Apparently management and the union were so far off in what they were willing to settle for that they ended up following through with the strike, which starts today and could last up to a week.
The Independent Flight Attendant’s Organization (UFO) has announced strike action for all Lufthansa flights from/ to Frankfurt and Dusseldorf on Friday, 6.11.2015 between 14.00 and 23.00 and Saturday, 7.11.2015 between 6.00 and 23.00 for all flights from/to Dusseldorf and for all flights operated with A319, A320, A321 and B737 from/to Frankfurt.
All intercontinental flights on 7.11.2015 will operate as scheduled.
Flights to and from Munich are not affected by the strike.
Flights operated by Lufthansa CityLine, Germanwings, Eurowings, Air Dolomiti, Austrian Airlines, SWISS and Brussels Airlines are not affected by potential strike actions and will therefore run as planned.
Lufthansa will do its utmost to keep the effects of a strike to a minimum and to inform passengers as soon as possible. For that reason, Lufthansa requests all passengers early on to stay up-to-date by checking the flight status on LH.com.
A total of almost ten per cent of all flights of the Lufthansa Group have to be cancelled due to the union’s strike today. Out of a total of 3,000 planned connections, 290 flights are cancelled, including 15 intercontinental flights to and from Frankfurt and Dusseldorf.
Lufthansa regrets any inconveniences caused by the strike.
- Friday (today), all Lufthansa 737 and Airbus A319/320/321 flights to/from Frankfurt/Dusseldorf will be canceled between 2PM and 11PM
- Saturday (tomorrow), all Lufthansa 737 and Airbus A319/320/321 flights to/from Frankfurt/Dusseldorf will be canceled between 6AM and 11PM
Lufthansa is getting creative and diverting some longhaul flights to Munich so that passengers with onwards connections won’t be stranded. For example, today’s A380 flight from Shanghai to Frankfurt diverted to Munich to drop off passengers, before continuing to Frankfurt
The union doesn’t plan on striking in Munich or on Sunday, because they don’t want leisure travelers to get stranded. Via NDTV:
However, Lufthansa’s Munich hub would not be affected at all this weekend, given that there were still school holidays in the southern regional states of Bavaria and Baden-Wuerttemberg, it explained.
In addition, “no industrial action is planned at all on Sunday since most people travelling that day will be doing so in a private capacity,” UFO said.
Well that’s… kind of them.
Nothing has been scheduled for early next week yet, though Lufthansa continues to allow free rebookings for flights through November 13, 2015.
Ultimately I respect the right of collective bargaining, and I’m not well versed enough on the situation to take a union vs. management side. At the same time, tens of thousands of people will be stranded, the airline will lose tens of millions of dollars, all the flight attendants’ colleagues (pilots, airport staff, reservations agents, etc.) will be significantly inconvenienced, and I still don’t get how they’ll actually be further along in their negotiations than when they began?
There has gotta be a better way (not that I know what it is… but there has to be).