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Air Canada reports 3Q adjusted net income of C$365 million

Air Canada (Montreal) today reported adjusted net income of $365 million or $1.29 per diluted share in the third quarter of 2013 compared to adjusted net income of $229 million or $0.82 per diluted share in the third quarter of 2012, an increase of 59.4 per cent.  Third quarter 2013 EBITDAR amounted to $626 million compared to EBITDAR (excluding benefit plan amendments) of $551 million in the third quarter of 2012, an increase of $75 million . On a GAAP basis (which includes special items), Air Canada’s net income was $299 million or $1.05 per diluted share compared to net income of $359 million or $1.28 per diluted share in the same quarter of the previous year, during which Air Canada recorded a special operating expense reduction of $127 million in Benefit plan amendments relating to changes to the retirement age under one of its collective agreements. No comparable operating expense reduction was recorded in the third quarter of 2013.

“I am extremely pleased to report Air Canada’s best quarterly performance in the Corporation’s history, surpassing previous records for adjusted net income and EBITDAR,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our operating leverage for the quarter was significant, as we achieved a 59.4 per cent improvement in adjusted net income based on increased total revenues of 4.6 per cent for the quarter.  These results underscore the momentum that has been achieved in executing on the foundations of our transformation strategy – sustainable profitability and positioning Air Canada as a stronger national and global competitor.

“In the quarter, we announced a series of significant developments in achieving our priorities: We successfully completed the $1.4 billion refinancing of our 2010 notes, significantly lowering our cost structure, strengthening our balance sheet and improving our credit profile.  We completed the transfer of all 15 Embraer 175 aircraft to Sky Regional, our Air Canada Express partner, an important step in Air Canada’s regional diversification strategy and our ongoing cost transformation program.  We finished construction of a new state-of-the-art Operations Centre that is designed to significantly improve operational capabilities and efficiencies of our global network.  To further develop Toronto Pearson as a truly global hub and even stronger North American gateway, we recently concluded an enhanced cooperation agreement with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA).  In addition, we implemented an expanded commercial agreement with Air China, to serve additional points in China on a codeshare basis with our Star Alliance partner.

“I am particularly pleased to see the stock market’s endorsement of the strategy that our team has developed. This was reflected in our stock price more than tripling over the past year.  Moreover, our commitment as a progressive employer and investment in the well-being of our employees has also been recognized with the recent naming of Air Canada as one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers.

“Looking ahead, we will take delivery of the final three of five new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft by February 2014 , and we are actively preparing to begin integrating the first six of 37 Boeing 787 aircraft into our widebody fleet in 2014.  For the summer of 2014, we announced a major European expansion as these new widebody aircraft enter Air Canada’s international fleet allowing for the transfer of current aircraft to Air Canada rougeTM in order to operate in leisure markets on a more cost competitive basis.

“Our operational performance has also shown continued improvement. On-Time Performance (OTP) for the quarter improved over 20 percentage points compared to the previous year, the third consecutive quarter of significant year-over-year gains.  I would like to thank our employees for their on-going focus on taking care of our customers while operating a safe and efficient airline.  Their professionalism, collaboration and dedication, combined with Air Canada’s award-winning product has once again been recognized by this year’s Ipsos Reid Business Traveller Survey, released in September, that confirmed that Canada’s frequent business travellers recognize Air Canada as their preferred airline by a growing margin – the widest margin versus our domestic competitors since 2008,” concluded Mr. Rovinescu.

Third Quarter Income Statement Highlights

Third quarter 2013 system passenger revenues were $3,177 million , an increase of $148 million or 4.9 per cent over the third quarter of 2012, on a 2.9 per cent growth in traffic and a 2.0 per cent improvement in yield.  Passenger revenue per available seat mile (RASM) increased 1.8 per cent from the third quarter of 2012 on the yield growth.  Air Canada reported a passenger load factor of 86.2 per cent for the third quarter of 2013, 0.1 percentage points below the third quarter 2012 record load factor.  In the premium class cabin, passenger revenues increased $12 million or 2.1 per cent on yield growth of 3.8 per cent as traffic declined 1.7 per cent from the third quarter of 2012.

Operating expenses increased $160 million or 6 per cent from the third quarter of 2012.  As a result of changes to the terms of the ACPA collective agreement related to retirement age, which are not subject to regulatory approval, Air Canada recorded an operating expense reduction of $127 million in Benefit plan amendments in the third quarter of 2012 related to the impact of those amendments on pension and other employee benefit liabilities.  No such operating expense reduction was recorded in the third quarter of 2013.

Air Canada’s adjusted cost per available seat mile (adjusted CASM), which excludes fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items, decreased 3.4 per cent compared to the third quarter of 2012.  The 3.4 per cent reduction in adjusted CASM was in line with the adjusted CASM decrease of 3.0 per cent to 3.5 per cent projected in Air Canada’s news release dated October 3, 2013 .

In the third quarter 2013, Air Canada recorded operating income of $416 million compared to operating income of $423 million in the same quarter in 2012.  As discussed above, an operating expense reduction of $127 million was recorded in Benefit plan amendments in the third quarter of 2012 while no such operating expense reduction was recorded in the third quarter of 2013.

Financial and Capital Management Highlights

At September 30, 2013 , unrestricted liquidity (cash, short-term investments and undrawn lines of credit) improved to $2,412 million or 20 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues ( September 30, 2012 – $2,135 million or 18 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues).

Adjusted net debt amounted to $4,104 million at September 30, 2013 , a decrease of $33 million from December 31, 2012.   Despite adding US$285 million of debt related to the two Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft delivered in June and August 2013 , Air Canada was able to reduce net debt by maintaining positive cash from operations.

In the third quarter of 2013, negative free cash flow of $249 million declined $96 million from the third quarter of 2012, largely due to the addition of one Boeing 777 aircraft, partly offset by an increase in cash flows from operating activities due to better operating results.

For the 12 months ended September 30, 2013 , return on invested capital (“ROIC”) was 10.8 per cent versus 7.7 per cent at December 31, 2012.   Air Canada has targeted achieving an ROIC of 10 to 13 per cent by 2015.

Current Outlook

For the fourth quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects its system ASM capacity, as measured by available seat miles (ASMs), to increase in the range of 3.0 to 4.0 per cent when compared to the fourth quarter of 2012.

Air Canada expects its full year 2013 system ASM capacity and domestic ASM capacity to increase in the range of 2.0 to 2.5 per cent when compared to the same periods in 2012 (as opposed to the increase of 1.5 to 2.5 per cent disclosed in Air Canada’s news release dated October 3, 2013 ).

For the fourth quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects adjusted CASM to decrease 2.0 to 3.0 per cent when compared to the fourth quarter of 2012.

For the full year 2013, Air Canada continues to expect adjusted CASM to decrease in the range of 1.5 to 2.0 per cent from the full year 2012, consistent with the revised outlook provided with the October 3, 2013 traffic release.

Air Canada continues to expect its full year 2014 system capacity to increase by 9.0 to 11.0 per cent when compared to the full year 2013.  This projected increase in capacity, which is being deployed primarily on international markets, is consistent with the fleet plan discussed in Air Canada’s Third Quarter 2013 MD&A.  The projected capacity increase is due to the addition of five high-density Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft (the first two having been delivered in June and August 2013 , respectively, and the remaining three scheduled for delivery between November 2013 and February 2014 ), the scheduled arrival in 2014 of the first six Boeing 787 aircraft, and the planned growth from Air Canada rougeTM.

Air Canada’s outlook assumes Canadian GDP growth of 1.25 to 1.75 per cent for 2013 and Canadian GDP growth of 2.0 to 3.0 per cent for 2014.

Air Canada also expects that the Canadian dollar will trade, on average, at C$1.03 per U.S. dollar for the fourth quarter of 2013 and the full year 2013 and that the price of jet fuel will average  89 cents per litre for the fourth quarter of 2013 and the full year 2013.

The following table summarizes Air Canada’s above-mentioned outlook for the fourth quarter and full year 2013 and related major assumptions:

 

Fourth Quarter 2013 versus 
Fourth Quarter 2012
Full Year 2013 versus 
Full Year 2012
Current Outlook
Available seat miles (System) Increase 3.0% to 4.0% Increase 2.0% to 2.5%
Available seat miles (Canada) n/a Increase 2.0% to 2.5%
Adjusted CASM (1) Decrease 2.0% to 3.0% Decrease 1.5% to 2.0%
(1) Excludes fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items
Major Assumptions -
Fourth Quarter 2013
Major Assumptions -
Full Year 2013
Major Assumptions
Canadian dollar per U.S. dollar 1.03 1.03
Jet fuel price – CAD cents per litre 89 cents 89 cents
Canadian economy 2013 Annualized Canadian GDP
growth of 1.25% to 1.75%
Canadian GDP growth of
1.25% to 1.75%

 

For the full year 2013, Air Canada continues to expect:

  • Depreciation, amortization and impairment expense to decrease by $115 million from the full year 2012.
  • Employee benefits expense to increase by $70 million from the full year 2012.
  • Aircraft maintenance expense to decrease by $40 million from the full year 2012 level, which includes a favourable maintenance return provision adjustment of $32 million in the fourth quarter of 2012.

The following table summarizes the above-mentioned projections for the full year 2013:

Full Year 2013 versus 
Full Year 2012
Depreciation, amortization and impairment expense Decrease $115 million
Employee benefits expense Increase $70 million
Aircraft maintenance expense Decrease $40 million

 

The outlook provided constitutes forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws and is based on a number of additional assumptions and subject to a number of risks.  Please see section below entitled “Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Information.”

Non-GAAP Measures

Below is a description of certain non-GAAP measures used by Air Canada to provide additional information on its financial and operating performance.  Such measures are not recognized measures for financial statement presentation under Canadian GAAP and do not have standardized meanings and may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other public companies.  Refer to Air Canada’s Third Quarter 2013 MD&A for reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures.

  • Adjusted net income (loss) and adjusted net income (loss) per diluted share are used by Air Canada to assess its performance without the effects of foreign exchange, net financing expense on employee benefits, mark-to-market adjustments on derivatives and other financial instruments recorded at fair value and unusual items.
  • EBITDAR is commonly used in the airline industry and is used by Air Canada to assess earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization, impairment and aircraft rent as these costs can vary significantly among airlines due to differences in the way airlines finance their aircraft and other assets.
  • Adjusted CASM is used by Air Canada to assess the operating performance of its ongoing airline business without the effects of fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items, such as impairment charges and benefit plan amendments, as such expenses may distort the analysis of certain business trends and render comparative analyses to other airlines less meaningful.
  • Free cash flow is used by Air Canada as an indicator of the financial strength and performance of its business because it shows how much cash is available for such purposes as repaying debt, meeting ongoing financial obligations and reinvesting in Air Canada.
  • Adjusted net debt is a key component of the capital managed by Air Canada and provides a measure of the airline’s net indebtedness.  Adjusted net debt is calculated as the sum of total long-term debt and finance lease obligations and capitalized operating leases less cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments.
  • Return on invested capital is used by Air Canada to assess the efficiency with which it allocates its capital to generate returns. Return is based on Adjusted net income (loss) (as discussed in the section above), excluding interest expense and implicit interest on operating leases. Invested capital includes average long-term debt, average finance lease obligations, the value of capitalized operating leases (calculated by multiplying annualized aircraft rent expense by 7) and the market capitalization of Air Canada’s outstanding shares.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-333 ER C-FRAM (msn 35250) approaches Tokyo (Narita) for landing.

Air Canada: AG Slide Show

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Korean Air finalizes its order with Boeing

Korean Air (Seoul) and Boeing (Chicago) have finalized an order for five 747-8 Intercontinentals and six 777-300 ER (Extended Range) jetliners that was announced as a commitment during the Paris Air Show in June. In addition, Korean Air has also announced an order for one additional 787 Dreamliner. The value of the combined order is valued at $3.9 billion at current list prices.

With this order Korea’s flag carrier expands its backlog of 747-8 Intercontinentals and 777-300ERs to 10 each. The order also increases Korean Air’s 787 backlog to 11.

Korean Air is currently the only airline in the world to order both the passenger and freighter variations of the 747-8. The airline also became the first international carrier to simultaneously operate both the 747-8 and 777 Freighter.

Korean Air’s current fleet of 90 Boeing passenger airplanes consists of 737, 747 and 777 airplanes. The airline also operates an all-Boeing cargo fleet of 27 747-400, 747-8 and 777 Freighters. The airline’s Aerospace Division is also a key Boeing partner on both the 747-8 and 787 programs, supplying the distinctive raked wing-tips for each model.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Korean Air’s Boeing 777-3B5 ER HL8275 (msn 37651) arrives in Los Angeles.

Korean Air: AG Slide Show

Ethiopian Airlines to take delivery of its first Boeing 777-300 ER on November 7

Ethiopian 777-300ER (03)(Flt)Ethiopian)(LR)

Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa) will take delivery of its first Boeing 777-300 ER on November 7. Boeing 777-36N ER ET-APX (msn 42101) is the first of four and is currently being painted for the handover.

The new 777-300 ER will operate on Ethiopian’s dense routes such as from Addis Ababa to Guangzhou (China), Washington (Dulles) D.C., Dubai and Luanda. The aircraft is scheduled to serve the Addis Ababa – Luanda route three times a week, as of November 10, 2013, and three times a week on the Addis Ababa – Guangzhou route starting on November 15, 2013.

In other news, Ethiopian will extend its system to Singapore on December 3, 2013 with three weekly flights. The new flights to Singapore will be operated with Boeing 767-300 aircraft with 24 seats in Ethiopian Cloud Nine Business Class and 211 seats in Economy class.

Flight Days From To Departure Arrival
ET626 TU/THU/SA Addis Ababa Singapore(via BKK) 00:40 18:15
ET627 TU/THU/SA Singapore(via BKK) Addis Ababa 22:45 06:25

Image: Ethiopian Airlines.

Ethiopian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Boeing delivers the first Boeing 777-300 ER to Kenya Airways

Boeing (Chicago) has delivered a 777-300 ER (Extended Range) to GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) for lease to Kenya Airways (Nairobi). The pictured 777-36N ER 5Y-KZZ (msn 41818) was handed over on October 24.

Kenya Airways’ 777-300 ER is configured with 400 seats, 28 in Premier World and 372 in Economy, and features USB ports, power sockets and an all-new in-flight entertainment system throughout the cabin. The airplane can fly up to 7,825 nautical miles (14,490 kilometers) and is equipped with GE90-115B engines, the world’s most powerful commercial jet engine.

Kenya Airways is set to take delivery of a further two 777-300 ERs, including an additional lease, as part of the carrier’s 10-year strategic plan dubbed ‘Project Mawingu.’ The Nairobi-based carrier plans to increase its fleet size from 44 airplanes to 107 by 2021 and destinations from the current 62 to 115. Currently the airline operates an all-Boeing long-haul fleet of four 777-200 ERs and six 767-300 ERs.

With this delivery, Kenya Airways is also working with Boeing to support the Alaskan Sudan Medical Project (ASMP) by carrying 10,400 lbs (4,717 kilograms) of humanitarian supplies on the 777-300 ER’s delivery flight to Kenya. ASMP will use the supplies to build medical clinics, drill water wells and construct bio-sand filters for clean water in the Jonglei region of South Sudan. The humanitarian cargo will also include water pumps and agriculture equipment to support local farmers, fulfilling the ASMP’s mission statement of saving lives through health, clean water and agriculture.

Kenya Airways operates a fleet of more than 25 Boeing airplanes including, 777s, 767s and 737s. The carrier serves more than 60 destinations across Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe and has nine 787 Dreamliners currently on order from Boeing.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-36N ER 5Y-KZZ (msn 41818) climbs beautifully from the runway at Paine Field near Everett.

