Perth Airport Gives Qantas Notice Of Lease Termination

The feud between Qantas and Perth Airport has escalated a notch further. On Friday, the airport issued 30-day…

Perth Airport Gives Qantas Notice Of Lease Termination

The feud between Qantas and Perth Airport has escalated a notch further. On Friday, the airport issued 30-day termination notices to the airline, advising it would not be renewing the carrier’s holdover leases. Qantas said these amount to eviction notices and warned that if they are not withdrawn, the airline could cease operations at Perth within two weeks.

Perth Airport has issued breach notices to Qantas Photo: Bidgee via Wikimedia Commons

In the most recent chapter of the quarrel between the Australian flag-carrier and the Western Australian capital’s airfield, Perth Airport last week issued breach notices for non-payment on the airline’s leases. Qantas holds 39 leases at the airport; 21 of these are current, and the other 18 are short-term so-called holdover leases.

30-day notices on leases

Perth Airport chief executive Kevin Brown said action had to be taken, and Qantas had been served breach notices for non-payment on current leases and 30-day notices that all holdover leases would not be renewed. In a statement issued on Perth Airport’s website, the CEO states that:

“As Qantas has unilaterally given itself a 100% rent waiver, with no negotiation, on all 39 leases at Perth Airport in breach of their contractual obligations, Perth Airport has had no option but to serve breach and termination notices (with up to 30 days’ notice).”

As reported by the Syndey Morning Herald, Qantas described the letters as “eviction” notices and warned if they were not withdrawn, Qantas, QantasLink, and Jetstar would be forced to cease operations through Perth within a fortnight.

“Qantas has struck deals with most airports around Australia, and is in productive negotiations with the rest, following the terrible impact of the coronavirus on airlines,” Richard Goyder, chairman of Qantas, was quoted as saying. “Perth Airport is the exception and has responded to Qantas’ request for rental abatements by issuing a series of eviction notices that would shut us down in WA.”

Western Australia premier Mark McGowan pleaded with both companies to resolve the issue as soon as possible as the dispute was severely threatening the WA economy and was “completely unacceptable.”

Simple Flying has sought Qantas for a comment but was yet to receive a reply at the time of publication.

Qantas said it may cease operations at Perth within a fortnight. Photo: Phillip Capper via Flickr.

350 flights a week

Tensions between the two have reached a breaking point following an ongoing dispute where Perth Airport claims that Qantas owes it AU$20 million ($13 million) in unpaid aviation and rental fees since February. This in addition to an ongoing court case in which Perth is asking for AU$11 million ($7.2 million) in unpaid aeronautical fees.

Despite a near-collapse in domestic and international travel, Qantas still operates about 350 flights per week from Perth Airport. Most of these are so-called fly-in fly-out (FIFO) flights, transporting key workers important for Western Australia’s mining economy.

Mr. Brown said the airport would not touch leases that impacted vital freight, repatriation, and FIFO flights.

Qantas recieves breach notice Perth airport
Qantas still operates 350 flights a week out of Perth. Photo: mailer_diablo via Wikimedia Commons

Terminal 4 lease take-over

Back in January, Perth Airport also retook the lease that Qantas held for its Terminal 4. This move still seems to be a source of contention whether or not Perth owes Qantas funds for upgrades done to the building.

“In a letter to Perth Airport dated 27 April, Qantas restated its demands in the guise of a request for support, and falsely linked its payment of outstanding aviation charges to the Terminal 4 valuation issue. There is no outstanding specific debt owing for T4.” Perth Airport commented in the statement.

Perth Airport has not been on very friendly terms with is airline colleagues of late. And this is undoubtedly not the last we will hear in the ongoing dispute between the Western Australia airport and its inhabitants. Stay tuned for further updates.

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Ryanair’s Return To Service Comes With Strings Attached

Ryanair has announced its return to service plans for July onwards. The Irish low-cost carrier intends to restore…

Ryanair’s Return To Service Comes With Strings Attached

Ryanair has announced its return to service plans for July onwards. The Irish low-cost carrier intends to restore 90% of its network on the 1st of July with the reintroduction of some 1,000 daily flights.

Ryanair has begun to look towards a return to service in July. Photo: Ryanair

Ryanair grounded the majority of its aircraft in late March as it became clear that intra-EU travel would be difficult or undesirable for most. Since then, the carrier has only been maintaining an essential skeleton network out of Dublin and London Stansted. The former is its home, while the latter is the airline’s largest hub. However, the skeleton schedule should be replaced in a month and a half, pending several caveats.

What’s the plan?

Ryanair is planning to reactivate 40% of its schedule on the 1st of July 2020. This would see the Irish carrier operating almost 1,000 flights around Europe per day. Additionally, the resumption would mean that 90% of Ryanair’s destinations would see a recovery of service, albeit with fewer trips than the full schedule. Thanks to operating ghost flights to keep the planes serviceable, the majority of the airline’s aircraft are good to go.

Of course, the plan to resume flying comes with some catches. Firstly, its subject to governments lifting restrictions on travel within the EU. After all, there’s no point in relaunching the flights if passengers can’t fly. Additionally, Ryanair said that there would need to be proper steps taken to ensure public health at airports.

Ryanair CO2
Passengers will be required to wear face coverings throughout their journey. Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

Flying won’t be the same for passengers

Passengers won’t get the experience that they’re used to next time they travel. Ryanair is introducing a wave of new measures to try and reduce transmission between passengers onboard. The airline looks as though it will follow IATA guidelines favoring face coverings over social distancing


Before flying, Ryanair is encouraging passengers to check-in online, and opt for priority boarding with two items of hand baggage instead of checking bags in. This negates the need for most passengers to interact with airport check-in staff.

Ryanair is also calling for passengers to be temperature screened at the airport entrance and turned away if they have a fever. The airline has said that passengers must wear face coverings at all times in the terminal and onboard aircraft.

The Irish airline will continue to sell prepackaged snacks and drinks onboard its aircraft. However, it will only accept cashless payments. It raises the question of how you’ll eat the snack if you must wear your face mask at all times on the plane.

Ryanair, Return to service, health measures
The airline says that a return to service will be dependant on governments lifting travel restrictions. Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

No toilet queues

Ryanair has said that passengers should remain seated with their seatbelt fastened for the duration of the flight. As such, passengers will not be allowed to get up and queue for the toilet. Instead, it seems they must call a member of the cabin crew to ask for permission. These members of the crew will also be wearing masks.

Speaking about the reintroduction of flights, CEO of the main Ryanair airline, Eddie Wilson, said:

“It is important for our customers and our people that we return to some normal schedules from 1 July onwards. Governments around Europe have implemented a 4 month lockdown to limit the spread of the Covid-19 virus. After 4 months, it is time to get Europe flying again  so we can reunite friends and families, allow people to return to work, and restart Europe’s tourism industry, which provides so many millions of jobs.”

What do you think? Are Ryanair’s new measures a step in the right direction, or far too much? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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