EasyJet was forced to cancel flights using Amsterdam this morning due to a last-minute strike by pilots.

The third in a series of strikes by pilot members of the VNV union based in Amsterdam was taking places for four hours from 6am local time.

The budget airline said: “We have been working closely with the VNV to negotiate a collective labour agreement and have already made a significantly improved offer.

“It is disappointing and unnecessary action by the union and will unfortunately affect our passengers travelling through Amsterdam today.

“We are trying to minimise the impact of the strike on our customers but unfortunately due to the short notice of the strike we will have to cancel flights.

“We will communicate to customers affected directly via SMS using the details provided at the time of booking.

“We apologise for the inconvenience caused by the strike.”

But VNV warned of further industrial action in a dispute over sick leave pay, more rest time between flights and better pension terms.

“We are determined to conclude a fair collective bargaining agreement for easyJet pilots, even if it means that the conflict and the resulting operational disruptions drag on for months,” a spokesman told Dutch news agency ANP.