world of aviation logo

Eurowings Germany pilot strikes cause hundreds of cancellations

written by Casey Martin | October 11, 2022

On 6 October, pilots employed by the Lufthansa subsidiary Eurowings Germany went on a 24-hour strike causing hundreds of flight cancellations.

Over 300 flights had to be cancelled, affecting more than 30,000 passengers. Eurowings Germany claimed that they were able to salvage “half” of the planned flights, using aircraft from the non-striking Austrian subsidiary of Lufthansa, Eurowings Europe and other partnering companies.

The decision to strike comes after the tenth round of negotiations surrounding dangerous working hours due to staff shortages came to a stalemate.

The Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) union released a statement in August regarding the working conditions.

“The workload has increased considerably … The employer regularly extends the working hours of colleagues to the maximum permitted,” the union said.

This statement led to a ballot among pilots resulting in a 97.7% vote in favor of strike action.


The pilots are asking to be provided with better pay as living costs continue to increase, roster adjustments, additional rest day and a reduction of active-duty hours. These demands have been rejected by Eurowings for months leading up to the strike.

A strike was originally planned for early September but was called off by the VC when a deal was struck with company executives. This agreement, however, failed to resolve any of the issues facing pilots.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, airport unions, including VC agreed to wage suspensions. Lufthansa pilots suffered the most, losing around €800 million.

Lufthansa has recovered significantly since travel restrictions have been lifted and passenger numbers have increased substantially. Despite this, the company did not reimburse those affected by the decision to suspend payment and its pilots continue to work under pressured environments.

Eurowings announced the strike to their customers on Twitter in the morning, providing them with the information needed if their flight was cancelled.

The information provided by Eurowings wasn’t satisfactory for some, with one Twitter user stating that there was no option to re-book on the link provided and when they did find a way to re-book a flight, the fee to do so cost more than the original flight itself.

A VC spokesperson said there are no plans to further labour disputes but it cannot be ruled out.



Each day, our subscribers are more informed with the right information.

SIGN UP to the Australian Aviation magazine for high-quality news and features for just $99.95 per year