United Prepares to Ax Almost 600 Workers

Having recently returned from a vacation to Iceland, this story grabbed my attention this week. United Airlines has set an absolute deadline of Monday, October 4, for all domestic employees to provide proof of vaccination for the Covid-19 virus. And starting the next day, the carrier will begin the process of firing 593 employees who so far haven’t provided that documentation.

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Delta Air Lines Increasing Health Insurance Premiums by $200 Monthly For Unvaccinated Staff

Delta Air Lines Airbus A350-900 aircraft as seen on final approach landing at Amsterdam Schiphol AMS EHAM airport in the Netherlands. The Delta Airlines modern and advanced wide-body airplane has the registration N512DN and is powered by 2x RR jet engines. Delta DL DAL is ranked the second-largest airline in the world with headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia US and is a member of SkyTeam airline aviation alliance. Delta is connecting with transatlantic flights the United States of America with the Netherlands and Europe during the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic era. July 2, 2020 (Photo by Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

In a unique and bold move, effective November 1, Delta Air Lines employees who choose to remain unvaccinated against the COVID-19 virus will be assessed an additional $200 monthly for their health insurance premium. Rather than specifically mandating vaccination, the Atlanta-based carrier is telling those who refuse to be innoculated that they will be paying for the increased costs the airline incurs to cover pandemic hospitalizations.

In addition to the higher insurance premium, starting September 12, unvaccinated Delta employees will be required to take a weekly COVID-19 test and wear a mask indoors while at work. Thus far, United Airlines, Hawaiian Air and Air Canada are the only North American airlines to mandate vaccinations for all workers, with an exception allowed for those who may be immuno-compromised and have not been vaccinated at the direction of a physician. Frontier Airlines requires vaccination or a weekly test for the virus, and Alaska Airlines is expected to mandate the vaccine shortly.

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Survey Says! These are the World’s Best Airports

Main concourse at the Seoul-Incheon International Airport

The world’s best airports for 2020 according to Skytrax, the London-based airline and airport research organization, have been announced. The annual results are viewed with keen interest by airport and air travel enthusiasts around the world. In order to reach the top 5-star rating, airports must excel in areas such as the overall facility design, ease of finding your way, access to multilingual assistance, dining and shopping options, terminal comfort and cleanliness, security/immigration, and the service level of airport staff.

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Where in the World Do You Want to Go? These Are the Safest Countries to Visit

Spectacular waterfalls, gorges and volcanic lava fields abound in Iceland.

Thanks to COVID we’ve all had plenty of time to plan our next adventure. While many Americans have already taken to the skies domestically, international travel has been virtually non-existent for the last year and a half. With the Delta variant now slowing our return to ‘normalcy’, whatever that is, and with more variants expected to follow, it’ll take a major ramping up of vaccinations worldwide before the international travel community can welcome us back to their countries.

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