Due to a canceled flight on Friday, 614 passengers were unable to fly from the Greek airport of Chania “Ioannis Daskalogiannis” to the UK. The ban was imposed on three flights.
Passengers who bought tickets to Manchester and London were in for a real “surprise” at the airport: just a few minutes before departure, they were informed that the flight had been cancelled. The reason is the lack of ground staff at UK airports. I had to spend the night in hotels while waiting for my flight.
Similar problems are observed at many European international airports. Airlines are experiencing severe staffing shortages and are also suffering from strikes by their employees. This leads not only to long delays, but sometimes to the cancellation of flights.
In Britain, airlines and the government are blaming each other amid tourism chaos that has led to hundreds of flight cancellations and overcrowded terminals. There is an acute shortage of qualified personnel in the country, who have turned their backs on the industry in the past two years. A spokesman for the GMB union says: “It’s almost impossible to find staff at the moment.”
EasyJet took an unprecedented step due to a shortage of flight attendants. This summer, all Airbus A319 aircraft will have their back row seats removed, reducing the total number of seats by six. This will allow, according to safety standards, not four, but three flight attendants, based on 150 passengers, to fly.
The situation is no better in Germany. Thomas Richter of the ABL Ground Handling Association states: “Many employees have changed jobs and moved to the logistics department.” Due to the increased traffic, due to the tourist season, German terminals are overcrowded – there are long queues in Düsseldorf, Berlin and Frankfurt. For example, in Düsseldorf, the main problem is the verification of passengers, which is carried out by a private company on behalf of the federal police. At the airports of Amsterdam and Copenhagen the situation is similar. Passengers are even advised to arrive at the airport of departure early – 4 hours before departure.
In addition, due to the crisis in Europe, the number of people wishing to fly in business class has significantly decreased, and passengers using the services of low-cost airlines have a lot of hand luggage. It slows down verification process at airports.
The Verdi union expects the problems to continue throughout the summer as the stress and pressure at work takes a physical and mental toll on workers. According to the company’s expert, “the incidence rate is already over 20%.”
Frankfurt, like its constant rival Amsterdam, announced the restriction of the flight program, canceling some destinations. And all this in close cooperation with the airlines, which, to put it mildly, are not happy and demand compensation. And Dutch airline KLM has suspended ticket sales to take a breather while making changes to existing bookings. newsbreak.gr.