Ethiopian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Etihad Airways and Emirates are expected to place large orders next month at the Dubai Air Show

Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) according to Reuters, is expected to place a large order shortly for additional Boeing jets, including the new Boeing 777X mini-jumbo and additional 787s.

Etihad is nearing its 10th anniversary on November 12.

Etihad’s order could pre-empt a widely expected large order for 100 or more 777X from rival Emirates Airline (Dubai) when it hosts the Dubai Air Show in November.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Etihad Airways is already a Boeing 777 operator for both passenger and cargo operations. Boeing 777-3FX ER A6-ETN (msn 39689) completes its final approach at London’s Heathrow Airport.

Etihad Airways:

AG Slide Show

Qatar Airways is coming to Miami

Qatar Airways (Doha), not surprisingly, given its expanding relationship with American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth), is coming to Miami. The fast-growing carrier will add the Doha-Miami nonstop route on June 1, 2014 with Boeing 777-200 LRs. The route will operate initially four days a week according to the Miami Herald. This will open a lot of Asian one stop connections via Doha’s new Hamad International Airport for South Florida passengers.

The Doha route will be the longest passenger route from MIA at 6,6667 nautical miles, making it one of the longest air routes in the world.

Qatar Airways will join the Oneworld alliance on October 30, 2013.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Update: Qatar Airways made the news official on Monday, October 21 with this announcement:

Qatar Airways, the national carrier for Qatar, has announced Miami (IATA code: MIA) to be its sixth destination to the U.S. beginning on June 10, 2014.  The airline will offer nonstop flights from its hub in Doha four-times per week aboard a Boeing 777.

Qatar Airways currently operates to Chicago (O’Hare), Houston (Bush Intercontinental), New York (JFK), and Washington D.C. (Dulles), in the U.S. and will add Philadelphia in April 2014.   The airline will operate a Boeing 777-200 LR to Miami with a two-class configuration with 42 seats in Business and 217 seats in Economy.

Qatar Airways will begin operations to and from Miami (MIA) as per below schedule effective June 10, 2014:

Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday

QR777    Departs DOH 08:40 hrs        Arrives MIA 17:20 hrs                     Travel time: 15:40

 

Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday

QR778    Departs MIA 21:15 hrs          Arrives DOH 18:20 hrs +1 day         Travel time: 14:20

Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 16 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 129 aircraft to 131 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and The Americas.

In 2013, Qatar Airways has launched ten destinations to date – Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Najaf (Iraq), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Chicago (USA), Salalah (Oman), Basra (Iraq), Sulaymaniyah (Iraq), Chengdu (China), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), and most recently Ta’if (Saudi Arabia).

Over the next few weeks and months, the network will grow further with Clark Manila International Airport, Philippines (October 28) and Philadelphia, USA (April 2, 2014).

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Qatar Airways Boeing 777-2DZ LR A7-BBG (msn 36101) prepares to land at Johannesburg.

Qatar Airways: AG Slide Show

United Airlines applies for San Francisco-Tokyo Haneda authority

United Airlines (Chicago) has applied to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for authority to provide daily nonstop service from the airline’s hub at San Francisco International Airport to Haneda Airport in downtown Tokyo. United applied for the Haneda Airport slot pair used by American Airlines for New York (JFK)-Haneda service, which the carrier announced on October 16, 2013, it will terminate.

United proposes to begin the new service from San Francisco in the summer of 2014, using existing aircraft in its fleet, subject to government approval.

From San Francisco, United and the United Express carriers operate more than 300 daily flights to more than 90 cities in North America, Asia, Australia and Europe. With nonstop service from San Francisco to Beijing, Hong Kong, Osaka, Seoul, Shanghai, Sydney and Tokyo Narita, 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, and nearly twice as many as any other airline from the U.S. West Coast. United also operates daily nonstop flights to Tokyo Narita from Chicago, Denver, Guam, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington.

The proposed San Francisco-Haneda flights will complement United’s daily San Francisco-Tokyo Narita service, which will continue to operate and offer alternative time-of-day departures and arrivals, as well as options for passengers who prefer to travel to Tokyo Narita or are making connections there.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-222 ER N222UA (msn 30553) lands at SeaTac (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport).

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

AMR reports a third quarter net profit of $420 million, excluding reorganization and special items

AMR Corporation (Dallas/Fort Worth), the parent company of American Airlines, Inc., (Dallas/Fort Worth) reported results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2013. Key highlights include:

  • Net profit of $530 million, excluding reorganization and special items, a $420 million improvement year-over-year; on that basis, it is the most profitable quarter in company history
  • Revenue of $6.8 billion, up 6.2 percent year-over-year; the highest quarterly revenue total in company history
  • Consolidated unit costs, excluding fuel and special items, improved 5.0 percent year-over-year, marking the fourth consecutive quarter of unit cost reduction
  • AMR ended the third quarter with approximately $7.7 billion in cash and short-term investments, including restricted cash, compared to a balance of approximately $5.1 billion at the end of the third quarter of 2012
  • American continued its fleet renewal, taking delivery of ten fuel-efficient Airbus A319s, eight Boeing 737-800s, and one Boeing 777-300 ER in the quarter, while also placing into service four Embraer ERJ 175s operated by one of its affiliated regional carriers
  • American and US Airways Group are vigorously defending the lawsuit filed by the Department of Justice seeking to enjoin their planned merger and continue to move forward with developing a merger integration plan
  • American accrued $59 million in employee profit sharing in the quarter, and has accrued a total of $65 million for employee profit sharing this year. The anticipated distribution would be the first profit sharing payout in thirteen years

“We are pleased to report our highest quarterly net profit in American’s history, excluding reorganization and special items, thanks to the hard work of the entire American team,” said Tom Horton, AMR’s chairman, president and CEO. “Continued execution on our product, network and alliance strategy, combined with cost efficiencies from restructuring and fleet renewal, creates strong momentum towards our planned merger with US Airways. And we are especially pleased to set aside $59 million this quarter in expectation of making our first profit-sharing payout since 2001 to our people who have done so much to put American back on top.”

In the third quarter of 2013, GAAP net profit was $289 million, a $527 million improvement compared to the prior-year period. Excluding reorganization and special items, the third quarter 2013 net profit was $530 million. This is a $420 million improvement compared to the prior-year period. In the quarter, AMR had $241 million of reorganization and special items, which are detailed below.

Financial Progress

AMR continued to drive profitability and significant margin expansion in the third quarter, achieving a pre-tax margin of 7.8 percent, excluding reorganization and special items, an improvement of 6.1 points over the prior-year period, and a GAAP pre-tax margin of 4.2 percent, an improvement of 7.9 points compared to the third quarter of 2012.

On a trailing twelve month basis, the third quarter marked AMR’s seventh consecutive quarter of improved pre-tax margins.  This margin expansion is driven by the realization of restructuring efforts to improve the operational and financial performance of the company, and AMR expects to realize additional improvements as the company continues to implement new terms reached with certain vendors and suppliers. AMR also expects results going forward to be bolstered as it competes more effectively by better matching aircraft size with demand through the continued deployment of the new Airbus A319 narrowbodies and the new two-class large regional jets, both of which started entering into service in the third quarter.

“As we continue to deliver substantial margin expansion and record results, we are positioning the company for long-term success,” said Bella Goren, AMR’s chief financial officer. “In addition, our financing activities have significantly enhanced our liquidity, and are enabling us to pay down high-interest debt and efficiently fund our impending emergence from the restructuring process.”

In the third quarter of 2013, AMR strengthened its liquidity and reduced its effective interest rates through several key transactions. AMR completed a private offering of $1.4 billion of enhanced equipment trust certificates with a coupon of 4.95 percent. The proceeds from this offering were used to pay off in full three prior aircraft financings with coupons of 8.625 percent, 10.375 percent, and 13 percent. The third quarter also marked the closing of an $850 million term loan, secured by American’s South American slots, gates, and routes, incremental to the $1.05 billion term loan secured by the same collateral that closed in the second quarter.

Revenue Performance

For the third quarter of 2013, AMR reported record consolidated revenue of approximately $6.8 billion, up 6.2 percent versus the same period last year. Consolidated passenger revenue was approximately $6.0 billion, an increase of 6.4 percent – and the highest quarterly passenger revenue in company history. Mainline and regional passenger revenue and cargo revenue each increased year-over-year as total operating revenue in the third quarter of 2013 was approximately $399 million higher than the third quarter of 2012.

“American’s solid revenue momentum continued in the third quarter, with especially strong performance at our domestic hubs, and in the Atlantic and Caribbean regions,” said Virasb Vahidi, American’s chief commercial officer. “We’re particularly pleased with our strength across the Atlantic, reflecting the success of our joint business with British Airways, Iberia and Finnair.

Through this partnership, we offer our customers more New York-London travel options than any other alliance, with 17 daily nonstop flights from New York area airports. This is yet another example of putting the customer at the center of everything we do.”

Consolidated passenger revenue per available seat mile (unit revenue) increased 3.4 percent versus the same quarter last year, to an all-time record for any quarter of 13.79 cents per available seat mile (ASM). Mainline unit revenue at American increased 4.0 percent versus the prior-year period, reaching an all-time record for any quarter of 13.11 cents per ASM.

The company’s unit revenue performance was driven by record passenger yield, or revenue per passenger mile, of 16.36 cents per mile, a 4.0 percent year-over-year improvement, and strong mainline and consolidated load factors, or percentage of seats filled, of 85.0 percent and 84.3 percent, respectively.

Operating Expense

For the third quarter, AMR’s consolidated operating expenses decreased $248 million, or 3.9 percent, versus the same period in 2012. Mainline and consolidated cost per available seat mile (unit cost) in the third quarter decreased 7.4 percent and 6.6 percent, respectively.

Excluding special items, AMR’s consolidated operating expenses decreased $52 million, or 0.8 percent, year-over-year.

Fuel expense in the third quarter increased $40 million year-over-year on a 2.9 percent increase in ASMs. Taking into account the impact of fuel hedging, AMR paid $3.04 per gallon for jet fuel in the third quarter of 2013 versus $3.12 per gallon in the third quarter of 2012, a 2.6 percent decrease.

Excluding fuel and special items, mainline and consolidated unit costs in the third quarter of 2013 decreased 5.4 percent and 5.0 percent year-over-year, respectively, primarily driven by the company’s restructuring efforts. This was the fourth consecutive quarter of non-fuel unit cost reduction.

In addition, AMR achieved an operating profit of $713 million and an operating margin of approximately 10.4 percent, an improvement of approximately $451 million and 6.3 points, respectively, over the prior-year period, excluding special items in both periods. On a GAAP basis, AMR realized an operating profit of $698 million and an operating margin of approximately 10.2 percent, an improvement of approximately $647 million and 9.4 points, respectively, over the prior-year period.

An unaudited summary of third quarter 2013 results, including reconciliations of non-GAAP to GAAP financial measures, is available in the tables at the back of this press release.

Cash Position

The company ended the third quarter with approximately $7.7 billion in cash and short-term investments, including a restricted cash balance of $935 million, compared to a balance of approximately $5.1 billion in cash and short-term investments, including a restricted cash balance of approximately $847 million, at the end of the third quarter of 2012. The increase was generated by operating activities and by financing initiatives in 2013.

Fleet Renewal and Transformation

In the third quarter, American made significant progress on its fleet renewal program, adding new, efficient and more comfortable aircraft.

  • The newest member of America’s fleet – the Airbus 319 – went into service in September, flying from Dallas/Fort Worth to Charlotte, Cleveland, Memphis and Wichita. These modern and fuel-efficient aircraft represent an important milestone in the company’s journey to transform the travel experience for its customers. American took delivery of ten A319s in the third quarter.
  • The company launched its first service with the 76-seat Embraer ERJ 175 operated by one of its affiliated regional carriers. This large regional aircraft in a two-class cabin configuration allows the company to better match supply and demand with the right amount of schedule frequency.
  • American also took delivery of eight Boeing 737-800s and one Boeing 777-300ER.

In the fourth quarter, American expects to take delivery of its first five Airbus A321 trans-con aircraft – specially configured with fully lie-flat First and Business Class seats. These aircraft are anticipated to enter service in January 2014.

Through the third quarter, American has taken delivery of 43 out of the 59 new mainline aircraft slated for delivery in 2013, including seven Boeing 777-300 ERs.

Pending Merger with US Airways Group

  • In the third quarter, American and US Airways Group continued preparing for their planned merger announced on Feb. 14, 2013.
  • On Aug. 13, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ) and certain states filed a lawsuit to enjoin the merger.
  • American and US Airways Group are vigorously defending the lawsuit. The trial is scheduled to begin Nov. 25. The company is confident that the merger would provide significant customer benefits and enhance competition in the airline industry.
  • On Oct. 1, American and US Airways Group announced they reached an agreement with the Texas Attorney General to support the proposed merger of American and US Airways Group.
  • American and US Airways Group continue to move forward with developing a merger integration plan designed to ensure a positive outcome for their customers, employees and stakeholders.

The merger is conditioned on the satisfactory resolution of the pending antitrust litigation with the DOJ and other customary closing conditions.

Operational Performance

American ran a solid operation during the busy summer travel season, achieving an on-time arrival rate of 79.5 percent, its best third quarter performance since 2010. American’s improved operational results for the quarter also include a completion factor of 99.0 percent, its best since 2010.

Recent Business Highlights

American has a strong commitment to its customers, its people, and the communities it serves. Recent American highlights include:

  • Launching new codeshare agreements with Bogota-based LAN Colombia and Sao Paulo-based TAM Airlines, which will add new service to key destinations and increase American’s network connectivity in the Latin American region, further strengthening American’s relationship with LATAM Airlines Group
  • Strengthening its global presence to best meet customer demand by announcing that American will launch its first-ever nonstop service from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) to Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) and Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG) next year
  • Opening its Flagship Check-In for premium customers at Chicago’s O’Hare airport, making it American’s fourth airport to offer this enhanced customer experience
  • Announcing plans to hire 1,500 new pilots over the next five years. The company has offered to recall all of its furloughed pilots and will begin the new recruiting later this fall.  This is in addition to the hiring and training underway for 1,500 new flight attendants and the more than 1,200 Premium Services Representatives, Airport Agents and Reservations Agents who have joined the American team this year

Restructuring Progress

On Sept.12, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York stated that it would enter an order confirming American’s Plan of Reorganization (the Plan). The next steps the company seeks to take are to achieve antitrust clearance and consummate the Plan and the company’s pending merger with US Airways Group.

The effective date of the Plan and American’s emergence from restructuring are expected to occur simultaneously with the closing of the merger with US Airways Group.

Reorganization and Special Items

AMR’s third quarter 2013 results include the impact of $241 million in reorganization and special items.

  • Of that amount, AMR recognized a $151 million loss in reorganization items resulting from the filing of voluntary petitions for reorganization under Chapter 11 by certain of its direct and indirect U.S. subsidiaries on Nov. 29, 2011. These items primarily consist of professional fees, as well as allowed and estimated allowed claim amounts.
  • In conjunction with the repayment of the existing financings, the company incurred cash charges of $19 million, included in interest expense, and a charge of $54 million, included in Miscellaneous, net, related to the premium on tender for the existing financings and to the write-off of unamortized issuance costs.
  • The company’s results for the third quarter also include special charges and merger-related expenses of $15 million.

Capacity Guidance

AMR estimates consolidated capacity in the fourth quarter of 2013 to be up approximately 3.5 percent versus the fourth quarter of 2012, primarily driven by the combination of an estimated 1.5 percent year-over-year increase in the average stage length per operation flown, and by new or increased capacity into South Korea, Mexico and Central and South America.

