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Until 5 p.m.: Austrian Airlines cabin and cockpit crew conduct a spontaneous warning strike

Until 5 p.m.: Austrian Airlines cabin and cockpit crew conduct a spontaneous warning strike

A work meeting was planned, but it turned into a warning strike that lasted several hours. Flight attendants and pilots express their dissatisfaction with wages at Austrian Airlines.

As a precaution, Austrian Airlines canceled 112 out of 302 scheduled flights. Because on Friday morning (March 1st) at 9am, flight attendants and pilots gathered at Vienna Airport for a company meeting. The works council and the VIDA union provided information there about negotiations on a new collective agreement.

More than 1,200 men and women attended. Because the mood among the cabin and cockpit staff at AUA is bad. After eight rounds of negotiations, employees and employers were unable to reach an agreement. Vida members were previously able to express their needs in a survey. A union spokeswoman said a higher salary and more predictable roster were at the top of the wish list.

Demand and supply are far apart

This stoppage seems to anger the employees. At the work meeting, one of those present suggested a spontaneous warning strike. It was “approved unanimously,” explains a VIDA spokeswoman. That's why many AUA flights were canceled until 5pm on Friday. In some cases, partners take responsibility for flights. An Austrian Airlines spokeswoman commented that this step was “completely incomprehensible.” “Think of the many passengers who have this disproportionate procedure performed on their backs.”

When it comes to wages, demands and offers currently remain far apart. Austrian Airlines is offering cabin and cockpit staff a 4.5 percent raise. According to Statistics Austria, the inflation rate in Austria reached 6.6 percent from March 2023 to February 2024. The hosts complain that this is “blatant.”

More is possible – with one but

According to an AUA spokeswoman, the focus is on the inflation rate in the euro area because the client structure is international. They are also willing to offer more through one-time payouts or higher profit-sharing bonuses. However, to do this, employees will have to accept longer terms of the collective agreement and an increase in efficiency.