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Tag Archives: A320

United to end San Francisco-Guadalajara serve on September 21

United Airlines (Chicago) will end service to Guadalajara, Mexico from its San Francisco hub on September 21 per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N475UA (msn 1495) taxies from the gate at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) in the retro 1972 “A320 Friend Ship” color scheme.

United Airlines (current livery): AG Slide Show

United Airlines (historic liveries): AG Slide Show

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Virgin America to go public, 2014 Giants logo jet is unveiled with photos of dedicated fans!

Virgin America Inc. (San Francisco) today announced that it has filed a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a proposed initial public offering (IPO) of its common stock. The number of shares to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined.

Barclays and Deutsche Bank Securities are acting as joint book-running managers and as representatives of the underwriters for the proposed offering.

A registration statement relating to the offering of Virgin America’s securities has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission but has not yet become effective. These securities may not be sold nor may offers to buy be accepted prior to the time the registration statement becomes effective.

Read the analysis by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin/AirlinersGallery.com. As we reported in June, Virgin America announced a new contest for dedicated San Francisco Giants baseball fans to be pictured on an Airbus A320. Airbus A320-214 N849VA (msn 4991) has now been unveiled in its latest 2014 version with features the words “Fly Together” which is actually composed of small pictures of SF Giants fans who won the contest!

Virgin America: AG Slide Show

Atlantis European Airways adds its first Airbus A320

Atlantis European logo

Atlantis European Airways (Yerevan) has added its first Airbus A320, its first aircraft. Former Armavia A320-211 EK32008 (msn 229) has been acquired and is being prepared for service in Prague according to Skyliner.

The company describes its activities:

Atlantis European Airways (AEA) LLC is an air carrier, which was established in Armenia with a strong purpose to improve Armenia’s tourism services’ infrastructure as well as to support the country’s small business development opportunities. Atlantis European Airways LLC is operating code-share flights with Austrian and Czech Airlines from Yerevan via Vienna and Prague to other destinations. One of the main targets of the business strategy of Atlantis European Airways is the integration of the company with the largest alliances of overseas airlines worldwide. The overall mission of Atlantis European Airways is to attract corporate and non-corporate partners for long-term collaboration and encourage them to become members of the company as a result of which they will be offered the richest variety of services provided by Atlantis European Airways . It realizes charter flights on requests. Air tickets are being sold all over Armenia via travel agencies the number of which reaches around 40.

U.S. and European carriers are resuming flights to Israel

EasyJet (easyJet.com) (UK) (London-Luton) has issued this statement about its flights to Israel:

The safety and security of easyJet’s passengers and crew is the airline’s highest priority. ‎

Due to the FAA lifting its instruction to all United States’ airlines to suspend their flights to Israel, and the European safety regulator EASA following suit, easyJet will operate its services to and from Tel Aviv as scheduled from Friday July 25.

easyJet will also operate one return flight this afternoon between London Gatwick and Tel Aviv. ‎

easyJet will continue to monitor the safety advice on travel to and from Tel Aviv from all relevant authorities.

easyJet flies to and from Tel Aviv from the UK, Switzerland, Germany and Italy.

Bloomberg Businessweek: How Israel convinced international airlines to return to Tel Aviv: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Paul Bannwarth/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 G-EZTL (msn 4012) lands at Tenerife Sur.

EasyJet (UK): AG Slide Show

JetBlue reports record second quarter earnings

JetBlue Airways Corporation (JetBlue Airways) (New York) today reported its results for the second quarter 2014:

Pre-tax income excluding special items1 of $103 million in the second quarter. This compares to pre-tax income of $60 million in the second quarter of 2013.

Gain of $242 million from the sale of its wholly-owned subsidiary LiveTV.

On a GAAP basis, pre-tax income of $345 million in the second quarter.

Net income excluding special items for the second quarter was $61 million, or $0.19 per diluted share.

This compares to JetBlue’s second quarter 2013 net income of $36 million, or $0.11 per diluted share.

On a GAAP basis, net income for the second quarter was $230 million, or $0.68 per diluted share.

“Today, we are pleased to report record second quarter earnings and our seventeenth consecutive quarter of profitability,” said Dave Barger, JetBlue’s Chief Executive Officer. “We saw improved profitability across our network, reflecting the success of ongoing efforts to adapt our products and services to meet our customers’ ever-changing needs. I would like to thank our 15,500 crewmembers for their dedication to running a safe airline and delivering outstanding service to our customers.”

Operational Performance

JetBlue reported record second quarter operating revenues of $1.5 billion. Revenue passenger miles for the second quarter increased 5.7% to 9.6 billion on a capacity increase of 6.0%, resulting in a second quarter load factor of 84.6%, a decrease of 0.3 points year over year.

Yield per passenger mile in the second quarter was 14.25 cents, up 6.3% compared to the second quarter of 2013. Passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) for the second quarter 2014 increased 6.0% year over year to 12.05 cents and operating revenue per available seat mile (RASM) increased 5.6% year over year to 13.12 cents. The shift of the Easter and Passover holidays from March last year to April this year positively impacted second quarter year over year PRASM by approximately two points.

Operating expenses for the quarter increased 9.8%, or $119 million, over the prior year period. Interest expense for the quarter declined 7.5%, or $3 million, due to JetBlue’s focus on debt reduction. JetBlue’s operating expense per available seat mile (CASM) for the second quarter increased 3.5% year over year to 11.88 cents. Excluding fuel and profit sharing, CASM2 increased 5.1% to 7.51 cents.

“We improved margin performance while expanding our network, demonstrating the core strength of our business,” said Robin Hayes, JetBlue’s President. “We remain focused on providing a differentiated product and culture in high-value geography while maintaining competitive costs. We believe this focus will drive improved returns for our shareholders.”

Fuel Expense and Hedging

JetBlue continued to hedge fuel to manage price volatility. Specifically, in the second quarter JetBlue had in place hedges for approximately 15% of its fuel consumption and managed approximately 7% of its fuel consumption using fixed forward price agreements (FFPs). This resulted in a realized fuel price of $3.09 per gallon, a 0.9% increase over second quarter 2013 realized fuel price of $3.06. JetBlue recorded $2 million in losses on fuel hedges that settled during the second quarter.

JetBlue has managed approximately 30% of its third quarter projected fuel requirements using a combination of FFPs, jet fuel swaps and caps. Based on the fuel curve as of July 17th, JetBlue expects an average price per gallon of fuel, including the impact of hedges, FFPs and fuel taxes, of $3.08 in the third quarter.

Liquidity and Cash Flow

JetBlue ended the quarter with approximately $797 million in unrestricted cash and short term investments. In addition, JetBlue maintains $550 million in lines of credit.

During the second quarter, JetBlue repaid approximately $44 million in regularly scheduled debt and capital lease obligations. In addition, JetBlue pre-paid approximately $300 million in debt with the proceeds from the sale of LiveTV. JetBlue plans to repay approximately $185 million in regularly scheduled debt and capital lease obligations in the remainder of 2014, including approximately $58 million in the third quarter.

“We continued to strengthen the balance sheet by paying down debt while enhancing access to liquidity by increasing the number of unencumbered aircraft,” said Mark Powers, JetBlue’s Chief Financial Officer. “We believe these actions will help us maintain a relatively flat invested capital base this year while growing assets, which we expect will help us meet our return on invested capital goal.”

Third Quarter and Full Year Outlook

For the third quarter of 2014, CASM is expected to increase between 0.5% and 2.5% versus the year-ago period. Excluding fuel and profit sharing, CASM in the third quarter is expected to increase between 1.0% and 3.0% year over year.

CASM for the full year is expected to increase between 1.0% and 3.0% over full year 2013. Excluding fuel and profit sharing, CASM in 2014 is expected to increase between 2.5% and 4.5% year over year. Relative to JetBlue’s previous cost outlook, this full year guidance reflects approximately a one point reduction in unit costs excluding fuel and profit sharing primarily due to a reduction of operating expenses in the second half of the year as a result of the sale of LiveTV.

Capacity is expected to increase between 3.0% and 5.0% in the third quarter. For the full year, capacity is expected to increase between 4.0% and 6.0%.

