Tag Archives: Airbus

Air Serbia reports its first net profit for 2014

Air Serbia (formerly Jat Airways) (Belgrade) is prospering under its new brand and growing relationship with partner Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi). The flag carrier reported a 2014 net profit of €2.7 million ($3 million), a complete turnaround from its 2013 €73 million net loss.

The airline issued this statement:

Air Serbia tails (Air Serbia)(LRW)

Air Serbia, the national airline of the Republic of Serbia, reported a net profit of EUR 2.7 million for 2014. In its first full year of operation, the airline’s revenues rose by 87 per cent to EUR 262 million, marking the strongest results in the existence of the national carrier.

Audited by KPMG, these financial statements also reflect strong growth in passenger traffic and cargo volumes. A total of 2.3 million passengers travelled with the airline in 2014, 68 per cent more than in 2013.

Air Serbia logo

Air Serbia’s passenger carrying capacity, measured in Available Seat Kilometres (ASKs), increased by 74 per cent to 3.3 billion by the end of 2014. Despite this increase the airline’s seat load factor rose by three percentage points from 64 per cent in 2013, the last year of operation as Jat Airways, to 67 per cent in 2014.

Air Serbia Cargo also performed significantly better in 2014, carrying 2,700 tonnes of freight, a 67 per cent increase on 2013. Cargo services continue to be a major area of growth for Air Serbia.

In a year of significant capacity increase, Air Serbia’s 2014 average on-time performance at its hub, Belgrade’s Nikola Tesla International Airport, was 78 per cent. This represents a four percentage point improvement over the performance of the former Jat Airways.

Dane Kondić, Chief Executive Officer of Air Serbia, said: “These results are a great achievement validating the effectiveness of our strategy. We are proud to have been able to deliver on our mandate which was to achieve strong growth, to become the region’s leading carrier and, most importantly, to do so as a commercially viable and profitable enterprise, while becoming a key driver of economic growth in Serbia. The profit we have delivered in 2014 is, above all, a great sign for the future, as it lays a solid foundation going forward and is proof positive, of what can be achieved when the right strategies and governance structures are put in place. We owe a debt of thanks to our two shareholders – the Government of the Republic of Serbia and Etihad Airways for their ongoing support. I would also like to thank our staff for their contribution and hard work, without which, none of this would have been possible.”

James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Airways, said: “We are delighted with the progress Air Serbia has made in delivering on its performance objectives in the very competitive European market. Its continued success amidst these challenges will depend not only on continued investment in its workforce and in innovative products and services, but also on the ongoing and strict financial discipline and focus on cost which have marked its first year of operation.”

Since Air Serbia’s launch on October 26, 2013, the airline has undertaken a number of initiatives outlined in its turnaround plan to rebuild the national carrier and transform it into a profitable, stable, reliable and strong airline to serve Serbia and the broader Balkan region

The airline was rebranded and ten new generation Airbus aircraft were introduced, with eight A319 and two A320 added to the fleet. As a result, the average age of the jet fleet has decreased from 25 to 10 years, delivering greater reliability and significantly lowering the costs of operation.

During 2014, Air Serbia’s network of direct routes grew to 40 destinations in 30 countries, the last of which was the highly symbolic launch of flights to Zagreb in December, re-establishing a link between Zagreb and Belgrade, last flown 23 years ago. The airline also expanded to 35, the number of destinations served with codeshare partners – airberlin, Aeroflot, Etihad Airways, Etihad Regional and Tarom. Coupled with the introduction of a modern and reliable fleet, the network expansion strategy has been a key driver of the significant growth in passenger numbers and cargo volumes.

Aviolet logo

Air Serbia also established a dedicated charter brand – Aviolet – which operates four rebranded and refurbished Boeing 737-300 aircraft. Aviolet operated over 520 return flights during the 2014 summer season and transported over 90,000 tourists to popular vacation destinations in Turkey, Greece, Egypt and Italy, among others.

