Coronavirus Special Report
September 20 to 26, 2020
Read all about it! More than 199,000 200,000 204,000 Americans have died during the virus pandemic. Airlines and hotels cut back because there is little traffic to support more optimistic approaches. Europe resumes limited lockdowns. Airline bosses expect the worst. Read up from the bottom for context.

Coronavirus Update for September 26, 2020

The United States yesterday passed 7 million cases of Coronavirus. I'm still trying to figure out how testing less would reduce the death rate, now above 204,000. Here are today's other developments:
        Las Vegas registered about 1.7 million passengers in August, down nearly 61 percent from 2019. For the year to date, traffic is down about 56 percent.
        New York City has permanently extended the Open Restaurant program. Originally due to expire October 31, the plan allows many restaurants to offer streetside, outdoor dining. Restaurants in the city still cannot offer indoor dining until later next week.
        Florida Governor Ron DiSantis on Friday lifted all restrictions on restaurants, bars and other businesses in the state. Although the Coronavirus has abated since summer peaks, Florida remains among the top five states for new infections.
        Rio de Janeiro has cancelled the 2021 Carnival, the largest pre-Lenten festival in the world. It was due to be held in mid-February.
        The firming floor The TSA says 826,329 people passed through airport checkpoints on Friday and that represents 32.4 percent of 2019 volume, a skosh below Thursday's performance and a little above last Friday's traffic.

Coronavirus Update for September 25, 2020

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, a medical doctor and noisy proponent of mask mandates, has tested positive for Coronavirus. So has his wife. Here are today's other developments:
        Delta Air Lines says it will resume international flights from its Minneapolis/St. Paul hub. Flights to Amsterdam return four times weekly beginning October 25. Elsewhere, however, Delta is cutting international flights it had restored to the fall and winter schedule. Atlanta-Munich has been cancelled. Boston-London has been reduced in frequency. Seven routes from New York/JFK also have lost some frequencies.
        JetBlue Airways has delayed service resumption at seven airports. Originally due to return on November 6, four airports (Baltimore-Washington and Burbank, San Jose and Ontario, California) have been delayed until April 1. Two others (Worcester, Massachusetts, and Newburgh/Stewart, New York) are cancelled indefinitely. Palm Springs resumes December 18.
        Thursday standard The TSA says that 826,316 people passed through airport checkpoints yesterday. It represents 32.9 percent of 2019 volume. That is one point better than last Thursday (September 17).
        Pac 12 football will be played this fall after all. A 7-game schedule begins November 6. The conference previously cancelled the season, but reversed its decision after pressure from President Trump.
        Hong Kong Disneyland has reopened again. It closed in January in the immediate aftermath of the Coronavirus. It reopened on June 18, but closed again on July 15 after an upsurge in cases.
        Madrid has urged all 6.6 million area residents to restrict their movements as the Coronavirus rages again. About half the city is now under a second lockdown.

Coronavirus Update for September 24, 2020

Missouri Governor Mike Parson, a noisy opponent of masks and a mask mandate, has tested positive for Coronavirus. So has his wife. Here are today's other developments:
        Meet the new Wednesday, same as the old Wednesday The TSA says that 608,726 people passed through airport checkpoints yesterday. That's 27.8 percent of 2019 volume, right about where traffic has settled since Labor Day. Yes, you've heard that before.
        Washington weakness Passenger traffic at Washington/National was down 78.1 percent in July compared to July, 2019. At Dulles, the decline was 82.8 percent year-over-year. Baltimore/Washington, which hosted about 926,000 flyers in July--that's about the combined total of National and Dulles--was down 63.6 percent.
        United Airlines says fares are down 30-40 percent since the pandemic began. It also reaffirmed that it does not expect to fly more than 45 percent of its former capacity until there is a vaccine.
        Subway slumber Passenger volume on the New York City subways, the nation's largest mass-transit system, was 9.7 million for the week of September 13. That's compared to 34.3 million for the week of September 13, 2019.
        Italy is jacking up its Coronavirus response ahead of a second wave. The regions of Campania (Naples) and Liguria (Genoa) now require masks be warn in public.

