DLufthansa is canceling another 2,200 flights during the main holiday season due to staff shortages. The group will “take 2,200 of 80,000 flights at the hubs in Frankfurt am Main and Munich out of the system”, and there could also be changes in flight times, a company spokesman said on Thursday, confirming a report by “Bild” – Newspaper.
According to the spokesman, the cancellations particularly affect domestic German and intra-European flights, but not the classic holiday destinations that are well utilized during the holiday season.
Lufthansa and its subsidiary Eurowings had already announced at the beginning of June that they were canceling more than 1,000 flights in July on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays due to staff shortages. Now there are also flights during the week. “Flight safety strikes, weather events and, in particular, an increased corona sickness rate have now put an additional strain on the system,” said the Lufthansa spokesman on Thursday. In the past few days there had been short-term sick leave.
Passengers will be informed immediately of cancellations and, if possible, rebooked on other suitable Lufthansa flights, as the spokesman announced. Alternatively, passengers could cover domestic German routes by train. “Flights in particular where our passengers can be offered a corresponding travel alternative by plane or train will be cancelled.”
Lufthansa did not take the decision lightly and regret the cancellations and the associated inconvenience for guests, the spokesman emphasized. However, the “flight plan consolidation” is an unavoidable measure with which the airline wants to ensure greater stability of the flight plan over the entire summer. The spokesman explained that this should prevent excessive strain on the procedures on the ground at peak times.
During the holiday season, passengers should get to the airport in good time and use digital offers such as online check-in and check-in the night before, Lufthansa advised. Hand luggage should also be reduced to the bare essentials in order to avoid long waiting times at security checks.
Air transport is struggling with staff shortages in the high season, especially for ground services, but also to some extent for flight attendants.
Strikes in Belgium
Meanwhile, tens of thousands of passengers are currently affected by restrictions due to strikes at the airlines Ryanair and Brussels Airlines. At Brussels Airlines alone, more than 300 flights will be canceled, according to the airline. It is estimated that 40,000 people will be affected. Both cabin crew and pilots are down from work from Thursday to Saturday.
The employees of the Lufthansa subsidiary criticize, among other things, the high workload. From Friday to Sunday there is also a labor dispute by employees of the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair.
According to Belga, 80 Ryanair connections at Charleroi Airport in the Belgian capital will be canceled due to the strike on Friday and Saturday. It was initially unclear how many flights could be canceled on Sunday. Among other things, Ryanair employees are demanding compliance with the Belgian minimum wage rules for cabin crew.