by Stephen Beard
BA goes to court today to try to stop the latest strikes. The carrier claims the stoppages are illegal.
Flight attendants at London’s Heathrow Airport are planning a series of five-day walkouts starting tomorrow. Their union has rejected the airline’s latest offer on pay and working conditions. The union says its members will wind up working harder for less money.
But BA lost around $600 million last year. The airline says it has to cut its costs.
Laurie Price is an aviation specialist with consultant Mott MacDonald. He says BA has a point.
“It’s got its costs in order. One of its largest costs, after fuel, are employees,” says Price. “Therefore, ensuring they get maximum efficiency, maximum productivity, is unfortunately — in this globalized world — exactly what they’ve got to do.”
Price says BA’s cabin crew, working from Heathrow Airport, earned 50 percent more than the average for the U.K. airline industry.