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French strikes likely to hit Euro 2016 flights

French strikes likely to hit Euro 2016 flights

Ryanair has called again on the European Commission to take action to prevent the skies over Europe being closed once more by French air traffic controllers’ union strikes, targeting the European Championships.

Ryanair has been forced to cancel 44 flights on Tuesday, to/from and over France, in what will be the 50th French strike since 2009, and tenth in the past 12 weeks.

This latest strike is being planned to directly target the European Championships, leaving football fans from Europe and beyond at the mercy of French unions.

Ryanair and other EU airlines have repeatedly called upon the Commission to introduce three simple measures which would alleviate the impact of such of air traffic control strikes on consumers:

  • Require French unions to engage in binding arbitration instead of strikes to resolve their claims, or
  • Allow Europe’s other air traffic controllers to operate over-flights over France while unions are on strike, or
  • Require that flights over France are protected while unions are on strike

Ryanair advised customers travelling on Tuesday to check the status of their flight on the website before travelling to the airport.

At the same time the low-cost carrier has urged passionate football fans to sign its Keep Europe’s Skies Open petition, which it will present to the European Commission once it accrues a million signatures.

Ryanair spokesman Kenny Jacobs said: “These ongoing strikes by the French air traffic control unions are being directly aimed not only at families taking a well-deserved summer holiday, but also at the millions of football fans coming to France this summer for the Euros.

“It is shocking that a small group of unionized workers can hold a continent of football fans to ransom, and we regret that once again we have been forced to cancel a number of flights due to the selfish actions of these workers.”