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Singapore Airlines Cargo adds Chongqing in China

Singapore Airlines Cargo (Singapore) added Chongqing in China on November 24 with twice-weekly cargo service.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

Singapore Airlines Cargo Slide Show: CLICK HERE

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Jet Airways to bail out subsidiary Jetlite

Jet AIrways (Mumbai) intends to loan its Jetlite (Mumbai) subsidiary $9.6 million by the end of March 2012 to keep the loss-making airline flying according to this report by the WSJ.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Jetlite Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Jet Airways Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Airberlin introduces a special “Santa Claus Tour 2011″ livery on D-ABMC

Airberlin (airberlin.com) (Berlin) took delivery of newly-built Boeing 737-86J registered D-ABMC (msn 37752) on November 14. The carrier has decorated the new airliner in this special “Flying home for Christmas” and “Santa Claus Tour 2011″ livery for the holidays.

Here is the flying schedule for D-ABMC: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf.

Airberlin Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Is Caribbean Airlines making money?

Caribbean Airlines (Port of Spain) is becoming a center point in a developing political storm in Trinidad and Tobago as to whether the expanded flag carrier is actually making a profit as declared.

According to this article by Stabroek News, the Ministry of Finance has requested Caribbean Airlines submit its latest financial statements following CAL chairman George Nicholas’ recent announcement that the airline made a TT$200 million profit.

Critics charge the statement does included losses due to fuel hedges which is included, would put the state airline into the red.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf.

Caribbean Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Airbus rolls out its new A320 Sharklets

Airbus (Toulouse) has rolled out at Toulouse this original Airbus A320-211 F-WWBA (msn 001) with this new Sharklets design. The manufacturer has also issued this new “Sharklets – hunting down fuel burn” livery complete with shark teeth at the nose!

Copyright Photo: Airbus.

 

Emirates to fly to Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires

Emirates Airline (Dubai) continues to rapidly expand. The United Arab Emirates-based carrier will begin flying the Dubai-Rio de Janeiro-Buenos Aires route starting on January 3, 2012.

Flight EK 247 will leave Dubai daily at 0705 and arrive at Rio’s Antônio Carlos Jobim International Airport at 1537. It will depart Rio at 1723, arriving at Buenos Aires Ministro Pistarini International Airport (Ezeiza) at 1930. From Buenos Aires, flight EK 248 departs at 2130, arriving in Rio at 0120 the next day. The aircraft will depart Rio at 0310, arriving in Dubai at 2253.

One of the world’s fastest-growing airlines, Emirates has a fleet of 162 aircraft and has become the world’s largest Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 operator.

With an order for 50 new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft placed at the Dubai Airshow earlier this month, Emirates now has 243 aircraft on order, worth over $84 billion at list prices.

Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires will be the airline’s 116th and 117th global destinations respectively. They will also become the second and third points to be added to Emirates’ South American network.

The new route will be served with Boeing 777-300 ERs.

In other news, Emirates added the Airbus A380 on the Munich route starting on November 25.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

Emirates Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Airberlin seeks out new partners in the Gulf and China

Airberlin (Berlin) is exploring possible partner and investor relationships with airlines from the Arabian Gulf region and China.

Airberlin’s new CEO Hartmut Mehdorn has already held talks with Etihad Airways and the HNA Group according to Sueddeutsche Zeitung and this report by AFP.

Airberlin’s founder Joachim Hunold had always opposed the option of seeking foreign investors but Mehdorn appears to be pursuing a different strategy.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck.

Airberlin Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Plus Ultra Lineas Aereas is born in Spain

Plus Ultra Lineas Aereas (Madrid) has been established in Spain by former Air Madrid (Madrid) director Julio Martinez. The new start-up is planning to launch long-range flights to Latin America (like Air Madrid) in 2012 with Airbus A340-300s.

Air France’ Airbus A340 flew with 30 screws missing after a China maintenance visit

Air France (Paris) grounded an Airbus A340 at Boston after 30 screws were found missing from a protective panel.

The A340 had previously undergone maintenance at Taeco-Taikoo Aircraft Engineering in Xiamen and departed on November 10 for Charles de Gaulle Airport near Paris for three days. The missing parts were not discovered until it was ready to depart from Boston’s Logan International Airport.

