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Old 30th Aug 2022, 02:10
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Originally Posted by OzzyOzBorn View Post
Some excellent points raised in the exchanges above. I would like to add my voice to those cautioning against unbridled optimism for the UK aviation industry in 2023. We need to be factoring in recession, and that means airlines retrenching and conserving cash. Some came close to extinction during the covid era, and their reserves remain weakened and depleted. UK carriers in particular received very little help from government, barring those generic schemes which were available to all employers. They need a period of stability and cannot afford to gamble.

MANFOD and Rutan16 explained the looming challenges well. But I would like to add some additional points. Firstly, the 'voucher redemption bulge' which fuelled exceptional demand in Summer 2022 has largely worked through the system now. It will be a far lesser factor for the industry in 2023. Although in certain respects that is a good thing, as the affected carriers were in effect working off historic liabilities with voucher redemptions not bringing in fresh cash.

2022 also saw a surge in demand for travel from those who had not been able to meet up with friends and family for upto three years previously. Much of that demand has now been satisfied; many of those delayed reunions have now taken place. Exceptions would be Australia, New Zealand and some Asian nations which retained harsh covid entry restrictions upto a much later stage than most of their European counterparts. Some of the delayed Australasia demand will be satisfied in the coming UK Winter season (Antipodean Summer). Certain countries such as China remain too restricted for discretionary leisure travel to return; students and essential business travel will endure the necessary hurdles as their payback justifies it. Even the US was relatively late to lift covid restrictions for visitors.

War in Ukraine remains a major problem. The human suffering is self-evident and I acknowledge it 100%, but for the purposes of this discussion I will stick to the implications for air travel. Fuel prices have soared, and further rises cannot be ruled out. The impact on airlines need not be further explained to most readers on here. Sanctions and airspace closures have imposed longer routings requiring extra fuel-burn for many key routes. Carriers such as Finnair and Air Baltic have seen their East-West business models destroyed overnight. Travel between the UK and Russia is at a virtual standstill. There are calls to ban Russian tourists from vacationing in EU states. Some destinations in Eastern Europe have seen demand for city breaks impacted by perceived proximity to the war zone.

MANFOD touched on exchange rates. The "everything sell-off" in the financial markets has seen the USDX (US Dollar Index) soar to a twenty year high, making Dollars comparatively expensive versus other major currencies. In general, when investment assets are sold payments are made in USD, so demand for these naturally soars when a major sell-off hits. However, whilst we see a very challenging GBP/USD exchange rate, the Euro has endured a torrid run due to perceived reliance of Euroland on Russian oil and gas. So the GBP/EUR exchange rate is far less daunting, and destinations such as Turkey with the cratering Turkish Lira appear to offer great value to travellers. So, as MANFOD alluded to, I would expect to see a continuation of increased demand for destinations which offer 'bargain' prices. Folks might not axe travel altogether, but they may book a fortnight in Antalya rather than Orlando. We also see this effect by airline as well: a carrier such as Ryanair can benefit from customers trading down from premium carriers which they may have preferred previously. So the no-frills short-haul carriers may be better placed looking ahead than those relying on Transatlantic demand, for example.

The cruise industry continues to suffer. They put out upbeat messages to give the impression of business as usual, but demand is muted and caution abounds. Just look how many cruise ships continue to operate loops around the coast of the British Isles. Many more adventurous itineraries continue to get cancelled. Some older customers continue to fear cruise ships as potential vectors for mass-infection. Even those who don't (like me) do fear being confined to one's cabin for a fortnight in the cell if spotted using a tissue. Fly-cruise business will remain challenging for a while yet, and that is another blow to Florida and the Caribbean in particular.

