Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) yesterday (June 18) took delivery of its first Airbus A320 (N219NV).
In other news, Allegiant introduce twice weekly nonstop service on June 7 between Provo International Airport (PVU) and Oakland International Airport (OAK).
Copyright Photo: Greenwing/AirlinersGallery.com. Sister-ship and former Iberia A320-214 EC-HUL (msn 1347) is awaiting delivery at Dublin as N217NV.
Singapore Airlines (Singapore) has finalized its order for 30 additional Airbus A350-900s, plus options for a further 20 aircraft. The agreement firms up a commitment announced last month. Under the terms of the agreement, Singapore Airlines will be able to select either the baseline A350-900 or the larger A350-1000 when exercising the options.
This is the third order from Singapore Airlines for the A350-900. The deal sees the carrier’s total firm orders for the all-new aircraft increase to 70, plus 20 options. Singapore Airlines will operate the A350-900 on long haul and regional services.
Oman Air (Muscat) and Boeing (Chicago) today announced an order for five Boeing Next-Generation 737-900 ER airplanes at the 2013 Paris Air Show. The order, previously unidentified on the Boeing Orders and Deliveries website, is valued at $473 million at current list prices.
With this order, Oman Air becomes the first customer in the Arabian Gulf region to order 737-900 ERs. Currently, the airline operates a fleet of 15 Boeing Next-Generation 737-800s and two 737-700s. With this new order, the airline now has a backlog of six 737-800s and five 737-900 ERs. In addition, Oman Air has six Boeing 787-8s on order.
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Operated by Travel Service Airlines in full Oman Air colors, Boeing 737-86N OK-TVU (msn 38025) prepares to land at Dubai.
SriLankan Airlines (Colombo) has signed an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with Airbus for six A330-300s and four A350-900s. The MOU will have to be finalized into a firm contract.
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. SriLankan already operates the Airbus A330-200. The A330-300 and A350-900 will be new types for the flag carrier. Airbus A330-243 4R-ALB (msn 306) prepares to land at Dubai.
AirlineRatings.com has cautioned travelers to steer clear of the LET410, Antonov An-12, Ilyushin Il-76, and CASA 212 aircraft which have the worst crash rate over the past 10 years.
AirlineRatings.com which rates 425 airlines for both safety and product has completed a comprehensive analysis of the crash records of 55 different aircraft in active service.
Editor Geoffrey Thomas said that AirlineRatings.com had only looked at the records for the last ten years as they were relevant to today’s travelers.
“The crash rates of aircraft that dominated the 1970s and 1980s but are no longer in passenger service are irrelevant today,” said Mr Thomas. “We only looked at aircraft that are carrying passengers in 2013.”
“We have used the Boeing database which is an industry standard and supplemented that with our own records and those of Aviation-Safety.net and Ascend,” he said.
The survey also ignores piston-powered planes and those smaller aircraft used mainly for charter work. ”Clearly flying on pure jet powered aircraft is far safer as seven out of the ten aircraft with bad crash rates are turboprops.”
“Aircraft such as the 777, A380, A340, 717 and 787 have never had a fatality,” said Mr Thomas.
However, Mr Thomas said that while some aircraft such as the Twin-Otter have a high crash rate it did not mean that it is a dangerous aircraft.
“It’s actually a great aircraft but you have to look also at which airline is operating them and how and where they are flying,” said Mr Thomas.
“For instance operating into mountainous regions in a third world country with limited navigation aids can be dangerous.”
|Worst Crash Rate||Fatal Crashes|
|Best safety record|
Air Costa (Vijayawada, India) has acquired three E-Jets for the launch of its scheduled regional airline service in India. Two Embraer 170s have been arranged from ECC Leasing, Embraer’s wholly-owned subsidiary. The new carrier has also purchased one new Embraer 190 from Embraer. The firm order is already included in Embraer’s backlog as an “undisclosed” customer.
Air Costa today said it is in the process of getting final approvals from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and would launch operations in July 2013.
The no-frills Air Costa will initially fly to Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad and Vijayawada as well as key secondary cities in the north and northwest of the country.
The new operator had initially planned to launch operations using five Bombardier Q400s.
Copyright Photo: Air Costa. Formerly operated by Gulf Air as A9C-MA, Air Costa will lease this Embraer ERJ 70-100LR G-CHJI (msn 17000278) from ECC Leasing Company as VT-LSR.
Boeing (Chicago) and and Korean Air (Seoul) today announced that the airline has agreed to purchase five 747-8 Intercontinental airplanes and six 777-300 ER (Extended Range) jetliners, valued at approximately $3.6 billion at current list prices. Boeing will work with Korean Air to finalize the order, at which time the order will be posted to Boeing’s Orders and Deliveries website.
Korean Air is the only airline in the world to order both the passenger and freighter variations of the 747-8. When today’s order is finalized, Korea’s flag carrier will have 10 747-8 Intercontinental airplanes on order. The airline has taken delivery of three of its seven 747-8 Freighters on order.
Korean Air currently operates a fleet of 90 Boeing passenger airplanes that consist of 737, 747 and 777 airplanes. The airline also operates an all-Boeing cargo fleet of 27 747-400, 747-8 and 777 Freighters. In February 2012, Korean Air became the first airline in the world to operate both the 747-8 and 777 Freighters.
Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Korean Air is already an operator of the Boeing 747-800F freighter. Korean Air Cargo Boeing 747-8HTF HL7609 (msn 37132) climbs briskly in the Southern California sky after departing from Los Angeles International Airport.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Royal S. King/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-3B5 ER HL7782 (msn 37643) lands at Paine Field near Everett.
Embraer S.A. disclosed a firm order from Japan Airlines (JAL) (Tokyo) today for another four Embraer 170 jets. The firm order is already included in Embraer’s backlog as an “undisclosed” customer. With this new agreement, the total number of firm orders for the E170 from JAL is 15 aircraft.
As with the previous aircraft ordered by JAL, these four E170s will be configured with 76 seats in a single-class layout and will be operated by J-Air (Nagoya), JAL’s wholly owned subsidiary that serves the company’s domestic network. The airline already operates twelve E170s, with an outstanding dispatch reliability of 99.7% over the last 12 months.
Copyright Photo: Akira Uekawa/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer ERJ 170-100ST JA218J (msn 17000314) approaches Tokyo (Haneda) for landing.
Bombardier Aerospace (Montreal) disclosed today that a previously announced firm order for 10 Bombardier CS100 aircraft was placed by Odyssey Airlines, a new airline that intends to operate from London City Airport. The firm order was announced on June 24, 2011.
According to Reuters, Odyssey Airlines plans to launch nonstop business class flights from London City Airport to New York and other destinations in Europe.
Doric Lease Corporation has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the purchase of 20 Airbus A380s at the 50th Paris Le Bourget Airshow. The agreement was signed today by Mark Lapidus, CEO of Doric Lease Corp and John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer, Customers.
With this investment, Doric will offer a tailored A380 leasing solution and will make the aircraft even more accessible to both new and existing A380 operators around the world who prefer to opt for the flexibility of an operating lease. Doric already has significant experience with the A380, ranking as the third largest wide-body lessor worldwide by value, and the world’s largest asset manager of leased A380s. Doric has a six billion US$ aircraft portfolio under management, including 18 A380s acquired through sale-leaseback arrangements.
