American Airways says August income weaker than anticipated due to Covid

An American Airlines passenger plane approaches landing at LAX during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Los Angeles, California on April 7, 2021.

Mike Blake | Reuters

American Airlines said on Wednesday that August earnings will be lower than expected due to an increase in Covid Falls Drives Bookings, Newest Carrier To Warn Of The Impact Of Infection On Sales.

“It has been and we expect it will continue to be a very troubled recovery,” said Vasu Raja, American chief revenue officer, speaking at a Raymond James investor conference.

Raja said July revenue was above the airline’s expectations, but the surge in Covid cases resulted in weaker short-term bookings and higher cancellations.

“Given the fluidity of the current demand environment, we are not ready at this point to make any final adjustments to our capacity plans or guidelines,” said Raja.

U.S. weighs ordering industrial airways to supply flights for Afghanistan evacuation efforts

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Army soldiers assigned to patrol the 82nd Airborne Division at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug. 17, 2021. Image taken on August 17, 2021.

US Air Force | Reuters

The Biden administration has told US commercial airlines that it could order them to help evacuate Afghanistan, according to someone familiar with the matter.

The Department of Defense informed several of the country’s major commercial airlines late Friday that it could activate the civil reserve air fleet to bolster the airlift, the person said, adding that the flights will be from other locations rather than from Afghanistan itself would. This could include airmen stranded on U.S. bases in Germany, Qatar and Bahrain, according to the Wall Street Journal, which first covered the news.

The almost 70-year-old Civil Reserve Air Fleet program was launched after the Berlin Airlift to support a “major national defense emergency”. Reasons are humanitarian or natural disasters and war.

The White House and the Department of Defense did not respond immediately.

The US withdrawal from Afghanistan announced by Biden earlier this year has been ravaged by chaos. Thousands of people poured into Kabul airport after the Taliban took over the city and secured control of the country last week.

US Defense officials say the military is looking for alternative ways to get Americans, Afghans and third-country nationals safely to the airport in Kabul following threats from the Islamic State. NBC News reports Saturday.

The US embassy in Afghanistan on Saturday warned US citizens should not travel to the airport “because of possible security threats at the gates of Kabul airport”.

A White House official told the press pool on Saturday that six U.S. military C-17s and 32 charter planes had left Kabul in the past 24 hours. The total number of passengers for these 38 flights is approximately 3,800. The White House official says the US has evacuated approximately 17,000 people since Aug. 14.

Several U.S. airlines volunteered earlier this week to help airlift evacuees, the person told CNBC.

The tender for the so-called CRAF flights was opened on Saturday and would be closed on Monday United Airlines Flight attendants, their union, the Association of Flight Attendants, wrote in a memo.

“In order for United to be prepared in the event that the US Department of Defense announces that United Airlines CRAF has been activated, offers for CRAF operations must be made immediately and over a very short period of time,” the statement said.

Alaska Airways is contemplating Covid vaccine mandates for employees

Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 taking off from LAX.

PG | Getty Images

Alaska Airlines told employees on Wednesday that it is considering making Covid-19 vaccines mandatory for employees, according to a company memo that CNBC viewed.

The policy change would make the Seattle-based airline the newest airline to require vaccines for its employees. On Friday, United Airlines became the first major US airline to operate Prescribe vaccines for its employees. Border airlines and Hawaiian Airlines have since issued similar requirements.

Alaska, which has about 20,000 employees, said if it did make vaccines mandatory it would after the Food and Drug Administration fully approved one of the vaccines currently available under emergency approval.

Airline executives recently raised concerns about the rapidly spreading Delta variant of Covid. Southwest Airlines on Wednesday lowered its revenue and profit outlook, blaming the variant’s spread on weaker bookings and increased cancellations.

delta, Southwest and American have encouraged, but not mandated, vaccination of employees.

“As an employer with a duty to protect you, and given the contagion and health risks of the COVID-19 virus and its variants, we have the right to make that decision and ask you for information about your vaccine status,” Alaska employees said . It was said that there would be exemptions for religious or medical reasons, similar to other companies.