Read the full report from Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Pepscl.

Air France Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Thomas Cook Group secures $154 million in new financing

Thomas Cook Group (London) has secured another $154 million in financing from a group of European banks, allaying fears of a collapse of the travel group.

Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE

BAA warns of 12-hour delays at Heathrow Airport on Wednesday

BAA Limited (London) is asking airlines serving London’s Heathrow Airport to cut back on the number of passengers for next Wednesday (November 30) due to a planned Public Sector strike which is expected to produce up to 12-hour delays at LHR.

BAA Ltd. is the Spanish-owned operator of six British airports (including Heathrow Airport) and Naples Airport in Italy, making the company one of the largest transport companies in the world. BAA stems from British Airports Authority and it is owned by a consortium led by Grupo Ferrovial, a Spanish firm specializing in infrastructure.

The main impact area will be in Immigration where the Immigration Services Union will be striking. Immigration staffing levels will be “at a maximum of 30-50%, and that most of those checking passports would have no experience and little training” according to this report by the BBC.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton.

Wow Air to start operations from Iceland on June 1, 2012

Wow Air (Reykjavik) is a new airline in Iceland which is planning to operate Airbus A320s to European destinations. The planned destinations from Keflavik include Alicante, Basel/Mulhouse, Berlin (Brandenburg), Cologne/Bonn, Copenhagen, Krakow, London (Stansted), Lyon, Paris (CDG), Stuttgart, Warsaw and Zurich.

The planned start-up date is June 1, 2012.

According to the website, “Majority holder of WOW air is the investment company Titan, owned by Skúli Mogensen. Other shareholders are Baldur Baldursson and Matthías Imsland. Baldur Baldursson is the company’s CEO.

Directors of the Board are Skúli Mogensen, Baldur Baldursson, David Másson Director and Partner Avion Capital Partners SA and Björn Ingi Knútsson former Airport Director of Keflavik Airport & Alternate representative for the Nordic Countries at ICAO in Montreal, Canada.

Skúli Mogensen is also Chairman of the Board of WOW air.”

Wow Air owners:

Planned Route Map:

 

Jetstar Asia starts nonstop Singapore-Beijing service

Jetstar Asia Airways (Singapore), the low-fare offshoot of Jetstar Airways, yesterday (November 24) challenged Singapore Airlines and Air China by launching daily low-fare nonstop service on the lucrative Singapore-Beijing route.

Jetstar will operate an Airbus A330 on its Singapore-Beijing service, configured for 303 passengers across business and economy classes. Jetstar will be the first low-cost carrier to fly the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, which will gradually replace its A330s from mid-2013.

Jetstar’s Singapore hub now connects to 27 destinations, including 14 in South East Asia, 10 in China and three in Australia.

Copyright Photo: John Adlard. Jetstar Asia’s aircraft also operate with just Jetstar.com titles like this Airbus A330-202 of Jetstar Airways of Australia.

BOC Aviation signs a contract for 15 Embraer 190s

BOC Aviation (formerly Singapore Aircraft Leasing Enterprise-SALE) (Singapore) has signed a firm contract for 15 Embraer ERJ 190 aircraft (E190).  Deliveries are scheduled from the fourth quarter of 2012 through 2014 for the leasing company.

Singapore Airlines owns 35.5 percent of the shares.

Image: Embraer.

Boeing delivers Ethiopian Airlines’ first 737 with the new Boeing Sky Interior

Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa) on November 22, 2011 accepted brand new Boeing 737-860 ET-APF (msn 40961). For the company, it is the first Boeing 737 with the new Boeing Sky Interior.

Copyright Photo: Boeing. An interior photo of ET-APF with the attractive new interior.

Air Nippon to be merged into ANA

Air Nippon (Tokyo), a wholly-owned subsidiary of ANA, will be merged onto ANA (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) based on the decision of both board of directors today (November 25).

Air Nippon was founded by ANA, Japan Airlines-JAL and TOA Domestic as Nippon Kinkyori Airways-NKK in March 1974 and commenced operations on October 10,1974. The name Air Nippon was adopted in 1987 and the abbreviation ANK comes from the full, somewhat redundant name Air Nippon Kabushiki kaisha.

