Issue No. 781

No Soft Landing: Airports in for a Bumpy Ride

Pushing Back: Inside This Issue

It’s nice to be a major cargo carrier right now. China Airlines joined Korean Air and Asiana in the exclusive club of airlines that actually made money last quarter, all thanks to carrying stuff rather than people. Taiwan’s EVA Air earned a small operating profit thanks to cargo as well. Cargo was a cushion but not a savior for Cathay Pacific and Turkish Airlines, both major players in the global passenger business.

In Brazil, Azul sees some signs of life in the domestic market. Bankrupt Avianca has a new financing deal that breathes life into its recovery efforts. Life is made tougher for Cebu Pacific by inconsistent local travel restrictions.

A thaw in relations between Israel and the UAE heralds big potential changes for the Tel Aviv market, which could soon welcome Emirates as a challenger to other sixth-freedom players like Turkish Airlines. For sixth-freedom traffic to regain relevance though, the world needs to get control of Covid-19. The struggle is seeing setbacks in Europe, where a spike in cases threatens what has been a decent shorthaul leisure recovery. The case numbers are still tiny compared to those seen in the U.S., however. In Florida, where Covid-related deaths are approaching 10,000, there’s hope that the scourge will ease by the winter peak. United, positioning itself to take advantage of an improved situation, announced a laundry list of new Florida flights starting November and December. 


"The impact of COVID-19 has been severe, but it will pass."

Sydney Airport CEO Geoffrey Culbert

Mondays With Airline Weekly

Peter Cerdá, IATA regional vice president-the Americas, joins host Madhu Unnikrishnan for the livestream at 12 p.m. EDT, Monday, Aug. 17. Join us for a discussion on Latin America's airline industry and what governments could be doing for the region's airlines. Registration is free for subscribers.


April to June (3 Months)

  • Turkish Airlines: -$327m; -26%
  • Thai Airways: -$167m/-$437m*; -361%
  • EVA Air: -$24m; 1%
  • China Airlines: $75m; 10%
  • Avianca: -$232m; -64%
  • Azul: -$544m/-$278m*; -204%
  • Cebu Pacific: -$158m/-$141m*; -443%
  • Pegasus: -$133m/-$94m*; -355%
  • Air Arabia: -$65m; -173%
  • Jazeera: -$13m; -54%
  • Chorus/Jazz: $21m/-$23m*; -11%
  • Mesa Air: $3m/-$40m*; -38%

January-June 2020 (6 Months)

  • Cathay Pacific: -$1.3b/-$891m*; -23%

*Net result in USD/*Net result excluding special items/ Operating margin

Note from the Editor

This issue is our last issue until Sept. 8, 2020. We'll be taking our annual summer hiatus. We'll still be around, though! Check AW Daily for airline industry news and updates. We hope you enjoy the final two weeks of August, and we'll be back with our weekly issues in September.

Weekly Skies

It describes itself as the world’s third-largest cargo airline. But even at a time of surging cargo yields, this didn’t help Hong Kong’s Cathay Pacific avoid a mammoth $1.3b net loss for the first half of 2020 (it didn’t disclose…


After Dubai began welcoming tourists again on July 7, Skift contributor and veteran road warrior Colin Nagy took the bait. He describes his Emirates flight from an eerily quiet New York JFK airport, where McDonald’s was the only cuisine on…

Landing Strip

Last week, 78 fewer airlines were operating at Sydney airport compared to the same week a year earlier. The airport mentioned that and several other facts that capture the gravity of the Covid catastrophe for airports everywhere. Sydney airport handled…

State of the Unions

American is urging employees to contact their Congressional representatives to extend the CARES Act payroll support program. Without the additional federal support, American had warned it may have to lay off tens of thousands of employees. “We and our union…

Routes and Networks

Florida can be enticing, but sometimes disappointing. Ask the Spanish explorers who failed to find the Fountain of Youth, or many a real estate investor. Airlines know the feeling too, tempted to ramp up Florida flying this spring after early…

Covid Crisis 2020

S&P Global now expects air travel demand to be down 60-70% this year compared with last year. This is a downgrade from S&P’s previous forecast of demand this year being down 50-55%, compared with 2019. And demand in 2021 is…

Feature Story

Last year, McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas had its busiest-ever year, handling more than 51m passengers. And this year, it was on track to beat that, with traffic in the first two months of 2020 up more than 6%…

Around the World

A look at the world’s airlines, including end-of-week equity prices