The Airline Industry Begins To Talk To Congress About A Second Bailout

Earlier today I wrote about whether United might be publicly talking up layoffs to take place as soon as the CARES Act bailout requirements lift as a stalking horse for a second bailout. That may seem far-fetched, after all is the government going to go back to the well a second time after funding U.S. passenger and cargo airlines at $58 billion?

Of course the restriction that airlines cannot furlough employees lifts October 1 – just one month before the Presidential election. The administration isn’t going to want to see mass layoffs then, and Democrats in Congress won’t want to see the loss of union jobs.

While this may have seemed speculative just a few hours ago, the President of airline lobby shop Airlines for America Nicholas Calio testified before the Senate today, and he broached the topic of airlines coming back to Congress for a second bailout. It’s notable that the Airlines for America board includes the CEOs of Alaska, American, Delta, Hawaiian, Southwest, JetBlue and United.

As Ned Russell reports,

U.S. airlines are telling Congress they ‘hope’ not to ‘have to’ come back for money subsidies. That means, of course, that they expect to seek more taxpayer money and they’re beginning to sow the ground now.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Imagine if the government used money for teleportation research instead of airline bailouts.

  2. Don’t forget about hotel bailouts:

    The American Hotel & Lodging Association is asking for the (forgivable) loan limit to be increased to 800% (from 250%) of average monthly costs for payroll, utility bills, and mortgage or rent payments, saying that will let most hotels keep their employees and stay in business.

    Another requested change is letting hotels spend just 50% of proceeds from PPP loans on payroll, down from the current requirement of 75%.

    Yep they want to take more of the paycheck protection program for themselves too.

  3. The domestic airline industry has acted in such an exemplary fashion towards customers and employees that there’s no question whether they deserve another huge pile of cash while getting absolutely nothing for the consumer in return.

  4. I guess it’s good news, but at least the reports are that it’s about loans, not grants.

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