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Tag Archives: Boeing

You can have the 1970s “Pan Am Experience” at Air Hollywood

Air Hollywood Pan Am Experience photo

Air Hollywood, the studio in Hollywood where many movies involving airliners are filmed, is now offering the “Pan Am Experience” to help “passengers” relive the golden age of air travel  on the original Pan Am of the 1970s. Prices range from $297 for the First Class experience and $197 for Clipper Class. The “experience” never leaves the ground, it occurs inside the mock Boeing 747 cabin that is used for making movies. Air Hollywood describes the experience:

Air Hollywood logo

From its birth in 1927, Pan American Airways was the pioneer airline whose routes spanned 6 continents and more than 80 countries. Almost a century later, the name Pan Am is still a very powerful brand, and inside this Southern California motion picture studio sits an exact replica of the airline’s Boeing 747 and everything that made it so special.

Your Pan Am experience starts on the main deck with a cocktail and beverage service in the First Class cabin. Each stewardess that greets you will be adorned in her original 1970’s Pan Am uniform. Our Pan Am crew will offer various video & audio selections while you sit back in your Pan Am Sleeperette seat and sip a cocktail.

Soon after, you’ll climb the winding staircase where the crew will set your table for a truly memorable dining event. In classic Pan Am style, you’ll be offered your favorite cocktail and served a delightful gourmet meal. Everything from the china to the glassware is authentic with careful attention to the exquisite service delivery of the era and menu offerings of Pan Am.

After dinner, you will have an opportunity to view the vast collection of airline memorabilia and view other film production sets.

For the first time since Pan Am ceased operations, you can now relive the magic of this golden era in travel. We cordially invite you to personally experience this unique “flying” opportunity in the tradition of Pan Am.

Air Hollywood Pan Am Experience cabin

Prices:

Air Hollywood Pan Am Experience Prices

All photos above by Air Hollywood.

For more information: CLICK HERE

Pan Am (1st) Slide Show: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747-121 N751PA (msn 19655) “Clipper Midnight Sun” displays the classic 1976 livery of the first and original Pan Am.

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Delta to suspend the Seattle/Tacoma-Tokyo Haneda route for the winter

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) will suspend for the winter season the Seattle/Tacoma-Tokyo (Haneda) route on October 1 per Airline Route. The route will be restored on March 29, 2015.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-332 ER N185DN (msn 27961) climbs away from London Heathrow Airport.

Delta Air Lines (current): AG Slide Show

 

Ethiopian Airlines orders 20 Boeing 737 MAX 8s

Ethiopian 737 MAX 8 (03)(Flt)(Boeing)(LRW)

Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa) and Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) have announced an order for 20 737 MAX 8s. The order, previously unidentified on the Boeing Orders and Deliveries website, is worth more than $2.1 billion at list prices and also includes options and purchase rights for a further 15 737 MAX 8s. The order represents the largest single Boeing order by number of airplanes from an African carrier.

The 737 MAX incorporates the latest technology CFM International LEAP-1B engines, Advanced Technology winglets and other improvements to deliver the highest efficiency, reliability and passenger comfort in the single-aisle market. The 737 MAX will be 14 percent more fuel-efficient than today’s most efficient Next-Generation 737s – and 20 percent better than the original Next-Generation 737s when they first entered service. The 737 MAX has a total of 2,294 orders from 47 customers worldwide.

Ethiopian currently serves more than 83 destinations across five continents from its base at Bole International Airport in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa. The Ethiopian flag carrier’s partnership with Boeing has existed for more than half a century, with a current fleet of more than 50 Boeing airplanes that includes Next-Generation 737s, 757s, 767s, 777s, 787 Dreamliners and a cargo fleet of 757s, 777 Freighters and MD-11s.

Image: Boeing.

Ethiopian Airlines: AG Slide Show

American Airlines and the Association of Professsional Flight Attendants reach a tentative agreement on a new contract

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) have reached a tentative agreement on a new joint collective bargaining agreement covering more than 24,000 flight attendants.

“We are building an airline that will compete aggressively in a global marketplace. Today’s tentative agreement with our flight attendants is another step forward in our integration,” said Doug Parker, chairman and CEO of American Airlines. “We thank the APFA and the union negotiation team for their leadership and professionalism in representing their 24,000 members. Jim Mackenzie of the National Mediation Board also played a key role and we are grateful for his leadership.”

APFA will be communicating details of the tentative agreement directly to their membership, which will then go to the combined flight attendant membership for a ratification vote.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-223 ER N753AN (msn 30261) climbs gracefully away from London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR).

American Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

EgyptAir to end Manchester service on October 25

EgyptAir (Cairo) will end Cairo-Manchester service on October 25 per Airline Route. The route is operated five days a week.

The route, served by Boeing 737-800s, started on June 1, 2013.

Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-866 SU-GDD (msn 35566) prepares to touch down in Brussels.

EgyptAir: AG Slide Show

AeroLogic adds a new route to Hong Kong

AeroLogic (Leipzig/Halle) on October 26 will add a new weekly cargo route from Frankfurt to Hong Kong via Ashgabat. The return flight will operate nonstop per Airline Route.

The company was established as a joint venture by Deutsche Lufthansa AG and Deutsche Post Beteiligungen Holding AG. The respective companies of the shareholders entrusted Lufthansa Cargo and DHL Express with the operational responsibility.

AeroLogic has its own Air Operator Certificate (AOC), its own traffic rights, and is responsible for all airline operations including aircraft, pilots and network.

The route network includes more than 20 destinations in Europe, in the Middle East, in Asia and North America. During the week, AeroLogic mainly flies to Asia within the express network of DHL Express, and on the weekend to the USA within the network of Lufthansa Cargo respectively.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FZN D-AALC (msn 36003) taxies at Paine Field in Everett.

AeroLogic: AG Slide Show

Video:

Jin Air to introduce the Boeing 777 on the Guam route on December 22

Jin Air logo (large)

Jin Air (Seoul) is planning to introduce the Boeing 777-200 ER on the daily Seoul (Incheon)-Guam route on December 12 per Airline Route. It is unclear if Jin Air will be the operator or will sub out the flying.

Jin Air: AG Slide Show

Current Route Map:

Jin Air 9.2014 Route Map

IranAir to retire its last Boeing 747SP on November 23

IranAir (Tehran) is the last passenger airline operator of the Boeing 747SP in the world. The flag carrier will offer a final farewell flight over Tehran on November 23. The Jumbo is currently operating between Tehran (Imam Khomeini International Airport) and Kuala Lumpur.

45 Boeing 747SPs (Special Performance) were built between 1974 and 1989 by Boeing. The “Stubby Jumbo” specialized in long, usually thin, routes in the early years.

In other news, IranAir will resume weekly Tehran-Moscow (Sheremetyevo) service on September 23 with Airbus A320s per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747SP-86 EP-IAC (msn 21093) will operate the last flight. EP-IAC is pictured in the original 1962 markings arriving at Paris (Orly). EP-IAC was delivered new to IranAir on May 27, 1977.

Boeing 747SP Slide Show: AG Slide Show

IranAir: AG Slide Show

Air China to increase the Beijing-London Heathrow route to double daily

Air China (Beijing), to meet market demand, starting October 26, 2014, will increase its Beijing – London (Heathrow International Airport) service to two daily flights.

The newly added flights are flights CA855/6. The outbound flight departs from Beijing at 14:30 and arrives in London at 17:50 local time. The inbound flight departs from London at 20:25 local time and arrives in Beijing at 14:45 Beijing time. The original daily flights CA937/8 are operated as normal – the outbound flight leaves Beijing at 12:30, and the inbound flight departs from London at 17:40.

After the schedule expansion, the Beijing – London (Heathrow) service as a whole is operated with Airbus A330-200 aircraft. Its Business Class is configured with 180-degree full-flat seats whose ergonomic design can fully meet the needs of premium business travelers looking to have a fortifying rest during the flight. All classes of service are outfitted with personal entertainment system (AVOD) and power sockets, keeping passengers entertained for the duration of the flight. In addition, on its China-Europe routes, Air China also offers such services as seasonal healthy meals and chauffeured transfers for VIP passengers.

As a member carrier of the Star Alliance, the world’s largest airline network, Air China has been actively expanding its European route network. Currently, Europe has become Air China’s largest overseas market, and Air China now operates over 100 flights between China and Europe a week, enabling passengers to travel from Beijing nonstop to 20 European cities such as London, Paris, Frankfurt, Rome, Moscow and Madrid. At the same time, relying on the extensive route network of the Star Alliance, Air China can easily fly passengers to 1,328 destinations in 195 countries.

Copyright Photo: Royal S. King/AirlinersGallery.com. Brand new Boeing 777-39L ER B-2006 (msn 44931) is decorated in a special “Love China” motif and is pictured after its first flight on September 16, 2014. B-2006 is the last of an initial order of 30 stretched Triple Sevens.

Air China: AG Slide Show

QANTAS Airways to operate the last Boeing 767 revenue flight on December 27

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) will retire its last Boeing 767 on December 27 per Airline Route and confirmed by the airline. The last flight, flight QH 490, will operate from Melbourne to Sydney. The company retired the type from international service on September 14 when it was replaced on the Honolulu route. The Boeing 767-300 currently only operates on domestic routes.

QANTAS introduced the smaller Boeing 767-200 in 1985. The first 767-238 ER (VH-EAJ) was delivered on July 3, 1985.

The first Boeing 767-338 ER (VH-OGA) was handed over to the company on August 30, 1988.

Copyright Photo: Micheil Keegan/AirlinersGallery.com. Several of the 767s were used for promotional reasons. Boeing 767-338 ER VH-OGG (msn 24929) in 2013 promoted the Disney’s Plane movie. VH-OGG arrives at the Sydney hub.

QANTAS Airways: AG Slide Show
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British Airways to resume flights to Kuala Lumpur on May 27, 2015

British Airways (London) will restore service to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia starting on May 27, 2015 from London (Heathrow). The daily route will be operated with Boeing 777-200 ER aircraft per Airline Route. The weakness of Malaysia Airlines flights probably led to the decision to restore the route.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-236 ER G-YMMA (msn 30302) gracefully climbs away from London (Heathrow Airport).

British Airways: AG Slide Show
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Alaska Airlines today starts nonstop Seattle/Tacoma-Albuquerque flights

Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) today (September 18) started daily nonstop service between Seattle/Tacoma and Albuquerque, the multi-cultural metropolis of New Mexico.

Upcoming, the carrier will start nonstop Seattle/Tacoma-Cancun flights on November 6.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-890 N583AS (msn 35681) with the new Aviation Partners Boeing Split Scimitar Winglets departs from Washington’ Reagan National Airport (DCA).

