British Airline pilots begin strike, flights cancelled

British Airways strike

British Airways PLC (BA) pilots yesterday began a 48-hour strike, grounding almost all its flights and disrupting the plans of thousands travelers in unprecedented industrial action over a pay dispute.

A landmark strike by British Airways pilots entered its second day on Tuesday with more travel chaos - and no end in sight to the long-running dispute over pay.

"We are offering all affected customers full refunds or the option to re-book to another date of travel or alternative airline".

Thousands of passengers' travel plans are disrupted as pilots from British Airways (IAG.L) are set to strike on Monday (9 September) and Tuesday (10 September).

British Airways to cancel "nearly 100 percent" of flights amid pilot strike.

"It is by all accounts an own goal", the airline's chief executive, Alex Cruz, told the BBC. IAG, British Airways' parent company, made a net profit of US$3.2 billion a year ago.

British Airways has advised that if a flight is cancelled that passengers should not go to the airport.

BA said other labor unions, representing almost 90% of all BA staff, including engineers, cabin crew and ground staff, had accepted the pay increase of 11.5%.

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British Airways is part of the OneWorld alliance which includes 13 worldwide airlines including Qatar Airways, Finnair, Cathay Pacific and SriLankan all of whom operate to various cities here and also fly to London from their own bases. "BA didn't reply", it said on Twitter on Sunday.

Pilots forming part of union Balpa (British Airline Pilots Association) voted in favour of walking out after failing to reach an agreement with the airline, which offered an 11.5% pay rise over three years. "Now BA is making billions of pounds of profit, its pilots have made a fair, reasonable and affordable claim for pay and benefits", he said.

However, it is most likely that the year 2019 will be looked back on as the first time their pilots went on strike, damaging further the airline's reputation among passengers which has been hit by IT outages, baggage issues and cabin crew striking in the past. Industrial action is also planned for September 27, a statement on BA's website said.

Our members' resolve is very strong and they remain very angry with British Airways, but they also want to leave no stone unturned in trying to find a resolution to their dispute.

The airline said that flights operated by its subsidiary BA CityFlyer and its franchises SUN-Air, in Scandanavia, and Comair, in South Africa, were not affected by the strike action. Passengers whose flights have been cancelled are also being urged not to travel to the airport.

"They've previously taken big pay cuts to help the company through hard times", Strutton said.

The airline apologised for the cancellations and said that it had no information about which pilots would strike.

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