Copyright Photo: EGO Airways (German Airways) Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW I-EGOA (msn 19000165) FLR (Marco Finelli). Image: 954700.
Copa Holdings, S.A. has announced financial results for the first quarter of 2021 (1Q21).
Photo: Orlando International Airport.
OPERATING AND FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
- Copa Holdings reported a net loss of US$110.7 million for the quarter, or US$2.60 per share. Excluding special items, the Company would have reported a net loss of US$95.1 million, or US$2.23 per share. Special items for the quarter include a US$15.7 million unrealized mark-to-market loss related to the Company’s convertible notes.
- Copa Holdings reported an operating loss of US$77.1 million for the quarter.
- Cash consumption, defined as cash disbursements less proceeds, excluding extraordinary financing activities and asset sales but including capital expenditures and payment of financial obligations, averaged approximately US$23 million per month during the quarter.
- The Company ended the quarter with US$1.5 billion of available liquidity, consisting of approximately US$1.2 billion in cash, short-term and long-term investments, and committed and undrawn credit facilities of US$345 million.
- The Company closed the quarter with total debt, including lease liabilities, of US$1.7 billion.
- The Company’s flight operations, measured in terms of available seat miles (ASMs), represented approximately 39% of those in the same period in 2019.
- During the quarter, 4 Embraer 190 aircraft exited the fleet as part of a previously agreed sale to a third party. As of March 31, 2021, there were 4 remaining Embraer 190 aircraft sold that are expected to leave during the second quarter.
- During the quarter, the Company took delivery of 6 Boeing 737 MAX 9. Excluding the aircraft classified as assets held for sale, and including aircraft in temporary storage, Copa Holdings ended the quarter with a consolidated fleet of 81 aircraft – 68 Boeing 737-800s and 13 Boeing 737 MAX 9s, compared to a total fleet of 102 aircraft at the end of the first quarter of 2020.
- During the quarter, Copa Airlines had an on-time performance of 95.0% and a flight-completion factor of 99.3%, once again positioning itself among the best in the industry.
- In April, the Company delivered 1 Embraer 190 aircraft, out of 14 that were sold to a third party.
Top Copyright photo: The Embraer 190s are being phase out this year. Copa Airlines Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW HP-1564CMP (msn 19000100) (ConnectMiles.com) PTY (Andres Meneses). Image: 929692.
Copa Airlines aircraft slide show:
Air Canada today reported first quarter 2020 EBITDA(1) (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) of $71 million compared to first quarter 2019 EBITDA of $583 million The airline reported an operating loss of $433 million compared to operating income of $127 million in the first quarter of 2019. At March 31, 2020, unrestricted liquidity amounted to $6.523 billion compared to unrestricted liquidity of $7.380 billion at December 31, 2019.
“Our first quarter results reflect the severity and abruptness of the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on Air Canada, which started to be felt across the global airline industry in late January with the suspension by many carriers, including Air Canada, of services to China. The impact was exacerbated during the month of March with mandated social distancing, unprecedented government-imposed travel restrictions in Canada and around the world and the shutting down of economies. As significant as the financial damage has been, our prime concern remains the health and safety of our customers and our employees, whom I thank for their unwavering dedication under impossible conditions. I also want to acknowledge the pandemic’s effects upon all of our other stakeholders, particularly those in the travel trade community. Be assured that we are resolutely committed to bringing our airline successfully through this crisis,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada.
“The past quarter was the first in 27 consecutive quarters that we did not report year-over-year operating revenue growth. Our solid January and February results gave us every encouragement that this performance would continue until the sudden and catastrophic impact of COVID-19’s onset in Europe and North America in early March. We are now living through the darkest period ever in the history of commercial aviation.
“Over the last decade, we have infused entrepreneurial spirit, resilience, innovation and discipline into Air Canada’s DNA and these attributes will serve us well as we navigate through this crisis. Due to disciplined long-term capital allocation we ended 2019 with $7.380 billion in unrestricted liquidity and still have access to significant unencumbered assets to support additional financings. We reacted quickly to the severity and abrupt impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, taking numerous measures, including drawing down credit lines and completing other financings to increase our liquidity, reducing our close-in capacity by more than 90 per cent, instituting a significant cost reduction and capital reduction and deferral program and implementing a temporary furlough of the majority of our unionized and management workforce, as well as management wage reductions for continuing employees.
