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Kingfisher Airlines may get bank loans to keep operating, announces a new reduced schedule

Kingfisher Airlines (Bangalore and Mumbai) is fighting for its corporate life. The airline has submitted a reduced schedule in order to prevent more cancellations and will return some Airbus A320s. In addition, the carrier may receive some bank loans to continue operating per this article by the Deccan Herald.

Read the articles: CLICK HERE and also CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Guillaume Besnard.

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Kingfisher Slide Show: CLICK HERE

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A new crash investigation of Airblue’s flight ED 202 to be conducted

The government of Pakistan has informed the Peshawar High Court that it has decided to conduct another investigation into the Airblue (Islamabad) flight ED 202 crash on July 28, 2010. The Airbus A321 crash killed all 152 passengers and crew members on board. The first investigation report was rejected by the court.

Read the full report from The News: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord. Please click on the photo for additional information on the crash.

Airblue Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Routes from Islamabad:

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Gulf Air to add 11 more weekly flights to Jeddah and Riyadh

Gulf Air (Bahrain) will added 11 extra flights to its existing flight schedule from Bahrain to Jeddah and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia to meet the increasing passenger demand.

The airline will operate four extra flights from Jeddah to Bahrain, increasing its frequency from 10 to 14 per week each direction starting on March 1, 2012, while adding seven flights from Riyadh to Bahrain increasing the frequency from its present 14 flights per week to 21 flights each direction, also starting on March 1, 2012.

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton.

Buy this Photo: CLICK HERE

Gulf Air Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Regional routes from Bahrain:

Please click on the map to expand.

Nasair withdraws from India, graduates its first 30 Saudi pilots

Nasair (flynas.com) (Riyadh) has dropped its final route (Kozhikode) to India on February 1.

In other news, Nasair celebrated the graduation of the first 30 Saudi pilots under it’s “Future Pilots Program”. The airline has targeted the goal of 100 Saudi pilots for the growing airline.

Read the full story from Arab News: CLICK HERE

Buy this Photo: CLICK HERE

Routes from the Riyadh hub:

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KLM to repaint seven Boeing 777-200 ERs in KLM Asia livery

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) is repainting seven Boeing 777-206 ERs (PH-BQF/H/I/K/L/M/N) to KLM Asia markings so the aircraft can fly the rerouted Amsterdam-Taipei-Manila route according to Scramble. KLM uses the “KLM Asia” brand to fly to Taipei (Taiwan) and the aircraft must fly over China. Previously KLM used Boeing 747s for its services to Taiwan.

KLM Asia was established in 1995 in order to operate flights to Taipei, without compromising the traffic rights held by KLM for destinations in the People’s Republic of China. KLM Asia is no longer in official operation but its aircraft still fly in the KLM Asia livery.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

KLM Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Boeing: 55 Dreamliners have the potential “shimming problem”

Boeing (Chicago) has stated 55 of its 787 Dreamliners “have the potential” to develop a fuselage shimming problem, but the company reiterated again the fault was being fixed.

Read the full story from the Jakarta Globe: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

Southwest Airlines’ mechanics throw a wrench into the AirTran Airways integration

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) has issued a statement regarding the “no” vote by its mechanics concerning the proposed integration plan with the mechanics of subsidiary of AirTran Airways.

Here is the statement:

“Southwest Airlines has offered a statement in response to the “no” vote by the Southwest Airlines Aircraft Mechanics, represented by the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) Local 11, on the tentative seniority integration agreement it had with the Company and with Aircraft Mechanics with AirTran Airways. This tentative agreement would have integrated the two groups’ seniority lists.

“With the rejection of the seniority integration proposal, we understand that Employees have different perspectives and opinions on this issue, but our goal continues to be the speedy resolution of seniority integration,” said Jim Sokol, Southwest Airlines Vice President of Maintenance Operations. “Our vested interest remains focused on our Employees, and we fully support a proposal that meets their needs without increasing complexity, creating division, or diminishing Southwest’s Culture.”
The next step in this process is the joint filing for arbitration by AMFA and IBT. The Company’s preference is that the two parties come to a resolution before arbitration begins, and it remains open to working with both Unions to reach a solution that supports a comprehensive integration. AMFA represents approximately 1,600 Southwest Airlines Aircraft Mechanics, and the IBT represents more than 400 AirTran Aircraft Mechanics.
Southwest and AirTran Pilots, Flight Instructors, and Flight Attendants have already successfully completed the Seniority Integration negotiation process. Work groups still in seniority integration negotiations include Aircraft Mechanics; Ramp, Operations, and Provisioning Agents; Customer Service Agents and Customer Support and Service Employees; Dispatchers; and Materials Specialists.”

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

Visit our website (growing every day): CLICK HERE

Southwest Airlines Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

United Airlines to launch nonstop Newark-Istanbul service

United Airlines (Chicago) today announced plans to launch daily, nonstop flights between its Newark Liberty International Airport hub and Istanbul, effective on July 1, 2012, subject to government approval. Westbound service from Istanbul begins July 2.

Istanbul will be the 76th international destination that United serves from New York/Newark and the 37th city in United’s trans-Atlantic route network. With service to points in the Americas, Europe and Asia, United offers more flights from the New York area to more destinations worldwide than any other airline.

United flight UA 904 will depart from Newark daily at 7:27 p.m. (1927) and arrive in Istanbul at 12:20 p.m. (1230) the next day. Flight UA 905 will depart Istanbul’s Ataturk International Airport daily at 1:55 p.m. (1355) and arrive at Newark at 6:02 p.m. (1802) on the same day.

