3 Links I Love: No Shutdown, China Inches Closer, Avianca Wins the Race

Avianca, Boeing, Government Regulation, LAX - Los Angeles, Links I Love

President Biden Announces New Actions to Protect Americans Against the Delta and Omicron Variants as We Battle COVID-⁠19 this WinterThe White House Briefing Room
Buried in this lengthy release are impacts on air travel. First, travelers coming from other countries will have to get tested within 1 day of travel, not 3 days any longer. The mask mandate on airplanes will now be extended through March 18. If these are the only changes, I can live with it. It’s a border closure that I find ridiculous at this point, and we seem to be avoiding that so far.

Image of the Week

What is this boring airport hallway? It is none other than the recently opened connector behind security from Terminal 1 to Terminal 2 at LAX. Maybe not much of a need for that since Southwest is in Terminal 1, but it does get us one step closer to having everything connected behind security.

Two for the Road

China Issues Directive on Boeing 737 MAX Airways Mag
One step closer… China remains the most significant country by far to not have allowed the MAX to return to service. This is what happens when politics gets in the way, especially since the airplane has been safely flying for many months now.

Avianca Emerges From Chapter 11Avianca News
Congrats to Avianca for beating LATAM and Aeromexico out of the South American bankruptcy party.

22 comments on “3 Links I Love: No Shutdown, China Inches Closer, Avianca Wins the Race

  1. Might I suggest a mural in that boring hallway depicting aircraft/airlines/liveries of the past that operated out of LAX. See what you can do about that Brett, you must have a LAX connection or two. ;)

      1. Nah, I would rather see Brett’s face painted on the walls to show just how much we respect him & the work he puts into the blog each day. Besides a little self promotion isn’t a bad thing in a case like this.

  2. The 72 hour to 24 hour change is non-trivial. I’ve done three Canada hops and it really squeezes the time frame by quite a bit. What I didn’t see is what happens if your flight is delayed. Under the current rules you have 72 hours before SCHEDULED departure to get the test. It doesn’t matter if the plane sits for multiple days technically. Canada on the other hand is 72 hours before ACTUAL departure (and you need a more expensive PCR test). How they have enforced this for delayed fights I have no idea, but that’s the rule. If they keep SCHEDULED departure then AOK, if it goes to ACTUAL departure its a serious time crunch.

    1. Just to clarify, it’s not 72 to 24 hours. It’s 3 days to 1 day. If you flight leaves at 7pm on a Friday you used to be able to get tested any time Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday morning. Now you only have all day Thursday or Friday. For morning flights the distinction between 24 hours and 1 day doesn’t make much of a difference but for afternoon flights you’ve got a few extra hours beyond 24.

      1. Ahhhh. Thanks. . . . . . that is correct. That is actually much more reasonable. I get confused on the Canadian vs American standard, but you are correct.

    2. I agree. Especially given how quickly this has been implemented. And Canada extracts $150 from you per person per test done (and that’s the questionably reliable rapid test). If you have a morning flight, it’s pretty hard to get to the airport, get the test, and still make your flight (Canada doesn’t have testing on every corner like they do here in the US). So it requires a separate trip to the airport for the test the day before. Layer on top of this elderly, mobility-challenged, children, and it quickly turns pretty onerous.

    3. Not exactly, Canada simply disallows the rapid ANTIGEN test, but doesn’t require a PCR. An NAAT test is fine, and can be of the rapid variety (meaning the rapid Walgreens NAAT ID NOW tests are the key for making Canada travel simpler).

      1. True. But I have seen NAAT tests cost more than PCR and have the same lead time. So I do the $150 PCR test outbound locally and the $25 Bitnax NOW test on the way home.

  3. Won’t it be hard to get test results that fast in a lot of places? That is my biggest question.

    1. John G – It shouldn’t be. Antigen tests are still allowed and those are pretty quick and easy. You can do something like Emed where you bring your own tests and then have a remote nurse walk you through it.

      1. I question how easy it will be to get these results reliably in the UK. The tests are already stupidly expensive compared with other countries. I’ve now had to change my flights to the UK in order to stand a chance of getting out of quarantine before Christmas Day – and am struggling to find a reasonable testing service that has a chance of delivering results before my flights back on Jan 3rd. Collectively, I will have spent $500+ on COVID tests for one round-trip. I can’t swallow those charges.

        1. S – Again, you can just order a test from Emed and bring it with you. If you have internet access, you can self test with a proctor watching anywhere in the world.

    2. Where I live (interior BC, Canada), the only travel testing facility is only open Monday-Friday. They ship tests off at the end of the day to the lab, so they only get processed after business hours. They promise antigen results by midnight that night (the one time we had visitors who used that lab, they met the same day promise), but that means that for Sunday or Monday flights, there is no way to get a test back that meets the one day criterion. CAD$129 per antigen test, which is pretty prohibitive anyway — certainly enough to make me reconsider any short trip to the US.

      My brother-in-law was planning to visit us next week; he cancelled this morning due to the one day testing requirement.

  4. I agree with the comments that the T1-2 corridor wall needs something. Preferably some sort of artwork that’s aviation or LA themed, but even ads would help break up the monotony.

    Does Southwest have access to any T2 gates? That would give them access to the T2 FIS for international arrivals. And even if they don’t and they have to use TBIT, that still means they’ll have an airside connection once the Delta SkyWay project is finished.

    1. David – I believe Southwest will have to send people from T1.5 via bus to the midfield gates. For now, T2 is jammed, especially since T3 is closed while Delta rebuilds it. Really, Southwest just needs to hold out until Concourse 0 opens.

  5. I look forward to reading the second article “China Issues Directive on Boeing 737 MAX” – Airways Mag. The URL points to the first “President Biden…” story.

  6. Go look at international flight search trends on Kayak. They are cratering the past 4 days. Cratering. For what? This testing mandate will be as successful as all the other mandates, which in other words it will be a complete failure. Do zero to stop any spread. Its all theatrics now. Terrible theatrics at that.

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