Czech Airlines-CSA (Prague) and partner Korean Air (Seoul) have announced Korean Air has exercised its option and brought in another equity partner. Travel Service Airlines (Prague) is acquiring a 34 percent share in Czech Airlines. Korean Air retains its 44 percent share.
The airlines issued this statement:
Czech Aeroholding has been informed by Korean Air about its requirement to use option to exercise its right to purchase further 34% of Czech Airline stock from Czech Aeroholding. This step is in accordance with the purchase contract on the sale of 44% of Czech Airline stock signed by Korean Air and Czech Aeroholding in April this year. Korean Air will subsequently sell 34% stake to Travel Service, an air carrier, which will thus become a co-shareholder of Czech Airlines thus joining Korean Air which holds 44% of shares, Czech Aeroholding with the final share of 19.74% and Ceska Pojistovna which will continue to hold its 2.26% share in Czech Airlines.
Korean Air explains the decision to exercise its option on further 34% of the Czech Airlines shares which is to be subsequently sold to Travel Service by its plan to reinforce its operations in Europe. Working together with Travel Service, the company wishes to make Vaclav Havel Airport Prague its European hub. The entry of Travel Service into Czech Airlines will provide Korean Air with connections to approximately 40 new destinations in Europe to which their passengers will be able to fly after their transfer at Vaclav Havel Airport Prague.
As early as in spring of this year, Korean Air purchased 44% of Czech Airlines shares from Czech Aeroholding which it will continue to hold. Now it wishes to use the Czech Airlines platform to collaborate with Travel Service. With regard to the fact that Travel Service, the new shareholder, is a Czech air carrier, Czech Airlines will not lose the status of the so called national carrier.
“We regard the development of Vaclav Havel Airport Prague aiming to make it a Central-European hub as absolutely crucial. The fact that Korean Air is bringing another key partner into Czech Airlines represents a step toward fulfilling this aim. I am convinced this partnership will be advantageous particularly for passengers who, in future, will be able to choose from a more quality product – a wide network of destinations – provided by the three carriers,” said Miroslav Dvorak, chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO of Czech Aeroholding.
In spite of the fact that the contractual documentation might be signed as promptly as possible, it will surely include suspensory conditions. This is because the entire transaction is first subject to approval by the competent antitrust authorities, which may take several months before it can take effect.
In the context of changes of the Czech Airlines shareholder structure, Philippe Moreels, the current President and Chairman of the Board, announced its intention to resign from both positions. “I welcome the entry of Travel Service into Czech Airlines and also perceive it as the culmination of the company’s intensive four year restructuring period. In this new phase, Czech Airlines is going to need some new blood and a change in its management style. Therefore, it is logical that all the shareholders will agree on a new company president after the transaction has been completed. Until then, I will continue to be available and will be working on all the steps necessary allowing the transaction to bring a synergy effect to allthe partners as soon as possible,” said Philippe Moreels about his intention to resign from both his positions after the transaction has been approved by antitrust authorities.
After the transaction has been approved by antitrust authorities, the Czech Airlines statutory bodies will continue to consist of three members and their composition will reflect the new shareholder structure of the company.
Top Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-112 OK-NEM (msn 3406) of Czech Airlines arrives in Amsterdam with the special 90 Years (1923-2013) logo.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Paul Bannwarth/AirlinersGallery.com. Travel Service Airlines’ (Czech Republic) Boeing 737-8CX OK-TVB (msn 32362) prepares to land in Nantes, France.
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) will add new daily nonstop service to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport from Fairbanks International Airport and Vancouver International Airport, beginning May 29, 2014 and June 5, 2014, respectively. We previously reported the new Seattle-Vancouver route.
Delta will offer customers five daily flights between Vancouver and Seattle, operated by Delta Connection carrier SkyWest Airlines (St. George, Utah) using 76-seat, two-class Bombardier CRJ900s. Additionally, the airline will begin one daily summer seasonal flight between Fairbanks, Alaska and Seattle/Tacoma using a Boeing 737-800. Each aircraft is equipped with First Class and Economy Comfort seating as well as onboard Wi-Fi.
Delta recently announced expanded Seattle/Tacoma service to Anchorage, Alaska, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Portland, Oregon,, San Diego and San Francisco to support its increasing international network which currently operates nonstop flights to Amsterdam, Beijing, Paris, Shanghai-Pudong and Tokyo. The airline will also operate new nonstop international service in 2014 to London-Heathrow in March, as well as Hong Kong and Seoul in June, pending government approval.
Every long-haul international Delta flight from Seattle/Tacoma now features full flat-bed seats in BusinessElite, Economy Comfort seating and entertainment on demand in every seat throughout the aircraft.
Delta currently operates 35 peak-day departures to 15 destinations from Seattle/Tacoma, and every flight offers BusinessElite/First Class and Economy Comfort seating as well as domestic Wi-Fi service. The airline has also invested $14 million in its facilities at Sea-Tac, including its recently completed lobby renovations, new Delta Sky Club, Sky Priority services, new gate area power recharging stations and expanded ticket counters.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-832 N387DA (msn 30374) climbs away from the runway at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA).
Holidays Video by Delta:
WestJet (Calgary), WestJet Vacations and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts (Canada) today pulled back the curtain on their most exciting adventure yet — a custom-painted Boeing Next-Generation 737-800 series aircraft featuring Mickey Mouse in his most famous role, Sorcerer Mickey.
WestJet, WestJet Vacations and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts (Canada) first forged a relationship in 2004 based on a shared vision of creating memorable experiences for their guests. Known in the social media world as the #MagicPlane, the aircraft will perform its inaugural flight on December 3, 2013, from Calgary to Orlando, Florida, home of Walt Disney World Resort. Following the flight, the Magic Plane will fly throughout WestJet’s domestic, trans-border and international network.
“We are very proud of our work with Disney and everything we’ve done together over the years to enrich the lives of our guests,” said Gregg Saretsky , WestJet President and CEO. “With the Magic Plane, we are soaring to new heights, offering guests of all ages the chance to share the skies with one of the world’s most beloved and iconic figures. We also look forward to having fun with our guests on the ground as they see the Magic Plane flying over their communities and at airports across our expanding network.”
“Bringing this vision to life has been a true collaboration between our companies and it’s so exciting to see the final result — the aircraft is absolutely beautiful,” said Marlie Morrison , Managing Director, Marketing & Sales, The Walt Disney Company (Canada) Ltd. “WestJetters are the first point of contact for many of our Walt Disney World guests embarking on their memorable family vacation. We have a great appreciation for WestJet, which shares a similar culture in bringing guests an exceptional experience from beginning to end.”
Fun facts about the Magic Plane:
- The two sides of the aircraft are mirror images of each other in all aspects but one. We’ll leave it to our guests to decide what that is!
- There are a total of 36 different paint colours on the aircraft.
- It took a team of 26 people 24 days working around the clock to paint the Magic Plane.
- The painting crew consumed more than 150 doughnuts over the 24 days.
- The painting crew consisted of people from four countries, five states, two provinces and 12 cities.
- The cookies that will be served on board are a special treat in the shape of Disney characters.
- Over the next five years, the Magic Plane will fly more than 400,000 guests a total of nearly eight million kilometres.
On board the Magic Plane’s inaugural flight on December 3 will be 16 members of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada from various cities across the country. Along with club chaperones and WestJet volunteers, the group will travel to Orlando for three days of fun at Walt Disney World Resort, “pay-it-forward” charity activities, teambuilding and leadership training.
WestJet serves Orlando, home of Walt Disney World Resort, with a total of 39 flights per week during peak winter months from Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Hamilton, London, Toronto Pearson, Ottawa, Montreal Trudeau, Halifax, Moncton and St. John’s , Newfoundland.
WestJet Vacations offers a variety of vacation packages to the Walt Disney World Resort. Play, stay, dine and save when you book a five- to 15-night vacation package at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels that includes Magic Your Way tickets and a Disney dining plan. Offer is valid for bookings made by February 22, 2014 , for travel between January 5 and April 12, 2014 .
Copyright Photos: WestJet. The pictured Boeing 737-8CT C-GWSZ (msn 37092) “Magic Plane” was formerly painted in the special “Care-antee” color scheme.
Scandinavian Airlines-SAS (Stockholm) today announced 34 new peak summer routes for the summer 2014 timetable.
In 2013, SAS launched more than 50 new domestic and European routes, as well as the popular Copenhagen-San Francisco route. With the announcement today, adding more than 40 new routes for 2014, SAS has then launched nearly 100 routes in the past two years.
New routes from Sweden:
Stockholm to: Pisa (21 Jun-9 Aug), Olbia (21 Jun-9 Aug), Napoli (21 Jun-9 Aug),
Chania (24 Jun-14 Aug), Bristol (30 Jun-15 Aug), Sarajevo (21 Jun-30 Aug),
Bastia (26 Jun-7 Aug), Biarritz 24 Jun-8 Aug), Bodö (29 Jun-17 Aug)
Gothenburg to: Palma de Mallorca (2 Jul-13 Aug), Athens (1 Jul-5 Aug), Alicante
(30 Jun-1 Nov), Pula 1 Jul – 5 Aug), Berlin (30 Jun-15 Aug)
New routes from Norway:
Oslo to: Olbia (4 Jul-8 Aug), Venice (2 Jul-6 Aug), Pisa (28 Jun-9 Aug), Larnaca
(1 Jul-12 Aug), Biarritz (1 Jul-12 Aug)
Kristiansand to: Split (3 Jul-7 Aug)
Stavanger to: Alanya (2 Jul-6 Aug)
Bergen to: Alanya (2 Jul-6 Aug), Billund (28 Jun-16 Aug)
New routes from Denmark:
Copenhagen to: Pisa (28 Jun-9 Aug), Napoli (1 Jul-7 Aug), Faro (2 Jul-6 Aug),
Chania (30 Jun-11 Aug), Bastia (2 Jul-6 Aug), Montpellier (28 Jun-9 Aug)
Billund to: Alanya (3 Jul-7 Aug), Split (2 Jul-6 Aug), Nice (2 Jul-6 Aug)
Aalborg to: Split (1 Jul-5 Aug), Nice (1 Jul-5 Aug)
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-86N LN-RGF (msn 38038) taxies at the Med destination of Palma de Mallorca.
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) on March 2, 2014 will launch a new nonstop route from Orlando to Las Vegas with Boeing 737-800 aircraft. The route will be operated three days a week per Airline Route.
Delta is also starting Raleigh/Durham-Las Vegas service on March 2, 2014. Both are traditional Southwest Airlines routes.
Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-832 N393DA (msn 30377) prepares to land at Baltimore/Washington.
AeroMexico (Mexico City) announced new seasonal services from New York (JFK) to Puerto Vallarta and Los Cabos as of January 16 and January 18, 2014 respectfully.
These new flights will have the following schedules:
|New York – Los Cabos*||
New York – Puerto Vallarta*
|12:10 hrs.||Sat||AM1902||07:30 hrs.||
|Thu and Sun|
Los Cabos – New York*
Puerto Vallarta – New York*
|AM1905||14:55 hrs.||22:00 hrs.||Sat||AM1903||16:10 hrs.||22:00 hrs.||Thu and Sun|
* Schedules are published in local time and subject to changes without notice.
Also, AeroMexico will add three weekly flights to the daily service it currently offers between New York (JFK) and Cancun as of December 20. The schedules on this route will be as follows:
|New York – Cancun*|
|AM0417||07:10 hrs.||10:25 hrs.||Daily|
|AM0425||10:00 hrs.||13:43 hrs.||Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays**|
|Cancun – New York*|
|AM0416||17:42 hrs.||22:37 hrs.||Daily|
|22:00 hrs.||Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays**|
*Schedules are published in local time and subject to changes without notice.
These new routes and frequencies will be served with 160-seat Boeing 737-800s, to develop a new and strong link between leading Mexican tourist destinations and the United States.
