> Soundbytes: your weekly travel and aviation industry insights

Soundbytes: your weekly travel and aviation industry insights

CTC – Corporate Travel Community each week brings you a roundup of the most thought-provoking and interesting comments from those industry leaders in the know.

SWISS CEO: 3% of passengers choosing ‘Green Fares’

SWISS CEO Dieter Vrancks reported 3% of the carrier’s total passengers have purchased its ‘Green Fares’ to compensate for their flying. Mr Vranckx added “the interest is across the board, and across all age groups though we need to assess the trends over a longer period as the fare category was only launched in the first quarter of this year”. As previously reported by CAPA, Lufthansa Group introduced the green fares in Feb-2023, with SWISS’ Zurich-London route recording the highest number of ‘Green Fares’ bookings in the first 100 days following the introduction of the product.

Virgin Australia CEO: ‘No pressure’ to go public

Virgin Australia CEO Jayne Hrdlicka stated there is “no pressure” over the timing of the carrier’s plan to go public, noting: “We’re in a very high inflationary environment and we’ve been through a really difficult period”. Ms Hrdlicka said: “The dynamic at play in aviation is [and] has always been the same, which is you have ups and downs, and the downs are pretty punishing”.

KLM more than willing to stop flying to Brussels: CEO

KLM CEO Marjan Rintel stated that “if there are [train] connections, if the connections are good, if they arrive at Schiphol, if they run also in the weekends, we are more than willing to stop flying to Brussels”. Ms Rintel added: “We are moving our customers from plane to train”.

Qantas Group CEO: ‘We’re seeing a lot of super funds engaging directly’

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce stated the company’s engagement with domestic and international institutional investors has been “uplifting and interesting”. Mr Joyce said: “We’re seeing a lot of super funds engaging directly”, adding: “We also have seen that [engagement] change over time because now sustainability has become a big part of the future”. He added it is important that the private sector “get involved in all aspects of society”.

ETC President: Preparation key for European destinations to manage increased demand in summer 2023

European Travel Commission (ETC) president Miguel Sanz stated European destinations “must be prepared to effectively manage the increased demand and return of travellers” in summer 2023. Mr Sanz added “tourist strategies must embrace travel dispersal in order to support destinations in addressing overcrowding, while also spreading the benefits of tourism to less-travelled areas”.

Hawaiian Airlines CEO apologies for disruptions after ‘one of the most difficult periods’

Hawaiian Airlines CEO Peter Ingram reported the past six months have been “one of the most difficult periods” in his career at Hawaiian amid operational challenges. Mr Ingram stated runway construction at Honolulu Daniel K Inouye International Airport, engine supply chain issues and the transition of its reservation system to Amadeus in Apr-2023 continued to impact customers, however the carrier is experiencing “steady improvement” in the performance of its IT systems. Mr Ingram stated he is “deeply sorry” for the disruptions caused.

Newcastle Wiliiamtown Airport ‘committed to growing airport the region deserves’: CEO

Newcastle Wiliiamtown Airport CEO Peter Cock stated the airport is “committed to growing the airport the region deserves” following construction commencing on the airport’s AUD110 million (USD75.77 million) terminal expansion project. Dr Cock noted Newcastle is the sixth largest economy in Australia, with the local population “passionately behind our airport”. As previously reported by CAPA, the new terminal building is scheduled to be complete in mid to late 2024.

airBaltic CEO: 1H2023 results surpass expectations

airBaltic CEO Martin Gauss stated 1H2023 results surpassed expectations. Mr Gauss noted: “We have been recording a strong summer season so far, with each passing month showcasing improvements with an upward trend”. The carrier aims to achieve EUR700 million in revenue and increase passengers to 4.4 million in 2023.

Eswatini Air to focus on SADC region before expanding to East Africa: CEO

Eswatini Air CEO Qiniso Dhlamini stated the airline does not plan to expand operations beyond the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region in the short term, commenting: “It is not in our five year strategy to expand services beyond the SADC”. Mr Dhlamini said: “Right now, we need to consolidate on the smaller routes”. He added: “We will be expanding, but within the SADC region initially, and then we will start looking at East Africa”.

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