May 30, 2023

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AVIATION REBOUNDS IN US: United to engage Pilots, Delta to reinstate middle seat

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Data from the Transportation Safety Administration, TSA, in the United States of America, USA, at the end of the first quarter of 2021, has revealed that over a million people were consistently screened each day at airport checkpoints in most of the major airports across the US, for a considerable period of time in the first 90 days of the year. This has given a cause for cheers to the airlines, Pilots and others in the air transport value chain.

To this end, the management of United Airlines had initiated a memo alerting the pilots of the prospect of a re-engagement sooner than later.

United Airlines Director, Flight Operations, Bryan Quigley, wrote in a memo just before the Easter holiday that, “United would start by hiring the roughly 300 pilots who either had a conditional job offer last year or whose start dates had been cancelled because of the pandemic”

United-Continental Airlines Livery

United Airlines Chief Executive, Scott Kirby, speaking at a virtual seminar appraising air travel recovery in the US last Wednesday, said “We can see that light at the end of the tunnel.”

Scott Kirby at the webinar further said that “domestic leisure demand has almost entirely recovered. It tells you something about the pent-up desire for travel, the pent-up desire to remake those connections with people.”

Also offering as the basis for the airline’s hope was the positive result of the vaccination and the cooperation from governments in most parts of the globe.

United Airline’s Flight Operations Director, Bryan Quigley, added that “With vaccination rates increasing and travel demand trending upward, I’m excited to share that United will resume the pilot hiring process,” he said.

Delta Airline Livery

Quigley further recalled that since September 2020 about 1,000 United pilots were either retired or taken voluntary leave, and added that the number of pilots the airline need will depend on how quickly demand recovers.

Also, just before the holiday, Delta Air Lines in its tweet said it would start selling middle seats for the first time in a year, citing the positive response to the widespread vaccinations as an indication that rebound is imminent.

Frontier Airline Livery

On Thursday, as the euphoria of the Easter holiday heightened, Denver-based Frontier Airlines announced it had just started trading on the Nasdaq, thus becoming the last of the nation’s 10 largest airlines to go public.

The Frontier Airlines President/Chief Executive, Barry Biffle, enthused “the time is now. The vaccine is unlocking the demand, and you’re seeing it everywhere. You’re seeing it in restaurants, you’re seeing it in hotels.”

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