BA moves to head off Christmas pilots’ strike

British Airways appears to have averted the threat of a fresh strike by pilots over Christmas.

A pay deal is reported to have been reached with the British Airline Pilots Association to prevent a repeat of a damaging walkout in September.

The union is understood to have secured an 11.5% pay rise over the next three years with a clause allowing for further increases in line with inflation.

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The airline is also offering improved working conditions, rostering and bonuses alongside travel perks removed following the September action.

The offer, first reported by the Financial Times on Saturday, is being recommended to about 4,000 BA pilots represented by Balpa. The dispute will end is accepted by members this week.

BA was forced to cancel more than 1,700 flights when pilots staged a two-day walkout on September 9-10.

It was the worst strike in BA’s history and cost parent company International Airlines Group around €118 million.

A further 24-hour strike planned for September 27 was cancelled but not before most flights were grounded.

Balpa general secretary Brian Strutton reportedly said: “We can confirm that Balpa, BA and [conciliation service] Acas have put together a new pay and conditions proposal and, subject to final checks, Balpa expects it will shortly be consulting with its 4,000 BA members on them.”

A BA spokesman said: “We welcome this positive step.”


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