Alaska Airlines: AG Slide Show

Aloha Air Cargo to acquire a Boeing 767-300F and launch cargo flights to Los Angeles

Aloha Air Cargo logo copy

Aloha Air Cargo (Honolulu) is breaking out of the inter-Hawaii market. The company has announced it will acquire a Boeing 767-300F freighter and launch services to Los Angeles on October 23. The airline issued this statement:

Aloha Air Cargo is expanding their air cargo service with the addition of a direct, wide-body Boeing 767-300F aircraft from Los Angeles (LAX) to Honolulu (HNL). The new, five-times weekly roundtrip flight is scheduled to begin service October 23, 2014 adding needed capacity into and out of Los Angeles, CA. The new air cargo service will be geared toward freight forwarders, consolidators, passenger carrier partners, and businesses looking to sync up with Aloha’s existing interisland network, for seamless movement of through cargo shipments to the Neighboring Hawaiian Islands.

Aloha Air Cargo will be operating a Boeing 767-300F, with a maximum payload of 125,000 pounds, from Los Angeles International Airport on a Tuesday through Saturday rotation, departing at 2 am (0200) PST, and arriving into Honolulu International Airport at approximately 5 am HST (0500). Return flights will operate Monday through Friday, departing Honolulu at 2:30 pm HST (1430) and arriving into Los Angeles at approximately 10:45 pm PST (2245).

The flight will significantly increase Aloha’s domestic capacity between North America and the Pacific region, and improve service reliability and frequency for onward shipments into Kailua-Kona (KOA), Kahului (OGG), and across the State of Hawaii. Likewise, the wide-body capability will further strengthen the platform and service performance that the Aloha network offers customers and carriers shipping from Asia to the Americas.

Aloha Air Cargo: AG Slide Show

Current Route Map:

Aloha Air Cargo 9.2014 route map

FedEx Corporation’s earnings surge in the first quarter to $606 million

FedEx Corporation (FedEx Express) (Memphis) reported its earnings for its fiscal first quarter surged by 24 percent to net income of $606 million. The corporation issued this financial report:

FedEx Corporation today reported earnings of $2.10 per diluted share for the first quarter ended August 31, up 37% from last year’s $1.53 per share.

First Quarter Results

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

• Revenue of $11.7 billion, up 6% from $11.0 billion the previous year

• Operating income of $987 million, up 24% from $795 million last year

• Operating margin of 8.5%, up from 7.2% the previous year

• Net income of $606 million, up 24% from last year’s $489 million

Operating income increased primarily due to higher volumes and increased yields at all three transportation segments. Results in the first quarter also include benefits from lower pension expense and the company’s profit improvement programs. These benefits were partially offset by higher aircraft maintenance expense due to the timing of certain engine maintenance events.

During the quarter, the company acquired 5.3 million shares of FedEx common stock. As of August 31, 2014, no shares remained under the existing share repurchase authorizations. Share repurchases benefited earnings in the quarter by $0.15 per diluted share.

Outlook

FedEx reaffirmed its fiscal 2015 earnings forecast of $8.50 to $9.00 per diluted share. The outlook assumes no net year-over-year fuel impact and continued moderate economic growth. The capital spending forecast for fiscal 2015 remains $4.2 billion.

“FedEx reported strong first quarter results, as all three of our transportation segments drove higher revenues and improved profitability year over year,” said Alan B. Graf, Jr., FedEx Corp. executive vice president and chief financial officer. “Our profit improvement programs are progressing as planned and we continue to expect strong earnings growth this year.”

2015 Rate Increases

As previously announced, FedEx Express, FedEx Ground and FedEx Freight will increase shipping rates effective January 5, 2015.

FedEx Express will increase shipping rates by an average of 4.9% for U.S. domestic, U.S. export and U.S. import services.

FedEx Ground and FedEx Home Delivery will increase shipping rates by an average of 4.9%. In addition, as announced in May, FedEx Ground will also begin applying dimensional weight pricing to all shipments.

FedEx Freight will increase shipping rates by an average of 4.9%. This rate change applies to eligible FedEx Freight shipments within the U.S. (including Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands), between the contiguous U.S. and Canada, within Canada, between the contiguous U.S. and Mexico, and within Mexico.

Details of all changes to rates and surcharges are available at fedex.com/us/2015rates.

Corporate Headquarters Costs

Effective this fiscal year, the company ceased allocating to its transportation segments the costs associated with the corporate headquarters division. These costs are now included in “Corporate, eliminations and other.” Prior year amounts in this release have been revised to conform to the current presentation.

FedEx Express Segment

For the first quarter, the FedEx Express segment reported:

• Revenue of $6.86 billion, up 4% from last year’s $6.61 billion

• Operating income of $369 million, up 35% from $273 million a year ago

• Operating margin of 5.4%, up from 4.1% the previous year

Revenue increased due to higher U.S. domestic package volume and international export package yields partially offset by lower freight revenue. U.S. domestic package volume grew 5%, as 8% growth in overnight and deferred box volume was partially offset by lower envelope volume. U.S. domestic yield increased 1% from higher fuel surcharges, changes in service mix and increased rates. FedEx International Priority® volume grew 1%, while FedEx International Economy® volume increased 3%. International export revenue per package increased 3% due to fuel surcharges, higher rates and weight per package.

Operating income and margin improved as higher U.S. domestic package volume, improved international export yield and benefits from profit improvement programs more than offset higher aircraft maintenance expense and lower freight revenues.

Copyright Photo: Steve Bailey/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FHT N883FD (msn 39285) of FedEx Express climbs away from the runway at Anchorage Ted Stevens International Airport (ANC).

FedEx Express: AG Slide Show

Boeing and Avolon finalize an order for 787 Dreamliners, 737 MAXs

Avolon logo

Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) and leasing company Avolon have finalized an order for six 787-9 Dreamliners and five additional 737 MAX 9s, valued at more than $2.1 billion at list prices. Avolon announced a commitment to purchase the airplanes during the 2014 Farnborough Airshow in July.

This marks Avolon’s first order for the 787 Dreamliner and will increase the lessor’s 737 MAX portfolio to 20 airplanes.

The 737 MAX has surpassed 2,200 orders from 47 customers worldwide. The largest in the 737 MAX family, the 737 MAX 9 offers the best fuel-efficiency per seat and will be 7 percent per trip less expensive to operate than its competitor, the A321neo. The 737 MAX 9 provides versatile growth capacity for airlines needing larger single-aisle options in their fleet.

QANTAS Airways to return to Vancouver with seasonal flights in January

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) has announced it will return to Vancouver (last served in January 2008) with twice-weekly Boeing 747-400 flights during the month of January 2015 (January 3-23, 2015).

The airline issued this statement:

QANTAS  announced it will operate six direct return services between Sydney and Vancouver in January 2015 to cater for demand during the peak of the North American winter holiday season.

The Vancouver services follow last week’s announcement of a new codeshare with WestJet, providing new connections.

QANTAS has also announced an increase in services to the US and Santiago from early 2015, and is upgrading its Dallas/Fort Worth service to an Airbus A380.

The services will operate from January 3-22, 2015, departing Sydney on Saturdays and Wednesdays (with same day connections available from the major Australian capital cities), and from Vancouver on Sundays and Thursdays, operated by a three-cabin Boeing 747 aircraft, reconfigured with lie-flat beds in Business Class and the award-winning international Economy seat.* Subject to regulatory approval.

All proposed services are subject to regulatory approval.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallary.com. Boeing 747-438 ER VH-OEH (msn 32912) approaches the runway at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York.

QANTAS Airways: AG Slide Show

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Emirates and Jetstar Airways to expand their codeshare agreement

Emirates (Dubai) and Jetstar Airways (Melbourne) have announced the expansion of their codeshare and frequent flyer relationship, to 30 routes across the Asia Pacific region providing more choice to Emirates customers.

From October 26, 2014*, Emirates will grow its codeshare on Jetstar to include Jetstar Airways services between Melbourne and Ayers Rock (Uluru), Christchurch to Wellington in New Zealand and three new destinations in south-east Asia from Jetstar Asia’s hub in Singapore.
The new codeshare services from Singapore will connect Emirates passengers to Penang in Malaysia, Yangon in Myanmar and Medan in Indonesia.

The additional destinations complement the current 25 routes announced in February this year.

Effective immediately, Skywards members can now also earn Skywards Miles when they book economy Starter Plus, economy Starter Max or Business Max fares on international routes with Jetstar Airways, Jetstar Asia, Jetstar Japan and Valuair, as well as domestic routes within Australia and New Zealand if they connect to an international flight.

All Emirates’ passengers on Jetstar flights will receive boarding passes on check-in at their first international departure point for connecting international service.

*subject to government approval

Top Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/AirlinersGallery.com. Emirates Boeing 777-31H A6-EMM (msn 29062) arrives in London (Heathrow).

Emirates: AG Slide Show

Jetstar Airways: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: John Adlard/AirlinersGallery.com. Jetstar Airways’ seventh Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner, the pictured VH-VKH (msn 36233) was delivered on August 14, 2014.

Southwest Airlines to operate seasonal Caribbean service from Milwaukee to both Montego Bay and Punta Cana

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) will add seasonal and weekly (saturdays) service from Milwaukee to both Montego Bay, Jamaica and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic from January 24 through April 4, 2015 per Airline Route.

Meanwhile the company is trying to lower its rising costs with new efforts to remain competitive with its union contracts. Bloomberg Businessweek looks at this critical effort. Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. “Heart Two” in the form of Boeing 737-8H4 N8645A (msn 36907) painted in the dazzling 2014 livery arrives at the Baltimore/Washington (BWI) hub.

Southwest Airlines: AG Slide Show
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Video: Repainting the fleet:

 

Norwegian Long haul to launch two new Boeing 787 routes to Orlando

Norwegian Long haul (Norwegian Air Shuttle) (Norwegian.com) (Oslo) continues to develop long-range operations and launching new routes from Copenhagen to Orlando, and between London Gatwick and Orlando. In addition, the company is also increasing frequencies on several existing destinations between Europe and the USA.

The new nonstop route to Orlando, Florida will be the fifth long distance flight from Copenhagen and the fourth from London Gatwick. Norwegian flies previously between Oslo and Orlando.

As previously reported, Norwegian started operations to Orlando International Airport (MCO) on May 29, 2014.

Norwegian will fly once a week (Mondays) from Copenhagen to Orlando, starting on March 30, 2015.

Norwegian will fly once a week (Saturdays) between London Gatwick and Orlando starting on April 4, 2015.

Norwegian is also increasing the number of flights between the following destinations: Stockholm – Oakland, increased from two to three flights a week, Oslo – Los Angeles extended from one to two times a week, London Gatwick – New York (JFK) expanded from three to six flights a week and London Gatwick – Los Angeles expanded from two to four times a week.

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner EI-LND (msn 35310) with Norwegian marathon runner Grete Waitz departs from Stockholm (Arlanda).

Norwegian: AG Slide Show

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United Airlines to pay its flight attendants $100,000 to leave the company, will recall all furloughed FAs

United Airlines (Chicago) has issued this statement:

United Airlines and the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) announced that United will offer its Flight Attendants an Enhanced Early Out Program, which allows participants a one-time opportunity to voluntarily separate from the company and receive a severance payment. United also announced that it is recalling all Flight Attendants who are on voluntary and involuntary furlough.

United will offer lump sum payouts of up to $100,000 for Flight Attendants who apply for the early out and meet certain service and eligibility qualifications, and the company will award early outs in seniority order.

“We’re excited to offer this extraordinary early out program, and we look forward to rewarding Flight Attendants who’ve contributed so much to United over the years,” said Sam Risoli, United’s senior vice president, Inflight Services. “Working together with the AFA Master Executive Council Presidents Ken Diaz, Suzanne Hendricks and Marcus Valentino, we were able to develop a program that provides great benefits, minimizes disruption to Flight Attendants due to staffing imbalances and at the same time helps us be more competitive.”

“United’s investment in this Enhanced Early Out benefits United and all our Flight Attendants represented by the AFA,” said Mike Bonds, executive vice president, Human Resources and Labor Relations. “Recalling furloughed Flight Attendants and aligning our staffing to match our flying schedule will further facilitate the company and AFA reaching a joint collective bargaining agreement. It’s another positive step in what has become a productive relationship with AFA.”

United has more than 23,000 flight attendants.

Narita-based Japanese national Flight Attendants employed by CMI, and who are not employed by United or represented by AFA, have their own severance and early-retirement terms provided in their collective bargaining agreement under Japanese law, and therefore are not eligible for the United Airlines Enhanced Early Out Program.

United has achieved joint collective bargaining agreements with a majority of its represented work force, including pilots, dispatchers, fleet service, passenger service, reservations and storekeeper workgroups. The company is engaged in expedited negotiations with the AFA and is in mediation with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT), representing United’s technicians.

Read the analysis by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-724 N16709 (msn 28779) departs from Washington’s Reagan National Airport.

United Airlines (Current): AG Slide Show

WestJet to charge $25 for the first checked bag for Econo fares for domestic and U.S. flights

WestJet (Calgary) today announced it will charge a $25 fee for a first checked bag on Econo fares for travel within Canada and between Canada and the U.S. The new fee will only apply to bookings made today onward, for travel on or after October 29, 2014. Guests flying to any of WestJet’s international destinations including Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America and Europe may continue to check a first bag at no charge.

This change, which will apply to Econo fares only, is expected to affect approximately one in five WestJet guests. Guests who select a Flex fare will receive one free checked bag while guests choosing a Plus fare will enjoy two complimentary checked bags in addition to waived fees, seat selection, more legroom and many other amenities. For more information on WestJet baggage fees, please visit westjet.com/baggage.

The baggage allowances for military personnel (with identification), infant and child equipment, mobility devices and code-share and interline guests are not impacted.

WestJet also today launched its new WestJet Rewards tiers program featuring three levels – Teal, Silver and Gold. Guests who qualify for the Silver tier will be able to check a first bag at no cost. Guests who qualify for the Gold tier will get two free checked bags. For more information on all the significant benefits offered with the new WestJet Rewards tiers, please visit westjet.com/tiers. In addition, we have added a free first bag as an enhanced benefit to our WestJet RBC World Elite MasterCard credit card program.

Along with the launch of WestJet Rewards tiers, the airline also introduced a price-drop guarantee today on WestJet flights and WestJet Vacations packages. Guests who see that the price of their flight or their vacation package has dropped since their original purchase can receive the difference in WestJet dollars.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. WestJet Airlines’ Boeing 737-8CT WL C-GWRG (msn 39071) with the Split Scimitar Winglets arrives at the Toronto (Pearson) hub.

WestJet: AG Slide Show

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Air France expects to cancel 60% of its flights tomorrow due to a pilots strike

Air France (Paris) has issued this statement in anticipation of a strike by its pilots tomorrow (September 16):

Air France expects to operate 40% of its flights on Tuesday, September 16, 2014, given an estimated 60% of pilots planning to strike.

The flight schedule is updated 24 hours in advance.

Air France asks its customers to check that their flight is operating before going to the airport.

7,000 Air France employees are doing all they can to assist customers.

Air France once again recommends its customers with a flight reservation between September 15-22 to postpone their trip or change their ticket at no extra cost.

Air France regrets this situation and is making every effort to minimize the inconvenience this may cause to its customers. Close to 600,000 texts and messages have been sent to inform customers due to travel on Tuesday individually and in real time.

If the strike action continues beyond September 16, the flight schedule will be adjusted accordingly. Customers will be informed of the potential impact the day before departure. However there may be other disruption and delays.

Meanwhile partner KLM Royal Dutch Airlines issued this short statement:

This is the result of a dispute between Air France and the French pilots’ union about terms relating to Transavia. French pilots who are transferring to Transavia demand the same terms of employment as pilots at Air France. The strike is – as communicated – expected to last from Monday, September 15 to Monday, September 22.

The Air France pilots’ strike will not affect the KLM operation. A rebooking policy is in effect. Customers who are affected by the strike will be rebooked free of charge.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-328 ER F-GZNC (msn 35542) approaches the runway at JFK International Airport in New York.

Air France: AG Slide Show
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SAS reports its third quarter income drops 44% to $69.5 million

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS (SAS Group) (Stockholm) despite recent personnel cuts and cost saving measures reported its fiscal third quarter income (ending on July 31) dropped 44 percent to SEK (Swedish Krona) 496 million ($69.5 million).

The group blamed the decline on its challenging market conditions especially coming from Norwegian Air Shuttle. CEO Rickard Gustafson blamed Norwegian for flooding the market with more seats than the market can handle.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

In other news, on Wednesday September 10, SAS moved in to the new Queen’s Terminal at London’s Heathrow Airport. The Queen’s Terminal, or Terminal 2, is the new home of all Star Alliance airlines that fly to Heathrow – in total 23 members.

SAS operates 21 departures and 21 arrivals at the terminal to and from the Scandinavian capitals of Stockholm, Oslo and Copenhagen
and the regional cities Gothenburg and Stavanger. SAS flight SK 500 was the first SAS scheduled flight to operate from Terminal 2.

Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-883 LN-RPM (msn 30195) promoting the SAS Eurobonus program,  approaches runway 01R at Stockholm (Arlanda).

SAS: AG Slide Show
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Air Canada to add the Boeing 787 from Vancouver for its Asian routes

Air Canada (Montreal) is gradually introducing the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner from Vancouver, replacing its older Boeing 767-300 ERs on some of its long-range routes. The carrier will introduce the 787 on the Vancouver-Shanghai (Pudong) route on October 26, Vancouver-Tokyo (Narita) on December 15, Vancouver-Beijing on February 1, 2015 and Vancouver-Seoul (Incheon) on March 1, 2015 per Airline Route.

In addition, Air Canada plans to operate Boeing 787 on the Vancouver-Toronto (Pearson) route at least once a day during the winter season effective October 26.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner C-GHPQ (msn 35257) departs from Lester B. Pearson International Airport in Toronto.

Air Canada: AG Slide Show

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Sunwing Airlines to start Ottawa-St. Petersburg/Clearwater flights on December 18

Sunwing Airlines (Toronto) will start weekly (on Thursdays) nonstop Ottawa-St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Florida (Tampa Bay) flights on December 18 with 189-seat Boeing 737-800s.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8BK C-FTJH (msn 29642) on a summer lease at Palma de Mallorca will be returning to Canada for the winter season. The airliner has been retrofitted with the new Aviation Partners Boeing Split Scimitar Winglets.

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Swiftair orders four Boeing 737-400 freighter conversions from Aeronautical Engineers

Aeronautical Engineers, Inc. (AEI) has announce that Swiftair S.A. (Madrid) has selected AEI to provide eight (8) Boeing 37-400SF passenger to freighter conversions. The contract calls for four firm orders plus an additional four options. The first aircraft, built in 1991 (msn 24438) (ex Samair) is a high gross weight Boeing 737-400 and is currently being modified at Commercial Jet Inc. in Miami, Florida, which is an authorized AEI Conversion Center. The second aircraft (msn 24445) is on location in Miami and will commence modification in mid-September. All eight aircraft will be modified at Commercial Jet Inc. in Miami, Florida.

Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com. Swiftair is a current Boeing 737-400 operator. 737-4Q8 (F) N156GA (msn 26298) arrives at Palma de Mallorca before it became EC-MCI.

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American Airlines’ first Boeing 787 Dreamliner takes shape at Paine Field, Everett

American first 787-8 final assembly (American)(LR)

American Airlines‘ (Dallas/Fort Worth) first Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner (N800AN, msn 40618) is now being assembled at Boeing’s Paine Field facility near Everett, Washington. The company has issued the above photo of the mid section of the fuselage being attached to the wings. The first 787 should be rolled out of the assembly plant in the first week of October. The second 787-8 will be entering final assembly around September 26.

The airline will take delivery of its first 787-8 in December. The first 787-8 is scheduled to enter revenue service in early 2015 initially on domestic routes.

American has 42 Boeing 787s on order including 16 787-8s and 26 787-9s, with 58 options. The airline is scheduled to take delivery of two 787s this year, 11 in 2015, 13 in 2016 and nine in 2017.

American will replace some of its older Boeing 767-300s with the new 787s.

Copyright Photo: American Airlines. The first 787 takes shape in Position 1A at Paine Field, Everett, where the mid-body and the wings were joined.

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Jetstar Airways to start Boeing 787 service to Honolulu from Sydney on February 19

Jetstar Airways (Melbourne) has announced it will start Boeing 787 service to Honolulu, Hawaii starting on February 19, 2015. The 787 will replace Airbus A330-200 aircraft currently assigned to the route.

In other news, Jetstar announced it will start flying three times a week between Gold Coast and Queenstown from December 13, 2014 and three times a week between Gold Coast and Wellington from December 12, 2014 (subject to government and regulatory approval).

Flights on both new Tasman routes will be operated by 180-seat Airbus A320 aircraft in a single class. Gold Coast-Wellington services are offered on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday and Gold Coast-Queenstown flights on Monday, Thursday and Saturday.

Copyright Photo: Rob Finlayson/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner VH-VKA (msn 36227) is pictured in action at Sydney.

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Royal Jordanian to expand Boeing 787 flights to Bangkok, Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur in October

Royal Jordanian Airlines (Amman) inaugurated Boeing 787 service as planned on September 1 from its base at Queen Alia International Airport to London Heathrow Airport.

The pictured Boeing 787-8 JY-BAA is the first of five that will join the RJ fleet during this year as part of the company’s strategic plan to modernize its long-range fleet of aircraft, replacing the currently operating Airbus A340s and A330s.

As previously reported, JY-BAA was received on August 27, 2014, Royal Jordanian becomes only the second airline in the Middle East to operate the 787.

Royal Jordanian is the first airline worldwide to take delivery of a Boeing 787 with the latest Thales in-Flight entertainment system called AVANT. The system offers passengers the next level of in-flight entertainment with 17” touchscreens in Crown and 10.6” touchscreens in Economy Class.

