Pay dispute involving public sector workers at German airports forces Lufthansa to cancel flights – airline publishes special flight schedule
Member airlines of the Lufthansa Group are expecting considerable disruption to air travel for tomorrow, Thursday March 27th. The reason is a token strike organized by Verdi. According to media reports, this is likely to involve 6,000 Fraport workers at Frankfurt airport alone. Services are also likely to be disrupted at airports in Munich, Düsseldorf, Cologne-Bonn, Stuttgart, Hamburg and Hanover. As a result of the strike, Lufthansa is canceling almost all domestic and European flights previously scheduled for tomorrow before 2 PM at both Frankfurt and Munich. Exceptions include Germanwings flights and flights run by Lufthansa's regional subsidiaries to/from Munich. These flights will probably operate according to schedule, although delays or cancellations may still affect individual flights. Long-haul routes to and from Frankfurt and Munich are also affected. All passengers planning to embark on a flight either out of Germany or to Germany tomorrow are requested to visit www.lufthansa.comand check the status of their flight before leaving for the airport.
Lufthansa deeply regrets the major disruptions that its customers are likely to experience due to Thursday's strike action. The airline is making every effort possible to reduce the impact on its passengers to the absolute minimum.
Dr. Bettina Volkens, Chief Officer Corporate Human Resources and Legal Affairs, Deutsche Lufthansa AG: "As was the case with the token strike called by security staff in Frankfurt over a month ago, Verdi is quite prepared to exploit non-involved parties – whether individuals or companies – in the pursuit of union objectives. We particularly regret the fact that our customers will suffer as a result. Losses at the Lufthansa Group alone will also run into the millions – even though we play no part whatsoever in this pay dispute.”
“The current strike action once again demonstrates the powerlessness of the German legal system to shield non-involved parties from the effects of pay disputes. It is for this reason that we urgently require binding conditions to be agreed for critical transportation infrastructure in Germany – and for rail and air transportation in particular,” said Dr. Volkens.
Lufthansa: Best possible service for all customers
Passengers flying with Lufthansa are requested to check the status of their flight on the LH.com website before beginning their journey. Lufthansa will also make every effort to communicate changes via text and email to customers who have provided the company with their contact details.
All customers booked to fly on March 27 with Lufthansa to/from Frankfurt, Munich, Düsseldorf, Cologne-Bonn, Stuttgart, Hamburg or Hanover are offered a one-time free ticket re-booking if they wish to change their travel plans. For details, please visit Lufthansa's website at LH.com. Seat reservations are also free to cancel for all customers whose flights were canceled due to industrial action. Travelers booked to fly on a domestic Lufthansa flight within Germany can use Deutsche Bahn rail services if their flight is canceled. Passengers can exchange their flight reservation for a rail ticket at the check-in machines or online.
Lufthansa is also making preparations to maximize service quality for its customers. As one example, additional staff will be on hand to respond to passenger inquiries at Frankfurt. Passengers will also receive complimentary refreshments and snacks while they wait. Lufthansa also boosted call center staff numbers from Tuesday.
To improve the coordination of the anticipated queues of customers at Frankfurt Airport, Lufthansa and Fraport will be using colored zones to organize the departure halls. Each color will indicate a particular stage in ground handling. As one example, check-in screens colored purple will inform passengers about rebookings involving European destinations with no connecting flight. Additional staff for handling customer inquiries will wear appropriately-colored vests. This will ensure passengers can find their way around more quickly and easily