Foreign Office in new update for anyone travelling to France | Travel News | Travel

Foreign Office in new update for anyone travelling to France | Travel News | Travel

The Foreign Office has given a grim warning to anyone planning on travelling to France in the next month or so – with lots of disruption set to happen. Officials have updated the advice on the government website, which already has highlighted issues with air traffic control and strikes.

It is now warning that further walkouts are set to happen until September on some public transport systems. The news follows some serious issues which have hit airlines this week – and also the collapse of a major holiday supplier meaning that all breaks in July were cancelled with no notice.

The Foreign Office said about France: “Throughout June, planned industrial action by port worker and air traffic control unions is expected to disrupt some ferry routes and flights across France, with some routes and flights diverted or cancelled.

“Check your operator’s advice before travelling, including where you are taking connecting flights. Until September, possible industrial action may cause disruption on the Paris public transport system (RATP). Check the RATP website for live service updates.”

Travellers are set to face further disruption as Unite union announced that 300 security and passenger services staff at Gatwick, a major UK airport, are planning to strike on six days in July. They will strike from 12 to 14 July and 19 to 21 July.

Last week Youtravel announced that all bookings will be cancelled up to and including 26 July. It said it had taken the ‘difficult’ decision to extend cancellations beyond 5 July while talks to secure its future continue.

Youtravel is owned by German company FTI Group, whose tour operator brand FTI Touristik filed for insolvency earlier this month. Many UK travel agents use products provided by the group so potentially thousands of travellers could have their plans thrown into disarray. It confirmed all active bookings for arrivals up to and including 26 July would be cancelled without charge by Monday 1 July giving agents holding packages for UK travellers with accommodation booked via Youtravel just days to act.

Meanwhile today Aer Lingus pilots walked out for eight hours in a bitter dispute with the airline over pay. Prior to Saturday’s full strike, pilots had been involved in indefinite work-to rule industrial action that began on Wednesday. Almost 400 flights have been cancelled so far, affecting tens of thousands of passengers.

A shortage of air traffic controllers has led to numerous cancellations and delays across UK airports on the last few days. Ryanair and Wizz Air have been impacted significantly in the chaos, with Ryanair confirming 60 flight cancellations and another 150 potential delays.

Neal McMahon, Ryanair’s Chief Operations Officer, criticised the ATC services, noting they were at their “worst levels ever”. He said: “These repeated ATC delays and cancellations are unacceptable. We apologise to our passengers for these repeated ATC flight delays and flight cancellations, which are deeply regrettable but beyond Ryanair’s control.”

Likewise, Wizz Air also expressed their concerns with a spokesperson stating: “Wizz Air was prepared to ensure smooth summer operations for its passengers; however, the air traffic control system seems to be experiencing significant issues this summer.”

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