Virgin Atlantic pilots threaten more airline strikes

Bitterwallet - Virgin AtlanticHey you! Yes you, the savvy and astute traveller!

You're not going to be caught out by the threat of possible strike action by flying with British Airways, are you? That's why you've booked with Virgin Atlantic, to guarantee you're plans won't be the victim of union or management politics.

Clever you! Unless Virgin Atlantic flights are threatened with potential strike action, too. Bollocks.

In a bid to send you into a Bruce Banner-style apoplectic rage of ages, the Mail on Sunday reports that the British Airline Pilots’ Association (BALPA) are claiming Virgin Atlantic is attempting to reduce their annual entitlement of days off, from 120 days to 106. 106 days still sounds exceptionally generous, but since pilots are in charge of a 600mph metal missile full of aviation fuel, it's difficult to make a call on it.

According to the newspaper, management and union representatives are due to begin negotiations this week. The nightmare scenario would be for both BA and Virgin to find themselves at the mercy of the unions and have their Autumn schedules unravelled by strike action at the same time. That's incredibly unlikely to occur (and even if it does, there are still plenty of options for transatlantic and longhaul flights) but let's see if any hysteria breaks out amongst the media to that effect.


  • The B.
    Surely the number of "days off" is governed by the CAA? Basically pilots are only allowed to work something like 40 hours a month, presumably they spend the rest on the golf course/down the pub.
  • Nobby
    I flew with BA once. Never again. He kept saying "I ain't getting on no plane".
  • blagga
    @nobby, if I wasn't laughing so hard at your joke, I'd have to call you a cunt. Good gag, mate.
  • Marky M.
    I flew with Virgin once. Never again. They wouldn't go all the way.
  • Ben
    Nooooooooooooooooooo! I have flights booked for october half term. Ballbags.
  • Jumpin J.
    The average office worker gets 104 days off per year but they are restricted to around 40hrs per week. Flight crews may appear to get more days off per year but they can work up to 60hrs in 7 days and are often at work when you are dreaming about going on holiday. Do you really want the 2 guys up front totally knackered while they take you on your jollies? If you think this is soley about Virgin, think again. The whole UK airline industry is suffering the effects of fatigue and it's going to get worse. It's a pity the tabloids don't give a monkies...until bits of metal start falling from the sky.
  • Phil K.
    More power to their unions. I drive a train and don't get those days off. But they are far more under pressure flying one of those. Good luck to them, but hope it's sorted by October 2011 when I fly to Orlando with my family !
  • Me
    Good luck to them. The capitalist bastards in the uk are trying to drag us back to the dark ages. Slave labour in disguise as cost cutting. Good luck also to London Fire Brigade, BA and anyone else who is getting royally shafted by their ungrateful company!
  • dacouch
    You cab't beat being Upper Virgin all the way to America

What do you think?

Your comment