RJ chose to configure its Dreamliner to carry 24 passengers in business class and 246 in economy.

Customers in all classes will experience an improved cabin environment featuring LED mood lighting, larger windows, bigger overhead bins, lower cabin altitude and enhanced ventilation systems and reduced noise levels among other features.

Royal Jordanian will continue to expand its 787 operations. Effective October 12 the new type will be assigned to the Amman-Bangkok-Hong Kong route (four days a week). For the other three days a week, effective October 15, the aircraft will fly the Amman-Bangkok-Kuala Lumpur route.

Copyright Photo: Wingnut/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 JY-BAA (msn 37983) taxies across the ramp at London’s Heathrow Airport.

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Southwest Airlines files to serve San Jose, Costa Rica from Baltimore/Washington

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) announced today (September 12) that it has filed an application with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to add its first destination in Central America with daily roundtrip service between Baltimore/Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport (BWI) and Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San Jose, Costa Rica, beginning on March 7, 2015.

Costa Rica will be the sixth near-international country served by Southwest Airlines from its U.S. gateway cities and the first new destination in the carrier’s network after the integration of wholly owned subsidiary AirTran Airways is completed by the end of this year. Service to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, and Mexico City begins on November 2, as Southwest converts existing AirTran service in those destinations. Southwest began service this summer to Aruba, The Bahamas, Jamaica, and both Cancun and San Jose del Cabo/Los Cabos, Mexico.

Southwest Airlines began service from Baltimore/Washington in September 1993, with ten flights offering scheduled service through nonstop destinations Chicago (Midway) and Cleveland. Southwest, 21 years later, is the largest carrier at BWI in terms of daily departure and, by March 2015, will fly nonstop to 60 cities with more than 200 departures a day.

In October 2006, Southwest began serving Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) and added service to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) in July 2012. By November, Southwest Airlines will be the second largest carrier at DCA in terms of seats, offering 44 flights a day to 14 destinations: Akron-Canton, Atlanta, Austin, Chicago (Midway), Dallas (Love Field), Ft. Myers/Naples, Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Nashville, New Orleans, St. Louis, and Tampa.

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-7H4 N214WN (msn 32486) in the Maryland One scheme arrives in Las Vegas

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Bottom Copyright Photo: Southwest Airlines. The new heart logo is directed too at its employees as it grows internationally and finalizes the AirTran merger.

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The last Air New Zealand Boeing 747 revenue flight touches down in Auckland, will increase Los Angeles frequencies

Air New Zealand (Auckland) ended an era  when the pictured Boeing 747-419 ZK-NBV (msn 26910), flying the final 747 revenue flight, landed in Auckland on a flight from San Francisco. ANZ has ended its long association (nearly 35 years) with the Jumbo. The flag carrier originally operated the Boeing 747-200B before that early type was replaced with the newer Boeing 747-400s. Now the 747-400s have been fully replaced with newer Boeing 777-300 ERs and 787-9 Dreamliners.

Read the account from the Sydney Morning Herald: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: David Apps/AirlinersGallery.com.

The last flight departed from San Francisco International Airport on September 10. This “Farewell 747″ banner was displayed at the departure gate at SFO:

Air New Zealand Farewell 747 banner

Copyright Photo: Air New Zealand.

Copyright Photo: Roy Lock/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747-419 ZK-NBV was previously painted in this special color scheme to promote the first Lord of Rings movie featuring Frodo on the aircraft. ZK-NBV was delivered new to ANZ on Halloween (October 31), 1998.

In other news, Air New Zealand is adding more flights to its North American schedule. The popularity of the airline’s service between Auckland and Los Angeles will see the airline step up frequency next year from twice daily to three times a day on three days of the week.

To date Air New Zealand’s Los Angeles service has predominantly run twice-daily but during the 2015 Northern Summer season (April – October) there will be a third flight departing Auckland on Monday, Thursday and Saturday, representing a 20% boost in total capacity.

The additional Los Angeles services will depart Auckland earlier than the current daily services arriving in Los Angeles around 0900 and enabling same day connections with Midwest and East Coast USA destinations. The earlier departure time will also suit Australian travellers heading to the USA, with convenient Melbourne and Sydney connections.

The additional services will depart Los Angeles later than current services accommodating later connections while still arriving into Auckland at 0700 in time for passengers to connect seamlessly to domestic New Zealand and Australia.

Air New Zealand is also increasing capacity between Auckland and Vancouver by 10%. Next year it will operate five times per week from June to September (currently mid-July to late August). The airline operates three times per week outside of this period.

Both the Los Angeles and Vancouver routes will get an additional boost during the New Zealand school holidays. Air New Zealand will operate a third daily Los Angeles flight on Sundays in the July and October school holidays taking the weekly total to 18, and move from three to four flights per week to Vancouver during the October school holidays.

Today (September 12) ANZ begins Boeing 787-9 service on the Auckland – Perth route, one month earlier than planned.

Additionally, Air New Zealand is progressively refitting its Boeing 777-200 ER fleet bringing the on-board customer experience into line with the high level of inflight innovation and comfort already enjoyed on the airline’s Boeing 777-300 ER and new 787-9 aircraft.

Air New Zealand has eight 777-200 ERs which are progressively having their interiors completely stripped out and replaced as part of a $100 million fleet refurbishment project.

Air New Zealand 777-200ER Economy Seat (ANZ)

 

ZK-OKA is the first to be completed. The refurbished aircraft features Air New Zealand’s new luxury leather Premium Economy seat (above) which recently debuted on the airline’s 787-9 Dreamliner and nine rows of the award-winning Economy Skycouch product. The airline’s Business Premier lie-flat bed and Economy seat round out the inflight product offering. Also on board is a brand new Panasonic eX3 seatback inflight entertainment system with improved resolution and touch capabilities.

The remainder of the airline’s Boeing 777-200 ER fleet is being progressively refurbished with the final aircraft scheduled to roll out of the hangar late next year.

On the financial side, Air New Zealand recently announced normalized earnings before taxation of A$332 million for the 2014 financial year, an increase of 30 percent on the previous year. Statutory earnings before taxation were A$357 million, an increase of 40 percent, while statutory net profit after taxation was $262 million.

Chairman Tony Carter said that the result represented the third consecutive year of strong earnings growth for the airline.

“This is a result Air New Zealand can be proud of. Our employees, our customers and our shareholders can be confident that Air New Zealand continues to be a world leading airline both in terms of customer experience and financial performance,” Mr Carter said.
“We have made significant progress on our key strategic initiatives. With new aircraft offering better operating economics, an optimised network with the right alliance partners, disciplined cost management and a daily focus on improving the customer experience, we are very well positioned to continue growing.”

Mr Carter said that Air New Zealand will significantly grow its capacity in the coming year, as new aircraft arrive.

“Based on our current expectations of market demand and fuel prices, we expect to improve on the 2014 result in the coming year. This outlook excludes equity earnings from the Virgin Australia shareholding,” he said.

Chief Executive Officer Christopher Luxon said the result was testament to the efforts of Air New Zealanders at all levels of the organisation.
“Our team is demonstrating their passion and commitment to ensuring that Air New Zealand is performing better than ever before. A successful Air New Zealand is good for everyone – it is a virtuous circle. As we grow our revenue and control costs, we generate strong financial results which lead to sustainable returns to shareholders and investment back in the business,” Mr Luxon said.

“We have a number of initiatives underway to further improve the customer experience, including induction of the Boeing 787-9 fleet, the refurbishment of our Boeing 777-200 ER fleet, moving to new terminals and lounges in Los Angeles and London and multiple lounge upgrades across the network.”

Mr Luxon also commented on the airline’s alliance with Singapore Airlines, which was recently granted full regulatory approval.

“This alliance is the third strategic revenue sharing alliance we have formed in recent years, following agreements with Virgin Australia (reauthorised in 2013) and Cathay Pacific in 2012. Forming alliances with the right partners in the right markets is a key pillar of our Go Beyond strategy.”

“Strong alliances such as this provide us with a platform for sustainable growth, allowing us to open up new routes and markets across the Pacific Rim,” he said.

Air New Zealand Aircraft Slide Show:

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Video: ANZ salutes the “Queen of the Skies”:

Video from stuff.co.nz: Air New Zealand’s Boeing 747-400 ZK-NBV named “Christchurch” made it final flight and now is in retirement. The 747-400 completed 67,552 flight hours and 7284 landings.

Video: Before the Boeing 747-400 there was the Boeing 747-200B:

 

Boeing responds to the Al Jazeera English documentary on the 787

Boeing logo (medium)

Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) has issued this statement on the Al Jazeera documentary on the 787:

We have not been afforded the opportunity to view the full program, but the promotional trailer and published media reviews suggest that what has been produced is as biased a production as we have seen in some time. It is unfortunate that the producers of this television program appear to have fallen into the trap of distorting facts, relying on claims rejected by courts of law, breathlessly rehashing as “news” stories that have been covered exhaustively in the past and relying on anonymous sources who appear intent only on harming The Boeing Company.

When first contacted by the producers, we accommodated them in order for them to produce a fair and objective report including facilitating factory access, interviews and providing full and open responses to their questions. The 787 is an outstanding airplane delivering value to our customers, but we have also talked candidly in public about its challenging development process. There are no tougher critics about our early performance than Boeing. Unfortunately, the reporting team appears to have chosen to take advantage of our trust and openness and abused their position from the outset by deliberately misrepresenting the purpose, objective and scope of their planned coverage.

This specious production appears to have ignored the factual information provided by Boeing and instead based the majority of its reporting on unnamed sources pursuing their own agendas and a disgruntled former employee engaged in a legal dispute with Boeing. In one instance, the producers resorted to ambush tactics normally seen only in tabloid-style TV news. The anonymous sources the TV program depends on are clearly working with those who seek to harm Boeing and its workers. They appear to have no real interest in truth, safety or better informing the public.

Even on-the-record sources seem to have changed their stories for the producers. For example, former Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA) President Cynthia Cole said this about the 787’s first flight in 2009: “Today’s flight is a testament to the skill, hard work and diligence Boeing employees put in to get this airplane ready to fly,” SPEEA President Cynthia Cole said in a news release. “Boeing returned to engineering, and that’s what made today possible and successful.” Now, she states in the documentary trailer that Boeing “shortchanged the engineering process.”

Instead of an objective view of the 787’s development, viewers and our employees will see a television program that is neither balanced nor accurate in its portrayal of the airplane, our employees, or our suppliers. This program and those involved with it do a disservice to the hard-working men and women of Boeing and our supplier partners who designed and build the 787.

Furthermore, the program presents a false impression of Boeing South Carolina and the quality of work performed there. Airplanes, whether delivered from South Carolina or Washington, meet the highest safety and quality standards that are verified through robust test, verification and inspection processes. Our data of the current 787 fleet in service show parity in the quality and performance of airplanes manufactured in both locations.

