Foreign Office issues travel alert for France
The Foreign Office is warning travellers to France that journeys by air, rail and sea are likely to be affected due to a strike by transport workers today.
Airlines have been told the cancel 20% of flights from Paris Orly and a third of flights from Marseille airports as air traffic controllers are staging a 36-hour walkout.
At Paris Charles de Gaulle, flights are more likely to be affected by delays than cancellations.
However, the strike is also hitting flights to other European destinations that pass over French airspace.
Ryanair has cancelled around 80 flights across Europe, including more than a dozen from the UK to France, Spain and Italy.
British Airways said it had cancelled an unspecified number of flights to and from France but warned that other European flights which use French airspace will be affected and passengers should be prepared for delays and cancellations.
“We will be using larger aircraft, where possible, to help affected customers and are doing all we can to reduce the levels of disruption'” said the airline.
EasyJet has cancelled a number of flights and it is warning passengers who are still due to travel that public transport in France will also be affected.
In a statement on its website, the airline added: “We are disappointed at this unnecessary strike action, coming so close to the ATC strikes of last week, and causing further disruption for passengers and airlines across Europe.
“As a member of Airlines for Europe (A4E), we are working with other airlines including Air France KLM, Finnair, International Airlines Group (IAG), Lufthansa Group, Norwegian and Ryanair, to call on governments and the EU to develop an action plan to minimise the impact of ATC strikes on passengers.
“We are doing everything possible to minimise the impact of the strike on our customers, and have taken the decision to proactively cancel a number of flights, allowing customers to reorganise their journeys. We will communicate to affected customers directly via SMS using the details provided at the time of booking.
“For cancelled flights, any affected customers will be offered a free of charge transfer to a new flight or a full refund. We strongly advise customers to avoid rebooking flights on the same day, as there is the possibility of further disruption.
“We advise all passengers to allow plenty of extra time to get to the airport and consider alternative transport options where possible, as public transport services will be also affected by the strike.”
Eurostar services to Paris and Lille appear to be operating as normal, but a quarter of Metro train services in Paris have been cancelled and only half of all commuter trains are operating. TGV high speed and regional trains have also been affected.
In Paris, the Eiffel Tower is closed, according to The Local website, as workers have joined the strike.
When will the French learn that they are doing irreparable harm to their country?