South African Airways (SAA) has been served with a strike notice by cabin crew who want a more generous meal allowance.
The South African Cabin Crew Association (SACCA) Secretary General Mpho Moikangoa said the union was striking over meal allowances which had remained stagnant for the past six years.
Moikangoa said negotiations with SAA were unsuccessful on Tuesday afternoon as the airline was offering an increase of R84.90 whereas the union wanted nothing less than R352.
Crew members are given a R1711 ($131) meal allowance per day.
“We spend 20 days out of the country and the hotels we sleep in are expensive and we can’t afford breakfast at times. We are forced to eat at places like McDonald’s‚” said Moikangoa.
The union represents 1300 of the 1700 airline crew members at SAA.
“Pilots are getting above R1959 ($150) and we are working in the same aircraft. We are only looking for something that is fair and won’t collapse the airline‚” said Moikangoa.
The airline advised its customers and stakeholders that the industrial action was scheduled to commence on Wednesday.
SAA said it was preparing for any service disruptions the strike may cause. “The airline is doing everything in their power to find common ground or settlement on matters that are currently under discussion‚” said the airline.
SAA was optimistic that the strike action could be averted.