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Author Topic: How the "World's Favourite Airline" has fallen  (Read 832 times)
grahame
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« on: October 12, 2020, 03:47:34 pm »

From the BBC

Quote
British Airways has announced it is replacing its chief executive Alex Cruz as the airline navigates "the worst crisis" facing its industry.

Mr Cruz, who has been with BA since 2016, will be immediately replaced by Aer Lingus boss Sean Doyle.

Mr Cruz will stay on as non-executive chairman for a transition period before Mr Doyle also takes on the role.

BA has been embroiled in a bitter dispute with unions over redundancies and pay cuts.

It is cutting 13,000 staff and has been criticised by staff and MPs who claim the airline has been following a "fire and rehire" policy, which left some employees facing pay cuts of up to 50%.

Luis Gallego, chief executive of IAG, which owns BA, said: "We're navigating the worst crisis faced in our industry and I'm confident these internal promotions will ensure IAG is well placed to emerge in a strong position."

And analysis within that article by Theo Leggett

Quote
He's done the dirty work - now a fresh pair of hands is needed.

Alex Cruz's most recent task at BA was to push through thousands of job cuts as well as changes to pay and conditions, which will see many remaining staff earning a lot less in future.

Those cuts may have been necessary due to the Covid crisis, but the way BA went about it - effectively threatening to fire employees who refused to sign new contracts - provoked deep resentment and bitterness among the workforce.

And he was hardly popular to begin with. He arrived at BA with a brief to cut costs and boost profitability, to enable the airline to compete with budget carriers. He succeeded, but at a price.

Customer satisfaction fell sharply, leading to accusations that the BA brand was being sacrificed for short-term shareholder value. There were strikes over what was described as "poverty pay" by cabin crew. And repeated IT failures proved deeply embarrassing for the company.

I will confess to BA being my "airline of last resort" after despicable customer care many years ago.  There have been a couple of times since where there has been no there choice and I have flown with them, but sadly those recent examples have confirmed rather than reversed my rankings.
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broadgage
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« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2020, 07:10:58 pm »

Good news for the environment, if we are serious about climate change we need to fly a LOTT less.
And remember that oil prices are currently only about $45 which is favourable for the fuel hungry aviation industry. If oil prices to double to about $90 I expect a further significant contraction in the airline industry.

Very sad for those put out of work, but they are in same position as other industries such as coal mining that have declined.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
southwest
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« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2020, 12:04:28 am »

Good news for the environment, if we are serious about climate change we need to fly a LOTT less.
And remember that oil prices are currently only about $45 which is favourable for the fuel hungry aviation industry. If oil prices to double to about $90 I expect a further significant contraction in the airline industry.

Very sad for those put out of work, but they are in same position as other industries such as coal mining that have declined.

Wish respect Broadgage I don't think you should be commenting on something you don't understand.
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southwest
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« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2020, 12:06:29 am »

This was a surprise but has nothing to do with BA, It's to do with IAG's old CEO leaving and being replaced by a fresh set of hands who wants to give BA a fresh start. It never made sense to put Cruz (someone with low cost airline experience) in charge of a national carrier.


Hopefully with the fantastic new Club World and revised First product, BA can go forward to a better future. Sean Doyle certainly knows the airline very well.
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broadgage
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« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2020, 01:01:25 pm »

Good news for the environment, if we are serious about climate change we need to fly a LOTT less.
And remember that oil prices are currently only about $45 which is favourable for the fuel hungry aviation industry. If oil prices to double to about $90 I expect a further significant contraction in the airline industry.

Very sad for those put out of work, but they are in same position as other industries such as coal mining that have declined.

Wish respect Broadgage I don't think you should be commenting on something you don't understand.

I disagree, I considered my remarks carefully and stand by them. I have sufficient knowledge to state the following facts about the airline industry.
1) Almost entirely entirely fossil fuel powered.
2) Carbon emissions per mile, per passenger, broadly similar to driving*
3) Often involves significant extra carbon emissions in driving to the airport, unlike rail transport for which most people are nearer the station than the airport.

I also confirm my statement that oil prices are very low at about $45. This is helpful to the airlines in view of the vast amounts consumed, with fuel being a major overhead.
When oil returns to about $90, there will be further contractions and more calls for bungs, subsidies and bailouts.

*No great accuracy may be claimed in this statement since both cars and aircraft vary a lot in fuel consumption and load factor. The problem is not just the fuel used per mile, but that the speed of air transport encourages longer and more numerous journeys. Few people would drive thousands of miles each way for a holiday, but flying a similar distance is common.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
southwest
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« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2020, 11:20:56 pm »

Good news for the environment, if we are serious about climate change we need to fly a LOTT less.
And remember that oil prices are currently only about $45 which is favourable for the fuel hungry aviation industry. If oil prices to double to about $90 I expect a further significant contraction in the airline industry.

