Lufthansa Confirms 22000 Job Cuts; Awaits Agreement with Labour Union

By Ankur Deo | June 16, 2020

Lufthansa has been hit quite hard in this pandemic. Just last week, the German airline had stated that it plans to cut around 22000 jobs as it struggles to keep up with the reduced air travel demands. In a statement on June 15, 2020 (Monday), the carrier stated that the planned job cuts will include 2600 flight attendants, 600 pilots and a multitude of personnel in its maintenance, catering, and ground staff divisions. The airline further mentioned that there will be a total of 5000 job losses in its airline operation while another 1400 jobs will be cut in administration and other units.

Lufthansa also plans to bid adieu to all of its quad-engine jets ©

Lufthansa Labour Director, Michael Niggemann, stated:

‘According to our current assumptions about the course of business over the next three years, we have no perspective of employing one in seven pilots and one in six flight attendants as well as numerous ground staff at Lufthansa alone’.

The Group had grounded around 95% of its fleet during the aviation lockdown, and even shutdown its regional wing, Germanwings. Lufthansa stated that the fleet and workforce shrinking will lead to 300 more jobs cut at another regional carrier ‘Eurowings’. Furthermore, Brussels Airlines will cut 1000 jobs , Austrian Airlines about 1100 jobs (despite receiving financial aid last week), and 500 jobs will be axed at the Lufthansa Cargo division.

In the months of March and April, about 95% of Lufthansa’s fleet was grounded. ©Bloomberg

The airline has said that short-term working and reduced hours could minimise the need for more immediate job cuts, but not for long.

Lufthansa stated in report:

‘In the biggest crisis in aviation history, we want to secure over 100000 jobs for the Lufthansa Group in the long term, despite all the challenges. To achieve this, painful restructuring measures are unavoidable, which we want to implement in a socially-responsible manner.’

The airline is currently in talks with its UFO, Verdi, and Vereinigung Cockpit unions over the speculated job cuts, and plans to reach an agreement by June 22, 2020. The planned 22000 cuts is one of the largest setbacks in airline industry over the last few months.

With uncertainty still prevailing on when (and whether) air travel shall get back to normal, do you think more job cuts are ultimately inevitable? Let us know in the comments!

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  • As being from a former group of “terminated employees” it seems as though Lufthansa has done the expected thing… make the cuts from the very bottom of the totem pole rather than making their cuts from the upper, middle and lower rungs of the employment ladder. After all… if you’re going to run reduced operations, then you need less of a middle-management supporting staff too.

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