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Alaska Airlines flight attendants ratify the new five-year contract

Alaska Airlines‘ (Seattle/Tacoma) flight attendants have approved a new five-year contract. Included in the new contract are quality of life enhancements and pay increases that rank Alaska’s 3,400 flight attendants among the highest paid in the industry at every pay step.

Under the Railway Labor Act, which governs collective bargaining agreements in the airline industry, contracts do not expire, they only become amendable. The previous agreement became amendable on May 1, 2012 and the new contract will become amendable again on December 17, 2019.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Alaska Airlines’ Boeing 737-990 ER SSWL N459AS (msn 36352) arrives in Los Angeles with Aviation Partners Boeing Split Scimitar Winglets.

Alaska Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Virgin America completes the fleetwide installation of Gogo ATG-4 WiFi service

Virgin America (San Francisco) today announced the fleetwide rollout of Gogo’s faster ATG-4 WiFi service – with the completion this week of ATG-4 WiFi installation on its Airbus A319 plane “Jane” (N526VA, above).

In 2009, Virgin America became the first airline to offer Gogo Inflight WiFi service on every flight – a distinction the airline still maintains today.

With a base of tech-forward flyers, the airline has similarly invested in the next generation of WiFi technology – with the rollout of Gogo’s enhanced WiFi product to all 53 of Virgin America’s Airbus A320 Family aircraft. ATG-4 offers a faster average guest experience with peak speeds of 9.8 Mbps to each aircraft – more than triple the peak speed of the 3.1 Mbps available with the first generation of inflight WiFi. To help celebrate this milestone, Virgin America and Gogo are asking guests to share their best “office in the sky” moment on Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #OfficeInTheSky for a chance to win a round trip Main Cabin flight for two on Virgin America, a brand new iPad or complimentary Gogo Inflight WiFi service for one year (full terms and conditions available here).

Gogo’s ATG-4 technology includes three industry-leading innovations: the addition of directional antennas and dual modems on each aircraft and the deployment of EV-DO Rev B technology on Gogo’s airborne and ground networks. Utilizing directional antennas and dual modem technology, ATG-4 increases overall peak connection speeds and ensures a more reliable connection to each and every passenger on board who chooses to connect.

Virgin America WiFi (Virgin America)(LR)

The airline’s in-flight connectivity milestones have included:

November 2008: Virgin America streams the first ever “air-to-ground” video stream to YouTube Live – YouTube’s first official real-world user event from the airline’s first WiFi-enabled aircraft

February 2009: The CBS Early Show airs the first-ever live broadcast transmission from a commercial plane – a Virgin America Airbus A320 – via the airline’s in-flight WiFi

May 2009: Virgin America becomes the first U.S. domestic airline to achieve fleetwide WiFi

December 2014: Virgin America is the first U.S. airline to offer next-gen, Gogo ATG-4 Inflight WiFi on every plane

The airline continues to expand its network across the country with flights to Austin, Boston, Cancun, Chicago, Dallas Love Field, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Los Cabos, Newark, New York (JFK and LGA), Orlando, Palm Springs (seasonal), Portland, Puerto Vallarta, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle/Tacoma and Washington D.C. (IAD and DCA).

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com (others by Virgin America). Airbus A319-112 N526VA (msn 3347) departs from Los Angeles.

Virgin America aircraft slide service: AG Slide Show

Video: In December 2014, Virgin America became the first airline to install Gogo’s faster ATG-4 WiFi service fleetwide with the installation of the service its Airbus A319 plane “Jane” (N526VA). With the rollout of Gogo’s enhanced WiFi product to all 53 of Virgin America’s Airbus A320 Family aircraft the airline now offers guests peak speeds of 9.8 Mbps – more than triple the peak speed available with the first generation of inflight WiFi.

Watch how each aircraft is converted:

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Emirates to bring the Airbus A380 to Perth, Western Australia

Emirates (Dubai) is bringing the Airbus A380 to Perth, Australia for the first time, commencing on May 1, 2015. The airline has announced that it will up-gauge one of its three daily services between Dubai and Perth to its flagship aircraft, demonstrating the growth of Perth as a global destination.

The change from a Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft will see an increase in capacity of 136 seats per flight and 1,904 seats per week, reinforcing Emirates’ commitment to business and leisure passengers visiting the capital city of Western Australia.

Emirates’ A380 program has seen 12 new double-decker aircraft join the fleet and launch to ten new A380 destinations in the past 12 months; Barcelona, London (Gatwick), Zurich, Mumbai, Frankfurt, Dallas/Fort Worth, Kuwait City, San Francisco, Milan and Houston (Bush Intercontinental). Glasgow, Manila, Tehran and Vienna have also experienced the flagship Emirates aircraft when it touched down on their tarmac for a one off showcase in 2014.

The Emirates A380 is set in a three-class configuration, with 401 seats in Economy Class on the main deck, 76 fully flat-bed, mini-pods in Business Class and 14 First Class Private Suites on the upper deck.

Emirates’ Perth Airbus A380 service will operate daily as EK 420 departing Dubai at 0255 and arriving at Perth International Airport at 1735 the same day. The return flight, EK 421, will depart Perth at 2210 and arrives in Dubai the following day at 0525, a flying time of 11 hours 15 minutes.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 A6-EDT (msn 090) departs from London (Heathrow).

Emirates aircraft slide show:

Video: Flying First Class on the Emirates Airbus A380:

 

Royal Jordanian retires its last Airbus A340-200

Royal Jordanian Airlines (Amman) retired its last Airbus A340-200 from revenue service on November 27, 2014 after the pictured A340-211 JY-AIA (msn 038) completed its flight from Chicago (O’Hare) to Amman per ch-aviation.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. JY-AIA arrives in New York (JFK) prior to the last revenue flight.

Royal Jordanian aircraft slide show:

Meridiana retires its last two Airbus A320s

Meridiana (Olbia) has retired its last two Airbus A320 aircraft according to ch-aviation. The company has been moving to Boeing for its narrow body needs.

The company was set up under the name of Alisarda on March 29, 1963 by Prince Karīm al-Hussayn Aga Khan with the aim of promoting tourism in Sardinia. Scheduled flights commenced in 1964.

On May 3, 1991 the name was changed to Meridiana.

At the end of February 2010, the name Meridiana fly was launched, the second largest carrier in Italy, with the merger of two air transport players: Eurofly, a company specializing in charter services to long haul holiday destinations and Meridiana, scheduled carrier with an extensive national and European network, with the primary objective of connecting the main Italian airports with the two largest islands Sardinia and Sicily.

In October 2011 Meridiana fly acquired the assets of Air Italy, a chartered Italian carrier which definitively joined the Group and now operates connections on behalf of Meridiana.

After rebranding, starting in March 2013, the company has eliminated the trademark Air Italy and the suffix of Meridiana fly by replacing it with just “Meridiana”.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 EI-EZS (msn 1823) holds short of the runway at Palma de Mallorca.

Meridiana aircraft slide show:

FedEx Corporation reports net income of $616 million, up 23% from last year’s $500 million

FedEx Corporation (FedEx Express) (Memphis) reported earnings of $2.14 per diluted share for its fiscal second quarter ended November 30, up 36% from last year’s $1.57 per share. The corporation reported net income of $616 million, up 23% from last year’s $500 million. However the corporation missed several analyst profit estimates despite declining fuel costs.

The company issued this statement:

“FedEx posted strong results and a higher operating margin in the second quarter, with continued growth in volumes and base yields in each of our transportation segments”

“FedEx posted strong results and a higher operating margin in the second quarter, with continued growth in volumes and base yields in each of our transportation segments,” said Frederick W. Smith, FedEx Corporation chairman, president and chief executive officer. “We are in the final stages of this year’s peak shipping season, and I’d like to thank the more than 300,000 dedicated team members around the world for once again delivering outstanding service to our customers during the holidays.”

Second Quarter Results

FedEx Corp. reported the following consolidated results for the second quarter:

• Revenue of $11.9 billion, up 5% from $11.4 billion the previous year

• Operating income of $1.01 billion, up 22% from $827 million last year

• Operating margin of 8.5%, up from 7.3% a year ago

• Net income of $616 million, up 23% from last year’s $500 million

Operating income and margin increased primarily due to higher volumes and base yields in all three transportation segments. Results in the second quarter also included benefits from the company’s profit improvement programs, lower pension expense and a slightly positive net impact from fuel. These benefits were partially offset by higher aircraft maintenance expense due to the timing of aircraft maintenance events.