One more factor to keep in mind too. Many customers endured a poor air travel experience in 2022. Airport delays, queues, late cancellations, lost luggage. I've had so many friends tell me they've been put off travelling abroad again for the foreseeable. Companies such as TUI, BA and EasyJet have lost alot of goodwill. This will take time to return. And the administrative aftermath from disrupted travel is an enduring nightmare: endless forms, unanswered phones ("your call is important to us"), staff in India / China sympathetic but not empowered to actually resolve issues when the phone does miraculously get answered. E.Mail communications routinely ignored. I and close family / friends are beyond hacked off with this merry-go-round of failure and frustration. It is actively putting me off making new bookings. Just looking at my own track record, I felt like a full-time travel agent pursuing refunds and juggling vouchers in 2020 / 2021. I'm still awaiting an Air Europa refund from early 2020. SAS refuse to refund an expensive 'non-refundable change fee' despite it being THEY who cancelled the new flights with the customers ready to travel. I'm in dispute with Wizz Air who refuse to refund £95 in 'Wizz Credits' which they neglected to set against my rebooked flights despite me doing everything correctly to enable this to happen as intended. My nephew recently had his outbound travel luggage delivered by Aer Lingus to a remote log cabin in Idaho - two weeks after he had returned home to the UK. He has found it impossible to contact Aer Lingus by any communications channel to discuss this. This year, when covid restrictions had broadly ended, I felt that it was safe to put a toe back into air travel in the form of new bookings. RYANAIR cancelled my return trip MAN-ORK, they took over £250 from my credit card for the "free" rebook to alternative dates option. It took me six months to get that back. EASYJET cancelled my Summer MAN-IOM trip; as I'd committed to ground arrangements on the island I had to rebook with Loganair at a far higher fare than if I'd booked with them in the first place. WIZZ AIR cancelled my August 2022 RIX-LTN booking ... the one I was already in dispute with them about for not applying my Wizz Credit to the booking. I had to rebook Finnair RIX-HEL-LHR as I was already committed to MAN-RIX with Air Baltic. And, speaking of Air Baltic, they have now cancelled my MAN-RIX-MAN booking for four passengers in September.

I realise that the above paragraph is a yarn, but it illustrates an important point. Leisure travel is meant to be FUN. And for too many customers in 2022 it hasn't been anything close to that. I've personally had SIX flight sectors cancelled on bookings made SINCE covid restrictions were lifted in the UK. They all generate another round of thankless admin which I naively thought I'd left behind post lifting of covid restrictions. I know I'm not the only one experiencing this. IT MAKES ME RELUCTANT TO BOOK NEW FLIGHTS. I have only two sectors booked at this point; I'd usually have around 20. That is purely down to avoidance of further administrative hassle, not household budgeting. I can't be the only one who feels hacked off with the airline industry at this point. I completely understand the problems they have faced, but I won't subject myself to more of this until the industry gets its act together. And I want my refunds sorted too. The Wizz Air one is off to arbitration in some EU department. I'd get banned if I wrote what I really think about them on here. Suffice to say that they'll be getting no more business from me or anybody I advise on air travel bookings.

So, in summary. 2023 will be tough.

- The voucher bulge has largely worked through the system.
- Cost of living crisis stressing disposable incomes.
- Exchange rate concerns, fuel costs, geopolitical fears.
- Folks at the end of their tether with the dysfunctional leisure travel experience.
- Continuing cancellations, changes, unanswered communications, delayed refunds, lost luggage, nightmarish admin hassle.
- Fear of sudden new covid restrictions; confinement to cabin / hotel room if seen with runny nose / getting stranded overseas.

ANYONE FOR A HOLIDAY?
I cannot disagree with the frustrations but would offer some counterpoints.

Employment is full.

Fuel prices are declining, as now is inflation.

Work is increasingly remote for many, far more opportunities to travel and still get paid.

Industry overshot to the down side on staffing and will now over correct the other way.

All of these point to increased supply, lower prices and renewed participation.
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Old 30th Aug 2022, 19:12
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OzzyOzBorn, couldn't agree more with your lengthy post.
I have plenty of time and money to travel and I wouldn't dream of booking anything for as far out as I can imagine.
This may well take some considerable time to work through.
Well done the airlines.

