Coronavirus & Aviation – Past The Peak

Still in that tunnel

What do you do when you hear some interesting news and you just don’t know what to do with it? You call your mum? Speak to your spouse? Have a conversation with the wall? Well for me, I stick it here on my blog. Let’s face it, this lock down is sending some of us loopy, but there may be some light at the end of this very, very long tunnel.

It’s already been over a month since this furlough malarkey began. Actually, I say “malarkey”, but I am extremely grateful for the job retention scheme that the government announced back in April, as it has meant that my company hasn’t had to feel the pressure of having to fork out the fast burning cash we have in our reserves for salaries. So as I mentioned, it’s already been over a month, and what’s happened in that month?

Well to be honest, not much at all has happened. Some airlines have gone bankrupt, while others have gone through voluntary administration. It’s been a tough month for aviation and the world economy in general. The last few days has been interesting though, for some good reasons, and some not so good.

British Airways – Need I say more?

I’m sure many of you have heard the news about our precious legacy carrier, British Airways? Well if not, then let me give you a little highlight. A few days ago, BA CEO, Alex Cruz, announced that the airline will have to cut up to 12,000 pilot and cabin crew jobs in the UK. This is absolutely incredible, considering their mother company, IAG, have managed to secure over €1billion in funding to keep BA’s sister airlines afloat. These are Aer Lingus, Iberia, Level, Vueling and IAGCargo. Not to mention the fact that IAG are also not backing down with the €1billion purchase of Air Europa.

British Airways Coronavirus - past the peak
Image courtesy of Daily Mail

Petitions, Petitions, Petitions

A petition has started on change.org. This claims that making the staff redundant is immoral and bordering on being possibly illegal. As of the time of writing this, the petition has been alive for less than a day and has already surpassed 35,000 signatures! Steven Manzanero, the person who started the petition, states that this is an attack on the UK and it’s workers. As briefly as possible, he states that for BA to make it’s staff redundant (especially those who have been in the company for 50 years or more), it would cost them a huge amount of money in payouts. But under the guise of this pandemic, IAG CEO, Willie Walsh, along with Alex Cruz, would be able to save a lot of money. They simply need to use the statutory redundancy packages instead of their agreed in-company packages.

It all sounds very odd to me, especially considering IAG have over €3billion available in the bank now, and there are other companies out there with nowhere near that amount, that haven’t called for anywhere near that many job losses. Anyway, rant over. If you want to get involved with the petition and help out the 12,000 British Airways pilots and cabin crew, then follow the link here and pop your details in.

WizzAir already flying again!

Yup, you read that right! WizzAir has already begun operating some sort of schedule to several destinations from London Luton Airport. The airline is now flying to Hungary, Slovakia, Canaries, Israel, Serbia, Portugal and Bulgaria, but these schedules come with some very strict restrictions and rules.

Image courtesy of Trip Advisor

All the crew and passengers must wear face masks and also need to stay as far away from each other as possible. WizzAir have also said that they have made an enhanced cleaning regime which has to be strictly adhered to.

The thing that I can’t believe, is the fact that Wizz say they expect to be flying 70% of their normal flights by July-August. This is in contrast to Ryanair who have stated they only expect to be flying about 50%.

At the end of the day, all of this “news” is just an absolute wild guess based on a few graphs. These graphs show how we are past the peak of coronavirus, and predict the end of coronavirus to be somewhere in mid to late June. But let’s be honest here, anything could happen. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to be optimistic, and I want to get back flying desperately, but this isn’t a normal situation, and the ball is still very much in play.

Until next time

It’s not been a long one this time, as I just wanted to get a few things down on metaphorical paper. As always, if you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to get in touch here. Also, if you want to be notified when I upload new posts, then just pop your name and email address in the box below.

I’d love to invite you to follow my instagram here, which may not have many flying photos coming up in the next few months, but will try and keep updated as much as possible with aviation related subjects. You can also check me out on TikTok by searching for TheHumblePilot.

I look forward to seeing you in the next post. If you’ve enjoyed this content and feel others may benefit from it too, then please do share it.

See you in the next one.

Happy Contrails.

The Humble Pilot