Published: Thu, July 12, 2018
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

Ryanair pilots' strike after last-ditch talks fail

Ryanair pilots' strike after last-ditch talks fail

The statement went on: "We have tried to avert this disruption, which is unnecessary given Ryanair pilots' and their union FORSA has received written proposals on seniority, annual leave and base transfers, which are what FORSA claims are the reasons for this strike, yet FORSA has rejected 21 separate invitations to meet Ryanair to negotiate these documents".

Last autumn, Ryanair was forced to cancel hundreds of flights after rostering failures left the airline with insufficient crew.

It is the result of a strike by pilots who are due to walk out for 24 hours from 01:00 BST on Thursday.

Ryanair's refusal to recognise unions was at the heart of the model that transformed the small Irish regional airline into Europe's largest carrier by passenger numbers.

The talks aimed at resolving the dispute broke down on Wednesday after seven hours of discussions.

The cancellations are all on high frequency routes between Ireland and United Kingdom destinations including London, where passengers can easily switch to alternative flights.

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Ryanair said it has contacted passengers affected by the strike by text and email and they will be offered a refund.

"We will do this by cancelling a number of flights on high-frequency routes from Ireland to London and other United Kingdom province destinations where customers can transfer readily to other flights on Thurs or switch their travel to Friday, Saturday or subsequent days".

The pilots' union Fórsa, of which the Irish Airline Pilots' Association (IALPA) is a branch, had earlier said it was not optimistic that a deal could be reached to avert the strike.

A statement released by all four unions that are representing the cabin crews said: "We call on the European Commission, and the governments of every European country where Ryanair operates, to act upon the social dumping performed by the Irish low-priced carrier and to enforce the EU employment and national imperative legislation".

Unions have said further action may follow if the airline does not make concessions on some employment terms.

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