Coronavirus Update for September 23, 2020

You think you're down on travel? United Airlines chief executive Scott Kirby said yesterday that "it's an apocalyptic environment for airlines and aviation right now." Meanwhile, Southwest Airlines boss Gary Kelly adds that "there's no reason to believe that things are going to improve anytime soon." Here are today's other developments:
        Typical Tuesday The TSA says 549,741 people passed through airport checkpoints yesterday. That's 27 percent of 2019 volume, right about where traffic has settled since Labor Day.
        Helsinki/Vantaa airport is testing specially trained dogs who can detect the Coronavirus in people. SkyNews has the details.
        France is cranking up Coronavirus-related restrictions. Sixty-nine of the country's d√©partements are now on alert. Bars and restaurants in Marseille and surrounding areas must close starting Saturday. Starting Monday, restaurants, bars and clubs must close early in Paris, Bordeaux, Lyon, Nice, Lille and other cities.
        Britain is also tightening its Coronavirus rules. Bars, pubs and restaurants must now close at 10pm and only table service is permitted.
        Stockholm surplus Commercial flights at Stockholm's Bromma Airport are "no longer justified on commercial grounds." With travel collapsed due to the Coronavirus, Bromma's eight routes could easily be handled at nearby Stockholm/Arlanda, according to Swedavia, the country's airport operator.

Coronavirus Update for September 22, 2020

British prime minister Boris Johnson wants you to know that more people die from Coronavirus in "freedom-loving" countries than places like Germany or Italy. Because maybe reactionary blond men shouldn't be running major democracies ... Here are today's other developments:
        Southwest Airlines says just one flight booked by Thursday (September 24) and flown by November 15 will earn a Companion Pass valid between January 6 and February 28. Registration is required. Southwest's standard Companion Pass, valid for one year, requires 125,000 Rapid Rewards points.
        JetBlue Airways is cutting capacity. It now says third-quarter capacity will be down 55 percent instead of the previously expected 45 percent. The daily cash burn will be at the "low end" of its $7-9 million third-quarter prediction.
        September stutter The TSA says nearly 770,000 people passed through airport checkpoints yesterday. That's 31.6 percent of 2019 volume, right in line with the travel torpor experienced since Labor Day. In other words, average daily flying has settled in at around 30 percent of 2019 volume.
        Dublin Airport says passenger volume Monday declined 89 percent compared to September 21, 2019.
        Mexico has joined the United States and Canada and extended the ban on non-essential land travel until October 21.
        Lying in plain sight/site A notorious right-wing troll called Streiff, who edits the reactionary RedState.com site, has been exposed as a government employee. In fact, he was a spokesman for the agency run by Dr. Anthony Fauci. The troll, Bill Crews, also viciously attacked Fauci in his Streiff guise. He "retired" from government after his dual life was exposed. The Daily Beast exposed Crews here. His retreat from the public teat was covered at The New York Times here.

Coronavirus Update for September 21, 2020

Today we hit 200,000 dead in the United States from Coronavirus. Canada's death toll is slightly more than 9,200. Adjusting for population, that would be around 83,000 deaths if Canada was as densely populated as the United States. Here are today's other developments:
        Bouncing along The TSA says almost 848,000 people passed through airport checkpoints on Sunday. That's 33.6 percent of 2019 volume, the best performance since the Labor Day weekend.
        The Taj Mahal in India reopened today after a six-month closure.
        Wynn Resorts, with has two properties in Las Vegas, reports there have been 548 Coronavirus cases since May among its 12,000 employees. There have been three deaths.
        Lufthansa has confirmed that it will retire all of its largest-capacity jets: 14 Airbus A380s and 17 Airbus A340-600s.
        The face of the virus A North Carolina couple married 48 years died within minutes of each other earlier this month. CNN has the details.

Coronavirus Update for September 20, 2020

It really does look as if we've hit the much-predicted post-summer end of the flying revival. The TSA says 638,575 people passed through airport checkpoints on Saturday. That is only 3/10th of a point higher in 2019 volume than Saturday, September 12. Here are today's other developments:
        Luxe letdown The Luxe Rodeo Drive hotel in Beverly Hills has closed permanently. The 86-room property is the first high-end Los Angeles property to close. It won't be the last.
        Failure to launch U.S. airlines operated 236,000 flights in June, up from 180,000 in May, but far below the 680,000 flights in June, 2019. The figures were compiled by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics division of the U.S. Department of Transportation.
        South Africa will lift its ban on international arrivals on October 1. Airports in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban will reopen to traffic. International visitors will be required to prove they have tested negative no earlier than 72 hours before arrival in South Africa.
        Hawaiian Airlines resumes service to Tokyo/Narita on October 1. There will be one weekly flight from Honolulu during the month of October.
        Trains to nowhere Ticket sales on British railroads plunged 85 percent during the last six months compared to 2019, according to Trainline.com, a huge online retailer of British rail journeys.