In April 2004 Air Nippon adopted ANA’s livery and currently uses ANA flight numbers.

Copyright Photo: Nobuhiro Horimoto.

Air Nippon Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Final assembly of the first Thai Airbus A380 begins at Toulouse

Thai Airways International (Bangkok) has six Airbus A380-800s on order. The first (msn 087) has begun its final assembly process at Toulouse.

At the first assembly station (pictured), the front, central, and aft fuselages, wings, and horizontal and vertical stabilizers are assembled and attached.

Copyright Photo: Airbus.

Thai Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Emirates celebrates the 40th anniversary of the founding of the United Arab Emirates with a special A380 logo

Emirates Airline (Dubai) is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the formation of the United Arab Emirates by carrying a special anniversary logo, emblazoned on its Airbus A380 aircraft.

The UAE is a federation of seven emirates (equivalent to principalities), each governed by a hereditary emir, with a single national president. The constituent emirates are Abu Dhabi, Ajman,Dubai, Fujairah, Ras al-Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm al-Quwain. The capital is Abu Dhabi, which is also the state’s center of political, industrial and cultural activities.

Prior to independence in 1971 from Britain, the UAE was known as the Trucial States or Trucial Oman, in reference to a 19th-century truce between the local sheikhs, hereditary rulers of the territories and the United Kingdom. The term Pirate Coast was also used by some to refer to the emirates from the 18th to the early 20th century, owing to the preponderance of pirates operating from emirati ports.

Copyright Photo: Emirates.

Emirates Slide Show: CLICK HERE

AeroSvit to launch the Odessa-Berlin route on March 25 with new Embraer ERJ 190s

AeroSvit Ukrainian Airlines (Kiev) is planning to launch the Odessa-Berlin (Tegel) route on March 25, 2012 according to Airline Route. The new route will be operated four times a week with the new Embraer ERJ 190. The company has 10 ERJ 190s on order.

AeroSvit Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Estonian Air to launch two new routes from Tallinn

Estonian Air (Tallinn) on March 25, 2012 will launch flights from Tallinn to Vienna with six flights a week and on April 2, 2012 from Tallinn to Hannover with six flights a week.

Estonian Air will serve the routes with 88-seater Bombardier CRJ900 NextGen aircraft. Tallinn-Vienna flight duration is 2 hour and 10 minutes and Tallinn-Hanover 1 hour 55 minutes.

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren.

Estonian Air Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Lufthansa to add four weekly flights from Munich

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) is set to expand its European network from its Munich hub and has identified Routes’ events as a major factor in it achieving this latest stage of its network growth. The airline will introduce routes from Munich to the Croatian city of Pula and the southern French city of Montpellier during the summer of 2012.

The two routes will be served on a weekly basis with Saturday flights and will mainly target leisure travellers. The flight to Montpellier is due to launch in April 2012, while Pula will be added on May 5, 2012. Additionally Lufthansa will add routes to Jersey, Bastia, Odessa and Valencia in the summer of 2012.

Copyright Photo: Gunter Mayer.

Lufthansa Regional-CityLine Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Vueling Airlines records a $54.8 million net profit in the third quarter

Vueling Airlines (vueling.com) (Barcelona) reported a net profit of $54.8 million in the third quarter.

Read the full report from CNA: CLICK HERE

Vueling Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems.

Routes from Barcelona:

Sky Airline has signed a code share agreement with TACA

Sky Airline (Santiago) has signed a new code share agreement with TACA (San Salvador). The Chilean airline is also expected to sign another code share agreement with Avianca (Colombia) (Bogota) next year.

Read the full report from Travel Agent Central: CLICK HERE

Sky Airline Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Alvaro Romero.

JetBlue and WestJet win slots

JetBlue Airways (New York) has won an auction for eight new takeoff and landing slots at both New York’s LaGuardia Airport and Washington Reagan National Airport according to this report by Reuters and Bloomberg Businessweek.

Additionally WestJet Airlines won eight takeoff and landing slots at LaGuardia.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Dave Campbell.