United Airways would require all U.S. staff to be vaccinated, a primary for nation’s carriers

United Airlines will require its 67,000 US employees to get vaccinated against Covid-19 by October 25th or risk firing, a first for major US airlines that is likely to put pressure on rivals.

Hours after United’s announcement on Friday, discount stores Border airlines said it Employees must be vaccinated by October 1st or get tested regularly for Covid.

Airlines, including United, had opposed vaccine mandates for all workers and instead offered incentives such as extra pay or time off to get vaccinated. Delta Airlines in May, newly hired employees were required to provide proof of vaccination. United followed in June.

United’s requirement is one of the strictest vaccination regulations of any US company and involves employees who regularly interact with customers such as flight attendants and gate agents.

US companies like Facebook Registered employees must provide evidence of a vaccination to return to the office. Others only ask for it for certain employees. Walmart, for example, said last week that it will be required for company employeesbut no warehouse or warehouse workers. above said US Office staff must be vaccinated in order to return to work in person, but they no longer have to be required for drivers.

Meat packers Tyson Foods said its 120,000 US employees this week must be fully vaccinated this year, however, according to the company, there are already 56,000.

“We know some of you will disagree with this decision to require the vaccine for all United employees,” United CEO Scott Kirby and President Brett Hart said in an employee note Friday. “But we have no greater responsibility to you and your colleagues than to ensure your safety at work, and the facts are crystal clear: everyone is safer when everyone is vaccinated.”

Kirby said he wanted to in January Make Covid vaccines mandatory and that other companies should do the same.

Ending the Covid-19 pandemic is especially critical for airlines, which are among the industries hardest hit by the pandemic. While summer vacation bookings exceeded the expectations of most executives, the rapidly spreading Delta variant begins weigh on requestFrontier Airlines said earlier this week.

“In the past 16 months, Scott has sent dozens of letters of condolence to the family members of United employees who have died of COVID-19,” executives said. “We are determined to do everything in our power to prevent any other United family from receiving this letter.”

United Airlines employees must upload proof that they have received two cans Pfizer or Modern Vaccines or a dose of Johnson & Johnson‘s single dose five weeks after full approval by federal officials or by October 25, whichever comes first, executives said. Exceptions are made for specific health or religious reasons, United said.

The mandate does not apply to regional airlines flying shorter routes for United.

Many of United’s employees have already reported they have been vaccinated, including more than 90% of pilots and 80% of flight attendants, company officials said. United did not disclose the company’s overall vaccination rate.

This compares with about 60% of the American Airlines‘Pilots are being vaccinated,’ said an Aug. 5 letter to members of their union, the Allied Pilots Association, encouraging Airmen to get vaccinated.

United didn’t say what the company’s overall vaccination rate is.

The decision was driven in part by concerns about a spike in Covid-19 cases over the past fall and winter, company officials said.

The Air Line Pilots Association, which represents United’s more than 12,000 airmen, believes the mandate is legal. It said the “small number of pilots” who disagree with the policy or plan to remain unvaccinated should contact their chief pilot’s office.

The flight attendants’ union, the Association of Flight Attendants, urged cabin crew to get vaccinated following United’s announcement.

“COVID-19 is a threat,” the union told members. “There are proven strategies to mitigate this threat. Vaccinations are necessary to end the pandemic and the health and economic damage it has caused.”

For its part, American Airlines said it has not changed its policy of promoting, but not mandating, vaccines for employees. Delta Airlines said it “strongly” encourages workers to be vaccinated but does not require it for all of its employees, except for new hires. More than 73% of the approximately 75,000 employees are vaccinated, it said.

Southwest Airlines did not say whether it plans to prescribe vaccines but said its policy has not been changed.

Spirit Airways CEO on what prompted the service’s meltdown

People wait in line at a Spirit Airlines counter at George Bush Intercontinental Airport on August 5, 2021 in Houston, Texas.

