x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

UK strike may affect Emirates and Etihad flights

Flights to and from the UK aboard Emirates Airline and Etihad Airways flights may be cancelled or delayed as a result of a planned labour strike there.

DUBAI // Etihad and Emirates airlines have warned passengers that flights to and from the UK could be delayed or cancelled on Wednesday due to a planned 24-hour labour strike.

The strike affects UK Border Agency staff across the country. Airline customers were also warned to expect potentially long delays at immigration halls due to the disruption.

"The UK Border Agency has announced they will be on strike on 30 November," said a statement on the Emirates Airline website. "As a result, all Emirates flights to/from the UK on that day may be disrupted or forced to be cancelled."

The Dubai-based carrier urged passengers to consider alternative days for travel.

Etihad Airways said on its website that the strike would start from 12.01am Wednesday UK time until midnight on Thursday. "The strike will most likely affect operations at all UK border crossings and has the potential to cause disruption at all UK airports," the Abu Dhabi-based carrier said on its website. "Etihad operates flights to both London Heathrow and Manchester. At this stage, Etihad flights will be operating as scheduled, but due to the anticipated disruption, it is possible Etihad guests may experience long delays in waiting to clear immigration at both airports on this day."

Anyone wishing to change their travel plans should contact the Etihad office or their travel agent.

The strike is part of a wider public sector demonstration, and could see two million people take part, including teachers, construction workers and some National Health Service staff.

The British government said troops could be stationed at border control points.

The dispute is over planned changes to public sector pensions.

Passengers are also advised to visit their airline's website for more details.

 

nhanif@thenational.ae