Delta Air Lines reduces its code-share agreement with Alaska Airlines at Seattle/Tacoma

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is reducing its code-share agreement with Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport per Airline Route. The move is not a surprise as Delta has been adding its own feeder flights at SEA to support its long-range routes.

Effective June 5, 2014 Delta will remove its DL code on Alaska Airlines flights from Seattle/Tacoma to Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose.

This will be followed on July 1 when Delta removes its DL code on Alaska flights to Anchorage and Houston (Bush Intercontinental).

Finally the Seattle/Tacoma-Phoenix route will be dropped on December 20, 2014.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/ Airbus A320-211 N333NW (msn 329) of Delta Air Lines taxies at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA).

Delta Air Lines (current): AG Slide Show

Alaska Airlines: AG Slide Show


New Straits Times: MH 370 flew at or below 5,000 feet to avoid local radars

New Strait Times is now reporting a theory that the missing Malaysia Airlines MH 370 may have been flying at 5,000 feet (or below) possibly using “terrain masking” to avoid local radar over three countries citing local sources in Malaysia. If true, this would raise the aspect of a terrorist takeover once again.

However all countries in the area, including India and Pakistan, have stated there was no flight over their respective areas.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

In addition, Malaysia Airlines management now believes the first officer uttered the last words from the flight “All Right, Good Night”.

The government of Malaysia has now reversed the sequence of events saying the transponder was turned off AFTER the last words were uttered by the first officer. According to Reuters, here is the new timeline:

“0119: Someone in the cockpit says “All right, good night” to Malaysian air traffic control. They were the last words heard from Flight MH 370.

0121: The plane drops off air traffic control screens as its transponder – which responds to civilian radar – is switched off. The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam says the plane failed to check in as scheduled at 0121 with air traffic control in Ho Chi Minh City. Malaysian authorities believe that someone on board shut off the plane’s communications systems and turned it sharply to the west.

0215: Malaysian military radar plots Flight MH 370 at a point south of Phuket island in the Strait of Malacca, hundreds of miles west of its last known location.

0811: The last signal received from the plane, according to satellite tracking data.”

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Bottom line: no one knows for sure at this point what happened after those words were uttered.

Airbus starts the final assembly of the first A320neo in Toulouse

Airbus first A320neo 6101 (Airbus)(LR)

Airbus has started final assembly of the first A320neo (msn 6101) at its Final Assembly Line (FAL) in Toulouse (France), with the join-up of the forward and aft fuselage sections which recently arrived from St. Nazaire in France and Hamburg in Germany respectively.

Once this phase is completed, the next stage is the wing to fuselage join-up. Overall it takes about one month to complete the final assembly of an A320 Family aircraft. On average, every seven hours an A320 Family aircraft leaves one of the three A320 Family FAL’s in Toulouse, Hamburg, or Tianjin.

According to Airbus, “The A320neo first flight will take place in the fourth quarter of 2014 and first delivery in the fourth quarter of 2015. The A320neo “new engine option” incorporates many innovations, including latest generation engines and large Sharklet wing-tip devices, which together deliver 15 percent in fuel savings and a reduction of 3,600 tonnes of C02 per aircraft per year. With a total of more than 2,600 orders received from 50 customers since its launch in 2010, the A320neo Family has captured some 60 percent of the market, clearly demonstrating its leadership.”

Copyright Photo: Airbus.

QANTAS Airways brings the Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks to Australia for the MLB Opening Series in Sydney

QANTAS 747-400 VH-OEH (07-Major League Baseball)(Nose)(QANTAS)(LRW)

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) has issued this statement about the Opening Series of Major League Baseball in Sydney, Australia between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Arizona Diamondbacks:

Major League Baseball teams, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks, will arrive in Australia tomorrow morning (March 17) onboard QANTAS Airways for the MLB Opening Series in Sydney.

The MLB Opening Series will be hosted at the Sydney Cricket Ground from March 20-23, aimed at boosting local interest in the sport and profiling Australia to a global audience as it plays host to the event.

Two QANTAS Boeing 747s will depart Phoenix, Arizona and touch down at Sydney International Airport, each carrying approximately 200 passengers including players and management from each team.

Each aircraft is painted in a special livery in support of the Opening Series and each seat headrest cover has been personalized with the team’s logos. Customized US-style menus featuring the teams’ favorite dishes are also onboard.

QANTAS CEO International Simon Hickey said QANTAS was a proud Major Sponsor and Official Airline of the 2014 Opening Series.

“QANTAS is proud to sponsor the MLB Opening Series, which will generate significant brand awareness for the airline in the US with each game expected to be viewed by more than 160 million households,” said Mr Hickey.

“This sponsorship follows a suite of activities to market Australia and QANTAS to the US. In 2012 QANTAS hosted Oprah to Australia and The Ellen de Generes Show in 2013, and last month the cast of Modern Family to film their holiday episode.”

The down-under celebration of baseball will feature the Team Australia Challenge, with Australia’s best home grown talent set to take on the LA Dodgers on Thursday March 20 and Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday March 21. The LA Dodgers will play the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday March 22 and Sunday March 23.

Fans at the game can be part of the excitement by keeping their eye out for the QANTAS Kiss Cam. The games will be broadcast to audiences around the world including Australia, the USA, Japan, Korea, China and Taiwan.

QANTAS Airways is a major sponsor and the official airline of the 2014 Opening Series.

Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways. Boeing 747-438 ER VH-OEH (msn 32912) is one of two 747s to wear this special MLB emblem during the series in Australia.

QANTAS Airways: AG Slide Show

Newcomer SaudiGulf Airlines orders four Airbus A320s to supplement the delayed Bombardier CS300s

Map of Dammam, Saudi Arabia

SaudiGulf Airlines, a new Saudi Arabian airline wholly owned by Abdul Hadi Al Qahtani Group of Companies has signed a firm contract with Airbus for four A320ceo, to be delivered in early 2015. The aircraft is equipped with Airbus “Sharklet” fuel saving wing tip devices.

As one of the two airlines to obtain carrier licenses to operate domestic and international flights from Saudi airports, the airline will contribute to increase the Kingdom’s air transport links with the region and the rest of the world. SaudiGulf plans to launch its operations out of Dammam (see map above), in the first quarter of 2015 followed by Riyadh and Jeddah.

Previously Bombardier Aerospace had announced the Dammam-based Al Qahtani Aviation Company has signed a firm purchase agreement for 16 CS300 aircraft with options for an additional 10 CS300 jetliners. The aircraft will be operated by SaudiGulf Airlines, a newly launched national carrier from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Al Qahtani Aviation Company and SaudiGulf Airlines are both owned by Saudi Abdel Hadi Abdullah Al-Qahtani & Sons Group of Companies (Tariq Al-Qahtani & Bros.).

However the CS300 has been delayed.

Map Image: Abdul Hadi Al Qahtani Group of Companies.

Wing panel flies off a Boeing 757 of Delta Air Lines

Delta logo

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) Boeing 757-200 operating flight DL 2412 from Orlando to Atlanta yesterday (March 16) was involved in an incident. An access wing panel flew off the right wing while the aircraft was en route. The aircraft landed safely.

Read the full report from CNN (with photo): CLICK HERE

Press Briefing by Hishammuddin Hussein, Minister of Defense and Acting Minister of Transport on missing flight MH 370

Malaysia logo-1

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) has issued this statement detailing the press briefing of Hishammudin Hussein, Minister of Defense and Acting Minister of Transport on missing flight MH 370 on March 16:

I know many of you have submitted questions, and I will try to answer some of those questions in my statement today (Sunday, March 16).

Every day brings new angles, especially as we are refocusing and expanding the search area – and as always, we have a responsibility to release only information that has been corroborated and verified.

We cannot respond to every request immediately, so I ask you to bear with us.

1. Search area

As the Prime Minister said yesterday (March 15), the operation has entered a new phase. The search was already a highly complex, multinational effort. It has now become even more difficult.

The search area has been significantly expanded. And the nature of the search has changed. From focusing mainly on shallow seas, we are now looking at large tracts of land, crossing 11 countries, as well as deep and remote oceans.

The number of countries involved in the search and rescue operation has increased from 14 to 25, which brings new challenges of co-ordination and diplomacy to the search effort.

This is a significant recalibration of the search. The search and rescue operation continues to be a multi-national effort, one led and co-ordinated by Malaysia.

In the last 24 hours, the Prime Minister has spoken to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, the President of Turkmenistan, the President of Kazakhstan and Prime Minister of India.

Yesterday (March 15) the Foreign Ministry of Malaysia briefed representatives from countries along the northern and southern corridors.

At 2 pm today (March 16), the Foreign Ministry of Malaysia briefed representatives from 22 countries, including those along the northern and southern search corridors, as well other countries that may be able to help. These include Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, China, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and Australia.

Malaysian officials are requesting support from these countries – as well as others. This support includes general satellite data, radar playback – both primary and secondary – provisions for ground, sea and aerial search, and assets as appropriate.

We are currently discussing with all partners how best to deploy assets along the two search corridors. At this stage, both the northern and southern corridors are being treated with equal importance.

We are asking countries that have satellite assets, including the U.S., China and France amongst others, to provide further satellite data. And we are contacting additional countries who may be able to contribute specific assets relevant to the search and rescue operation. Surveillance aircraft are required, and maritime vessels are needed, particularly for the southern corridor.

2. Police investigation

As the Prime Minister said yesterday (March 15), up until the time the aircraft left military primary radar coverage, its movements were consistent with deliberate action by someone on the plane.

I cannot comment on speculative theories as to what might have caused the deviation from the original flight path, as I do not wish to prejudice the on-going investigation.

I understand the hunger for new details. But we do not want to jump to conclusions. Out of respect to the families, and the process itself, we must wait for the investigation to run its course.

The Malaysian authorities are refocusing their investigation on all crew and passengers on board MH 370, as well as all ground staff handling the aircraft.

