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With airlines doing the most to encourage a surge in Christmas and New Year bookings, today’s edition of ‘Aviation This Week’, seventh in its series summaries some relevant aviation happenings between December 20 – 26, 2020.

Emirates Transports COVID-19 Vaccine, Receives 5 Star APEX Ratings

Emirates earlier this week transported the first batch of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from Brussels to the United Arab Emirates for use by health authorities. The vaccines were transported for free on Emirates’ December 22, 2020 flight number EK 182.

The airline has also received the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) 2021 Five Star Global Official Airline RatingTM which was awarded based on the feedback from passengers who had flown the airline.

Qatar Airways also was given the same rating from APEX earlier this December.

Ghana to Ban UK Fights If Necessary

Following a discovery of a new strain of the coronavirus in the United Kingdom (UK) and a subsequent ban on flights from the UK by some European countries, Ghana’s Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah says the government will also not hesitate to ban UK originated flights should the need be.

Ghana’s Domestic Airline Operations Making Gains in spite of COVID-19

Aviation Analyst and a former Chief Operating Officer of Africa World Airlines, Sean Mendis says Ghana’s domestic aviation sector seem to have recovered fully from the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic.  Mr. Mendis explained that the quick recovery could also be attributed to election stimulation, which seem to happen every fourth quarter in Ghana’s election year.

Ethiopian Offering 20% on Christmas and Holiday Bookings

From now till December 31, 2020, Ethiopian airlines is offering a 20% discount to its customers who book flights using its online or mobile application. Offer is available for travels before January 10, 2021.

Netherlands demands negative COVID-19 test from all transit passengers

From Monday, December 29, 2020, all international passengers travelling through The Netherlands are now required to possess a negative COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours. This follows the country’s decision to implore all necessary measures to control the spread of a new strain of the COVID-19. Children under 13 years and passengers from Iceland are, however, exempted.

Airlines Record Increment in Load Factor

Reports from Aviation Ghana suggests that major airlines operating in Ghana seem to have recorded an increase in their load factor between October and December 20, 2020. Per the report, the load factor, which is the percentage of filled airline seats has increased by 25%, pushing the current load factor to 75% for the period under review.

Qatar Airways Offers More Booking Flexibility

Qatar Airways is now offering its customers the ability to change travel dates and also seek refunds at no cost for all tickets issued before April 30, 2021 for travels completed by December 31, 2021.

The airline has also offered to make the exchange of tickets for a travel voucher with 10% more value a permanent feature for customers booking via its website.

Turkish Airlines Offering Flexibility for COVID-19 Affected Travels

Effective December 28, 2020, persons travelling to Turkey will now have to present a negative COVID-19 test done within 72 hours.

In view of this new Turkish Government directive, Turkish Airlines is offering its customers who are unable to meet this requirement for flights between December 28, 2020 and February 28, 2020 an opportunity to reschedule their flights until March 20, 2021 for the initial planned route or seek either a refund or a travel voucher 15% more than ticket amount at no extra cost.

 

BY:  Mark Ofosu||Aviation Geek||[email protected]

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