“We have developed a plan to manage through a protracted downturn, recognizing that the pandemic and its fallout will materially impact both customer demand and our liquidity in the short and medium term. Moreover, while the duration of the pandemic and its fallout remain unknown, it is our current expectation that it will take at least three years to recover to 2019 levels of revenue and capacity. We expect that both the overall industry and our airline will be considerably smaller for some time, which will unfortunately result in significant reductions in both fleet and employee levels. While it is not possible to predict the course of the pandemic globally or indeed the changes that will be required of the airline industry, our determination is to ensure that our company is positioned to emerge in the post-COVID-19 world as strong as possible and capitalize on the opportunities that will inevitably arise,” concluded Mr. Rovinescu.
Air Canada has taken or will take the following measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
- Air Canada has reduced second quarter 2020 capacity by 85 to 90 per cent when compared to 2019’s second quarter. Third quarter 2020 capacity is expected to be reduced by approximately 75 per cent when compared to the third quarter of 2019. The airline will continue to dynamically adjust capacity and take other measures as required to account for health warnings, travel restrictions, border closures globally and passenger demand.
- In March 2020, Air Canada drew down its US$600 million and $200 million revolving credit facilities for aggregate net proceeds of $1.027 billion. As at March 31, 2020, Air Canada’s unrestricted liquidity amounted to $6.523 billion.
- In April 2020, Air Canada concluded a 364-day term loan in the amount of US$600 million, secured by aircraft and spare engines, for net proceeds of $829 million. After giving effect to this facility and estimated declines in asset valuations as a result of COVID-19, Air Canada’s unencumbered asset pool (excluding the value of Aeroplan and Air Canada Vacations) amounts to approximately $2.6 billion. As part of Air Canada’s ongoing efforts to increase liquidity levels, additional financing arrangements continue to be pursued.
- In late April 2020, Air Canada concluded a bridge financing of $788 million for 18 Airbus A220 aircraft which may be used for general corporate purposes and which Air Canada expects to replace with longer-term secured financing arrangements later in 2020 with the same lender.
- In addition to cost savings associated with the significant capacity reductions, workforce reductions and other mitigation programs, Air Canada has initiated a company-wide cost reduction and capital reduction and deferral program which has now reached approximately $1.050 billion, increased from an initial target of $500 million, and continues to seek additional opportunities for cash preservation.
- Air Canada is accelerating the retirement of 79 older aircraft from its fleet – Boeing 767, Airbus A319 and Embraer 190 aircraft, with the Embraer aircraft exiting the fleet immediately. Their retirement will simplify the airline’s overall fleet, reduce its cost structure, and lower its carbon footprint.
- Air Canada suspended share purchases under its Normal Course Issuer Bid in early March 2020 and does not intend to renew it upon its expiry.
- To assist with global requirements of goods and personal protective equipment during the pandemic, Air Canada has operated more than 500 all-cargo international flights since March 22, 2020, and plans to operate up to 150 all-cargo flights per week in the second quarter using a combination of Boeing 787 and Boeing 777 aircraft as well as four newly converted Boeing 777 and four converted Airbus A330 aircraft where it has doubled available cargo space by removing seats from the passenger cabin.
- Air Canada has adopted the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) for most of its workforce which allowed it to return previously furloughed Canadian-based employees to its payroll for the March 15 to June 6, 2020 period.
- Air Canada announced special benefits and accommodations for Aeroplan and Altitude members in light of COVID-19. These include pausing mileage expiration, grandfathering mileage-earned status, waiving certain change and redeposit fees, and launching new promotions so that members can earn additional Aeroplan Miles without leaving home.
- Air Canada makes safety its first consideration in all that it does and has been continually incorporating new information about COVID-19 into its health and safety policies and procedures for travelers and employees in all workplaces, airports and onboard aircraft. This includes a requirement for customers to wear a protective face covering and measures to implement social distancing, as well as enhanced protective personal equipment for airport agents and crews, the encouragement of safe practices such as frequent hand washing and collaborating with the Canadian federal government to screen passengers to determine fitness for flying of all customers. For more details on preventative measures and policies please see: https://www.aircanada.com/covid19updates
- To underscore its commitment to customer and employee safety, Air Canada will soon be introducing Air Canada CleanCare+. This program sets out all the health and safety measures being implemented at every touch point of the flight journey.