Yesterday (March 15), officers from the Royal Malaysia Police visited the home of the pilot. They spoke to  family members of the pilot and experts are examining the pilot’s flight simulator. The police also visited the home of the co-pilot. According to Malaysia Airlines, the pilot and co-pilot did not ask to fly together on MH 370.

I would like to stress that Malaysia has been working with international law enforcement agencies since day one.

3. Aircraft maintenance

Malaysia Airlines has confirmed that the aircraft (9M-MRO) was subjected to the required maintenance program: the Boeing Maintenance Planning Document. Checks are done according to this program. The aircraft had been fully serviced and was fit to fly.

4. New involvement

The Inmarsat team arrived yesterday (March 15) and will support the investigations team, which includes the Malaysian authorities, and the U.K. and U.S. teams.

5. Concluding remarks

I would like to conclude by reiterating that the search for MH 370 has entered a new phase.

The information released yesterday (March 15) has provided new leads, and given new direction to the search process.

We will provide more detail on the redeployment of assets when it becomes available. Facts must be corroborated and verified before being released.

When possible, we will keep the media fully briefed, but our priority remains the search and rescue operation. To that end, we have been engaged in diplomatic and investigative efforts over the past 24 hours.














US Airways announces its routes to be dropped from Washington’s Reagan National Airport

US Airways (Phoenix) according to Airline Route, has announced the anticipated US Airways and US Airways Express route deletions and dates from Washington’s Reagan National Airport as required by the Department of Justice (DOJ) agreement as a prerequisite for the American Airlines-US Airways merger.

May 22, 2014: San Diego

June 5: Augusta, Fayetteville, Fort Walton Beach, Jacksonville (NC), Little Rock and Omaha

June 19: Tallahassee

July 2: Islip, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Pensacola and Savannah

August 19: Detroit

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/ Airbus A321-231 N508AY (msn 3740) arrives at Washington’s Reagan National Airport (DCA).

US Airways: AG Slide Show

Concorde F-WTSB arrives at its final resting spot at the Aeroscopia Museum in Toulouse

Aerospatiale-BAC Concorde F-WTSB (Grd) TLS (Airbus)(LRW)

One of the first Concorde jetliners built at Toulouse, France has made its final “voyage” with the aircraft’s ground transfer to the Airbus-supported Aeroscopia Museum site at the Toulouse-Blagnac Airport.  Designated as an Aerospatiale BAC Concorde 100 and registered as F-WTSB (msn 1), this Concorde made its last flight in April 1985, returning to Toulouse after a career that included a full range of test and development activity.

The Aeroscopia Museum where Concorde msn 1 will be permanently displayed has received funding from Airbus, and its collection will also include one of the initial A300s – the cornerstone widebody jetliner in Airbus’ product line – as well as the msn 1 flight test A400M military airlifter.

All photos by Airbus. Aerospatiale-BAC Concorde F-WTSB at hangar (Grd) TLS (Airbus)(LRW)

Great Lakes Airlines to end service early at several cities

Great Lakes Airlines (Cheyenne) has announced it will end Essential Air Service (EAS) passenger service a month early at Great Bend, Kansas on April 1. The struggling regional carrier will also end passenger flights at Dickinson, North Dakota on March 26 after 21 years. Williston, North Dakota will be dropped on March 30. Great Lakes will also suspend operations at McCook, Nebraska on April 1. The airline is blaming a pilot shortage but critics state the company does pay enough to attract enough pilots.

SeaPort Airlines has bid on the routes with the Department of Transportation (DOT).

Great Lakes has received permission to operate some of their Beech 1900Ds with only 9 seats (please see the seating diagram below) rather than the normal 19 seats so the aircraft can be operated under Part 135 regulations. This allows the company to hire First Officers who have less the 1500 hours FAA requirement. The aircraft still have a captain with at least 1500 hours of experience with an ATP rating. Even with this measure, the airline was not able to stave off the termination of service to these affected cities.

Great Lakes Fleet Seat Plan

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/ Beech (Raytheon) 1900D N201GL (msn UE-201) with a promotional Pierre, South Dakota image on the tail arrives at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Great Lakes: AG Slide Show

The shrinking Great Lakes Route Map (routes shown as of February 1):

Great Lakes 3.2014 Route Map

If Malaysia Airlines missing flight MH 370 went into the southern Indian Ocean, it’s a lonely place, was the captain politically motivated?

MH 370 in southern Indian Ocean

Investigators are now looking at the possibility that Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 made either a north turn or a south turn once it was in the middle of the Indian Ocean. The satellite data revealed by Prime Minister Najib suggests the airliner could be anywhere in either of two arcs: one stretching from northern Thailand to the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, or a southern arc heading from Indonesia to the vast southern Indian Ocean. If the missing flight with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) and 239 souls on board took a turn to the south it could have not picked a more desolate spot on earth except for the polar regions.

According to this article by Reuters, a plane could crash in this area without a ship spotting it or even radar picking it up. In short, it is a lonely place.

So far no trace of missing flight MH 370 has been found. Searchers are now switching to the Indian Ocean but it is a vast area and will be a daunting task. The aircraft could have flown another 2,200 miles after it was last spotted off the northwest coast of Malaysia. That leaves a lot of ocean territory (see map above) to search.

According to Reuters in the article, “The southern Indian Ocean, between Indonesia and Australia, is broken up only by the Australian territories of Christmas Island, home to asylum seeker detention facilities, and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands some 2,000 km (1,240 miles) northwest of Perth. The Cocos Islands have a small airport to serve the islands’ combined population of just 3,000 people.

Further south, the only habitation is the handful of research stations on the scattering of tiny French-run islands including Kerguelen – a group of volcanic outcrops between Africa, Australia and Antarctica. While home to several powerful astronomical scanners and radar, there is no airport and it is seen extremely unlikely the aircraft could have made it that far.”

In summary, MH 370 may never be found and could become the biggest aviation mystery in history. Let’s hope there is some closure for the grieving families.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Meanwhile investigators are also searching for a motive and an answer to the large “why?”. Investigators are investigating the backgrounds of the pilots, crew members and passengers on board missing flight MH 370.

Was this disappearance meant to embarrass the ruling government of Malaysia which has not done a good job of handling this crisis?

Reuters reports the captain (who had a simulator in his home) had postings on his Facebook page suggesting the pilot was a political opponent of the ruling Malaysian government coalition that has ruled Malaysia for the past 57 years since independence.

Read the full article from Reuters: CLICK HERE

Timeline of events: CLICK HERE

Malaysia Airlines issued this 19th media statement late yesterday:

Further to the statement by the Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak earlier today into the ongoing search for Flight MH 370, Malaysia Airlines has shared all available information with the relevant authorities since the moment we learned that the aircraft had disappeared, in the early hours of Saturday 8th March. This includes the very first indications that MH370 may have remained airborne for several hours after contact was lost, which the Prime Minister referred to today.

This is truly an unprecedented situation, for Malaysia Airlines and for the entire aviation industry. There has never been a case in which information gleaned from satellite signals alone could potentially be used to identify the location of a missing commercial airliner. Given the nature of the situation and its extreme sensitivity, it was critical that the raw satellite signals were verified and analysed by the relevant authorities so that their significance could be properly understood. This naturally took some time, during which we were unable to publicly confirm their existence.

We were well aware of the ongoing media speculation during this period, and its effect on the families of those on board. Their anguish and distress increases with each passing day, with each fresh rumour, and with each false or misleading media report. Our absolute priority at all times has been to support the authorities leading the multinational search for MH370, so that we can finally provide the answers which the families and the wider community are waiting for.

We remain absolutely committed to sharing confirmed information with family members and the wider public in a fully open and transparent manner. However given the nature of the situation, the importance of validating new information before it is released into the public domain is paramount.

Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families of the 227 passengers and our 12 Malaysia Airlines colleagues and friends on board flight MH 370. They will remain at the center of every action we take as a company, as they have been since MH 370 first disappeared.

Today the airline issued this short statement:

The current general enquiry number +60378841234 for the MH 370 incident will change effective Monday, 17 March 2014 at 12.00 noon.

Moving forward, families of passengers and crew of MH 370 may call +603-87775770. This is a dedicated number for families only.

For media queries, kindly contact +603 8777 5698/ +603 8787 1276.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the passengers and our colleagues on board MH 370 as well as their families and loved ones.

Malaysia Prime Minister says flight MH 370 left its planned route due to “deliberate action”

Malaysia logo-1

Prime Minister Najib Razak of Malaysia announced today (March 15) that Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 left its planned route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing a week ago as the result of a “deliberate action” by someone on board the aircraft according to the New York Times.

According to the Times, “That conclusion was based on a final signal from the plane picked up on satellite at 8:11 a.m. on March 8, nearly seven hours after ground control lost contact with the jet”.

Read the full report from the New York Times: CLICK HERE

Read the analysis from CNN: CLICK HERE

The search area is again being expanded for the lost Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) that was operated on flight MH 370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing over a week ago.

The homes of the pilots are now being searched.

The Prime Minister also reported someone in the cockpit said “OK, good night” to Air Traffic Control (ATC) AFTER the transponder and ACARS was turned off! This would show intent and knowledge of the turn off. The aircraft then turned to the west rather than proceeding on course into Vietnamese airspace as instructed. After that the aircraft either turned north or south in the Indian Ocean.

Here is a timeline of events by the minute when MH 370 went missing: Read the full report from ABC News: CLICK HERE

Malaysia Airlines issued this statement today:

Further to the statement by the Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak earlier today into the ongoing search for Flight MH 370, Malaysia Airlines has shared all available information with the relevant authorities since the moment we learned that the aircraft had disappeared, in the early hours of Saturday March 8. This includes the very first indications that MH 370 may have remained airborne for several hours after contact was lost, which the Prime Minister referred to today.

