With the airline industry nearly grinding to a halt, Cranky Concierge has taken a hit as well. We’ve been working hard to help customers handle changes and refunds, and we’ve found a way to cut 20 percent of fixed costs without laying anyone off. But we need more than that, so I’m putting out a new subscription product that might be of interest to you. All it takes is a minimum $25 contribution to sign up. Just click the button and write in the amount you want to pay:
While some publications have stepped up requests to have people pay or donate to keep them afloat, I stubbornly don’t want to do that. I want Cranky Flier to continue to be free. What my team and I did realize, however, is that we spend a lot of time just trying to keep the ever-changing schedules and rules straight thanks to this coronavirus mess. We deal with this all day every day, and we figured our collective knowledge might be of interest to others.
With that, I present to you the Cranky Coronavirus Daily Update. This was originally designed as an internal tool, but we’ve bulked it up and made it available externally now for the first time. Don’t expect my usual terrible images or much flash. This is a down-and-dirty update of what we’re seeing in the market.
We’re committing to publishing this every evening, Monday through Friday, through the end of April. If there is something major over the weekend, we will put something out then as well. And of course, if the madness continues beyond April, we’ll revisit the schedule then.
If you’d like to subscribe, you can do it by clicking the giant SUBSCRIBE NOW button.
There is no fixed price for this. All we ask is a minimum $25 contribution. Remember, this not only gets you subscribed to the newsletter, but it helps keep everyone at Cranky Concierge employed while we work our way through this mess. It also helps support the blog. Click the button and pick your price:
Still not convinced? Ok. Here’s a copy of last night’s newsletter so you can get an even better idea of what you’ll see.
March 23, 2020
Florida Imposes Restrictions on New Yorkers, Flight Cuts Will Follow
Following the lead of Hawai’i in implementing a quarantine for domestic passengers, Florida says it will require all New Yorkers arriving in Florida be quarantined for 14 days.
Executive Order 20-80 says that travelers arriving in Florida that originated in “the New York Tri-State Area (Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York)” have to self-quarantine for 14 days. They can’t stay with family or friends during that time.
Though further flight cuts have yet to be announced, this restriction means we can expect more flight cuts soon.
Lufthansa Group Prevents Travel Agent Refunds Indefinitely
Lufthansa Group airlines (Lufthansa, Austrian, Brussels, SWISS) are not allowing travel agents to issue refunds “due to high volume.” Agents can either use the credit toward future travel or they can wait until refund functionality is re-enabled. When that may be is unknown.
UAE, Hong Kong Ban All Visitors, Airlines Slash Flights
With the UAE and Hong Kong banning all visitors, including connecting traffic, Emirates, flyDubai, Etihad have entirely shutdown. Cathay Pacific will remain operating a skeleton schedule.
After canceling all flights yesterday and then quickly reinstating a handful, Emirates has reversed course again due to the new mandate. It alongside flyDubai and Etihad will stop all flights beginning March 25 for two weeks. Emirates is not allowing refunds but it has extended ticket validity to 760 days from original date of purchase.
India Cancels All Flights
Following on the heels of a cancellation of international flying, India has banned domestic flights beginning on March 25. The duration of the ban is unclear, though there have been some reports that it may only be for a week. During this time, no commercial flights will operate in the country.
Airline Operation Potpourri
- Aegean will suspend all international flights except an occasional Brussels service from March 26 through April 30.
- Austrian has extended its shutdown of all flights until April 19.
- China Southern, flying in the face of actual demand, will put its A380s back on the Los Angeles to Guangzhou route.
- Copa has suspended all operations through April 21.
- Interjet will suspend all international flight starting tomorrow, March 24.
- Lufthansa will operate only 6 long-haul routes through April 19. Those go from Frankfurt to Bangkok, Chicago/O’Hare, Johannesburg, Montreal, Newark, and Tokyo/Haneda.
- Stobart Air (including Aer Lingus Regional operations) will suspend all international and most domestic operations from March 28. The only remaining service will be from Dublin to Kerry and Donegal. A resumption date has not been announced.
