Tag Archives: Airbus

As TAP Portugal marches towards privatization, the unions threaten to strike on December 27-30, the government attempts to block any disruptions

TAP Portugal (Lisbon) has had a challenging year in 2014. As the government continues to move towards privatization, the company has been facing an on-going labor strife situation. TAP’s 12 unions had been planning to strike the company from December 27-30 in protest against the privatization. However the council of ministers remains resolved to privatize and has evoked a civil requisition to block the strike. Now the unions are threatening legal action against the government.

Read the full story from the Portugal News Online: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 CS-TNR (msn 3883) departs from London (Heathrow).

TAP Portugal aircraft slide show:

EasyJet flight attendants in France to strike on Friday

EasyJet (easyJet.com) (UK) (London-Luton) flight attendants, angry over scheduling and pay, announced a strike on Friday. The planned action is expected to force the low-cost carrier to cancel about half its flights in France the day after Christmas day.

Though workers from SNPNC-FO and UNAC unions said their strike is to start on Christmas, there are no flights scheduled that day, so the walkout will only impact travellers flying on December 26.

EasyJet said in a statement it “doesn’t know exactly how many workers are to down tools”, but anticipates fewer than half of all flights will be impacted.

The British airline will know the extent of the strike Tuesday because aviation workers are legally obligated to announce strikes 48 hours in advance.
But general director, of EasyJet’s France operations, François Bacchetta told AFP agency the company expected “less than half of flights” to be cancelled.

“On Monday, we will pre-emptively cancel a certain number of flights in order to transfer passengers, so they can adjust their plans,” he said.

Workers are upset over schedules that “can change twenty times per month”, making “family life totally impossible”, said Laurent Nicolas of the SNPNC-FO flight attendants’ union.

Bacchetta acknowledged the demands of the industry were “complicated” and that he understood the “frustration” of workers.

But he was less lenient with protests over salaries, which he said were currently entering annual negotiations.

EasyJet employs about 1,000 people in France, including 600 flight attendants.

Read the full report from The Connexion: CLICK HERE

Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock reporting from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-111 G-EZEW (msn 2300) arrives in London (Gatwick).

EasyJet (UK) aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Airbus to deliver the first Airbus A350-900 to Qatar Airways on Monday

Qatar A350-900 F-WZFA (A7-ALA)(06)(Grd) TLS (Airbus)(LRW)

Qatar Airways (Doha) will now take delivery of its first Airbus A350-900 on Monday, December 22. Apparently the previous unspecified issues that delayed the original handover date have been worked out. Qatar Airways will now receive the pictured A350-941 F-WZFA/A7-ALA (msn 006) on Monday as the launch customer of the new type and the first airline to take delivery.

Airbus issued this statement:

The historic delivery of Airbus’ first A350 XWB – which is to be received on December 22 by launch customer Qatar Airways – will mark another major milestone for this advanced widebody jetliner that is setting new standards in terms of passenger comfort, operational efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

The A350 XWB program has been particularly busy during 2014 as Airbus and other stakeholders worked toward the headline-making initial handover. This activity was highlighted by the continuation and completion of A350-900 flight testing; which was followed by Type Certification by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), received in September and November, respectively.
Lasting just over 14 months, which is an industry record, the A350-900 flight test and certification programme comprised a five-aircraft fleet which performed over 2,600 flight hours in total. During this campaign, Airbus successfully completed the certification trials which took the airframe and its systems beyond their design limits to ensure airworthiness criteria are fully met.

The remarkable fuel-efficiency is the product of cutting-edge technology. More than two-thirds of this jetliner’s airframe is made from composite materials, titanium and advanced aluminium alloys. The fuselage and wings are built from carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic. The latest aerodynamics sharpen the A350’s operational efficiency, while its Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines use the most advanced propulsion technology.

At the end of November 2014, the A350 XWB had logged 778 firm orders from 41 customers worldwide. To meet this demand, Airbus is ramping up production progressively to reach the planned rate of 10 aircraft per month by 2018.

Copyright Photo: Airbus.

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IAG reveals failed Aer Lingus bid

International Airlines Group (IAG) (London), the parent company of British Airways (Heathrow), Iberia (Madrid) and low cost carrier Vueling Airlines (Barcelona), has revealed that the board of Aer Lingus (Dublin) has rejected a potential takeover attempt.

IAG confirmed in a stock exchange disclosure it had “submitted a proposal” to make an offer for Aer Lingus, but it added that this was “rejected by the board of Aer Lingus.”

IAG added: “There can be no certainty that any further proposal or offer will be forthcoming. A further statement will be made if and when appropriate,”.

“The board has reviewed the Proposal and believes that it fundamentally undervalues Aer Lingus and its attractive prospects. Accordingly, the Proposal was rejected on 16 December 2014,” Aer Lingus said in a stock market disclosure. “Shareholders are strongly advised to take no action.”

This is not the first time Aer Lingus has been the target of a takeover bid. Irish competitor Ryanair (Dublin) has made several attempts to acquire its fellow Irish carrier, but each of these efforts has been blocked on competition grounds.

Last September, a UK Competition Commission (UKCC) investigation into these unsuccessful Ryanair bids revealed that Aer Lingus was looking to combine with another carrier in 2012 and has more recently explored a variety of merger and acquisition scenarios. They also revealed that several sets of talks relating to Aer Lingus acquiring, merging and forming strategic initiatives with other airlines.

Ryanair was ordered to sell its 29.8% stake in Aer Lingus down to 5% by the UKCC, partly based on concerns the shareholding could jeopardize Aer Lingus’ consolidation with other carriers. Ryanair responded by putting its entire stake up for sale, with certain conditions. More recently Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary has bemoaned a total lack of interest in the Aer Lingus stake.

O’Leary, speaking at the release of Ryanair’s first-quarter results this summer, said: “We’ve had depressingly received no interest in Aer Lingus stake, which has been up for sale for about 18 months.”

The takeover bid from IAG could have could have valued the Republic’s flag carrier at at least €1 billion, industry sources estimate. Earlier, Aer Lingus shares had jumped 14% after the Financial Times reported that IAG was considering a bid.

Reported by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Aer Lingus A320-214 EI-DEN (msn 2432) approaches the runway in London (Heathrow).

Aer Lingus aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Vistara to launch operations on January 9, 2015

Vistara (Delhi) has announced it will launch its joint venture operations on January 9, 2015. The full service airline will start operations from Delhi to both Mumbai and Ahmedabad with 148-seat Airbus A320s.

The airline issued this statement:

With its distribution channel and booking website going live, Vistara, the much-awaited JV between Tata and SIA is ready to take to the skies. The full service carrier announced that its first flight would take-off on January 9, 2015. With Delhi as its hub, Vistara will initially offer flights to Mumbai and Ahmedabad.

Delivering on its brand promise of “a world class flying experience” Vistara is the first full service carrier in India to introduce the ‘Premium Economy’ class. Vistara’s 148-seater A320-200 will offer three separate cabins, with 16 seats in Business, 36 in Premium Economy and 96 in Economy Class. Seats for all three classes are on sales and there will not be a separate fuel surcharge. Vistara is also the first airline in India to offer a value based frequent flyer program called Club Vistara, wherein loyalty points are accrued based on actual spend on the ticket fare rather than miles travelled. Keeping up with the times, airline has done away with the physical loyalty card.

Vistara’s technology partners – Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Wipro and Amadeus – will be responsible for its customer support system and IT services. The technology partners are poised to help Vistara fulfill its brand promise of personalization of service and providing a seamless experience to customers. Wipro will manage the Vistara Customer Service Centre, which will handle all customers’ enquiries on reservations, ticketing and Club Vistara FFP. As Vistara’s strategic partner, TCS will be engaged in its various IT initiatives ranging from application service transformation to consulting and business-impacting technology initiatives. Amadeus Altéa Suite will power Vistara’s travel reservations, inventory management, airport departure control systems, as well as revenue accounting and revenue management.

Vistara logo (large)

The brand name of the airline, Vistara is derived from the Sanskrit word, ‘Vistaar’, which means ‘limitless expanse’, and draws inspiration from the brand’s domain – the ‘limitless’ sky. The logo is derived from a ‘yantra’, a perfect mathematical form that reflects the unbounded universe. Its fluid interconnecting lines reflect the seamless experience the airline wants to offer its customers. The eight-pointed star at the centre of the logo reflects the high standards Vistara is committed to and the excellence that will be a hallmark of the airline.

Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 F-WWDF (msn 6388) will be delivered as VT-TTF.

V Air commences operations

V Air (subsidiary of TransAsia Airways) (Taipei) on December 17 launched schedule low-fare operations. The first route was from Taipei (Taoyuan) (TPE) to Bangkok (Don Mueang) (DMK) using this 194-seat A321. The new airline will compete with Tigerair Taiwan. The second route to Chiang Mai, Thailand is scheduled to start in early January.

Top Copyright Photo: Manuel Negrerie/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A321-231 B-22608 (msn 6009) holds short of the runway at Taipei (Sung Shan).

Below Photo: V Air. The V Air crew waves goodbye to the inaugural flight.

V Air inaugural flight (V Air)(LR)

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Hawaiian Airlines finalizes the purchase of six Airbus A330-800neo aircraft

Hawaiian A330-800neo (01)(Flt)(Hawaiian)(LRW)

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has announced a definitive purchase agreement with Airbus, finalizing the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) announced earlier this year to acquire six new A330-800neo aircraft starting in 2019. The agreement replaces Hawaiian’s previous order for six A350-800s. The transaction includes rights to purchase an additional six aircraft as part of the carrier’s path to growth and increased efficiency.

The A330-800neo wide-body, powered by the recently launched Rolls Royce Trent 7000 engine, is similar in size to Hawaiian’s A330-200 which seats 294 passengers in a two class configuration (First and Coach), and will incorporate aerodynamic enhancements that will increase range by up to 400-nautical miles and reduce fuel consumption by 14 percent per seat. According to the carrier, “the aircraft is the right-sized solution for the carrier’s future growth strategy.”

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but the aircraft have a total list-price value of approximately $2.9 billion if all of the purchase rights are exercised. Hawaiian Airlines’ existing orders include an additional three new A330-200s for delivery in 2015 and 16 narrow-body A321neo aircraft starting in 2017.

Hawaiian Airlines currently operates a fleet of 50 aircraft, comprised of 29 wide-body, long-haul aircraft (294-seat A330-200 aircraft and 252 to 264-seat Boeing 767-300 aircraft), 18 narrow-body 118- to 123-seat Boeing 717-200 aircraft and three 48-seat ATR42-500 for Neighbor Island flights.

Image: Airbus.

Hawaiian Airlines aircraft slide show: