Tag Archives: Boeing

WSJ: Kuwait calls in Ms. Roumi to turn around Kuwait Airways

Kuwait Airways (Kuwait City) has a new CEO. Ms. Rasha Al Roumi, 52, has been selected by the Kuwait government to turn around the flag carrier according to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Dave Glendinning/AirlinersGallery.com. The Boeing 777-200 ERs are being phase out as the airline becomes an all-Airbus airline. Boeing 777-269 ER 9K-AOB (msn 28744) taxies to the gate at London Heathrow Airport (LHR).

Kuwait Airways: AG Slide Show

 

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UPS produces an operating profit of $1.5 billion in the first quarter, down $106 million due to harsh winter weather

UPS (United Parcel Service) (UPS Airlines) (Atlanta) today released first quarter 2014 results. Diluted earnings per share totaled $0.98, a $0.06 decline from first quarter 2013 adjusted results. Operating profit for the quarter was $1.5 billion, down $106 million from the prior-year’s adjusted results. Unusually harsh weather weighed on operating profit by approximately $200 million, due to increased expenses and slower revenue growth. Average daily shipments in the U.S. climbed 4.2% driven primarily by large e-commerce shippers using lightweight deferred shipping solutions.

The International segment operating margin expanded to 14.0% on daily volume growth of 7.9%. Supply Chain and Freight experienced improved operating profit and margin expansion.

For the first quarter of 2013, UPS reported diluted earnings per share of $1.08, which includes $36 million in after-tax gains related to the attempted acquisition of TNT.

“Much of the U.S. economy was negatively affected by the severe weather conditions in the first quarter, resulting in lower UPS operating results versus the prior year,” said Scott Davis, UPS chairman and CEO. “International and the Supply Chain and Freight segment benefitted from positive momentum during the quarter as customers utilized the strategic investments made by UPS to strengthen our portfolio.”

Cash Flow

For the three months ended March 31, UPS generated $1.9 billion in free cash flow. The company paid dividends of $596 million, up 8.1% per share over the prior year, and repurchased 6.8 million shares for approximately $660 million.

U.S. Domestic Package

U.S. Domestic revenue increased 2.6% over the prior-year period, to $8.5 billion. Daily volume improved 4.2%, led by UPS SurePost and UPS Second Day Air.

The segment generated $927 million in operating profit, down $158 million compared to the prior year, due to the impact of severe winter weather. The company experienced lost revenue and additional cost as a result of significant network disruptions on more than half of the operating days during the quarter. Overtime wages, purchased transportation and snow removal costs increased substantially over the prior year. Operating margin contracted 220 basis points to 10.9%.

Revenue per package declined 1.5% from the previous year due to changes in customer and product mix, as well as lower fuel surcharges. Product mix continues to be impacted by the rapid increase of UPS SurePost. More e-commerce retailers are choosing this product to serve their value-conscious customers.
International Package

The International segment revenue improved 5.0% and produced operating profit of $438 million, 12% more than the prior-year adjusted results. Operating margin expanded to 14% driven by improved network efficiency and in-country leverage.

On a reported basis, the segment recorded operating profit growth of 24% more than the prior-year result of $352 million. This reflects the operating profit impact of a $39 million net charge in 2013, related to the attempted acquisition of TNT.

Export shipments climbed 7.7% driven by 15% growth in Europe and modest gains in Asia and the Americas. Transborder shipments in Europe continue to expand rapidly as customers migrate to Pan-European distribution using UPS solutions.

To support strong Intra-European growth and intercontinental trade, the company announced the completed expansion of its Cologne, Germany, air hub. This $200 million investment increased facility capacity by 70%.
Non-U.S. Domestic deliveries increased 8.1%, driven by growth in Europe and Canada. Poland led the European countries with more than 20% growth, while Germany and the U.K. contributed strong gains.

Average revenue per package declined 2.1% due to product mix changes as non-premium Export products jumped almost 13%, overshadowing improved growth in premium products.

Supply Chain & Freight

Supply Chain and Freight operating profit increased 3.5% to $148 million. Operating margin expanded 30 basis points to 6.8%, driven by gains in the Forwarding and Distribution units.

The Forwarding business delivered improved operating profit and margin gains during the quarter as the unit adapted to market changes. International Air Freight growth in shipments and tonnage were offset by lower revenue per pound. Ocean Freight and Brokerage showed both improved revenue and operating profit.
Gains from retail and healthcare customers drove higher revenue growth in the Distribution business unit.

Operating profit improved more than 10% despite additional expansion costs during the quarter.

UPS Freight revenue increased slightly on a 3.1% increase in LTL revenue per hundredweight. Both tonnage and operating profit were negatively impacted by the severe winter weather.

Outlook

“During the quarter, the momentum of the underlying business was masked by the disruption of inclement weather,” said Kurt Kuehn, UPS chief financial officer. “We are encouraged by the positive trends in our business and expect the remainder of the year to perform as we originally guided. However, due to the challenging start to 2014, we anticipate diluted earnings per share to be at the low end of our full-year guidance range of $5.05 to $5.30.”

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-34AF ER N328UP (msn 27754) in Blended Winglets prepares to land at Philadelphia International Airport (PHL).

UPS Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Southwest Airlines Company reports record first quarter net profit of $126 million

Southwest Airlines Company (Southwest Airlines and AirTran Airways) (Dallas) today reported its first quarter 2014 results:

Record first quarter net income, excluding special items*, of $126 million, or $.18 per diluted share, compared to first quarter 2013 net income, excluding special items, of $53 million, or $.07 per diluted share. This exceeded the First Call consensus estimate of $.16 per diluted share.

Record first quarter net income of $152 million, or $.22 per diluted share, which included $26 million (net) of favorable special items, compared to net income of $59 million, or $.08 per diluted share, in first quarter 2013, which included $6 million (net) of favorable special items.

Record first quarter operating income of $215 million; $242 million excluding special items.
Return on invested capital*, before taxes and excluding special items (ROIC), for the 12 months ended March 31, 2014, of 14.2 percent, as compared to 8.3 percent for the 12 months ended March 31, 2013.

Gary C. Kelly, Chairman of the Board, President, and Chief Executive Officer, stated, “I am delighted to report record first quarter earnings, which increased significantly year-over-year, despite the disruption caused by more than 7,500 of our flights canceled due to extreme weather conditions and the impact of the shift in timing of the Easter and Passover holidays. This outstanding performance was driven by record first quarter operating revenues of $4.2 billion, and a 1.2 percent year-over-year decline in total operating costs, excluding special items, driven largely by lower fuel prices and our ongoing fleet modernization. Our record first quarter operating income of $242 million, excluding special items, was very strong, especially considering an estimated $50 million unfavorable impact from winter storms. Operationally, our Employees did an outstanding job in difficult conditions taking care of our Customers, and I thank them again for their efforts.

“Our first quarter 2014 earnings performance is a superb start to the year and on plan to achieve a 15 percent pre-tax return on invested capital for the year, excluding special items. Second quarter 2014, benefiting from the Easter and Passover holidays, also is off to a great start, with strong bookings, favorable revenue trends, and stable fuel prices.

“Our balance sheet, liquidity, and cash flows remain strong. We are actively managing our debt and total invested capital, while making strategic investments that have already contributed significantly to our record profitability. We were pleased to return $371 million to Shareholders during first quarter 2014 through the payment of $56 million in dividends and the repurchase of $315 million in common stock. Since August 2011, we have returned $1.6 billion to our Shareholders through share repurchases and dividend payments.

“Our five strategic initiatives are on track and meeting or exceeding expectations. In January, we deployed our international reservation system and began selling Southwest’s inaugural international service to Aruba, The Bahamas, and Jamaica, scheduled to begin July 1, 2014. We quickly followed with selling Southwest service to Cancun and Los Cabos, scheduled to begin August 10, 2014. By the end of this year, we intend to fully convert AirTran’s seven international markets, along with its remaining domestic markets, to the Southwest route network. We have converted 21 of the 52 AirTran Boeing 737-700s to the Southwest Evolve configuration, and plan to convert the remaining 31 -700s this year (see below). This will complete the AirTran integration and retire the brand by the end of 2014.

“We have a significant amount of fleet activity planned this year, as we wind down the AirTran brand and continue to modernize our fleet, resulting in a larger than normal number of aircraft out of scheduled service. Accordingly, we expect relatively flat 2014 available seat miles, year-over-year.

“Our network development and optimization results, to date, have been excellent. We are excited about the opportunity to add new service to New York LaGuardia, Washington Reagan National, and Dallas Love Field this year, as well as to the international terminal under construction at Houston Hobby next year. Looking ahead to 2015, while we have not finalized our fleet and capacity plans, we have been managing to a baseline of 695 aircraft, which was our combined fleet at the time of the AirTran acquisition. We are planning year-over-year growth in our available seat miles derived from increased fleet utilization resulting from the completion of the AirTran integration and the increase in seats from the upgauging of our fleet. Of course, this will drive significant unit cost benefits.”

Financial Results and Outlook

The Company’s first quarter 2014 total operating revenues increased 2.0 percent, year-over-year, to $4.2 billion, despite an estimated $45 million reduction to revenues from weather-related cancellations. Operating unit revenues increased 3.1 percent, on a 1.1 percent decrease in available seat miles and a 2.6 percent increase in average seats per trip, all as compared to first quarter 2013. While the shift in the timing of the Easter and Passover holidays impacted March results, April bookings and revenue trends, thus far, are strong. Based on April’s trends and current bookings for the remainder of the second quarter, the Company expects another solid year-over-year increase in its second quarter 2014 operating unit revenues.

Total operating expenses in first quarter 2014 decreased 1.6 percent to $4.0 billion, as compared to first quarter 2013. First quarter 2014 total operating expenses included an estimated $5 million in net costs associated with winter storms. The Company incurred costs (before profitsharing and taxes) associated with the acquisition and integration of AirTran, which are special items, of $18 million during first quarter 2014, compared to $13 million in first quarter 2013. Cumulative costs associated with the acquisition and integration of AirTran, as of March 31, 2014, totaled $428 million (before profitsharing and taxes). The Company expects total acquisition and integration costs to be no more than $550 million (before profitsharing and taxes). Excluding special items in both periods, total operating expenses in first quarter 2014 decreased 1.2 percent to $3.9 billion, as compared to $4.0 billion in first quarter 2013.

First quarter 2014 profitsharing expense was $29 million, compared to $15 million in first quarter 2013. Profitsharing expense in first quarter 2014 was impacted by acquisition and integration costs incurred during that period. In addition, in accordance with the Company’s ProfitSharing Plan (the Plan), first quarter 2014 operating profit, as defined in the Plan, was reduced by a portion of the acquisition and integration costs incurred from April 1, 2011, through December 31, 2013, which will be amortized from January 1, 2014, through December 31, 2018.

First quarter 2014 economic fuel costs were $3.08 per gallon, including $.06 per gallon in favorable cash settlements from fuel derivative contracts, compared to $3.29 per gallon in first quarter 2013, including $.05 per gallon in unfavorable cash settlements from fuel derivative contracts. Based on the Company’s fuel derivative contracts and market prices as of April 21, 2014, second quarter 2014 economic fuel costs are expected to be comparable to second quarter 2013′s economic fuel costs of $3.06 per gallon. As of April 21, 2014, the fair market value of the Company’s hedge portfolio through 2017 was a net asset of approximately $252 million. Additional information regarding the Company’s fuel derivative contracts is included in the accompanying tables.