Very sad for those put out of work, but they are in same position as other industries such as coal mining that have declined.

Wish respect Broadgage I don't think you should be commenting on something you don't understand.

I disagree, I considered my remarks carefully and stand by them. I have sufficient knowledge to state the following facts about the airline industry.
1) Almost entirely entirely fossil fuel powered.
2) Carbon emissions per mile, per passenger, broadly similar to driving*
3) Often involves significant extra carbon emissions in driving to the airport, unlike rail transport for which most people are nearer the station than the airport.

I also confirm my statement that oil prices are very low at about $45. This is helpful to the airlines in view of the vast amounts consumed, with fuel being a major overhead.
When oil returns to about $90, there will be further contractions and more calls for bungs, subsidies and bailouts.

*No great accuracy may be claimed in this statement since both cars and aircraft vary a lot in fuel consumption and load factor. The problem is not just the fuel used per mile, but that the speed of air transport encourages longer and more numerous journeys. Few people would drive thousands of miles each way for a holiday, but flying a similar distance is common.

Still well over 100,000 people who have lost their jobs in this country, some who have had the aspiration as a child, some have been in the job so long it's all they know.  [text deleted by moderation team - personal attack on another member - 16.10.2020 at 20:14]
« Last Edit: October 16, 2020, 08:14:51 pm by grahame » Logged
grahame
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« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2020, 11:45:13 pm »

Still well over 100,000 people who have lost their jobs in this country, some who have had the aspiration as a child, some have been in the job so long it's all they know. ....

A perfectly valid comment; very sadly, the price of a changing world is often the loss of what people hd considered to be life time / permanent jobs.  Add "steam train driver", "miner", "punch girl", 'bus conductor" to your list.
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« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2020, 11:47:51 pm »

I used to work in aviation (flight recorders), left way before the pandemic, left for a multitude of reasons. Also a 'green' try to cycle where possible, cut down on meat etc..
Good to get your thoughts off to some sort of outlet though, these times are not good for social types.
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broadgage
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« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2020, 12:40:47 am »

The loss of aviation related jobs is very sad, and I feel sorry for those thrown out of work.
That however does NOT mean that I support bail outs or subsidies for airlines and related businesses.

I would likewise not support government subsidies to protect the jobs of coal miners. And looking back further, I would not have subsidised the manufacture and operation of horse drawn vehicles, when demand for same was badly hit by the new fangled horseless carriage.
Or the manufacture of gas lighting equipment when faced with "unfair" competition from the new electric lights. Should electric lighting have been restricted to save jobs in the gas lighting industry ?

And what about the huge numbers of workers in the post coach industry thrown out of work by the railways ?

Airlines are in my view a dying industry, due to a combination of factors.
1) Environmental concerns. Burning TONS of fuel for a pleasure or business trip is increasingly regarded as unacceptable..
2) Opposition to airport expansion due to noise nuisance.
3) And soon to return, fuel costs. Airlines are struggling despite the present very low price of fuel. What happens when it goes up ?

Even I do not expect the near term end of aviation, but I do believe that it has reached a peak and is now declining. I don't believe that public money should be spent on supporting it (except on a VERY small scale in exceptional cases, such as when it is the only reasonable access to remote islands)
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
southwest
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« Reply #9 on: October 17, 2020, 01:20:16 am »

The loss of aviation related jobs is very sad, and I feel sorry for those thrown out of work.
That however does NOT mean that I support bail outs or subsidies for airlines and related businesses.

I would likewise not support government subsidies to protect the jobs of coal miners. And looking back further, I would not have subsidised the manufacture and operation of horse drawn vehicles, when demand for same was badly hit by the new fangled horseless carriage.
Or the manufacture of gas lighting equipment when faced with "unfair" competition from the new electric lights. Should electric lighting have been restricted to save jobs in the gas lighting industry ?

And what about the huge numbers of workers in the post coach industry thrown out of work by the railways ?

Airlines are in my view a dying industry, due to a combination of factors.
1) Environmental concerns. Burning TONS of fuel for a pleasure or business trip is increasingly regarded as unacceptable..
2) Opposition to airport expansion due to noise nuisance.
3) And soon to return, fuel costs. Airlines are struggling despite the present very low price of fuel. What happens when it goes up ?

Even I do not expect the near term end of aviation, but I do believe that it has reached a peak and is now declining. I don't believe that public money should be spent on supporting it (except on a VERY small scale in exceptional cases, such as when it is the only reasonable access to remote islands)

All I will say is that sometimes it's better to keep opinions to yourself, we all have our own views & beliefs. But it's important to remember that the general public can see what is being put said on this forum. This year has been an extremely upsetting year for a lot of people. I for one do not want to make anyone else feel worse or more importantly bring  anyone's mental health to breaking point.

