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Greek islands escape strike action

- by Archimedes

Greek islands escape strike action.

Visitors on Greek Island holidays remain largely unaffected by protest strikes against the latest Greek austerity measures.

Transport problems are set to resume this week, but disruption is mainly confined to the mainland. A walkout by Athens metro workers and railway staff triggered traffic jams in Athens last week, while air travellers faced delays after a go-slow by Athens air traffic controllers.

Public transport workers plan walkouts this week in a bid to halt Athens city buses while taxi drivers are to stage a 48-hour strike in protest at a licensing shake-up. The Greek government plans to put thousands of public transport workers on a labour standby scheme that will result in wages being slashed by up to 50% for at least 12 months.

Commuters in Athens will be badly hit on Monday when a walkout will halt city buses operating between 11am and 5pm. Trolley buses are expected to stop between 11am and 4pm. The strike by workers on the Athens metro and the Piraeus-Kifissia electric railway led to a second day of traffic gridlock in Athens as city dwellers who usually use public transport took their cars instead.

Air traffic control unions called a go-slow, work-to-rule and an overtime ban after a planned 24-hour strike was declared illegal. They also plan a four hour work stoppage on September 28 which may cause flight cancellations.

But the Greek islands remain relatively free of industrial action with ferry unions free of strike action throughout September. Cheap flier easyJet confirmed its confidence in Greek Island holidays by launching a new route to Corfu from London Luton Airport next March.

As part of the celebration easyJet previewed its new TV commercial, which will be airing from October. TV actress Lorraine Chase was on hand at Luton to announce the route launch.

Lorraine has been synonymous with Luton since the Campari advert – which kick-started her career – spawned her catchphrase 'Luton Airport'. The ad then inspired the 1979 hit record 'Luton Airport' by Cats U.K.