Aer Lingus is close to settling a pay dispute with its pilots, despite ongoing strikes disrupting flights. The airline has agreed to a 17.75% pay raise, pending a vote by the pilots. With that, hundreds of flights have been canceled, affecting thousands of travelers.

Aer Lingus Nears Agreement Despite Ongoing Pilot Strike

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Aer Lingus Nears Pilot Agreement

Although still in choppy waters, an agreement looks imminent between Aer Lingus and its pilots, much to the relief of travelers. 

After bearing significant disruptions to operations due to the pilots' strike, the Irish carrier agreed to increase salaries by 17.75 percent, following the advice of the Labour Court. 

The decision comes after the court's intense deliberations to try to resolve a dispute that began nearly two weeks ago, when pilots, represented by the Irish Air Line Pilots' Association (IALPA), launched an indefinite work-to-rule action.

The recommendation encapsulates a time frame that extends from January 2023 through December 2026. What is expected to prove difficult to address in that spectrum falls within the anticipated. 

At the other extreme, management for Aer Lingus is considering compliance with the court's proposal as it assesses the broader impact of the ongoing standoff on the airline's profiling.

As per The Irish Times, although the risk of a deteriorating situation has eased, the possibility of further strike action exists with the pilots' union set to ballot its members on the recommendation offered by the company - with the vote expected to take several days. 

This caused cancellations to run into hundreds of flights, affecting tens of thousands of passengers and keeping future Aer Lingus travelers on tenterhooks about their travel plans.

Industry experts, including travel writer Eoghan Corry, have reacted tentatively to news of the resolution. He revealed the union could use this recommendation as a base for further negotiations, continuing the work-to-rule stance that ensured pilots earn during the dispute.

Related Article: Aer Lingus Cancels More Flights as Pilots Continue Their Strike

Travel Plans Disrupted by Strikes

Aer Lingus is scrapping a further 80 flights between July 11 and July 14 because of ongoing pilot strikes over pay rows. 

This move aims to minimize the total disruption by saving as many flights as possible during this period. Aer Lingus will contact passengers affected by cancellations directly to discuss refunds and alternative travel arrangements.

Pilots at the airline, members of IALPA, conducted a work-to-rule continuous protest starting June 26 by working only scheduled hours and refusing to work overtime or conduct any duties beyond regular shifts. 

This protest has already scuppered hundreds of flights, leaving tens of thousands of travelers in a lurch.

Only last week, Aer Lingus announced that 76 flights due to leave early the next week were canceled. The industrial action stepped up over the weekend when pilots took part in an eight-hour strike. 

The pilots are seeking a 24% pay increase to bring their salaries in line with inflation since they received their last pay raise in 2019. However, Aer Lingus is willing to discuss up to only a 12.25% hike in return for changes to working conditions.

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