Brandon Bell | Getty Images

The causes of Spirit Airlines‘ fixed Flight cancellations that derailed tens of thousands of customers’ summer vacation this week have been brewing for more than a month, said CEO Ted Christie.

A combination of July flight delays, staffing bottlenecks, technology issues and a surge in travel that surprised most airlines culminated in more than 1,700 canceled flights since Sunday, some days of which made up more than half of Spirit’s flight schedule.

And for travelers, the trouble is not over yet. Christie said the airline would have to cancel additional flights in the next few days to get back on track.

“There are definitely some angry people out there,” he told reporters Thursday night. “At the moment I can only say that we are very sorry about what happened.”

The chaos enraged stranded customers at airports and sparked angry news online that presented Christie with one of his biggest tests since he took office as CEO on New Year’s Day 2019.

“That’s a punch in the heart for everyone,” said Christie.

Chronic delays in July piled up, causing staff shortages as crews timed out and reached the maximum time they could legally work each day, he said. It got dramatically worse over the weekend and the days that followed.

“We couldn’t stand in front of it,” said Christie. He estimated “tens or hundreds of thousands” of customers were affected by the disruption at Spirit and said it was too early to assess the financial impact on the company.

On Thursday alone, 446 Spirit flights were canceled, 56% of operations.

A sharp recovery in summer travel has been a headache for summer travelers as airlines and their contractors have faced staff shortages associated with the usual annoying summer storms.

Spirit, based in Miramar, Florida, has improved its reliability over the past few years, becoming in 2017 Walt DisneyThe company’s leadership and training subsidiary, the Disney Institute, to improve customer service.

“We will do everything we can to regain the trust of our guests and the traveling public. We believe we can do that,” Christie said on the call on Thursday. He said the airline is giving cash refunds to affected customers.

In hindsight, Spirit should have canceled more flights earlier to allow time for recalibration, Christie said. Instead, the airline tried to maintain flights to serve large numbers of customers, many of whom were flying for the first time since the pandemic began.

The airline forecast last month that it would fly nearly 11% more flights in the third quarter than in the same period in 2019, a much stronger rebound than most airlines.

Christie said he and other executives are looking at ways to deploy more backup staff, faster response to disruptions, and better technology.

“We’re starting to turn the corner and get our legs under us so we can start going back to where we were before,” Christie said.

Correction: This story has been updated to correct a headline.

Spirit Airways cancels half its flights to ‘reboot’ operation

Spirit Airlines canceled half of its flights on Wednesday to “restart” operations after a wave of disruptions that began over the weekend due to a mixture of bad weather, staff shortages and technology issues.

Spirit has canceled more than 1,000 flights since Sunday and hundreds more have been delayed.

Angry customers complained on social media about the cancellations and the difficulty of reaching customer service agents. Some tweeted images of long lines at airports and travelers lying on the ground near gates.

The chaos is a great test for the executives at Spirit who have worked over the past few years to improve the airline “s reliability and customer service.

Spirit said the disruption was “exacerbated” by the surge in summer travel that was drifting away from the Coronavirus pandemic faster than expected by the airlines. Fuller flights mean fewer opportunities to rebook guests, the airline said.

“The past three days have been extremely difficult for our guests and team members, and we sincerely apologize for that,” Spirit said in a statement.

More than 340 flights, half of the daily flight schedule, were canceled on Wednesday, according to flight tracking website FlightAware.

Airlines sometimes clean large numbers of flights to avoid further disruption and to get staff and planes to the right place to resume flights.

Spirit said it expects cancellations to “gradually decrease” in the coming days.

American Airlines Hundreds of flights were also canceled this week after hours of storms of high winds, lightning and hail struck Dallas / Fort Worth International Airport, its largest hub.

On Wednesday, American operations stabilized with about 100 cancellations, about 3% of the daily schedule, versus 12% of canceled flights on Tuesday.

Spirit said it would learn from the meltdown.

“By delving deeply into the challenges we face, we have identified opportunities for improvement that will help us operate a more resilient network and better serve our guests,” said a statement.

