Airline strikes in Europe this summer: Will it affect you?

A passenger waiting for a delayed flight fills out a claims form, while kneeling on the airport floor. She is surrounded by other passengers, also waiting.

Airline and airport staff are going on strike across several major airports in Europe this month.

The number of passengers moving through Europe has spiked sharply since border restrictions were removed – and the aviation sector was underprepared for such a rise.

With staff shortages, due to pandemic layoffs, hours have increased for many airline employees, contributing to stress and poor working conditions.

Overworked and underpaid employees at EasyJet (Spain), Ryanair (Spain), and ground handling company Portway (Portugal) are slated to strike at various points throughout August 2022.

This could result in major disruption for travel plans, so it’s important to know who, when, and where the strikes will affect. 

EasyJet (Spain) airport strikes 

Spanish pilots at EasyJet will strike nine days this month. The first of the 72 hour strikes was on 12 - 14 August. Further pilot strikes will occur on 19 - 21 August and finally 27 - 29 August 2022.

The EasyJet strikes will likely affect many flights departing or arriving in Spain with the carrier. 

Ryanair (Spain) airport strikes 

Ryanair cabin crew union strikes are being held from 8 August to 7 January 2022 and may affect flights from Monday to Thursday each week during the five month industrial action. 

Following similar action in July, a 12 day cabin crew strike resulted in 319 cancellations and almost 3,700 flight delays in Spanish airports. 

Portway (Portugal) airport strikes 

Ground handling company Portway’s workers will strike between 26 - 28 August 2022. This may affect travellers at Lisbon, Porto, Faro, and Funchal airports. 

Those travelling through these European countries should be aware of the industrial action occurring and make alternative arrangements, if possible. 

Affected travellers may benefit from travel insurance policies which provide cover for travel delays and cancellations due to these strikes, if the airlines involved do not reimburse customers first.