If you’re planning on visiting Europe this summer, be prepared for possible delays, cancellations, and an overall frustrating experience.
This past Friday, air traffic controllers went on strike in Italy, leading to disruptions for those traveling to and within the continent.
As reported by the Independent, the workers carried out their strike from 1:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. on Friday, June 8. This is also the busiest time of the week for flight arrivals and destinations.
At Gatwick, a bustling airport in England, U.K. budget airline easyJet canceled multiple flights to destinations in Italy. Other cancellations include flights from Heathrow to Milan, and flights to Rome and Venice. Alitalia, the flag carrier of Italy, is being hit with the most disruptions. The Independent reports that the airline has canceled more than 100 flights following the strike.
With the strike hindering a traveler’s trip, passengers with delayed and canceled flights have been entitled to an airline’s compensation until they reach their desired destination.
“Due to yet another Italian strike, Ryanair regrets to inform customers that it has been forced to cancel a number of flights on Friday,” said Ryanair in a statement. This low-cost Irish airline has also experienced multiple cancellations this week. “As a result of this unjustified strike action, we also expect delays to flights to/from/over Italy and we advise customers due to travel on Friday to check the status of their flight on the Ryanair.com website.”
While those traveling in the air are affected by this strike, so are those traveling on the ground. Tourists able to arrive in Italy may also find the country’s local transport being disrupted. Those who work for transit in Rome, Turin, and Verona have also been reported to be planning a 24-hour strike.
This news also comes in the threat of an upcoming strike involving Westjet, a low-cost Canadian airline. In addition, air traffic controllers at the Marseille Area Control Centre in France had been set to stage a walkout on June 9 and 10, recently completing a similar strike in May. French railroad workers have also been on strike this week, causing even more travel disruptions.
The strikes are expected to continue every five days until June 28, though an additional strike is reported to already have been planned for July 5.
During these times of uncertainty, those traveling to and within Europe have been advised to check their flight status prior to arriving at the airport.