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Ryanair’s Massive Strike: Thousands of Passengers Affected across Europe

The Dutch pilots of the low-cost airline Ryanair decided to join the massive strike, causing many disturbances throughout Europe.

The European strike of the pilots of the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair was further amplified on Thursday. A court in the Netherlands has allowed Dutch pilots to participate in the planned move on Friday, which is expected to affect thousands of passengers in the summer season.

“The strike can take place,” Judge Theo Röell told the court in Haarlem, near Amsterdam, where Ryanair brought an interlocutory procedure to prevent Dutch pilots from joining the movement.

The judge essentially held that Ryanair had no reason to singularly attack the Dutch pilots.

55,000 passengers concerned

A 24-hour strike in the Netherlands “coincides with other strikes in Europe that will have a much bigger impact and against which no legal action has been taken,” he said.

The Dutch Airline Pilots Union (VNV) announced on Wednesday its intention to join the pilots’ strike based in Ireland, Germany, Sweden and Belgium, all calling for “better protection of employee rights”.

In total, more than 55,000 passengers will be affected, including 42,000 for Germany, according to the company that promised the injured travelers a free change of booking.

Ryanair said Thursday night that 85% of their flights will be insured. “More than 2,000 flights will operate normally, carrying nearly 400,000 passengers across Europe,” the Irish airline said on Twitter.

“The majority of affected customers have already been assigned to another Ryanair flight,” she added.



No flights cancelled in the Netherlands

The strike should see the cancellation of about 400 flights, during the holiday period. However, no flights to or from the Netherlands will be affected, Ryanair said on the sidelines of the court’s decision.

“There will be no cancellation following the useless strike of the union of Dutch airline pilots in the Netherlands,” the company said in a statement.

“Ryanair fully respects the right of the Dutch pilots to go on strike but requests that the VNV notify us seven days in advance so that we can minimize the disruption to our customers. “

According to the company, “the VNV deliberately seeks to harm the interests of the passengers” by announcing their intention to participate in the strike two days before its beginning.

An argument refuted by the union, although it will now be required to notify Ryanair 72 hours in advance in case of strike.

Passengers at the counter of the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair at Berlin-Schoenefeld airport on 22 December 2017.
Passengers at the counter of the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair at Berlin-Schoenefeld airport on 22 December 2017. (© dpa / AFP / Archives / Bernd Settnik)

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