Bloomberg Businessweek: JetBlue considers charging for the first checked bag: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N709JB (msn 3488) in the special one-off “Binary Code” livery arrives in New York (JFK).

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

Virgin America and GoPro partner with a new airborne channel

Virgin America (San Francisco) has partnered with the hot stock and camera company, GoPro, for a new airborne channel. The airline issued this statement through its blog:

Day dreaming from a mood-lit chair in the sky is tough to beat. If you’re looking to infuse those dreams with a little action and adventure, you may want to check out the GoPro® Channel on our Red™ seatback entertainment system.

Virgin America GoPro Channel

Channel 8 has tons of thrilling content from rooftop fire breathing to hugging lions in Africa – all of which were all captured using GoPro’s HERO3+ Black Edition camera. “Be a Hero” at your destination by making a few adventure videos of your own.

Here is a typical video using the GoPro:

Video:

Do you have an airline-theme video using the GoPro camera? Let us know and we will promote your video.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 N851VA (msn 4999) completes its final approach to the runway at Los Angeles.

Virgin America: AG Slide Show

Hong Kong Aviation Capital orders 40 Airbus A320neo and 30 A321neo aircraft

Airbus A320neo (Flt)(Airbus)(LRW)

Hong Kong Aviation Capital (HKAC) (Hong Kong) has signed a firm order with Airbus for a total of 70 A320neo Family aircraft (40 A320neo and 30 A321neo)

The contract was finalized at the 2014 Farnborough Airshow by Donal Boylan, CEO of HKAC and John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer, Customers. The agreement follows the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed at the 2013 Paris Air Show.

HKAC currently has a portfolio of over 50 single and twin aisle Airbus aircraft. It provides financing leasing services to several airlines in Asia and worldwide. This is HKAC’s first direct order with any aircraft manufacturer.

CIT commits to order 15 A330neo and 5 A321ceo aircraft

CIT Aerospace A330-900 (Flt)(Airbus)(LRW)

CIT Group Inc. (CIT Aerospace) has announced a commitment to order 15 Airbus A330-900neo aircraft and five A321ceo aircraft, becoming a launch customer for the new A330neo. The Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) were signed at the 2014 Farnborough International Airshow by Jeff Knittel, President of CIT Transportation & International Finance and Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President & CEO. CIT will announce its engines selection for the A321 aircraft at a later date.

The A330-800neo and the A330-900neo are two new members of the Airbus Widebody Family launched in July 2014 with first deliveries scheduled to start in Q4 2017. The A330neo incorporates latest generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, aerodynamic enhancements and new cabin features. Benefitting from the unbeatable economics, versatility and high reliability of the A330, the A330neo reduces fuel consumption by 14% per seat, making it the most cost efficient, medium range Widebody aircraft on the market. In addition to greater fuel savings, A330neo operators will also benefit from a range increase of up to 400 nautical miles and of course all the operational commonality advantages of the Airbus Family.

Image: Airbus.

BOC Aviation orders 43 additional Airbus A320 Family aircraft

BOC Aviation A320neo (Airbus)(LRW)

BOC Aviation (Singapore), the aircraft leasing subsidiary of Bank of China, has announced an order for an additional 43 Airbus A320 Family aircraft, comprising seven A320neo Family aircraft and 36 A320ceo aircraft across A320 and A321 variants, at the Farnborough International Airshow 2014.

Including this latest purchase agreement, BOC Aviation’s cumulative orders for new Airbus aircraft have reached 255, as of June 30th 2014, 142 of these have already been delivered, and another 55 committed to lease.

As of June 30, 2014, BOC Aviation’s fleet of 251 aircraft includes 109 Airbus aircraft operated by 27 airlines. There are 98 A320 Family aircraft in the fleet.

Image: Airbus.

AerCap firms up an order for 50 additional Airbus A320neo Family aircraft

AerCap A320neo (Flt)(Airbus)(LRW)

AerCap (Amsterdam) has firmed up an order for 50 additional Airbus A320neo Family aircraft at the Farnborough International Airshow 2014. The contract, AerCap’s first major aircraft order following the acquisition of ILFC earlier this year, was signed by Philip Scruggs, AerCap’s President & Chief Commercial Officer and Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO. AerCap will announce its engine selection in due course.

Including today’s order for 50 A320neo aircraft, AerCap’s total order of A320neo aircraft rises to 200 and its total orders of Airbus aircraft rises to 945. Following the lessor’s acquisition of ILFC, AerCap becomes Airbus’ largest customer overall, both in number and value of aircraft purchased.

Image: Airbus.

Wizz Air to add flights to Groningen and Maastricht from Poland

Wizz Air (Budapest) has announced further enhancements to its low fare route network from Poland, with six new routes from five different airports. Flights to Glasgow from Katowice and Poznan will start on October 26 and October 28 respectively, from October 27 Warsaw will have a service to Bergen and Szczecin will be linked to London Luton, while two new destinations in the Netherlands will be added: flights to Groningen from Gdansk and flights to Maastricht from Katowice will start on October 28.

Groningen will become the 97th Wizz Air destination. Maastricht will become Wizz Air’s 98th destination.

With these six new services Wizz Air is now offering a total of 90 routes to 17 countries from Poland.

Wizz Air also announced further expansion at its Romanian bases Cluj-Napoca and Timisoara. The airline will deploy a fourth aircraft and launch three new services in Cluj-Napoca from December 20 and double its fleet at Timisoara bringing a second Airbus A320 and four new services to the base from November 1.

Only recently the airline had announced a new service from Cluj-Napoca to Nuremberg in Germany and with this announcement of seven international routes to Belgium, Italy, Germany, Sweden and Switzerland, Wizz Air is offering a total of 87 routes from seven Romanian airports.

Copyright Photo: Paul Bannwarth/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-233 HA-LPF (msn 1834) lands at EuroAirport serving Basel/Mulhouse/Freiburg.

Wizz Air: AG Slide Show

Frontier Airlines announces three new routes

Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver) has announced it will again expand its low-cost service with discount flights between Atlanta and Chicago (O’Hare), Denver and Chicago (O’Hare) and St. Louis and Ft. Myers.

This announcement means Frontier Airlines will now serve 72 destinations nonstop from Denver International Airport, eight cities from Chicago O’Hare, ten destinations from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport and five cities from Southwest Florida International Airport (Ft. Myers).

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 N216FR (msn 4745) arrives in Los Angeles.

Frontier Airlines: AG Slide Show

New expanded route map: CLICK HERE

 

 

Airbus to offer high-density seating for the A320 and A321

Airbus A320neo (Flt)(Airbus)(LRW)

Airbus (Toulouse), in appealing to ultra low-fare carriers where the number of seats that can be sold is important, is now offering a high-density configuration version for the A320neo/A320ceo of 189 seats and 240 seats for the A321neo. Airbus issued this statement:

In offering even more efficiency for airline operators, Airbus is increasing seating capacity for A320neo (new engine option) and A320ceo (current engine option) jetliners to 189 seats, while also adding 20 more seats for A321neo aircraft to accommodate 240 passengers in an efficient high-density, all-economy layout.

“We are supporting the higher seat count with intelligent means to give living space to passengers,” said Klaus Roewe, Airbus’ Senior Vice President – A320neo Programme. “These new A320 Family configurations do not compromise on comfort, as they retain the Airbus standard of 18-inch wide seats in economy.”

To raise the A320’s capacity to 189 seats, Airbus has worked with airworthiness authorities to certify increased exit limits for the forward and aft doors on this version of the aircraft, taking advantage of exits that are significantly larger than the Type C requirements they were originally certified to. Also incorporated are wider evacuation slides or slide/rafts.

For the A321neo, the use of state-of-the-art slim-line seats and a new exit door arrangement – along with the optimized “Space-Flex” rear cabin galley configuration and Smart-Lavatory design – will increase this stretched fuselage jetliner version’s passenger capacity to 240 passengers, all while retaining Airbus’ 18-inch wide seat standard for economy travellers.

Roewe explained that six or more seats are added by using the new exit door arrangement, which eliminates Door 2 and the first cross-aisle in the fuselage’s forward section, while also incorporating a new double over-wing exit and shifting Door 3 aft-ward by four frames – thereby reducing the area necessary to accommodate emergency exit rows in the aircraft.

