As EVA Air flight attendants entered the fifth day of their walk-out Monday, hundreds of flights had to be canceled leaving thousands of passengers scrambling just as the peak travel season gets underway.
Labor union strikes are unusual in this area but is the second this year in Taiwan. China Airlines, Taiwan’s largest carrier, held a work stoppage in February for seven days as Pilots negotiated an updated compensation package.
The current strike at EVA pits flight attendants against management as the two sides have failed to reach an agreement over per diem allowances. Some 2,000 cabin staff workers — two-thirds of all the airline’s flight attendants — walked away from their posts Thursday as many Taiwanese were starting their summer vacations. The workers are holding sit-in protests outside the company’s headquarters in Taoyuan in northern Taiwan.
The most impacted destinations are cities in North America, Europe, South-east Asia as the strike hobbles nearly half of the airline’s daily carrying capacity. In a statement from the airline reported by Bloomberg. the airline will have scrapped a total of 852 flights in the eight days to June 28.
The strike affects flights from Taipei to Hong Kong – one of the world’s busiest routes. It also affects flights on Singapore Airlines, which has a code-sharing agreement with EVA Air.
“While we are not able to provide specific details, Singapore Airlines has assisted to accommodate some passengers from the affected EVA Air flight cancellations to our own flights,” Singapore Air told Reuters. EVA Air notes passengers can get updates about the strike and canceled flights from EVA Air’s website.