Between an IT outage at the national airline, hacked airport websites and a massive labor strike across multiple airports, Germany’s air travelers just can’t catch a break this week.
On Wednesday, an IT outage at Lufthansa, Germany’s national airline, caused nearly 500 flights to be delayed or canceled.
“During construction work in Frankfurt, fiber optic cables belonging to a telecom service provider were damaged, causing an outage of Lufthansa’s IT systems at Frankfurt Airport,” Lufthansa spokesperson Christina Semmel wrote on Wednesday in an email to Forbes. “Flight operations are expected to stabilize in the early evening.”
Unfortunately, the carrier’s troubles appear to have bled into Thursday. By mid-afternoon in Germany, Lufthansa had canceled 235 more flights and experienced 175 delays, according to data from FlightAware.
Thursday also saw the websites of several German airports taken offline in a suspected hacker attack, but it does not appear to have impacted the country’s air traffic. Airports whose websites went down include Nuremberg, Duesseldorf, Dortmund and Erfurt-Weimar, first reported by Germany news agency Deutsche Presse-Agentur.
The incident is reminiscent of a Russian cyberattack that hit a dozen U.S. airports last October without causing operational disruptions.
Looking ahead to Friday, the situation only worsens for travelers. Thousands of flights have been preemptively canceled due to a swarm of 24-hour strikes called by German trade union Verdi at Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Hamburg, Dortmund, Hanover and Bremen airports.
Lufthansa and sister airline Lufthansa Cityline have collectively canceled nearly 800 flights on Friday, the lion’s share of which are clustered at the country’s two largest airports, in Frankfurt and Munich.
Verdi indicated that the strike over a wage dispute will cause “massive disruptions” on Friday and mainly affect domestic travel. The group said travelers were given advance warning so they could make alternative plans.
Lufthansa is also suggesting that impacted customers take a train instead.