Aviation leads as Airport Technology lists the top five terms tweeted on airlines in Q2 2020, based on data from GlobalData’s Influencer Platform. The top tweeted terms are the trending industry discussions happening on Twitter by key individuals (influencers) as tracked by the platform.

1. Aviation – 839 mentions

Quarantine having severe impact on aviation, leading to permanent job redundancies and cutting down capacities while fares increased, and passenger aviation and social distancing being incompatible, were popularly discussed topics during Q2 2020. According to an article shared by Simon Calder, a travel writer and broadcaster, the new 14-day quarantine for arrivals into the UK has triggered fury from airlines and airports. UK aviation felt the early blow, with quarantine rules interfering with airports and airports’ plans for a gradual resumption of international travel, passenger cancelling flights and future bookings as well.

Alex Macheras, an aviation analyst, further tweeted on how British Airways was the first airline in the world to announce permanent job redundancies owing to the coronavirus outbreak. The airline removed almost 30% of its workforce, including both pilots and crew members.

In other news, Dominic Gates, an aerospace reporter for Seattle Times, shared an article on how Boeing lost more than 500 jets this year as aviation’s coronavirus crisis deepened. Customers cancelled orders for 108 Boeing 737 MAXs last month. And Boeing removed a further 99 MAX orders that had previously been booked from the official backlog.

2. Pilots – 790 mentions

Pilots and crew being made redundant during the coronavirus outbreak, pilots getting fake licenses, and quarantine rules for pilots, were popularly discussed during the quarter. According to Alex Macheras, an aviation analyst, British Airways owner IAG Group was set to lay off up to 12,000 employees amidst the global Covid-19 health crisis.

Dominic Gates, an aerospace reporter for Seattle Times, meanwhile, discussed how one in almost three pilots in Pakistan had fake licenses. Post the Airbus A320 crash in Karachi which killed 98 people, Pakistan’s aviation minister revealed that as many as 262 pilots in the country cheated to get a pilot license. This meant that 30% of the civilian pilots did not write the exam, held fake licenses, and were not qualified to fly, the article noted.

In other news, Captain Dave, an A380 captain, tweeted on whether the 14-day quarantine rules applied to pilots, and if not, then why. He also added why these rules applied to only air travel and not for ferry, train, cruise ship, or cars.

3. Aircraft – 768 mentions

Grounding of aircraft, a federal plan to cover aircraft, the airports, mass transit, cabs, and more, and the gradual reactivation of aircraft, were popularly discussed in the second quarter of the year. According to Sara Nelson, the president of the association of flight attendants, even though the airlines have taken precautions and safety mandates for passengers and staff, it will take some time to restore confidence among people to resume flying again. All stakeholders, including aircraft, airports, mass transit, cabs, and others have to be part of a larger and more effective federal plan, she added to restore faith in commercial aviation.

Eamonn Brennan, director general of Eurocontrol, further discussed how airlines across Europe have been grounding fleets due to the coronavirus outbreak. Top airlines having grounded aircraft by category included Ryanair, Lufthansa, Turkish Airlines, Air France, British Airways, Easy Jet, and SAS, among others.

In other news, Adrian Schofield, an aviation journalist, tweeted on Qantas Airways having decided to cut nearly 6,000 out of its total workforce of 29,000. The airline also announced the grounding of 100 aircraft for the rest of the year, including most of its international fleet.

4. Covid-19 – 747 mentions

The grounding of fleets due to the growing coronavirus pandemic, new safety measures for passengers travelling on any airline, and acquisition in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, were trending topics during the second quarter. According to Eamonn Brennan, director general of Eurocontrol, as many as 20 airlines grounded fleets across Europe because of the growing pandemic. Lufthansa, Turkish Airlines, Air France, and British Airways, among others grounded fleets in the very large aircraft category.

Max Kingsley-Jones, executive director at FlightGlobal, further tweeted on Air France-KLM Group’s termination of the its Airbus A380 fleet operations, in response to the COVID-19 crisis and its impact on the expected activity levels.

In other news, Alex Macheras, the aviation analyst, discussed how passenger safety was being ensured with passengers travelling to or from Italy, on any airline, being instructed to travel with no overhead luggage, but a tiny bag that could be fitted under one’s seat. He also tweeted on the IAG Group confirming its plans to acquire the Spanish airline, Air Europa for €1bn.

5. Cargo – 506 mentions

From passenger aircraft and other non-cargo aircraft being converted into cargo-only flights to transport essential goods, medical supplies, and equipment, and alterations to make room for more cargo on board, were popularly discussed during the second quarter of the month. According to an article shared by Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, Virgin Atlantic was looking at operating seven more cargo-only flights between London and Shanghai, along with the department of health and the NHS, to bring crucial medical supplies into the UK.

Jon Ostrower, an aviation journalist, shared an article on how the entire shape of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner fuselage was determined by the shape of the lower deck and its ability to carry cargo pallets. The cabin came second.

In other news, Will Horton, an aviation analyst, shared an article on how the role of the cabin crew was transitioning from being just flight attendants to in-flight fire fighters as passenger cabins did not have the fire suppression systems installed in cargo compartments. Singapore Airlines and Scoot Tigerair were also being allowed to carry cargo in the passenger cabin when used as cargo flights by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, the article noted.

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