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Ethiopian Airlines today starts a new route to Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro via Lomé, Togo

Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa) has announced that it has added South America, the fifth continent in its route network, with the launching of new services to Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil as of today – July 1, 2013.

The inaugural flight to these destinations is operated using Ethiopian Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner, the most technologically advanced commercial aircraft offering unparalleled on-board comfort to passengers with high ceiling, the biggest windows in the sky, greatly reduced noise, unique lighting system and higher level of humidity.

Ethiopian flight to Brazil are operated through its second hub in Lomé, Togo, three times a week. The addition of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro will bring the number of its international destinations across five continents to 75. The flights will be the only connection between West Africa and Brazil.

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner ET-AOQ (msn 34745) arrives in Dubai.

Ethiopian Airlines: AG Slide Show

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ALC to lease two Airbus A321-200s with Sharklets to Monarch Airlines

Air Lease Corporation (Los Angeles) has announced long term lease agreements with Monarch Airlines (London-Luton) for two new Airbus A321-200 aircraft with Sharklets and powered by IAE V2533 engines. Both aircraft are scheduled for delivery in April and May of 2015.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A321-231 G-ZBAE (msn 5606) taxies at Palma de Mallorca in the updated 2011 livery.

Monarch Airlines: AG Slide Show

Reuters: Stelios to vote against easyJet’s “secret” Airbus deal

EasyJet (UK) (easyJet.com) (London-Luton) must get stockholder approval for its recent tentative deal with Airbus for 100 A320neo and 35 A320ceo aircraft. However, according to this report by Reuters, founder Stelios Haji-Ioannou stated today he would vote against the deal. The founder still controls around 37 percent of the shares. Stelios has been critical of the current management and their “over expansion”. The airline has not commented on Stelios’ comments.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 G-EZUG (msn 4680) promoting the new destination of Moscow, arrives at Palma de Mallorca.

EasyJet (UK): AG Slide Show

The new Germanwings is launched today

Germanwings (2nd) (Cologne/Bonn) as a subsidiary of Lufthansa, relaunched operations today (July 1) as a re-invented airline, taking over many former Lufthansa routes and offering three levels of fares and services.

The airline issued this statement:

Today sees the launch of the new Germanwings offering a wider selection of flight services. As well as our popular BASIC and SMART fares, as of today you can book our new BEST fare. You can choose to book a flight by itself with no extra services or our premium offer with everything included. The choice is yours. One thing won’t change, though, and that’s our very low fares.

Germanwings (2nd) cabin (Germanwings)(LR)

It doesn’t end there. Germanwings is expanding. Over the next few months we will be taking over a good deal of Lufthansa’s German and European routes. This means in the future you’ll have even more connections to select from, in particular from Berlin, Hamburg and Düsseldorf.

We will now be able to offer you even more destinations. All LH-flights from Stuttgart and Cologne have already been transferred, and over the coming year other flights from Hamburg and Berlin will follow. In 2014 more destinations from Düsseldorf will expand our network even further.

Germanwings (2nd) FA (Germanwings)(LR)

We hope to see you on board and experience Germanwings as it is reborn.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-132 D-AGWN (msn 3841) awaits its takeoff clearance for the runway at Palma de Mallorca.

Germanwings: AG Slide Show

After 16 years, Air India to serve Australia again

Air India (Mumbai) will again serve Australia after a 16-year absence. The carrier is launching a triangular route from Delhi to Sydney and Melbourne and back to Delhi four days a week starting on August 29 per this report from The Sydney Morning Herald. On the other three days of the week, the route will be Delhi-Melbourne-Sydney-Delhi. The restored route will be operated by its Boeing 787-8s. Therefore it will become the first 787 operator in Australia.

Read the full story from The Sydney Morning Herald: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner VT-ANH (msn 36276) taxies to the terminal on arrival at Frankfurt.

Air India: AG Slide Show

AirAsia Japan to be shut down on October 31

AirAsia Japan (Tokyo-Narita) will cease all scheduled services on October 31, 2013. ANA has decided it will not merge the joint venture with Peach Aviation. The airline started operations on August 1, 2012.

All four Airbus A320s will be returned to AirAsia (Malaysia) the following day.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-216 JA01AJ (msn 5153) approaches the Tokyo (Narita) hub.

AirAsia (Japan): AG Slide Show

Route Map:

AirAsia Japan 6:2013 Route Map

Silver Airways to drop the Montana EAS contract

Silver logo-1

Silver Airways (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) has filed a 90-day notice with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) that it intends to drop its Montana routes under the Essential Air Service (EAS) program according to the Independent Record.

The airline will be required to operate the routes until a replacement carrier is located. The DOT has set a deadline of July 15 for the bids from other carriers. Silver Airways intends to move its Beech (Raytheon) 1900Ds from the Montana operation based at Billings, MT to the Cleveland operation.

Previously Great Lakes Airlines was outbid by Silver Airways (formerly Gulfstream International Airlines) for the EAS contract and may re-bid the contract.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Silver Airways: AG Slide Show

The Montana Route Map:

Silver Montana 3:2012 Route Map

A new era for Iraqi Airways; new aircraft and a new brand

Iraqi Airways (Baghdad) in May 2008, through the Iraqi government, ordered 30 new Boeing 737-800s from The Boeing Company with options for 10 additional aircraft. The first aircraft in the order is being prepared for delivery. The flag carrier is taking the opportunity to also introduce a new livery for the airline. The airline is retaining its historic green and while color scheme but now with updated lines.

Copyright Photo: Duncan Kirk/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-81Z YI-ASE (msn 40104) taxies to the runway at Boeing Field (King County) in Seattle yesterday (May 28) in the evening for a test flight.

Iraqi Airways: AG Slide Show

Gestair Cargo rebrands back to Cygnus Air

Gestair Cargo (Madrid) has rebranded back to its original name of Cygnus Air Corporacion.

Gestair Cargo logo

The airline is currently owned by the Macholfam International (Grupo Gestair) (60%) and IMES (Grupo ACS) (40%) according to Wikipedia.

Top Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/AirlinersGallery.com. This Gestair Cargo color scheme  and name was introduced in 2008.

Bottom Copyright Photo: Gunter Mayer. Now ex-Iberia Boeing 757-236 EC-KLD (msn 24121), pictured at Nuremberg at night, is wearing the basic Gestair livery now with Cygnus Air Corporacion titles and the new (old) tail logo.

Cygnus Air (2nd) 757-200F EC-FTR (13)(Grd) NUE (GM)(LRW)

Norwegian takes delivery of its first Boeing 787-8 from ILFC and Boeing

Norwegian Air Shuttle (Norwegian Long haul) (Oslo) has taken delivery of its first Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner. Boeing, International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) and Norwegian celebrated several milestones on Thursday (June 27) during a delivery ceremony for a new 787 Dreamliner. It was the first 787 delivered to ILFC and its lessee, Norwegian, which will operate the airplane. The 787 also marked the 700th airplane Boeing delivered to ILFC.

The delivery to ILFC builds on Boeing’s 40-year relationship with the Los Angeles-based leasing company and largest 787 customer with 74 Dreamliners on order.

Norwegian currently has eight 787s on order through lease agreements and direct deliveries. The carrier will use the 787s to service its new long-haul routes from Oslo and Stockholm to New York (JFK) and Bangkok. In November, the airline also will operate the 787 to Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood from Oslo, Stockholm and Copenhagen.

The delivery flight to Oslo (Gardermoen) took 8 hours and 20 minutes.

Before the new aircraft is deployed on its long-haul routes to New York (JFK) and Bangkok, between July 4 and August 4, the new type will be flying a range of European routes from Oslo to include London, Alicante, Malaga, Nice and Barcelona.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Norwegian’s Boeing 787-8 EI-LNA (msn 35304) with Sonja Henie on the tail is pictured departing Paine Field near Everett yesterday afternoon (June 28) as “Norstar 576″. Norwegian will operate its new Boeing 787s as a separate “Norwegian Long Haul A.S.” (DU/NLH) division.

Norwegian: AG Slide Show

Delta to begin renovations on Delta Flight Museum, set to open in 2014

Delta Museum (Delta)(LRW)

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) will begin renovations funded by a $6.3 million grant from The Delta Air Lines Foundation and will kick-off a corporate sponsorship campaign to refurbish Delta’s historic hangars on the company’s corporate campus. Upon completion of the project, the facility will open to the public as the Delta Flight Museum offering daily tours and a unique private event facility.

The hangars, originally built in the 1940s for Delta’s aircraft maintenance, were repurposed in 1995 as the site of the current Delta Air Transport Heritage Museum. Its mission then was to preserve the history of Delta’s people and culture of exceptional customer service forged by founder C.E. Woolman. The site has served as the backbone of the company’s global headquarters for more than 70 years.

“Returning Delta’s historic hangars to their original glory helps preserve the history and rich Delta employee culture for generations of aviation enthusiasts,” said Tad Hutcheson, vice president – Community Affairs and Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Delta Air Transport Heritage Museum. “The new Delta Flight Museum will offer a one-of-a-kind experience for the Atlantacommunity and visitors from around the world.”

The renovation project will last 12 months and is scheduled to be complete in advance of Delta’s 85th anniversary of commercial aviation service on June 17, 2014. Some of the major improvements include the addition of a welcome theater, installation of an elevator and construction of a new mezzanine level.

When completed, the new museum will offer a full-service event space that will accommodate private events for groups ranging from 100 to 1,200 people for a seated meal service. The facility will be among the largest capacity venues in the Atlanta metropolitan area and will offer a variety of scalable rental options.

The entrance to the Delta Flight Museum will offer convenient access for daily visitors and will include dedicated parking for museum patrons as well as capacity for valet parking services to compliment private functions held in the facility.

The Spirit of Delta will continue to be one of the largest items on display in the museum. The Boeing 767-200 (above, caption below) was purchased by Delta employees in 1982 as an expression of thanks to the company and has been located in the museum since being retired from service in 2006.

The renovation also will include preserving the hangar doors by returning them to their original condition and polishing the concrete floors to retain the distinctive markings created when Delta installed the reinforced concrete needed to handle heavier aircraft as it transitioned from the use of propeller planes to the jet age.

New air conditioning and heat controls will provide a comfortable year-round visitor experience inside the large hangar facility. A full Convair 880 cockpit already owned by the museum along with a Boeing 737-200 flight simulator will be installed as permanent exhibits and a new retail store will be built for visitors to purchase aviation memorabilia and Delta-branded items.

The hangars were designated as an official Historic Aerospace Site by The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics in Feb. 2011, acknowledging them as the oldest surviving buildings currently in use at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

Delta moved its headquarters from Monroe, Louisiana, to Atlanta in 1941 and began use of the hangars as the primary maintenance facility for its daily commercial flight operations. Aircraft maintenance moved to the site of Delta’s current Technical Operations Center in 1960. In 1990, a group of Delta retirees launched an effort to consolidate Delta memorabilia, archival collections and one of Delta’s first 1940s era Douglas DC-3 aircraft. The effort resulted in the creation of the Delta Air Transport Heritage Museum located in the hangar facility donated by Delta.

