Travel in France is set for turbulence in the coming days as the country embarks on a national strike. The strike is set to begin at 7 pm local time today and is due to continue until Sunday 8 December. It is thought that the strike will affect rail, road and air transport across the country. The strike will mostly target local services, however, French air traffic controllers have also announced their involvement, meaning flights to and from France could face serious delays and cancellations.
Meanwhile, according to The Independent, an easyJet spokesperson said: “Like all airlines, our flights to and from French airports, as well as those flying in French airspace, could be affected.
“We expect that there will be delays and cancellations due to the industrial action.
“Please also be aware that public transport services will be affected by the strike. We recommend all customers allow plenty of extra time to get to the airport and consider alternative transport options where possible.
“Although this situation is outside of our control we would like to apologise to any affected passengers for the inconvenience caused.”
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has issued a warning to British travellers who have plans to travel to the country during the strike dates.
It warns: “From Thursday 5 December, strikes are expected across France which will primarily affect public transport with cancellations and severe delays expected on trains, metros, buses and trams.
“Disruption and cancellations to Eurostar services between London St. Pancras and Gare du Nord are expected. Other international rail services such as those to the Netherlands and Belgium could also be affected. You should check services before travelling.
“Demonstrations by hauliers on some major roads may also cause delays or blockages. Strike action by Air France workers and air traffic controllers may also cause disruption to air travel.”
Travellers hoping to connect to or throughout the country by train will be severely affected, with local services taking a huge hit.
Holidaymakers hoping to connect from London via Eurostar services are being offered the opportunity to cancel or rebook their journeys after the train line was forced to pull its regular schedule.
A statement issued by Eurostar reads: “Trade Unions in France have called for a nationwide general strike from 5 December 2019.
“The strike action will impact our ability to deliver the usual timetable as we expect disruption to signalling along all routes. As a result, we will now run a reduced timetable from the 5 until the 10 December.”
The transport provider also advises passengers to travel “outside of the strike period” although adds that “exchanges during the strike period are possible, although availability is very limited.”
Alongside public transport services coming to a halt, the strike sees lorry drivers intending to block major French roads from 7 December onwards. Postal workers, ambulance drivers, hospital workers and other public service staff are also joining the strike. Meanwhile, petrol garage’s have warned French citizens reliant on cars to stock up on gas incase stocks run dry. The strikes are being supported by France’s Gilets Jaunes movement.