Tigerair suspends all flights as Virgin Australia slash domestic routes by 90 per cent and stand down 8000 staff
- Virgin Australia Group has stood down 8,000 of its staff until the end of May
- The flight staff will be entitled to leave and the airline will help them find work
- Virgin Australia CEO Paul Scurrah said the mass closure was unprecedented
Tigerair has suspended all flights and Virgin Australia will cut domestic travel by 90 per cent as the COVD-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on the travel industry.
The cut back will mean 125 planes will be grounded and 8,000 of Virgin Australia Group’s 10,000 employees will be stood down but be entitled to take leave.
The news was announced to the stock exchange on Wednesday with international and domestic flights not expected to resume until at least the middle of June.
Tigerair has suspended all flights as Virgin Australia cuts domestic travel by 90 per cent with 8,000 staff stood down until at least the end of May
Virgin Australia said it has maintained the remaining 10 per cent of domestic travel to allow for essential services, critical freight and logistics operations to continue.
The changes to domestic travel will come into effect from midnight on Friday while all international flights will be cut off from Monday onward.
The majority of staff will be stood down until at least the end of May but the airline group will help them seek out job options for temporary work to fill the gap.
It comes after Queensland joined Tasmania, WA and SA in sealing themselves off from to the rest of Australia.
The states ruled unless visitors represented essential services they were either not allowed entry entirely or warned travellers they would be quarantined for 14 days.
Virgin said it has maintained the remaining 10 per cent of domestic travel to allow for essential services
Virgin Australia CEO Paul Scurrah said the mass closure was unprecedented.
‘There has never been a travel environment in Australia as restricted as the one we see today and the extraordinary steps we’ve taken have been in response to the federal and state governments’ latest travel advice,’ he said.
‘We are now facing what will be the biggest grounding of aircraft in this country’s history.
‘We plan to return Tigerair Australia and Virgin Australia to the skies as soon as its viable to do so, however I am mindful that how we operate today may look different when we get to the other side of this crisis,’ he said.
It comes after Queensland joined Tasmania, WA and SA in sealing themselves off from to the rest of Australia due to the rapidly increasing coronavirus cases
Mr Scurrah applauded the actions of staff who had worked tirelessly to help passengers get home before states around Australia shut down their borders.
He is now left to nurse the airline group through the unprecedented crisis.
Those will flights booked between Wednesday and June 30 are entitled to claim back the cost of their flights as credit to use with the airline later.