British Airways announced last night that the Unite union has announced new strike dates for next week.
‘Mixed Fleet’ cabin crew will walk out on Tuesday 10th and Wednesday 11th January in protest over pay.
‘Mixed Fleet’ represents around 15% of cabin crew members, so the BA schedule will not be totally decimated. British Airways said last night that “We are looking to ensure that all of our customers, with bookings on those two days, will travel to their destinations.”
What I understand (ie guess) this to mean is that:
all flights from Gatwick and London City will operate as they do not use ‘Mixed Fleet’ crew
all long haul flights will operate
short haul routes with one flight per day will operate
frequencies will be chopped from routes with multiple flights, with customers given the option of cancelling or moving to another service on the same day
BA has said that it will publish its contingency plans on Friday. You should NOT contact British Airways at this stage as you will not be allowed to change or cancel your booking unless your ticket type allows it.
The last strike, planned for Christmas Day and Boxing Day, was called off. What happened was that Unite supported a revised offer from the airline and said that it would put it to the ‘Mixed Fleet’ members. The offer has now been rejected by staff despite the support of the union and so strikes are back on the agenda.
As a reminder of the background to the strike, of the 4,000 members of ‘Mixed Fleet’, only 1,500 took part in the ballot. 80% of those of who voted were in favour of the strike.
According to a BBC report:
According to a recent Unite survey, half of Mixed Fleet staff have taken on second jobs to make ends meet, and more than two-thirds were going to work “unfit to fly” because they could not afford to be off sick.
It said 84% reported experiencing stress and depression since joining BA because of their financial circumstances.
Some even admitted sleeping in cars between flights, because they could not afford the petrol to get home.
Salaries for mixed fleet crew are reported to start at £12,000 per annum plus £3 per hour of flight time. Average pay is reported to be £16,000. These crew – hired over the last five years or so – operate totally separately from other cabin crew and are on substantially poorer packages than earlier recruits.
You can keep up to date with flight cancellation and rebooking news via the strike page of ba.com here.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 2022)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!
In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.
EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.
Run your own business?
We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,000 Avios.
You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.
There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.