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JetBlue Consolidates Metro-Area Airports to Reduce Flying

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JetBlue today announced it will temporarily consolidate operations in five major metropolitan areas in the U.S between April 15 and June 10. The revised schedules are aimed at reducing excess flying during a time of unprecedented low demand for air travel while maintaining a critical level of service across the airline’s network for those who absolutely must fly.

“We face new challenges every day and can’t hesitate to take the steps necessary to reduce our costs amidst dramatically falling demand so we can emerge from this unprecedented time as a strong company for our customers and crewmembers,” said Scott Laurence, head of revenue and planning, JetBlue.

Effective April 15 through June 10, JetBlue will consolidate its operations in Boston, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco and Washington D.C. with flights operating at one or two airports in each metro area.

JetBlue also intends to file an exemption request with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to temporarily suspend flying at other airports where the airline typically operates only a handful of daily flights and where current demand does not support JetBlue service.

As previously announced, JetBlue has reduced flying network-wide by 80% per day in April. Customers whose flights have been canceled will be notified via email by the airline’s Customer Support team for rebooking options on other JetBlue flights or the choice of a refund or JetBlue credit for future travel.

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New United CEO Scott Kirby Comes Out Firing

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United Airlines’ Scott Kirby, who took over as CEO last week in the wake of Oscar Munoz’s retirement, is wasting no time establishing his authority.

Kirby cut 13 high-level executives in a cash-saving move on Friday as the coronavirus pandemic has throttled the industry financially. A day earlier, he told an online investor conference that the airline absolutely would not declare bankruptcy, and that he thought flying was safe enough to not block the middle seats on planes from being sold.

Well, he did build a reputation as an open – some might say abrasive – executive while at American Airlines.

Kirby is eliminating 13 of United’s 67 officer positions, all effective on Oct. 1. That’s the day after the restrictions on firing employees runs out per the federal government’s rules for airlines accepting billions of dollars in stimulus package grants and loans.

“While there are glimmers of good news in our July schedule — we expect to be down about 75% versus 90% right now — travel demand is still a very long way from where it was at the end of last year and the financial impact on our business remains severe,” United said in a written statement as reported by CNBC.

The cuts are in response to the loss of nearly 90 percent of business for United and all airlines, as the demand for travel has dropped dramatically compared to last year and beyond.

But Kirby defiantly said during the investor conference a day before that he has no plans for the airline to go bankrupt.

“Zero percent, no chance,” Kirby said. “It’s worse for shareholders. It’s worse for creditors. It’s worse for employees. It’s worse for every constituent that we have.”

To that end, Kirby also said he won’t sacrifice potential sales by blocking middle seats, as some airlines have done. As the blog The Points Guy noted, Kirby said the airline’s cleaning process, air circulation and a requirement for passengers and crew to wear face masks make it a safe experience.

“Airplanes don’t have social distancing — we’re not going to be six feet apart,” he said. “But an airplane environment is incredibly safe.”

This post was published by our news partner: TravelPulse.com | Article Source

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