Excluding economic fuel and oil expense, profitsharing, and special items in both periods, first quarter 2014 operating costs increased 2.4 percent from first quarter 2013, and increased 3.5 percent on a unit basis. Based on current cost trends, the Company expects both second quarter 2014 and full year 2014 unit costs, excluding fuel and oil expense, profitsharing, and special items, to increase, year-over-year, in the two to three percent range.

Operating income for first quarter 2014 was $215 million, compared to $70 million in first quarter 2013. Excluding special items, operating income was $242 million in first quarter 2014, compared to $112 million in the same period last year.

Other income in first quarter 2014 was $29 million, compared to $24 million in first quarter 2013. The $5 million increase primarily resulted from $53 million in other gains recognized in first quarter 2014, compared to $46 million recognized in first quarter 2013. In both periods, these gains primarily resulted from unrealized mark-to-market net gains associated with a portion of the Company’s fuel hedging portfolio, which are special items. Excluding these special items, first quarter 2014 had $16 million in other losses, compared to $5 million in first quarter 2013, primarily attributable to the premium costs associated with the Company’s fuel derivative contracts. Second quarter 2014 premium costs related to fuel derivative contracts are currently estimated to be in the $15 million to $20 million range, compared to $12 million in second quarter 2013. Net interest expense in first quarter 2014 was $24 million, compared to $22 million in first quarter 2013.

Balance Sheet and Cash Flows

As of April 23, 2014, the Company had approximately $3.5 billion in cash and short-term investments, and a fully available unsecured revolving credit line of $1 billion. Net cash provided by operations during first quarter 2014 was $1.1 billion, and capital expenditures were $407 million, which included the payment for slots acquired at Washington’s Reagan National Airport. The Company repaid $46 million in debt and capital lease obligations during the first quarter 2014, and intends to repay approximately $500 million in debt and capital lease obligations during the remainder of 2014, which includes $35 million paid on April 1, 2014, associated with eight of the Company’s Fixed-rate Boeing 717 Aircraft Notes due in 2017.

During first quarter 2014, the Company generated free cash flow* of $712 million. The Company returned approximately $371 million to its Shareholders through the payment of $56 million in dividends and the repurchase of $315 million in common stock, or 12 million shares, under its share repurchase program, including $200 million under an accelerated share repurchase program with a third party financial institution. In first quarter, pursuant to the accelerated share repurchase program, the Company advanced $200 million to the financial institution and received approximately seven million shares of the Company’s common stock, representing an estimated 75 percent of the shares the Company expects to purchase under the accelerated share repurchase program. The specific number of shares that the Company ultimately will repurchase under the accelerated share repurchase program will be determined generally based on a discount to the volume-weighted average price per share of the Company’s common stock during a calculation period to be completed by May 9, 2014. At settlement, under certain circumstances, the third party financial institution may be required to deliver additional shares of common stock to the Company, or under certain circumstances, the Company may be required to deliver shares of its common stock or may elect to make a cash payment to the third party financial institution. Since August 2011, the Company has repurchased $1.48 billion in common stock, or 124 million shares, under its $1.5 billion share repurchase authorization.

Fleet

During first quarter 2014, the Company’s fleet was reduced by five to 676 aircraft at period end. This reflects the first quarter 2014 delivery of two new Boeing 737-800s and six pre-owned Boeing 737-700s, as well as the retirement of one Boeing 737-300. In addition, the Company removed 12 Boeing 717-200s from service during first quarter 2014 in preparation for transition. Additional information regarding the Company’s aircraft delivery schedule is included in the accompanying tables.

Southwest 737-700 Fleet Table

Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Southwest’s Boeing 737-7H4 N214WN (msn 32486) completes its final turn on the river approach into Washington’s Reagan National Airport (DCA).

Southwest Airlines: AG Slide Show

AirTran Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. AirTran’s Boeing 737-7BD N315AT (msn 35788) completes its final approach to the runway at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

 

American Airlines Group reports a record first quarter net profit of $480 million

American Airlines Group (American Airlines and US Airways) (Dallas/Fort Worth) today reported its first quarter 2014 results.

First quarter 2014 net profit was a record $480 million. This represents a $777 million improvement versus the company’s combined first quarter 2013 net loss of $297 million.

Excluding net special credits, the company reported a record first quarter net profit of $402 million. This represents a $340 million year-over-year improvement versus the company’s combined net profit of $62 million excluding net special charges in the first quarter 2013.

First quarter 2014 pretax margin excluding net special credits was 4.1 percent, a 3.6 point year-over-year improvement.

The company ended the quarter with $10.6 billion in total cash and short-term investments. Since the close of the merger, the company has used more than $542 million of cash to reduce its diluted shares outstanding by approximately 20 million.

For the first quarter 2014, American Airlines Group reported a record GAAP net profit of $480 million. This compares to a net loss of $341 million in the first quarter 2013. The company’s GAAP results for the first quarter 2013 reflect AMR Corporation prior to the merger.

The company believes it is more meaningful to compare year-over-year results for American Airlines and US Airways on a combined basis, which is a non-GAAP formulation that combines the results for AMR Corporation and US Airways Group. Therefore, it includes the results of US Airways Group for the full period. See the accompanying notes in the Financial Tables section of this press release for further explanation of this presentation, including a reconciliation of GAAP to non-GAAP financial information.

First quarter 2014 net profit excluding net special credits was a record $402 million. This compares to a combined non-GAAP net profit of $62 million excluding net special charges for the same period in 2013. Excluding net special credits, first quarter 2014 diluted earnings per share was $0.54.

“We are very pleased to report a record profit in our first full quarter as a merged company,” said Doug Parker, CEO of American Airlines Group. “Our team of dedicated professionals did an excellent job of taking care of our customers despite particularly difficult weather conditions throughout the quarter. We are excited for the future and expect our synergies to build as we continue to integrate our operations.”

Merger Integration

Since closing the merger on December 9, 2013, the company has made significant progress in integrating American Airlines and US Airways. Key accomplishments:

Launched the world’s largest codeshare, offering customers improved access to the company’s global network by allowing them to book flights on both airlines’ networks

Provided reciprocal benefits for airport lounge and frequent flyer elite members, including priority check-in, waiving fees for checked bags, complimentary access to preferred seats, priority security lines, early boarding and priority baggage delivery

Enabled AAdvantage® and Dividend Miles® members to earn and redeem miles when traveling across either airline’s network

Joined operations at 58 airports, including Phoenix and Miami hubs

Moved US Airways into the oneworld alliance on March 31 and to the trans-Atlantic joint venture with American, British Airways, Iberia and Finnair on April 3

Aligned award travel options, checked baggage policies and inflight services for First and Business Class customers

Announced Sabre as the new Passenger Services System for the combined company

Closed the sale of the slot divestitures required by the U.S. Department of Justice at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). In total, the company received $381 million in cash from the DCA sales and the sale of slots at New York’s LaGuardia (LGA) Airport, which closed in the fourth quarter 2013.

Revenue and Cost Comparisons

On a combined basis, total revenues in the first quarter were a record $10 billion, up 5.6 percent versus the first quarter 2013 on a 2.0 percent increase in total available seat miles (ASMs). Driven by a record yield of 17.03 cents, up 3.2 percent year-over-year, combined consolidated passenger revenue per ASM (PRASM) was also a record for the first quarter at 13.67 cents, up 2.9 percent versus the first quarter 2013.

Total combined operating expenses in the first quarter were $9.3 billion, down 0.3 percent over first quarter 2013. Combined first quarter mainline cost per available seat mile (CASM) was 13.50 cents, down 2.7 percent on a 2.7 percent increase in mainline ASMs versus first quarter 2013. This cost improvement was largely due to a 4.8 percent decrease in year-over-year mainline fuel prices. Excluding special charges, fuel and profit sharing, mainline CASM was up 4.0 percent compared to the first quarter 2013, at 8.96 cents. Regional CASM excluding special charges and fuel was 16.62 cents, up 5.0 percent on a 3.2 percent decrease in regional ASMs versus first quarter 2013.

Liquidity

As of March 31, 2014, American had approximately $10.6 billion in total cash and short-term investments, of which $947 million was restricted. The company also has an undrawn revolving credit facility of $1.0 billion. Approximately $750 million of the company’s unrestricted cash balance was held in Venezuelan bolivars, valued at the weighted average applicable exchange rate of 6.32 bolivars to the dollar. This includes approximately $94 million valued at 4.3 bolivars, approximately $611 million valued at 6.3 bolivars and approximately $45 million valued at 10.7 bolivars, with the rate depending on the date the company submitted its repatriation request to the Venezuelan government.

In the first quarter of 2014, the Venezuelan government announced that a newly-implemented system (SICAD I) will determine the exchange rate (which fluctuates as determined by weekly auctions and at March 31, 2014 was 10.7 bolivars to the dollar) for repatriation of cash proceeds from ticket sales after January 1, 2014, and introduced new procedures for approval of repatriation of local currency. The company is continuing to work with Venezuelan authorities regarding the timing and exchange rate applicable to the repatriation of funds held in local currency. The company is monitoring this situation closely and continues to evaluate its holdings of Venezuelan bolivars for potential impairment.

Since the merger, the company paid $542 million in tax withholdings for employees in lieu of issuing shares of common stock as compensation as permitted under the Plan of Reorganization, thereby reducing the number of shares expected to be issued under the Plan by approximately 20 million. Additionally, the company has elected to utilize the cash settlement feature for the remaining $22 million principal amount of US Airways Group 7.25% convertible notes due May 15, 2014, which will further reduce diluted shares by approximately 4 million shares.

Special Items

In the first quarter, the company recognized a combined total of $78 million in net special credits, including:

$137 million in net special credits consisting primarily of the gain on the sale of slots at Reagan National Airport offset in part by integration and merger-related expenses

$47 million in non-operating special charges due primarily to non-cash interest accretion on bankruptcy settlement obligations

$8 million in non-cash deferred income tax provision related to certain indefinite-lived intangible assets

$4 million in regional non-operating charges

Additional Integration Related Developments

Distributed $11 million to employees for baggage handling and on-time performance in the month of January; this distribution of $100 per employee is part of the company’s Triple Play program which measures on-time arrivals and baggage performance as reported in the DOT’s Air Travel Consumer Report (ATCR)

Conducted first joint Captain Leadership Training with newly promoted captains from both airlines

On April 9, Piedmont flight attendants ratified a new five-year Collective Bargaining Agreement
Opened a new Admirals Club lounge at the company’s Philadelphia (PHL) hub

Fleet/Network Developments

As part of its plan to modernize its fleet by replacing older aircraft with newer, more fuel-efficient aircraft, the company inducted 12 new Airbus A321 aircraft into service between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), and JFK and San Francisco International Airport (SFO). American is now the only U.S. carrier to offer three classes of service between these key markets.

The company also took delivery of one Airbus A330-200 aircraft, five Boeing 737-800 aircraft and one Boeing 777-300 aircraft during the first quarter.

Revealed new Boeing 767-300 and 777-200ER cabin retrofits, which feature lie-flat seats with direct aisle access in Business Class

In April 2014, the company exercised its option to purchase (and thus terminated its existing lease financing arrangements) for 62 Airbus A320 family aircraft scheduled to be delivered between first quarter 2015 and third quarter 2017. In connection with this decision, the company also exercised its right to convert firm orders for 30 Airbus A320 family NEO aircraft (scheduled to be delivered in 2021 and 2022) to options to acquire such aircraft.

Top Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner/AirlinersGallery.com. American Airlines’ Boeing 767-323 ER N346AN (msn 33085) taxies at Zurich.

American Airlines: AG Slide Show

US Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. US Airways is now planning to operate the last Boeing 737 revenue flight on August 18 at the Charlotte hub. Boeing 737-4B7 N450UW (msn 24933) arrives back at CLT.

