Spanish Airline Strike Leads To Hundreds Of Flight Cancellations

Cabin staff of the Spanish Iberia Airline went on a 48-hour strike, major to more than 400 flights being cancelled and thousands of passengers getting inconvenienced.

Cancelled flights contain domestic, European as well as trans-Atlantic flights. Over 440 flights out of 2000 have been grounded. This strike has been called by the unions CTA and SITCPLA, in protest of a four-year pay freeze for around four,300 cabin employees. An additional result in for protest is that other Iberia workers, for instance pilots, have noticed wages rise in the meantime while their own keep stagnant.

Iberia has expressed its regret that labor unions should demand spend increases, especially in view of the dismal scene in the aviation sector all through the globe. The strikers have refused to back down, nonetheless, and have planned additional stoppages for November ten and 11.

Worst affected was Madrid’s Barajas airport, where more than 200 flights failed to take off as 600+ workers joined the staff strike. Passengers have been deeply inconvenienced by the strike, and some are tremendously enraged at Iberia for refusing to pay for an extra day’s hotel keep triggered by the strike. Even so, Iberia has promised to offer option flight dates or to refund the tickets.

Nevertheless, Madrid’s inflation price is really high at the moment – the official figure is among three.six and 4 per cent, which is 1 of the highest in all of Europe. This puts the workers in a position where living slowly grows closer to the untenable, especially in view of the jobs becoming lost in the international recession and added stress on the earning members of the family.

It is not identified but how this will influence the downward spiral in Spanish tourism. Spain is performing all that it can to revive this failing market, such as a deal with English football club Liverpool providing the Spanish Tourism Board (Turespana) international rights to promoting Spain as a travel destination.

In order to revive its flagging enterprise, Iberia Airlines have also considered other choices, amongst which are:

* A merger with the equally fragile British Airways, which seems to have fallen by means of as a result of the current airline strike

* A code sharing agreement with GOL, a carrier primarily based in Sao Paulo, Brazil. This is aimed at enhancing access to the Brazilian, Spanish-speaking market place. If this is implemented, the two organizations will also share Frequent Flyer points, resulting in a stronger loyalty program.

These are all parts of a structural overhaul designed to counter the steeply declining revenues caused by the worldwide recession. Other components of this overhaul contain –

* creating a new subsidiary airline by 2011 that will deal with its brief-haul and medium-haul flights.

* Pay freeze all through the firm for 2010 and 2011, or till the new airline is in operation.

* Laying off cabin staff above the age of 55, amounting to about 200 ground staff.

* Saving up to 37 million euros a year in 2011 and 2012 in overhead charges.

The major constructive fallout of Iberia’s restructuring and Spain’s declining tourism is that this is an very profitable time to travel in Spain. With Spanish hotels and airlines providing packages at all-time low rates, this becomes the ideal time to capitalize on the opportunity.
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