Aer Lingus Manchester transatlantic flights ‘unaffected’ by planned industrial action

Aer Lingus transatlantic flights from Manchester and regional services between the UK and Ireland will be unaffected by a work to rule by pilots.

But the Irish carrier warned that the industrial action planned by the Irish Airline Pilots’ Association (Ialpa) will cause a “significant impact” on other flight schedules from June 26.

“This action will have a wholly unnecessary impact on customers who are travelling in the coming weeks, at what is peak holiday season for families,” Aer Lingus said.

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“However, our focus is on communicating directly with impacted customers when we can and notifying them of their options. 

“We will also be communicating directly with third party agents including travel agents and online agents. Passengers who booked through a third-party should contact their sales agents for any updates.

“We will do everything we can to minimise the impact for customers. However, it is inevitable that there will be disruption as a result of this industrial action and we will communicate any changes, delays or cancellations to impacted customers as soon as possible. 

“Where there are cancellations, we will look to re-accommodate customers as quickly as possible and will work with other airlines, with partner airlines and seek to hire-in aircraft for this purpose.”

The airline added: “Please be advised that Aer Lingus Regional flights, operated by Emerald Airlines, are unaffected by this industrial action.

“Transatlantic flights to/from Manchester are also unaffected by this industrial action.”

Latest efforts to head off industrial action by pilots broke down, with the union accused by Aer Lingus of demanding an “unsustainable” level of increase in pay.

The airline pointed out that its profitability levels are the lowest among International Airline Group carriers with an operating margin “significantly lower” than pre-Covid levels.

“Investment of such profits in paying exorbitant increases to already very well-paid pilots is simplistic in the extreme,” Aer Lingus added.  

Ialpa members had voted overwhelmingly to reject a Dublin Labour Court recommendation that pilots should receive pay increases totalling 9.25% as part of an interim settlement.

The figure was well below the 23.8% that the pilots are seeking.

Ialpa president Captain Mark Tighe said on Monday that Aer Lingus management had to “understand the strength of feeling” and “see that the pilots will not back down”.

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