 

United Airlines reports a first quarter net loss of $489 million

United Airlines (Chicago) today reported a first quarter 2014 net loss of $489 million, or $1.33 per share, excluding $120 million of special items. Including special items, UAL reported a first quarter 2014 net loss of $609 million, or $1.66 per share.

Historic severe weather increased United’s first quarter loss by approximately $200 million.

United’s consolidated passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) decreased 2.0 percent in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the first quarter of 2013. Weather-related cancellations reduced first quarter 2014 consolidated PRASM by approximately 1.5 percentage points.

First quarter 2014 consolidated unit costs (CASM) increased 1.0 percent year-over-year. First-quarter 2014 consolidated CASM, excluding special charges, third-party business expenses, fuel and profit sharing, increased 3.1 percent year-over-year on a consolidated capacity reduction of 0.3 percent.

UAL ended the first quarter with $6.0 billion in unrestricted liquidity.

“This quarter’s financial performance is well below what we can and should achieve. We are taking the appropriate steps with our operations, network, service and product to deliver significantly better financial results,” said Jeff Smisek, UAL’s chairman, president and chief executive officer. “The entire United team is sharply focused on accomplishing the goals we have laid out for long-term financial success.”

First Quarter Revenue and Capacity

For the first quarter of 2014, total revenue was $8.7 billion, a decrease of 0.3 percent year-over-year. First-quarter consolidated passenger revenue decreased 2.3 percent to $7.4 billion, compared to the same period in 2013. Ancillary revenue per passenger in the first quarter increased 7.6 percent year-over-year to more than $21 per passenger. First-quarter cargo revenue decreased 7.9 percent versus the first quarter of 2013 to $209 million. Other revenue in the first quarter increased 18.0 percent year-over-year to $1.1 billion, in large part due to an agreement to sell jet fuel to a third party.

Consolidated revenue passenger miles and consolidated available seat miles each decreased 0.3 percent year-over-year for the first quarter, driven largely by adverse weather, resulting in a first quarter consolidated load factor of 81.1 percent.

First quarter 2014 consolidated PRASM and consolidated yield each decreased 2.0 percent compared to the first quarter of 2013.

“We recognize that we have lagged on revenue and are taking the necessary actions to remedy that,” said Jim Compton, UAL’s vice chairman and chief revenue officer. “Our employees pulled together during the unprecedented extreme winter weather that marked this quarter. We appreciate their hard work, which resulted in higher customer satisfaction scores than for the same period last year.”

First Quarter Costs

Total operating expenses increased $60 million, or 0.7 percent, in the first quarter versus the same period in 2013. Excluding special charges, first-quarter total operating expenses increased $100 million, or 1.1 percent, year-over-year.

First quarter consolidated CASM increased 1.0 percent year-over-year. First quarter consolidated CASM, excluding special charges, third-party business expense, fuel and profit sharing, increased 3.1 percent compared to the first quarter of 2013. Third-party business expense was $193 million in the first quarter of 2014.

“We are making good progress in reducing costs and delivering sustainable efficiencies, all while improving the product for our customers,” said John Rainey, UAL’s executive vice president and chief financial officer. “While we are not pleased with our first-quarter financial results, we are building a strong foundation that will result in improved financial performance.”

Liquidity and Cash Flow

UAL ended the first quarter with $6.0 billion in unrestricted liquidity, including $1.0 billion of undrawn commitments under a revolving credit facility. The company generated $694 million of operating cash flow in the first quarter. During the first quarter, the company had gross capital expenditures of $737 million, excluding fully reimbursable projects. The company made debt and capital lease principal payments of $637 million in the first quarter.

Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-424 ER N76064 (msn 29459) touches down at Zurich.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

Four Seasons introduces the Boeing 757 “Four Seasons Jet”

Four Seasons 757-200 WL (Flt)(Four Seasons)(LRW)

Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts (Toronto) has introduced its luxurious “Four Seasons” Boeing 757 concept available for charters starting in February 2015. The company issued this statement and video:

The sky is literally the new limit as Four Seasons continues to reimagine luxury hospitality with the introduction of the Four Seasons Jet, the industry’s first fully branded private jet experience.

With Four Seasons on the fuselage and the iconic Four Seasons logo on the tail, the completely retrofitted Boeing 757 will feature interiors and exterior design customized by the company’s team of design experts, setting the stage for a travel experience like no other. Beginning in February 2015, the Four Seasons Jet will transport 52 guests on bespoke journeys, offering discerning travellers a distinctly Four Seasons travel experience from the moment they book their trip. Four Seasons in-flight staff, including a dedicated on-board concierge, will coordinate with local Four Seasons concierges in each destination to ensure that the Four Seasons Private Jet Experience is nothing short of extraordinary.

An ambition to reimagine the future of luxury hospitality is what first inspired the company to create private jet journeys that focused exclusively on stays at Four Seasons properties worldwide in 2012. Now, with the debut of a fully branded Four Seasons Jet, guests can look forward to individually handcrafted leather flatbed seats, globally inspired cuisine and signature Four Seasons service – on board and on the ground. Global in-flight Wi-Fi keeps guests and staff connected, so that spa treatments, tee times, private excursions and more can be arranged “on the fly” to augment each thoughtfully planned itinerary. Travellers will also have access to exclusive experiences available only to Four Seasons Jet passengers.

Reservations aboard the new Four Seasons Jet are currently open for the following trips:

Around the World, February 2015 – Beginning in Los Angeles and concluding with a celebratory dinner in London, this 24-day, 9-destination journey explores dynamic cities, exotic islands, architectural wonders and awe-inspiring natural environments. Highlighted by an only-by-private-jet stop at the Taj Mahal, all accommodations will be at Four Seasons hotels and resorts.

Backstage with the Arts, April 2015 – In the company of like-minded travellers who share a passion for the arts, guests will visit six cities and spend 16 indulgent days filled with backstage visits to Europe’s most stunning museums, outstanding performances at Teatro alla Scala in Milan and the Estates Theatre in Prague, exquisite dinners and a private gala in the Pavlovsk Palace outside St. Petersburg.

Around the World, August 2015 – Epic is the word to describe this globe-circling expedition through nine destinations, including stays in three of the newest Four Seasons hotels, plus the brand’s very first safari lodge in the Serengeti. From the Forbidden City in Beijing to the medina in Marrakech, the pristine waters of the Maldives to the excitement of the world’s largest fish market in Tokyo and a final, glittering dinner in New York, it will be 24 days no one will ever forget.

Each journey includes air travel and ground transportation, planned excursions, all meals throughout the trip and luxurious accommodations exclusively at Four Seasons.

The Four Seasons Jet, including accompanying staff and crew, may also be privately chartered.

Founded in 1960, Four Seasons continues to define the future of luxury hospitality with extraordinary imagination, unwavering commitment to the highest standards of quality, and the most genuine and customized service. Currently operating 92 hotels and private residences in major city centres and resort destinations in 38 countries.

Video:

Gol to start nonstop Fortaleza-Buenos Aires flights on May 10

Gol Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes S.A. (Gol Transportes Aereos) (Sao Paulo) in association with the Ceará state government, has announced the launch of nonstop flights between Pinto Martins Airport, in Fortaleza, and Ezeiza International Airport, in Buenos Aires, beginning on May 10. Gol has 77 flights per week between Argentina and Brazil, more than any other airline.

The connection was brought about by the Ceará State Tourism Department through the Draft Bill 155/2013 for the ICMS tax (state VAT) on jet fuel, after the approval by the state legislature. It reduced ICMS tax (state VAT) on jet fuel from 30% to 12%, applicable for all domestic flights for Companies that has also regular direct international flights departing from this airport. Thus, the state of Ceará stands out even more as a tourist destination for the region.

Copyright Photo: Alvaro Romero/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8EH PR-GGK (msn 35065) is pictured at the downtown Jorge Newbery Aeroparque Airport (AEP) in Buenos Aires.

Gol: AG Slide Show

Boeing reports first quarter net income of $965 million

 

Boeing 787-10 (Boeing)(LR)

The Boeing Company (Chicago and Seattle) reported first quarter revenue increased 8 percent to $20.5 billion on higher commercial volume (Table 1). Core earnings per share (non-GAAP) increased 14 percent* to $1.76 when excluding a benefit of $0.19 per share for the 2012 research and development tax credit recorded in the first quarter of 2013. First quarter 2014 core operating earnings (non-GAAP) increased 12 percent to $2.1 billion and core operating margin (non-GAAP) increased to 10.2 percent reflecting continued strong operating performance. GAAP earnings from operations included previously announced non-cash charges totaling $334 million ($0.29 per share) for retirement plan changes.

Core earnings per share guidance for 2014 increased to between $7.15 and $7.35, from $7.00 to $7.20, to reflect the benefit of a tax settlement to be recognized in the second quarter of 2014. GAAP earnings per share guidance for 2014 is reaffirmed at between $6.10 to $6.30 as the tax settlement benefit was offset by the retirement plan charges. GAAP pension expense guidance for 2014 is now at approximately $3.2 billion, up from $3.1 billion, to reflect the retirement plan charges. The company reaffirmed its 2014 revenue, operating cash flow and deliveries guidance.

Boeing Commercial Airplanes first-quarter revenue increased to $12.7 billion on higher 787 and 737 deliveries. First-quarter operating margin improved to 11.8 percent reflecting the delivery volume and mix and lower period costs partially offset by higher R&D.

During the quarter, the 787 program reached a 10 per month production rate and completed preliminary design review on the 787-10. The company selected the Everett, Washington site as the location for a new composite wing center for the 777X. In April, the 737 program reached a production rate of 42 per month.

Commercial Airplanes booked 235 net orders during the quarter. Backlog remains strong with over 5,100 airplanes valued at $374 billion.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Delta Air Lines reports a first quarter net profit of $281 million despite more than 17,000 cancelled flights

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) today reported financial results for the first (March) quarter. Key points include:

Delta’s pre-tax income for the March 2014 quarter was $444 million, excluding special items1, an increase of $363 million over the March 2013 quarter on a similar basis.

Delta’s net income for the March 2014 quarter was $281 million, or $0.33 per diluted share, excluding special items1. This is $196 million higher year over year despite $163 million of non-cash tax expense now recognized after the reversal of the company’s valuation allowance.

On a GAAP basis including special items, Delta’s pre-tax income was $335 million and net income was $213 million, or $0.25 per diluted share.

Delta cancelled more than 17,000 flights due to severe weather in January and February, double the number of flights cancelled for weather in 2013. These cancellations resulted in $90 million of lost revenue and $55 million lower pre-tax income.

Results include $99 million in profit sharing expense in recognition of Delta employees’ contributions toward achieving the company’s financial goals.

Delta generated $951 million of operating cash flow and $390 million of free cash flow in the March 2014 quarter. This strong cash generation allowed the company to reduce its adjusted net debt to $9.1 billion, contribute more than $600 million of funding to its defined benefit pension plans, and return $176 million to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases.

“The March quarter’s record results in the face of unprecedented weather show the strength and resilience of Delta. By delivering the industry’s best customer service, operational reliability and financial performance, Delta people continue to show that they are the very best in the business,” said Richard Anderson, Delta’s chief executive officer. “Our work is not finished, and there is great opportunity ahead as we expect the June quarter to produce 14% – 16% operating margins. We are transforming Delta into a high-quality S&P 500 company that consistently delivers strong earnings growth and shareholder returns.”