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Old 31st Aug 2022, 20:07
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Agree with Ozzy. Iíve had 2 of my 4 legs with Air Canada downgraded & denied boarding on another, all without recompense- or any prospect of such.incorporating delays (baggage) too.
I am travelling long haul (Thai) in December for essential personal reasons.
I would normally be making several discretionary trips in between the AC & TG, but given the current passenger experience, it just isnít worth it.
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Old 31st Aug 2022, 21:07
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Originally Posted by Bbtengineer View Post
I cannot disagree with the frustrations but would offer some counterpoints.

Employment is full.

Fuel prices are declining, as now is inflation.

Work is increasingly remote for many, far more opportunities to travel and still get paid.

Industry overshot to the down side on staffing and will now over correct the other way.

All of these point to increased supply, lower prices and renewed participation.
Is this satire?
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Old 31st Aug 2022, 22:08
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Originally Posted by Bbtengineer View Post
I cannot disagree with the frustrations but would offer some counterpoints.

Employment is full.

Fuel prices are declining, as now is inflation.

Work is increasingly remote for many, far more opportunities to travel and still get paid.

Industry overshot to the down side on staffing and will now over correct the other way.

All of these point to increased supply, lower prices and renewed participation.
At 10.1% the UK inflation rate is increasing, the only Western European country in double figures and above the EU average. "Employment is full" meaning insufficient baggage handlers, airport catering staff, aircrew and more delays/cancellations 🤣.
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 01:06
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The EU inflation rate is 9.1% and rising. The Russian gas pipeline has once again been shut off "temporarily". An EU vs. UK arguement here is proper playground stuff.
UK unemployment remains remarkably low.
meaning insufficient baggage handlers, airport catering staff, aircrew and more delays/cancellations
They're linked. Cost of living is a real challenge, advocating for desperate EU nationals to come here and work for less than you or I isn't progressive! We know blue collar wages have been forced downwards relatively speaking for years in aviation, a re-set upwards isn't a bad thing IMHO. The low cost bubble was exploititative on a few levels, it's hardly a bad thing when people no longer are forced to work harder for less and less each year. Also, there's still quite a few remarkably cash rich people who continue to do very well working from home and saving on stupidly high rail fares, demand will be fairly robust in 2023 I suspect.
Aviation needs to get it's house in order across the board IMHO. Turnover is still stupidly high as management are still paying peanuts.....
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 04:48
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Originally Posted by HOVIS View Post
Is this satire?
Thought so too !


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Old 1st Sep 2022, 05:33
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Originally Posted by Skipness One Foxtrot View Post
The EU inflation rate is 9.1% and rising. The Russian gas pipeline has once again been shut off "temporarily". An EU vs. UK arguement here is proper playground stuff.
UK unemployment remains remarkably low.

They're linked. Cost of living is a real challenge, advocating for desperate EU nationals to come here and work for less than you or I isn't progressive! We know blue collar wages have been forced downwards relatively speaking for years in aviation, a re-set upwards isn't a bad thing IMHO. The low cost bubble was exploititative on a few levels, it's hardly a bad thing when people no longer are forced to work harder for less and less each year. Also, there's still quite a few remarkably cash rich people who continue to do very well working from home and saving on stupidly high rail fares, demand will be fairly robust in 2023 I suspect.
Aviation needs to get it's house in order across the board IMHO. Turnover is still stupidly high as management are still paying peanuts.....
As both you and I are economic migrants ( for personal betterment) and the fact much indeed most of the wage containment over the last decade has been with approval of the government ( English Nationalist , sometimes Conservative) including promotion of zero hours or the worse a guaranteed base hour ( could be modern slavery; these effectively block the opportunities for multiple contracts ),I think we should reappraise your comments.

Why shouldnít I employ someone from Gdańsk if they have the skills ( lacking in the general public) here in London and same across the whole economy. Would I employ someone from the UK well yes however thatís up to the candidate to A apply B demonstrate ability C aptitude D be in the right geographically location .

Resourceful people move thats a constituent element of the human condition ( might even be primeval).

For the worlds higher earners itís not even questioned !

The last time a capitalist economy closed its doors to external labour and entered a trade war ,also had a period immediately prior with under employment and that resulted super inflation a stock market crash , massive UNEMPLOYMENT and a depression

Final point of relevance within the UK that impacts domestic labour, mobility is without doubt the most important - accommodation to earning ratios- Suffice to say itís broken indeed solidly seized preventing many moving even if willing and no party had been able or willing to address this right back to Thatcher.

So that mythical chap from Gdańsk may be willing to take shared room,
yet a family from Hattersley would expect to move lock stock and barrel (and why not !) but canít they lack the prime funding !

The lack of genuine not so called affordable, but actual social housing can be seen at the heart of many of the problems within the UK economy.
The unemployed and job opportunity locations differ significantly - any suggestions how we overcome this with effective and structural solutions?


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Old 1st Sep 2022, 07:04
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As both you and I are economic migrants ( for personal betterment) and the fact much indeed most of the wage containment over the last decade has been with approval of the government ( English Nationalist , sometimes Conservative) including promotion of zero hours or the worse a guaranteed base hour ( could be modern slavery; these effectively block the opportunities for multiple contracts ),I think we should reappraise your comments.
Lets be fair, driven by EU policies as much as by UK govts - and not just Tories

Final point of relevance within the UK that impacts domestic labour, mobility is without doubt the most important - accommodation to earning ratios- Suffice to say it’s broken indeed solidly seized preventing many moving even if willing and no party had been able or willing to address this right back to Thatcher.
Yes - huge obstacle in the UK economy.

Now - back to Manchester (if I could afford it! )
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 07:12
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Just to add that whilst labour shortages inevitably turn the thoughts of UK commentators to Brexit, 6.25 million EU citizens applied for and were granted leave to remain in this country. Two years of enforced economic idleness under 'covidworld' did persuade some to relocate back from their miserable UK bedsits to family in their countries of origin (if they still could), but many are still here and in our labour force. If we examine recruitment problems replicated at airports across Euroland: DUB, AMS, DUS, BER and many more, plus across into the US and Australia, it is clear that we can't just blame Brexit and look no further. Industry remuneration, terms and conditions need a reset. And this extends across the spectrum of blue collar employment; the UK was not the only country with shortages of truck drivers, bus drivers and many more roles too. The issue is widespread.
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 12:04
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The issue is that a lot of people of working age decided that they could no longer be bothered to work. A lot of these people have left the workplace and furlough will have a lot of very negative effects in this country for years to come. There is a crisis - where is the next handout is now the norm. Just about every business I come into contact with have vacancies, yet for many working a few more hours to help with their cash needs does not seem to be an option. And I am talking about businesses that pay good wages and good T & C's.
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 12:21
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Originally Posted by SWBKCB View Post
Lets be fair, driven by EU policies as much as by UK govts - and not just Tories


Yes - huge obstacle in the UK economy.

Now - back to Manchester (if I could afford it! )
No nothing to do with the EU indeed the concept of Zero hours contract are largely illegal in many of our neighbouring economies
Now as to the working time directive and guaranteed paid holiday entitlement and rudimentary redundancy terms yes they are a problem NOT !
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 12:42
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Originally Posted by True Blue View Post
The issue is that a lot of people of working age decided that they could no longer be bothered to work. A lot of these people have left the workplace and furlough will have a lot of very negative effects in this country for years to come. There is a crisis - where is the next handout is now the norm. Just about every business I come into contact with have vacancies, yet for many working a few more hours to help with their cash needs does not seem to be an option. And I am talking about businesses that pay good wages and good T & C's.
This is utter gas lighting and deflective nonsense afraid to say and certainly not reflected in any figures I can see
Through repeated by the likes of RH Mogg of the nineteenth century
Yes there are a core of baby boomers 55 and above that have made enough money to early retire and good on them equally there remains a tide of ageism in the work place for those in the same age bands that actually do want to work
The second could be targeted I suppose via incentives within the tax and benefits system I agree however there should be no enforced returns imho
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 12:48
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Rutan16, I respect your opinion. But if you think benefits and handouts are not having a very negative effect on the working culture in this country, then you are sadly mistaken. And I am not relying on the views spouted by others, as you state, but what I see and experience with my own eyes.
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 13:26
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Originally Posted by Rutan16 View Post
No nothing to do with the EU indeed the concept of Zero hours contract are largely illegal in many of our neighbouring economies
Now as to the working time directive and guaranteed paid holiday entitlement and rudimentary redundancy terms yes they are a problem NOT !
You've just picked out zero hours - for example, freedom of movement created the environment where zero hours could work, and led to wage containment in other ways
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 14:38
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Originally Posted by SWBKCB View Post
You've just picked out zero hours - for example, freedom of movement created the environment where zero hours could work, and led to wage containment in other ways
If that were so (it isnít) why differing effects in France, Germany and others ( caveat Germany did retain some restrictions for a period post accession which GB could have also done) and why the likes of Belgium enforce the three month rule on internal migrants labour ?
There are plenty of tools within the EU freedom of movement rules to control unfettered movement (the so called movement for benefits conditions)
Wage restraints were a domestic industry and indirect government policy within the UK
And whatís more has not fundamentally changed
True Blue here say evidence is not evidence
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 15:06
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But it had to exist in the first place to allow the different interpretations, so that makes it a contributor and doesn't make it soley down to the UK government - you can't say its "No nothing to do with the EU", it wouldn't have happened if there wasn't a pool of labour there willing to accept those terms. And yes, wage restraints are something different - not sure why your bringing them up?
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 18:16
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Originally Posted by SWBKCB View Post
But it had to exist in the first place to allow the different interpretations, so that makes it a contributor and doesn't make it soley down to the UK government - you can't say its "No nothing to do with the EU", it wouldn't have happened if there wasn't a pool of labour there willing to accept those terms. And yes, wage restraints are something different - not sure why your bringing them up?
Again and finally the EU doesnít determine wage policy or define contracts beyond those that effect ďhealth and safetyĒ and worker rights .

YOU can not say that a pool of labour effected wages either indeed there has been attempts to analyse this yet none has been able to adequately quantify any effect either way within a acceptable level of error !

Right now are the real wages rising No , indeed they are falling as a result of inflation not seen since I was knee high to a grasshopper!

And taking your example we now have a massive shortage in particular sectors including the aviation sector .Where are the queues of domestic workers lining up for these vacancies - well ?

Have the rates of pay at SWISSPORT / DNATA / DHL and the myriad agencies increased NO and they wonít either, indeed with reduced ďburdensĒ or regulations these employers can be emboldened to maintain their positions imho.

Where there has been upward pressure on rates is mainly in the skilled sectors - For instance I have personal experience in employing an estimator that has seen typical rates of pay rise from £35k to nearer £45k in the last year or so ( plus £8k to an agency ) , however thatís because estimators are in demand and in short supply on a purely domestic basis ( and irrelevant of external pressures)

The blame foreigners is far to simplistic.

Right this is the last of these political diatribes from me and shall we now discuss aviation in the context of Manchester Airport be that route news, development, and employment opportunities.
Or even negative news of potential route closures or note?







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Old 1st Sep 2022, 18:54
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Originally Posted by True Blue View Post
Rutan16, I respect your opinion. But if you think benefits and handouts are not having a very negative effect on the working culture in this country, then you are sadly mistaken. And I am not relying on the views spouted by others, as you state, but what I see and experience with my own eyes.
People have been saying this for most of my lifetime. Apart from some isolated instances it just isn't true.
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Old 1st Sep 2022, 19:29
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Originally Posted by ZULUBOY View Post
People have been saying this for most of my lifetime. Apart from some isolated instances it just isn't true.
It's only true in the parallel universe inhabited by the usually suspects from the 5th estate.
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