JetBlue Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Boeing announces a world 787 “Dream Tour”

A new look for ZA003, originally uploaded by The Boeing Company.

Boeing (Chicago) will begin a six-month “Dream Tour” with a 787 Dreamliner. According to Boeing, “customers and partners around the world will experience the revolutionary technology and passenger innovation offered on the first new airplane of the 21st century.”

The December schedule for the 787 Dream Tour includes six stops in Asia , Africa and the Middle East :

December 4-11 : China with stops in Beijing , Guangzhou and Haikou to visit customers, partners, and government officials including representatives from Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), Air China, China Southern, Hainan Airlines, Aviation Industries of China (AVIC) and Chengdu Aircraft Industrial Co. (CAC).

December 11-16 : Africa with stops in Addis Ababba, Ethiopia and Nairobi, Kenya to visit Ethiopian Airlines and Kenya Airways.

December 16-19 : Middle East stop in Doha to visit Qatar Airways.
Specific dates for the subsequent segments of the tour will be announced about one month prior to the events. Additional tour stops are being planned for January through April 2012 and will be detailed in future announcements.
Many of the stops will include opportunities for local media to tour the airplane and talk with Boeing executives and pilots.

Aviation enthusiasts can follow the progress of the 787 tour at www.newairplane.com. Videos, photos and reports from the tour stops as well as an inside look at the airplane, will be featured beginning with the first stop next week.

The Dream Tour airplane, ZA003, (N787EX) has been retrofitted with special interior features designed to highlight the unique cabin features and performance capabilities of the Dreamliner. The flight test equipment on board ZA003, the third 787 to be built, has been removed and a stunning new interior has been installed (see above). The airplane also has received a refreshed Boeing livery.

Visitors will be greeted by the spacious signature 787 entryway sky light and gathering area. The LED lighting, standard on all 787s, will be demonstrated throughout the tour airplane. Visitors will experience the dynamic affect of this new technology to make meal time more enjoyable, sooth passengers during restful periods and gently wake them following a long flight.

Visitors also will find a luxurious business-class cabin with a dozen lay-flat seats, an overhead crew rest compartment and an economy class section. A large open space between the two economy class sections allows Boeing to spotlight the features of the 787 with displays and demonstrations. The exterior of the airplane has been repainted in the standard Boeing livery.

Copyright Photo: Boeing.

Boeing delivers the 100th Next-Generation 737-900 ER

Boeing’s (Chicago) Next-Generation 737-900 ER (extended range) reached 100 deliveries with a delivery this week to Somon Air (Dushanbe) of Tajikstan.

To date, the 737-900 ER has logged 414 orders from 16 customers. The Next-Generation 737 family (all models) has won orders for more than 6,000 airplanes and Boeing has delivered more than 3,800.

Copyright Photo: Boeing. 737-93Y P4-SOM (msn 40889) was officially handed over on November 21.

Safi Airways to add the Kabul-Abu Dhabi route on January 5

Safi Airways (Kabul) will add the Kabul-Abu Dhabi route on January 5, 2012. The new route will be operated four days a week with Airbus A320s.

Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Safi Airways Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Air Austral to fill the void with new Seychelles-Paris flights

Air Austral (St. Denis, Reunion Island) is filling the void created with the recent announcement of Air Seychelles that it was dropping all long-distance flights to Paris and London. Air Austral will add a new twice-weekly St. Denis-Seychelles-Paris (CDG) route per Airline Route on March 27, 2012.

The new route will be operated with Boeing 777-300 ERs.

Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati.

Air Austral Slide Show: CLICK HERE

South African Airways to launch nonstop Johannesburg-Beijing flights

South African Airways (Johannesburg) is planning to launch new nonstop service linking its Johannesburg hub with Beijing starting on February 3, 2012 according to Airline Route. The new route will be operated three times a week with Airbus A340-600 equipment.

Copyright Photo: Wingnut.

South African Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Turkish Airlines swings to a third profit of $43.1 million

Turkish Airlines (Istanbul) which was expected to report a loss for the third quarter, produced an operating profit of $43.1 million for the 3Q.

Read the full report from the airline: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Gunter Mayer.

