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Covid-19: Airlines seek emergency aid as coronavirus brings industry to near-halt

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A350s become freighters through Airbus pallet-for-seat swap

Airbus is offering carriers a modification and regulatory support scheme to convert passenger A350s, A330s and A340s temporarily into main-deck freighters by swapping out seats and fitting pallets onto their floor tracks.

Modification is provided to operators under an Airbus service bulletin which sets out not just the engineering work but also manages securing of European Union Aviation Safety Agency approval.

EASA has issued guidelines to operators seeking to use passenger aircraft as freighters, setting out a limited exemption period of eight months in order to allow carriers to capitalise on dormant fleet capacity while the coronavirus crisis persists.

Airbus test pilot and vice-president of flight operations support Yann Lardet says there has been an “evaporation” of capacity just as demand for medical supplies has increased. He says some 45-50% of cargo had been carried in passenger aircraft holds.

While airlines can apply to EASA for main-deck modification, Lardet says this case-by-case procedure is “quite a painful process”. Airbus is offering to handle this regulatory side, free of charge, by providing all the necessary documentation, with operators only contributing the cost of labour for the modification.

“Customers can generate revenues with aircraft that would otherwise be grounded,” says Lardet.

More: https://www.flightglobal.com/air-transport/a350s-become-freighters-through-airbus-pallet-for-seat-swap/138161.article

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German govt to gain 25.1% stake in Lufthansa bailout: report

Lufthansa is seeking a €10 billion bailout that would give the German government a massive stake in the airline, Der Spiegel reports. The German flag carrier has said it is losing €1 million an hour due to the pandemic.

See: https://www.dw.com/en/german-govt-to-gain-251-stake-in-lufthansa-bailout-report/a-53304930

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Just saw the news. Domestic flights in Malaysia permitted with 50% passenger load only(Middle seat to be blocked). Goodluck to ALL AIRLINES that don't run break even margin with half load.

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6 hours ago, jahur said:

Just saw the news. Domestic flights in Malaysia permitted with 50% passenger load only(Middle seat to be blocked). Goodluck to ALL AIRLINES that don't run break even margin with half load.

Here is the news story: Ismail Sabri: Domestic flights only half-load with social distancing in place

Do note that ministers are known to say inaccurate things and are often corrected at a later date.

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8 hours ago, jahur said:

Just saw the news. Domestic flights in Malaysia permitted with 50% passenger load only(Middle seat to be blocked). Goodluck to ALL AIRLINES that don't run break even margin with half load.

I've read before in their financial reports, AirAsia needs only 50% load to break even. Lolx, sell all tickets above cost should be enough for them. I wonder if they will enforce social distancing on board?

A320= 180 seats/ 186 seats= 30 rows/ 31 rows = 2 empty middle seats= 60 seats empty= 120/126 seats available. Half load (90 seats)= minus 30 seats...Last 30 of 120/126 offset with highest fare.

A321= 236 seats= 40 rows= 2 empty middle seats= 80 seats empty= 156 seats available. Half load (118 seats)= minus 38 seats. ...Last 38 of 156 offset with highest fare.

A330 will be tricky.....Lolx.

Edited by JuliusWong

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16 minutes ago, JuliusWong said:

I've read before in their financial reports, AirAsia needs only 50% load to break even. Lolx, sell all tickets above cost should be enough for them. I wonder if they will enforce social distancing on board?

A320= 180 seats/ 186 seats= 30 rows/ 31 rows = 2 empty middle seats= 60 seats empty= 120/126 seats available. Half load (90 seats)= minus 30 seats...Last 30 of 120/126 offset with highest fare.

A321= 236 seats= 40 rows= 2 empty middle seats= 80 seats empty= 156 seats available. Half load (118 seats)= minus 38 seats. ...Last 38 of 156 offset with highest fare.

A330 will be tricky.....Lolx.

50% break even must mean the aux income sales have them well covered.