AeroMexico will offer 42 weekly flights from New York, strengthening its extensive global network and increase its seat offerings to provide additional connectivity options and expand tourist travel to Mexico.
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8Z9 WL N342AM (msn 34262) lands in Las Vegas.
Airberlin explains how it determines the registration marks of its aircraft, unveils its 2013 “Flying home for Christmas” logo jet
Airberlin (airberlin.com) (Berlin) in an online article on their website, explains the art of aircraft registrations:
Dr. Justin Gordon Abdy spends the time waiting. Standing at the window façade where the gate is located, he allows his gaze to wander across the airport’s airfield. Dawn is breaking. In his head, he runs through his documents one more time in preparation for the talk he has scheduled for today. Out of the corner of his eye, he notices a red and white aircraft behind the glass panel. It taxies slowly to the runway. D-ABDY – five letters on the tail of the aircraft suddenly grab his attention. Abdy is his surname! It can be traced back to the English knights and barons of the 17th and 18th centuries. He wonders how the name ended up on the tail of the aircraft and takes out his smartphone. He does some investigation into the matter.
The aircraft with this registration code is an Airberlin Airbus A320. Every aircraft in the world is uniquely designated so that it can be precisely identified wherever it is. In Germany, the aircraft registration code is assigned via the higher federal authority for civil aviation, the LBA (German Federal Aviation Office) in Braunschweig. An international classification system is used for determining the registration code. The first letter represents the country of the operator – in this case “D” for “Deutschland” (Germany). The hyphen is followed by a letter that designates the maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of the aircraft. All those with the letter “A” after the country designation have a weight of over 20 tons. This Airbus is even authorised for a MTOW of 77 tons.
Later, Dr Abdy sends a snapshot of the A320 to Airberlin. Germany’s second largest airline tells him more about the aircraft registration code. The sequence of the other letters in the registration code is determined by the airline operating the aircraft itself. It then needs to be approved with official authorizations in accordance with specific regulations. Moreover, the letter combinations selected by the airline must not be present on any other aircraft anywhere in the world.
At Airberlin, everything regarding aircraft registration is handled by the CAMO (Continuing Airworthiness Management Organization) team, where Nicole Pietsch and her colleagues are based. This team is dedicated to maintaining the airworthiness of the Airberlin fleet and, among other things, deals with the complex authorizations required for the aircraft at the LBA. The process as a whole begins long before the aircraft is allowed to taxi for the first time on the airport apron. The Airberlin aircraft have an average age of just five years. The authorization process starts approximately half a year before an aircraft joins the Airberlin fleet. When this happens, Nicole first of all, files an application for the reservation of a registration code, which is used by the office responsible for handling the matter to open a file for this aircraft.
For the registration code, Nicole determines the letters towards the end in accordance with a scheme. Because Airberlin is also otherwise abbreviated as “AB” on flight tickets, the third letter is often “B”. The other letters are then chosen to enable the Airberlin technicians to recognise the equipment of an aircraft, or its type, immediately from the combination of letters. For instance, all Airbus A320 aircraft which have the same equipment have “D”, “F” or “N” as the fourth letter. If it were a case of proceeding in a purely chronological and alphabetical order, the letter “E” would also be used, but this letter is already occupied by aircraft of other airlines. The last letter then follows in accordance with the order of the alphabet again. Since Nicole has been following this procedure for a while now, the classification system continues to be used for all newly authorised airberlin aircraft.
In order to register an aircraft, however, yet more steps have to be taken – simply establishing a registration code is not enough. The initial application to the LBA is followed by many more at specific points in time – for initial registration, prior to delivery, following the technical checks and after certain approvals and inspections have taken place. Everything is put down in writing. For instance, even with four to six weeks to go before delivery takes place, the airberlin legal team makes an application for the purpose of registering the aircraft. When all the necessary steps have been taken, Nicole personally brings the documents to Braunschweig. The day on which the aircraft is to be authorised is an exciting one. Carrying a vast number of original documents under her arm, she goes to the LBA and only leaves the office once she has the newly issued authorisation documents such as the certificate of airworthiness, the registration certificate and the noise certificate. Then, at the end of the day, she also receives the Air Operator Certificate (AOC) via fax, which permits the aircraft to be flown as part of the airberlin fleet.
Though he has learned that the Airbus is not directly named after his surname but simply happens to share the same sequence of letters, Dr Abdy is still delighted that an aircraft bears his surname.
Copyright Photo: Airberlin. Boeing 737-86J D-ABMS (msn 37782) was unveiled yesterday in Dusseldorf. The airline issued this statement:
Airberlin is once again operating its aircraft decorated in Christmas livery under the motto “Flying home for Christmas”. The Boeing 737-800 will continue to be out and about on the airline’s European route network right into January. Anyone who flies home for the holiday season with Airberlin on a regular basis has a good chance of travelling in the festively-decorated aircraft. The inaugural flight for Airberlin’s Christmas aircraft will go from Dusseldorf to Copenhagen. “I am delighted to have the opportunity of operating the first flight this year in Airberlin’s Christmas colors. It’s always a special occasion, bringing flight guests home to their families and friends in airberlin’s Christmas aircraft,” First Officer Andreas Graute explained.
This year the design of the Christmas plane resembles a string of fairy lights. There is a candle-like light for each day of Advent. “The windows of the aircraft constitute the flames of the candles. For the first time we have a Christmas design that achieves a completely different effect at night to that created during the daytime. The aircraft has an especially atmospheric ambience on evening flights,” said André Rahn, Senior Vice President Marketing. The design was created by RAPP Germany. The interior of the plane is also decorated in festive mood with specially-designed headrest covers.
The Boeing with the registration D-ABMS, which is affectionately known as “Merry Santa”, arrived at Hangar 7 at Dusseldorf Airport on November 13. First of all, the fuselage of the aircraft was thoroughly cleaned. On November 14 the seven-man Airberlin technik team started work. The first step was to once again clean all the surfaces to be decorated with special detergent. Next the sheeting, which is certified for aviation and specially UV-resistant, was mounted on the fuselage of the aircraft. Finally, an edge sealer was applied to the leading edges in order to prevent the sheeting from peeling away and to guarantee optimal airflow. The sheeting with the fairy light design is just 80 micrometres thick, measures 15.32 m in length and is 1.87 m high.
In 2010, the Airberlin Christmas aircraft appeared for the first time in digital form on airberlin.com. In response to requests from numerous guests, the first actual airberlin aircraft in Christmas livery took to the skies in November 2011. airberlin is the first German airline to have a Christmas aircraft.
Video: 30 Years of flying from the Air Berlin USA days:
Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) will increase service at Boston’s Logan International Airport with daily year-round and seasonal service to the following seven destinations, including three new markets.
- New daily service to Jacksonville, Florida and Richmond, Virginia, operated by Delta Connection carrier Endeavor Air using 76-seat, two-class Bombardier CRJ900s, effective March 3, 2014 and March 6, 2014
- New service to Las Vegas with three flights per week operating a Boeing 737-800, effective March 6, 2014
- Expanding service to Los Angeles with one additional flight for a total of two daily operating a Boeing 737-800, effective April 7, 2014
- New Saturday-only summer seasonal service to Nassau, Bahamas, operated by Delta Connection carrier Shuttle America using 76-seat, two-class Embraer ERJ 175s as well as the Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands using an Airbus A320, effective March 8, 2014
- Extended service to Cancun, previously scheduled to end April 26, 2014, now ending Aug. 30, 2014
Delta and joint venture partner, Virgin Atlantic, recently announced they will coordinate schedules and retime their respective Boston to Heathrow flights to offer customers more convenient and flexible travel options.
Delta currently operates 70 peak-day departures from Logan International Airport to 16 nonstop destinations. Delta’s new Boston service offers customers the option of First Class, Economy Comfort or economy seating, along with in-flight Wi-Fi on domestic flights.
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-832 WL N3771K (msn 29632) is pictured in action at Los Angeles International Airport.
Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) today introduced its fifth Disney logojet in rainy Seattle. Boeing 737-890 N570AS (msn 35185) has been painted in this special “Follow us to Disneyland Resort” color scheme. Oddly instead of promoting the recent “Disney Planes” movie the characters are from “Disney Cars”.
Alaska Airlines later in the day issued this statement:
The newest themed airplane in Alaska Airlines’ fleet flew into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport today (November 7), featuring one of America’s most beloved and rusty tow trucks.
Adorned with the familiar images of Disney-Pixar’s animated Cars characters Mater, Lightning McQueen, Guido and Luigi, the colorful Boeing 737-800 named “Adventure of Disneyland Resort” celebrates Alaska’s partnership with Walt Disney’s original theme park.
It is the fifth Disney-themed airplane born out of the successful partnership between Seattle-based Alaska Airlines and Disneyland Resort.
“Our Disney planes generate a lot of excitement among our passengers young and old wherever they fly,” said Jeff Butler, Alaska Airlines’ vice president of customer service-airports and cargo, and board member of Make-A-Wish Alaska and Washington. “I can’t think of a better way to celebrate our strong partnership than to launch this flying invitation to visit Disneyland Resort’s newest attraction and Mater’s home in Cars Land.”
At a special airport event, Mater himself made a satellite appearance from Cars Land at Disney California Adventure Park, providing travelers with updates on the arrival of the plane as it neared Seattle. After the ceremony, the aircraft officially joined the Alaska fleet on a flight to Orange County, Calif., and will then fly throughout the carrier’s 65-city network.
“Adventure of Disneyland Resort is a great example of taking beloved, iconic Disney-Pixar characters and bringing them to life in new and unexpected ways,” said Sharon Siskie, Disney Destinations’ vice president of travel industry sales. “It’s been our great privilege to be part of this collaborative effort with Alaska Airlines, and we’re delighted that today’s inaugural flight will create some very powerful memories for special guests from Make-A-Wish.”
Joining passengers flying on Flight 500 were four Make-A-Wish children from Washington and Alaska, ages 3 to 7, and their families, who will spend the next several days at the Disneyland Resort. During their visit, they will be treated to special activities and enjoy overnight accommodations at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel at the Resort.
“Since our inception, we’ve granted life-affirming wishes to more than 5,300 children in Alaska and Washington and it’s only because of the partnerships that we have with companies like Alaska Airlines and Disney,” said Barry McConnell, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish Alaska and Washington.
Since granting its first wish in 1986, Make-A-Wish Alaska and Washington has granted 2,257 Disney wishes and sent 1,051 children and their families on wish trips via Alaska Airlines. Disney helps Make-A-Wish America® grant more than 5,000 wishes annually, making a trip to a Disney Park the most frequent wish requested by Make-A-Wish children.
Alaska Airlines has supported Make-A-Wish Alaska and Washington since 1986 and provides air transportation for about 225 Wish kids and their families to travel each year. Alaska invites members of its Mileage Plan to donate frequent-flier miles to Make-A-Wish through the Charity Miles program.
The Adventure of Disneyland Resort aircraft received its new livery at Aviation Technical Services in Everett, Washington. A team of specialists from Associated Painters Inc. accomplished the complicated painting process, including a sponge-type application to re-create Mater’s rust-colored finish.
Adventure of Disneyland Resort trivia:
- A 34-member crew worked around the clock for 29 days at Associated Painters Inc. to paint the plane.
- Painters painstakingly airbrushed the aircraft with 70 unique colors and applied more than 10,000 square feet of vinyl graphics to create the lifelike characters, including the headlights, tire rims and eyes.
- More than 72,000 linear feet of masking tape was used during the painting of the Adventure of Disneyland Resort.
- Mater’s rustic-looking muffler, which is located on the tail of the jet, will naturally change color over time due to the plane’s normal exhaust stains.
- The 129-foot-long Boeing 737-800 has a wingspan of 117 feet and a cruising speed of 530 mph.
- The plane accommodates 157 passengers and six crew members.
Top Copyright Photo: Brandon Farris/AirlinersGallery.com. The weather did not cooperate at SEA today for the unveiling as a storm system moved through the area. Cockpit Copyright Photo: Alaska Airlines.
Video of the painting Process:
Reuters: DOJ asking American and US Airways to give up some DCA slots and routes for a merger agreement
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix) reportedly are considering a pre-trial offer by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to give up slots at Ronald Reagan National Airport (the combined airline would control 69 percent of the DCA slots) in Washington and some other routes around the country according to this report by Reuters citing sources and the Wall Street Journal. The DOJ is focusing on over 1,000 city pairings where the combined airline would dominate. However in a deregulated marketplace where any U.S. airline can enter a market, how would the “new American” if approved, be prevented from reentering a market again in the future? DCA is slot controlled but most of the airports on the DOJ list are “free entry” airports.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. American’s Boeing 737-823 N968AN (msn 30095) completes its approach from the south into Washington’s slot-controlled Reagan National Airport.
Have you seen the “new look” AirlinersGallery.com photo library website?
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix) are now considering a settlement agreement with the Department of Justice (DOJ) according to this report by Reuters. The reported deal would involve giving up an unspecified number of Washington Reagan National Airport slots. The trial to block the proposed merger is due to start on November 25.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. The battle and approval of the merger has always been about the “fortress” number of Reagan National slots. American’s Boeing 737-823 N924NN (man 33486) banks on the river approach into Washington’s downtown Reagan National Airport.
Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) today is expected to formally unveil this new “Employee powered” Boeing 737-800 logojet as a way of thanking its employees. Here is a sneak preview.
The dashes between the two stripes are signatures of employees that attended the FlightPath meetings of Alaska Airlines.
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Formerly painted in the “Follow Apolo to Hawaii” special scheme, the pictured Boeing 737-890 N568AS (msn 35183) at Paine Field in Everett, WA now wears this special color scheme dedicated to its employees. It is not a new livery for Alaska but the company has been rumored to be testing new designs to replace its current 1990 livery.
United Airlines (Chicago) will begin new nonstop service from its two West Coast hubs on April 1, 2014, with twice-daily flights between San Francisco and Atlanta and between Los Angeles and Minneapolis/St. Paul.
The daily schedules are as follows:
|San Francisco – Atlanta||Atlanta – San Francisco|
|8:30 a.m.||4:07 p.m.||7:00 a.m.||9:16 a.m.|
|4:00 p.m.||11:37 p.m.||4:55 p.m.||7:11 p.m.|
|Los Angeles – Minneapolis||Minneapolis – Los Angeles|
|8:40 a.m.||2:18 p.m.||6:00 a.m.||8:00 a.m.|
|6:00 p.m.||11:38 p.m.||4:00 p.m.||6:00 p.m.|
United will operate the Atlanta flights using Boeing 737-800 aircraft, and SkyWest Airlines will operate the United Express service to Minneapolis/St. Paul using Bombardier CRJ700 regional jet aircraft. The aircraft for both routes will be outfitted with United First, United Economy Plus and United Economy seating.
Additionally, on April 1, 2014, United will add a new flight between San Francisco and Seattle/Tacoma and will convert all of its existing service on the route to mainline aircraft. This will bring the total number of departures each way to 11, and increase the number of United’s seats available on the route by more than 50 percent.
United’s San Francisco Hub
From San Francisco International Airport, United and the United Express carriers operate more than 300 flights each day to more than 90 cities in North America, Asia, Australia and Europe – more than any other carrier. With nonstop service from San Francisco to Beijing, Hong Kong, Osaka, Seoul, Shanghai, Sydney and Tokyo – and beginning next year to Taipei and Chengdu, subject to government approval – United’s San Francisco hub serves more destinations across the Pacific with more nonstop flights from the United States than any other airline – nearly twice as many as any other airline from the West Coast.
United’s Los Angeles Hub
United and the United Express carriers operate almost 200 daily flights from Los Angeles International Airport to nearly 55 airports across the United States and more than 10 international destinations in Europe, Asia, Australia, Latin America and Canada, including service to London, Shanghai, Sydney and Tokyo.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-824 N37281 (msn 31599) climbs away from the Los Angeles hub.
American Airlines‘ (Dallas/Fort Worth) flight attendants, represented by the APFA, are putting political pressure on those states which are joining with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to oppose the American-US Airways (Phoenix) merger. APFA is particularly focusing on Attorney General Pam Bondi from the State of Florida. American has a large international hub at Miami International Airport. The union issued this statement:
In the wake of Tuesday’s announcement by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott that he would withdraw from the lawsuit to block the merger of American Airlines and US Airways, the flight attendants at American are calling on Pam Bondi and attorneys general from five other states to do the same.
“Florida, particularly South Florida, is home to about 2,500 American flight attendants that are in need of good wages and long term job security, but General Bondi is standing in the way of that,” said APFA President Laura Glading. “Pam Bondi’s participation in the Justice Department’s antitrust lawsuit demonstrates a lack of understanding of what the merger means for her constituents. Everyone – business travelers, tourists, and airline employees – stand to benefit from the new American. We were able to explain that to General Abbott in Texas and we’d like to do the same in Florida.”
Unable to compete with United and Delta, which had recently merged with Continental and Northwest, respectively, American Airlines was forced into Chapter 11 bankruptcy in November of 2011. It is clear that in order for American to be competitive, it needs to merge with US Airways. The merger plan has had the strong support of employees at both companies since its inception. Unfortunately, the US Department of Justice and attorneys general from seven states and the District of Columbia filed an eleventh-hour lawsuit to block the merger in August of this year.
The new American Airlines will offer consumers more destinations and a better product. It will also give flyers a third choice – in addition to Delta and United – for their travel needs. Finally, the merger will provide much-needed job security for approximately 100,000 employees nationwide, 11,650 of whom live in Florida.
Last week, members of Florida’s congressional delegation sent a letter to General Bondi urging her to support the merger. The letter was authored by Rep. Alcee Hastings and signed by Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Ted Deutch, Lois Frankle, Frederica Wilson, Joe Garcia, and Patrick E. Murphy.
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-823 N965AN (msn 29544) of American arrives in deadlocked Washington (Reagan National).
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) (Washington) has asked the special master handling discovery disputes to limit the number of documents it must turn over to American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix). The DOJ is suing both carriers to block their effort to merge. All parties are currently in the discovery phase. According to this report by Reuters, the DOJ objects to the airlines’ request to turn over all confidential internal documents relating to all previous airline merger requests in the past 10 years.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. De Biasi/Airlinersgallery.com. Boeing 737-823 N804NN (msn 29567) lands at Washington’s Reagan National Airport, across the Potomac River from the contentious and gridlocked District of Columbia.
Sunwing Airlines to operate weekly vacation flights for Kelowna, BC to Ixtapa, Mexico for this winter season
Sunwing Airlines (Toronto-Pearson) is planning to launch a new route from Kelowna, British Columbia to Ixtapa, Mexico for the upcoming winter season. Flights from Kelowna to Ixtapa will start on Thursday, December 19, 2013 and operate weekly until March 27, 2014.
Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Sunwing expands its fleet during it busy winter season adding extra Boeing 737-800s from European carriers who experience slower demand during their winter seasons. This creates a variety of hybrid color schemes during the winter months. One example is this Boeing 737-8K5 C-FYUH (msn 34689) leased from TUIfly in their colors but with Sunwing markings.
United Airlines (Chicago) has announced that the company has reached tentative agreements on new joint collective bargaining agreements with the International Association of Machinists (IAM) for the fleet service, passenger service and storekeeper workgroups at its United, Continental, Continental Micronesia and MileagePlus subsidiaries. United and the IAM reached these agreements with the assistance of the National Mediation Board, and the agreements are subject to ratification by IAM members.
The agreements cover more than 28,000 United employees.
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-824 N14228 (msn 28792) completes its final approach to the runway at Washington’s Reagan National Airport.
AMR Corporation (Dallas/Fort Worth), the parent company of American Airlines, Inc., (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways Group, Inc. (Phoenix), the parent of US Airways (Phoenix), have each agreed to extend the outside date at which either party may terminate the previously announced Agreement and Plan of Merger (the Merger Agreement), in light of the trial schedule surrounding litigation with U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).
In a joint statement, Tom Horton, chairman, president and CEO of AMR, and Doug Parker, chairman and CEO of US Airways, said, “The Boards and management teams of AMR and US Airways remain committed to completing this combination to create the new American, and the extension of this outside date is a reflection of this commitment. Our focus is on mounting a vigorous defense and winning our court case so the new American can enhance competition, provide better service to our customers and create more opportunities for our employees.”
The amended Merger Agreement extends the date on which either AMR or US Airways may terminate the Merger Agreement from December 17, 2013 to the later of January 18, 2014, or, if the Court enters an order on or before January 17, 2014 in favor of American and US Airways, on the 15th day following the entry of such order. In the event of an unfavorable ruling by the Court, AMR or US Airways may terminate the merger agreement five days after the Court enters a final, but appealable, order permanently enjoining the merger.
Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. American’s Boeing 737-823 N925NN (msn 31169) prepares to touch down at Washington’s Reagan National Airport.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. US Airways’ Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N961UW (msn 19000183) taxies to the runway at the Charlotte hub.
Aeroflot Russian Airlines (Moscow) is on the verge this month of taking delivery of its first new Boeing 737-800. This will be the return of the Boeing 737 type to the Aeroflot fleet. The Russian carrier operated the 737-400 in 1998. Aeroflot will join a growing list of airlines operating both the Airbus A320 Family of aircraft and the Boeing 737 Next Generation Family of aircraft.
Aeroflot intends to eventually operate 65 Boeing 737 Next Generation aircraft through Russian Technologies including 25 Boeing 737-800s with Winglets as well as the 737-700 and 737-900 ER.
Copyright Photo: Joe G. Walker/AirlinersGallery.com. The pictured Boeing 737-8LJ VP-BRF (msn 41195) at Boeing Field in Seattle will be the first and is named S. Obraztsov.
Have you seen the “new look” AirlinersGallery.com?
Transat A.T. Inc. (Air Transat) (Montreal) has announced the signing of an agreement for the seasonal leasing of Boeing 737-800 narrow-body aircraft that will be supplied in winter by Transavia France, the Air France/KLM Group’s French leisure airline. The five-year pact is for four planes for the winter of 2015, five for 2016, six for 2017, seven for 2018 and eight for 2019. The aircraft, which will be operated by Air Transat.
This agreement follows from Transat’s already expressed decision to internalize narrow-body medium-haul operations, for which it has relied on a third-party partner since 2003, and to adopt a so-called “accordion fleet” strategy, which enables it to adjust the number of aircraft to the seasonal needs of the tourism market. On July 24, Transat announced an agreement with the U.S.-based International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) for the long-term leasing of four Boeing 737-800s, which will become the core of Air Transat’s permanent narrow-body fleet.
AMR Corporation (American Airlines) (Dallas/Fort Worth) has secured an approval from U.S. bankruptcy judge Sean Lane yesterday for its merger with US Airways. However the merger requires a resolution with the Department of Justice which is going to court to block the proposed merger with the US Airways Group.
The judge also denied a clause that would pay outgoing CEO Tom Horton $19.9 million in severance pay.
Read the full story from Reuters: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-823 N970AN (msn 30096) completes its final approach into Washington’s Reagan National Airport.
AeroMexico (Mexico City) has announced the start of its AeroMexico Contigo program as of October 1.
According to the carrier, “the new product will provide migrant customers residing in Mexico or in the United States, who travel frequently between the two countries, a specific Call Center and personal assistance at participating airport check-in counters, to help the passengers fill out their immigration forms, transportation of oversized packages, connections to the airline’s route network and attention on both sides of the border, as well as competitive rates for this important passenger segment.”
The carrier has configured four of its Boeing 737-800 airplanes to offer this new service, with 174 seats. The three front rows – 18 seats – will feature the AM Plus seat configuration, with more legroom and angle in the reclining backrests, among other benefits. The other 156 seats will be in Economy Class.
Some of the destinations featuring the Aeromexico Contigo product include:
|Destinations Within Mexico|
|Guadalajara – Tijuana||28 weekly flights|
|Culiacan – Tijuana||14 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Chicago||7 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Ontario||7 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Los Angeles||14 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Fresno||3 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Sacramento||3 weekly flights|
In addition to this product’s unique benefits, AeroMexico will continue to provide complimentary on board beverages and entertainment services, and one piece of checked luggage weighing up to 55 pounds, with a 22 pounds carry-on for travel between Mexico and the United States. Passengers traveling from the United States to Mexico can also check a 50 pounds piece of luggage and carry a 22 pounds bag on board.
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. AeroMexico’s Boeing 737-852 EI-DRC (msn 35116) approaches the runway at Miami International Airport.
Sunwing Airlines (Toronto-Pearson) will operate weekly nonstop flights this coming winter season from Halifax, Nova Scotia to St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Florida. The flights will depart on Wednesdays from February 5, 2014 until April 30, 2014.
Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8K5 C-FRZG (msn 35139) in the special Oasis livery taxies to the runway at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.
Virgin Australia Holdings (Virgin Australia Airlines) (Brisbane) reported a statutory loss after taxes of A$98.1 million ($88.3 million) for its fiscal year ending on June 30, 2013. The airline issued this full financial statement for its past fiscal year:
Results in line with guidance:
- Statutory Loss After Tax of $98.1 million – in line with previous guidance of a loss of $95 to $110 million
- Pre-tax loss (excl. one-off transformation costs and Skywest1 loss) of $35.2 million – in line with previous guidance of a loss of $30 to $50 million
- Outperformed main competitor on Group Yield growth
- Strong underlying cost performance – underlying CASK2 (excl. fuel) approximately equal to FY12, inclusive of major product and service enhancements
- Total cash position of $580.5 million and positive operating cash flows – several initiatives identified and in progress to supplement and diversify the Company’s liquidity position
Completed major restructuring and transformation as part of Game Change Program:
- Managed critical transition to global ticketed environment and single airline designator, with SabreSonic system implemented and delivering benefits
- Completed acquisition of 100% of Skywest and 60% of Tigerair Australia3, enabling repositioning of business across all key aviation market segments, creating new competitive landscape
Delivered on key targets of the next phase of the Game Change Program:
- Business efficiency project generated sustainable efficiency gains of more than $60 million4 for FY13
- Velocity Frequent Flyer membership of approx. 3.7 million, up by approx. 500,000 on FY12
- Improved access to global markets – interline and codeshare revenue increased 45% on FY12 and forward domestic bookings approx. 6% higher than PCP5, on a capacity increase of less than 4%
- Significant enhancements to customer experience – upgrade program for major lounges and airport terminals, business class roll-out complete and new in-flight entertainment installed in 30 aircraft
- Leading airline in Roy Morgan’s Domestic Airline Business Satisfaction for FY136
Virgin Australia Holdings Limited (ASX: VAH) reported a Statutory Loss After Tax of $98.1 million, consistent with previous guidance. A number of factors impacted the financial performance for the 2013 financial year, including the difficult economic and competitive environment, significant one-off pre-tax restructuring and transformation costs and the carbon tax.
Virgin Australia Chief Executive Officer John Borghetti said: “While the financial results clearly did not meet our initial expectations, the 2013 financial year was a pivotal year for Virgin Australia, in which we completed our major restructuring and transformation program and reshaped the competitive landscape of the Australian aviation market, despite a very difficult economic environment and intense competition.
“As part of this program, we secured access to the growing budget, charter and regional market segments, we successfully executed the crucial transition from a ticketless to a global ticketed airline environment with the implementation of the our new booking and check-in system, SabreSonic, and we further enhanced the Virgin Australia customer experience. Each of these initiatives is critical to our success going forward.
“Furthermore, we exceeded our business efficiency program target of $60 million in sustainable efficiency gains, we expanded Velocity Frequent Flyer and improved its value proposition, increased our access to global markets and further developed the most important part of our airline, our people.
“We continued our strong focus on yield, with consistent yield growth in each month of the last quarter of the financial year. This reflects our success in attracting higher-yielding customers, while ensuring we are well-positioned in the market as we enter the 2014 financial year.
“We maintained a disciplined approach to cost management, with underlying CASK growth (excluding fuel) for the 2013 financial year approximately equal to last year, notwithstanding the significant investment in product enhancements.
“The 2014 financial year represents the fourth year of our five-year Game Change Program strategy in which we will focus on consolidating our market positioning in order to drive earnings growth.
“As we move into the new financial year, we continue to grow yield and build loads, supported by our improved access to global distribution channels, through SabreSonic. Preliminary operating statistics for July 2013 indicate positive yield7 growth and domestic loads of 79.6 per cent.
“We now have the right structure in place to compete vigorously in all key market segments and achieve sustainable performance in the future”, Mr Borghetti said.
Financial and Operating Performance
“Revenue and income increased 2.6 per cent on the 2012 financial year, following growth of 19.8 per cent on the 2011 financial year. This reflects the weaker trading conditions experienced during the 2013 financial year and the impact of the introduction ofSabreSonic, which includes approximately $25 million from the waiving of ancillary fees in order to protect the customer experience, as well as forgone revenue due to the scheduled cutover of the booking system.
“Excluding Skywest and not adjusting for approximately $25 million of waived ancillary fees, the underlying loss before tax for Virgin Australia is $72.8 million8.
“Due to our strengthening relationships with international airline partners, interline and codeshare revenue continued to grow strongly, with a 45 per cent increase on the prior corresponding period.
“Domestic Business Class passengers continue to increase, with passenger traffic in the Business Class cabin more than doubling compared to the 2012 financial year.
“The result includes the underlying pre-tax trading loss of $9.4 million for the recently acquired Skywest business, reflecting the investments being made to integrate and facilitate the growth of the business.
“Our international operations continue to perform well as a result of the network changes we made as part of the Game Change Program and our alliance partner strategy. International revenue increased by 6.4 per cent compared to the 2012 financial year, off capacity growth of 3.0 per cent, and the business continues to be EBIT positive.
“Virgin Australia outperformed our major competitor on Group Yield growth for the second year running, with relatively flat Group Yield9 growth for the 2013 financial year.
“We incurred $105.1 million of significant one-off pre-tax costs as a result of the major restructuring and transformation program. The transition to a global ticketed environment, a single airline designator code and new core IT systems (including a new data warehouse and a new revenue accounting system) comprised the majority of this cost, totalling $81.5 million. This incorporated a comprehensive 12 month staff training program, technical costs of the system cutover, resources for customer management and communications, and other costs associated with the transition. Other one-off restructuring and transformation costs include the restructure costs associated with the Skywest and Tigerair Australia transactions, the integration of Skywest and business transformation initiatives, totalling $17.3 million. The business also incurred $6.3 million of costs associated with accelerated depreciation on legacy assets.
“While significant one-off costs affected our profitability for the year, we maintained strong controls on costs, with underlying CASK10(excluding fuel) for the 2013 financial year approximately equal to that of the 2012 financial year, even with significant enhancements to product and service.
“The company was also impacted by the carbon tax during the 2013 financial year, with a $47.9 million cost of which we were unable to recover due to strong competition in the market.
“Importantly, we have made significant progress in our plan to streamline the ongoing costs of the business as it grows. In its first year, our business efficiency program has exceeded targets, delivering sustainable efficiency gains of over $60 million and is on track to deliver cumulative productivity gains of approximately $400 million over the three years to 30 June 2015.
“Our tiered hedging policy continues to be successful in providing short term certainty in a volatile environment, while enabling us to maintain flexibility in the longer term.
“In line with guidance11, we recorded capacity growth of 6.3 per cent across our domestic network for the 2013 financial year. As previously stated, we expect domestic capacity (excluding Tigerair Australia) to grow between 3 and 412 per cent in the first half of the 2014 financial year.
“On Time Performance for the Virgin Australia brand was roughly in line with that of our major competitor’s branded operations, at 81.1 per cent for the 2013 financial year13. This includes the impact of the transition to SabreSonic, which affected On Time Performance during the third quarter of the year”, Mr Borghetti said.
Liquidity and Cash Flow
“We finished the 2013 financial year with a total cash position of $580.5 million and an unrestricted cash position of $326.5 million as at 30 June 2013.
“Improved underlying cost disciplines across the business have supported positive cash flow generated from operations14 of $184.2 million across the 2013 financial year.
“We continue to review Virgin Australia’s assets to ensure we are utilising our resources in the best way possible. As part of this process, over the year we have executed the sale and lease-back of the Virgin Australia hangar at Brisbane Airport and several other initiatives have also been identified and are underway to supplement and diversify our liquidity position.
“This includes conditional commitments for a new term loan facility from Air New Zealand (NZX: AIR), Etihad Airways and Singapore Airlines (SGX: SIA) for an aggregate amount of AUD90 million, as part of our focus on supplementing and diversifying the Company’s liquidity position”, Mr Borghetti said.
Game Change Program Strategy Update
“We have concluded the first phase of the Game Change Program with the completion of significant restructuring and transformation initiatives, which are essential to ensure the Group can compete effectively in all market segments and to create a solid platform for growth”, Mr Borghetti said.
Systems and Processes
“Central to the Game Change Program is building a strong flexible operating platform, through strengthening our systems and processes.
“Thanks to the significant work undertaken internally we have now created this platform. Over the past three years we have implemented a new Treasury management framework, an improved group-wide procurement framework, improved operating and financial disciplines and a business efficiency program to drive better cost efficiencies and operational effectiveness.
“During the 2013 financial year, we completed one of the most significant initiatives in Virgin Australia’s thirteen year history. We transitioned from a ticketless environment to a global ticketed environment, moving from a low cost carrier system to become a full service airline with better access to global distribution channels and the ability to provide a more seamless customer experience. This involved moving from two booking and check-in systems and two airline designator codes to one globally-recognised system and one airline designator code, with the implementation of SabreSonic in January 2013.
“This new system is critical to our ability to continue to grow the business, increasing our exposure to the corporate and government market and to travel agents both in Australia and around the world. It was therefore crucial that we implemented the system as quickly as possible, with minimal disruption to the customer experience, even though that meant significant one-off costs for the business during the 2013 financial year.
“The new SabreSonic system is already supporting our ability to increase yield. For example, domestic bookings made within the final three weeks prior to departure have experienced a doubling of yield premium to 20 per cent, whilst the number of domestic bookings has improved by 15 per cent over the prior corresponding period15.
“The system will also make it easier for us to work with our current alliance partners and to add new alliance partners, as it aligns with industry standard practices and supports IATA protocols.
“SabreSonic is central to providing an improved travel experience, making it easier for customers to transfer between our flights and those of our partner airlines and offering customers more online self-service options and a greater choice of flights”, Mr Borghetti said.
Product and Service Enhancements
“One of the key aims of the Game Change Program is to establish a superior position in customer experience, while maintaining our cost advantage. This has been a priority during the 2013 financial year as we implemented the final initiatives of our major transformation program and continued to innovate in order to maintain our leadership in this area.
“During the year we completed the roll-out of business class to our domestic fleet, with new cabins on our Embraer 190 aircraft, giving travellers in Australia choice in business class for the first time in over a decade.
“We have expanded existing lounges in key capital cities to meet growing demand and we have launched a new 300 seat lounge in the nation’s capital, Canberra. The refurbishment and extension of our Sydney lounge is now complete. By the end of the 2013 calendar year, we will have completed the expansion of our Melbourne lounge and opened a new lounge in Cairns, with new lounges in Darwin and Perth to open in calendar year 2014.
“We also continued to enhance the airport terminal experience for our customers. In the 2013 financial year we launched Virgin Australia’s state-of-the-art terminal facilities in Canberra and completed the refurbishment of terminal facilities in Melbourne and our extended pier at Sydney Domestic Airport’s Terminal 2.
“In-flight entertainment is critical to customer satisfaction in the air and we have made substantial progress on the implementation of the wireless content streaming technology, with 30 aircraft fitted out and the rest of the domestic Boeing and Embraer fleet to be completed by the end of the year.
“Innovation will remain core to the Virgin Australia brand and we have a range of new product and service initiatives planned for the 2014 financial year to ensure we retain our leadership position, while maintaining a low cost base”, Mr Borghetti said.
Velocity Frequent Flyer
“Membership of the Velocity Frequent Flyer program has grown to approx. 3.7 million, an increase of approximately 500,000 members from the end of June 2012. We continue to see steady growth across all metrics of the business and we are confident that we are on track to achieve our target of 5 million members by the end of the 2015 financial year.
“Over the 2013 financial year we increased the number of hotel partners by 80 per cent and added a range of new partners, maintaining the widest retail offering of any loyalty program in Australia.
“We have launched a number of successful new initiatives aimed at engaging members. We were first to market with a new multi-currency pre-paid travel card, the Global Wallet, combining the Velocity membership card with a Visa pre-paid travel card capability. We also launched Australia’s first pet frequent flyer program and a Velocity Frequent Flyer Facebook presence.
“Going forward, we are focused on continuing to strengthen and mature the business to optimise Velocity Frequent Flyer for ongoing growth”, Mr Borghetti said.
Network and Alliances
“We have further expanded our extensive global network over the 2013 financial year, offering a range of benefits to travellers and providing access to more than 460 destinations across five continents, with the ability for our Velocity Frequent Flyer members to earn Points and Status Credits on all flights. This represents an increase of 27 destinations on the prior corresponding period.
“We are very pleased to have the support of our strong airline alliance partners, Air New Zealand, Delta Air Lines, Etihad Airways and Singapore Airlines, which is critical to the success of our business.
“We continue to work closely with these partners on improving our offering for customers and also on identifying other opportunities to create efficiencies and enhance the customer experience”, Mr Borghetti said.
“In May 2013 we launched Virgin Australia’s regional operation, following the acquisition of the Western Australia based Skywest).
“We have made significant progress with the integration of Skywest into the Virgin Australia Group, including the roll out of Virgin Australia branding across the airline’s operations and the transition to the same SabreSonic system as Virgin Australia, aligning website and airline designator codes.
“Work is well advanced on integrating the networks of the two airlines to explore opportunities for growth and to enhance the customer proposition. For example, earlier this month we launched Virgin Australia’s two-class Embraer aircraft to the important mining hub of Kalgoorlie, as well as Fokker 100 services to the oil and gas port of Onslow.
“We are now well positioned to compete in the regional and charter markets in the 2014 financial year”, Mr Borghetti said.
“We completed the acquisition of 60 per cent of Tigerair Australia in July 2013, enabling us to re-enter the high-growth budget market segment, which is a key part of our overall strategy.
“We have observed positive performance trends to date and we expect performance improvements to be driven by three key factors.
“Firstly, increasing the scale of the business by growing the fleet to 23 aircraft, with the potential to increase up to 35, which we believe will bring economies of scale and deliver a further cost advantage. Secondly, improving operational and service standards to enable the business to increase yields.
Recent performance indicators have been positive, with load factors for July 2013 at 92.0 per cent, an increase of 8.2 points on the same time last year.
Thirdly and finally, we believe margins will be improved by extracting synergies through leveraging off shareholders for certain functions such as procurement”, Mr Borghetti said.
“Our people and the service they deliver continue to be our main differentiator in the market. During the 2013 financial year we implemented an organisational change program designed to develop a more customer-centric culture in all aspects of our business.
“Virgin Australia has received a range of accolades over the year for its achievements in customer service, including our recognition at the Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards as Domestic Airline of the Year and at the World Airline Awards for ‘Best Airline Staff Service” in the Australia/Pacific region for the third consecutive year. The Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction results for the 2013 financial year demonstrate that we are leader in Domestic Airline Business Satisfaction, with 81 per cent of customers very or fairly satisfied.
“I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all team members for their tireless dedication to Virgin Australia as we continue to progress our Game Change Program strategy. In a year of major restructuring and transformation, they have demonstrated great passion and tremendous skill and they will continue to be the drivers of our success going forward”, Mr Borghetti said.
“Given the uncertain economic environment we are unable to provide guidance for the 2014 financial year at this time”, Mr Borghetti said.
11Refers to Skywest Airlines Pte Ltd (formerly known as Skywest Airlines Ltd). Acquisition was completed 19 April 2013
2Underlying CASK is a non-statutory measure and is defined on page 10 of this media release
3Refers to Tiger Airways Australia Pty Ltd. Acquisition was completed 8 July 2013
4This figure has not been audited or reviewed by KPMG
5As at 30 June 2013, compared to the prior corresponding period (PCP) of 30 June 2012
6Source: Roy Morgan Research, July 2012 – June 2013. Finished the 2013 financial year at 81.0% domestic business travellers very or fairly satisfied compared to Qantas at 78.8%
7For the purposes of comparison this excludes the Regular Passenger Traffic segment previously operated by Skywest
8Underlying Profit / (Loss) Before Tax (PBT) excludes Skywest and is a non-statutory measure used by Management and VAH’s Board as a primary measure to assess financial performance of Virgin Australia and individual segments. Refer to page 9 of the media release for a reconciliation of Statutory and Underlying PBT
9Group Yield excludes Skywest
10Underlying CASK is a non-statutory measure and is defined on page 10 of this media release
11Capacity growth includes Virgin Australia Regional (previously Skywest) for May and June FY13 figures
12FY14 growth target takes into account Virgin Australia Regional for the full prior comparable period, and excludes Tigerair Australia
13In accordance with the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport & Regional Economics definitions, flight departure is counted as “on time” if it departs the gate within 15 minutes of the scheduled departure time shown in the carriers’ schedule. Compares the departure OTP results of Virgin Australia-branded operations (Virgin Australia and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines) with Qantas-branded operations (Qantas and QantasLink), which recorded a result of 81.9%
14Excludes business transformation and net finance costs
15Refers to domestic bookings made through all sources and compares the 4 trading weeks of July 2013 to 4 weeks of trading in July 2012
Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Boeing 737-8FE VH-YIA (msn 37824) passes through Honolulu on its long delivery segment of flights.
Ryanair (Dublin) will appeal the UK Competition Commission (UKCC) final report concerning Ryanair’s 29.8 percent share of Aer Lingus (Dublin) and its effort to acquire a controlling share. Based on this decision the Irish ultra low-fare carrier has been shopping its share to other carriers but so far there are no takers. Here is the statement by the flamboyant airline:
Ryanair has confirmed that it will appeal the UK Competition Commission (UKCC) final report which wrongly found that Ryanair, through its 7 year old minority (29.8%) shareholding in Aer Lingus, “had led or may be expected to lead to a substantial lessening of competition between the airlines on routes between Great Britain and Ireland”. This baseless claim is manifestly disproven by 7 years of evidence and by the European Commission’s recent (Feb 2013) ruling that competition between Ryanair and Aer Lingus has “intensified” since 2007.
Under EU law, the UKCC has a duty of sincere cooperation with the EU, and cannot contradict or reach different conclusions to the European Commission’s findings. Inexplicably, today’s report by the UKCC infringes this legal duty by ignoring and contradicting the recent findings of the European Commission that:
“Aer Lingus and Ryanair compete on a greater number of routes compared to the 2007 Decision”, “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”.
In addition, the UKCC has inexplicably dismissed Ryanair’s unprecedented remedies package which comprehensively addressed the UKCC’s three invented “concerns”. For example, the UKCC rejected Ryanair’s offer to unconditionally sell its minority stake to any other airline that makes a bid for Aer Lingus and obtains acceptances from 50.1% of Aer Lingus’ shareholders. Ryanair also offered to support Aer Lingus’ rights issues and any disposal of Aer Lingus’ Heathrow slots, but these simple and effective remedies were also rejected by the UKCC.
The UKCC’s manifestly unjust ruling demonstrates that it did not conduct any fair investigation and that it has now merely announced what was its pre-determined conclusion. Ryanair will appeal the UKCC’s unlawful ruling to the UK Competition Appeal Tribunal. In any event, until the completion of Ryanair’s appeal to the EU courts against the European Commission’s February 2013 prohibition decision, the CC cannot lawfully impose any remedies on Ryanair.
Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary said:
“This report by the UKCC is bizarre and manifestly wrong but also entirely expected. From the first meeting with the UKCC it has been clear to us that Simon Polito’s and Roger Davis’ minds had been made up in advance and no truth or evidence was going to get in the way of their story. This prejudicial approach to an Irish airline is very disturbing, coming from an English government body that regards itself a model competition authority.
Polito’s and Davis’ ignoring of evidence, their conduct of a manifestly unfair investigation, their omission of all the substantial body of evidence that conclusively disproves their case, and their rejection of Ryanair’s unprecedented undertakings (which patently address their three invented future concerns), all in a misguided pursuit of their pre-determined conclusion, demonstrate that this process was not a competition investigation but merely a corrupt and politically biased charade.
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 and concerns very few UK consumers, is yet another enormous waste of UK taxpayer resources from a body which took no action whatsoever when the two main UK airlines (BA and bmi) merged. It would appear to be a case of one rule for the UK airlines but an invented set of rules for two Irish airlines.
Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8AS EI-DLO (msn 34178) with “Bye Bye EasyJet” sub-titles approaches the London (Stansted) for landing.
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix) will go to trial on November 25 against the Department of Justice, six states and the District of Columbia. U.S. District Court Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly set the trial date. The date was sooner than the DOJ wanted which means they will have to do their research much faster.
The DOJ, the six states and DC entered the lawsuit in the court on August 13 to block the proposed merger. This trial will probably serve as one of the final hearings in the merger request since the DOJ is critical in any approval. In other words, a judge could determine the fate of the two airlines.
The airlines are likely to argue that Southwest Airlines (which was not counted in the original DOJ data) is a formidable competitor and a merger is necessary to stay competitive against WN and other fast-growing ultra low fares carriers like Spirit Airlines and Allegiant Air (they have a good point). They are also likely to argue that air fares have gone up not as a result of the recent mergers but continuously rising fuel costs.
The DOJ meanwhile would prefer to compare the AA-US merger against the previous mergers of United Airlines-Continental Airlines and Delta Air Lines-Northwest Airlines and their international routes.
The other critical point bound to be discussed in detail at the trial is the slots the proposed merged carrier will have at Washington’s super high yield Reagan National Airport. The new AA would be a super carrier at DCA if the merger is now approved. AA-US will likely have to give up more concerning DCA.
Lawyers for both sides are likely to exchange millions of documents according to this report by Reuters. If you are an airline route analysis junkie, this is the “trial of the century”.
As many as 50 people could testify at the trial. Will other airline CEOs testify at the trial?
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. American’s Boeing 737-823 N989AN (msn 33205) prepares to land at Dulles International Airport in Virginia near Washington, DC.
Have you seen the “new look” AirlinersGallery.com?
Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. US Airways’ Airbus A321-231 N535UW (msn 3993) climbs away from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
WestJet (Calgary) announced today it has entered into a letter of intent (LOI) to purchase 65 737 MAX aircraft from Boeing, consisting of 40 737 MAX 8 and 25 737 MAX 7 aircraft, with delivery scheduled to begin in September 2017.
The 737 MAX aircraft will be equipped with CFM International LEAP-1B engines, and is expected to reduce fuel burn and CO2 emissions by 13 per cent as compared with the most fuel-efficient single-aisle aircraft currently available. Additional design updates, including Boeing’s Advanced Technology winglets and the Boeing Sky Interior, will also contribute to these improvements in fuel efficiency and WestJet’s overall guest experience. Boeing currently has firm orders from five other airlines in North America for its 737 MAX aircraft.
The airline will substitute 15 of its existing Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft orders currently scheduled to deliver between December 2014 and 2018, with Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, for a net increase of 50 committed deliveries to its fleet plan. Including this pending order, WestJet’s future Boeing 737 aircraft deliveries total 92, with commitments for the proposed Boeing 737 MAX 7 and MAX 8 aircraft, including substitution rights to the 737 MAX 9, scheduled for delivery from 2017 through 2027. WestJet notes that as a result of the flexibility built into its fleet plan, which includes its lease renewal options but excludes any potential sales other than the previously announced sale of 10 737 Boeing Next-Generation aircraft in 2014 and 2015, the fleet could be as large as 162 737 Boeing aircraft or as few as 120 737 Boeing aircraft a decade from now.
As a result of this pending order, WestJet now anticipates its capital expenditures to range between $210 million and $220 million for the third quarter of 2013, and between $690 million and $710 million for the full-year 2013. Previously, WestJet’s guidance was between $100 million and $110 million for the third quarter of 2013, and between $610 million and $630 million for the full-year 2013. The increase in full-year 2013 capital expenditure incorporates reduced deposits forecasted in the fourth quarter of 2013 as a result of the Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft substitutions. Including this pending order, WestJet’s cumulative aircraft capital expenditures from 2014 to 2017 will be lower than previously expected due to the substitution of 15 existing Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft orders that were scheduled to deliver between December 2014 and 2018 to Boeing 737 MAX aircraft delivering in 2017 and beyond.
WestJet expects that a definitive purchase agreement will be entered into prior to September 30, 2013.
Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. WestJet’s current fleet consists of 103 Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft. Boeing 737-8CT C-GWSA (msn 34153) approaches Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) (Washington) has rejected the request of American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and US Airways (Phoenix) for a speedier trial on November 12 on its merger request. The DOJ and six states and the District of Columbia (DC) have filed a lawsuit to block the merger. The DOJ and this group still want a March 2014 trial because of the research required.
Read the full story from USA Today: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. American Airlines’ Boeing 737-823 N968AN (msn 30095) arrives at the number one hot spot in the merger fight, Washington’s slot-controlled Reagan National Airport.
Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) today (August 26) inaugurated nonstop service between Portland, Oregon and Atlanta.
Alaska Airlines has added eight new routes from Portland within the last 12 months which also includes new service to Dallas-Fort Worth starting on September 16.
|Summary of new service:|
|Start date||City pair||Departs||Arrives||Frequency|
|Aug. 26||Portland-Atlanta||9:50 a.m.||5:35 p.m.||Daily|
|Aug. 26||Atlanta-Portland||5:10 p.m.||7:30 p.m.||Daily|
|Flight times based on local time zones.|
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-890 N518AS (msn 35693) completes the “River Approach” into Washington’s Reagan National Airport.
Shandong Airlines-SDA (Jinan, Shandong, China) on August 6 took delivery of this brand new Boeing 737-800. The pictured 737-85N B-5786 (msn 39127) is painted in a special promotional scheme for the Tenth China Art Festival.
According to the official website, the “China Art Festival is the top, largest and most influential state-level art festival in China. It is held every third year and has successfully staged nine sessions up to now. The Tenth China Art Festival will be held in Shandong in October 2013, cosponsored by Ministry of Culture and Shandong Provincial People’s Government.
With the purpose of “art event, people’s festival”, the Tenth China Art Festival takes “developing advanced culture, boosting cultural industry, promoting civilization progress” as the theme and “government taking lead, benefit for the people, highlighting special characteristics, mass participation, open and innovative, pragmatic and thrifty” as the principle.”
Shandong Airlines is the official airline sponsor of the event.
Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Beautifully-decorated B-5786 is pictured passing through Honolulu yesterday (August 7) on its delivery routing. The airliner wears the event logo on the forward fuselage.
Copa Holdings, S.A. (Copa Airlines and Copa Colombia) has announced financial results for the second quarter of 2013:
OPERATING AND FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
- Copa Holdings reported net income of US$74.4 million for 2Q13, or diluted earnings per share (EPS) of US$1.68. Excluding special items, Copa Holdings would have reported an adjusted net income of $85.0 million, or $1.92 per share, a 45.3% increase over adjusted net income of US$58.5 million and US$1.32 per share for 2Q12.
- Operating income for 2Q13 came in at US$97.7 million, a 34.5% increase over operating income of US$72.6 million in 2Q12. Operating margin for the period came in at 16.5%, compared to 14.1% in 2Q12, as a result of lower unit costs.
- Total revenues increased 14.8% to US$592.0 million. Yield per passenger mile decreased 4.6% to 16.4 cents and operating revenue per available seat mile (RASM) decreased 2.5% to 12.8 cents. However, adjusting for a 7.3% increase in length of haul, yields decreased 1.2% and RASM increased 1.0%.
- For 2Q13, passenger traffic (RPMs) grew 20.4% on a 17.7% capacity expansion. Consolidated load factor came in at 75.3%, or 1.7 percentage points above 2Q12.
- Operating cost per available seat mile (CASM) decreased 5.2%, from 11.3 cents in 2Q12 to 10.7 cents in 2Q13. CASM, excluding fuel costs, decreased 2.6% to 6.7 cents.
- Cash, short term and long term investments ended 2Q13 at US$848.7 million, representing 35.0% of the last twelve months’ revenues.
- During the second quarter, Copa Airlines took delivery of one Boeing 737-800 aircraft. As a result, Copa Holdings ended the quarter with a consolidated fleet of 86 aircraft.
- For 2Q13, Copa Holdings reported consolidated on-time performance of 89.3% and a flight-completion factor of 99.7%, maintaining its position among the best in the industry.
- On July 17, 2013, Copa Airlines announced it will begin nonstop service four times a week from Panama to Tampa, Fla., on December 16, 2013. Tampa will be Copa Airlines’ ninth U.S. destination and its 66th destination overall.
- On August 7, 2013, the Board of Directors of Copa Holdings resolved to change the Company’s dividend policy to increase the annual distribution to an amount equal to 40% of the prior years’ annual consolidated net income. In addition, dividends going forward will be distributed in equal quarterly installments during the months of March, June, September and December, subject to board approval each quarter. On August 7, 2013, the Board of Directors also approved dividend payments payable at the end of both 3Q13 and 4Q13, in amounts equal to 10% of the consolidated net income of 2012.
|Consolidated Financial &
|2Q13||2Q12||% Change||1Q13||% Change|
|Revenue Passengers Carried (’000)||1,861||1,658||12.2%||1,899||-2.0%|
|Load Factor||75.3%||73.5%||1.7 p.p.||76.9%||-1.6 p.p.|
|PRASM (US$ Cents)||12.3||12.6||-2.3%||13.5||-8.9%|
|RASM (US$ Cents)||12.8||13.1||-2.5%||14.0||-8.2%|
|CASM (US$ Cents)||10.7||11.3||-5.2%||10.9||-1.5%|
|CASM Excl. Fuel (US$ Cents)||6.7||6.9||-2.6%||6.5||3.3%|
|Breakeven Load Factor (1)||61.6%||63.0%||-1.4 p.p.||58.7%||2.9 p.p.|
|Fuel Gallons Consumed (Millions)||60.0||52.1||15.0%||60.1||-0.2%|
|Avg. Price Per Fuel Gallon (US$ Dollars)||3.08||3.32||-7.3%||3.34||-7.8%|
|Average Length of Haul (Miles)||1,868||1,740||7.3%||1,859||0.5%|
|Average Stage Length (Miles)||1,126||1,063||6.0%||1,123||0.2%|
|Average Aircraft Utilization (Hours)||10.9||10.6||3.1%||11.3||-3.5%|
|Operating Revenues (US$ mm)||592.0||515.8||14.8%||641.3||-7.7%|
|Operating Income (US$ mm)||97.7||72.6||34.5%||142.6||-31.5%|
|Operating Margin||16.5%||14.1%||2.4 p.p.||22.2%||-5.7 p.p.|
|Net Income (US$ mm)||74.4||32.0||132.6%||113.8||-34.6%|
|Adjusted Net Income (US$ mm) (1)||85.0||58.5||45.3%||124.4||-31.6%|
|EPS – Basic and Diluted (US$)||1.68||0.72||132.4%||2.56||-34.6%|
|Adjusted EPS – Basic and Diluted (US$) (1)||1.92||1.32||45.2%||2.80||-31.6%|
|# of Shares – Basic and Diluted (’000)||44,387||44,354||0.1%||44,387||0.0%|
(1)Breakeven Load Factor, Adjusted Net Income and Adjusted EPS for 2Q13, 2Q12, and 1Q13 exclude non-cash charges/gains associated with the mark-to-market of fuel hedges. Additionally, for 1Q13 excludes a US$13.9 million charge related to the devaluation of the Venezuelan currency.
Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8V3 WL HP-1721CMP (msn 40362) prepares to touch down in Miami.
Lion Air (Jakarta) Boeing 737-8GP PK-LKH (msn 37297) while operating flight JT 892 from Ujung Padang to Gorontalo, Indonesia (Sulawesi) with 110 passengers and seven crew members while attempting to land at Jalaluddin Airport near Gorontalo skidded off the runway last night (August 6) after hitting three cows. The brakes failed after colliding with the animals. One cow was found dead under under the main gear. The airport was closed. Reports indicate animals are often sighted on the runway and Lion Air has previously complained about the problem to airport and government officials!
The company has had at least 10 previous incidents and accidents involving the landing phase.
Read the full report from Jakarta Globe: CLICK HERE
Read the full report from the Jakarta Post: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Joe G. Walker/AirlinersGallery.com. Pictured landing at Seattle (Boeing Field), Boeing 737-8GP PK-LKH was handed over to Lion Air on September 28, 2012.
Gorontalo is located in the northern region of Sulawesi (Google Maps):
Current Route Map:
Alrosa Avia (Alrosa Air Company) (Alrosa Airlines) (Alrosa Mirny Air Enterprise) (Moscow-Zhukovsky) is planning to add this former Sky Airlines (Turkey) Boeing 737-800 on lease from GECAS. This will be a new type for the Russian charter airline. Currently the airline is operating Tupolev Tu-134s and it is also wet leasing a Boeing 737-76Q (VQ-BEO, msn 30293) from Yakutia Airlines in a different two-tone blue color scheme.
Sister company Alrosa Mirny Air Enterprise (Mirny, Russia) was founded by the Russian mining company ALROSA (ALmazy ROssil SAkha Trade Company), hence the diamond logo.
Alrosa Avia commenced operations in 1995. The group currently operates 10 aircraft types. In 2008, the fleet was expanded with the Tupolev Tu-134s and Tu-154s. The fleet now comprises 41 fixed wing aircraft and 29 helicopters.
Alrosa is also introducing this new “diamond” livery with this delivery.
Copyright Photo: Greenwing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-83N N302TZ (msn 32576) was delivered new to ATA Airlines on June 29, 2001. It would later fly with Gol (PR-GIC), Transavia Airlines (PH-HST) and Sky Airlines (TC-SKR) before becoming the current M-ABFV. The airliner will be delivered from Dublin as EI-FCH.
Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) (Seattle) has announced it has formally received an order from TUI Travel PLC for Boeing 737-800 Split Scimitar Winglets. This program is the culmination of a five year design effort using the latest computational fluid dynamic technology to redefine the aerodynamics of the Blended Winglet into an all new Split Scimitar Winglet. The unique feature of the Split Scimitar Winglet is that it uses the existing Blended Winglet structure, but adds new strengthened spars, aerodynamic scimitar tips, and a large ventral fin. This advanced technology winglet is the ultimate winglet in terms of performance, without increasing the existing wing span.
Earlier this year, APB launched the Split Scimitar Winglet program for the provisioned wing 737-800 (line number 778 and on) and 737-900 ER with an order from United Airlines. FAA supplemental type certification for the Boeing 737-800 is targeted for October 2013 and EASA certification planned for December 2013. Certification flight testing of Split Scimitar Winglets is currently underway.
APB estimates Split Scimitar Winglet Systems installed on a Boeing 737-800 will save TUI Travel up to 200 metric tons (65,000 gallons) of jet fuel per aircraft, per year resulting in a corresponding carbon dioxide emissions reduction up to 630 metric tons per aircraft, per year. The fuel savings can enable a 737-800 to increase its payload up to 3,300 pounds or increase its range up to 60 nautical miles. APB also expects to certify an improvement in low speed performance that will generate take-off benefits at high/hot or obstacle limited runways.
APB will also certify 6 additional Boeing Next-Generation 737 configurations. These include: structurally provisioned (line number 1545 and on) and non-provisioned (pre-line number 1545) 737-700 and BBJ1, non-provisioned (pre-line number 778) 737-800, and structurally provisioned (line number 778 and on) 737-900.
Nearly 5,000 Blended Winglet Systems are now in service with over 200 airlines in more than 100 countries. APB estimates that Blended Winglets have saved airlines worldwide more than 3.8 billion gallons of jet fuel to-date.
Transat A.T. Inc., the parent of Air Transat (Montreal) has announced the signing of an agreement with the U.S.-based International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) for the long-term (eight-year) lease of four Boeing 737-800 aircraft. This new type will be introduced in the summer of 2014 and will become the core of Air Transat’s permanent narrow-body fleet. The 737-800s will be used on sun-destination routes to Mexico, the Caribbean and Florida. The agreement also includes the renewal through 2020 and 2021 of the leases on six Airbus A330 aircraft—three A330-200s and A330-300s—with improved terms.
The three long-range A330-200s were originally to be phased out of the fleet. Transat and ILFC, however, reached an agreement that will enable Transat to achieve its objective of reducing costs, and that, in the case of these aircraft, will prove more advantageous than the seasonal subcontracting arrangement originally envisioned.
The agreement is in keeping with Transat’s previously announced plan to internalize its operations using narrow-body aircraft (it has relied on outside aircraft since 2003), and to deploy a so-called accordion fleet that enables it to adjust the number of narrow- and wide-body jets at its disposal according to seasonal tourism market needs. Generally speaking, Transat has greater need for narrow-body aircraft in winter, when Canadian travellers favour medium-haul sun destinations, and greater need for wide-body jets in summer, when the transatlantic market is busiest.
“This is an important step in the implementation of a fleet that is adaptable to seasonal needs,” said Jean-Marc Eustache, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transat, adding: “This deal gives us greater flexibility and a significantly enhanced cost structure. This strategy is key to our future success and to a return to profitability in winter, and will also ensure that we maintain the high quality of our products and our customer experience.”
Air Transat’s fleet currently consists of nine Airbus A310s and twelve A330s. Transat plans to add additional narrow-body aircraft, mainly on a seasonal basis in winter, to meet demand on its sun destination routes.
These measures are part of the plan announced in December 2011 and updated in June 2013, which calls for improvements to Transat’s cost structure of $75 million by 2015, and which is unfolding as anticipated. As for the fleet, other changes are planned, notably the replacement of some Airbus A310s.
Air Transat has previously wet leased Boeing 737-800s from CanJet Airlines.
Air Transat will again be a Boeing operator.
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. The Airbus A330-200s will remain a part of the Air Transat fleet through 2021. Airbus A330-243 C-GTSN (msn 369) is beautifully captured at Amsterdam.
Ryanair (Dublin) under the file “It was bound to happen”, has announced it will now sell advertising space on its 303 Boeing 737-800s. Although not a full logojet, a space by the nose and three other locations is being offered to any potential advertisers. The ultra-low fare airline issued this statement:
United Airlines (Chicago) Boeing 737-800 aircraft retrofitted with the new Split Scimitar Winglet took its maiden test flight Tuesday (July 16) in Everett, Washington. This advanced winglet improves on the existing blended winglets United currently has on its next generation 737 fleet.
In January, United served as the launch customer for this innovative winglet when it made a firm commitment with Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) to retrofit its 737-800 fleet. In June, United announced its commitment to also retrofit its 737-900ER fleet. Using a newly patented design, the program consists of retrofitting United’s Boeing Next Generation 737 Blended Winglets by replacing the aluminum winglet tip cap with a new aerodynamically shaped “Scimitar”™ winglet tip cap and by adding a new Scimitar-tipped ventral strake.
This new winglet design demonstrates significant aircraft drag reduction over the basic blended winglet configuration United uses on its current fleet. United expects the new Split Scimitar winglet to result in approximately a two percent fuel savings for the 737. Once the Split Scimitar Winglets are installed, the combined winglet technology installed on United’s 737, 757, and 767 fleet is expected to save the airline more than $200 million per year in jet fuel costs.
United will begin retrofitting its 737-800 and 737-900 ER fleet with the new winglet beginning early next year, once testing and FAA certification of the winglets are complete.
Copyright Photo: United Airlines. Boeing 737-824 N37277 (msn 31595) makes history at Paine Field near Everett.
International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) (Los Angeles), a wholly owned subsidiary of American International Group, Inc. (AIG), has announced the delivery of a new Boeing 737-800 to Okay Airways Company Limited (Okay Airways) (OKAir) (Tianjin), which will allow the airline to expand services to meet the growing demand within its flight route network.
The newly-delivered Boeing 737-8Q8 B-5841 (msn 41789) is powered by two CFM 56-7B26E engines and will operate on the airline’s routes linking Tianjin with other major cities in China.
In other news, ILFC has announced today that it has finalized an order for the purchase of 50 E-Jets E2 aircraft from Embraer, including 25 E190-E2 and 25 E195-E2. The order also includes options for an additional 50 aircraft.
Copyright Photo: Paul Doyle. Sister-ship ex-Ryanair Boeing 737-8AS N594MS (msn 33557) became B-5577 on delivery.
Luxair-Luxembourg Airlines (Luxembourg) has announced it will resume service to Dublin on March 30, 2014 with four weekly frequencies. The restored route will operate during the summer season with Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) aircraft.
According to the flag carrier, “This decision is part of the new Luxair strategy to serve its customers better, not only with a more attractive fare structure but also by developing its European network according to the demand of both business and leisure travellers. This follows the opening of the new Luxembourg-Copenhagen route as of June 3, already coming up with a very good load factor. This also is in accordance with the enhancing of the London City route (a fifth daily flight is being operated since April 8) and the Milan Malpensa connection (a third daily flight is being operated since September 2012).
A losing year in 2012. Previously the Luxair Group issued its financial statement for 2012:
The aviation sector remains very sensitive to the vagaries of the economy, with increased exposure with regard to traditional regional air transport in Europe. Luxair Luxembourg Airlines’ operating result thus logically experienced a further downturn in 2012, while the tour operator Luxair Tours only just managed to struggle through in a highly competitive environment. As for the freight handling business, the interaction between the state of the economy and goods transport unsurprisingly resulted in a decline in volumes handled by Luxair CARGO. 2012 was therefore a difficult year for Luxair Group and resulted in a loss of 10.5 million EUR ($13.7 million).
Luxair Luxembourg Airlines’ losses, the deterioration in the profitability of Luxair Tours and Luxair CARGO’s deficit pushed the operating loss to over 18 million EUR in 2012 against only 2 million EUR in 2011. Group revenue increased from 428.6 million EUR in 2011 to 446.7 million EUR in 2012. The net result for the year came out at a loss of 10.5 million EUR in 2012 against a profit of 3.6 million EUR in 2011.
Luxair S.A. has a 43.4% stake in Cargolux. In 2012, Cargolux has suffered again from weak economic conditions. The handled volumes have decreased by 2% to 645,800 tons. An after-tax loss of $35 million had a negative impact on the financial year (loss of $18 million in 2011), equally affected by a fall of 7.6% in turnover.
By including the subsidiaries, including Cargolux by 43.4%, the consolidated net result of Luxair Group comes
to a loss of 21.2 million EUR in 2012 compared to a gain of 1.4 million EUR in 2011.
Luxair Luxembourg Airlines
2012 was marked by increased competition on Luxair Luxembourg Airlines’ domestic routes, particularly with regard to flights to and from Munich, Geneva, London and Hamburg, as well as connecting traffic via the hubs served by competitors. The rise in the price of oil, + 10% compared with 2011, is another factor which weighed heavily on Luxair’s financial performance.
On a like-for-like basis, Luxair recorded a 7% rise in passengers, which enabled passenger numbers to stabilize despite lower capacity due to a reduction in the number of flights.
Top Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) LX-LGA (msn 4159) climbs gracefully from Frankfurt bound for LUX.
Bottom Copyright Photos: Luxair. The airline invited local children to visit this Boeing 737-800 at the local Luxembourg base. The airline has also added promotional Disney Planes logos to this Boeing 737-8C9 LX-LGU (msn 41047).
Spring Airlines Japan (Tokyo-Narita) as the new low-cost subsidiary of Spring Airlines (Shanghai), has been approved by Japan’s MLIT for a launch of scheduled passenger operations. However the new airline is now planning to commence operations in late 2013 or early 2014 according to CAPA. The new airline is planning to operate domestic routes initially from Narita Airport to Hiroshima, Kumamoto and Takamatsu. The airline previously was hoping to start operations in the spring of 2013 and the first Boeing 737-800 was prepared for delivery.
Spring Airlines is the largest low-cost carrier in China and operates over 50 international and domestic routes covering a network of more than 30 cities across China, Japan and Thailand. Spring Airlines is the aviation subsidiary of Shanghai Spring International Travel Service.
Copyright Photo: Rick Schlamp/AirlinersGallery.com. Unlike the parent which operates Airbus A320s, Spring Airlines Japan will operate Boeing 737-800s. The Japanese subsidiary also has a different livery. Boeing 737-81D N272LM (msn 39429) will be delivered as JA01GR.
Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) has announced that from August 15, 2013 it will commence services between Melbourne and Hamilton Island.
The airline will operate its Boeing 737-800 aircraft on the new route with 8 Business Class and 168 Economy Class seats.
The flights will depart Melbourne at 8:30 am (0830) on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, arriving into Hamilton Island at 11:30 am (1130). The return flight departs Hamilton Island at midday (1200) on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays arriving into Melbourne at 3:00 pm (1500). During off-peak months (between February and June), services will only operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Copyright Photo: Micheil Keegan/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8FE WL VH-YIA (msn 37824) prepares to land at Perth.
Domestic Route Map:
Video: Hamilton Island.
Ryanair (Dublin) has finalized a firm order for 175 Next-Generation 737-800 airplanes with Boeing valued at $15.6 billion at list prices. The order, originally announced as a commitment in March, is Boeing’s largest ever aircraft order from a European airline.
CEO O’Leary flew into the air show on one of Ryanair’s 303 737-800s, which bore a special livery celebrating the agreement.
Ryanair, which took delivery of its first 737-800 from Boeing in 1999 and has the largest fleet of Boeing airplanes in Europe.
The airline operates over 1,600 flights per day from 57 bases on 1,600 routes across 29 countries, connecting more than 180 destinations.
Copyright Photo: Boeing. Michael O’Leary, president and CEO of Ryanair (left) joined Ray Conner, Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and CEO (right), at the Paris signing ceremony.
AeroMexico (Mexico City) has announced the launch of its new Aeromexico Contigo (Aeromexico with You) product which will offer a host of benefits to passengers traveling frequently between Mexico and the United States.
The use of the Boeing 737-800 airliner for the Aeromexico Contigo program optimizes operating costs, which then translates into lower pricing. Other benefits include increased legroom, personalized attention by Aeromexico Call Center agents and at participating airport check-in counters.
Destinations to feature the Aeromexico Contigo product include:
|Guadalajara – Tijuana||28 weekly flights|
|Culiacan – Tijuana||14 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Chicago||4 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Ontario||6 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Los Angeles||14 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Fresno||3 weekly flights|
|Guadalajara – Sacramento||3 weekly flights|
It is important to note that the benefits offered through Aeromexico Contigo are in addition to Aeromexico’s existing baggage policy for travel between Mexico to the US, which includes free check in of passengers’ first bag weighing 55 lbs (25 Kg) and one carry-on bag weighing 22 lbs (10 Kg) and for passengers’ traveling from the US a first bag weighing 50 lbs (23 Kg) and one carry-on bag of 22 lbs (10 Kg).
