The Verdi trade union has announced a strike by ground handling, airport company and aviation security workers at the German capital's BER airport for next Wednesday, January 25th. Verdi expects a high participation.
There will probably be massive restrictions on air traffic to and from Berlin. Julián Navas, air passenger rights expert at the world's largest air passenger rights organization, AirHelp, explains what rights affected passengers have.
Passengers are entitled to compensation
"Due to the warning strike, several thousand passengers will not reach their destination as planned. Those affected are entitled to alternative transport if the delay is three hours or more. The rebooking to another flight must be implemented by the operating airline itself. Domestic German flights can optionally be transferred to a train ticket.
If the airline does not take action of its own accord, affected passengers should set a deadline of three hours after the scheduled departure time. If the request is still not fulfilled, travelers can look for their own alternatives and charge the airline for the costs.
If the delay is more than five hours or carriage is carried out at a later point in time, the airline is also obliged to reimburse the full ticket price. In the case of delays of more than two hours and a flight distance of more than 1.500 kilometers, the operating airline must also provide the passengers with meals and drinks at the airport. In addition, two telephone calls or the sending of two e-mails must be possible. If necessary, the airlines must also provide accommodation and facilitate transportation there. In any case, it is advisable to request this service from the airline.”
Airport personnel are only entitled to compensation under certain circumstances
"Since it is a strike by airport staff, the passengers affected are generally not entitled to compensation under the European Air Passenger Rights Regulation EG 261. The exception: If the check-in staff, who are provided by the airline, also go on strike, consumers can claim compensation for delays of three hours or more. This amounts to up to 600 euros per person.”
Passengers have these rights according to EC 261
Cancellations and delays can entitle you to compensation payments of up to 600 euros per passenger. The amount of the payment is calculated from the length of the flight route. The rightful claim for compensation depends on the actual length of the delay at the destination and the reason for the canceled or delayed flight. Affected passengers can assert their claim for compensation retrospectively up to three years after their flight date.
Extraordinary circumstances such as storms or medical emergencies can result in the operating airline being released from the obligation to compensate. Both announced and unannounced strikes are not included.