The owner of British Airways has said strikes by pilots earlier this month have cost the airline an estimated €137 million (£121 million), hitting the group's operating profit.
International Airlines Group (IAG) said the carrier was initially forced to cancel 4,521 flights over a period of seven days due to a walk-out by the British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA), though 2,196 of those services were later re-instated after the union called off planned industrial action on 27 September.
In addition to the cancellations, BA allowed passengers booked onto 4,070 flights not directly impacted by the strikes to re-book for different dates or receive a refund.
IAG claimed: “There have been no further talks between British Airways and BALPA. The airline’s offer of an 11.5 per cent pay increase over three years still stands and has been accepted by British Airways’ other unions, representing 90 per cent of the airline’s employees.”
BALPA said its members took lower pay rises in the past when BA was suffering financially, but it is demanding a greater share of the profits now that the airline’s owner’s outlook has improved.
IAG has warned that it now expects its 2019 operating profit to be €215 million lower than 2018 (about €3.5 billion) after the impact of the strikes, a €33 million hit from threatened industrial action by Heathrow employees that was later called off, and a €45 million blow caused by “booking trends” in the group’s low-cost segment (Vueling and LEVEL).
However, the company warned that “any further industrial action will additionally impact IAG’s full year 2019 operating profit”.