The airline will initially operate the services with three-cabin Boeing 767-300 aircraft with 183 seats – six in United Global First, 26 in United BusinessFirst and 151 in United Economy, including 67 Economy Plus seats with added legroom. Effective on August 28, the airline will operate the service with two-cabin Boeing 767-300 aircraft with 214 seats – 30 in BusinessFirst and 184 in Economy, including 46 Economy Plus seats.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

Air Zimbabwe fails to resume domestic flights after its unpaid pilots refuse to fly

Air Zimbabwe (Harare) was unable to resume domestic operations yesterday which were suspended last month. The pilots refused to fly until their unpaid back wages are paid according to News Day.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Rainer Bexten.

Air Zimbabwe Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Virgin Atlantic adopts a “block IAG takeover and replace BMI” strategy

Virgin Atlantic Airways (London) is calling on the European Commission to block the IAG takeover of BMI (East Midlands). The company is also vowing to replace the critical UK-Heathrow feeder services provided by BMI with its own UK regional carrier.

Is Virgin Atlantic the undisclosed bidder for BMI Regional?

Read the full article from Travel Weekly: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Wingnut.

Virgin Atlantic Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

United Airlines finally repaints the last mainline aircraft in the 1993 blue and gray livery

United Airlines (Chicago), like Delta Air Lines in the past, was flying lately with three brands. Three brands at one time is not always the best marketing strategy as it often confuses the consumer. Now for the mainline, UA is now down to just two aircraft liveries. The last mainline aircraft to wear the pictured 1993 gray top color scheme is finally being repainted. Ironically the UA aircraft are being repainted into the older 1991 Continental color scheme. It is “back to the future” for the new United Airlines.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

United Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Fly Guam suspends charter operations

Fly Guam (Guam) has apparently suspended all scheduled charter operations and no flights are listed on their website. The pictured colorful Sky King Airlines (Lakeland) Boeing 737-400 has returned to Florida and is now flying charters from Miami still with the Fly Guam titles.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Fly Guam Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

PIA and Boeing finalize an order for five additional Boeing 777-300 ERs

PIA-Pakistan International Airlines (Karachi) and Boeing (Chicago) today announced a firm order for five 777-300 ER (extended range) airplanes. Valued at nearly $1.5 billion at list prices, the order also includes purchase rights to Pakistan International Airlines for five additional 777-300 ERs.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

PIA Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Southwest and AirTran announce new routes

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) and its wholly owned subsidiary AirTran Airways (OrlandO) announced today new nonstop routes as they extend their flight schedules for travel bookings out through November 2, 2012. Southwest announced new nonstop service between Detroit and Las Vegas and AirTran announced new nonstop service between Des Moines and Chicago Midway. In addition, Southwest will now operate two daily nonstop flights between Atlanta and San Francisco as it transitions this route from an AirTran-operated city pair to one operated by Southwest. Southwest also will initiate one daily nonstop flight between Atlanta and Orlando, with AirTran continuing its nine daily flights between these cities.

Copyright Photo: Southwest Airlines. WN and FL are now tail-to-tail at the Atlanta hub.

AirTran Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Southwest Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Kingfisher Airlines claims its cancellations are due to frozen bank accounts

Kingfisher Airlines (Bangalore and Mumbai) has cancelled a high number of flights since Saturday. According to this report by Reuters, the airline claims the cancellations are due mostly to frozen bank accounts.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: David Apps.

Kingfisher Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

OLT Express Poland to add 17 new routes in April

OLT Express (Poland) (formerly Yes Airways) (Warsaw) will add 17 new routes in Poland in April according to Warsaw Business Journal.

According to the WBJ, from Warsaw will add new services to Gdańsk, Szczecin, Poznań, Wrocław and Rzeszów. From Gdańsk, the company will add new flights to Szczeciń, Poznań, Wrocław, Katowice, Kraków, Łódź and Warsaw.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Damian Lesniak.

Visit our new website: CLICK HERE

LOT Polish Airlines to drop Hanoi on March 26, will add Beijing

LOT Polish Airlines (Warsaw) will drop Hanoi due to poor load on March 26. Instead the flag carrier will add new service to Beijing.

On the financial side, the carrier lost over $44 million in 2011.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography.

Buy this Photo: CLICK HERE


airLithuanica is proposed in Lithuania as a new flag carrier

airLithuanica (Vilnius) is a newly-proposed airline in Lithuania to replace FlyLAL which ceased operations on January 16, 2009.

According to this report by ATO.ru, Vilnius Mayor Arturas Zuokas stated city officials will possibly participate in the creation of a new airline named airLituanica. The proposed makeup is 34% of the new airline to be owned by the city of Vilnius, 49% by a prospective strategic investor and 17% by other shareholders in Lithuania.

Update: On June 18, 2013 at the Paris Airshow, Embraer issued this statement about the new carrier:

AirLituanica of Vilnius, Lithuania, has acquired two Embraer E-Jets. The carrier will launch scheduled service on June 30 with one Embraer 170 leased from a third party. In July, Air Lituanica will add another E-Jet, an Embraer 175, leased from ECC Leasing Company, Ltd., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Embraer.