Air Serbia FAs (Air Serbia)(LRW)

Air Serbia’s growth has created a significant number of new jobs for Serbian nationals. During 2014, the airline grew its workforce by more than 400 new professionals. The technical department of Air Serbia has employed 44 engineers and technicians to establish the line maintenance facility at Belgrade’s Nikola Tesla International Airport. A number of new pilots were hired in the first half of 2014, including three of the airline’s first female pilots. The airline’s largest ever global drive for pilots was launched in September 2014, and resulted in the recruitment of over 40 new pilots by the end of the year. A nation-wide recruitment drive for cabin crew attracted nearly 1,700 candidates – the highest in the history of the airline, indicating that the national airline not only inspires confidence, but that it has become an employer of choice among young Serbian nationals.

Presently, over 1,900 employees work at Air Serbia, including its subsidiaries Air Serbia Catering and Air Serbia Ground Services.

Air Serbia launched a ground-breaking multi-channel advertising campaign in October, with the tag-line “Air Serbia. The New Wings of Europe”, to boost awareness of the airline and position Belgrade and Serbia as an attractive destination and a convenient European air transport hub. The success of the campaign was recognised by the Association of Advertising Professionals of Serbia (UEPS), receiving two golden awards.

The campaign has to date, received a record 800,000 YouTube views (below):

Top Copyright Photo: (all others by Air Serbia): SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 YU-APH (msn 2645) approaches the runway at London (Heathrow).

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Eurowings outlines its first intercontinental routes, will be operated SunExpress Germany

Lufthansa Group (Frankfurt) details the first long-range routes for the new Eurowings:

The new Eurowings will fly from October 25, 2015 on its new intercontinental flights  from Cologne/Bonn Airport. The first flights will take off to the Caribbean, Dubai and Thailand.
The new Eurowings is building on the successful Germanwings concept, which is positioned as an innovative quality low-cost airline and “low-cost” brand in Germany and Europe.

The new routes will include Dubai, the Thai cities of Bangkok and Phuket, as well as the Caribbean destinations of Varadero, Cuba and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

The new Eurowings routes will be flown by Airbus A330-200s. From the coming winter season onwards, the fleet will initially consist of two aircraft and will be expanded to a total of seven Airbus A330s.

SunExpress Deutschland (SunExpress Germany), a joint venture of Lufthansa (Frankfurt) and Turkish Airlines (Istanbul), will operate the long-haul route aircraft on behalf of the new Eurowings with its own cockpit and cabin personnel.

Vienna has now been chosen as the first location outside of Germany as a new Eurowings base.

Initially two Airbus A320s will be put into operation on European routes in the first step of the expansion.

The fares will correspond to Germanwings’ popular “fly à la carte” principle, which was successfully introduced in 2013. The fares BEST, SMART and BASIC, which have been extremely popular with passengers, will also be used by the new Eurowings. The fare classes include various levels of services and service packages.

The BEST fare is offered to the most demanding private customers who value comfort and exclusiveness. This offer includes comfortable seating in an extra-wide seat with lots of leg-room in the exclusive forward cabin area. The BEST fare also includes two free items of luggage each of up to 23 kg, à la carte menus on board, priority check-in, lounge access and the chance to collect miles (including HON Circle miles).

The cheaper SMART fare includes extra services such as one piece of luggage of up to 23 kg, two meals and soft drinks on board, as well as the chance to collect miles.

The BASIC fare offers a straightforward travel experience at a reasonable price, to which further services can be added on an individual basis.

On long-haul routes, the new Eurowings offers three attractive options. The exclusive BEST area comprises the first three seating rows and offers the latest ZIM seats. These seats correspond to the new Lufthansa premium economy class model, which offers seat pitch of 115 cm, has a backrest that can be adjusted by up to 20 cm, allows a 130° angle, and offers every guest their own armrest as well as comfortable leg and foot rests. Economy tickets can be booked with both SMART and BASIC fares. The “More Comfort” option, which can be booked as an add-on, offers seats with greater seat pitch along with a blanket and a pillow. State-of-the-art in-flight entertainment is offered on all intercontinental flights across all fares, which can be enjoyed both on screens in the backrest of the seat in front as well as on passengers’ own electronic devices such as notebook computers, tablets and smartphones. All long-haul aircrafts will also have Wi-Fi on board.