For the full year 2013, consolidated capacity is estimated to increase approximately 1.5 percent versus the prior year.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-223 ER N778AN (msn 29587) arrives at London (Heathrow).

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

American Airlines is coming to Hong Kong

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) today announced it plans to launch its first-ever nonstop service from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) to Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) and Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG) next year.

The new daily service between DFW and Hong Kong will be operated with a Boeing 777-300 ER, marking the first time American will deploy its flagship aircraft to Asia. The new service between DFW and Shanghai will be operated with a 777-200 aircraft. Pending regulatory approval, customers can travel on these new routes beginning summer 2014.

Both routes will be operated as part of American’s joint business agreement with fellow oneworld®alliance member Japan Airlines. The service to Hong Kong will add a new destination to American’s international network, and the service to Shanghai complements American’s existing service from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD). Through oneworld member airlines and their affiliates, American’s customers will have access to more than 145 destinations within Asia. Also, through American’s extensive network out of Dallas/Fort Worth, customers traveling from Shanghai and Hong Kong will now have access to nearly 200 destinations throughout North, Central and South America.

In addition to welcoming the 777-300 ER to Asia with the launch of service to Hong Kong, American will take delivery of and deploy additional 777-300 ER aircraft to key international markets in 2014, including routes from American’s hub in Miami for the first time. American will begin operating the 777-300 ER on one of its two daily flights from Miami to London Heathrow (LHR) in January, and one of its four daily flights from Miami to Sao Paulo (GRU) in November 2014. American will also operate an additional 777-300 ER between New York JFK and London Heathrow in March. By the end of 2014, American will have 16 of the 20 777-300 ER aircraft it has on order deployed throughout its network.

With the introduction of an additional 777-300 ER between JFK and London Heathrow, customers will have the opportunity to travel in fully lie-flat First Class or Business Class seats on all 12 frequencies American operates together with British Airways between the two airports, providing more fully lie-flat seats than any other airline partnership in the market.

Together, American and British Airways provide customers in the competitive New York to London travel market more service than any other airline partnership, with 17 daily nonstop flights from New York-area airports to London-area airports. In addition to the combined 12 daily trips between JFK and London Heathrow, British Airways also offers direct access from Newark to London Heathrow and the only service by any carrier between JFK and London City (LCY), giving business travelers more convenient access to the financial district in the heart of London.     

Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. American’s new Boeing 777-323 ER N722AN (msn 31547) arrives in London at Heathrow Airport.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Air France-KLM: The Alitalia business plan is not suitable

Air France-KLM Group (Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines) (Paris and Amsterdam) with 25 percent of the stock is the key to Alitalia’s (2nd) (Rome) survival. According to this report by Reuters quoting internal sources, the group has stated privately the Alitalia rescue plan and capital infusion “fell short of its requirements, particularly in terms of debt restructuring.”

However, the source added that Alitalia was “of strategic interest” to Air France-KLM.

Meanwhile Willie Walsh of the International Airline Group (British Airways, Iberia and Vueling Airlines) has spoken out against the state aid for Alitalia and has called on the European Commission to stop the Italian government’s efforts to prop-up the failing flag carrier.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Alitalia’s Boeing 777-243 ER I-DISU (msn 32858) climbs from the runway at Tokyo (Narita).

Alitalia (2nd): AG Slide Show

Air France: AG Slide Show

KLM: AG Slide Show

Etihad Airways to buy five Boeing 777-200 LRs from Air India, will fly to Los Angeles

Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) has announced its plans to acquire the five Boeing 777-200 LRs (Longer Range) from Air India (Mumbai). The airline issued this statement:

The two carriers signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) in Mumbai earlier this week paving the way for the deal.

The 777-200 LRs will be used on the airline’s new route between Abu Dhabi and Los Angeles, which starts on June 1, 2014.

Etihad Airways currently flies to New York (JFK), Chicago (O’Hare), Washington (Dulles), DC and Toronto (Pearson) in North America, and to São Paulo in Brazil, and has stated its ambition to add new services to both continents.

Subject to approvals, the aircraft will be delivered to Etihad Airways from the beginning of 2014 and each will be re-fitted in a three class cabin configuration consistent with similar aircraft in the Etihad Airways fleet.  It is expected the first aircraft will enter service in April 2014.

The purchase comes as Etihad Airways finalizes details on a new fleet order which will meet its organic growth and expansion requirements to 2025 in line with its rolling network plan.

The Boeing 777-200 LR, of which less than 60 were manufactured, has a design range of 17,370 km, allowing it to connect almost any city in the world from Etihad Airways’ hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport.

The five Air India 777-200 LR aircraft, which Etihad Airways is purchasing, are on average, six years old, helping the airline to maintain its overall position of having one of the most modern fleets in the industry.

Etihad Airways’ current fleet will reach 87 aircraft by year end, with 14 new deliveries from aircraft manufacturers during 2013.

In other news, Etihad has announced it will increase its share in Virgin Australia Holdings to 19.9 percent. At 19.9 percent, Etihad Airways has reached the threshold approved by Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board in June 2013.

Etihad Airways and Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) signed a 10-year strategic partnership agreement in August 2010 that includes code-sharing on flights, joint sales and marketing activities, and reciprocal earn-and-burn on their respective frequent flyer programs.

For more information, please see: CLICK HERE

Finally, Etihad Airways and airBaltic (Riga) have announced a new Abu Dhabi-Riga joint route which will start on December 16, 2013.

The announcement follows the signing of a codeshare agreement between the two airlines.  Subject to regulatory approvals, airBaltic will operate the new four weekly return flights using a 116 seat Airbus A319 aircraft.

With seating capacity for 14 Business class and 102 Economy class passengers, the flights will operate on a split schedule, ensuring optimal connectivity over each airline’s respective hubs in Abu Dhabi and Riga.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Air India’s Boeing 777-237 LR VT-ALD (msn 36303) prepares to touch down at London’s Heathrow Airport.

Air India: AG Slide Show

Etihad Airways: AG Slide Show

Cathay Pacific to add flights to both Los Angeles and Chicago O’Hare

Cathay Pacific Airways (Hong Kong) today announced that it will add a fourth daily direct flight from Los Angeles to Hong Kong on June 1, 2014 and three additional direct flights from Chicago (O’Hare) to Hong Kong on August 2, 2014, bringing the number of flights from the Windy City to 10 per week (subject to government approval).

These additional North American flights come on top of Cathay Pacific’s recent announcement that it will launch a daily direct service from Newark to Hong Kong on March 1, 2014. This will complement the airline’s current four-times-daily service from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York. Cathay Pacific also operates two daily flights from San Francisco.

The fourth Los Angeles frequency will be operated by Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft, with a consistent product offering of First, Business, Premium Economy and Economy Class seats and Cathay Pacific’s award-winning cabin services. Also operated by Boeing 777-300 0ER aircraft, all Chicago flights offer Business Class, Premium Economy Class and Economy Class products.

Details of the new flights are included in the schedule below (all times local):

LOS ANGELES (LAX) (June 2014, subject to government approval)

Flight no From To Departure/Arrival Days of operation
CX883 LAX HKG 2355/0545+2 Daily
CX881 LAX HKG 0115/0700+1 Daily
CX885 LAX HKG 1255/1855+1 Daily
CX893* LAX HKG 0940/1525+1 Daily
CX880 HKG LAX 2340/2155 Daily
CX882 HKG LAX 1625/1435 Daily
CX884 HKG LAX 1255/1110 Daily
CX892* HKG LAX 0930/0755 Daily

* Newly added flights. To commence on June 1, 2014.

CHICAGO (ORD) (August 2014, subject to government approval)

Flight no From To Departure/Arrival Days of operation
CX807 ORD HKG 1530/2020+1 Daily
CX801* ORD HKG 0115/0550+1 Wed, Fri, Sun
CX806 HKG ORD 1155/1350 Daily
CX802* HKG ORD 1825/2020 Tue, Thu, Sat

* Newly added flights. To commence on August 2, 2014.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-367 ER B-KPL (msn 36161) in the Oneworld livery arrives at Los Angeles International Airport.

Cathay Pacific Airways: AG Slide Show

 

Air Canada announces a major international expansion to Europe

Air Canada (Montreal) is undertaking a major expansion of international services to Europe from Toronto (Pearson), Montreal (Trudeau), Vancouver and Calgary . The airline today announced highlights of its Summer 2014 Europe schedule, which includes the introduction of year-round nonstop service from Toronto (Pearson) to Milan (Malpensa), Italy with up to five weekly flights, offering the only nonstop service between Canada and Milan .

In addition, Air Canada will increase its year-round Toronto (Pearson) – Istanbul nonstop service to daily flights from three times weekly. The airline will expand the availability of its new international Premium Economy cabin with its introduction on Vancouver-London Heathrow flights year-round, as well as Montreal-London Heathrow flights during the peak summer travel season. Air Canada will also deploy larger aircraft from its international wide body fleet on flights from Calgary to London Heathrow and Frankfurt , as well as from Montreal to Brussels and Geneva in order to meet travel and cargo demand during the peak summer season.

As part of the Summer 2014 schedule, Air Canada’s leisure carrier subsidiary, Air Canada rouge (Toronto-Pearson), will launch seasonal nonstop flights between Toronto (Pearson) – Lisbon , Toronto (Pearson) – Manchester , Montreal (Trudeau) – Barcelona and Montreal (Trudeau) -Nice. The new routes supplement the leisure carrier’s other popular vacation destinations, including previously announced Toronto (Pearson) – Dublin year-round service.

As new Boeing 777-300 ER and 787 aircraft enter the Air Canada mainline fleet, Air Canada will continue growing Air Canada rouge to reach a total of up to 50 aircraft, as demand warrants. The growth of its leisure carrier, in tandem with the mainline fleet renewal and international network expansion, is a key element of Air Canada’s overall strategy for sustainable, profitable growth, both at the mainline and leisure carrier.

Air Canada will have taken delivery of five new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft for the mainline fleet between June 2013 and February 2014 , and the first three of 37 Boeing 787 aircraft by the summer of 2014. Air Canada is scheduled to take delivery of six 787-8 aircraft in 2014 and the remaining 31 787-8 and -9 aircraft between 2015 and 2019.

Highlights of the Air Canada mainline Summer 2014 flight schedule:

Toronto – Milan

  • New year-round nonstop service starting on June 18, 2014 with up to five flights per week.  Boeing 767-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins.
Flight # Depart Toronto
(YYZ)
Arrive Milan
(MXP)
Flight # Depart Milan
(MXP)
Arrive Toronto
(YYZ)
AC842 20:20 10:40 +1 AC843 12:10 15:30

 

Toronto – Istanbul

  • Year-round nonstop service increases from three times weekly to daily flights beginning June 2014 , subject to government approval. Boeing 767-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins.

Toronto – Rome

  • Aircraft upgauged from Boeing 767-300 ER to Airbus A330-300 service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from May 1 – October 25, 2014 .

Montréal-London Heathrow

  • Aircraft upgauged from Airbus A330-300 to Boeing 777-300 ER service featuring new international Premium Economy cabin, in addition to Executive First and expanded Economy cabins, from June 15 – September 30, 2014 .

Montréal- Brussels

  • Aircraft upgauged from Boeing 767-300 ER to Airbus A330-300 service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from March 29 – October 25, 2014 .

Montréal- Geneva

  • Aircraft upgauged from Boeing 767-300 ER to Airbus A330-300 service year-round featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins.

Montréal- Frankfurt

  • Addition of a second nonstop flight five times weekly from May 16 – October 12, 2014.   The Air Canada codeshare flight will be operated by Star Alliance partner, Lufthansa, and will complement Air Canada’s daily Airbus A330-300 year-round nonstop service,

Calgary-London Heathrow

  • Aircraft upgauged from Airbus A330-300 to Boeing 777-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from June 1 – September 30, 2014 .

Calgary – Frankfurt

  • Aircraft upgauged from Airbus A330-300 to Boeing 777-300 ER service featuring choice of Air Canada Executive First and Economy cabins, from March 29 – October 25, 2014 .

Vancouver-London Heathrow

  • Effective March 1, 2014 , upgauged to Boeing 777-300 ER service year-round featuring new international Premium Economy cabin, in addition to Executive First and expanded Economy cabins.

Highlights of the Air Canada rouge Summer 2014 flight schedule:

Toronto – Lisbon

  • New three times weekly service from June 21 to September 21, 2014 , subject to government approval. Departing Toronto on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday, and from Lisbon on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

Toronto – Manchester

  • New five times weekly service from June 26 to September 13 . 2014. Departing Toronto on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday, and from Manchester on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

Montréal-Nice

  • New three times weekly service from June 5 to October13, 2014, subject to government approval. Departing Montréal on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday, and from Nice on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Montréal- Barcelona

  • New twice weekly service from June 4 to October 11, 2014 , subject to government approval. Departing Montréal on Wednesday and Friday, and from Barcelona on Thursday and Saturday.

Toronto – Athens

  • Seasonal nonstop service increases from four to five weekly flights beginning June 2014 .

Toronto – Edinburgh

  • Seasonal nonstop service increases from three to five weekly flights beginning July 2014 .

In addition, three popular holiday travel markets currently served by Air Canada’s mainline carrier on a seasonal basis will be converted to Air Canada rouge service beginning summer 2014:

Toronto – Barcelona

  • Up to five times weekly service from May 8 to October 19, 2014 , subject to government approval. Departing Toronto on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, and from Barcelona on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.

Toronto – Dublin

  • Year-round service beginning on May 1, 2014 .

Montréal- Rome

  • Up to daily service from May 23 to October 19, 2014 .

For the summer 2014 season, Air Canada rouge will continue to operate Toronto – Venice , Toronto – Edinburgh and Toronto / Montreal – Athens after their successful inaugural season in 2013.

All Air Canada rouge flights to Europe are operated with Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft featuring a two-cabin configuration with three customer comfort options including rouge, rouge Plus with preferred seating with additional legroom, and, beginning in winter 2013, Premium rouge offering both additional room and enhanced service. By the Summer 2014 season, the Air Canada rouge wide body fleet will consist of eight Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-333 ER C-FIUR (msn 35242) taxies at Paris (CDG).

Air Canada: AG Slide Show

Air Canada rouge: AG Slide Show

KLM is coming to Santiago, Chile

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) will extend the Amsterdam-Buenos Aires route to Santiago, Chile starting on February 2, 2014. The airline issued this statement:

From February 2, 2014, flights will be operated with a Boeing 777-300 (KL 701 and KL 702), with a stop in between in Buenos Aires three times a week on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday from Amsterdam and on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from Santiago.

To suit its clients’ needs, KLM offers 3 classes on board:

  • 35 seats  in World Business Class for 777-300,
  • 350 seats in Economy Class and
  • 40 seats in the Economy Comfort Zone that offers 10 cm extra room for passenger’s legs, twice the lean back of their seats and priority disembarking.

KLM weekly schedules as per February 2, 2014 are:

Winter schedule:

Departure Time Arrival Time
Amsterdam 20:55 Buenos Aires 07:05
Buenos Aires 09:10 Santiago 11:20
Santiago 13:00 Buenos Aires 14:55
Buenos Aires 16:55 Amsterdam 10:15

Summer schedule:

Departure Time Arrival Time
Amsterdam 21:00 Buenos Aires 06:10
Buenos Aires 08:10 Santiago 09:25
Santiago 11:05 Buenos Aires 14:00
Buenos Aires 16:00 Amsterdam 10:20

Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-306 ER PH-BVD (msn 35979) painted in the SkyTeam alliance livery arrives back at the AMS hub.

KLM: AG Slide Show

Alitalia to start twice-weekly Venice-Tokyo (Narita) flights on April 2, 2014

Alitalia (2nd) (Rome) on April 2, 2014 will launch a new twice-weekly route linking Venice with Tokyo (Narita). The new route will be operated with Boeing 777-200 ERs according to Airline Route.