Share repurchases benefited second quarter earnings by $0.16 per diluted share.

Outlook

The company reaffirms its fiscal 2015 earnings forecast of $8.50 to $9.00 per diluted share. The outlook assumes continued moderate economic growth and a modest net benefit from fuel. The capital spending forecast for fiscal 2015 remains $4.2 billion.

Fuel Surcharges

FedEx regularly reviews its fuel surcharge tables and will update certain tables at FedEx Express, FedEx Ground and FedEx Freight effective February 2, 2015. Details on these changes will be available on fedex.com by December 23, 2014.

FedEx Express Segment

For the second quarter, the FedEx Express segment reported:

• Revenue of $7.02 billion, up 3% from last year’s $6.84 billion

• Operating income of $484 million, up 36% from $357 million a year ago

• Operating margin of 6.9%, up from 5.2% the previous year

Revenue increased due to higher U.S. domestic package volume and international export package base revenue, partially offset by lower fuel surcharges and exchange rates. U.S. domestic package volume grew by 7%, including a 10% increase in U.S. overnight box. U.S. domestic revenue per package declined 2% due to decreased fuel surcharges and lower weight.

FedEx International Economy® volume grew 5%, while FedEx International Priority® volume increased 1%. International export revenue per package was flat, as higher rates were offset by unfavorable currency exchange and lower fuel surcharges.

Operating results improved due primarily to U.S. domestic and international export package revenue growth, cost management related to profit improvement programs, lower pension expense and a slight net benefit from fuel. These improvements were partially offset by the timing of higher aircraft maintenance expense. The year over year increase in aircraft maintenance expense is expected to subside beginning in the fourth fiscal quarter.

FedEx Ground Segment

For the second quarter, the FedEx Ground segment reported:

• Revenue of $3.06 billion, up 8% from last year’s $2.85 billion

• Operating income of $465 million, up 6% from $439 million a year ago

• Operating margin of 15.2%, down from 15.4% the previous year

FedEx Ground average daily volume grew 5% in the second quarter, driven by growth in both business-to-business and FedEx Home Delivery services. Revenue per package increased 3% due to rate increases and higher residential surcharges. FedEx SmartPost average daily volume decreased 4% due to the reduction in volume of a major customer. FedEx SmartPost revenue per package increased 7% due to rate increases and improved customer mix, partially offset by higher postage rates.

Operating income increased due to higher revenue per package and volume, partially offset by higher network expansion costs, as the company continues to heavily invest in the FedEx Ground and FedEx SmartPost businesses.

FedEx Freight Segment

For the second quarter, the FedEx Freight segment reported:

• Revenue of $1.59 billion, up 11% from last year’s $1.43 billion

• Operating income of $112 million, up 35% from $83 million a year ago

• Operating margin of 7.1%, up from 5.8% the previous year

Less-than-truckload (LTL) average daily shipments increased 8%, including a 10% increase in demand for Priority service. LTL revenue per shipment grew 3% due to higher weight per shipment, higher rates and increased fuel surcharges.

Operating results improved due to increased LTL revenue per shipment and higher average daily LTL shipments.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Monday, December 15, was the busiest day for FedEx in its history according to the company. Cutting through the early morning mist at Charlotte is Airbus A300B4-622R (F) N719FD (msn 388) bound for the Memphis cargo hub.

FedEx Express aircraft slide show:

 

Finnair’s first Airbus A350-900 takes shape

Finnair A350-900 (018)(Nose) TLS (Airbus)(LRW)

Finnair (Helsinki) in the fall of 2015 will take delivery of its first Airbus A350, specially the pictured A350-941 (msn 018).

Airbus has issued this picture and short message:

The first A350-900 for Finnair is taking shape in the Roger Béteille Final Assembly Line (FAL) in Toulouse, France. Finnair will be the first European airline to fly the A350 XWB and the third operator in the world. Scheduled for delivery in autumn 2015 the aircraft is now in the fuselage section joining phase.

Following this, the aircraft will move to wing junction, cabin installation and first power-on, all achieved in one single station. Once these phases are completed, the aircraft will undergo system tests, cabin completion, painting and engine installation before starting the delivery process, including flight testing.

Finnair has a total of 19 A350 XWB on order. The aircraft will be deployed on Finnair’s long-haul routes to Asia and America.

Photo: Airbus.

Finnair aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Virgin America and China Eastern Airlines announce a new codeshare agreement

Virgin America (San Francisco) and China Eastern Airlines (Shanghai) today announce a codeshare agreement to offer seamless booking and travel from Shanghai, China to multiple destinations across the United States. The new agreement will see China Eastern place its two-digit flight code (MU) on a range of Virgin America routes from Los Angeles and San Francisco – including West Coast flights to Boston, Chicago, Dallas Love Field, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Las Vegas, Newark, New York (JFK), Seattle/Tacoma, San Diego and Washington Dulles (Dulles). This will open a world of choice and convenience for travel between Asia, China, and the United States, offering a one-stop booking process and one-stop check-in, including seamless boarding passes and baggage handling for the entire journey. Codeshare flights can be booked today for travel from December 17, 2014.

The two airlines also announce today that starting next year the two airlines will launch reciprocal frequent flyer benefits. Members of China Eastern’s frequent flyer program will be able to earn Eastern Miles when traveling on all Virgin America flights and redeem their Eastern Miles for reward flights on all Virgin America routes. Members of Virgin America’s Elevate frequent flyer program will also be able to earn Elevate points when flying across China Eastern’s network as well as redeem their Elevate points for international reward flights on any route operated and marketed by China Eastern.

China Eastern offers daily direct flights from Shanghai to San Francisco and from Shanghai to Los Angeles.

The codeshare partnership expands on the two airlines’ existing interline agreement, which commenced in May 2013. China Eastern is Virgin America’s fifth codeshare agreement and joins the airline’s growing partner portfolio.

Top Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Virgin America’s Airbus A320-214 N846VA (msn 4894) rotates on the runway at New York (JFK).

Virgin America aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

China Eastern aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Olivier Gregoire/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 F-WWCG (msn 1588) wears the new look for China Eastern Airlines. It will become B-5962 on delivery.

American Airlines flight 280 from Seoul to Dallas/Fort Worth encounters severe turbulence, five people transported to Tokyo hospital

American flight AA 280 ICN-DFW (Brian Curtis)(LR)

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) flight AA 280 from Seoul (Incheon) to Dallas/Fort Worth) encountered severe turbulence shortly after its departure. The flight crew diverted the Boeing 777 to Tokyo (Narita) for medical attention. Four passengers and one crew member were transported to local hospitals.

Read the full report from CNN: CLICK HERE

Above Twitter photo by Brian Curtis.

Video of the flight:

Reuters: American Airlines CEO Doug Parker discourages profit sharing

American CEO Doug Parker (LRW)

American Airlines‘ (Dallas/Fort Worth) Chief Executive Officer Doug Parker (above) stated in an interview with Reuters that airlines should end profit sharing with its employees and instead improve the wages despite pressure from his own labor groups to link part of their pay with the company’s performance.

Doug Parker led America West Airlines (Phoenix) that acquired bankrupt US Airways (merged and adopted the name) and then acquired bankrupt American Airlines (merged and adopted the name).

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Photo: American Airlines.

American Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Alitalia begins new service to Berlin and Dusseldorf due to its new relationship with Airberlin

Alitalia (2nd) (Rome) yesterday (December 15) began new service from Rome (Fiumicino), Milan (Linate) and Venice to Berlin (Tegel) and Dusseldorf. The first Alitalia flights to the two German cities took off from Milan Linate Airport at 6.30 am (flight AZ 418 to Dusseldorf) and 6:35 am (flight AZ 406 to Berlin), while the new flights from Rome and Venice departed later in the day.

The new daily service to Berlin and Dusseldorf will operate, for the winter season, with an Embraer 175 aircraft configured in two classes of service: “Ottima” – Alitalia’s business class on international flights, and “Classica”, the economy class. During the summer season, which will begin in March 2015, these routes will be operated with higher capacity aircraft.

