After years of failed negotiations, Spirit Airlines’ pilots appear ready to go on strike this Saturday. The National Mediation Board (NMB), which has facilitated discussions between the two sides, declared an impasse in May. The subsequent mandatory 30-day cooling-off period ends at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, and the pilots can commence labor actions at any time after that.
Spirit claims to have a contingency plan in place, and says it will continue to serve its customers in the event of a strike. Spirit spokesperson Misty Pinson told the Associated Press (AP) that the airline is “partnering with other air carrier providers to continue to serve our customers,” though she declined to offer details about these partnerships.
Sean Creed, head of Spirit’s Airline Pilots Association unit, expressed skepticism about Spirit’s purported backup plan, saying, “I think if they were going to have a plan to continue operation, it would need to have some specific details.”
Aside from a brief release, Spirit has not offered any specific information for passengers concerned about the strike’s impact on their travels. With that in mind, Spirit passengers would be wise to brush up on their rights, and perhaps contact Spirit to inquire about changing their flights. Spirit currently charges between $100 and $110 to change nonrefundable fares.