Everyone has one of those friends or co-workers: the one that continually shows up late, or maybe not at all. They say they’ll be there, but even then, you know there’s a decent probability that they won’t be.
For river cruisers bound for Europe, German airline Lufthansa is quickly becoming that friend. After spending almost 30 consecutive days with no labour strife, the airline’s Flight Attendants have announced their intention to begin a week-long strike that could kick off on Friday, November 6, crippling the airline’s short-and-long-haul flight schedules out of the airline’s main hubs at Frankfurt and Munich.
That’s really bad news if you’re scheduled to cross the Atlantic in the next seven days with the carrier. Check your tickets; even if you’ve booked with another Star Alliance airline like Air Canada or United, your ticket may say, “Operated by Lufthansa” on it – and you’ll want to pay attention.
So what can you do if Lufthansa does go on strike? You have a few options:
Wait for the strike, and have Lufthansa rebook your flights.
This option obviously incurs no extra charges, but it does place you at a disadvantage: with flights flying fuller now than ever before, your chances of getting on another flight that day are slim depending on your destination. However, it is Lufthansa’s responsibility to get you where you’re going – even if they have to put you on another Star Alliance airline to do it.
Check Your Flight Status
If and when the strike does go ahead, Lufthansa will begin updating their website with a list of which flights are cancelled, and which are operating. You can manage your booking online or via the telephone, though expect long wait times for the latter, and load issues for the former. Last month, Lufthansa’s website went down on us when we were in Portugal and flights to Frankfurt were delayed by a wildcat Air Traffic Control strike.
It’s important to note that the strike would only affect Lufthansa-branded flights; flights on Lufthansa Cityline (sometimes branded as LH Cityline), Germanwings, Eurowings, Air Dolomiti, Austrian Airlines, SWISS, and Brussels Airlines – all of which are part of the Lufthansa Group – are not affected at this time.
Research Your Alternate Options
This is particularly helpful for those travelling to Europe. If you’re stranded at Frankfurt Airport, rail travel might be a faster way to get to where you’re going – as can renting a car, if you feel comfortable zipping along the famous Autobahn.
Check Back Here
We will, of course, keep you updated as soon as we have more concrete information as to whether Lufthansa’s flights will be operating on Friday, and how widespread the strike may be.