Some U.S. airline operations were constrained this summer as carriers worked to catch up with training for pilots who were on leave during worst days of the Covid-19 crisis.

But experts expect the return of a more structural pilot shortage in the coming years as flight operations eventually ramp up to 2019 levels but without the pilots who took advantage of early retirement offers put forward by airlines in 2020. Candidates for pilots can learn the profession in

“It’s going restrict our ability to do business worldwide,” said Kit Darby, whose aviation consulting business,, focuses on pilot career services. “It is going to restrict our regional airlines, and they have half the flights and over a quarter of the passengers. If the smaller airlines run out of pilots they can’t feed the bigger airlines passengers.”

Fueled by a surge of pilots reaching the mandatory retirement age of 65 and augmented by industry growth and a reduction in the number of military-trained pilots who could quickly be hired, the U.S. airline industry was struggling with a pilot shortage prior to the pandemic.

The University of North Dakota, which has one of this country’s leading four-year flight training degree programs, estimated that the U.S. had a shortage of 3,500 commercial pilots in 2020, pre-pandemic.

The shortage had been especially acute for regional airlines in the years leading up to the Covid-19 outbreak, forcing some to reduce their schedules while also contributing to some bankruptcies and closures.

Schedule reductions directly impact major carriers, since the largest U.S. regional airlines fly under the American Eagle, Delta Connection and United Express brands.

The University of North Dakota expected mandatory retirements to peak between 2023 and 2026 at around 3,000 annually.

Kit Darby

Kit Darby

The pilot shortage ended overnight with the beginning of the Covid-19 crisis. Instead, approximately 5,000 pilots accepted early retirement offers from mainline U.S. carriers desperate to reduce payroll, according to analysis undertaken by Darby. Now, as airlines anticipate reaching 2019 demand levels in 2022 or 2023 and then growing from there, they’ll have to replace those pilots sooner than expected, often from the existing regional pilot ranks.

Hiring needs will be substantially higher than what airlines have dealt with to date. U.S. airline seat capacity is down 11% this August compared with 2019, according to the air travel data provider OAG. Worldwide, the in-service airline fleet also remains 11% below the pre-pandemic level, according to a recent Aviation Week analysis. In addition, 11% of the planes that are in service are either parked or on reserve.

In other words, there will be a future need for more planes — and more pilots.

What the airlines are doing about it

Delta has said it plans to hire 1,000 pilots by next summer. United recently became the first mainline U.S. carrier to purchase its own flight training school. The carrier expects to graduate 5,000 pilots from its Aviate Academy by the end of the decade.

In an analysis early this year, the

CHICAGO — Chicago Public School students return to the classroom this morning following the Labor Day weekend. However, anyone who hasn’t been vaccinated and travelled out of town for the holiday will have to stay at home — without remote learning as an option.

CPS informed students and families of the guidelines before the holiday weekend.

If a child is unvaccinated, CPS wants them to produce a negative Covid test and still quarantine for seven days after returning to the state.

If a child doesn’t get tested, they are required to stay home for 10 days.

Parents should notify the schools that their child will be absent and it will be excused by the school.

After 24 hours, students will be given take home work.

CPS’s online tracker shows that as of Sept. 4, 28 adults in the district have tested positive for COVID-19, with 11 students doing the same.

Last week, Gov. JB Pritzker said it was important that everyone step back and think about they can keep others safe.

Students who do test positive for COVID-19 will be allowed access to the district’s virtual academy.

Parents must notify the district before that process can begin.

When it comes to theme parks, there are certain things that make Disneyland the magical place that it is. There are, of course, all the amazing rides and attractions, the smell of popcorn as you make your way down Main Street U.S.A, and the incredible fireworks that light up the night sky. However, for true Disneyland fans, there is something else that makes Disneyland special — the Dapper Dans.

dapper dans
Credit: Disney

The Dapper Dans are a barbershop quartet that can be found singing classic songs on Main Street U.S.A. They are loved by all, and they encourage Guests of all ages to sing along with the Disney songs that they know and love.

The Dapper Dans were a Disneyland Park staple before the theme park was forced to shut down due to the pandemic. Although the theme park was able to reopen on April 30, after being closed for more than 400 days, the Dapper Dans were not a part of the reopening. However, they have now returned to the theme park, and just in time to be a part of Halloween season!

Dapper Dans
Credit: Disney

Disney fans are not the only ones who are excited to see the Dapper Dans return — the singers themselves are glad to once again be a part of the magic, especially at Halloween. They spoke to Disney Parks Blog, who shared the news of the Dapper Dans return.