The E170 and E175 are configured with 76 and 86 seats in single class, respectively. AirLituanica will deploy the aircraft on its planned routes between Vilnius and Brussels, Amsterdam, Berlin, Prague, Munich and Moscow. The airline intends to add three to four more aircraft to increase frequencies with the objective of serving a dozen European routes from Vilnius in three years.

Read the report (in Russian): CLICK HERE

Ryanair to open 8 new routes from Warsaw’s new Modlin Airport

Ryanair (Dublin) has announced it will open eight new routes from Warsaw to Brussels, Budapest, Dublin, London, Milan, Oslo, Rome and Stockholm as soon as Warsaw’s new Modlin airport opens on July 16, 2012. These eight new Warsaw routes will deliver 700,000 passengers per year and will create up to 700 local jobs at Modlin Airport according to the airline.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

Ryanair Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Ryan International Airlines becomes a new Airbus operator

Ryan International Airlines (Rockford) has become a new Airbus operator. The pictured Airbus A330-343X N771RD (msn 1231, ex G-VINE) was leased from Virgin Atlantic Airways on November 23, 2011. The jetliner is operating in an all-white condition with a simple “Ryan” title on the forward fuselage and logo on the tail and the engines.

The airliner has been operating subservices for other carriers, military contract flying, college football bowl charter flights and other charter flights.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck. Airbus A330-343X N771RD (msn 1231) lands at Baltimore/Washington from Sanford on February 13, 2012.

Ryan International Airlines: AG Slide Show


UPS makes a bid for TNT Express N.V. which is rejected but the two companies continue talking

UPS-United Parcel Service (Atlanta) is in talks to acquire TNT Express N.V. (Hoofddorp). TNT is the second-largest package-delivery company in Europe. TNT has rejected UPS’ initial $6.43 billion takeover offer.

The bid of 9 euros per share is 42 percent higher than Friday’s closing price of TNT’s stock according to Bloomberg.

TNT issued the following statement:

“TNT Express N.V. announces that it has received an unsolicited non-binding and conditional proposal from United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS) for the acquisition of the whole of the issued capital of TNT Express at an indicative price of € 9 per ordinary share.

The TNT Express N.V. Supervisory and Executive Boards have carefully considered the indicative proposal and explored its rationale, merits and risks for shareholders and all other stakeholders.

The TNT Express N.V. boards have rejected the proposal. They have informed UPS accordingly but continue to be in discussions.”

TNT Airways S.A. (Liege) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the TNT Express.

The TNT fleet includes:

3 Boeing 777F freighters
4 Boeing 747-400ERF freighters
2 Boeing 767-200F freighters (ABX Air)
1 Boeing 767-300F freighters (Gestair)
2 Airbus A300-600F freighters (Air Atlanta)
3 Boeing 757-200SF Special Freighters (Icelandair and Gestair)
12 Boeing 737-300/400SF Special Freighters (Bluebird, Cargo Air and Ukraine International)
18 BAe 146 including 2 QC models

Read the full article by Bloomberg: CLICK HERE

TNT Airways Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

UPS Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

AeroMexico is coming to Atlanta on July 1 from Mexico City

AeroMexico (Mexico City) will add Atlanta and the Mexico City-Atlanta route on July 1, linking it with partner Delta Air Lines. The new route will be operated with Boeing 737-700s per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Gilbert Hechema.

Buy this Photo: CLICK HERE

AeroMexico Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Allegiant to drop four routes from Las Vegas in April

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) will drop the Knoxville-Las Vegas route on April 9.

In addition, the carrier is also dropping service from Las Vegas to Lexington (April 7), Pueblo and Redmond in April.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

Buy this Photo: CLICK HERE

Allegiant Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Singapore Airlines to retire the Boeing 747 with two special flights on April 6

Singapore Airlines (Singapore) has announced it will operate special commemorative flights between Singapore and Hong Kong on April 6, 2012 to mark the retirement of the Boeing 747 after nearly four decades of service.

Flight SQ 747 from Singapore to Hong Kong and SQ 748 from Hong Kong to Singapore will be operated with this Boeing 747-400 (9V-SPQ), replacing existing flights SQ 860 and SQ 863, which are normally operated with Airbus A330-300s.

The special flights, which will be SIA’s last commercial passenger services with the Boeing 747, are now open for sale. In addition to more than 300 commercial passengers, on board will be employees who have worked on the aircraft throughout its storied history, as well as a group of underprivileged children and media.

The commemorative flights will have an extended flying time of one hour to enable those on board to be treated to a unique inflight experience. This will include specially crafted meal services and inflight entertainment. Customers will also receive limited edition Boeing 747 memorabilia.

First Class customers will be provided an additional experience – an exclusive tour of the Airline’s cabin crew training facilities and Boeing 747-400 flight simulator in Singapore.

A dedicated website has been set up to commemorate the jumbo’s retirement, at http://www.SIAjourneys.com, featuring milestones and records set over the years, historical photographs and video footage, including interviews with staff and customers. Information about fares for flights SQ 747 and SQ 748 can also be found on the website.

Top Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

Singapore Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Worldwide routes operated by Singapore Boeing 747s:

Bottom Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati. Please click on the photo for additional details.

ANA announces its strategy for the coming years

ANA (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) has announced it strategic plans for the next two fiscal years (this is a common practice in Japan).

