British Airways has recently been forced to cut flight schedules even further as they continue to struggle to hire enough staff to meet renewed and fierce demand for air travel.
The issues come as BA axed almost 10,000 staff in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic to cope with financial losses after the aviation industry came to a halt.
Missing out on a huge summer season?
The British flag carrier faces missing out on the boom the summer season will bring if they do not manage to fix its staff shortage issue. Other leading European carriers, such as Franco-Dutch airline Air France-KLM and German flag carrier Lufthansa, predict strong travel numbers this summer that’ll replicate something close to 2019 levels (or even beyond in some cases).
Regardless, the airline will be cutting 10% of its flight schedules between March and October.
BA Chief Executive Sean Doyle said that the airline had cut the equivalent of 8,000 round trips and ¾ on short-haul routes.
International Airlines Group (IAG) owns British Airways. They expect flying schedules to rise to 80% of pre-pandemic levels, down from the 85% forecast in February.
In an attempt to remedy the problem, the British carrier expects to hire 6000 staff in 2022. More than 20,000 people have applied for a job at BA but significant delays caused by government security vetting procedures have meant that very few start work at a time – as previously reported by Travel Radar.
Doyle partly blamed the owners of Heathrow Airport for not reopening all of its terminals quicker; however, he stressed that he was “acutely aware” of the problems facing BA, as it has also faced IT failures and other inconveniences that would not have helped matters.
IAG remains upbeat, saying that it expects to return to profit this quarter after reporting an operating loss after tax and exceptional items of €787mn in the first quarter.
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