“If you add this up, it results in an approximately six per cent fuel burn per seat reduction – only by incorporating more seats in the A321neo aircraft,” Roewe added.

Image: Airbus.

Poll:

 

Livingston gets a reprieve, will continue flying after July 14

Livingston Compagnia Aerea (2nd) (New Livingston) (Milan-Malpensa) has won its appeal and will continue to fly with its current Air Operators Certificate (AOC). The company issued this statement:

New Livingston has been granted by Italian Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC) the revalidation of its Operating License, as per art. 9, paragraph 1, of EU Regulation n. 1008/2008.

All connections continue regularly and are confirmed as planned. At the same time tickets, reservations and contracts will be honored without any interruption, even after July 14, 2014.

On June 27, 2014, the Court of Busto Arsizio has appointed Mr Oliviero Tessera as judicial commissioner of the procedure of “concordato preventivo con riserva”, whose petition for admission had been submitted by New Livingston on June 25.

The above procedure is intended to strengthen New Livingston financial structure and improve its commercial and industrial efficiency.

New Livingston wishes to thank again the customers, the suppliers and own employees for their trust and constant support.

Copyright Photo: Marco Finelli/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 EI-ERH (msn 2157) taxies at Bologna.

Livingston (2nd):

Lufthansa reports on the first year of the “new Germanwings”

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) has issued this information report on the first anniversary of the revamped Germanwings (2nd) (Cologne/Bonn):

For exactly one year now, the “new Germanwings” has enhanced the range of flights on offer for customers throughout Europe. On July 1, 2013, it launched an entirely new product and brand concept, and over the space of twelve months it has developed to become the third largest airline in Germany. Since July 2013, Germanwings has carried more than 16 million passengers. The number of routes on offer has also risen from 182 to 296 today. Germanwings now serves 130 destinations, most of which are in Europe.

Lufthansa amalgamated its domestic German and European flights that were not operated through its Frankfurt and Munich hubs in the “new Germanwings”. The handover of flight routes is now well advanced. In Cologne, Stuttgart and Hanover it has been completed, while in Hamburg and Berlin a few routes are still being transferred. Lufthansa began transferring routes to Germanwings in Düsseldorf in March 2014. Once the hand-over has been completed, Düsseldorf will be the largest Germanwings base.

Germanwings passengers rate the airline highly positively. In all the passenger surveys, they attest to the airline’s high-quality service, and the vast majority is extremely satisfied with the new offer. Customers thus reinforce Germanwings’ claim to be a low-cost-carrier offering flights at low prices and a high-quality service.

The expansion of Germanwings has also been successful from a commercial point of view: in comparison to last year, when the airline contributed €93 million to the Lufthansa Group’s earnings improvement year-on-year, the contribution is expected to increase again this year. For 2015, for the first time in many years, the Group expects to achieve a balanced result on its non-hub routes in Europe.

The airline, which is based at Cologne-Bonn Airport, has also significantly expanded its fleet. While just one year ago 38 jets bore the Germanwings livery, 71 aircraft can now be seen sporting the logo of the youngest airline in the Lufthansa Group. A further ten aircraft will join the fleet by the end of the year. The workforce has also increased from 1,600 to just over 2,000, the bulk of new staff recruitment being in flight operations. The number of flight personnel has thus risen from 1,174 to 1,614. Germanwings crews currently complete a total of 3,312 flights each week, compared with 1,891 a mere twelve months ago. Since its launch a year ago, Germanwings with its highly motivated team has already completed around 171,000 safe take-offs and landings. Carsten Spohr, Chairman of the Executive Board of Deutsche Lufthansa AG: “We have been on the offensive with the ‘new Germanwings’ in terms of point-to-point flights on European and German domestic routes that are not operated through our major hubs. We have combined our many years of experience in the low-cost segment and our high quality standards to develop a convincing concept that has been extremely well received by customers. With the ‘new Germanwings’, we have taken an important step and are now closer to achieving our goal of flying profitably beyond the major hubs within the short-haul traffic segment.”

Thomas Winkelmann, spokesman for the Germanwings Executive Board: “Germanwings is without a doubt one of the most creative airlines in Europe. Twelve months ago we entered new territory with Germanwings’ new product and brand promise. Since then, we have been combining the various requirements of different customer groups in one airline. Today we know that this bold decision was the right one: everyone feels at home on board of Germanwings. This is undoubtedly because we refuse to compromise on two points: safety and the friendly and expert way in which we deal with our customers.”

A unique feature of Germanwings is ‘à la carte flying’. When booking their tickets, passengers have a choice of three products in different price segments with different comfort add-ons: ‘BEST’ represents the high-end offer that primarily covers the needs of business passengers but that also appeals to certain leisure travelers. The ‘SMART’ fare product includes certain extra services, and ‘BASIC’ is a no-frills, low-cost fare.

Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com. The Germanwings fleet has expanded from 38 to 71 Airbus aircraft in the past year. Formerly with Lufthansa, Airbus A320-211 D-AIQS (msn 401) now flies for lower-cost Germanwings.

Lufthansa: AG Slide Show

Germanwings (2nd): AG Slide Show

The first Airbus A320neo is rolled out at Toulouse

Airbus A320-200N WL F-WNEO Roll Out TLS (Airbus)(LRW)

Airbus (Toulouse) yesterday (July 1) rolled out the first assembled A320neo (new engine option). The pictured Airbus A320-271N WL F-WNEO (msn 6101) will soon enter its flight test program. The manufacturer issued this statement:

The assembly of Airbus’ first A320neo has been completed following painting of the aircraft and the mounting of Pratt & Whitney PW1100G-JM engines. Msn 6101, which will be the first A320neo to fly, will soon start its ground tests to prepare for first flight.

The flight test campaign for the A320neo will kick-off in September 2014, paving the way for Entry Into Service in Q4 2015.

The A320neo “new engine option” incorporates many innovations, including latest generation engines and large Sharklet wing-tip devices, which together deliver 15 percent in fuel savings and a reduction of 3,600 tonnes of C02 per aircraft per year. With a total of nearly 2,700 orders received from more than 50 customers since its launch in 2010, the A320neo Family has captured some 60 percent of the market, clearly demonstrating its leadership.

Airbus also issued this statement about the upcoming test program:

The highly-efficient NEO (new engine option) single-aisle jetliner project is another step closer to taking flight with the rollout of the initial A320neo – a key milestone as Airbus continues on-schedule for the aircraft’s maiden flight.

Prominently featuring the NEO branding on its livery, this aircraft – designated MSN6101 in the company’s numbering system – is powered by Pratt & Whitney PW1100G-JM engines and is the first in Airbus’ A320neo Family developmental fleet. It is equipped with extensive flight test instrumentation for handling qualities, performance and engine tests, along with the high-altitude, and hot- and cold-weather campaigns.

In total, Airbus’ NEO flight-test fleet will comprise eight aircraft. This includes two A320neos, one A319neo and one A321neo for each of the new engine choices: Pratt & Whitney’s PW1100G-JM and the CFM International LEAP-1A.

The company’s rigorous A320neo Family flight-test and certification programme is facilitated by the jetliner’s fly-by-wire commonality, as well as previous flight dynamics testing during the Sharklet-certification campaign, explained Sandra Bour-Schaeffer, Project Flight Test Engineer for the NEO programme at Airbus.

Once msn 6101 takes flight, Airbus will begin with initial development and aircraft flight manual tests, before proceeding into its A320neo development and certification phase and maturity campaign – to ensure the A320neo fully meets customer requirements at service entry, which is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2015.

In addition, a second Pratt & Whitney-powered A320neo aircraft is planned to join the developmental fleet this year – fitted with lighter flight test instrumentation for noise, functionality, reliability testing and ETOPS approval.

Airbus already is well advanced with “up-front” A320neo testing, including approximately 250 flight hours performed on the company’s A320ceo (current engine option) in-house developmental aircraft to evaluate hardware and software for NEO flight control laws, and test bench validation of thrust reversers.
To further prepare for first flight, Airbus will begin a “virtual flight-test campaign” this summer, which includes simulator-based evaluations of flying scenarios and aircraft systems.

