Ryanair strikes in Spain: which UK flights are affected by strike action, walk out dates and who is striking?

Ryanair cabin crew across Spain will strike every week for the next five months to demand better working conditions

Ryanair cabin crew across Spain will go on strike for five months, with walkouts to last until January.

Cabin crew unions Unión Sindical Obrera (USO) and Sitcpla have called are staging the walkouts to demand better working conditions, including 22 days of holiday and two extra months payment to comply with Spanish legislation.

Lidia Aransanz, a leader for USO’s Ryanair section, said: “As the company has been unable to listen to the workers, we have been forced to call new strike days.”

Their demands also include a call for the immediate reinstatement of 11 cabin staff who were fired for striking in July, and an end of subcontracting through employment agencies, such as Workforce and Crewlink.

Ryanair cabin crew across Spain will strike every week for the next five months (Photo: Getty Images)
Ryanair cabin crew across Spain will strike every week for the next five months (Photo: Getty Images)
Ryanair cabin crew across Spain will strike every week for the next five months (Photo: Getty Images)

When will the strikes take place?

Cabin crew across Spain will walk out over a period of five months, running from 8 August to 7 January 2023.

The industrial action will run every week from Monday to Thursday and will last 24 hours, according to Euronews.

Which flights will be affected?

The new strike action is expected to mainly affect the airports of Madrid-Barajas, Barcelona, Malaga, Alicante, Seville and Palma de Mallorca, with both national and international connections to be disrupted.

The latest walkouts come following 12 days of walkouts by Spanish cabin crew earlier this month as staff called for the same working conditions as their counterparts in other European countries, like France and Germany.

Ten Spanish airports have been affected, including Madrid, Malaga, Barcelona, Alicante, Sevilla, Palma, Valencia, Girona, Santiago de Compostela and Ibiza.

The number of cancelled flights was limited compared to other countries where Ryanair staff are also striking, as Spanish regulation forces airlines and staff to maintain a minimum service.

A Ryanair spokesperson said: "Ryanair has recently reached an agreement with the main Spanish CCOO union on pay, rosters and allowances for its Spanish cabin crew.

“Recent strikes by USO/SITCPLA have been poorly supported with minimal effect.

"Ryanair has operated over 45,000 flights to/from Spain over the last 3 months with less than 1% affected by crewing and Ryanair expects minimal (if any) disruption this winter."

Ryanair has been battling against the threat of strike action from staff over pay after it cut salaries during the pandemic, but said it has agreed deals with unions representing more than 80% of its pilots and around 70% of cabin crews.

The airline added: “We hope to conclude agreements with the small remaining balance in the near future.”

EasyJet workers also staging three sets of three-day strikes this month. Two have already taken place, with the third scheduled between 29 and 31 July.

Some 450 workers based at Barcelona’s El Prat airport, Malaga and Palma de Mallorca will walk out.

The USO said its members in Spain typically have a base salary of €950 a month, which is €850 less than what easyJet cabin crew receive in France and Germany. The union has been in a dispute with the airline since February.

Easyjet said it plans to operate its full schedule of flights, but admitted there could be some disruption to its programme.

What happens if my flight is cancelled because of the strikes?

If your flight is cancelled or delayed because of strikes you may be able to receive compensation.

If your flights are part of a package holiday you will either be offered alternative travel or a full refund, but if you purchased the flights alone, your compensation depends on when your flight is cancelled and how long you are delayed for.

If your flight is cancelled, your airline should offer you the choice of an alternative flight or a refund.

If your flight is cancelled with less than two weeks’ notice, you may be able to claim compensation based on the timings of the alternative flight.

The amount you are entitled to also depends on how far you were travelling. For flights under 1,500km, you can claim up to £220 per person, and for flights more than 3,500km, you can claim up to £520 per person.

Airlines must also offer sufficient drink and accommodation if your flight is cancelled at short notice and your new flight is the following day. This assistance must also be offered if your flight is delayed by at least two hours.