Airlines continue to cut flights as the COVID-19 pandemic prompts consumers nationwide to cancel leisure travel and businesses to continue to restrict travel for employees. American Airlines and Delta Air Lines announced new cuts on Friday following similar moves by Southwest Airlines and United Airlines. American, whose May reductions will be uploaded by April 5, said its capacity will drop between 70%-80%.
Instacart workers are planning a nationwide strike to demand greater safety precautions. Organizers say requests for hazard pay and protective equipment have been ignored for several weeks amid surging demand for grocery delivery. As the COVID-19 pandemic worsens in the U.S., more and more consumers nationwide are sheltering in place and not leaving their home for any reason, including groceries.
The company known for revolutionary vacuum cleaners is pivoting in light of the coronavirus. Dyson has received an order from the U.K. government for 10,000 ventilators to support efforts by the country's National Health Service. James Dyson, the company's billionaire founder, confirmed the order in a letter to employees shared with CNN on Wednesday. Dyson said the company had designed and built an entirely new ventilator, called the "CoVent," since he received the call 10 days ago from U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
The Cheesecake Factory is one of hundreds of businesses affected by shelter-in-place orders that are keeping patrons away. Many locations are located in now-closed malls. The popular sit-down restaurant chain says it will not be able to make upcoming rent payments for any of its storefronts on April 1. The Calabasas Hills-based company informed all of its landlords in a letter dated March 18 that a severe decline in restaurant traffic has decreased its cash flow and “inflicted a tremendous financial blow” to business, according to the letter obtained by Eater.
Travelers who must take flights despite the world-wide pandemic will see less airport and on-board amenities at airlines across the board. Several have suspended alcoholic beverage service on all flights, even international. Many are only offering bottled water as a beverage. American Airlines will also temporarily close most of its Admirals Club lounges until further notice and Delta Air Lines is closing many Sky Clubs.
The star-studded, limited-edition Pirelli calendar is a much-anticipated event in fashion circles, but the tire company decided to cancel the 2021 edition in response to the global pandemic. Instead it's donating 100,000 euros ($107,906 at current exchange) to "the fight against and research into Coronavirus," the organization said in a release. The 2020 calendar featured actresses Kristen Stewart and Emma Watson, among others.
Rich Williams has been relieved of the title of Groupon CEO a month after the deals site reported a dismal fourth-quarter performance. Williams will continue as an employee and the company’s current president of North America, Aaron Cooper, will become interim CEO and help in the search to find Williams’ permanent replacement. Chief Operating Officer Steve Krenzer is also no longer serving in his role, but will continue as an employee, the company says in a release.
Mortgage companies are anticipating a wave of customers who won’t be able to make payments due to job loss or illness related to COVID-19. “The companies, such as Quicken Loans Inc. and Mr. Cooper Group Inc., expect a wave of missed payments from borrowers as early as next month that will force them to come up with tens of billions of dollars on short notice,” according to The Wall Street Journal. “The mortgage firms are on the hook to continue paying principal and interest on the mortgages they service even if homeowners are in arrears.”
Chase, American Express, Capital One, Citi and Discover are all offering assistance to customers experiencing financial difficulties as a result of COVID-19. Customers are being encouraged to call the customer support phone numbers on their cards to see what might be available. On Chase’s website, there is a dedicated coronavirus resource page with a message from Chase Consumer Banking CEO Thasunda Brown Duckett saying, “If you need help because of COVID-19, please reach out to us,” according to CNBC.
The International Olympics Committee said millions of Tokyo hotel rooms had been booked for this summer, and some of the city’s venues might not be available a year from now. Organizers have reported spending $12.6 billion on preparations. The sprawling athletes' village was scheduled to be sold off, piece by piece, as condominiums in the fall. That plan will have to be put on ice.