Transnational Airlines (TNAs) with bases in more than one European country had reshuffled the employment terms & conditions for pilots. Pilots associations and unions have lost much of their bargaining and negotiations power because of airlines using 'divide & conquer' strategies among its employees and (ab)using the differences in national legal frameworks.
In an effort to rectify this, ECA has been active in facilitating communication and coordination of negotiations efforts between TNA pilots across Europe. We help pilots exchange information and stay united in their negotiations with management.
In the past years, various TNA Pilot Groups have been formed under the umbrella of ECA. Below is an overview of all active TNA Pilot Groups, which hold regular meetings. To receive all the latest updates on their work, please sign up below.
Transnational Pilot Groups in Europe are here to unite all pilots who work for an airline which has bases in different countries. On issues that affect all pilots throughout the airline’s network, Transnational Pilot Groups seek to speak with one collective voice. Together, our mission is to ensure fair working conditions for all in an industry that continues to maintain the highest safety standards.
The easyJet Pilot Group (ePG) was the first TNA pilot group to be formed in 2006. Back then, easyJet had cautiously started to expand on the continent, which in turn necessitated the organisation of a good alliance among the different pilot unions. With bases across 8 countries, easyJet currently operates under a UK, Swiss & Austrian AOC.
The actors within the ePG are the VNV, SNPL, SEPLA, ANPAC, SPAC, BALPA, Verdi (in close link with VC) and ESPA (in close link with AEROPERS). The ePG enjoys a constructive relationship with management.
Latest news: Currently the ePG is focussed on finalising a transnational company agreement on base transfers and setting up its website.
In 2017, ECA member association from Sweden (SPF), Finland (FPA) and Denmark (FPU/DALPA) called on ECA to start tightening links and cooperation within the CityJet pilot community. They were soon joined by Belgium (BeCA), Ireland (IALPA) and France (SNPL). Now company council members from those countries are building the foundations of the CityJet Pilot Group. The company is an ACMI provider for well-known carriers such as SAS, KLM, Air France, Aerlingus and Brussels Airlines and operates under an Irish AOC.
The CityJet Pilot Group Protocol was signed in February in Brussels and the group are identifying topics for transnational implementation and coordination.
The Norwegian Pilot Group (NPG) was formed in 2014 by the pilot associations present in the Norwegian network back then: NPU, SEPLA, BALPA and NPUF representing the Norwegian, Spanish, British and Finnish pilots respectively. Norwegian quickly expanded its business into new countries and so the NPG grew with ANPAC (Italy), SNPL (France), VNV (Netherlands) and IALPA (Ireland) having also officially joined the NPG in order to be able to represent the Norwegian pilots in their respective territories. The NPG has since gone trans-atlantic joining forces with US ALPA and Argetinian ALPA as Norwegian was the first European LCC to provide flights to the US and Argentina. Norwegian has AOCs in Ireland, Norway (2), the UK, Argentina and Sweden.
Latest news: FPU/DALPA have joined the NPG family in November 2018. NPG are currently working on updating their Master Seniority List and Binding Declaration, in cooperation with the company.
The Vueling Pilot Group was one of the additions to ECA's Pilot Group umbrella in 2018 and brings together the pilot unions in Spain (SEPLA), Italy (ANPAC) and France (SNPL). 24 May 2018 marked the first meeting of the group Vueling Pilot Group (VPG), with strong cooperation and exchange of know-how being key pillars, the group discussed common approaches to agreed transnational issues and showed commitment to the Vueling Pilot Group Protocol which will be signed in 2019.
Latest news: The company council reps involved have agreed with the company on a base transfer protocol. Work will resume in 2019 following elections in the Spanish union.
The Eurowings Transnational Pilot Group was established in April 2019 by VC (Germany), BeCA (Belgium), ACA (Austria) and SEPLA (Spain).
The name “Eurowings” dates back to a regional operator based in Dortmund and founded in 1993. By 2011, Lufthansa had taken over complete ownership but Eurowings remained a regional airline operating Canadair jets. In 2014, Lufthansa introduced the “Wings-Concept” which led to the merger of germanwings operations into Eurowings (2015) and the creation of Eurowings Europe in Vienna and the first Airbus aircraft based in Austria. Additionally, Eurowings Europe has bases in Spain and Munich.
Later the Eurowings operation switched to Airbus Lufthansa acquired LGW which currently and for the foreseeable future still operates solely for Eurowings, even though it has very recently been sold to an outside investor. Also operating under the Eurowings brand is the wet-leased long-haul operation of SunExpress Deutschland and recently long haul flights from German airports under a wet-lease agreement with Brussels Airlines.
Currently Eurowings holds AOCs in Germany and Austria.
Established in March 2018, the Ryanair Transnational Pilot Group (RTPG) is the collective voice of Ryanair Company Councils, supported by their national pilot associations.Together they progress strategies to achieve the interests of Ryanair pilots throughout Europe. With Ryanair being one of the largest companies in Europe, the company councils and member associations involved cover Portugal, Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Italy, The Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, the UK as direct members of the RTPG as well as Austria, France and Denmark as observers. What do Ryanair Pilots want?
Latest News: Negotiations with Ryanair are still not a success story after several strikes in many jurisdictions and some local agreements on specific topics, we have yet to see the establishment of fair and equal treatment for all Ryanair pilots across the whole of Europe. #PilotUnity
Several events have taken place, bringing together the different Pilot Groups. These events have been warmly welcomed by the pilot community as an opportunity to network, exchange ideas, learn from experiences, grow from challenges and identify synergies. Together, the mission of TNA Pilot Groups is to ensure fair working conditions for all in an industry that continues to maintain the highest safety standards.
Transnational Pilot Groups in Europe: to be the voice & face of pan-European pilot representation, recognised by law, employers and industry.