Incorporating its new engine choices, along with the application of Airbus’ fuel-saving Sharklets wingtip devices, the NEO shares over 95 per cent commonality with CEO aircraft – while delivering at least 15 per cent reduction in fuel consumption for operators.

Copyright Photo: Airbus.

 

VivaColombia to fly internationally to Balboa, Panama

VivaColombia (Medellin) is launching its first international routes to Balboa, Panama. The low fare airline will start daily flights to the former Howard Air Force Base, now known as the Panama Pacific International Airport in Balboa, Panama (BLB) (near Panama City) on August 1 from both Bogota and Medellin.

VivaColombia is the first and only low-cost airline in Colombia. It started operations on May 25, 2012, from the Jose Maria Cordova Airport located in Rionegro, in the state of Antioquia.

Copyright Photo: Greenwing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 EI-EPX (msn 1454) became HK-4905 when it was delivered on October 31, 2012..

 

Bingo Airways suspends operations, attempts to reorganize

Bingo Airways (Warsaw) this month suspended operations according to Pasazer.com. According to the article, the airline has lost some important charter contracts and two of its Airbus A320s (SP-ACO and SP-AEK) have left the fleet. The carrier’s AOC has been suspended by the Polish authorities as the attempts to find additional funding and reorganize according to CEO Marek Sidor.

Read the article (in Polish): CLICK HERE

Bingo Airways started operations on May 18, 2012.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by Bingo Airways). Airbus A320-214 SP-AEK (msn 1450) taxies at Antalya, Turkey.

Bingo Airways: AG Slide Show

Bingo FAs (Bingo)(LRW)

Bingo logo

Route Map:

Bingo 6.2014 Route Map (LRW)

 

 

 

Livingston to shut down on July 14

Livingston Compagnia Aerea (2nd) (New Livingston) (Milan-Malpensa) will cease operations on July 14 after the ENAC announced the revocation of its Air Operators Certificate (AOC). The airline is guaranteeing its flights until then and is also appealing the decision.

On June 25 the airline issued this statement:

Livingston (2nd) logo-1

New Livingston has filed a petition with the Court of Busto Arsizio for the admission to the settlement with creditors procedure pursuant to article 161, paragraph 6 of the Italian Bankruptcy Law (so called “concordato preventivo”).

New Livingston resolved to apply for the above mentioned instrument, in order to overcome a temporary financial crisis ascribable to, inter alia, the bankruptcy of Aeradria S.p.A., significant delays in collecting certain credits and the recent revocation of the PSO route Alghero – Roma Fiumicino and vice versa (in connection with such measure, a claim against Regione Autonoma della Sardegna is still in progress). The above, in compliance with the so-called “par condicio creditorum”.

New Livingston has already provided to ENAC the documentation needed in order to immediately obtain the revocation of the suspension measure of its carries license starting from 00:01 of  July 14, 2014 or the issuance of a provisional carrier license, on the basis of article 9, paragraph 1, of the Regulation (EC) No. 1008/2008 and paragraph 4.6 of the Circular ENAC EAL-16 of 27 February 2008.

New Livingston will continue its full operation of scheduled connections guaranteeing its high standards of quality and safety.

The second version of Livingston started operations on March 31, 2012.

Previously on December 15, 2011 Riccardo Toto bought the assets of defunct Livingston Energy Flight (1st) from the company in receivership. The name “Livingston” was reborn. The airline is privately held.

The company currently operates three Airbus A320s and the main route is from Rome to Alghero, Sardinia.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 EI-ERH (msn 2157) holds short of the runway at Palma de Mallorca (PMI).

Livingston (2nd): AG Slide Show

 

Volaris is coming to Portland, Oregon

Volaris (Mexico City) is coming to Portland, Oregon. Starting on October 6 Volaris will operate twice-weekly Guadalajara-Portland service according to Airline Route.

In other news, Volaris launched four new routes from Mexico City to Villahermosa, Tampico, Los Mochis and Oaxaca on June 17. Volaris will also increase from 2 to 4 daily frequencies on the Mexico – Monterrey route from July 15.

With these additions, Volaris now serves 19 domestic destinations from MEX.

Copyright Photo: Airbus A320-233 N514VL (msn 5337) named “Jorge” taxies from the gate at Los Angeles International Airport.

Volaris: AG Slide Show

 

Iberia resumes flights to Istanbul

Iberia (Madrid) on June 20 resumed daily flights between its Madrid hub and Istanbul, Turkey. The restored route will now operate with Airbus A320s, with Business and Economy sections.

Iberia has also announced it is restoring IB service to Amsterdam, Athens and Stockholm in Europe, and to Montevideo in Uruguay and Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic starting on September 1.

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 EC-IZR (msn 2242) in the Oneworld color scheme completes its final approach to the runway at the Madrid (Barajas) hub.

Iberia:

Air Astana to resume operations to Dubai on September 1

Air Astana (Almaty) will restart services from Almaty to Dubai from September 1, 2014.

Flights will be operated by Airbus A320 family aircraft. Flights from Almaty to Dubai International Airport (DXB) will depart at 07:55 and arrive 10:25 at Terminal 1. Dubai-Almaty flights will depart at 11:40 arriving at Almaty at 17:55.

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 P4-XAS (msn 4519) arrives at Southend after a test flight.

Air Astana: AG Slide Show

Air Armenia is coming to Frankfurt

Air Armenia (Yerevan) will start a new twice-weekly route to Frankfurt on September 2. Previously the growing carrier started twice-weekly Paris (CDG) service on April 30.

Air Armenia is a private airline established in Armenia in 2003 and is based at Yerevan’s Zvartnots Airport.

For 10 years since its foundation, Air Armenia has only operated cargo flights, except for a short period in 2003-2004 when it was contracted to operate passenger flights.

Upon liberalization of air passenger transportation policy in Armenia in 2013, Air Armenia launched regular passenger services to Russia, and is planning to expand to other destinations in the CIS, Europe and Middle East.

Copyright Photo: OSDU/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 EK32039 (msn 1439) arrives in Moscow (Vnukovo).

Air Armenia:

Wizz Air to open a new base in Riga, Latvia

Wizz Air (Hungary) (Budapest) has announced the opening of its 17th base in Riga, Latvia. Wizz Air is initially deploying one Airbus A320 aircraft and opening 4 new routes from Riga to Barcelona, Doncaster/Sheffield, Dortmund and Beauvais (near Paris).

Wizz Air is not only adding new flights from Riga, but also increasing the frequencies on the existing services to London (Luton) and Torp (near Oslo). Wizz Air is now offering 8 routes to 6 different countries from the Latvian capital. The airline believes its expansion in Riga can stimulate the local job market in aviation and the tourism sector with more visitors now able to travel to Latvia on its low fare services.

Wizz Air on May 19, 2014 celebrated its 10 year anniversary of its first flight from Katowice in southern Poland to London (Luton) on May 19, 2004. The low fare airline now operates a fleet of 52 Airbus A320 aircraft on 300 routes from 18 bases, connecting 96 destinations across 35 countries. It transported over 13.9 million passengers in the financial year ending on March 31, 2014.

In addition, Wizz Air on October 26, 2014 is expanding service from Bucharest, Romania with the launch of two weekly flights to Basel/Mulhouse/Freiburg and Nuremberg.

Copyright Photo: Paul Bannwarth/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 HA-LPK (msn 3143) lands at EuroAirport serving the Basel/Mulhouse/Freiburg area.

Wizz Air (Hungary): AG Slide Show

Routes from Rigia, Latvia:

Wizz Air 6.2014 Riga Route Map

Virgin America narrows its first quarter net loss

Virgin America (San Francisco) today reported its financial results for the first quarter of 2014. The company reported a net loss of $22.4 million for the quarter, compared to a net loss a year ago of $46.4 million, resulting in a $24.0 million year-over-year improvement.

The airline continued:

The airline significantly narrowed its net loss from the same period in 2013 with a 51.8 percent year-over-year improvement.

First Quarter 2014 Financial Highlights

Operating Revenue: Total operating revenue of $313.4 million, an increase of 4.0 percent over the first quarter of 2013.

