Monday, 30th October 2017

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Strike disrupts British Airways flights

“Nearly 100 per cent” of BA flights have been cancelled because of a two-day strike by some 4,000 of its pilots

By Amit Roy in London
  • Published 10.09.19, 2:07 AM
  • Updated 10.09.19, 2:07 AM
  • a min read
  •  
The 48-hour strike by BA pilots, who want a bigger share of the airline’s profits, began at midnight on Sunday, with another planned for September 27 if the dispute is not settled by then Shutterstock

Flying out to either Delhi or Mumbai from London in the next few days is going to prove very difficult because “nearly 100 per cent” of British Airways flights have been cancelled because of a two-day strike by some 4,000 of its pilots.

A travel agent told The Telegraph: “We have a seat on Tuesday at £389 one way on Air India but because of the British Airways strike, passengers are trying to rebook with Air India and, therefore, seats are very limited.”

The 48-hour strike by BA pilots, who want a bigger share of the airline’s profits, began at midnight on Sunday, with another planned for September 27 if the dispute is not settled by then.

BA, which describes itself as “the world’s favourite airline”, has cancelled some 1,700 flights on Monday and Tuesday, disrupting the travel plans of 195,000 passengers.

Flights are not expected to return to normal on Wednesday because many of the aircraft will be in the wrong locations. On Monday, Terminal 5 at Heathrow, which is the BA base, resembled “a ghost town”, several passengers said.

The irony is that BA, which has painted some of its aircraft in the livery of the old BOAC to recall the glory days of the past, should currently be celebrating the 100th anniversary of founding of the airline.

BA has offered a pay rise of 11.5 per cent over three years which has been accepted by other employees. The airline says this will take the pay of some captains to more than £200,000 after three years but this figure is disputed by Balpa (British Airline Pilots’ Association), the pilots’ union, which claims the base salary is closer to £100,000. Their main argument is that they absorbed cuts when times were bad and want a bigger share of the profits when times are good.