Further job cuts: Austrian is downsizing its fleet more than planned


    The Lufthansa subsidiary has to reduce its fleet again.  Austrian Airlines is storing two more jets for the long term.  The consequence are also layoffs.
    <p>Michael Trestl makes it clear in an interview with aeroTELEGRAPH.  “We have to be able to assert ourselves better in the competition at the Vienna location,” said the new head of commercial affairs at Austrian Airlines.  The airline is currently plagued by the corona crisis; previously it was hit by tough competition from low-cost airlines, which will not simply go away.  It is true that last year it already significantly reduced costs by agreeing new contracts with suppliers, negotiating high wage waivers with the staff and taking aircraft out of service.

But that’s obviously not enough. The pandemic is going on longer than expected and that is why “additional measures” have to be taken “to secure the future of our Austrian Airlines permanently”, said CEO Alexis von Hoensbroech on Thursday (March 25). He informed the employees that AUA will reduce the fleet more than expected. The management counted on 60 jets in the long term. It is now taking two more aircraft out of planning.

“Not accessible in all areas due to fluctuation”

The two Airbus jets would be stored long-term – until at least 2024 or 2025. Before the crisis, Austrian’s fleet had consisted of 84 aircraft. However, the step is not entirely surprising. The management had already said in March that if the booking situation remained bad, the fleet would have to be reduced further. For the summer it is “very promising”, but currently still bad.

Fewer planes also means less need for personnel. Approximately 80 to 100 employees come to an airplane. Austrian Airlines has already cut 650 jobs, said von Hoensbroech at an event with the staff. But one would have to cut as many jobs again by 2023.

Part-time models are being examined

So a total of 1300 jobs are lost at AUA. So far, 1100 has always been mentioned. The tough message here: “This will not be achievable in all areas through further fluctuation”.

Nevertheless, the Lufthansa subsidiary tries to give as few layoffs as possible. One tries «to find temporary solutions together with the works council». Part-time models are examined, among other things.


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