Coronavirus Update for September 13-19, 2020

Read all about it! More than 193,000 195,000 199,000 Americans have died during the virus pandemic as positive cases pass the 6.5-million mark. Countries that once "beat" the virus experience a dreaded second wave. Flying numbers fall as both business and leisure travel slows. Hotels are closing forever. Ground borders in North America remain closed. And more. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for September 6-12, 2020

Read all about it! More than 188,000 190,000 193,000 have died during the pandemic in the United States. Schools and universities continue to cancel or curtail in-person classes. U.S. airlines press for another bailout, but the Senate omits it from its bill. The travel industry begins autumn cutbacks as the summer uptick flattens. And more. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for August 30-Sept. 5, 2020

Read all about it! The United States has now passed 6 million confirmed cases and 182,000 185,000 188,000 dead. That's about 24 percent of the global cases and 20 percent of the death toll. We are 4 percent of the world's population. Meanwhile, more and more 2021 events are cancelled as travel dials back from a brief summer "high." And more. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for August 23-August 29, 2020

Read all about it! The death toll from Coronavirus surges past 175,000 180,000 182,000 as European and Asian nations deal with resurgences of the virus. Flying hits the wall as daily traffic sags noticeably. Airlines globally begin to pull down service again. And more. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for August 16-August 22, 2020

Read all about it! As the nation begins two weeks of Zoom-like political conventions, the death toll from Coronavirus surges past 169,000 175,000 176,000. As many places open, others shut back down. Travel continues to wobble: Airline passenger volume flattens, hotel occupancy rates remain far below 2019 levels. And more. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for August 9-August 15, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll surges past 162,000 165,000 169,000. There are now more than 20 million cases worldwide and a quarter of them have been in the United States. Travel continues to be in an extended holding pattern as Americans fret about schools, the football season--and the post office. And more. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for August 2-August 8, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll spikes dramatically as the nationwide tally surges past 155,000 160,000 162,000. Countries that thought they'd tamed the virus are scaling back activities just as the August vacation season kicks into high gear. U.S. carriers and hotels face the wreckage of a shrunken travel industry. And more. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for July 26-August 1, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll surges past 146,000 150,000 154,000 as new cases and rising hospitalization rates tax hospitals in Florida, Texas and other Sunbelt states. European countries consider requirements for returning residents to test after holidays. The travel industry worries about the fragility--and shallow nature--of the "recovery." And more. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for July 19-25, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll surges past 140,000 145,000 146,000 while infections rage out of control throughout the Sunbelt. Countries close their borders again and reopenings in the United States are rolled back or curtailed. The travel industry faces a hard reality: There's no V-shaped recovery. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for July 12-18, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll surges past 135,000 140,000 while countries such as New Zealand can declare themselves virus-free. New York City, however, said it had its first death-free day since mid-March. Meanwhile, Florida is the new global epicenter of Coronavirus. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for July 5-11, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll surges past 130,000 135,000 and new virus infections are rising around the nation and around the world. The question is now what a post-Fourth travel scene will look like as several states with key hubs--California, Arizona, Texas, Florida--report record-breaking infection numbers. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for June 28-July 4, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll surges past 125,000 130,000. As the Coronavirus rages throughout the South, reality sets in about the pace of any possible "recovery" and reopenings. Europe drops most of its intra-continental travel restrictions, but most foreign visitors, including Americans, are still barred. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for June 21-27, 2020

Read all about it! The U.S. Coronavirus death toll surges past 115,000 120,000 125,000 126,000. Deaths slowed last week, but the infection rate is growing in half the states. U.S. travel picks up. The Northeast states that suffered in earlier months now quarantine arrivals from the high-infection states. European carriers grow capacity as the continent prepares for a July 1 reopening that may not permit Americans to visit. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for June 14-20, 2020

Read all about it! The nation's Coronavirus death toll surges past 115,000 119,000. The second wave seems to be starting in states that opened early. More airlines around the world resume service. U.S. airlines add back some flights, but traffic remains below 20 percent of 2019's totals. And more. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for June 7-13, 2020

Read all about it! The nation's Coronavirus death toll surges past 110,000 115,000 and the number of confirmed cases passes the two-million mark. Protests around the nation overshadow the pandemic and its effects. New York City opens up just as London and Britain launch 14-day quarantines. Flight traffic jumps yet remains a small fraction of 2019 volume. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for May 31-June 6, 2020

Read all about it! As the nation's Coronavirus death toll surges past 100,000 105,000 110,000, the nation's cities are hit with peaceful protests and violent riots. European carriers begin to fly again and the continent's major tourist countries plan to reopen to the world. U.S travel inches up from its mid-April floor. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for May 24-May 30, 2020