Turkish Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Lufthansa to fly to Qingdao, China

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) will launch the Frankfurt-Shenyang-Qingdao route on March 26, 2012. The new route will be operated with Airbus A340-300s three times a week. The Frankfurt-Guangzhou route will be dropped at the same time.

Qingdao, also known in the West by its postal map spelling of Tsingtao, is a major port city with a population of over 8.7 million (2010 census) in eastern Shandong province in eastern China.

LH will be the first European carrier to serve the city.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

Lufthansa Slide Show: CLICK HERE

KLM to resume service to Lusaka on May 15

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) will restore the Amsterdam-Lusaka route on May 15, 2012. The restored Lusaka (Zambia) route will be operated three times a week with Airbus A330-200s.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography.

KLM Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Delta to suspend the Atlanta-Shanghai route on January 18

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) will suspend the twice-weekly nonstop Atlanta-Shanghai (Pudong) route on January 18, 2012. This route may be move to another US city (Seattle/Tacoma?).

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

Delta Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Wizz Air to expand operations at Timisoara, Romania

Wizz Air (wizzair.com) (Budapest) has announced it is expanding its operations at Timisoara Airport by increasing capacity on a number of routes.

Starting on March 27, 2012 Wizz Air will increase services to Dortmund (Germany) and from June 23, 2012 to Beauvais (near Paris) (France), London (Luton) (UK), Bologna (Forli) and Rome (Fiumicino).

Wizz Air will increase its capacity in Timisoara by 20% next summer. As a result, the company now expects to carry over 400,000 passengers to/from the airport in 2012.

Copyright Photo: Rob Skinkis.

Routes from Timisoara:

Thomas Cook’s stock tumbles as it goes to the banks for financial help

Thomas Cook Group (London) has lost nearly three-quarters of its market value on the London Stock Exchange after the ailing firm admitted it had gone back to the banks for more financial help according to this report by the Press Association.

Thomas Cook Group plc is a travel company created on June 19, 2007 by the merger of Thomas Cook AG and MyTravel Group plc. At flotation on the London Stock Exchange 52% of the shares in the new company were held by the German mail order and department store corporation Arcandor (former owners of Thomas Cook AG) and 48% owned by the shareholders of MyTravel. On June 9, 2009 Arcandor filed for bankruptcy. The merger, which was backed by 99.9% of shareholders, took place through the formation of “NewCo” which effectively purchased MyTravel and Thomas Cook and was then listed on the London Stock Exchange under the name of Thomas Cook Group plc.

The Thomas Cook Group plc is the parent organization of Condor Flugdienst, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia, Thomas Cook Airlines (Belgium), Thomas Cook Airlines (Canada) and Thomas Cook Airlines (UK).

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Thomas Cook (UK) Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

Iberia’s pilots to vote on a strike action on November 30

Iberia’s (Madrid) pilots will take a strike vote on November 30. The pilots are protesting the company’s plans to launch a new low-cost subsidiary (named Iberia Express) hiring pilots under lower rates and taking over many of IB’s routes.

Read the full story from Reuters: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ariel Shocron.

Iberia Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Norwegian to open 34 new routes in the summer

Norwegian Air Shuttle (Oslo) is launching 34 new routes from Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden to destinations all over Europe. The new routes will commence with the summer schedule starting in March 2012.

New routes from Norway:

Oslo: Ajaccio/Corsica, Andøya, Bratislava, Kiev, Reykjavik, Skiathos
Bergen: Edinburgh
Sandefjord/Torp: Antalya, Bergen, Berlin, Evenes, Las Palmas, Nice, Palma/Mallorca, Trondheim
Trondheim: Berlin

New routes from Sweden:

Stockholm: Amsterdam, Corfu, Krakow, Riga, Vaasa
Gothenburg: London Gatwick

New routes from Denmark:

Copenhagen:, Belgrade, Bratislava, Burgas, Marseille, Milan, Riga, Szczecin
Aalborg: Berlin

New routes from Finland:

Helsinki: Corfu, Palma/Mallorca, Paris, Rhodes,

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren.

