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LHR/LGW pilots (BALPA) industrial action 9 Sep, 10 Sep, and 27 Sep

LHR/LGW pilots (BALPA) industrial action 9 Sep, 10 Sep, and 27 Sep

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Old Aug 23, 19, 8:25 pm   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Quick answers to FAQ:

Help! What do I do now?
Most importantly, don't panic and don't do anything in haste. Read these FAQ. Read the thread, particularly the posts starting from the time that the strike dates were announced. Identify your options. Think about what works for you. Then take action. If you do anything in haste, you may have thrown away good options, or you may have thrown away money that you needn't have spent.

NOTE: 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 MMB then you don't need to take further action. A cancelled flight should be shown in MMB 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.

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 BA's 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?
LHR and LGW based flights. Not LCY or STN 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 the 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 have been announced, see post 1551 below for more information: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/brit...l#post31451055

and BA Trade Site guidance here: https://www.britishairways.com/en-gb...kba?faqid=7594

Rebooking is now allowed on Iberia, AA, Finnair, JAL and Qatar. Within Europe EI and Vueling are also allowed. This is for both revenue and redemption flights.

and the FAQ on BA.com here (this includes information on BA Holidays bookings which are substantially different): https://www.britishairways.com/en-gb...st-information

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 BA 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.
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Old Jun 11, 19, 7:59 pm
  #16  
 
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Originally Posted by gengar View Post
Purely out of curiosity - what is the issue with the LAS nightstop from LGW? IIRC the LHR service has crew returning the following day as well?
We’ve always done a nightstop LAS on MF. I believe though, that LGW has something in their agreement that says anything longer than so many hours has to be at least 2 local nights and LAS falls under this; which the company has essentially shrugged its shoulders at.
This might be completely wrong, crewmours are simply that and we don’t get the full picture on other fleets.
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Old Jun 11, 19, 8:10 pm
  #17  
 
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Originally Posted by gengar View Post
Purely out of curiosity - what is the issue with the LAS nightstop from LGW? IIRC the LHR service has crew returning the following day as well?
The crew (and indeed BA) sees the opportunity to spend time down-route as an essential perk of the job. It's marketed as such to job seekers.

There are posters on this board who would be absolutely furious if their employer found a way to impound all the work-related frequent flyer points, in other words, take their semi-free holidays away. In effect, this is what BA has done to its crew.
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Old Jun 11, 19, 8:11 pm
  #18  
 
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Originally Posted by Warszawiak View Post
Hi, long time reader but first poster. First and foremost, thank you to all for the informative posts. I've learned a lot from reading them.

​​​​​​The last time that I had the opportunity to fly BA (to Warsaw) they went of strike and my flight was cancelled a couple of times. Could not go on my annual holiday last year through no fault of my own. Now I'm due to fly out on 14 July and they're threatening to strike again! I need to read the EC261 thread now. Last time BA said that I was not entitled to compensation due to strikes being out of their control.

​​​​​
Use travel insurance to rebook on EasyJet? Or sue BA and see what the County Court thinks of their excuse?
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Old Jun 11, 19, 8:49 pm
  #19  
 
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Originally Posted by MFCC View Post
We’ve always done a nightstop LAS on MF. I believe though, that LGW has something in their agreement that says anything longer than so many hours has to be at least 2 local nights and LAS falls under this; which the company has essentially shrugged its shoulders at.
This might be completely wrong, crewmours are simply that and we don’t get the full picture on other fleets.

Thank you for the info.
Originally Posted by cauchy View Post
The crew (and indeed BA) sees the opportunity to spend time down-route as an essential perk of the job. It's marketed as such to job seekers.

There are posters on this board who would be absolutely furious if their employer found a way to impound all the work-related frequent flyer points, in other words, take their semi-free holidays away. In effect, this is what BA has done to its crew.
Totally understand that part of the issue and do not disagree with the sentiment - was mainly wondering the issue specific to LGW (vs., say LHR).
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Old Jun 12, 19, 12:10 am
  #20  
 
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Originally Posted by SonTech View Post
What gets me with unions in general is that they always want more when a company does well but as soon as the company hits trouble they don't want to do anything to help.
I think you’ve confused Unions with Directors.
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Old Jun 12, 19, 12:27 am
  #21  
 
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Originally Posted by Warszawiak View Post
Hi, long time reader but first poster. First and foremost, thank you to all for the informative posts. I've learned a lot from reading them.

​​​​​​The last time that I had the opportunity to fly BA (to Warsaw) they went of strike and my flight was cancelled a couple of times. Could not go on my annual holiday last year through no fault of my own. Now I'm due to fly out on 14 July and they're threatening to strike again! I need to read the EC261 thread now. Last time BA said that I was not entitled to compensation due to strikes being out of their control.

​​​​​
Ryanair tried that argument, and lost. It was deemed airlines are (at least) partially responsible for dire industrial relations, therefore must compensate disrupted passengers.
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Old Jun 12, 19, 1:02 am
  #22  
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Originally Posted by Warszawiak View Post
Hi, long time reader but first poster. First and foremost, thank you to all for the informative posts. I've learned a lot from reading them.

​​​​​​The last time that I had the opportunity to fly BA (to Warsaw) they went of strike and my flight was cancelled a couple of times. Could not go on my annual holiday last year through no fault of my own. Now I'm due to fly out on 14 July and they're threatening to strike again! I need to read the EC261 thread now. Last time BA said that I was not entitled to compensation due to strikes being out of their control.​​​​​
Welcome to Flyertalk and welcome to the BA forum Warszawiak. It's good to see you here and I hope we will see more of you.