Virgin Australia to upgrade the Perth-Sydney route to all Airbus A330s on weekdays, expands its code-share program with Etihad Airways
Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) has announced that from October this year, it will operate its Airbus A330 aircraft on all Perth-Sydney weekday flights.
The introduction of a seventh Airbus A330 to Virgin Australia’s fleet later this year will see these aircraft operate all Perth-Sydney and Perth-Melbourne weekday services and two out of three Perth-Brisbane weekday services.
The airline now offers all customers on flights between Perth and the East Coast fully inclusive hot meals and beverages, as well as in-flight entertainment.
“We have had an extremely positive response to the introduction of our Airbus A330 “Coast To Coast” service and we are very pleased to now be offering this on all Perth-Sydney and Perth-Melbourne weekday flights.
The Airbus A330 aircraft feature Virgin Australia’s designer Business and Economy Class product, which includes luxury leather seating, generous seat recline and a range of gourmet food offerings.
In other news, Virgin Australia has announced flights to Milan, Italy and Amsterdam, Netherlands will be added to its codeshare agreement with Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) from June 3, 2013.
The announcement follows recent regulatory approvals being granted allowing Virgin Australia to codeshare on flights into Italy and the Netherlands.
Customers travelling on Virgin Australia’s network will be able to connect through Abu Dhabi on to Milan or Amsterdam on the same ticket. Velocity Frequent Flyer members will also be able to earn points and status credits on these routes.
The codeshare flight between Abu Dhabi and Milan will be operated by a two-class Airbus A330-200 seven times per week. Abu Dhabi to Amsterdam will be operated by a two-class Airbus A330-200 seven times per week. Etihad and Virgin Australia fly 28 times per week from Australia to Abu Dhabi, connecting to 14 codeshare destinations in Europe.
This is a continuation of the roll-out of Virgin Australia’s alliance with Etihad Airways, which already includes 50 codeshare and interline destinations globally. Virgin Australia will continue to work closely with Etihad Airways to develop a network aligned with the needs of their customers.
Etihad Airways currently operates flights from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane into Abu Dhabi.
Copyright Photo: Olivier Gregoire/AirlinersGallery.com.
AMR Corporation (Dallas), the parent company of American Airlines, Inc. (Dallas/Fort Worth), and US Airways Group, Inc. (US Airways) (Phoenix) today announced the senior leadership team responsible for guiding the new American Airlines after the closing of the companies’ expected merger.
As previously announced, Tom Horton, 52, will serve as Chairman of the Board of the new American Airlines. Doug Parker, 51, will serve as Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors. The senior leadership team announced today includes:
- Scott Kirby, 45, President: responsibilities include planning, marketing, sales, alliances, pricing/yield management and operations
- Elise Eberwein, 48, Executive Vice President, People and Communications: responsible for human resources, media relations, internal communications, social media and public affairs
- Beverly Goulet, 58, Chief Integration Officer: will lead the complex integration process of merging American Airlines and US Airways into one airline
- Robert Isom, 49, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Executive Officer of US Airways, Inc. post-close: responsible for all aspects of airline operations, including customer service, flight operations, maintenance, regional carrier management, cargo, safety and security
- Stephen Johnson, 56, Executive Vice President, Corporate Affairs: responsibilities include corporate and legal affairs, government and regulatory affairs, labor relations, and real estate
- Derek Kerr, 48, Chief Financial Officer: responsible for oversight of all financial areas, including financial planning and analysis, corporate finance and treasury functions, purchasing, controller and audit functions and investor relations
- Maya Leibman, 47, Chief Information Officer: responsible for all information technology systems, including systems development, infrastructure, and planning
- William Ris, 65, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs: responsible for all federal and international government and regulatory affairs and public policy
Kirby, Eberwein, Isom, Johnson and Kerr will join the new American from US Airways; Goulet, Leibman and Ris will join from American.
American Airlines and US Airways also noted that Dan Garton will step down as President and Chief Executive Officer of American Eagle Airlines later this year. A successor will be named prior to Mr. Garton’s departure.
AMR and US Airways also announced today the members of the Board of Directors of the combined company after the closing of the companies’ expected merger. The new Board will be comprised of the following individuals, who the companies believe have the experience, breadth and perspective to guide the new American Airlines to create value for all of the company’s stakeholders:
- John T. Cahill, Lead Independent Director
- James F. Albaugh
- Jeffrey D. Benjamin
- Michael J. Embler
- Matthew J. Hart
- Alberto Ibarguen
- Richard C. Kraemer
- Denise M. O’Leary
- Ray M. Robinson
- Richard P. Schifter
As previously announced, AMR and US Airways agreed to combine to create the new American Airlines, a premier global carrier. Headquartered in Dallas-Fort Worth, the new American Airlines will become a highly competitive alternative for consumers to other global carriers and will provide greater flight opportunities, with more than 6,700 daily flights to 336 destinations in 56 countries. The combined airline will offer customers more choices and increased service across a larger worldwide network and through an enhanced oneworld® Alliance. Together, American Airlines andUS Airways are expected to operate a mainline fleet of almost 950 aircraft and employ more than 100,000 people worldwide. The merger is subject to regulatory approvals, approval by US Airways shareholders, other customary closing conditions and confirmation of American Airlines’ Plan of Reorganization by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.
Bottom Line: The new American with be CEO Doug Parker’s airline managed by mostly his former US Airways managers. Although the American name is retained (as it was with US Airways), it is really America West Airlines now operating as the new American Airlines when the merger is approved.
Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. De Biasi/AirlinersGallery.com. Old and new AA tails meet at Washington (Reagan National), a key strategic airport for the new American.
Video: The two companies salute their rich heritage:
Air Lituanica (Vilnius) is a new Lithuanian airline that is set to commence operations with an Embraer 170 leased from Estonian Air. The new airline intends to launch operations on June 30 to Brussels and on July 8 to Amsterdam. The airline intends to expand later to Berlin, Prague, Munich, and Moscow.
Planned Route Map:
The company has presented this information about the new company on its website:
Air Lituanica is a new Lithuanian airline. The company plans to begin convenient direct flights from Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, and to improve air travel links with Lithuania.
In preparation for the start of flights, Air Lituanica is presenting to the public its company brand, which is inspired by Lithuanian history and aviation tradition.
The new company’s name commemorates the nonstop flight of Lithuanian pioneer pilots Steponas Darius and Stasys Girėnas across the Atlantic Ocean in a small aircraft named Lituanica in 1933. The company’s logo features an old-style Lithuanian cross with two transepts, a symbol which was often used in Lithuanian aviation in the inter-war period. In the Air Lituanica logo this cross is modernised and it becomes stylised aircraft propeller blades.
Air Lituanica company symbols also make use of the ducal seal of Vytautas Magnus, Grand Duke of Lithuania, to symbolise the Lithuanian origin of the airline. The company symbol is presented on a rich red background. Historically, red was the most important colour for symbols of nationhood of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, representing energy and vitality.
