Lufthansa says its customers have not felt any inconvenience on the first day of a strike by ground and cabin staff over pay.
A spokesman for the German national carrier said 1,000 flights had gone without any major problems — only a few minor delays.
In Hambourg, he said: “They’re flying safely, with the right maintenance, and there’s food aboard. Basically, the effects of the strike are not noticeable to the customers.”
But according to union officials, the impact will grow. The open-ended strike, which officially started at midnight on Sunday, threatens to hit areas from catering to cargo to repairs.
A union negotiator said: “No maintenance, no flight… that will affect operations. The dispute is unpredictable.”
The company said it had limited the impact of the walkouts by reassigning non-striking staff to required tasks.
German media reported many passenger rebookings with other airlines, just in case of delays with Lufthansa. After years of wage restraint, Verdi is demanding a 9.8 percent pay rise. Lufthansa is offering 6.7 percent.