Lufthansa Flight Attendants to Strike Across Germany Friday, Hundreds of Flights Cancelled
Lufthansa’s main flight attendant union, the Unabhängige Flugbegleiter Organisation (UFO), announced plans for a 24-hour strike on Friday, September 7. The strike will impact all 16 German airports served by Lufthansa.
This is the latest and most severe of the flight attendant union’s actions, the first of which cancelled over 300 flights at Frankfurt am Main airport and continued Tuesday at Frankfurt, Munich and Berlin’s Tegel airports, with over 350 cancellations and 26,000 passengers left stranded.
Lufthansa plans to post a list of flights that will be cancelled on Friday on its website by Wednesday evening, and warns of unannounced cancellations and significant delays for flights that are not cancelled in advance.
Flights on subsidiary airlines including Germanwings should not be impacted , as the labor dispute only involves employees of Lufthansa’s main business unit. Customers whose flights are cancelled will be rebooked on a later flight, or if travelling within Germany may opt to travel via Deutsche Bahn rail service. Deutsche Bahn plans to add capacity ahead of Friday’s strike in anticipation of displaced Lufthansa passengers. Lufthansa warns that effects will continue past the end of this action.
Deutsche Lufthansa and the UFO have been at odds over pay increases and working conditions for over a year, with talks officially breaking down early last week. In addition to pay increases, the UFO is objecting to Lufthansa’s use of temporary and contract workers on flight crews and plans to eliminate as many as 3,500 jobs. Lufthansa is in similar talks with pilot union Cockpit and ground crew union Ver.di, whose March strike cancelled over 400 flights across Germany. The German flag carrier cites economic difficulties stemming from increased competition from low-cost and Middle Eastern carriers and high fuel costs.
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