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Air traffic control strike to hit many French flights next week

A quarter of flights from four airports will be cancelled 

Toulouse airport is one of the four affected and will operate at reduced capacity on Monday Pic: Stephen M Brooks / Shutterstock

Up to a quarter of flights will be cancelled at four French airports due to a strike by air traffic controllers on Sunday evening and all day on Monday.

The affected airports are Paris-Orly, Toulouse-Blagnac, Bordeaux-Mérignac and Marseille-Provence. The strike action will begin at 18:00 on Sunday (November 19). 

Air traffic control will continue to operate during the strike, albeit at minimum service.

The French Civil Aviation Authority announced that many flights to and from these airports will have to be cancelled to ensure the safety of air traffic.

The cancellations will affect 25% of flights to and from Paris-Orly and Toulouse-Blagnac, and 20% of flights to and from Bordeaux-Mérignac and Marseille-Provence.

The sudden strike by air traffic controllers comes in response to a law passed on November 15 that seeks to restrict their ability to go on strike.

The law mandates that they must register their individual intent to join in strike action at least 48 hours before going on strike.

It comes in response to France’s position as the European leader in terms of strike action by air traffic controllers.

Between 2004 and 2016, they have accumulated 254 days of strike action, far more than the second placed country, Greece, where controllers have been on strike for 46 days during the same period. 

“Despite our preventative measures, passengers should still expect delays,” said the civil aviation authority. “Passengers who are able to travel at a later date should do so.”

Anyone who has booked a plane ticket for travel on Sunday or Monday should contact their airline to see if their flight is affected.

Read also

French unions threaten Christmas and New Year rail strike

Travel: How to be reimbursed if affected by strike action in France

Doctors pause their strike in France: Will consultation fees go up?

Richard Branson ‘plans London-Paris train service to rival Eurostar’

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