United Airlines (NASDAQ: UAL) has begun to offer incentives to all flight attendants as well as pilots that receive the Covid-19 vaccine. The airline is offering flight attendants three extra vacation days and pilots a pay increase, according to Reuters.
“AFA and United Airlines have a shared priority in getting as many Flight Attendants vaccinated as quickly as possible for a number of reasons. First and foremost, the vaccine provides an additional layer of protection in addition to mask compliance and cleaning process initiatives,” the Association of Flight Attendants wrote in a statement on the agreement.
The AFA noted that though the programs were currently voluntary, governments could make them mandatory.
“It is anticipated, without advance notice, some countries may begin to require flight crews to be vaccinated. Having these records in place allows United to meet these requirements quickly and efficiently and maintain a competitive advantage within the industry while ensuring each of us can continue to fly our awarded schedules without interruption,” the AFA continued.
United offered pilots 13 hours of pay if they could present proof of vaccination by June 1, 12 hours of pay by June 10 and 11 hours of pay if vaccinated before June 30. Approximately 80% of United’s 12,500 pilots are vaccinated, according to a company spokeswoman.
The majority of airlines have not settled on whether or not to enforce vaccinations for their employees. However, in May, Delta was the first to require vaccinations for new employees, after reporting that 60% of its 75,000 employees had been vaccinated.