The highlights of the plan are:

1. A 22 per cent increase in ANA’s international operations in two years.

2. Increase in operating income to ¥110 billion in FY2012 and ¥130 billion in FY2013.

3. Adoption of multi-brand strategy and switch to holding company structure.

4. Further efficiency measures to reduce Group costs by ¥100 billion.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

ANA Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Lion Air signs a contract for 27 additional ATR 72-600s for Wings Air

Lion AIr (Jakarta) on February 16, 2012 signed a contract with ATR for the purchase of 27 additional ATR 72-600 aircraft. Once these aircraft will be integrated into the fleet of Lion Air’s regional subsidiary Wings Air, it will become the largest operator of ATR aircraft in the world, with a total fleet of 60 aircraft (20 ATR 72-500s and 40 ATR 72-600s). Wings Air currently operates a fleet of 16 ATR 72-500s across its domestic network in Indonesia. The airline plans to receive its 60th ATR 72 by the end of 2015.

These next 44 ATR 72-500/600s to be delivered to Wings Air will continue to develop new routes departing mainly from Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi and Papua islands. Some of these aircraft will also replace and complement Wings Air’s MD-80s and Lion Air’s Boeing 737s operating from these airports, thus adding new frequencies into the network.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

United rebrands premium cabins, upgrades food, entertainment and amenities

United Airlines (Chicago) today announced the company is upgrading its premium-cabin services to offer customers new food and beverage options, additional choices in in-flight entertainment, and – on long-haul international flights – new amenity kits, pillows and blankets.

According to the airline, “United is also rebranding its international, long-haul premium-cabin services, introducing:

United Global First, the international first-class experience on three-cabin aircraft.

United BusinessFirst, the international business-class experience on two-cabin and three-cabin aircraft.

United Global First, United BusinessFirst

Beginning on March 3, 2012 on long-haul international flights and many flights within Asia and the Pacific, first-class customers on three-cabin aircraft will experience United Global First, with a higher level of privacy and comfort, a flat-bed seat, priority airport services and more-personal attention.

On most of United’s three-cabin aircraft, United Global First suites offer flat-bed seats, laptop power, USB ports, individual audio and video on demand with noise-reduction headsets, additional storage compartments and a multi-course meal with complimentary wines.

Beginning in the second quarter 2012 , United will upgrade the long-haul first-class experience with new amenities, including:

More-comfortable bedding amenities.
Additional in-flight food choices.
New amenity kits featuring Philosophy-brand skin-care products.

United also will extend Continental’s award-winning BusinessFirst product to United, offering an elevated business-class service with new amenities that include:

An additional entree option, for a total of four, designed by United’s Congress of Chefs. United is also changing the way it prepares business-class meals to improve the quality and taste.

Expanded wine selections chosen by Doug Frost, Sommelier and Master of Wine.

New ice cream sundae dessert option with a choice of six toppings.

Improved in-flight entertainment including noise-reduction headsets.

New amenity kits featuring Philosophy-brand skin-care products.

Duvet-style blankets and higher-quality pillows and hot towels.

For customers flying United in North America, between North America and Central America, between North America and northern South America, and on some flights within Asia and the Pacific islands, the airline will continue to offer United First and United Business premium-cabin services.

On most flights, United has revamped its premium-cabin meal and snack choices to offer customers their favorites among options previously available only on United flights or Continental flights, including:

Warmed, all-natural scones and cookies, made from scratch exclusively for United.

Warmed cinnamon rolls on breakfast flights.

Pasta salads as a light snack.

Premium snacks including all-natural pop chips, Emerald nuts, Clif organic energy bars, Toblerone

Swiss milk chocolate and fresh fruit.

Warmed nuts offered in a small china bowl on all lunch and dinner services.

Ice cream sundaes offered with a choice of six toppings, available on many transcontinental lunch and dinner services.

On United Express flights longer than two hours, customers seated in the premium cabin may enjoy complimentary snack boxes.

The rebranding and expanded menu options come as United continues with plans to invest more than $550 million to upgrade aircraft interiors. The airline has installed Economy Plus seating on dozens of Continental aircraft. When fully deployed, United will offer customers more extra-legroom economy-class seats than any other airline in the world.

United continues to upgrade its widebody fleet with new premium cabins, with more than 130 aircraft outfitted with flat-bed seats. Once completed in early 2013, United will offer more premium-cabin flat-bed seats than any other airline.

Beginning later in 2012, customers will see additional improvements, including larger overhead bins on Airbus A319 and A320 aircraft – increasing the available carry-on storage space by approximately two-thirds – and satellite-enabled inflight internet service. United is also introducing on-demand entertainment on its popular transcontinental p.s. service, along with an expanded premium-cabin service with flat-bed seats.”

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

United Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Mokulele Airlines rebrands under its new ownership

Mokulele Flight Service (Mokulele Airlines) (Kailua-Kona), flying the skies of Hawai’i since 1994, was recently purchased by TransPac Aviation Holdings in late 2011 from the Mesa Group.

While rebranding its core business, the airline is maintaining its marketing relationship with Go!

Mokulele Airlines has introduced a new logo and branding and is taking a hard look at its core business. The airline will now focus on the commuter inter-island business.

Mokulele Airlines will continue all of its current routes – including flying the only shuttle between Kailua-Kona and Kahului and between Kahului and Molokai.

Mokulele offers over 40 flights a day connecting Maui and Oahu to the Big Island, Lanai, and Molokai using 9-seat turbine powered Cessna Grand Caravan 208 aircraft.