“Halloween is definitely one of my favorite times of the year on Main Street,” said Dapper Dan Wesley Alfvin. “’Grim Grinning Ghosts’ is one of my favorite songs to sing because it has such a wonderful history here at the park with Haunted Mansion and Thurl Ravenscroft.” (Foolish mortals, Thurl Ravenscroft can be heard as one of the original Grim Grinning Ghosts singers over at the Haunted Mansion!) “I’ve always felt personally honored to step into his shoes a bit and sing the bass in the song.”

Inside the Magic visited Disneyland on the first day of Halloween Time and saw the singers donning their classic orange vests that honor the season.

Dapper Dans
Credit: ITM Bailee A.
Dapper Dans
Credit: ITM Bailee A.
Dapper Dans
Credit: ITM Bailee A.

While “Grim Grinning Ghosts” is usually just sung by the Dapper Dans during Halloween Time, there are a number of sings that you can hear them sing all year long, including “Strolling Through the Park”, “Mr. Sandman”, and “Zip-a-Dee Doo Dah”.

Are you excited to see the Dapper Dans back at Disneyland? Let us know in the comments!

CLICK HERE to book your Disneyland Resort vacation with our friends at Academy Travel – an EarMarked Diamond travel agency that can provide you with a free quote today!

Google said on Tuesday that it would delay reopening its offices until Jan. 10. The new date is a postponement from October, which was a postponement from September, which was a postponement from July, which was a postponement from January.

Companies including Amazon, Apple and Starbucks have rescheduled with similar frequency, and it’s becoming difficult to take new announcements about back-to-office plans seriously. The New York Times, Twitter and others have decided not to set a new date for reopening their offices.

These shifts, of course, reflect constantly changing circumstances during the pandemic. A batch of surveys captured how workplace practices and policies are changing, the DealBook newsletter reports.

On vaccine mandates:

Before the latest surge of coronavirus cases, few companies had announced vaccine mandates. But according to a survey released Wednesday, most companies now have plans to require that employees get vaccinated by the end of the year. Conducted by Willis Towers Watson, the survey polled nearly 1,000 companies that together employ almost 10 million people:

  • 52 percent plan to have vaccine mandates by the end of the year (including 21 percent that already do).

  • 78 percent plan to track employees’ vaccination status (55 percent already do).

  • 17 percent are considering health insurance premium rewards or surcharges to encourage vaccination (2 percent already do).

On employee expectations:

Creating and putting these policies in place takes time. Companies may also be responding to their employees’ shifting expectations (and fears) about returning to the workplace. Another report released Wednesday, conducted by the Conference Board, surveyed 2,400 U.S. workers:

  • 42 percent said they were worried about returning to work for fear of contracting Covid or exposing family members to the virus, up from 24 percent of respondents in a survey in June.

  • 29 percent said they were unsure if they would remain at their current job for the next six months. Among those looking for jobs, 80 percent said that their employer’s stance on flexible work arrangements was very or moderately important in their decision to look elsewhere.

On business travel:

Looking ahead to after the pandemic, one of the things that workers can probably count on is less business travel, according to a survey out Tuesday by Bloomberg of 45 large companies around the world:

  • 84 percent of companies plan to spend less on travel after the pandemic, with a majority of those planning cuts of 20 to 40 percent of their prepandemic budgets. Put another way, all of those Zoom meetings aren’t going away.

In just over one week, Disneyland Resort will transform into the Spookiest Place on Earth for its much-anticipated Halloween season. Disneyland was closed last Halloween due to the pandemic, so Guests are especially excited to see the return of Mickey pumpkins, specialty treats, and the incredibly popular Halloween party, Oogie Boogie Bash.

oogie boogie bash
Credit: Disney

Oogie Boogie Bash will run on select nights from September 9 until October 31 and will feature a ton of exciting events and experiences. One of the top experiences for party Guests is the Frightfully Fun Parade, which will run through the streets of Disney California Adventure. On August 26, Disney announced a fan favorite would be returning to the parade. According to Disney Parks Blog:

Get ready to be dazzled as your favorite Disney characters and Disney villains pass by in a parade with a spell-binding beat. Led by the Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow arriving on his eerie black steed, this rockin’ gathering of vivacious ghosts and hair-raising haunts is not-to-be-missed.

headless horseman disney
Credit: Disney

While Guests attending Oogie Boogie Bash will be able to experience a bunch of exclusive events, they will also be able to take advantage of all the Disney California Adventure Park has to offer, with much lower crowds.