First Quarter Summary
Air Canada recorded a net loss of $1.049 billion or $4.00 per diluted share compared to net income of $345 million or $1.26 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2019. The first quarter of 2020 included foreign exchange losses of $711 million while the first quarter of 2019 included foreign exchange gains of $263 million. The airline reported an adjusted net loss(1) of $392 million or $1.49 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2020 compared to adjusted net income(1) of $17 million or $0.06 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2019.
Net debt of $4.170 billion increased $1.329 billion from December 31, 2019, reflecting the drawdown of Air Canada’s US$600 million and $200 million revolving credit facilities, partially offset by debt repayments of $509 million. The unfavourable impact of a weaker Canadian dollar, as at March 31, 2020 compared to December 31, 2019, increased foreign currency denominated debt (mainly U.S. dollars) by $692 million. At March 31, 2020, Air Canada’s leverage ratio(1) (net debt to trailing 12-month EBITDA ratio) was 1.3 versus a leverage ratio of 0.8 at December 31, 2019.
In the first quarter of 2020, net cash flows used in operating activities amounted to $20 million, a decrease of $3,131 million from the same quarter in 2019 on a deterioration in operating results and lower cash from working capital as a result of lower advance ticket sales, reflecting the severe and abrupt impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Cash flows from operating activities in the first quarter of 2019 were favourably impacted by receipts amounting to $1,612 million in conjunction with Air Canada’s acquisition of Aeroplan. In the first quarter of 2020, net cash inflows from financing activities amounted to $387 million, an increase of $689 million from the first quarter of 2019.
Proceeds from borrowings of $1,027 million in the first quarter of 2020 reflected the drawdown of Air Canada’s US$600 million and $200 million revolving credit facilities in March 2020. Debt repayments amounted to $509 million. Negative free cash flow(1) of $393 milliondeteriorated by $972 million from the first quarter of 2019, reflecting lower cash flows from operating activities due to the severe and abrupt impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, partially offset by a lower level of capital expenditures year-over-year.
Outlook and Major Assumptions
As indicated above, Air Canada expects to reduce second quarter 2020 capacity by 85 to 90 per cent when compared to 2019’s second quarter. Third quarter 2020 capacity is expected to be reduced by approximately 75 per cent when compared to the third quarter of 2019. The airline will continue to dynamically adjust capacity and take other measures as required to account for health warnings, travel restrictions, border closures globally and passenger demand.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and significant uncertainty around resulting travel restrictions and passenger demand, concerns about travel due to the pandemic or precautions such as physical distancing, as well as the overall economic environment and recent significant volatility in fuel prices and foreign exchange rates, Air Canada is not providing assumptions around GDP, fuel prices or foreign exchange rates. In addition, Air Canada is withdrawing all guidance, including as previously announced, all first quarter and full year 2020 guidance as well as its full year 2021 guidance (including its free cash flow guidance for the 2019-2021 period).
(1) Non-GAAP Measures
Below is a description of certain non-GAAP financial measures used by Air Canada to provide readers with additional information on its financial and operating performance. Such measures are not recognized measures for financial statement presentation under GAAP, do not have standardized meanings, may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other entities and should not be considered a substitute for, or superior to, GAAP results. Readers are advised to review the section entitled Non-GAAP Financial Measures in Air Canada’s 2019 MD&A for a further discussion of such non-GAAP measures and a reconciliation of such measures to Canadian GAAP.
- Adjusted net income (loss) and adjusted earnings (loss) per share – diluted are used by Air Canada as a means to assess the overall financial performance of its business without the after-tax effects of foreign exchange gains or losses, net financing expense relating to employee benefits, gains or losses on financial instruments recorded at fair value, gains or losses on sale and leaseback of assets, gains or losses on debt settlements and modifications, gains or losses on disposal of assets, and special items as these items may distort the analysis of certain business trends and render comparative analysis to other airlines less meaningful.
- EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) is commonly used in the airline industry and is used by Air Canada as a means to view operating results before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization as these costs can vary significantly among airlines due to differences in the way airlines finance their aircraft and other assets. Air Canada excludes special items from EBITDA as these items may distort the analysis of certain business trends and render comparative analysis to other airlines less meaningful.
- “Leverage ratio” refers to net debt to trailing 12-month EBITDA leverage ratio and is commonly used in the airline industry and is used by Air Canada as a means to measure financial leverage. Leverage ratio is calculated by dividing net debt by trailing 12-month EBITDA (excluding special items). As mentioned above, Air Canada excludes special items from EBITDA results (which are used to determine leverage ratio) as these items may distort the analysis of certain business trends and render comparative analysis to other airlines less meaningful.
- Free cash flow is commonly used in the airline industry and is used by Air Canada as an indicator of the financial strength and performance of its business, indicating the amount of cash Air Canada is able to generate from operations and after capital expenditures. Free cash flow is calculated as net cash flows from operating activities minus additions to property, equipment and intangible assets, and is net of proceeds from sale and leaseback transactions. Free cash flow in 2019 also excludes the one-time proceeds related to the Aeroplan acquisition.
Above Copyright Photo: Air Canada Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW C-FMZW (msn 19000124) YYZ (Jay Selman). Image: 404016.
Air Canada aircraft slide show:
American Airlines has made this announcement:
Last month, American Airlines announced plans to accelerate the retirement of some older, less fuel-efficient aircraft from its fleet sooner than originally planned. As flying schedules and aircraft needs are fine-tuned during this period of record low demand, American will take the unique step of retiring a total of five aircraft types.
Above Copyright Photo: American Airlines Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N946UW (msn 19000072) CLT (Jay Selman). Image: 403270.
Above Copyright Photo: American Airlines Boeing 767-323 ER WL N347AN (msn 33086) MIA (Ken Petersen). Image: 949517.
American has officially retired the Embraer E190 and Boeing 767-300 fleets, which were originally scheduled to retire by the end of 2020.
Above Copyright Photo: American Airlines Boeing 757-223 WL N191AN (msn 32385) MIA (Ken Petersen). Image: 949641.
Above Copyright Photo: American Airlines Airbus A330-323 N272AY (msn 333) LHR (SPA). Image: 930259.
The airline has also accelerated the retirement of its Boeing 757-200s and Airbus A330-300s. Additionally, American is retiring 19 Bombardier CRJ200 aircraft operated by PSA Airlines.
Above Copyright Photo: American Eagle (2nd)-PSA Airlines (2nd) Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) N244PS (msn 7912) CLT (Jay Selman). Image: 402940.
These changes remove operating complexity and will bring forward cost savings and efficiencies associated with operating fewer aircraft types. It will also help American focus on flying more advanced aircraft as we continue receiving new deliveries of the Airbus A321neo and the Boeing 737 MAX and 787 family. American’s narrowbody fleet also becomes more simplified with just two cockpit types – the Airbus A320 and the Boeing 737 families. This benefits American’s operational performance through training efficiency and streamlined maintenance.
American continues to evaluate its schedule and remains committed to caring for customers on life’s journey. These changes will help American continue to provide a reliable travel experience around the world, even during these uncertain times.
Here’s a snapshot of the aircraft exiting American’s fleet:
- Joined the US Airways fleet in 2000 prior to joining American’s fleet in 2013.
- Nine A330-300s in the fleet as of Jan. 1, 2020.
- Flew mainly trans-Atlantic routes, with some domestic service.
- Joined the America West fleet in 1987 and American in 1989.
- 34 757-200s in the fleet as of Jan. 1, 2020.
- Flew mostly mainland domestic and Hawaii routes, with some trans-Atlantic and Latin America service.
- Joined American in 1988.
- 17 767-300ERs in the fleet as of Jan. 1, 2020.
- Flew mainly trans-Atlantic routes, with some domestic, Hawaii and Latin America service.
- Joined the US Airways fleet in 2006 prior to joining American’s fleet in 2013.
- 20 E190s in the fleet as of Jan. 1, 2020.