The new service between Italy and Germany is very important for Alitalia from a strategic point of view. With the introduction of the new flights to Berlin and Dusseldorf, Alitalia will offer 370,000 more seats to Germany in 2015, an increase of +66%, compared to 2014, expanding its network, which was limited to flights from Rome to Munich and from Rome and Milan Linate to Frankfurt.

All new flights launched are in codeshare with Airberlin, the second largest German airline, in accordance with the codeshare agreement between the two companies launched on October 26, 2014.

Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer ERJ 170-200LR (ERJ 175) EI-RDC (msn 17000333) taxies at Zurich.

Alitalia aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

 

Iberia Express is coming to London Gatwick

Iberia Express (Madrid) will start the twice-daily Madrid-London (Gatwick) route on March 29, 2015.

Copyright Photo: Ariel Shocron/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 EC-JSK (msn 2807) taxies at the Madrid (Barajas) base.

Iberia Express aircraft slide show:

London Gatwick Airport turns to Amadeus’ cloud-based airport-collaborative decision making portal, will handle 55 flights per hour on one runway

Amadeus Control Room (LRW)

London Gatwick Airport is the first to implement Amadeus’ cloud-based Airport-Collaborative Decision Making Portal (A-CDM) to improve collaborative decision-making processes, Amadeus has announced.

London gatwick logo

Gatwick is now one of a forward-thinking group of airports to join the European-wide A-CDM standard, with airports such as Munich, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Madrid and Zurich.

However, Gatwick followed an innovative approach opting for Amadeus’ cost effective cloud technology to speed up the implementation time of A-CDM, rolling out the Amadeus portal to 300 users in just 8 weeks. Assisted by the Amadeus portal, LGW will handle 55 flights per hour from the world’s busiest runway and estimates up to 2 million additional passengers.

The A-CDM standard’s aim is to bring the entire airport ecosystem, of airport operators, airlines, ground handlers and air traffic management, together to operate more efficiently and transparently, sharing accurate information in a timely manner. This results in better air traffic management with fewer delays and increased capacity, as well as an improved passenger experience thanks to an integrated approach to operations.

Michael Ibbitson, Chief Information Officer of London Gatwick commented: “We have received extremely positive feedback from our Amadeus A-CDM Portal stakeholders. It is easy to use and enables them to make better decisions that contribute to smoother and more efficient operations. The portal supports all partners at the airport involved in activities from refuelling and de-icing and to ground handling and cargo. Those employees have access to real-time data about what’s happening across London Gatwick – it’s a game changer.”

He continued: “We constantly strive to embrace new technologies at London Gatwick that will improve the travel experience and operating environment. We estimate that thanks to Amadeus’ A-CDM Portal, we will be able to increase capacity to more than 40 million passengers on a single runway following wider adoption of the portal in the next year or so.”

John Jarrell, Head of Airport IT at Amadeus added: “Communication gaps still prevail in the airport ecosystem – a collaborative approach is key to align on aspects such as disruptions, flight information, number of bags on board and passengers in transit. We hope to see other airports follow Gatwick’s innovative use of the Amadeus A-CDM Portal to facilitate improved communications and operational efficiency.”

The Amadeus Portal and its customisation for London Gatwick is part of Amadeus’ broader commitment to work with airports to improve the passenger experience. Earlier this year, Amadeus published a whitepaper focused on attitudes to cloud computing in the airport industry. This included the viewpoints of over 20 senior IT leaders from the airport industry to investigate the business case for adopting cloud-based Common Use systems at airports.

Report by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Top Photo: Amadeus.

Bottom Copyright Photo: London Gatwick Airport.

London Gatwick ATC Tower (LGW)(LRW)

Ryanair announces three new routes from Athens

Ryanair (Dublin) has announced three new routes from their Athens base, to Budapest, Bratislava and Santorini (Thira).

Reported by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Painted in the updated Boeing Dreamliner color scheme, Boeing 737-8AS EI-DCL (msn 33806) arrives at Charleroi near Brussels.

Ryanair aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

 

Aer Lingus shareholders approve €191 million ($237 million) payment to the new pension fund

Aer Lingus‘ (Dublin) shareholders have voted in favor of a deal to address the airline’s pension deficit, which was previously described as “a real and significant risk to the success of the company.”

A proposal to plough €190.7 million ($237.6 million) into the pensions scheme, which has taken four years to finalize, was put to shareholders during an extraordinary general meeting December 10.

In a stock exchange disclosure, Aer Lingus said the motion had been passed, with 421,859,027 votes in favor and 1,942,425 against.

The numbers indicate that the holders of close to 80% of the company’s shares voted, while the margin of the vote itself was 99.55% in favor and 0.45 against.

This rubber stamp means the Irish carrier can now proceed with the implementation of the IASS proposal, which will avoid labor conflict, give financial and legal clarity, and stabilize staff costs.

Aer Lingus and Dublin Airport Authority jointly operate IASS, which has an estimated €750 million deficit. Part of the proposals for tackling the problem involve transferring staff to a defined benefit scheme, to which both companies will contribute lump sums totaling €263 million.

The vote followed a stormy meeting at the Dublin Airport Radisson, which was nearly disrupted by protesting retired workers, who at one point surrounded part of the conference room in which it was held and banged on the windows.

A number of former staff attending the meeting itself also expressed their anger to Aer Lingus chairman, Colm Barrington, and claimed the scheme’s trustees had refused to deal with them while the company’s management were ignoring their plight.

They say that they are facing the loss of up to six weeks income a-year under the plan to restructure the insolvent scheme.

The pensioners have hired a legal team and are considering going to court. Leaving the meeting, retired Aer Lingus worker, Vincent McCabe, said “we will go to court if we have to go to court”.

Speaking afterwards, Mr Barrington said that Aer Lingus had honored all its obligations:

“We have got to get the situation resolved and get industrial peace,” he added, referring to the strikes and other unrest that have been a feature of the pension dispute.

Read the full story for the Irish Times: CLICK HERE

Reported by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 EI-DVM (msn 4634) in the 1963 retro livery arrives in London (Heathrow).

Aer Lingus aircraft slide show:

Azul arrives in Orlando

Azul arrives in Orlando (Azul)(LRW)

Azul Linhas Aereas Brasileiras (Campinas), Brazil’s largest airline by number of cities served, yesterday (December 15) inaugurated daily nonstop service to and from Orlando, its second international destination. The airline’s first arrival landed at Orlando International Airport at 5:10 pm (1710) and the first outbound flight departed or Sao Paulo (Campinas) at 7:45 pm.

From its new $1.5 billion terminal at Sao Paulo-Campinas International Airport, located 60 minutes from the city, Azul conveniently connects to popular destinations including Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Salvador and Iguacu Falls.

Photos: Orlando International Airport. The inaugural flight was operated with the pictured Airbus A330-243 PR-AIZ (msn 527).

Azul aircraft slide show:

Azul A330-200 PR-AIZ (08)(Nose)(Azul)(LRW)

InselAir arrives again in Port of Spain, Trinidad

InselAir F.28 Mk. 0070 P4-FKC (Ldg)(LRW)

InselAir (Curacao) yesterday (December 15) relaunched service to Port of Spain in Trinidad and Tobago. The inaugural flight was operated with the pictured Fokker F.28 Mk. 0070 P4-FKC.

The company issued this statement:

On Monday December 15, InselAir relaunched it’s 20th destination Trinidad and Tobago with an festive early breakfast at Curacao International Airport followed by the inaugural flight to Piarco International Airport in Port of Spain. The flight was operated with a Fokker 70, with 80 seats, which was acquired by InselAir earlier this year. InselAir will operate flights from Curacao to Port of Spain three times per week; on Mondays and Thursdays departing Curacao at 10:30 AM and arriving in Trinidad at 12 PM. On Tuesdays the flight leaves at 4:15 PM and arrives in Trinidad at 5:45 PM which provides business travels a perfect schedule for a two-day business trip.

Copyright Photo: Nigel Steele. Fokker F.28 Mk. 0070 P4-FKC (msn 11583) is the third Fokker 70 acquired by the airline. It is pictured landing at POS on the inaugural flight.