This is truly an unprecedented situation, for Malaysia Airlines and for the entire aviation industry. There has never been a case in which information gleaned from satellite signals alone could potentially be used to identify the location of a missing commercial airliner. Given the nature of the situation and its extreme sensitivity, it was critical that the raw satellite signals were verified and analysed by the relevant authorities so that their significance could be properly understood. This naturally took some time, during which we were unable to publicly confirm their existence.

We were well aware of the ongoing media speculation during this period, and its effect on the families of those on board. Their anguish and distress increases with each passing day, with each fresh rumor, and with each false or misleading media report. Our absolute priority at all times has been to support the authorities leading the multinational search for MH 370, so that we can finally provide the answers which the families and the wider community are waiting for.

We remain absolutely committed to sharing confirmed information with family members and the wider public in a fully open and transparent manner. However given the nature of the situation, the importance of validating new information before it is released into the public domain is paramount.

Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families of the 227 passengers and our 12 Malaysia Airlines colleagues and friends on board flight MH 370. They will remain at the center of every action we take as a company, as they have been since MH 370 first disappeared.

Virgin America to cancel the #nerdbird flights between Los Angeles and San Jose on May 14

Virgin America (San Francisco) is dropping the short-lived service between San Jose, California (Silicon Valley) and Los Angeles on May 14. Started less than a year ago, the self branded #nerdbird flights did not apparently attract enough flyers.

Copyright Photo: Airbus A319-112 N527VA (msn 3417) taxies on the ramp at Los Angeles International Airport.

Virgin America: AG Slide Show


Avatar Airlines wants to fly Boeing 747-400s with low fares and a lot of advertising

Avatar Airlines 747-400 (Avatar)(LR)

Avatar Airlines (Las Vegas) is a proposed new airline that wants to operate high-density Boeing 747-400s on popular domestic routes with attractive low fares. The new airline has reported its has submitted an application to the DOT and the FAA for operating authority as an air carrier. A core component of its business plan to offer corporate sponsors the opportunity to advertise on the exteriors of the aircraft as well as in the interiors of the aircraft.

Proposed Routes:

Avatar Airlines 2014 Proposed Route Map

Here are some of highlights of their business plan:

Avatar is building a better airline from the ground up.  Avatar will make full use of the latest technology in order to bring down the cost of air travel, without sacrificing the creature comforts of luxury flight.  Exclusive use of online reservations (“straight to the gate”) is a tremendous savings for Avatar, and allows it to pass on a tremendous savings to its passengers.  Not only will Avatar not sacrifice creature comforts, it will actually enhancethem.  We realize that “creature comforts” may mean different things to different passengers.  Some passengers may want to use their flight-time to totally unplug and relax by catching a few extra winks or by even curling up with a good book. We get it. There’s no reason these passengers should have to pay for technology they don’t plan on using.  It’s one of the ways Avatar plans to keep the overall cost of flight travel at remarkably low levels.

Yet, for those passengers that wish to indulge, Avatar’s plan is to equip its fleet with on-board satellite Wi-Fi capability as part of its in-flight entertainment profit center.  For a nominal cost, passengers will be able to surf the net, watch a movie , catch up on emails, or shop on the Avatar network and receive valuable discounts while flying thousands of feet in the air, giving a literal meaning to the term “cloud-based” computing.

Seat-back technology is for the birds, not the planes.”

Ever look at some of our competitor’s seatbacks and think to yourself, “hmm… that technology sure is starting to look dated.  It could use a good facelift.”  Lackluster color.  Not enough definition. Worn-out control buttons.  Pokey connections. Technology changes so fast, why not leave it up to our passengers to decide the quality of their onboard devices?  Passengers are encouraged to use their own devices, or for a nominal fee, rent a portable hi-tech device from Avatar. Avatar plans on forming strategic alliances with third party vendors to supply portable hi-tech devices and swap them out as the technology advances – insuring that Avatar’s passengers always have the option to enjoy hi-tech devices on their flight, whether that device is one of their own, or one of ours.

Luggage Handling

Ever see our competitor’s passengers struggling to get their “oversized” carry-ons into the overhead bins, to avoid costly luggage fees?  (Were you one of them?  Or maybe you were the one shielding yourself from a possible fallout???)   A bit like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole, wouldn’t you say? Did we mention no more luggage fees?  Avatar thinks it’soutrageous that passengers should have to pay to bring a reasonable amount of luggage with them on a flight.  Avatar plans to “roll back the clock” to the good old days when each passenger was permitted to check two normal pieces of luggage into cargo for no fee, in addition to standard carry-on bags.

Avatar’s business plan is unique, incorporating six individual profit centers in conjunction with the exclusive use of the Boeing 747 aircraft equipped with 539 economy seats and 42 business class seats, resulting in the industry’s lowest cost per seat mile.

This allows Avatar to offer everyday fares between $19 to $99, depending on the destination and time of purchase.

Avatar profit centers include:

Passenger Ticketing
In-flight Entertainment
Advertising & Promotions (Branding) a Avatar Vacations

Each center is responsible for earning a profit, combined they are responsible for lowering Avatar’s cost per available seat mile resulting in a cost expected to be the lowest in the industry.

It’s simple: Big airplanes carrying maximum number of seats combined with fares which are low enough and markets which are large enough to guarantee 100% load factors.

Airline Media, Inc. is solely owned by Avatar Airlines and is that profit center responsible for corporate sponsorships through branding. The Company provides the opportunity to display your ad or logo on the inside and/or the outside of one or all of Avatar’s aircraft.

Areas such as: seat upholstery, cabin walls and ceilings, over-head bins, bulkheads, tray table, exterior-wrap as well as other areas are available.

Avatar Airlines Bin Advertising

The proposed airline is also proposing to corporate sponsors to decorate their large aircraft with a full size logo jets as “Exterior Wraps”:

Avotar Airlines Exterior Wraps

Here are some corporate possibilities:

Avatar Airlines 747-400 logojets

All images from the  Avatar Airlines 2014 press kit.

Goodyear unveils a new state-of-the-art blimp

Goodyear 2014 Blimp (Goodyear)(LRW)
The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company today (March 14) unveiled an all-new, state-of-the-art version of its world-famous icon, the Goodyear Blimp. The new airship is larger, faster, and more maneuverable and builds on the company’s legacy as the world’s leading builder and operator of airships.
Goodyear logo
The new blimp was introduced to media, Goodyear associates and dealers at an event held at Goodyear’s Wingfoot Lake hangar in Suffield, Ohio. The blimp is scheduled to begin test flights over Northeast Ohio later this month before going into service in the summer.
Copyright Photo: Goodyear.

Flynas announces new Airbus A330 routes to London and Manchester

Flynas A330 (13)(Flt)(Flynas)(LR)

Flynas (formerly Nasair) (stylized as flynas) (Jeddah) is expanding internationally to Europe and Asia with new Airbus A330s. The airline has issued this statement about its new planned Airbus A330 service to both London (Gatwick) (April 8) and Manchester (May 2):

Flynas, the Kingdom’s national carrier, concluded a successful UK tour to announce the launch of direct flights from Jeddah to London and Manchester, the first two European destinations to feature on its ambitious Global Flight Routes program.

The flights will operate three times a week to both the British capital and the northern city of Manchester, offering easy access to the entire country.

The announcements were made at two press conferences held in London and Manchester respectively.

Recently Flynas has made significant investments in enhancing its fleet by adding Airbus A330 aircraft and upgrading its in-flight offering to include a 12-seat Business Class Cabin and smarter onboard entertainment technologies which are perfectly in line with the expectations of cosmopolitan, regional and international customers.

All of Flynas’ international flights will operate out of its hub in Jeddah in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The airline recently announced the launch of direct flights to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (starting on April 6) and Jakarta, Indonesia. Other destinations set to be rolled out as part of the program include Paris, France; Karachi, Pakistan and Casablanca, Morocco.

Images: Flynas.

Flynas logo

Current routes from Jeddah:

Flynas 3.2014 Route Map



Vanilla Air introduces its new “LOHACO Jet”

Vanilla Air A320-200 JA8391 (13-LOHACO)(Grd-1)(Vanilla Air)(LR)

Vanilla Air (Tokyo-Narita) today (March 14) introduced its first new “LOHACO Jet” special scheme on its Airbus A320-211 JA8391 (msn 300). The aircraft will go into service tomorrow. The airline issued this short statement (translated from Japanese) with photos:

To commemorate the surprise giveaway event tomorrow (March 15) the new LOHACO jet will be flown on flight  JW 903 departing from Sapporo.

According to ZipanguFlyer, JA8391 will promote the new association with “LOHACO, an e-commerce website jointly operated by major online office appliance seller ASKUL and Yahoo! Japan.”

Read the full story from ZiapanguFlyer: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photos: Vanilla Air.

Vanilla Air A320-200 JA8391 (13-LOHACO)(Tail)(Vanilla Air)(LR)

Air Do today retires its “Bear Do” logo jet

Air Do (Sapporo) is gradually retiring its fleet of Boeing 737-500s (now down to five aircraft).

According to ZipanguFlyer, Air Do’s first special-theme aircraft, the pictured Boeing 737-54K JA8196 (msn 27966) “Bear Do”, flew its last revenue service today (March 14) as flight HD 024, from Sapporo (New Chitose) to Tokyo (Haneda) with 121 passengers. The passengers received special “Bear Do” memorabilia and a last flight certificate according to ZipanguFlyer.

Read the full story from ZipanguFlyer: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Susumu Tokunaga/ JA8196 taxies past the camera at Haneda Airport (Tokyo International Airport) in Tokyo.

Air Do: AG Slide Show

Pictures of the event on Air Do’s Facebook page:

Video: Crosswind landings and takeoffs this winter at Birmingham, England

This winter in the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe has seen its share of stormy weather. This video by flugsnug compiles some of more interesting crosswind landings and takeoffs at Birmingham Airport (BHX) in Birmingham, England this winter. The video is really a showcase of excellent piloting skills dealing with these challenging wind conditions.

