CAPA News Briefs

CAPA publishes more than 1,000 global News Briefs every week, covering all aspects of the aviation and travel industry. It’s the most comprehensive source of market intelligence in the world, with around 50 per cent of content translated from non-English sources. The breadth of our coverage means you won’t need any other news sources to monitor competitors and stay informed about the latest developments in the wider aviation sector.

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Below is a sample of the latest news headlines. 450 news briefs have been published for CAPA Members in the past 2 days.

Air New Zealand announced (11-Aug-2022) it is taking measures to protect the travel plans of its customers as sickness levels continue to cause disruption. Over the next six months, the carrier will operate a reduced schedule of 1.5% fewer seats than originally planned. Most customers who experience a service change will be transferred to another flight on the same day for domestic travel, and for international travel, on the same day or a day either side of their original booking. Where customers cannot be accommodated within these timeframes, they may change their booking online, opt into credit or request a refund. Customers with changes will start to see them from 11-Aug-2022 and will be automatically transferred to another service. Air New Zealand CEO Greg Foran stated: "We're pulling out all the stops to minimise disruption and provide surety for our customers over the next six months. We have rehired or brought on more than 2000 pilots, airport staff, cabin crew, contact centre and engineers, and we're going as fast as we can with recruitment and training". Mr Foran added: "We're also exploring options to lease a crewed widebody aircraft for the busy summer period… at the moment we're stretched to capacity and making sure our customers are able to travel is our top priority. The lease of an additional crewed aircraft may help us achieve that". Air New Zealand's domestic and international schedule will be operating at 90% of pre-Covid capacity for the next six months. [more - original PR]

Air New Zealand announced (09-Aug-2022) it is bringing its first Victorville based Boeing 777-300 aircraft out of the desert, after 696 days in deep storage. In 2020, the airline sent four 777-300s to the Victorville storage facility in the Mojave Desert due to the impacts of coronavirus, limiting the airline's flying schedule to the bare minimum. The first Boeing 777-300 aircraft, registration ZK-OKP, is due to leave Victorville in late Aug-2022 for Auckland where it will have scheduled maintenance before re-joining the Boeing 777-300 operating fleet from late Sep-2022. ZK-OKP is the first of four Victorville based Boeing 777-300 aircraft to be reanimated and the airline is working through a programme to bring back the three remaining aircraft over the next year. The airline also has three Boeing 777-300 aircraft that were stored in Auckland for the last two years. Two of these aircraft are back in service, with Boeing 777-300 ZK-OKO due to re-enter service in the coming weeks. [more - original PR]

EUROCONTROL director general Eamonn Brennan, via his official Twitter account, reported (08-Aug-2022) the following European network traffic highlights, for the period between 25-Jul-2022 and 31-Jul-2022:

Hong Kong's Government announced (08-Aug-2022) inbound travellers will be subject to quarantine under the '3+4' model, effective 12-Aug-2022. The model involves compulsory quarantine in designated quarantine hotels for three days, followed by medical surveillance at home for four days. The new regime will be a reduction from the current seven day hotel quarantine. [more - original PR]

Avianca submitted (08-Aug-2022) a request to Colombia Aerocivil to integrate Viva into the Abra Group. The carriers stated the integration request is due to Viva's "complex financial situation that requires immediate intervention". Avianca CEO Adrian Neuhauser said: "The integration request with Viva seeks to fight for its survival in the market, as well as to maintain the competitiveness it has built during 10 years of operation... Avianca has a solid financial position... which would allow it to achieve synergies and take advantage of economies of scale with Viva, provide financial support and participate in its management". As previously reported by CAPA, Avianca and GOL created the Abra Group holding company in May-2022, with the organisation initially proposing a non-controlling 100% economic interest in Viva's operations in Colombia and Peru. [more - original PR]

LATAM Airlines Chile resumed (05-Aug-2022) twice weekly Santiago-Easter Island passenger service on 04-Aug-2022, following a temporary suspension since early 2020. The airline operates the service with Boeing 787-9 equipment. [more - original PR - Spanish]

Oslo Sandefjord Airport reported (02-Aug-2022) it handled 176,944 passengers in Jun-2022 and 201,016 passengers in Jul-2022. Marketing and communications manager Tine Kleive-Mathisen stated: "Traffic has exceeded all expectations. We hardly dared to dream that we would reach 200,000 passengers in July... The SAS strike earlier this summer has probably also given [us] extra traffic in July, as some travellers have been desperate and found non-traditional itineraries around Europe to reach their holiday destination after the journey with SAS was cancelled". [more - original PR - Norwegian]

Air Premia confirmed (04-Aug-2022) plans to commence services to Ho Chi Minh City and Los Angeles in Sep/Oct-2022. The airline also confirmed plans to commence service to Germany in 2023. [more - original PR - Korean]

Atlas Air Worldwide entered (04-Aug-2022) a definitive agreement to be acquired by an investor group led by Apollo Global Management for USD5.2 billion. The acquisition will be conducted in partnership with investment affiliates of JF Lehman & Company and Hill City Capital in an all-cash transaction. Atlas Air shareholders will receive USD102.50 per share in cash. The company will continue to be led by CEO John Dietrich and the current executive team. The transaction is expected to close in 4Q2022/1Q2023, subject to regulatory and shareholder approval. [more - original PR]

Agility finalised (04-Aug-2022) the GBP763 million acquisition of John Menzies and will combine the business with National Aviation Services (NAS). Details include:

Agility stated the acquisition will create "the world's largest aviation services company by number of countries and second largest by number of airports served". Agility vice chairman Tarek Sultan said: "This deal creates the largest owned and operated - 'controlled' - business in Agility's portfolio by revenue, headcount, and global presence". [more - original PR]

US Department of Transportation (DoT) announced (03-Aug-2022) a proposal to strengthen consumer protections regarding airline ticket refunds when a flight is significantly changed or cancelled. The proposal would define the term 'significant change' to include the following circumstances:

  • Changes that affect the departure and/or arrival times by three hours or more for a domestic flight or six hours or more for an international flight;
  • Changes to the departure or arrival airport;
  • Changes that increase the number of connections in the itinerary;
  • Changes to the type of aircraft flown if it causes a significant downgrade in the air travel experience or amenities available onboard the flight.

The proposal would also define a cancelled flight as a flight that was published in a carrier's computer reservation system at the time of ticket sale but was not operated by the carrier. Under the regulation, airlines and ticket agents would be required to provide passengers flight credits or vouchers valid indefinitely when passengers are unable to fly due to COVID-19 related reasons. Airlines and ticket agents that receive significant pandemic government assistance would also be required to issue refunds in lieu of credits/vouchers. [more - original PR]

France's Government, via its official website, announced (01-Aug-2022) it lifted its COVID-19 travel restrictions, effective 01-Aug-2022. As a result, travellers are no longer required to provide a vaccination certificate, 'compelling' reason for travel, a sworn statement of non-contamination or undergo a test upon arrival.