Video: The Al Jazeera documentary on the Boeing 787:

Air Transat’s parent reports adjusted 3Q net income of C$26.7 million

Air Transat‘s (Montreal) parent, Transat A.T., Inc. issued this quarterly financial statement for the fiscal third quarter (all amounts in Canadian dollars):

Transat A.T. Inc., one of the largest integrated tourism companies in the world and Canada’s holiday travel leader, posted revenues of $941.7 million for the quarter ended July 31, 2014, compared with $927.0 million in 2013, an increase of $14.7 million, or 1.6%. The Corporation recorded adjusted operating income of $46.8 million, compared with $54.4 million in 2013, and net income of $25.8 million ($0.66 per share on a diluted basis), compared with $41.1 million ($1.07 per share on a diluted basis) in 2013. Before non-operating items, Transat reported adjusted net income of $26.7 million in 2014 ($0.69 per share on a diluted basis), compared with $30.8 million ($0.80 per share on a diluted basis) in 2013.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. Air Transat’s Boeing 737-8Q8 C-GTQB (msn 30696) in the Split Scimitar Wingslets is resting between flights at Toronto (Pearson).

 

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Centurion Cargo could lose 5 of its freighters, pilots furloughed

Centurion Cargo (Miami) is struggling according to this report by the South Florida Business Journal.  According to the report, “five statutory trusts based in Dublin, Ireland filed a lawsuit in federal court on August 29 against Miami-based Centurion and its Sky Lease I affiliate. It claims the companies are delinquent on $10.2 million in lease payments on five aircrafts: one Boeing 747-400F and four McDonnell Douglas MD-11Fs.”

Until now the airline has not returned the aircraft.

The company was originally founded on November 8, 1985 as Challenge Air Cargo Inc. After many years in the business, on July 20, 2001 Challenge Air Cargo Inc. changed its name and started operating as Centurion Air Cargo Inc.

According to the airline, Centurion Cargo is a privately owned company founded in 2001.Based at Miami International Airport it currently operates a 550,000 square foot warehouse (51,097 square meters); divided into two different sections; a 159,000 square foot (14,772 square meters) Cooler and 391,000 square foot (36,325 square meters) Dry Cargo Area, the Centurion Cargo Center is by far the largest privately owned all cargo airline facility in North America, and operates a fleet of ten MD-11Fs and three 747-400ERFs.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Update: Late on September 10, 2014 all pilots of Centurion Cargo received furlough notices.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747-4R7F N901AR (msn 25868) arrives in Philadelphia.

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Qatar Airways Cargo to expand to Brussels and Shanghai

Qatar Airways Cargo (Qatar Airways) (Doha) is set to continue its expansion with the launch of two new freighter destinations, Brussels in Belgium and Shanghai in China.

Brussels will be served four times weekly by the Airbus A330F freighter, effective on October 1. The freighter will fly via Entebbe to Brussels on Wednesdays and Sundays and via Nairobi to Brussels on Mondays and Fridays.

A three-times weekly nonstop Boeing 777 freighter service will operate on the Doha-Shanghai-Doha route, effective October 2.

In addition, with effect from October 1, an additional Boeing 777 freighter frequency will be added on the Doha – Hong Kong route, bringing up the weekly frequencies to 14.

Qatar Airways Cargo completed the transition from a manually handled cargo environment to a fully automated cargo terminal at Hamad International Airport when it moved to the new state-of-the-art facility. The brand new cargo terminal at Hamad International Airport offers the very latest technology and five-star service to customers around the globe.

Previously Qatar Airways signed a Letter of Intent for four additional Boeing 777Fs.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FDZ A7-BFE (msn 39644) taxies at Paine Field near Everett.

Qatar Airways: AG Slide Show

Icelandair is coming to Portland, Oregon next summer

Icelandair (Keflavik) will begin seasonal nonstop service from Portland, Oregon to Reykjavik, Iceland via Keflavik International Airport beginning on May 20, 2015 and continuing through October 21, 2015. With this new route, Icelandair now provides flights to its third gateway in the Pacific Northwest region of North America, and 14th overall in the United States and Canada.

Icelandair’s 2015 route network is the largest in the airline’s history with flights to more than 20 destinations throughout Europe. As a result of this announcement, the Portland metro area’s 2.3 million residents will gain access to one of the regions fastest elapsed flying times to popular European destinations including London, Copenhagen, Paris, Stockholm and Munich. With low fares in three cabins of service, personal in-flight entertainment, on-board Wi-Fi access, and the exciting option of booking an Icelandair Stopover in Iceland at no additional airfare for up to seven nights, Icelandair is excited to bring this refreshing new alternative to Oregon.

Service from Portland International Airport (PDX) will operate on Wednesdays and Fridays with departures at 3:40 pm (1540), arriving at Icelandair’s hub at Keflavik International Airport the following morning at 6:15 am (0615), with a total flight time of just over seven hours. Return service departs Keflavik on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 5:15 pm (1715), with same-day arrival in Portland at 6:15 pm (1815).

Icelandair offers service to Iceland from Boston, New York-JFK, Washington (Dulles), Seattle/Tacoma, Denver, Toronto (Pearson) and Edmonton, with seasonal service from Newark, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Sanford (near Orlando), Portland, Vancouver, Halifax, and Anchorage.

Route Map:

Icelandair PDX 9.2015 Route Map

The company is also increasing the frequencies next summer on the Newark, Toronto and Washington routes.

In other news, an Air Iceland pilot allowed his passengers to get an up-close view of the simmering Bárðarbunga volcano. Icelandair posted this report and photos on their website:

Icelandair Group passengers Erla Vinsý and Odee were two of a few lucky customers on board a recent flight with our sister company Air Iceland during the morning of September 3, 2014. With the flight path routing over central Iceland, the chance of seeing the volcanic fissure eruption in the Bárðarbunga area quickly turned into a rare opportunity thanks to clear skies, and the Air Iceland pilot didn’t let the moment pass them by. Taking a short detour via a circle back around the eruption area, passengers on both sides of the aircraft were treated to an aerial view of the eruption while flying safely over the center of the action, allowing Erla and Odee to take these unique photographs of Iceland’s nature and power in action. With brightly-colored lava seeping through the earth’s crust and steam billowing from below the surface, the passengers and crew of this Air Iceland flight were provided a memory they won’t soon forget. Tourists in Iceland are now booking all available charter flights for sightseeing into the uninhabited interior of Iceland where the volcano is putting on its show. For amateur and professional photographers and filmmakers alike, this is the chance of a lifetime. We would like to thank Erla and Odee for sharing their photographs with us!

Bárðarbunga volcano photos

Copyright Photo: Luimer Cordero/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 757-256 TF-LLX (msn 29311) arrives in Miami with a partial livery.

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Delta Air Lines announces new routes, employees will build additional homes for Habitat for Humanity

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) will launch daily nonstop service between Manchester International Airport and New York John F. Kennedy International Airport from June 2, 2015 as it increases its network between the U.K. and North America. The airline will also begin flying its first nonstop service between London-Heathrow and Newark Liberty International Airport effective March 29, 2015. Both routes will be operated in conjunction with joint venture partner Virgin Atlantic Airways (London).

Delta’s new Newark operation is part of a network update by Virgin Atlantic where Delta will operate one of Virgin’s two Newark services while Virgin Atlantic will start its first daily nonstop Manchester to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport service.

Delta has operated services from Manchester since June 1991 when its maiden flight departed from Atlanta. Virgin Atlantic, meanwhile, has served the market since 1996 and also operates services to Orlando and Las Vegas from Manchester.

The updated joint venture network from London-Heathrow brings the daily number of services to the New York area to 10. Eight of these flights will operate to JFK and two to Newark.

Additionally Delta will launch a new Los Angeles-San Antonio, Texas route in April 2015. This new route will be operated by Compass Airlines.

In other news, Delta Air Lines employees from across the country will build or renovate affordable single family homes with Habitat for Humanity. This year’s fall builds will take place in six cities, including Delta’s hubs in Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York City and Seattle as well as in Los Angeles, a key international gateway for the airline. More than 2,300 Delta employees will participate in the projects, which began on September 8 and continue through October 17.

During the two-and-a-half-month long project, Delta will celebrate its 200th build with Habitat for Humanity. This milestone will be commemorated with the Seattle build, which will be partially funded through proceeds from Delta’s in-flight recycling program. This is the sixth home Delta has funded by recycling aluminum cans, plastic bottles and other materials from flights. More than 1 million pounds of material were recycled in 2013, and more than 8.5 million pounds have been recycled since the start of the program in 2007.

Through local and national support, Delta employees have helped build or rehab 199 Habitat homes in 11 countries around the world. Habitat is one of Delta’s core community partners in its Force for Global Good, a program that encourages employees to make a difference in the communities where they live, work and serve.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 767-332 ER N171DZ (msn 29690) in the special “Habitat for Humanity – Force for Global Good” livery, departs from London’s Gatwick Airport in the past.

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Allegiant Air is dropping Bellingham-Hawaii service

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) will not be renewing Hawaii service from Bellingham, Washington this coming winter according to the Bellingham Herald. The airline has reduced its full-year Hawaiian flying from Honolulu to only two mainland points; the Las Vegas base and Los Angeles. Other destinations (Boise, Eugene, Fresno, Mesa, Spokane and Stockton) will continue to have seasonal service to Honolulu but the number of flights has been dropping since the peak.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Eddie Maloney/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 757-204 N902NV (msn 26964) lands in Las Vegas.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

NokScoot unveils its logo and business plans

NokScoot logo (large)

NokScoot (NokScoot Company) (Bangkok-Don Mueang) as previously reported, is the new joint venture between budget airline Scoot (Singapore) (49%) and Nok Air (Bangkok) (51%). The new airline will commence scheduled low-fare flights from Bangkok’s downtown Don Mueang International Airport in the first quarter of 2015 with three Boeing 777-200s.

The airline has issued its new logo (above).

The joint venture describes its business plan:

NokScoot isn’t just like any other run-of-the-mill low-cost carriers – we don’t just provide low travel fares, we also provide an enjoyable flying experience. So our passengers never have to compromise on their experience when they are travelling with us.

NokScoot puts the fun back into budget travel and NokScoot gets our passengers to wherever they want to, in the way that they want to. And because they get to choose and customise their own travel experience, our passengers don’t just fly. They fly awesome.

Meanwhile Scoot has announced its planned Boeing 787-9 routes for 2015. The airline will operate the new type to Bangkok-Don Mueang (from April 27), Gold Coast (April 28), Hong Kong (from March 29) Perth (March 29), Qingdao (May 26), Shenyang (May 26), Sydney (March 29) and Tianjin (May 25) per Airline Route.

 

Southwest Airlines rebrands with a flashy new look and theme

Heart One. Stephen M. Keller

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) today officially unveiled this new livery, theme and logo in a special ceremony this morning in Dallas despite some images being leaked, probably from where it was painted in Victorville, CA. The first aircraft to be repainted is the pictured Boeing 737-8H4 N8642E (msn 42525) (above) delivered new on August 6, 2014.

