Aer Lingus became the second airline this week to issue a profit warning, with the Irish carrier blaming cabin crew strikes for putting passengers off booking flights on its planes this summer.
The shamrock-adorned airline said the impact of industrial action by staff, who are locked in a dispute about timetables with claims the current ones leave cabin crew exhausted, would knock up to €12 million (£9.7 million), or 20 per cent, off annual profits.
Strikes hit last month’s bank holiday but two further days of industrial action, planned for next week, have been deferred.
However, Aer Lingus said: “the threat of this strike has caused significant damage to forward bookings for several months into the future.”
It said 2014 profits will be 10 per cent to 2 per cent lower than last year and “the outcome will depend in part on the speed with which we can win back customer confidence”.
Lufthansa yesterday also blamed strikes by workers, as well as strong competition from Gulf carriers, for its latest profit warning. The German airline slashed its operating profit target for this year by as much as a third to €1 billion.