Aeromexico Contigo will begin operation in October 2013.
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-852 WL EI-DRB (msn 35115) completes its final approach into Miami International Airport.
Aviation Partners Boeing launches 737-900 ER Split Scimitar Winglets with order from United Airlines
Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) (Seattle) has announced it has formally launched the 737-900 ER (Extended Range) Split Scimitar Winglet program with an order from United Airlines (Chicago). Using a newly patented design, the program will consist of retrofitting existing Boeing Next-Generation 737 Blended Winglets by replacing the aluminum winglet tip cap with a new aerodynamically shaped “Scimitar” TM winglet tip cap and by adding a new Scimitar tipped Ventral Strake.
In January 2013, APB launched the Split Scimitar Winglet program for the provisioned 737-800 with an order from United Airlines. FAA supplemental type certification for the Boeing 737-800 is targeted for October of this year with EASA certification planned within the following two months. Certification flight testing of Split Scimitar Winglets on the 737-900ER will follow closely behind and is scheduled to begin in November with FAA supplemental type certification targeted for late February 2014.
APB is targeting 6 additional Boeing Next-Generation 737 configurations for possible certification; these include: the structurally provisioned (line number 1545 and on) and non-provisioned (pre-line number 1545) 737-700 and BBJ1, the non-provisioned (pre-line number 778) 737-800, and the structurally provisioned (line number 778 and on) 737-900.
“United Airlines continues to lead the way in adapting its fleet to be as fuel efficient and eco-friendly as possible,” said Aviation Partners Boeing executive vice president and chief commercial officer Patrick LaMoria. “United’s relentless drive to improvefuel efficiency is the perfect complement to APB’s focus on continuous innovation. We are once again very excited to launch another new program with United.”
“We are always looking for opportunities to improve the fuel efficiency of our fleet. The Next-Generation 737 Split Scimitar Winglet will provide a natural hedge against rising fuel prices while simultaneously reducing fuel consumption and carbon emissions,” said Ron Baur, United’s vice president of fleet. “We are pleased to build on our commitment to the Split Scimitar Winglet as the launch customer for the new 737-900ER winglet program and appreciate APB’s focus in helping United become even more fuel efficient.”
APB expects Split Scimitar Winglet Systems installed on a Boeing 737-900ER to save United Airlines over 57,000 gallons of jet fuel per aircraft per year resulting in a corresponding reduction of carbon dioxide emissions of over 600 tons per aircraft per year. The fuel savings can enable a 737-900ER to increase its payload up to 3,300 pounds or increase its range up to 60 nautical miles. APB also expects to certify an improvement in low speed performance that will generate significant take-off benefits from high/hot or obstacle limited runways.
Nearly 5,000 Blended Winglet Systems are now in service with over 200 airlines in more than 100 countries. APB estimates that Blended Winglets have saved airlines worldwide more than 3.7 billion gallons of jet fuel to-date.
Aviation Partners Boeing is a Seattle based joint venture of Aviation Partners, Inc. and The Boeing Company.
Copyright Photos: Aviation Partners Boeing.
Gol Transportes Aereos (Sao Paulo) has introduced a new logojet. The carrier has unveiled a new logojet in support of the Brazilian Soccer Federation (CBF-Confederação Brasileira de Futebol). The special livery incorporates the Brazilian flag colors as well as the five stars of the five World Cups won by Brazil. the logojet contains the insignia of CBF on the tail surfaces and the phrase “Transportadora Oficial da Seleção Brasileira” (official transporter of the Brazilian team). The aircraft, the pictured Boeing 737-8EH PR-GUM (msn 35846), flew the Brazilian team from Goiania to Brasilia yesterday for the forthcoming FIFA Confederations Cup during the period of June 15-30, 2013.
The CBF issued this statement:
The CBF announces that on Wednesday (June 12, 2013) Seleção Brasileira arrived in Brasilia, site of the debut in Confederations Cup, on the Boeing 738-800 Next Generation Sky Interior of Gol, specially painted with the colors of Seleção.
The initiative of the airline – the official carrier of Seleção Brasileira – reinforces this act, the meaning of partnership.
Gol managed to have the first of three aircraft alluding to Seleção ready before the Confederations Cup. This was the result of compromise and teamwork, characteristics that unite us even more.
Besides the flights of Seleção, this aircraft will integrate the operations of Gol, which will allow fans to also be able to know this special tribute.
President José Maria is thrilled with the results produced by the partnership between the Brazilian Football Confederation and the company.
“I appreciate the professionalism and dedication of Gol, from its Board to its employees. The CBF has in this company a great partner and ally.”
Copyright Photo: Brazilian Soccer Federation (CBF).
Want to see more logojets? Follow our Airline Special Color Schemes blog: CLICK HERE
Alaska Airlines (Seattle) today (June 3) officially unveiled this colorful “Spirit of the Islands” logojet. The pictured Boeing 737-890 N560AS (msn 35179) is a special salute to the state of Hawaii. The airline issued this statement:
A specially painted Alaska Airlines jet adorned with a Honolulu high school student’s winning design honoring the culture of the Aloha State touched down today in Honolulu before a crowd of students, educators and travelers. The unique paint theme, dubbed the “Spirit of the Islands,” was created by 17-year-old Aaron Nee.
Nee’s design was selected from among more than 2,700 submissions by students across the Hawaiian Islands in a statewide “Paint-the-Plane” contest sponsored by Alaska Airlines, in partnership with the Hawaii State Department of Education and Hawaii Association of Independent Schools. A 10-member judging panel, comprised of Hawaii artists, educators and other local community members, carefully scored and selected the three top designs, which were then voted on by Hawaii residents in an online public vote.
As the grand prize winner, Nee received a trip for four to any of the carrier’s destinations and a $5,000 scholarship.
“This has been an incredible opportunity to share Hawaii’s beauty with people throughout the country,” said Nee. “This contest helped me to sharpen my graphic design skills and demonstrated that with hard work, attention to detail and determination, great things are possible.”
Nee’s winning design displays a voyaging canoe depicting the cultural diversity of the Islands, a bright yellow hibiscus (the state flower), the Hawaiian Island chain and the phrase “Spirit of the Islands.”
The soon-to-be Kaiser High School senior is a nearly straight-A student and a decorated member of the school’s Air Force ROTC program. Known for his artistic ability and interest in graphic design and athletics, Nee said he plans to invest his $5,000 for college and take his family to visit relatives in New York, where he hopes to see snow for the first time.
The “Spirit of the Islands” Boeing 737-800 was revealed to Nee at Honolulu International Airport on June 3, where he was joined by his parents, Robin and Mitch Connell, and father Aaron Garrett Nee, as well as Hawaii Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui, Hawaii Tourism Authority President and CEO Mike McCartney, Kaiser High School Principal John Sosa and several of Nee’s teachers. Also joining the welcoming ceremony were the 12 finalists and honorable mention winners, who received prizes and scholarships for their entries, as well.
Izabela Hamilton, a 12th grader at Seabury Hall on the island of Maui, placed second for her design featuring a male and female hula dancer against a backdrop of ocean waves and windswept mountain cliffs. Sophia Cleek, a sixth grader at Kapolei Middle School on Oahu, placed third for her design depicting a voyaging canoe sailing around the Islands. Hamilton and Cleek will each receive a trip for four to any Alaska Airlines destination and a $1,000 scholarship. The 10 other honorable mention winners were awarded a $1,000 scholarship each.
“Spirit of the Islands” trivia
- The 129-foot-long Boeing 737-800 has a wingspan of 117 feet and a cruising speed of 530 mph.
- A crew of 18 worked around the clock for 24 days at Aviation Technical Services in Everett, Wash., to paint the plane, which required 26 colors and about 140 gallons of paint, including 20 gallons of primer. In addition, 28,800 yards of masking tape were used.
- The plane accommodates 157 passengers and six crew members.
The aircraft will fly throughout most of Alaska Airlines’ network, connecting destinations from Hawaii to San Diego and from Anchorage as far south as Mexico.
The “Spirit of the Islands” contest is the third time Alaska Airlines has turned to the public to paint a plane. The Spirit of Alaska Statehood aircraft paint scheme was created by a 16-year-old Sitka student in a similar statewide contest celebrating Alaska’s 50-year anniversary of statehood. In 2011, two soccer fans designed the MLS Portland “Timbers Jet” to celebrate the airline’s jersey sponsorship of the Portland, Ore., soccer team.
Copyright Photo: Royal S. King/AirlinersGallery.com. Please click on the photo for the full-size view.
What does it take to paint an aircraft like this? Here is a previous video on the painting of “Salmon-Thirty-Salmon II“:
Meridiana starts to repaint the Air Italy fleet, drops the “fly” from its name and settles on a color scheme
Meridiana fly (Olbia, Sardinia) on July 18, 2011, announced a merger with Air Italy (2nd) (Milan-Malpensa). Since then the two airlines have been operating as two separate airlines with their own brands and operating philosophies. This is now changing.
Meridiana has been using the Meridiana fly name since its merger with Eurofly (Milan-Malpensa) on February 28, 2010. Now the company will revert back to just Meridiana for the rebranding. The pictured 1991 livery above will now become the standard livery for all of the merged aircraft. For now, until the merger is complete, Air Italy is technically wet leasing its aircraft to Meridiana. The pictured Boeing 737-800 of Air Italy carries a small “Supplied by Air Italy” sticker applied close to the main forward left door.
The Air Italy brand will now be retired.
According to commercial director Andrea Andorno, “we want to emphasize the characteristics of full service carriers for the high-class clientele. No more low cost philosophy” according to this report by La Stampa.
Read the full report (in Italian): CLICK HERE
Top Copyright Photo: Marco Finelli. Air Italy’s Boeing 737-84P WL EI-IGN (msn 35074) taxies past the camera at Bologna in its new look.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Nik French. Air Italy’s Boeing 737-8BK WL EI-EOJ (msn 33022) parks between flights at Manchester.
Lion Air‘s (Jakarta) flight from Bandung to Bali went into the water while landing at Bali today and broke into two sections. The 101 passengers and seven crew members were able to safely evacuate the aircraft. There were reports of 53 people with minor injuries.
The aircraft involved is this brand new Boeing 737-8GP PK-LKS (msn 38728) (below) which arrived at Lion Air on March 20, 2013 after a short stint with subsidiary Malindo Air.
Read the report by Bloomberg: CLICK HERE
A local report by the Jakarta Post quotes a Lion Air official stating the aircraft had not yet touched the runway before it hit the water implying the aircraft crashed short of the runway and was not an overrun of the runway as most media accounts claimed.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Leslie Snelleman. The ill-fated PK-LKS is pictured at the Jakarta base on April 4, 2013.
Follow-Up: Investigators are now looking at wind shear. The pilot reported losing control of the aircraft on its final approach according to this report by Reuters.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Air Lease Corporation (Los Angeles) announced a lease agreement with Aerolíneas Argentinas (Buenos Aires) for six new Boeing 737-800 aircraft, each on lease for twelve years. The aircraft are scheduled for delivery between November 2014 and February 2016.
Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. De Biasi. Boeing 737-86J LV-CTC (msn 30570) lands at Aeroparque Jorge Newbery Airport in downtown Buenos Aires.
Airberlin (airberlin.com) (Berlin) is working to trim its unprofitable routes. The carrier has announced it is downsizing its mainly tourist hub at Nuremberg for the coming winter schedule. The carrier will retain some holiday routes to southern destinations.
Read the full report (in German) by Bayerischer Rundfunk: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Gunter Mayer. Boeing 737-86J D-ABBF (msn 32917) taxies to the gate at NUE.