InselAir aircraft slide show:

Insel Air logo-1

InselAir route map:

Insel Air 12.2014 Route Map

AeroMexico announces a new route to Managua, Nicaragua

AeroMexico (Mexico City) has announced the beginning of its new service with six weekly flights between its Mexico City hub and Managua.

This is the sixth destination in Central America and its 16th in Latin America.

The new AeroMexico Connect route will be served with six weekly flights with 76-seat Embraer 170 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Rurik Enriquez/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer ERJ 170-100SU XA-ACP (msn 17000019) arrives in Mexico City.

AeroMexico aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

AeroMexico Connect aircraft slide show:

Porter Airlines to add seasonal service to Charleston, South Carolina

Porter Airlines (Toronto) is introducing weekly seasonal service between its Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport base and Charleston, South Carolina from February 14 to May 2, 2015.

The new South Carolina service (the company previously operated to Myrtle Beach) will supplement regular service to these US cities (below):

Porter's USA cities

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) C-GLQO (msn 4270) arrives in Washington (Dulles) (all others by Porter).

Porter Airlines aircraft slide show:

Video: In April 2013 Porter laid out its expansion lans for its home downtown airport:

Porter flying redefined

ViaAir to offer seasonal flights between Charlotte and St. Augustine, Florida

ViaAir (Orlando) has announced it will offer seasonal flights between Charlotte and St. Augustine, Florida starting on December 19 and operating through January 20, 2015 with 30-seat Embraer EMB-120 Brasilias. The company on December 3 launched regular flights from Beckley, West Virginia to Charlotte.

The company describes its activities:

ViaAir logo

ViaAir LLC is an indirect Air Carrier operating under DOT Regulation 14 CFR 380 together with its subsidiary, Via Airlines , as the Direct Air Carrier on 30 passenger Embraer EMB-120.

Via Airlines as the Direct Air Carrier has been providing Air transportation service for over 15 years operating 30 passenger EMB-120. We are proud to have been providing such service with excellent dispatch rate of over 98%, excellent safety record and client oriented service and support.

In ViaAir, we still believe that Air Service is a service and not just means of transportation. Our experienced team understands that client satisfaction and community support are critical to the creation of a successful flight operation. We pride ourselves at being more than just transportation; as such we always go above and beyond as proven in our excellent client
satisfaction rate.

Via Airlines was founded in 1997 and has grown to become a prominent Air Carrier operating 30 passenger planes while maintaining an excellent safety record and an excellent dispatch rates The company has earned an ARG/US Gold rating and continuously strives and maintains best-in-class safety, quality and customer satisfaction.

The EMB-120 is ideal for the commuter air service requirements. As an airplane that was built to meet the more demanding requirements of FAR-25 it is safe, reliable and fast. Operated by over 27 operators worldwide and over 5 million flight hours, it has great positive past record.

Top Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. ViaAir’s Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia N653CT (msn 120243) arrives at Charlotte Douglas International Airport.

Bottom Photo: ViaAir.

ViaAir EMB-120 Fleet (ViaAir)(LRW)

United Airlines to end Crescent City service

United Airlines (Chicago) will end all United Express service to Crescent City, California and the San Francisco-Crescent City route on April 7, 2015 per Airline Route. SkyWest Airlines is phasing out its unprofitable Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia fleet.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia N295SW (msn 120322) arrives in Los Angeles.

United Airlines aircraft slide show (current livery): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest Airlines aircraft slide show:

New Mexico Airlines suspends operations, plans to resume operations tomorrow

New Mexico Airlines (subsidiary of Pacific Wings) (Albuquerque) voluntarily suspended operations on December 11 until further notice due to unspecified “mechanical issues” involving its five Cessna 208B Grand Caravans. Parent Pacific Wings said the grounding was temporary and the aircraft would be flying again shortly. The company is now listing tomorrow (December 17) as its restart date. The airline operated to Carlsbad and Los Alamos from ABQ.

The airline started operations on July 1, 2007.

Read the full report from KOTA Channel 7 in Albuquerque: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Sun Valley Airlines/AirlinersGallery.com. Cessna 208B Grand Caravan N12959 (msn 1254) is pictured at the ABQ base.

 

American Airlines resumes New York-Cleveland flights, outlines new Airbus A321 routes

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) is resuming New York-Cleveland service. On March 29, 2015 the carrier will resume New York (LaGuardia)-Cleveland flights with American Eagle Embraer ERJ 140s.

American Airlines has also filed advanced schedules for additional Airbus A321 two-class services per Airline Route:

Dallas/Fort Worth-Phoenix (starting on January 6, 2015)

Dallas/Fort Worth-Denver (February 12, 2015)

Miami-Cancun (March 4, 2015)

Dallas/Fort Worth-Atlanta (March 5, 2015)

Dallas/Fort Worth-San Diego (March 29, 2015)

Dallas/Fort Worth-Chicago (O’Hare) (March 29, 2015)

Dallas/Fort Worth-Seattle/Tacoma (March 29, 2015)

Los Angeles-Chicago (O’Hare) (March 29, 2015)

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Newly delivered Airbus A321-231 N125AA (msn 6272) departs from Los Angeles.

American Airlines aircraft slide show (current livery): AG Slide Show

American Airlines rewards its loyal passenger with a bonus mileage promotion in 2015

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) is rewarding its loyal passengers with this bonus mileage announcement for 2015:

American Airlines will reward its customers with a bonus mile promotion in 2015, making the AAdvantage program the most generous in the industry. The promotion will offer AAdvantage® and Dividend Miles® members more miles based on the distance flown, the fare purchased and the member’s elite status level.

Beginning January 1, 2015 American will reward customers that are members of either the AAdvantage or Dividend Miles programs with bonus miles for purchased First or Business Class tickets on all eligible flights marketed or operated by American or US Airways. The promotion applies to all travel between January 1 and December 31, 2015.

Eligible flights for AAdvantage members include all AA and US-marketed and operated flights (including codeshare flights between the two carriers), and AA or US-marketed, partner-operated flights, including British Airways, Iberia, Finnair, Japan Airlines and Qantas. Until the company merges the frequent flyer programs in the second quarter 2015, eligible flights for Dividend Miles members will include all AA and US-marketed and operated flights (including codeshare flights between the two carriers).

The airline’s promotion provides bonus miles in addition to base mileage and elite status/class of service bonuses that customers normally earn. The amount of bonus miles earned will depend on the customer’s elite status level and the length of the flight.

Copyright Photo: Fred Freketic/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-323 ER N394AN (msn 29431) prepares to depart from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.

American Airlines aircraft slide show (current livery): AG Slide Show

United Airlines to add additional flights to Shanghai and Chengdu for next summer

United Airlines (Chicago) today announced it will operate additional flights to Shanghai and Chengdu, China, from the airline’s trans-Pacific gateway hub in San Francisco during the peak summer travel season. The current daily service between San Francisco and Shanghai will increase to two flights daily from May 6 to October 24, 2015, and the three-times-weekly service between San Francisco and Chengdu will increase to daily service from June 4 to September 1, 2015, both routes subject to government approval.

Second-daily Flight to Shanghai

Flight UA 891 will depart from San Francisco International Airport at 2:40 p.m. (1440) and arrive at Shanghai Pudong International Airport at 7:00 p.m. (1900) the following day (all times local). On the return, flight UA 890 will depart from Shanghai at 9:00 p.m. (2100) and arrive in San Francisco at 5:40 p.m. (1740) on the same day. Flight times will be approximately 13 hours, 20 minutes westbound and 11 hours, 40 minutes eastbound.

United will operate the flights with Boeing 777-200 ER aircraft featuring a total of 269 seats – eight flat-bed seats in United Global First, 40 flat-bed seats in United BusinessFirst and 221 seats in United Economy, including 104 Economy Plus extra-legroom seats.

The new summer-season service will operate in addition to United’s current daily year-round flights between San Francisco and Shanghai.

Daily Flights to Chengdu

Flight UA 9 will depart San Francisco daily at 1:20 p.m.(1320) and will arrive at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport at 6:40 p.m. (1840) the following day (all times local). On the return, flight UA 8 will depart Chengdu daily at 9:50 a.m. (0950) and arrive in San Francisco at 8:30 a.m. (0830) the same day. Flying times are approximately 14 hours, 20 minutes westbound and 13 hours, 40 minutes eastbound.

