IAG Expects €137 million Hit From British Airways Pilot Strike

Earlier this month, British Airways pilots staged a two-day strike in protest of proposed wage issues. The strike meant that only one flight was operated by British Airways crew over the two days. Now IAG, the owner of British Airways, has released its expected financial hit from the strike.

BALPA, British Airways, Pilot Strike Cancelled
Pilots had been set to walkout on the 27th of September. Photo: British Airways

For a while now, British Airways pilots have been threatening strike action. The pilots voted for strike action in July, before announcing strike dates in August. The BALPA pilots union announced three days of strike action, however, only carried out two days of strikes. Now, the airline’s owner, IAG, has announced it expects the strike to cost it €137 Million.

Strike recap

British Airways pilots belonging to the BALPA union staged two consecutive days of strike action in early September. These dates were Monday the 9th and Tuesday the 10th of September.

During these days, almost all of British Airways’ flights were canceled as the airline didn’t know which staff were coming into work, and which weren’t. As a result, only one British Airways flight with passengers was operated by the airline across the two days. This flew a few lucky passengers to Tokyo in Japan.

BALPA, British Airways, Pilot Strike Cancelled
British Airways pilots cancelled their third day of industrial action. Photo: British Airways

What about tomorrow?

Tomorrow (Friday 27th September) BALPA members were due to stage their third day of strike action. As a result of this planned strike, British Airways had begun to cancel flights. The airline wanted to give passengers as much certainty as to what would happen on the day as possible.

After British Airways had begun to cancel flights, however, the pilots’ union decided to call off its third day of strike action. The union described this as “to take the initiative to sort out this dispute”. Interestingly, Ryanair pilots have also taken the same approach in their pay dispute.

British Airways, Pilot Strike, Flights Cancelled
IAG estimates the financial impact of the strike is over €100 million. Photo: British Airways

Financial impact

As a result of the strike action, IAG today issued guidance of its financial impact. When contacted by Simple Flying, the group sent a pre-prepared statement. IAG said,

“During September, BALPA’s (British Airways main pilots’ union) industrial action initially scheduled for the 9, 10 and 27 led to an initial cancellation of 4,521 flights over a period of seven days. Subsequently, 2,196 flights were reinstated leaving 2,325 cancellations.”

They went on to add,

“The net financial impact of the industrial action is estimated to be €137 million.”

As the disagreement behind the strikes is yet to be resolved, it is possible for the union to announce further strike action until January. The union is required to give 14 days notice of strike action.

Were you affected by the British Airways strike? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!