Destinations in Hawaii:

Alaska Airlines starts seasonal service between San Jose and Palm Springs, California

Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) today inaugurates new seasonal service between San Jose and Palm Springs, California. The new nonstop route operates through June 2. After a hiatus from June 3 to October 4, seasonal service will then resume on October 5, 2012.

The seasonal San Jose-Palm Springs route will be operated by Alaska’s sister carrier, Horizon Air, with the fuel-efficient Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400).

Copyright Photo: Joe G. Walker. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Alaska Horizon Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Spirit Airlines moves into Denver, what is the future of Frontier Airlines?

Spirit Airlines (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) has announced that it will start nonstop service from Denver International Airport (DEN) to the carrier’s four largest bases. On May 3, 2012, Spirit will begin offering nonstop service from Denver to Chicago O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Las Vegas, with connections available to 29 additional cities throughout the U.S., the Caribbean and Latin America.

Spirit’s new service includes:

1. Daily service between Denver and Chicago O’Hare.

2. Daily service between Denver and Dallas/Fort Worth with a second daily flight starting on May 17, 2012.

3. Daily service between Denver and Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood.

4. Twice daily service between Denver and Las Vegas.

Is this a strategic move by Spirit in preparation of a potential bid for Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver)? Frontier’s parent Republic Airways Holdings (Indianapolis) still has not made up its mind on what it will do with Frontier. However their hand may be forced by this move. The ultra low-cost carrier’s move into the DEN market will further lower air fares and also further erode Frontier’s yield in its largest hub. It is already suffering at the Milwaukee hub.

What is the future of Frontier?

Copyright Photo: Dave Campbell.

Spirit Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

The updated Spirit Route Map. The Frontier Route Map would mess well with Spirit’s. Spirit’s recent moves have been mainly in the West setting the stage for this announcement.

Please click on the map to expand.

Air Australia goes into bankruptcy and the fleet is grounded

Air Australia (formerly Strategic Airlines) (Brisbane) on February 17, 2012, the Director of the Air Australia group of companies appointed John Park and Mark Korda of KordaMentha as Voluntary Administrators.

The fleet has been grounded.

The following statement was issue by Air Australia:

“It currently appears that there are no funds available to meet operational expenses so flights will be suspended immediately. For clarity, it also appears highly unlikely there will be any flights in the short to medium term. You should make alternate travel arrangements.”

Read the “behind the scenes” account of the over-spending by Air Australia by newscom.au: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Lloyd Fox. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Air Australia Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Strategic Airlines Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

QANTAS Group announces a half year profit of A$202 million

QANTAS Group (Sydney) issued the following financial statement (all amounts in Australian dollars):

“The Qantas Group has announced underlying profit before tax of $202 million for the half-year ended December 31, 2011, a decrease of $215 million compared with the prior corresponding period. Statutory profit before tax was $58 million.

The result reflects the $194 million financial impact of industrial action during the first half, as well as increased fuel costs compared with the prior corresponding period. Total fuel costs in the half were $2.2 billion, up $444 million (or 26 per cent).

The Group also today outlined measures that respond to global economic conditions and the structural challenges facing Qantas, including the European finance crisis, the changing Australian economy and the need to increase efficiency and competitiveness. These steps will position the Group for a strong, sustainable future and build long-term shareholder value.

They include a reduction in capital expenditure of $700 million over 2011/12 and 2012/13; a review of Qantas’ heavy maintenance footprint in Australia; and changes to Qantas’ catering and engineering operations.

Qantas’ underlying EBIT in the first half was $66 million, compared with $165 million in the prior corresponding period.

Jetstar achieved record underlying EBIT of $147 million, up $4 million on last year’s first-half earnings.

The following network changes will be made in order to adjust capacity to market conditions and route performance:

1. Withdrawal from the Singapore-Mumbai and Auckland-Los Angeles routes, effective 6 May 2012. This is in addition to previously-announced withdrawals from the Hong Kong-London and Bangkok-London routes, effective March 2012.

2. Aircraft changes on the following international and domestic routes: Sydney-Bangkok (Boeing 747 replaced with Airbus A330 from 10 June), Sydney-Perth (Boeing 747 replaced with Airbus A330 on certain services from 6 May) and Melbourne-Perth (additional A330 services added from 6 May).

3. Capacity increases on the Los Angeles-New York route from 6 May (Airbus A330 replaced with Boeing 747) and Sydney-Tokyo route from 10 June (one Airbus A330 service per week replaced with a Boeing 747 service, resulting in daily Boeing 747 services).

4. Early retirement of two further Boeing 747 aircraft (in addition to the four early B747 retirements announced in August 2011).”


Rock Center’s feature on FedEx and interview with Fred Smith

FedEx (Memphis) was one of the feature sections last night on NBC’s Rock Center:

Watch the Video: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

FedEx Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE


DirectAir to add three new destinations from Lakeland

DirectAir (Myrtle Beach) has announced it will add three new destinations from Lakeland (near Orlando). Flights from LAL to Columbus, OH, Gulfport/Biloxi and Pittsburgh will commence on May 18 and will be operated by Sky King Airlines (Lakeland).

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

Route Map:

Please click on the photo for the full view.

Horizon Air orders two additional Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s)

Horizon Air (Alaska Horizon) (Seattle/Tacoma) has signed a firm purchase agreement for two Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s) NextGen airliners. Horizon Air, a wholly owned subsidiary of Alaska Air Group, is the largest operator of Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft in the Americas with 48 aircraft in service today.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

Horizon Air Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Garuda Indonesia orders six Bombardier CRJ1000 jets

Garuda Indonesia Airways (Jakarta) has now been confirmed as the airline that ordered the six Bombardier CRJ1000 NextGen regional jets and placed 18 options, announced by Bombardier on February 10, 2012 as an unidentified customer.

