Rarely do you remember so many people around the screens that announce the departures and arrivals of flights in Terminal 1 of the Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport. The stoppage called by Ryanair left more than 150 incidents between cancellations and delays throughout the national territory on Thursday. Today, the concern among tourists was capital. The fifth day of the strike also coincided with the first called by the cabin crew of another low cost airline, the English company Easyjet, which will also stop on July 3, 15, 16, 17, 29, 30 and 31. However – and to the surprise of the unions – the situation that the Madrid terminal showed early in the morning was completely normal.

Ryanair has mobilized, according to the Union of Workers (USO), employees from Portugal and the United Kingdom to make up for the casualties of those workers who did not go to their job in Spain, avoiding the chaos that did occur on Thursday. “Once again, the company is failing to comply with Spanish labor legislation and even community law. They are violating a fundamental right, they are going over it,” said the USO spokesman. The protest, which should end this Saturday, seeks to achieve better working conditions for the around 1,900 crew members of the company in Spain.

The news was enthusiastically received by the customers present, who “understand the workers” but recognize that “it would be unfair” for this situation to deprive them of their vacations. “Last week we thought about changing the tickets, we’ve had the requested days for a while now and we can’t lose them,” says Paula, who is heading to Palma de Mallorca to enjoy a few days at the beach.

With the measure, Ryanair has managed to reduce the number of cancellations. By late afternoon, only eight flights were not grounded according to union sources. Despite this, a high number of delays remains: a total of 277.

Regarding the enclaves affected by the Easy Jet strike, Malaga airport has been the most affected. The strike called by the airline’s cabin workers, based in the Andalusian town itself, Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca, has caused the cancellation of 5 flights departing from or arriving at the Costa del Sol. In this sense, in La Palma the remaining 4 cancellations were made, thus not affecting the first day of stoppages at the El Prat facilities.

The Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda had set minimum services of between 51% and 57%, however, the airline “decreed” all its flights in Spain as essential services. “EasyJet has followed the Ryanair model: not respecting the minimum decree and violating the crew’s right to strike. Our legal team is analyzing the decree to take legal action,” says USO.

Last week, during the first day of strikes by Ryanair workers, the Irish airline also declared all its flights in Spain as minimum services. The dispute between the unions and the company ended in the National High Court after the request for “very precautionary measures” by USO.

The Aena airport network plans to operate a total of 24,600 flights between this Friday and Monday, according to Europa Press. In this sense, the day with the highest number of trips was yesterday, Friday, with a total of 6,334 flights.

Spain is not the only country that is suffering this summer the effect of strikes in the airline sector. According to the Reuters agency, the workers’ strike at the French airport of Charles de Gaulle (Paris) will force one out of five scheduled flights to be canceled today. Throughout the day yesterday, 10% of flights were canceled. In this sense, the unions of employees of Airports of Paris (ADP) demand a salary increase of 6%, although the employer only offers them 3%.

DIRECT PARIS | Strike and traffic closures at Charles de Gaulle airport

French airport workers hold a protest at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport to demand pay increases, disrupting several flights.


In England, British Airways ground staff at London’s Heathrow airport have voted to go on strike after the airline failed to reverse a 10% pay cut imposed during the pandemic. Although the dates have not been confirmed, everything indicates that it will take place during the last weeks of July.

Despite the cancellations and inconveniences that may arise, the Tourism portfolio downplays this situation. On Thursday, during the presentation of the tourist forecasts for Spain, the Secretary of State confirmed that “they do not consider” that situations of strikes and conflicts could affect the tourist situation in our country.

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