British Airways gets Backing from Rival Ryanair

by Emily DUNBAR on March 24, 2010

The chief executive of Ryanair, Michael O’Leary, has voiced his support for British Airways about the cabin crew on strike. In a press conference statement, he lashed out at Unite, the union representing the workers, calling them ‘a bunch of dimwits’, ‘headbangers’, ‘fat cats’ and ‘dinosaurs’.

O’Leary said that it’s insane that the cabin crew is striking against an airline that is ‘a big pension deficit on wings’. He’s appalled that these strikes are happening while the economy is still just starting to recover from a global recession and at a time when the carrier is reporting enormous losses. He added that he completely agrees with what his rival Willie Walsh is doing, which is something that doesn’t happen often.

Ryanair was a kind enough rival to lease some of their planes to British Airways during the 3-day strike to use as replacement flights. The airlines plan to put the same practice into action for the 4-day strike starting on Saturday as well.

Meanwhile, British Airways is looking over their weekend’s flight schedule to make sure that they can fly as many passengers as possible during the second strike. They also confirmed word that they will offer alcoholic drinks on flights but not hot food.

The British airline tried to hide the effects of the strike on the company, but they still had to cancel a number of flights from Heathrow Airport until mid-Tuesday. However, they announced that all of their flights from London City and Gatwick airports will continue to operate as usual during the week, while a majority of their other flights will as well.

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