Industrial action has been on the cards at the airline for some time. A reconciliation meeting earlier in the week failed to make any headway. Pilots decided to commence their strike action on Monday and not to affect passengers eager to get away during the Ascension Day holiday weekend.
The flag carrier intends to keep most of its planes on the tarmac on Monday in order to avoid chaos. 75% of flights could be cancelled. The company promises to provide passengers who had planned to fly on Monday with information as soon as possible. It also urges passenger to stay up to date on flight information by consulting its website. Brussels Airlines will be deploying extra staff with a view to helping as many passengers as possible.
Brussels Airlines plans to guarantee flights to 12 destinations Billund, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Gothenburg, Berlin, Hannover, Basel, Milan, Turin, Nantes, Paris and Strasbourg. Flights from New York will land in Germany. The company says that Wednesday’s situation will mirror that on Monday.
Brussels Airlines intends to contact around 63,000 passengers to suggest an alternative flight.
A fresh reconciliation meeting is planned for Monday. If this fails further action is possible. A spokesman for the Christian union noted that pilots will also take strike action on Wednesday as part of a national day of action against the government's pension reforms.
Pilots are striking in favour of higher pay and better working conditions. Monday's action is the third time in 16 years that the carrier is affected by a strike.