Ryanair pilots in the Netherlands announced Wednesday they were joining a European-wide walkout on Friday to ratchet up pressure on the cut-price airline in a row over pay and conditions at the height of the summer season.
Ryanair, which in the Netherlands flies to holiday destinations such as Malaga in southern Spain, the Canary Islands and Ibiza, said it would have to axe around 400 out of 2,400 European flights scheduled for Friday, affecting 55,000 passengers. Germany will be the worst hit with 250 flight cancellations.
Europe's second biggest airline has been grappling with staff unrest since it recognised trade unions for the first time in December 2017, in a bid to ward off widespread strikes over the Christmas period.
But unions say little progress has been made on their demands for better wages and fairer contracts despite months of talks.
Ryanair sought an urgent court order in the Netherlands to prevent pilots from joining the strike, but the Dutch airline pilots' union told judges only a small number of flights from Dutch airports could potentially be affected.
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