Ryanair on the brink of closing its hub in Billund

Unions have until 17:00 today to call off strikes

The controversial budget airline Ryanair has warned that it will close down its base in west Denmark’s largest airport Billund on Friday should the Danish unions continue with their planned strike against the airline.

The Irish airline’s head of personnel Eddie Wilson revealed at a press conference in Billund that the about 100 pilots and cabin staff face being moved to the airline’s other bases in Europe.

“We sincerely regret any inconvenience caused to our people and our customers by this week’s base closures in Copenhagen and Billund, however the Danish Unions have made clear that as long as we have any base in Denmark they intend to engage in secondary strikes at Copenhagen, despite admitting they have no members among Ryanair pilots or cabin crew,” Wilson said.

Ryanair said it would close down its Billund base unless the unions called off the strikes by 17:00 today and the airline claims that the closure would mean about 400,000 fewer travellers per year out of Billund. Two routes to Chania and Corfu in Greece will be completely shut down.

READ MORE: Ryanair shuts down Copenhagen base

Strikes start Saturday
Ryanair flies to 14 destinations in Europe from Billund, the vast majority being in southern Europe. The three planes based in Billund will be moved to London and Dublin as a result of a prospective closure.

The Danish unions have warned of a strike against Copenhagen Airport on July 18 and the airports in Billund and Aarhus on July 23.

The conflict arose after Ryanair refused to negotiation a wage agreement with the Danish unions when it opened a base in Copenhagen Airport earlier this year. The airline subsequently closed it Copenhagen base on July 1.