Revenue per Available Seat Mile (RASM): RASM increased 0.9 percent, to 11.28 cents. Year-over-year

RASM growth was impacted by the Easter and Passover travel peaks shifting to April in 2014 (in 2013, these holidays fell earlier in the year), as well as a more than four-fold increase in the percentage of cancelled flights from the year earlier period due to severe winter weather in 2014 – including a significant number of cancellations during the busy, high-RASM Presidents’ Day holiday travel period.

Cost per Available Seat Mile (CASM): Total CASM increased 0.2 percent, to 11.76 cents. CASM excluding fuel costs increased 2.4 percent year-over-year, to 7.59 cents. CASM was negatively impacted by the high level of cancellations, as well as a 6.9 percent decrease in average stage length.

Operating Loss: First quarter 2014 operating loss of $13.1 million was a $1.9 million improvement over

Virgin America’s operating loss in the year prior. Operating margin improved by 0.8 percent year-over-year.

Net Loss: $22.4 million net loss for the quarter, compared to a net loss a year ago of $46.4 million, resulting in a $24.0 million year-over-year improvement.

Capacity: Available seat miles (ASMs) increased 3.0 percent year-over-year. The airline ended the quarter with 53 aircraft.

Liquidity: Unrestricted cash was $132.9 million as of March 31, 2014, an increase of $74.8 million since March 31, 2013.

Executive Commentary

“Given our network’s focus on trans-continental flying to the East Coast and with 30 percent of our revenue generated by New York markets alone, we bore the brunt of this year’s winter storms with a significant increase in cancellations. Yet despite the challenging operating and financial environment brought on by the severe winter weather and a shift in holiday travel, Virgin America improved its year-over-year net results in the first quarter,” said David Cush, Virgin America’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “With our first full year of net income in 2013, this marks the sixth straight quarter that we have delivered improved year-over-year financial results. In addition, our continued sweep of the major travel awards remains a testament to the work of our 2,800 teammates who consistently deliver the best product in the skies – despite the tough operating conditions for the quarter.”

In March, the California-based airline reported fourth quarter results and its first-ever full year profit in 2013, with a net income of $10.1 million, an improvement of $155.5 million over 2012. Total operating revenue for 2013 was $1.4 billion, a $91.8 million increase and 6.9 percent improvement over 2012. Virgin America achieved the highest year-over-year percentage increase in RASM of all major U.S. airlines in 2013.

Acquisition of Strategic Assets

As of the first quarter of 2014, Virgin America had finalized the purchase of slot assets at Washington Reagan National Airport (DCA) and at New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA) that became available as part of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) settlement agreement resolving American Airline’s merger with US Airways. With the further acquisition of new gates at Dallas’ Love Field (DAL) which were made available in the same settlement process and with the support of Dallas consumers and local leaders, the airline will launch four new daily nonstop flights from DAL to LGA, three daily nonstop flights from DAL to DCA, and three daily nonstop flights from both Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to DAL as of October 2014. These acquisitions will allow Virgin America to significantly strengthen its network. The airline will be the only carrier at Love Field to offer a consistent, upscale product on every flight — with three classes of service, WiFi, in-seat power outlets, confirmed seating and touch-screen seatback entertainment available for every guest. Virgin America will be the second low-cost airline to serve all three major New York-area airports. In addition, the airline closed and funded a $40.0 million financing facility with two major banks early in the second quarter of 2014 to finance these slot purchases and further increase unrestricted cash.

Read the analysis by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 N633VA (msn 3230) approaches the runway at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York City.

Virgin America: AG Slide Show

 

Virgin America announces faster Wi-Fi service

Virgin America (San Francisco) has just released this statement about its upgraded Wi-Fi service:

Five years ago, Virgin America became the first airline to offer Gogo In-flight Wi-Fi service on every flight. And we’re proud to say that we still retain that distinction today – as the only U.S. airline to offer Wi-Fi connectivity on every single domestic flight. As technology has improved and as more and more people are logging in at 35,000 feet, we’re equally pleased to share that as of this Fall – Virgin America will be the first airline to offer Gogo’s faster ATG-4 Wi-Fi service to flyers on every flight. The new ATG-4 service offers more bandwidth within the cabin, resulting in a faster web experience for travelers looking for their “office in the sky.”

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 N849VA (msn 4991) now only displays a “SF” (San Francisco Giants) logo on the engines. The crew of N849VA prepares to land at Washington’s Reagan National Airport (DCA).

Virgin America: AG Slide Show

Video: Upgrading the fleet:

 

JetBlue Airways announces two new routes from Washington Reagan National Airport

JetBlue Airways (New York) today announced two new nonstop routes from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) to Fort Myers (RSW) and West Palm Beach (PBI) in Florida. The two routes will launch on December 18, 2014 and operate during the winter season. The airline today also launched three new routes from DCA to Charleston, SC (CHS), Hartford/Springfield (BDL) and Nassau, Bahamas (NAS). Additionally, JetBlue will boost its existing service to Tampa, Florida, with a second daily flight effective July 2, 2014.

The new routes and increased frequency follow the allocation of 12 slot pairs to JetBlue by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) as a result of divestitures from the American Airlines-US Airways merger. More flights will be announced this summer as JetBlue continues to ramp up its presence at DCA.

JetBlue entered the Reagan National market in 2010, becoming the airline’s 62nd destination. With the three new routes launched today, the airline now offers 24 daily flights, with service to Boston, Charleston, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Hartford/Springfield, Nassau, Orlando and Tampa, as well as San Juan, Puerto Rico. New service to Ft Myers and West Palm Beach will both launch on December 18, 2014. JetBlue will operate up to 30 roundtrips per day at DCA by the end of 2014.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N665JB (msn 3348) arrives at Reagan National Airport (DCA).

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

Mandala Airlines to be shut down on July 1, Tigerair pulls the funding

Tigerair Group (Singapore), which controls 35.8 percent of the Mandala Airlines (Tigerair Mandala) stock, has decided to stop funding the loss-making Indonesian carrier. The company issued this statement:

PT Mandala Airlines deeply regrets to inform customers that its airline (operating under the brand-name of  Tigerair Mandala) will cease operations from July 1, 2014.

Customers who hold a flight booking with flight designator “RI” should note the following:

All Mandala flights from now to June 30, 2014 will operate as scheduled.

The last flight to be operated will be RI 545 on July 1, 2014, HKG-DPS departure time 0235.

All other flights operated by Mandala on July 1, 2014 and thereafter will be cancelled.

As a gesture of goodwill, the Tigerair Group will assist all affected customers with either a flight transfer to a TR flight if seats are available, or a refund for tickets booked for travel on July 1 or thereafter. Tigerair has no legal obligation or responsibility to do so. All legal obligations and responsibilities still rest with Mandala.

The Board and staff of Mandala wish to thank all customers for their support and sincerely apologize for any inconvenience caused.

Mandala Airlines originally started operations in February 1970 and was resurrected on April 5, 2012 under the assistance of Tigerair (Singapore).

Read the full report from Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord/AirlinersGallery.com. Mandala Airlines’ Airbus A320-232 PK-RMP (msn 5073) with the Tigerair tail arrives at Bangkok.

Tigerair Mandala: AG Slide Show

Tigerair (Singapore): AG Slide Show

Spirit Airlines to add two routes this winter from Latrobe

Spirit Airlines (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) has announced it is starting new seasonal service between Arnold Palmer Regional Airport serving Latrobe (near Pittsburgh), Pennsylvania (LBE) and two additional Florida cities – Tampa (TPA) and Fort Myers (RSW) starting on December 18, 2014.

These nonstop seasonal flights are in addition to Spirit’s regular, year-round service to Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Orlando.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N618NK (msn 5458) taxies to runway 09L at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL).

Spirit Airlines: AG Slide Show

Frontier adds three new routes from growing Cleveland

Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver) is again adding more routes from its new and growing Cleveland mini hub. Frontier is adding three new mainline routes from Cleveland to Chicago O’Hare (starting on October 1), Washington-Dulles (October 1) and New York-LaGuardia (October 26).

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 N209FR (msn 4641) approaches the runway at Washington (Reagan National).