The block middle seat should be the social distancing. For now i think it should be okay to resume domestic after mco for the month of May and June. The main problem will be international flights unless all inbound pax are hauled up for quarantine on arrival as per mco requirement. Expect this to be the norm until other countries stop reporting new covid clusters. 

Edited by jahur

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Malaysia Airlines has updated GDS, resuming international flight for time period 1st July 2020 to October 2020. Source: routesonline.

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Coronavirus: Rolls-Royce 'to cut up to 8,000 jobs'

Rolls-Royce could axe up to 8,000 jobs after aircraft manufacturers were forced to cut production during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The aeroplane engine maker employs 52,000 people worldwide, with 23,000 staff in the UK.

According to a company source, senior leaders have warned "cuts could be as high as 8,000, but efforts to mitigate the impact are ongoing".

It had announced plans to save £750m but now "needs to take further action".

The aviation industry has been badly hit by the pandemic as many flights across the world have been suspended.

More: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-derbyshire-52514444#

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MASKargo A380 in cargo-only flight ‘first’

MASKargo has operated an A380 aircraft on a cargo-only flight – moving e-commerce goods from Kuala Lumpur International (KLIA) to Heathrow.

The airline said that — as far as it is aware — this is the first time an A380 has been used on a cargo-only basis.

MASKargo said that flight MH04 departed KLIA at 9.50am on Tuesday with 26 tonnes of cargo made up of mostly e-commerce goods originating from Guangzhou.

“This is definitely an innovative and ‘beyond-the-box approach’ on our part; as no other Airbus A380 equipped airline that we know, has done this,” said lbrahim Mohamed Salleh, MASkargo’s chief executive.

“Our freighters’ flying hours have been utilised to the maximum allowable due to humanitarian Covid-19 relief efforts and other business demands.

“When the freighters can no longer cope, we initially innovated via the passenger-to-cargo (P2C) project where we use our A330 passenger fleet to carry cargo.

“With the volume of cargo increasing coupled with lesser cargo capacity into Heathrow, we had no choice but to utilise the biggest aircraft in the Malaysia Airlines fleet to meet our customers’ expectations. The originally scheduled A350, could not cater for the volume of cargo that we need to move.”

More: https://www.aircargonews.net/airlines/bellyhold-airline/maskargo-a380-in-cargo-only-flight-first/

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Berkshire sells entire stakes in U.S airlines: Buffett

(Reuters) - Berkshire Hathaway Inc (BRKa.N) sold its entire stakes in the four largest U.S. airlines in April, Chairman Warren Buffett said Saturday at the company’s annual meeting, saying “the world has changed” for the aviation industry.

The conglomerate had held sizeable positions in the airlines, including an 11% stake in Delta Air Lines (DAL.N), 10% of American Airlines Co (AAL.O), 10% of Southwest Airlines Co (LUV.N) and 9% of United Airlines (UAL.O) at the end of 2019, according to its annual report and company filings.

The conglomerate was one of the largest individual holders in the four airlines and in 2016 disclosed it had begun investing in the four carriers after avoiding the sector for years.

Airline stocks have been hard hit by the near collapse U.S. travel demand amid the coronavirus pandemic.

More: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-berkshire-airlines/berkshire-sells-entire-stakes-in-u-s-airlines-buffett-idUSKBN22E0VP

Edited by flee

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10 hours ago, flee said:

MASKargo A380 in cargo-only flight ‘first’

MASKargo has operated an A380 aircraft on a cargo-only flight – moving e-commerce goods from Kuala Lumpur International (KLIA) to Heathrow.

The airline said that — as far as it is aware — this is the first time an A380 has been used on a cargo-only basis.

MASKargo said that flight MH04 departed KLIA at 9.50am on Tuesday with 26 tonnes of cargo made up of mostly e-commerce goods originating from Guangzhou.

“This is definitely an innovative and ‘beyond-the-box approach’ on our part; as no other Airbus A380 equipped airline that we know, has done this,” said lbrahim Mohamed Salleh, MASkargo’s chief executive.