Southwest The Heart sets us apart (LRW)

The company issued this statement this morning:

Southwest Airlines introduced a modern new look to its iconic brand today (September 8) at an event dedicated to its Employees. The airline proudly unveiled a new aircraft livery, named Heart One, airport experience, and logo. The new look puts the airline’s Heart on display, showcasing the strength of the nearly 46,000 Employees Companywide—whose dedication can be felt by every Customer each time Southwest Airlines connects them to what’s important in their life.

“Our collective heartbeat is stronger and healthier than ever, and that’s because of the warmth, the compassion, and the smiles of our People,” said Gary Kelly, Southwest Airlines Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer. “The Heart emblazoned on our aircraft, and within our new look, symbolizes our commitment that we’ll remain true to our core values as we set our sights on the future.”

It’s a big year for Southwest, as the airline introduces its legendary brand to international destinations; the repeal of the Wright Amendment is within sight; and the integration of AirTran Airways operations is on track to be completed later this year. Southwest continues to evolve, serving more than 90 destinations, and expanding its footprint in big markets like New York City and Washington, D.C.

“With all these exciting changes happening, we thought it was time for a new visual expression of our brand—one that marries our past to our present and sets the course for where we’re headed in the future,” Kelly said.

Southwest 2014 logo

NEW LOOK, SAME GREAT EXPERIENCE

The announcement of Southwest Airlines’ modern new look introduces a striking new livery design, new iconic Southwest logo (above), newly designed inflight materials and magazine, an advertising campaign that celebrates the airline’s unique personality, and a revamped experience both online and at its airport locations, all of which showcase the unique spirit and Heart of the brand, and communicate its focus on Customer care. In addition, the airline will introduce a refresh to its signature “DING!” mnemonic.

To bring this all to life, Southwest collaborated with advertising and branding partners GSD&M, Lippincott, VML, Razorfish and Camelot Communications—each an expert in their own field. The task was given to distill more than 40 years of rich history into one modern, impactful look, representing the exciting future of a one-of-a-kind airline.

“The job wasn’t to change who we are,” said Kevin Krone, Southwest’s Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. “We already know who we are. The job was to keep the elements of Southwest that our Employees and Customers love, and to make them a bold, modern expression of our future.”

“With so much of Southwest’s focus firm¬ly set on the future, it was a natural time to look at our visual identity,” said Bob Jordan, Southwest Airlines Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer.

“As we developed the identity, it wasn’t just about the new livery or the logo, but about developing the total, integrated brand expression of Southwest,” said Rodney Abbot, Senior Design Partner at Lippincott.

Southwest new heart logo

“The Heart is our identity the same way the Heart of our Southwest Employees enhances the Customer experience, said Krone. “It’s the finishing touch that makes the Southwest brand unique, demonstrating that Southwest cares about each and every Customer. Even on the belly of the plane, the Heart is a symbolic reminder that we put our Hearts into every flight.”

“For more than three decades, GSD&M has partnered with Southwest Airlines, so we certainly understand and believe in the power of Southwest’s Heart,” said Marianne Malina, President of GSD&M. “We were thrilled with the opportunity to partner with an extraordinary and talented team to bring Southwest’s love of People front and center. This work is a celebration of the great brand that Southwest has become and, most importantly, where it’s headed next.”

Southwest Airlines and its partners did comprehensive research and held numerous focus groups with Employees and Customers to determine how best to create the new look. The airline heard that it was important to remain unique and to retain its personality; for these reasons, Southwest continues to use the vibrant color palate and striped tail that has long identified the carrier, while adding a modern touch, proudly displaying the Southwest name on the side of the fuselage and presenting the Heart on the aircraft belly. Southwest has had several different liveries and logos throughout its 43-year history; remaining current and relevant is critical to the sustainability and future growth of the brand.

As a legendary low-fare carrier, Southwest doesn’t make a change this bold without first assessing cost impact. The approach and focus with this launch has been with the intent to remain cost-neutral by using a phased rollout. Aircraft will receive the newly painted livery within the aircraft’s existing repainting schedule, with new aircraft delivered in the new Heart livery. In addition, many of the future airport conversions will be integrated into existing and upcoming airport improvement projects. Because Southwest is taking this cost-conscious approach to the conversion of planes and airports, it might be some time before Customers and Employees see the new design in person.

Heart One. Stephen M. Keller

Copyright Photo: Southwest Airlines. The company again has bold new fuselage titles for good visibility.

Here is the message from Chairman, President and CEO Gary Kelly:

Forty-three years ago, Southwest launched a low-fare revolution that is still alive and well today. Ignited by a Maverick Spirit and a passion for serving others, we set out to do things differently than the other guys. Today, the world is a much different place than it was back in 1971. Our industry landscape is hardly recognizable, and our Customers’ travel habits have evolved. Southwest has evolved too — but we have never stopped smiling.

We’ve been hard at work over the past decade transforming Southwest to be just as relevant and successful for the next four decades. We enhanced our cabin interiors, installing WiFi and offering free live TV onboard (thanks to DISH®!). With the Boeing 737-800 series aircraft, we’re bringing on larger airplanes that are better suited for longer flights. We expanded in big markets like New York City and Washington, D.C. and revamped our Rapid Rewards® Frequent Flyer program. We acquired AirTran Airways, and we’re in the final stages of integrating our two airlines to become one by the end of this year. The AirTran integration set the stage for Southwest to launch international service for the first time in our history, which we did in July. And next month, a federal law (the Wright Amendment) restricting where we can fly domestically from our home airport of Dallas Love Field will be lifted — giving us the freedom to serve more nonstop markets from our hometown.

With all these exciting changes happening, we thought it was time for a new visual expression of our brand — one that marries our past to our present and sets the course for where we’re headed in the future. So this month, we’re introducing a modern, new look. You’ll see it throughout your experience with us. Our new logo showcases a Heart — fitting for a Company whose very core has always been fueled by the heartbeat of its People. Our collective heartbeat is stronger and healthier than ever, and that’s because of the warmth, the compassion, and the smiles of our People. This Heart symbolizes our commitment to you that we’ll remain true to our core as we set our sights on the future.

What started as a revolution has undergone an evolution. But we haven’t changed what we stand for: low fares, a convenient flight schedule, and the friendliest Employees in the world. Our Purpose is to connect you, our valued Customer, to the moments that are most important in your life, through friendly, reliable, and low-cost air travel. That was true in 1971, and it’s just as true today. So, while our look may be new, our DNA is the same — with the big Heart and big smile you have come to LUV. Thanks for coming along for the ride!

All images by Southwest Airlines.

Read the analysis by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Southwest Airlines Aircraft Slide Show: AG Slide Show

What do you think?

Video: The unveiling of the new brand:

Video: The evolution of the heart logo:

Video: Repainting the first aircraft:

Boeing launches the 200-seat 737 MAX 200 with Ryanair

Ryanair 737-MAX 8 Artwork

Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) launched the newest member of the 737 MAX family today (September 8) with a commitment from Ryanair (Dublin) for 100 airplanes. Europe’s leading low-cost carrier will be the first airline to operate the 737 MAX 200, a variant based on the successful 737 MAX 8 that can accommodate up to 200 seats, increasing revenue potential and providing customers up to 20 percent better fuel efficiency per seat than today’s most efficient single-aisle airplanes.

In addition to the commitment, valued at $11 billion at current list prices, Ryanair has options to purchase another 100 737 MAX 200s.

“Ryanair is proud and honored to become the lead operator of Boeing’s ‘gamechanger’ 737 MAX 200, which will expand our fleet to 520 aircraft by 2024 and create another 3,000 new jobs for pilots, cabin crew and engineers in Europe, while allowing us to grow traffic from 82 million last year to over 150 million annually by 2024,” said Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary.

“These new “gamechanger” aircraft will allow Ryanair to lower our costs and airfares, while improving our customer experience with more leg room and the Boeing Sky Interior, as we roll out new offers, particularly for our Business Plus and Family Extra customers. As many of Europe’s flag carriers cut capacity on short haul routes, Ryanair looks forward to using these new Boeing 737 MAX 200s to grow at many more of Europe’s primary airports,” said O’Leary

Boeing developed the 737 MAX 200 in response to the needs of the fast growing low-cost sector, which is forecasted to account for 35 percent of single-aisle airline capacity by 2033. While the heart of the single-aisle market will remain at 160 seats, the 737 MAX 200 will provide carriers like Ryanair with up to 11 more seats of potential revenue and up to 5 percent lower operating costs than the 737 MAX 8, driving economic growth and increasing access to air travel.

With the addition of the 737 MAX 200, the 737 MAX family offers the right capacity to meet the needs across the single-aisle market.

“The 737 MAX 200 is the perfect fit for Ryanair, providing improved efficiencies, 20 percent lower emissions, increased revenues and a high level of passenger comfort,” said Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Ray Conner. “The new variant will play a significant role in enabling the airline to continue to expand its operations, while providing passengers across Europe with outstanding value. For everyone at Boeing, it is an honor to launch the 737 MAX 200 with Ryanair, one of the world’s most successful all-Boeing operators.”

Based on the 737 MAX 8 airframe, the 737 MAX 200 can accommodate up to 200 seats by incorporating a mid-exit door increasing the exit limit. The airframe is 2.2 meters longer than the A320neo, giving customers more flexibility and space in the cabin, and offering a better solution at both the heart of the single-aisle market (160 seats) and at maximum passenger configurations.

Standard across the 737 MAX family, Ryanair’s 737 MAX 200s will be configured with the passenger inspired Boeing Sky Interior, featuring modern sculpted sidewalls and window reveals, LED lighting that enhances the sense of spaciousness and larger pivoting overhead stowage bins.

With 2,239 orders from 46 customers worldwide, the 737 MAX family offers customers superior fuel efficiency, economics and passenger comfort in the single-aisle market.

Headquartered in Ireland’s capital city, Ryanair operates more than 1,600 flights daily from 69 bases connecting 186 destinations in 30 countries. Currently operating more than 300 Next-Generation 737-800s, Ryanair took delivery of its first 737 in 1994, and now operates the largest fleet of Boeing airplanes in Europe. With a team of more than 9,500 highly skilled professionals, the airline is expected to fly more than 86 million passengers this year.

Image: Boeing.

Read the analysis by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Ryanair: AG Slide Show

Garuda Indonesia extends the Jakarta-Amsterdam route to London Gatwick today

Garuda Indonesia Airways (Jakarta) is extending its presence in Europe by launching a new service from Jakarta to London (Gatwick) via Amsterdam today (September 8), as part of the airline’s transformation program “The Quantum Leap 2011-2015″. London serves as the airline’s second gateway in the region after Amsterdam. By launching the five times weekly service to London, Garuda Indonesia is now able to provide the first direct link between Indonesia and the United Kingdom.