Frontier Airlines (2nd): AG Slide Show

Frontier CLE Ad

 

Gulf Air today returns to Athens

Gulf Air (Bahrain) today (June 16) celebrated the resumption of operations to Athens with a ribbon-cutting ceremony held at Bahrain International Airport and attended by members of Gulf Air’s executive management team, Civil Aviation Authority, Bahrain Airport Services, Police Directorate of Bahrain International Airport, Public Administration of Ports Security, Department of Immigration and Passports, Airport’s National Security Department officials, and passengers travelling on the airline’s inaugural flight.

Gulf Air will be operating four weekly flights to Athens International Airport with an Airbus A320 aircraft in a two-class configuration, featuring 14 Falcon Gold Class seats and 96 Economy Class seats.

Copyright Photo: Jacques Guillem Collection/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 A9C-AM (msn 4827) taxies at Milan (Malpensa).

Gulf Air: AG Slide Show

Dalmatian is planning to launch operations on June 30

Dalmatian logo

Dalmatian (Zagreb) is a new airline in Croatia. The new carrier will launch operations on  June 30 with services to Hamburg, Rome, Stuttgart and Zurich. This will be followed by Dusseldorf, Geneva, Milan, Prague, Sofia and Warsaw on the following day of July 1. Dalmatian will also operate weekly seasonal flights to Larnaca, Cyprus from July 26 to October 1. The carrier is expected to utilize Airbus A320s.

The airline describes itself as a “new breed of hybrid low cost/low fare airline concept founded to pursue the growth opportunities in emerging markets of short and long distance air travel”.

The first Batik Air Airbus A320 rolls out of the paint shop

Batik Air A320-200 WL F-WWBO (PK-LAF)(13)(Grd) TLS (Airbus)(LRW)

Batik Air‘s (Jakarta and Manado) first Airbus A320, and the first for the Lion Group, has rolled out of the paint shop at Toulouse, France. Batik Air is a current Boeing 737NG operator. Airbus issued this short statement and photo:

The first Airbus aircraft for Indonesia’s Lion Group has rolled out of the paint shop hangar in Toulouse, France. With the airline’s colorful livery, the aircraft will be delivered in third quarter and will be operated by Lion Group’s full service unit Batik Air on its growing domestic and regional network.
The aircraft is the first from a major order placed by the Lion Group in March 2013 for a total of 234 A320 Family aircraft (109 A320neo, 65 A321neo and 60 A320ceo).

Copyright Photo: Airbus. The pictured A320-214 F-WWBO will become PK-LAF (msn 6164) on the hand over.

Batik Air: AG Slide Show

Wizz Air takes delivery of its 50th Airbus A320

Wizz-wizzair.com (Hungary) A320-200 WL F-WWIC (HA-LYE)(04)(Tko) TLS (Airbus-P. Pigeyre)(LRW)_edited-1

Wizz Air (Hungary) (Budapest) has taken delivery from Airbus of its 50th A320 Airbus aircraft during a special ceremony in Toulouse, France, taking the total of its A320 fleet to 52. The carrier was one of the first Eastern European Airlines to take delivery of an A320 with Sharklet fuel saving wing tip devices in April 2013. Wizz Air, an all Airbus operator, has ordered a total of 112 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Airbus/P. Pigeyre. The pictured Airbus A320-232 F-WWIC became HA-LYE (msn 6131) when it was delivered on June 10.

Wizz Air: AG Slide Show

Spirit Airlines announces new seasonal service from Boston to West Palm Beach

Spirit Airlines (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) has announced new seasonal service between Boston’s Logan International Airport (BOS) and Palm Beach International Airport (PBI), serving West Palm Beach, Florida starting on November 21, 2014.

Spirit offers nonstop service from Boston to seven cities, including Atlantic City, Chicago/O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fort Myers, Myrtle Beach, and beginning in November, West Palm Beach.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N618NK (msn 5458) in the special DFW advertising scheme lands at Baltimore/Washington (BWI)>

Spirit Airlines: AG Slide Show

Lufthansa lowers its profit forecast for 2014

Lufthansa (Lufthansa Group) (Frankfurt) has adjusted its earnings forecast. The company issue this revised forecast:

Deutsche Lufthansa AG is adjusting its earnings forecast as a result of the revenue development in the passenger and cargo businesses, which is below expectations: the company’s Executive Board is now projecting an operating profit for the current financial year of approximately EUR 1 billion ($1.35 billion)(approximately EUR 1.3 billion after adjustment for one-off effects). Previously the company had been forecasting an operating profit for 2014 of EUR 1.3 to 1.5 billion (EUR 1.7 to 1.9 billion after adjustment for one-off effects).

“The revenue risks mentioned when we presented the quarterly figures in early May have unfortunately materialized”, said Simone Menne, Chief Officer Finances and Aviation Services at Deutsche Lufthansa AG. The Group had already warned against increasing risks to the earnings forecast in the first quarterly reports. Above all it is the Group’s American and European business that has suffered from increasing excess capacity, which leads to falling prices on these routes. “We will therefore noticeably reduce our capacities during the winter timetable period”, emphasized Menne. Strong capacity growth by state-owned Gulf carriers was a major concern, she added. They are advancing ever further into the European market, also by means of investments in European airlines, she explained

The strike by the “Vereinigung Cockpit” pilots’ union in early April, had a negative results impact of EUR 60 million ($81.2 million). Only recently has booking activity returned to normal. Additionally, impairments on receivables denominated in Venezuelan Bolivar have burdened the result of the current year by EUR 60 million so far.

Given these economic developments the Executive Board no longer believes that the earnings target for 2015 of EUR 2.65 billion ($3.58 billion) set as part of the Score program can be achieved. The company nonetheless intends to substantially increase its operating profit compared with the current year. The basis for this will be laid with the noticeable reduction of capacities during the winter timetable period. Additionally, in order to boost the competitiveness of the Lufthansa Group, structural measures will be implemented at a higher pace. The details will be presented by Carsten Spohr, Chairman and CEO of the Executive Board in July. The Executive Board sets a new target of approximately EUR 2 billion on an operating profit level for 2015, provided that conditions remain stable. Menne emphasized: “The current development underlines the importance of Score for the group. We are achieving a sustainable reduction of our unit costs and now aim to stabilize the revenue trends, in order to counteract an ever intensifying competitive situation”, said Simone Menne.

Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 D-AIUD (msn 6033) is the only A320 painted by Lufthansa in the special “Fanhansa” colors for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil.

Lufthansa: AG Slide Show

 

JetBlue sells LiveTV to the Thales Group for $399 million

JetBlue Airways (New York) announced today it has completed its sale of its wholly-owned subsidiary LiveTV to Thales Group for $399 million in cash. The sale will allow LiveTV to continue the innovation that has set it apart as the leader in inflight entertainment (IFE) and onboard connectivity under Thales ownership. JetBlue will maintain its relationship with LiveTV to continue providing customers with differentiated, industry-leading inflight entertainment and connectivity products.

LiveTV is the leading provider of live IFE and connectivity systems for commercial airlines. In 2013, LiveTV and its partner ViaSat introduced Ka-band satellite-driven onboard connectivity, a game-changing technological advancement.

Meanwhile Bloomberg Businessweek is taking a look at the challenges facing JetBlue (and others) in providing high speed inflight Internet service. Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Showing off the LiveTV antennae on top, Airbus A320-232 N821JB (msn 5417) banks before landing at Washington (Reagan National).

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

 

AirAsia India to start low-fare operations on June 12

AirAsia (airasia.com) (India) (Chennai) will commence low-fare operations on June 12 between Bangalore and Goa.

According to the Economic Times, AirAsia India “will charge passengers for check-in luggage. Cancelled tickets will not earn a refund. Passengers cannot eat their own food on board.”

AirAsia India is a joint venture, partnering AirAsia, Tata Sons Limited and Mr. Arun Bathia of Telestra Tradeplace Pvt. Ltd.

The entrance of AirAsia is expected to ignite a new fare war in India.

Read the full account from the Sydney Morning Herald: CLICK HERE

Read the feature article by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. AirAsia India’s fleet will be drawn from the 475 A320 Family aircraft ordered by the AirAsia Group. To date, almost a third of the aircraft on order have already been delivered and are flying on AirAsia Group’s operations out of Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Jakarta, Manila and now Chennai. Airbus A320-216 F-WWBV (msn 6015) became VT-AIF on delivery.