With your ticket to Oogie Boogie Bash, you will also be able to explore Disney California Adventure park, including the all-new Avengers Campus! Check out the transformed Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark, an exciting Halloween adventure filled with creepy creatures and thrilling drops. For more thrills, don’t forget to include a ride on the Incredicoaster in Pixar Pier. If you prefer a smoother, less spine-chilling ride, enjoy the majestic views on Soarin’ Around the World.

Monsters After Dark
Credit: Disney

On Oogie Boogie Bash party dates, California Adventure will close at 6 p.m. and the party will run from 6 p.m. until 11 p.m. However, Guests with Oogie Boogie Bash tickets can enter California Adventure as early as 3 p.m. All Oogie Boogie Bash tickets are sold out at this time.

Are you excited to see the Headless Horseman make his return? Will you be attending Oogie Boogie Bash? Let us know in the comments!

CLICK HERE to book your Disneyland Resort vacation with our friends at Academy Travel – an EarMarked Diamond travel agency that can provide you with a free quote today!

Qantas is already taking bookings to Singapore with international flights set to resume from mid-December.

The flying kangaroo airline started accepting bookings to the Asian financial hub on Thursday morning, hours after it announced overseas flights would resume when 80 per cent of Australians were fully vaccinated.

The federal government is yet to formally repeal the ban on overseas holiday travel but air tickets for Singapore are now available.

Prices for a Qantas flight from Sydney just before Christmas, one way, start at $741 for economy.

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Qantas is already taking booking to Singapore with international flights set to resume from mid-December. The flying kangaroo airline started accepting booking to the Asian financial hub on Thursday morning, hours after it announced overseas flights would resume when 80 per cent of Australians were fully vaccinated

Airfares for destinations like Singapore went on sale on Thursday morning even though the federal government is yet to formally announce the end of the travel ban for overseas holidays. Prices for a Qantas flight from Sydney just before Christmas, one way, start at $741 for premium economy

Airfares for destinations like Singapore went on sale on Thursday morning even though the federal government is yet to formally announce the end of the travel ban for overseas holidays. Prices for a Qantas flight from Sydney just before Christmas, one way, start at $741 for premium economy

A day before the Qantas announcement, Trade and Tourism Minister Dan Tehan hinted Australia’s travel bubble with New Zealand would be expanded to include the likes of Singapore.

‘When we see 80 per cent are fully vaccinated, outbound international restrictions will be lifted and travel bubbles will be expanded,’ he told Parliament.

‘So not only will we have the travel bubble with New Zealand but the Pacific Islands, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, the US, the UK are all possibilities that we’ll be able to extend our travel bubbles to.’ 

Travellers from Australia are already on Singapore’s favoured list, despite lockdowns in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra, with no pre-Covid test required before boarding a flight.

Only China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Canada, Germany,  New Zealand and Macau are also in Singapore’s special category.

Qantas is expecting Australia to reach the 80 per cent vaccination target in December – triggering the re-opening of international borders as part of ‘Phase C’ of the federal government’s path to pandemic normality. 

A day before the Qantas announcement, Trade and Tourism Minister Dan Tehan hinted Australia's travel bubble with New Zealand would be expanded to include the likes of Singapore

A day before the Qantas announcement, Trade and Tourism Minister Dan Tehan hinted Australia’s travel bubble with New Zealand would be expanded to include the likes of Singapore

Qantas plan for international travel

MID-DECEMBER: Singapore, the United States, Japan, United Kingdom and Canada using Boeing 787s

New Zealand if travel bubble reopened with Australia 

Airbus A330s, and 737s and A320s for services to Fiji

FEBRUARY 2022: Hong Kong 

APRIL 2022: Bali, Jakarta, Manila, Bangkok, Phuket, Ho Chi Minh City and Johannesburg

APRIL 2022: Budget subsidiary Jetstar to resume international flights 

JULY 2022: Sydney to Los Angeles on A380s

NOVEMBER 2022: Sydney to London via Singapore with Darwin instead of Perth as a possible transit point 

The first available travel routes will be to first-world destinations with high vaccination rates including the United States, Canada, the UK, Singapore, Japan and New Zealand, Qantas told the Australian Securities Exchange.

Those routes will

A surge in positive coronavirus infections in Hawaii has officials contemplating a return to tougher COVID-19 restrictions on travelers, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

COVID-19 testing for vaccinated domestic travelers, as well as implementing other requirements aimed at halting the spread of the coronavirus, are all on the table, Lt. Gov. Josh Green said.


