19 OCTOBER 2020

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Mitsubishi Shoguns for Heathrow

It may come as a surprise to readers but Heathrow has extensive off-site commitments besides the nearly 5sq miles of the actual airport.

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Norwegian’s tentative Gatwick return

The only British (?) airline still not flying, Norwegian Air UK has indicated a March 2021 return of long-haul Gatwick services with its Boeing 787 Dreamliner fleet.

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The Foreign Office Travel Guidelines

This is the up to date exempt list as issued by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-countries-and-territories-exempt-from-advice-against-all-but-essential-international-travel

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COMMENT: Doyle follows Cruz

The appointment of the London-based boss of Aer Lingus, Sean Doyle, as BA chief is an astute move by the board of IAG, which hopefully will bring its rewards in time.

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A Heathrow test flight

United Airlines is expected this week to operate a scheduled flight from Heathrow to New York Newark with a number of volunteer passengers taking part in what is termed “The Common Pass System”, World Economic Forum sponsored.

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Airlines 2050 Monday morning

Sean Doyle, the new Chief Executive of British Airways, is to replace the departed Alex Cruz for the keynote speech at today's Airlines 2050 Conference 10:10 BST.  It is being streamed live FOC (See below for registration details). Please note a change in timings for the original programme.

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BA long-haul November

Latest adjustment sees selected destinations remain cancelled or continue to be served at reduced frequencies. Planned A380 service resumption has been postponed to 1 December at the earliest, in latest update.

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British Airways fined

British Airways will probably treat this as from the previous era, and just a single day's loss during the Covid-19 pandemic but a £20m fine announced last Friday by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) is clearly a warning to others.  Do not pass on personal and financial details acquired in normal business!  Follow the GDPR rules.   Some 400,000 BA customers had their integrity breached.

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Cruz steps down

In an announcement to the London Stock Exchange last Monday (12 October) International Airlines Group (IAG) announced changes to its senior management team with immediate effect.

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MAX problems

A long and well researched piece by the experienced aviation journalist John Arlidge in yesterday’s Sunday Times has cast doubt on the recertification of the Boeing MAX by the FAA and its European counterpart EASA.

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O’Leary faces facts

Ryanair is to dramatically cut flights between November and March due to the European coronavirus travel restrictions.

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Sean Doyle is the new BA CEO

Aer Lingus Chief Executive Sean Boyle has re-joined British Airways replacing Alex Cruz as Chief Executive.

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SpiceJet confirms Heathrow

Low-cost Indian airline SpiceJet has finally confirmed Friday 4 December for the introduction of a weekly service from Delhi to Heathrow.

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Wizz Air - Aviation Club & schedule

Tomorrow Tuesday (20 October) will see József Váradi, founder and CEO of Wizz Air live via Zoom at a virtual Aviation Club lunch 12:00 noon (BST).  There is no charge for members and their guests.

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ON TOUR: Gloucester – Aviation and trade

With overseas holiday trips now more or less taboo, late last summer the Editor-in-Chief and wife took a week off in the Cotswolds.  It does look like UK breaks are going to be the norm for some time.  Plan for winter and spring tours.  We found Gloucester as a centre to be a good base.

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AND FINALLY: Will it make it?

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ABTA 1 – Shapps and quarantine

A prepared statement by Transport Secretary of State Grant Shapps at last week’s ABTA Travel Convention contained no news at all for an industry that has been virtually halted by the Coronavirus pandemic.

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ABTA 2 – ‘Tourism for Good’

Last week’s ABTA’s annual conference, the strangest ever known, functioning entirely online, launched the travel trade organisation’s ‘Tourism for Good’ report setting out how the industry can place sustainability at the heart of its recovery.

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ABTA 3 – The full impact

This year’s virtual ABTA conference revealed new figures showing the impact of the coronavirus crisis on overseas travel. Only 15% of people took a foreign holiday between February and July compared to 51% over the 12-month period, and 64% the previous year.

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ABTA 4 – Shai Weiss – Virgin Atlantic

One of a number of speakers with essentially the same message, Virgin Atlantic boss Shai Weiss used the ABTA Travel Convention to criticise the Government for its lack of support for the industry and the way it has dealt with the quarantine restrictions.

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Airport in food initiative – A first?

It may have been done at pubs prior to the pandemic, and maybe also at other airports, but Teesside International is now offering what is calls ‘OrderNext’, an initiative for passengers to order food and refreshments in a safe Covid-secure way while waiting for their flight.

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Bath hotel opens

The opening of Hotel Indigo in Bath marks the IHG brand’s 18th hotel opening in the UK.  Set in a beautiful honey coloured Georgian terrace built in the 18th century, the 166-room Grade I listed building has hosted famous figures from history including Sir Walter Scott, William Wilberforce and the Duke of York.

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Cruising begins – Just

The cruising industry, and the airlines, are watching tentatively as deep-sea cruising gets under way in Italy.

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Emirates simulates London too

Two years after it first opened, Emirates Flight Training Academy (EFTA) at Dubai South is looking forward to reopening when given the go-ahead.  In London the Greenwich ‘Flight Experience’ centre is now functioning again.

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