Qatar Airways to fly nonstop to Zagreb, Doha-London A380 service to start on July 1

Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced that commencing on October 1, 2014, the airline will offer nonstop flights from Doha to Zagreb three times weekly. The new direct flights will provide a more convenient alternative to the current daily flights to Zagreb which fly via Budapest before moving onwards to the Croatian capital.

From October 1, passengers will be able to fly daily directly to Budapest, four times a week to Zagreb via Budapest on a linked flight, and three times a week directly to Zagreb on the delinked flight.

The new route schedule will increase seats to 240 Business Class and 2,640 Economy Class per week, an increase of 72 and 384 seats respectively. The airline will continue to fly the Airbus A320 aircraft direct to and from Zagreb. With its two-cabin configuration, comprising of 12 seats in Business Class and 132 Economy Class seats

In other news, Qatar Airways has delayed its planned Airbus A380 inaugural service on the Doha – London (Heathrow) route to July 1 instead of June 17 according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 A7-AHY (msn 5395) with Sharklets prepares to land in Geneva.

Qatar Airways: AG Slide Show

Niki to fly daily Vienna-Abu Dhabi flights starting on November 24

Niki (flyniki.com) (Vienna) on November 24 will launch a new long-range daily route from Vienna to Abu Dhabi, the hub of partner Etihad Airways, following in the path of owner Airberlin (Berlin). The six-hour flight will be operated with Airbus A320 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Jacques Guillem Collection/AirlinersGallery.com.

Niki: AG Slide Show

 

Airberlin to introduce a daily flight from Stuttgart to Abu Dhabi on December 1

Airberlin (airberlin.com) (Berlin) is adding another feeder route to its partner Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi). Airberlin will introduce a daily flight between Stuttgart and Abu Dhabi on December 1, 2014, opening up 41 onward travel destinations for flight guests.

The new Abu Dhabi route, still subject to government and regulatory approvals, is Airberlin’s first long-haul destination from Stuttgart. The service will be operated by an Airbus A320 aircraft configured with 12 seats in Business Class and 132 in Economy Class.

Altogether, airberlin will offer 63 flights per week this coming winter season from Germany to Abu Dhabi jointly with Etihad Airways, flying twice daily from Berlin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt and Munich, as well as daily from Stuttgart.

Copyright Photo: Bernhard Ross/AirlinersGallery.com. With the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Brazil, Airberlin has decorated its Airbus A320-214 D-ABFK (msn 4433) in this special “Fan Force One Bitburger” color scheme. D-ABFK taxies at Frankfurt.

Airberlin: AG Slide Show

Air New Zealand orders 14 new Airbus aircraft, the first Boeing 787-9 completes its first flight

Air New Zealand A321neo (13)(Flt)(Airbus)(LRW)

Air New Zealand (Auckland) has announced it has placed an order for 10 Airbus A320neo aircraft (above), one A320ceo and three A321neo aircraft (above, image via Airbus). The signing ceremony took place at the IATA annual meeting today in Doha, Qatar.

In other news, on May 29 Air New Zealand’s first Boeing 787-9 (ZK-NZE) (above) took to the air for the first time, successfully completing its first production test flight in the skies above Seattle, Washington.

Copyright Photo: Daniel Gorun/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-9 ZK-NZE (msn 34334) taxies at Paine Field near Everett, WA.

The aircraft, which is in Air New Zealand’s signature black livery, is currently in the final phases of the delivery process before being formally handed over to the airline as the new owner.

Air New Zealand is the launch customer for the Boeing 787-9 and has 10 of these stretch versions of the 787 on order.

Air New Zealand 787-9 ZK-NZE (13-Black)(Tko) PAE (Air New Zealand)(LRW)

Copyright Photo: Air New Zealand/Boeing. ZK-NZE departs from PAE on its first flight.

This first test flight is known as a B1 flight where the two pilots put the aircraft through its paces thoroughly exercising its systems to verify performance while at the same time the functionality of every aspect of the cabin is tested in-flight.

The distinctive black aircraft departed from Paine Field airport north of Seattle at 1:45 pm (1345) local time. It reached an altitude of 11,800 meters (39,000 feet) and an airspeed of 360 knots which is standard for a B1 flight and returned to Paine Field three hours and ten minutes later.

Air New Zealand: AG Slide Show

Aegean Airlines reports a first quarter net loss of $11.4 million

Aegean Airlines (Athens) reported a first quarter net loss of $11.4 million. The company issued this statement:

Aegean reports first quarter 2014 results with consolidated revenue of €133.9 million, and after-tax losses during the seasonally weakest quarter of the year of €8.4 million ($11.4 million). On a pro-forma basis, i.e. assuming consolidation of Olympic Air in the respective period last year, losses narrowed compared to after-tax losses of €13.2 million in the first quarter of 2013 while revenue showed a 1% rise.

It is noted that results are not comparable with reported parent results of 2013 given the fact that the latter set of results did not include Olympic Air (Athens) as the acquisition was completed in October 2013.

Αegean Airlines and Olympic Air carried 1.6 million passengers in the first quarter of 2014, 12% more versus the previous year. Domestic network passengers increased by 17% to 930 thousand while international network passengers reached 700,000, 6% higher versus last year. Load factor improved by 1.8 percentage point to 73%.

Operating cash flow improved significantly resulting to an increase in the company’s cash and cash equivalents to €274 million from €239 million in December 2013.

Mr. Dimitris Gerogiannis, Managing Director, commented:

“Following the acquisition of Olympic Air, the initial benefits from network synergies are already evident and along with our new pricing policy are translated to improved load factors and increased connecting traffic during this seasonally weakest quarter for the year.

Pre-bookings for the summer season as well as our traffic results for April 2014 confirm the positive trend. Our investment in expanding our network and capacity with the addition of 5 airbus aircraft and 17 new international destinations as of May/June, takes place within a rising demand environment. On the other hand, available capacity offered is substantially increased by the majority of operators active to the Greek market.

As far as Olympic Air integration is concerned, implementation is progressing in line with targets, with the full synergy and scale economies benefits expected to mature with the next 12 months. At the same time, innovation and services that add value to our customers remain a top priority.”

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 SX-DVV (msn 3773) of Aegean Airlines taxies at London (Heathrow) while promoting the new Acropolis museum.

Aegean Airlines: AG Slide Show

Olympic Air (3rd): AG Slide Show

 

 

Jetstar Airways celebrates 10 years with a new A320 logo jet

Jetstar A320-200 VH-VGF (10th anniversary) MEL (Jetstar)(LR)

Jetstar Airways (Melbourne) on May 25 celebrated its 10th anniversary. The low-cost subsidiary of QANTAS Airways had a special ceremony at its Melbourne hangar to unveil a special orange and white 10th anniversary logo jet scheme on the pictured Airbus A320-232 VH-VGF (msn 4497).

Copyright Photos: Jetstar Airways. The unveiling ceremony at Melbourne. The left side carries #jetstargeneration titles. On the right side the A320 has “low fares forever” titles.

Jetstar A320-200 VH-VGF (14-#jetstargeneration)(Ceremony) MEL (Jetstar)(LR)

Jetstar Airways: AG Slide Show

Video: 10th Birthday – Pass the Parcel:

Video: Low fares are just part of the Jetstar story:

Wizz Air to go public on the London Stock Exchange

Wizz Air (Budapest) according to Reuters plans to list its shares on the London Stock Exchange, with the goal to raise 200 million euros ($273 million) in order to grow further.

Read the full story from Reuters: CLICK HERE

In other news, on May 19 the low-fare airline celebrated its 10th anniversary. The company issued this statement:

Wizz Air, the largest low-cost airline in Central and Eastern Europe on May 19 celebrated the 10 year anniversary of its first flight from Katowice in southern Poland to London Luton on May 19, 2004. Wizz Air was established with the ambition of making flying more affordable to the citizens of CEE. To the end of 2013, Wizz Air carried a total of 69 million passengers. Wizz Air has built a current network of over 300 routes and 96 destinations across 35 countries. In FY 2014, Wizz Air carried 13.9 million passengers and looks forward to welcoming many more passengers on board its flights in the years ahead.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 HA-LPI (msn 2752) taxies at Antalya.

