Airline Stock Roundup: United Airline's Expansion Update, Gol Linhas' August Traffic Report, & More

In the past week, United Airlines (UAL) announced that due to the uptick in air-travel demand, it plans to increase its October flying schedule to 40% of its full schedule from 34% in September. Taking advantage of this improvement in travel demand (particularly for leisure), Spirit Airlines (SAVE) issued an expansion update, as well.

Meanwhile, Hawaiian Airlines, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Hawaiian Holdings (HA), became the latest carrier to eliminate change fees. Notably, carriers like United Airlines, Delta Air Lines (DAL), and American Airlines (AAL) had earlier taken the same decision.

Moreover, Gol Linhas (GOL) management stated that demand in the domestic market for August increased 19.8% from the July levels on the recovery in demand in the Latin American market.

Recap of the Past Week’s Most Important Stories

United Airlines anticipates flying 46% of its October 2019 domestic schedule, which is higher than the September flying schedule of 38%. This includes restarting new services on approximately 50 routes. On the international front, United Airlines expects to fly 33% of its October 2019 schedule compared with the 29% of September of last year. This includes resumption of services to 14 international destinations.

In another development, United Airlines announced that it will have to furlough roughly 16,370 employees as the existing federal grant of $25 billion covering the current payroll costs of airlines is set to expire at this month-end. If materialized, this drastic move will result in massive job loses across all work groups. Per a Reuters report, 2,850 pilots, 2,010 mechanics, and 6,920 flight attendants, alongside multiple management and support staff might be ousted between October 1 and November 30.

Hawaiian Airlines eliminated change fees on its flights beginning September 3. The strategic action is intended to attract passengers on board, as the ongoing pandemic dealt a heavy blow to the airline’s top line due to deflated passenger revenues stemming from feeble air-travel demand. The cancellation of change fees implies that passengers can reschedule their domestic and international flights without incurring additional costs.

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