Revenue Environment

Delta’s operating revenue improved 5 percent, or $416 million, in the March 2014 quarter compared to the March 2013 quarter, despite $90 million of lost revenue due to weather-related cancellations. Traffic increased 3.5 percent on a 1.7 percent increase in capacity.

Passenger revenue increased 5 percent, or $357 million, compared to the prior year period. Passenger unit revenue (PRASM) increased 3.2 percent year over year with a 1.3 percent improvement in yield.

Cargo revenue decreased 9 percent, or $21 million, driven by lower freight volumes and lower yields.
Other revenue increased 8 percent, or $80 million, driven by higher joint venture and SkyMiles revenues.”March quarter’s top line growth of 5 percent shows the strength of Delta’s revenue momentum even through the revenue loss from weather and a shift of the Easter holiday traffic into April,” said Ed Bastian, Delta’s president. “We see continued revenue strength as we move through the year from corporate revenue gains, the benefits of the Virgin Atlantic joint venture and improved ancillary revenues. These initiatives, coupled with a solid demand environment, should lead to unit revenue growth in the mid-single digits for the June quarter.”

Cost Performance

Total operating expense in the quarter increased $18 million year-over-year driven by the impact of employee investments including $79 million higher profit sharing expense. These cost increases were almost fully offset by lower fuel expense, savings from Delta’s structural cost initiatives, and receipt of a $25 million insurance claim related to Superstorm Sandy.

Consolidated unit cost excluding fuel expense, profit sharing and special items (CASM-Ex2), was 0.3 percent higher in the March 2014 quarter on a year-over-year basis, driven by the impact of employee investments and 1 point of pressure from weather-related cancellations. GAAP consolidated CASM decreased 1.4 percent.

Fuel expense, excluding mark-to-market adjustments, declined $167 million as a result of lower market fuel prices and better settled hedge performance. Delta’s average fuel price3 was $3.03 per gallon for the March quarter, which includes $107 million in settled hedge gains. On a GAAP basis, consolidated fuel expense for the March quarter decreased $109 million year-over-year, driven by lower market fuel prices and mark-to-market adjustments on fuel hedges.

Operations at the Trainer refinery produced a $41 million loss for the March quarter as a result of the same lower market fuel prices that lowered Delta’s overall fuel spend. During the quarter, one of the major crude units at the refinery was taken offline for scheduled modifications which lowered throughput levels. These modifications will yield a higher level of jet and diesel distillates going forward and improve the profitability of Trainer. In addition, refinery profitability was negatively impacted by an increase in Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) expense.

Non-operating expense for the quarter increased by $66 million, driven by a $31 million seasonal loss associated with Delta’s 49% ownership stake in Virgin Atlantic, an $18 million loss on extinguishment of debt driven by Delta’s debt reduction initiatives, and $39 million higher foreign exchange impact, including a $23 million loss associated with the devaluation of the Venezuelan currency. These losses were offset by $34 million lower interest expense.

“The March quarter marks another quarter with non-fuel unit cost growth below 2 percent, and the growing momentum of our domestic refleeting and other cost initiatives provide the platform to maintain this performance,” said Paul Jacobson, Delta’s chief financial officer. “We are addressing all parts of our cost base through executing our structural cost initiatives, lowering our fuel expense with the refinery and hedging, and reducing our interest burden with additional debt reduction.”

Cash Flow

Cash from operations during the March 2014 quarter was $951 million, driven by the company’s March quarter profit and the normal seasonal increase in advance ticket sales. Cash from operations is net of $605 million of contributions made by Delta to its defined benefit pension plans during the quarter. The company generated $390 million of free cash flow.

Capital expenditures during the March 2014 quarter were $570 million, including $514 million in fleet investments. During the quarter, Delta’s net debt maturities and capital leases were $353 million.

In the March quarter, the company returned $176 million to shareholders. On March 14, the company paid $51 million to shareholders, which represents a $0.06 per share quarterly dividend. In addition, the company repurchased four million shares at an average price of $30.94 for a total of $125 million. The company has completed $375 million of the $500 million share repurchase plan authorized by Delta’s Board of Directors in May 2013.

Delta ended the quarter with $5.6 billion of unrestricted liquidity and adjusted net debt of $9.1 billion. The company has now achieved nearly $8 billion in net debt reduction since 2009.

June 2014 Quarter Guidance

Following are Delta’s projections for the second (June) 2014 quarter:

2Q 2014 Forecast

Operating margin
14% – 16%

Fuel price, including taxes, settled hedges and refinery impact
$2.97 – $3.02

2Q 2014 Forecast

(compared to 2Q 2013)

Consolidated unit costs – excluding fuel expense and profit sharing
Up 0% – 2%

System capacity
Up 2% – 3%

Special Items
Delta recorded a net $68 million special items charge in the March 2014 quarter, including:

a $31 million charge associated with Delta’s domestic fleet restructuring;

a $21 million mark-to-market adjustment on fuel hedges; and

a $16 million charge for debt extinguishment and other.

Delta recorded a net $78 million special items charge in the March 2013 quarter, including:

a $102 million charge for facilities, fleet and other, primarily associated with Delta’s domestic fleet restructuring; and

a $24 million mark-to-market adjustment on fuel hedges.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-232 ER N862DA (msn 29734) departs from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Shandong Airlines plans to finalize an order for 50 Boeing 737 aircraft

Shandong Airlines (Jinan, Shandong Province, China) has announced its intention to order 50 Boeing 737 aircraft including 16 Next-Generation 737s and 34 737 MAXs for delivery between 2016 and 2020. The order has not yet been finalized.

Boeing issued this short statement:

Shandong Airlines’ commitment to order 50 Boeing 737s, including 16 Next-Generation 737s and 34 737 MAXs. The airline plans to expand its capacity to meet growing demand in China and Northeast Asia, one of the most dynamic markets for commercial airplanes.

Copyright Photo: Joe G. Walker/AirlinersGallery.com. Shandong is already a large Boeing 737 operator with three Boeing 737-300s (which are being retired), three 737-700s and 58 of the pictured 737-800. Boeing 737-85N B-5785 (msn 39113) in the special DEEJ taxies at Seattle’s Boeing Field (BFI).

Shandong Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Hawaiian Holdings reduces its first quarter net loss to $5.1 million

Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. (Honolulu), parent company of Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. (Honolulu), today reported its financial results for the first quarter of 2014.
Operating income grew to $10.0 million in the first quarter compared to an operating loss of $11.9 million in the prior year period.

GAAP net loss in the first quarter of $5.1 million or $(0.10) per diluted share compared to a loss of $17.1 million in the prior year period or $(0.33) per diluted share.

Adjusted net loss, reflecting economic fuel expense, in the first quarter of $0.9 million or $(0.02) per diluted share compared to $14.8 million in the prior year period or $(0.29) per diluted share.

Unrestricted cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments of $479 million compared to $438 million in the prior year period.

Liquidity and Capital Resources

As of March 31, 2014 the Company had:

Unrestricted cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments of $479 million.

Available borrowing capacity of $69.5 million under Hawaiian’s Revolving Credit Facility.

Outstanding debt and capital lease obligations of approximately $940 million consisting of the following:

$570 million outstanding under secured loan agreements to finance a portion of the purchase price for nine Airbus A330-200 aircraft.

$150 million outstanding under secured loan agreements to finance a portion of the purchase price for 15 Boeing 717-200 aircraft.

$108 million in capital lease obligations to finance the acquisition of an Airbus A330-200, two Boeing 717-200 aircraft and aircraft-related equipment.

$34 million outstanding under floating rate notes for two Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft (above).

$78 million of outstanding Convertible Senior Notes.

Copyright Photo: Jacques Guillem Collection/AirlinersGallery.com.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Delta completes the installation of full flat-bed seats for its entire international wide body fleet

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) has completed the installation of full flat-bed seats with direct-aisle access in BusinessElite across its entire international widebody fleet, making it the only U.S. carrier to offer full flat-bed seats and the convenience of direct-aisle access on all overseas flights.

The completed interior fleet modifications include all Delta Airbus A330-200/300, Boeing 767-300ER/400ER, 747-400 and 777-200ER/LR aircraft, which represents Delta’s largest interior fleet modification investment in more than a decade. With these modifications complete, Delta also is the only U.S. domestic carrier to offer personal, on-demand entertainment at every seat on all long-haul international flights.

The fleet modifications are Delta’s latest investment in improving the customer experience. Since 2010, Delta also has:

Launched international Wi-Fi service and completed the installation of Wi-Fi on all domestic, two-class mainline and regional jets, offering more than 400,000 customers per day access to the Internet above 10,000 feet on more than 870 aircraft.

Transformed the sleep experience in the air by offering Westin Heavenly In-Flight bedding for customers in the BusinessElite cabin.

Updated BusinessElite amenity kits with stylish cases from Tumi and skincare product brand Malin+Goetz.
Built a team of celebrity chefs and James Beard Award winners to offer customers great food and wine selections at 30,000 feet.

Introduced International Economy Sleep Kits and added new amenities for its Economy customers on transoceanic flights.

Beginning July 1, 2014, Delta also will operate three updated Boeing 757 aircraft with full flat-bed seats on the trans-continental route between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport. These will be the first 757 aircraft in service to feature Delta’s previously announced upgrades including full flat-bed seats in BusinessElite on trans-con flights between New York-JFK and Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle. All trans-con flights on these routes will feature full flat-bed seats by summer 2015.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Beginning July 1, 2014, Delta also will operate three updated Boeing 757 aircraft with full flat-bed seats on the trans-continental route between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport. Boeing 757-232 N699DL (msn 29970) departs the runway at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Cuba Travel Services announces Miami-Holquin charter flights

Cuba Travel Services is now offering nonstop flights from Miami to Holguin, Cuba. Cuba Travel Services arranges flights operated by American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) to popular destinations including Havana, Cienfuegos, Camaguey, Santa Clara and Santiago de Cuba.

Cuba Travel Services believes that expanding its network will provide its clients with a high quality of service at a more competitive price. The new flights to Holguin will utilize next generation Boeing 737-800 aircraft, which include both first and coach class configuration.

CTS Logo

Cuba Travel Services Inc. arranges weekly, nonstop public charter flights between the United States and Cuba and is licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) as an authorized Carrier Service Provider specializing in travel to Cuba. They offer full service travel arrangements to individuals, groups, families, educators, students, professionals and organizations, under Specific or General Licenses issued by the Office of Foreign Assets Control.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8BK WL N814SY (msn 30620) of Sun Country Airlines lands in Las Vegas.

Sun Country Airlines: AG Slide Show

Japan Airlines will launch JAL SKY NEXT on May 28 from Tokyo Haneda to Fukuoka

Japan Airlines (JAL) (Tokyo) will launch its first JAL SKY NEXT service between Tokyo (Haneda) and Fukuoka on May 28, 2014. A total of 77 aircraft are scheduled to be revamped sequentially and will be progressively introduced on domestic routes.

JAL SKY NEXT logo

JAL SKY NEXT will provide updated cabin interior with all-leather seats and LED lighting. Additionally, the in-flight internet service-JAL SKY Wi-Fi with new in-flight entertainment website will be introduced on domestic routes to deliver more comfortable travel experience and convenience to customers.

The first type with the new service standard will be the Boeing 777-200.

JAL SKY NEXT seats (JAL)

Top Copyright Photo (all others by JAL): Akira Uekawa/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-246 JA8984 (msn 27651) in the special “Sky Eco” livery departs from Tokyo’s Haneda Airport.

