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British Airways Pilots Are Going on Strike. Here’s Everything You Need to Know

New Thread: Practical Assistance for Those Affected by British Airways’ Strikes

Update 8/24:

Some emails have been sent out by mistake notifying the cancellation of flights on 8 September and other dates. If your booking still looks OK in Manage My Bookings then you don’t need to take further action. A cancelled flight should be shown in Manage My Bookings with struck-through text. If your flight details are not struck through, then it probably hasn’t actually been cancelled. You could check ba.com to see whether BA is still taking reservations for the flight in question. If so, then the flight has not been cancelled. You may also try checking on ExpertFlyer, if you have access, to see whether your flight appears still to be operating and whether BA is still taking reservations. However, some afternoon/evening flights on 8 September have genuinely been cancelled. See main thread for details.

Original Post:

In the conclusion of what has been a protracted period of headline-grabbing negotiations, it appears that BLPA, British Airways’ pilot’s union, is going on strike. The action is scheduled to take place. Will your upcoming flights be affected? How long will the strike last? You can find most of the answers to your questions in this short list of FAQ’s from the British Airways forum:

Has a strike been called yet?
Yes. BALPA, the pilots’ union, has voted in favour of strike action, and the Court of Appeal has rejected British Airways’ submission to have the poll set aside, so the legal process is now over. The two parties went back into talks after the legal proceedings and those talks were expected to continue into the week of 5 August.

BALPA on 23 Aug announced strikes on Monday 9 September Tuesday 10 September and Friday 27 September.

Any further strikes normally require 2 weeks notice under UK legislation.

What flights may be affected?
Heathrow Airport and Gatwick Airport based flights. Not London City Airport or London Stansted Airport flights. Both cabin and flight crew are in dispute with BA, but the pilots (captains, senior first officers, first officers) are closest to strike action.

How long would a strike last?
The initial strikes are for two days then a single day, with normal working in between. Any other strikes could be of any length. It would be rare in the UK for there to be a full time strike.

What would happen to my flights if it is a strike day?
A range of options will usually be announced. See this forum post for more information.

You’ll find British Airways Trade Site guidance here, and the FAQ on BA.com here (this includes information on BA Holidays bookings which are substantially different) here.

Can I do anything with an existing booking now?
Yes. Your options are different depending on whether your flights are currently showing as cancelled or not. See the links above.

What about Heathrow staff – aren’t their strikes planned there too?
Yes there is a separate dispute at the moment between Heathrow Airport (HAL) and their staff such as those who operate the security checkpoints. See the separate thread on the issue.

Am I protected by EC261 if there is a problem?
You are always covered by the Right to Care provisions of Regulation EC261. You could potentially be able to claim compensation for delays, cancellations and downgrades caused by British Airways staff action too, but not for HAL strikes (for cancellations only if there is flight is less than 14 day’s notice). See the main EC261 thread in the BA Forum Dashboard.

British Airways has released this statement on the strike action:


Check back here, or in this forum thread, for more information as we receive it.