Your weekly travel and aviation Quote-a

9 September, 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.

Qantas Group CEO: ‘We’re defeating distance’ with long haul route plans

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the carrier is looking to launch ultra long haul services to New York, Paris, Frankfurt, Miami, Chicago, Cape Town and Sao Paulo, noting "We're defeating distance". The routes are set to operate from Sydney and Melbourne, and will be in addition to services from Perth to London and Rome and Qantas Airways' Sydney-Dallas service.

IATA director general: Fuel costs to remain 'a challenge for all airlines' in 2022

IATA director general Willie Walsh commented on the "very high crack spread" between the price of Brent oil and jet fuel, stating: "This is at levels I don't recall ever seeing before". Mr Walsh said that while the Brent oil price has eased, "jet oil prices are still very, very strong, very elevated". Mr Walsh stated: "We had expected this crack spread to reduce as more jet fuel supply became available. But clearly the recovery in demand is stronger than the recovery in the production of jet fuel". He said fuel prices "will continue to put pressure on the airline cost base as we go through the rest of the year", adding: "Clearly it is a challenge for all airlines".

Bonza CEO: Civil Aviation Safety Authority approval achieving a 'greater pace'

Bonza CEO Tim Jordan said Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) regulatory approval for the start-up carrier is achieving a "greater pace", however approvals may not occur in 2022. Mr Jordan further reiterated: "Our competitor is not the other airlines, our competitor is the couch or the car", adding "The growth of regional Australia has accelerated and I think that's where it all comes from".

Ryanair CEO: Airports should reward airlines that invest in more efficient aircraft

Ryanair CEO Eddie Wilson said airports should reward airlines that invest in more efficient aircraft, stating Ryanair "should pay less for passengers" as the carrier is updating its fleet from Boeing 737-800 to 737 MAX equipment. Mr Wilson added: "Those who don't invest and use gas-guzzling aircraft should pay double", stating that airports "will take the same amount of money in, but will just incentivise those with less carbon emissions".

Ibom Air and its customers 'not very happy' about rising fuel costs and airfares

Ibom Air group manager marketing and communication Annie Essienette commented on the impact of rising fuel costs, stating: "The impact is quite obvious as it has led to the increase in airline ticket base fare". Ms Essienette added: "Our customers are not very happy about the development, and neither are we".

Lufthansa Group CEO: Fit for 55 measures make us very concerned

Lufthansa Group CEO Carsten Spohr stated the EU's Fit for 55 climate package "make us very concerned", adding the group believes it is "a bit too dependent on Germany". Mr Spohr said the group "will continue to internationalise - not only on the customer side, but also in production, in order to become far less susceptible to regulatory decisions".

United Airlines to suspend New York JFK operations in Oct-2022 unless given additional slots: CEO

United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby, in a letter to US FAA acting administrator Billy Nolen, stated the carrier will suspend service to New York John F Kennedy International Airport in Oct-2022 unless FAA grants the carrier additional slots. Mr Kirby stated the carrier cannot serve the airport "effectively" compared to competitors, including JetBlue Airways and American Airlines, without permanent slots across multiple seasons. United Airlines currently operates twice daily services to Los Angeles and San Francisco from the airport, according to OAG.

Flyr CEO: We will continue to adjust capacity in line with actual demand

Flyr CEO Tonje Wikstrøm Frislid stated travel demand was high in Aug-2022, with the carrier handling 208,300 passengers with a load factor of 71.6%. Ms Wikstrøm Frislid said that moving forward "demand for travel is hard to predict due to the fact that most people's private economy is under pressure with increasing interest rates and increasing prices on electricity and groceries". Ms Wikstrøm Frislid added the carrier will "continue to adjust capacity in line with actual demand", highlighting it is able to do so due to its "relatively small size and our ability to be adaptable and efficient".

Astral Aviation CEO expecting growth in intra Africa trade and 'new opportunities for air cargo'

Astral Aviation CEO Sanjeev Gadhia stated the intra Africa market "has incredible potential for African airlines", adding: "We expect an increase in regional trade and new opportunities for air cargo". Mr Gadhia said Astral's two Embraer E190F aircraft, due for delivery from Nordic Aviation Capital from 3Q2024, will "meet the requirement for a feeder aircraft for our Nairobi hub" and "replace the ageing DC9 freighter fleet".

United Airlines SVP: Demand remains strong coming off peak summer season

United Airlines SVP global network planning and alliances Patrick Quayle stated bookings continue to remain strong coming off the peak summer travel period. Mr Quayle added: "It does not appear that some has come to an end. [Demand] is that strong". The carrier recently revised its 3Q2022 to raise its revenue outlook, attributing its optimism to "robust" demand.