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On the Go – January 7, 2021

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January 7, 2021

Industry News – Click on the title to read the full article. Many of the sources below require a free registration to gain access to the article. If a paid registration is required, the individual source will be noted.

Airlines

Delta Inks New Satellite Partnership, Aims For Free Wi-Fi (Source: Delta News Hub)
Delta Air Lines is partnering with satellite operator Viasat to provide Wi-Fi for more than 300 aircraft starting this summer, along with an associated portal that will connect with other day-of-travel services. “In working with Viasat, we gain the tools needed to deepen customer interactions and bring us closer to delivering more personalized in-flight content as well as an ability to consistently provide free, fast, streaming Wi-Fi in the future,” said Delta’s Bill Lentsch.

Airlines Advocate For Global Testing Program (Source: The Hill)
Airlines for America urged federal officials to rescind entry restrictions on travelers from the UK and other countries in favor of a national policy to require COVID-19 testing for all inbound travelers, saying: “We believe a well-planned program focused on increasing testing of travelers to the United States will further these objectives in a much more effective way than the blanket travel restrictions currently in place.”

US Airlines Look Toward Recovery In 2021 (Source: CNBC)
US airlines lost an estimated $35 billion in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Looking ahead to what Delta CEO Ed Bastian called a “year of recovery,” airline executives are hopeful that travel demand will begin to recover United CEO Scott Kirby explained, “This is one of those strange situations where I think we’re probably better at forecasting what’s going to happen a year from now than we are what’s going to happen next quarter.” Meanwhile, Alaska Airlines looked back at 2020 by focusing on the positive, featuring high points like a musical safety video that went viral, efforts to promote diversity and employees who went above and beyond, including one who lent her car keys to a passenger.

Southwest, United Prepare For 737 MAX Return to Service (Source: The Dallas Morning News)
Southwest and United are preparing to return the Boeing 737 Max to service, and American Airlines has already resumed flights with the aircraft. Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly recently flew aboard the 737 Max.

General Interest

Health App Acts As Vaccination Passport (Source: WFAA-TV)
A number of airlines, including JetBlue and United, are adopting the CommonPass app for travelers to prove they have been vaccinated for COVID-19 before boarding a flight, says Paul Meyer, CEO of app developer The Commons Project. Meyer also expects public venues to adopt the app, which is free for patients and health care providers to use.

2020 Holiday Travel Half of 2019’s (Source: Reuters)
The Transportation Security Administration screened about 11.3 million people at airport checkpoints between Dec. 18 and Dec. 28, the highest volume since the coronavirus crisis hit but still 50% lower than in 2019. Meanwhile, the Airlines Reporting Corp. noted that airline ticket sales for the week ending Dec. 27 were down 63.8% compared with last year, an improvement over the 66.1% of the previous week, possibly triggered by optimism over new coronavirus vaccines.

Airports

Reagan National Airport Concourse Hits Home Stretch (Source: The Washington Post)
A formal opening for a new concourse at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in Arlington, Va., is planned for July, but it may partly open shortly before that. The concourse is nearing completion and will span 230,000 square feet with 14 new gates.

Airports Invest In Touchless Technology (Source: USA Today)
Spurred by the coronavirus pandemic, airports have accelerated adoption of technology that makes multiple aspects of the passenger experience “touchless.” Air travelers can use their smartphones to verify their identity at security checkpoints, pay for parking, check bags and order food delivery.

$8B Renovations Transform N.Y.’s LaGuardia Airport (Source: CNN)
As $8 billion in renovations near the finish line, New York City’s LaGuardia Airport now boasts modern public spaces with art installations and images of the Statue of Liberty and the Brooklyn Bridge projected onto a fountain, along with a new terminal. The redevelopment project, which is 80% complete, is the largest public-private partnership in US aviation history.

LAX Now Offering Rapid Coronavirus Testing (Source: The Points Guy)
To accommodate an increase in travel, Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) has begun offering rapid coronavirus testing near Terminal 6. Located inside a shipping container, the testing site provides PCR test results within 3-5 hours. According to Justin Erbacci, chief executive of Los Angeles World Airports, the testing center aims to provide a safer experience for those who are traveling right now, either for essential or leisure purposes.

Leisure Travel

Scottish Train Melds Luxury, History, Whisky (Source: CNBC)
The Belmond Royal Scotsman is resuming train excursions to the Scottish Highlands in the spring. Itineraries can include everything from golf and visiting historic castles to touring distilleries and relaxing at the onboard spa.

This industry news synopsis is intended for travel professionals and is provided as a news resource only. Travel One does not endorse advertisements that may be contained or pop up in the links. Please consider the environment before printing this email

 

SteveN

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