easyJet passengers are expected to be the most affected. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter

It’s been a challenging summer for British travellers due to waves of strike action in the airline industry and the air traffic control sector and this week Gatwick, Britain’s second biggest airport, has implemented a temporary limit on daily flights because of a shortage of staff in air traffic control caused by illnesses, including coronavirus.

The airport has imposed a cap of 800 flights taking off or landing a day until Sunday and said 164 flights will be cancelled because of the disruption.
London Gatwick boss Stewart Wingate apologised for the disruption and said it was “a difficult decision to take”.

“The action we have taken means our airlines can fly reliable flight programmes, which gives passengers more certainty that they will not face last minute cancellations,” Wingate said in a statement.

In a separate statement air traffic control provider NATS said around a third of staff in air traffic control were unavailable for “a variety of medical reasons including COVID,” leaving it unable to manage the number of flights that were originally planned.

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With the forecast promising great weather for at least the next two weeks, Mallorca and other Balearic islands were all set for a late surge in bookings but the problems at Gatwick could make people think twice or at least look for an alternative airport to depart from.

Furthermore, Friday is expected to be the worst day with 865 flights scheduled to be disrupted.
The airport has said that a total of 164 cancellations will be shared proportionately between individual airlines until Sunday, but easyJet passengers are expected to be the most affected due the airline operating under half of its flights from Gatwick.

Jet2 has already issued a travel warning for Yorkshire passengers travelling to Spain amid strikes. Jet2 issued a statement ahead of ground handling strikes at Alicante airport set to affect a long list of dates.

The strikes will take place for two hours a day and are expected to cause delays in getting through the airport. The full statement reads: “We wanted to let you know that a Ground Handling strike action is taking place on the following dates listed below. This is supported by the Security service at Alicante airport and this may mean potential congestion in security.

The strike will take place for one hour in the morning and evening, on the following dates:
September: 26th 29th & 30th
October: 1st 3rd 6th - 15th 17th 20th- 22nd 24th 27 - 29th & 31st
November: 1st – 5th 7th 10th – 12th 14th 17th – 19th 21st 24th – 26th & 28th
December: 1st – 10th 12th 15th - 17th 19th 22nd- 31st
January 2024: 1st – 14th
“Please ensure you allow plenty of time to pass through the airport.
“All our flights are due to operate at the scheduled time of departure.”