JAL-Japan Airlines: AG Slide Show

Global Air Jets starts weekly charter flights from West Palm Beach to Montego Bay, Jamaica

Global Air Jets (West Palm Beach) started weekly charter flights on Sundays from West Palm Beach to Montego Bay, Jamaica on April 20 using the AOC of Swift Air (2nd) (Phoenix). The public charter company is also planning charter flights to Kingston, Jamaica starting in June on Tuesdays.

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-4B7 N802TJ (msn 24874) of Swift Air is pictured on the ramp at San Francisco International Airport (SFO).

Swift Air: AG Slide Show

 

Global Air Jets logo

 

Japan Airlines and Korean Air to expand their codeshare agreement

JAL-Japan Airlines (Tokyo) and Korean Air (Seoul), both codeshare partners since 2004, have agreed to further expand their codeshare flights on all routes and flights operated by Korean Air between Japan and South Korea from April 22, 2014.

Flight Number

Route

Dep. Time (Local time)

Arr. Time (Local time)

Days of Operation

JL5253 / KE768

Aomori – Seoul (Incheon)

13:25

16:00

Wed. Fri. Sun.

JL5252 / KE767

Seoul (Incheon) – Aomori

10:10

12:30

Wed. Fri. Sun.

JL5255 / KE770

Akita – Seoul (Incheon)

13:50

16:20

Mon. Thu. Sat.

JL5254 / KE769

Seoul (Incheon)-Akita

10:30

12:45

Mon. Thu. Sat.

JL5257 / KE720

Haneda – Seoul (Incheon)

06:25

08:50

Daily

JL5256 / KE719

Seoul (Incheon) – Haneda

20:55

23:05

Daily

JAL-Korean Air codeshare route map

JL5259 / KE792

Oita – Seoul (Incheon)

15:45

17:20

Fri.

JL5259 / KE792

Oita – Seoul (Incheon)

18:55

20:30

Sun.

JL5258 / KE791

Seoul (Incheon) – Oita

13:10

14:45

Fri.

JL5258 / KE791

Seoul (Incheon) – Oita

16:20

17:55

Sun.

JL5261 / KE748

Okayama – Seoul (Incheon)

10:00

11:35

Daily

JL5260 / KE747

Seoul (Incheon) – Okayama

18:40

20:10

Daily

JL5265 / KE784

Fukuoka – Busan

11:05

12:00

Daily

JL5267 / KE798

Fukuoka – Busan

19:45

20:40

Daily

JL5264 / KE783

Busan – Fukuoka

09:15

10:05

Daily

JL5266 / KE797

Busan – Fukuoka

17:55

18:45

Daily

JL5263 / KE772 (*2)

Sapporo (Chitose) – Busan

12:35

15:15

Tue. Thu. Sat.

JL5262 / KE771 (*2)

Busan – Sapporo (Chitose)

09:15

11:35

Tue. Thu. Sat.

JL5269 / KE756

Nagoya – Jeju

11:55

13:50

Wed. Fri. Sun.

JL5268 / KE755

Jeju – Nagoya

15:00

16:45

Wed. Fri. Sun.

Note:
*1. All of the above flights are operated by KE.
*2. Sapporo = Busan route will start from April 26, 2014.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. JAL’s Boeing 737-846 JA312J (msn 35341) in the old 2002 livery arrives at Tokyo (Narita).

JAL-Japan Airlines: AG Slide Show

Korean Air: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-9B5 HL7706 (msn 29991) also arrives at Tokyo (Narita).

 

A 16-year boy survives a flight from San Jose to Honolulu in the wheel well!

A 16-year old boy somehow survived a 5 and a half hour flight from San Jose, California to Honolulu, Hawaii. The boy from Santa Clara, California hopped the fence at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport (SJC) and climbed into the wheel well of a Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) Boeing 767-300 departing for Honolulu. Running away from home according to ABC News, the boy somehow survived the long flight and the color temperatures. The airliner was flying over the Pacific Ocean at 38,000 feet. On arrival at HNL, he jumped down and started walking around the tarmac!

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-3CB ER N592HA (msn 33468) of Hawaiian Airlines taxies to the runway at Seattle/Tacoma.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

US Airways trims the frequencies on some new Charlotte European routes

US Airways (Phoenix) is trimming back on four new European routes from the Charlotte hub according to the Charlotte Observer. The new routes from CLT to Barcelona, Brussels, Lisbon and Manchester were announced in October as daily flights (CLICK HERE to read the original report). However due apparent weak demand, the new flights are now being trimmed back to only four days a week.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 757-2B7 N201UU (msn 27180) arrives back at the Charlotte hub yesterday (April 20).

US Airways: AG Slide Show

 

Cronus Airlines to add its first Boeing 737

Cronos Airlines (Malabo, Equatorial Guinea) plans to introduce later this month its first Boeing 737, operated by the Spanish ACMI specialist Calima de Aviación. Boeing 737-436 EC-LTC (msn 25439) is pictured departing from Palma de Mallorca with the new titles.

The airline, which started operations in 2010, currently operates two daily flights between Malabo and Bata in Equatorial Guinea, three weekly flights between Malabo and Douala and three weekly flights between Malabo and Cotonou as well as charter flights. It operates BAe 146s.

The carrier will soon open new regional routes to Port Harcourt and Abidjan.

Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com.

Cronus Airlines (Equatorial Guinea) logo

 

 

Current Route Map:

Cronus Airlines (Equatorial Guinea) 4.2014 Route Map

Missing Malaysia Airlines remains the biggest aviation mystery of our time, Bluefin-21 fails to find anything so far

 

Malaysia logo-1

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014 with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) remains missing with all of its 239 passengers and crew members. It remains the biggest aviation mystery of our age. The underwater drone called “Bluefin-21″ has failed to find any remains of the presumed to have crashed airliner.

Here is an update on missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 from CNN:

“The underwater drone scanning for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 finished its seventh mission Sunday (April 20), having covered about half its intended territory without finding any sign of the missing plane.

The Bluefin-21 drone started its eighth mission soon after the previous one ended Sunday morning, surveying the bottom of the southern Indian Ocean for traces of the Boeing 777.”

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Yesterday Hishammuddin Hussein, Minister of Defence and Acting Minister of Transport issued this briefing:

Introductory Statement

I would like to begin this with a message.

On behalf of the Malaysian Government and specifically the MH370 SAR team, we would like to extend deepest sympathies and condolences to those on board the tragic incident involving the South Korea ferry that departed from Incheon planned for Jeju. We empathies and can imagine how difficult it can be for the families and the SAR team coping with the situation. All our thoughts and prayers are with them.

I will now continue with MH370.

We have now entered day 43 of the search operation for the MH370. It has been six weeks since we started the operation in which we have continuously refined the search area in the quest to locate the missing aircraft. We have pursued every possible lead presented to us at this stage and with every passing day, the search has become more difficult.

Search Updates

On Thursday, I spoke with Angus Houston and he has briefed me on the images captured from the Bluefin – 21 AUV. I can confirm that the Bluefin – 21 has captured clear and sharp images of the seabed while its search mission in the underwater search area. However, from all 6 missions conducted, no contacts of interest have been found to date. Bluefin – 21 AUV’s seventh missing has been commenced this morning.

From the images, Angus has also confirmed me that the terrain of the seabed is undulating and the Bluefin – 21 is focusing on the immediate search area based on the pings that have been detected. Some media reports have stated that it would take Bluefin -21 anywhere from six weeks to two months to scan the entire underwater search area. This is incorrect. The immediate search area that the Bluefin – 21 is now scouring should be completed within the next week.

As Prime Minister Abbott stated earlier this week, and I quote –

“We will regroup and reconsider the SAR operations, if there are no new updates in the given time” – end quote.

I have to stress that this is not ti stip operations but to also consider other approaches which may include widening the scope of the search and utilizing other assets that could be relevant in the search operation.

The search will always continue. It is just a matter of approach. All efforts will intensified for the next few days with regards to the underwater search.

I would also like to take this opportunity, on behalf of the Malaysian government, to again thank Australia on narrowing the search area and doing all they can in the search for MH370.

Updates on Ministerial Committees

As I announced a few weeks ago, three ministerial committees have been established. They have been working tirelessly and I will now update you on their progress.

The next of kin committee, led by Hamzah Zainuddin, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, is working closely with various Governments especially the countries whose nationals were on board MH370. From the meetings with the representative embassies and high commissions, various issues that needed urgent attention were addressed.

Hamzah has also discussed with his counterparts in Beijing and both sides have exchanged views and discussed ways and means to deal with the situation with regards to the families of those on board.

The technical committee, led by Aziz Kaprawi, Deputy Minister of Transport, has developed and drafted the proposed structure and Terms of Reference of the Aircraft Accident Investigation Team For MH370 in accordance with the Malaysian Civil Aviation Regulations 1996 (MCAR 1996) and Annex 13 – Aircraft Accident and Incident Investigation, Chicago Convention.

The structure was developed after consulting the experts from the Air Accidents Investigation Brach, United Kingdom (AAIB), National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), United States, Australia Transportation Safety Board (ATSB) and Air Accident Investigation Department, China. The proposed team would comprise of local and international experts.

We have also spoken with the ASEAN secretariat on the possibility of appointing some of our counterparts to come on board. This is in accordance with the ASEAN Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation Relating to Aircraft Accident and Incident Investigation that was signed in 2008.

The Asset Deployment committee has identified private companies that have the capabilities for deep water salvage and recovery work, and other national assets that can be deployed to support this operation. Local companies such as DEFTECH and Boustead have been tasked to discuss with their international collaborative partners such as SAAB, DCNS (Direction des Constructions Navales) and other to identify the relevant assets and instruments required for the search operation.

I have also been in consultations with Jean Paul Troadec given his experience in handling Air France 447 in deploying private commercial assets to assist in their search operations.

Concluding Remarks

As we move on to the next phase of the search, I am humbled that more friends from other nations have been expressed their willingness to assist and support our efforts to locate MH370.

Thank you.

 

 

ANA’s last Boeing 747 (JA8961) arrives in Tupelo, Mississippi to be parted out

ANA’s (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) last Boeing, the pictured 747-481 (D) JA8961 (msn 25644), as planned, arrived at Tupelo, Mississippi to be parted out on Thursday (April 17). The Jumbo was met by the traditional water gun salute at Tupelo Regional Airport and thousands of onlookers around the airport.

10 previous ANA aircraft has been dismantled at Tupelo.

Read the full report from DJournal.com: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747-481 JA8961 (msn 25644) taxies at Tokyo (Haneda) before it departed for Mississippi.

ANA: AG Slide Show

Delta’s flight 1500 lands safely in Denver after a false bomb threat

Delta logo

Delta Air Lines‘ (Atlanta) flight DL 1500 from Detroit to Denver landed safely last night (April 18) after a flight attendant found a note in the rear galley threatening a bomb was on board. The Boeing 737-832 (N3750D, msn 32375) with 151 passengers and four crew members landed safely. There was no bomb on board.

Read the full report from ABC 7: CLICK HERE

Delta Air Lines (current): AG Slide Show

Air Canada becomes the first Canadian airline to offer Wi-Fi, delays start of Boeing 787 service

Air Canada Wi-Fi logo on A319 (Air Canada)(LR)

Air Canada (Montreal) became the first Canadian carrier to offer customers in-flight Wi-Fi connectivity. The carrier plans to begin rolling out connectivity across its North American fleet in May under an agreement with Gogo®. The agreement will also provide for future type-testing of Gogo satellite solutions for Wi-Fi on international flights.

