LAN Airlines (Chile) (Santiago) today (January 3) brought the new Boeing 787-8 to Miami for the first time. The first visit was due to the snowstorm in New York (JFK).
The airline is planning to commence regular once-weekly Santiago to Miami 787 service via Cancun starting on August 9, 2014 per Airline Route.
Copyright Photo: L. Apso. Boeing 787-8 CC-BBE (msn 38473) parked at gate J11 in the South Terminal this morning.
Cebu Pacific Air (Cebu Air, Inc) (Manila) has started negotiations to possibly acquire rival Tigerair Philippines (formerly SEAIR) (Manila and Clark) according to the Philippine Daily Inquirer. If the two parties can reach agreement, the acquisition would need to pass several regulatory hurdles including the Philippines CAB.
Tigerair Philippines was formed when Tigerair (Tiger Airways) of Singapore acquired 40 percent of SEAIR (formerly Asian Wings) and renamed the airline.
Read the full story: CLICK HERE
Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Cebu Pacific Air’s (Cebu Pacific Air.com) Airbus A320-214 RP-C3273 (msn 5498) with Sharklets approaches Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi) for landing.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Kok Chwee K.C. Sim/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 RP-C6319 (msn 5188) with “It’s more fun in the Philippines” lands in Singapore.
The complete Tigerair Route Map including Tigerair Philippines:
Available for customers in United BusinessFirst on long-haul international flights departing from the United States, the collectable tins highlight each of United’s eight North America hubs. Each customer in BusinessFirst will receive one of the eight tin designs, which feature distinctive imagery that United commissioned specifically for the brand campaign.
“These commemorative amenity kits showcase our hub cities and our flyer friendly network connecting customers to points around the globe,” said Tom O’Toole, United’s senior vice president of marketing and loyalty and president of MileagePlus.
The special edition kits include the amenities of the traditional BusinessFirst kit, including Philosophy brand skin care products, and will be available until March 1, 2014 or until supplies last. Customers in BusinessFirst will receive the traditional amenity kit on long-haul flights arriving in the United States.
Copyright Photo: United Airlines. To celebrate our “flyer friendly” campaign, we are releasing eight special-edition amenity tins starting January 3. Each tin features a hub region and is filled with in-flight amenities carefully selected to make your flight more comfortable. The collectible tins highlight each of United’s eight North America hubs. Customers will receive one of the tin designs, which feature distinctive imagery commissioned by United specifically for the campaign.
Era Alaska (Anchorage and Fairbanks), the brand that represents the family of airlines that includes Era Aviation, Hageland Aviation Services and Frontier Flying Service, is rebranding as Ravn Alaska. The airlines under the Era Alaska umbrella will also undergo rebranding. The move is reflective of Ravn Alaska’s ongoing effort to meet its mission of unsurpassed safety, excellent customer service, reliable and on-time flights, and safe and efficient handling of baggage and cargo. The effort is intended to decrease confusion in the marketplace with the Era name and distinguish the airline from others in the aviation industry – a process nearly six months in the making.
Era Aviation will become Corvus Airlines, and Hageland Aviation and Frontier Flying Service will operate under the brand name Ravn Connect.
“We have worked hard to create an airline network that covers nearly the entire state of Alaska, and like the raven, we are statewide, strong in flight, and part of a united family that sticks together,” said Ravn Alaska CEO Bob Hajdukovich. “For more than 60 years, we have been a part of aviation in Alaska, and we look forward to this next chapter in our company’s history.”
Wherever you see Era Alaska today, you will see Ravn Alaska in the near future. The company will continue to operate in its current structure. There has been no change in ownership, staff or locations served. The rebranding of Era Alaska to Ravn Alaska will happen in phases and will take several months to fully complete. The website will transition from flyera.com to flyravn.com.
Background information on the three companies:
For decades, Era Alaska and its family of partners have been connecting some of the Last Frontier’s most famous destinations, including Anchorage, Fairbanks, Bethel, Cordova, Homer, Valdez, Kenai, Kodiak and beyond.
Whether it’s Era Aviation, Hageland Aviation or Frontier Flying Service — combined, our companies have been flying here for about as long as Alaska’s been a state. In fact, our operations and experience have grown right alongside the Last Frontier.
The Era Alaska family is now proud to offer scheduled service to more than 100 communities statewide. Our team of professionals on the ground and in the air has the history and experience to offer the highest level of customer satisfaction today — and for the future. We offer service for passenger groups and odd-sized cargo up to 6,000 pounds, and have charter authority for anywhere in our great state, Canada and the Lower 48.
One of the earliest pieces of the Era Alaska puzzle fell into place in 1948. Era Aviation began operations that year as Carl Brady flew the first commercial helicopter to Alaska to work on a mapping contract for the U.S. government.
These small mapping routes grew over the years until scheduled passenger service took flight in May 1983. At that time, the company was wholly owned by Rowan Companies.
After a series of owners, Era Aviation joined with the combined Hageland Aviation and Frontier Flying Service in 2009 under the Era Alaska family umbrella. The newest partnership formed the largest airgroup in the state by serving more cities and passengers with the largest airplane fleet in Alaska. Era’s scheduled regional passenger and cargo flights offer comfort, convenience and impeccable service, primarily using a combination of Bombardier Dash-8 and Beechcraft 1900D and 1900C aircraft.
Frontier Flying Service
Retired Air Force Col. Richard McIntyre founded Frontier Flying Service in 1950, catering to Alaska bush communities, primarily around Fairbanks. The company provided charters throughout the state as well as mail service for Wien Air Alaska.
In 1974, Frontier was purchased by John Hajdukovich. The company continued to grow with its acquisition in 2005 of Cape Smythe Air Services, taking on that company’s equipment and infrastructure.
Frontier and Hageland Aviation Services began talks in 2008, eventually combining their forces to form HoTH, the parent company of the Era Alaska group of carriers. In the new mix, Frontier mainly provided service between major Alaska hub communities with Beech 1900C aircraft, while Hageland provided point-to-point service out of the hubs to smaller villages. The combined operations made the two the largest passenger commuter operation in the state by fleet size and number of routes.
In 2009, HoTH acquired Era Aviation which ultimately completed the rebranding and transformation.
Hageland Aviation Services
Founded in Mountain Village by Mike Hageland, Hageland Aviation started as the youngest member of Era Alaska’s extended family. A veteran of the Army European Command with experience as a flight engineer in Vietnam, Hageland began his Alaska operations in September 1981 with just one Cessna 180, which he used to transport passengers and cargo to the state’s smaller communities.
In 1982, Hageland added a C-207 to its operations as well as Tom Hawkins as a partner. The following year, Hageland Aviation Services became a corporation. Throughout the ’80s, the company added more aircraft, pilots and routes, including the Aniak, McGrath and Unalakleet regions served by Ron and James Tweto. Into the 1990s, Hageland continued to expand, acquiring a certificate to transport mail in addition to building hangars in Bethel, St. Mary’s and Kotzebue, with new bases eventually in Barrow and Nome.
At the end of the 20th century, Hageland continued to add planes to its fleet, including its first Cessna Caravan II. While bulking its numbers to nearly 20 aircraft, the company maintained safety as a priority by becoming an active member in the Alaska Aviation Safety Foundation and the Alaska Air Carrier Association in 2000.
As in earlier years, the company continued its steady growth through the first decade of the new century, adding the Beech 1900C to its stable and relocating its headquarters to the former Reeve Aleutian Airways facility near Anchorage International Airport. Frontier and Hageland combined in 2008 to form the parent company HoTH and rebrand their new services as “Frontier Alaska.” The following year, with the acquisition of Era Aviation, Frontier Alaska was rebranded as Era Alaska.
Top and Bottom Copyright Photos: In June 2013 Era Alaska painted its de Havilland Canada (Bombardier) DHC-8-106 Dash 8 N887EA (msn 351) in the University of Alaska (Anchorage campus on one side, Fairbanks on the other side):
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix) (American Airlines Group) employees have voted to keep the new 2013 (Horton) livery. CEO Doug Parker made the announcement. 52 percent of the employees voted to keep the new look rather than a more traditional AA on the tail.
