RyanAir pilot strike grounds 400 flights across Europe

Ryanair strike Pilots in the Netherlands to join Europe-wide strikes on Friday

The German pilots will join colleagues in Sweden, Belgium and Ireland to stage a 24-hour walkout that will cancel hundreds of flights.

Germany's powerful Cockpit union (VC) held a press conference in Frankfurt on 8 August, explaining that 96% of Ryanair pilots in Germany voted in favour of industrial action.

Which flights are affected by the Ryanair strike?

"Ryanair alone is responsible for the escalation we are now seeing", Locher insisted.

The union said that while pilots appreciated the carrier's five days on, four days off rotas, they wanted to change the large variable component in salaries and also alter Ryanair's practice of moving staff between bases without much notice.

"The strike may go ahead", judge Theo Roell told the Haarlem District Court, where Ryanair had filed for an urgent court order to halt the industrial action.

The Belgian Cockpit Association's Alain Vanalderweireldt said the strike in Belgium "is the conclusion of six months of discussions between Ryanair and the union representatives that has led to nowhere concretely".

A spokesperson said: "Despite regrettable and unjustified strike action taking place in 5 of our 37 markets on Friday (10 Aug), over 2,000 Ryanair flights (85% of our schedule) will operate as normal tomorrow carrying nearly 400,000 customers across Europe".

A total of around 400 flights Europewide have been cancelled due to the strike action, AFP reported - equating to around 55,000 passengers.

Ryanair built its low-priced business model without unions, but said previous year it would recognise them.

The Ryanair spokesperson continued: "We will first try to accommodate you on the next available Ryanair flight on the same route".

"Ryanair said there is not one extra cent for personnel costs", he noted, adding that "therefore, no improvement is possible".

HSBC said it was seeing interest from investors looking to purchase Ryanair shares based on its valuation but argued that this was premature.

"Our pilots in Germany enjoy excellent working conditions".

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"We have made this crystal clear to Ryanair, who are well aware of their legal obligations, which includes how and when they should reroute passengers, along with the level of information it provides its passengers".

The famously low-budget company boasts lower costs per passenger than its competitors and is eyeing profits of around 1.25 billion euros this year.

Will Ryanair be offering compensation for travellers?

While the union wants to apply Belgian labor laws to employees, Ryanair is still applying Irish laws, he said.

Staff say this creates huge insecurity for them, blocking their access to state benefits in their country.

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