Strikes ground all flights at Berlin airport

STORY: All flights were cancelled at a major airport in Germany on Wednesday (January 25) due to a strike.

Staff at Berlin's BER airport went on strike for the day to push for better pay.

300 take-offs and landings for 35,000 passengers were originally planned for the day.

Martin Ellinghaus works for the airport's fire department.

"We are here because we want 500 euros more, respectively a fixed amount. Our last wage increases were back in 2019 and now we have been offered five per cent in two years' time and we don't find that acceptable as workers."

A leading union wanted airport staff in ground services, aviation security and the airport company to strike.

It called the one-day action due to what it saw as insufficient progress in talks over wages.

One traveller found they were unable to get back home.

"Well, I am from Mongolia. We were going back home, to transfer in Istanbul to Mongolia, but all the flights are cancelled. I am so disappointed. We used a lot of money to get here and try to experience Germany. Well, it is not so good. I am feeling bad."

A union representative told Reuters the airport company had made a collective bargaining offer.

The proposal was for a 24-month term where salaries would rise by 3% on June 1, and by another 2% in May next year.