Our own WAN unofficial public poll showed a higher margin – 57 percent approving of the new design with 43 percent picking the more traditional AA tail. Therefore the new tail is probably more popular with the general public than with the employees.
See the results of our poll: CLICK HERE
The repainting of the US Airways and US Airways Express aircraft into American colors will now begin.
The first new legacy logo jet will be for TWA. In our on-going poll for which TWA livery should be painted on the retrojet, our readers favor the last (1995) livery by around 35 percent. However the 1962 (red arrow, twin globes) livery (27 percent) and 1980 livery (twin stripes, bold titles) (24 percent) are running close behind.
Have you voted? CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com.
The governors of New York and New Jersey declared a state of emergency on Thursday as a major snowstorm hammered the northeastern United States, causing thousands of flight cancellations and paralyzing road travel.
Read the full story: CLICK HERE
This will have a major impact on the airlines trying to bring home million of passengers from their holiday vacations.
National Weather Service Impact Map: CLICK HERE
Miami International Airport (MIA) ended 2013 by reaching the 40-million passenger mark for the first time in the airport’s 85-year history and setting a new record for annual passengers for the fourth year in a row. Preliminary numbers show that the watershed moment for MIA came on Friday, December 27, just five days before the end of the year. Since 2010, when MIA hit the 35.7 million passenger mark for the first time, annual passenger traffic at the airport has increased by more than 12 percent.
Since December 1, more than 3.1 million passengers have travelled through MIA, including a new single-day record of 139,940 passengers set on December 21.
MIA continued to expand internationally with seven new foreign destinations in 2013: Guadeloupe, Martinique, Cozumel, Milan, Curitiba and Porto Alegre, all by American Airlines; and Calgary by Canadian carrier WestJet. MIA’s global route network will expand further with three new route launches scheduled in the first six months of 2014: Belem, Brazil; Brussels, Belgium; and Doha, Qatar.
Vote on your favorite MIA photo on the Miami International Airport Facebook page. Here is one of the entries:
What do 40 million passengers look like? The following facts offer some perspective:
In 2013, MIA moved the equivalent of Argentina’s entire population – or the combined populations of Florida and New York.
The Miami Heat would have to sell out every single regular season home game at the 19,600-seat American Airlines Arena for the next 50 years in order to match MIA’s 2013 passenger total.
Congratulations to the Miami Dade Aviation Department (MDAD) and the airlines serving MIA.
Video: Miam Aviation History 1920s to 1980s:
Bottom Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum (all others by MDAD). Miami International Airport’s well known MIA airport code embraces the initials of the airport and the first three letters of the city of Miami, a very unique combination in airport codes.
Alas Uruguay (Alas-U) (Wings of Uruguay) (Montevideo), the hopeful worker-led replacement for defunct and grounded Pluna (Montevideo), has been unable to acquire the intended three Bombardier CRJ900s of Pluna. The carrier now expects to lease three Boeing 737-300s in order to start operations according to El Pais.
The paper airline hopes to employ 250 former Pluna employees.
The new flag carrier would like to operate from Montevideo to Asuncion, Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago and Sao Paulo.
Transaero Airlines (Moscow) will offer a new low cost product called Discount Class.
Starting on January 14, 2014 Transaero will offer Discount Class of travel on its flights from Moscow Domodedovo airport to a number of popular destinations including those to Barcelona, Berlin, Vienna, Vilnius, Milan, Rome, Tel Aviv, Yekaterinburg, Kazan, Kaliningrad, Kemerovo, Krasnodar, Mineralnye Vody, Novosibirsk, Novy Urengoy, Omsk, Perm, Rostov-on-Don, Samara, Saint Petersburg, Sochi, Stavropol, Tomsk, Ufa, Khanty-Mansiysk, Kiev, Donetsk, Dnepropetrovsk, Odessa, Astana, Almaty, Karaganda and Yerevan.
Transaero will operate Boeing 737-300/400/500 aircraft on the mentioned routes.
Discount Class tickets will include from 10 to 20 kg free luggage allowance, the amount of luggage allowance will depend on the ticket fare.
The low cost services in Discount Class will be provided in accordance with the Federal Aviation Rules of the Russian Federation and will include free onboard meals and drinks which will vary depending on the flight duration (the maximal duration is up to four and half hours). In particular, on all Discount Class flights all passengers will be served refreshing drinks, tea and coffee. On flights lasting no longer than two hours passengers will be served sweet snacks in addition to drinks. On flights operating up to four hours passengers will be served cold meals. On flights with duration longer than four hours passengers will be able to choose among two options of hot meals.
As the airline will operate aircraft in standard two-class configuration, passengers with Discount Class tickets purchased at highest available airfare can enjoy air travel in the Business Class cabin or in the Economy Class cabin with a vacant seat next to his/her seat. They also will be invited to purchase a ticket to the airline’s business lounge at Domodedovo airport at discounted fare.
Discount Class ticket refunds will be made in accordance with the norms and rules set in the Air Code of the Russian Federation.
Discount Class passengers will be offered a choice of free newspapers. The airline will also offer for sale duty free goods on its international flights.
The new product by Transaero Airlines will guarantee the reasonable balance of comfort and affordable ticket prices.
Apart from Discount Class flights Transaero Airlines will continue offering full service on all of its flights operated from Moscow Vnukovo Airport including Imperial, Business, Premium, Economy and Tourist classes of service.
Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf/AirlinersGallery.com. Transaero Airlines Boeing 737-4Y0 EI-DDY (msn 24904) taxies at Salzburg.
Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) today announced that Southwest Airlines (Dallas) has ordered Split Scimitar Winglets for its Boeing Next-Generation 737-800 aircraft. APB’s newest program is the culmination of a five-year design effort using the latest computational fluid dynamic technology to redefine the aerodynamics of the Blended Winglet into an all-new Split Scimitar Winglet. The unique feature of the Split Scimitar Winglet is that it uses the existing Blended Winglet structure, but adds new strengthened spars, aerodynamic scimitar tips, and a large ventral strake. APB looks forward to receiving FAA certification for Split Scimitar Winglets later this month.
By upgrading its Boeing Next-Generation 737-800s with Split Scimitar Winglets, APB estimates that Southwest will increase its annual fuel savings of approximately three percent per aircraft from Blended Winglets to approximately five percent per aircraft annually with the Split Scimitar Winglet upgrade. In addition to lowering Southwest’s fuel costs, the Split Scimitar Winglet will reduce emissions, supporting Southwest’s commitment to efficiency and to the Planet.
Southwest’s order of 85 Split Scimitar Winglets allows the airline to retrofit the 52 Boeing 737-800s currently in its fleet, in addition to the 33 Boeing 737-800s the airline expects to be delivered in 2014. Pending FAA certification, Southwest Airlines plans to begin Split Scimitar Winglet retrofits at Aviation Technical Services, based in Everett, Washington, in the first half of 2014, with an expected completion of all retrofits by early 2015.
APB’s Split Scimitar Winglet program is the most successful product launch in its history. Since launching the program early last year, APB has now taken orders and options for 1,451 Split Scimitar Winglet systems. Over the last 10 years, APB has sold more than 7,000 Blended Winglet Systems. Over 5,100 Blended Winglet Systems are now in service with over 200 airlines in more than 100 countries. APB estimates that Blended Winglets have saved airlines worldwide over 4 billion gallons of jet fuel to-date.
Aviation Partners Boeing is a Seattle based joint venture of Aviation Partners, Inc. and The Boeing Company.
