Ryanair was forced to cancel at least 20 flights to and from Portugal on Thursday, as cabin crew went on strike.
Last December, the Irish company finally agreed to recognise trade unions as a way of avoiding Christmas strike chaos, with Chief Executive Michael O’Leary later saying he was expecting localised strike action this year.
Portugal’s SNPVAC union last week confirmed strikes for March 29, April 1 and April 4, claiming that management had failed to meet its demands on working conditions for Ryanair staff, including recognising parenthood rights and allowing doctor-approved sick days.
Ryanair’s management says that working conditions at the company are the same as at other low-cost airlines and has accused union representatives, working for its competitors, of organising the Ryanair strike to disrupt its Easter schedule.
Ryanair admitted there had been a small number of cancellations on Thursday due to the cabin crew strike, describing the action as, “unnecessary and unjustified.”
Ryanair has flown additional flights for those disrupted by Thursday’s action and was planning to do the same on Friday as further flights were cancelled.
The company was pleased to announce that the majority of its Portuguese crews turned up for work as normal on Thursday.