Low-cost airline easyJet has claimed it was hanging by a thread – just a year after rival tour operator Thomas Cook collapsed.
The pilots union representative and easyJet captain Martin Entwisle reportedly warned that the airline could severely curtail its flight schedule due to the damage caused by the pandemic.
It flies from several UK airports including Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow and Bristol to destinations across Europe.
according to at the BBCEntwisle said the company was in dire straits at another potential blow to the travel industry that has already been decimated by the coronavirus crisis.
The comments were made on a tape the broadcaster received after a meeting between the union and easyJet bosses, including CFO Andrew Findlay.
Balpa representative, Mr Entwisle, tells his colleagues, “I think the easiest way to put it is that the company is hanging by a thread. The situation is dire.
“If we don’t have a good summer next summer and we make a significant amount of money, we’re really going to be unemployed.”
The warning was part of a presentation by union officials during negotiations to save jobs at the airline.
Balpa claimed it had reached an agreement with easyJet to avoid compulsory layoffs. 1,500 pilots chose to work part-time.
Earlier this year, the airline announced it would close its bases in Newcastle and two London airports, Southend and Stansted, and confirmed in May that it would cut around 4,500 jobs across Europe.
However, EasyJet hit back, claiming the claims did not accurately reflect the meeting.
In a statement to the BBC, easyJet said: “The recording does not reflect what easyJet or its CFO said. We understood that the entire industry was affected by the pandemic. EasyJet, however, has a prudent approach to it chosen on capacity and capacity. ” the right measures to preserve the money.
“The airline continues to monitor all liquidity options, but no decisions have been made.
“Winter flying is always significantly lower than summer and easyJet will continue its prudent and dynamic capacity approach through winter. No decisions have been made and we will update the market in due course.”
The pilots’ union claim came 12 months after vacation giant Thomas Cook collapsed last September, losing 9,000 jobs and stranding thousands of vacationers overseas.
According to the industry association Airlines UK, more than 30,000 jobs have been lost at British airlines since the beginning of the pandemic.
There have also been cuts made by airports, baggage handlers, travel agents and tour operators.