Ryanair cancels flights as pilots walk out for historic strike

Ryanair cancelled flights pilot strike

Customers were informed of the cancellation of 30 Britain-bound flights.

Flights between Ireland and the United Kingdom are the only ones impacted by the strike action, but a significant number of passengers have been affected.

More than 5,000 Ryanair customers have been left with cancelled flights as a result.

"All customers on these flights have received text and email notification of these cancellations earlier today and our Customer Service teams are assisting them with refunds, free transfers to alternative flights on Thurs, or Wed, Fri and Saturday". For customers travelling to the United Kingdom we will also be assisting them with alternative transport on comparable operators (both flights and ferries) where there is some limited space available.

Flights from Dublin to Gatwick, Birmingham, Newcastle, Liverpool, Bristol and Manchester have all been affected.

Why are pilots on strike?

Despite a history of hostility towards unions, the airline eventually agreed to recognise them in December.

According to a statement from Ryanair, the meeting lasted for seven hours.

The pilots' union Fórsa, of which the Irish Airline Pilots' Association (IALPA) is a branch, had earlier said it was not optimistic that a deal could be reached to avert the strike.

Ryanair and union officials met for talks on Wednesday which ended without agreement.

On Twitter, Ryanair said: "We respect but regret the decision of 25% of our Irish pilots to go on strike, but believe that they should take up our offer of working groups so we can resolve these issues".

The airline has apologised for the "regrettable disruptions", saying it was trying to minimise the strike's impact on people travelling to Portugal, France, Spain, Italy and Greece. German pilots are expected to vote over a pay and working conditions dispute later this month.

The airline has said it "expects limited disruption" in addition to the cancelled flights.

Ryanair is facing its first day of industrial action in Ireland since the airline bowed to pressure from staff and recognised trades unions.

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