London Heathrow Airport is making contingency plans to keep the airport open ahead of a three-day strike by security guards this week.
Members of Unite, the union that represents, among others, security guards working at Heathrow, are set to strike from May 25 through May 27 as the group continues to push for “a fair and decent pay rise.” This week’s strike is in addition to 15 days of strike action that Unite has already held this spring.
The strike is coming during what is typically a hectic time of the year for traffic at Heathrow.
According to the airport’s chief executive John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow has prepared for the strike ahead of time and expects little-to-no impact from the strike.
“Passengers should not be concerned about strike action by Unite over the half-term getaway. The 15 days of strike action over the Easter peak and Coronation weekends have had no impact on the smooth running of the airport, and passengers have not noticed any difference from the normal great service they expect at Heathrow,” he said.
Heathrow is alerting those traveling from the airport that they should still arrive “no more than 2 hours before short haul flights and 3 hours before long haul flights and preparing for security with their compliant liquids and electronics out of their hand luggage.”
Strikes are nothing new for the travel industry in 2023. In the first five months of 2023 alone, the industry has dealt with a German airport worker strike that caused the cancellation of 2,300 flights, potential WestJet and American Airlines pilots’ strikes that were both averted, and more.