Including the order from Garuda Indonesia, Bombardier has recorded firm orders for 1,715 CRJSeries aircraft, with 1,661 delivered as of December 31, 2011.

Image: Bombardier.

Garuda Indonesia Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Ethiopian Airlines orders five Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s)

Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa) has been confirmed as the airline that has ordered five new Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s). Two of the five aircraft will be operated by Ethiopian Airlines and three by its affiliate, ASKY Airlines of Togo.

This order brings the total number of Q400s ordered by Ethiopian to 13.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photogaphy.

Ethiopian Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Drukair signs a MOU for an Airbus A319 with Sharklets

Drukair (Paro), the flag carrier of landlocked Eastern Himalayan mountain Kingdom of Bhutan, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Airbus for an Airbus A319-100 aircraft fitted with Sharklets to complement its existing fleet of two A319s.

Paro is the only airport in Bhutan which is located in a deep valley at an elevation of 7300 ft above sea level. The surrounding hills are high as 16,000 ft and approach into Paro airport is entirely by visual flight rules. Due to the difficult operating conditions, operations with the Dornier 228 caused many delays and diversions. With the growth of traffic and the expansion of flights, the need for a larger aircraft became necessary. After conducting numerous tests taking into account the difficult operating conditions the British Aerospace BAe 146-100 was selected and started operations in November 1988. Within a short span of its introduction the network of Drukair increased to link Paro with New-Delhi, Bangkok and Kathmandu. From two destinations in 1983 today Drukair operates from Paro seven times a week to Bangkok where five flights operate via Kolkata and two flights through Gaya (flights via Dhaka and Yangon are currently suspended), three times a week to Kathmandu and Delhi.

Drukair purchased and Airbus delivered two A319 in the largest transaction the country has ever taken. The final delivery of the A319 was made on December 3, 2004 and as of now, both the Airbus are operational.

Top Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen.

Bottom Image: Airbus.

The country of Bhutan:

Norwegian’s loss widens in the fourth quarter

Norwegian Air Shuttle (Oslo) reported its fourth quarter loss widened to $23 million due to strong competition and rising fuel costs, despite taking delivery of more fuel-efficient Boeing 737-800s.

The company was still able to produce a $21 million net profit for 2011.

Read the full report from Norwegian: CLICK HERE

The expanding airline is looking at adding long-range routes to Bangkok, Beijing, Hong Kong and New York with the delivery of the pending Boeing 787 Dreamliners.

Read the full report from Bloomberg: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Terry Wade. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Norwegian Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Spirit Airlines profits increase in the 4Q and 2011

Spirit Airlines, Inc. (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) today reported fourth quarter 2011 and full year 2011 financial results.

Net income for the fourth quarter 2011 was $24.0 million, or $0.33 per diluted share.
Full year pro forma adjusted net income was $95.5 million, or $1.32 per diluted share. Full year 2011 GAAP net income was $76.4 million, or $1.43 per diluted share.
EBITDAR for the fourth quarter 2011 was $70.7 million resulting in an EBITDAR margin of 25.8% excluding unrealized fuel hedge gains and special items. For the full year 2011 EBITDAR was $275.0 million, resulting in an EBITDAR margin of 25.7% excluding unrealized fuel hedge losses and special items.

Spirit took delivery of two A320s in the fourth quarter, ending 2011 with 37 aircraft in its fleet. Spirit expects to take delivery of seven A320s in 2012 (3 in 1Q12, 2 in 2Q12, 2 in 4Q12), which would bring its fleet count to 44 at year-end 2012.

Amended its Airbus purchase agreement for an order of 75 aircraft consisting of 30 A320 and 45 A320neo aircraft. These aircraft are scheduled for delivery from 2016 through 2021 and are in addition to the 31 aircraft under Spirit’s previous order that are scheduled for delivery from 2012 through 2015.

Spirit ended the year with $343.3 million in unrestricted cash.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

Spirit Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

SkyWest reverts to the red in the latest quarter

SkyWest (St. George) reported a net loss of $18.0 million, or $0.35 per basic and diluted share, for the quarter ended December 31, 2011, compared to $37.2 million of net income, or $0.67 per diluted share, for the same period last year.

The company’s foreign investments is also dragging the company down. Recorded additional $6.8 million loss attributable to SkyWest’s minority investments in Trip Linhas Aereas (TRIP) and Mekong Aviation Joint Stock Company (Air Mekong).

On November 12, 2010, SkyWest completed the acquisition of ExpressJet Holdings, Inc. (Houston) and ExpressJet Holdings became a subsidiary of Atlantic Southeast Airlines, Inc. (Atlanta), a wholly-owned subsidiary of SkyWest. During the fourth quarter of 2011, the operations conducted by ExpressJet Holdings and its subsidiaries were combined into Atlantic Southeast, and the combined operations are now conducted as ExpressJet Airlines, Inc.

Copyright Photo: James Helbock.

SkyWest Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Bill Ayer to retire as CEO at the Alaska Air Group

The Alaska Air Group (Seattle/Tacoma) board of directors and Bill Ayer, chairman and chief executive officer, announced today that Ayer will retire as CEO of Air Group and its subsidiary carriers, Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air, effective at the company’s annual shareholder meeting on May 15. Brad Tilden, a 21-year veteran at Air Group, will succeed Ayer as CEO of Air Group and the company’s two airlines and will remain as president of Alaska Airlines. Ayer will continue to serve as chairman of the board.