Air Lituanica, our new airline, will base its services on the fundamental values of flight safety, reliability and convenience.
All Images: Air Lituanica.
Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) inaugurates nonstop service today (June 7) between San Diego and Lihue, Kauai. The flight operates daily through August 26, and then will operate four days a week. Alaska also flies nonstop from San Diego to Honolulu and Maui.
Alaska Airlines now offers 171 flights a week from San Diego to a dozen cities stretching from Hawaii to Mexico to the East Coast.
|Summary of new service:|
|Start date||City pair||Departs||Arrives||Frequency|
|June 7||San Diego-Kauai||10 a.m.||1:10 p.m.||Daily until Aug. 26,|
|then Mon, Tue, Thu, Sat|
|June 7||Kauai-San Diego||11:10 a.m.||7:30 p.m.||Daily until Aug. 26,|
|then Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun|
|Times based on local time zones.|
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-890 WL N558AS (msn 35177) climbs away from Anchorage.
Bombardier Aerospace (Montreal) and WestJet (Calgary) today (June 6) announced the delivery of the first of 20 DHC-8-402 (Q400) NextGen turboprop airliners ordered by WestJet. The aircraft will be operated by the new regional carrier, WestJet Encore (Calgary) and will serve multiple destinations, beginning in Western Canada in its first year of service. WestJet also holds options for 25 additionalQ400 NextGen aircraft.
Earlier this year, WestJet announced plans to begin service with Encore on June 24, 2013, opening new routes to Fort St. John and Nanaimo, British Columbia, as well as Brandon, Manitoba, on September 3, 2013. Flights to points in Alberta and Saskatchewan are to be added later this year, along with additional flights to cities already served by WestJet.
Today, Bombardier Aerospace hosted a special delivery ceremony in Toronto alongside more than 100 WestJetters, including Gregg Saretsky, President and Chief Executive Officer, WestJet and Ferio Pugliese, President, WestJet Encore, and Executive Vice-President, WestJet. Also on site in Toronto, where the Q400 NextGen airliners are manufactured, were Mike Arcamone, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, Simon Roberts, Vice-President and General Manager, Turboprop Programs and the Toronto Site, Bombardier Aerospace and guests from the federal, provincial and municipal governments.
Top Copyright Photo: WestJet. Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) C-FOEN (msn 4440) “401″ flies over Toronto’s downtown Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Bombardier. C-FOEN has small WestJet Encore titles by the forward L1 door.
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is planning to de-hub the money-losing Memphis hub this fall. Delta reached a high 0f 240 flights a day in June 2009. MEM is a former hub of Northwest Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul).
Memphis will be looking for other airlines to fill the vacant routes.
Read the full report from The Washington Post: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Delta is concentrating on its largest and most profitable hubs like New York (JFK). Airbus A320-212 N376NW (msn 1812) prepares to depart the runway at JFK.
MEM Airport Map (Memphis International Airport):
AMR Corporation (American Airlines) (Dallas/Fort Worth) has received an approval from the bankruptcy court judge, Sean Lane, to send its reorganization and merger plan to the unsecured creditors according to this report by Reuters. This reorganization is unique in that the creditors will receive a 3.5 percent share in the new company under the proposal. Usually creditors do not receive any value after a Chapter 11 reorganization. Secured creditors will be paid in full.
On June 7, 2013 AMR issued this statement:
AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines, Inc., announced that the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York entered the order approving the Disclosure Statement filed in connection with the company’s proposed Plan of Reorganization (the Plan). The Court also authorized American to begin soliciting votes on the Plan of Reorganization from creditors and stockholders. Solicitation packages will be distributed by June 20 and the voting deadline is July 29. The hearing before the Court to consider confirmation of the Plan is scheduled for August 15, 2013.
The Plan is supported by the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors. Holders of approximately $1.6 billion of prepetition unsecured claims also have committed to vote to accept the Plan.
“This is a significant step forward in our efforts to complete the most successful restructuring in aviation history,” said Tom Horton, AMR’s chairman, president and CEO. “We’re in the home stretch of our restructuring and thanks to the hard work of our team, we are positioned to emerge a highly competitive, leading global airline focused on delivering the very best for our customers, our people, and our investors.”
The proposed Plan is to become effective concurrently with the consummation of a merger with US Airways. The proposed merger is expected to maximize recoveries for all of the company’s economic stakeholders and the proposed Plan provides a recovery of 3.5% of the common stock (on an as-converted basis) of the combined company for holders of existing AMR equity securities, with the potential for such holders to receive additional shares.
Under the terms of the Merger Agreement with US Airways, stockholders of US Airways will receive one share of common stock of the combined company for each share of US Airways common stock then held. The aggregate number of shares of common stock of the combined company issuable to holders of US Airways equity instruments (including stockholders, holders of convertible notes, optionees, and holders of restricted stock units) will represent 28% of the diluted equity ownership of the combined company. The remaining 72% of the diluted equity ownership of the combined company will be issued under the Plan to AMR’s stakeholders, AMR’s labor unions, and certain employees of AMR.
Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com.
Do you want to pay an annual subscription to check your bags? United Airlines is the first U.S. airline to offer this service
United is the only U.S. carrier to offer an annual subscription for its extra-legroom economy seating and checked baggage service charges. Terms and conditions apply to each of the offers, which can be found at www.united.com/subscriptions, and the subscriptions may be given as gifts.
Travelers may access Economy Plus for a year starting at $499, and customers can select the region and the number of travelers on their subscription.
Economy Plus seats offer customers additional legroom to stretch out and relax. United offers more extra-legroom economy seating than any other U.S. airline, with Economy Plus available on most of the airline’s nearly 700 mainline aircraft and nearly 180 United Express aircraft. Economy Plus seating, when available, remains complimentary for Premier-level MileagePlus members.
United’s checked baggage subscription enables customers to pre-pay standard checked baggage charges for one year, starting at $349. Customers may tailor their subscription by choosing up to two bags, the number of travelers and preferred geographic region.
Additionally, customers may now use MileagePlus miles to purchase an annual United Club membership, which currently offers access to the 49 United Club locations, as well as Copa Club locations and participating Star Alliance affiliated airport clubs worldwide.
One-year membership pricing starts at $500 or 65,000 miles for general MileagePlus members, with discounts for Premier members. An initiation fee of $50 or 7,000 miles applies for all new United Club memberships.
In other news, United Airlines today executed a definitive purchase agreement with AltAir Fuels for cost-competitive, sustainable, advanced biofuels at commercial scale, representing a historic milestone for aviation. With United’s strategic partnership, AltAir Fuels will retrofit part of an existing petroleum refinery to become a 30 million gallon, advanced biofuel refinery near Los Angeles, Calif. AltAir will produce low-carbon, renewable jet fuel and other renewable products. United has collaborated with AltAir Fuels since 2009 and has agreed to buy 15 million gallons of lower-carbon, renewable jet fuel over a three-year period, with the option to purchase more. The airline is purchasing the advanced biofuel at a price competitive with traditional, petroleum-based jet fuel, and AltAir expects to begin delivering five million gallons of renewable jet fuel per year to United starting in 2014. United will use the biofuel on flights operating out of its Los Angeles hub (LAX).