In other news, Italian transport minister Maurizio Lupi expects Air France-KLM to strongly reaffirm the value of Alitalia and strengthen its role according to a report by Reuters. AF-KL own 25 percent of AZ and will soon announce its intention with the Italian flag carrier.

read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Stephen Tornblom/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-243 ER I-DISE (msn 32856) departs from the runway at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.

Alitalia (2nd): AG Slide Show

Willie Walsh: “A number of European carriers will fail this winter”

British Airways‘ (London) and IAG’s CEO Willie Walsh stated in an article published by Travel Weekly, has warned “a number” of European carriers are poised to fail this winter season.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Wearing a Panda face for the launch of the new route to Chengdu, China, Boeing 777-236 G-YMMH (msn 30309) arrives at the London (Heathrow) hub.

British Airways: AG Slide Show

 

British Airways gets ready to fly to Chengdu, China with a Panda Jet

British Airways 777-200 G-YMMH (97-Union flag-Panda Jet)(Nose) LHR (AJB)(LRW)

British Airways (London) as planned, will launch its new thrice-weekly London (Heathrow)-Chengdu, China route on September 22. BA has painted the pictured Boeing 777-236 ER G-YMMH (msn 30309) as a smiling panda. Chengdu is the home of the giant panda.

BA is also adding the lucky (in China) “8” in the flight numbers. Flight BA 89 will depart London Heathrow on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays at 1530, arriving into Chengdu at 0855 the following day. The return flight BA 88 will depart Chengdu on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 1055, arriving at Heathrow Airport at 1500.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. G-YMMH is pictured at LHR with the new panda markings.

British Airways: AG Slide Show

Video:

Virgin Australia unveils a new in-flight entertainment system

Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) has officially launched its new wireless in-flight entertainment system, representing a new era in the way travelers experience entertainment in the sky according to the airline.

The entertainment platform is the first of its kind in the Asia Pacific region, giving customers the ability to stream content to their own devices, including smartphones, laptops and tablets, through in-built wireless technology on board.

Following a successful trial earlier this year, Virgin Australia is now extending the wireless innovation across its domestic and short-haul international network. Thirty-seven aircraft are now fitted out with the new technology, including aircraft operating on routes to New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, which went live today.

The roll-out across Virgin Australia’s Boeing 737-800 and Embraer ERJ 190 fleet will be complete before the end of the year.

Since the trial started in August 2012, the App has been downloaded close to 200,000 times.

The wireless in-flight entertainment system supports Wi-Fi-enabled Apple iOS devices (iPad®; iPhone®; iPod touch®), Android devices (phone or tablet) and Windows laptops. To access the system, download the free “In-flight Entertainment by Virgin Australia” App to your phone or tablet, or have the latest version of Microsoft Silverlight downloaded on your laptop.

Copyright Photo: Roy Lock/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-3ZG ER VH-VOZ (msn 35302) taxies to the gate at Los Angeles International Airport.

Virgin Australia: AG Slide Show

Emirates is coming to Boston

Emirates (Dubai) has announced a new trans-Atlantic link with the start of flights to Boston from March 10, 2014.

This will be the airline’s 8th route into the United States, 9th into North America and 12th into all of the Americas.

The flight will be operated by a GE-90 engine-powered Boeing 777-200 LR and brings the winner of the Skytrax ‘World’s Best Airline’ 2013 award into Boston Logan International Airport on a daily basis.

From March 10, 2014, flight EK 237 will depart Dubai at 0945 and arrive in Boston at 1515. The return flight, EK 238, will take off from Boston at 2255 and land in Dubai at 1910 the next day. As part of an agreement with JetBlue Airways (New York), Emirates and JetBlue passengers are able to travel on each other’s flights and earn reciprocal miles.

Emirates started flights to America in 2004, beginning with New York. The airline’s current seven U.S gateways form part of a 134-destination network, served by a fleet of more than 200 modern aircraft, including the airline’s flagship Airbus A380. Emirates’ much-lauded hub in Dubai is equipped with the world’s first purpose-built A380 concourse, housing the largest First and Business Class lounges in the industry.

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-21H LR (Longer Range) A6-EWA (msn 35572) touches down at Stockholm (Arlanda), a recent new destination for the fast-growing carrier.

Emirates: AG Slide Show

EVA Air brings the new Boeing 777-300 “Hello Kitty” to Los Angeles

EVA Air 777-300 B-16703 (13-Hello Kitty Sanrio Family)(Grd) LAX (PMJ)(LRW)

EVA Air (Taipei) has introduced its popular Hello Kitty jets to US travelers. EVA Chairman and airline Captain K.W. Chang piloted the first long-range edition of the aircraft painted with pop icon Hello Kitty and other Sanrio friends, from Taipei, Taiwan, on its first flight to Los Angeles yesterday (September 18). The Boeing 777-300 ER Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet will be used on three of EVA’s 17 regular weekly flights from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) in Taipei.

EVA Chairman KW Chang initiated Hello Kitty jets to make flying fun and passengers love them.  The new EVA Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet marks the first time Hello Kitty is featured on an aircraft amongst her Sanrio friends.  The bright display of 19 Sanrio characters are shown hand-in hand, in different shapes and sizes, on both sides of the fuselage.

The Hello Kitty jet experience begins at airport check-in with Hello Kitty boarding passes and baggage stickers. Onboard, flight attendants wear pink aprons with Hello Kitty designs and passengers use more than 100 in-flight service items including headrest covers, pillows, tissue, hand cream, liquid hand soap, napkins, paper cups, utensils, snacks and meals.  EVA Air and Sanrio have developed new inflight service item designs for the Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet, including a selection of limited-edition Hello Kitty duty-free products that fans can buy inflight.

In addition to the Hello Kitty Hand-in-Hand jet, EVA Air currently operates five shorter-range Hello Kitty aircraft in Asia  with regional flights between Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Mainland China and Guam.  A member of Star Alliance, EVA offers more flights from Los Angeles, New York, Seattle, San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver to Taipei.

Copyright Photo: Pete Morejon. EVA Air’s newly painted Boeing 777-35E ER B-16703 (msn 32643) “Hello Kitty – Sanrio Family” arrives at Los Angeles International Airport yesterday (September 18) for the first time in the new special livery.

EVA Air: AG Slide Show

EVA Air 777-300 Hello Kitty Logo

Lufthansa orders 34 Boeing 777-9Xs and 25 Airbus A350-900s

Lufthansa logo-1

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) as expected, placed orders for 34 Boeing 777-9Xs and 25 Airbus A350-900s. The group issued issued this statement:

Lufthansa 777-900 (88)(Flt)(Boeing)(LR)

Following a recommendation by the Deutsche Lufthansa AG Executive Board headed by Dr Christoph Franz, the Supervisory Board approved the purchase of 59 ultra-modern aircraft for the Group at its meeting. 34 Boeing 777-9Xs (above) and 25 Airbus A350-900s (below) will be added to the Lufthansa Group’s wide-body fleet. The first of these new aircraft will be delivered as early as 2016. Older Boeing 747-400s and Airbus A340-300s will be phased out by 2025. The new airplanes will primarily serve to replace existing aircraft at Lufthansa.

Lufthansa A350-900 (88)(Flt)(Airbus)(LR)

The investment amount for the Lufthansa Group’s latest order totals EUR 14 billion at list prices and is the largest single private-sector investment in the history of German industry. “This investment will safeguard about 13,000 jobs at Lufthansa alone as well as thousands of jobs at our partners in aviation and other suppliers”, said Christoph Franz, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of the Lufthansa Group, explaining the macroeconomic significance of the investment at a press conference in Frankfurt.

This investment in new technology, efficiency and customer comfort is a continuation of the ongoing fleet modernization that is taking place at the Group’s airlines. Lufthansa operates a wide-body fleet of around 107 aircraft, among them ten ultra-modern Airbus A380s and nine Boeing 747-8s as well as the Airbus A330-300 (18 aircraft). The fleet also includes Airbus A340s (48) and Boeing 747-400s (22). In addition to these, the Group subsidiary Swiss has 31 wide-body airplanes, while Austrian Airlines’ wide-body fleet consists of 12 aircraft.

The aim is to reduce the number of different models and fleet complexity in the Passenger Airline Group segment and also replace existing aircraft with state-of-the-art airplanes. In March, the Group approved the purchase of around 100 short and medium-haul aircraft. This order included six new Boeing 777-300 ERs for Swiss, which are also intended to replace older Airbus A340-300s at the airline.

The new aircraft will be operated by ultra-modern, powerful, low-noise engines – the Airbus A350 by the Rolls-Royce ‘Trent XWB 84′ engine and the Boeing 777-9X by General Electric’s ‘GE-9X’ model. The noise footprint of the new models will be at least 30 per cent lower than today’s aircraft.

Lufthansa: AG Slide Show

FedEx Corporation reports net income of $489 million in the fiscal 1Q, up 7%

FedEx Corporation (FedEx Express) (Memphis) reported earnings of $1.53 per diluted share for the first quarter ended August 31, compared to $1.45 per share last year.

“Growth in overall demand for our broad global portfolio of solutions drove our improved first quarter results,” said Frederick W. Smith, FedEx Corp. chairman, president and chief executive officer. “FedEx Express remains focused on reducing costs while facing challenging global economic conditions. Meanwhile, FedEx Ground continues to generate strong profitability on growing customer demand for its services.”

First Quarter Results

FedEx Corp. reported the following consolidated results for the first quarter:

• Revenue of $11.0 billion, up 2% from $10.8 billion the previous year

• Operating income of $795 million, up 7% from $742 million last year

• Operating margin of 7.2%, up from 6.9% the previous year

• Net income of $489 million, up 7% from last year’s $459 million

Revenue and earnings increased during the quarter, driven by solid performance at each of the company’s transportation segments. Results include significant headwinds from the net year-over-year impact from the timing lag that exists between when fuel prices change and indexed fuel surcharges automatically adjust, as well as one fewer operating day.

Outlook

FedEx reaffirmed its forecast of full-year earnings per share growth of 7% to 13% from last year’s adjusted results. This outlook assumes the market outlook for fuel prices, U.S. GDP growth of 2.1% and world GDP growth of 2.6%. The capital spending forecast for fiscal 2014 remains $4 billion.

“We remain confident in our full year earnings outlook despite tepid global economic growth,” said Alan B. Graf, Jr., FedEx Corp. executive vice president and chief financial officer. “FedEx Express continued to execute on its profit improvement initiatives during our first quarter. We remain focused and are committed to FedEx Express achieving its $1.6 billion operating profit improvement target by the end of fiscal 2016.”

2014 Rate Increases

FedEx Express will increase shipping rates by an average of 3.9% for U.S. domestic, U.S. export and U.S. import services effective January 6, 2014. The FedEx Ground and FedEx SmartPost pricing changes for 2014 will be announced later this year. FedEx Freight implemented a 4.5% general rate increase on July 1, 2013.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FS2 N852FD (msn 37723) approaches Anchorage International Airport for landing.

FedEx Express: AG Slide Show

Lufthansa is close to announcing a new order with both Airbus and Boeing

Lufthansa logo-1

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) according to this report by Reuters, is close to announcing a new order for the proposed 406-seat Boeing 777-9X, which Boeing intends to formally launch this year. Lufthansa would be a launch customer like it was with the Boeing 747-800 Intercontinental.

The 777-9X will have new engines and wings and is expected to start flying passengers around the end of this decade.

Lufthansa, which is already a large Airbus operator, is also expected to order between 20 and 25 of the new 314-seat Airbus A350-900. The A350 will enter service in the second half of 2014.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Lufthansa: AG Slide Show

Lufthansa’s transfer of Austrian Airlines employees to cheaper Tyrolean Airways deemed illegal by a Vienna court

Lufthansa Group (Frankfurt) in 2012 orchestrated the transfer of around 2,000 staff members of its Austrian Airlines (Vienna) subsidiary to the cheaper Tyrolean Airways (Innsbruck) subsidiary to reduce overall costs. A Vienna court ruled yesterday (September 2) that the move was illegal and the employees were still employed by Austrian Airlines.

Austrian Airlines stated it would appeal the verdict of the Vienna Labor and Social Affairs Court. The transfer was the heart of the loss-making airline’s restructuring plan and its attempt to return to profitability along with the Lufthansa Group.

Currently Tyrolean Airways is operating all Austrian Airlines-branded aircraft (except one Boeing 777) as Austrian Airlines flights. The one Triple Seven is keeping the Austrian Airlines AOC alive.

Read the full report from Euronews: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Austrian Airlines-branded Boeing 777-2Z9 ER OE-LPA (msn 28698) pictured departing from Tokyo (Narita) is actually being operated Tyrolean Airways-employed crews on the Tyrolean AOC until the Vienna court deemed the crews to be considered Austrian Airlines employees again! What will now happen to the Tyrolean crews who were operating alongside Austrian crews?

Austrian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Qatar Airways launches its relationship with FC Barcelona

Qatar Airways (Doha) has officially launched the start of its three year partnership with FC Barcelona at an event held at Camp Nou.

FC Barcelona logo

The airline’s partnership with FCB took effect from July 1 this year.

In attendance were leading representatives of both organizations, the CEO of Qatar Airways, Akbar Al-Baker, the President of FC Barcelona, Sandro Rosell and Vice President of FC Barcelona Economic and Strategy Area, Javier Faus.

Since its beginnings, FC Barcelona has been characterized by being not just a football organization, but also a powerful force for globalization, solidarity, integration and social cohesion. Qatar Airways fully identifies with these values, which is why this partnership between both organizations is much more than just a simple economic alliance. Furthermore, Qatar Airways’ partnership with FC Barcelona will help to position the airline in the world.

Qatar Airways will work with FC Barcelona to create joint initiatives and will especially focus on connecting with the club’s fans and also with underprivileged children to spread the love of the game to all corners of the globe.

A new FC Barcelona logojet is on the horizon.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FDZ A7-BFD (msn 41427) of the cargo division of Qatar Airways taxies at Amsterdam.

Qatar Airways: AG Slide Show

Videos:

 

Emirates is coming to Taipei in February 2014

Emirates (Dubai) has announced the launch of nonstop passenger services to Taipei, its 16th destination in the Far East.

The service will commence on February 10, 2014, initially with six nonstop flights per week to Taipei’s Taoyuan International Airport.

The route will be operated by a three class Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft equipped with eight luxurious private suites in First Class, 42 lie-flat seats in Business Class, and generous space for 304 passengers in Economy Class, along with gourmet cuisine in all classes.

Emirates now operates services to 134 destinations in 76 countries from Dubai. Earlier this year Emirates launched services to Warsaw and Algiers, followed by Haneda, Japan in June.

Emirates has announced plans to launch services to Stockholm starting September 4, to Clark International Airport in the Philippines and the trans-Atlantic Milan-New York (JFK) route on October 1; Conakry on October 27, Sialkot on November 5 and Kiev on January 16, 2014.

Taipei Flight Schedule – from February 10, 2014

Day Flight Number Departure Airport Departure Time Arrival Airport Arrival Time
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday EK 366 EK 367 DXB TPE 0425 2315 TPE DXB 1615 0510 +1
Wednesday EK 366 EK 367 DXB TPE 0225 2315 TPE DXB 1430 0510 +1
Saturday EK 366 EK 367 DXB TPE 0020 2315 TPE DXB 1205 0510 +1
Sunday EK 366 EK 367 DXB TPE 0340 2315 TPE DXB 1525 0510 +1
In other news, Emirates wants to expand its U.S. destinations from the current seven to 15 in the next three to five years according to a report by Reuters. In fact, the fast-growing carrier wants to add three new U.S. destinations in the next 12 months.
Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-31H ER A6-ECF (msn 35574) lands at Dulles International Airport near Washington, DC.