Norwegian Slide Show: CLICK HERE

British Airways shifts its Mauritius flights from Heathrow to Gatwick

British Airways (London) is shifting its London departure point for the Mauritius Islands in the Indian Ocean from Heathrow Airport to Gatwick Airport.

British Airways has recently opened its new state-of-the-art terminal extension at Gatwick, which will be home to all British Airways flights at Gatwick.

Copyright Photo: Gilbert Hechema.

British Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Ryanair to offer reserved seating on all flights starting on January 10

Ryanair (Dublin) announced it will extend its reserved seating service to all its routes, after successfully testing the concept on over 100 routes since May. The pre-booking service, which will be bookable on all routes from January 10, 2012, will costs €10 (each way) and includes priority boarding.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

Ryanair Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Iceland Express is forced to switch to Holidays

Iceland Express (Reykjavik) has switched to Holidays (CSA (Holidays) and their Airbus A320s to maintain its schedules due to the demise of Astraeus.

Iceland Express Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Nik French. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Route Map:

Astraeus Airlines suddenly goes into receivership and shuts down

Astraeus Airlines (London-Gatwick) suddenly ceased operations yesterday (November 21) and went into receivership (bankruptcy protection).

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton. Please click on the photo for the full story.

Astraeus Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Astraeus Video: CLICK HERE

SkyWest Airlines to start flying for US Airways on December 16

SkyWest Airlines (St. George) and US Airways (Phoenix) have finalized their previously announced tentative agreement to operate as a new US Airways Express carrier. Beginning on December 16, SkyWest Airlines will begin operation of six daily US Airways Express flights from US Airways’ hub in Phoenix. By the spring of 2012, SkyWest Airlines will operate approximately 49 flights to 19 destinations for US Airways Express.

SkyWest will serve US Airways’ Phoenix-based Express operation with 14 50-passenger Bombardier CRJ200 regional jet aircraft, replacing the CRJ200 and DHC-8 Express service currently operated by Mesa Airlines as US Airways Express. US Airways offers more than 267 daily departures from its Phoenix hub to 74 destinations. Eighty-six of the daily departures are operated by US Airways Express with service provided by a combination of SkyWest and Mesa.

Copyright Photo: James Helbock.

JetBlue Airways to add the Fort Lauderdale-Kingston route on April 30

JetBlue Airways (New York) on April 30, 2012 will add the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood-Kingston, Jamaica route. The new route will be operated by JetBlue’s Embraer ERJ 190 aircraft as well as the 150-seat Airbus A320.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

JetBlue Slide Show: CLICK HERE

American picks the Airbus A319 and the A321

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) today (November 21) announced another milestone in its fleet transformation plans by selecting the Airbus A319 and A321 variants to be a part of its A320 family fleet order, which was announced in July 2011 . These new aircraft, which American expects to begin taking delivery of starting in 2013, build upon the airline’s efforts to enhance its fleet in order to be more fuel efficient and provide customers with a state-of-the-art travel experience.

The A319 aircraft will be powered by the CFM56-5B engine from CFM International, a joint venture between General Electric and Snecma. The A321 aircraft will be equipped with V2500-A5 engines from International Aero Engines (IAE), a joint venture between Pratt & Whitney, Rolls-Royce, MTU and JAEC. These engines were selected to enhance the operational performance and fuel efficiency of American’s new Airbus fleet. The Airbus A320 family aircraft offer a 35 percent reduction in fuel cost per seat versus the MD-80 and a 12 percent and 15 percent fuel cost reduction per seat, respectively, versus the 757 and 767-200.

These 130 current-generation A319 and A321 aircraft are fully financed through lease transactions. The financial terms and conditions of the CFM56-5B and V2500-A5 engine purchase have not been disclosed.

As announced in July 2011, American plans to take delivery of 130 current-generation aircraft from the Airbus A320 family starting in 2013. American exercised its rights to convert its delivery positions to the A319 and A321 variants.

Beginning in 2017, American expects to begin taking delivery of 130 aircraft from the A320neo (New Engine Option) family featuring next-generation technology. The new aircraft are about 15 percent more fuel efficient than today’s models. American is scheduled to be the first network airline in the U.S. to deploy this new technology. Engine selection for the A320neo family aircraft will be made in the future.

