Holidaymakers could face a summer of delays at Gatwick airport with workers at two separate companies threatening to strike over low pay rates.
Unite said it was balloting more than 100 members who work for security firm ICTS, scanning passengers luggage for dangerous items.
The union has also asked members at ISS World – who provide a variety of services from baggage handling to cleaning and waste management – if they want to strike.
ICTS staff are currently paid £8.50 an hour but are demanding a 50p increase to match the £9 an hour living wage.
Holidaymakers at Gatwick could face a summer of strike chaos after security workers, baggage handlers and support staff were ballotted over industrial action (file picture)
ISS workers are on £8.49 per hour and have decided to ballot after management went back on a pay increase offer.
The firm had agreed a two stage pay increase, with the second tranche due in April 2019.
However this payment was not made, and the manager who arranged the original deal has since left the organisation while ISS has failed to honour the pay pledge.
Ballot papers for both strikes will be sent to members on Friday and the deadline for their return is July 26.
If members vote for industrial action strikes could begin in mid-August, which would inevitably create disruption at the airport.
Unite regional officer Jamie Major said: ‘It is time to end poverty pay at Gatwick airport.
‘The owners of Gatwick airport are making millions every year while they are allowing workers on contracts to be paid rates below what workers can actually live on.
If workers at security firm ICTS and outsourcing company ISS approve the strikes, they will take place during the school summer holidays in August (file picture of Gatwick)
‘It is astonishing that workers who undertake such crucial safety critical work as scanning luggage, are paid so little for the work they do.
‘If strikes go ahead then passengers will inevitably experience delays and a poorer service but this is in the hands of the contractors and Gatwick airport.
‘Workers are drawing a line in the sand and stating clearly they will no longer accept such miserable rates of pay.’
Gatwick airport made a profit of £148 million last year, an increase of £88 million on the previous 12 months.