Your weekly travel and aviation Quote-a

20 May, 2022

At a time of crisis, it is important that we share our insights and experience, helping each other to contain and mitigate the impact of COVID-19. CTC – Corporate Travel Community each week brings you a roundup of the most thought-provoking and interesting comments from those industry leaders in the know.

IATA director general: Aviation industry must attract more women in 'battle for talent'

IATA director general Willie Walsh stated the aviation industry is "in a battle for talent" and must become "more attractive to women". Mr Walsh said: "This industry has always been seen as a male dominated industry. We need to change that to ensure that we can, not just attract, but also to retain the best talent in the industry so that we can build on the progress that we've made, and ensure that we have a sustainable financial business and a sustainable environmental business for the future".

Tourism Australia MD: 'There is a new view of what value looks'

Tourism Australia MD Phillipa Harrison said: "There is a new view of what value looks like and that's a real opportunity for us". Ms Harrison said the agency looks to place a focus on high value travellers, as well as the visiting friends and relatives market, which is "no longer regarded as a discretionary item, but more of a right".

Group CEO: Ryanair would be 'beneficiaries' of a recession

Ryanair Group CEO Michael O'Leary said he "would look forward with some optimism to an economic downturn" because it would likely improve the LCC's financial position. Mr O'Leary added: "In every past recession, we have grown stronger and faster because people don't stop flying in a recession, they get more price-sensitive... IKEA, Lidl [and] Ryanair will be the beneficiaries of a downturn".

United Airlines CEO: Aircraft are 'safest' indoors environment against COVID-19

United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby stated it is safe to not wear COVID-19 face masks onboard aircraft. Mr Kirby said onboard an aircraft is "the safest environment" indoors, noting aircraft have 10 times more airflow than a hospital intensive care unit. Mr Kirby added being seated between two people onboard an aircraft is the equivalent of being 15 feet away from someone in a building.

Munich Airport CEO: Demand for exclusive travel has increased

Munich Airport CEO Jost Lammers said forecasts indicate the airport will recover between 80% and 90% of business travel in 2022, compared to pre-pandemic levels. Mr Lammers stated: "The demand for exclusive travel has increased", adding "I firmly believe that business partners want to meet face-to-face again".

Travelmarket CEO: Overcapacity pushing Danish airfares down in Jun-2022

Travelmarket CEO Ole Stouby stated there is currently an overcapacity of airline seats in the market, as a result of intense competition between the airlines. Mr Stouby highlighted demand in Jun-2022 is trailing supply, with airfares for the week commencing 13-Jun-2022 "pushed down to a record low". The Danish price comparison site highlighted the average price for European services departing Copenhagen in the week 13-Jun-2022, are currently 25% below the corresponding 2019 levels, according to the Danish Air Price Index.

Aer Lingus CEO: It is 'inevitable' rising fuel costs will be reflected in air travel prices

Aer Lingus CEO Lynne Embleton said it is "inevitable" that rising fuel costs will "be reflected in price" to airline passengers. Ms Embleton said that whilst ticket price rises may not "happen immediately", she expects "the industry to recovery those costs" in the future.

Transport Minister: Canadian Government is 'working closely' with partners over airport security lines

Canada's Minister of Transport Omar Alghabra, via his official Twitter account, stated the Canadian Government is "working closely with CATSA and partners to address" long security lines at airports, but Mr Alghabra added "rumours that we have asked airlines to cut back on flights are not true".

ACI Europe: Rising inflation and fuel prices pose challenges to traffic recovery

ACI Europe deputy director general Morgan Foulkes said the European aviation industry is expecting a strong summer 2022 season, due to the removal of COVID-19 travel restrictions and "strong leisure demand". Mr Foulkes stated rising inflation and fuel costs pose "significant challenges" to the pace of traffic recovery. He added that rising airfares due to fuel prices could result in "new demand pressures and a shift in travel sentiment". ACI Europe expects the region's traffic to reach pre-pandemic levels by 2024.

Webjet Limited MD: 'FY2022 was a year of recovery... We are now cash flow positive'

Webjet Limited MD John Guscic stated "FY2022 was a year of recovery", adding "We are now cash flow positive". Mr Guscic said the year "has also been one of incredible and unprecedented industry challenges", due to changes in travel plans and travel restrictions. Mr Guscic added: "The demand for travel after two years of massive restrictions as the world grappled with the global pandemic is showing the resilience, flexibility and the essential nature of travel in everyone's lives".

SunExpress CEO: Impact of Ukraine war much lower on the carrier

SunExpress CEO Max Kownatzki said the impact of the war in Ukraine on the carrier is much lower than some other airlines. Mr Kownatzki noted: "We have some routes that are longer but only slightly - nothing compared to the impact some other airlines are experiencing". Mr Kownatzki added SunExpress is affected by the cost of fuel, however the carrier is 60% hedged during summer and 40% during winter.

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport to establish 'green team': CEO

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport CEO Jacqueline Yaft said the airport is planning to establish a "green team" of community, business and city partners in fiscal year 2023. The group would be responsible for environmental aspects of the airport as it plans to undergo numerous construction and expansion projects.