Welcome to our weekly briefing on air travel in London and around the world, published every Monday at 06:00 GMT.
Welcome to our Monday Briefing for the week beginning 10 December 2018.
At the risk of being proved wrong, news tends to thin out in the run up to Christmas so this is our last Monday Briefing for 2018. It will return on Monday 14 January 2019.
2018 has been a tough year for the industry.
The oil price remains volatile. Primera Air and Cobalt Air have failed. Flybe is searching for a buyer. WOW air is scrambling to secure new financing. Etihad is shedding itself of aircraft, lounges and routes.
There are still questions over Norwegian. Last week, it reported a fall in its load factor from 83.7% to 78.8% year on year as revenue growth did not keep up with capacity expansion of more than a third.
Alitalia somehow stumbles on regardless.
2019 will be no less an eventful year.
Indeed, before it has even begun we know to expect:
– BA’s Centenary Celebrations
– BA and Virgin Atlantic both introducing the Airbus A350-1000 aircraft and new Club World and Upper Class cabins respectively.
– easyJet launching a new frequent flyer currency.
– JetBlue possibly announcing new transatlantic routes from Boston and New York to London.
– Qantas confirming whether it will launch non-stop flights from London to Sydney.
– Virgin, subject to regulatory approval, launching a new combined transatlantic joint-venture with Air France-KLM; and relaunching its frequent flyer programme.
– WestJet introducing the Boeing 787 with its first international business class cabin at Gatwick.
The one thing you won’t be seeing is Crossrail as this is now expected to be delayed until 2020.
Buckle up, it’s going to be quite a ride!
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