Thunderstorms hampered Spirit’s efforts to recalibrate Wednesday. Gate and taxi delays at Spirit’s main base in Fort Lauderdale, Florida exceeded an hour, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

American Airways, Spirit Airways cancel a whole bunch of flights

American Airlines aircraft stand at the passenger gates at Dallas / Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) near Dallas, Texas.

Patrick T. Fallon | Bloomberg | Getty Images

American Airlines Passengers have faced hundreds of cancellations and delays since Sunday as the airline struggles to recover from disruption caused by severe thunderstorms that swept through its Dallas / Fort Worth international hub.

According to flight tracking site FlightAware, more than 270 flights – or 9% of America’s main flight schedule – had been canceled by Tuesday morning. At least 120 of the cancellations were due to a lack of flight crew, according to an internal list reviewed by CNBC.

The Americans canceled around 850 flights between the Sunday when the thunderstorm hit and Monday. Almost 2,000 were delayed. Around 80 American flights were diverted to other airports on Sunday.

Travelers complained on social media of difficulty reaching customer service agents and extensive delays.

“Mother Nature is not playing well and many flights in and out of DFW are delayed or canceled,” American Airlines tweeted to a customer on Sunday.

Before hurricanes and snowstorms occur, airlines will often cancel thousands of flights to avoid passengers and crews getting stranded at airports. Thunderstorms can be disruptive to passengers and airlines alike, as they often result in rolling delays because they are less predictable.

In addition, airlines are struggling to find staff to cope with the surge in travel demand urging Employees in the pandemic took buyouts or leave of absence in the past year to reduce labor costs.

The Transportation Security Administration screened 2.24 million people on Sunday, most since February 28, 2020.

An American Airlines spokeswoman said Monday the weather and air traffic restrictions caused the delays at DFW.

American had cut about 1% of its schedule for the first half of July to deal with weather and other disruptions, as well as staffing issues.

But the carrier has restored more capacity than some of its competitors like United Airlines and Delta Airlines.

“And we expect to fly a larger domestic network with DFW in August this year than in August 2019,” said American President Robert Isom in a quarterly call last month.

More capacity leaves little room for error in the event of malfunctions, analysts told CNBC.

According to the Ministry of Transport, airlines are not required to provide hotel accommodation or meal vouchers to travelers whose flights have been canceled.

“Passengers understand that airlines don’t control the weather, but what makes a good airline is how they treat passengers when the chips are down,” said Henry Harteveldt, founder of travel industry consultancy Atmosphere Research Group and a former airline manager .

More than 1,100 Southwest Airlines Flights, nearly a third of the Dallas-based airline’s schedule, were postponed Monday while 44 were canceled. The airline said Sunday’s thunderstorms triggered Monday’s cancellations.

Spirit Airlines“Problems continued on Tuesday. According to FlightAware, 38% of the flight schedule or 258 flights have been canceled, in addition to about 500 flights between Sunday and Monday.

A spokesman for the low-cost airline said Monday the disruptions were due to “operational challenges” caused by the weather. Airlines will often cancel flights to get the crews in place rather than continuing to delay flights.

“We are working around the clock to get back on track after a few travel interruptions at the weekend due to a number of operational challenges,” the airline said in a statement. “We understand how frustrating it is for our guests when plans change unexpectedly, and we are working to find solutions. We ask guests to actively monitor their emails and flight status before heading to the airport.”

Air security website lists 20 finest airways on the planet

Travelers back on the fence about flying may want to read a new list of the world’s best airlines.

The flight safety website AirlineRatings.com published its list of the “Top Airlines in the World”, which traditionally classifies airlines according to safety, on-board service, passenger comfort and flight routes.

But this year new evaluation criteria are shaking up the ranking. For the first time, airlines are being judged in part on how they have responded to the global Covid-19 pandemic.

“Covid has affected ratings in two ways,” said AirlineRatings.com Editor-in-Chief Geoffrey Thomas. “Airlines had to be Covid compliant by our standards to be considered, and we removed profitability as a criterion this year.”

