Dublin 7 Aug – We are disappointed that the pilots union BALPA, is threatening to disrupt our customers travel plans during late August, early September, when it has the support of less than 30% of Ryanair’s UK pilots.
The independent result of BALPA’s ballot shows that less than 50% of Ryanair’s UK pilots are members of BALPA, and of these, just 57% voted in favour of industrial action. This is less than 30% of Ryanair’s UK pilots. It is notable that over 70% of Ryanair’s UK pilots are either not members of BALPA, or did not vote in BALPA’s ballot, or voted against industrial action. BALPA have no mandate to disrupt our customers holidays and flights, particularly at a time when UK pilots are facing job losses due to the Boeing MAX delivery delays, and the threat of a no deal Brexit on 31 Oct.
Last year, Ryanair’s UK pilots agreed a 20% salary increase, with Senior Captain’s earning up to £180,000 p.a., which is more than competitor airline pilots in Norwegian or Jet2. BALPA is recommending a pay freeze for Jet2 pilots in return for improved rosters (which Ryanair pilots already enjoy), and/or 12 months unpaid leave for Norwegian’s Gatwick pilots.
This BALPA industrial action has no mandate from Ryanair pilots, is ill-timed just 10 weeks before Brexit, and will cause unnecessary disruption to customers holidays and travel plans. We have written to BALPA asking them to return to talks, and we apologise sincerely to customers for any uncertainty that BALPA’s ballot may cause them. We hope BALPA will now work with Ryanair to minimise job losses instead of undertaking ill-judged and ill-timed industrial action.
Editor’s note: Attached Ryanair’s letter 7th August to BALPA