Ryanair pilots and cabin crew in Germany have gone on strike and created reischaos for thousands of passengers during the last flare of a bitter, Europe-wide battle for better pay and conditions.
The Irish budget holder said that it canceled 150 of the 400 scheduled flights to and from Germany because of the outage which he struck as & # 39; unacceptable & # 39; and & # 39; unnecessary & # 39 ;.
It also said that it might have to close a number of bases and cut jobs in Germany if the standstill drags.
Ryanair employees are attending a demonstration at Frankfurt Airport today during a 24-hour strike
The striking staff waved signs and also held a banner with the text & # 39; Ryanair stops pressing our crew & # 39;
The remarkable staff of Ryanair makes photos of Michael O & # 39; Leary, CEO of the airline, during the strike on their face
A Ryanair plane was parked on the platform at Frankfurt Hahn airport on Saturday after pilots and cabin crew went into strike in Germany
The German Federation of Cockpit Pilots and the Verdi Trade Union for Service Workers called the 24-hour strike after saying that discussions with Ryanair management about wages and conditions were stuck.
Verdi spokesman Andreas Splanemann, who was part of a demonstration at the Schoenefield airport in Berlin, said: "We hope that this strike has a significant effect, that the company realizes that the employees no longer have bad working conditions and poor wages. will accept. & # 39;
But with affected passengers who were warned in advance, there were only a few stranded travelers that the employees with their signs & # 39; no rights, no flights & # 39; saw.
The strike comes because Ryanair is already making a strong stand for a massive coordinated strike by cabin crew in Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain.
The leaders of the Union are expected to announce the details of the interruption in Brussels on Thursday.
They have vowed to be the biggest strike action the company has ever seen & # 39; to organise.
Ryanair clashes with employee representatives since last year's unprecedented move to recognize unions in an effort to avert widespread Christmas strikes.
Last month, Ryanair pilots in five European countries, including Germany, held their first simultaneous loopout, canceling around 400 flights and causing chaos by 55,000 passengers.
After 150 of the 400 Ryanair flights to and from Germany were canceled, the check-in desks at Frankfurt Airport were empty
The federation of the Cockpit pilots in Germany and the Verdi labor union for aid workers called a 24-hour strike after they said that discussions with Ryanair's management about the wages and the conditions were stuck.
However, since then the airline has concluded several employment contracts and reached the first trade union settlement with Italian pilots at the end of August.
In Ireland, pilots last week agreed to an agreement on improved working conditions.
The breakthrough prompted Ryanair to come back from a previous threat that it would move multiple planes and 300 jobs from Ireland to Poland.
The German Cockpit and Verdi Confederations, representing around 400 Ryanair pilots in Germany and 1,000 flight personnel, condemned the airline's attempt to press them with a similar threat.
Vice President Markus Wahl of Cockpit told AFP: "Ryanair deals with his employees: putting pressure on them, making them frightened and threatening job losses."
The chief marketing officer of Ryanair, Kenny Jacobs, told a press conference in Frankfurt: "We do not pose a threat.
& # 39; If you have persistent strikes, that's the economic impact. & # 39;
Ryanair passengers gather at the Schoenefield airport in Berlin. The strike is because Ryanair is already preparing for a massive coordinated strike by cabin crew in Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain
The no-nonsense airline has lower costs per passenger than its competitors and this year looks for profit of approximately 1.25 billion euros ($ 1.45 billion).
But the staff have long complained that they earn less than counterparts from competing airlines.
Another important problem for employees in countries other than Ireland is the fact that Ryanair employs them under Irish law.
They say that this creates enormous uncertainty for them, blocking their access to the benefits of the state in their country.
Trade unions also want the airline company to offer contractors the same employment conditions as staff members.
Ryanair claims that it has already offered substantial wage increases and firmer contracts.
It says that German pilots can earn up to 190,000 euros per year.
Striking Ryanair employees in Berlin keep signs with the text & # 39; no rights, no flights & # 39;
But Mr. Wahl van Cockpit said that this applies only to & # 39; a handful of people & # 39 ;, with an initial salary of around 39,000 euros (£ 35,000) and the most experienced fliers that are around 110,000 euros (£ 98,000) ) to take home with a fixed salary per year. depending on flight hours.
Mr. Wahl said that pilots are fighting for more remuneration in general, and in particular a higher salary with a fixed interest rate.
The Verdi trade union said that Ryanair's cabin crew earns on average a basic monthly salary of 800 to 1,200 euros (£ 712 to £ 1,000) far below the easyJet price.
& # 39; Wages are so low that they are insufficient to guarantee a decent standard of living & # 39 ;, said board chairman Christine Behle.