The Airbus aircraft feature cabin interiors with increased overhead storage, reduced noise and ambient lighting options.

American is also strengthening its Boeing fleet, with plans to acquire 200 additional aircraft from the 737 family, with options for another 100 737 family aircraft. As part of the Boeing agreement, American plans to take delivery of 100 aircraft from Boeing’s current 737NG family starting in 2013, including three 737-800 options that had been exercised as of July 1, 2011 . American also expects to acquire 100 of Boeing’s next-generation 737 MAX aircraft, which will be powered by CFM International LEAP-1B engines. The new-engine variant is expected to have 10 to 12 percent lower fuel burn than current 737s.

American’s most recent deliveries of the 737-800, with 160 seats, include the all-new Boeing Sky Interior, offering larger overhead bins that pivot down and out similar to those on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, a contemporary feeling of spaciousness, and variable LED lighting options for cabin ambience.

American has plans to acquire 42 state-of-the-art 787 Dreamliners, which are currently scheduled to be delivered starting in late 2014. The Company also has firm orders for 15 777 widebody aircraft, which are scheduled for delivery in 2012 through 2016.

American Slide Show: CLICK HERE

QANTAS Airways’ negotiations with the striking unions fail, the dispute is going to arbitration

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) was unable to reach an agreement with the striking unions and it has now agreed to let the dispute go to arbitration.

The company issued the following statement today:

“QANTAS has been unable to reach a new agreement with the Australian and International Pilots Association (AIPA) and both parties concluded that Fair Work Australia will need to resolve the dispute.

QANTAS has negotiated in good faith for 15 months with the pilots union including over 50 meetings including 19 days of meetings before Fair Work Australia over recent weeks.

QANTAS and the Transport Workers Union have failed to reach a new deal on pay and conditions for 3,800 employees, so there will now be binding arbitration by Fair Work Australia.

QANTAS is extremely disappointed that despite over six months of negotiations and a further three weeks of conciliation talks before Fair Work Australia the TWU has refused to remove its unreasonable demands.

QANTAS Chief Executive Officer Alan Joyce said while QANTAS preferred option had been to resolve the dispute through negotiations, it was now time to let Fair Work Australia bring the matter to a close.”

Copyright Photo: John Adlard.

QANTAS Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Air Australia to start the Brisbane-Melbourne route on December 15

Air Australia (formerly Strategic Airlines) (Brisbane) will launch the Brisbane-Melbourne route on December 15.

Copyright Photo: Lloyd Fox.

Qatar Airways announces 7 new routes for 2012

Qatar Airways (Doha) is planning to add seven new routes to Perth, Helsinki, Zagreb, Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Zanzibar, Kigali and Mombasa.

All seven new routes will be launched over the next few months. They will join previously announced new destinations of Baku and Tbilisi, the capital cities of Azerbaijan and Georgia, respectively, which are will become part of Qatar Airways’ family of routes from February 1, 2012.

One of the fastest-growing airlines in the world, Qatar Airways has orders worth over $ 45 billion for more than 250 aircraft, including Boeing 787s, 777s, Airbus A350s, A380s, A320 Family of aircraft and Bombardier corporate jets.

The rapid expansion of Qatar Airways has prompted the State of Qatar to embark on one of its biggest projects – the construction of a brand new international airport in Doha, which is scheduled to open in 2012.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

Qatar Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Ukraine International to fly to Iran

Ukraine International Airlines (Kiev) will launch the Kiev-Tehran route starting on January 26, 2012 per Airline Route. The new route will be flown with Boeing 737-500s.

Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati.

Ukraine International Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Condor to start seasonal service to Singapore on December 4

Condor Flugdienst (Frankfurt) will start twice-weekly seasonal Frankfurt-Singapore service on December 4 according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Bernhard Ross.

Condor Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Air Seychelles to drop London and Paris

Air Seychelles (Mahe) is getting out of the long-haul business and will concentrate on regional routes using Boeing 737-800s. London (Heathrow) will be dropped on January 8, 2012 and Paris (CDG) on March 25, 2012. The three remaining Boeing 767-300s will be returned.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

Air Seychelles Slide Show: CLICK HERE

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