AIR FRANCE cabin crew are set to begin a seven-day walkout next week, the busiest time of the year, after negotiations failed to find a solution to an ongoing dispute over pay and conditions.
Following the breakdown of talks, members of two unions, the SNPNC-FO and UNSA-PNC, who represent nearly 50% of Air France’s 14,000 cabin crew, are set to strike from Wednesday, July 27, until Sunday, August 2, in a walkout that looks set to hit travel during the busy summer holiday ‘crossover’ period in France.
Negotiations have been ongoing since notice to strike was filed in June. Short and medium-haul flights will be most-affected, Air France said, and warned that some flights could be cancelled.
It said clients would be advised of any cancellations the day before their flights, and advised travellers to check the website before heading to the airport on the day of departure.
KLM and Hop! flights will not be affected the airline said in a statement on its website.
A third union, Unac, which represents 22% of staff, had earlier postponed its planned strike until October, to allow new Air France-KLM CEO Jean-Marc Janaillac time to ‘refine an agreement’ on new contracts as part of a major company reorganisation.
A key sticking point is the length of the new contracts. The current agreement expires on October 31, and unions have rejected a new 17-month deal, arguing that previous agreements have lasted for five years – and pointing to a similar long-term agreement between cabin crew and German airline Lufthansa.