Transport for London (TfL) made its “full and final” one-year offer to 16,000 London Underground staff last week, offering a five per cent pay rise that will be backdated to April.
Aslef members will now be asked in a referendum whether they accept the deal. However, rejecting it would lead to an immediate strike ballot.
And, should Aslef hold a network-wide strike, the Tube will be guaranteed to be shut as no trains would be able to run.
Meanwhile, RMT is also due to consider the offer next week. While some of its members are urging for the offer to be rejected, it is expected to be a while before the union’s executives make a final decision.
In addition, the union has recently voted in favour of more industrial action, meaning more strikes could be on the way if the offer isn’t accepted.
Since the start of the nationwide rail strikes and other industrial actions over a year ago, tens of millions of Brits’ travel plans have been derailed.
But how long have the strikes been going on and how long are they expected to continue?
When did the rail strikes begin?
The national rail strikes began in June 2022, marking the largest incidence of industrial action since 1989.
The main rail union, the RMT, and Aslef, which represents train drivers, are the unions engaged in conflict with the top 14 English rail operators on wages, employment, and working conditions.
In the current wave of nationwide strikes, the RMT has staged walkouts on 33 days, with Aslef suspending work on 12 of those days.
The two unions are requesting unrestricted raises that account for the high rate of inflation. They claim to be ready to talk about reforms, but they need to be negotiated individually. They anticipate that any adjustments will come with matching salary increases.
How long could strikes continue?
Following a vote by RMT union members in favour of more industrial action, train customers may experience strikes for a further six months.
Fourteen firms had more than 20,000 members cast ballots, according to the RMT. The percentage of voters who supported strike action was very slightly lower than in May, notwithstanding the reduced turnout.
The vote, according to RMT general secretary Mick Lynch, gave rise to a "decisive mandate".
The turnout was 63.6 per cent, and 89.9 per cent of voters cast ballots in favour.
In the spring, a parallel disagreement involving RMT members employed by Network Rail was resolved.
However, the most recent offer from the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), which represents the rail companies, was turned down in April by employees of the train companies, including guards and station personnel. It is believed that no substantial progress has been made in the recent discussions.
Aslef have also not been able to reach an agreement with employers.
Will there be strikes in November?
The vote in favour permits the RMT to set strike dates in the lead-up to Christmas and beyond, albeit no fresh dates have been published yet.