I would keep an eye on the forum over the next couple of weeks, if there was to be a strike on 14 July the law in the UK requires unions to give notification within certain deadlines. There needs to be a specific postal ballot (of a workforce that travels rather a lot) and 7 days notice minimum, so personally I think your particular date will be OK, we are nearly out of time for that already. EC261 has changed in the last year or so, thanks to industrial relations problems on German airlines. Airlines now have to pay compensation for delays due to their own workforce going on strike, and on the limited data range so far, what BA does is a cancel a quantity of flights more than 2 weeks off such that they know they can run the rest of the schedule, and allow people to rebook on services which continue to operate. Particularly if your trip starts in North America then alternative routings will become possible via AA, Aer Lingus, Iberia and Finnair. So in summary if you haven't heard differently by about 2 July then you can assume your flights will operate.
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Old Jun 12, 19, 1:09 am
  #23  
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Originally Posted by cauchy View Post
The crew (and indeed BA) sees the opportunity to spend time down-route as an essential perk of the job. It's marketed as such to job seekers.
I expect it's not just spending time in exotic locations which is the issue. BA crew are paid a flat rate per hour from when they sign on for duty, and when they sign off. So an extra night means an extra 24 hours of pay.
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Old Jun 12, 19, 3:43 am
  #24  
 
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What would be the rough timescales for this please, e.g. the earliest it could happen, got a few flights through Gatwick over the next few months? Thanks
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Old Jun 12, 19, 4:07 am
  #25  
 
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Originally Posted by hungry View Post


Ryanair tried that argument, and lost. It was deemed airlines are (at least) partially responsible for dire industrial relations, therefore must compensate disrupted passengers.
As far as I know the case hasn't been settled yet
https://www.ch-aviation.com/portal/n...nsation-claims
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Old Jun 12, 19, 4:37 am
  #26  
 
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Originally Posted by MFCC View Post


We’ve always done a nightstop LAS on MF. I believe though, that LGW has something in their agreement that says anything longer than so many hours has to be at least 2 local nights and LAS falls under this; which the company has essentially shrugged its shoulders at.
This might be completely wrong, crewmours are simply that and we don’t get the full picture on other fleets.
Is that to say the MF crew out of Gatwick are upset they not have to spend 2 nights rather than 1? Or that policy says it should be 2 nights but because BA have historically only done 1 stop then that’s all they’re doing?
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Old Jun 12, 19, 4:50 am
  #27  
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Different fleets have different agreements, BA are not following the LGW agreement with regard to the LAS route.
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Old Jun 12, 19, 5:18 am
  #28  
 
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
Welcome to Flyertalk and welcome to the BA forum Warszawiak. It's good to see you here and I hope we will see more of you.

I would keep an eye on the forum over the next couple of weeks, if there was to be a strike on 14 July the law in the UK requires unions to give notification within certain deadlines. There needs to be a specific postal ballot (of a workforce that travels rather a lot) and 7 days notice minimum, so personally I think your particular date will be OK, we are nearly out of time for that already. EC261 has changed in the last year or so, thanks to industrial relations problems on German airlines. Airlines now have to pay compensation for delays due to their own workforce going on strike, and on the limited data range so far, what BA does is a cancel a quantity of flights more than 2 weeks off such that they know they can run the rest of the schedule, and allow people to rebook on services which continue to operate. Particularly if your trip starts in North America then alternative routings will become possible via AA, Aer Lingus, Iberia and Finnair. So in summary if you haven't heard differently by about 2 July then you can assume your flights will operate.
Thanks for the words of encouragement. I am indeed flying from North America (KBWI) and contrary to what some posters think, I actually prefer BA metal and flight crew so I sincerely hope that my flight through LHR will not be affected.

​​​​

Last edited by Warszawiak; Jun 12, 19 at 5:36 am
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Old Jun 12, 19, 6:18 am
  #29  
 
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BA has a serious challenge on its hands given its broad cabin crew contracts and scheduling agreements trying to work alongside each other. Introducing updated crew contracts was understandable in the operating environment but this decision was very risky and I suspect noise levels will get a lot worse as staff on newer contracts become established and don’t leave as quickly as BA might have thought.

As I understand it, legacy crew contracts (Heathrow base?) protect staff Ts and Cs but are more restrictive on the company in terms of crew flex. BA appears to have introduced contracts at the other end of the spectrum for new staff and even regional bases - and I think Gatwick is considered regional! Staff doing the same job, working similar routes and contributing to a profit making organisation but treated very, very differently. It sounds as if the legacy contracts are impossible to renegotiate which creates a two tier system for exactly same job and some staff left at a disadvantage.
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Old Jun 12, 19, 9:06 am
  #30  
 
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Originally Posted by icegirl View Post
Unions have their place , but when they throw in statements like " Exhausted Employees " it makes them sound like children. The FAs don't have a hard job in flight. They get to work in a clean , climate controlled atmosphere , in a comfortable uniform , and they get breaks and nappy time. The flights average @ 10:30 min from LGW-LAS-LGW . Then they get to rest 20+ hours in between ( which most don't take full advantage of ). This should not be exhausting to anyone that is here " FOR YOUR SAFETY " and physically fit. There are countless physically demanding jobs where 12+ hours are the standard in very hot / cold climates. The work clothing can be very hot and heavy and the breaks are short without any nappy time unless you want to get fired.

I am not trying to belittle the FAs job and I respect them but they need to muzzle some of their Union leadership. I would also like 2 nights in Las Vegas. If it is part of my contract , damn right I what it , but don't cheapen the debate with foolish assertions. I have been on both sides of union negotiations and statements have a big impact on public sentiment.
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