By Marcus Leach

More than 6,100 passengers will be affected by Qantas's strike on Tuesday.

The strike by the Transport Workers Union means Qantas are forced to cancel 28 flights and delay a further 27 flights by up to 35 minutes.

Qantas has been able to significantly reduce the full impact of the strike by using larger wide-body aircraft and deploying Australian-based Qantas management to act in operational roles.

There could be further delays over the next two days as a result of the flow on effect from the strikes and the 48 hour ban on working higher duties.

Qantas Group Executive Olivia Wirth said the airline was focussed first and foremost on getting passengers to the destinations as quickly as possible.

“We apologise to our passengers who will be caught up in this strike action from the Transport Workers Union. The TWU is intent on causing disruptions to Qantas passengers and we are doing everything we possibly can to reduce the delays and cancellations,” Ms Wirth said.

Ms Wirth said that the TWU were taking strike action as part of an ongoing pay dispute.

“The TWU are asking for 15 per cent pay increase over the next three years which is just not sustainable in the current economic climate and when these employees are already the highest paid in the Australian aviation industry,” she said.

“The union is also trying to place restrictions on Qantas which would remove our flexibility to scale up or scale down our workforce in line with busy and quiet periods.

“The TWU is willing to allow its members to be paid 12 per cent less at Virgin and to enable them to have a lower pay scale for new starters but they are demanding that Qantas does not have the same flexibility.

“We have been in negotiations with the TWU since May and are willing to offer reasonable pay increases. We encourage the TWU to remain at the negotiating table instead of going on strike.”

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