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British Airways pilots strike – what you need to know for Monday, Tuesday and 27th September

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Pilot unit BALPA is staging a number of strikes throughout September.  BALPA represents about 90% of British Airways pilots.

The strike dates are Monday 9th, Tuesday 10th and Friday 27th September.

You can find the latest information on this special strike page of

Note that flights from London City Airport are not impacted, except for the New York service which is operated by Gatwick flight crew.

BA 747 retirement

Monday 9th / Tuesday 10th – what is cancelled?

Everything, basically.

Only ONE British Airways flight was operating from Terminal 5 on Monday 9th September.  This was a Tokyo service and was retained due to the Rugby World Cup.  The only other flights operating were to Cairo (operated by Air Belgium at the moment due to a shortage of BA aircraft) and the Iberia flights to Madrid.

From Gatwick, the only flight was a New York JFK service which is currently operated by Evelop Airlines on behalf of BA, again due to a shortage of BA aircraft.

All passengers were contacted over two weeks in advance of travel.  Despite some initial hiccups (which forced The Civil Aviation Authority to publish this statement) British Airways was eventually very proactive in moving passengers to other airlines with over 50 carriers involved.

What about Wednesday 11th?

A normal schedule will operate, although some services are likely to be cancelled due to planes and staff being in the wrong place.  There is no space at Heathrow to store the entire British Airways fleet, and so aircraft have had to be parked at other airports across the world.

What about Friday 27th?

Cancellations have not yet been done for the strike on 27th September.

The cut-off date for British Airways is 13th September, which is the last date they can cancel your flight without offering compensation on top of a reroute.  Note that some flights on 28th and potentially also 26th will also be cancelled for operational reasons.

What can I claim if I am stranded abroad?

For people stranded abroad, British Airways has confirmed that the standard £200 per night per room hotel allowance will be available.  This can be exceeded but only if you have strong evidence that no rooms are available for that price.  You cannot remain in a £500 beach resort and reclaim that if there is an airport hotel available for under £200.

Other subsistence costs (food, taxis etc) can also be claimed.

You are not technically liable for additional costs incurred in the UK before or after travel due to date changes, but it is worth submitting receipts to BA anyway.

Will I receive Avios and tier points for cancelled flights?

Yes.  If you accepted a refund or were moved to a non-oneworld airline, you can ask BA to credit you with the Avios and tier points you would otherwise have earned.

Don’t forget to sign up to earn points from the airline you were moved to, if it is not a BA partner!  Nothing stops you earning twice.

Could the strikes be called off?

BALPA has offered to reopen talks with British Airways, but the airline has stated that no new offer is available.  The airline appears to have decided to push on with strikes rather than accept the pilot demands for profit sharing.

Can more strikes be called?

Yes, but 14 days notice must be given.  Your trip is safe once you are inside the 14 day period.

(And, to be honest, a lot of people have been getting some good results in terms of alternative carriers!  Being moved from British Airways onto Qatar Airways, Cathay Pacific, Malaysia Airlines etc etc – if you are travelling in Business Class – would be a good result.)

BALPA’s strike ballot, held earlier this summer, is valid until January.  This allows BALPA to continue calling strikes throughout the Autumn without requiring a further member vote.

For the latest information, check out here.

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Comments (419)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Michael says:

    Acknowledging likely compromise between now and action, any point worrying about impact to KLX – LHR on 28th Sept?

  • Jill (Kinkell) says:

    Oh dear, I do feel for the affected. My own stress levels have reduced somewhat as my dates are domestic to LHR on 11, long haul on 12 , return from Atlanta on 28th. . However, there could be knock on effects …..we get bumped out of our 241 F seats to accommodate the displaced paying pax! It’s a ‘wait and see’ game and hopefully a resolution is found soon.

  • Neil says:

    We are due to fly to Chicago in First on 9 September for our wedding anniversary so not sure how to tell the better half

    • Shoestring says:

      FWIW the vast majority of pilots really don’t want to strike (the last BA pilots’ strike was 40 years ago…) – plus Cruz knows it will look extremely bad for him if the 3 strikes go ahead – I’d say the chances of an early settlement are on the very high side, not that BA won’t start making pre-emptive cancellations quite soon unless they all get talking again…

      • Neil says:

        Already got the “your flight is cancelled” – no compensation due text and email from BA. Wife got the text too so great way to start the weekend

        • Shoestring says:

          Hard luck. Did you pay for the hotel etc on a credit card? – don’t forget about Section 75 protection.

          • Neil says:

            Was beginning to think about that but called BA and we’re going out on the 7th and still in First.

            Could have got business on American on the 9th but while talking about the state of English cricket with the very helpful man from BA I asked about different dates which got us the option of the 7th.

            Yes, it will cost us more, but we already had loads planned for the trip and its easy ish for us to add a couple of days of at the start, especially as it’s a weekend, which I’m sure won’t be an option for all.

            Agent I spoke to said that if the pilots settle then they will get a load of calls from people wanting their original travel itinerary back again so spare a thought for the call centre staff who are stuck in the middle ( mine was finishing at 10 and back in at 6 )

            + a big thanks to Rob and for all the helpful people on here for providing so much useful information that I was able to react and sort things out almost like a frequent flyer – which I’m not

          • Shoestring says:

            brownie points from your wife for looking like you’re a professional , I’ll bet

  • Bs says:

    Ba website saying EU261 not payable because they will cancel all flights more than 14 days before the flight.

    • Lady London says:

      However they must reroute you if flight is cancelled more than 14 days ahead still even if no compo.. Or offer something else you want to accept.

  • Shoestring says:

    Re: this bit: [Will I get compensation?
    We wanted to give our customers as much notice as possible so cancellations were made as soon as we received dates from BALPA. As this was 14 days before the strike action starts EU261 compensation is not payable.]

    OK, I didn’t see that they already cancelled so many flights, I’m not much of a Flyertalk reader! BA are absolutely right of course: with 14 days’ notice you stand no chance whatsoever of EC261 compo. You’re still entitled to duty of care and re-ticketing.

    Anyway, people asking if their flights on 9th/ 10th (maybe not yet 27th) – I suggest you check up on Manage My Booking. Sounds like those flights are already cancelled to some extent.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Does it count as 14 days notice if your outboard is within 14 days?

      • Shoestring says:

        how do you mean? fly the outbound as normal and it goes in (say) 5 days – but the return flight is more than 14 days away and you get notice of cancellation of that second flight?

        no compo

  • Liz says:

    We are in the clear for our domestic leg on 23/9 connecting to our separate Safari tour. Hopefully it will be resolved before our return journey.

  • TokyoFan says:

    So I have a strike date LHR-Frankfurt. I’m tempted to book a LCY alternative for the £1 + avios (as there is currently lots of availability) to give me a backup. Is it still only the £1 to cancel these?

    • Rob says:

      Seems so. BA is already allowing changes though so try via MMB first for free.

      • TokyoFan says:

        So original booking is an RFS booking. Seemingly allowing changes to alternative date but not change of route (to LCY). Have booked LCY reward seats as a back up.

        • Sloth says:

          Can’t you ring to ask? They are normally good to allow a route change around strikes

          • Magic Mike says:

            …BA would not transfer my wife’s LHR-BLL to LCY… Refund or rebook for different dates…

  • guesswho2000 says:

    Typically my one annual flight with BA is their strike day, HKG-LHR. Rebooked via DOH with QR, painless process other than the expected lengthy phone queues.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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