Almost all flights by British Airways, totalling hundreds of departures, were cancelled on Monday as pilots launched a 48-hour strike in a dispute over pay. British Airways The airline estimated that the two-day strike will affect 195,000 customers.
Most of British Airway’s 850 scheduled flights per day would be cancelled, with passengers being offered a refund or a later flight. The strike has been labelled one of the biggest in the airline’s history, and the first by its pilots.
The airline said that without information about which pilots would strike, “we had no way of predicting how many would come to work or which aircraft they are qualified to fly. “So, we had no option but to cancel nearly 100 per cent our flights.”
London’s Heathrow airport will be worst affected as it is British Airway’s busiest hub. Terminal 5, the one mainly used by the airline, was compared to a ghost town. British Airways said it flies to over 70 countries and transports more than 40 million customers a year.
A second strike is planned for 27 September.