Air France is warning travelers to expect only four out of 10 flights operating today as their pilots strike for the third day.
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Wednesday that their strike was “weighing heavily” on the company and the image of France, and that it had to stop.
The pilots are resisting the national carrier’s attempts to cut costs and compete in the low-cost market by setting up a company through its Transavia brand based in Portugal, paying Portuguese wages, and transferring many French-based staff to that office.
The pilots currently earn around 75,000 euros a year for those working for Transavia and up to 250,000 euros for those in the Air France planes. The company claims at these rates competing with their more nimble rivals is impossible.
The pilots say their strike will last the entire week. According to Air France the strike is costing 10 to 15 million euros per day.