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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Lufthansa Pilots to Wreak Travel Chaos With 24-Hour Strike Planned For Friday

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After a deal during last-ditch salary negotiations fell down, Lufthansa pilots have stated that they will strike for 24 hours on Friday, September 2.

With strong backing from the pilot community, the walkout is expected to bring the airline to a halt. Following protracted negotiations, nearly all of the pilots represented by the Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) union decided to go on strike last month.

Matthias Baier, a VC spokesperson said the union had exhausted all avenues before calling a strike. “Aware of our responsibility for the company (Lufthansa) and guests, we did not want to leave any stone unturned and offered another negotiation date,” Baier said on Wednesday evening.

“We have not received a sufficient offer today (Wednesday) either. This is sobering and a missed opportunity. The negotiations have failed.”

The union issued a warning last week, stating that the demands of the pilots and Lufthansa’s concessions were “too far apart.”

On September 2, the strike is scheduled to begin at 1:00 am and end at 11:59 pm. Due to aircraft and pilots being out of position, the strike’s impacts are likely to be felt all day Thursday and into the early hours of Saturday.

When Lufthansa’s ground staff went on a one-day warning strike in July, the airline was forced to cancel nearly the entire schedule from its hubs in Frankfurt and Munich, which resulted in the cancellation of at least 1,000 flights and the stranding of 134,000 passengers.

The previous 48-hour walkout by Lufthansa employees occurred in November 2016, and 1,700 flights were canceled as a result. The most recent strike is expected to be the German carrier’s 15th since 2014.

In order to stop the walkout, Lufthansa must “present a significantly improved offer,” according to Marcel Gröls, Chairman of Tariff Policy of VC.

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