United will operate the San Francisco – Chengdu flights with Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft, featuring a total of 219 seats – 36 in United BusinessFirst and 183 in United Economy, including 70 Economy Plus extra-legroom seats.

Earlier this year, United launched the Chengdu service with three-times-weekly Boeing 787 flights from San Francisco, the first-ever nonstop trans-Pacific service to mainland China beyond Beijing and Shanghai. The Chengdu flights will return to three-times-weekly operations on September 2, 2015.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner N28912 (msn 34828) climbs away from London’s Heathrow Airport.

United Airlines aircraft slide show (current livery): AG Slide Show

Mahan Air today launches a new route to London Gatwick

Mahan Air Tehran) today (December 15) today launches a new route to London (Gatwick) operating three days a week reportedly with Airbus A310-300s per Airline Route.

Virtual tour on Airbus A300: CLICK HERE

Previously on November 4, Mahan Air celebrated the launch of scheduled flights from Tehran to Beijing nonstop service linking the capitals of Iran and People’s Republic of China and marking the carrier’s 14th international destination. It is also the airline’s first regular flight to China.

The thrice weekly flights are operating via 299-seat Airbus A340-300 in two class configuration. Beijing is Mahan Air’s third new international route after Yerevan and Shiraz to Dubai which were inaugurated in summer 2014.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Mahan Air’s Airbus A310-304 EP-MNF (msn 547) arrives in Bangkok.

Mahan Air aircraft slide show:

Mahan Air route map:

Mahan Air 12.2014 Route Map

Canadian newcomer Jetlines selects Boeing for five Boeing 737 MAX 7s

Jetlines 737 MAX 7 (Flt)(Jetlines)(LRW)

Jetlines (Vancouver) and Boeing (Chicago, Seattle and Charleston) today announced an order for five 737 MAX 7s as the new Canadian ultra-low cost carrier builds its future fleet. The order, valued at $438 million at current list prices, includes purchase rights for an additional 16 737 MAXs.

The new airline plans to tap into passenger demand by offering low cost airfares on routes that avoid direct competition with other airlines.

The 737 MAX 7 will be capable of flying more than 3,800 nautical miles, extending the range over today’s 737-700 by approximately 400 nautical miles (741km).

With this order, the 737 MAX has orders for 2,562 airplanes from 55 customers worldwide.

Image: Jetlines.

WestJet selects Global Eagle Entertainment for its inflight entertainment content

WestJet (Calgary) like other airlines, is overhauling its inflight entertainment system. The carrier has selected Global Eagle Entertainment to provide the inflight content. GEE issued this statement:

Global Eagle Entertainment Inc., a worldwide leading provider of content, connectivity and digital media solutions to airlines, today announced that it has been selected by WestJet to manage its inflight content services.

WestJet is currently overhauling its existing inflight entertainment (IFE) system and replacing it with a wireless IFE solution. Global Eagle Entertainment (GEE) will provide a broad array of content that can be accessed by passengers using their personal electronic devices or tablets rented from the airline. Through this long-term agreement, GEE will provide a selection of current movies and television, including a wide catalog of engaging and entertaining programs, beginning in the first quarter of 2015.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-7CT C-FWCC (msn 32752) prepares to touch down in Las Vegas.

WestJet aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Alaska Airlines launches its new “Alaska Beyond” inflight entertainment service

Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) today issued this statement:

Starting today, Alaska Airlines customers can enjoy free* entertainment directly on their personal electronic devices. The new entertainment service, available today on 50 of Alaska’s 737 planes, will be available at no extra charge through January 31, 2015. Alaska will equip nearly all of its all-Boeing fleet by April 2015.

Alaska Beyond logo

Above logo: Did you notice the subtle change in the Alaska titles? The jagged lines have now been smoothed out a bit and the “k” no longer intrudes on the “a”. No, the Eskimo is not going away but the aircraft titles are now likely to change to this updated and cleaner look.

Alaska’s inflight entertainment launch marks the debut of Alaska BeyondTM, a new flight experience that highlights what sets Seattle’s hometown airline apart from other carriers. In addition to entertainment, Alaska Beyond is further defined by its artisan food and beverage program, and its in-cabin comforts including Recaro seats with personal power at every seat.

Alaska Beyond and iPad (Alaska)(LRW)

Alaska Beyond Entertainment lets customers catch up on their favorite television shows and watch recently released movies using their own Wi-Fi-enabled tablet, smartphone or laptop. *All content, including premium movies and TV shows, will be complimentary through Jan. 31, 2015. Starting February 1, customers can still enjoy access to a wide selection of complimentary custom curated content and purchase premium movies and TV shows starting at $1.99.

Alaska Beyond Rush [Lauren]12-14-14[431]-xtraTM

With Alaska Beyond Comfort, Alaska customers power-up with standard and USB personal power outlets at every seat. The custom-designed leather seats, made by Recaro, feature 6-way adjustable headrests, enhanced personal space and three inches of recline. Access to power outlets is conveniently located in the seatback in front of each passenger. Today, more than 95 percent of Alaska’s fleet of Boeing 737-800s, -900s, and -900ERs have power outlets at every seat. Many of Alaska’s aircraft also feature the Boeing Sky Interior which creates a lighter and more spacious cabin. Later next year, Alaska will be the launch customer of Boeing’s innovative Space Bins , which provide 48 percent more overhead bin storage.

Alaska Beyond Delicious offers travelers locally-sourced, artisan food and beverage from iconic Northwest brands, including signature entrees designed by award-winning chef Tom Douglas. The popular Signature Fruit & Cheese Platter features Beecher’s Flagship and Tillamook cheeses are available on all flights, as well as hand-poured Canoe Ridge wines, Sun Liquor hand-crafted liquors, Alaskan Amber and other local micro-brews, and in First Class, Chateau Ste. Michelle wines.

Launching Beyond Entertainment

Customers will know entertainment is available on their device by reviewing the Flight Amenities seatback card located at each seat on equipped aircraft. Programing available through Alaska’s inflight entertainment is powered by Gogo Vision, a service that wirelessly streams content from a server onboard the aircraft to customer tablets and smart phones.

Customers can begin viewing content after the aircraft reaches an altitude of 10,000 feet. To connect, customers go to the Gogo Inflight network, launch their browser and click on “Entertainment.” Further instructions and a list of supported devices is available at http://www.gogoair.com . Customers traveling without a device can rent a video player with pre-loaded content on many longer flights. Prices vary depending on the length of the flight and start at $8.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by Alaska Airlines). Boeing 737-890 N560AS (msn 35179) “Spirit of the Islands” now has Aviation Partners Boeing Split Scimitar Winglets.

Alaska Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Video:

 

http://www.multivu.com/players/English/7399551-alaska-airlines-debuts-alaska-beyond-with-the-launch-of-new-inflight-entertainment/embed_videos.html?video=77085b12-de76-4731-b1e2-577f841fd324&embed=true

 

The arbitration board issues its final decision for a joint American-US Airways flight attendant contract

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix) flight attendants will now have a joint collective bargaining agreement and contract. The dispute went to arbitration and the arbitration board issued its decision.

The Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) issued this statement about the decision:

On December 13, the seven member Arbitration Panel, established in accordance with the Negotiations Protocol Agreement, issued its decision on the terms of the Joint Collective Bargaining Agreement. The JCBA will consist of the pay, work rules, and benefits outlined in the APFA arbitration proposal. Unfortunately, the award does not include the “me too” clauses for health plans and profit sharing for which APFA argued. The award also does not provide retroactive pay raises for Flight Attendants. APFA had argued for the wage increases to take effect December 2, 2014. Instead, the increases will take effect on January 1, 2015. The effective date of the JCBA is December 13, 2014.

First, APFA proposed that the value of $112 million is the amount that the arbitrators must add to our combined contracts to equal market based in the aggregate, which is the standard provided for in the NPA. AA stipulated to this value.

Second, APFA argued for a “me too” for health insurance, meaning that if the company were to offer another work group health insurance that differs from the health insurance in our JCBA, APFA would have the option of replacing our current insurance with such other health insurance beginning the following year. The company argued against a “me too” for health insurance.

