More Ryanair flights have been cancelled due to ongoing industrial action by pilots at the low-cost carrier.
A total of 24 services, affecting 4,000 passengers, between Ireland and the UK have been scrapped on Friday out of the 290 flights that were scheduled.
The walkout marks the second strike by Irish pilots’ union Forsa after it staged a 24 hour walk out last week.
More Ryanair flights have been cancelled on Friday due to ongoing industrial action by pilots at the low-cost carrier
Thirty Ryanair flights were cancelled last Thursday, affecting some 5,000 passengers, after the pilots staged their first strike over pay and their conditions of employment.
After Friday’s strike a third 24-hour walk-out is planned for next Tuesday.
Members of the Irish Airline Pilots’ Association (Ialpa) at the budget airline voted overwhelmingly (99 per cent) in favour of industrial action, or around 27 per cent of the carrier’s Irish pilots.
Their concerns include a dispute over seniority, as well as the procedures for allocation of base transfers, promotions and annual leave. The action involved Irish-based pilots directly employed by Ryanair.
The union says the Dublin-based carrier is not taking its demands seriously.
Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary warned investors in May that he could not rule out the possibility of strikes and would face any action down
But Ryanair rejects this and in a previous statement, it told MailOnline Travel: ‘Ryanair pilots have already secured a 20 per cent pay increase, earn up to €200,000 p.a., work five days-on, followed by four days-off (a double bank holiday weekend at the end of every week), enjoy rapid promotions and unmatched job security.
‘The union Forsa has received written proposals on seniority, annual leave and base transfers, which are what Forsa claims are the reasons for this strike, yet Forsa has rejected 21 separate invitations to meet Ryanair to negotiate these documents.’
The majority of pilots flying Ryanair planes are self-employed, enabling the airline to restrict the impact of the strikes.
As it did last Thursday, Ryanair said it was cancelling high-frequency flights from Ireland to the UK, as it was easier to transfer customers to other scheduled flights.
‘We apologise again to these Irish customers for these regrettable and unnecessary disruptions which we have done our utmost to avoid,’ said the airline.
The airline, which is Europe’s biggest budget carrier averted widespread strikes before last Christmas by deciding to recognise trade unions for the first time in its 32-year history, but has since struggled to reach agreement on terms in some countries.
Ryanair, which flies in 37 countries and carried 130 million passengers last year, has so far signed agreements with pilots in Italy and Britain, two of its largest markets, but also experienced minor disruption in Germany and Portugal.
Meanwhile, earlier this month, it was revealed that Ryanair cabin crew staff in Spain, Portugal and Belgium were planning a two-day strike.
Workers will hold the stoppage on July 25 and 26, while staff in Italy will hold industrial action for 24 hours on July 25.
Previously, Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary warned investors in May that he could not rule out the possibility of strikes and would face any action down.
Carolina Vicente, Travel Expert at Columbus Direct, said: ‘Many of those heading off on holiday will experience severe disruption due to Ryanair’s cabin crew strikes. As Ryanair is a European airline, if you are due to travel during this time and your flight is cancelled you are protected.
‘You have the option to take an alternative flight with the airline to your destination, or cancel your flight and claim a full refund. If the alternative flight Ryanair offer isn’t at the right time for you Ryanair is legally required to book you on a comparable flight with them or an alternative airline. You should not be charged anymore for this.’