Southwest in its advertisements is helping the public correlate the wing “doohickeys” with reduced costs which lead to lower fares. Now they will have “super doohickeys”:
Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. The current Boeing 737-800 fleet has the Aviation Partners Boeing Blended Winglets. They will be replaced with the new model. Boeing 737-8H4 N8309C (msn 36985) taxies to the gate at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
RAK Airways (rakairways.com) (Ras Al Khaimah) has again suspended operations as of today (January 1) as it restructures. The airline issued this statement today:
UAE’s RAK Airways announced today (January 1, 2014) the suspension of all operations starting on January 1, 2014 until further notice. In a written statement today, the airline said, ‘The decision for suspending operations was taken following increased pressures on the carrier’s performance due to continuous market conditions, increased operating costs and the impact of the regional political instability on the overall aviation industry.’.
‘‘The board of directors took the decision today to suspend the operations until further notice. We believe this decision is in the best interest of the airline and its shareholders. We will take this time to re-evaluate the best options available for RAK Airways future as well as those that fit the industry requirements of the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah.”
RAK Airways current network included flights from RAK International Airport to Doha, Peshawar, Islamabad, Lahore, Jeddah, Riyadh, Calicut and Kathmandu.
RAK Airways regrets the inconvenience caused to its customers as a result of this decision. All passengers who have made bookings with RAK Airways will be re-booked on alternative airline or receive full refund for any payments made.
The UAE airline originally launched scheduled passenger operations on November 29, 2007. The airline suspended all operations in 2009, reorganized and resumed operations on October 10, 2010. This is the second suspension of services.
The airline is vowing to reorganize and relaunch operations at a later date.
Copyright Photo: Rainer Bexten/AirlinersGallery.com. RAK Airways (rakairways.com) Airbus A320-214 A6-RKC (msn 2158) is seen at the RKT hub (all others by RAK Airways).
Video: RAK Airport video:
American Eagle Airlines (2nd) (Dallas/Fort Worth) is a subsidiary of the new American Airlines Group (Dallas/Fort Worth). In a lot of ways the regional jet carrier is now the step-child of the Group and fighting for its future. The current American Eagle (not the brand that several carriers are now flying under) was created on May 15, 1998 as a consolidation of four AMR-owned regional carriers, namely Simmons Airlines, Executive Airlines (3rd), Flagship Airlines and Wings West Airlines. The pilots of the carriers signed a single contract in August 1998 creating the large feeder airline for parent American Airlines. American Eagle used the AOC of Simmons Airlines. The MQ code of Simmons has been retained.
American Eagle has had an important role in the history of American Airlines. Today it is fighting for new contracts and its life.
The Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) represents the present-day pilots of American Eagle Airlines. The new management team of the American Airlines Group are demanding a new (lower benefits) contract with the pilots to bring their contract in line with the new American Group regional model, i.e. PSA Airlines, which will be flying a new batch of regional aircraft for American as a new American Eagle carrier.
The pilots of American Eagle Airlines are now facing a difficult decision, accept the new contract which cuts benefits or gradually see its fleet dissolve and be transferred to the other lower cost American Eagle units like PSA Airlines (Dayton).
Will the original American Eagle follow the same path of Delta Air Lines’ Comair and go out of business?
Terry Maxon of the Dallas News explores this interesting and important question in his excellent column. The column includes union messages on the subject.
Read the full story: CLICK HERE
American Eagle Airlines will soon announce a new name to distinguish itself from the other carriers operating under the American Eagle brand.
Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. American Eagle Airlines’ (2nd) Embraer ERJ 145LR (EMB-145LR) N928AE (msn 14500911) lands at Baltimore/Washington.
We would like to take this opportunity to wish all our loyal readers and supporters the best in holiday wishes for a successful and healthy 2014. Happy New Year to you and your family!
We thank you for your readership and contributions, especially news, photos, corrections and most importantly your friendship during 2013. Readership of the World Airline News soared by 20 percent this year. Viewership of our “new look” flagship AirlinersGallery.com photo library more than doubled in 2013.
For those who ordered our AG color prints and posters in 2013 we thank you for your financial support which makes all of this possible. In 2014 we will be introducing the AG Store which will bring you best in aviation books (including some new airline history and photo books not available anywhere else) and display models.
Bruce Drum and the AG Team
Copyright Photo: Ariel Shocron/AirlinersGallery.com.
Nordwind Airlines (Moscow) of Russia successfully took delivery of its eighth Airbus A321-200 aircraft as part of its on-going fleet and network expansion. Airbus A321-232 VQ-BRU (msn 2933) was ferried to Nordwind’s main base at Sheremetyevo Airport on the north side of Moscow on December 29. This is the ninth Airbus aircraft received by Nordwind.
Nordwind’s Airbus fleet now consists of eight A321-200s and the one A320-232 delivered between December 2011 and December 2013.
The new A321, powered by IAE V2500 engines, features a comfortable two class cabin. The new aircraft will be used to increase frequencies to existing destinations on short- and medium-haul routes.
Nordwind Airlines is still expecting to receive two additional A321s by the end of 2014 and will continue to add more in 2015 per its expansion plans.
Currently Nordwind has the fleet of 41 aircraft – 3 Boeing 777-200 ERs, 16 Boeing 767-300 ERs, 8 Boeing 757-200s, 1 Airbus A320-200, 8 Airbus A321-200s and 5 Boeing 737-800s and expects to end 2014 with a consolidated fleet of 50 aircraft.
“With this eighth Airbus 321 aircraft, Nordwind will continue to expand the fleet with more frequencies and destinations for the convenience of our passengers,” said Oguz Senol Yuce, Deputy General Director, Head of Fleet, of Nordwind Airlines. “Along with two expected deliveries in 2014, we plan to operate 10 A321 in total in 2014 which will allow us to continue our capacity growth at a time when we see positive demand trends. It provides best-in-class efficiency, economics, reliability and passenger comfort that Nordwind needs for its fleet renewal initiative.”
Copyright Photo: Nordwind Airlines. A beautiful capture of the new addition, namely the former Kingfisher Airlines Airbus A321-232 VQ-BRU (msn 2933, ex N933AG and VT-KFR). The airliner is being leased from ACG.
Video: Unique safety video:
Tatarstan Airlines (Kazan, Tatarstan, Russia) today (December 31) is shutting down and will cease all operations. All passengers on the Kazan-Baku route will be transported by Ak Bars Aero (Bugulma, Russia) in the future.
The shut down was due largely to the terrible “dive into the ground” crash of Tatarstan Airlines flight 363 on November 17, 2013 which killed all 44 passengers and six crew members on board. Russia’s air transport regulator Rosaviatsiya recommended the airline’s AOC be revoked after it discovered inadequate training and overworked crews. The revocation was affective today.
Other noteworthy airline departures in 2013:
Air Cargo Germany (April 18)
Air France by Airlinair (March 31) (all three became Hop!)
Air France by Brit Air
Air France by Regional
Air Italy (2nd) (merged into Meridiana in April 2013)
Air Pacific (2nd) (June 27) became Fiji Airways again.
AirAsia (Japan) (August 31) (relaunched as Vanilla Air)
American Eagle Airlines-Executive Airlines (2nd) (March 31)
Arkefly (now operating as Arke)
Armavia (March 29)
Augsburg Airways (October 26)
Aurela Aircompany (February 18)
Avient Aviation (April 5)
Bahrain Air (February 12)
Batavia Air (January 31)
Belle Air (Albania) (November 25)
Belle Air Europe (Italy) (November 26)
Brindabella Airlines (December 14)
Brit Air (March 31)
Capital Cargo International Airlines (March 11)
Condor Berlin (April 30)
DAE (Dutch Antilles Express) (August 24)
Danube Wings (November 20)
Delta Connection-Pinnacle Airlines (July 31)
Dniproavia (January 8)
Donbassaero Airlines (January 14)
Evergreen International Airlines (December 31)
Flybe-Suckling Airways (April)
FlyNonstop (October 29)
Georgia Skies (Pacific Wings Airlines) (March 31)
Gestair Cargo (Une) (became Cygnus Air again)
Jat Airways (October 26) (reformed as Air Serbia)
Lufthansa Regional-Augsburg Airways (October 26)
Meridiana fly (became Meridiana)
Mongolian Airlines Group (April 18) (became Hannu Air)
Nasair (November 13) (became Flynas)
OLT Express (Germany) (January 27)
Orbest Orizonia Airlines (Spain) (February 20)
Regional (Compagnie Aerienne Europeenne) (March 31)
Ryan International Airlines (January 11)
SAT Airlines (merged in October with Vladivostok Air to form Aurora Airlines)
SEAIR-South East Asian Airlines (June 7) (became Tigerair Philippines)
Sky Airlines (Turkey) (June 4)
Skywest Airlines (Australia) (May 5) (became Virgin Australia Regional Airlines)
TACA (El Salvador) (May 28) (now operating under the Avianca brand)
Tampa Cargo (June) (became Avianca Cargo)
Tiger Airways (Australia) and Tiger Airways (Singapore) (July) (now operating as Tigerair)
Vladivostok Air (October) (merged with SAT Airlines to form Aurora Airlines)
Zest Air (Zest Airways) (August 16)
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Formerly with United Airlines, Boeing 737-322 VQ-BAP (msn 24665) taxies past the camera at Antalya.
