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Photo: SAS

SAS axes more flights as talks continue

The situation is fluid, as another round of flights have been cancelled for Thursday and parties go back to the negotiating table.

SAS says it will cancel more flights on Thursday, as the airline meets the unions involved in a pilot strike in an effort to resolve a weeklong dispute that has left hundreds of thousands of passengers stranded.

In excess of 300,000 people have been hit by the confrontation over salaries and other demands, which experts think could cost the airline €9.4 million a day – destroying the airline’s annual profits.

At least 20,000 passengers are expected to be affected on Thursday when 280 flights are cancelled throughout Scandinavia until 14:00.

SAS says that “we are doing everything in our power to limit the number of cancelled flights, and information about the current traffic situation caused by the pilot strike is updated continuously”.

Karin Nyman, vice president for communications at SAS, commented: “It is positive that the parties now return to the negotiating table, it is the only way the conflict can be solved. As the parties meet, we have the aspiration that it will lead to constructive dialogue.”

She added: “We follow the development closely and make decisions continuously accordingly. Every cancelled flight is a failure, so we work hard to limit the number of cancelled flights.”

As on previous days, flights operated by SAS’s partners will not be affected by the strike. Impacted passengers can rebook or cancel their tickets free of charge until May 5.

Talking peace
At 11:00 on Wednesday morning, SAS and the striking pilots from Denmark, Norway and Sweden began new negotiations in Oslo.

So far, since the strike began on April 26 SAS has had to cancel a total of almost 3,600 flights, hitting around 350,000 passengers’ travel plans.

More than 500 flights scheduled for Wednesday, which was a public holiday in Sweden, were cancelled, affecting some 47,000 passengers.

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