Carpool hashtags trending on social media ahead of transit strike

With a nationwide public transit strike scheduled for Tuesday, Dutch are looking for other ways to get around tomorrow. Carpool- and ride sharing hashtags are already trending on social media. If you want to offer or request a ride, look for hashtags like  #liftaangeboden, #meerijden #carpool, #carpoolen, #samenrijden, #liftnodig, #treinstaking, #ovstaking.

Radboud University in Nijmegen, one of the universities that will continue its lectures and exams as planned on Tuesday despite the strike, also created a ride-sharing hashtag for students and staff who usually travel to the university by public transit. Students looking for a lift to Radboud on Tuesday can look for the hashtag #radboudride. 

Public transit employees across the Netherlands are striking for a better pension system on Tuesday. The unions want the retirement age to be frozen at 66, and for people with physically taxing jobs and people who work shifts to be able to retire earlier. Only public transit employees in the Achterhoek are not participating in the strike, according to AD. According to union FNV, the number of public transit workers not striking on Tuesday is "marginal". The strike will start at 5:00 a.m. on Tuesday and last for 24 hours.

A number of universities, including the University of Amsterdam, Utrecht University and And the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences, rescheduled important tests, exams and lectures that were scheduled for Tuesday. Other tertiary education institutions, including Radboud, the University of Leiden, and the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, will continue as usual. Minister Ingrid van Engelshoven of Education stressed that it is up to the schools and universities themselves to determine how they handle the strike tomorrow, but she expects that they will be lenient with students or pupils who miss tests or classes, she said to AD. She emphasized that the education institutions can expect some creativity from their students - arrange a lift with someone or stay with a friend near school.

A court ruled that the unions must allow trains to run between Schiphol airport and Amsterdam Central Station during the strike on Tuesday. Despite this, chaos is still expected at the airport. NS warned that the four trains per hour the court ordered is not enough to handle the normal traveler numbers around the airport. Schiphol called on travelers not to come to the airport on Tuesday if not absolutely necessary. And KLM advised travelers to keep a close eye on current travel information in case the strike results in flight delays and cancellations. KLM travelers can also re-book their flights to travel on another day.

A number of employers are allowing their employees to work from home on Tuesday. Some others helped pay for overnight accommodation close to work, so that their employees can come in by foot or bicycle. 

Public works department Rijkswaterstaat expects that the public transit strike will also have consequences for road traffic. Combined with rain expected for Tuesday, Rijkswaterstaat expects many traffic problems during morning- and evening rush hour. 

On Wednesday workers in other sectors will also strike for a better pension system on Wednesday. The public transit workers initially planned to join this strike, but as this would have meant that other striking workers would not be able to reach labor actions by public transit, the sector decided to hold its strike a day earlier. 


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