Ayer, 57, has spent three decades at Air Group, including 10 years as CEO. In addition to serving as chairman of Air Group and its subsidiary boards, he will participate as a member of the NextGen Advisory Committee, a panel of aviation industry leaders who are working with the FAA to modernize the nation’s air traffic control system and improve airport and airspace efficiency.

Tilden, who is 51, joined Alaska Airlines from Price Waterhouse in 1991. He was promoted to Air Group’s chief financial officer in 2000, to executive vice president – planning and finance in 2007, and to president of Alaska Airlines in 2008. As president, Tilden has overseen the nation’s seventh-largest airline, with 9,500 employees and 119 aircraft serving 61 destinations across the continental United States and in Alaska, Hawaii, Canada and Mexico.

In addition to serving on the Alaska Air Group board, Tilden is a director of Flow International Corp., Pacific Lutheran University and the Chief Seattle Council of the Boy Scouts of America (where he will serve as council president beginning in March). He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Pacific Lutheran University and an MBA from the University of Washington and is a private pilot.

Ayer, also a private pilot, joined Horizon in 1982 and has served in a variety of marketing, planning and operational posts at the regional carrier and Alaska Airlines. He was appointed CEO of Air Group and Alaska Airlines in 2002, succeeding John F. Kelly, and became chairman in 2003. Ayer, who is joining the University of Washington Board of Regents, is chairman of the Puget Energy board, serves on the UW Foster School of Business Advisory Board, and is a director of Angel Flight West and the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

Hawaiian earns first-ever Aviation Carbon Credits for reducing emissions

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has earned the first-ever aviation based carbon credits, having reduced its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by nearly 22,000 metric tons over the past six years using an innovative, eco-friendly engine washing technology developed by Pratt & Whitney.

A carbon credit is a verified means of measuring the reduction of industrial CO2 emissions from the environment, with one credit equal to the removal of one ton of CO2. Hawaiian’s earning of carbon credits has been quantified and certified under the Verified Carbon Standard, the world’s leading independent standard for the measurement and verification of greenhouse gas emissions and the creation of carbon credits.

Hawaiian’s reduction of CO2 emissions using Pratt & Whitney’s patented EcoPower engine washing system has had the equivalent effect of taking 700 cars off the road annually.

In addition, since launching the program in 2005, Hawaiian’s commitment to the engine-washing system has saved the company more than 2.5 million gallons of fuel, along with an estimated 26,000 gallons of water that would have been used with traditional washing methods.

The EcoPower system reduces fuel burn and eliminates three pounds of CO2 for every pound of fuel saved, while also reducing engine temperatures and normal wear. It uses pure, atomized water to wash aircraft engines in a closed-loop system that filters contaminants and reuses water, eliminating potential contaminant runoff. The system is more effective and faster than traditional engine washing processes.

Hawaiian’s engine washing program is part of a broader continuous effort to mitigate high fuel costs and their impact on its customers. The company has commitments to acquire a fleet of new, more fuel efficient aircraft valued at more than $8 billion and has installed performance-enhancing winglets, lighter passenger seats and lighter service carts on its existing wide-body fleet.

Hawaiian employs a number of other measures to reduce its carbon footprint, including a variety of other fuel conservation measures, recycling of waste materials and use of renewable and biodegradable resources in onboard meal packaging and utensils.

The company is also part of an airline industry movement to support development of clean- burning alternatives to petroleum-based fuel for powering jet engines.

Top Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. P&W Sales Vice President Rick Duerloo (left) with Hawaiian CEO Mark Dunkerley (right) at the special award ceremony in Honolulu.

Hawaiian Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. The unique ECO Poer “engine washer”.

AMR loses big in the 4Q and 2011

AMR Corporation (Dallas/Fort Worth) AMR recorded a consolidated net loss of $1.1 billion for the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to a consolidated net loss of $97 million in the fourth quarter of 2010. The fourth quarter 2011 results include:

$886 million in non-cash special charges and reorganization items.

Of that amount, $768 million is related to special items, which includes a $725 million non-cash charge resulting from the impairment of certain aircraft and gates and a $43 million unfavorable adjustment to revenue, as a result of changes in assumptions related to the recognition of AAdvantage® revenue.

The Company recognized $118 million in reorganization items, primarily due to the rejection of 24 leased aircraft: 20 MD-80s and 4 Fokker 100s; as well as professional fees.

Excluding these items, the loss in the fourth quarter of 2011 was $209 million, which compares to a loss, excluding special items, of $69 million in the same period of 2010.

For fiscal 2011, AMR recorded a consolidated net loss of approximately $2.0 billion, which compares to a consolidated net loss of $471 million for fiscal 2010.

Fiscal Year 2011 results include:

$917 million in non-cash special charges and reorganization items.

Of that amount, $799 million is related to special items, which includes a $725 million non-cash charge resulting from the impairment of certain aircraft and gates, $31 million of non-recurring non-cash charges related to certain sale/leaseback transactions, and a $43 million unfavorable adjustment to revenue, as a result of changes in assumptions related to the recognition of AAdvantage revenue.

The Company also recognized $118 million in reorganization items, primarily due to the rejection of 24 leased aircraft: 20 MD-80s and 4 Fokker 100s; as well as professional fees.

Excluding the items described above, the Company’s consolidated net loss was approximately $1.1 billion in 2011, versus a consolidated net loss of $389 million excluding special items in 2010.

For fiscal year 2011, including the impact of fuel hedging, AMR paid an average of $3.01 per gallon for jet fuel compared to an average of $2.32 in 2010, a 30.1 percent increase. As a result, the Company paid nearly $2.0 billion more for jet fuel in full-year 2011 than it would have paid at prevailing prices in the prior full-year period.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

Japan Airlines to bring the 787 Dreamliner to San Diego and Helsinki

JAL-Japan Airlines (Tokyo) announced today as part of its Mid-Term Management Plan for fiscal years 2012 to 2016, that it will launch new nonstop services from Tokyo (Narita) to San Diego in December 2012 and to Helsinki in March 2013, utilizing the new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft on both routes, in addition to the inaugural service between Tokyo (Narita) and Boston which will commence April 22 this year.

JL066/065 will be the first nonstop flights linking San Diego with Japan and Asia, and will be operated with the 787 Dreamliner fitted with Executive Class and Economy Class cabins. JAL will begin serving the eighth most populous U.S city, also the city with the largest Asian community currently without a direct flight to Asia, with four flights a week from December 2012 and daily from March 2013 to/from Narita.

In other news, JAL will order 10 additional 787s, bringing the total to 45.

The airline will also convert 10 existing 787-8 orders to the larger 787-9 model.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

JAL Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Boeing and Voltea agree on 717 leases

Volotea (Palma de Mallorca) as previously reported, has taken delivery of its first Boeing 717-200 airplane leased from Boeing Capital Corporation, the manufacturers’ financing and leasing arm. The operator plans to begin its new European point-to-point service with an all-717 fleet in time for this year’s Easter travel season.

Under a multi-year arrangement, Boeing will begin additional deliveries of the twinjet in March of this year. The number of aircraft involved in the arrangement was not disclosed.

Volotea’s business plan is to serve Europe’s small and mid-sized cities.

Volotea’s 717s will be configured to carry 125 passengers in an all-coach layout.

Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez.


Delta begins full flat-bed seat installations on its Boeing 747-400s

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is renovating its Boeing 747-400 fleet to include full flat-bed seats in the BusinessElite cabin and new “slim line” seats offering more personal space and individual in-seat entertainment throughout the Economy cabin. The airline already has taken delivery of the first modified aircraft, which operated its first flight on January 26, 2012 from Tokyo (Narita) to Detroit. As modifications are completed throughout 2012, customers will increasingly see the upgraded aircraft on various routes across the Pacific and Atlantic. Customers will experience the new interiors on each 747-400 flown by Delta by October, 2012.

Top Copyright Photo: Gabor Hajdufi.

Bottom Copyright Photo: Delta Air Lines.

Each 747 will have 48 BusinessElite full flat-bed seats on the upper and lower deck of the aircraft featuring direct aisle access for every seat, a 110-volt universal power outlet,USB port and a personal LED reading lamp. In addition, each seat comes with a 15.4 inch widescreen video monitor with instant access to more than 1,000 entertainment options – more than any other U.S. carrier – including more than 300 films, 88 hours of television programming, nearly 100 hours of premium programming from HBO and Showtime, 27 video games and more than 5,000 digital music tracks.

Delta already offers more direct-aisle access seats than any other U.S. carrier. The new 747 BusinessElite seat, manufactured by Zodiac Aerospace, are approximately 80 inches in length and 20.5 inches wide, and will be arranged in an angled herringbone layout, similar to the flat-bed product currently offered on Delta’s 777 fleet. Window seats will face outward, while center seats are angled toward each other. The new seats are 20 percent wider than those they replace and include a large dining table and side console. There are no middle or rear-facing seats.

Delta Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings has a profitable 4Q and 2011

Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. (New York) today announced adjusted net income of $39.7 million, or $1.50 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2011, and $108.8 million, or $4.12 per diluted share, for the full year.

Adjusted results for both periods exclude pre-operating expenses for the introduction of new aircraft types, including incremental costs incurred as a result of aircraft delivery delays; a special charge related to the retirement of the company’s 747-200 fleet; and gains and losses on the disposal of assets.

On a reported basis, fourth-quarter net income attributable to common stockholders totaled $33.5 million, or $1.27 per diluted share. Full-year reported net income attributable to common stockholders totaled $96.1 million, or $3.64 per diluted share.

Copyright Photo: Bernhard Ross. With the addition of new aircraft, including the pictured Boeing 767-300 ERs and new 747-800F freighters, Atlas Air was able to retire its last Boeing 747-200.

Atlas Air Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Gulf Air to drop four destinations

Gulf Air (Bahrain) has announced the closure of four destinations; Damascus (March 2), Athens (March 12), Milan (Malpensa) (Amrch 12) and Kuala Lumpur (March 25). The four destinations are underperforming. This announcement follows the previous announcement of the closure of the Entebbe and Geneva routes earlier this month.

Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss. Please click on the photo for full details on this first Airbus A321.

Gulf Air Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Emirates to add Lisbon on July 9

Emirates (Dubai) is adding Lisbon and the Dubai-Lisbon route on July 9. The new route will be served with Boeing 777-200 ER aircraft.

In addition, the carrier has now assigned the Airbus A340-500 to the Dubai-Accra route.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

Emirates Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE


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