Emirates: AG Slide Show

LATAM Airlines Group loses $330 million in the 2Q

LATAM Airlines Group (LAN Airlines and TAM Linhas Aereas) (Santago and Sao Paulo) reported it lost $330 million in the second quarter. The group was created last year with the merger of the two airlines. The group is struggling in Brazil with TAM due to a weakening Brazilian economy. TAM is cutting costs and reducing flights.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

LATAM Airlines Group Fleet Plans (excerpt from the report):

LATAM Airlines Group 8:2013 Fleet

Top Copyright Photo: Rodrigo Cozzato/AirlinersGallery.com. Sporting new Sharklets, Airbus A320-214 PR-MYY (msn 5591) taxies at the Sao Paulo (Guarulhos) hub.

LAN Airlines (Chile): AG Slide Show

TAM Linhas Aereas: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Alvaro Romero/ModoCharlie.com. Boeing 777-F6N N772LA (msn 37708) arrives at the Santiago hub.

AMR Corporation and US Airways file a motion to set merger trial for November 12, 2013

AMR Corporation (Dallas/Fort Worth), the parent company of American Airlines, Inc. (Dallas/Fort Worth), and US Airways Group, Inc. (US Airways) (Phoenix) have announced that they filed a motion to set a trial date and a supporting brief in the United States District Court for the District Of Columbia in connection with the lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) regarding the merger of the two airlines. In the motion, American Airlines and US Airways have requested a November 12, 2013 trial date.

In their filing, the Companies explain that their proposed trial date is very reasonable by recent historical standards. The DOJ request for 180 days, especially with one of the parties in bankruptcy, however, would be unprecedented and unreasonable in the circumstances. Based on the DOJ merger cases litigated to a decision since 2001, the average time from the DOJ’s complaint to trial is 70 days.

Top Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/AirlinersGallery.com. American Airlines’ Boeing 777-223 ER N781AN (msn 29586) approaches Madrid for landing.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

US Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A319-132 N814AW (msn 1281) lands at Long Beach near Los Angeles.

JetBlue Airways and British Airways start interlining, becomes the 25th partner for JetBlue

JetBlue Airways (New York) and British Airways (London) have announced an interline agreement to connect the carriers’ networks at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), Boston Logan International Airport (BOS), Orlando International Airport (MCO) and Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD), creating new possibilities for travelers.

This marks the first partnership between JetBlue and British Airways, and the 25th airline agreement for JetBlue. The carriers initially plan to interline on 18 daily trans-Atlantic British Airways flights, more than 50 U.S routes on the JetBlue network and more than 100 British Airways routes beyond London. British Airways’ intercontinental routes that are part of the interline agreement include Boston-London Heathrow (LHR), New York/JFK-London City Airport (LCY), New York/JFK- London Heathrow (LHR), New York/JFK-Paris Orly (ORY), Orlando-London Gatwick (LGW) and Washington/Dulles-London Heathrow (LHR). Tickets can be purchased through British Airways.

Customers will be able to enjoy access to a variety of British Airways destinations beyond London, including Europe, Africa, the Middle East and India, as well as non-stop access to Paris Orly Airport from New York. Meanwhile, British Airways customers can now book onward tickets to new U.S. destinations such as Burlington, Vermont (BTV); Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts (MVY); Nantucket, Massachusetts (ACK); and Portland, Maine (PWM).

At JFK Airport British Airways operates from Terminal 7.  JetBlue operates from nearby Terminal 5, a quick ride away on the airport’s free AirTrain service.

At Boston Airport, where JetBlue is the largest carrier and offers nonstop service to 49 cities, more than any other airline, British Airways operates from Terminal E, while JetBlue operates from nearby Terminal C.

At Orlando, where JetBlue operates numerous routes to the Caribbean and Latin America, British Airways operates from Terminal B and JetBlue from Terminal A.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 N645JB (msn 2900) in the Harlequin tail design lands at the focus city of Long Beach, California.

JetBlue Airways: AG Slide Show

British Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord/AirlinersGallery.com. British Airways’ Boeing 777-336 ER G-STBA (msn 40542) arrives at the London (Heathrow) hub.

Austrian Airlines introduces a new cabin product for its long haul flights

Austrian Airlines (Vienna) has introduced a new long-haul cabin product and issued this statement:

As of now all passengers on Austrian’s long-haul flights benefit from the advantages of its new cabin. These advantages include a new level of seating comfort in Economy Class, an advanced board entertainment system offering non-stop entertainment, as well as innovative Business Class seats capable of being transformed into entirely flat beds. A total of 2,538 new seats were installed in the four Boeing 777 and six Boeing 767 airplanes belonging to Austrian’s long-haul fleet. An optimal array of seats ensures undisturbed flights. The Boeing 777’s Business Class provides four of five passengers sitting in a row with direct access to the aisle. This access is enjoyed, in fact, by every Business Class passenger in Austrian’s Boeing 767s. As before Austrian’s passengers are indulged by the prize-winning service and the first class DO and CO-catered fare. The menus provided in Business Class receive their final touches from flying chefs.

Austrian Long Haul 2 (Austrian)(LR)

The reconfiguration of the cabins has considerably boosted customer satisfaction, which has risen substantial 31 percentage points – among passengers on long-haul flights – since the launch of the new cabin. This result places Austrian Airlines among the peak of the evaluations received by the airlines comprising the world-spanning Star Alliance.

Austrian Long Haul Cabin (Austrian)(LRW)

 

Austrian CCO Karsten Benz states: “We are gratified by the enthusiasm shown by our customers. The significant rise in their satisfaction is proof that our investments of more than €90 million have paid off.”

Top Copyright Photos: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by Austrian Airlines). Boeing 777-2Z9 ER OE-LPC (msn 29313) climbs away from Tokyo (Narita) bound for the Vienna hub.

Austrian Airlines: AG Slide Show

TAAG Angola Airlines supports Angola 2013, the Roller Hockey World Cup

TAAG Angola Airlines (TAAG Linhas Aereas) (Luanda) is supporting the upcoming “Angola 2013″ Roller Hockey World Cup event in Angola with a large “Angola 2013 – 41st Mundial e Hoquei Patins” message emblazoned across the fuselage of this Boeing 777-3M2 registered as D2-TEG (msn 40805).

Angola 2013 logo

The 2013 FIRS Men’s Roller Hockey World Cup will be the 41st edition of the FIRS Roller Hockey World Cup. It will be held in Luanda and Namibe Providence, Angola from September 20-28, 2013.

This will be the first Roller Hockey World Cup played in Africa.

FIRS logo

Copyright Photo: Pedro Batista/Flyingphotos. D2-TEG departs from Lisbon bound for Luanda with the additional markings.

TAAG Angola Airlines: AG Slide Show

TAAG logo-1

 

Cathay Pacific Airways is coming to Newark

Cathay Pacific Airways (Hong Kong) has announced that it will launch a new daily service from Newark Liberty International Airport to Hong Kong on March 1, 2014, subject to government approval. The new service will complement Cathay Pacific’s current four-times-daily service from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York. The launch of the Newark service will provide more convenience and greater flexibility for passengers traveling to and from the New York metropolitan area.

The Newark service will be operated by Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.

Newark will become Cathay Pacific’s fifth gateway in the United States, and seventh in North America. The airline currently serves Chicago, Los Angeles, New York (JFK), San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver.

The flight schedule for Cathay Pacific’s Newark (EWR) service, effective March 1, 2014, will be as follows (all times local and subject to change):

Standard time:

Flight no From To Departure/Arrival Days of operation

CX899

EWR HKG 0115/0600 Daily

CX890

HKG EWR 1820/2100 Daily

Daylight saving time:

Flight no From To Departure/Arrival Days of operation

CX899

EWR HKG 0150/0540 Daily

CX890

HKG EWR 1820/2200 Daily

Cathay Pacific Airways flies daily to Hong Kong and beyond, including over 22 destinations in Mainland China, from Chicago, Los Angeles, New York (JFK), and San Francisco.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-367 ER B-KPB (msn 35299) climbs into the sky at Toronto (Pearson).

Cathay Pacific Airways: AG Slide Show

Kenya Airways is losing revenue every day due to the Nairobi terminal fire

Kenya Airways‘ (Nairobi) CEO Titus Naikumi estimates the airline has already lost around $4 million due to the August 7 fire that gutted the international arrival building at Nairobi’s Airport. The airline is suffering long delays and cancellations due to the damage. The airport has erected tents as a makeshift terminal according to this report by Reuters. Kenya Airways is currently operating at around 90 percent of its normal capacity.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-2U8 ER 5Y-KQS (msn 33683) prepares to depart from London (Heathrow) bound for Nairobi.

Kenya Airways: AG Slide Show

Air Canada reports record second quarter net income of C$115 million

Air Canada (Montreal) today reported adjusted net income of $115 million or $0.41 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2013 compared to an adjusted net loss of $7 million or $0.02 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2012.  Second quarter EBITDAR amounted to $385 million compared to EBITDAR of $312 million in the second quarter of 2012, an increase of $73 million or 23 per cent. On a GAAP basis, Air Canada’s net loss was $23 million or $0.09 per diluted share compared to a net loss of $161 million or $0.59 per diluted share in the same quarter of 2012.

“Air Canada delivered its best second quarter financial performance in the Corporation’s history, with records reported in all three measures of operating income, adjusted net income and EBITDAR,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer.  “These results are a clear indication that we are gaining momentum in our transformation towards sustainable profitability at Air Canada and underscore our Company-wide efforts to achieve cost containment and continue to improve on our revenue and yield performance.

“Our success in the quarter was not only financial – I am also especially pleased to report ongoing improvements in operational performance for the second consecutive quarter, with a 30 per cent improvement in On-Time Performance (OTP) for the quarter compared to the previous year.  This is a reflection of the professionalism, collaboration and dedication of Air Canada’s 27,000 employees in taking care of our customers while operating a safe and efficient airline.  Also, we were once again recognized by global travelers as the Best Airline in North America for the fourth consecutive year, a wonderful recognition of our efforts.

“Market response to the launch of our new leisure carrier, Air Canada rouge, on July 1st has been very positive and our plans are on track for growing the Air Canada rouge fleet to serve more holiday destination markets where we can now compete on a more cost effective basis.  In addition, in early July, we began operating the first of five new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft, marking the first significant growth in the mainline wide-body fleet in ten years to support continued development of our international network and Toronto hub as our North American gateway.  These aircraft also debut our new Premium Economy cabin, offering customers a high-value option for enhanced comfort and service on select international routes.

“Looking ahead, our focus remains on the execution of the Corporation’s business plan led by our four core priorities: cost transformation, international growth, customer engagement and culture change to transform Air Canada into a sustainably profitable company for its shareholders and employees,” concluded Mr. Rovinescu.

Second Quarter Income Statement Highlights

Second quarter 2013 system passenger revenues were $2,757 million, an increase of $86 million or 3 per cent over the second quarter of 2012, on a 1.6 per cent growth in traffic and a 1.5 per cent improvement in yield.  Passenger revenue per available seat mile (RASM) increased 0.9 per cent from the second quarter of 2012 on the yield growth.  Air Canada reported a passenger load factor of 83.0 per cent for the second quarter of 2013, 0.5 percentage points below the second quarter of 2012.  In the premium class cabin, passenger revenues increased $19 million or 3.3 per cent on yield and traffic growth of 2.2 per cent and 1.1 per cent, respectively, over the second quarter of 2012.

Operating expenses decreased $42 million or 1 per cent from the second quarter of 2012.  Operating expense increases in wages, salaries and benefits and capacity purchase costs were more than offset by operating expense decreases in aircraft fuel and depreciation, amortization and impairment expenses.

Air Canada’s adjusted cost per available seat mile (adjusted CASM), which excludes fuel expense, the cost of ground packages at Air Canada Vacations and unusual items, decreased 1.4 per cent compared to the second quarter of 2012.  The 1.4 per cent reduction in adjusted CASM was in line with the adjusted CASM decrease of 0.5 per cent to 1.5 per cent projected in Air Canada’s news release dated June 10, 2013.

In the second quarter 2013, Air Canada recorded operating income of $174 million compared to operating income of $63 million in the same quarter in 2012, an improvement of $111 million.

Liquidity Highlights

At June 30, 2013, cash and short-term investments amounted to $2,107 million or 17 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues (June 30, 2012 – $2,323 million or 20 per cent of 12-month trailing revenues).

At June 30, 2013, adjusted net debt of $3,975 million decreased $162 million from December 31, 2012, mainly reflecting the impact of an increase in cash balances.

Free cash flow of $147 million decreased $86 million from the second quarter of 2012, largely reflecting the addition of one Boeing 777 aircraft, partly offset by an increase in cash flows from operating activities due to better operating results.

Current Outlook

For the third quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects its system ASM capacity, as measured by available seat miles (ASMs), to increase in the range of 2.5 to 3.5 per cent when compared to the third quarter of 2012.

Air Canada continues to expect its full year 2013 system ASM capacity to increase in the range of 1.5 to 2.5 per cent when compared to the full year 2012.  Air Canada also continues to expect its full year 2013 domestic capacity to increase in the range of 1.5 to 2.5 per cent from the full year 2012.

For the third quarter of 2013, Air Canada expects adjusted CASM to decrease 1.5 to 2.5 per cent when compared to the third quarter of 2012.

Taking into account Air Canada’s adjusted CASM result for the second quarter 2013, Air Canada now expects its full year 2013 adjusted CASM to decrease in the range of 1.0 to 2.0 per cent from the full year 2012 (as opposed to the decrease of 0.5 to 1.5 per cent projected in Air Canada news release dated June 10, 2013).

Air Canada continues to expect its full year 2014 system capacity to increase by 9.0 to 11.0 per cent when compared to the full year 2013.  This projected increase in capacity, expected to be deployed primarily on international markets, is consistent with the fleet plan discussed in Air Canada’s Second Quarter 2013 MD&A and is due to the addition of five high-density Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft, the first having been delivered in June 2013 and the remainder scheduled for delivery between August 2013 and February 2014, the scheduled arrival in 2014 of the first six Boeing 787 aircraft, and the planned growth from Air Canada rouge.

Air Canada’s outlook assumes Canadian GDP growth of 1.25 to 1.75 per cent for 2013 and Canadian GDP growth of 2.0 to 3.0 per cent for 2014.

Air Canada also expects that the Canadian dollar will trade, on average, at C$1.04 per U.S. dollar for the third quarter of 2013 and C$1.03 per U.S. dollar for the full year 2013 and that the price of jet fuel will average 87 cents per litre for the third quarter of 2013 and the full year 2013.

Copyright Photo: Ole Simon/AirlinersGallery.com. Formerly painted in the special Vancouver 2010 livery, Boeing 777-333 ER C-FIVS (msn 35784) gracefully climbs away from Frankfurt.

Air Canada: AG Slide Show

American launches codeshare agreement with LAN Colombia, creditors and shareholders tentatively approve the merger with US Airways

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) has announced the launch of a new codeshare agreement with LAN Colombia (Bogota), adding new service to key destinations in Colombia and further strengthening American’s relationship with LATAM Airlines Group. Customers can begin booking travel on the codeshare flights for travel beginning August 8.

The new codeshare agreement will give American’s customers seamless connecting service within Colombia and provide LAN Colombia’s customers access to new destinations in the United States. The two airlines will codeshare on flights between the U.S. and Colombia and provide American’s customers access to four new destinations in Colombia – Barranquilla, Bucaramanga, Cartagena and Pereira, while giving LAN Colombia’s customers access to 12 new cities in the U.S. from Miami, including Chicago (O’Hare), Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles and New York (JFK).