Top Copyright Rendering: Delta Air Lines.

Middle Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. “The Spirit of Delta” in the form of donated Boeing 767-232 N102DA (msn 22214) worn several different liveries in its career with Delta. Here is the special “Celebrating 75 Years 2004″ livery at Miami.

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Douglas DC-3-357 NC28341 (msn 3278) lands at Baltimore/Washington (BWI).

Sichuan Airlines takes delivery of its first Airbus A320 with Sharklets

takeoff

Sichuan Airlines (Chengdu), the largest all Airbus fleet operator in China, has taken delivery of its first A320 aircraft equipped with Sharklets.

The A320, powered by IAE V2500 engines, features a comfortable two class cabin, seating 164 passengers with eight in business class and 156 in economy.

Sichuan Airlines was also the first Chinese airline to operate the A320, the first to take delivery of an A320 assembled at Airbus’ Tianjin Final Assembly Line, and now one of the first with Sharklets in China.

Sichuan Airlines is China’s largest all Airbus fleet operator. It introduced an A320 in 1995 to become the first Chinese airline to operate an Airbus fly-by-wire aircraft. In 2009, the airline received the first A320 assembled at the Airbus Final Assembly Line China (FALC) in Tianjin. Now it operates a fleet of five A330s and 70 A320 Family aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Airbus. The pictured Airbus A320-232 F-WWIM became B-9935 (msn 5646) when it was handed over on June 26, 2013.

Sichuan Airlines: AG Slide Show

Libyan Airlines takes delivery of its first Airbus A330-200

Libyan Airlines (Tripoli), the national carrier of Libya, has taken delivery of its first A330-200 becoming a new operator for the type. The carrier already operates seven Airbus A320 aircraft, with three A330-200 and four A350-800 aircraft on order.

Accommodating a two-class configuration of 24 business and 235 economy seats, the aircraft is  powered by GE CF6-80 engines and will be deployed in the Middle East, around Dubai and Jeddah, as well as on Asian and European trunk routes.

Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-202 F-WWCK (msn 1412) became 5A-LAR on delivery.

Libyan Airlines: AG Slide Show

Qatar Airways to fly its Boeing 787 to Stockholm starting on August 1 and Copenhagen and Oslo on September 1

Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced an expansion of its Boeing 787 services to Europe with the new state-of-the-art aircraft being deployed on three Scandinavian routes.

The Doha-based carrier will launch 787 flights to the Swedish capital Stockholm on August 1, followed a month later to both Copenhagen and Oslo – capital cities of Denmark and Norway, respectively, effective September 1.

Qatar Airways operates daily flights to each of the three Scandinavian capitals from its hub, capital of the State of Qatar, with a total weekly capacity of 21 services.

Qatar Airways Boeing 787 Business Class Interiors
Qatar Airways Boeing 787 Business Class Interiors (Qatar Airways).

 

Qatar Airways has 254 custom-made seats across its 787 Business and Economy Class cabins with specially designed interiors. Business Class is configured 1–2–1 with 22 seats, while Economy has a 232 seating capacity in a 3–3–3 layout. All seats in Business Class are fully reclinable.

The airline’s 787s are the world’s first fully connected Dreamliners with wireless facilities for passengers to remain in touch with friends and colleagues on the ground through the internet and SMS mobile texting across both Business and Economy cabins.

Made up of composite materials, the 787 Dreamliner is lighter and more fuel-efficient than any comparable aircraft of its size and range. Unique features include larger windows, reduced cabin noise and cleaner cabin air.

Qatar Airways currently operates five Boeing 787s, flying on the London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Munich, Zurich and Dubai routes from Doha. The airline took delivery of its sixth Dreamliner at the Paris Air Show, where the aircraft was open for VIP, trade and media tours. Qatar Airways currently has a further 54 Dreamliners on order.

 

Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 16 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 125 aircraft to 128 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and The Americas.

The airline has so far launched six destinations this year – Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Salalah (Oman), Najaf and Basra (Iraq), Phnom Penh (Cambodia) and Chicago (USA). Over the next few months, the network will grow further with new destinations introduced to Sulaymaniyah, Iraq (August 20), Chengdu, China (September 3), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (September 18), Clark International Airport, Philippines (October 27) and Philadelphia (April 2, 2014).

In other news, Qatar Airways intends to introduce its first Airbus A380 on the Doha-London (Heathrow) route followed by Doha-Paris (CDG) in early 2014.

Qatar Airways currently has 13 Airbus A380s on order with plans to operate them on popular routes, especially in slot-constrained airports. The first A380 will arrive in early 2014.

Top Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner A7-BCL (msn 38330) prepares to touch down at London (Heathrow).

Qatar Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Image: Airbus. The painted tail has been attached to the first Qatar A380 at Toulouse. The first three A380s will be msn 137, 143 and 146.

Qatar A380-800 (06)(Flt)(Airbus)(LRW)

Aeroflot considers dropping out of SkyTeam because of Delta

Aeroflot Russian Airlines (Moscow) according to Reuters, citing a report in Kommersant, is considering leaving the SkyTeam alliance in the future. According to the report, the flag carrier is not happy with its development of routes in the United States due to the “high fares” charged by Delta Air Lines.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: OSDU/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-343X VQ-BCQ (msn 1058) in the SkyTeam motif arrives at the Moscow (Sheremetyevo) hub.

Aeroflot: AG Slide Show

 

WestJet expands operations to Hawaii

WestJet (Calgary) has announced new, daily service between Vancouver and Kona (The Big Island) and between Vancouver and Lihue (Kauai), starting in December.

On December 12, 2013 , service between Vancouver and Hawaii Island increases to daily from the four times weekly served last winter. Service between Vancouver and Kauai also increases to daily, beginning on December 14, 2013 , from three times weekly.

In addition to increased service to Hawaii Island and Kauai, WestJet also offers twice-daily service from Vancouver to both Honolulu and Maui.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8CT WL C-GWSZ (msn 37092) in the special Care-antee livery taxies at Vancouver on a beautiful day.

WestJet: AG Slide Show

Reuters: Justice Department is taking depositions in the American Airlines-US Airways merger

The United States Department of Justice (Washington) is taking sworn depositions as part of a legal probe into the proposed American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix) merger according to this exclusive report by Reuters. The DOJ is concerned that if the merger is approved as it stands, it would create antitrust concerns because the new American Airlines would control 68 percent of the slots at downtown Washington Reagan National Airport. Proposed CEO Doug Parker has told Congress in hearings that if the new airline is required to surrender DCA slots it could mean a loss of service to the medium and smaller cities serving the capitol. Many of the representatives are from those districts that could lose air service to their place of work. Over 100 members of Congress have asked those Federal agencies approving the merger to allow the new American to keep the DCA slots. Other airlines would probably like additional lucrative DCA slots. A fight is brewing.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. De Biasi/AirlinersGallery.com. “Gridlock and Motion”. In many ways DCA is the “airport of Congress” as the favorite airport for those members of Congress who live nearby, as well as all of the concerned parties always flying in on any proposed legislation and the growing legions of lobbyists ready to apply rapid pressure on Congress on any given issue. As a result DCA has some of highest yield routes in the country. Symbolically, fast-moving American’s Boeing 737-823 N804NN (msn 29567) lands at DCA across the river from slow-moving downtown Washington.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

US Airways: AG Slide Show

JetBlue today launches nonstop Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood-San Jose, Costa Rica flights

JetBlue Airways (New York) today launched daily nonstop service between Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) and Juan Santamaria International Airport in San Jose, Costa Rica (SJO).

Destinations in Latin America and the Caribbean now make up almost one-third of JetBlue’s route network. In addition to the new Fort Lauderdale to San Jose route, JetBlue started service between Orlando and San Jose in 2009, and also offers nonstop service to Liberia from New York’s JFK Airport.

JetBlue’s schedule between Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and San Jose, Costa Rica:

Fort Lauderdale (FLL) to San Jose (SJO):

San Jose (SJO) to Fort Lauderdale (FLL):
Depart – Arrive Depart – Arrive
9:45 a.m. – 10:38 a.m. 1:20 p.m. – 6:24 p.m.
                                                               – All times local –

JetBlue serves 27 Latin American and Caribbean destinations, including: Aruba; The Bahamas (Nassau); Barbados; Bermuda; Cayman Islands (Grand Cayman); Colombia (Bogota, Medellin and Cartagena); Costa Rica (Liberia and San Jose); Dominican Republic (La Romana, Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, Samana, Santiago and Santo Domingo); Jamaica (Kingston and Montego Bay); Mexico (Cancun); Puerto Rico (Aguadilla, Ponce and San Juan); St. Croix; Saint Lucia; St. Maarten; St. Thomas; and, Turks and Caicos (Providenciales).

JetBlue’s flights to San Jose will be operated with its 150-seat Airbus A320s.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N534JB (msn 1705) in the Blueberries tail design departs from FLL.

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

Air Pacific becomes Fiji Airways today

Air Pacific (2nd) (Nadi, Fiji) today (June 27) as planned, became Fiji Airways (2nd), completing its rebranding.

On June 5 the flag carrier issued this statement:

Air Pacific announced it will change its name and start trading as Fiji Airways on Thursday June 27.

Returning to its 1958 name, the switch-over marks another important milestone in the airline’s turnaround. Customers have already been able to experience a “sneak peak” of our new A330 aircraft with their new state of the art features. June 27 represents the official launch of the Fiji Airways brand with a number of further new brand elements rolled out across Fiji and the international marketplace on this date.

“The official changeover date marks the official end of Air Pacific and the beginning of Fiji Airways. It is exciting that after a 15-month journey, we can now be known as ‘Fiji Airways’ across the globe. The changeover represents an exciting future for the airline that is rooted in our more than 60-year history and service to the people of Fiji”, said Aubrey Swift, the airline’s Acting CEO.

“At the heart of our airline’s new name and brand is the Fiji Airways’ brandmark, a striking new Masi design, created by celebrated local Fijian Masi artist, Makereta Matemosi. The brandmark symbolises the airline’s new identity and epitomises all that Fiji Airways represents. It is authentic, distinctive, and true to the airline’s Fijian roots. Fiji Airways will continue to be the country’s flying ambassador to the world, bringing the renowned Fijian hospitality to people across the globe.”

The changeover underscores the success of the airline’s turnaround plan, which started in 2010 and has culminated in reversing record losses and significantly growing passengers and revenue without increasing the size of the carrier’s fleet.

Schedule, product and service enhancements will be rolled out through the rest of 2013, along with the delivery of the third Fiji Airways A330 (and the retirement of the 747s). Thus, by the end of the year, the turnaround and brand transition will be complete.

Top Copyright Photo: John Adlard/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8X2 WL DQ-FJG (msn 29968) is seen at Sydney in the new look.