Read all about it! As the nation's Coronavirus death toll surges past 95,000 100,000 103,000, holiday travel "surges" back to about 13 percent of 2019's numbers. Some international travel resumes, but new bans are instituted, too. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for May 17-May 23, 2020

Read all about it! As the national Coronavirus death toll surges past the 85,000 90,000 95,000 96,000 mark, all eyes are on the states that opened quickly. Will their infection and death rates spike? Asia deals with zero tourism as bans on visitors continue. European countries sweat the decisions to open to some tourism. Flying is still down more than 90 percent compared to 2019, but surges for Memorial Day. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for May 10-May 16, 2020

Read all about it! The nationwide Coronavirus death toll surges past the 75,000 80,000 85,000 88,000 mark. European countries make plans for slow, phased openings. The United States is more chaotic. Airlines and airports go beyond masks to temperature checks. Travel is picking up--if you squint and squeeze the numbers. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for May 3-May 9, 2020

Read all about it! The nationwide Coronavirus death toll surges past the 65,000 70,000 75,000 78,000 mark. We enter the era of the masked flyer. New York closes its subways for the first time ever. Airline losses keep piling up. Traffic doesn't. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for April 26-May 2, 2020

Read all about it! The nationwide Coronavirus death toll surges past the 50,000 55,000 60,000 65,000 66,000 mark. Some states loosen restrictions while European countries will keep things closed into the summer. U.S. airline traffic begins to nudge up as airline earnings plunge. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for April 19-April 25, 2020

Read all about it! The nationwide Coronavirus death toll surges past the 35,000 40,000 45,000 50,000 52,000 mark, but progress is made in Italy, Spain, Austria and France. Governors start opening their states. Airlines begin to declare bankruptcy and the first tranche of first-quarter financial results are brutal. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for April 12-April 18, 2020

U.S. governors talk about when the states can reopen even as nationwide Coronavirus deaths surge past the 20,000 25,000 30,000 35,000 mark. Airlines whine about the terms of the bailout money they're getting from the nation's taxpayers. And only fools and self-important pundits know anything about the future of travel. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for April 5-April 11, 2020

Read all about it! As the world convulses with the waves of Coronavirus, the toll on the travel industry is revealed. Remaining flights are essentially empty, airports are shutting terminals and business travelers have nowhere to go--and aren't in a rush to get there. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for March 29-April 4, 2020

Read all about it! Domestic travel is down more than 90 percent from last year. More states impose stay-at-home orders. The death toll in Italy and Spain continues to skyrocket. And doctors and nurses are scrambling for supplies to help Coronavirus patients--and protect themselves. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for the day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for March 22-28, 2020

The new "new normal"? International transit airports barring transit passengers. U.S. states demanding arrivals from other U.S. states quarantine themselves on arrival. U.S. passenger volume dropping by 90 percent in a matter of days. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for the day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for March 15-21, 2020

Read all about it! The world is closing--and we watch in personal and transportation isolation. Countries are closing borders, airlines are all but shut and hotels are putting the keys in the door. Here's how we're covering it. Click here for the day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for March 8-14, 2020

Read all about it! Italy, Spain, France and Israel shut down. Other countries close their borders as the United States preps for what's to come. The Trump Administration botches the roll out of a ban on "all travel from Europe." U.S. carriers begin cutting service to the bone. Here's how it's happening. Click here for the day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for March 1-7, 2020

Read all about it! Italy emerges as the new Coronavirus hotspot so airlines begin making huge service cuts there. Meanwhile, Chinese airlines resume some flying. The chief rabbi of Israel says don't kiss the mezuzah. The travel industry starts tallying the financial damage. Here's how it's happening. Click here for the day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for February 15-29, 2020

Read all about it! The Coronavirus spreads around the globe. Japan, South Korea and Italy are hit hard and airlines quickly drop their flights. Tourism disappears and companies begin telling employees to curtail business travel. The Tokyo Summer Olympics may be threatened. Airlines begin rolling out gimmicky fee waivers to nervous flyers. Click here for the day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for February 1-14, 2020

Read all about it! The spread of the Coronavirus is still mostly affecting mainland China, but Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan are losing flights and visitors, too. As Chinese tourists stay home, however, the travel industry learns how much they mean to airline traffic, cruise ships and hotels. Click here for day-to-day details.

Coronavirus Update for January 23-31, 2020

Read all about it! As the Coronavirus worsens, airlines have reacted by slashing service to Hong Kong and mainland China. Retailers and food-service giants such as McDonald's are closing locations, too. And neighboring countries are closing their borders. Click here for the day-to-day details.