Air Canada presently has two Wi-Fi-equipped Airbus A319 aircraft operating in Canada and the United States and, subject to a final agreement with Gogo, plans to begin outfitting its remaining Airbus A319, A320 and A321 and Embraer 190 fleet types, as well as its Air Canada Express CRJ705 and Embraer 175 aircraft, with Air-To-Ground Wi-Fi connectivity. The installations are to begin in May with the goal of equipping 29 aircraft in 2014 and a targeted completion date of December 2015 for the designated 130 narrow-body aircraft. The system offers peak connection speeds comparable to mobile broadband services available on the ground. Current regulations prohibit the use of cellular phones for voice communication. Pricing will be competitive with other in-flight Wi-Fi connectivity offerings.

Gogo has also provided Air Canada the opportunity to type-trial two satellite-based systems, using Gogo 2KU and Inmarsat GlobalXpress KA-band solutions. These tests are expected to be conducted in 2015. The results will help determine future connectivity options that can be considered as the technology continues to evolve.

In other news, Airline Route is reporting Air Canada has delayed the introduction of the new Boeing 787-8 due to delivery delays. The Toronto (Pearson)-Zurich route has been delayed from May 18 to May 25. The Toronto (Pearson)-Tel Aviv route will also be delayed from July 1 to July 15. The Toronto (Pearson)-Tokyo (Haneda) route remains unchanged for July 1. There will be a single domestic roundtrip on May 21 between Toronto (Pearson) and Montreal (Trudeau) to introduce the new type.

Copyright Photo: Air Canada.

Air Canada: AG Slide Show

Video: The Air Canada 787:

 

 

 

American Airlines to bank its flights again at Miami International Airport

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) is switching from a “rolling hub” to a more traditional “banking hub” at Miami International Airport (MIA) on August 19. With this change MIA will have 10 distinctive banks throughout the day. The change will help improve the revenue synergies for the company because it will allow for quicker and more competitive connections (each hub competes against other hubs for the quickest and easiest connections). The move will also increase the number of possible connections.

MIA has four runways so it can handle the inbound and outbound complexes.

Of course during afternoon thunderstorms in the summer months a banking hub will be more of a challenge as there is less room for any weather delays. If one complex is delayed on the ground by a thunderstorm, the following arriving complex will have to wait for that departing complex to depart.

 

American is doing the same thing at Chicago (O’Hare) (ORD) and Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) throughout 2015. American does not have any re-banking plans at Los Angeles (LAX) or New York (JFK) right now due “to a variety of factors including gate space and slot constraints.”

 

American explained this change to its employees:

American's MIA Hub (American)(LR)

American Banking Hub (American)(LR)

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-823 N816NN (msn 31081) arrives at Miami International Airport on a clear day.

American Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

Hawaiian and Air China sign a codeshare agreement

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has announced the signing of a codeshare agreement with Air China (Beijing), China’s exclusive national flag carrier, that leverages the reach of their respective hubs in Honolulu and Beijing to offer more options and a more streamlined experience for customers traveling to further destinations. The new partnership takes effect following Hawaiian’s launch of its three-times weekly nonstop service to Beijing on April 16.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-33A N591HA (msn 33423) approaches the runway at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Air China: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-39L ER B-2033 (msn 38673) arrives at the Beijing hub.

 

Emirates to ground aircraft and reduce flights to 41 destinations for the 80-day runway-work period

Emirates Airline (Dubai) will continue to serve all of its worldwide destinations during the 80-day period of runway upgrading works at Dubai International Airport (DXB) starting on May 1. However, it has had to reduce flights to over 40 destinations, and change timings on some of its flights.

These changes will not impact customers booked to fly between May and July, as the flight schedules have been planned and implemented months ahead of time. Customers or travel agents searching for flight options on Emirates will only see those flights that are available.

Emirates aircraft at Dubai International Airport.

“As the biggest operator at Dubai International accounting for about 50% of traffic, of course we have had to take the biggest hit in reducing flights. There will be an impact on our revenues to the tune of approximately AED 1 billion. However, we understand the need for this upgrading work to be done, and we support it wholeheartedly. It will add much-needed capacity to the airport, and having world-class infrastructure ultimately means a better experience for customers. So we have to take the long-term view and manage the short term pain,” he added.

Emirates will ground 20 aircraft in May, 22 in June, and 22 in July, as Dubai Airports launches a comprehensive runway upgrade project which will see both runways at Dubai International close alternatively for resurfacing and other enhancement works.

During this time, Emirates has plans for its own upgrading projects, taking advantage of its “grounded fleet” to perform engineering maintenance and onboard enhancements, ensuring its award-winning fleet operates at top form. These works include phased upgrades to its GCS (Global Communications Suite), an initiative that requires approximately 2,200 man hours of mechanical and avionic work per aircraft. The parked aircraft also provides operational flexibility for an ongoing fleet-wide inflight entertainment system and cabin maintenance improvement campaign. In addition, the Emirates Engineering team will carry out its first-ever landing gear change to a Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft, the start of a program which will eventually involve over 70 other Boeing 777s. The landing gear change work occurs once every 10 years in the aircraft’s lifespan.

All Emirates passenger flights will continue to operate from Dubai International Airport (DXB) during the runway upgrading period from  May 1 through July 20, while its freighter operations will move to Al Maktoum International at Dubai World Central (DWC) on May 1 as planned.

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-31H ER A6-EGT (msn 35600) touches down at Stockholm’s Arlanda International Airport (ARN).

Emirates: AG Slide Show

Pan American Airways to revive the Pan Am brand with Boeing 737-800s

Pan Am (4th) 737-800 WL (Pan Am)(LR)

Pan American Airways Global Holdings, Inc. (New York) is the parent holding company of six brands of the Pan American family.

The would-be paper airline wants to revive the Pan Am name and brand. If it does, it will be the fourth version using the venerable name.

On April 5 the company issued this statement:

Pan American Airways is pleased to announce that it has completed formal selection of aircraft for it’s planned launch early this summer to include the Boeing 737-800 models, with upgrades to the NexGen later as service needs develop.

In late March of 2014, Pan American entered into discussions with an undisclosed lessor that is well positioned to support Pan Am’s growth strategy within the southern tier markets, and have ratified formal agreements through an issued LOI early Friday, and will be supported with a signed Purchase Agreement once aircraft delivery is ready to proceed.

Senior executives close to these negotiations continue to monitor the formal delivery of these aircraft, as certain criterion need to be met in order to deliver the specified flying experience that the brand wishes to extend to its audience.

Pan American is committed to delivering a top flight level of service that was once enjoyed by many worldwide, and those expectations will be extended into the new 21st century business model, as we continue to proceed with our plans to launch early, to mid-summer of this year.

In other Pan American news, crew selections will begin early to mid-next week for both in-flight attendants, as well as needed Captains and First Officers, and will be formally addressed through the appropriate department heads from each section through upcoming published releases to be issued to the public. However, those that wish to apply formally online may do so by submitting their respective resume’s via our online source through hr@paaglobal.com.

According to the company, “Pan American strives to be the industry-leading provider of safe, clean, reliable and cost-efficient air service. Pan American Global aircraft will deploy under our network brands as well as our wholly owned subsidiaries of Blue Sky Airlines and P21 Air.”

Images: Pan American Airways.

Pan Am (4th) logo

FlySafair is cleared to commence passenger operations

 

Safair (Johannesburg) has issued this statement about its new low-fare FlySafair (Johannesburg) passenger subsidiary:

Microsoft Word – FlySafair announcement

Safair has announced the news that the Air Services Council (ASLC) has granted FlySafair a domestic air service licence for the operation of domestic scheduled flights. This is in addition to the international and domestic unscheduled licence that it held for almost 50 years, providing aviation services both domestically and internationally.

The airline was initially blocked from starting its operations after two competitors brought an urgent application to interdict the new low cost airline from starting its operations based on it not meeting the 75% domestic ownership requirements.

Since then FlySafair has restructured their shareholding, getting rid of the shareholding which caused the problems and at the same time concluding the largest employee share ownership scheme in the aviation industry, effectively giving its South African employees a 25.14% stake in the company.

Despite FlySafair not having been operational since October 2013, the airline retained the services of all the employees who were hired 10 months ago, by utilising them in Safair’s traditional business of providing backup services to local airlines and also in international charter operations.

FlySafair: AG Slide Show

Top Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-4Y0 ZS-JRD (msn 24917) taxies at the Johannesburg base.

FlySafair Cleared to Fly

 

 

Boeing delivers the 8,000th 737 to United Airlines

Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) yesterday (April 16) delivered the 8,000th 737 to come off the production line to United Airlines (Chicago) as N68821, marking another important milestone for the world’s best-selling airplane. The airplane, a Next-Generation 737-900 ER (Extended Range), features a special logo.

The 737 is the first commercial airplane in history to reach this delivery milestone. The program has a strong backlog with more than 3,700 airplanes on order, including 1,934 orders for the new 737 MAX.

United was the first airline to order and take delivery of the 737-200. Since 1965, United has taken delivery of more than 550 737s and operated nearly every model.

Copyright Photo: Joe G. Walker/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-924 ER N68821 (msn 43535) lands at Boeing Field in Seattle. N68821 has small “8000th 737″ gray titles by the main cabin door.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

Transavia France introduces seven new routes from Paris Orly as the fleet expands with Airbus A320s, introduces a new uniform

Transavia France (Transavia.com) (Paris-Orly) has introduced seven new routes per Anna Aero. Paris (Orly)-Tel Aviv was added on April 10 followed by new service to Athens, Faro, Istanbul and Malaga on April 12 along with Pisa and Prague on April 13.

The subsidiary of Air France-KLM now operates 12 Boeing 737-800s and will soon operate five Airbus A320s that are being transferred from Air France.

On April 1 Transavia unveiled its new cabin crew uniform. Previously Transavia issued this statement:

Transavia.com logo-1

Transavia.com is in the process of creating a new uniform for its cabin crew and sales & service staff. The design process is unique because the end product will be a result of co-creation. This means that the wearers themselves will contribute ideas for the design. Bas van Wayenburg, design consultant, will translate these ideas and suggestions into wearable uniform components. Through ‘crew sourcing’, the airline’s personnel in both the Netherlands and France will take a vote on the final design. By opting for this approach, transavia.com is not only demonstrating its commitment to its employees, but is also enhancing its visual appearance to its customers. The new uniform will be put into use in the summer of 2015.

“We are proud to be working together with our around 1,500 employees, the end users, on the creation of a new uniform in such a way. Our employees reflect our brand and are the customers’ first point contact. The uniform is an important element of our visual identity and must continue to be that. Therefore, after nearly 9 years, we are giving our uniform a facelift. It needs to be in keeping with the core values of our brand, including enthusiasm, commitment and sincerity, while at the same time expressing safety and responsibility,” explains Mattijs ten Brink, General Manager of transavia.com.

Incidentally, this is not the first time that transavia.com has involved end users in the development process of a product. Crowd sourcing was also applied for the Fanflight (2013) and Slogan (2011) campaigns.

Top Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-86J WL F-GZHI (msn 36120) taxies past the camera at Antalya, Turkey.

Transavia (France): AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Transavia.

Transavia FA Uniform

Routes from the Paris (Orly) base:

Transavia France ORY 4.2014 Route Map

 

The new Eastern picks the Boeing 737-800 as its first aircraft type, will Spirit Airlines beat it to Miami?

Eastern (2nd) 737-800 WL (Eastern)(LR)

Eastern Air Lines Group, Inc. (Miami), better known as the proposed “new Eastern”, has apparently selected the Boeing 737-800 as its first aircraft type. The new version of Eastern had previously looked at the Airbus A319 and later the A320.

On their website, the group has added a rendering of a Boeing 737-800 with Winglets in Eastern colors (above) with this photo caption:

This is the current artists rendering of an Eastern Boeing 737-800 in the Eastern livery. This aircraft, the “Spirit of Captain Eddie Rickenbacker” is expected to be delivered to Eastern in late Summer 2014.