Third, APFA argued for a “me too” for profit sharing, meaning that if another workgroup on AA’s property were given a profit sharing plan, APFA would have the option of reducing the wage rates by $50 million per year (the value allotted for profit sharing in our proposal) and adopting such profit sharing plan. The company argued against a “me too” for Profit Sharing.

Finally, APFA asked for pay rates retroactive to December 2, 2014. The company argued against retroactive pay rates.

A majority of the Panel denied APFA’s request that the JCBA contain “me-toos” regarding the medical plan and profit sharing. In both cases the Panel found that the inclusion of these provisions would push the added value of the JCBA beyond the market-based aggregate of $112 million.

A majority of the Panel also rejected APFA’s argument that the new wage rates of the JCBA be retroactive to December 2, 2014. It held that starting the pay increases prior to the effective date of the JCBA would result in its value exceeding the $112 million cap.

The two union-appointed members of the Arbitration Panel dissented from the Panel’s decision denying the “me-toos” and the retroactivity of the new wage rates.

The effective date of the JCBA is December 13, 2014, the day the decision was issued. A link to the updated contract language including the implementation letter will be uploaded to apfa.org in the next several days. The new pay rates will go into effect on January 1, 2015.

In other news, American Airlines issued this statement today about a mileage promotion:

American Airlines will reward its customers with a bonus mile promotion in 2015, making the AAdvantage program the most generous in the industry. The promotion will offer AAdvantage® and Dividend Miles® members more miles based on the distance flown, the fare purchased and the member’s elite status level.

President, AAdvantage Loyalty Program Suzanne Rubin said: “As the largest airline in the world, with a global network that spans 54 countries, our frequent flyer program must also be the best in the business. A mile flown continues to be a mile earned in AAdvantage, and now we’re going to reward customers even more when they purchase a First or Business Class ticket.”

Beginning January 1, 2015 American will reward customers that are members of either the AAdvantage or Dividend Miles programs with bonus miles for purchased First or Business Class tickets on all eligible flights marketed or operated by American or US Airways. The promotion applies to all travel between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2015.

Eligible flights for AAdvantage members include all AA and US-marketed and operated flights (including codeshare flights between the two carriers), and AA or US-marketed, partner-operated flights, including British Airways, Iberia, Finnair, Japan Airlines and Qantas. Until the company merges the frequent flyer programs in the second quarter 2015, eligible flights for Dividend Miles members will include all AA and US-marketed and operated flights (including codeshare flights between the two carriers).

The airline’s promotion provides bonus miles in addition to base mileage and elite status/class of service bonuses that customers normally earn. The amount of bonus miles earned will depend on the customer’s elite status level and the length of the flight.

American graph 12.15.14

Registration for the promotion is not necessary, as all bonus miles will be automatically added to members’ accounts after the eligible flight is complete. Additional details about the 2015 AAdvantage bonus mile offer are available at aa.com/moremiles.

As previously announced, also beginning January 1, bonus miles for AAdvantage members on Business Class tickets on American and US Airways will increase from 25 to 50 percent to align with what Dividend Miles members receive today.

Over the past year, American has rolled out enhanced benefits to members flying on either airline, including:

The opportunity to earn and redeem miles on American or US Airways, with all eligible travel on either airline counting toward elite status qualification in the program of that member’s choice

Reciprocal benefits for elite status members when flying either airline, including First and Business Class check-in, complimentary checked bags and priority security and boarding

More lounge access, with reciprocal club access for Admirals Club® and US Airways Club members

Easy access to the combined company’s expanded network through the codeshare between American and US Airways, which allows the ability to sell seats on both airlines’ flights

Bringing US Airways into the award-winning oneworld® alliance, offering more options across the Atlantic and an easier and more rewarding global travel experience to Europe and beyond

The ability to easily stay connected while customers fly with Monthly Traveler and Daily Wi-Fi passes, valid on both American and US Airways

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. US Airways’ Boeing 757-23N N204UW (msn 30886), now in American colors, exits the runway at Amsterdam.

American Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

American Airlines-US Airways aircraft slide show:

China Airlines to launch Boeing 777-300 service to Frankfurt

China Airlines (Taipei) is planning to launch new Boeing 777-300 ER service to Frankfurt from Taipei (Taoyuan) starting on November 1, 2015. The new type will replace the current Boeing 747-400 service and will operate five days a week per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-36N ER B-18051 (msn 41821) prepares to land at Los Angeles International Airport.

China Airlines aircraft slide show:

AirAsia X firms up its order for 55 Airbus A330-900neo aircraft

AirAsia X A330-900neo (14)(Flt)(Airbus)(LRW)

AirAsia X (AirAsia.com) (Kuala Lumpur), the long haul affiliate of AirAsia (AirAsia.com) (Malaysia) (Kuala Lumpur), has placed a firm order with Airbus for 55 A330neo aircraft. This is the largest single order to date for the A330 Family and reaffirms AirAsia X’s position as the biggest A330 airline customer worldwide, having now ordered a total of 91 aircraft. The announcement covers the firming up of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for 50 A330neo signed during the Farnborough Air Show in July 2014, plus an additional five aircraft. Deliveries of the newly-ordered aircraft will begin in 2018.

The A330neo will incorporate latest generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, aerodynamic enhancements and new cabin features.

Image: Airbus. A conception image of the A330-900neo.

AirAsia X aircraft slide show:

9 air starts operations in China

9 air (9air.com) (Jiu Yuan Airlines) (Guangzhou-Baiyun) commenced operations on December 2. The first route connected Guangzhou with Zhanjiang. The new airline is a subsidiary of Juneyao Airlines.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8GP B-1715 (msn 39819) passes through Honolulu on delivery. B-1715 is one of three 737-800s leased from Transportation Partners (Lion Air).

 

Flydubai to add three new routes in 2015

Flydubai (Dubai) has announced the addition of three new routes to its growing network. Flights to Hargeisa (Somaliland), Chennai (India), and Nejran (Saudi Arabia) will commence in the first quarter of 2015, further expanding the carrier’s footprint to 89 destinations in 46 countries.

From March 5, 2015, Flydubai will become the first carrier to operate to Hargeisa, Somaliland from Dubai with four weekly flights. Flydubai has expanded its network in Africa in 2014 to 13 points served by 60 weekly flights.

Nejran will be added on January 10, 2015 with four weekly flights followed by Chennai on March 31, 2015 with three flights a week.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8KN A6-FDE (msn 40235) departs from Paine Field.

Flydubai aircraft slide show:

El Al’s third quarter net profit slips to only $10.1 million

El Al Israel Airlines (Tel Aviv) reported a third quarter net profit of $10.1 million, down from a net profit of $57.9 million in the same quarter a year ago. Net loss during the period of the first nine months of 2014 amounted to $13.2 million compared to a profit of $29.1 million dollars during the equivalent period in the previous year.

El Al’s CEO, David Maimon: “The results of the third quarter reflect the effect of the “Operation Protective Edge”, which caused significant harm to revenues and as a result El Al requested government assistance. This is the first time since the Second Lebanon War in 2006 in which El Al presents a significant decline in third quarter profits which is traditionally considered as its strongest quarter. In addition, the quarter was characterized by an erosion in prices which resulted in a decline in revenues per passenger.”

Maimon added: “On the other hand, we have significant marketing achievements: the number of members of the Frequent Flyers Club in Israel and globally increased to 1.4 million members, inter alia thanks to the launching of the Flycard and Flycard Premium credit cards with 40 thousand customers ordering these cards within a few weeks. In addition, in the framework of the renewal and extension of the Company’s network of destinations, in the fourth quarter we announced the opening of a new El Al direct line to Boston and a new cooperative agreement (codeshare) signed with JetBlue Airways and American Airlines, which enables our customers to fly to a wide range of destinations in the US with high availability and convenient connections.”

The results of the third quarter of 2014:

Revenues amounted to $601.2 million dollars, compared to $643.3 million during the equivalent quarter in the previous year, a decline of 6.5%. Revenues per passenger declined by 7.3%, mainly as a result of a drop in the yield per passenger-kms, as a result of the negative effects of the ‘Operation Protective Edge’. Revenues from cargo transport increased by 4.5%, mainly as a result of an increase in the number of ton-kms flown, after setting off a decline in the yield.

