Lufthansa Group gave the travel industry some welcome good news when it announced that it planned to reactivate 80 aircraft for regular flight operations starting in June, with 106 destinations. Starting June 1, some 160 of the company’s aircraft will be in service. Lufthansa Group carriers include Lufthansa, Lufthansa Cityline, Eurowings, Germanwings, Austrian Airlines and Brussels Airlines.
Strict health and safety protocols are in place, plus passengers are asked to wear a mask during their entire journey. According to Lufthansa Group, the policy to wear a mouth-nose cover onboard introduced by its members airlines on May 4 has been “very positively received and accepted by guests.”
Hans DeHaan, Senior Director Canada, Lufthansa Group, answers our COVID-19 Questionnaire.
Q. What do you think air travel will look like in a post-COVID 19 world?
A. “Lufthansa Group carriers will continue to offer the best travel options, services and products for our customers taking into consideration the new realities in a post COVID-19 world. It is too soon to give a forecast of how air travel will look but that things will change in the future is clear to everyone. We are committed however to continuing our commitment in Canada and beyond.”
Q.What do you think will rebound most quickly, and what might take some time?
A. “Leisure travel including VFR will likely rebound first followed by corporate travel once the travel bans are lifted. There is no replacement for human contact and video conferencing does have its limits.”
Q. What do you like most, and least, about working from home?
A. “I miss seeing my colleagues every day and have that quick personal interaction if needed but we adapted well to working at home and that allows for more family time. The long and sometimes timely commutes to and from the office are no longer there.”
Q. The travel industry is showing its strength and resilience as it rallies to take on the unprecedented impact of the coronavirus pandemic. What message do you want to get out to travel agents?
A. “The travel industry will be back! There is demand that I am hearing about, I suspect that demand will be high when the time comes. Travel will never go away. People need it for social reasons as well as seeing loved ones, families and enjoying new experiences, cultures and amazing landmarks this wonderful world has to offer. At this time the industry needs to get ready for the eventual ramp up and jump right back in to serve our customers via all available distribution channels. The travel agents play an important role in that.”