Therefore, starting today, the Jakarta – Amsterdam – Jakarta flight changed to become Jakarta – Amsterdam – London (Gatwick) – Amsterdam – Jakarta.

The schedule for Jakarta – Amsterdam – London is as follows (all times local):

Flight No Origin Destination Departure / Arrival Days of Operation

GA088 Jakarta Amsterdam 00.40 LT – 09.40 LT Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun
Amsterdam London 11.45 LT – 11.50 LT Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun

GA089 London Amsterdam 13.10 LT – 15.15 LT Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun
Amsterdam Jakarta 17.00 LT – 11.40 LT* Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun

*(+1 day)

The new service will be operated by Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft capable of carrying 314 passengers, in a three-class cabin configuration featuring its globally praised First Class, brand new business class service concept, and the world’s best economy class (Skytrax Global Airline Awards 2013).

According to the airline, “the fleet is equipped with “Inflight Connectivity” facilities, including “WiFi Onboard” and “Live TV” services for passengers in all classes and a “chef on board” for “First Class” passengers. The “Inflight Connectivity” facilities enable passengers to remain connected to the internet and continue their business activities during the flight or simply access their favorite entertainment, such as live soccer games via the sports channel, and many other entertainment options.”

Following its entrance into the SkyTeam global airline alliance on March 2014, Garuda has decided to make Amsterdam, The Netherlands, its hub for Europe and beyond. In order to make this hub effective and most convenient for its customers, the airline started flying direct and nonstop between Jakarta and Amsterdam on May 30, 2014.

Garuda Indonesia joined SkyTeam global alliance as its 20th international member, and second Southeast Asia member.

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-3U3 ER PK-GIC (msn 40075) departs from Paine Field before it was handed over to the carrier.

Garuda Indonesia: AG Slide Show

A new color scheme is also coming for Southwest Airlines

Southwest with a heartSouthwest Plane Palooza

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) is also planning to make an announcement tomorrow (September 6). It is believed the company is planning to introduce a new livery too.

A Boeing 737-800 is expected to be rolled out tomorrow at Dallas’ Love Field showing a new blue, yellow and red color scheme.

Southwest logo

Like Frontier, Southwest issued this short teaser comment:

We’ve been working on something special. And Monday, we’ll get to the heart of the matter.

DFWTower.com has published photos of a Southwest 737-800 in a hangar with the new design. It does not appear to be a special livery. The main changes, an apparent deeper shade of blue and white fuselage titles: CLICK HERE

This will be third basic livery for Southwest:

Top Image: Southwest Airlines. Southwest recently had a “Plane Palooza” voting contest for its special liveries on Facebook. The finalists were Florida One and Lone Star One. Naturally for the Texas-based airline, Lone Star One won.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Reflecting an American Southwest look, Southwest started operations with this orange, red and mustard color scheme. When Southwest launched intrastate operations in Texas on June 18, 1971 this was the color scheme on its three Boeing 737-200s. Boeing 737-2H4 N21SW (msn 20345) (+ the other two) are seen at the Love Field base. The full titles ran up the rear fuselage and the tail. Later the titles were shortened to just “Southwest” and were placed alone on the tail.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. The current “Canyon Blue” fuselage top livery was introduced in 2001. Boeing 737-3H4 N608SW (msn 27928) departs from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.

Southwest Airlines Aircraft Slide Show: AG Slide Show

In other news, Southwest is recycling its old leather seats. According to CNN, “Southwest Airlines after a large-scale redesign of many of its 737 aircraft, the carrier found itself with an excess of 80,000 leather seat covers — enough to fill the Empire State Building.

Southwest dubbed the initiative “Luv Seat: Repurpose with Purpose,” and reached out to potential partners to take the used leather, but found that there were few takers.

Following the advice of Bill Tiffany, a Southwest VP who grew up in Kenya, the airline started looking towards Africa for recipients of the used leather. Rather than just donating the goods and leaving it there, the airline decided to take a more holistic approach, giving the materials to NGOs that will use them to provide job training and health education.

The main partner is SOS Children’s Villages Kenya, which is providing paid apprenticeships and training to orphaned youth, who in turn make shoes and soccer balls from the leather. The shoes are given to Maasai Treads, who distributes them as part of a campaign to fight debilitating foot parasites. The soccer balls are donated to Alive & Kicking, a charity that uses sport to educate young people on HIV/AIDS and malaria prevention.”

Great idea Southwest. Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Photo courtesy of Southwest Airlines.

Southwest seats made into soccer balls (Southwest)

The proposed return of the Air Florida brand as a public charter carrier

Air Florida (3rd) (St. Petersburg/Clearwater) is the latest return of an historic brand following the return of PEOPLExpress and Eastern. The paper airline has posted this plan and information on their new website:

Air Florida Kiss Us Hello

Air Florida is a privately-held start-up carrier, incorporated as a Florida Corporation In 2014. The company has filed for registration of all logos and indicia of the iconic carrier (Air Florida 1st, 1971-1984), and will operate initially as a public charter carrier.

The carrier Is expected to name the executive team of Aviation Solutions, Inc., of Dallas, TX to manage all phases of operation.

We have reached an agreement In principle with Xtra Airways of Boise, ID for the provision of multiple Boeing 737-400 aircraft (and crews) on an ACMI lease program.

Air Florida (3rd) logo (small)

The carrier is also in discussion for a similar lease arrangement for one McDonnell Douglas MD-11 aircraft for long-haul service, initially proposed to be (Los Angeles-St. Petersburg/Clearwater-San Juan.

While Air Florida will indeed provide leisure travel services from under-served airports In the Northeast and Midwest to various destinations in our home state. Many of the cities in our launch service will become focus cities upon further expansion. The carrier will offer connecting flights and point-to-point service between Northeast and Midwest destinations.

In addition to providing both low-fare leisure and business travel, a key philosophy behind the start-up is a return to the original Air Florida’s K.I.S.S. (Keep It Sweet & Simple) principles. Air Florida does not intend to add hidden or ‘A La Carte’ fees to its fares, but will work to keep fares low while offering our customers what should be expected in air travel.

Air Florida 8.2014 Proposed Route Map

We intend to commence service in early 2015 with service from St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Daytona Beach and Ft Lauderdale/Hollywood to Chicago (Gary), St. Louis, Pittsburgh, Allentown (Lehigh Valley) and Worcester.

The would-be airline is currently in discussions to lease Embraer EMB-120 turboprops as feeder flights for its proposed long-range routes operated with Boeing 737-400s.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. The 1979 blue and green color scheme of the original Air Florida is seen on Boeing 737-2T4 N56AF (msn 22369).

The original Air Florida aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Japan Airlines to restart Osaka (Kansai)-Los Angeles flights on March 20, introduces “JAL Sky Suite 787″ service

JAL-Japan Airlines (Tokyo) will resume the Osaka (Kansai)-Los Angeles route on March 20, 2015. Additionally the carrier will resume Nagoya (Chubu Centrair)-Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi) route on December 20, 2014.

The airline issued this statement:

JAL Group (JAL) has announced revisions to its international network, flight frequency and fleet plans in the second half of fiscal year 2014, the year ending March 31, 2015. The airline will launch two routes between Nagoya (Chubu) and Bangkok, as well as between Osaka (Kansai) and Los Angeles. Additionally, the airline’s fully revamped JAL SKY SUITE aircraft will be expanded onto more international routes. JAL is implementing adjusted flight frequencies and fleet plans in accordance with the needs of its customers. JAL is embracing new challenges to expand its network, and to enhance the quality of products and services in order to improve customers’ convenience.

The following flight schedules and fleet plans are subject to relevant authorities’ approvals and changes.

1. Expansion of International Network

JAL will advance the implementation of an expanded international network outside of Japan’s Tokyo Metropolitan Area, which was originally scheduled for FY2015. The airline will launch Chubu = Bangkok route from December 2014, and Kansai = Los Angeles route from March 2015. These are JAL’s first international flights from Chubu Airport in ten years, and concurrently its first international flights from Kansai Airport in six years. JAL becomes the only Japanese airline to operate nonstop flights on these two international routes. The airline is positively contributing to the economic development of the Chubu and Kansai regions, as well as to the improvement of customers’ convenience.

Launched Routes

Flight No.

Route

Dep. Time

Arr. Time

Aircraft

Date Effective

Days of Operation

JL737

Nagoya (Chubu) – Bangkok

10:30

14:50

767-300ER 787-8(*1)

Dec. 20, 2014 ~

Daily

JL738

Bangkok – Nagoya (Chubu)

22:55

06:20+1

JL060

Osaka (Kansai) – Los Angeles

15:20 (17:40)*(2)

09:20 (12:00)

787-8

Mar. 20, 2015 ~

Daily

JL069

Los Angeles – Osaka (Kansai)

11:20 (14:30)

15:50+1 (19:00+1)

(*1) Boeing 787-8 will utilized on the Chubu – Bangkok route from January 1, 2015.
(*2) “( )”are the Dep. and Arr. time on and after March 29, 2015, which are subject to change.

Chubu-Bangkok route

The Bangkok route will be initially operated with a Boeing 767-300 ERs, and from January 2015, the aircraft is scheduled to be replaced with the Boeing 787-8s in order to provide customers with a more comfortable in-flight experience. JAL will operate five daily flights between Japan and Bangkok after adding the Chubu – Bangkok service, which re-positions JAL as the leader in flight frequencies to and from Bangkok. Additionally, JAL customers arriving from Japan can transit at Bangkok to an additional 13 destinations beyond, including Myanmar and Cambodia, by using JAL codeshare flights operated by Bangkok Airways (PG).

Kansai=Los Angeles route

In addition to JAL’s daily Tokyo (Narita) – Los Angeles flight (*3), JAL will launch the Kansai – Los Angeles route, the only nonstop connection between Los Angeles and the area with Japan’s second largest economy and population, starting March 20, 2015.
(*3)Two daily flights are available between Narita and Los Angeles including the codeshare flights operated by AA.

The Kansai – Los Angeles route will operate utilizing the Boeing 787-8, which offers an improved in-flight experience because of the aircraft’s advanced technology, especially on long-haul routes. Additionally, in cooperation with American Airlines (AA), JAL’s partner airline for trans-Pacific joint business, customers can reach 37 additional destinations from Los Angeles, via AA’s network.

Additionally, Boeing 787-8s will be introduced on the Narita – Bangkok and Kansai – Bangkok routes from December 2014, as well as the Chubu – Bangkok route from January 2015, enabling JAL to provide fully-flat seats or shell flat seats in Business Class cabins on all medium and long haul routes to and from Southeast Asia and Honolulu.

Additionally, smaller aircraft will be introduced on select Chubu = Shanghai, Narita = Shanghai and Narita = Beijing flights. The airline will also utilize the Boeing 787-8 on its Narita – Delhi route from December 2014 and concurrently decrease flight frequency on its Narita -Seoul (Incheon) route. JAL is continuously reviewing and responding to meet changes in demand including the expected growth of transit needs between

 

Effective Period

Flight No.

