CAPA Stats Show Potential Impact of Qatar Flight Suspension
Major Middle Eastern airlines have suspended all flights to Qatar amid an escalating diplomatic crisis in the region. Etihad, Emirates, flydubai and Gulf Air said Monday they will stop flying to Doha, the Qatari capital, starting tomorrow morning. Qatar Airways has retaliated with the suspension of all flights to Saudi Arabia, effective immediately, and the suspension of all flights to the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain as of tomorrow. According to statistics from CAPA, over 200,000 airline seats will be affected per week, and could add up to more than 10 million lost seats over the next year, should the suspension continue. The news comes after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain decided to cut all diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism.
Trump Announces Air Traffic Control Privatization Plan
The Trump administration today unveiled a plan to privatize the US air traffic control system. The plan will see the separation of air traffic control operations from the Federal Aviation Administration, with the aim of spinning it off into a nonprofit corporation. Trump was joined at the White House by CEOs of several major airlines who have lobbied vigorously for change. Trump’s plan will also eliminate taxes on airline passengers in favor of user fees.
De Juniac Calls for Openness as Qatar Airways CEO Leaves IATA AGM Early
Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker left early from the IATA Annual General Meeting in Cancun, departing by private jet on Monday amid a diplomatic dispute between Arab states. When asked about Saudi Arabia and Bahrain’s decision to ban Qatari aircraft from their airports and airspace, IATA’s director general, Alexandre de Juniac, called for openness. “We would like borders to be reopened, the sooner the better,” he said. “Aviation is globalization at its very best … As aviation’s leaders, we must bear witness to the achievements of our connected world.” De Juniac also described the US decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on climate change as “disappointing,” but said it would not be a setback for CORSIA, the aviation industry’s emissions accord.
[PHOTOS] New Renderings of Changi Airport’s Verdant Canopy Park
Singapore’s Changi Airport has unveiled a set of eye-catching rendered images of its upcoming Canopy Park, scheduled to open in 2019. The 150,000-square-foot indoor space will form the top floor of the airport’s planned mixed-use complex, Jewel, and will feature a series of lush gardens and walking trails, a 130-foot-high waterfall, a suspended bridge and a selection of restaurants and bars. “When we conceptualized Canopy Park, we envisaged an area that is not only relaxing because of the lush greenery around, but also one that is filled with timeless activities and interactions for visitors of all ages,” said Hung Jean, CEO of the Jewel development.
Emirates Doubles Free In-Flight Wi-Fi Data Allowance
Emirates is doubling its free in-flight Wi-Fi data allowance from 10 MB to 20 MB, to be used within two hours of sign-up, for all economy-class passengers. However, starting June 14, the Dubai-based carrier is increasing charges for additional data usage from the current rate of $1 per 500 MB of data to $15.99 for the same amount, or $9.99 for 150 MB. Business- and first-class passengers will now receive free unlimited wireless connectivity on board.
Can Vice Media Help Delta Boost Its Hipster Appeal?
Delta Air Lines has hired Vice Media to host a series of free public events geared toward young entrepreneurs, called Delta Launch, in Los Angeles, New York and Seattle. Vice Media is creating a collection of videos about film, music and food with content from these events, which will appear on its Viceland cable network, video channels and through Snapchat Discover takeovers. “Our challenge was to create an event where we can actually capture content to run on Vice’s channels for that audience that actually has value,” said Amy Harry, Delta’s general manager of Brand Communications. “The challenge is always to go way beyond the ‘Brought to you by X brand.’”