AltAir has partnered with an existing oil refiner for the operation of its first commercial facility and use of the refiner’s existing refinery near Los Angeles, Calif. This partnership is taking idled refining equipment and retooling it to increase the nation’s energy supply – positively impacting the southern California economy and providing the opportunity to sustainably power LAX flights.
Through process technology developed by Honeywell’s UOP, AltAir is retrofitting the existing refinery to produce renewable biofuel. AltAir has worked extensively with Honeywell’s UOP to demonstrate the commercial viability of the Honeywell Green Jet process. Utilizing this technology, licensed from UOP, the AltAir facility will be the first refinery internationally to be capable of in-line production of both renewable jet and diesel fuels. The facility will convert non-edible natural oils and agricultural wastes into approximately 30 million gallons of low-carbon, advanced biofuels and chemicals per year.
These advanced biofuels are drop-in replacements for petroleum-based fuel, requiring no modification to factory-standard engines or aircraft, with which they are fully compatible. This fuel provides the same performance as conventional, petroleum-based jet fuel. AltAir Fuels’ renewable jet fuel is expected to achieve at least a 50 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on a lifecycle basis.
“This refinery is important for two timely and significant reasons,” said AltAir’s President and COO Bryan Sherbacow . “First, the industry is delivering on the promise of commercial production of advanced biofuels that move beyond additives, like ethanol and biodiesel, to drop-in, replacement low-carbon fuels. Second, this project demonstrates the practical efficiencies these fuels allow by fully integrating into an operating petroleum refinery.”
United will support AltAir Fuels’ efforts to incorporate internationally recognized sustainability standards, such as those being developed by the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB). RSB is an international, multi-stakeholder initiative that brings together farmers, companies, non-governmental organizations, experts, governments and inter-governmental agencies concerned with ensuring the sustainability of biomass production and processing.
In 2009, United Airlines made history as the first North American carrier to perform a two-engine aircraft flight demonstration using sustainable biofuels derived from algae and jatropha. United also operated the first flight by a North American commercial airline using synthetic fuel made from natural gas in 2010.
In November 2011, United operated the first U.S. commercial flight powered by advanced biofuels. Flight 1403 departedHouston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport for Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, making United the first U.S. airline to fly passengers using a blend of sustainable, advanced biofuel and traditional petroleum-derived jet fuel.
In June 2012, United, along with the Boeing Company, Honeywell’s UOP, the Chicago Department of Aviation and the Clean Energy Trust, launched the Midwest Aviation Sustainable Biofuels Initiative (MASBI). MASBI is an effort by more than 40 organizations across the aviation biofuels supply chain to accelerate the commercialization of advanced biofuels in the Midwest.
United Airlines is a signatory to the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Users Group, whose members represent approximately 32 percent of commercial aviation fuel demand. United signed a pledge to pursue the advancement of drop-in biofuels that achieve important sustainability criteria, work with leading organizations to achieve biofuel certification standards and take actions to enable commercial use of aviation biofuels.
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 757-222 N538UA (msn 25222) prepares to land at Los Angeles International Airport.
FedEx Corporation (FedEx Express) (Memphis) announced today it had permanently retired or will accelerate the retirement of 86 aircraft and 308 related engines as it continues to modernize its aircraft fleet and improve the global network of FedEx Express.
The permanent retirement of aircraft and related engines announced today includes:
- Two Airbus A310-200 aircraft and four related engines;
- Three Airbus A310-300 aircraft and two related engines; and
- Five McDonnell Douglas MD-10-10 aircraft and 15 related engines.
The impact of retiring these aircraft, engines and parts resulted in an impairment charge of $100 million recorded in May 2013.
In addition, FedEx will accelerate by several years the retirement of:
- 47 McDonnell MD-10-10 aircraft and 172 related engines;
- 13 McDonnell MD-10-30 aircraft and 55 related engines; and
- 16 Airbus A310-200 aircraft and 60 related engines.
As of July 1, 2013, FedEx Express will complete the final retirement of the Boeing 727-200 fleet.
“We are modernizing our aircraft fleet by retiring older, less-efficient, and less-reliable aircraft and replacing them with modern aircraft to build a fleet with higher reliability and better cost efficiency,” said David J. Bronczek, president and chief executive officer of FedEx Express. “With the planned acquisition of new aircraft and projected slower economic growth than previously forecast, FedEx Express is lowering maintenance costs by aggressively parking and retiring aircraft.”
The impact of accelerating the retirement of aircraft will result in additional year-over-year depreciation expense of $74 million in FY14.
FedEx Express Aircraft Fleet Facts
- As of February 28, 2013, FedEx Express’s fleet totaled 660 aircraft, including 368 jet aircraft.
- During the four quarters ended on February 28, 2013, FedEx Express spent $3.8 billion on 1.2 billion gallons of jet fuel.
- The Boeing 757-200 is significantly more fuel efficient per pound of payload and has 20% additional payload capacity than the Boeing 727 it replaces.
- The Boeing 767 will provide similar capacity as the MD-10s, with improved reliability, an approximate 30% increase in fuel efficiency and a minimum of a 20% reduction in unit operating costs.
- The Boeing 767 shares spare parts, tooling and flight simulators with the B757.
The Board of Directors today declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.15 per share on FedEx Corporation common stock, an increase of $0.01 per share over the previous dividend payment. The dividend is payable on July 1, 2013 to stockholders of record at the close of business on June 17, 2013. FedEx remains committed to paying higher dividends to shareowners in years to come.
Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. The pictured Boeing 727-233 (F) N221FE (msn 20932) was originally delivered as a passenger aircraft to Air Canada as C-GAAA on September 25, 1974.
Avianca (Bogota) is planning to deploy its Airbus A330-200s on the daily Lima-Miami route starting on July 15 per Airline Route.
Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 N948AC (msn 948) taxies to the runway at Miami International Airport dressed in the now old 2005 livery (please click on the photo for the full-size view).
Bottom Copyright Photos: Avianca. The new look for AV. Airbus A320-214 N538AV (msn 5398) is one of the first aircraft to display the new look.
Boeing (Chicago) has begun final assembly of the first 787-9 Dreamliner. The newest member of the 787 family began taking shape on schedule on May 30 in Everett, Washington, when Boeing started joining large sections of the super-efficient jet.
Boeing will build the first three 787-9s on its Temporary Surge Line in Everett to allow for smoother integration of the 787-9 into the production system while continuing to ramp up production across the 787 program.
The 787-9 will complement and extend the 787 family, offering airlines the ability to grow routes opened with the 787-8. With the fuselage stretched by 20 feet (6 meters), the 787-9 will carry 40 more passengers an additional 300 nautical miles (555 kilometers) while using 20 percent less fuel than similarly sized airplanes. The 787-9 leverages the visionary design of the 787-8, offering the features passengers prefer such as large, dimmable windows, large stow bins, modern LED lighting, higher humidity, a lower cabin altitude, cleaner air and a smoother ride.