Fiji Airways: AG Slide Show

Air Pacific: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Graham Weatherby. Boeing 737-7X2 DQ-FJF (msn 28878), repainted in the new livery of Fiji Airways, departs from a wintry Christchurch, New Zealand.

Fiji Airways (2nd) 737-700 WL DQ-FJF (13)(Tko) CHC (GWB)(LRW)

Red Wings Airlines is resurrected and resumes operations

Red Wings Airlines‘ (Moscow-Vnukovo) Air Operators Certificate (AOC) has been recertified and the carrier has relaunched operations.

The company issued this statement (translated from Russian):

Federal Air Transport Agency has renewed the certificate of the operator Red Wings to carry commercial passengers and freight. The airline since it was grounded, has added a new CEO. Red Wings has conducted a revision of its aircraft crew training, as well as to address the deficiencies and violations found during the unscheduled inspections at the beginning of this year. Together, the common set of measures taken has allowed Red Wings to provide proof of its readiness to continue its activities. In this regard, the Federal Air Transport Agency has positively reviewed the application of Red Wings for the resumption of its business and commercial passenger and freight traffic from June 17, 2013.

The airline has resumed operations with two Tupolev Tu-204s. Previously the Russian carrier was ground in February 2013 following the crash of flight 9268 with RA-64047 on December 29, 2012 in Moscow.

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Tupolev Tu-204-100V RA-64043 (msn 1450743164043) prepares to land at the vacation destination of Antalya, Turkey.

Red Wings Airlines: AG Slide Show

Finnair to continue to fly to Tel Aviv year-round, rumors of a possible merger with SAS

Finnair (Helsinki) will continue to operate its new route to Tel Aviv also during the winter season. As of November 1, Finnair will continue to fly to Tel Aviv with the similar frequency as during the on-going summer season, twice a week on Mondays and Fridays, but with new timetables that better fit Finnair’s Asian and European connections. 

Finnair flights arriving from Asia on Mondays will have a good connection to Tel Aviv. The connecting flight from Helsinki departs at 3.40 p.m. (1540) and arrives in Tel Aviv at 8.05 p.m.(2005) The return flight from Tel Aviv departs at 8.55 p.m. (2055) and arrives in Helsinki at 1.35 a.m. (0135) the next day.

On Fridays the flight departs from Helsinki at 6 a.m. (0600) and arrives in Tel Aviv at 10.25 a.m. (1025). The return flight from Tel Aviv is well connected to Finnair’s Asian flights in the afternoon.

The flights to Tel Aviv are operated with an Airbus A320 aircraft.

Finnair will also operate five scheduled flights a week from Helsinki to Dubai during the winter season. In addition, a charter service is provided on Tuesdays.

In other news, there are media reports of a possible merger with Scandinavian Airlines-SAS (Stockholm). According to this report by Reuters, new Finnair CEO Pekka Vauramo sees both advantages and disadvantages with a possible merger. other than that, both airlines are not commenting on the reports.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Finally, Finnair has leased three Embraer ERJ 170s to AeroMexico Connect.

Top Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Finnair’s Airbus A320-214 OH-LXF (msn 1712) arrives at Amsterdam.

Finnair: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Finnair’s Embraer ERJ 170-100STD OH-LEL (msn 17000139) in now dressed in full AeroMexico connect colors. The airliner is pictured passing through Toronto (Pearson) on June 15 and will become XA-SAC with the Mexican carrier.

AeroMexico connect ERJ 170-100 OH-LEL (XA-SAC)(06)(Grd) YYZ (TMK)(LRW)

Boeing delivers the first 787-8 to British Airways

British Airways (London) and Boeing (Chicago) today announced the delivery of the UK carrier’s first Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

The British Airways 787 departed Paine Field in Everett, Washington, on Wednesday, June 26, arriving at London’s Heathrow Airport today at 12:10 pm local time. The airplane was welcomed to its Heathrow home by Willie Walsh, chief executive officer ofInternational Airlines Group (IAG), the company that owns British Airways.

British Airways has announced that the airline will operate the 787 from Heathrow to Toronto (Pearson) from September 1 and Heathrow to Newark from October 1.

“The delivery of the first of BA’s 787s is an exciting milestone for Boeing and British Airways,” said Todd Nelp, vice president of European Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.  “The 787 is the most technologically advanced and fuel-efficient commercial jetliner in its class. Its improved lighting, bigger windows, larger overhead bins, lower cabin altitude and cleaner cabin air will offer BA’s passengers an unparalleled flying experience.”

The 787 Dreamliner is composed of lightweight composites and features numerous systems, engine and aerodynamic advancements, with unmatched fuel efficiency using 20 percent less fuel than today’s similarly sized airplanes.  It is the first mid-sized airplane capable of flying long-range routes, providing airlines with unprecedented fuel economy and low operating costs and enabling airlines to open new, non-stop routes preferred by passengers. On a 787 with Rolls-Royce engines, UK companies make about 25 percent of the 787 by value.

The British Airways 787 Dreamliner carries 214 passengers and is configured with 35 seats in Club World, 25 in World Traveller Plus and 154 seats in the World Traveller cabin.

British Airways operates more than 140 Boeing airplanes within its fleet including 52 777s, as well as the world’s largest fleet of 747s with 52.

This is the first of 24 787s British Airways has on order. In addition, IAG recently announced that it will convert 18 787 options to firm orders for British Airways, subject to shareholder agreement. Twelve of these will be 787-10s, meaning British Airways will operate the entire 787 family – the 787-8, 787-9 and 787-10.

British Airways issued this statement:

To celebrate, the airline is launching special fares from both cities to London Heathrow. For travel from Toronto and New York (JFK or Newark), the fares begin at $787 roundtrip in World Traveller (economy). World Traveller Plus, the airline’s premium economy, fares begin from $1290 roundtrip and, continuing the celebrations, Club World business class fares start from $2787 roundtrip. All fares include taxes, fees and carrier charges.

British Kim Cattrall (British)(LR)

The new 787 routes were announced in association with brand ambassador and star of stage and screen, Kim Cattrall (above). Kim, who born in England and raised in Canada said: “I fly regularly between the UK, Canada and the USA with British Airways and I love their service. I need to be ready to work when I land, so to know that I can fly on their 787s and arrive feeling really rested and refreshed is a definite bonus for me.”

New British Airways Boeing 787 Dreamliners: Benefits for Customers

  • Low levels of cabin noise resulting in increased rest for customers.
  • A higher humidity level in the cabins reduces the ‘drying effect’ so customers arrive feeling refreshed. This is the result of a difference in pressurization where cabin altitude is the equivalent of 6,000ft; 2,000ft lower than on other aircraft.
  • The aircraft’s smooth ride technology provides extra comfort during any turbulence.
  • The bespoke lighting in every cabin can be set to reflect the time of day, helping to lull travellers to sleep at night and to wake them in the morning.
  • Customers can also enjoy much larger windows, offering views of the horizon from every seat.

Willie Walsh, chief executive of IAG, said: “The 787 is a tremendous, innovative aircraft which sets new standards for environmental performance and operating efficiency and I’m sure British Airways customers will love it.

“The 787 will become a mainstay of the British Airways fleet over the next few years. This is the first of 24 that will arrive by 2017, and we have announced plans to convert further options for the aircraft into firm orders for delivery from 2017, including for the new larger 787-10 version.”

Mitch Preston is British Airways’ first 787 pilot to fly the aircraft from Boeing’s Seattle home toLondon. Preston said: “It was a real pleasure to fly the 787 home to Heathrow today — it’s a joy to operate, and a really smooth ride.

“It’s exceptionally quiet and the cabin environment, combined with the service customers would expect from British Airways, will make for a great experience. I for one can’t wait to welcome our customers on board.”

British Airways has ordered 24 787s, which will arrive over the next four years. The airline has also ordered 12 A380s and six additional Boeing 777-300 ERs. Over the next 12 months, it will take delivery of a new aircraft at the rate of one a fortnight.

 The aircraft orders form the centrepiece of British Airways’ [Pounds]5bn investment in improved customer experience in the air and on the ground. The airline is the first in Europe to operate both the 787 and the A380.

Videos:

Top Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. The pictured 787-8 G-ZBJB (msn 38610) was officially handed over to the carrier on June 25, 2013.

Bottom Copyright Photo: James Mepsted. The first arrival of G-ZBJB this morning at London (Heathrow).

British Airways 787-8 G-ZBJB (97-Union flag)(Apr) LHR (JMS)(LRW)

British Airways: AG Slide Show

Horizon Air and SkyWest to open up four new routes from Seattle/Tacoma and Portland for Alaska Airlines and two routes from San Diego

Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) will inaugurate daily service between Seattle/Tacoma and Colorado Springs, Colorado, starting on November 1, and between Seattle/Tacoma and Omaha, Nebraska, starting on November 7. The carrier will also add nonstop flights between Portland, Oregon, and Tucson, Arizona, starting on November 1, and between Portland and Reno, Nevada, starting on November 8, 2013.

Summary of new service:
Seattle-Colorado Springs
Start date City pair Departs Arrives Frequency
Nov. 1 Seattle-Colorado Springs 6:20 p.m. 9:55 p.m. Daily
Nov. 2 Colorado Springs-Seattle 8 a.m. 9:55 a.m. Daily
Seattle-Omaha
Start date City pair Departs Arrives Frequency
Nov. 7 Seattle-Omaha 10:40 a.m. 3:45 p.m. Daily
Nov. 7 Omaha-Seattle 4:15 p.m. 5:45 p.m. Daily
Portland-Reno
Start date City pair Departs Arrives Frequency
Nov. 8 Portland-Reno 11:10 a.m. 12:45 p.m. Daily
Nov. 8 Reno-Portland 1:15 p.m. 2:50 p.m. Daily
Portland-Tucson
Start date City pair Departs Arrives Frequency
Nov. 1 Portland-Tucson 9:15 a.m. 1:05 p.m. Daily
Nov. 1 Tucson-Portland 1:35 p.m. 3:30 p.m. Daily
All times based on local time zones.

The new Portland-Reno flights will be flown for Alaska Airlines by Horizon Air (Alaska Horizon) (Seattle/Tacoma) using 76-seat Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s). The remaining flights will be operated by SkyWest Airlines (Alaska SkyWest) (St. George) using 70-seat Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets.

Alaska Airlines last operated between Portland and Reno in 2009 and also served Portland-Tucson in 2003.

In addition, Alaska Airlines will begin new daily service between San Diego and Boise, Idaho, starting on November 1, and daily seasonal service between San Diego and Mammoth Mountain Ski Area in California, starting on December 19, 2013.

