British Airways and Pilots’ Union Agree Pay Deal in Bid to Avoid Christmas Strike Action

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The Times has a very interesting article today, reporting that a pay deal has finally been reached between British Airways and the BALPA pilots’ union.

According to the article, although BALPA has recommended the deal to members, they do still need to vote on it next week.

What’s the deal?

Note that at the moment this is only according to The Times report, as BALPA hasn’t released a statement yet:

“The union is believed to have accepted an 11.5 per cent pay rise over three years with the addition of a clause that allows for further rises in line with inflation. BA also offered better working conditions, rostering and bonuses alongside the restoration of generous travel perks stripped from pilots involved in past strike action.”

Bottom line

I have written before about how I found the aggressive attitude of British Airways’ management towards the dispute to be extremely strange. If The Times report is accurate, it seems that the pilots really were only asking for (or at least have settled for) relatively minor changes to the pay deal previously on the table – which is what BALPA were saying publicly at the time. Perhaps the changes to working conditions are more significant, but there should always have been flexibility on those sort of non-cash issues in the negotiations.

Regardless, an agreement was always ultimately going to be reached and it seems remarkable that the dispute could not have been resolved with less disruption for passengers and less cost to the business (including longer term reputational and morale issues).

Let’s hope that the pilots are happy to vote in favour of the agreement next week and that further disruption – particularly over Christmas – can be avoided!


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