Potential solutions such as having people show vaccination cards to get into gyms, restaurants and other public places, as well as implementing curfews to reduce activities that could further strain health care facilities, are all possible.

Sunday, August 22, was in fact a record day for cases in Hawaii, which soared to a one-day high of 893. Green said 392 COVID-19 patients were in hospitals Sunday.

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Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in many different species of animals, including camels, cattle, cats, and bats.

“We peaked at 318 last year,” he said. “I’ve cautioned the governor and the mayors that if our numbers go much higher, we are going to lose some citizens to COVID that should be able to get care.”

A vaccination exemption has been in place since June 15 for vaccinated travelers who received at least one shot in Hawaii. It was offered July 8 to domestic trans- Pacific travelers.

The vaccine exemption has been credited with helping Hawaii’s domestic tourism rise above the peak 2019 level. It also has been criticized by some for increasing tourism demand for Hawaii, potentially contributing to coronavirus tolls.

On Saturday, 31,054 travelers arrived in Hawaii, according to Hawaii Safe Travels data. Some 26,682 of them were visitors.

“We have about 900,000 visitors coming in a month, and we are to blame for everything,” said Hewett. “You will never convince me that those numbers are right. It’s like saying the moon is made of green cheese.”

Tutu Man Kawaikapu Hewett – a founding member of Hawaii Quarantine Kapu Breakers, an entertainer and a former Hawaii Tourism Authority board member – said he supports toughening Safe Travels entry requirements immediately as well as instituting short-term lockdowns and curfews. He also wants officials to beef up enforcement of Hawaii’s coronavirus restrictions.

“I’m a great-grandfather, a grandfather, a father. I want to make sure that everyone survives this. I’m going to support anything and everything that makes us safer,” Hewett said.

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Last month, the economy showed signs of solid job growth, adding 943,000 jobs to the labor force in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This brings the overall unemployment rate down to 5.4%, lower than the 5.7% rate economists had predicted.

Of the 943,000 jobs added, 68.8% went to women, marking the largest one-month increase in women’s job growth since August 2020, reports the National Women’s Law Center. With women disproportionately impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, the NWLC estimates that women need nearly five straight months of July’s job gains to return to where they were before the pandemic.

“I think this was a blockbuster month, having nearly one million jobs added,” Jasmine Tucker, NWLC’s director of research, tells CNBC Make It. While it’s good to “celebrate all those gains,” Tucker says she’s unsure about whether we will see similar growth in the coming months due to mask mandates and other restrictions being reinstated because of the delta variant.

“I think next month we could see something completely different based on what’s happening right now,” she says, while emphasizing that “it will be interesting to see what happens with parents” as the school year starts back up.

When looking at the overall jobs report for July, women accounted for 53.9% of the job gains in the leisure and hospitality industry, 91.3% of the job gains in government and all of the job gains in the education and health services sector, according to NWLC’s analysis.

“So, there’s sort of a mixed bag there,” says Tucker. “We tend to think of government jobs as more well-paid jobs with benefits. But, when you think about leisure and hospitality, I think a lot of those are low-quality jobs where people don’t have access to great scheduling, the wages are lower and they don’t always have access to benefits.”

While leisure and hospitality jobs — including those in restaurants, hotels and other service sectors — tend to help drive the economy, data indicates that workers in these roles could also be impacted the most if restrictions are reinstated that limit dining out, traveling and leisure activities.

When peeling back the layers of the jobs report, Tucker says you will also see that not all workers are having an equal recovery. While a total of 140,000 men and women rejoined the labor force last month, NWLC reports that 65,000 Black women and 51,000 Latinas left in July.

“We saw a lot of the unemployment numbers come down, which I think signals some good signs as people have come back to the labor force,” explains Tucker. “But for Black women and Latinas, whose unemployment rates also went down, they had large numbers of people leaving the labor force and that’s probably what drove their [unemployment] drop because those people are no longer counted among the unemployed since they aren’t looking for work.”

In July, the overall unemployment rate for women ages 20 and over decreased to 5% from 5.5% in June. The overall unemployment

The New Orleans metro area has added back 22,200 jobs compared to June 2020 when pandemic-related restrictions cut into the job market.

The Crescent City area had 528,600 nonfarm jobs last month, up 4.3% compared to June 2020 but still well short of 588,300 jobs pre-pandemic in June 2019, according to data released Friday by the Louisiana Workforce Commission.

The numbers are not seasonally adjusted and are from data compiled through surveys conducted in mid-June.

Two sectors were still down from June 2020. Financial activities had 28,900 jobs, down 600 jobs over the year but topping 27,900 jobs in June 2019. Construction had 25,200 jobs, down 1,100 over the year and still down 32,700 jobs compared to June 2019.

Leisure and hospitality had 66,100 jobs, up 9,300 jobs over the year but way down compared to 97,000 jobs in June 2019. Manufacturing had 28,700 jobs, up 200 over the year but down compared to 30,200 June 2019. Trade, transportation and utilities, with 103,900 jobs, was up 3,700 over the year but down from 112,500 in June 2019. Education and health services had 102,700 jobs, up 4,200 jobs over the year and topping the more than 101,500 in June 2019. Professional and business services had 71,700 jobs, up 4,500 over the year but down compared to 77,900 in June 2019. Government had 70,800 jobs, up 300 over the year but down from 72,500 jobs in June 2019. Other services had 21,700 jobs, up 1,500 jobs over the year but down compared to 25,000 in June 2019. Information, which includes the motion picture industry, had 5,400 jobs, up 400 jobs over the year but down compared to 6,700 in June 2019. Mining and logging had 3,500 jobs, down 200 over the year and still down compared to 4,400 jobs in June 2019.

The New Orleans metro unemployment rate was 8.9% compared to 8.2% in May and 12.6% in June 2020. Louisiana’s unemployment rate was 7.4%, compared to 10.3% last year. The U.S. unemployment rate was 6.1% compared to 11.2% in June 2020.

OTHER AREAS: Baton Rouge added back 18,300 jobs for 385,100 jobs, still down compared to 411,000 jobs in June 2019. The Lafayette metro area had 192,600 jobs, up 6,800 jobs over the year but still down compared to 205,900 in June 2019. Alexandria had 59,900 jobs, up from 58,300 jobs; Houma-Thibodaux, 82,900 jobs, up from 78,900; Monroe, 74,400 jobs, up from 72,100; Shreveport-Bossier City, 170,800 jobs, up from 163,300; Lake Charles, 93,200 jobs, down from 95,200 jobs; and Hammond, 45,500 jobs, up from 43,600 a year ago.

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Even as tourists return to popular destinations, a new report says nearly 500,000 hotel jobs lost in the United States during the pandemic will not return this year.

The American Hotel and Lodging Association released their midyear report with two key findings: One in five of the lodging jobs lost nationwide would not come back by next January, and revenues will be off by $44 billion nationwide from their highs in 2019.

In a state-by-state breakdown, the organization estimated that Florida would be missing more than 44,000 hotel jobs by year’s end. The report did not give a breakdown of Florida’s revenue loss.

Preliminary June numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed more than a million jobs in leisure and hospitality in the state, down 210,000 from the high point in February 2020.

The picture, however, might not be as dire for metro Orlando. In the second week of July, the revenue per available room in the area was $95.87, a 15% increase over the same time in 2019, according to hotel analysts STR.

Orlando’s occupancy rate was still down slightly from July 2019, 72% now versus 76% but was above the current national rate of 67.2%.

Casandra Matej, president and CEO of Visit Orlando, said the employment problems hotels in Orlando, Fla., are seeing are not from a lack of visitors. “We’re recovering at a pace ahead of what we even thought,” she said.

She says hotels are self-restricting their occupancy rates because of a lack of applicants for open positions. “We’re trying to get the word out that there a lot of good job openings out there,” she said.

The missing piece in tourism-dependent Florida is business travel, said Carol Dover, Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association president.

Echoing a sentiment she expressed in Orlando last month, Dover wrote in a statement that “Despite impressive recovery in leisure travel, business travel — the main source of income for hotels — is still down significantly, cruises are not operating, and the labor shortage crisis is crippling the ability to operate at adequate capacity.”

More than 10,000 hotel workers in metro Orlando were laid off or furloughed during the pandemic, and all the theme parks closed, resulting in thousands of more layoffs in the hospitality industry.

Many Central Florida hotels reopened last summer, and since the rollout of the vaccines, have seen an increase in business and held job fairs for new hires. Hotel and timeshare chains such as Westgate have said they have rehired most of their former employees.

The American Hotel and Lodging Association has been urging Congress to consider legislative action to protect the industry, including passing the Save Hotel Jobs Act, which would provide $20 billion to hotels to cover payrolls.

The organization is also pushing to establish per diem rates for government travel based on 2019 hotel rates rather than using the past year.