The St. Petersburg-Tampa Airboat Line (St. Petersburg, Florida) was the first scheduled airline in the world using a fixed-winged aircraft. The airline provided schedule airline service between St. Petersburg, Florida and neighboring Tampa. The service commenced on January 1, 1914.
According to Wikipedia, visionary P.T. Fansler brought in Thomas W. Benoist to start an airline service using his new airboats to create an airline service. Even though the two cities share the same Tampa Bay with causeways criss-crossing the bay today, in 1913 the two growing cities were a full day apart due to the circuitous land passage around the bay.
On January 1, 1914 the SPT Airboat Line became the world’s first scheduled winged airline service. That same day, Antony H. Jannus piloted the airline’s Benoist Type XIV on its first flight between St. Petersburg and Tampa. Due to widespread media coverage by the St. Petersburg Times, there were reportedly over 3,000 spectators at a parade accompanied by an Italian band at the departure point. An auction was then conducted for the first round-trip ticket. It was won with a final bid of $400 by the former mayor of St. Petersburg, Abram C. Pheil. Pheil boarded the wooden, open-air craft for the 23-minute flight that rarely exceeded an altitude of 5 feet (1.5 m) above the waters of Tampa Bay.
On January 1, 2014 as part of the 100th Anniversary celebrations, a website (www.flying100years.com) will be launched on January 1, 2014 to host the centennial celebration. Along with historical and economic reference materials, the website will also be an interactive information hub depicting the value that commercial aviation provides from personal, economic and other perspectives.
The sponsors of Flight 2014 were planning to re-enact the first commercial airline passenger flight using a replica of the original Benoist airboat. Pilot and aircraft constructor Kermit Weeks was planning to take off from St Petersburg, Florida and fly across the bay to downtown Tampa at 10:00 am (1000) US Eastern Standard Time on January 1, 2014, re-tracing the exact path taken by Jannus and Pheil 100 years ago.
However the replica of the Benoist airboat proved problematic for Kermit Weeks. On trials in December 2013 the recreation was unable to generate enough horsepower to take off from a lake underscoring the significance of the original feat 100 years ago. The replica will be on display at St. Petersburg. Instead Kermit Weeks will fly another historic aircraft across the bay on January 1, 2014 to celebrate the historic flight.
Read the full story of the problems of recreating a flyable replica from the Tampa Bay Times: CLICK HERE
The pioneer airline was also the first airline failure, especially in the small airline graveyard of Florida. The airline continued to operate until May 5, 1914. In total, the airline flew over 7,000 miles, conducted 172 flights and carried 1,205 passengers according to Wikipedia citing sources.
See original photos of the opening day on January 1, 1914: CLICK HERE
More on Tony Jannus from Tampapix.com: CLICK HERE
Above: The original airline schedule, the first airline schedule in the world.
Zhejiang Loong Airlines firms up order for 20 Airbus A320 Family aircraft, starts operations in China
Zhejiang Loong Airlines (Loongair) (Hangzhou), based in the capital city of Zhejiang province in Eastern China, has signed its first purchase agreement with Airbus, for 20 A320 Family aircraft, including 11 A320ceo and nine A320neo, becoming the lastest Airbus customer. The agreement follows the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in September at the Beijing Airshow.
On December 16, 2013 at 2:00 pm (1400) local time the first Airbus A320 (B-9962 above) arrived in the rain at Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport (see below) and despite the rain received a water cannon salute. A second leased A320 (A320-214 B-6858, msn 5008) arrived on December 22, 2013.
The airline commenced scheduled passenger operations on December 26, 2013 with the two A320s.
The new airline is flying from Hangzhou to Chengdu , Xi’an, Xiamen, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Wuhan, Kunming, Chongqing, Changsha and Changchun. The airline plans to expand to Hong Kong, Macao, Taipei and in Southeast Asia (please see route map below).
In the first half of 2014, Loongair’s fleet is expected to reach nine aircraft, including six passenger aircraft and three freighters.
Top Copyright Photo: Airbus/Iihutao (all others by the new airline). The airline is operating as Loongair. The pictured Airbus A320-214 B-9962 (msn 5656) was leased from Capital Airlines on December 11, 2013.
Current Route Map:
Fiji Airways (2nd) (Nadi, Fiji) has announced the introduction of two new nonstop international services from the Fijian capital of Suva.
From May 2014, Fiji Airways will offer twice–weekly nonstop flights between Suva and Sydney, operated by its Boeing 737-700 aircraft, and between Suva and Apia, operated by Pacific Sun’s soon-to-arrive ATR 72 aircraft.
The direct services between Suva and Sydney will operate on Mondays and Friday, with a convenient midday departure from Suva, and an afternoon departure from Sydney.
The new introduction means Fiji Airways will offer three flights from Sydney to Fiji on Mondays and Fridays, with the two current flights to Nadi and the new direct Suva flight from May 2014.
The new schedule means a change to the Suva-Auckland services, allowing for a late evening Suva-Auckland service on Mondays and Fridays, and a morning Auckland-Nadi service on Tuesdays and Saturdays. The new schedule will improve connectivity with ferries and flights to the outer islands for passengers arriving from Auckland.
“The 8 am departures from Auckland to Nadi two times a week mean New Zealanders will now be able to easily travel to the North and the outer islands, allowing them to enjoy the amazing beauty of these regions on the day they arrive,” says Mr Pichler.
The Suva-Apia services will operate late nights on Mondays and Fridays, while the return Apia-Suva flights will operate in the mornings of Tuesday and Saturday. This will now allow Apia passengers to connect on a Fiji Airways service to Auckland, Sydney, Brisbane or Nuku’alofa (Tonga) on the same day.
Pichler explained the strategy behind the expansion in Suva: “As Nadi is our traditional leisure hub, Suva will more and more grow into our business hub.” It is a dual hub strategy where there is one winner – our customers.
Copyright Photo: John Adlard/AirlinersGallery.com. Under a rainbow, Boeing 737-7X2 DQ-FJF (msn 28878) is pictured in action at Sydney.
Air China (Beijing) starting on February 11, 2014, will upgrade the assigned aircraft on its Beijing – San Francisco route to the Boeing 777-300 ER. By then, Air China’s entire fleet that it uses to serve its destinations in the continental United States – San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles and Houston – will have been upgraded to the Boeing 777-300 ER.
According to the airline, the “Boeing 777-300 ER represents the best cabin interior design ever in Air China’s history. The First Class and Business Class are outfitted with 180-degree full-flat seats, and the Economy Class seats are designed from an ergonomic perspective to make passengers feel at ease. All classes of service offer personal power outlets and personal entertainment system.”
The surge in tourist numbers and business traveler numbers in recent years has tremendously ramped up demand on the China-US aviation market. To meet that demand and expand its international presence, Air China is increasing capacity for its US operations by continuously expanding its route network and upgrading aircraft types.
