Updated Jul 11th 2018, 6:28 PM
RYANAIR MANAGEMENT AND the Irish Airline Pilots Association (IALPA) have failed to make an agreement in talks today, meaning the planned strike tomorrow is set to go ahead.
In a statement this evening, Ryanair that it has agreed with the union to set up a working group that will “meet at least fortnightly over the coming weeks” to discuss the ongoing dispute, but that an agreement to avert the strike wasn’t possible after seven hours of talks.
“We believe that this working group can work together in resolving these matters quietly in the best interests of our pilots and our customers,” Ryanair’s chief people officer Eddie Wilson wrote in an email to a union head this evening.
The airline has cancelled 30 of its 290 flights between Ireland and the UK tomorrow, in an attempt to minimise disruption to European destinations used for family holidays.
Approximately 5,000 passengers travelling from Ireland to the UK are estimated to be affected.
Members of IALPA, a branch of the Forsa trade union, working for Ryanair last week voted to go on strike this coming Thursday.
The strike will commence at 1am tomorrow and the union said it will notify the airline of additional strike days in due course.
Ryanair has said that customers who are travelling on one of its flights to or from Ireland on Thursday and who have not already received an email or text notification should expect their flight to operate as normal tomorrow.
In a customer notice printed in newspapers today, Ryanair said that all affected customers were contacted yesterday and have been moved to alternative flights or given a full refund.
Addressing tomorrow’s strike action, the notice said: “We sincerely regret the unnecessary strike called by 94 (27%) of our 350+ Irish pilots on Thursday. The Forsa union confirmed yesterday that they expect the strike to go ahead despite agreeing to meet with us at Dublin Airport on Wednesday July 11 at 10am.
“We sincerely apologise to all Irish customers affected by these cancellations on Thursday. Ryanair has made every effort to avert this unnecessary strike and minimise the disruption to our customers.”
In a statement on Monday, Forsa said that the union had expected that tomorrow’s industrial action will go ahead.
Ryanair added that it cannot rule out further disruptions in July and August, but that it will do its best to avoid them.
The company says that the strike will affect just 94 of its more than 350 pilots. Ryanair and members of the pilots’ union will meet this morning at a neutral venue.