I'm sure Grahame will agree with me that we all need to be careful what we put on here.
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grahame
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« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2020, 08:26:39 am »

There is a distinction between disagreeing with the views of another poster - the lifeblood of active discussions - and getting personal with other posters - belittling them, suggesting what they should and should not post, etc.   The former is very welcome, the latter is against the forum rules.

Watching TV news, you may see one politician referring to another as "a monster" or suggesting that another is old and has lost the mental abilities to do the job (or perhaps has never had it).  You may see a politician trying to drown out another through a series of interrupts which distract from the topic under discussion.  You may see a politician who feels and acts differently to others because he feels the rules don't apply to him.  Well - on this forum, gentlemen and ladies, please can we all remember we can be better than that. Politicians have chosen to get into the boxing ring of politics, but here in the coffee shop we have a friendly exchange of views and enjoy the time we spend here, coming out with a wider understanding of the immediate and associated matters.

Very occasionally, the moderator team in the Coffee Shop has to have a quiet word with a member or group to keep the place friendly; it could be that they and other members are taken aback by what they (over)hear from a table.  It could be that they spot something going on with a member being rounded on / bullied.  And it could be because concerned members call them in, expressing a concern.   I'm relieved that such call-ins are occasional, and I would re-iterate to members advise to thing before you post about people personally - to put the boot on the other foot and thing "what would I think if someone posted that about me?"

Our rules are there for a purpose - to keep this place friendly and welcoming, and will be enforced where they put that purpose at risk while at the same time understanding that members have personal issues, especially at the moment, that can result in occasional ill-judged actions.   But if you're bursting to pick a fight, not here please.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #11 on: October 17, 2020, 08:45:15 am »

Hear Hear.

.....and Broadgage is the last person we want to be "shut down", his dissertations on steak, Port and catering in general, his passionate commitment to the environment (stopping some way short of veganism!) the shortcomings of various trains and general, oft repeated ruminations on any subject under the sun with the benefit of his crystal balls are amongst the most entertaining on the Forum................I do sometimes wonder if his is a "parody account" such as those found on Twitter and elsewhere, but I am sure he is 100% genuine and authentic...........well quite sure anyway!!!  Smiley
« Last Edit: October 17, 2020, 09:06:11 am by TaplowGreen » Logged
broadgage
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« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2020, 01:14:31 pm »

I would not describe myself as "being passionate about the environment" Concerned, yes and I try to practice what I preach by not flying, not driving, minimising use of  taxis, (unless electric) and so on.

Extinction Rebellion could be described as passionate about the environment, they are calling for "net zero carbon emissions by 2025" which in effect means the end of aviation by that date.
The more extreme supporters of XR are calling for a variety of illegal tactics to shut down airports.

All that I called for was not to bail out or otherwise give public money to airlines, airports or builders of aircraft. I consider such views to be moderate.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
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« Reply #13 on: October 17, 2020, 03:06:13 pm »


All that I called for was not to bail out or otherwise give public money to airlines, airports or builders of aircraft. I consider such views to be moderate.

My own view is that that is just as extreme as Extinction Rebellion, I see no reason why aviation should not be getting money, when train and bus companies are getting public money.

Even some of the most financially sustainable business' are struggling who would otherwise be fine, Britain is the only country who are not bailing or offering more heavy financial support, Germany, France, Spain, Australia, USA are all doing so.

I myself want to see us being more sustainable and green, however, I do not agree that should come at the cost of peoples livelihoods, or the economy in general. Aviation is absolutely playing catch up to the road and rail industry on being more sustainable, but there is also many safety and regulatory issues to bypass before electric aircraft could be used on any viable distance. How would for example it work with ETOPS regulations? How would the aircraft continue to be flyable if the electric engines stopped working? And on top of that, how long would it be flyable before it crashed?
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broadgage
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« Reply #14 on: October 17, 2020, 03:30:19 pm »

I do not believe that electric aircraft will EVER be possible for long distances such as trans Atlantic.
Flying needs a lot of energy, and even the best batteries have an energy density very much lower than oil derived fuels.

Electric aircraft are a distinct possibility for "short hops" such as to islands not far from the mainland. At least one has already flown. The consequences of mechanical failure could be fatal, but no more of a risk than for fossil fuel aircraft.
A large battery powered airliner able to cross the Channel with dozens or hundreds of passengers should be possible, but is there any point ? Rail is probably preferable.

Battery/solar powered airships are a possibility, but are much slower than jet aircraft. I do not expect large scale use of airships because the helium with which they are filled is in limited supply.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
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