Welcome to London Air Travel’s Monday Briefing for the week beginning 5 July 2021.
“It’s Time For New York City”
It was a week of transatlantic anniversaries last week.
Virgin Atlantic marked 30 years of operations at London Heathrow where it became the 2nd UK airline allowed to operate transatlantic flights at the airport. BA marked 75 years since BOAC operated its first commercial flight to New York City, via Shannon and Gander.
Next month, JetBlue will operate its inaugural flight from London Heathrow to New York JFK. Or at least it plans to.
And New York is certainly keen to welcome back visitors. The official tourism agency NYC & Company is rolling out a new $30 million advertising campaign “It’s Time For New York City”.
It was hoped that yesterday’s 4th of July public holiday in the US would mark a lifting of international travel restrictions for passengers from Europe. No so. And it’s likely to be a similar story for the Labor Day holiday.
Progress on opening a travel bubble between the UK & the US is said to be slow. This is partly because of concern over the spread of the Delta COVID-19 variant in the UK; the number of organisations in the US government that have oversight of travel restrictions and that the AstraZeneca vaccine does not have regulatory approval in the US.
Calls for progress from both airlines and government are noticeably louder on this side of the Atlantic. Last week, Air France-KLM CEO Benjamin Smith joined BA and Virgin Atlantic in urging for restrictions to be lifted.
Here in the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to hold a press briefing on the planned lifting of remaining restrictions in England from Monday 19 July. This was widely briefed to newspapers yesterday, with some suggesting that quarantine for passengers returning from “amber list” countries will not have quarantine on arrival.Continue reading “London Air Travel’s Monday Briefing – 5 July 2021”