Alcock adds: “You’ve got to try and convince the regulator that you have the financial resources to trade.”
“There are going to be an awful lot of operators that, come the end of September, are not going to be able to get the security they need to get their licence renewed.”
This is only one part of a perfect storm that is brewing, he adds. Employer contributions towards Rishi Sunak’s furlough scheme ramp up in September before its end in October. Meanwhile, an emergency moratorium that prevents suppliers from winding up companies over unpaid bills is due to come to an end.
Nimmo is optimistic pragmatism will prevail. He says: “I think everyone appreciates these are not normal times, and it is likely the regulator will take this into account over the weeks ahead.”
Airlines, airports, travel operators and agents rank among the worst hit by Covid-19, a recent report by ratings agency Moody’s found.
Bespoke state support has yet to be forthcoming, all the more galling after early indications that it was on the cards back in March. The quarantine and its reintroduction has poured salt into the wounds, insiders say.
“The wisest in the industry could do well by shutting their doors until next April,” says one boss. Many, however, may not survive that long.