A post that I’ve been longing to write for months now. The World appears to be opening up again.
Earlier today, Virgin Atlantic announced that they will be resuming passenger operations from 20th July. In addition, British Airways have also announced that a number of previously cargo only operations will now be open to passengers.
EasyJet also announced earlier this week that they will be taking to the skies again. The Coronavirus hit them particularly hard, as their entire operation has been grounded since April. As they only have smaller short haul aircraft in their fleet, operating cargo flights simply wasn’t viable for them.
The likes of Virgin Atlantic and British Airways (as well as many other non UK based airlines) have been operating cargo only flights these past months in order to at least get some money coming in.
The main sticking point however, at least when flying to the UK, is the quarantine ruling. From 8th June, all arrivals into the UK will have to self isolate for 14 days, no matter where they have come from in the world. There are a few exceptions to this, but on the whole, most will have to obide by this or face a potential £1000 fine.
Previously Virgin Atlantic have said that they wouldn’t be able to restart their operations until August if the UK pushes ahead with their quarantine procedures. However, this appears to not be the case. Could they have been told something behind closed doors? The UK imposing a mandatory quarantine has been a bit of a contentious issue since it was first announced last month. Even many UK politicians have spoken out against it.
Over in the States, American Airlines have also announced their plans going forward. This includes re-opening a select number of their Admirals Club lounges from 22nd June.
- Charlotte (Concourse C)
- Chicago (Concourse H & K)
- Dallas (Terminal A & C)
- Los Angeles (Terminal 4)
- New York JFK (Terminal B)
- New York LGA (Concourse D)
- Miami (Gate D30)
- Philadelphia (Terminal B & C)
- Phoenix (Gate A7)
- Washington DCA (Terminal B)
Qantas have recently announced that they hoped be operating around 40% of their domestic schedule by the end of July. Currently, the Australian airline are only operating around 5% of their usual schedule.
Spanish airline Iberia will resume their daily widebody service between their home base of Madrid and London Heathrow from the end of June, using a mixture of Airbus A330, A340 and A350 aircraft.
In the UAE, both Emirates and Etihad will start to ramp up their services too. Etihad will fly between the following destinations via transfer in Abu Dhabi from 10th June.
Just a few days later, from 15th June, Emirates will serve the following destinations from Dubai:
- New York
- Kuala Lumpur
- Hong Kong
In addition, the airline will begin to sell seats on its previous cargo only flights to:
- London Heathrow
It should be noted however, that due to restrictions in the UAE, both Abu Dhabi and Dubai airports are only open for transfer initially.