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$5,000 cash boost for Qantas staff after ‘tough few years’

·3-min read
Qantas plane and money
Qantas will hand out $5,000 bonuses to its staff. (Source: Getty)

Qantas will dish out $5,000 to its employees in a bid to “share the benefits of the recovery” with its staff.

Around 19,000 employees will be eligible for the one-off bonus, with management and senior executives excluded from the scheme.

This comes as the airline has attracted criticism for poor customer service over the past few months, with reports of lost baggage, cancelled flights and hours-long waits on the phone to speak to an operator.

Airlines around the world have been struggling to manage the return to travel after pandemic restrictions due to labour shortages.

University of Technology Sydney senior tourism lecturer David Beirman said many airlines shed workers during the pandemic and not all workers were keen to return to the industry.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the one-off payment was a gesture to reward employees who stuck by the airline through “a tough few years for everyone in aviation”.

“Today, we’re announcing a one-off payment that goes some of the way to acknowledging the sacrifices our people have made, including long periods of no work and no annual wage increases,” Joyce said.

“It also recognises the great work they are doing as we restart the airline, which has been challenging for everyone.”

The airline also said it was in the process of negotiating a 2 per cent wage increase across the company following a two-year wage freeze.

Joyce said no further permanent pay rises were on the table at the present time.

“Getting our permanent cost base right is how we’re able to reinvest, which ultimately means more opportunity for our people,” he said.

“The structure of our business means many of our people see their salary increase significantly as their careers progress.

“That progression often relies on the business growing, so the recent investments we’ve announced in new aircraft and new ventures will see employees share in the benefit as the national carrier enters a new phase.”

Like many airlines, Qantas saw severe losses during COVID.

The airline’s financial position is starting to look healthier now that demand for travel has picked back up.

The group is reportedly on track to return to profit in the 2023 financial year.

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