For the past several months, British Airways pilots have been in a pay dispute with management, which has even led to some industrial action. Well, it looks like this dispute has now officially been resolved.
British Airways’ Pilots Dispute
For several months now, British Airways pilots have been in a pay dispute with management. In early July, talks broke off between British Airways management and the British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA).
Following this, pilots voted overwhelmingly for industrial action. British Airways pilots went on strike on September 9 & 10, which caused huge disruptions — it inconvenienced tens of thousands of people, and cost the airline €137 million.
Then the pilots were supposed to also go on strike on September 27, though that ended up being called off last minute. The union explained that the previous strike “demonstrated the anger and resolve of pilots,” and that it was “now time for a period of reflection before the dispute escalates further and irreparable damage is done to the brand.”
Then we didn’t hear anything for a couple of months, until late November, when it was reported that management and the union were nearing a pay deal. That has in fact happened now, as pilots have voted to approve a new agreement.
British Airways Pilots Vote In Favor Of Deal
The union and management had recently reached an agreement that the union had recommended to pilots. Then pilots had to vote on that, and the ballots closed yesterday.
BALPA reports that pilots voted nearly nine to one (apparently ~87%) to accept the final agreement that was recommended by BALPA to the pilots.
That’s some overwhelming support, so did British Airways pilots finally get what they wanted? Well, nope, unfortunately not. The pay deal they agreed to is allegedly very similar to what management had been proposing all along, including an 11.5% pay increase over three years.
I guess management sufficiently wore them down. Perhaps taking away flight benefits for pilots and their families was part of that.
I’m happy that management and pilots came to a pay deal, which means we should see no further industrial action, especially ahead of the upcoming holiday season. While the company lost a lot of money from the strike, I guess management standing firm on terms paid off.