MIAMI – KLM (KL) Pilots via their union have declined to accept a wage freeze through 2025, potentially endangering the future of the airline amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

While unions representing cabin crew have agreed to a similar prolonged wage freezes, the union representing the pilots stated that extending the freeze from 2022 to 2025 on such a short notice was not feasible.

The wage freezes are set to last as long as KL receives governmental support.

KLM Boeing 737-800 Photo: Photo: Bram Steeman via Wikimedia

A Delicate Balance

KLM, having previously submitted a restructuring plan to the Dutch government, is at risk of having the government withhold a €3.4bn bailout package unless the company adjusts the restructuring plan to include the freezes.

This comes as Air France-KLM on Friday reported a 67% drop in third quarter revenue to €2.52bn as COVID-19 continuously ravages the industry.

The group, having €12.4bn largely thank to governmental bailouts, will rely on the KL pilots union agreeing to the wage freeze for survival.

KLM Boeing 787-9 PH-BHD nose. Photo: Bram Steeman via Wikimedia