Ryanair faces flight disruptions over Christmas as Dublin-based pilots vote in favour of strikes
The airline has warned pilots that they could 'lose' benefits if they take part.
could face disruptions to its Christmas flight schedule after Irish pilots have voted in favour of industrial action.
Members of the Irish Ialpa took a vote this week, with 79 out of 84 voters backing strikes - and these could take place over the busy Christmas season.
Ialpa doesn't represent all of Ryanair's pilots, just the those directly employed by the airline (Ryanair employs many of its pilots from third parties), but voters included captains - and since flights can't take place without them, this would pose a major problem for the airline.
Not to mention that Dublin is one of the airline's biggest bases, so it could cause real disruptions to the network, especially over the busy festive season.
In a statement addressing the vote, Ryanair explained that less than 28% of its Dublin pilots had voted in favour of strikes, and explained that it had "received no notification of any industrial action by its Dublin pilots".
The airline also seemed to issue a warning to pilots considering participating in industrial action, hinting that they would "lose their favourable rosters (5on/4off, a double bank holiday every week) and remuneration benefits that are specifically linked by agreement to dealing directly with Ryanair".
Any disruptions would be a major blow for Ryanair, who already faced a fiasco earlier this year when an error regarding their pilots' rosters left them having to cancel and delay thousands of flights
Ialpa initially did not comment on the outcome, as the ballot result was being considered by IMPACT's Services and Entreprises executive committee.
Full statement from Ryanair:
"Less than 28% of Ryanair's Dublin (over 300) pilots have voted in favour of unspecified industrial action.
"Ryanair has received no notification of any industrial action by its Dublin pilots so we suspect this is more PR activity by Aer Lingus pilots group IALPA, to distract from their failure in negotiating a paltry 3% pay increase for Aer Lingus pilots.
"Now that Ryanair’s Cork, Shannon and Belfast bases have agreed 20% pay increases we expect the Dublin pilots to follow this trend.
"However, if Ryanair’s Dublin pilots are misled by some Aer Lingus pilots into industrial action then they will lose their favourable rosters (5on/4off, a double bank holiday every week) and remuneration benefits that are specifically linked by agreement to dealing directly with Ryanair.
"This might be the first time in Irish history that a few Aer Lingus pilots persuade Ryanair pilots earning between €150,000 to €180,000 p.a. to take up industrial action instead of a 20% pay increase when Aer Lingus pilots are only getting 3%.
"If any such industrial action occurs Ryanair will still not engage with, or recognise, Aer Lingus pilots or their IALPA union."