Spain and Belgium braced for strikes

28 Sep 2010 by BusinessTraveller

Flights in and out of Spain are likely to be severely affected tomorrow as a result of the planned one-day general strike, and a Belgium air traffic control strike is also set to go ahead.

Spanish flag carrier Iberia says it will operate 35 per cent of flights during the strike period, which lasts from 0000 until 2359 (Spanish local time) tomorrow. The operating flights are those negotiated between the unions and the government under the “minimum services agreement”.

Iberia advises those passengers whose flights have not been cancelled or changed, to check in as normal, although subsequent advice says that “passengers should come earlier than usual to the airport”.

Easyjet’s website says that “At this time the Spanish Government are deciding on the minimum service levels to impose on airline activity and how this will affect each airline. We are working closely with the Spanish Government to try to minimise the impact to our customers.”

The carrier adds that the strike “will likely mean that we will suffer delays and may mean we have to cancel a number of our flights. As soon as we know which flights are directly affected we will contact those customers”.

Easyjet is also offering its customers who have booked to travel to or from Spain tomorrow, the opportunity to change their flight date to an alternative date within 5 days free of charge. Details of how to do this can be seen here.

Ryanair has gone one step further by limiting all passengers to hand luggage only on its flights to and from Spain, and passenger who had previously checked in are now required to do so again, in order to reprint their boarding passes. Details can be seen here.

The carrier says that it “plans to operate all flights [on Wednesday September 29], but as the action may impact our third party baggage handling services, we will be unable to accept checked baggage on all flights to/from Spain. Note that the disruption includes flights to and from the Balearic Islands.

Meanwhile an air traffic control strike is due to start in Belgium at 1500 today (September 28). Ryanair advises that it has “been notified of a Air Traffic Controllers strike in Belgium which will impact Belgian Air Traffic Control from today 1500 (CET) 28th September until 1500 (CET) 29th September 2010. 

“As a result of the late notification of this strike Ryanair have been forced to cancel all flights scheduled to operate to/from Charleroi Airport between 15:00 (CET) 28th September until 15:00 (CET) 29th September 2010.”

Report by Mark Caswell


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