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BALPA recommends British Airway’s pay offer – but will the pilots accept?

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As you have probably seen in the mainstream media, the British Airways pilot union, BALPA, has agreed an amended three year pay deal after lengthy talks at ACAS.

At first glance, it doesn’t seem to offer much.

British Airways has reportedly agreed to inflation-proof its original offer of a 11.5% pay rise, spread over three years.  This means that pay will rise further if inflation is higher than expected.

There are also unspecified ‘improvements to working conditions, rostering and flight bonuses’.  Staff travel benefits will also be returned immediately.

All of the media comment to date has assumed without question that the pilots will accept the recommendation from their union.  I wouldn’t be so sure.

Will BA pilots accept the revised BALPA pay offer?

As I have written before, I believe that BALPA has handled the strike badly.  The ‘cold war’ period of threatening strikes went on far too long.  When strikes finally came, the first was deliberately announced far enough in advance to allow BA to escape its liability for EC261 compensation.

The second strike was cancelled in the hope that it would encourage the airline to re-enter talks (see our story here).  I can’t remember any other strike which was called off because the employer REFUSED to sit down and talk!

In reality, the offer now being proposed seems little different to what was originally on the table.  There is no sign, of course, of the profit sharing deal that was a key part of the pay demand.

BALPA’s lack of progress comes despite the fact that British Airways management has been on the back foot since IAG CEO Willie Walsh stated publicly that he felt the negotiations had been badly handled.

The long and short of it is that, based on feedback I’ve had, there is no guarantee that the pilots will accept this deal.  BALPA may have misjudged the strength of feeling among its members.

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  1. O/T Amex referrals, appear to have stopped tracking for me. One rep said person has to activate the card for it to work, which has been done, and online chat say tough have to wait for 8 weeks. Guess have no choice but to wait ☹️. These were not self referrals

    • Lot’s of people reporting issues recently.

      • Shoestring says:

        If there’s a perceived problem of gaming it on referrals/ self referrals, first thing I would do is get an intern to do a quick & dirty appraisal of referrals coming in for a few weeks to assess how bad the problem looked, maybe it’s nothing much & can be ignored

      • Lady London says:

        Hum. Wonder if the reason could be that for now, “some sort”of manual handling has been introduced for “some reason”?in lightof recent reports from elsewhere.

  2. There may be a public relations side to the last strike being cancelled, falling as it did, during the collapse of Thomas Cook.

  3. Shoestring says:

    hey Raffles – the Sunday Times school league tables are out today – you can see if your money is being well spent! 🙂 [click Tables]
    https://www.thetimes dot co dot uk/article/best-uk-schools-guide-parent-power-tr95xdztg

    the 3 months for £3 subscription trial promotion is still going for anybody who fancies trialling the Times/ Sunday Times on the cheap or just get behind the paywall to see the school league tables

    could be some Avios in it too if you know where to look

    • Coincidentally I was just reading this in Pret. Queen’s Gate is about 115th in private schools, although it would be top 50 if it was a state school. More relevant to us is ‘value add’ – last year Queen’s Gate was 5th in the UK for ‘improvement’ based on testing at 11 and testing at 16. Is it worth the money? Dunno.

  4. OT: if anybody is considering booking flights on Sri Lankan before the end of this month there is a promotion giving double points in economy and quadruple points in business for travel by the end of this year. Thus, possibly worth crediting to FlySmiles although I found them very difficult to redeem.

  5. OT: Any way to force my browser (Chrome on Android) back to mobile view for HFP? It randomly switched to desktop view a few days ago, now uses this for every article, and has made the site almost unreadable.

    • Are you using Android 9? Not sure why some of us are having this problem and some not. Anyway, scroll to the bottom of the page until you see mobile view and click there. Alternatively, repeatedly click desktop under the gears menu top right and see what happens. In the latest version of android that now gives me weird results with some sites such as hotmail. It is also possible simply clicking on the HFP main page header will do the trick.

    • We are speaking to the hosting people today. It is to do with your phone not being recognised as a phone and so desktop being served.

      HFP is 2 separate sites – mobile and desktop. It is not 1 site that changes shape based on device.

      • I’m sure it is to do with the settings, or a conflict, some people have on their individual phones so there may be little that can be done about it. I’ve never had a problem and I am sure if the problem was more widespread you would have had more comments than you have.

        • Lady London says:

          I just expand it so the left hand column fills the phone screen.

        • Thanks. Mine changed from mobile to desktop about 4 days ago without obvious reason. No change of device or browser settings.

  6. Re LATAM avios redemptions. What is the last date to make a redemption? Is it possible to book a redemption with Avios for a flight after the 30th September deadline.
    I’m thinking of a Chile Argentina holiday around Easter 2021, and it would be great to use LATAM flights to hop between Santiago, Mendoza and Buenos Aires.

    • No idea, unfortunately.

    • Lady London says:

      I wouldn’t recommend it as I used BD miles in the short period BD was owned by LH, to book sone flights via LH. The first segment on the ticket was an LH coded flight. So that meant LH ‘owned’ the whole ticket and was responsible for management of the booking for all flights on thé ticket.

      About 2 months before I was due to fly, by then LH no longer owned BD. LH sold all of their flights that didnt touch MUC or FRA to Germanwings. Lots of intra-Europe LH flights were cancelled and some former codeshare flights didnt work anymore. M’y ticket was in a mess and nonfunctional as key flights had disappeared. I had carefully constructed the routing so as to see 2 friends in Europe on less-than-24-hour-but-really-1day stopovers, en route to NZ. All that disappeared. LH didnt want to know – they were still responsible as it was ticketed on LH ‘paper’ but they stuck me with a sh1tty reroute and wouldnt budget. But it was an award ticket and BD was now owned by BA so LH hung me out to dry. They simply wouldnt deal with it. I was left with a really sh1tty routing that I couldnt cancel because i would not have got the long haul seats back again.

      So my short advice to you is make sure that whichever airline owns your ticket is still in same alliance and ideally same oxnership as where your points come from, when you fly. I suspect if you get any kind of booking mess such as a reschedule that makes your ticket unflyable they will disappear and refuse to communicate. They wouldnt have access to Oneworld inventories any longer to fix the mess.

      • Lady London says:

        On the plus side in this case I suppose its possible any rebook after the transfer would have to be to *A flights…. and possibly not in an award booking class… which could have some advantages.

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