The vertical stabilizer on this 787-9 reflects the new Boeing Commercial Airplanes livery, a refreshed look for the Boeing family of airplanes that started with the 747-8 and evolved with the 737 MAX. Many features of the livery on the original 787 are reflected in the new design. The prominent number designator on the tail helps distinguish various models within the same product family.
First flight of the 787-9 is scheduled for the second half of 2013, with first delivery to launch customer Air New Zealand set for early 2014. 20 customers around the world have ordered 355 787-9s, accounting for 40 percent of all 787 orders.
Copyright Photo: Boeing.
Ryanair attacks Aer Lingus’ staff compensation increases, will appeal the Competition Commission’s preliminary decision to divest its 29.4% share of Aer Lingus
Ryanair (Dublin) is appealing the UK’s Competition Commission’s preliminary decision to force the carrier to divest its 29.4 percent share of rival Aer Lingus (Dublin). The ultra low cost carrier could drag out the decision for at least two years appealing the decision according to The Independent. The Competition Commission ruled in its preliminary ruling that Ryanair exerts “material influence” over Aer Lingus due to this minority share.
The airline issued this fiery statement (as it normally does) in response:
Ryanair on May 30 criticized the UK Competition Commission’s (CC’s) provisional decision that Ryanair, through its 6½ year old minority (29.8%) shareholding in Aer Lingus, “has influence’ over Aer Lingus and that this “could reduce competition”. This unfounded claim is disproven by the European Commission’s recent (February 2013) ruling that competition between Ryanair and Aer Lingus has “intensified” since 2007.
Under EU law, the UK CC has a duty of “sincere cooperation” with the EU, and cannot contradict or reach different conclusions to the European Commission’s findings. Inexplicably, this provisional decision by the CC infringes this duty of sincere co-operation by ignoring the recent findings of the European Commission that:
“Aer Lingus and Ryanair compete on a greater number of routes compared to the 2007 Decision” and “there is significant competitive interaction between the Parties” and “evidence collected by the Commission in the market investigation has also confirmed that the competitive relationship between Ryanair and Aer Lingus has at least persisted, if not increased, since 2007”.
Should the CC maintain this untenable position in its final decision (due in July), Ryanair will appeal that decision to the UK Competition Appeals Tribunal and thereafter, if necessary, to the Court of Appeal. Until the outcome of this UK appeal, and the completion of Ryanair’s appeal against the European Commission’s February 2013 prohibition decision, the CC cannot impose any remedies, however unlawful, on Ryanair.
Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary said:
“This provisional decision by the UK CC is bizarre and manifestly wrong. The CC’s finding that Ryanair’s shareholding obstructs Aer Lingus’ ability to attract other airlines was disproved by Etihad’s purchase of a 3% stake and the evidence submitted by other large EU airlines, which confirmed that Ryanair’s shareholding was not a barrier to other airlines acquiring a stake in Aer Lingus.
In February 2013 the European Commission found that competition between Ryanair and Aer Lingus has “intensified” since 2007. A decision by the Competition Commission that Ryanair’s 29.8% stake in Aer Lingus may lead to a lessening of competition will clearly breach the EU Treaty duty of sincere cooperation between the EU and the UK. Ryanair therefore calls on the Competition Commission to abide by this overriding legal principle and end this bogus and baseless enquiry into a 6½ year old minority shareholding between two Irish airlines.
While Ryanair is one of the UK’s largest airlines, Aer Lingus has a tiny presence in the UK, serving just 6 routes to the Republic of Ireland, a traffic base that has declined over the past 3 years and now accounts for less than 1% of all UK air traffic. This case, involving two Irish airlines where one (Aer Lingus) accounts for less than 1% of the UK’s total air traffic, is yet another enormous waste of UK taxpayer resources on a case which has little if any impact on UK consumers.
Read the full report by The Independent: CLICK HERE
Meanwhile to re-emphasize it does not have much control over Aer Lingus, Ryanair issued this scathing statement on recent Aer Lingus employee compensation increases:
Ryanair, a 6½ year old minority shareholder in Aer Lingus on May 31 condemned the spineless Board and Management of Aer Lingus which has accepted the latest crazy Irish Labour Court recommendation that another €170m to €200m of shareholder funds be squandered to compensate Aer Lingus staff for a pension deficit which Aer Lingus has repeatedly assured shareholders is a defined contribution (‘DC’) pension scheme, and for which Aer Lingus has no further liability. If, as Aer Lingus’ IPO prospectus (and every subsequent annual report) confirmed, neither Aer Lingus nor its shareholders have any liability towards this ‘DC’ pension scheme, then why is yet another €170m to €200m being wasted on yet another pay off for Aer Lingus’ staff.
Pension deficit & ESOT contributions
Staff restructuring and PCI payments
Staff restructuring and PCI payments
ESOT debt & leave/redundancy tax payments
Staff restructuring payments
€170m – €200m
Pension deficit & employee payments
€600m – €630m
Top Copyright Photo: SM Fitzwilliams Collection/AirlinersGallery.com. Ryanair’s Boeing 737-8AS WL EI-EVF (msn 40291) with “Modlin Jest OK! – Modlin is OK!” sub-titles taxies at the Dublin base.
Bottom Copyright Photo: SM Fitzwilliams Collection/AirlinersGallery.com. Aer Lingus’ Airbus A319-111 EI-EPT (msn 3054) lands at Dublin.
Aeroflot Russian Airlines (Moscow) has put its newly-delivered Airbus A320-214 VP-BNT (msn 5614) into revenue service. The flag carrier issued this statement:
The only air plane in a retro livery in Russia has joined the Aeroflot fleet celebrating the 90th Anniversary of the national flag carrier.
In late 2012 Aeroflot organized a voting in social networks to choose the best livery for its retro-jet. More than 2500 people participated in the voting process, and the livery of one of the first world’s jet airliners — Tupolev Tu-104 (appeared in 1956) was declared a winner. In the opinion of the majority of voters was this livery carried the spirit of the “romantic” 1950s, the time when the air transport industry in the country was rapidly growing and significant achievements were made in the national air construction.
The final draft of the livery to be painted on the newest Airbus A320 was designed in accordance with the voters’ comments, taking into account safety standards and recommendations from Airbus and Akzo Nobel specialists considering the paint spraying and its technical and performance parameters.
The retrojet is named “DOBROLET” after the Open Joint Stock Company found on March 17, 1923, which was the predecessor of Aeroflot. The newcomer to the Aeroflot fleet is to demonstrate the vast historical inheritance of the air company and to attract interest of the public to the long and rich history of Aeroflot.
Gaining from the synergy of prominent heritage and modern innovative development, the Russian national flag carrier, one of the oldest air companies in the world, operates one of the youngest air fleets in Europe. Currently there are 137 aircraft in Aeroflot including 87 Airbus A319/320/321 family planes.
All Airbus aircraft are received by Aeroflot directly from Airbus manufacturing plants. The airplanes are designed in two class composition and can carry 116 (A319), 140 and 158 (A320) and 170 (A321) passengers. These aircraft provide services on European and Russian domestic destinations. Airbus A320 family airplanes satisfy the highest reliability, safety and comfort standards and are one of the best for mid-range flights.
