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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 Aug 16, 19, 10:11 am
  #1096  
 
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Originally Posted by subject2load View Post
@KeaneJohn - interesting update, thanks.

Like so many others with forward bookings, I am very much hoping for a no-strike settlement.

In making what they term a ‘final offer’ but one which was not readily accepted by the BALPA team, BA have taken a gamble ..... in fact, quite a significant one. The offer could prove to be adequate - in which case, all is well.

However .....if not ........ well, it seems to me that even the most junior pilots could survive as individuals / families for a number of weeks, on reduced pay (or even no pay at all) ; whereas the cost implications, and long-term damage, arising from even a very short strike would surely be rather more intolerable for BA as a worldwide business.

In the face of only a short period of chaos caused by strike action, the airline would, in all probability, be forced to move its position again, meaning further concessions. I guess I’m stating the obvious in saying that BA really need to think carefully as to whether if it’s really worth delaying the inevitable.
Look at the disruption the IT outage caused. BALPA could have issued strike dates like HAL did to focus BA a bit. From what I gather in this thread they reached deadlock previously, BALPA said they would issue strike dates and BA resumed a couple of days of talks. BA have upset the pilots by with the legal challenge and appeal and if BA have been hoping to avoid action over the Bank Holiday and centenary weekend they will have stirred up a hornets nest.

Whilst iI would say that pilots might be able to ride out not being paid a bit better than cabin crew it won’t take more than a couple of days tactical planning to decimate BAs flight schedule for a while. I really hope it doesn’t come to that but can’t second guess the outcome, it could go either way.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 10:11 am
  #1097  
 
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Originally Posted by nancypants View Post
Also are we genuinely saying there are zero line pilots who are not union members?

(i’ve said if above but I suppose bears repeating. Even if there is a vote for strike and a strike is called, individual employees do not have to strike- this applies regardless of how they voted. Similarly those voting not to strike are still allowed to strike)
The actual turnout will be up to individual members, but if what I have heard turns out to be reality not much will move.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 10:15 am
  #1098  
 
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Indications are - based on the ballot result itself - that a strike, IF implemented, would have very solid support.

Only time will tell of course, but at this stage it doesn’t seem remotely feasible that the airline could maintain any form of viable flight schedule. Even trying to do so would perhaps (??) end up causing more trouble than it’s worth.

In short I feel we would be very much into unknown territory.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 10:21 am
  #1099  
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Worrying times for all concerned, not least the ‘customers’. I hope some meaningful conversations ensue over the weekend, not least because we’re personally at T-16 for our next l/h sector!
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Old Aug 16, 19, 6:43 pm
  #1100  
 
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Originally Posted by rapidex View Post
Almost all are members. There are about 500 management pilots who are not members,
How many pilots are there employed by BA and roughly how many would be working on a typical day? I'm guessing more than 500 would be working on a typical day?
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Old Aug 16, 19, 6:54 pm
  #1101  
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Remember that BALPA told its members to only vote yes for industrial action if they were actually willing to go on strike.

so given the 90%+ vote in favour of a strike I don’t see a lot of strike breakers appearing.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 11:41 pm
  #1102  
 
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There are actually very few management pilots, trainers are not management. Also any pilot can be a union member, there is no exclusion from membership just because a pilot holds a management position. BA have c 4500 pilots.
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Old Aug 17, 19, 12:11 am
  #1103  
 
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Originally Posted by T8191 View Post
Worrying times for all concerned, not least the ‘customers’. I hope some meaningful conversations ensue over the weekend, not least because we’re personally at T-16 for our next l/h sector!
Agreed. We have a l/h flight on Sept 7 that is fairly essential. No hope of getting anything comparable at this late date. I have been watching this with interest not knowing what to do so it is getting a bit worrying that they won’t come to any agreement and we will be stuck. Fingers crossed the offer is a good one.
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Old Aug 17, 19, 1:58 am
  #1104  
 
