MIAMI – United Airlines (UA) has announced it is shutting down 13 executives positions and adding new flights in its July schedule in the wake of the pandemic.

While 13 of the 67 officers of UA were dismissed in the airline’s regional network, eight of them will remain through September 30. The decision was made in light of the federal aid terms on no layoffs before that date.

For upcoming operations, the airline’s CEO, Scott Kirby said that UA expected a plunge in its July schedule of about 75% versus 90% of current reductions in what he calls a “zero percent, no chance” scenario for filing bankruptcy.

Photo: Vincenzo Pace – @jfkjetsofficial

Why UA cut executives jobs

As the Chicago-based carrier reported US$9.6b in liquidity in the first quarter of 2020 through the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), it has been offering voluntary leaves and different staff packages as cost-saving measures. In April, it already announced US$2.1b in losses due to the pandemic.

To reach that liquidity, UA received US$4b in loans, aircraft financing deals and equity sales. Now, it expects to increase its cash flow with the increment of 40 international routes in July and a US$5b payroll support package from the government.

Regarding the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) data of just 12% of passengers passing through U.S. airport checkpoints at the end of May, the airline chose to resume European, Asian and Latin American destinations and in the process firing top executives on regional hubs.

Even though Kirby said that filing for bankruptcy was not “even remotely” in UA’s plans, by now there has not been word on how much money the carrier saved with this job restructuring.

Photo: Vincenzo Pace – @jfkjetsofficial

Resumed routes for July

The company’s July schedule includes flights from Washington to Brussels, London, Munich and Zurich; from San Francisco to Tel Aviv and Delhi; and from Chicago and New Jersey to Tokyo.

While UA added the Caribbean and Latin American services from Houston and Newark, it also said that it expected to soon resume flights to China, pending regulatory permission. These routes would be from San Francisco and Newark to Shangai and Beijing, as reported by Bloomberg.