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AirlineGeeks ‘AG Lounge’ Podcast Episode 12: Airlines Announce Furloughs, Shut Down, and Renew Testing

Thank you for reading the AirlineGeeks Podcast Recap. This article gives a brief look at this week’s episode of our news podcast. For our full analysis of each of these stories, you can listen to the AirlineGeeks Podcast on SpotifyGoogle Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, or through our distributor, Anchor.

This week’s episode focuses mainly on airline furloughs in the United States. We start by discussing Delta’s decision to furlough nearly 2,000 pilots in October, soon after the terms of its CARES Act stimulus run out. As demand remains depressed across the aviation industry, Delta, like many other airlines, is forced to furlough, if not lay off, excess staff to cut costs until demand bounces back. Interestingly, the airline also announced an increase in international flying for Winter 2020 and Summer 2021, potentially signaling that it could need more staff in the next few months relative to other airlines. With AirlineGeeks writer Pablo Díaz, we discuss the implications of Delta’s furloughs and how its increased services play into the mix.

Next, we take a look at ExpressJet, the regional airline that lost a contract with United Airlines Express in July. The airline will halt operations after Sept. 30, in line with the CARES Act’s expiration. It will also furlough staff that will not be needed to either shut the company down or “review of future business opportunities.”

We consider if there is a future for ExpressJet in the U.S. market – its terminate contracts with Delta Connection and American Eagle could make getting another legacy deal difficult – and what the airline could look like operating independently, which it already has some experience doing.

Last, we dive into what airlines and countries are doing to encourage people to travel during the coronavirus pandemic. While long quarantine requirements may discourage travel, especially the leisure travel that is expected to bounce back first, some governments are turning to altered coronavirus testing and contact tracing practice to reduce, or even eliminate, quarantine requirements and encourage passengers to start visiting again. Until a vaccine is readily available, which could take another six to 12 months, a number of governments are banking on testing to boost confidence by offering assurance that no coronavirus is entering open borders undetected.

We hope you’ll give our episode a listen at our links above for a more in-depth discussion of each of these stories. Monitor our pages on your favorite streaming service each Friday to hear the latest episode just as it’s published. Let us know what you think in the comments.

John McDermott


  • John McDermott

    John McDermott is a student at Northwestern University. He is also a student pilot with hopes of flying for the airlines. A self-proclaimed "avgeek," John will rave about aviation at length to whoever will listen, and he is keen to call out any airplane he sees, whether or not anyone around him cares about flying at all. John previously worked as a Journalist and Editor-In-Chief at Aeronautics Online Aviation News and Media. In his spare time, John enjoys running, photography, and watching planes approach Chicago O'Hare from over Lake Michigan.

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