Top Copyright Photo: Aeroflot. Airbus A320-214 VP-BNT (msn 5614) is seen at the Moscow (Sheremetyevo) base. VP-BNT was handed over on May 29.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. The airframe was tested at Toulouse as F-WWIF.
China Southern Airlines (Guangzhou) is planning to introduce the new Boeing 787-8 to scheduled service on June 6. The new type will be introduced on the Guangzhou-Beijing route.
On May 31, Boeing and China Southern Airlines celebrated the delivery of the carrier’s first 787 Dreamliner. China Southern is the first Chinese airline to take delivery of the game-changing airplane.
This delivery is the first of 10 Dreamliners for China Southern. China Southern will first operate the 787 on domestic flights before introducing the Dreamliner on its long-haul international passenger service. China Southern is the tenth customer worldwide to take delivery of the 787 Dreamliner.
Copyright Photo: Royal S. King/AirlinersGallery.com. The first, Boeing 787-8 B-2725 (msn 34923), arrives back at Everett (Paine Field) after a test flight. B-2725 is painted in a special 787 color scheme.
Video: China Southern commercial:
Japan Airlines-JAL (Tokyo) announced today that it will install all new seats in the airline’s two-class international Boeing 767-300 ER fleet as part of its continued commitment to provide customers with a high-quality, full-service experience. The latest improvements are in addition to the previously announced revamp of the airline’s four-class international Boeing 777-300 ERs.
JAL Business Class in the updated Boeing 767-300ERs will be fitted with 24 new JAL SKY SUITE II seats, each designed to recline 180 degrees into a fully flat bed. In addition, each seat in the 1-2-1 configuration provides unobstructed aisle access for an undisturbed flight allowing maximum personal enjoyment and a soothing rest.
In revamped aircraft’s JAL Economy Class, the airline will install its newest economy class seat, JAL SKY WIDER. A total of 175 seats will be available in a 2-3-2 configuration and seat highlights include increased pitch and a slim-style seatback design resulting in approximately 10 cm (MAX.) more legroom than the present seat pitch.
JAL plans to first introduce the completely revamped Boeing 767-300 ERs between Tokyo (Narita) and Vancouver from December 2013. The revamped aircraft will also be introduced onto select long-haul Southeast Asia routes and Honolulu routes by fiscal year 2014.
With these latest improvements, all of JAL’s routes operating to and from North America and Europe as well as the airline’s long-haul Southeast Asia routes will offer flat-reclining seats in JAL Business Class providing passengers with an even more comfortable in-flight experience.
Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-346 ER JA615J (msn 33850) approaches the Tokyo (Narita) hub. All others by JAL
Singapore Airlines (Singapore) has placed a firm order with both Airbus and a tentative order with Boeing according to Reuters. The airline has ordered 30 additional Airbus A350-900s. Some of the A350-900s can be converted to the larger A350-1000s. Additionally Singapore has tentatively placed an order for 30 stretched Boeing 787s. Boeing has not yet made a decision to launch this new variant.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) today announces daily nonstop service between Miami International Airport (MIA) and Malpensa Airport (MXP) in Milan. The new route will start on November 21.
Daily MIA-MXP Service Schedule (all times local):
- Departs MIA at 5:55 p.m. ET
- Arrives at MXP at 9:35 a.m. CET the following day
- Departs MXP at 11:25 a.m. CET
- Arrives at MIA at 4:40 p.m. ET
The new service between Miami and Milan will be operated as part of American’s joint business agreement with British Airways and Iberia. Through the airlines’ enhanced relationship, American’s customers have access to more than 125 destinations throughout Europe. In addition to the new service from Miami, American also currently serves MXP from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York. The new route will be operated with a Boeing 767-300 with 218 seats.
Copyright Photo: Luimer Cordero/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-323 ER N7375A (msn 25202) lands at the Miami hub (please click on the photo for the full size view).
Gol Transportes Aereos (Sao Paulo) is exploring the possibility of adding a new route to Lagos, Nigeria. The airline issued this short statement:
“Gol is studying the possibility of opening a new route between Brazil and Nigeria, in Africa. The new flight would be operated by Gol’s standard fleet of Boeing 737 NG.”
Copyright Photo Above: Gol. Not to be overlooked, on March 8, 2013 in order to celebrate International Women’s Day, Gol completed a domestic flight totally with a female crew. Fernanda Prieto, commander (left); Deise Cristiane (right), copilot (above); Andrea Duderstadt, head of cabin and flight attendants Onalice Gama, Suellen Lisandra and Patricia Ferreira (below) represented women in Brazilian aviation.
Top Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. DeBiasi/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-85F WL PR-GIO (msn 30477) arrives at Sao Paulo (Guarulhos).
Video (in Portuguese:
The Teamsters want to represent American’s ground workers, American-US Airways fight hard in Congress to keep all of the Reagan National slots
American Airlines‘ (Dallas/Fort Worth) ramp workers are currently represented by the Transport Workers Union of America (TWU). According to this article by Reuters, the Teamsters are ramping up their efforts to represent this group of workers. The National Mediation Board will determine which union will represent the workers through a vote.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
In other news, over 100 members of Congress are now pressurizing the DOT and Justice Department to not require the new American Airlines (with US Airways) to give up any important slots at the pictured Washington Reagan National Airport for the pending merger according to Reuters. American Airlines and US Airways have been warning their members of Congress that any merger pre-conditions to give up at any slots at DCA could result in a lose of service from their districts to Washington.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. De Biasi/AirlinersGallery.com. Symbolically, American Airlines’ Boeing 737-823 WL N804NN (msn 29567) lands at the downtown Reagan National Airport with Washington’s Capitol Hill in the background.
Avianca Holdings S.A. (Avianca) (Bogota) today (May 28) as planned, formally retired the TACA brand and the previous AviancaTaca Holding company. All aircraft will be repainted in the new Avianca brand. Avianca is updating its logo, livery and product as we previously reported. This announcement will end the history of TACA and AviancaTaca Holding. Our slide show below recalls the aircraft and many liveries of TACA International. The holding company issued this statement:
As announced in late 2012 and after three years of intense work aimed at integration and reorganization of operations and processes, ground and air equipment modernization, and the adoption of industry best practices, the airlines in Avianca Holdings S.A. (formerly known as AviancaTaca Holding S.A.) begin a new stage in their business development under the commercial brand Avianca, with its new visual standards.
Honoring the business development reached by Avianca and TACA Airlines with 94 and 82 years of uninterrupted operations, respectively, the new identity bonds the heritage of the route network, envisioning connecting the continent through all cardinal points, capturing in the logo the service provided through the skies of the Americas.
The image of the “new Avianca” will be displayed in over 160 airplanes, 14 thousand seats onboard, 214 ticket offices, 100 airports, VIP lounges in 25 countries, as well as the corporate buildings in the Americas and Europe. This new image will also dress over 13,000 employees with client service positions -out of the 18,000 total-, and identify our new integrated website, social networks, onboard reading materials, and corporate communications media in general.
This new image highlights a very important chapter in the airline´s history, striving to provide a strong product and service offer in order to become the ideal partner for business and leisure travelers.
