IAG offers PAX aircraft for cargo charter

By Damian Brett

IAG is offering its passenger aircraft to freight forwarders for cargo operations in response to the coronavirus.

In a short note to customers, IAG Cargo chief commercial officer John Cheetham said: “To support your freight and to help get it where it needs to be, we are now opening up the opportunity for freight forwarders to charter our aircraft where needed.

“As a business we are looking to move quickly to find working solutions for our customers. If you are interested and you need more information on charter capacity, please do get in touch with your local sales representative.”

This comes as passenger operations have been cut, resulting in cargo capacity reductions.

Earlier this week, IAG chief executive Willie Walsh said that governments “need to appreciate” that there is a strong cargo demand, and passenger aircraft carry a large proportion of global airfreight.

“Our intention is to try and keep as much of our capacity available for critical supplies that need to be shipped around the world,” he said.

“We may operate some of our passenger aircraft just for belly-hold cargo to ensure we keep critical supplies moving.”

IAG is set to ground dozens of aircraft over April and May, equivalent to a 75% cut in capacity, in response to falling demand and restrictions imposed on travel.

In the US, Delta Air Lines has also offered its aircraft up for cargo charter.

Meanwhile, Scoot is operating its passenger aircraft on behalf of sister company SIA Cargo and Cathay Pacific and Korea Air have confirmed that their aircraft are being used to carry cargo.

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