Thank you to everyone for supporting Cranky. Hopefully you’ll find the newsletter to be helpful. If you have any suggested news items, you can always send them to us at email@example.com.
I subscribed but the buttons in the email would not work for me. So I went to the website.
The subscription link takes me to PayPal, but doesn’t do anything like setting up who to pay etc. Pls advise. Thanks.
Some people have had trouble signing up through the links via email. If that’s happening, just go to links.crankyconcierge.com/coronanews and you can pay there!
I think I subscribed but please confirm that the $25 went to Cranky
Lee- You are signed up. Thank you.
I just paid $35. Perhaps it was a rash decision given the state of my own company right now, but I suppose you need to be rash to love this crazy business as much as we love it. And for all I’ve enjoyed this site over the years, it was the least I could do.
Itami – Thank you! It’s much appreciated.
Love it. After your reply on Saturday when I asked how this had impacted your concierge business I have been thinking about how you could perhaps leverage your team’s airline industry skills for a premium product. Perhaps a non-corona premium content product (a course?) that teaches independent-minded travelers how to do some of the things your team is doing? Obvious downside is that it in theory might eat into future revenue. But I think there are always people who are DIYers who would love to be more efficient at what they are doing already. Another downside… would you be feeding proprietary info to future competitors.
Anyway, while I am suffering from corona-overdose already, I will subscribe. Maybe I can just stop looking at other sources for a while and leave the aggregating to you guys.
Thanks for the thoughts, Oliver. I’m not against some kind of premium offering, and I’m happy to help people learn how to do what we do at Cranky Concierge. When we tell people how complex it can be, they usually just want us to do it anyway!
Ok, so when can I enroll for Cranky University? I’d take the course pass/fail :)
Oliver – Hah, sounds like I’ll have to work on that.
I cannot get the Subscribe to work with PayPal.
Thank you for the updates…
How will these Florida-NY restrictions work? I understand Hawaii is easy enough to restrict but what’s to stop travellers from flying from LGA to ATL to FLL for example? Also it doesn’t seem like much enforcement of this is practical or even possible?
I assume there is no way to enforce it, but if you get caught it is (according to news reports) a second degree misdemeanor that could carry jail time, a fine or both.
I think it’s a measure to encourage a voluntary reduction in inbound travelers.
Any excuse to increase the prison population. Even if something as minor as this is the justification to do so.
Public health isn’t necessarily a minor issue.
FYI, federal health officials are now requesting that everyone who was in NY(C) recently self-quarantine for 14 days. So no longer limited to FL or exception for other modes of transportation.
Bill – I really don’t know the answer to that. I would imagine that this will most easily be applied to people going from New York directly into Florida, but I don’t think it includes those who are connecting via New York. So it’s a mess.
Is the item about Florida quarantining inbound New Yorkers an early April Fool’s joke or what?
So all the arriving flakes from Cali get in free? (Not applicable to the Crankster, of course.)
It’s the fact that so many of those in Florida have NYC area routes. In the case for California it’s mostly Nevada & Arizona that would need to place that type of travel restriction, but I doubt they would do it as so many people aren’t taking it all that seriously as that area is deep into Fox news watching.
Look at the infection numbers of NYC and LAX. California will likely catch up, but NYC is much further ahead on the Italy curve.
Cranky- I have always enjoyed and appreciated your blog. I signed up, not because I need the information, but because I appreciate what you do even more during this difficult time. All the best and stay well.
Thank you, Bill!
I subscribed! Enjoy the blog so much. Looking forward to the first newsletter :-)
Topic for consideration-could you explain and provide advice about flights that need to be cancelled or will be cancelled due to airport shut downs. Selfishly, I have a flight that I have pending in May and would love to know the options (in general).
Sunny – Thank you! This newsletter is supposed to be more about what changes are coming out every day so it won’t focus on advice for specific types of situations. If you’re traveling in May, the options vary by airline but chances are you can change with no penalty right now if you want. Otherwise, you can try to get a refund if the flight ends up canceling but not all airlines are offering refunds.
I don’t really need to the daily brief but would be happy to support you guys with a donation. Our email client blocks the link so can you send me something on the side that will work?