In addition, LAN Colombia plans to join the oneworld® alliance in the fourth quarter of this year. LAN Colombia operates more than 990 weekly flights to cities throughout Colombia as well as destinations in Brazil and the U.S. From its Bogota hub, LAN Colombia offers 125 daily flights, including service to 20 Colombian cities.

In addition to the codeshare agreement with LAN Colombia, later this year American will launch new service from Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) to Bogota (BOG), demonstrating its mission to provide customers with expanded options through a growing network footprint in Latin America. American currently operates up to 35 weekly flights from its hub in Miami to Bogota (BOG), Cali (CLO) and Medellin (MDE).

In others news, AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines, Inc., announced the preliminary voting results on the Company’s Plan of Reorganization, which indicate overwhelming acceptance of the Plan by those creditors and shareholders entitled to vote.

Of the eight creditor classes entitled to vote, at least 88 percent of the ballots received and tabulated in each class, representing more than 97 percent of the claims value voting in each class, were voted in favor of the Plan.  Additionally, more than 99 percent of the shares tabulated for the class of AMR stockholders voted to accept the Plan.

The final voting results for the Plan will be certified and filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York in advance of the confirmation hearing on August 15, 2013.

On June 7, 2013, the Court authorized the company to begin soliciting approval of the Plan from AMR’s creditors and stockholders. Voting on the Plan ended July 29, 2013 at 5 p.m. EDT.

The effective date of the Plan and American’s Chapter 11 emergence are expected to occur simultaneously with the closing of the merger with US Airways. The merger is expected to close in the third quarter of 2013.

Top Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Brand new Boeing 777-323 ER N725AN (msn 41666) was handed over to American Airlines on July 31, 2013.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

LAN Colombia: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Bernardo Andrade/AirlinersGallery.com. Former AIRES Colombia Boeing 737-73S EI-EEB (msn 29081) of LAN Colombia taxies past the camera at Sao Paulo (Guarulhos).

ANA orders three additional Boeing 777-300 ERs

ANA (All Nippon AIrways) (Tokyo) and Boeing have announced ANA has ordered three additional 777-300 ER (extended range) airplanes. The order, valued at approximately $945 million at current list prices, will increase the total number of 777s in ANA’s fleet to 57 airplanes once delivered.  ANA currently operates 26 Boeing 777-300s (see below).

In route news, ANA will increase the number of flights between Tokyo-Narita, and Yangon Airport in Myanmar, to seven flights per week, from three. As a result, there will be a daily service on this route from September 30, 2013. In addition, seat capacity for the route will be increased by replacing the Boeing 737-700 aircraft with the 767-300 ER aircraft.

ANA will also announce the name of a new Narita International Airport-based leisure carrier. The new subsidiary will replace the now failed joint venture with AirAsia, named AirAsia Japan. This unit will served leisure destinations such as Guam and Hawaii and will launch operations with two aircraft. The fleet will expand to five aircraft by March 2014 according to Reuters.

On the financial side, ANA Holdings reported a $57.3 million operating loss for the fiscal first quarter ending on June 30.

ANA Fleet 7:2013 (ANA)

In addition, the flag carrier announced its new in-flight services and the new “Inspiration of JAPAN” tagline and issued this statement:

From late August, 2013, ANA will begin flying aircraft adorned with the tagline ‘Inspiration of JAPAN’, ANA’s brand concept. Alongside of this tagline, ANA will enhance its in-flight services and introduce new services throughout this fiscal year, starting from September.Inspiration of Japan
‘Inspiration of JAPAN’, which is the products and services brand of ANA, will be re-stated as the company tagline and will be designed on all of ANA’s aircraft. This will represent many aspects of the Japanese culture and spirit, including skills in innovation and technology, Japanese courtesy and precision, and the spirit of customer service at the heart of ANA.
In addition to the tagline, national flag of Japan will also be designed at the front of the aircraft in order to emphasize our proud of Japanese heritage to global passengers.THE CONNOISSEURS
The first in-flight service enhancement to be launched in September will be THE CONNOISSEURS project. THE CONNOISSEURS is an in-flight meal team composed of 10 renowned chefs, 5 beverage specialists and 9 of ANA’s own catering chefs, among the most talented of any of the world’s airlines. The team will produce a range of meals and drinks for our international and domestic flights. See ‘Notes to Editors’ section for more information on the chefs and menu.

New First and Business Class Bedding and Amenities 
In First and Business classes on long haul flights, we will introduce new bedding using the latest Japanese innovative technologies. This is a joint development with Nishikawa Sangyo Co., Ltd., the leading bedding manufacturer in Japan.

ANA will also provide a new amenity kit service in Business Class that will surely make passengers relax and enjoy our flights. Passengers will receive a pouch filled with L’OCCITANE products, originating from Provence in southern France.

As the first airline in Japan, and one of the few global airlines being recognized as the highest 5-Star airline by SKYTRAX, ANA will continue to further enhance the services we offer to our customers.

 

 Tagline Design
New bedding for long-haul flights – Ultimate in cabin comfortANA presents a new selection of bedding, using the latest innovative technologies that are the pride of Nishikawa Sangyo Co., Ltd., a leading Japanese manufacturer of bedding products since its founding in 1566. Based on the theories of its Japan Research Laboratory of Sleep Science, we now offer items such as highly functional Nanofront® fibers from Teijin, and the finest organic materials from Tenerita. We hope you will enjoy your journey above the clouds.First Class
Quality of sleep is determined by multiple factors including posture, bedding texture, weight, heat retention, and breathability. Our ultra-light comforters are made from the highly functional Teijin fibers using the latest technologies from Nishikawa Sangyo. Moreover, its AiR® mattress features a unique structure that disperses body pressure, while its Angel Float® pillow offers a flexible fit even when lying face up or sideways.
Also enjoy our blankets made with the finest cashmere and Tenerita’s organic cotton that meets strict international standards, as well as the double-sided knitted loungewear with a truly soft texture.
Applicable flights: Routes departing from Japan bound for North America and Europe
Applicable class: First Class

The new bedding in First Class represents the best of Nishikawa Sangyo. Pillow, comforter, bed pad, and blanket by Tenerita.

Double-sided knitted loungewear can be taken home after your flight
Business Class
In Business Class, bed pads are Nishikawa Sangyo’s Air Cyclone® customized for the ANA BUSINESS STAGGERED seats. Turning over during sleep is easy due to the unique three-layer structure and moderate resistance. These bed pads also offer excellent breathability and comfort. And because the reverse side is skid resistant, they can also be used as seat cushions. The comforters are Bodyline Quilts that fit your body. We’ve also introduced structural pillows from Nishikawa Sangyo for a perfect fit from your neck to the back of your head.

Applicable flights: Routes departing from Japan bound for North America and Europe (except Honolulu)
*New bed pads will be introduced on flights equipped with ANA BUSINESS STAGGERED seats only.
Applicable class: Business Class
ANA will introduce a bed pad on Business Class for the first time.
Our new service will provide a more relaxing experience
[From left] pillow, comforter, bed pad.
In Business Class, ANA will also start offering an amenity kit containing amenities from L’OCCITANE, a brand focused on the lifestyle of Provence in southern France.

Top Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-381 ER JA733A (msn 32648) arrives at London (Heathrow).

ANA: AG Slide Show

Air France-KLM turns to the black in the first six months of 2013

Air France (Paris) and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) issued its financial report for the first six months of 2013 including subsidiary Transavia Airlines (Amsterdam). The group reported an operating profit of $105 for the first half turning around a comparable loss in the first six months of 2012. The group expects to make an operating profit for the entire  year.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Read the analysis by Bloomberg: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 F-HPJE (msn 052) climbs away from Washington (Dulles).

Air France: AG Slide Show

KLM: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-306 ER PH-BVD (msn 35979) in the SkyTeam motif taxies to the runway at the Amsterdam hub.

Delta posts a $844 million net profit in the Second Quarter

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) today reported financial results for the June 2013 quarter.  Highlights from the quarter include:

  • Delta’s net profit for the June 2013 quarter was $844 million, or $0.98 per diluted share, excluding special items1.  This result is a record June quarter profit excluding special items and is a $258 million improvement year-over-year.
  • Including $159 million in special items, Delta’s GAAP net income was $685 million, or $0.80 per diluted share.
  • The company announced a balanced capital deployment plan, targeted at creating up to $5 billion of value for shareholders by 2017 through further debt reduction and the return of more than $1 billion to shareholders over the next three years by means of $200 million of annual dividends and a $500 million share repurchase program.
  • June quarter results include $118 million of profit sharing expense in recognition of Delta employees’ contributions to the company’s financial performance.
  • Delta generated $1.3 billion of operating cash flow and $730 million of free cash flow in the June 2013 quarter, and ended the period with adjusted net debt of $10.2 billion.

Revenue Environment

Delta’s operating revenue declined $25 million in the June 2013 quarter compared to the June 2012 quarter.  Traffic increased 0.5 percent on a 0.8 percent increase in capacity.

  • Passenger revenue increased 0.7 percent, or $63 million, compared to the prior year period.  Passenger unit revenue (PRASM) was flat year over year with a 0.2 percent improvement in yield.
  • Cargo revenue decreased 11.4 percent, or $30 million, on declining freight yields.
  • Other revenue decreased 5.6 percent, or $58 million, as a result of the decision to discontinue a number of low margin-producing third-party maintenance contracts.

Comparisons of revenue-related statistics are as follows:

Increase (Decrease)

2Q13 versus 2Q12

Passenger Revenue 2Q13 ($M) Change

YOY

Unit

Revenue

Yield Capacity
Domestic $ 3,885 3.7% 0.9% 2.5% 2.8%
Atlantic 1,578 2.5% 1.4% 0.9% 1.0%
Pacific 841 (2.1)% 0.5% (2.7)% (2.6)%
Latin America 492 3.6% 1.2% (2.3)% 2.4%
Total Mainline 6,796 2.7% 1.1% 1.1% 1.6%
Regional carriers 1,698 (6.2)% (2.3)% 0.9% (4.0)%
Consolidated $ 8,494 0.7% (0.1)% 0.2% 0.8%

Cash Flow

Cash from operations during the June 2013 quarter was $1.3 billion, driven by the company’s June quarter profit and the seasonal increase in advanced ticket sales, which was partially offset by $500 million of accelerated pension funding.  The company generated $730 million of free cash flow.

Capital expenditures during the June 2013 quarter were $704 million, including $360 million for the acquisition of 49% of Virgin Atlantic and $238 million in fleet investments, including aircraft parts and modifications. During the quarter, Delta’s debt maturities and capital leases were $405 million.

Delta ended the quarter with adjusted net debt of $10.2 billion and the company has now achieved nearly $7 billion in net debt reduction since 2009.  This debt reduction strategy produced a $43 million year-over-year reduction in interest expense in the June quarter. As of June 30, 2013, Delta had $5.7 billion in unrestricted liquidity, including $3.9 billion in cash and short-term investments and $1.8 billion in undrawn revolving credit facilities.

Cost Performance

Total operating expense in the quarter decreased year-over-year by $805 million driven by the savings from Delta’s structural cost initiatives and lower mark-to-market adjustments on fuel hedges, partially offset by the impact of operational, service and employee investments.

Consolidated unit cost excluding fuel expense, profit sharing and special items (CASM-Ex2), was 2.5 percent higher in the June 2013 quarter on a year-over-year basis, driven by the impact of wage increases and operational and service investments.  GAAP consolidated CASM decreased 9 percent, driven by lower fuel expense.

Fuel expense for the June quarter declined $710 million year-over-year, or $288 million excluding mark-to-market adjustments, as a result of lower fuel prices and prior year hedge losses. Delta’s average fuel price3 was $3.03 per gallon for the June quarter.  For the June quarter, operations at the Trainer refinery produced a $51 million loss ($0.05 cents per gallon impact) driven by the elevated price of the Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) required under the Environmental Protection Agency’s Renewable Fuel Standard.

Balanced Approach to Capital Deployment

In May, Delta announced a five year financial plan and a balanced capital deployment program aimed at creating up to $5 billion of value for shareholders, including returning more than $1 billion to shareholders over the next three years.  The company’s financial plan focuses on free cash flow generation through a combination of expected earnings improvements and a disciplined approach to capital investment.  Over the next five years, Delta plans to reinvest $2.0 – $2.5 billion annually, or approximately 50 percent of its operating cash flow, into improving the company’s fleet, facilities, products and technology.

The resulting free cash flow will be used to return cash to shareholders, further reduce the company’s debt, and opportunistically address longer-term pension funding needs, driving up to $5 billion of value to Delta’s shareholders.  Specifically,

  • The company expects to achieve an adjusted net debt level of $7 billion by 2017, a $5 billion reduction over 2012.  By meeting the $7 billion target, Delta will have reduced its adjusted net debt by $10 billion since 2009, significantly decreasing the company’s balance sheet risk and accreting more than $750 million of interest expense savings for shareowners;
  • Delta’s Board of Directors initiated a quarterly dividend and declared a $0.06 per share dividend for shareholders of record as of August 9, 2013.  This dividend will be paid on September 10, 2013.  In addition, the Board authorized a $500 million share repurchase program, to be completed no later than June 30, 2016.  Together, these two programs are designed to return more than $1 billion of capital to shareholders over the next three years;
  • The company also plans to make up to $1 billion of incremental contributions to the company’s defined benefit pension plans over the next five years.  These contributions would be in addition to the $650 – $700 million annual contribution requirement.

Special Items

Delta recorded special items totaling a $159 million charge in the June 2013 quarter, including:

  • a $125 million charge for mark-to-market adjustments for fuel hedges settling in future periods; and
  • a $34 million charge for facilities, fleet and other items, primarily associated with Delta’s domestic fleet restructuring.

Delta recorded special items totaling a $754 million charge in the June 2012 quarter, including:

  • a $561 million charge for mark-to-market adjustments on fuel hedges settling in future periods;
  • $171 million in severance and related costs associated with voluntary early out programs; and
  • a $22 million charge for facilities, fleet and other items.

End Notes

(1)  Note A to the attached Consolidated Statements of Operations provides a reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures used in this release and provides the reasons management uses those measures.

(2)  CASM – Ex: In addition to fuel expense, profit sharing and special items, Delta believes excluding ancillary business costs is helpful to investors because ancillary business costs are not related to the generation of a seat mile. These businesses include aircraft maintenance and staffing services Delta provides to third parties and Delta’s vacation wholesale operations. The amounts excluded were $165 million and $244 million for the June 2013 and 2012 quarters, respectively. The amounts excluded were $350 million and $484 million for the six months ended June 30, 2013 and 2012, respectively.  Management believes this methodology provides a more consistent and comparable reflection of Delta’s airline operations.

(3)  Average fuel price per gallon: Delta’s June 2013 quarter average fuel price of $3.03 per gallon reflects the consolidated cost per gallon for mainline and regional operations, including contract carrier operations, and includes the impact of fuel hedge contracts with original maturity dates in the June 2013 quarter. On a GAAP basis, fuel price includes $125 million in fuel hedge mark-to-market adjustments recorded in periods other than the settlement period. The net refinery loss for the quarter was $51 million, or 5 cents per gallon.  See Note A for a reconciliation of average fuel price per gallon to the comparable GAAP metric.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-232 LR N702DN (msn 29741) “The Spirit of Atlanta” prepares to land at Tokyo (Narita).

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Turkish Airlines converts five Boeing 777-300 options to firm orders

Turkish Airlines (Istanbul) has converted five Boeing 777-300 ER orders into firm orders according.

The aircraft will be delivered in 2016 and 2017, according to a filing with the Istanbul stock exchange.

