dnata has continued to deliver reliable and safe air services and taken on new roles to support and create value for airline customers and local communities amid COVID-19 challenges.
Cooperating closely with government authorities, customers and suppliers, the company’s dedicated teams have worked around the clock to make a difference by ensuring smooth and safe turnaround of repatriation flights, handling essential cargo, supporting industries facing a labour shortage, launching innovative new products and services as well as donating high-nutrition meals to organisations and individuals in need.
Gary Chapman, President of dnata, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented disruption to the travel and aviation industries. dnata is not immune. Like our customers and competitors, we are also facing serious challenges and working hard to recalibrate our business and operations for what, right now, is an uncertain future. Despite this extraordinary operating environment, we must stay focussed on delivering the promises we made and continually creating value for our customers and the communities around us.
“Over the past few months, we have adapted our operations and processes to the new normal, enhanced our existing services, and launched new ones to meet changing demand. This has all been achieved thanks to the team of talented colleagues across our businesses, who live and breathe dnata’s promise to deliver quality and safe services for our customers and their customers.”
Although flights have been dramatically reduced globally, dnata’s ground and passenger handling teams have continued to help airline partners deliver on special missions across the globe. From London to Manila and Dubai, the company’s dedicated employees have helped thousands of families reunite by handling more than 2,600 repatriation flights between March-July. With health and safety being dnata’s number one priority, all employees have been thoroughly trained on updated protocols, including the correct use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and the application of social distancing across airport operations.
dnata has also continued to support airlines in maintaining global trade and the flow of essential goods by delivering best-in-class cargo services. dnata’s teams have handled over 67,000 tonnes of PPE, life-saving medical supplies and pharmaceuticals over the past four months. At each of its 46 cargo stations, dnata has been using the latest technology, best practices and certified warehouses to ensure that every pharma and vaccine shipment is handled in compliance with the highest international standards.
In response to the strong air cargo market demand for the rapid, reliable and efficient transportation of essential commodities, several airlines have introduced additional cargo capacity by using passenger aircraft with seats fully or partially removed from the cabin. To adapt to changing customer needs, dnata has enhanced services, improved processes and trained employees to safely and efficiently handle passenger planes carrying cargo only. In Australia, Pakistan and the UK, dnata’s professionally trained staff achieved remarkable milestones by loading record amounts of up to 71 tonnes of cargo onto airline customers’ passenger aircraft.
dnata has also enhanced its aircraft cabin cleaning services to ensure the highest possible level of safety on board its customers’ flights. The new process involves extensive cleaning with a stronger disinfectant, and includes a comprehensive wipedown of all surfaces – from windows, tray tables, seatback screens, armrests, seats, in-seat controls, panels, air vents and overhead lockers in the cabin to lavatories, galleys and crew rest areas. The on-board cleaning chemicals are approved by the relevant authorities and proven to kill viruses and germs. They leave a long-lasting protective coating against new contamination of viruses, bacteria and fungi on surfaces, and are eco-friendly. A dedicated quality team and shift managers oversee the cleaning on the majority of flights.
In addition, dnata has launched innovative new products and services across its global operations to help airlines and passengers navigate the new normal. The company has added thermal screening, baggage disinfection and even home COVID-testing services to its offering at various locations around the world.
Operating over 60 state-of-the-art facilities, dnata has significant capacity to provide safe, quality catering services to industries in need. Since the COVID-19 outbreak began, dnata’s catering team has adapted its catering products and services in line with demand, and increased its capability to serve health and aged-care industries to support relief efforts alongside local authorities. In several countries, dnata delivers meals for quarantine facilities, looking after those who have to compulsorily isolate.
dnata’s skilled workforce has also taken on new roles to support communities. In Singapore and Australia the company has partnered with authorities and companies to temporarily redeploy employees to organisations in industries facing a labour shortage. To date, over 400 dnata employees have been trained and started working in other organisations.
dnata has remained committed to giving back to communities globally. The company teamed up with authorities, organisations and partners to provide ingredients, meals and packaged goods to local communities in need. To date, more than 200,000 wholesome meals have been donated to various organisations in Australia, Ireland, Italy and the UK to enable them to support those who need it the most.