- Flew domestic routes, with extensive support for American Airlines Shuttle.
- Joined the PSA Airlines fleet in 2003.
- 19 CRJ200s in the fleet as of Jan. 1, 2020.
- Flew domestic routes on the East Coast, with service primarily from American’s hubs in Charlotte, North Carolina; Washington, D.C.; and Philadelphia.
Copa Holdings, S.A. has announced financial results for the third quarter of 2019 (3Q19).
The following financial information, unless otherwise indicated, is presented in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). Unless otherwise stated, all comparisons with prior periods refer to the third quarter of 2018 (3Q18).
OPERATING AND FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
- ▪ Copa Holdings reported net profit of US$104.0 million for 3Q19 or earnings per share (EPS) of US$2.45, compared to net profit of US$57.6 million or earnings per share of US$1.36 in 3Q18.
- ▪ Operating profit for 3Q19 came in at US$132.9 million, representing a 70.9% increase from an operating profit of US$77.8 million in 3Q18.
- ▪ Total revenues for 3Q19 increased 5.3% to US$708.2 million. Yield per passenger mile increased 7.9% to 12.5 cents and revenue per available seat mile (RASM) increased 9.4% to 11.1 cents.
- ▪ Operating cost per available seat mile (CASM) increased 0.5% to 9.0 cents in 3Q19. Excluding fuel costs, CASM increased 5.5% from 5.9 cents in 3Q18 to 6.2 cents in 3Q19, mainly due to the decrease in capacity related to the grounding of the Boeing MAX fleet.
- ▪ Operating margin for 3Q19 came in at 18.8%, 7.2 percentage points higher than the 11.6% generated in 3Q18.
- ▪ While capacity (measured in available seat miles, or ASMs) decreased by 3.7% in 3Q19 due to the grounding of the Boeing MAX fleet, consolidated passenger traffic (measured in revenue passenger miles, or RPMs) decreased by only 2.2%. As a result, consolidated load factor for the quarter increased 1.4 percentage points to 85.6%.
- ▪ The sum of cash, short-term and long-term investments was US$885.5 million at the end of 3Q19, representing approximately 33% of the last twelve months’ revenues.
- ▪ Despite the operational challenges presented by the grounding of its Boeing MAX fleet, Copa Airlines delivered an on-time performance of over 92% and a flight-completion factor of 99.8%, maintaining its position among the best in the industry.
- ▪ Copa Holdings ended the quarter with a consolidated fleet of 103 aircraft – 68 Boeing 737-800s, 14 Boeing 737-700s, 15 Embraer 190s (top) and 6 Boeing MAX 9s.
- ▪ The Company has not taken any aircraft deliveries since the world-wide grounding of the Boeing MAX fleet took effect in March 2019. According to its original growth plan for 2019, the Company should have received six additional Boeing MAX 9s during the first three quarters of the year and would have received one more in the fourth quarter to end the year with 13 Boeing MAX9 aircraft.Subsequent Events
- ▪ Copa Holdings will pay its fourth quarterly dividend of $0.65 per share on December 13, to all Class A and Class B shareholders on record as of November 29, 2019.
- ▪ As part of the world-wide grounding of the Boeing MAX fleet, the Company has removed all Boeing MAX operations from its schedule until mid-February 2020.
- ▪ As part of its plan to increase efficiencies, the Company has decided to accelerate the exit of its E190 fleet (top) and is planning to sell the remaining 14 aircraft over the next 18 months, 3 years earlier than previously planned. This anticipated exit could result in a book loss in the range of US$90 million related to the sale of the aircraft and spare parts inventory.
Despite the operational and financial impact of the grounding of its Boeing MAX fleet, Copa Holdings delivered a great quarter, with strong financial results and outstanding operational metrics. Higher load factors and yields resulted in a significant unit revenue increase, which generated a 18.8% operating margin for the quarter, a 7.2 percentage point increase over 3Q18. In terms of operational results, the Company delivered a 92% on-time performance and 99.8% completion factor, placing it again among the best in the industry.
The Company ́s consolidated operating revenue increased 5.3% to US$708.2 million during the quarter, despite a 3.7% decrease in capacity compared to 3Q18.
