Tens of thousands of air travelers have to prepare for flight cancellations at Hamburg Airport on Monday in the middle of the spring break. The reason is a 24-hour warning strike announced by the Verdi union. It begins on Sunday with the start of the night shift at around 10 p.m. Therefore, individual flights are canceled late in the evening, as the airport announced on Sunday.
On Monday, not only were all 123 originally planned flights from Hamburg canceled. 50 of the 121 planned flights to Hamburg are already affected. According to the airport, landings are possible on Monday. Due to strikes, however, all-day flight cancellations and significant delays are also expected for arrivals.
The airport advised passengers to keep themselves informed about their flight status and, if necessary, to contact the airline or tour operator. Due to the warning strike, it is also not possible to check in the evening before for flights on Tuesday. The airport asked passengers affected by cancellations not to come to the airport.
The Verdi union has called around 2,000 employees to go on warning strikes – from the airport and from several airport subsidiaries (maintenance, IT, parking space management), who fall directly under the public service collective agreement or are indirectly linked to it via in-house collective agreements. The employees of security services, who fall under the nationwide collective agreement in aviation security, and passenger handling are also called upon.
"All of these companies have one thing in common: air traffic has been booming again for a long time and they earn very well," said trade union secretary Lars Stubbe. However, the management refused to pay their employees appropriately and fairly. "Many families have lost a lot of money in recent years with inflation and Corona, money that they now lack." Aviation security employees have been negotiating allowances for more than two years. "So far, the employers have not moved at all." The irregular working hours represent a high burden and must be rewarded accordingly.
There had already been a 24-hour warning strike at Hamburg Airport in mid-February. According to the airport, 253 flights and around 32,000 passengers were affected.
Airport spokeswoman Janet Niemeyer criticized that the warning strike was taking place in the middle of the March holidays in Hamburg, a popular travel time for families. The airport continues to feel the consequences of the Corona years. "Around 30 percent of the passengers are still missing and the airport's economic deficit is in the double-digit million range." She expects massive restrictions for tens of thousands of travelers. The northern German airports of Hanover and Bremen as well as the capital's Berlin-Brandenburg airport BER are also on strike all day by Verdi.
Hamburg Airport expects numerous rebookings on Tuesday and the following days. 122 take-offs and 122 landings are planned for Tuesday in Hamburg. The flights will be heavily loaded.
The union is planning a two-hour rally in front of the terminals on Monday (12:00 p.m.). The deputy Verdi country manager Ole Borgard wants to speak there. The union expects 300 participants.
The union is demanding 10.5 percent more wages, but at least 500 euros more per month, for around 2.5 million employees in the federal and local public services nationwide. The employer side has so far offered five percent more money in two steps and one-off payments of 2500 euros. The third round of negotiations is scheduled for March 27-29 in Potsdam.
According to the Verdi union, around 250 employees of the city cleaning and the Hamburg State Opera took part in a rally on Saturday. The warning strike in Hamburg got off to a good start, said a Verdi spokesman on Saturday. "The recycling centers are closed, the waste bins in Hamburg are full."
Theatergoers are also feeling the effects of the warning strike. The premiere "Il Trittico" planned for Sunday in the Hamburg State Opera is canceled, as the opera announced on Friday. Instead, the performance next Wednesday should act as a premiere.