“Our freighters’ flying hours have been utilised to the maximum allowable due to humanitarian Covid-19 relief efforts and other business demands.

“When the freighters can no longer cope, we initially innovated via the passenger-to-cargo (P2C) project where we use our A330 passenger fleet to carry cargo.

“With the volume of cargo increasing coupled with lesser cargo capacity into Heathrow, we had no choice but to utilise the biggest aircraft in the Malaysia Airlines fleet to meet our customers’ expectations. The originally scheduled A350, could not cater for the volume of cargo that we need to move.”

More: https://www.aircargonews.net/airlines/bellyhold-airline/maskargo-a380-in-cargo-only-flight-first/

Kind of a waste MAB sold of their two B744F few years ago. Otherwise they are very useful and churning money for them. Both were fully owned. And we sold off 9M-MUC  A332F too.

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23 minutes ago, JuliusWong said:

Kind of a waste MAB sold of their two B744F few years ago. Otherwise they are very useful and churning money for them. Both were fully owned. And we sold off 9M-MUC  A332F too.

The cargo market wasn't lucrative prior to Covid. It was doing pretty good in 2005-2012 then everything then went down in size. The cargo today have been trimmed down in size and weight. Even SQ downsized their cargo ops and removed all 747BCFs and were previously seeking to offload 2-3 B744Fs. The cargo airlines that can handle the heat in Asia is Cathay and Korean Air Cargo. But i do agree that 9M-MUC should not be sold it had the right capacity. 

Edited by jahur

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1 hour ago, jahur said:

The cargo market wasn't lucrative prior to Covid. It was doing pretty good in 2005-2012 then everything then went down in size. The cargo today have been trimmed down in size and weight. Even SQ downsized their cargo ops and removed all 747BCFs and were previously seeking to offload 2-3 B744Fs. The cargo airlines that can handle the heat in Asia is Cathay and Korean Air Cargo. But i do agree that 9M-MUC should not be sold it had the right capacity. 

Well, holding on to planes that don't do revenue flights is a mighty waste and MH did not have the luxury to do so these past few years. As you noted, even SQ decided to let go a substantial part of the freighter fleet too. The cargo market has somewhat shifted to carrying packages, with heavy cargo mainly being carried by the Antonovs. If MH really needs another freighter, it can now quite easily get a converted A333 as this has more volume.

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12 hours ago, Kee Hooi Yen said:

So it was under the schedule passenger flight number MH04. Interesting. 

Most airlines are using regular flight numbers.

You'll see MH 333/332s busy flying to CAN, CGK, SGN, BKI, BKK, KCH, SYD, MEL, PER, HAN, MNL, PVG, NRT etc. Most of these are P2C flights (no revenue pax) but using regular flight number and almost regular schedule. And you'll see KA, CI, BR, CZ all flying into KUL/PEN daily too (sometimes 2 times a day on CI/BR on 77W) but most of these are P2C flights as well. You can't buy revenue seats even if you wanted to.

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The Non-Bailout: How the Fed Saved Boeing Without Paying a Dime

Less than two months ago Boeing Co. went to Washington, hat in hand, asking for a $60 billion bailout for itself and its suppliers. The company, which had spent heavily on stock buybacks and was still reeling from the 737 Max disaster, was an unlikely candidate for government support.

Yet by urging the Federal Reserve to take unprecedented steps to bolster credit markets, the Trump administration ended up helping the plane maker more than any government handout could.

The Fed’s decision to use its near limitless balance sheet to purchase corporate bonds improved liquidity so much that it was a game changer for the company, according to people with knowledge of the matter who asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly.

Ultimately, it allowed Boeing to raise $25 billion from private investors and withdraw its request for a government rescue, avoiding the restrictions that would have certainly been imposed.