Load factor came in at 85.6%, or 1.4 percentage points above 3Q18. Yields improved 7.9% to 12.5 cents. As a result, passenger revenues per ASM (PRASM) increased 9.7% to 10.7 cents in 3Q19.
Total operating expenses for 3Q19 decreased 3.2% to US$575.3 million, while operating expenses per ASM (CASM) increased 0.5% to 9.0 cents. Excluding fuel costs, CASM increased 5.5% to 6.2 cents, mainly due to the capacity reduction resulting from the grounding of the Boeing MAX fleet.
Aircraft fuel expense decreased by 12.6%, or US$25.5 million, compared to 3Q18 due to lower jet fuel prices and fewer gallons consumed given the lower capacity. The Company’s effective jet fuel price decreased 10.2%, from an average of US$2.40 per gallon in 3Q18 to an average of US$2.16 per gallon in 3Q19.
The Company recorded non-operating expense of US$16.6 million for 3Q19 compared to non-operating expense of US$8.9 million in 3Q18. The non-operating expense in 3Q19 was mostly comprised of a net interest expense of US$6.6 million and a US$9.6 million translation loss due to foreign currency fluctuations, primarily resulting from the significant devaluation of the Argentine Peso.
Copa Holdings closed the quarter with US$ 885.5 million in cash, short-term and long-term investments, representing approximately 33% of last twelve months ́ revenues.
Total debt at the end of 3Q19 amounted to US$1.10 billion compared to US$1.29 billion at the end of 2018, all of which is related to aircraft financing. At the end of the quarter, the Company’s lease liability- adjusted net debt to EBITDA ratio was 0.8 times.
The company has a very solid business model, which is based on operating the best and most convenient network for intra-Latin America travel from its Hub of the Americas® based in Panama’s advantageous geographic position, with the region’s lowest unit costs, best on-time performance, and a strong balance sheet. Going forward, the Company expects to continue strengthening its long-term competitive position by taking advantage of new growth opportunities and implementing initiatives to further strengthen its network and product, while continuing to reduce unit costs.
Top Copyright Photo: Copa Airlines Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW HP-1556CMP (msn 19000016) SAL (Tony Storck). Image: 922298.
Copa Airlines aircraft slide show:
Avianca Holdings is streamlining its operations and selling off certain assets due to its on-going reorganization.
The group announced the plan to retire its former TACA Embraer 190 fleet which never adopted the Avianca brand.
Avianca (El Salvador) (formerly TACA), as planned, has now phased out its last Embraer 190. The pictured N936TA operated the last revenue flight for the type as flight TAI 316 on July 1, 2019 from Panama City to the San Salvador base.
Avianca (El Salvador) operates between El Salvador and the following destinations:
- Ciudad de Guatemala
- Ciudad de México
- Ciudad de Panamá
- La Habana
- San José de Costa Rica
- San Pedro de Sula
Avianca Holdings S.A., previously announced on June 4, through its subordinates Grupo Taca Holdings Limited and Nicaraguense de Aviacion S.A., it closed the sale of its shares in Turboprop Leasing Company Ltd., parent company of the Costa Rican airline Servicios Aéreos Nacionales S.A (SANSA) and in Nicaraguan airline Aerotaxis La Costeña S.A (La Costeña). These airlines operate domestic flights in Costa Rica and Nicaragua, respectively.
The buyer is Regional Airlines Holding LLC., domiciled in Delaware, USA. The transaction was closed on May 31, 2019 by perfecting the contract for the purchase and sale of shares entered into on April 22 between the parties.
This transaction occurs within the framework of the Holding’s new corporate strategy aimed at strengthening its international passenger transportation segment, as well as focusing on the loyalty (LifeMiles) and cargo transportation (Avianca Cargo) business units.
It is important to note that with this transaction, thirteen Cessna 208 and two ATR 42 aircraft will no longer be part of Avianca Holdings’ fleet, in line with the company’s fleet simplification strategy.
In Costa Rica, the Holding has its own airline (Avianca Costa Rica S.A.), operating direct flights to the company’s three hubs: (San Salvador, Bogota and Lima); as well as the Guatemala City and Panama City. Likewise, flights to destinations in Canada, Chile, Ecuador, the United States and Mexico are operated with Costa Rican crews.