Summary of new service:
San Diego-Boise
Start date City pair Departs Arrives Frequency
Nov.1 Boise-San Diego 10:20 a.m. 11:25 a.m. Daily
Nov.1 San Diego-Boise 5:35 p.m. 8:40 p.m. Daily
San Diego-Mammoth Lakes
Start date City pair Departs Arrives Frequency
Dec. 19-April 13 San Diego-Mammoth 5:30 p.m. 7 p.m. Mon, Tue, Wed,
Thu, Fri, Sun
Dec. 19-April 13 Mammoth-San Diego 7:30 p.m. 9 p.m. Mon, Tue, Wed,
Thu, Fri, Sun
Dec. 21-April 12 San Diego-Mammoth 9:30 a.m. 11 a.m. Saturdays only
Dec. 21-April 12 Mammoth-San Diego 11:30 a.m. 1 p.m. Saturdays only
All times based on local time zones.

The new 90-minute flight to Mammoth Lakes is estimated to save residents more than 6 hours of driving. Horizon Air (Alaska Horizon) will operate the Mammoth Lakes flights for Alaska Airlines using 76-seat Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s). SkyWest Airlines (Alaska SkyWest) will operate the new San Diego-Boise flights for Alaska using 70-seat Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets.

With these flights, Alaska Airlines will offer 25 peak-daily departures from San Diego with nonstop service to 12 domestic and two international destinations.

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Horizon Air’s Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) N441QX (msn 4348) pushes from the gate at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport hub.

Alaska Airlines: AG Slide Show

Alaska Horizon: AG Slide Show

Alaska SkyWest: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N215AG (msn 10009) lands at Long Beach.

 

American Airlines and Disney collaborate to promote “Disney Planes”

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and the Walt Disney Studios announced a strategic collaboration on the upcoming “Disney’s Planes” movie, including a cameo appearance by Tripp – inspired in part by American’s Boeing 777-300 ER, the newest addition to American’s fleet.

Video: CLICK HERE

Tripp dons the airline’s new look, complete with the company’s newly developed flight symbol and stripes on his tail for a special cameo appearance in the film.

American-Disney Planes Banner

“Disney is a global family brand and working with them gives us a fun opportunity to connect with families who know and love the iconic American Airlines brand,” said Rob Friedman, American’s Vice President – Marketing.  “Through this collaboration, we have a lot of great things planned for this summer, including exciting trip promotions and in-airport activities, so I encourage everyone to stay tuned.”

To kick off the excitement, American and Disney surprised customers traveling throughLos Angeles International Airport (LAX) with gate celebrations and giveaways, including special guest appearances by the film’s director Klay Hall and actor Carlos Alazraqui, who provides the voice of passionate racer El Chupacabra (El Chu) in the film.

In addition, American and Disney today premiered a special version of the “Disney’s Planes” trailer for LAX customers, as well as American’s new custom animated commercial directed by Hall, and developed in conjunction with McCann Worldgroup. In the spot, characters from the movie, including DustyEl Chu and Tripp, highlight American’s fleet modernization efforts with a comedic flare. American also held the inflight debut of the trailer and commercial spot onboard Flight #2442 from LAX to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW).

“Disney’s Planes” and Tripp soar into theaters nationwide beginning Aug. 9, 2013.  Leading up to the film’s release, the companies plan to roll out an integrated marketing effort, including collaborated advertising, promotions and inflight entertainment. American will also feature an inflight version of the movie in October, one month earlier than other airlines, as part of American’s continuing effort to provide customers with the latest and most exclusive content.

“Disney’s Planes” is an action-packed 3D animated comedy adventure featuring Dusty (voice of Dane Cook), a plane with dreams of competing as a high-flying air racer. But Dusty‘s not exactly built for racing—and he happens to be afraid of heights. So he turns to a seasoned naval aviator who helpsDusty qualify to take on the defending champ of the race circuit. Dusty‘s courage is put to the ultimate test as he aims to reach heights he never dreamed possible, giving a spellbound world the inspiration to soar. “Disney’s Planes” takes off in theaters on Aug. 9, 2013.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

Frontier to start twice-weekly Wilmington, DE-Fort Myers service on November 16

Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver) today announced it will add nonstop service from Wilmington New Castle Airport in Wilmington, Delaware (ILG) to Fort Myers, Florida (RSW) starting November 16, 2013.

As previously announced, Frontier will start service on July 1 from Wilmington to five cities: Chicago-Midway; Denver; Houston; Orlando; and Tampa. The Fort Myers service builds on this new service given the strong customer response Frontier is seeing to its new Wilmington service.

This new service will operate with 168-seat Airbus A320 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 N210FR (msn 4668) approaches Washington (Reagan National) for landing.

Frontier Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Boeing leases additional 717s to QANTAS Link and Volotea

Boeing’ (Chicago) leasing unit, Boeing Capital Corporation, announced additional deployments of 717s.

Australia’s largest regional airline, QANTAS Link, will receive an additional five leased 717s to add to its existing fleet of 13 of the twinjets that operate across Australia. Those deliveries will begin in late 2013 after the aircraft are refitted with upgraded interiors to include a full business class experience and new in-flight entertainment systems. The QANTAS Group has operated the 717s since 2002.

The 717s will be deployed on the Sydney-Canberra, Brisbane-Canberra and Melbourne-Canberra routes.

In Europe, startup carrier, Volotea (Barcelona and Venice), will increase its 717 fleet (below) in 2013 to a total 15 as it continues to develop its business model of offering point-to-point service to passengers between medium and small-sized European cities. Volotea began operations on April 5, 2012 with a network built around the 717 that is supported by a comprehensive Boeing solution for operations and training.

Volotea recently surpassed the million passenger mark enabled by its operation from 52 European airports, currently serving 97 city pairs.

There are more than 150 Boeing 717s in service today since the first airplane was delivered in 1999. The twinjet’s technology and fleet performance have earned it the distinction of being the world’s best jetliner serving the 100-passenger airline market.

Top Copyright Photo: Micheil Keegan/AirlinersGallery.com. Operated by Cobham Aviation Services Australia for QANTAS, Boeing 717-2K9 VH-NXH (msn 55055) prepares to land in Perth, Western Australia.

QANTAS Link-Cobham: AG Slide Show

Volotea: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 717-2BL EI-EWI (msn 55170) climbs away from Southend after maintenance.

Air Canada to expand Air Canada rouge to 23 holiday destinations, will expand to 50 aircraft

Air Canada (Montreal) announced the growth of its leisure carrier subsidiary, Air Canada rouge, is on track to expand to a total of 23 holiday destinations in the Caribbean, Mexico, Florida and Las Vegas for its 2013-2014 winter season.

“We are delighted with the response to Air Canada rouge’s inaugural summer season as it prepares for take-off July 1st,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer, inToronto for a pre-inaugural event with employees and media.  “Our plans for growing the Air Canada rouge fleet are on track to serve more holiday destination markets where we can now compete on a more cost effective basis operating our new leisure carrier, while leveraging the strength of Air Canada Vacations. Once Air Canada rouge completes its inaugural summer season to Edinburgh, Venice, Athens and a number of Caribbean destinations, its flying will expand southward for the winter to an additional 13 destinations in the Caribbean, Mexico and select U.S. holiday markets. I would like to commend Michael Friisdahl and his team at Air Canada rouge for overcoming the complexity and challenges of launching a new carrier in record time with professionalism and an impressive sense of purpose. I also congratulate the first Air Canada rouge inflight graduating class who we expect will set an excellent customer service standard for vacation travel.”

“As new Boeing 777-300 ER and 787 aircraft enter the Air Canada mainline fleet, we intend to continue spooling up Air Canada rouge to reach a total of up to 50 aircraft.  The growth of our leisure carrier, in tandem with the mainline fleet renewal and international network expansion, is a key element of Air Canada’s overall strategy for sustainable, profitable growth, both at the mainline and leisure carrier.  With a renewed, more efficient fleet combined with our award-winning product, Air Canada will be well positioned to expand its mainline global network to new, higher business-demand destinations while Air Canada rouge profitably expands Air Canada’s presence on a lower cost basis in current and future leisure markets that present new opportunities,” concluded Mr. Rovinescu.

Air Canada will take delivery of five new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft for its mainline fleet between June 2013 and February 2014, and the first three of 37 Boeing 787 aircraft by the summer of 2014. Air Canada is scheduled to take delivery of seven 787 aircraft in 2014 and the remaining 30 between 2015 and 2019.

Air Canada rouge’s July 1 start-up fleet consisting of two Airbus A319 aircraft and two Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft will grow to ten aircraft by the end of 2013 with the addition of six Airbus A319 aircraft by December 2013, and an additional four Airbus A319 aircraft by March 2014, for a total of 14 aircraft by the end of the 2013-2014 winter season.

A number of popular holiday destinations currently served by Air Canada’s mainline carrier will be converted to Air Canada rouge service on a phased-in basis beginning October 2013 through March 2014 as additional aircraft are released by the mainline airline for operation by its leisure carrier.

Air Canada rouge will operate flights to the following popular holiday destinations for its 2013-2014 Winter Schedule. Flights are now available for purchase at aircanada.com and through travel agents:

Mexico: flights from Toronto to Cancun, Puerto Vallarta*, Cabo San Lucas* and Huatulco*, subject to government approval.

United States: flights from Toronto and Montreal to Orlando and Las Vegas, and from Toronto to Sarasota*, Florida.

Caribbean: flights from Toronto to Montego Bay, Jamaica; Grenada*; St. Kitts*; Grand Exuma, Bahamas; Curacao*, Netherlands Antilles; and La Romana*, Dominican Republic.  This is in addition to Air Canada rouge service commencing with its summer 2013 schedule on July 1 from Toronto year-round to 10 Caribbean and Central America destinations: Kingston, Jamaica; the Dominican Republic (Punta Cana, Puerto Plata and Samana), Cuba (Varadero, Cayo Coco, Holguin and Santa Clara) and Costa Rica (San Jose and Liberia).

* Seasonal services where indicated.  All other routes are year-round services.

All flights will be operated using Airbus A319 aircraft, with the exception of Toronto-Las Vegas and Toronto-Montego Bay flights that will be operated with Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft.

Air Canada rouge’s Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft feature a two-cabin configuration with three customer comfort options including rouge, rouge Plus with preferred seating with additional legroom, and, beginning in winter 2013, Premium rouge offering both additional room and enhanced service.  The airline’s Airbus A319 aircraft are configured with rouge and rouge Plus preferred seating.  All flights will offer customers streamed wireless inflight entertainment, stylish and modern cabin interiors with innovative new seats, and the ability to earn and redeem Aeroplan miles.

Copyright Photo: Greenwing/AirlinersGallery.com. Air Canada rouge’s pilots have been performing proving flights to Dublin before the official July 1 launch. Boeing 767-33A ER C-GHPE (msn 33423) taxies at DUB.

Air Canada: AG Slide Show

Air Canada rouge: AG Slide Show

Expanding Route Map:

Air Canada rouge 6:2013 Route Map

JetBlue’s pilots to use Electronic Flight Bags (iPads) in the cockpit

JetBlue Airways (New York) has received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval to give all pilots custom-equipped iPads that will add more real-time capabilities in the cockpit and save fuel by eliminating the heavy paper manuals that all pilots carry.

iPad (Apple)

Copyright Photo: Apple.

