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Possible Air Strike in Chile

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The news was just released on December 14, 2015 of a possible 48-hour strike of Chile's civil aviation authority. IF the strike occurs, it will happen this Thursday & Friday, December 17 & 18. This potential disruption is only heightened by the upcoming holidays and timing during high travel season in the region. Obviously, the possibility of such an event would create major logistical disruptions.

After two months of negotiations, Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) workers stated on Monday that they had rejected the government's proposal for a state subsidy to improve their pensions. The discussions are ongoing, so no one is certain whether or not the strike will actually be necessary. Jose Perez, Union Head, said that, "Unless there is an improvement in the government offer very soon, the stoppage will go ahead."

Adventure Life is doing everything within our power to assist our affected travelers! Obviously, the situation is out of our control, but our staff is available to help travelers walk through possibilities or even alternatives. From what we understand, SOME domestic flights within Chile may still operate. International & regional-international flights (Santiago, Chile to Buenos Aires, Argentina, for example) may NOT be cancelled. However, this is all still NOT confirmed by any official sources.  We are advising all travelers with international flights into Chile on December 17 or 18 to arrive to the airport 4 HOURS prior to flight time. 

One other piece of advice we are giving to our travelers is to check with your travel insurance provider, if you have purchased a plan. Strikes MAY BE covered under certain policies, so this would be the first step we would ask our Adventure Lifers to take if their trip would be influenced by a strike this week. Travelers who are not staying in Chile but just have a flight routing them to the country may even start looking into alternative flights that might be available.

We obviously have access to very limited information about the potential event, but we want to maintain transparency with you, our valued travelers. Our hope is that this strike becomes a non-issue and that it does not actually take place. However, we want to be proactive in preparing for the worst, and we truly appreciate your understanding & patience throughout the process.

Here is an article from LAN airlines that basically states the strikes are likely to occur, but that they are doing everything in their power to assist travelers. It also outlines the following options passengers with flights on December 17 or 18 may qualify for:
1. Forward your trip between 14 and 16 December inclusive with no penalty.
2. Postpone your trip until 15 days after the original date of flight with no penalty.
3. A change of route to the validity of the ticket, with no penalty, but paying fare differences that may arise.
Travelers wishing to reschedule your trip may do so through the LAN Contact Center (600 526 2000) or by visiting any of the commercial offices of the company.

Another article claims that air traffic controllers will NOT actually be participating in the national strike. "The biggest impact of the strike will be on domestic flights," states the article. Airlines have not cancelled flights in an effort to maintain business as usual and stay committed to travelers' expectations.  However, the unknown likelihood of a strike has caused them to formulate plans which will hopefully mitigate the event's impact.

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