British Airways is resuming talks today with unions at resolving a row over cost-cutting measures, including thousands of job losses and a pay-freeze. Unions and airline management spent several hours yesterday discussing the company’s proposals.
British Airways staff have unanimously rejected plans to cut thousands of jobs and freeze pay.A meeting of about 2,000 BA workers, mainly cabin crew, discussed BA’s plan to cut up to 3,700 jobs by March 2010 and freeze pay for all staff.
Cabin crew are poised to reject demands by British Airways for new pay and conditions contracts and up to 3,700 job cuts which chief executive Willie Walsh says is necessary in its “fight for survival”.Rising anger and threats of strike action is leading to fears of a summer of chaos for millions of passengers at the peak of the late July and August holiday season.
British Airways has announced plans to cut its annual spending from £725 to £580 million, as well as axing 3,700 further jobs, in addition to the 2,500 it has cut over the past year.The British flag carrier also said it was delaying the delivery of five Airbus A380s by two years to 2016. It also said it would ground its remaining three mainline Boeing 757 aircraft next summer and a further three Boeing 747-400s in winter 2010.
In June 2009, British Airways passenger capacity, measured in Available Seat Kilometres, was 1.7 per cent below June 2008. Traffic, measured in Revenue Passenger Kilometres, fell by 3.8 per cent. This resulted in a passenger load factor decrease of 1.8 points versus last year, to 79.6 per cent. Traffic comprised a 14.9 per cent decrease in premium traffic and a 1.3 per cent fall in non-premium traffic. Cargo, measured in Cargo Tonne Kilometres, fell by 9.8 per cent.
British Airways has called in the conciliation service ACAS after failing to reach an agreement with unions over job losses and pay cuts as it attempts to head off a summer of strike action.The airline announced today that it had asked ACAS to host future meetings with its unions after last night’s deadline to reach a deal passed without agreement.
British Airways and trade unions have failed to reach an agreement on cost cutting and compulsory redundancies, sparking fears of proposed strike action.The flag carrier had set a deadline of last night to finalise a programme of measures, including cutting 3,500 jobs. However it was unable to reach an agreement because of a number of sticking points, including concerns over the number of redundancies, as well as arrangements for consulting over job losses.
British Airways is today announcing further changes to its winter schedule including increasing the number of flights to Warsaw and Istanbul.From October 25, the airline will move from two to three flights a day from Heathrow to Warsaw and Istanbul.
British Airways is bracing itself for a series of summer strike action as cabin crew unions meet with management today over redundancies and a radical cost-cutting programme.
Unions have stepped up their battle with British Airways by accusing the management of “bullying” and being “unrealistic to the needs of workers” after the airline disclosed that 800 employees had accepted its request to work for nothing.The volunteers for unpaid work are among 6,940 staff who agreed to take a pay cut in a move that the flag carrier says will save up to £10m.
British Airways is launching new twice-weekly flights to Montego Bay in Jamaica and Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, reinforcing its position as the airline with more flights to the Caribbean than any other UK carrier. The new routes commence October 2009 with the airline also increasing services to other Caribbean favourites. Richard Tams, head of sales, commented that they are “popular destinations with our customers and it’s due to demand that we’re increasing the number of flights to the region.”
British Airways could start charging for extras such as wine and peanuts as it desperately grapples to cut costs.The airline’s chief executive, Willie Walsh, said he was considering following arch rivals such as Ryanair that charge for such items.