Wizz Air: AG Slide Show

Routes from Budapest:

Wizz 5.2014 BUD Route Map

JetBlue announces two more routes from Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood

JetBlue Airways (New York) has announced two new nonstop routes from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport to Cartagena, Colombia (CTG) and Las Vegas, Nevada (LAS). Both flights will begin on October 29, 2014, the same day the airline will also launch its new nonstop service to Pittsburgh.

These three upcoming routes are in addition to the six international routes already launched within the last year from JetBlue’s South Florida focus city. New international destinations include San Jose, Costa Rica; Lima, Peru; Port-au-Prince, Haiti; Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago; Montego Bay, Jamaica; and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N510JB (msn 1280) approaches the runway at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) in the old Dots tail design and smaller aircraft titles.

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

SAS to launch seven new winter routes, will continue other summer routes into the winter

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS (Stockholm) for the winter season is launching seven new routes, with four routes going to holiday destinations in Spain. At the same time, twenty summer routes will continue during the winter timetable. SAS has launched a total of 53 new routes in 2014. This winter, SAS
passengers can enjoy flying direct on the following routes: Copenhagen-Las Palmas, Aalborg-Malaga, Billund-Malaga, Gothenburg-Geneva, Bergen-Las Palmas, Oslo-Hamburg and Oslo-Vilnius.

SAS is continuing to expand its range of direct routes from Scandinavian airports to popular Spanish holiday destinations throughout the winter. Four of the new winter routes go to Malaga, capital of the Costa del Sol, and Las Palmas, capital of Gran Canaria.

SAS will be operating a total of 34 routes from Scandinavia to seven destinations in Spain.

Geneva, Vilnius and Hamburg

The winter timetable also offers other new routes. During the skiing season, passengers from Gothenburg can visit the Swiss Alps with a new direct flight to Geneva, while SAS passengers from Oslo can fly to Vilnius over the Christmas period. In addition to this comes the launch of the Oslo-Hamburg route, which is attractive both for business and weekend travelers.

Selected summer routes continue in winter

As well as launching the new winter routes, SAS will continue operating twenty routes from the summer timetable during the winter – either as year-round routes or as additional routes during the Christmas holidays. So passengers from the SAS hubs of Stockholm, Oslo and Copenhagen can take a city break in Barcelona over Christmas and New Year, for example.

More frequencies on routes to the US

In the winter timetable SAS adds several departures to US destinations. SAS increases from five to six weekly departures from Stockholm to New York and Chicago and also increases with two more departures each week from Oslo to New York.

New routes from Denmark

Copenhagen-Las Palmas: November 1, 2014 to March 28, 2015, departure on Saturday
Aalborg-Malaga: December 20, 2014 to January 3, 2015 and February 7 to March 28,
2015, departure on Saturday
Billund-Malaga: December 20, 2014 to January 3, 2015 and February 7 to March 28,
2015, departure on Saturday

New routes from Norway

Oslo-Hamburg: From October 26, departing on Monday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday
Oslo-Vilnius: Departure December 19, 2014, December 21, 2014, December 26, 2014,
December 28, 2014, January 4, 2015, and January 5, 2015
Bergen-Las Palmas: November 1, 2014 to January 3, 2015 and February 21, 2015 to
March 28, 2015, departure on Saturday

New routes from Sweden

Gothenburg-Geneva: January 31, 2015 to March 21, 2015, departure on Saturday

Year-round routes

Copenhagen-Alanya, Copenhagen-Leeds, Copenhagen-Linköping, Oslo-Alanya, Oslo
-Aberdeen, Oslo-Aalborg, Stavanger-Tromsø, Stavanger-Houston, Stockholm-Nice,
Stockholm-Thessaloniki, Stockholm-Tel Aviv, Stockholm-Edinburgh, Stockholm
-Visby, Stockholm-Alicante, Stockholm-Hamburg.

During the Christmas holidays

Copenhagen-Barcelona, Copenhagen-Thessaloniki, Oslo-Barcelona, Stockholm
-Barcelona and Stockholm- Pristina.

Intercontinental routes

Oslo-New York: Daily departures except Saturday (Tuesday and Wednesday are new)
Stockholm-New York: Daily departures except Monday (Friday is new)
Stockholm-Chicago: Daily departures except Sunday (Thursday is new)

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 OY-KAP (msn 3086) prepares to land at the Stockholm (Arlanda) hub.

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS: AG Slide Show

JetBlue wins J.D. Power award for best low-cost airline for 10 years in a row

JetBlue Airways (New York) has been awarded highest honors in airline customer satisfaction among low-cost carriers by J.D. Power 2014 North America Airline Satisfaction Study℠, an estimable recognition the carrier has received every year from 2006 to 2014. JetBlue also ranked highest in customer satisfaction among all U.S. major airlines in 2005, when low-cost and traditional network carriers were combined in a single category, making this year’s achievement its tenth consecutive J.D. Power award.

The company issued this statement:

To have our customers honor us for customer satisfaction is truly gratifying. To receive that distinction 10 years in a row is both humbling and flattering—we are floored to be ranked “Highest in Customer Satisfaction among Low-Cost Carriers in North America” by J.D. Power.

The 2014 North America Airline Satisfaction Study SM measures customer satisfaction among both business and leisure customers of major North America carriers. The study is based on responses from 11,370 customers who flew on a major North America airline between March 2013 and March 2014. The study was fielded between April 2013 and March 2014, and measures overall customer satisfaction based on performance in seven measures (in order of importance): cost and fees; inflight services; boarding/deplaning/baggage; flight crew; aircraft; check-in; and reservation.

We don’t take these accolades lightly, and while we know there’s always room for improvement, it’s an incredible honor to know our customers appreciate the experience we deliver. To celebrate this momentous occasion, we decided to give 10 lucky winners a chance to really experience our award-winning product and service… by bringing back one of your favorite promotions of all time.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N828JB (msn 5723) in the Blue berries motif arrives in Los Angeles.

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

JetBlue Ad:

JetBlue JD Power Awards

 

 

Virgin America wins the battle for two gates at Dallas’ Love Field

Virgin America (San Francisco) has won the “Battle of Dallas”.

According to the Star-Telegram, Dallas City Manager A.C. Gonzalez stated he would approve an agreement with American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) to transfer its lease on two gates at the city-owned Love Field to Virgin America rather than hometown Dallas-based Southwest Airlines.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Previously Virgin America announced it was launching its “new business-friendly flights” from Dallas’ Love Field (DAL) to New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA), Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and San Francisco International Airport (SFO). The new flights take off in October 2014.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 N839VA (msn 4610) completes the final bank on the River Approach into Washington’s Reagan National Airport (DCA).

Virgin America: AG Slide Show

Virgin America Free Love Field

VivaAerobus begins its transition to the Airbus A320

VivaAerobus (Mexico City) formally launched its fleet transition to A320 aircraft today (May 14), after the airline started operating its first three Airbus A320 aircraft in April. The low cost carrier will receive an additional two A320s before the end of 2014. The A320s, powered by IAE, are configured in an all economy 180 seat configuration, 32 additional seats or a 22 percent increase in capacity as compared to VivaAerobus’ existing fleet of Boeing 737-300s.

The A320s will bring VivaAerobus improved fuel efficiency, performance and range, allowing the airline to ultimately expand its network service throughout Mexico and beyond. The aircraft will be based in the airline’s Cancun hub and fly to Mexico City, Monterrey, Veracruz, Tuxtla Gutierrez, Reynosa and Torreon. Additionally, the aircraft will operate from Mexico City to Reynosa and from Monterrey to Mazatlan.

By the end of 2016, the airline will have completed its fleet transition from 737-300 to become an all-Airbus operator. In October 2013 VivaAerobus signed a purchase agreement for 52 Airbus A320 Family aircraft (40 A320neo and 12 A320ceo), representing the biggest Airbus aircraft order by a single airline in Latin American history.

Copyright Photo: Greenwing/AirlinersGallery.com. A nice ramp portrait of Airbus A320-232 EI-ERH (msn 2157) at Dublin.

VivaAerobus: AG Slide Show

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