Today, Boeing issued this statement:

Boeing and Turkish Airlines have announced a order for five 777-300 ER(Extended Range) airplanes, valued at $1.6 billion at list prices. The Turkish flag-carrier has exercised options on five 777-300 ERs that were first announced in December 2012 as part of a previous firm order for 15 777-300 ERs. Turkish Airlines now has 20 777-300 ERs currently on order from Boeing.

Turkish Airlines’ fleet currently includes 12 777-300 ERs, the first of which Boeing delivered in October 2010. In that time, the 777-300 ER has played a significant role in Turkish Airlines’ incredible long-haul growth.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-3F2 ER TC-JJN (msn 40795) is pictured at Everett (Paine Field).

Turkish Airlines: AG Slide Show

Philippine Airlines to continue Toronto flights

Philippine Airlines (Philippines) (Manila) was planning to drop all service to Toronto (Pearson) on September 18 per Airline Route. The flag carrier was serving YYZ via an extension of the Manila-Vancouver route three days a week.

Update: According to Airline Route, PAL appears to have reversed its decision and has re-opened reservations for Toronto flights after September 18.

Copyright Photo: John Adlard/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-36N ER RP-C7776 (msn 37712) prepares to land at Sydney.

Philippines: AG Slide Show

Philippine Airlines to return to Europe

Philippine Airlines (Philippines) (Manila) is returning to Europe after an absence of 15 years after the European Union lifted its ban against the carrier. PAL intends to fly again to London, Paris, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Rome and Madrid.

The airline issued this statement:

Philippine EU Statement

Copyright Photo: Micheil Keegan/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-36N RP-C7777 (msn 37709) prepares to land in Sydney.

Philippines: AG Slide Show

Asiana Airlines’ pilot sees a bright light on the final approach

National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) (Washington) has conducted its final press conference in San Francisco. The landing Asiana Airlines pilot reported a bright light source on his final approach (reflection of the sun on the water?). The pilot looked away and did not think it blinded him. The other pilot did not report any source of light. Here is the briefing from yesterday afternoon (July 11). The final accident report will probably take a year or longer before it is issued. If there are any recommendations, the NTSB will issue those recommendations sooner to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Meanwhile the remains of the Boeing 777 are slowly being removed.

Air China starts nonstop Beijing-Houston service

Air China (Beijing) began its four weekly nonstop services between Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) in Beijing, China and George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, Texas yesterday (July 11).

The inaugural flight from Beijing, CA 995, arrived at 3:40 (1540) yesterday afternoon to a Texas-sized welcome which included a traditional water cannon salute. Houston Mayor Annise Parker was on hand to greet the delegation from Chinaled by Ms. Yinxiang Wang, Co-Chairwoman of Air China Limited; Chinese Consul General for Texas and seven U.S. southern states and Puerto Rico, Ms. Erwen Xu; and, former Houston Rockets star and now Houston’s Honorary Goodwill Ambassador, Yao Ming.

HOUSTON AIRPORT SYSTEM RIBBON CUTTING

Copyright Photo: Ribbon Cutting Celebrates Air China’s New Nonstop Service Between Houston, Texas and Beijing, China. (PRNewsFoto/Houston Airport System).

With the launch of the nonstop service, Houston becomes Air China’s fifth gateway in North America, joining Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Vancouver.  Air China will operate inside Terminal D at George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Houston’s gateway for all foreign carriers.

Houston and Beijing have enjoyed a strong relationship for several decades. China’s paramount leader, the late Deng Xiaoping, visited Houston during his historic trip to the United States in 1979.

Air China will operate the nonstop flights, CA 996, from Houston to Beijing on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, departing at 1:00 AM local time (0100) and arriving in Beijing at 4:50 AM (0450) local time, next day.   The chart below shows the schedule of the new service.

Flight Number Code-Share Flt. No. Route Departure Arrival Schedule Aircraft
CA 996 UA7602* Houston-Beijing 01:00 04:50+1 Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun B777-300ER
CA 995 UA7601* Beijing-Houston 15:00 15:40 Tue, Thu, Sat, Sun B777-300ER

NOTES: All times are local.  “+1″ stands for next-day arrival.

Top Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-39L ER B-2036 (msn 38676) arrives at the Frankfurt terminal.

Air China: AG Slide Show

* Codeshare flight.

Singapore Airlines unveils its next generation cabin product and KrisWorld

Singapore First Class Seat (Singapore)(LR)

Singapore Airlines (Singapore) has unveiled its next generation First, Business and Economy Class seats, together with the next generation KrisWorld, according to the airline “the world’s most advanced in-flight entertainment system”. The airline issued this statement:

Customers will soon be able to experience the next generation KrisWorld, the world’s most advanced in-flight entertainment system to date, on new Boeing 777-300 ERs entering Singapore Airlines’ fleet in the coming months.

The new KrisWorld, based on a Panasonic Avionics hardware platform, will initially be available on eight new Boeing 777-300 ERs that will begin to enter service from September 2013. It will also be introduced on new Airbus A350s scheduled for delivery in the coming years, in line with the terms of an agreement valued at nearly $400 million that was signed with Panasonic Avionics in 2012. Existing KrisWorld systems on other aircraft already in service may also be retrofitted with the new system.

Singapore Airlines agreed last year to be the launch customer for Panasonic Avionics’ next-generation eX3 system for the Airbus A350s, as well as the first to offer the eX3 experience on the Boeing 777-300ERs. The airline will also be the first to offer Panasonic’s Global Communications Suite on the A350s, with the capability to provide broadband Internet services to passenger devices and the seat-back, as well as mobile phone services.

Singapore First Class (Singapore)(LR)

The new KrisWorld features larger LCD screens and video touch-screen handsets across all classes. LCD screens will increase from 23 to 24 inches in First Class, 15.4 to 18 inches in Business Class and 10.6 to 11.1 inches in Economy Class. Economy Class customers will also be able to browse through the more than 1,000 on-demand entertainment options by swiping or scrolling through the touch-screen monitor.

Working with renowned design company Massive Interactive, Singapore Airlines has seamlessly integrated the functionality of the video touch-screen handset into the core design of a new, innovative KrisWorld user interface to ensure that navigating through menus and programmes is intuitive and user-friendly. Customers will be able to multi-task among the varied entertainment options available. For example, they may watch a movie, while at the same time use the handset to keep up to date with the latest news headlines or track the aircraft’s flight path. Alternatively, customers may use the handset as a touchscreen trackpad to navigate KrisWorld. New features such as  “Quick Search”, where a flick of the handset pulls up a playlist of entertainment choices, are also being introduced.

Leveraging on technology, a number of thoughtful features are being incorporated into KrisWorld with customers’ convenience in mind. For example, the Notification Centre on the KrisWorld dashboard contains information relevant to the flight, reducing the number of onboard announcements, thereby allowing customers to watch movies uninterrupted.

Customers will also experience greater personalisation, with KrisWorld providing content recommendations based on passengers’ preferences. They may also rate movies and see how others have rated these.

Twenty-one aircraft have been equipped to date and the service will be rolled out to the rest of the Airline’s Airbus A380-800 and Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft by the end of next year. Inflight connectivity service on the 21 aircraft is provided by OnAir. For the new 777-300 ERs entering the fleet over the next two years, the service will be provided by Panasonic Avionics.

Key Features

First Class

Business Class

Economy Class

IFE screen size 61 centimetres 24 inches 46 centimetres  18 inches 28 centimetres  11.1 inches
Touch-screen handset Available across all three classes
Ports HDMI, USB & eXPort  HDMI, USB & eXPort    USB & eXPort  
In-seat power supply Available across all three classes
Headphones Bose Quiet Comfort QC15noise-cancellation headphones Phitek Supra Auranoise-cancellation headphones   Standard headphones

Entertainment – movies, TV, music, radio channels

More than 230 movies, over 340 TV programmes, 22 hosted radio programmes and more than 790 CDs.
Games In addition to more than 80 interactive games including high performance 3D games, popular touch-screen games are now available.
Applications New to KrisWorld: 

  • Travel Forum: Introducing a social networking element to KrisWorld, customers can now share their travel experiences, tips and recommendations with fellow passengers.
  • DK Travel Guides: comprehensive guides to major cities in the world.
  • Live News: Customers can stay connected to the happenings on the ground with news from Channel NewsAsia
  • Flight Path iXplor 2: Improved flight path information  allowing customers to view key points of interests, for example, the Taj Mahal, when they are flying over it. 

Copyright Photos: Singapore Airlines. The airline has launched its next generation First, Business and Economy Class seats, together with the next generation KrisWorld, the world’s most advanced in-flight entertainment system. They will be available on new Boeing 777-300 ERs over the next two years. Customers travelling on select flights between Singapore and London will be the first to experience the new products from September 2013.

Singapore Airlines: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-312 ER 9V-SWJ 9msn 34575) arrives back at the SIN hub.

Video:

Etihad Airways posts record profits for the second quarter and the first half of 2013

Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) posted record profits for the second quarter and the first half of 2013. The airline issued this statement:

The national carrier of the United Arab Emirates achieved an eight per cent increase in Q2 2013 passenger revenues, generating $921 million (all amounts in US Dollars) (2012: $855 million), while passenger revenues for the first half of 2013 reached $1.8 billion (2012: $1.6 billion), up by 13 per cent.

Revenue generated by codeshare and equity alliance airline partners was $184 million in Q2 2013. This was 25 per cent above the $147 million turnover in the same period of 2012.  Partnership revenue comprised 20 per cent of the airline’s total passenger revenue in both Q2 and the first half of 2013.

The President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways, James Hogan, said the company’s Q2 and half year results were achieved despite the continuation of unsteady economic and geopolitical factors, with air fare yields slightly lower for the quarter, compressed by strong competitive capacity growth and resultant price competition.

“Despite the tough global trading climate, we have still achieved record, double digit growth in both Q2 and the first half of 2013,” Mr Hogan said.

“This reflects not only the continuing popularity of our Abu Dhabi hub, but the growing maturity of our airline partnership strategy and the strength of our cargo operations, which continue to well exceed industry growth rates.”

Mr Hogan said a significant achievement in Q2 was the improved contribution of the Etihad Airways equity alliance partners, in particular Germany’s Airberlin, which has become the largest codeshare contributor. This reflects increased connectivity between the integrated networks of the two airlines.

Etihad Airways increased its codeshare partnerships during Q2, adding Serbia’s national carrier, Jat Airways (Belgrade), and announced new partnerships with Air Canada (Montreal), South African Airways (Johannesburg) and Belavia (Minsk) of Belarussia, all to take effect during Q3. With these inclusions, Etihad Airways will have 45 codeshare partners and a virtual global network of more than 350 destinations, the most comprehensive of any alliance or Middle Eastern airline.

In Q2, Etihad Airways’ Available Seat Kilometers (ASKs) – reflecting network seat capacity – rose by 13 per cent to 17.2 billion  (2012: 15.2 billion).  Revenue Passenger Kilometers (RPKs) – reflecting traffic – increased by 13 per cent to 13.3 billion in Q2 2013 (2012: 11.8 billion).

This growth was achieved through the delivery of two new Boeing 777-300 passenger aircraft –  a three-class version seating 328 passengers and a two-class model seating 380 –  and a corresponding increase in flights, including new services to Amsterdam, Sao Paulo and Belgrade.

Results for Q2 were further strengthened by the introduction late in March of daily flights to a fourth new destination, Washington, D.C.

Etihad Cargo continued to achieve the strongest growth in the company, with 112,963tons uplifted in Q2 2013 (2012: 89,470 tons) and 215,124 tons in the first half of 2013 (2012: 174,622 tons). This reflected a massive 26 per cent growth in Q2 and 23 per cent growth for the first half of 2013.

The growth in cargo volumes was underpinned by the delivery in Q2 of three new freighter aircraft – one Airbus A330-200F, one Boeing 777-200F and the company’s first Boeing 747-8F, which was wet leased from Atlas Air – taking the cargo fleet to nine. Cargo performance was further boosted by increased passenger services, providing more under-floor freight capacity.

During Q2 Etihad Airways announced that, subject to regulatory approvals, it would acquire 24 per cent of India’s Jet Airways, enlarging the Etihad Airways equity alliance and group network.

In addition, Etihad Airways signed an Initial Memorandum of Understanding with the Government of Serbia to discuss potentially investing in Jat Airways.  Etihad Airways also secured Australian regulatory approval to increase its equity stake in Virgin Australia from 10 per cent to 19.9 per cent.

As well as its Virgin Australia stake, Etihad Airways holds a 29 per cent shareholding in Airberlin (Berlin), 40 per cent of Air Seychelles (Mahe) and three per cent of Aer Lingus (Dublin).

Copyright Photo: Duncan Kirk/AirlinersGallery. Newly-built Boeing 777-3FX ER A6-ETP (msn 41699) lands at Paine Field near Everett after a test flight. The new airliner was delivered on June 25, 2013.

Etihad Airways: AG Slide Show

ALPA pushes back on growing pilot error media conclusions

The Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l, released the following statement regarding the crash landing of Asiana Airlines (Seoul) flight 214 in San Francisco on Saturday, July 6, 2013.

First and foremost, our thoughts are with those who were involved in the accident this past Saturday. From the crew to the passengers to the families and first responders, we hope they can gain some comfort during this difficult time.

ALPA is stunned by the amount of detailed operational data from on-board recorders released by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) this soon into the investigation. The amount of data released publicly during the field portion of the accident investigation is unprecedented.

It is imperative that safety investigators refrain from prematurely releasing the information from on-board recording devices. We have seen in the past that publicizing this data before all of it can be collected and analyzed leads to erroneous conclusions that can actually interfere with the investigative process.

The release of individual data points from the flight data recorder and the cockpit voice recorder—without the context of the entire body of factual investigative data—represents a potential detriment to flight safety. It encourages wild speculation, as we have already seen in the media, about causes of the accident before all the facts are known, before investigators have the ability to determine why the events occurred, and in this case before the flight crew had even been interviewed.

This premature release of partial data is often taken out of context and creates the impression that the NTSB has already determined probable cause even before the investigation has started. Since each factor of flight, landing, airport environment, and crew is part of safe air travel, we need to ensure that reckless release of information is not sensationalized by the media for the purpose of a few headlines.

ALPA has long supported an objective accident investigation process that is based on the fundamental principle of obtaining all the facts to perform accurate analysis in the context of all factors that may have led to an accident. We stand ready to assist the NTSB or any state investigative agency in obtaining those facts and ensuring that an appropriate operational context is maintained.

ALPA urges the NTSB to make sure that the objective investigative process continues by gathering all the facts and relevant information before leading the public to believe that a cause has been determined.

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the world’s largest pilots union, representing more than 50,000 pilots at 33 airlines in the United States and Canada.

NTSB Videos:

CNN Video:

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Here is another view of the ill-fated Boeing 777-28E ER HL7742 (msn 29171) arriving at Los Angeles before the accident at SFO.

Asiana Airlines: AG Slide Show

Breaking News: Asiana’s Boeing 777-28E HL7742 crashes on landing at San Francisco

Asiana Airlines‘ (Seoul) flight OZ 214 from Seoul (Incheon) to San Francisco with a reported 291 passengers and 16 crew members crashed landed short of runway 28L on landing at San Francisco at 1127 local time. The underside of the fuselage, possibly the main gear, impacted the rock seawall while landing leaving a trail of debris down the overrun area and on to the runway. The forward section of Boeing 777-28E ER HL7742 (msn 29171) was consumed by fire. The main fuselage separated from the tail section on impact. Most passengers and crew members were able to escape the burning aircraft from the main section.

The flight crew gave no indication of a problem before attempting its landing.

