Lufthansa is taking extra bookings for the planned rail strike from Wednesday to Monday and is using larger aircraft on various routes. Flixbus reports similar things and brokerage portals are now actively advertising to switchers.
Airlines, car rental companies and bus operators are booking high bookings due to the longest strike in Deutsche Bahn's history. A spokeswoman for listed car rental company Sixt told Reuters on Tuesday that “we are currently seeing a significant increase in demand nationwide this week. It has nearly 350 stations in its network in Germany. For the planned strike from Wednesday to Monday, Lufthansa will suspend “some of its domestic German flight connections. “We are booking additional bookings and using larger aircraft on various routes to provide travel opportunities to as many guests as possible,” a company spokesperson said.
FlixBus, a direct rail competitor to FlixTrain, reported something similar. “We are seeing a significant increase in demand, as is often the case when competitors go on strike,” a spokesperson insisted. “Demand has doubled this time.” There are currently enough tickets available. “If necessary, we plan additional buses if possible in close collaboration with our bus partners,” it said.
Europcar emphasized that it still has many free vehicles. “It's going to be very tight, including Wednesday, because we've already got a lot of bookings,” said Tobias Zizik, managing director of Europcar Mobility Group Germany. Europcar has more than 300 stations in Germany.
“Bye Bye Pansin, Hello Car Sharing”
Train drivers' union GDL has called a strike from Wednesday to Monday. Mediation portals are now actively recruiting people who want to switch. “Be bye Bahnsinn, hello car sharing,” say circular emails from providerbilliger-mietwagen.de, which offers car sharing offers in addition to rental cars.
Despite the increased demand, car rental companies offer hope to those who need transportation urgently. “Experience shows that many customers are still reconsidering,” said Europcar manager Zisik. “That means cancellations can be made and rental cars will be available again.” As of Thursday, things are looking good again across Germany.
According to economists, the rail strike will cause huge losses to the German economy. “A one-day nationwide rail strike costs about 100 million euros a day in economic output,” Michael Gromling, head of economic activity at the German Institute for Economic Affairs (IW Cologne), which deals with employers, told Reuters. Since the strike period now announced is six days, the costs will not increase linearly, but sometimes by multiples. “We are quickly approaching a billion euros in damage,” Gromling said. (Reuters)