Air China’s Summer 2013 – Spring 2014 schedule features a number of new and upgraded China-US routes, with capacity increasing by 33%. Starting on March 31, 2013, Air China increased its Beijing – New York service to 11 weekly flights, and its Beijing – Los Angeles service to 2 daily flights. On July 11, 2013 Air China commenced Beijing – Houston (Bush Intercontinental) nonstop service, the first ever air links between China and the central and southern regions of the United States. On January 21, 2014 , Air China will start Beijing -Honolulu service and will become the first carrier ever to operate between Beijing and Hawaii.
Copyright Photo: Bernhard Ross/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-39L B-2035 (msn 38674) at Frankfurt wears the special “Smiling China” motif.
Japan Airlines-JAL (Tokyo) on January 20, 2014 will launch its new “JAL Sky Suite 777″ service from Tokyo (Narita) to Chicago (O’Hare). This will be followed with Narita-Frankfurt service starting in April 2014.
JAL currently operates the new Boeing 777 Sky Suite service to London (Heathrow), New York (JFK), Paris (CDG) and Los Angeles.
JAL is modifying all 13 of its 232-seat Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft to this new level of service.
Copyright Photo: Akira Uekawa/AirlinersGallery.com. Operated domestically, JAL’s new and second special livery to support Japan’s national team for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia has been introduced. The pictured Boeing 777-346 JA8942 (msn 28394) features the image of figure skater Mao Asada on the fuselage. JA8942 entered revenue service on December 26, 2013 with the new markings and is seen on the short final to runway 34L at Haneda Airport in Tokyo on December 28, 2013.
Video: Re-defining the 777 cabin:
Air Austral (Sainte-Denis, Réunion Island, Indian Ocean, France) will resume twice-weekly Réunion-Mahe flights on June 23, 2014. The route was suspended in May 2013.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Air Austral’s Boeing 737-89M F-ONGB (msn 40911) prepares to land in Bangkok.
Royal Jordanian Airlines (Amman) this month celebrated its 50th Anniversary. The flag carrier launched scheduled passenger flights on December 15, 1963 as Alia-The Royal Jordanian Airline (Air Jordan) between Amman and Beirut. The airline adopted the current name on December 15, 1986.
Majesty King Abdullah II joined the airline on December 22 to celebrate the Golden Jubilee according to the airline. RJ has introduced a new 50th emblem which is likely to appear on its aircraft The airline is also issuing 50 days of daily free tickets.
The airline issued this statement and photo:
His Majesty King Abdullah II joined Royal Jordanian on Sunday, December 22, 2013, in a celebration to mark the national carrier’s 50thanniversary.
During a visit to RJ’s new premises, the King toured a photo exhibition depicting the flag carrier’s development since its launch in 1963 and also viewed a model of a modern aircraft and its functions from take-off to landing.
The King and the attendees also watched a film about the development of RJ, which launched its maiden flight to Beirut on December 15, which was later followed by other destinations across various continents.
His Majesty congratulated the RJ staff on the airline’s golden jubilee, expressing his pride in and appreciation for their relentless efforts to upgrade “this national edifice” over five decades.
“Through its glitter, RJ has become a real ambassador of the country and an embodiment of its bright image as it circled the world in its name,” the King wrote in the visitors’ book, urging the airline to pursue its efforts to boost its competitiveness in the region and the world.
During the ceremony, attended by His Royal Highness Prince Faisal Ibn Al Hussein, Prime Minister Abdullah Nsour and senior officials, King Abdullah honoured a number of staff members and ex-employees for their contributions to RJ. He also received a memento, a Boeing 787 yoke, from the Chairman of the Board of Directors Nasser Lozi.
Lozi said in remarks during the ceremony that RJ’s golden jubilee marks the carrier’s history and the ability of its staff from multiple generations to build an airline whose roots run deep at home and which has spread its branches across the world.
He said the company had made remarkable growth and expanded through various stages of the Kingdom’s development and sought to promote the national values of a sense of belonging, maintaining traditions and hospitality.
Lozi said human resources are the backbone of RJ’s development and modernisation as it relied on the expertise, loyalty and keenness of its staff to put the airline among the world’s prestigious airlines
Royal Jordanian President/CEO Amer Hadidi said: “The 50 past years of RJ lifetime is a source of pride for all of us. RJ is dream that came true with the persistent efforts of loyal Jordanians that could manage to build this edifice with very limited potentials.”
He added that the airline has promising future plans including growing its fleet and increasing the destinations on its route network, adding that RJ will be receiving the first 5 Boeing 787 aircraft in the second half of 2014, helping RJ to reach new heights and to fly to more cities around the world.
Hadidi said the airline intends to invest in the aviation industry in the field of maintenance and ground handling, and to expand in this area by providing these services in the regional markets. He pointed that RJ has the required expertise and capabilities qualifying it to contribute to the development of aviation in the Arab world, particularly the countries that witnessed the transformation of the Arab Spring and are in need of such services.”
In other news, Royal Jordanian is planning to introduce its first new 267-seat Boeing 787-8 initially on the Amman-Jeddah route on July 1, 2014 followed by the twice-weekly Amman-Lagos-Accra route the next day according to Airline Route. Twice-weekly Amman-Montreal (Trudeau) will be introduced on July 3 followed by weekly Amman-Abu Dhabi service on July 5.
Top Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner/AirlinersGallery.com. Royal Jordanian Airlines’ Airbus A330-223 JY-AIF (msn 979) approaches the runway at London’s Heathrow Airport.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati/AirlinersGallery.com. Alia’s Lockheed L-1011-385-3 TriStar 500 JY-AGB (msn 1219) taxies at Paris (Orly) in the ornate 1981 livery.
Nok Air (Nok Airlines Public Company Limited) (Bangkok-Don Mueang) and Scoot (subsidiary of Singapore Airlines) (Singapore) on December 13, 2013 signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to start a new low-fare airline named NokScoot Company Limited. The MOU is subject to final negotiations and approval process.
Nok will hold 51 percent of the shares and Scoot will control the other 49 percent. Nok means “bird” in the Thai language.
The objective of the proposed airline is to operate a low-cost airline with wide-body aircraft on medium and long-hail international routes.
Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Nok Air’s colorful former Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS HS-DBD (msn 33821) arrives at the downtown Don Mueang Airport in Bangkok.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Micheil Keegan/AirlinersGallery.com. Will the Scoot brand go away of this temporary agreement is finalized? Scoot’s Boeing 777-212 ER 9V-OTA (msn 28507) rotates at Sydney Mascot.
Current Nok Air routes operated with Boeing 737-800s:
Current Scoot routes operated with Boeing 777-200s. Scoot will soon be adding Boeing 787-9s. Hong Kong was added on November 15, 2013, its 12th destination.
Nok Air video:
Spring Airlines Japan (Spring Airlines Japan Company Limited) (Tokyo-Narita), which was established in October 2012 and 33 percent of the stock is owned by Spring Airlines of China, received its Air Operators Certificate (AOC) on December 17, 2013 from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport. The remaining 67 percent of the stock is owned by local Japanese investors.
The new airline is planning to fly international flights and domestic flights starting on May 31, 2014.
According to the airline, Spring Airlines Japan will offer “cheap fares, with the aim to improve the convenience of the user and to stimulate new demand with the aim of development of the business, not only in tourism but will continue to contribute to the revitalization of the local economy.”
The airline will utilize 189-seat Boeing 737-800 aircraft (above).
Domestically the low-fare airline will operate from Narita Airport to Takamatsu and Saga to Hiroshima.
Copyright Photo: Rick Schlamp/AirlinersGallery.com. The pictured Boeing 737-81D N272LM (msn 39429) was delivered as JA01GR on July 17, 2013 and has been used to obtain the AOC.
ANA and Garuda Indonesia move closer with a new partnership, both airlines will launch a Tokyo Haneda-Jakarta route
ANA (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) and Garuda Indonesia (Jakarta) have announced a comprehensive partnership under which the two airlines will code share on flights between the two countries and will allow passengers to be able to collect and redeem miles on Frequent Flyer Program of both airlines.