Operating expenses increased by 2% to $493 million compared to $483.6 million during the equivalent quarter in the previous year. The rate of operating expenses to turnover increased from 75.2% in the third quarter of 2013 to 82.0% in this quarter. The increase in operating expenses was a result mainly of the increase in expenses for jet fuel, an increase in levies and air transition fees, and after setting-off the decline in salary and security expenses.

Salary expenses declined during the quarter, mainly due to the effect of the devaluation in the rate of the shekel compared to the dollar on the Company’s liabilities for employee benefits. The number of the Company’s employees, permanent and temporary, stood at an average of 6,216 employees, compared to 6,109 during the equivalent quarter in the previous year.

The Company’s expenses for jet fuel increased by 5.2%. The increase was due to the effect of the increase in operations and the effect of the increase in the effective price of jet fuel (which includes the results of hedging operations that the Company took). It should be mentioned that the prices of jet fuel in the market declined in the third quarter compared to the equivalent quarter in the previous year, but the Company’s hedging operations resulted in an increase in the effective price for the Company. The rate of jet fuel expenses to turnover increased from 30.3% during the equivalent quarter in the previous year to 34.1% in the third quarter. Total hedging payments in the quarter under report agregated 2.9 million dollars compared to $4.4 million receipts from hedging for the equivalent quarter in the previous year. In addition, the Company recorded expenses of $5.8 million as a result of changes in the fair value of the hedging transactions, which are not recognized as hedging (revenues of 2.4 million dollars during the equivalent quarter in the previous year).

Gross profits amounted to $108.3 million (18.0% of turnover), compared to $159.7 million for the equivalent quarter in the previous year (24.8% of turnover).

Income from operations amounted to $29.1 million, compared to $75.6 million during the equivalent quarter in the previous year.

Net financing expenses during the quarter amounted to $15.4 million compared to net financing income of $5.2 million during the equivalent quarter in the previous year, mainly due to the results of hedging the rates of exchange.

Net profit for the third quarter of 2014 amounted to $10.1 million, compared to $57.9 million for the third quarter of 2013.

Cash flows used for operating activities in the third quarter of 2014 amounted to $12.0 million compared to $56.1 million cash flows provided by operating activities during the equivalent quarter in the previous year.

The EBITDA in the third quarter of 2014 amounted to $57.3 million compared to $100.6 million during the equivalent quarter.

Results for the first nine months of 2014:

Revenues for the first nine months of the year amounted to $1,588.2 million, compared to $1,604.0 million during the equivalent period in the previous year, a decline of 1.0% due mainly to the decline in yield as a result of the increasing competition and after setting off the increase in the number of passengers flown.

Operating expenses during the first nine months of 2014 amounted to $1,357.7 million compared to $1,324.4 million during equivalent period in the previous year, an increase of 2.5%.

Salary expenses increased during the first nine months of 2014 compared to the equivalent period in the previous year, mainly due to the effect of the revaluation which occurred during most of the period of report in the average rate of the shekel against the dollar on expenses, most of which are in shekels. The increase was set off by the effect of the devaluation of the rate of the shekel compared to the dollar at the end of the period on the Company’s liabilities for employee benefits.

The Company’s expenses for jet fuel increased by 1.0% compared to the equivalent period in the previous year. This due to the changes in the fair value of hedging transactions which are not recognized as hedging, payments for hedging compared to receipts during the equivalent period in the previous year, an increase in operations and setting off the decline in the prices of jet fuel in the market. The rate to turnover increased from 32.9% to 33.5%. Total hedging payments during the period of report amounted to $1 million compared to $4.7 million of hedging receipts during the equivalent period in the previous year. In addition, the Company recorded expenses of $5.5 million as a result of changes in the fair value of hedging transaction which are not recognized as hedging (an expense of $2.4 million during the equivalent period in the previous year).

Security expenses the Company recorded a significant decline of $14.3 million as result of an increase in the rate of the State’s participation.

Gross profits during the first nine months of 2014 amounted to $230.5 million, which is a rate of 14.5% of turnover, compared to gross profits of $279.6 million (a rate of 17.4% of turnover) during the equivalent period in the previous year.

Operating income during the first nine months of 2014 amounted to $1.8 million, compared to $46.3 million during the first nine months of 2013.

Net financing expenses amounted to $20.9 million compared to $4.0 million during the equivalent period in the previous year; the increase was a result of the hedging transactions on the rates of exchange.

Net loss during the period of the first nine months of 2014 amounted to $13.2 million compared to a profit of $29.1 million dollars during the equivalent period in the previous year.

El Al’s EBITDA for the first nine months of the year amounted to $84.8 million dollars compared to $121.3 million during the equivalent period in the previous year.

Cash flows from operating activities for the first nine months of the year amounted to $147.9 million, compared to $184.6 million during the equivalent period in the previous year.

Additional data:

As of September 30, 2014, the balances of the Company’s cash, cash equivalents and short-term deposits amounted to $138.0 million dollars.

It should be mentioned that during the third quarter of 2014, the Company invested $66.2 million in fixed assets and other assets, mainly in the acquisition of an additional Boeing 737-900 aircraft, as well as repaying current loans of $48.3 million and receiving loans of $75.4 million dollars to finance the acquisition of new aircraft.

Copyright Photo: El Al’s Boeing 777-258 ER 4X-ECE (msn 36083) taxies at London (Heathrow).

El Al aircraft slide show:

 

South African Airways to add a new route to Etihad Airway’s Abu Dhabi home

South African Airways (Johannesburg) is moving closer to potential equity partner Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) with an expanded codeshare relationship as previously reported. SAA will launch a new daily route to Abu Dhabi from Johannesburg on March 29, 2015 with Airbus A330-200s.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 ZS-SXV (msn 1249) arrives at the Johannesburg base.

South African aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Turkish Airlines is coming to Manila

Turkish Airlines (Istanbul) will start a new route from Istanbul (IST) to Manila next year. The new route will be operated three days week with Airbus A340-300 aircraft starting on March 30, 2015 according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A340-311 TC-JDJ (msn 023) taxies at New York (JFK).

Turkish Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Red Wings Airlines to take delivery of three former Moskovia Airlines Superjet 100s

Red Wings Superjet 100 RA-89021 (07)(Red Wings)(LRW)

Red Wings Airlines (Moscow) has announced it has opened the sale of tickets for the Moscow-Grozny route. Flights will be operated from January 2 to March 28, 2015 with newly acquired Sukhoi Superjet 100s.

Red Wings Airlines selected the Sukhoi Superjet 100 on October 8, 2014 and signed a contract to lease the three Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft from Sukhoi.

The aircraft will be handed over to the airline before the end of the 2014 season. Red Wings plans to fly the Sukhoi Superjet 100 from Moscow also to Ufa, Sochi, Chelyabinsk and Makhachkala.

According to ch-aviation Red Wings is to take delivery of the former Moskovia Airlines aircraft starting this month. RA-89001 (msn 95008) and RA-89021 (msn 95021) (above) are scheduled to arrive on or after December 22 with RA-89002 (msn 95002) set to follow in March 2015 according to ch-aviation.

Photos: Red Wings Airlines.

Red Wings aircraft slide show:

Red Wings FAs (Red Wings)(LRW)

Aeroflot to start Moscow-Samarkand flights

Aeroflot Russian Airlines (Moscow) in January is starting daily regular flights on the route Moscow — Samarkand.

Aeroflot will operate the new route with Airbus A320s from Sheremetyevo Airport Terminal D.

Samarkand is the second largest city in Uzbekistan and the capital of the Samarkand Province.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 VQ-BKU (msn 4835) arrives in London (Heathrow).

Aeroflot aircraft slide show:

Belavia Belarusian Airlines to introduce the Boeing 737-800 on the Minsk-Barcelona route

737-800 Belavia Artwork

Belavia Belarusian Airlines (Minsk) is getting ready to take delivery of its first Boeing 737-800 (737-8K5 EW-437PA, msn 27988, ex D-AHFP) leased from AerCap.

Previously on June 26, 2014 Belavia announced it had reached an agreement with Boeing on an order for three 189-seat Next-Generation 737-800 airplanes.

Belavia currently operates six Boeing 737-500s and seven 737-300s.

Belavia is planning to initially operate the new type on the Minsk-Barcelona route starting on May 16, 2015 per Airline Route.

Image: Boeing.

Belavia aircraft slide show:

 

Iberia to add six new routes from Madrid next summer

Iberia (Madrid) is planning to add six new destinations for the next summer season. The flag carrier will add service from Madrid to Budapest (starting on June 2, 2015, three weekly flights), Catania (June 20, one weekly), Florence (March 29, six weekly), Funchal (July 4, twice weekly), Hamburg (March 30, four weekly) and Palermo (June 23, weekly) per Airline Route.

Additionally Iberia Express will add Edinburgh (March 29, four weekly), Naples (June 1, three weekly) and Verona (June 2, three weekly).

Copyright Photo: Iberia’s Airbus A320-214 EC-MCS (msn 6244) taxies at London’ Heathrow Airport.

Iberia aircraft slide show:

Iberia (2013) logo

Map of Iberia’s expansion:

Iberia new routes 2015 map and graph

 

TAP Portugal to increase the frequency on the Miami route

TAP Portugal (Miami) from June 28 through September 22, 2015 will go to daily service on the Lisbon-Miami route. Ironically this is the summer rainy season for Miami, the off season for North American visitors. The route is operated with Airbus A330s and A340s.

Copyright Photo: Pedro Baptista/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330223 CS-TOH (msn 181) in the Star Alliance livery arrives at the Lisbon hub.

TAP Portugal aircraft slide show:

 

VivaAerobus is coming to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport

VivaAerobus (Monterrey) will launch new international service to DFW International Airport from two of Mexico’s largest cities, Guadalajara and from Monterrey, starting on March 28, 2015. The low cost carrier will use Airbus A320 aircraft and will operate out of DFW’s International Terminal D three times per week. VivaAerobus also plans to launch service from DFW to Cancun in July of 2015.

VivaAerobus currently serves 21 destinations in Mexico with hubs in Monterrey and Cancun, and also serves three U.S. destinations in addition to DFW Airport. Headquartered in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, Viva Aerobus is co-owned by IAMSA, Mexico’s largest bus company conglomerate, and the founders of Ryanair, Europe’s biggest low-cost carrier.

When service begins in March, VivaAerobus will become the eighth international carrier to start service at DFW since 2011, extending the Airport’s recent run of international expansion. Since 2011, DFW has added 25 new international routes, 18 of those to new international destinations.

Copyright Photo; Greenwing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 EI-ERH (msn 2157) was formerly operated by Livingston.

VivaAerobus aircraft slide show:

VivaAerobus logo

Current route map:

VivaAerobus 12.2014 Route Map

Interjet expands its Miami operations

Interjet (Mexico City) is expanding its operations in Miami. The airline is launching a new route connecting Cancun with Miami International Airport (MIA) on December 18. The new route will operate six days a week.

The carrier’s regular Mexico City-Miami will be increased to 18 flights a week on January 7, 2015.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 XA-BAV (msn 5372) arrives in Miami.

Interjet aircraft slide show:

Interjet wavy logo

Current routes from Mexico City:

Interjet 12.2014 MEX Route Map

 

EasyJet announces 19 new routes for summer season 2015

EasyJet (UK) (easyJet.com) (London-Luton) is continuing it’s ever-expanding route map by announcing 19 new routes for the summer season of 2015.

The new routes were released on the carrier’s website. They are as follows:

Amsterdam – Corfu (June 30) twice weekly
Amsterdam – Ibiza (June 30) three times weekly
Amsterdam – Palermo (June 29) twice weekly
Bristol – Bilbao (April 19) twice weekly
Bristol – Isle of Man (April 19) four times weekly
Bristol – Zakinthos (May 13) once weekly
Hamburg – Alicante (March 30) twice weekly
Hamburg – Bologna (March 29) three times weekly
Hamburg – Irakleion (June 27) twice weekly
Hamburg – Paris Orly (March 29) once daily
Hamburg – Pisa (March 30) twice weekly
Hamburg – Thessaloniki (June 29) twice weekly
Lisbon – Ponta Delgada (March 29) three times weekly
London Luton – Split (June 16) three times weekly
Manchester – Kefalonia (June 16) twice weekly
Manchester – Split (June 17) twice weekly
Newcastle – Corfu (June 7) once weekly
Newcastle – Rhodes (June 4) once weekly
Newcastle – Split (June 2) twice weekly

Sophie Dekkers, easyJet’s UK Director, said:

“We’re pleased to be continuing our growth with additional new routes for next summer placed on sale today.”

“This underlines our commitment to both leisure and business passengers across the UK, making it easy and affordable for them to connect to a choice of summer destinations and we expect our new routes to be especially popular.”

 

Reported by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: Paul Bannwarth/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-111 G-EZGA (msn 4427) lands at EuroAirport serving Basel/Mulhouse/Freiburg..

EasyJet (UK) aircraft slide show:

British Airways announces new flights to Greece from London City Airport

British Airways (London) has announced new flights to Greece from London City Airport for the summer of 2015. The British flag carrier announced seasonal services to Mykonos and Thira (Santorini) for operation from June 29 to September 6, 2015. The routes will be operated with Embraer ERJ 190s by BA CityFlyer.

The route schedule released by BA is as follows:

London City – Mykonos: Four Times Weekly

BA2221 LCY 1040 – 1615 JMK E90 134
BA2221 LCY 1245 – 1820 JMK E90 7
BA2220 JMK 1705 – 1900 LCY E90 134
BA2220 JMK 1920 – 2115 LCY E90 7

London City – Thira: Twice Weekly
BA2223 LCY 1040 – 1620 JTR E90 25
BA2222 JTR 1705 – 1900 LCY E90 25

BA’s general manager commercial at London City, Luke Hayhoe, said to wharf.co.uk: “London City is no longer just a business airport as our growing leisure schedule shows.

“In recent years we have launched new flights to many popular summer sun spots in Spain, Italy and France, now we are delivering what our customers have asked for – some Greek Island destinations.”

Reported by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: Nik French/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer ERJ 190-100SR G-LCYM (msn 19000351) taxies at Manchester.

British Airways aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

British Airways-BA CityFlyer aircraft slide show:

Air Canada launches year-round service to Rio de Janeiro

Air Canada (Montreal) has inaugurated new nonstop service between Toronto (Pearson) and Rio de Janeiro – Galeão International Airport with the departure of flight AC 098. The year-round flight to Brazil’s “Marvelous City” will complement Air Canada’s existing daily nonstop service to Sao Paulo and further drive Air Canada’s international expansion strategy.

Three-times-weekly service is being operated with a Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft with 24 International Business Class and 187 Economy seats.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-38E ER C-GDUZ (msn 25347) departs from London (Heathrow).

Air Canada aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Ryanair to add Deauville, France on April 3, 2015

Ryanair (Dublin) has announced that it is extending it’s summer 2015 schedule from London Stansted Airport, with a new route to Deauville, France. This is in addition to the previously announced four new summer 2015 routes to Ponta Delgada (Azores), Cologne, Glasgow and Edinburgh and increased flights on 24 existing routes to and from London (Stansted).

The new route to Deauville will operate twice weekly on Mondays and Fridays from April 3, 2015.

Reported by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: SM Fitzwilliams Collection/AirlinersGallery.com. Up close and person. Boeing 737-8AS EI-EVK (msn 40298) launches into the sky at the Dublin base.

Ryanair aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

United to drop four more routes from Cleveland

United Airlines (Chicago) continues to downsize its Cleveland station, creating new opportunities for other carriers. On March 5, 2015, the carrier will drop the route to Dallas/Fort Worth, followed by Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fort Myers and Tampa in Florida on April 7, 2015 according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-824 N76505 (msn 32834) with Aviation partners Boeing Split Scimitar Winglets climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.

United Airlines aircraft slide show (current livery): AG Slide Show

 

Reuters: Airbus is confident it can deliver the first A350 to Qatar Airways within 10 days

Airbus (Toulouse) is confident it can prepare the first Airbus A350-900 for delivery to launch customer Qatar Airways (Doha) within 10 days according to this report by Reuters.

The original delivery ceremony was scheduled for December 13.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. The first delivery A350, the pictured A350-941 F-WZFA (msn 006) will become A7-ALA on the handover, whenever that occurs.

Qatar Airways aircraft slide show:

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