Eastern logo (large)

As previously reported, in January 2014, the new Eastern filed an application with the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity.

When the first aircraft arrives, the new proposed airline will then go through the final Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Part 121 certification process leading to an Air Operators Certificate (AOC).

The new airline has proposed using Miami as its new hub.

Spirit logo

 

Spirit Airlines is reportedly in negotiations to bring some of its ultra low-fare operations to Miami. Spirit Airlines has looked at Miami briefly in the past but decided to keep all of its South Florida operations at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL).

Read the report from Brian Andrews of CBS Miami: CLICK HERE

Image: Eastern Air Lines Group, Inc.

Eastern Airlines (1st) Slide Show: AG Slide Show

Spirit Airlines Slide Show: AG Slide Show

Qatar Airways to fly the Boeing 787 to Bali, Indonesia

Qatar 787-8 A7-BCB (06)(Flt)(Qatar)(LRW)

Qatar Airways (Doha) today announced that from July 21, 2014, the airline will operate a new daily nonstop route from Doha to Bali.

The 10-hour routes from October will be operated with Qatar Airways’ Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. Initially the Bali route will be operated with an Airbus A330.

Flying direct to and from Bali, the Dreamliner will have a two-cabin configuration, comprising of 22 seats in Business Class and 232 Economy Class seats with a high standard of comfort on board, including individual 10.5 inch television screens on all Economy Cass seats and a full complimentary food and beverage service.

Over the next few months, the network will grow further with Larnaca, Cyprus (April 29), Al Hofuf, Saudi Arabia (May 15), Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport, Turkey (May 22, 2014), Edinburgh, Scotland (May 28, 2014), Miami (June 10, 2014), Tokyo Haneda (June 18, 2014) and Dallas/Fort Worth (July 1, 2014).

Daily nonstop Doha to/from Bali: (all times local)

QR 962 departs Doha (DOH) at 02:35; arrives Bali Denpesar (DPS) at 17:35
QR 963 departs Bali Denpesar (DPS) at 19:35; arrives Doha (DOH) at 23:59

Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways. Boeing 787-8 A7-BCB (msn 38320) soars beautifully.

Qatar Airways: AG Slide Show

Ethiopian Airlines to fly to Kano, Nigeria starting on May 24

Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa) has announced the commencement of four weekly flights to Kano, Nigeria, starting on May 24, 2014.

The flights to Kano will be Ethiopian fourth destination in Nigeria, in addition to Lagos, Abuja and Enugu.

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-860 ET-APF (msn 40961) approaches the runway at Dubai.

Ethiopian Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

 

Southern Air takes delivery of its first Boeing 737-400F freighter for DHL

Microsoft Word – 737 DHL Express Southern Air Press Release_FINAL

Southern Air (2nd) logo-1

Southern Air (2nd) (Cincinnati) has taken delivery of its first Boeing 737-400F freighter (737-4Q3, N493SA, msn 29487). The former JTA airliner was converted to a freighter by Commercial Jet. The freighter will be operated for DHL.

DHL is adding five Boeing 737-400 aircraft to expand its routes within the Americas as part of a multi-year service agreement with US cargo carrier Southern Air. The five aircraft will be placed into service from April through August.

Current planned routes include flights from Caracas (CCS), Venezuela, to Barbados (BGI) and Trinidad and Tobago (POS) in the Caribbean, as well as from Caracas to Bogota (BOG), Colombia, and Panama (PTY). In the United States, the new aircraft will add flights from the Cincinnati hub (CVG) to several cities along the Northeast and Midwest, including Philadelphia (PHL), Hartford (BDL) and St. Louis (STL).

Southern Air also operates four Boeing 777F freighters for DHL.

Southern Air: AG Slide Show

 

Southwest Airlines to distribute $228 million in profit sharing

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) has announced it will contribute approximately $228 million—the largest total dollar amount ever allocated—directly to Employees through its ProfitSharing Plan this year. The payment is an 88 percent increase over last year’s contribution of $121 million. Southwest was the first in the industry to offer a ProfitSharing Plan, and this is the Company’s 40th consecutive ProfitSharing payment. Through the ProfitSharing Plan, Southwest Employees currently own more than four percent of the Company’s outstanding shares.

Combined with ProfitSharing is the Company’s $269 million match and other amounts contributed to the Southwest and AirTran 401(k) plans. Southwest rewarded its Employees with a 2013 total retirement benefit of nearly $500 million. In addition to retirement contributions, Southwest Airlines also invested approximately $580 million in its Employees’ benefits during 2013, which included healthcare coverage, wellness programs, and other benefits. In total, that’s more than $1 billion dedicated to the wealth and wellbeing of Southwest Employees in 2013 alone, on top of base salaries.

Over four decades, Southwest ProfitSharing contributions have totaled $2.5 billion. In other words:

It’s enough money to buy 500 million mini bottles of founder Herb Kelleher’s drink of choice, Wild Turkey, which would fill 10 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
Or, $2.5 billion would buy 83 billion bags of Southwest peanuts—enough for 10 roundtrips to the moon if you lined them up end-to-end.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-7H4 N481WN (msn 29853) prepares to touch down in Las Vegas.

Southwest Airlines: AG Slide Show

Aer Lingus launches its inaugural flight to Toronto and its first Boeing 757 from Dublin

Aer Lingus (Dublin) yesterday (April 14) recorded two firsts; the launch of its inaugural flight from Dublin to Toronto (Pearson) and the first operation from Dublin of the Boeing 757-200 aircraft recently added to its trans-Atlantic fleet.

The new service will operate year-round with a daily service between Dublin and Toronto during the summer season and up to four weekly services operating during the winter. This is the fourth trans-Atlantic route launch in recent months and forms part of Aer Lingus’ significant trans-Atlantic growth plan in 2014.

The 2014 growth plan includes;

· New routes from Dublin to Toronto and San Francisco
· The addition of three Boeing 757-200 aircraft to the long haul fleet
· Almost doubling of frequency on services from Shannon to Boston and New York
· The creation of more than 200 new jobs

Aer Lingus customers travelling from over twenty UK and European cities via Dublin to Toronto will also have the option to connect to eight key cities within Canada including Vancouver, Montreal and Calgary.

To support the operation of the new routes from Dublin to Toronto and from Shannon to New York and Boston, Aer Lingus has wet leased three Boeing 757-200 aircraft from ASL Aviation Group. The aircraft are configured with an economy and business class cabin. Business travellers will continue to enjoy the same great level of service; with gourmet meals, sleeper seats and an extensive in-flight entertainment selection.

The ASL Aviation Group, based in Ireland, is a well-established global aviation group providing an unrivalled array of aviation services. The group of aviation companies includes Irish airline Air Contractors and French based airline Europe Airpost as well as two support service companies – ACLAS Global and Air Contractors Engineering; and various leasing entities. The Group’s operations are worldwide with the airlines operating a mixed fleet of wide body, short haul and turboprop passenger and cargo aircraft under their own brands and for a number of leading airlines. ASL Aviation Group has a staff of 1,200, a fleet of ±80 aircraft. ASL is a joint venture between CMB (51%) and 3P Air Freighters (49%).

Copyright Photo: Michael Kelly/AirlinersGallery.com. Formerly operated by Finnair as OH-LBT, Boeing 757-2Q8 EI-LBT (msn 28170), operated by Aero Contractors for Aer Lingus, departs from Dublin on its inaugural flight to Toronto on April 14, 2014.

Aer Lingus: AG Slide Show

The search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 switches to Bluefin 21

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370, remains missing. The search for MH 370 has been long and frustrating to everyone involved. The fate of Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) (above) and the 239 souls on board remains a true aviation mystery. It may remain the greatest mystery of our lifetimes.

A new oil slick has been discovered near where the four series of pings were located west of Australia in the Ocean Ocean. There has been no sign of any wreckage from 9M-MRO.

According to CNN, the search for MH 370 enters a new phase with the underwater vehicle Bluefin 21 taking center stage.

However Bluefin 21 faces plenty of challenges in finding the missing Triple Seven. This article explains how the side-scan sonar works on Bluefin 21.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO lands at the Kuala Lumpur base in the past.

Malaysia Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Delta paints a Boeing 757 in the 1966 livery for its upcoming 85th Anniversary

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) has just repainted its Boeing 757-232 registered N608DA (msn 22815) in Atlanta in the “Upright Widget” livery. This color scheme (above) was introduced in 1966 for the fleet and was the longest-running livery for the carrier until the “red dash” color scheme was introduced in 1997.

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Sister ship Boeing 757-232 N619DL (msn 22909) taxies at Dallas/Fort Worth when it actually wore the 1966 color scheme (slightly altered in 1976). This is the first livery worn by Delta’s Boeing 757-200s.

Delta Air Lines (current livery): AG Slide Show

Delta Air Lines (historic and all other liveries): AG Slide Show

Delta’s Route Map in 1966 (it was barely an international airline):

Delta 1966 Route Map

Delta’s current fleet line-up and number of aircraft in service (Delta Air Lines):

Delta Fleet Part 1

Delta Fleet Part 2

Spring Airlines Japan to launch operations on June 27

Spring Airlines Japan (Tokyo-Narita) has announced it will commence scheduled passenger operations on June 27. The new airline was established in October 2012. The airline is 33 percent owned by Spring Airlines, a Chinese low-cost carrier, with the remainder held by various Japanese investors.

The first routes will be to Hiroshima, Saga and Takamatsu with three Boeing 737-800s per ZipanguFlyer.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-86N JA03GR (msn 41272) passed through Honolulu on delivery.

Spring Japan logo

 

Alitalia launches Venice-Tokyo service, cancels its order for 12 Airbus A350-800s

Alitalia (2nd) (Rome) on April 3 launched nonstop service between Venice and Tokyo (narita). The new route will operate two days a week: AZ 788 will depart on Thursdays and Saturdays at 1.30 PM and will land in Tokyo at 9.40 AM (local time) the following morning. From Tokyo Narita, AZ 789 will depart every Wednesday and Friday at 12.25 PM (local time) and will arrive in Venice at 8.20 PM.

Alitalia has a total of 19 weekly frequencies to Japan: 14 frequencies a week, of which 7 are from Rome Fiumicino, 5 from Milan Malpensa and 2 from Venice, which connect these three Italian airports with Tokyo Narita; 5 flrequencies a week connect Rome Fiumicino with Osaka.

Venice has become the third Italian city, after Rome and Milan, to host intercontinental flights operated by Alitalia and, above all, for the first time, Alitalia offers the citizens of Venice and the Veneto region a direct service to the Far East.

The service between Venice and Tokyo will be operated by one of Alitalia’s Boeing 777-200 ER aircraft, the flagship of its long-haul fleet, which can accommodate 293 passengers on board divided into three classes of travel: Magnifica business class (30 seats), Classic Plus premium economy class (24 seats) and Classica economy class (239 seats).

In other news, Alitalia has canceled its order for 12 Airbus A350-800s and 12 options. The order was originally placed in June 2008 by Air One.

Copyright Photo: Reinhard Zinabold/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-243 ER I-DISO (msn 32857) taxies at Toronto (Pearson).

Alitalia (2nd): AG Slide Show

Will Air France-KLM ditch their freighter fleet?

Air France (Paris) and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) may leave the dedicated air freighter business after five decades according to Bloomberg Businessweek. The freighter division has been beset by losses in cargo that rose to nearly $300 million last year according to the report.

