Over the last year or so, we’ve seen the travel industry engulfed by a great deal of tumult and turmoil. A global pandemic brought many industries to a complete standstill. Hard lockdowns meant people were hardly allowed to or planning travel or even outdoor excursions. A multitude of similar factors dealt a gut punch to the travel industry. Governments around the world responded with some form or aid or stimuli in order to keep the industry afloat. However, it does seem like United Airlines still isn’t out of the woods, with the airline today warning that it may soon have to furlough 14,000 of its workers.
United Airlines: April furlough deadline beckons
As per Forbes, United Airlines sent out a memo to its employees stating that it may have to furlough up to 14,000 workers once the second round of federal aid expires.
The reason for the potential downsizing is because the “second round of federal aid expires this spring,” and if the situation does not improve, the airline will be left with little other choices than to cut costs and let go of workers.
In a memo to its employees, United’s senior leadership stated that they still don’t see any immediate signs of a quick rebound.
CEO Scott Kirby and president Brett Hart candidly said in the memo released by United, “The truth is, we just don’t see anything in the data that shows a huge difference in bookings over the next few months.”
The Pundit’s Mantra
On one hand, we’re seeing that without another round of bailouts, the airline industry is set to shed more jobs. On the other hand, critics point out that while the bailout funds brought back workers to their jobs, airlines also showered key executives with lavish compensation packages. For instance, former United CEO Oscar Munoz earned close to $12 million in 2019 and the current CEO Scott Kirby made $16.7 million in 2019 as well.
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