Traveling in May and the first few weeks of June this year (2022) is enough to give a good sense of what summer might look like at European airports. For the next few weeks, passengers will need to carry one of the most essential "baggage" items: patience. At German airports, the lines at the check-in counters are getting longer and longer. The main reason: Airport services are understaffed: both security personnel and luggage handlers on the tarmac. Just recently, budget airline Easyjet announced it was canceling thousands of flights in the coming weeks due to a lack of staff. During the height of the pandemic, many service providers laid off workers.
Clients often try to find jobs that pay better thereafter. Ralph Beisel, chief executive of the German Airports Association (ADV), explained that if the person intends to return to work, he must first pass a lengthy security review. At present, the airports are banner design short of about one-fifth of the staff. Therefore, he calls for speeding up the review process so that people can be hired faster: "The security review cannot take eight weeks, because by then, the summer vacation will be over." Manpower shortage It's not just the lack of staff on the ground. There are also "bottlenecks" in the air. For example, Lufthansa will have to cancel hundreds of flights in July due to a shortage of staff.
The union felt its position was confirmed. "It has long been clear that aggressive layoffs in many sectors of the aviation industry will have a negative impact on the recovery," said Stefan Herth, president of the pilots union (Cockpit). However, finding enough pilots quickly is no easy task – all over the world. Heinrich Großbongardt, a Hamburg aviation expert, points out that in the United States, the hiring conditions for regional traffic pilots are now even better than previously thought to be optimal. Therefore, labor rights are increasing. Deutsche Lufthansa may even face a pilot strike as management deliberately reduces the number of airliners at the parent company, moving them to a cheaper subsidiary, Eurowings, to help deliver the cost-cutting that must be done .