Fabio Villegas, Avianca Holdings CEO said: “The single commercial brand represents a very important milestone for an improved flight offer and an interesting challenge to Avianca’s service capacity. For that reason, the airlines’ background and the professionalism and experience shared by the many generations of men and women who have contributed with their work to Avianca, TACA Airlines, Aerogal, and Tampa Cargo, have become our inspiration.”
“More than 5.100 weekly flights operated on a modern fleet enable us to help our travelers reach 100 destinations in 25 countries throughout the Americas and Europe, provide access to 21.900 daily flights served around the world by Star Alliance member airlines, be preferred by more than 23 million passengers who choose our services yearly for their travel plans and the transportation of 300 thousand tons of goods. This motivates us to assure the “new Avianca”, as the leading airline in Latin America preferred by the world´s travelers,” quoted the executive.
Three years of achievements
Fleet. The combined fleet size between Avianca and TACA Airlines at the moment of their integration was 129 aircraft. Currently the company has 151 aircraft in operation. Within its fleet modernization plan, Avianca recently announced the incorporation of Airbus A320neo airplanes equipped with new generation engines, as well as aircraft fitted with sharklets, which provide a 4% better fuel economy than previous models. Avianca welcomed the first aircraft of this type to its fleet in February.
Tampa Cargo acquired four new A330-200 freighters with cargo capacity of 68 tons in order to strengthen the cargo business. The first aircraft of its type joined the fleet in December of last year.
The company also announced the standing offer to purchase 15 ATR 72-600 aircraft, along with the option to purchase an additional 15 of the same model. This turboprop fleet is intended to serve routes within Colombia and Central America and will join the fleet beginning July this year. Finally, the company has confirmed the purchase order for 15 Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft, to operate transatlantic routes starting in 2014.
Route Network. Currently, the “new Avianca” covers 100 destinations in 25 countries in the Americas and Europe, through 5,100 weekly flights. The domestic and international connections operate from and to Bogota (Colombia), with more than 2,656 weekly flights, San Salvador (El Salvador), with 532 weekly flights, and Lima (Peru) with 483 frequencies per week. Also connections to and from other Latin American capitals are part of this comprehensive route network.
In addition to its own network, travelers connecting through Avianca are able to reach more than 1,320 cities around the world thanks to code-share and interline agreements with world renowned airlines, granting access to 990 VIP lounges and enjoying multiple benefits provided by the Star Alliance network around the world.
Transported Passengers. As a result of the synergies of the route network, the airlines in Avianca Holdings S.A. have experimented passenger growth. A comparison between 2010 and 2012 reflects an increase of 31.88%. In 2010, the airlines transported 17´510.881 passengers, reaching 20´454.924 in 2011, while in 2012 the number increased to 23´092.533 passengers.
Joining Star Alliance. Avianca and TACA Airlines officially joined Star Alliance on June 21, 2012, which is the largest global airline network in terms of daily flights, coverage, and services. As a result travel advantages and options for our travelers multiplied. In order to be accepted as member airline of the alliance, multiple requirements had to be fulfilled along with several service and operational standards. The “new Avianca” maintains these standards and complies with the periodical audits required.
Avianca Cargo. In 2010 the Cargo businesses of Avianca, TACA, and Aerogal were integrated to Tampa Cargo, building on more than 100 years of experience in the field. After centralizing management, operations, and service the cargo offer underwent a strengthening process. As part of this process the airline announced the acquisition of 4 A330-200 freighters with 68 ton capacity and became the first airline to operate this model in Latin America.
With the expansion of capacity through dedicated aircraft, as well as the bellies of the passenger fleet, the route network was also broadened to meet importer and exporter needs in Latin America, accompanied by the implementation of new integrated technologies for all the business. Today, under the name “Avianca Cargo” this business unit focuses on delivering increased connectivity and services through advanced technology and a highly specialized human team.
Technology. Avianca continues moving forward in the implementation of the latest technology in order to better serve its passengers. In addition to online tools for checking fares, booking reservations, purchasing tickets and seat selections, the airline has been implementing self-check-in modules in 36 of the airports where it currently operates. Travelers can also make use of the web check-in feature for routes in the Americas, allowing them to check-in from the comfort of their home or office.
Passengers may also check-in using their smartphones. This service is initially available for domestic flights in Colombia and Peru, and direct international flights, except Europe, from El Salvador and Medellin and from Bogota to South America, improving check point and boarding times by showing the boarding pass on their smartphones.
VIP Lounges. This past February, Avianca opened its new 2,000 square meter VIP Lounge located in the international terminal of Eldorado Airport in Bogota, aimed at the members of its frequent flyer program, LifeMiles, and business class travelers. In meeting its service improvement plan, the airline will also refresh the VIP lounges in Cali, Barranquilla, Medellin, Cartagena, and San Salvador.
LifeMiles. It was the first joint business deliverable. The unified loyalty program was the result of integrating best practices of both Avianca and TACA, and improving them based on studies on the leading loyalty programs from top airlines around the world. LifeMiles has more than five million members and was recognized by travelers with a Freddie Award in the category of Best Redemption Ability, making it the only loyalty program in Latin America to receive a Freddy Award during the 2013 edition.
Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. All others by Avianca. A look back at one of the first jets for TACA International. BAC 1-11 407AW YS-17C (msn 093) taxies to the runway at Miami on October 19, 1980.
Jet2 (Jet2.com) (Leeds/Bradford) yesterday (May 27) launched a new route from Belfast to Reus, Spain (near Barcelona). The airline issued this statement and publicity photo:
Latino beauty Juliana Cunha is celebrating leading leisure airline Jet2.com’s inaugural flight to Reus. Flights to this Spanish hot-spot, which is close to Salou and only an hour from Barcelona, started on Monday, May 27 and will continue every Monday until September 16 from Belfast International Airport.
Virgin Australia Holdings Limited (Virgin Australia Airlines) (Brisbane) today (May 28) welcomed confirmation from the Foreign Investment Review Board that it has no objections to the proposed acquisition of 60 percent of the existing shares in Tiger Airways Australia Pty Ltd (Tiger Australia) (Melbourne).
This confirmation satisfies another condition for the proposed acquisition of Tiger Australia, which will enable Virgin Australia to access the budget market segment and expedite the growth of Tiger Australia.
The proposed transaction still remains subject to certain conditions and Virgin Australia expects the transaction to be completed by mid-July.
Top Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Virgin Australia’s brand new Boeing 737-8FE WL VH-YFF (msn 40994) and crew pass through Honolulu on delivery.
Above Copyright Photo: Virgin Australia.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Peter Gates/AirlinersGallery.com. Tiger Airways’ Airbus A320-232 VH-VNH (msn 3734) stops at Brisbane.
Romance is Back Video:
Emirates (Dubai) is finding unique ways to promote its airline and its large fleet of Airbus A380. Here is a new one:
Spectators at this year’s Roland Garros tournament® are looking to the skies thanks to Emirates’ innovative A380 aerial camera created in collaboration with the French Federation of Tennis.
