United Kingdom

Willy Walsh: We’re all fed up with Zoom’s death

The travel restrictions caused by the pandemic have had a devastating effect on our ability to connect for family, friends, or business.

Globally, air travel collapsed by more than 90% during the height of the crisis, making Britain one of the most devastated countries.

As an island, Britain relies on air transport to connect to the world. Everyone in the UK suffered when borders were closed and expensive inspection and quarantine requirements were imposed – millions denied the opportunity to visit their families as well as work and business in the economy. Mental health and well-being of people, and friends abroad, or friends desperate for a vacation in the sun.

In this situation, we had to resort to digital alternatives such as Zoom, Skype, Teams and FaceTime. Real face-to-face contact was not possible, so I had to use these options.

“When I was running British Airways, I was always told that many planes would soon be killed in video calls. I think the experience of virtual conferencing over the last two years shows the opposite. There is no substitute for a real meeting, “said Willy Walsh (above).

The travel restrictions caused by the pandemic have had a devastating effect on our ability to connect for family, friends, or business. Globally, air travel collapsed by more than 90% during the crisis, making Britain one of the most devastated countries.

The travel restrictions caused by the pandemic have had a devastating effect on our ability to connect for family, friends, or business. Globally, air travel collapsed by more than 90% during the crisis, making Britain one of the most devastated countries.

So I think we should be grateful that there are technologies that bring at least some interaction during this horrific pandemic.

But nearly two years after the crisis, I’m convinced that I’m not the only one holding enough virtual meetings. Don’t spare us from another Zoom family quiz!

And as a business tool, we are all fed up with the same problems that occur over and over again. People got stuck in the “waiting room” because someone forgot to put them in. Squint at a small presentation on the screen. I always yell at a man who forgets to unmute.

Perhaps you’ve come to the point of cheering when the connection is lost.

The collapse of travel has tested that such technology destroys many so-called “futurists” prophecies that will make travel obsolete.

When I was running British Airways, it was always said that many planes would soon be killed in video calls. I think the experience of virtual conferencing over the last two years shows the opposite. In short, there is no substitute for a real meeting.

I attended a meeting in Dublin last Tuesday. This is the first international conference to be held in Ireland since the pandemic began. There were 800 people there.

In this situation, we had to resort to digital alternatives such as Zoom, Skype, Teams and FaceTime. Real face-to-face contact was not possible, so I had to use these options. (File image)

In this situation, we had to resort to digital alternatives such as Zoom, Skype, Teams and FaceTime. Real face-to-face contact was not possible, so I had to use these options. (File image)

These were the people who were doing business with Zoom and Teams, and they couldn’t wait to come back to the meeting face-to-face. 600 people attended the IATA Annual Meeting in Boston earlier this month, with the same attitude.

The value of face-to-face interaction is far superior to what technology can do for us. Gather together, hug your loved ones, wave your co-workers and clients – these things can’t and never match the 1’s and 0’s floating on fiber optic cables.

Getting out of the worst Covid-19, our society faces many challenges. But there is one thing I’m sure of. That is, people will still want to travel. Foreigners will still want to visit the house.

Holidaymakers will still want to explore abroad. Conference representatives will want to continue to build the network. Dealmakers will want to read the opposite number of body language.

There is evidence of this. Every time a country is removed from the UK Red List, bookings for that country surge. The latest example is the United States.

Finally, the White House has allowed vaccinated travelers to visit from November 8th. That’s great news. Bookings from Europe to the United States surged 250% when the store opened last month.

If you get the chance, travel and the long-awaited job will come back. But it needs help.

Between February and August, passengers arriving in the UK had a PCR positive rate of 1% and a general population test positive rate of 7%. Therefore, we can confidently say that travel does not increase the risk of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom. The government has stopped air travel ¿Now we will need government support to ensure that Britain will fly higher in the future

Between February and August, passengers arriving in the UK had a PCR positive rate of 1% and a general population test positive rate of 7%. Therefore, we can confidently say that travel does not increase the risk of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom.Government has stopped air travel – in the future, government support will be needed to ensure Britain will fly higher

The UK was once the third largest aviation market in the world. Only the United States and China carried more passengers. And that traffic supported over a million jobs. This is a testament to the professionalism and excellence of the British aviation sector, as well as the adventurous British people.

Successive British governments have consistently taken this success for granted. They treated airlines as dollar boxes and raised billions of air taxes.

They allow Heathrow, the country’s leading aviation gateway, to dig up customers, providing huge profits to shareholders while making it the most expensive airport in the world to do business.

However, the pandemic shows that this complacency towards one of Britain’s few unquestionable business success stories cannot continue.

Major EU competitors have overtaken the UK in many ways, including the size of airlines, the number of routes they serve, the flexibility to respond to pandemics, and their competitive cost base. The British people and the British economy are set to pay the price of this government’s negligence.

It’s not too late. The UK still has a strong foundation for rebuilding. But taking aviation seriously as a strategic asset in Britain requires government and civil servants.

Please be considerate of the environment. Airlines have recently promised to achieve zero net carbon emissions by 2050, giving everyone the opportunity to fly green. But to achieve that, we need to produce much more sustainable aviation fuel.

The Biden administration is encouraging the production of at least 11 billion liters of sustainable aviation fuel by 2030. This is leadership. This is in stark contrast to the EUReFuel initiative, which imposes obligations but does not provide incentives to achieve them.

And aircraft manufacturers need to develop clean electric and hydrogen planes. The government can help encourage that investment. For example, diverting £ 1 billion of air passenger taxes can be a great help.

The government can also take seriously to get Heathrow shareholders to share the pain felt by our others in the pandemic.

Instead of reducing dividends or saving efficiency, they aim to recover the money they lost in the last two years by increasing landing fees by 90%. This means that a typical family traveling to Heathrow could pay an additional £ 100. Only monopoly could behave this way.

Above all, the government needs to be aware of pandemic limits. Abolishing PCR testing for vaccinated travelers this month is a welcome step. The good news is to simplify the ridiculous signaling system and reduce the number of Red List countries.

However, the same mistake that led the UK to undergo the world’s most expensive PCR test is repeated with the transition to antigen testing. You can pick up these in Europe for € 5 on High Street.

However, in the UK, state-sponsored lip-offs will continue, testing costs £ 35 and is only available from the provider’s closed shops. That’s not enough.

Between February and August, passengers arriving in the UK had a PCR positive rate of 1% and a general population test positive rate of 7%. Therefore, we can confidently say that travel does not increase the risk of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom.

We are all tired of zooming. I would like to zoom out and visit people directly. But regaining those jobs, their routes, and their opportunities doesn’t happen magically.

The government has stopped air travel – it will need government support to ensure that Britain will fly higher in the future.

Willy Walsh: We’re all fed up with Zoom’s death

SourceWilly Walsh: We’re all fed up with Zoom’s death

Back to top button