Some flights affected as mass transport strikes across France continue on Wednesday

Mass transportation strikes entered their 42nd day on Wednesday with one union representing air traffic controllers also joining the industrial action.

Some flights affected as mass transport strikes across France continue on Wednesday
Photo: AFP

Unions and governments have been meeting on Tuesday to discuss whether concessions over plans for pension reform could halt the strikes that have brought severe disruption to France since December 5th.

But while there were some positive indication, it was not enough for unions to call off the industrial action.

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Here's a look at what is happening on Wednesday:

There is strike action from air traffic controllers who belong to the USAC-CGT union. This is not the main union for air traffic controllers, so the impact is not expected to be major.


Ryanair has confirmed that it is running a normal schedule on Wednesday and Easyjet has not posted any cancellations, but Air France has said it is likely some of its flights will be delayed. Anyone with a flight booked on January 15th or 16th is advised to contact their airline.

On the railways the majority of trains are running on Wednesday.


On the high speed TGV service eight out of 10 of the normal services are running and the budget Ouigo services are described as 'quasi normal'.

Three quarters of the suburban Transilien services are running and half the usual Intercité routes, while eight out of 10 of normal services are running on the local TER trains.

In Paris services have also been slowly improving in recent days, although there remains a significant amount of disruption.

French strikers are not paid during strikes and as Wednesday marks the 42nd day since the dispute began, many employees can simply no longer afford the financial hit and are returning to work.

On the Metro all lines are open, but only lines 1 and 14 – which are automated – will be running a full service.


However most lines are now running for at least the majority of the day, rather than the rush-hour only service.

Line 2 is running from 5.30am to 1.30am.

Line 3  – 6am to 10pm.





Line 3bis – 7am to 6pm. 

Line 4 –  6.30am to 8.30pm.

Line 5 – 6am to 11am and 2pm to 9pm

Line 6  – 6am to 10am and 4pm and 8pm.

Line 7 – 5.30am to 7.30pm.

Line 7 bis – 5.30am to 1.30am.

Line 8 – 5.30am to 9.30pm.

Line 9  – 6.30am to 10am and 4.30 to 7.30pm.

Line 10 – 5.30a to 1.30am.

Line 11 – 5.30am to 8.30pm.

Line 12  6.30am to 10am and 4.30pm to 7.30pm

Line 13 5.30am to 11am and 4.30pm to 10pm.

All the above lines will be running fewer services than normal and some stations on the line remain closed.





The trams are running as normal and the RER suburban trains are running fewer services than normal, but running all day. RER line B, which connects Charles de Gaulle airport to the city, is no longer be stopping at Gare du Nord.

On the buses four out of five of the normal services are running.

The dispute over proposed reforms to the French pension system had been stuck in stalemate, but over the weekend the government offered a significant concession by offering to withdraw one of the most controversial bits of the plan.

Prime Minister  Edouard Philippe said he was prepared to withdraw the idea of a 'pivot age' for a full pension. The French legal retirement age is 62 and although the reforms would not change that, the proposed a 'pivot age' of 64 – people who worked to the pivot age rather than the legal age would receive a fuller pension.

The reforms would also do away with the 'special regimes' which allow many people, principally in the public sector, to retire earlier than the legal age of 62.

The concession was enough to draw unions back to the table and several leaders met labour minister Muriel Pénicaud on Tuesday.

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French customs officers strike over job cuts

Customs officers across France will walk out on Thursday in protest at job cuts that unions say will “weaken the customs network”.

French customs officers strike over job cuts

The national strike on Thursday, March 10th is expected to lead to delays at ports, airports and on the Eurostar.

The strike, which will include a rally outside the National Assembly building in Paris, was called by the CFDT-Douane and has the support of other unions. 

A work-to-rule protest over pay and conditions by customs officers in 2019, under the shadow of Brexit, led to delays and disruption at airports, as well as ports including Calais and Dunkirk, and on Eurostar trains.

Unions are calling on the government to axe plans to switch responsibility for import duty collection to the Direction Générale des Finances Publiques by 2024, at the cost of 700 customs’ officer jobs – and, according to strikers, tens of billions of euros to State coffers.

“We are asking for the reforms to be stopped, mainly that of the transfer of taxation, which is disorganising the network with the elimination of nearly a thousand jobs,” CFDT-Douane’s secretary general David-Olivier Caron said.

The planned job cuts come after years of restructuring and streamlining that has seen thousands of positions disappear, the unions say, when customs fraud and smuggling is rising because of a lack of resources.