Positioned up to 45 meters above the grounds of Roland Garros the Emirates A380 aerial camera has been designed to travel along a secure 350 meter cable throughout the tournament grounds. The A380 camera weighs 60 kilograms and is two meters and 80 centimeters long and took nearly two months to build. Made from fiberglass and polyurethane foam the aircraft is a near perfect replica of the Emirates A380 that currently flies twice daily to Paris.
“Leveraging our sponsorships to showcase Emirates is a key part of our overarching brand strategy. This is the first time we have attempted to create an A380 aerial camera and the results speak for themselves. The A380 is an iconic aircraft and this near scale model hovering above Roland Garros is guaranteed to be a real eye-catcher,” said Boutros Boutros, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications.
Croatia Airlines (Zagreb) is getting back to normal operations after its pilots and later the flights attendants on May 21 ended their strikes. This settlement ended eight days of strikes against the airline which is attempting to reorganize and lower costs.
Copyright Photo: Dave Glendinning/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-112 9A-CTI (msn 1029) in the Star Alliance livery taxies to the gate at London (Heathrow).
Blue Air (BlueAirweb.com) (Blue Air Transport Aerien S.A. dba) (Bucharest) was acquired by Airline Management Solutions. The new owners have laid our their strategy and issued this statement:
The new ownership of Blue Air has as objective to strengthen the position in the market. “The target for 2013 is keeping the turnover at the same level as in 2012 and preserving the number of passengers who benefit from our services”, said Gheorghe Răcaru, CEO of Blue Air, during a press conference on Sunday.
He added that for the period 2014-2015, the objective of the new shareholders is to increase the consolidated turnover by 3-5%. “We are considering a radical change in terms of services. From customer service, bookings and catering in the aircraft, you will see radical changes and updates, a first for the Romanian industry. In addition, we are interested in gradually increasing the fleet”, said Răcaru.
The CEO said that the shareholders intend to keep and specialize the current staff. In addition, Gheorghe Răcaru said that the flights will be operated according to the existing schedule, ensuring customers that Blue Air will remain their preferred airline: “We assure our customers that Blue Air will continue to be one of the top airlines in Romania and that all provided services will be at least at the same level of quality, reliability and professionalism as before”.
In turn, Arthur Flieger, lawyer and representative of Airline Management Solutions, the new majority shareholder of Blue Air, said that the transaction goes as planned, with no delays. “From our point of view, even if the process is extensive, all that remains to be done for the sale is just formalities. The actual transfer will be completed probably in two or three weeks”, he explained.
The Airline Management Solutions company has Romanian capital and purchased Blue Air through a transaction worth about 30 million euro, including the assumption of liabilities in the amount of 28 million euro.
Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-430 YR-BAK (msn 27005) climbs away from Brussels.
Air Dolomiti (Verona and Munich) is facing a four-hour strike strike on May 29 by its pilots, belonging to Ugl Trasporti Union.
Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl/AirlinersGallery.com. ATR 72-212A (ATR 72-500) I-ADLJ (msn 686) approaches Zurich for landing.
Air Canada (Montreal) has painted and handed over its first Airbus A319 for its new low-fare division called Air Canada rouge. The company issued these photos and short statement:
Countdown to takeoff! Air Canada rouge has just taken delivery of its first Airbus 319 aircraft in its new livery at Mirabel Airport today (May 22) where it will now undergo a new interior design. Air Canada rouge will soon be leading the way in affordable, leisure travel when service starts July 1. Further details will be released on flight team training and the unveiling of new uniforms starts on May 27.
Top Copyright Photo: Air Canada. Airbus A319-112 C-GSJB (msn 1673) is the first aircraft to be painted.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Air Canada. Air Canada rouge VP Operations Al Read was on hand to take delivery of the leisure airline’s first Airbus 319 in its new livery today at Mirabel Airport, where the aircraft will be fitted with its new interior.
Finnair (Helsinki) this year is celebrating 90 years of aviation excellence.
- In October 2012, Finnair announced their collaboration with popularFinnish textile and interior design company Marimekko.
- For the next three years, all Finnair aircrafts will feature Marimekko textiles and tableware.
- The collection, featuring Marimekko’s signature patterns, will also adhere to Finnair’s sustainable standards to reduce aircraft weight and fuel consumption.
- Michelin-starred Pekka Terava specializes in classic Nordic flavors and innovative Tomi Bjorck will bring his Asian-infused cuisine to the skies.
- How about a sample menu? Reindeer fillet with mushroom puree, oven baked potatoes and organic barley and butternut squash yellow curry. Yum!
- Beginning June 2013, Finnair will begin operating direct flights from Helsinki to popular destinations including Xian (China), Hanoi (Vietnam), Tel Aviv (Israel), Antalya (Turkey) and Palma (Majorca).
- Now travelers can choose to check-in to their flights with Facebook by linking their profiles with the airline seating maps.
- This March, Finnair also launched a two-month trial of Windows 8-powered HP ElitePad 900 tablets on select aircrafts, a new chapter in wireless in-flight entertainment.
- Every month this year Finnair will be posting a video to their Youtube Channel to celebrate 90 years.
Top Copyright Photo: Stephen Tornblom. Historic Photo (click on the photos for the full-size view): Finnair add its first McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30, the pictured OH-LHA, on January 27, 1975.
US Airways (Phoenix) today begins daily, nonstop, summer service from its international gateway at Philadelphia following a four-year hiatus to Shannon, Ireland. The airline will operate flights to SNN on 176-seat dual-class Boeing 757-200 aircraft until September 6, 2013. The seasonal service complements US Airways’ existing flights to Dublin, which the airline serves year-round from Philadelphia and during the summer from its largest hub in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The flight schedule is as follows:
|Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) –||Shannon Airport (SNN) – Philadelphia|
|Shannon Airport (SNN)||International Airport (PHL)|
|776||9:05 p.m.||8:40 a.m.*||777||11:35 a.m.||2:05 p.m.|
*Flight arrives next day. First day of service from Shannon is May 23, 2013.
Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. De Biasi. Ex-America West Boeing 757-2G7 N909AW (msn 24522) climbs away from Washington (Reagan National).
Virgin America (San Francisco) today celebrated the launch of its new daily roundtrip service to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) from San Francisco with an onboard concert.
In keeping with Austin and the Virgin brand’s musical roots, guests onboard the inaugural flight were also treated to a live, in-flight acoustic performance onboard the Airbus A320 aircraft by the award-winning Austin-based psychedelic rock band, The Bright Light Social Hour. En route from SFO to the “live music capital of the world,” the band surprised guests and performed in the aisles on the commercial flight (see video below).
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. Airbus A320-214 N848VA (msn 4959) approaches Los Angeles International Airport.
Adria Airways (Ljubljana) reported a reduced loss of $7.3 million in the first quarter. The struggling carrier intends to lease out its two Airbus A319s to Jat Airways (Belgrade) next month according to Balkans.com. However the airline will lease in two older (and cheaper) A319s in order to maintain its summer schedule and main routes according to the same source.
The government of Slovenia is planning to privatize around 15 state owned companies including Adria Airways according to Telecompaper.
Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-132 S5-AAR (msn 4301) prepares to land at Zurich.
Video: Adria Airways’ Cabin Crews: