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Air France unions announce 4 new strike days

The Local, Apr 5

Air France passengers are set for even more travel misery in the coming month, with the airline announcing four new strike days in April. Air France has already lost €100 million due to strikes.

Whether you're travelling by plane or train, getting around France is going to be a challenge in April.

After an unsuccessful meeting with the airline's management, ten unions representing Air France staff including pilots, cabin crews and ground staff have announced two more two-day strikes in April.

The four additional strike days are scheduled for Tuesday April 17th, Wednesday April 18th, Monday April 23rd and Tuesday April 24th as staff continue to battle for a wage increase.

The joint union group blasted Air France chiefs for their "sham negotiations" and vowed to carry on their fight to get a 6 percent pay rise across the board.

That's on top of the strike days already announced for Saturday April 7th and a two-day strike on Tuesday April 10th and Wednesday April 11th.

The new dates follow four previous strike days which took place on February 22nd, March 23rd, March 30th and April 3rd.

The really bad news for passengers is that three of the Air France strike dates, April 18th, 23rd, and 24th coincide with the rail strikes by France's national rail operator SNCF (see calendar below).

Unions representing pilots, cabin crew and ground staff have called the strikes to demand a 6 percent pay rise across the board to make up a loss of their spending power in recent years due to stagnating wages.

Management is offering a basic increase of 1 percent to be paid in two installments and a range of incentives, which trade unions have dismissed as "small change".

The unions representing Air France staff warned they would toughen up the pace of the strike action in the face of the airline management which they say has "offered no concrete response" to the demands already expressed during the strikes of February 22nd and March 23rd.

"Coming in once again with empty pockets, making no realistic proposal, the leadership again persists with confrontation and ensures that the strikes will go on," read a statement from the join union group.

"This stubbornness has already lost 100 million euros for Air France," the statement read.

The unions have also accused the airline's management of "seeking to create division" and the recent meeting to try to defuse the wage dispute lasted less than 45 minutes.

The dates on the calendar in the picture with a red mark under them are when Air France staff are set to strike whilst the dates in blue are when the scheduled rail strikes are due to take place.

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