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EasyJet plans to remove seats from planes as part of latest bid to tackle staff shortages | United Kingdom | News

This will allow it to operate flights with fewer cabin crew. EasyJet has announced plans to remove the rear row of seats from its A319 fleet. The main airline says this will allow it to fly with three cabin crew members instead of four, limiting the number on board to a maximum of 150 passengers.

EasyJet said it was an efficient way to operate the fleet while “building resilience and flexibility” into the airline’s operations.

Meanwhile, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps recently told the House Transport Committee that the government would allow airports to start training staff without security clearance to avoid widespread flight cancellations.

Civil Aviation Authority regulations require a certain number of cabin crew members based on the number of physical seats, not actual passengers – meaning that by reducing this number, EasyJet can fly with less staff.

While many airlines have been struggling with staff shortages, EasyJet appears to have been particularly hard hit.

Thousands of airline workers have been laid off as the travel industry has been hit hard during the lockdown.

Many of those workers have since taken early retirement or found new jobs elsewhere, forcing the airline industry to rehire much of its workforce with new recruits in need of lengthy terrorism checks.

Heathrow passengers found themselves in hour-long queues in early April when more than 120 flights were canceled in one day – half of which were those of EasyJet, which had just canceled more than 200 on previous weekend.

Meanwhile, disruptions at Manchester Airport led to the resignation of its chief executive Karen Smart.

Experts predict staffing difficulties will continue for up to 12 months.

Ahead of their planned changes for this summer, EasyJet said the passenger limit system will allow them to operate with more certainty.

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Before the pandemic, the airline carried nearly 300,000 passengers every day during peak season.

Julia Lo Bue-Said of the Advantage Travel Partnership said the “severe labor shortage” was one of many factors affecting the travel industry after two years of disruption, adding that EasyJet’s situation was a parody “.

She said the chair-stripping program “only exacerbates the problem of meeting consumer travel demand.”

EasyJet said the last six seats are usually booked in the final days before departure, so selling up to 150 tickets would not affect customers planning summer travel.