From March 30, 2014, ANA will operate new route between Tokyo’s Haneda Airport and Jakarta Airport, followed by Garuda Indonesia opening the same route from the first quarter of 2014. These new flights will increase the number of weekly flights operated by the two carriers between Japan and Indonesia to 53 – comprising 14 ANA flights and 39 Garuda Indonesia flights. Both airlines will be providing improved and expanded customer service concurrent with this agreement and network expansion.
ANA and Garuda will allocate code share flight numbers to flights between Japan and Indonesia operated by each airline.
Passengers on ANA flights arriving in Jakarta will be able to travel on to maximum of 10 Indonesian routes such as Jogjakarta or Denpasar on code share flights operated by Garuda Indonesia while passengers on Garuda Indonesia flights arriving at Haneda Airport, Narita Airport or Kansai International Airport will be able to travel on to maximum of 11 Japanese routes such as Chitose or Nagoya using code share flights operated by ANA.
The two airlines will also start discussions on a partnership between their respective mileage programs. The details of joint mileage program, including the start date, will be announced separately on both companies’ websites when decided.
Top Copyright Photo: John Adlard/AirlinersGallery.com. ANA’s Boeing 777-281 JA702A (msn 27033) arrives in Fukuoka.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 PK-GPM (msn 1214) of Garuda Indonesia approaches Amsterdam for landing.
National Geographic Magazine (Washington) through its National Geographic Channel has introduced a new TV series called “Ultimate Airport Dubai” which will focus on the operations of fast-growing Dubai International Airport (DXB), the home of Emirates.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 1The new concourse is trialed to test if it’s on schedule to receive 15 million passengers and 33 of the mighty 389-million-dollar Airbus A380s.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 2The construction team behind the new concourse feel the heat as more than 200 volunteers test whether it’s ready to be used by the public.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 3The pressure is on as engines, cargo and construction materials all go missing – pushing an airport already near-capacity to breaking point.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 4Over a million passengers pass through Dubai International Airport every week. Meet the people behind the scenes making everything run smoothly.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 5Over a million passengers pass through Dubai International Airport every week. Meet the people behind the scenes making everything run smoothly.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 6Duty Manager Khalil has to help a family stranded in the terminal, while Controller Nargis must free a cargo of meat stuck in the desert heat.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 7David Robson must greet some temperamental VIP passengers and Dispatcher Nizel has a problem when a brand-new A380 goes missing.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 8Passenger Operations has to cope with a group of stranded tourists, and a missing passenger puts a curfew-critical flight to Sydney in jeopardy.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 9Although Dubai International tries to prepare for every scenario, more than one million passengers each week inevitably bring unusual challenges.
Ultimate Airport Dubai: Episode 10John has seconds to drive on runways looking for debris and engineer Mian must work out why a jet won’t move after its parking brake is released.
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Completing its final approach into DXB is Emirates’ Boeing 777-31H ER A6-EGZ (msn 41081).
Watch Season 1, Episode 1:
Cathay Pacific Airways (Hong Kong) and Boeing (Chicago) announced the airline has ordered an additional 747-8 Freighter and three 777-300 ER (Extended Range) airplanes. The order, valued at about $1 billion at current list prices, will bolster Cathay Pacific’s 747-8 Freighter fleet and 777-300ER fleet to 14 and 53, respectively.
Hong Kong’s flag carrier is in the midst of renewing its freighter fleet with newer, more efficient airplanes, while also looking to strengthen its position as a market leader in the air cargo business.
The 747-8 Freighter gives cargo operators the lowest operating costs and best economics of any large freighter airplane while providing enhanced environmental performance. At 250 feet, 2 inches (76.3 m) long — 18 feet, 4 inches (5.6 m) longer than the 747-400 Freighter — the 747-8 Freighter gives customers 16 percent more revenue cargo volume compared to its predecessor with nearly equivalent trip costs and lower ton-mile costs.
The Boeing 777 is the world’s most successful twin-engine, long-haul airplane. The 777-300ER is equipped with the world’s most powerful GE90-115B commercial jet engine, and can seat up to 386 passengers in a three-class configuration with a maximum range of 7,930 nautical miles (14,685 km).
Hong Kong’s flag carrier operates 55 777s, including 38 777-300 ERs and an all-Boeing freighter fleet that includes 13 747-8 Freighters. With this order, Cathay Pacific will have 21 777-9X airplanes, 15 777-300 ERs and one 747-8 Freighter on order with Boeing.
Top Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Brand new Boeing 747-867F B-LJI (msn 39247) lifts off the runway at Paine Field near Everett, Washington.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. The Stretch Triple Seven is becoming the mainstay of the Cathay Pacific long-range passenger aircraft fleet as the Boeing 747-400 replacement. Sleek Boeing 777-367 B-KPN (msn 36165) steadily climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) under the new (old US Airways) management led by CEO Doug Parker, has revised the US Airways (Phoenix) pending order for 22 new Airbus A350s. The order, which was originally placed for 18 A350-800s and four A350-900s, will now be 22 of the larger A350-900s for American Airlines according to a filing and the Dallas News. The aircraft will begin to arrive in 2017.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A350-941 F-WXWB (msn 001) climbs away from Toulouse on a test flight.
Sichuan Airlines (Chengdu) on December 20 launched a new service from Chengdu and Chongqing to Sydney.
Sichuan Airlines will operate twice weekly flights from Chengdu-Chongqing to Sydney on its Airbus A330-200 aircraft.
Sydney Airport now has 94 weekly flights from nine carriers to greater China, with five carriers offering 46 services to mainland Chinese cities including Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Nanjing and Shanghai.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 B-5907 (msn 462) lands in Beijing.
Donghai Airlines (Shenzhen) currently operates seven Boeing 737-300 freighters. The airline has been approved by the CAAC to start flying regularly scheduled passenger routes and has ordered three Boeing 737-800s according to Travel Daily Asia.
Donghai Airlines was established in November 2002. The airline was approved by the Ministry of Commerce, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), as the first private foreign joint venture cargo airline in China.
Operations commenced on September 19, 2006.
Shenzhen Donghai Airlines shareholders are : Shenzhen Donggang Trading Company (representing 51 % of the shares), the United East, Hong Kong (Holdings) Limited (25% of the shares) and Hong Kong Wing Enterprises Ltd. (24% of the shares).
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-3W0 B-2517 (msn 23396) arrives in Beijing.
Current cargo route map:
Emirates (Dubai) will become the first airline to operate a regularly scheduled service to London Gatwick airport with an Airbus A380.
Starting March 30, 2014, the airline’s 489-seat A380 will replace the Boeing 777-300 ER on EK flight 09/10, bringing a 36 percent increase in capacity on one of its three daily flights.
Emirates will start operating scheduled A380 services to Zurich and Barcelona from January and February 2014 respectively.
Flight EK 009 will depart Dubai at 1500 (3 pm) and arrive at London Gatwick Airport at 1930 (7:30 pm). The return flight, EK 010, will leave London Gatwick at 2115 (9:15 pm) and arrive in Dubai at 0720 (7:20 am) the next day.
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 A6-EDH (msn 025) taxies at Amsterdam with special Expo 2020 Dubai UAE markings.
Irkut Research and Production Corporation Antonov An-12 crashed in Russia last night (December 26). The An-12 was carrying aircraft parts from Novosibirsk to Irkutsk. The aircraft crashed at about 21:45 local time, (12:45 GMT) in the Batareinaya station of the East Siberian railway during the approach into Irkutsk according to the Voice of Russia.
The six crew members and three passengers died in the crash.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Story and Photos from New York Daily News: CLICK HERE
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) suffered through a computer glitch yesterday that for a short period offered very low fares, such as a reported New York-Los Angeles ticket for $40. The airline has fixed the probably and to its credit, will honor the tickets.
Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE
Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Dhaka) is currently now planning to operate the last passenger McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 revenue flight on January 30 on a regular flight between Kuwait City and Dhaka as a stand-by aircraft. This retirement is always subject to change due to operational requirements. Biman currently has two DC-10-30s which are also the last passenger DC-10s operating in the world. The airline is offering a ferry flight to Birmingham and possible scenic flights in the UK in which it will sell seats.
Previously CEO Kevin Steele issued this statement on November 10, 2013:
There has been a lot of interest lately from press, aviation enthusiasts and the general public, on what will be happening with Biman’s last DC-10s, which will be phased out in the coming months with the arrival of new aircraft. These are the last flying passenger DC-10-30 aircraft in the whole world. So I thought I would take this opportunity to brief you with the latest news, which will be updated when further firm news becomes available.
Biman currently has 2 DC-10-30s flying. As their fuel consumption is higher than other aircraft in our fleet, they are used sparingly. One of those DC-10s will come to the end of its economic life on November 10, 2013 and will be scrapped locally. The last DC-10 will continue normal flying until December 7, 2013, the start of the revised schedule for the fog period here in Dhaka. Thereafter, it will only be used as a standby aircraft, in case another aircraft in our fleet become unserviceable for any reason. We will not be scheduling it on any route though.
This last DC-10 will continue as a standby aircraft until sometime in February 2014. The exact date is not known yet, as it is being coordinated with the arrival of our brand new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft from Boeing. We expect to know the exact date in early January 2014.
The last DC-10 is being donated to a museum in the USA, a fitting end for an aircraft that has served Biman loyally and well over many years. Accordingly, we will then offer for sale, as a last opportunity to travel on a passenger DC-10, anywhere in the world:
a. Seats on a last flight Dhaka to Birmingham (UK). Note this will need a technical stop
b. 2 (or more if demand requires it) one hour ‘scenic tours’ to/from Birmingham
c. We are unsure if the US authorities will give us traffic rights on the Birmingham to USA
sector. If they do, this will also be offered for sale.
d. We are also discussing with the UK Post Office, about the carriage of ‘Last day Covers’
on the last sector Birmingham-USA, for sale at a later date.
Tickets will only be sold via our website, hopefully from early January, so do not buy tickets elsewhere, we want these tickets to go to genuine aviation enthusiasts. If there is a demand for more ‘scenic tour’ flights at Birmingham, we can consider these too.
We hope you will join with us in celebrating the farewell of a loyal, beautiful aircraft, but also to recognize that the time has now come for Biman to equip itself with the very latest in new aircraft and technology.
Copyright Photo: Michael Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 S2-ACQ (msn 47817) prepares to land in Singapore.
SkyWest Airlines (St. George) will bring Delta Connection air service from the Salt Lake City hub to Eastern Utah passengers in March. In both Moab and Vernal, Utah, the new Delta Connection flights, operated by SkyWest, will begin on March 2, 2014.
Each of the new flights from both Moab and Vernal have been timed to provide maximum connection opportunities in Salt Lake City. With 260 daily flights in Salt Lake to more than 80 destinations, including New York and Washington, D.C., it is easy for passengers to get anywhere they want to go. The direct access to Utah’s capital will also continue to drive economic development in Eastern Utah, and makes it simple for those who want to take advantage of the incredible outdoor activities that are available in Moab and Vernal.
All flights will be operated on 30-seat Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia turboprops.
Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest’s Brasilias currently operate in their own in-house 1986 color scheme for Delta. They are not expected to adopt the Delta Connection livery. Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia N562SW (msn 120336) lands in Las Vegas.
Route Map: SkyWest-operated routes for Delta Air Lines:
London Heathrow Airport has officially opened a new airfield observation deck with 270 degree views. The area is called View Heathrow Observation Deck and is located in Terminal 4 (T4). The airport issued this statement and photos:
What has 270 degree views, a view of the Concorde, is right next to the Southern Runway at Heathrow and has just opened? The Answer: The View Heathrow Observation Deck.
The View Heathrow Observation Deck in T4 was officially opened this afternoon by Heathrow’s Normand Boivin and Tom Willis with a host of our airline partners from the terminal.
View Heathrow, located between gates 15 and 16, features 270 degree views and is located less than 250 metres from the centre of the Southern Runway.
The retired British Airways’ Concorde can even be seen from the area which has been converted from an unused former airline lounge.
Led by Paul Springthorpe from the Property team, the project has created a flight deck theme for passengers to interact with including a unique Turbine egg ball chair.
Visitors to View Heathrow can get involved with our social media team by hashtagging their spectacular Instagram pics and Twitter comments with #ViewHeathrow.
A live feed of these Instagram images and Tweets is on display in the viewing area, while visitors can also check out live flight radars on fixed iPads in the area.
The area is free to enter and open in line with Terminal 4’s operating hours.
What’s next for #ViewHeathrow?
This isn’t the only initiative we’ve been working on for all our aviation enthusiasts. We are working on some exciting new things for 2014 including multiple photo competitions, better non-airside venue access and more.
We’re also looking to select a group of aviation photographers to join us for a #ViewHeathrow visit in January. Tweet @yourHeathrow if you’re interested.
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) has now officially announced on what we previously reported. The airline today issued this statement on the last Douglas DC-9 flight in the history of the airline.
Delta Air Lines on January 6, 2014 will retire its remaining Douglas DC-9 aircraft following flight DL 2014 scheduled to depart Minneapolis/St. Paul for Atlanta at 4:20 p.m. (CST) (1620), the last scheduled commercial flight of the DC-9 by a major U.S. airline.
“The DC-9 has been a workhorse in our domestic fleet while providing a reliable customer experience,” said Nat Pieper, Delta’s vice president – Fleet Strategy. “The aircraft’s retirement paves the way for newer, more efficient aircraft.”
Since 2008, Delta has removed or retired more than 350 aircraft from its fleet including 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200s; SAAB 340Bs and McDonnell Douglas DC-9s; while adding economically efficient, proven-technology aircraft such as the Boeing 777-200 LR; two-class, 65 and 76-seat regional jets and variants of the 737 and 717, largely on a capacity-neutral basis.
The DC-9 retirement comes just months after Delta began taking delivery of its orders of 88 Boeing 717-200 aircraft and 100 Boeing 737-900 ER aircraft, which began entering service in October and November, respectively. Each aircraft features a First Class cabin and slim-line seats throughout Delta’s Economy Comfort and Economy cabin along with Wi-Fi connectivity and in-seat power ports. Additionally, the Boeing 737-900 ER offers on-demand entertainment throughout the cabin. Delta also recently announced its order for 40 Airbus aircraft including 30 narrowbody A321s, which will begin to be delivered in 2016.
Delta was the launch customer for the original 65-seat version of the DC-9-14 in 1965 as the airline replaced propeller aircraft on high-frequency, short-haul domestic routes. The twin-engine plane was removed from the Delta fleet in 1993, but larger variants reentered service following the merger with Northwest Airlines; those aircraft joined Northwest after it acquired Republic Airlines in 1986. Delta has flown a total of 305 DC-9s since 1965.
To acknowledge the DC-9’s retirement, the last flight has been tagged DL 2014 noting the final year of service, while the preceding flight operating from Detroit to Minneapolis/St. Paul will be flight DL 1965, the aircraft’s initial year of service.
The last DC-9 to be operated by Delta is the pictured DC-9-51 (top). It is unclear at this time which aircraft will be flown on the last historic flight.
Well done Delta for recognizing and honoring your rich history.
Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51 N787NC (msn 48149) arrives at the MSP hub.
Video: Inside the cockpit of DC-9-51 N774NC:
Spirit Airlines (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) known for its ultra low fare model (based on Ryanair) which charges for everything else besides a basic seat on airplane, is taking a page out of the old Western Pacific Airlines (Colorado Springs) book to raise additional revenue through aircraft exterior advertising.
Airbus A320-232 N618NK (msn 5458) is now adverting the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (one of its growth airports) with this unique “Greetings from Fort Worth” “aircraft postcard”.
Copyright Photo: Rurik Enriquez/AirlinersGallery.com. N618NK makes a stop at Cancun with the new look.