More: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-05-02/the-non-bailout-how-the-fed-saved-boeing-without-paying-a-dime

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“The seating will be similar to that of buses, whereby one person can only occupy two seats due to social distancing. To my knowledge, flights to and from Sabah and Sarawak are still being done by Firefly at the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Subang,” Ismail Sabri said during his daily press conference in Putrajaya.

 

firefly flying to Sabah Sarawak with their ATRs?

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1 hour ago, Kenny Sing said:

“The seating will be similar to that of buses, whereby one person can only occupy two seats due to social distancing. To my knowledge, flights to and from Sabah and Sarawak are still being done by Firefly at the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Subang,” Ismail Sabri said during his daily press conference in Putrajaya.

 

firefly flying to Sabah Sarawak with their ATRs?

Politicians as usual or the press. 😆

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United Airlines plans to cut more than 3,400 management jobs

United Airlines plans to eliminate more than 3,400 management and administrative positions Oct. 1 as the airline reels from the coronavirus pandemic that has brought air travel to an almost standstill.

Chicago, United’s hometown, could be especially hard-hit.

“We have to acknowledge that there will be serious consequences to our company if we don’t continue to take strong and decisive action, which includes making decisions that none of us ever wanted or expected to make,” Kate Gebo, the airline’s executive vice president of human resources and labor relations, said in a memo to employees on Monday.

The cuts represent 30% of United’s roughly 11,500 management and administrative employees, most of whom work in Chicago, many at the company’s Willis Tower headquarters. Employees affected by the cuts, which take effect Oct. 1, will be notified in July, Gebo said.

More: https://www.chicagotribune.com/coronavirus/ct-coronavirus-chicago-united-airlines-job-cuts-20200505-542kkmykdfbvjdefti6d3tbb7i-story.html

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IAG scales back planned deliveries to 75 over next three years

British Airways and Iberia parent IAG now expects to take delivery of 75 aircraft over the next three years as it reduces its fleet requirements in line with expectations that passenger demand will not return to pre-crisis levels before 2023.

The new fleet plan marks a reduction of 68 on the number of aircraft deliveries it had originally planned to take over 2020 to 2022, the bulk of which will be short-haul aircraft. The fleet plan covers all IAG carries, which also includes Aer Lingus and Vueling alongside BA and Iberia.

More: https://www.flightglobal.com/fleets/iag-scales-back-planned-deliveries-to-75-over-next-three-years/138262.article

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UK 'to bring in 14-day quarantine for air passengers'

UK airlines say they have been told the government will bring in a 14-day quarantine for anyone arriving in the UK from any country apart from the Republic of Ireland in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The new restriction is expected to take effect at the end of this month.

Industry body Airlines UK said the policy needed "a credible exit plan" and should be reviewed weekly.

People arriving in the UK would have to self-isolate at a private residence.

Government and aviation sources told BBC News that the quarantine would mean people might be expected to provide an address at the border.

It is not clear how long the new travel restriction would be in place and whether non-UK residents would be allowed to stay in rented private accommodation.

"We need to see the details of what they are proposing", said Airlines UK, which represents British Airways, EasyJet and other UK-based airlines, in a statement.

More: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-52594023

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On 5/9/2020 at 1:03 PM, flee said:

UK 'to bring in 14-day quarantine for air passengers'

UK airlines say they have been told the government will bring in a 14-day quarantine for anyone arriving in the UK from any country apart from the Republic of Ireland in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The new restriction is expected to take effect at the end of this month.

Industry body Airlines UK said the policy needed "a credible exit plan" and should be reviewed weekly.

People arriving in the UK would have to self-isolate at a private residence.

Government and aviation sources told BBC News that the quarantine would mean people might be expected to provide an address at the border.

It is not clear how long the new travel restriction would be in place and whether non-UK residents would be allowed to stay in rented private accommodation.

"We need to see the details of what they are proposing", said Airlines UK, which represents British Airways, EasyJet and other UK-based airlines, in a statement.

More: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-52594023

UK economy rely heavily on financial services, foreign students, export, and etc, quarantine if imposed will cost the economy enormously. 

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