British Airways reportedly looking to cancel most of its flights on Monday and Tuesday after pilots pledged to strike after a breakdown in negotiations over a new contract, according to an inside source.
The U.K. company will scrap both short and long-distance based destinations, told the person, who asked to be anonymous because the information isn’t officially public yet. A spokeswoman for the airline, which is a unit of IAG SA, refused to comment on any cancellations but told BA operates about 850 flights a day.
The airline has alleged that the British Airline Pilots’ Association union of not acting in good reason and not being ethical enough by demanding “an eleventh-hour inflated proposal” which essentially would cost an additional 50 million pounds ($62 million). Balpa had come up with a new contract proposal and vowed to stop the walk-off if management returned to the negotiation proceedings.
However, a Balpa spokeswoman said on Friday the strike is on and well. “We’re are still willing to do the talking with BA but they have so far not obliged,” she said. Additionally, BA said in another statement that it remains “ready and pledged to return to negotiations with Balpa.” The FT has reported the airline later forwarded an email warning to the pilots that anyone who participates in the strike will end up losing generous travel-related perks for themselves and their families for the next three years.
The strike will be the BA’s first that involves the pilots since the 1970s and could result in travel chaos for customers at the very end of the busy summer season. The existing demands are associated with pay, profit sharing, and a share-awards functioning, and come after cockpit crew took cute in wages in the wake of the latest financial troubles to help improve the airline’s finances, said the union.