On routes within Germany and on routes throughout Europe, the existing Eurowings fleet will gradually be replaced from the beginning of 2015 by aircraft in the new Eurowings livery (above). The 23 Bombardier CRJ900s operated until now will also be replaced by Airbus A320s.

Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss/AirlinersGallery.com. The first Airbus A320, the pictured A320-214 D-AIZQ (msn 5497) in new livery flew on February 1, 2015 from Hamburg to Prague.

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Iberia to take early delivery of 8 Airbus A330-200s to speed up the retirement of the A340-300s

Iberia A330-200 (13)(Flt)(Iberia)(LR)

Iberia (Madrid) and Airbus (Toulouse) have reached an agreement over the early delivery of the A330-200s the airline ordered last year, which will now join the long-haul fleet 14 months earlier than initially planned, between December 2015, and November 2016.

The new aircraft will replace the older Airbus A340-300s.

The new twin-engine, wide-bodied aircraft, with a range of up to 13,400 km, consumes less fuel than the four-engine A340-300s they replace, and also generate less noise and air pollution.

The earlier delivery dates also speed the upgrading of Iberia’s entire long-haul fleet with the new cabins, fittings, and entertainment and communications systems, for an improved customer experience.

Iberia is currently renewing its long-haul fleet and also its long-haul cabins. In recent years the IAG parent has ordered 24 new long-haul aircraft for Iberia, the eight A330-300s delivered in 2013 and 2014; the eight A330-200s; and eight A350-900s to be delivered later.

Meanwhile, the company is retrofitting its 17 Airbus A340-600s with new long-haul cabins.

Image: Iberia. The first new Airbus A330-200 for Iberia will now arrive in December 2015.

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US Airways flight 445 makes an emergency landing in Denver with smoke in the cabin

US Airways (Phoenix) flight US (AWE) 445 from Charlotte to Denver made a safe emergency landing at Denver International Airport yesterday (March 4) after smoke reportedly filled the cabin. Passengers safely evacuated the pictured Airbus A321-211 registered as N188US (msn 1724) (now painted in American Airlines colors). The 158 passengers and six crew members used the emergency chutes to safely evacuate the aircraft.

Video Below: By CalNinjaMonkey.

American Airlines issued this statement:

American Airlines confirms that US Airways Flight 445, from Charlotte Douglas International Airport to Denver International Airport was involved in an incident at Denver this afternoon. While taxiing to the gate, the pilot was alerted to possible smoke in the cabin. The passengers and crew deplaned via the slides and are all in the terminal.

We are in contact with the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration.

The Airbus A321 had 158 passengers and six crewmembers.

Read the full account from CBS 4 in Denver: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A321-211 N188US (msn 1724) arrives at Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT).

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Spirit Airlines to add Latrobe-Chicago O’Hare flights

Spirit Airlines (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood) will begin new daily nonstop flights from Latrobe, Pennsylvania (near Pittsburgh). The carrier announced new daily service from Arnold Palmer Regional Airport to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport which begins May 7, 2015.

With these additional routes Spirit Airlines will operate nonstop flights from Latrobe to seven cities. Current routes include: Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fort Myers, Las Vegas (starting April 16, 2015), Myrtle Beach, Orlando, and Tampa.

From Chicago O’Hare, Spirit will operate flights to a total of 23 cities nonstop with this additional route. Current routes from Chicagoinclude: Atlanta, Atlantic City, Baltimore/Washington, DC, Boston,Denver, Dallas/Fort Worth, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Houston, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Myrtle Beach, New Orleans, New York, Oakland, Orlando, Philadelphia (starting April 16, 2015), Phoenix, Portland (OR), San Diego (starting April 16, 2015), and Tampa.

