Skyscanner’s German site (www.Skyscanner.de) saw a 13% rise in traffic as travellers scrambled to find replacement flights following yesterday’s strike by Lufthansa pilots.
Lufthansa, as well as Lufthansa Cargo and its cheap flight subsidiary Germanwings, were all affected by the strike which has now been suspended until March 8th, as talks between the pilot’s union and the airline continue.
The strike left thousands of passengers grounded yesterday as 900 flights were cancelled. But the chaos continues for travellers, with Lufthansa admitting it will take a few days until flight operations return to normal.
Barry Smith, Skyscanner Co-founder and Business Development Director commented:
"Airline strikes like this hit consumer confidence hard. This is being reflected in how people book their flights and we’ve seen a radical shift in booking patterns; in 2008, Skyscanner users searched for flights an average of 146 days ahead of when they planned to travel, but last year, this dropped to just 34 days."
"It seems people are shying away from booking too far in advance for fear of strike action or an airline collapsing altogether. The irony is that it’s normally cheaper to book in advance, and tickets booked on a credit card are protected anyway."
Just as Lufthansa managed to overt the threatened four day strike, BA cabin crew members voted in favour of a fresh strike in a completely separate dispute. No dates have been announced yet, but BA’s union has already pledged that there will not be any stoppages over the Easter period.
Skyscanner typically sees its traffic spike following news of an airline strike and saw an 11% rise in user traffic after British Airways’ Christmas strike threat.