And the winner is…

Qatar Airways took first place this year and was named “Airline of the Year” by the website.

The Doha-based airline received the grand prize for its cabin innovation, in-flight service and “commitment and dedication to keep operating during the Covid pandemic,” according to the website Notice on the 20th of July.

Qatar Airways, based in Doha, was founded in the mid-1990s and currently flies to more than 140 destinations.

Courtesy of Qatar Airways

According to AirlineRatings.com, Qatar Airways also presented industry innovations, such as being the first provider of the International Air Transport Association Security audit and one of the first to test their Covid Safe Travel Pass.

Qatar Airways also has one of the youngest fleets in the world, the announcement said.

The rest of the list

Here is the full list, followed by each airline’s position over the past year:

1. Qatar Airways (9)

2. Air New Zealand (1)

3. Singapore Airlines (2)

4. Qantas (4)

5. Emirates (6)

6. Cathay Pacific (5)

7. Virgin Atlantic (7)

8. United Airlines (not applicable)

9. EVA air (8)

10. British Airways (17)

11. Lufthansa (11)

12.ANA or all Nippon Airways (3)

13. Finnair (12)

14. Japan Airlines (13)

15. KLM (14)

16. Hawaiian Airlines (16)

17.Alaska Airlines (18)

18.Virgin Australia (10)

19. Delta Airlines (19)

20. Etihad Airways (20)

Most airlines maintained a similar position to the 2020 list. However, Qatar Airways has jumped eight places to take the top spot, a position typically dominated by Air New Zealand.

“Air New Zealand has been our Airline of the Year for six of the past eight years for its outstanding innovation and cabin service,” said Thomas.

The much-acclaimed Qsuites from Qatar Airways, which create a private room with double beds and privacy screens, have been named the airline’s “Best Business Class” for three years in a row.

Courtesy of Qatar Airways

British Airways jumped seven spots in the rankings to 10th place while United jumped 8th place after failing to make the 2020 list at all.

Only airlines with seven security stars are taken into account for the annual list. This assessment is based on crash history, pilot-related incidents, government audits – and now Covid logs like social distancing, aircraft cleaning and masked cabin crew.

Less than 150 of the 350 airlines rated by AirlineRatings.com have seven stars. Eight airlines have only one star, according to the website.

The company said rankings judged by the site’s editors also take into account airline service, staff engagement, and passenger feedback.

Excellence Awards

Individual airlines are also honored with the “Airline Excellence Awards” for their outstanding service and products. This year’s awards went to:

Best First Class: Singapore Airlines

Best business class: Qatar Airways

Best Premium Economy Class: Air New Zealand

Best economy class: Air New Zealand

Best Low Cost Airline in Asia Pacific: Jetstar

Best low-cost airline in Europe: EasyJet

Best Low Cost Airline in America: Southwest

Best ultra-low-cost airline: Vietjet Air

Best regional airline: Qantas

Best cabin crew: Virgin Australia

Best lounges: Qantas

Award for catering on board: Qatar

In-flight entertainment award: Emirates

Separately, AirlineRatings.com gives an annual “The twenty safest airlines“List that analyzes crash recordings and safety compliance. In the next year, too, they will take into account the airlines’ Covid compliance measures,” said Thomas.

This list is expected in January 2022.

American Airways shares rise on service’s higher second-quarter forecast

American Airlines flight takes off from Miami, Florida.

Marco Bello | Reuters

American Airlines Shares rose after the airline forecast better revenue and a smaller loss for the second quarter than previously estimated, the latest sign of airlines recovering from travel expenses from the coronavirus pandemic.

The Fort Worth, Texas-based airline said Tuesday that it expects a “slight” pre-tax profit for the second quarter. It said it is expected to release results from a net loss of $ 35 million to a net income of $ 25 million for the three months ended June 30. Excluding net special items, it expects a net loss of up to $ 1.2 billion and a stock loss of between $ 1.67 and $ 1.76. That compares to analyst estimates of $ 2.44 per share.