Sunrise Airways (Port-au-Prince) as the new flag carrier of Haiti celebrated its first anniversary. The young carrier launched operations on December 20, 2012.
Sunrise continues to expand. Sunrise added service to Santo Domingo. It launched regular flights between Port-au-Prince, Haiti and La Isabella International Airport (JBQ) in Santo Domingo on November 15, 2013.
Santo Domingo becomes the third international route launched by Sunrise Airways in 2013. The carrier initiated new service between Cap Haitien and Providenciales, Turks & Caicos on August 26, 2013. Sunrise Airways flights between Port-au-Prince and Holguín, Cuba were launched on November 1, 2013.
New service to Havana and Santiago in Cuba is being planned.
Sunrise Airways is owned by noted Haitian businessman and philanthropist, Philippe Bayard and operates 19-passenger BAe Jetstream 32s.
Copyright Photo: Sunrise Airways.
Video (in French):
British Airways (London) Boeing 747-400 (believed to be 747-436 G-BNLL, msn 24054) preparing to depart from Johannesburg for London (Heathrow) on Sunday night (December 22) while taxing to the runway took the wrong taxiway. The right wing slammed into a building adjacent to the taxiway. The 202 passengers and crew members safely exited the aircraft. The aircraft has now been removed from the building.
Four employees were injured in the building leased by the Bidvest Group Limited mainly from falling debris.
Photo tweeted by Harriet Tolputt:
Read the full report from the Sydney Morning Herald: CLICK HERE
American Airlines‘ (Dallas/Fort Worth) new management led by new CEO Doug Parker is re-banking its hubs to increase revenue starting with the Miami hub in August according to the Dallas News.
Previously the old AA management had developed a “rolling hub” concept like other carriers did after the 9/11 attacks rather than a true “all at once” hub of the past. Parker is going back to the true hub concept which will increase revenue and allow for more quick connections. However during storm events, it can also stretch the hub facilities including runway capacities and available gates. Summer afternoon thunderstorms affect many of the hubs, especially Miami and winter snow and ice storms affect the northern hubs. When the weather is fine, the hub usually works well and it makes money. When things back up due to weather or a security-related event, the hub can unravel quickly leading to missed connections.
Like other carriers, American is now going back to a banked schedule for its hubs.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Brian Peters/AirlinersGallery.com. American’s newly-repainted Boeing 777-223 ER N791AN (msn 30254) in the Oneworld scheme arrives at Los Angeles.
So far in our reader’s poll the current new AA tail is winning by 58 percent of the votes. Have you voted in our informal poll on which AA color scheme should be adopted for the total fleet? If not vote here: CLICK HERE
euroAtlantic Airways (Lisbon) is celebrated its 20th Anniversary in 2013.
The airline was established as Air Zarco by Tomaz Metello and the largest Portuguese leisure corporation, Pestana Hotels and Resorts, on August 25, 1993. The charter airline adopted the name of Air Madeira in 1997 until May 17, 2000 when the current name of euroAtlantic Airways – Transportes Aéreos S.A. was adopted.
Copyright Photo: Pedro Baptista/Flyingphotos. Former Singapore Airlines Boeing 777-212 ER CS-TFM (msn 28513) departs from the Lisbon base with a large 20 Years 1993-2013 emblem.
Video: Just Planes Video:
Emirates (Dubai) has received delivery of its 43rd and 44th A380 aircraft with a double delivery from Airbus’ Finkenwerder facility in Hamburg, Germany.
The 43rd (A6-EER) and 44th Emirates (A6-EES) A380s offer 14 seats in First Class, 76 seats in Business Class and 427 seats in Economy Class, and were put into service starting on December 21, initially operating on flights to Mauritius and Munich.
Both aircraft were handed over to the carrier on December 19.
Emirates operates the world’s largest fleet of A380s, flying one in three of these modern jets in the skies today. Emirates was the first airline to order the aircraft back in 2000, and it ordered another 50 more at the Dubai Air Show in November. In 2013, Emirates received 13 A380 aircraft and it expects to receive another 13 in 2014. The airline still has 96 more A380s worth $43 billion on order, of which 71 are expected to be delivered over the next five years, before the end of 2018.
From its Dubai hub and dedicated A380 terminal, Emirates’ A380s crisscross the globe flying to 24 destinations spanning Los Angeles to Auckland. Illustrating the range of the A380, Emirates’ currently operates the world’s longest nonstop A380 service (13,414 kilometers), with its daily A380 flight between Dubai and Los Angeles, launched earlier this month. Emirates’ shortest A380 flight is between Bangkok and Hong Kong, clocking 1,900 kilometers.
Emirates’ current A380 destinations are: Amsterdam, Auckland, Bangkok, Beijing, Dubai, Hong Kong, Jeddah, Kuala Lumpur, London Heathrow, Los Angeles, Manchester, Mauritius, Melbourne, Moscow, Munich, New York JFK, Paris, Rome, Seoul, Singapore, Shanghai, Sydney, Toronto, and Brisbane.
Emirates will start operating scheduled A380 services to Zurich from January 2014.
Google A380 Virtual Tour: CLICK HERE
Video: Emirates is now flying the A380 to the Mauritius islands, its 24th destination for the type:
Air Caraïbes Atlantique Airlines (Guadeloupe) has signed a firm contract with Airbus for three A350-1000s, the largest member of Airbus’ new generation A350XWB Family. As previously reported, the airline will also lease three new A350-900s from ILFC. The aircraft will enter into service between 2016 and 2022.
The Air Caraïbes’ A350-1000s will seat 439 passengers in three classes, and the -900 will seat 387 passengers. The aircraft will be operated on the airline’s routes from Paris to Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint-Marteen, Haïti, Saint-Domingue and French Guyana which are currently flown by five A330s.
The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) has issued this short statement:
Members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) District 751, District W-24 and District 70 will vote January 3, 2014 on a revised proposal from the Boeing Company that would secure 777X production in the Puget Sound area.
Details of the revised offer will be provided by mail to IAM members and their families prior to the January 3 vote. The new proposal contains significant improvements over an earlier offer from Boeing that was rejected by IAM members on November 13, 2013.
The January 3 vote will take place at IAM Local union halls in Seattle, WA, Portland, OR and Wichita, KS, with results announced later that day.
LAM’s ERJ 190 C9-EMC crashed into the ground with the autopilot engaged, did the captain intentionally crash the airliner?
LAM’s (Linhas Aereas de Mocambique) (Luanda) Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW C9-EMC (msn 19000581) on November 29, 2013 was operating flight TM 470 from Maputo, Mozambique to the Luanda, Angola. The airliner never arrived. The aircraft crashed in a Namibian game park, killing the 27 passengers and six crew members on board.
According to Reuters, citing a preliminary report released to the media by Namibia’s Transport Ministry, the crew was “flying in normal conditions and no mechanical deficiency was detected when it suddenly began a descent from its normal cruising altitude with its automatic pilot on and its altitude selector set to below ground level.”
According to Reuters, “the aircraft made the descent on autopilot, and after actions that would have required knowledge of its systems, denoted a “clear intention”. The aircraft was under the command of the captain, Herminio dos Santos, who “was alone in the cockpit at the time of the crash, after his co-pilot had gone to the bathroom. Alarms going off could be heard on the flight recordings, and also the sound of someone beating on the cockpit door “as if asking to be let in”.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Vanilla Air (formerly AirAsia Japan) (Tokyo-Narita) as planned, relaunched operations on December 20 under this new brand. The first routes were from Tokyo (Narita) to Naha, Okinawa and Tokyo (Narita) to Taipei (Taoyuan).
Tokyo (Narita) – Sapporo will be started next month followed by Tokyo (Narita) – Seoul (Incheon) in March 2014.
Vanilla Air is the low-cost subsidiary of ANA.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-216 JA01VA (msn 5844) with Sharklets and a new identity arrives today at Tokyo (Narita).
Video: Inaugural Flight from Narita to Taipei on December 20: