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Lufthansa Will Only Operate 18 Long-haul Flights Per Week Until at Least May 3

Lufthansa Will Only Operate 18 Long-haul Flights Per Week Until at Least May 3

German flag-carrier Lufthansa says it will only operate 18 long-haul flights per week until at least May 3 under what it calls its ‘returnee flight schedule’. The drastically cut back schedule was originally meant to be operated through April 25 but has now been extended by at least one week.

Lufthansa did not say whether it might expand its long-haul schedule after this date or slash it even further in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Photo Credit: Lufthansa

As it stands, the airline will operate three-times-weekly from its hub in Frankfurt to Newark and Chicago, Montreal, Sao Paulo, Bangkok and Tokyo. Lufthansa had also hoped to operate some limited service to Johannesburg but these will be cancelled due to restrictions imposed by the South African authorities.

Along with the long-haul schedule, Lufthansa will continue to maintain 50 daily flights between Germany and key cities throughout Europe. Lufthansa subsidiaries Austrian and Brussels Airlines have suspended all regular operations and SWISS will only operate a handful of long-haul flights to Newark from both Zurich and Geneva.

The Lufthansa Group has, however, been working closely with national governments on a massive repatriation effort to bring back stranded Austrian, Belgium, German and Swiss citizens. Around 300 rescue flights have already been flown and a further 45 flights are in the works.

So far, some 60,000 tourists have been rescued after governments, tour operators and cruise lines chartered Lufthansa planes.

Last week, Lufthansa agreed on a deal to put 27,000 of its employees of short term work – a deal in which the German government to pay 90 per cent of an employees wages during periods in which there is no work for them to do. Around 77 per cent of Lufthansa’s 35,000 strong workforce has been placed on short term work.

A separate deal with Lufthansa’s pilots is yet to be agreed.