Lufthansa will have shed 27,000 jobs by year end – further cuts expected in 2021

©Lufthansa

According to German newspaper Bild am Sonntag, Lufthansa, along with its subsidiaries Eurowings, Swiss, Austrian and Brussels Airlines will have cut its workforce by 27,000 by the end of 2020 to help mitigate the catastrophic effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on air travel. 20,000 of those jobs will employees based outside Germany, while approximately 7,500 staff will no longer be under the group’s umbrella when its catering unit, LSG, is sold. The newspaper further reports that Germany’s flagship carrier will shed a further 10,000 jobs in 2021 as it does not anticipate passenger numbers will recover to pre-pandemic levels until Read more

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Ryanair to acquire 75 new 737 MAXs in all but name, and at a “modest discount”

©Ryanair

Ryanair, Europe’s largest low-cost carrier, is to increase its fleet of 737 MAX jets after placing a new order for 75 of the beleaguered jets at what has been described as a “modest discount” from the list price of US$22 billion. At a news conference in Washington to announce the deal, Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary described the 737 Max as “a fabulous aircraft”. Boeing’s chief executive, David Calhoun, said it was “the beginning of the fulfilment of a more robust order book”. However, when announcing the deal, O’Leary’ would only refer to the 737 MAX as the “737 8200”. Read more

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TUI extends borrowing with third bailout from German government, banks, and investors

©TUI

TUI, the world’s largest holiday company, has secured a third major financial bailout to help it cope with the knock-on effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the travel industry. Having already secured €3 billion in state loans this year, the company has announced that it has struck a deal with the German government, banks and private investors to borrow an additional €1.8 billion. TUI lost €1.1 billion in the second quarter of 2020, having flown 23 million holidaymakers in 2019. Currently the company is burning through approximately €600 million a month. Including this new loan, TUI now has reserves of Read more

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Germany’s Condor ends shield proceedings – announces the company is again financially healthy

©Condor

While remaining an asset of the now defunct Thomas Cook Group, Condor Flugdienst GmbH (Condor) the German charter airline, has announced that it is once again a healthy company. On September 25, 2019 Condor obtained credit facilities of €380 million (US$460 million) while on December 19, 2019 “Schutzschirmverfahren” (protective shield proceedings) began under the Frankfurt jurisdiction. “Condor is leaving what is probably the most challenging time in the company’s history behind it today and is beginning a new chapter. For our customers and partners, this means that they can continue to rely on Condor,” says Ralf Teckentrup, CEO of Condor. Read more

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Thales and StandardAero achieve world’s first four-axis autopilot test flight for Airbus AS350 and H125 helicopters

Thales and Standard Aero StandardAero have announced the successful first flight test of a revolutionary compact autopilot system for the Airbus AS350 and H125 helicopter. This is a key milestone which lays the groundwork for this critical phase of the Supplemental Type Certification (STC) process and the launch of this unique autopilot solution to the light helicopter market by the middle of 2021. Flight testing will continue throughout this winter at StandardAero’s Langley, British Columbia, Canada facility, and WeatherTech, the well-known automotive accessories company, will be its launch customer.  The Autopilot will initially be certified for installation on both the Read more

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Transport Canada intends to play greater role in aircraft validation after 737 MAX crashes

In a tone which now underlines the country’s wariness of the relationship between Boeing and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, Transport Canada has announced its intention to play a far greater part in the validation process of aircraft. We “have to look at the interaction that different authorities have with their manufacturers,” Nicholas Robinson, Transport Canada’s director of civil aviation, told a Canadian hearing on aircraft certification and the MAX. Currently Transport Canada is yet to approve the 737 MAX despite the FAA having already approved the jet to return to the skies. In particular, Transport Canada is likely to Read more

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WASB gets airport slot use relief while flight numbers remain suppressed

Amsterdam Schiphol Airport ©AirTeamImages

The Worldwide Airport Slot Board (WASB) which comprises the Airports Council International (ACI World), the International Air Transport Association (IATA), and the Worldwide Airport Coordinators Group (WWACG) has pushed worldwide regulators to be more flexible with slot rules while airlines struggle to cope with heavily reduced schedules. The intention behind the push for flexibility is to preserve essential air transport connectivity. The COVID-19 pandemic has seen a 65% drop in direct city pair connections during Q1 2020 and slot-regulated airports handle roughly 50% of all passengers, creating a backbone for the global scheduled airline network. Where recovery is concerned, this Read more

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CAE to buy TRU Simulation + Training in second acquisition this month

Established in 2014 through the merger of Mechtronix and OPNICUS with part of the Textron Systems division, the Textron subsidiary TRU Simulation + Training (TRY Canada) is to sell certain of its non-U.S. businesses to CAE Inc. for US$40 million excluding post-closing adjustments and subject to regulatory approval. TRU Canada is a Canadian-American manufacturer of flight simulators and training solutions for civil and military markets and the deal includes a backlog of simulator orders, full-flight simulator assets, its Montreal manufacturing operations, its ETOPS entities in France and Malaysia, and a minority interest in a joint venture in Iceland. This is Read more

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Embraer eyes developing new turboprop as way forward after Boeing deal collapses

Brazil’s Embraer, the world’s third-largest commercial plane manufacturer, has announced it is exploring the possibility of developing a new turboprop aircraft. The initial announcement made it clear that its commercial unit is not for sale. “We are actively in discussions with (turboprop) partnerships, but I can’t go into more details now,” Commercial Aviation Chief Executive Arjan Meijer said, adding “Also the type of partnership, be it industrial or financial, is wide open. We are looking at all the options, or it could be a combination of the two … We are not ruling anyone out at this point.” According to Read more

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IATA makes progress on Travel Pass to help reopen international borders

COVID test ©IATA

The International Air Transport Association has announced it is moving forward with the impending introduction of its Travel Pass. This final development phase will ultimately enable countries to open up their borders to international travelers which are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The digital health pass will support the safe opening of these borders and the IATA Travel Pass will manage and verify the secure flow of necessary testing and vaccine information between governments, laboratories, airlines, and travelers. IATA is calling for systematic COVID-19 testing of all international travelers and the information flow infrastructure needed to enable this Read more

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