Top Copyright Photo: TACA International Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N936TA (msn 19000215) MIA (Brian McDonough). Image: 908637.
JetBlue Airways today announced it is expanding service to Massachusetts’ Nantucket Memorial Airport (ACK) with new summer seasonal service from New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA) and Westchester County Airport (HPN).
Westchester flights take off June 13, 2019 and will operate on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.
LaGuardia flights will launch on June 15, 2019 and operate on Saturdays and Sundays.
JetBlue has served Nantucket for more than a decade, first landing on the island in May 2007. The newly announced routes will complement JetBlue’s existing summer seasonal service to the New England destination from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) (top photo), Boston Logan International Airport (BOS), and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA).
On peak summer travel days in 2019 JetBlue will operate up to ten daily flights to Nantucket, providing capacity for up to 2,000 daily customers. The additional flights also bolster JetBlue’s leadership position in both New York and New England where the airline is already a top carrier, and brings new travel choices to customers in these important regions.
Schedule between Westchester (HPN) and Nantucket (ACK)
Thursdays – Mondays Beginning June 13, 2019
|HPN – ACK Flight #2121||ACK – HPN Flight #2122|
|8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.||1:50 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.|
Schedule between LaGuardia (LGA) and Nantucket (ACK)
Saturdays Beginning June 15, 2019
|LGA – ACK Flight #1609||ACK – LGA Flight #1610|
|8:00 a.m. – 9:10 a.m.||10:05 a.m. – 11:11 a.m.|
Schedule between LaGuardia (LGA) and Nantucket (ACK)
Sundays Beginning June 16, 2019
|LGA – ACK Flight #1609||ACK – LGA Flight #1610|
|1:40 p.m. – 2:51 p.m.||3:40 p.m. – 4:53 p.m.|
JetBlue will serve the new routes with its Embraer 190 aircraft.
Top Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N178JB (msn 19000004) (Tartan) JFK (Fred Freketic). Image: 944367.
JetBlue aircraft slide show:
Current routes from Nantucket:
Republic Airways Holdings issued this statement:
The first class of future pilots at the Republic Airways Holdings’ LIFT Academy will “take off” on Tuesday. LIFT Academy, a U.S.-based aviation training school located at the Indianapolis International Airport (IND), launched in May of 2018 and makes aviation training affordable, accessible and attractive. Over 600 applications were received for the first class.
LIFT Academy makes a career as a commercial pilot more accessible to all by reducing the cost and structural barriers to entry in aviation. Applying to LIFT is free, and total tuition for the flight academy is $65,000, which is lower than most other aviation training schools in the U.S. Further, graduates of LIFT are guaranteed a First Officer job with Republic Airways. To further help students with tuition costs, Republic is also offering financing opportunities and loan assistance to those who qualify.
“We are thrilled to welcome our first class to LIFT Academy,” said Matt Koscal, Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, Republic Airways Holdings. “LIFT Academy is revolutionizing pilot training by introducing the most technologically advanced flight program, while removing barriers such as cost and accessibility that today limit the pilot career to a narrow demographic.”
LIFT Academy features a structured aviation education environment and curriculum that combines flight, flight simulator, online and in-classroom training. Throughout the training program, students train on a fleet of advanced new aircraft and flight simulators produced by Diamond Aircraft Industries, including the DA40 single-engine and the DA42 twin-engine aircraft. Both aircraft possess the most advanced technology in the industry, including the most sophisticated avionics suite in the market. The program will be further enhanced with Diamond Flight Simulator Training Devices (FSTD) built to achieve the most realistic cockpit simulation environment.
Republic currently hires nearly 700 commercial pilots annually, and that number is expected to grow by 50% over the next decade. The airline industry is currently facing a significant pilot shortage. Reports indicate 637,000 new commercial airline pilots will be needed worldwide by 2036 to meet demand because of contributing factors like pilot retirements and worldwide aviation growth.
Interested students can call 317.471.2200 or 1.800.435.2552 and visit flywithLIFT.com. Republic Airways officials are available to answers questions regarding the pilot shortage and LIFT Academy.