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Originally Posted by ATCOlad View Post
My outbound fight on 30th now safe 🙏 I don’t particularly mind if they leave me in Barbados 😂 but very hopeful for a resolution at this stage 🤞
We fly on the 30th also. Been checking here several times a day and the Balpa media page / twitter! Also don’t mind if we get hassle on the return leg.
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Old Aug 17, 19, 3:15 am
  #1105  
 
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Hypothetically, if a strike is called for 2nd September, and one is flying on 2nd September, would one be able to move said flight to 1st September if there is availability? I'm assuming BA Gold will have priority to rebook? with Silver and Bronze following.

I am considering extending my Hotel two days prior, as I have free cancellation T-24h. I'm happy to pay for an extra night's accommodation at my own expense if it means I would avoid missing my trip entirely!
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Old Aug 17, 19, 3:20 am
  #1106  
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Originally Posted by Sailbot3310 View Post
Hypothetically, if a strike is called for 2nd September, and one is flying on 2nd September, would one be able to move said flight to 1st September if there is availability? I'm assuming BA Gold will have priority to rebook? with Silver and Bronze following.
It depends on BA's guidance, which they won't issue until the risk of a strike is very high. But yes, typically bringing a trip forward would be allowed. More details in the wiki and its hyperlink to post 238. Golds wouldn't have any priority, it will be first come, first served, however typically Golds can get an agent's assistance faster than those without status.
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Old Aug 19, 19, 1:27 am
  #1107  
 
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Thanks so much for your help c-w-s.

So far my outbound BNA-LHR-GLA at the end of the week is safe, but I may be stranded for a couple of days upon my return in early September. Can't think of anywhere I'd rather be stuck out for a couple of days, and thankfully I thought to purchase trip insurance, so I'm watching with a mixture of curiosity and glee.
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Old Aug 19, 19, 3:12 am
  #1108  
 
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Hi all, I was hoping to get some advice on this.

I'm due to fly from LGW -> MCO on 7 September. I'm concerned about the risk of strike impacting my flight.

Because of this I've made a backup plan and reserved flights with United that include a connection. The flights are reserved for 7 days as of last night, which means I have up until 10pm 25 August to book.

My understanding is that BALPA must give BA 14 days notice of a strike. Does the above reservation with United mean I'm covering myself adequately? E.g. the latest the strike could be announced to impact my flight would be 23 August, so the fact that I have backup flights reserved until 25 September mean I should be okay if it came to that?

Thanks in advance!
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Old Aug 19, 19, 3:35 am
  #1109  
 
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Originally Posted by samfrost93 View Post
Hi all, I was hoping to get some advice on this.

I'm due to fly from LGW -> MCO on 7 September. I'm concerned about the risk of strike impacting my flight.

Because of this I've made a backup plan and reserved flights with United that include a connection. The flights are reserved for 7 days as of last night, which means I have up until 10pm 25 August to book.

My understanding is that BALPA must give BA 14 days notice of a strike. Does the above reservation with United mean I'm covering myself adequately? E.g. the latest the strike could be announced to impact my flight would be 23 August, so the fact that I have backup flights reserved until 25 September mean I should be okay if it came to that?

Thanks in advance!
My Understanding is that from 00:01 on Sunday 25th August your flight on Saturday 7th September will be safe.

I also believe from following this thread closely that just because a strike is called, does not mean your flight will automatically be affected. You may not know if your flight is affected until nearer the time, which could mean you hold two flights that are both going ahead. You'd only receive a refund/compensation if your flight was actually cancelled (Which is might not be, even if a strike hits your dates).

I might be a bit wrong, I'm still trying to learn the ropes as an amateur aviation enthusiast!
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Old Aug 19, 19, 7:02 am
  #1110  
 
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So am I right in thinking it's been over a week since BA made a revised offer presumably that BALPA are considering, have they put an offer to the pilots? Been reading Head for Points. How long do they have to decide?
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