Copyright Photo: Chris Sands/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-132 N534NK (msn 3395) touches down in Las Vegas.

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Turkish Airlines Airbus A330-300 skids off the runway at Kathmandu

Turkish A330-300 TC-JOC crash landing at Kathmandu 3.4.15 (Mallika Aryal)(LR)

Turkish Airlines (Istanbul) flight TK 726 from Istanbul skidded off a foggy runway today (March 4) while landing at Kathmandu, Nepal. The Airbus A330-303 TC-JOC (msn 1522) had already aborted a previous approach and was circling the airport before attempting to land again. The aircraft skidded off the runway and the nose gear collapsed. The passengers used the emergency chutes to evacuate the airliner.

According to this report by NBC, only one passenger out of the 224 passengers and crew members on board was injured.

Turkish Airlines issued this short statement:

Our flight number TK726 from İstanbul to Kathmandu overshot the runway after landing at Napal / Kathmandu.

All of our passengers and flight crew evacuated safely.

Necessary precautions are taken; after the technical investigation, this unfortunate incident will be determined and announced to public.

Read the full report from NBC: CLICK HERE

Read the full report from The Independent: CLICK HERE

Twitter photo by Mallika Aryal.

Video:

International Airlines Group reports higher earnings in 2014 due to Iberia turnaround

International Airlines Group (IAG) (British Airways, Iberia and Vueling Airlines) (London and Madrid) presented Group consolidated results for the year to December 31, 2014:

IAG period highlights on results:

Fourth quarter operating profit €260 million (2013: operating profit of €113 million) before exceptional items

Revenue for the quarter up 9.9 per cent to €5,015 million, up 5.8 per cent at constant currency

Non-fuel unit costs for the quarter down 0.8 per cent at constant currency

Operating profit for the year to December 31, 2014 of €1,390 million (2013: operating profit of €770 million) before exceptional items

Revenue for the year up 8.0 per cent to €20,170 million and passenger unit revenue for the year down 0.4 per cent at constant currency

Fuel unit costs for the year down 7.8 per cent also down 7.8 per cent at constant currency.

Non-fuel unit costs before exceptional items for the year down 1.9 per cent, down 3.9 per cent at constant currency

Cash of €4,944 million at December 31, 2014 was up €1,311 million on 2013 year end

Adjusted gearing up 1 point to 51 per cent and adjusted net debt to EBITDAR improved 0.6 to 1.9 times

Willie Walsh, IAG Chief Executive Officer, said:

“We’re reporting strong full year results with an operating profit before exceptional items of €1,390 million which is up 80.5 per cent. Total revenue was up 8.0 per cent with non-fuel costs up 7.0 per cent and fuel costs up 0.6 per cent on capacity growth of 9.3 per cent.

“Iberia made an operating profit of €50 million compared to an operating loss of €166 million last year. The airline’s turnaround has been remarkable, both financially and operationally, and we’re very proud of its achievement especially its strong cost discipline. In 2013 we said our intention was for Iberia to breakeven in 2014 and it has fulfilled that promise.

“British Airways’ operating profit increased to €1,215 million up from €762 million last year which shows significant progress towards its long term targets. Vueling made an operating profit of €141 million, compared to an operating profit of €139 million in 2013, with the airline focusing on flexible growth.

“We achieved a strong unit cost performance, down 4.1 per cent, through increased productivity, supplier cost savings and lower fuel unit costs. The latter was boosted by the introduction of more efficient aircraft into our fleet and lower fuel prices in the last quarter of the year. However, the positive effect of the oil price reduction has been partly offset by hedging and significant currency impact.

“In the quarter, we made an operating profit before exceptional items of €260 million which is up from €113 million last year. Revenue for the quarter was up 9.9 per cent. Non-fuel costs were up 10.5 per cent and fuel costs decreased by 0.4 per cent on capacity growth of 5.8 per cent.”

Copyright Photo: Iberia Airbus A321-211 EC-JQZ (msn 2736) taxies at London’s Heathrow Airport.

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