| ANOTHER five-day strike by Iberia pilots, cabin crew and ground staff will mean a further 1,300 flights grounded next week.
Starting from Monday, March 4 and running until Friday, March 8 inclusive, workers will down tools in protest over the 3,807 redundancies planned by the airline as a consequence of restructure plans.
Employees have already presented viable alternatives, including methods of increasing productivity and with pilots even proposing to take a 26-per-cent pay cut, but these have been rejected by the company's management and negotiations have reached stalemate.
This means that next week, 431 Iberia flights, 100 Iberia Express, 316 Vueling and 434 Air Nostrum flights will be cancelled – a total of 1,281, or 59 more than during the previous five-day strike last week.
Flights through other firms – such as Turkish Airlines and Lufthansa – could also be cancelled or suffer delays since Iberia's ground staff provide services to up to 120 companies in Spanish airports.
Those flights which do take off are likely to see long delays.
Anyone due to fly into or out of Spain, particularly with one of the four Iberia affiliates, should check with their airline to ensure their trip will still go ahead.
A further five-day strike is planned for the week of March 18 to 22, which will affect travellers going away for the Saint Joseph's Day public holiday on March 19, when the massive Fallas festival is held in the Comunidad Valenciana attracting thousands of tourists.
Minister for public works and infrastructure, Ana Pastor, has arranged for an independent mediator to solve the deadlock between Iberia and its workers, but as yet nothing concrete has happened.
For each day Iberia staff are on strike – as is their legal right – the company is set to lose 10 million euros.