The Union of Aviation and Airport Workers (Sindicato dos Trabalhadores da Aviação e Aeroportos, Sitava) has called for a five-day strike to take place from Saturday, May 13, through Wednesday, May 17. All Portuguese airports will be affected, including those located in Azores and Madeira islands. Delays at airport security checkpoints and baggage drop-off may occur; flight delays are also possible and cancelations cannot be ruled out.
The strike coincides with increased security measures and border controls ahead of a visit by Pope Francis. Temporary border controls will be in place between 00:01 (local time) on May 10 until 23:59 on May 14. All visitors to the country will be required to show their passports or an identification document issued by a European Union member state when entering the country during this period.
On related note, the Portuguese government has announced that a public sector holiday will be observed on Friday, May 12, to celebrate Pope Francis's visit. The pope is expected to arrive in Portugal at 16:20 on May 12 and visit the sanctuary of Fàtima, Portugal's most revered pilgrimage site, and depart at 15:00 on May 13. More than 500,000 pilgrims are expected to attend May 13 celebrations in Fàtima.
Travelers are advised to arrive at airports earlier than normal in anticipation of increased waiting times, to carry proper identification documents, and to anticipate longer waiting times at border crossings and airport immigration checkpoints.
Copyright and Disclaimer