Top Copyright Photo (all others by Republic): Republic Airlines (2nd) Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N173HQ (msn 19000206) DCA (Brian McDonough). Image: 909600.
Republic aircraft slide show:
AeroMexico Connect flight AM 2431 operating from Durango, Mexico to Mexico City on July 31, 2018 with Embraer 190 XA-GAL (above) crashed while attempting to takeoff from Durango and overran the runway and burned. The 99 passengers and four crew members were able to exit the burning aircraft. The aircraft is destroyed.
The flight was attempting to takeoff in heavy rain. Downdraft?
On social media:
49 people were hospitalized.
Two people, including one crew member, are in critical but stable condition.
AeroMexico issued this updated statement:
We deeply regret the events of this Tuesday evening involving flight AM 2431 from Durango bound for Mexico City.
This is a very difficult day for passengers, pilots, flight attendants, families, and loved ones of all those affected by this accident; as well as for our Aeromexico family and Mexico at large.
During a press conference the CEO of Grupo Aeromexico, Andres Conesa, expressed, “Our heart is with those affected and their families. We are deeply saddened and moved by this incident, and we would like to reiterate, first of all, that the Grupo Aeromexico family extends its support, thoughts, and prayers to those affected and their families. We are doing everything in our power to assist them.”
Aboard the aircraft were 88 adult passengers, nine minors, two infants and four crew members, as well as two pilots and two flight attendants. At present time no human losses have been reported thanks to the prompt action of the crew and passengers. The safety of our passengers is our first priority. Our more than 14,000 employees are wholly committed to the well-being of passengers and their families.
The aircraft involved was an Embraer 190 with registration XA-GAL, manufactured in 2008 and has been operated as part of our fleet since 2014.
At the moment, our priority is to address the needs of those affected and their families by taking the following actions:
- Providing attention and care for passengers and crew in nearby medical facilities.
- The Aeromexico Emergency Response Team is already in the accident zone and is focused on assisting passengers and their families.
- We have made free transportation available to relatives of affected passengers in Durango. To this end, a telephone helpline has been established at +52 (55) 51 33 40 59 in Mexico and 1 866 205 4084 from abroad.
We are closely collaborating with the relevant authorities, particularly with the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGAC), to establish the cause of this accident.
On behalf of the company, Andres Conesa especially thanked the crew for their professional actions, along with the Federal and State authorities, whom from the first minute have supported the rescue and assistance efforts. Moreover, he also thanked the employees for their professionalism and prompt response, as well as other airlines that have expressed their solidarity.
Lastly, we would like to reaffirm that we are focused 100% on doing everything in our power for the well-being of passengers and their families.
Read more from CNN: CLICK HERE
Top Copyright Photo: AeroMexico Connect Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW XA-GAL (msn 19000173) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 942978.
AeroMexico Connect aircraft slide show:
JetBlue Airways today announced it is again growing in South Florida and in the Caribbean with the start of nonstop service between Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood (FLL) and Grand Cayman (GCM).
JetBlue first announced its intent to fly this route in January. Service will operate once daily beginning October 25, 2018.
New Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood service will complement JetBlue’s existing service from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and seasonal service from Boston Logan International Airport (BOS).
Schedule between Fort Lauderdale (FLL) and Grand Cayman (GCM)
Beginning October 25, 2018
|FLL-GCM Flight #1397||GCM-FLL Flight #1398|
|10:26 a.m. – 10:53 a.m.||11:53 a.m. – 2:29 p.m.|
The new service also advances JetBlue’s position as the top airline at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood, where the airline plans to operate 140 daily flights in the coming years.
Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood is one of JetBlue’s fast-growing focus cities, serving customers throughout South Floridaand offering a fast and convenient alternative for Miami-Dade travelers. The airline also recently expanded its operation to two new gates in Terminal 3 and began utilizing Terminal 1 for additional international arrivals to help support future growth.
JetBlue intends to serve the route with its 100-seat Embraer 190 aircraft offering the airline’s award-winning service and the most legroom in coach (b), as well as complimentary and unlimited name-brand snacks and soft drinks and free first-run Hollywood movies.
Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N187JB (msn 19000009) (Blueberries) FLL (Bruce Drum). Image: 104650.
JetBlue aircraft slide show: