A strike on three consecutive days would be one of the biggest walkouts in Lufthansa’s history. More than 425,000 passengers are likely to be affected. Pilots of the Group airlines: Swiss International Air Lines, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Eurowings, Lufthansa CityLine and Air Dolomiti are not participating in the strike.
Due to the strike announced by the pilots’ union Vereinigung Cockpit (VC), Lufthansa, Lufthansa Cargo and Germanwings have canceled approximately 3,800 flights on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (April 2–4). During the three day walkout of the cockpit crew, only about 500 Lufthansa short and long haul flights will be operated. The list of canceled flights is published on www.LH.com. Information for Germanwings passengers is available on www.germanwings.com.
Flight cancellations on such a massive scale will affect a total of 425,000 passengers. Lufthansa will inform all passengers who have registered their contact details in their booking or in their Miles & More profile about flight changes via text message and email. Most of the remaining domestic and European flights will be flown by the daughter companies, Eurowings and Lufthansa Cityline, whose pilots are not participating in the walkout.
In addition to Lufthansa Passenger Airlines, Lufthansa Cargo will also be affected. For the three strike days, 23 of 31 planned cargo flights from Frankfurt have already been canceled.
The pilots of the daughter companies, Swiss International Air Lines, Austrian Airlines, Eurowings, Lufthansa CityLine and Air Dolomiti, as well as the pilots of Brussels Airlines, will not participate in the strike. Where possible, these companies will use larger planes on routes from and to Germany in order to bring as many rebooked Lufthansa passengers as possible to their destinations.
Additionally, Lufthansa will re-book affected passengers on other airlines and will provide train tickets on domestic routes in cooperation with German Railways (Deutsche Bahn). Airline tickets can be exchanged for a train ticket at automated check-ins or on the Internet. Information on how to exchange Germanwings flight tickets for train tickets is available onwww.germanwings.com/aktuell.
For further questions Lufthansa customers in the United States can also use the toll free service telephone number: 1-800-645-3880. Toll free numbers for other countries can be found at www.lufthansa.com/de/en/Travel-information. Already since last Friday, passengers can re-book or cancel flights at no cost for the period of April 2-4, 2014.
“I greatly regret that the Vereinigung Cockpit is not prepared to settle this by negotiations and to find a solution without engaging in a labor dispute. We made good offers for an improved salary as well as a future provision for early leave from flight service,” said Dr. Bettina Volkens, Member of the Executive Board Legal and Personnel of the Lufthansa Group. “Based on this, it is difficult to understand that the VC union is calling for a three-day strike right away - both for our customers and the more than one hundred thousand colleagues of the other Lufthansa employee groups. We will do our best to care for our customers during the strike. I want to thank in advance all employees that will go above and beyond what is normal and give their best for our customers and for the Company,” Volkens added.
Lufthansa is preparing a number of actions to minimize the impact, as far as possible, on its passengers. For example, in Frankfurt and Munich additional employees will be in the terminal to take care of passengers. In the Lufthansa service centers, capacities were already significantly increased. Passengers are requested to visithttps://www.lufthansa.com/xx/en/My-Bookings and check the status of their flight before leaving for the airport.
In total, a three-day pilot strike would alone, for Lufthansa German Airlines, have a negative impact on profit in the range of tens of millions of euros. The announcement has already caused significant damages since passengers have already rebooked flights and logistic customers have made arrangements with other cargo airlines to secure the transport of their goods.