Following the collapse in air travel, low-budget airline easyJet have offered alternative contracts to its pilots amid warnings of compulsory redundancies.
In May, the airline revealed it planned to cut up to 4,500 jobs as it struggled to weather the financial storm caused by the coronavirus pandemic. It now appears 727 pilot jobs are at risk, almost a third of the total.
The outlook may be looking up for easyJet in terms of demand, operating around 1,000 flights per day in August, a 10% capacity increase on original predictions. However, their dire financial position was revealed in a third-quarter trading update earlier this month.
During this period, they carried only 117,000 passengers and generated £7m in revenue. Last year the airline flew 26.4m passengers to destinations across Europe and within the UK, generating a revenue of £1.76bn.
It is this drastic downturn in passenger numbers that has already forced easyJet to announce the closure of their bases in Stansted, Southend and Newcastle. Now, these new contracts for pilots are hoped to limit the number of compulsory redundancies the airline has to make in the next few months.
Pilots have been given a number of options; working for two weeks and then having two weeks off, dropping four days from their normal pattern of 13 fixed days, working for three weeks and then having a week off or unpaid leave lasting from six to 18 months.
Voluntary redundancy is an additional option and if staff do not apply for this or one of the new contracts, they could be selected for compulsory redundancy which is likely have less generous severance terms.
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