Emirates is coming to Oslo, Norway

Emirates (Dubai) will expand its European network with a new daily flight to Oslo, Norway, from September 2, 2014 marking its third Scandinavian gateway.

Operated by a Boeing 777-300 ER, the daily service will offer three cabin classes with eight seats in First Class, 42 seats in Business Class and 310 seats in Economy Class.

In addition to passenger operations, Emirates SkyCargo will offer 23 tons of cargo capacity between the two cities. Popular commodities are expected to be; oil and gas equipment, maritime and ship spares, pharmaceuticals, seafood, chemicals, electronics, telecommunication equipment, machinery, dairy products and fruits and vegetables bound for markets like Vietnam, China and Taiwan.

Emirates new daily flight to Oslo will depart Dubai as flight EK 159 at 0700 and arrives at Oslo Airport, Gardermoen at 1210. The return flight, flight EK 160 will depart at 1355 and arrives at Dubai International Airport at 2250.

Emirates’ launch of Oslo will follow the launch of Kano and Abuja in Nigeria on August 1 and Chicago on August 5.

Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl/ Boeing 777-31H ER A6-EGO (msn 35598) departs the runway at Zurich with the special “1,000th 777″ emblem.

Emirates: AG Slide Show

US Airways flight 1702 with Airbus A320 N113UW blows a tire on takeoff at Philadelphia, nose gear collapses

US Airways (Phoenix) flight US 1702 was departing the Philadelphia hub last night (March 13) headed towards Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood at 6:25 pm (1825) local time. The flight with 149 passengers and five crew members was being flown on the pictured Airbus A320-214 N113UW (msn 1141). On the takeoff roll the A320 blew a tire and the takeoff was aborted. Eyewitnesses reported the bounced at least twice. The nose wheel gear collapsed as the airliner came to a halt at the edge of the pavement. The passengers and crew members safely exited the airliner via emergency exits and chutes. The incident closed the main runway for a period of time.

Read the full report from CNN: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Jay Seman/ Airbus A320-214 N113UW (msn 1141) taxies at the Charlotte hub prior to incident at Philadelphia.

US Airways: AG Slide Show

Evacuation Video:




The mystery of Malaysian Airlines flight MH 370 deepens

Andaman and Nicobar Islands Map

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 operated with Boeing 777-2H7 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) remains missing with no sign of debris. There are reports the the airliner may have flown for up to five hours after the after radar contact was lost (the transponder was turned off). The mystery is deepening and the search area is broadening once again.

According to Reuters, “military radar data suggests a Malaysia Airlines jetliner missing for nearly a week was deliberately flown hundreds of miles off course, heightening suspicions of foul play among investigators, sources told Reuters on Friday.

Analysis of the Malaysia data suggests the plane, with 239 people on board, diverted from its intended northeast route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing and flew west instead, using airline flight corridors normally employed for routes to the Middle East and Europe, said sources familiar with investigations into the Boeing 777’s disappearance.

Two sources said an unidentified aircraft that investigators believe was flight MH 370 was following a route between navigational waypoints when it was last plotted on military radar off the country’s northwest coast.

This indicates that it was either being flown by the pilots or someone with knowledge of those waypoints, the sources said.”

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

If the Reuters report is correct, this means the aircraft was flying (for whatever reason) towards the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (see map above) or beyond into the Indian Ocean. This will probably broadened the search area towards and possibly into the Indian Ocean.

Oddly today (March 14), a 5.5 magnitude earthquake struck in the sea off the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, the U.S. Geological Survey reported via CNN.

Another report also deepens the mystery. Chinese researchers have reportedly detected a “seafloor event” in the waters between Malaysia and Vietnam around 2:55 am on Saturday. This is about 72 miles (116 km) northeast of the last known position at 1:30 am.

Read the full report from the Indian Express: CLICK HERE

Malaysia Airlines has issued this latest statement:

Malaysia Airlines reiterates that we will continue to give our full support in cooperating with the search and rescue mission which is coordinated by the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia (DCA) under the purview of the Ministry of Transport, Malaysia.

Malaysia Airlines is fully aware of the on-going media speculations and we have nothing further to add to the information we have already provided.

Our primary focus at this point in time is to care for the families of the passengers and crew of MH 370. This means providing them with timely information, travel facilities, accommodation, meals, medical and emotional support.

Malaysia Airlines will continue to provide regular updates to the general public via the media and our website on all matters affecting MH 370.

CNN Video: 9M-MRO is most likely at the bottom of the sea:

CNN Video: A tour of the Boeing 777 cockpit:

Malaysia Airlines Aircraft Slide Show: AG Slide Show

Hawaiian Airlines to reinstate nonstop San Jose-Honolulu service

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) today announced that it will reinstate its daily San Jose service beginning on May 16, 2014. In addition, the airline will also be up-gauging the aircraft on its Oakland route to the 294-seat Airbus A330-200, adding a total of 60 more seats each day, beginning June 18, 2014.

Hawaiian Airlines currently offers daily nonstop service between Oakland and both Honolulu and Kahului, Maui. The airline previously announced that new seasonal summer service between Oakland and both Lihu’e, Kaua’i and Kona, Hawai’i Island will commence this June, connecting all four main Hawaiian Islands to Northern California.

Daily San Jose-Honolulu Schedule

Daily nonstop service between San Jose and Honolulu will be operated on Hawaiian Airlines’ wide-body, twin-aisle Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft with the following schedule:

Flight Route Departs Arrives Aircraft Start Date
HA 44 HNL-SJC 2:20 p.m. 10:30 p.m. Boeing 767-300ER May 16, 2014
HA 43 SJC-HNL 10:10 a.m. 12:35 p.m. Boeing 767-300ER May 17, 2014

Hawaiian Airlines’ Boeing 767 aircraft seats 264 passengers in a two-class cabin, with 18 in Business Class and 246 in the Main Cabin. Amenities include personal electronic tablets available for purchase.

Daily Oakland-Honolulu Schedule

Daily service between Oakland and Honolulu will continue with slightly adjusted times beginning June 18, 2014:

Flight Route Departs Arrives Aircraft Start Date
HA 48 HNL-OAK 2:10 p.m. 10:25 p.m. Airbus 330-200 June 18, 2014
HA 47 OAK-HNL 10:00 a.m. 12:20 p.m. Airbus 330-200 June 19, 2014

Travelers to and from Oakland will enjoy Hawaiian Airlines’ A330 amenities, highlighted by the personal on-demand entertainment system at each seat, increased legroom, and a roomy interior. With high-resolution LCD touch-screen monitors in each seatback, the A330’s state-of-the-art entertainment system lets customers choose from a wide range of movies, TV programs, music, and video games, while also offering a USB port for the use of their own personal media players.

Adding to the enjoyment of the travel experience on Hawaiian Airlines is the carrier’s signature onboard hospitality program, Mea Ho’okipa (translation: I am host). Travelers will enjoy island-style complimentary meals and made-in-Hawai’i snacks to go along with Hawaiian Airlines’ engaging presentation of the islands’ culture, people and Aloha Spirit throughout the flight.

Copyright Photo: Eddie Maloney/ Boeing 767-3CB ER N592HA (msn 33468) prepares to touch in Las Vegas.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

EasyJet to expand EasyJet Holidays to become a pan-European tour operator with Hotelopia, unveils a Tartan logo jet

EasyJet Holidays (EasyJet) (London-Luton) has announced that it will become a major pan-European tour operator through a new partnership with the online travel agency Hotelopia.

Six new websites are planned in Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Spain, France and the Netherlands as easyJet holidays re-launches itself across the main European countries where the airline has a large presence.  This will open up easyJet holidays to up to 100 million people across Europe, all fully protected according to the industry standard local regulations of each source markets such as ATOL in the UK or ATOUT in France.

EasyJet Holidays will continue to offer competitively priced, flexible holidays across the airline’s extensive network including city breaks, beach and ski holidays.  In addition, a brand new range of activity holidays such as cycling and golfing breaks will also be added and for the first time ever, excursions will be on offer in all major destinations. The three year and five month deal with Hotelopia SLU commences in May.

Hotelopia, which is part of TUI Travel PLC, one of the world’s leading leisure travel companies will provide their extensive portfolio of hotels across the seven countries where easyJet holidays is operating. This extensive product choice on easyJet holidays website specially selected by Hotelopia will be augmented by the already very popular Spanish Paradores and Disneyland Paris Hotels as well as more than 27,000 self-catering accommodation options with Interhome.

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/ Airbus A319-111 G-EZBF (msn 2923) was painted in this special Tartan color scheme. The airliner was rolled out this morning at Southend and is now named “Inverness”.

EasyJet (UK): AG Slide Show

Eastern Airways adds its ninth SAAB 2000

Eastern Airways (Humberside and Aberdeen) is expanding the size of its SAAB 2000 fleet to nine aircraft with the introduction of an extra aircraft.

The regional airline, which provides a comprehensive domestic network of scheduled services, and is the UK’s leading provider of fixed wing air services for the oil and gas industry, will see the Saab 2000 entering service in the coming weeks.

The Swedish manufactured 50-seater SAAB 2000 is one of the world’s fastest turbo-prop aircraft with its two Rolls Royce engines producing a cruising speed of 425 mph, and low fuel burn due to its efficiency.

This latest addition will be assigned to its charter services operating for the oil and gas industry, which also includes the recently awarded major contract with BP flying between Aberdeen and Sumburgh in the Shetland Isles.

Paul Alcock, Eastern Airways’ managing director, said: “The SAAB 2000 is an extremely flexible aircraft that can operate on both short and longer runways, which is ideally suited to our long term charter services for the oil and gas industry.  The aircraft type is also used on our scheduled network and to European destinations for ad-hoc charters.”

SAAB 2000 aircraft were first introduced to Eastern Airways fleet in 2004 and the latest addition increases the fleet to nine.  The airline is also the largest operator of British Aerospace Jetstream 41s in the world with a fleet of 18.  The remainder of the fleet comprises of four regional jets, including two Embraer 135 and two Embraer 145 aircraft.

A network of services across to 20 airports in the UK, Norway and France is operated by the airline on a fleet of 31 regional aircraft (see route map below).

Eastern Airways 3.2014 Route Map

In January 2014, the airline started a new scheduled service between Leeds Bradford and Southampton and also launched its third domestic route in France with flights between Lorient and Lyon.

Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/ SAAB 2000 G-CDKA (msn 006) prepares to land in Stockholm (Arlanda).

Eastern Airways: AG Slide Show

SkyWest Airlines to add two new United Express destinations in North Dakota

SkyWest Airlines (St. George, Utah) has announced new United Express jet service from Jamestown and Devils Lake Regional Airports to the Denver hub.

Beginning June 5, 2014, there will be 11 roundtrip flights each week from both Jamestown and Devils Lake to Denver, including both nonstop and one-stop trips. Every flight is timed to provide extensive connection opportunities on hundreds of daily United Airlines flights in Denver.

The new service from Jamestown and Devils Lake will be operated with 50-passenger Bombardier-manufactured Canadair Regional Jet 200s (CRJ200s).

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/ SkyWest’s Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) N973SW (msn 7949) climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

Routes operated as United Express:

United Express-SkyWest 3.2014 Route Map

Embraer rolls out first production E175 with fuel burn improvements


Embraer Commercial Aviation (São José dos Campos) rolled out the first E175 (PR-EFG) featuring a range of aerodynamic improvements that reduce fuel burn compared to the previous production aircraft.  The modifications include the introduction of a new wingtip, systems optimization, and streamlining of aerodynamic surfaces.  The aircraft was presented to Embraer employees at a ceremony at the company’s São José dos Campos facility.  The first customer delivery of the E175 with the complete package of modifications is expected in the coming weeks.

The modified E175 aircraft recorded impressive results during several months of performance trials. Fuel consumption on a typical flight is 6.4% lower than the original E175, exceeding earlier-reported savings of up to 5%.

“The 6.4% fuel consumption reduction demonstrates the expertise of our development and manufacturing teams and partners, and our commitment to provide our customers with the best product to keep them competitive,” said Paulo Cesar Silva, President and CEO of Embraer Commercial Aviation. “We are delivering, on schedule, an airplane unique to the market. With the most comfortable passenger cabin in the 70 to 90-seat category, the E175 is the airplane with the lowest operating cost in its class.”

With these improvements, the E175 has become a best-seller in its category.  In 2013, four airlines in the USA (Republic Airways, United Airlines, SkyWest Inc., and American Airlines Inc.) placed 177 firm orders, 60 re-confirmable orders and 277 options for the E175.

The versatility of the E175 is evident when compared with 70 to 80-passenger turboprop aircraft.  On routes of more than 250 nautical miles (450 kilometers), the E175 offers better operating economics and greater productivity, as well as superior passenger comfort.

Besides reduced fuel burn, other improvements to the current generation of E-Jets include longer maintenance intervals, increased productivity and lower maintenance costs.  These improvements ensure that the airplane will remain competitive until the second generation of the jet, the E175-E2, goes into operation in 2020 when it will offer even greater operating efficiency.

Copyright Photos: Embraer.

United Express-SkyWest E175 PR-EFG (302)(CO 91)(Embraer)(LRW)

Frontier to add six new destinations from Cleveland

Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver) has announced it will add six new nonstop destinations from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) with the addition of nonstop service to Atlanta, Georgia (ATL), Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Florida (FLL), Fort Myers, Florida (RSW), Phoenix, Arizona (PHX), Raleigh-Durham, North Caroline (RDU) and Tampa, Florida (TPA) beginning on June 13, 2014.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/ Newly-delivered Airbus A320-214 N221FR (msn 3205) displays “Bugsy”, the tree frog, on the tail as it completes its river approach into Washington’s Reagan National Airport.

Frontier Airlines: AG Slide Show

JetBlue announces seasonal New York (JFK)-Hyannis flights starting on June 26

JetBlue Airways (New York) has announced Hyannis, Massachusetts as the 86th BlueCity. Hyannis/Cape Cod marks JetBlue’s 64th nonstop route from New York (JFK), where the airline will offer seasonal service with one daily flight between June 26 and September 9, 2014.

Hyannis, referred by many as the “Capital of the Cape,” is the largest of the seven villages in the city of Barnstable, Massachusetts, and the commercial and transportation hub of Cape Cod.

JetBlue’s new route will follow the schedule below:


Depart: 11:59 a.m. / Arrive 1:05 p.m.


Depart: 1:45 p.m. / 2:53 p.m.

In other news, JetBlue has announced an agreement to sell LiveTV to the Thales Group.

According to the carrier, “the relationship with LiveTV is not going away. Rather, this important customer relationship is expanding. JetBlue will continue to benefit from having access to current and future LiveTV IFE and connectivity products. Specifically, with the sale of LiveTV, we entered into two long-term agreements with LiveTV to continue and enhance both Fly-Fi connectivity and the IFE experience for Customers.”

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/ Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N249JB (msn 19000045) in the Dots tail design arrives at the JFK hub.

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

Hawaiian moves up the start date for year-round Los Angeles-Kahului flights to May 2

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has announced it has accelerated the start date for its new daily year-round service between Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Maui’s Kahului Airport (OGG) by one month, from June 1 to May 2, 2014. In addition, the airline will also add a second daily flight for eight weeks this summer, doubling up on flights from June 30 to September 8, 2014 and adding more than 32,700 seats in both travel markets.

Hawaiian Airlines previously announced that new nonstop summer service between Los Angeles and both Lihu’e, Kaua’i and Kona, Hawai’i Island will commence this June, connecting all four main Hawaiian Islands to Southern California.

With the new start date for the year-round service and the addition of the second daily flight this summer, a total of more than 175,000 seats will be added to both Los Angeles and Maui’s travel markets this year. In addition, Hawaiian Airlines’ Maui hub, which was established in 2012, offers an alternative connecting point for travel to other islands with its expanded neighbor island flight schedule.

The new daily service will be operated by Hawaiian Airlines’ wide-body, twin-aisle Airbus A330-200 aircraft, which seats 294 passengers with 18 in First Class and 276 in the Main Cabin. Hawaiian Airlines’ A330 amenities include personal on-demand entertainment system for each seat, increased legroom, and roomy interior.

Flight Route Departure Arrival Aircraft New Start Date
HA 34 OGG-LAX 3:40 p.m. 11:55 p.m. Airbus 330-200 May 2, 2014
HA 33 LAX-OGG 11:15 a.m. 1:40 p.m. Airbus 330-200 May 3, 2014

The second daily flight this summer will be operated by Hawaiian Airlines’ wide-body, twin-aisle Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft, seating 264 passengers in a two-class cabin, with 18 in Business Class and 246 in the Main Cabin. Hawaiian Airlines’ Boeing 767 amenities include personal electronic tablets available for purchase, along with increased legroom and roomy interior.

Flight Route Departure Arrival Aircraft Start Date End Date
HA 56 OGG-LAX 9:40 p.m. 5:55 a.m. Boeing 767-300 June 30, 2014 September 7, 2014
HA 55 LAX-OGG 1:30 p.m. 4:05 p.m. Boeing 767-300 July 1, 2014 September 8, 2014

Adding to the enjoyment of the Maui travel experience on Hawaiian Airlines is the carrier’s signature onboard hospitality program, Mea Ho’okipa (translation: I am host). Travelers will enjoy island-style complimentary meals and made-in-Hawai’i snacks to go along with Hawaiian Airlines’ engaging presentation of the islands’ culture, people and Aloha Spirit throughout the flight.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/ Airbus A330-243 N384HA (msn 1259) prepares to land in Los Angeles.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Malaysia Airlines retires MH 370 and MH 371 flight numbers, 9M-MRO may have flown for four hours after losing contact, no debris found

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) has retired the affected flight numbers and issued this statement:

As a mark of respect to the passengers and crew of MH 370 on March 8, 2014, the MH 370 and MH 371 flight codes will be retired from the Malaysia Airlines’ Kuala Lumpur- Beijing-Kuala Lumpur route.

With effect from March 14, 2014, the new flight number to replace MH 370 and MH 371 will be:-

MH 318 – Kuala Lumpur – Beijing

MH 319 – Beijing – Kuala Lumpur

There are no changes to the frequency of our services and we will continue to operate double daily services to Beijing.

Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families of our colleagues and passengers of MH 370.

In other news, the Wall Street Journal is reporting U .S. investigators helping to probe the disappearance of MH 370 now believe the Boeing 777-200 may have flown for four hours after losing contact with air traffic controllers due to the engine date. If true, this would dramatically require the widening of the search area.

However this information seems to be in dispute, as Reuters is reporting Malaysia Airlines has said previously that the Rolls-Royce Trent engines stopped transmitting engine condition reports  when contact with the missing 9M-MRO was lost.

Meanwhile planes and ships were searching an area of the South China Sea where Chinese satellite images had shown what could be aircraft debris, but had so far searchers have not found any debris from MH 370.

Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE

The Australian explores the question of whether the crew passed out due to oxygen starvation because of a possible fuselage leak. The Australian  looks at Helios Airways crash in Greece. Read the full article: CLICK HERE

In summary, there is a lot of conflicting information and reports out there and really no one as this time knows the true location of the lost Boeing  777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420). No debris from the aircraft has been located despite some interesting reports. The direction the aircraft may have taken after losing radio contact and the distance it may have flown are all in dispute among the parties involved. Hopefully we will soon have closure on this tragedy.

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/ Where in the world is 9M-MRO? As incredible as it seems in this modern age, this missing airplane is becoming reminiscent of the long-time search for the much smaller Amelia Earhart’s missing Beechcraft in the South Pacific Ocean.

Malaysia Airlines:

Is the image of Malaysia Airlines missing flight MH 370?

MH 370 Satellite Photo (China)

China’s State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense has “announced the discovery of three suspected floating objects and in the South China Sea” according to CNN.

According to CNN, the objects are “13 by 18 meters (43 by 59 feet), 14 by 19 meters (46 by 62 feet) and 24 by 22 meters (79 feet by 72 feet). For reference, the wingspan of an intact Boeing 777-200 ER like the one that disappeared is about 61 meters (200 feet) and its overall length is about 64 meters (210 feet).”

According to the Chinese, the objects are located at 105.63 east longitude, 6.7 north latitude (see map below) in the South China Sea between Malaysia and Vietnam..

Read the full story from CNN: CLICK HERE

Read the full story from the BBC: CLICK HERE

Image: State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense.

Editor’s Note: The Chinese Government later admitted this image was a mistake and should not have been released.

Map: Google Maps.

China Coordinates

Aeroflot Group’s full year 2013 net profit increases 41.9% to $203.3 million

Aeroflot Russian Airlines (Moscow) today announced the consolidated IFRS financial results of the Aeroflot Group (Moscow) for the twelve months ending December 31, 2013. Key financial highlights:

• Full year 2013 net income increased 41.9% to RUB 7,334.7 mlm ($203.3 million);

• Full year 2013 revenue increased 15.0% to RUB 290,955.8 mlm ($9.135 billion);

• Full year 2013 traffic revenue increased 16.4% to RUB 257,545.7 mlm ($8.086 billion);

• Fuel costs for 2013 rose 11.2% to RUB 79,127.8 mlm ($2.484 billion);

• Operating costs excluding aircraft fuel, staff costs and depreciation and amortization for full year 2013 increased 9.9% to RUB 133,354.0 mlm ($4.187 billion);

• Full year 2013 basic and diluted earnings per share (EPS) were both RUB 7.6 (US cents 23.9), which is 15.2% higher than basic EPS in 2012 and 16.9% higher than diluted EPS in 2012.

Other 2013 highlights

Aeroflot became the official carrier of the football club Manchester United in 3Q 2013. The long-term sponsorship agreement helps position Aeroflot as a premium global brand.

In October 2013 Aeroflot announced plans to launch Russia’s first national low-cost carrier under the brand Dobrolet. The airline will operate as a 100%-owned subsidiary of Aeroflot. Since the October announcement Aeroflot has worked closely with relevant government authorities to ensure that necessary legislation and regulations are in place to allow for the LCC model to succeed in Russia. Aeroflot views the LCC market as a significant source of future growth and an opportunity to expand its business with negligible cannibalisation. The Group plans to launch Dobrolet this year.

In November 2013 Aeroflot introduced Aurora Airlines, a unified Russian Far East subsidiary based on the legacy assets of Vladivostok Avia and Sakhalin Aviatrassy (SAT). The roll-out of Aurora Airlines presents a strong opportunity to capture market share in the Far East, a region with few transport alternatives. The Group expects that Aurora will fly 2.4 million passengers a year by 2018. The creation of Aurora contributes to the consolidation and restructuring of Aeroflot’s legacy subsidiaries.

In December 2013 JSC Aeroflot was granted permission by the Central Bank of Russia to introduce a depositary receipt program. The following month Aeroflot launched a Level 1 American Depositary Receipt (ADR) program.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/ Airbus A321-211 VP-BTL (msn 5881) in Manchester United special promotional livery arrives at London (Heathrow).

Aeroflot: AG Slide Show

United Airlines announces additional Embraer 175 routes

United Express ERJ 175 (CO 91)(Flt)(United)(LRW)

United Airlines (Chicago) has announced that it will launch service with the airline’s new Embraer 175 aircraft on flights between United’s Houston hub at George Bush Intercontinental Airport and Atlanta and New Orleans beginning on June 15, and between Houston and Austin beginning on June 16. United also announced ERJ 175 service between Chicago O’Hare and Minneapolis/St. Paul beginning on June 5; between Chicago O’Hare and Atlanta beginning on June 15; and between Chicago O’Hare and New York LaGuardia beginning on June 23.

The 76-seat ERJ 175 regional jet is the newest addition to the United Express fleet. The aircraft features 12 seats in United First, 16 seats in United Economy Plus and 48 seats in United Economy. United Express carrier Mesa Airlines (Phoenix) will operate the flights between Houston and Atlanta, Austin and New Orleans. United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines (St. George, Utah) will operate the flights between Chicago O’Hare and Atlanta, New York LaGuardia and Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Last month, United announced that SkyWest Airlines will operate ERJ 175 service between Chicago O’Hare and Reagan Washington National beginning on May 17 and between Chicago O’Hare and Boston Logan beginning on May 19.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

Delta Air Lines’ volunteers to build 10 homes in Quezon City, Philippines

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) and Habitat for Humanity International will join forces March 7-16, to help build 10 Habitat homes in Quezon City, outside the capital of Manila, as part of Delta’s Force for Global Good program to effect positive local and global change. This year’s volunteers come from 16 cities throughout the U.S. and Canada.

While building the 10 new homes, Delta volunteers will work side by side with the families who will live in the new community — called Bistekville 4 — when it is completed. The structures will be built to resist earthquakes, hurricanes and floods and will be primarily made from concrete block, which will require minimal ongoing maintenance for the new owners.

For a second consecutive year, Delta volunteers will be joined by Dan DeRiemer of Roswell, Georgia, a DeltaSkyMiles Diamond Medallion member who bid a record 556,000 miles through Delta’s SkyMiles Online Auctionto win the opportunity to participate in the build with his wife, Laura.

Delta Habitat for Humanity voluteers (Delta)(LR)

Delta employees from around the globe use vacation time and pay a portion of their expenses to volunteer on the international builds and help those in need of simple, decent and affordable housing, while also taking the opportunity to learn more about the country and its culture. Delta has participated in similar projects in Chile,China, Dominican Republic, Ghana, Haiti, India, Japan, Mexico, South Africa and Thailand.

Delta has supported Habitat for Humanity for more than a decade and strengthened the partnership in 2006 by becoming a national partner and unveiling the first 767-300 featuring a unique Habitat for Humanity livery and aDelta Force for Global Good decal. The special livery helps raise awareness of Habitat for Humanity’s global work and highlights the efforts of employee participation in Delta’s Force for Global Good.

Delta operates daily flights from Manila to Tokyo-Narita and Nagoya-Centrair, where customers can connect to daily flights to the U.S. More than 150 employees are based in the Philippines. Delta is committed to supportingthe Philippines community, a country that Delta has served for more than 60 years. During the past 10 years, Delta has sponsored a scholarship program at Concordia College Manila to support underprivileged students and recently partnered with Ayala Foundation, a Manila-based nonprofit organization, through the SkyWish charity program thus allowing customers to donate miles to support its efforts.

Habitat for Humanity International’s vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Anchored by the conviction that housing provides a critical foundation for breaking the cycle of poverty, Habitat has helped more than 4 million people construct, rehabilitate or preserve homes since 1976. Habitat also advocates to improve access to decent and affordable shelter and supports a variety of funding models that enable families with limited resources to make needed improvements on their homes as their time and resources allow. As a nonprofit Christian housing organization, Habitat works in more than 70 countries and welcomes people of all races, religions and nationalities to partner in its mission.

Top Copyright Photo: James Helbock/ Delta has been a strong supporter of Habitat for Humanity and has painted this Boeing 767-332 ER (N171DZ, msn 29690) to express that support. N171DZ arrives at Los Angeles.

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 was possibly headed towards the Indian Ocean

Malaysia logo-1

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 with 239 people on board remains lost and has become a bigger mystery. The search area has now been broadened. Malaysia is now asking for international help, especially from Europe, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to review the conflicting radar data.

Malaysia Air Force chief has denied military and government reports the Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) turned around and headed west to the Malacca Strait although this area is now part of the official search area.

The transponder was apparently turned off when it apparently turned to the west.

In summary, no one knows for sure where flight MH 370 has gone and there has been no confirmed debris found from the flight. It remains a mystery.

Read the full report by the BBC: CLICK HERE

New Straits Times has been comprehensively covering this story – here are all of their local articles: CLICK HERE

Pictorial video from New Strait Times:


Questions and answers on the MH 370 disappearance from the New York Times: CLICK HERE

Time Magazine: 6 mysterious airplane disappearances in aviation history: CLICK HERE

Malaysia Airlines has issued this statement:

Malaysia Airlines’ primary focus at this point in time is to care for the families of the passengers and crew of MH370. This means providing them with timely information, travel facilities, accommodation, meals, medical and emotional support. All these costs are borne by Malaysia Airlines.

We have deployed teams of caregivers consisting of trained MAS staff and volunteers from Mercy Malaysia and Tzu Chi Foundation. These caregivers are stationed at five different locations at Beijing and four different locations in Kuala Lumpur.

As of now, we have 115 family members in Kuala Lumpur and they are taken care of by 72 different caregivers. At least one caregiver is assigned to each family together with a Mandarin translator for the families from China.

The caregivers have been keeping the families updated on the search and rescue efforts as well as provide emotional support.

Equal amount of initial financial assistance are being given out to all families of passengers and crew over and above their basic needs. This amount is extended to families of all crew and passengers in Malaysia as well those from other nations.

We regret and empathise with the families and we will do whatever we can to ease.



Help find missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370

Help Find MH 370

Malaysia Airlines’ (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) with 239 passengers and crew members remains a mystery and has not been found.

Now you can help by reviewing recently downloaded satellite maps by Digital Globe of the prospective search areas and to help tag suspected areas or mysterious shapes.


SpiceJet orders 42 Boeing 737 MAX 8s

SpiceJet (Delhi) and Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) have announced at the India Aviation 2014 show an order for 42 737 MAX 8s. The order, previously listed as unidentified on the Boeing Orders & Deliveries website, is valued at $4.4 billion at list prices.

Development of the 737 MAX is on schedule with firm configuration of the airplane achieved in July 2013. First flight is scheduled in 2016 with deliveries to customers beginning in 2017. Already a market success, the 737 MAX has accumulated more than 1,800 orders to date and will have 8 percent lower per-seat operating costs than the future competition.

With this announcement, SpiceJet has ordered 90 airplanes directly from Boeing, which includes the 737-800, 737-900 ER and now the 737 MAX. To date, SpiceJet has taken delivery of 31 of the airplanes.

Copyright Photo: Malcolm Nason/ Boeing 737-8GJ VT-SZD (msn 39430) departs from Shannon.

SpiceJet: AG Slide Show

‘Ohana by Hawaiian starts operations

Ohana by Hawaiian-Empire ATR 42-500 N804HC (13)(Grd-1) HNL (IN)(LRW) 3.11.14

‘Ohana by Hawaiian (Honolulu), Hawai’i’s newest interisland operation, yesterday (March 11) launched its inaugural turboprop service to Moloka’i, the first of two islands it will return to the Hawaiian Airlines network. Twice daily service between Honolulu and Lana’i will be launched on March 18.

The arrival of flight HA 614 into Moloka’i Airport was followed by a cultural exchange featuring an oli kahea (chant of admission) presented by Hawaiian Airlines and ‘Ohana by Hawaiian staff asking for permission to enter the community, and an oli aloha (chant of welcome) from the Hawaiian language immersion students of Punana Leo o Moloka’i and ‘O Hina i ka Malama, and the seniors of Alu Like, Inc.’s Ke Ola Pono No Na Kupuna. Remarks were given by renowned Hilo-based artist Sig Zane, who designed the livery of the aircraft; Tim Komberec, president and chief executive officer of Empire Airlines; Moloka’i Senator Kalani English, chair of the Committee on Transportation and International Affairs; Stacy Crivello, Maui County council member; Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian Airlines president and chief executive officer; and Hadden Watt, ‘Ohana by Hawaiian managing director.

The festivities also included a lu’au with nearly 500 Moloka’i residents in attendance, live Hawaiian entertainment, tours of the aircraft and a blessing prior to the departure of flight HA 615 to Honolulu.

‘Ohana by Hawaiian will offer three daily flights between Honolulu and Moloka’i using a 48-seat ATR 42 aircraft. The daily flights, operated by Empire Airlines, are scheduled below:


Flight Route Departs Arrives   Start Date
HA610 HNL-MKK 7:00 a.m. 7:25 a.m. March 12, 2014
HA614 HNL-MKK 12:15 p.m. 12:40 p.m. March 12, 2014
HA618 HNL-MKK 5:30 p.m. 5:55 p.m. March 11, 2014


Flight Route Departs Arrives Start Date
HA611 MKK-HNL 8:05 a.m. 8:30 a.m. March 12, 2014
HA615 MKK-HNL 1:20 p.m. 1:45 p.m. March 11, 2014
HA619 MKK-HNL 6:35 p.m. 7:00 p.m. March 11, 2014


Flight Route Departs Arrives   Start Date
HA612 HNL-LNY 9:30 a.m. 10:00 a.m. March 18, 2014
HA616 HNL-LNY 2:40 p.m. 3:10 p.m. March 18, 2014


Flight Route Departs Arrives Start Date
HA613 LNY-HNL 10:40 a.m. 11:10 a.m. March 18, 2014
HA617 LNY-HNL 3:50 p.m. 4:20 p.m. March 18, 2014

The livery of ‘Ohana by Hawaiian’s aircraft was created by Sig Zane and his son Kuha’o, who both used Hawaiian Airlines’ interisland route map as inspiration for the design, weaving three kapa patterns: piko (navel), representing ancestry and progeny; manu (bird), representing both a bird in flight and the prow of a canoe, the traditional form of migration; and kalo (taro), representing family. The ATR 42 aircraft are named after a significant wind on each of the islands that ‘Ohana by Hawaiian will serve: Holo Kaomi of Paoma’i, Lana’i; Kaiaulu of Wai’anae, O’ahu; and Hikipua of Halawa, Moloka’i.

The ‘Ohana by Hawaiian operation creates more than 100 new Hawai’i-based jobs in various areas of air transportation including pilots, flight attendants and mechanics as well as ground-handling and customer service positions. Hawaiian Airlines handles reservations and sales for the new operation, allowing the interisland flights to integrate seamlessly into Hawaiian Airlines’ well-established route network. The new service operates out of gates 49 and 50 at Honolulu International Airport.

Hawaiian Airlines last flew to Moloka’i and Lana’i in 2004, operating on a Boeing 717-200 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/ ‘Ohana by Hawaiian’s N804HC (msn 623) operated by Empire Airlines (Idaho) is pictured starting to taxi out as flight HA 614 to MKK on its first flight.

‘Ohana by Hawaiian: AG Slide Show

Malaysia Airlines responds to media reports about allegations against the first officer of missing flight MH 370

Malaysia logo-1

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) first officer Fariq Ab Hamid on missing flight MH 370 once allegedly allowed two South African teenagers into the cockpit during a entire flight from Phuket to Kuala Lumpur in 2011 according to NBC News and Channel 9 in Australia citing an interview with Jonti Roos. The woman produced photos and video with the first officer on the ground after the alleged flight.

Malaysia Airlines issued this statement:

Malaysia Airlines has become aware of the allegations being made against First Officer, Fariq Ab Hamid which we take very seriously. We are shocked by these allegations.

We have not been able to confirm the validity of the pictures and videos of the alleged incident. As you are aware, we are in the midst of a crisis, and we do not want our attention to be diverted.

We also urge the media and general public to respect the privacy of the families of our colleagues and passengers. It has been a difficult time for them.

The welfare of both the crew and passenger’s families remain our focus. At the same time, the security and safety of our passengers is of the utmost importance to us.

Read the full report from NBC: CLICK HERE

Read the full report from The Guardian: CLICK HERE

Jetstar Airways to launch Melbourne-Ayers Rock flights on June 29

Jetstar Airways (Melbourne) has announced it will commence a four times weekly return service between Melbourne and Ayers Rock Airport (Uluru) from June 29, 2014. Jetstar’s existing Sydney-Uluru route will increase to daily service from June 28, 2014.

Copyright Photo: John Adlard/ Airbus A320-232 VH-VQP (msn 2573) arrives in Sydney.

Jetstar Airways: AG Slide Show

Spirit Airlines to reward its customers who spend the least!

Spirit Airlines (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) is taking a different approach than Delta Air Lines and other U.S. airlines for its reward program. The ultra low-fare airline issued this statement:

Spirit Airlines will be offering up to 1,000 bonus miles to all FREE SPIRIT® members who book flights for less than $100 each way*. The tiered bonus structure is designed to award the most miles to customers who book the lowest possible fares, and will be available for any flight purchased today through April 15, 2014 (see chart below).

“We see an increasing trend in other airlines switching to an elitist frequent flier reward system that essentially favors customers who have deeper wallets and can spend more money on their flights,” explains Bobby Schroeter, Vice President of Consumer Marketing. “Our FREE SPIRIT® program rewards customers based on their loyalty and we firmly believe that the more money we save our customers, the more loyal they will be.”

One-way Flight Price* Bonus Miles
less than $36 1000
$36 – $65 500
$66 – $99 250

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/ Airbus A320-232 N605NK (msn 4548) lands in Las Vegas.

Spirit Airlines: AG Slide Show

Japan Airlines and S7 Airlines to expand their code share agreement

Japan Airlines (JAL) (Tokyo) and S7 Airlines (Novosibirsk), both members of oneworld®, have agreed to further expand the code share flights with adding 12 domestic destinations in Russia from March 19, 2014.

The new codeshare routes between Moscow (Domodedovo) and domestic cities in Russia includes Saint Petersburg, the second largest city in Russia, and also Sochi, which is the host city of the 2014 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games as well as other attractive cities. 

Routes between Moscow (Domodedovo) and domestic cities in Russia


・Moscow = St. Petersburg

・Moscow = Perm

・Moscow = Samara

・Moscow = Ufa

・Moscow = Kazan

・Moscow = Chelyabinsk

・Moscow = Yekaterinburg

・Moscow = Volgograd

・Moscow = Nizhny Novgorod

・Moscow = Krasnodar

・Moscow = Rostov

・Moscow = Sochi

* Code share flights are subject to government approval.

* All of the above flights are operated by S7.

* Flight schedule and dates are subject to changes. Please visit JAL website for the latest information.

Top Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/ JAL-Japan Airlines’ Boeing 777-246 JA8985 (msn 27652) in the special Tokyo Disney Resort – 30th Anniversary livery taxies at Fukuoka.

JAL-Japan Airlines: AG Slide Show

S7 Airlines: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf/ S7 Airlines added its first Airbus A321, the pictured A321-211 VQ-BQH (msn 3070) in September 2013.


Emirates arrives in Boston

Emirates (Dubai) yesterday (March 10) launched its daily, nonstop service between Dubai and Boston. Boston becomes the airline’s eighth US destination and the 142th on its global network which links key tourism and trading destinations across six continents.

The inaugural flight EK 237 departed from Terminal 3, Dubai International at 09:45 hours, carrying a delegation of senior airline executives including: Tim Clark, President, Emirates Airline; Adel Al Redha, Emirates’ Executive Vice President & Chief Operations Officer; Hubert Frach, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President Commercial Operations West; and Hiran Perera, Emirates’ Senior Vice President Cargo Planning and Freighters.

Also travelling on the inaugural flight was a VIP delegation from the UAE including: His Excellency Abdulrahman Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman, Dubai Chamber; His Excellency Mohammad Khamis Bin Harib Al Muhairi, Director General, The National Council of Tourism and Antiquities; Rahul Agarwal, Manager of Recruiting, McKinsey & Co; Chadi Chahine, Chief Financial Officer, Smith Nephew.

Emirates will operate daily flights between the two cities with a Boeing 777-200 LR (Longer Range) aircraft in a three-class configuration, offering eight seats in First Class, 42 in Business Class and 216 in Economy Class.

In addition to passengers, Emirates SkyCargo will operate bellyhold cargo space to help transport goods to and from Boston – such electronics, medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, machine parts, leather products, consumer commodities, as well as New England’s finest lobster. Emirates SkyCargo can carry up to 15 tons per day.

EK 237 will depart Dubai at 09:45 and arrive in Boston at 15:15. The return flight, EK 238, will take off from Boston at 23:15 and land in Dubai at 19:30 the next day.  

Emirates began passenger services to America in 2004 with the launch of daily nonstop flights from New York JFK to Dubai, and now offers daily flights to Washington (Dulles), Houston (Bush Intercontinental), Dallas/Fort Worth, Seattle/Tacoma, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/ (all others by Emirates). Boeing 777-21H LR A6-EWB (msn 35573) approaches the runway at Washington’s Dulles International Airport (IAD).

Emirates: AG Slide Show

JetBlue Airways launches Boston-Detroit service, Detroit becomes the 85th BlueCity

JetBlue Airways (New York) yesterday (March 10) added Detroit, Michigan to its route map from Boston. The airline issued this report on its Blue Tales blog:

JetBlue launched Detroit as its 85 BlueCity and our 51 nonstop destination from Boston. JetBlue is entering the market with three daily Embraer 190 flights between BOS and Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW).

We’re really excited to give the business communities within the two cities a new comfortable (and affordable!) option for travel. And with one of the largest Arab American communities in our country the greater Detroit area we know our code-share with Emirates will be of great interest to many as Emirates also began their nonstop  BOS – Dubai (DXB) flights today.

Here are some photos from our inaugural flight:

All photos by JetBlue Airways.

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

The 6,000th Airbus A320 Family aircraft is delivered

Airbus (Toulouse) has delivered the 6,000 A320 Family aircraft. Airbus has issued this statement:

This handover involved a Sharklet-equipped A320 received by Air Arabia (Sharjah) during a ceremony at Airbus’ Hamburg, Germany facilities – home to one of three A320 Family final assembly sites worldwide. The jetliner is the 37th A320 Family aircraft received by Air Arabia, a leading low cost-carrier in the Middle East and North Africa regions.

Since the A320’s service entry in 1988, ongoing improvements to the A320 Family developed by Airbus – including engine enhancements, aerodynamic refinements such as the incorporation of Sharklets, and upgrades to its widest-in-class passenger cabin – have resulted in the world’s best-selling and most modern single-aisle product line, with more than 10,200 aircraft ordered to date.

In addition, the company is continuing to apply innovations to the A320 Family with the A320neo (new engine option) – which has captured some 60 per cent market share ahead of its 2015 service entry. These jetliners share 95 per cent commonality with current engine option (CEO) aircraft, while incorporating two new powerplant choices – CFM International’s LEAP-1A and the PurePower PW1100G-JM from Pratt & Whitney – along with Sharklets wingtip devices as standard equipment.

Top Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss/ Airbus A320-214 A6-ANW (msn 6000) was handed over to Air Arabia (United Arab Emirates) (Sharjah) on March 6 and wears a special emblem.

Air Arabia (UAE): AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Airbus. A320-200 WL A6-ANW (04)(Grd) XFW (Airbus)(LRW)

Did Malaysia Airlines missing flight MH 370 fly west into the Strait of Malacca?, Cathay Pacific flight reports metal objects floating in the water off the South China Sea near Ho Chi Minh City

MH 370 Malacca Strait Map

Malaysia’s military believes it traced the missing Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200 flight MH 370 into the Malacca Strait (northwest of Kuala Lumpur) according to this report by Reuters. According to the military, the aircraft changed course after passing over Kota Bharu and took a lower altitude and headed west to this large body of water (see map above).

Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) is still missing with 227 passengers and 12 crew members on board. The previous oil slick in the Gulf of Thailand (north of Kota Bharu) has been identified as not coming from the missing aircraft. No wreckage has been found in the Gulf of Thailand from the missing and presumed crashed airliner.

Meanwhile Malaysia has identified and issued photos of the two Iranians who used the stolen passports.

Read the full Reuters report: CLICK HERE

Video: Report on the two Iranians:


Meanwhile the chief of Interpol says he does not believe the missing airliner was due to terrorism.

Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE

The New York Times offers this “Questions and Answers” (to common questions) on the missing MH 370: CLICK HERE

A Cathay Pacific Airways flight has reported a relatively large metal debris area off the Vietnam coast near Ho Chi Minh City.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Map of the area where the Cathay Pacific Airways flight has reported the floating metal debris:

Malaysia-Vietnam Cathay Pacific Debris Map

Southwest moves to protect its Dallas Love Field home with 12 proposed new routes if it gets two new gates

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) plans to add 20 flights to 12 new nonstop destinations if the airline is able to acquire two additional gates at Dallas Love Field.  Southwest would add nonstop service to:

  • Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Charleston, South Carolina
  • Detroit, Michigan
  • Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Memphis, Tennessee
  • Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota
  • Newark, New Jersey
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina
  • Sacramento, California
  • San Francisco, California
  • Seattle/Tacoma, Washington

These 12 new nonstop destinations would be added to Southwest’s schedule if the airline is able to obtain the rights to two Love Field gates that American Airlines must relinquish under the terms of a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice.  These destinations would be in addition to the 15 cities that Southwest previously announced it would serve from Love Field beginning later this year, and five new nonstop destinations currently planned for service in 2015 that Southwest has announced:

  • Boston, Massachusetts (Boston Logan)
  • Oakland, California
  • Panama City Beach, Florida
  • Portland, Oregon
  • San Jose, California

With the upcoming sunset of the Wright Amendment restrictions on long-haul flights from Love Field, demand for Southwest nonstop service from the airport far exceeds the Company’s current gate capacity.  Access to two additional gates would allow Southwest to provide North Texas residents and visitors with the benefits of new nonstop flights to 12 additional destinations that would not otherwise be possible – a BIG win for consumers, businesses and the Dallas-Ft. Worth area.

The Dallas-Fort Worth area is a single aviation market that is served by two airports, DFW International Airport and Dallas Love Field.  In total, these airports have 175 gates (155 at DFW and 20 at Love Field).  If Southwest were to acquire the two additional Love Field gates, its percentage of gates in the Dallas-Ft. Worth market would remain very small, around 10 percent.  Importantly, other carriers, such as Virgin America and Delta Air Lines, already have a presence at DFW International Airport and can easily expand at DFW’s ample gate facilities.  In contrast, Southwest’s growth in North Texas can occur only at Love Field under the terms of the five-party agreement that resulted in the end of the Wright Amendment.

Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf/ Boeing 737-7H4 N714CB (msn 27848) is retained in the gold “Southwest Classic” classic livery. It is pictured arriving at Las Vegas.

Southwest Airlines: AG Slide Show


Finnair to offer full-flat seats for nine long-haul routes

Finnair’s (Helsinki) flights to Tokyo and New York will feature aircraft equipped with full-flat seats available in Business Class. Additionally, Finnair will offer full-flat seats on flights to Beijing beginning on May 1, 2014 and as of June 1, 2014 the full-flat allocation also extends to Hanoi, Hong Kong, Nagoya, Osaka and Shanghai. The new seats are a result of Finnair’s 29 million-euro program to retrofit most of its wide-body fleet of Airbus A330 and A340 aircraft.

The Zodiac Seats UK Vantage model seats, which are already in use on Finnair’s four newest Airbus A330s, are designed to provide a fully-flat bed measuring 79 inches in length and 23 inches in width. The fully adjustable seats also come with an individual reading light, adjustable head rest, mood lights and a range of inflight entertainment options.

After the full-flat retrofit program is complete, all of Finnair’s long-haul Airbus fleet will have full-flat seats in Business Class with the exception of three older aircraft. Due to maintenance or other technical reasons, designated full-flat routes may still be served by these other aircraft, which feature angled lie-flat seating in Business Class. These three aircraft will be the first to be removed from the fleet as next-generation Airbus A350 XWBs begin arriving in 2015.

Finnair currently operates 15 Airbus A330 and A340 aircraft in its wide-body fleet, serving a network of 15 long-haul destinations in Asia and North America. A further 11 Airbus A350 XWBs (with an option for 8 more) are due to arrive beginning in H2 2015, which will help the airline double its revenue from Asian destinations by 2020. Finnair will be the first European airline to fly with the state of the art A350.

Top Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/ Airbus A330-302X OH-LTO (msn 1013) arrives back at the Helsinki (HEL) hub.

Finnair: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Finnair.

Finnair Lie-Flt Business Class Seats (Finnair)(LR)

Air Serbia to retire the last Jat Airways Boeing 737 on April 28

Air Serbia (Belgrade) is currently planning to operate the last Boeing 737-300 flight on April 28. The aging Jat Airways Boeing 737-300 fleet is being upgraded and replaced with newer Airbus A319s. Currently the last Boeing 737-300 scheduled service is now scheduled for flight JU 415 from Stockholm (Arlanda) to Belgrade on April 28 according to Airline Route.

This will also be end of the Jat Airways (JAT) brand and name.

Top Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/ Because of the imminent retirement the former Jat Airways Boeing 737-300s are not being repainted in Air Serbia’s colors. Boeing 737-3H9 YU-ANJ (msn 23714) completes its final approach to the runway at London’s Heathrow Airport in the current 2004 livery.

Air Serbia: AG Slide Show

Jat Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner/ JAT was the first airline in Europe to order and operate the new Boeing 737-300 in 1985. The new type entered revenue service after the first (YU-AND) was delivered on July 31, 1985. The pictured 737-3H9 YU-ANL (msn 23716) displays the original 1963 livery worn by the type.



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