Some airlines promote a luxurious image, some fun, some sexy and others cheap. Lufthansa is none of those – its one main feature is that it is solid and reliable.
Sadly, and not for the first time, today’s pilots strike suggests the airline does not want to live up to its own image any longer.
The strike by pilots from midday on Monday until midnight on Tuesday was public knowledge on Friday, or earlier for those who keep a watch on such things. Anyone looking at Lufthansa’s website on Sunday afternoon would have been none the wiser though. There was the usual link to Travel Information where some details of the strike were given and passengers told of the option to travel earlier if they wanted. Passengers in Germany probably knew of the strike because of local media coverage but foreign strikes do not get much coverage elsewhere so the likelihood is that most British (and French, Spanish, Italian and others) travellers knew nothing about it. And Lufthansa certainly wasn’t going to volunteer the news.
Like every airline, Lufthansa wants to keep in touch with its customers by social media. They have an active Twitter account - but not so active it could be bothered to mention the strike until 17.00 on Sunday.
Yes, we all know that strikes can get called off at short notice but why could not Lufthansa do passengers the courtesy of warning them of the (strong) possibility?
Lufthansa has a long record of strikes in recent years and this behaviour is nothing new.
The least an airline should do when it is aware of the serious possibility of a strike is to add a highlighted section to its homepage. No company wants to boast of its strikes but there is a clear line between providing correct information and deliberately avoiding passing it on.
Lufthansa needs to take lessons from Ryanair, and many others, on how to warn passengers of potential disruption.