The airline’s board is weighing options and plans to decide on a strategy by September, according to a report in Bloomberg News.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Marcelo F. De Biasi/AirlinersGallery.com. Air France is phasing out its Boeing 747-400  ER freighter fleet with the last to be retired next year. Boeing 747-428 ERF F-GIUA (msn 32866) arrives in Sao Paulo (Guarulhos).

Air France: AG Slide Show

Gol receives permission to operate flights from Campinas to Miami via Santo Domingo

Gol Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes S.A. (Gol Transportes Aereos) (Sao Paulo) has received authorization from the National Civil Aviation Agency (ANAC) and other pertinent authorities to operate regular flights between Campinas (SP-Brazil) and Rio de Janeiro (Santos Dumont airport). Additionally, Gol announces it has received the approval to start flights from Campinas to Miami. The flight will have a connection in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, where the passenger has also the option to fly to Orlando. Operations will begin on July 18, 2014.

Campinas (SP) – Rio de Janeiro, Santos Dumont Airport (RJ)

There will be 12 flights per day between Campinas (SP-Brazil) and Rio de Janeiro (Santos Dumont Airport).

Campinas (SP) – Miami

The new flights between Campinas (SP-Brazil) and Miami via Santo Domingo, with the option to fly also to Orlando, will take place, initially, three times per week, on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

In other news, Gol has announced that it has signed a contract to implement a codeshare and frequent flyer program agreement with TAP Portugal (Lisbon). The agreement will be submitted for the authorization of Portugal and Brazil’s governments, and is still pending the approval of Brazil’s National Civil Aviation Agency (ANAC) and Antitrust Authority (CADE).

Initially, the agreement will allow TAP Portugal, with more than 74 weekly flights from Portugal to Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Campinas, Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Porto Alegre, Salvador, Natal, Fortaleza and Recife, to include its codes on Gol’s flights, enabling connections to other Brazilian destinations.

Copyright Photo: Rodrigo Cozzato/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8EH PR-GTE (msn 34278) climbs gracefully Sao Paulo (Guarulhos).

Gol: AG Slide Show

First Air and Canadian North to discuss a merger of equals

Makivik Corporation and NorTerra Inc., respectively the shareholders of First Air (Ottawa) and Canadian North (Yellowknife), have agreed to hold discussions leading to the merger of their operations consistent with a merger of equals, subject to the successful conclusion of negotiations and regulatory review.

The potential merger is intended to create a single airline entity that builds on the strengths and identities of the two companies. A merger would improve the sustainability of these critical Inuit birthright enterprises and would also create better air services and new economic development opportunities across the north.

Flight operations and services will remain independent and unaffected during the negotiation and regulatory review phases.

Makivik Corporation and NorTerra Inc. will inform the public as discussions progress.

Top Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Formerly operated by KLM, Boeing 737-406 C-FFNC (msn 27232) of First Air taxies at Hamilton, Ontario.

First Air: AG Slide Show

Canadian North: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Gilbert Hechema/AirlinersGallery.com. First Air’s Boeing 737-25A C-GCNO (msn 23790) climbs away from the runway at Montreal (Trudeau).

First Air current route map:

First Air 4.2014 Route Map

Canadian North current route map:

Canadian North 4.2014 Route Map

Jet Airways Boeing 777-300 operates over Germany for 30 minutes without ATC radio contact

Jet Airways‘ (Mumbai) flight 9W 117 from London (Heathrow) to Mumbai flew over the busy German airspace  without radio contact on March 13, five days after Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 disappeared. Boeing 777-35R VT-JEG (msn 35163) was flown for 30 minutes without positive radio contact from the cockpit crew.

Both pilots, who failed to notice they had lost air traffic control radio contact, were suspended by the company.

Read the full report from the Economic Times: CLICK HERE

Previously the airline on February 12, 2014 had inaugurated flights from the new international integrated terminal T2 at Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport on this route to London Heathrow.

Jet Airways’ flight 9W 118 from Mumbai to London Heathrow became the first international flight to take off at 1320 from India’s most new, modern and spacious Terminal 2.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Sister ship Boeing 777-35R ER N834BA became VT-JEL (msn 36563) on delivery.

Jet Airways: AG Slide Show

 

Cathay Pacific to return to Manchester

Cathay Pacific Airways (Hong Kong) today (April 10) announced that it will launch a four-times-weekly service to Manchester on December 8, 2014 (subject to government approval).

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

Flights will depart from Hong Kong to Manchester every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Departures from Manchester are also on these days.

Copyright Photo: Stephen Tornblom/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-367 ER B-KPS (msn 39232) climbs away from Los Angeles International Airport.

Cathay Pacific: AG Slide Show

American Airlines and US Airways issue their fleet plans

American Airlines Group (American Airlines and US Airways) (Dallas/Fort Worth) has issued its new fleet update (see below) for 2014. Overall the fleet will grow by only three aircraft this year. The Group will take delivery of 83 new mainline aircraft during 2014, namely 10 Airbus A319s, 42 A321s, three A330-200s, 20 Boeing 737-800s, two 787-8s and six 777-300s (more Airbus aircraft than Boeing aircraft). The Group expects to retire during 2014 26 McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82/83s (MD-80s), 14 Boeing 737-400s, 22 757-200s, 13 767-200s and five Airbus A320s.

The last eight Boeing 737-400s being operated by US Airways (top) are expected to be retired before the end of the third quarter (September 30).

On the regional side, the Group is significantly reducing its Embraer ERJ 140 fleet but it will also operate a large amount of inefficient 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200s (138) and Embraer ERJ 145s (118).

Here is the full report:

American Fleet Update 4.2014 (AAG)

In addition, according to Airline Route, American Airlines and US Airways will begin assigning certain routes to either American or US Airways:

Effective June 1: American Airlines routes to be operated entirely by US Airways:

Charlotte – Chicago (O’Hare)
Charlotte – Miami
Los Angeles – Phoenix

Effective July 2, the following American routes will be operated by US Airways:

Miami – Detroit
Miami – New Orleans
Miami – Raleigh
Miami – Tampa

Effective July 2, the following US Airways routes will be operated by American:

Phoenix – Detroit
Phoenix – Newark
Phoenix – Orange County
Phoenix – Seattle

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. A significant milestone is approaching quickly. US Airways has had a long association with the Boeing 737 and the last 737-400 is expected to be retired before the end of September according to this fleet update. Boeing 737-4B7 N433US (msn 24555) taxies to the runway at Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT).

US Airways: AG Slide Show

American Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

American Airlines (historic): AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. American is quickly replacing the older Boeing 767-200 ERs currently being operated between New York (JFK) and Los Angeles with newer Airbus A321s. The last AA 767-200 is expected to be retired on May 7 according to ch-aviation although the type will continue with US Airways into 2015. American Airlines’ Boeing 767-223 ER N335AA (msn 22333) departs from Los Angeles bound for New York (JFK).

 

Alaska Airlines’ IAM employees ratify a new 5-year contract

Alaska Airlines‘ (Seattle/Tacoma) 2,500 clerical, office and passenger service employees, who are represented by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), have ratified a new five-year contract. The contract was approved by 62 percent of those who voted.

The contract includes pay raises and job security provisions, among other improvements.

The previous three-year contract became amendable on January 1, 2014 and a tentative agreement was reached on February 3, 2014. Contracts in the airline industry do not expire. Once they become amendable, the current contract remains in effect until a new agreement is ratified.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-4Q8 N754AS (msn 25095) arrives at Anchorage International Airport (ANC).

Alaska Airlines: AG Slide Show

Southwest starts operating its first Boeing 737-800 with Split Scimitar Winglets

Southwest 737-800 SSWL N8624J (Winglets-1)(Southwest)(LR)

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) yesterday (April 9) operated its first revenue flight utilizing a Boeing 737-800 equipped with Aviation Partner’s Boeing Split Scimitar Winglets. The newly designed winglet differs than those currently installed on the carrier’s fleet of Boeing 737s, with aerodynamic scimitar tips and a large ventral strake on the bottom of the blended winglet structure. By upgrading the 737-800s with Split Scimitar Winglets, annual fuel savings are estimated to increase from approximately 3.5 percent per aircraft from Blended Winglets to approximately 5 to 5.5 percent per aircraft annually. In addition, the new winglet will reduce emissions, supporting Southwest’s commitment to the environment.

Southwest Airlines takes delivery of its first 737-800 with Spli

The Split Scimitar Winglets will be installed on 33 new 737-800s once they are delivered to the airline this year. The airline also plans to retrofit 52 additional 737-800s currently in the fleet. The retrofits are expected to be completed by early 2015. All of the carrier’s Boeing 737-700s and 737-800s, as well as a majority of its 737-300s, are equipped with Blended Winglets saving the company roughly 55 million gallons of fuel annually. Blended Winglets were first installed on Southwest Airlines Boeing 737s in 2007.

Copyright Photos: Southwest Airlines. Brand new Boeing 737-8H4 N8624J (msn 37004) was delivered to the company on March 26, 2014.

Southwest Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Air Canada and Gogo to roll out Wi-Fi in May in the North American fleet

Air Canada (Montreal) and Gogo announced today that it plans on rolling out Wi-Fi on Air Canada’s entire North American fleet in May. The agreement also provides for future type-testing of Gogo satellite solutions for Wi-Fi on international flights. The international trials will take place in 2015.

Air Canada presently has two Wi-Fi-equipped Airbus A319 aircraft that are now operating in Canada and the U.S. and, subject to a final agreement with Gogo, the carrier plans to begin outfitting its remaining Airbus A319, A320 and A321 narrow-body and Embraer 190 fleet types, as well as its Air Canada Express CRJ705 and Embraer 175 aircraft, with Gogo’s Air-To-Ground (ATG) and next generation ATG-4 technologies. The installations are to begin in May, with the goal of equipping 29 aircraft in 2014 and a targeted completion date of December 2015 for the designated 130 narrow-body aircraft. The 2Ku and Global Xpress satellite trials are expected to take place on select international aircraft in 2015.

Copyright Photo: Bernie Leighton/AirlinersGallery.com. Air Canada’s Boeing 777-333 ER C-FIUL (msn 35255) climbs away from the runway at a cold Edmonton (International). It mainly serves the international markets.

Air Canada: AG Slide Show

 

United’s first Boeing 787-9 rolls out of the Everett final assembly building

United 787-9 Factory Rollout - April 8, 2014

United Airlines‘ (Chicago) first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner rolled out of final assembly Tuesday evening (April 8) at Boeing’s Everett, Washington, facility. The rollout marks the first major milestone in the aircraft’s production ahead of its expected delivery this summer. The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner is the second and newest member of the fuel-efficient 787 family. With the fuselage stretched 20 feet longer than the 787-8, United’s 787-9 will fly more than 30 additional passengers and up to 300 nautical miles farther with the same exceptional environmental performance, including up to 20 percent less fuel burn per seat and up to 20 percent fewer emissions than similarly sized aircraft. The airline is the North American launch customer for the aircraft.

Earlier this year, United announced that it will fly the 787-9 on nonstop service between its hub at Los Angeles International Airport and Melbourne, Australia, beginning in October. The airline will fly the route six times weekly with the aircraft. United will be the first North American carrier to take delivery of the 787-9, and this will be the airline’s first international deployment of the aircraft type.

Over the next several months, the aircraft will move to the next phase of completion, which includes final cabin configuration and painting. United’s 787-9 will be configured with 252 seats – 48 in United BusinessFirst and 204 in United Economy, including 88 Economy Plus seats with added legroom and increased personal space. United’s first 787-9 will also be one of five aircraft used by Boeing in a flight test program to certify the aircraft.

Copyright Photo: United Airlines.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

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