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IATA Now Says Coronavirus Could Cost Airlines $250 Billion

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Less than three weeks after saying the airlines could lose $113 billion in revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has revised its estimates.

And it’s not good.

The industry advocate now says global passenger revenues could fall by $252 billion this year – 44 percent down from 2019’s figures.

“The airline industry faces its gravest crisis,” warned IATA’s Director General and CEO, Alexandre de Juniac. “Within a matter of a few weeks, our previous worst-case scenario is looking better than our latest estimates. But without immediate government relief measures, there will not be an industry left standing. Airlines need $200 billion in liquidity support simply to make it through. Some governments have already stepped forward, but many more need to follow suit.”

de Juniac’s words came before the U.S. Senate came to an agreement to bail out American carriers with $58 billion in loans as part of a new stimulus package.

IATA said its $113 billion figure from earlier this month was an estimate “before countries around the world introduced sweeping travel restrictions that largely eliminated the international air travel market.” It said that the new $250 billion figure was based on “severe travel restrictions” lasting for up to three months, followed by a gradual economic recovery later this year.

While several governments have jumped in to help, United Kingdom Chancellor Rishi Sunak said that the government would only step in to help airlines as “a last resort.”

“Despite the significant economic interventions we have put in place, we will not be able to protect every single job or save every single business,” Sunak said.

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Airline In-Flight Magazines Are Latest To Go

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Airlines have trimmed as many expenses as they can after being decimated by the global coronavirus pandemic, including big-ticket items like parking planes and cutting capacity to, seemingly, low-priority expenses like food and beverage.

Now comes the latest cutback.

According to the aviation blog The Points Guy, four of the top five U.S. airlines have removed their inflight magazines from seatback pockets.

And it might not have been solely the choice of the airlines.

Delta, for instance, removed its Sky magazine and said the decision was based on a new aircraft cleaning process. Like many airlines, Delta has gone with a fogging disinfectant in the plane.

But Sky magazine is published privately by MSP Communications, and several staff writers say they’ve been laid off in the wake of Delta’s decision.

Southwest Airlines has also put Southwest: The Magazine on hold, after publication of the March 2020 issue. At its peak, the magazine had 5.5 million readers and Southwest is “working around the clock and will follow up with next steps regarding the Southwest: The Magazine soon,” a company spokesperson told The Points Guy.

Alaska Airlines is not publishing an April or May issue of its Alaska Beyond magazine.

As for American Airlines, its American Way magazine was placed in seatbacks for April. Michael Keating, CEO of Ink Global, which publishes American Airlines’ American Way magazine and United’s Hemisphere magazine.

“The April edition of American Way was boarded as usual and American is 100% committed to all the titles that we produce (American Way, Nexos and Celebrated Living),” he said. “Whilst of course pagination and print runs will vary, we are planning future issues as normal. The same goes for Hemispheres, though we will be skipping the May issue as United passenger numbers will be down. We are currently working on the June issue of Hemispheres and beyond.”

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

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