Following a successful trial phase with approximately 60 pilots over several months, JetBlue already has begun giving all 2,500 pilots a fourth-generation 16 GB Wi-Fi capable Apple iPad. While JetBlue has been approved for a decade to use a PC-based laptop in the cockpit – called an Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) – the iPads will offer new capabilities and conveniences, especially as JetBlue implements Ka-Band satellite Wi-Fi.

“We are one step closer to a paperless cockpit,” said Jeff Martin, senior vice president of operations for JetBlue. “The iPads will have real-time weather capability and the ability to update safety and flight documents securely,” Martin said. “We expect to add digital chart capability, once it is approved.”  With JetBlue’s coming Ka-band satellite capability enabled by LiveTV, pilots will be able to download weather imagery in seconds, while the same download might take several minutes with other systems.

“Our pilots will have the fastest real-time images in the air,” Martin said. JetBlue’s pilots will use WSI Optima application for weather briefings, the Comply365 app for digital documents and the AeroData DFP app for aircraft performance and weight and balance calculations. The Comply365 solution will be used throughout JetBlue. JetBlue is currently evaluating digital charting providers for implementation at a later date.

“Pilots will be able to make decisions to help improve the customer experience, such as having a more robust weather briefing that can be used to update customers during the flight about what to expect en route,” Martin said. JetBlue will implement iPad use during the next three months to ensure a safe transition.

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N598JB (msn 2314) with the Plaid tailfin departs runway 27R at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.

Jet Blue Airways: AG Slide Show

United Airlines employees debut new uniforms worldwide

United FAs (6-13)(United)(LRW)

United Airlines‘ (Chicago) employees worldwide – including flight attendants, customer service agents, technical operations and ramp workers – begin wearing newly designed uniforms this week, the first time members of these work groups will wear similarly styled uniforms. More than 64,000 United employees will debut the garments, which feature accents of blue, gold, silver and gray.

United new uniforms

United pilots will begin wearing newly designed uniforms later this year in the traditional midnight blue color with gold stripes and accents. Other uniform design concepts include:

  • Flight Attendants: The uniform includes a core wardrobe of black trousers, skirts, sweaters, vests and blazers with two rows of silver braid on the sleeves. Female flight attendants will also wear sweaters, vests, short sleeve jackets and two styles of dresses, including a signature blue dress with a black stripe detail. Outerwear for male and female flight attendants includes a black all-season coat and an optional gray double-breasted wool coat.
  • Customer Service Agents: The uniform includes a wardrobe of black blazers, trousers, sweaters, vests and skirts. Agents will also wear colored shirts and distinctive neckwear that vary depending on their job responsibilities.
  • Ramp, Cargo and Technical Operations: The uniform offers flexibility, comfort and durability for year round comfort. Employees will wear work shirts, polo shirts and T-shirts made with breathable and flexible fabric. The pants, shorts and coveralls for both men and women feature a soft, brushed fabric. Outerwear for ramp, cargo and technical operations workers includes a three-piece system consisting of a zip-up fleece-lined vest, jacket and waterproof outer shell. The uniform also includes waterproof wind pants, hooded sweatshirts, baseball caps and knit caps.

Copyright Photos: United Airlines.

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

Hawaiian starts nonstop service to Sendai, Japan

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) yesterday (June 25) launched its inaugural flight from Honolulu to Sendai, its fifth gateway in Japan and 10th new international destination it has introduced or announced in less than three years.

Passengers of the inaugural flight enjoyed a festive island-style send-off at Honolulu International Airport before boarding, featuring Hawaiian music and hula, a traditional Hawaiian blessing, presentation of fresh flower lei, and a special performance honoring the Japanese culture.

HAWAIIAN AIRLINES LAUNCHES NONSTOP SERVICE TO SENDAI

Copyright Photo: Hawaiian Airlines Customer Service Agents Starlynn Kuaana (left) and Charael Perry (right) greet passengers with lei as they board the inaugural flight from Honolulu to Sendai today. Sendai is Hawaiian Airlines’ fifth gateway in Japan and 10th new international destination it has announced or introduced in less than three years. (PRNewsFoto/Hawaiian Airlines).

Sendai is the largest city in the Tohoku region of northern Honshu, which has a population of more than 9 million. Sendai is known in Japan as “Mori no Miyako,” or Forest City, for its many green spaces in its city center. It is also known for its high quality rice and for its summer Tanabata Festival, which draws thousands of visitors from across Japan.

Hawaiian’s Honolulu-Sendai service is the first scheduled service between Sendai and Hawai’i since another carrier left the market in 2004, and among the first new services to be introduced at Sendai Airport since it was closed for more than a month in 2011 due to damage caused by the Tohoku earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

Hawaiian’s flight HA 441 departs Honolulu International Airport on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at 12:55 p.m. (1255), cross the international dateline, and arrive at Sendai International Airportat 4:30 p.m. (1630) the following day. The return flight HA 442 will then continue to Sapporo’s New Chitose Airport at 5:45 p.m. (1745) on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, arriving at New Chitose at 7:00 p.m. (1900) before departing to Honolulu at 9:10 p.m. (2110), crossing the international dateline and arriving in Honolulu at 9:50 a.m. (0950) the same day.

Hawaiian operates the Honolulu-Sendai-Sapporo flights using its fleet of  Boeing 767-300E R aircraft that seat up to 264 passengers.

The addition of Sendai to Hawaiian’s international network follows the launches of service to Tokyo in November 2010, Seoul in January 2011, Osaka in July 2011, Fukuoka in April 2012, New York in June 2012, Sapporo in October 2012, Brisbane in November 2012 and Auckland in March 2013. Hawaiian previously announced new service to Taipei, Taiwan in July 2013. New nonstop service will begin between Honolulu and Beijing, China in April 2014, subject to government approvals.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-33A ER N591HA (msn 33423) arrives in Los Angeles.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Route Map:

Hawaiian 6:2013 Route Map

Republic Airways Holdings reaches a tentative agreement with its flight attendants

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis) has announced that it has reached a tentative agreement (TA) on a new five-year contract with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) Local 135 Flight Attendants. Local 135 represents over 2,000 Flight Attendants for Chautauqua Airlines, Republic Airlines (2nd) and Shuttle America.

The proposed contract includes increases in pay, improvements in quality of life and more flexibility in scheduling. The TA still must be presented to union members for review and a ratification vote, which is expected to be held in July.

Top Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com (please click on the photo for the full size view). Shuttle America’s Embraer ERJ 170-200LR (ERJ 175) N204JQ (msn 17000243) operating as a Delta Connection carrier arrives at Washington (Reagan National).

Delta Connection-Shuttle America: AG Slide Show

United Express-Shuttle America: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Shuttle America’s Embraer ERJ 170-100SE N639RW (msn 17000057) prepares to land at Charlotte while operating for United Airlines as an United Express carrier.

Combined Route Map (please click on the map for the full-size view):

Republic Airways Holdings 7:2013 Route Map

ANA to buy out AirAsia’s share of AirAsia Japan, the joint venture to be dissolved

ANA Holdings Inc (ANA-All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) according to Reuters, will buy out AirAsia’s (Malaysia) (Kuala Lumpur) portion of AirAsia Japan (Tokyo-Narita) joint venture for over $25 million. The loss-making entity will be dissolved. AirAsia Japan commenced operations only on August 1, 2012. ANA controls 67 percent of the shares.

ANA is considering its options. The joint venture could be rolled into Peach Aviation.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

AirAsia (Japan): AG Slide Show

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. The AirAsia brand will soon die in Japan. The concept is just not working despite the recent SkyTrax 2013 Awards (below, AirAsia Japan). Airbus A320-216 JA01AJ (msn 5153) arrives at the Narita base.

AirAsia Japan FAs SkyTrax 2013 (AirAsia)(LR)

 

 

Air New Zealand announces its Boeing 787-9 destinations

Air New Zealand 787-9 (13-black fern)(Flt)(ANZ)(LR)

Air New Zealand (Auckland) has confirmed the destinations its new fleet of 10 Boeing 787-9 aircraft will fly to. The primary long-haul destinations for the new aircraft will be Shanghai and Tokyo, it will also service mid-haul destinations including Honolulu – Auckland, Perth and Papeete.

Air New Zealand is the launch customer for the 787-9, the first of which is due to roll off the production line at Boeing in Seattle next month. Chief Executive Officer Christopher Luxon says the 787-9 is a game changer for the airline.

“This modern, flexible, fuel-efficient aircraft will not only replace our current fleet of Boeing 767s, it also represents a significant growth opportunity for our business and opens up the prospect of expanding our Pacific Rim footprint.

“Given our 787-9s will be multiple purpose aircraft – operating both long and mid-haul sectors – we’ve put a lot of research effort into coming up with four distinct seating selections that meet the customer expectations across the markets it will serve.”

  • The Business Premier cabin will feature Air New Zealand’s signature chalk-colored, luxurious leather armchair which converts to an 180 degree lay flat bed complete with memory foam mattress, duvet and two full size pillows.
  • In the Premium Economy cabin the airline has worked with US seat designer Zodiac on a customized seat best described as Business-lite. This comfortable, ink-colored luxury leather seat will have a 41” pitch, a generous 5” wide armrest and a leg rest and extendable foot support which will allow passengers to really stretch out and relax.
  • The Economy cabin will feature 16 rows of Air New Zealand’s unique and highly popular Kiwi-designed Skycouch seats. This is a row of three seats that converts into a sofa-like flat surface for both rest and relaxation.
  • The standard Economy seat in the 787-9 will be also be supplied by US manufacturer Zodiac and customized to Air New Zealand’s specifications including a slim line seat back to enhance the feeling of space, sculpted upholstering and a more flexible headrest.

Mr. Luxon says the addition of the 787-9 to the Air New Zealand fleet means the airline will be able to offer a consistent product experience across its long-haul fleet, and will see the Skycouch available on routes into Asia for the first time.

Images: Air New Zealand. The two versions of the new Air New Zealand livery that will be introduced with the delivery of the first 787-9.

Air New Zealand: AG Slide Show

Air New Zealand 787-9 (13-silver black fern)(Flt)(ANZ)(LR)

WestJet launches WestJet Encore

WestJet DHC-8-400 C-FHEN (95)(Grd) YYC (WestJet)(LR)

WestJet (Calgary) yesterday (June 24) launched WestJet Encore, Canada’s newest regional airline, with service to Fort St. John, Nanaimo, Vancouver, and Victoria, British Columbia and Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. WestJet Encore features a new fleet of two Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) NextGen aircraft.

Calgary will also be the home of its WestJet Encore operations.

