Air traffic

Aer Lingus flights affected by air traffic control strikes

Aer Lingus had to cancel 12 flights yesterday and three more today due to air traffic control strikes in France, Italy and Spain as well as a Covid outbreak among its staff.

The airline has apologized for the cancellations.

In a statement, Aer Lingus said it had anticipated the return of travel demand once Covid restrictions were lifted and had built appropriate buffers into its plans to cope with a reasonable level of further disruption.

“Over the weekend, pressure on the system from ATC strikes and ongoing issues at airports and third-party providers unfortunately necessitated the cancellation of some flights,” the airline said.

“This strain on the system has been compounded by a spike in Covid cases among our own teams over the past few days,” he added.

The airline, which is owned by IAG, said that in the event of a cancellation, it seeks to rehabilitate disturbed passengers on the next available alternative service.

Meanwhile, Ryanair said less than 2% of its scheduled flights between Friday and Sunday were affected by cabin crew strikes, the airline said.

Ryanair cabin crew unions in Belgium, Spain, Portugal, France and Italy had announced action plans over the weekend, with crews in Spain set to strike again on June 30 and July 1 and 2.

“Less than 2% of Ryanair’s 9,000 flights operated this weekend (June 24/25/26) were affected by minor and poorly supported crew strikes,” Ryanair said in a statement.

Unions said the airline failed to comply with local labor laws covering issues such as minimum wages and urged management to improve working conditions.

Ryanair, which told Reuters last week it had negotiated working arrangements covering 90% of its staff across Europe, says it offers staff competitive and fair terms.

He said he did not expect widespread disruption this summer.