REX Declares Force Majeure On Queensland Routes

Australian regional airline, Regional Express, has declared a Force Majeure event on its government contracted services in Queensland. The airline is walking away from regulated routes operated under contract with the Queensland government and its regular passenger routes in the state. Services will cease tomorrow, 1 April 2020.

REX walks out of Queensland

In a statement released this morning, Regional Express (better known as REX) said;

“With cash fast running out and no immediate prospect of a workable solution from the
Queensland State Government, Rex has no choice but to declare a Force Majeure event for
the Contract and suspend all services on Queensland regulated routes indefinitely until it has
the ability to service the contract in a commercially viable manner.”

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Southwest Scraps Inflight Refreshments Due To Virus Concerns

Southwest Airlines is taking measures to continue to limit interactions and potential for virus transmission aboard its flights. For now, starting on March 25th, Southwest is suspending all inflight service.

Inflight service suspension onboard Southwest

Starting on March 25th, Southwest announced that it will end all inflight service. This includes the suspension of beverage and snack services. The reason for this is the COVID-19 outbreak. Through these measures, Southwest will be able to limit the number of interactions with flight attendants and passengers thereby reducing opportunities for transmission.

Southwest Airlines To Cancel 1,000 Daily Flights Through April

Southwest Airlines is gearing up for major schedule reductions starting this weekend. From Sunday, March 22nd, Southwest Airlines will start to cancel 1,000 of its nearly 4,000 daily flights.

Cancellations at Southwest Airlines

From March 22nd, Southwest announced that it will cancel 1,000 of 4,000 daily flights through April 14th. From April 14th, the carrier will operate a previously revised schedule of original 20% capacity reductions through June 5th. The reason for this, Southwest states, is the drop in travel demand in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

These cancellations will generally target routes on which there are multiple daily frequencies. Furthermore, the cancellations are designed to occur on a rolling, multiple-daily basis. This gives customers more options to change and rebook.

Singapore Airlines Fast Forwards Boeing 777-200ER Retirement

Seeing a precipitous drop in demand, Singapore Airlines has opted to retire its 777-200ERs earlier than expected. The move comes as the virus continues to spread globally, forcing airlines to cancel flights and cut costs.

An early goodbye

Singapore Airlines currently operates 4 Boeing 777-200ER aircraft. The aircraft type is the oldest in the airline’s fleet, clocking in at an average of 17.6 years. Prior to schedule changes, the plane was used to service medium-haul routes in Asia. Singapore Airlines plans to replace the aging jet with the newer Boeing 787-10.

Is LOT Polish’s Condor Takeover “Permanent Survival Assistance”?

The parent group of LOT Polish Airlines, Polska Grupa Lotnicza, has ruffled some feather at Lufthansa. The German giant is now taking aim at Condor’s takeover and deeming the Polish government as providing “permanent survival assistance” to LOT

FlightGlobal reports that more than few feathers have been ruffled at Lufthansa over Condor’s acquisition. Lufthansa’s characterized this deal as one that “distorts competition.” At the same time, Lufthansa also characterized its Star Alliance partner as having an unsustainable business model relying on government support.

Canadian University Creates Scholarships In Memory Of Iran 737 Crash

With so much going on in the aviation world, it can be easy to forget some of the biggest events in aviation. Just over two months ago, a Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-800 crashed in Tehran, Iran. Now, a university in Canada is creating two scholarships in the name of students who passed away in the incident.

Scholarships in the name of passengers

The University of Guelph announced the creation of scholarships in the name of two graduate students who passed away in the Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737 crash.

Hawaiian Airlines To Alter Tokyo-Haneda Service

Hawaiian Airlines is adjusting planned service to Tokyo–Haneda from the end of March. The carrier will be cutting some flights temporarily as it navigates reduced demand from the coronavirus outbreak.

Adapting service to coronavirus outbreak

Hawaiian Airlines announced that the carrier is adjusting frequencies between Hawaii and Tokyo-Haneda amid the global coronavirus, or COVID-19 outbreak. The airline has already suspended its flights to Seoul. Like many other carriers, Hawaiian is seeing reduced travel demand– especially to East Asia.

Unruly American Airlines Passenger Tries To Open Door In Flight

An American Airlines flight this week was diverted after a male passenger attempted to open an emergency exit door during a flight.

What happened on the flight

The flight, AA2300, was operating the evening service between Chicago and Dallas Fort Worth on Tuesday, 3 March 2020.

About 45 minutes into the flight, the unnamed man tried to open the emergency exit door. Several passengers moved quickly to subdue the man. DJ Mitchell told 5 NBCDFW

Delta Apologizes After Baggage Is Accidentally Sprayed With Fuel

The Rutgers Scarlett Knights, the baseball team for Rutgers University had quite an unusual experience with its baggage earlier this morning. Before heading to New York JFK during a Delta Air Lines connection from Salt Lake City (SLC), the team’s bags were sprayed with jet fuel.

Surprising occurrence

The New Jersey outfit tweeted Delta about what happened. The team shared that following the unexpected occurrence, much of the baggage is still ruined.

Hainan Airlines Parent Group To Receive Government Assistance

Chinese conglomerate HNA Group is asking the Chinese province of Hainan for assistance as it faces a slowdown in its businesses as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. According to Reuters, the provincial government of Hainan has been asked to lead a work group with the goal of “resolving its increasing liquidity risks”. HNA Group is the parent company of both Hainan Airlines and Hong Kong Airlines.

“Managing liquidity”

According to the South China Morning Post, HNA Group’s liquidity will be managed by a committee made up of representatives from at least two Hainan government units. According to the company’s Saturday statement, these units will be the country’s civil aviation administrator and China Development Bank.

HNA Group not only owns Hainan Airlines and Hong Kong Airlines, but also has assets around the world associated with hotels, banking and real estate. Recently the group has come under heavy pressure to repay debts that have reached as high as US$108 billion.