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Portugal to Experience Severe Rail Disturbance Due to Strikes

Rail traffic between Tuesday, May 30 and June 1, is expected to have major disruptions due to a strike called by several unions for Wednesday.

According to local media, the strike called by SFRCI, SINFA and SNTSF unions will impact rail traffic for two to three upcoming days after the industrial action is carried out, reports.

“We would like to inform you that, due to a strike called by the SFRCI, SINFA and SNTSF unions, for the period between 00:00 and 23:59 on May 31, 2023, strong disturbances are expected in railway circulation, in all services, with a possible impact on the days before and after the strike period, on May 30 and June 1,” CP – Comboios de Portugal says in an informative message directed to costumers.

The authority informs customers that already have tickets to travel on Intercidasdes, Alfa Pendular, InterRegional and Regional trains may request a fund for their ticket or exchange it for another train of the same category and travel class.

Both changes, including refunds and exchanges, can be made at myCP or at the ticket offices, at the area designated for tickets purchased online or in the CP mobile application. This has to be done 15 minutes before the departure of the train from the station of the country of origin of the customer.

Up to ten days after the end of the strike, a refund can be requested by completing an online contact form, “Refund for Delay or Deletion”, and sending a copy or scan of the original ticket.

Last week, the Sindicato Ferroviário da Revisão Comercial Itinerante (SFRCI) and SNTSF/FECTRANS called a 24-hour strike for May 31 at CP, making Portugal the next place affected by workers’ strikes.

Throughout May, workers in Belgium, Italy, and Spain had organised strikes or announced those, while the impact of strikes across Europe was felt, especially in the air travelling industry, as many flights were either delayed or cancelled.

Workers in Brussels were protesting social dumping – a practice of employers to use a cheaper labour market, while pilots at the Spanish airline Air Europa were and will continue to protest due to unmet demands. Strikes by pilots will continue in the upcoming days – May 30 to June 2, as these workers say management is earning profits by increasing ticket prices, but workers continue dealing with pay cuts.

France has put on hold the protests over the retirement age, but bigger strikes can occur in June – which can lead to some of the biggest strikes of the year. According to the General Directorate of Civil Aviation (DGAC), more than 6,000 flights were cancelled between January and April due to strikes that occurred in France.