“We are clearly moving in the right direction,” said CEO Doug Parker and President Robert Isom in an employee statement.

American stock was up more than 2% in early trading on Wednesday.

Air traffic has recovered strongly since the spring when Covid-19 Vaccines became widespread in the U.S., and officials lifted restrictions banning attractions from indoor restaurants to theme parks.

American said it flew 44 million passengers in the second quarter, an 82% increase from the first three months of 2021, albeit still below 2019 levels.

Revenue for the quarter ended last month was likely 37.5% below the same period in 2019 when it generated $ 11.96 billion, compared to an earlier estimate of a 40% decline.

American expects the daily cash build rate to be around $ 1 million per day, the first positive quarter since the pandemic began.

US airlines have at times struggled to meet the rapidly growing demand for travel.

As of March 2020, airlines have received $ 54 billion in federal payroll allowance in exchange for not laying off workers. This has contributed to staffing bottlenecks that have arisen in certain workgroups such as customer service reps and pilots.

Americans for his part cut his schedule for the first half of July by 1% and canceled flights in the last month partly due to a lack of trained and available pilots or other personnel.

“Restoring service this quickly in response to unprecedented growth in demand is incredibly complex,” write Isom and Parker. “But the Americans are facing the situation, and the results prove it.”

The airline is expected to release its quarterly results on July 22nd before the market opens.

American Airways cancels flights as a consequence of staffing, upkeep points

American Airlines planes at LaGuardia Airport

Leslie Josephs | CNBC

American Airlines said it canceled hundreds of flights this weekend due to staff shortages, maintenance and other issues, challenges for the airline as travel demand rises to pre-pandemic levels.

According to flight tracking site FlightAware, about 6% of the airline’s main flight schedule or 180 flights were canceled on Sunday. The airline said this represented about 3% of its total flights, including those operated by regional airlines. About half of them because of unavailable flight crews, showed a company list that was viewed by CNBC. About 4% or 123 flights were canceled on Saturday, the website showed.

American said it was cutting its overall plan by about 1% by mid-July to alleviate some of the disruption, some of which was due to bad weather at the hubs of Charlotte International Airport and Dallas / Fort Worth in the first half of June.

“The bad weather, combined with the labor shortage that some of our suppliers are struggling with, and the incredibly rapid rise in customer demand, has led us to make our operations even more resilient and safer by cutting a fraction of our planned flight times by mid- July, “American Airlines spokeswoman Sarah Jantz said in a statement. “We have made targeted changes with the aim of influencing the least possible number of customers by adjusting flights in markets where we have multiple options for rebooking.”

Bad weather has adversely affected flight crews’ ability to get to assigned flights, and bad weather can cause crews to drop outside of working hours they are allowed to work at the federal level, the spokeswoman said.

Dennis Tajer, spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association, which represents the roughly 15,000 American pilots, said the company should offer more overtime upfront to encourage staff to fill out, as well as more flexibility in pilot plans to cover staff shortages.

“You’re trying to put a plaster on something that needs sewing,” said Tajer, who is also the captain of a Boeing 737.

American is also rushing to train any pilots it has taken on leave between two state aid packages that prohibited layoffs, as well as its Airmen due for regular recurring training. Jantz said American is well on its way to completing the training of pilots on leave by the end of this month, adding that the company is offering overtime due to its operational issues.

Delta Airlines canceled more than 300 flights last Thanksgiving weekend and many others during the holiday season a Lack of pilots.

The weekend disruption previously reported on the airline’s View from the Wing blog comes just as airlines are trying to capture spikes in travel demand and curb record losses. American said in a filing earlier this month that capacity will decline 20 to 25% in the second quarter from 2019 while United Airlines said it expected its capacity to decrease by about 46% and delta forecast a decrease of 32% compared to 2019. Southwest Airlines predict July capacity will lag just 3% from 2019, down from a 7% decline this month.