Two people have died in the crash. 181 people were initially transported to nine area hospitals from the triage area. 123 people are listed as uninjured. 34 people have been transported to the Trauma Center at the San Francisco General Hospital. Of these 34, five are listed now as “critical” and five are now listed as “serious”. One person is now listed as “unaccounted”. The remainder were later transported to area hospitals for medical attention and are expected to be released.

One eyewitness, watching the planes landing, reported to CNN that he saw the airliner land short of the runway with the landing gear hitting the seawall. A fire ball flared on the underside of the aircraft during the hard landing. The aircraft cartwheeled according to the eyewitness with the tail section and vertical stabilizers separating quickly. The right wing tip shows damage.

Another eyewitness who was a passenger in the rear section of the aircraft told CNN the tail section hit the ground very hard and at least two Flight Attendants “fell out” from rear into the gap that was created when the tail section separated.

An United Boeing 747-400 was very close to the final resting spot of the forward section and was preparing to depart.

Weather was reported to be clear and visibility at 10 miles at the time of the accident.

San Francisco International Airport is now reporting it has opened two runways.

HL7742 was delivered new to Asiana on March 7, 2006.

More news will be posted as it is confirmed.

Read the report from NBC: CLICK HERE

Local TV news coverage from PIX 11: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. HL7742 is pictured on final approach previously at Los Angeles.

Asiana Airlines: AG Slide Show

Videos from San Francisco:

Report from CNN:

Alitalia issues a new Turnaround Plan, Air One to be rebranded

Alitalia (2nd) (Rome), a carrier that is familiar with financial problems, has issued this new “Industrial Plan 2013-2016″ to turnaround the flag carrier along with Air One (Milan-Malpensa):

Gabriele Del Torchio, new CEO of Alitalia, presented the strategic outline of the new Industrial Plan 2013 – 2016 for Alitalia and the new mission of the Company.
With this Plan, the Group wants to better respond to changes in the aviation market which, in recent years, has seen a sharp reduction in the domestic traffic sector, against a growth of international and intercontinental routes, particularly to Eastern Europe, North and South America, Middle and Far East.
The Plan foresees an increase in revenue from overseas activities which already account for over 50% of the total revenue of the Group, making Alitalia one of the main Italian companies to contribute to the balance of payments of Italy.
The Industrial Plan 2013 – 2016 will focus on 3 principal businesses – Alitalia, Air One and Alitalia Loyalty (the new company of the Group, founded at the end of 2012, which deals with the development and enhancement of the MilleMiglia program) and will be based on 4 strategic lines with the goal of recovering the productivity of the Company, allowing it to remain in the market efficiently and profitably.
1. STRATEGIC LINE: REDEFINITION OF THE ROLE OF ALITALIA AND AIR ONE WITH REGARD TO SHORT AND MEDIUM HAUL ROUTES
This will involve the redefinition of the Alitalia Group’s short and medium haul network, differentiating the activities of Alitalia and Air One, avoiding overlapping between the two Companies, with the aim to better respond to the needs of all customer segments.
The Smart Carrier Air One: a web oriented company, which will have operational bases in Sicily, North East Italy and Pisa.
A new image and branding project is under way for Air One. The new brand, which will replace Air One, will have a stronger likeness to Alitalia. The Smart Carrier will offer, with a predominantly web-oriented sales model, 2 fares and 2 levels of service (GO and SMART) to meet the needs of both price-sensitive and premium segments. GO fare passengers will be able to customise their travel experience by choosing additional services.
The Smart Carrier’s new short and medium haul network structure will be dedicated to serve point-to-point connections, from the bases of Catania, Palermo, Venice and Pisa, strengthening, in particular, the provision of international flights.
The increase of the offer in Sicily and in North East Italy responds to the need to meet the high traffic demand in Sicily and to regain market share in North East Italy, which was lost in recent years to other European airports. Maintaining a presence in Pisa and Tuscany is also of great importance.
Alitalia strengthens its operations at the hub of Rome Fiumicino and at Milan Linate and Milan Malpensa airports
Alitalia will operate all national and international connections to/from the hub of Rome Fiumicino and to/from Milan Linate and Milan Malpensa airports, increasing international and intercontinental services at these 3 airports.
With regard to Milan Linate airport, whilst maintaning the connections to Southern Italy, the Plan provides that selected Rome-Milan-Rome slots will be replaced with new international point-to-point connections, thereby allowing Alitalia to satisfy the needs of customers in Northern Italy, especially business travellers.
During the course of the Plan, new flights from Milan Linate to Copenhagen, Budapest, Vienna, Stockholm, Helsinki, Malta, Tallinn, Prague and Warsaw will be introduced.
Alitalia will also operate services from Milan Malpensa airport to non-EU destinations such as Cairo, Tunis, Moscow and Tirana, in addition to connections to Rome Fiumicino.
The international offer will be further enhanced, as early as 2013, with new flights from Rome Fiumicino to several international routes. Possible new destinations are: Nuremberg, Lviv, Bordeaux, Skopje, Zagreb, Sarajevo, Ankara, Marrakech, Misurata, Minsk, Basel, Marseille, Rostov, Pristina, Damascus, Erbil.
New pricing strategy and servicing
The safeguard and the development of the domestic and international market share will be ensured through a rethinking of pricing strategies to take into account and to attract not only those who choose a premium fare (the vast majority of Alitalia passengers today), but also price-sensitive customers, who, in any case, will be able to customise their travel experience by choosing additional services.
The new strategy also embraces other customer groups by offering dedicated initiatives. For example, young people (thanks to the already introduced JUMP ON-BOARD fares) and, soon, families and foreign nationals living in Italy.
2. STRATEGIC LINE: DEVELOPMENT OF INTERCONTINENTAL ACTIVITIES
The Strategic Plan 2013 – 2016 sees a strong projection on the intercontinental network.
Development of the long-haul fleet
To support the development of the intercontinental network, 6 long-haul aircraft are expected to be introduced into the Alitalia fleet, during the course of the Plan.
Various actions are needed in order to increase profitability of the current intercontinental routes. In October 2013, as part of a specific plan, the reconfiguration of 10 Airbus A330 aircraft part of the Alitalia fleet will commence and is expected to be completed by 2014.
The new configuration is the result of a research into the precise needs of the Italian air transport  market.
New long-haul routes with high potential
New long-haul routes with high traffic potential to/from Italy will be identified and introduced. The new routes will operate mainly from the hub of Rome Fiumicino and the airports of Milan Malpensa and Venice.
The new intercontinental destinations which may be introduced between Winter 2014 and Winter 2016 are Nairobi, Seoul, Santiago de Chile, San Francisco and Johannesburg from Rome. Shanghai, Abu Dhabi and Osaka from Milan Malpensa; Tokyo from Venice.
The launch of the new routes will be combined with the strengthening of the Alitalia presence through increased frequencies to North and South America (especially the United States and Brazil), Japan and the Arabian peninsula.
This process will boost the attractiveness of Rome Fiumicino as a national and intercontinental hub, with a strong and innovative trade policy to attract increasing volumes of passengers.
Strengthening of business partnerships with major companies
Parallel to the development of new long-haul routes served directly, Alitalia will expand its worldwide presence in countries which, are today insufficiently served, by strengthening existing commercial partnerships.
Thanks to the reinforcement of existing codesharing agreements, or through the development of new agreements, Italian passengers will be able to reach destinations throughout the world, even if not directly served by Alitalia.
Development of market share and of commercial activity abroad
Alitalia, as ambassador of Italy and of Italian excellence in the world, aims to increase its market share abroad and, in particular, in those countries where there is a strong presence of Italian communities, such as Canada, USA, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, South Africa and Australia.
At the same time, to further increase the flow of traffic to Italy, of both leisure and business travellers, Alitalia will strengthen its commercial network, already present in many worldwide countries.
The expansion of Alitalia abroad will be made possible by alliances and codesharing agreements.
ROME FIUMICINO RE-HUBBING PROJECT
An all-encompassing activity, which will fast forward the achievement of the objectives highlighted in the first two strategic lines of the 2013 – 2016 Industrial Plan, is the Re-Hubbing project of the Alitalia hub at Rome Fiumicino Airport, which will be launched in October for the Winter 2013 – 2014 timetable.
This process consists of the reorganization and optimization of the time slots for domestic, international and intercontinental flights departing from and arriving at Rome Fiumicino, with the aim of improving the quality of the service offered to passengers.
The change of the time slots for flights to/from Rome Fiumicino has been implemented in favour of both business passengers, who will benefit from flights to Italy and Europe with early morning departures and evening returns, and passengers departing from other Italian airports, who will be able to take advantage of more convenient connections in Rome Fiumicino to reach long-haul destinations, such as the Americas.
This reorganization will also guarantee significant benefits and economic advantages for Alitalia, thanks to a more efficient operational structure and use of flight and ground resources at the Rome Fiumicino hub.
3. STRATEGIC LINE: DEVELOPMENT OF INFRASTRUCTURE PARTNERSHIPS AND MORE ATTENTION TO THE INTERMODAL PASSENGER TRANSPORTATION (AIR AND RAIL)
It involves the identification of new partnerships and the strengthening of existing ones, with key infrastructure partners in Italy, such as, for example, airports.
The goal of these partnerships is to create synergies and improve customer satisfaction through increased efficiency of ground operations, joint development of network and infrastructures and the expansion of services which are not closely related to flight operations (parking or transfers to/from airports).
The Plan calls for another key element of future collaboration: the opportunity to introduce and develop appropriate intermodal connections between aviation and high speed rail.
A more efficient allocation of traffic between train and plane will allow to optimize the inputs of the Italian national production system.
4. STRATEGIC LINE: TURN ALITALIA LOYALTY INTO A SEPARATE BUSINESS BRINGING PROFITABILITY TO THE ENTIRE ALITALIA GROUP
This relates to Alitalia Loyalty, the new company of the Group, founded at the end of 2012, which deals with the development and the enhancement of the Alitalia MilleMiglia programme.
The main guidelines of the Plan relating to the operation of Alitalia Loyalty include: the push to increase the number of members of the MilleMiglia programme, the development of new ways to redeem miles on flights or other services, the creation of high value partnerships with leading financial and credit institutions, the entrance of the MilleMiglia programme in a coalition of many loyalty programs to increase the opportunities of earning and redeeming Alitalia miles, the development of new forms of communication and marketing towards MilleMiglia members.
ECONOMIC-FINANCIAL OBJECTIVES OF THE 2013 – 2016 PLAN
During the course of the four-year plan, with the implementation of all the expected industrial and financial measures, the Company plans to achieve the following economic results:
  • 2013: positive industry EBIT in the second semester, resulting from an improvement in industrial management
  • 2014: break-even operating margin
  • 2015: balanced budget
  • 2016: balance sheet profit
Concurrently, the following objectives have also to be achieved:
  • Increase the convertible shareholders loan by 55 million euros within December 2013
  • Increase the financial resources by 300 million euros in December 2013
THE NEW MISSION OF ALITALIA
The Industrial Plan provides that Alitalia refocuses on the values that have always distinguished the Company in Italy and in the rest of the world: the being Italian, the high quality service and the pride of belonging.
These elements define the new mission of the Company:
PROUD TO SHOW THE BEST OF OUR COUNTRY. WITH PASSION.
The new mission of Alitalia, which will be made as visible as possible to customers on planes and at airports, is, in a nutshell, the new spirit of Alitalia: a company that, with its highly recognizable tricolor tailfin and thanks to the passionate effort of all its employees, is the ambassador of the quality, the elegance and the typical Italian lifestyle that make Italy an icon in the world.
The first initiatives will address the re-branding of the three flight service classes, the improvement of on-board services, the new VIP Lounges and the new assistance service dedicated to passengers in transit at the airport hub of Rome Fiumicino.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Alitalia will concentrate on adding new, higher-yield long-range international routes. Boeing 777-243 ER I-DISA (msn 32855) climbs away from Tokyo (Narita).

Alitalia (2nd): AG Slide Show

Air One: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord/AirlinersGallery.com. Air One will be rebranded, possibly as “Smart Carrier”. Air One’s Airbus A320-215 EI-DSK (msn 3328) taxies at the Milan (Malpensa) base in the 1995 color scheme.

Garuda Indonesia celebrates the arrival of its first Boeing 777-300 ER in Jakarta

Garuda Indonesia 777-300 PK-GIA (09)(Flt)(Garuda)(LR)

Garuda Indonesia (Jakarta) on June 27, 2013 took delivery of its first Boeing 777-3U3 ER (PK-GIA, msn 40074). Boeing and Garuda Indonesia are celebrating the delivery in Jakarta today. Boeing issued this statement:

Boeing and Garuda Indonesia celebrated the arrival of the airline’s first 777-300 ER (Extended Range) in Jakarta Tuesday (July 2).

The long-haul, twin-aisle airplane is the first of 10 777-300 ERs delivered to the airline and is a key component of the Garuda Indonesia’s Quantum Leap fleet revitalization program.

The airline configured its new 777-300 ERs with eight first-class suites, 38 business-class seats and 268 seats in economy class. The aircraft is also equipped with in-flight internet connectivity.

The airplane can fly up to 7,825 nautical miles (14,490 km). The 777-300 ERs are equipped with GE90-115B engines, the world’s most powerful commercial jet engine.

Copyright Image and Photo: Garuda Indonesia.

Garuda Indonesia FAs (Garuda)(LR)

Garuda Indonesia: AG Slide Show

Video:

American Airlines and Disney collaborate to promote “Disney Planes”

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and the Walt Disney Studios announced a strategic collaboration on the upcoming “Disney’s Planes” movie, including a cameo appearance by Tripp – inspired in part by American’s Boeing 777-300 ER, the newest addition to American’s fleet.

Video: CLICK HERE

Tripp dons the airline’s new look, complete with the company’s newly developed flight symbol and stripes on his tail for a special cameo appearance in the film.

American-Disney Planes Banner

“Disney is a global family brand and working with them gives us a fun opportunity to connect with families who know and love the iconic American Airlines brand,” said Rob Friedman, American’s Vice President – Marketing.  “Through this collaboration, we have a lot of great things planned for this summer, including exciting trip promotions and in-airport activities, so I encourage everyone to stay tuned.”

To kick off the excitement, American and Disney surprised customers traveling throughLos Angeles International Airport (LAX) with gate celebrations and giveaways, including special guest appearances by the film’s director Klay Hall and actor Carlos Alazraqui, who provides the voice of passionate racer El Chupacabra (El Chu) in the film.

In addition, American and Disney today premiered a special version of the “Disney’s Planes” trailer for LAX customers, as well as American’s new custom animated commercial directed by Hall, and developed in conjunction with McCann Worldgroup. In the spot, characters from the movie, including DustyEl Chu and Tripp, highlight American’s fleet modernization efforts with a comedic flare. American also held the inflight debut of the trailer and commercial spot onboard Flight #2442 from LAX to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW).

“Disney’s Planes” and Tripp soar into theaters nationwide beginning Aug. 9, 2013.  Leading up to the film’s release, the companies plan to roll out an integrated marketing effort, including collaborated advertising, promotions and inflight entertainment. American will also feature an inflight version of the movie in October, one month earlier than other airlines, as part of American’s continuing effort to provide customers with the latest and most exclusive content.

“Disney’s Planes” is an action-packed 3D animated comedy adventure featuring Dusty (voice of Dane Cook), a plane with dreams of competing as a high-flying air racer. But Dusty‘s not exactly built for racing—and he happens to be afraid of heights. So he turns to a seasoned naval aviator who helpsDusty qualify to take on the defending champ of the race circuit. Dusty‘s courage is put to the ultimate test as he aims to reach heights he never dreamed possible, giving a spellbound world the inspiration to soar. “Disney’s Planes” takes off in theaters on Aug. 9, 2013.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

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