FLIGHT SCHEDULE:

Flight Departing Arriving Effective
3109 Calgary at 11 a.m. Nanaimo at 11:45 a.m. June 24, 2013
3108 Nanaimo at 12:30 p.m. Calgary at 2:56 p.m. June 24, 2013
3101 Calgary at 3:50 p.m. Fort St. John at 4:35 p.m. June 24, 2013
3103 Fort St. John at 5:05 p.m. Vancouver at 6:48 p.m. June 24, 2013
3103 Vancouver at 7:20 p.m. Victoria at 7:50 p.m. June 24, 2013
3246 Calgary at 4:50 p.m. Saskatoon at 6:09 p.m. June 24, 2013
3247 Saskatoon at 6:35 p.m. Calgary at 7:59 p.m. June 24, 2013
3102 Victoria at 7:15 a.m. Vancouver at 7:44 a.m. June 25, 2013
3102 Vancouver at 8:15 a.m. Fort St. John at 10:01 a.m. June 25, 2013
3100 Fort St. John at 10:30 a.m. Calgary at 1 p.m. June 25, 2013

Copyright Photo: WestJet. Employees wave goodbye to the first WestJet Encore flight as it departs Calgary bound for Nanaimo with Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) C-FHEN (msn 4441).

WestJet: AG Slide Show

Video: WestJet Never Sleeps:

Video: A previous April’s Fools “Kargo Kids”:

SAS signs MOU for 8 Airbus A350-900s and 4 A330-300s

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS (Stockholm) and Airbus (Toulouse) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the order of eight new A350-900 XWB and four A330-300 Enhanced. The agreement marks the launch of SAS’ long haul strategy of an extensive fleet renewal plan, options for more aircraft and a total upgrade of passenger cabins on existing fleet.

SAS recently launched a completely new service concept to create the most modern flight experience for our customers. The customer offer is backed by a comprehensive fleet renewal plan with 65 short haul aircraft already announced and initiated, now complemented with an extensive long haul fleet plan. Key deliverables within the strategy 4Excellence Next Generation have paved the way.

The first A350-900 is due in 2018, and already in 2015, the fleet will be upgraded with the first couple of A330-300 Enhanced to replace A340 when the current leasing agreements expire. In the meantime, SAS will commence the cabin upgrade of seven aircraft in the existing fleet.

SAS’ current long haul fleet consists of seven A340-300 and four A330-300 as well as an additional leased A340 in the fall of 2013.

Eight A350-900 XWB

· SAS will order eight A350-900 with options for another six aircraft.
· The A350-900 has approximately 20% higher passenger capacity than the existing A340/A330 fleet.
· The A350-900 is a completely new aircraft type incorporating advanced aerodynamics, the latest materials and system technology available.
· The Aircraft offers up to 30% lower fuel consumption per passenger seat.
· More comfort, larger windows and a quieter cabin resulting in reduced noise by half compared to e.g. A340.
· The A350 will be delivered to SAS starting 2018.

Four A330-300 Enhanced

· SAS will increase its efficient A330 fleet from four to eight aircraft by ordering four of the A330-300 Enhanced.
· The improvements include a new cabin interior, a 2% fuel burn reduction and a huge increase in range, making it a capable aircraft for all of SAS network.
· The A330-300 Enhanced will be delivered to SAS starting in 2015

Upgrade of seven A330/A340

· SAS will upgrade the passenger cabins on up to seven selected A330/A340.
· The upgrade will consists of new seats throughout the cabin including fully flat seats in Business Class, and throughout the entire cabin a new high definition full video on demand in-flight entertainment system.
· The Cabin upgrade is expected to be completed 2015.

In other news, SAS is supplementing its current Copenhagen-Newark route from June 28 through August 16 with a twice-weekly wet-leased Omni Air International Boeing 767 per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-343X SE-REE (msn 515) climbs away from the Stockholm (Arlanda) hub.

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS: AG Slide Show

American Airlines and Seaborne Airlines announce a code-share agreement

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) today announced the launch of a new code-share agreement with Seaborne Airlines (St. Croix), providing customers access to six destinations in the Caribbean out of San Juan, Puerto Rico. The code-share agreement allows American to place its code on Seaborne’s flights between San Juan (SJU) and Dominica (DOM), Fort-de-France, Martinique (FDF), Pointe-a-Pitre, Guadeloupe (PTP), Tortola, British Virgin Islands (EIS), Vieques, Puerto Rico (VQS) and Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands (VIJ). Customers can book travel on the codeshare flights today for travel beginning June 27, 2013.

As we have previously reported, Seaborne Airlines has been adding SAAB 340B turboprops and adding new longer-range routes, filling the void left by the removal of the American Eagle-Executive Airlines ATR 72s.

Seaborne logo

Video: A look at the Seaborne’s DHC-6 Twin Otter operations:

Current Seaborne Airlines map:

Seaborne 6:2013 Route Map

Delta Air Lines acquires a 49% share in Virgin Atlantic Airways

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) and Virgin Atlantic Airways (London) today detailed a codeshare agreement across 108 routes* and connections to 66 destinations across North America and the U.K.

Today’s codeshare announcement coincides with Delta acquiring a 49 percent stake in Sir Richard Branson’s airline – marking the next step towards a full joint venture between the two carriers. Virgin Atlantic will place its code on 91 Delta routes, including both trans-Atlantic and domestic U.S. routes. Delta will place its code on 17 Virgin Atlantic routes, including the recently launched Little Red domestic U.K. services connecting London to Manchester, Edinburgh and Aberdeen.

The agreement includes the following customer benefits:

  • Virgin Atlantic customers will now enjoy a vast network of connecting North American destinations while Delta customers will gain an additional six daily frequencies between London to New York
  • SkyMiles and Flying Club loyalty programs that will offer up to 125% tier bonus miles* to frequent fliers on all Delta and Virgin Atlantic flights – not just those within the codeshare agreement
  • Reciprocal Delta Sky Club and Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse access at applicable airports for Upper Class and BusinessElite passengers and Flying Club Gold members and SkyMiles Platinum and Diamond members
  • Priority check-in, boarding, baggage handling and additional baggage allowance on all Virgin Atlantic and Delta operated flights worldwide – not just those within the codeshare agreement – forVirgin Atlantic Upper Class and Flying Club Gold members as well as Delta BusinessElite and SkyMiles Gold, Platinum and Diamond members

The two airlines announced their intention to enter into a joint venture agreement in December 2012. Last week unconditional merger clearance was granted by the European Commission and theU.S Department of Justice closed their review of the transaction. As of today, Delta has successfully completed its acquisition of a 49 percent stake in Virgin Atlantic. The U.S Department of Transportation is currently reviewing the parties’ application for antitrust immunity relating to the proposed joint venture of the parties’ operations on nonstop routes between the US and the UK. This review is expected to be completed during third quarter of 2013, and the implementation of the Delta/Virgin Atlantic joint venture is anticipated to occur in the first quarter of 2014. Once implemented, this will deliver further significant additional consumer benefits and vibrant competition to the trans-Atlantic market.

Customers will be able to reap the rewards of the reciprocal codesharing beginning July 3, 2013 when travel across the routes begin.

As part of a $3 billion investment in enhanced global products, services and airport facilities, all of Delta’s flights between the U.S. and London-Heathrow feature fully flat-bed seats offering direct aisle access in the BusinessElite cabin. These flights also offer Delta’s popular Economy Comfort seating in the forward section of the economy cabin. Economy Comfort offers four additional inches of legroom and 50 per cent more recline compared to standard economy seats. All cabins offer in-seat audio and video on demand with a broad range of in-flight entertainment options. Delta also will begin introducing in-flight WiFi service on international flights beginning in 2014.

Virgin Atlantic completed a £150m upgrade program, including a new Upper Class cabin across its Airbus A330 aircraft in 2012 – with features including the longest fully flat bed in the sky and a redesigned on board bar. Brand new Clubhouses opened at both JFK and Newark airports in the past year and have received awards for innovation and design. The airline launched its domestic service; Virgin Atlantic Little Red in March 2013 and is now flying 26 daily frequencies to Manchester, Edinburgh and Aberdeen from Heathrow. Virgin Atlantic achieved record levels of on time performance in 2012 and is the number one airline in punctuality performance at Heathrow on the majority of its routes and out-performing its key competitor in 11 out of 12 months.

*Canadian and Jamaican flights subject to foreign government approval.

Virgin Atlantic codeshare on Delta operated flights:

LHR

London

to JFK New York, NY
BOS Boston, MA
ATL Atlanta, GA
DTW Detroit, MI
MSP Minneapolis, MN
MAN Manchester to ATL Atlanta, GA
JFK New York to ATL Atlanta, GA MKE Milwaukee, WI
AUS Austin, TX MSP Minneapolis, MN
BNA Nashville, TN MSY New Orleans, LA
BOS Boston, MA ORD Chicago, IL
BUF Buffalo, NY ORF Norfolk, VA
BWI Baltimore, MD PDX Portland, OR
CHS Charleston, SC PHL Philadelphia, PA
CLE Cleveland, OH PHX Phoenix, AZ
CLT Charlotte, NC PIT Pittsburgh, PA
CMH Columbus, OH RDU Raleigh Durham
CVG Cincinnati, OH RIC Richmond, VA
DCA Washington, DC ROC Rochester, NY
DEN Denver, CO RSW Fort Myers, FL
DFW Dallas/Fort Worth SAN San Diego, CA
DTW Detroit, MI SAT San Antonio, TX
FLL Fort Lauderdale SDF Louisville, KY
IAD Washington, DC SEA Seattle, WA
IND Indianapolis, IN SFO San Francisco, CA
JAX Jacksonville, FL SLC

Salt Lake City, UT

LAS Las Vegas, NV STL St Louis, MO
LAX Los Angeles, CA TPA Tampa, FL
MBJ Montego Bay YQB Quebec, Canada
MCI Kansas City, MO YUL Montreal, Canada
MCO Orlando, FL YVR Vancouver, Canada
MIA Miami, FL YYZ Toronto, Canada
BOS Boston to ATL Atlanta, GA MCO Orlando, FL
CMH Columbus, OH MEM Memphis, TN
CVG Cincinnati, OH MSP Minneapolis, MN
DTW Detroit, MI ORF Norfolk, VA
IND Indianapolis, IN RDU Raleigh Durham, NC
LGA La Guardia, NY SLC Salt Lake City, UT
LAX Los Angeles to HNL Honolulu, HI PHX Phoenix, AZ
KOA Kona, HI SAN San Diego, CA
LAS Las Vegas, NV SEA Seattle, WA
LIH Lihue, HI SFO San Francisco, CA
OAK Oakland, CA SLC Salt Lake City, UT
OGG Kahului, HI SMF Sacramento, CA
PDX Portland, OR
EWR Newark to ATL Atlanta, GA
DTW Detroit, MI
MSP Minneapolis, MN
IAD Washington to ATL Atlanta, GA
DTW Detroit, MI
MSP Minneapolis, MN
ORD Chicago MSP Minneapolis, MN
SLC Salt Lake City, UT
SFO San Francisco HNL Honolulu, HI
SLC Salt Lake City, UT

Delta codeshare on Virgin Atlantic operated flights:

LHR

London Heathrow

to BOS Boston, MA
EWR Newark, NJ
JFK New York, NY
IAD Washington, DC
LAX Los Angeles, CA
MIA Miami, FL
ORD Chicago, IL
SFO San Francisco, CA
YVR Vancouver, Canada
ABZ Aberdeen, UK
EDI Edinburgh, UK
MAN Manchester, UK
LGW London Gatwick to LAS Las Vegas, NV
MCO Orlando, FL
MAN Manchester to MCO Orlando, FL
LAS Las Vegas, NV
GLA Glasgow to MCO Orlando, FL

*Full details

Top Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Ex-TWA/American Airlines Boeing 757-2Q8 WL N713TW (msn 28173) departs from New York (JFK).

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Virgin Atlantic Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-343X G-VKSS (msn 1201) lands at Las Vegas.

American Airlines completes Electronic Flight Bag (iPad) implementation

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) has completed the successful rollout of its industry-leading Electronic Flight Bag program with the discontinuation of paper revisions to terminal charts, making it the first majorcommercial airline to fully utilize tablets in all cockpits during all phases of flight. In April, American completed testing on its Boeing 757 and 767 aircraft and has secured FAA approval to use the Apple iPad on all of its current fleet types – Boeing 777, 767, 757, 737 and MD-80.

An Electronic Flight Bag, which replaces more than 35 pounds of paper-based reference material and manuals that pilots often carried in their carry-on kitbag, offers numerous benefits for American and its pilots.

“Our Electronic Flight Bag program has a significant positive environmental and cost-savings impact,” said David Campbell, American’s Vice President – Safety and Operations Performance. “In fact, removing the kitbag from all of our planes saves a minimum of 400,000 gallons and $1.2 million of fuel annually based on current fuel prices. Additionally, each of the more than 8,000 iPads we have deployed to date replaces more than 3,000 pages of paper previously carried by every active pilot and instructor. Altogether, 24 million pages of paper documents have been eliminated.”

All American pilots now enjoy the benefits associated with replacing their heavy kitbags – one of the airline’s biggest sources of pilot injuries – with a 1.35-pound iPad. The digital format also requires less time to update each of the six or more paper manuals found in each pilot’s kitbag, as manual paper revisions take hours to complete every month, compared to the minutes it takes for electronic updates.

“Our focus on technological improvement throughout our operation has never been stronger as we continue to build the new American,” said Patrick O’Keeffe, American’s Vice President – Airline Operations Technology. “As the first major commercial airline to successfully complete the Electronic Flight Bag transition across its fleet, we are proud to count this among our other successful programs that provide the tools our people need to perform their duties safely and efficiently.”

As part of the Electronic Flight Bag program, American’s pilots use mobile software and data from Jeppesen, a unit of Boeing Digital Aviation. The FAA-approved Jeppesen Mobile Terminal Chart application is allowed for gate-to-gate use throughout all phases of flight and, with the exception of a few select documents, replaces paper operating manuals with up-to-date electronic information that is easier to access.

“We congratulate American Airlines on the success of its Electronic Flight Bag program,” said Jeppesen President Thomas Wede. “Working closely together on this program over several years, we take pride in American’s achievements as it continues to eliminate paper-based materials in the flight deck, reducing pilot workload and increasing operational efficiency in a competitive business environment.”

American and the Allied Pilots Association (APA) began working on the feasibility of using a tablet device as an Electronic Flight Bag in June 2010, and American was the first commercial airline to receive FAA approval to use a tablet during all phases of flight in December 2011 on its Boeing 777 fleet. American has worked closely with its pilots throughout all phases of development that led to the program’s full integration.

Beginning July 10, American Eagle Airlines pilots will have the option to use Apple iPads to access reference material and manuals, making American Eagle one of the first regional carriers to adopt Electronic Flight Bags.

Top Copyright Photo: Brian Peters/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-223 ER N782AN (msn 30003) arrives at the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) hub.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

Technical Videos:

Joel Chusid’s Airline Corner – June 2013

Guest Editor Joel Chusid

Guest Editor Joel Chusid

Guest Editor Joel Chusid

Just a couple of keystrokes can make a world of difference

In the airline business, there are misboardings and misbookings. Due to increased security, boarding the wrong flight is not quite as common anymore, although it does happen. But there’s nothing to stop a passenger from being booked to the wrong destination as a result of an incorrect city code or similar sounding destinations. Unfortunately many people are handicapped in their geographic knowledge which only adds insult to injury.  Take the recent case of a California couple who booked a vacation in Dakar, Senegal on Turkish Airlines. The city code for Dakar is DKR. But they were booked to DAC. Now, it is natural to expect to change planes in Istanbul when flying Turkish, so the first part flight was uneventful. Then they boarded the second flight, and while watching the inflight video map, it seemed strange to be flying over the Middle East enroute to West Africa. Only then they realized something was amiss; they were bound for Dacca, Bangladesh, and that’s what their tickets read, only it was 7000 miles from their intended destination. From my own experience, there are undoubtedly hundreds of cases annually of people arriving in the wrong Georgetown (Bahamas or Guyana?), Santiago (Chile, Spain or Cuba?), Springfield (Illinois or Missouri?) and similar same name places. I recall one freezing winter day some years back a French family, in tropical attire, arrived in Providence, Rhode Island, got into a taxi and asked to be taken to Club Med. The problem was they were bound for Club Med in Providenciales, Turks and Caicos. Oops! Right hemisphere, wrong “Island”!

Meet at the Airport

What did we do at airports before smart phones? Although you may have missed it, late last year the mass media reported on a new website, www.meetattheairport.com, where registered members could hook up with another traveler to pass the time on layovers, have coffee or drinks, even dinner or more, especially during extended delays.  While the site’s home page tends to focus on the romantic aspect of this, it acknowledges that the idea fosters friendship, networking and travel companionship.  Our friends at USAToday did a little update on the site a couple of months ago and reported there are now over 60,000 members (there were 1,546 online as I write this), with more concentrated on the East Coast. The site recently did a survey and discovered the most popular airports for hooking up. Orlando came in first, due to its 54 restaurants and bars.  Miami was second, for an “interesting international crowd”, followed by Newark, due to its propensity for incurring delays.  Fourth was Boston Logan, supposedly for its chilly weather and fifth, Philadelphia for a plethora of amenities at the terminal. If you’re a social butterfly, this might be the way to spread your wings while on the ground.

BYO  

Years ago it was rare to bring your own food, blanket, pillow or even reading material on board, let alone a carry-on suitcase. After all, airlines provided everything from drinks and hot meals, magazines, pillows and blankets – of course, and even little bars of soap in the lavatories.  Bags were checked for free. Now, in addition to their rolling bag and overstuffed backpacks, you can see travelers carrying everything for their comfort, including all sorts of pillows, throws and plenty of bottles of water and brown bags full of sandwiches, pizza, garlicky salads, reading material and more. This is by no means limited to budget carriers either.  A recent incident on board a United Airlines 11-hour flight from San Francisco to London made big news when it wasn’t sufficiently stocked with toilet paper, bringing a new meaning to “BYO”.  The airline claimed it would have caused a delay to have stocked it, and I might venture, even worse if they had to land to pick up some in Greenland. So the flight attendants got creative by placing cocktail napkins in the loos, ironically with the slogan “Fly by the tips of your fingers”. With Ryanair’s CEO now suggesting they might venture into the transatlantic market, you’ll want to be sure to BYO in case they start charging by the sheet. Stretching your legs with that 29-inch legroom is going to be tough. Maybe their new venture will be called Air DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis)! Be warned!

Calling Not Free Either

Many airlines charge you to make a reservation over the phone now.  Spirit has gone one step further. Now the toll-free number has gone the way of free meals on airliners. The “800” number has been replaced by “801” (Utah!). While most cellphones have free domestic long distance, some land lines don’t – another reason to book online if you can.

Maids, Butlers and Facebook

Spring Airlines, a Chinese airline, recently raised the ire of social media netizens when it proposed the controversial idea of outfitting its flight attendants in rather risqué maid and butler uniforms on “theme flights”.  Responding to the criticism on numerous social media sites about this, and the airline, which also flies to Thailand and Japan claimed the idea came from its own flight attendants. The airline, which also has several prolific Facebook pages, also claimed to have surveyed its followers on Facebook and received overwhelming approval on the subservient maid and butler uniforms, as well as suggestions for superheroes and villains or even school uniforms.  Really?

Fresh Daily Airline News from World Airline NewsCLICK HERE

 

DHL Air takes Djala and family back to the wild

DHL Air (UK) (East Midlands) is the official air transport of the Aspinall Foundation’s “Back to the Wild” campaign to transport a western lowland gorilla family from the Port Lympne Wild Animal Park to Africa. The cargo airline has decorated this Boeing 767-300 freighter with these special markings for the special transport.

The Foundation issued this statement:

The family is headed by Djala, a 30 year old silverback (below).

DHL Air (UK) Djala (gorilla)(LR)

As a baby Djala was rescued from Africa and flown to the safety of Port Lympne where he has become one of the largest silverbacks in captivity, weighing 200kgs and fathering a total of 15 offspring. 

The family’s journey is part of The Aspinall Foundation’s Back To The Wild Campaign in conjunction with Port Lympne Wild Animal Park, and has been made possible by generous gifts from supporters of the charity, our partner DHL and the Gabonese Government.

But we still need your help to continue sending animals like Djala and his family ‘Back To The Wild’.

For more information: CLICK HERE

Gorilla-Back to the Wild logo

DONATE

Phil Couchman, CEO of DHL Air, issued this statement:

Last year we undertook a very special request to transport three critically endangered black rhino from The Aspinall Foundation’s Port Lympne Wild Animal Park to a protected reserve in Tanzania.  Not something we do normally but, hey, this is DHL. So we did it.

Very soon we’ll be providing another essential service to protect a threatened cohabitant of our planet: moving a family of critically endangered western lowland gorillas from The Aspinall Foundation’s Port Lympne Wild Animal Park to Africa as part of the ongoing and ambitious conservation initiative, created by The Aspinall Foundation – Back To The Wild.

This move is extra special as the “big daddy” was orphaned in Africa 30 years ago and is finally going home – with his family.

Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. DHL Air’s Boeing 767-3JHF ER G-DHLH (msn 37806) arrives at Brussels with the special “Djala’s Journey Home-Gorillas in Transit-Aspinall Foundation” markings. The aircraft arrived from Cincinnatti and departed for Lagos, Nigeria.

DHL Air (UK): AG Slide Show

Video:

United Airlines incurs another Boeing 787 diversion

United Airlines‘ (Chicago) Boeing 787-8 flying from Houston (Bush Intercontinental) to Denver yesterday (June 23) as flight UA 94 was forced to divert and land at another airport because of a break warning light. This became the third 787 diversion in the past week according to ABC 7 News in Denver.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersgGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 N26906 (msn 34829) lines up to land at Los Angeles.

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Frontier to suspend the Denver-Rockford route on September 7

Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver) will suspend the Denver-Rockford, IL (near Chicago) route on September 7 per Airline Route. The route is currently being flown three days a week with Airbus A319s.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-111 N936FR (msn 2392) with Earl, the Walrus, on the tail climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport (click on the photo for the full-size view).

Frontier Airlines: AG Slide Show

Fastjet receives international authority from Tanzania, will create a new airline in Nigeria and shelves plans for a South African airline

Fastjet (Fastjet.com) (Dar es Salaam) has been granted permission to launch international flights from Tanzania to South Africa, Zambia and Rwanda marking a major step towards establishing the first-ever pan-African low-cost network. 

These route approvals have been granted by the relevant governments under the Bilateral Air Services Agreements (BASAs) between Tanzania and the other countries.

Fastjet has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Nigeria’s Red 1 Airways Ltd to create a low-cost airline operating within Nigeria and to destinations across Africa.

The Fastjet Board has taken the decision to put the launch of Fastjet-branded domestic routes in South Africa temporarily on hold so that it can direct all its efforts and resources to starting its international services as soon as possible.

Copyright Photo: Duncan Kirk/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-112 5H-FJC (msn 1145) poses for the camera at Lusaka.

LOT Polish Airlines asks for more money from the Polish treasury

LOT Polish Airlines (Warsaw) has applied for additional state aid in the amount of over $115 million from the Polish treasury according to this report by Business New Europe citing treasury sources. The treasury has promised the citizens of Poland that this will be last bailout for the state airline. The treasury ministry must approve the request before it is sent to the European Commission in Brussels for the final approval.

There is also a report the airline will lease out out two of its new Boeing 787-8s.

LOT Polish will continue to shrink in size and go to smaller aircraft as the government continues its attempt to sell the loss-making carrier.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/AirlinersGallery.com. LOT Polish’ Embraer ERJ 170-200LR (ERJ 175) SP-LIN (msn 17000313) taxies at Paris (Orly).

LOT Polish Airlines: AG Slide Show

Virgin Australia to fly the Mebourne-Hamilton Island route starting on August 15

Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) has announced that from August 15, 2013 it will commence services between Melbourne and Hamilton Island.

The airline will operate its Boeing 737-800 aircraft on the new route with 8 Business Class and 168 Economy Class seats.

The flights will depart Melbourne at 8:30 am (0830) on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, arriving into Hamilton Island at 11:30 am (1130). The return flight departs Hamilton Island at midday (1200) on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays arriving into Melbourne at 3:00 pm (1500). During off-peak months (between February and June), services will only operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

Copyright Photo: Micheil Keegan/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8FE WL VH-YIA (msn 37824) prepares to land at Perth.

Virgin Australia: AG Slide Show

Virgin Australia logo

Domestic Route Map:

Virgin Australia 6:2013 Domestic Route Map

Video: Hamilton Island.

Arik Air orders three Bombardier CRJ1000s and four DHC-8-402s

Arik Air (Arik Wings of Nigeria) (Lagos) has signed a firm contract with Bombardier to acquire three CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft and four DHC-8-402 (Q400) NextGen turboprop airliners.

Arik Air currently operates four CRJ900 aircraft and two DHC-8-402 (Q400) NextGen aircraft.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. The pictured DHC-8-402 C-FSRN became 5N-BKV (msn 4219) with Arik Air.

Arik Air: AG Slide Show

Arik Air logo

Route Map:

Arik Air Route Map

 

Video:

Thomson Airways puts its first Boeing 787-8 into revenue service

Thomson Airways (London-Luton and Manchester) yesterday (June 21) placed its first new Boeing 787-8 into revenue service between London (Gatwick) and Mahon Airport on Menorca.

Flights operated on June 21:London Gatwick to Mahon (Menorca) TOM4536
Mahon (Menorca to London Gatwick TOM4537
London Gatwick to Mahon (Menorca) TOM4554
Mahon (Menorca) to London Gatwick TOM4555

Flights operated on June 22:

London Gatwick to Palma (Majorca) TOM4600
Palma (Majorca) to London Gatwick TOM4601
London Gatwick to Rhodes TOM4660
Rhodes to London Gatwick TOM4661

Flights currently planned to operate on June 23:

London Gatwick to Heraklion (Crete) TOM4706
Heraklion (Crete) to London Gatwick TOM4707
London Gatwick to Enfidha (Tunisia) TOM 612
Enfidha (Tunisia) to London Gatwick TOM 613

 
Until the new type goes into trans-Atlantic service on July 8, Thomson will operate their 787s on its routes to its more popular Mediterranean destinations, including the Balearic and Greek Islands, replacing Boeing 737-800 and 757-200 equipment.
 
 
Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 G-TUIA (msn 34422) “Living the Dream” is pictured on its final approach for runway 24L at Palma de Mallorca today.
 
Video: A day in the lift of a Thomson pilot:
 
 
Thomson Airways: AG Slide Show

Germanwings completes its makeover in time for the July 1 relaunch

Germanwings (2nd) (Cologne/Bonn), the lower-cost subsidiary of Lufthansa (Frankfurt), is preparing for its July 1 relaunch. Germanwings since January 1, 2013 has been taking over most of the former LH point-to-point European routes that are not flying to either the Frankfurt and Munich hubs.

As part of the relaunch, the airline has been rapidly rebranding. The last aircraft to be repainted, Airbus A319-132 D-AGWI (msn 3358), operated the last flight in the old livery on June 20 between London (Heathrow) and Cologne/Bonn. The aircraft has been ferried to Ostrava for repainting and should be back in service for the July 1 relaunch. All of the special liveries have been retired.

The airline is also going to three individualized levels of services like most budget airlines, i.e. you get what you pay for.

Germanwings Relaunch Ad

Here is the CEO letter to its customers about the relaunch:

Germanwings, your German budget airlines, is about to revolutionize the low-cost market in Europe by offering the highest-quality airline experience in this sector in Europe. On July 1, 2013 “new Germanwings” will introduce a completely new brand and product concept allowing passengers to fly “à la carte”.

Our passengers will be able to put together individualized packages ranging from budget, no-frills travel to a more refined passener experience with more advantages and extra services, all of which will be tailored to your specific needs. In the broader context of economy class, “new Germanwings” will have three fare brackets with differing services provided in each.

The “BEST” fare is our top category with business travellers in mind principally, but also non-business passengers. The “SMART” fare includes some extra services and the possibility to purchase others. The “BASIC” fare is the purely low-cost category.

As of January 1, 2013, the “new Germanwings” now includes Lufthansa’s decentralized European routes not operating out of our Frankfurt or Munich hubs. Our aim is a smart, dynamic and innovative service.

From July 1, 2013 the new airline will officially be launched. From that point onwards Lufthansa aircraft to be incorporated into “new Germanwings” will gradually be re-equipped and transferred.

Our logo is also going to change to reflect this new brand and product concept. The key element will be a stylized burgundy and yellow ‘W’, transforming the wings in Germanwings into a succinct icon (see photo above). All of the airline’s aircraft will be painted in the new livery when the brand is officially launched on July 1, 2013.

“New Germanwings” aims at being even more attractive to our customers. We will be deveoping our mobile booking and information systems, thereby ensuring direct and spontaneous interaction with passengers. All our fares will be displayed fairly with no hidden costs and our new cheaper 0180 number has already replaced the old 0900 number. Germanwings will continue to offer our enticing 33 € starting fare for one-way tickets.

Yours,

Thomas Winkelmann
(CEO Germanwings)

Logo New Germanwings

Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-132 D-AGWG (msn 3193) in the new look arrives at Zurich.

Germanwings (see all of the previous logojets): AG Slide Show

Videos:

Routes from Cologne/Bonn:

Germanwings CGN 6:2013 Route Map

EasyJet further expands operations at Southend Airport with three new routes

SEN Terminal (SEN)(LR)

EasyJet (UK) (easyJet.com) (London-Luton) on June 20 celebrated two milestones at London Southend Airport.

To further enhance the airline’s expansion and network of destinations from London Southend, EasyJet has added a fourth aircraft to its fleet based at the airport. The additional plane will enable the launch of three new EasyJet destinations to Berlin, Krakow and Newquay with 130,000 passengers expected to fly on these new services annually increasing passenger traffic at London Southend Airport by almost 20%. The announcement comes just over one month after EasyJet’s inaugural flights to Edinburgh took off from the airport in May.

SEN logo

EasyJet marked the addition of the fourth aircraft and its inaugural Newquay flight with a fun send-off by the London Southend Airport Fire Service which gave the plane a 40 foot high water arch salute before it took-off (see below).

SEN London Map

Southend along with London City Airport serves the east side of the metropolitan London area (Microsoft).

The addition of these new services brings the total number of EasyJet destinations from Southend to 15:

Alicante, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Belfast, Berlin, Edinburgh, Faro, Geneva, Ibiza, Geneva, Krakow, Majorca, Malaga, Newquay and Venice.

(L-R) Hugh Aitken (easyJet UK Commercial Manager) with Paul Simmons

The LSA Fire Crew give the first flight to Newquay from London Southend

 

Copyright Photos: Top: London Southend Airport. All others by EasyJet.

EasyJet (UK): AG Slide Show

Routes from Southend (SEN):

EasyJet SEN 6:2013 Route Map

AeroMexico starts two new routes to Las Vegas and Los Angeles

AeroMexico (Mexico City) on June 20 started serving the new Hermosillo – Puerto Penasco – Las Vegas route.

This new twice weekly flight will be operated with the following schedule:

Las Vegas – Puerto Penasco

Flight Departure Arrival Frequency
AM 2675 4:05 p.m. 6:06 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays

Puerto Penasco – Hermosillo

Flight Departure Arrival Frequency
AM 2675 6:46 a.m. 7:37 a.m. Thursdays and Sundays

Hermosillo – Puerto Penasco

Flight Departure Arrival Frequency
AM 2674 11:30 a.m. 12:32 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays

Puerto Penasco – Las Vegas

Flight Departure Arrival Frequency
AM 2674 1:21 p.m. 3:15 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays

* Times published are local to each country and are subject to changes without notice.

AeroMexico also on June 20 started to serve the Los Angeles – La Paz route with AeroMexico Connect Embraer 190 aircraft equipped with 99 passenger seats.

This new twice weekly flight will be served with the following schedule:

Los Angeles – La Paz

Flight Departure Arrival Frequency
AM 2167 2:20 p.m. 5:44 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays

La Paz – Los Angeles

 Flight Departure Arrival Frequency
AM 2166 11:51 a.m. 1:20 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. AeroMexico Connect’s Embraer ERJ 190-100LR XA-ACI (msn 19000525) approaches runway 9 at Miami International Airport.

AeroMexico: AG Slide Show

AeroMexico Connect: AG Slide Show

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