Dear Sir,
I am very surprised indeed at the naïvety of the letter from Mr Phillips in your issue of 14 June. He seems to be echoing the stupid comments of the local union leaders viz. “the tour operators can bring the clients the following day – where is the problem?” He should know better.

The disruptions and sequels to changing the day of operation are incalculable. Firstly Mr Phillips might prefer to extend his holiday rather than spend a day at the airport, as would anyone, given this choice. However with the Consumer Laws applying in UK and Germany there will be an avalanche of claims from clients who are generally not as understanding as Mr Phillips, all of which will have legal backing.

All of the people who have their holidays cut short will claim, many of those who have had their holidays forcibly extended will claim. So also will holidaymakers who had booked to fly to Greece, Turkey, etc, on the day following, who find their flights delayed. You can be sure that they will have delays as it is not feasible to bring forward flights when you have to change them, you must always delay them.

No repeat, no airline can afford to have a 40 million dollar aircraft sitting doing nothing, just in case you might have a problem, Especially on a Friday, ALL the aircraft in Europe will be fully occupied, not necessarily flying to Majorca. To carry all the passengers to Majorca as well as their projected contracted flights on the Friday, will cause enormous disruption to people all over Europe.

I hold no brief for tour operators, but it is incredible that the unions cannot see that this strike, if they insist on not supplying minimal coverage at the airport, will have enormous repercussions on an already difficult season. The holidaymakers can do nothing to improve the labour problems of Spain so why take it out on them? The unions are risking the future of all the Balearics by their blinkered view of their supposed labour struggle.

The tour operators after all can increase their contracts with our competitors like Greece, Cyprus and Turkey. They have already done that this year when the hoteliers misread the situation and INCREASED their prices and conditions in the mistaken belief that holidaymakers would not visit Islamic countries after 11 September. They, the unions, are playing with the future of all of us on this island – and are, unfortunately, likely to lose.

Ian McIntosh (by email)


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