Labor Sanctions to Disrupt Iberia Flights to Israel

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Flights to and from Israel operated by the Spanish-based airline Iberia as to be disrupted beginning Monday due to labor sanctions by the airline’s staff.

The disruptions are expected to last through Friday, resulting in the cancellation of four flights this week on the company’s Tel Aviv-Madrid route two outgoing flights and two incoming. The airline said it would work to re-ticket passengers on the route to other Iberia flights or to flights of other carriers. Travelers will also be given the option of rebooking their travel for other dates. The current disruptions follow similar labor sanctions last month that resulted in the cancellation of 20 of the carrier’s flights serving Israel.

The route is particularly popular with Israelis traveling to South America and connecting in Spain. Iberia is expected to scrap about 40% of its flights worldwide this week. The airline’s staff are not striking longer haul international service, but rather just short- and medium-distance flights, including those to and from Israel.

According to Israel Airports Authority data, last year about 175,500 passengers flew Iberia to or from Israel, a decline of about 10% from 2011. In January of this year 11,200 passengers flew the airline to or from Ben-Gurion International Airport, a decline of 21% compared to January of last year.

Workers of Spanish airline Iberia holding demonstration in Malaga's Pablo Ruiz Picasso airport. February 22, 2013.Credit: Reuters

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