Strikes by Eiffel Tower workers anger tourists

If you’ve headed to Paris for the Easter holidays, chances are you’ve left the city’s most famous tourist attraction rather frustrated.

Workers for the company that runs the Eiffel Tower have been on strike for two days now, complaining over stalled pay increases. As a result, the tower was essentially closed Wednesday and Thursday. Negotiations with union workers was ongoing today, but the tower remained closed Friday morning.

Around 300 workers completely blocked the Eiffel from tourists on Wednesday. Yesterday, after more protests in the morning, one of the tower’s four pillars briefly opened to visitors before security workers shut it down again. Tourists were left in line for hours without any indication whether they’d get a chance to go up.

Basically, the workers’ beef is that while the price of going up the Eiffel Tower has increased this year (tickets now run roughly $18), their salaries have not gone up. Security workers and ticket takers are demanding pay increases and bonuses.

About 18,000 tourists per day visited the Eiffel Tower last year.