Aircraft

December 1, 2014 ~

JL407/JL408

777-300ER (SS7) to 787-8 (SS8)

January 1, 2015 ~

JL004/JL003

787-8 to 787-8 (SS8)

December 1, 2014 ~

JL002/JL001

787-8 to 777-300ER (SS7)

JL771/JL772

777-200ER to 777-300ER (SS7)

October 26, 2014 ~

JL759/JL750

767-300ER to 767-300ER (SS6)

December 1, 2014 ~

JL033/JL032

767-300ER to 777-200ER

JL707/JL708

767-300ER to 787-8

JL727/JL728

JL749/JL740

777-200ER to 787-8

JL741/JL742

767-300ER to 787-8

JL097/JL098

767-300ER to 777-200ER

October 26, 2014 ~

JL809/JL802

737-800 to 767-300ER

JL877/JL874

767-300ER to 737-800

JL883/JL884

JL869/JL860

(*6) Aircraft type change for JL003 will be from January 2, 2015.

(*7) Aircraft type change for JL772 will be from December 2, 2014.
(*9) Aircraft type change for JL708 will be from December 2, 2014.
(*10) Aircraft type change for JL728 will be from December 2, 2014.

(*11) JL954 will be operated by Boeing 737-800 on October 26, 2014.

(*12) Days of operation: Wednesday, Friday and Sunday

Read the full report from ZipanguFlyer: CLICK HERE

JAL Sky Suite 787

In other news, JAL is also introducing a new “JAL SKY SUITE 787″ service on its new Boeing 787-8 on the Tokyo (Narita)-Frankfurt route (JL407/JL408) starting on December 1, 2014 and on the Tokyo (Narita)-New York route (JL004/JL003) on January 1, 2015.

JAL 787 Sky Suite Seating Chart

Additionally, JAL will introduce fully-flat seat named “JAL SKY SUITE” in Business Class on the 787.

JAL 787 Business Sky Suite

In Economy Class, as the second installment of “New Spacious Economy” on international routes, JAL SKY WIDER II will be introduced also on the 787.

JAL 787 Economy JAL Sky Wider II (JAL)(LR)

Top Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by JAL). Boeing 787-8 JA827J (msn 34837) arrives in New York (JFK).

JAL-Japan Airlines: AG Slide Show

ANA and Lufthansa Cargo obtain antitrust immunity for their Japan-Europe joint cargo venture

ANA-All Nippon Airways (Tokyo) and Lufthansa Cargo AG (Frankfurt) will launch a strategic air cargo joint venture on routes between Japan and Europe and vice versa. This is the first worldwide cargo joint venture of its kind. ANA has received antitrust immunity, i. e. approval for the joint venture from the Japanese Ministry of Land Infrastructure and Transport after filing for it in the spring of 2014. In addition, the joint venture has been positively assessed by external counsel for compliance with relevant EU antitrust regulations.

Now ANA and Lufthansa Cargo can jointly manage activities covered by the joint venture including network planning, pricing, sales and handling on all routes between Japan and Europe and vice versa. Based on a joint contract which shall be signed in the next weeks, the two carriers aim to introduce the joint approach on shipments originating from Japan to Europe in winter 2014/2015 and for shipments from Europe to Japan mid-2015.

The joint venture will benefit customers by generating a greater selection of routings and a wider range of service options. Customers will especially profit from a larger and faster network with more direct flights, more destinations and more frequencies. By their moving under one roof at major stations, such as the airports Tokyo Narita and Nagoya in Japan and Dusseldorf and Frankfurt in Germany, customers will enjoy the services of both airlines at a single location.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. ANA Cargo’s Boeing 767-381F ER JA602F (msn 33509) arrives at bthe Tokyo (Narita) base.

ANA: AG Slide Show

Lufthansa Cargo: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Rob Skinkis/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FBT D-ALFC (msn 41676) of Lufthansa Cargo lands at Manchester.

 

British Airways to refresh 18 Boeing 747-400 cabins

British Airways (London) is upgrading 18 selected Boeing 747-400s for a cabin refresh including a new in-flight entertainment system. The airline issued this statement:

Some of British Airways’ much-loved Boeing 747s are to receive a cabin refresh including a state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment system.

Customers travelling on the 18 selected 747s will be treated to double the choice of TV programs and films thanks to the installation of Panasonic’s next generation eX3 entertainment system.

The new system, which will be installed from August 2015, will provide more than 130 movies and 400 TV programs on larger, hi-resolution screens, capable of touch and swipe gestures, giving the system the familiar feel of using a tablet.

Lightweight in design, the system from Panasonic Avionics Corporation also helps to save the amount of fuel used by the aircraft.

As part of the upgrade, customers in World Traveller Plus on these aircraft will have access to a universal power socket at every seat, capable of accepting plugs from the UK, US and Europe. In addition, World Traveller customers will now have their own personal USB socket to power phones and tablets.

Richard D’Cruze, British Airways’ in-flight entertainment and technology manager, said: “We know that in-flight entertainment is really important to our customers – being able to relax and watch a film or listen to music helps customers to pass the time enjoyably – so by installing this state-of-the-art equipment we will be able to deliver even more programing on board.”

The refit, which will be carried out by British Airways’ engineers in Cardiff, will include a cabin interior refresh bringing these 747s more in line with the airline’s newest aircraft.

New seat foams will be installed in World Traveller and World Traveller Plus to increase customer comfort and new style seat covers fitted to improve appearance and match those on the A380 and 787. Carpets and curtains throughout the plane will also be replaced to the new aircraft colour pallet.

Kathryn Doyle, aircraft cabin interiors manager, said: “Our customers love our new aircraft, and we wanted to refresh the 747s in line with them as we know they have a special place in the heart of many of our customers. These aircraft will get some well deserved TLC and the improvements will be really noticeable to our frequent fliers.”

British Airways has introduced a number of recent changes to its in-flight entertainment, including the introduction of HBO and the Discovery Channel as well as a new ‘paws and relax channel’ showing cute footage of cats, kittens, dogs and puppies, to enhance the wellbeing of customers.

British Airways was also the first European airline to permit the use of hand-held mobile devices after landing and the first European airline to introduce the use of in-flight entertainment systems from gate-to-gate.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747-436 G-CIVO (msn 28849) completes its final approach to the runway at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York.

British Airways: AG Slide Show

Air France-KLM to retire the Martinair McDonnell Douglas MD-11 freighters in 2015 and 2016, will expand Transavia leisure flights

Air France (Paris) and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) (Air France-KLM Group) issued this statement about its shrinking and unprofitable freighter fleet including Martinair‘s (Amsterdam) McDonnell Douglas MD-11 freighter fleet:

At its meeting on September 4, 2014, the Air France-KLM Board of Directors examined the findings of the strategic review of its full-freighter operations which was launched earlier this year.

On top of the ongoing reduction of the full-freighter fleet, and facing a slower than expected recovery in demand, the Board of Directors has decided to reduce the full-freighter fleet based in Amsterdam to 3 aircraft in operation by the end of 2016. Five MD-11s will be phased out on an accelerated basis during 2015 and 2016.

By then, the Group will operate five full-freighter aircraft: 2 Boeing 777Fs in Paris and 3 Boeing 747 ERFs in Amsterdam, compared with a total of 14 in 2013.

The group intends to find alternative employment internally for all affected staff. It will engage in consultations on this matter with the Works Council and trade unions of the companies involved.

The Group will remain a major player in the cargo sector in Europe through its extensive belly network effectively supplemented by a limited number of full-freighter aircraft.

This adjustment of the full-freighter fleet is part of a broader strategic vision designed to increase cargo contribution to the group. Other measures include a strong focus on specialized products such as pharmaceuticals and express, as well as investment in state-of-the-art IT infrastructure and E-developments, further cost reduction and expansion of partnerships.

In other news, the Air France-KLM Group will expand its leisure operations under the Transavia brand with new bases outside of Paris and Amsterdam. The Group issued this statement:

At its meeting on September 4, 2014, as proposed by its Chairman and CEO Alexandre de Juniac, the Air France-KLM Board of Directors approved the group’s development project on the leisure market in Europe.

This development will take place under the Transavia brand from the two existing airlines – Transavia France and Transavia the Netherlands – and new bases will be opened in other European countries.

This project will strengthen the development of Transavia France (Paris) and Transavia Airlines (Amsterdam) in the Netherlands. The terms of these developments are the subject of consultations in both countries.

The group is positioning itself as a major player in this rapidly growing market in Europe.

This project is part of the group’s new plan for growth and competitiveness, Perform 2020, which will be presented in details to investors and to the press on September 11.

Air France-KLM have also unveiled its new “Perform 2020″ program which replaces its “Transform 2015″ program. Here is the formal plan:

Air France-KLM unveiled its new Perform 2020 strategic plan.

Perform 2020 is the successor to Transform 2015, which represented the first phase in the Group’s turnaround. While maintaining the imperatives of competitiveness and the ongoing strengthening of the Group’s financial position, this growth plan will focus on the following three strategic areas:

  •   Selective development to increase exposure to growth markets
  •   A product and services upgrade targeting the highest international level
  •   An ongoing improvement in competitiveness and efficiency within the framework of strictfinancial disciplineAir France-KLM’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Alexandre de Juniac, made the following comments:
    “Transform 2015 will be completed by the year end having fully delivered on its objective of significantly improving the Group’s competitiveness and delivering a €1 billion-plus reduction in costs. Perform 2020, the strategic plan we are launching today, will be supported by two main levers: growth, which we are looking to capture in a number of areas, and competitiveness combined with financial discipline which should continue to ensure firm foundations for the development of Air France-KLM. This is why the ambitious initiatives we are launching today will go hand in hand with redoubled efforts to reduce costs and restructure activities which remain loss-making. By 2020, we will have built an air transport Group focused on a leading long-haul network at the heart of global alliances, with a portfolio of unique brands, restructured short and medium-haul operations with a reinforced presence in the low cost segment in Europe, leadership positions in cargo, maintenance and catering, and a significantly improved risk profile both operationally and financially.”

    1 See definition in appendix
    2 At constant currency, fuel price and pension cost

Business review

In an environment which remains challenging but with profitable growth opportunities across all the Group’s markets, Air France-KLM plans to reinforce its key strengths, namely its network, its products and services, and its brands, while adjusting its portfolio of activities.

The development of the passenger hub business based on an upgraded product offer, an increased customer focus and a stronger positioning of brands. Benefiting from the broadest long-haul network on departure from Europe, the Group will be able to continue to capture growth opportunites particularly via the reinforcement of strategic partnerships.

The Group will maintain strict capacity discipline with growth in passenger capacity expected to be around 1% to 1.5% for the 2015-2017 period.

The Group will continue to restructure its point-to-point operations, aiming at a return to operating breakeven by 2017. In addition to the full impact of the measures launched in 2013, this objective will be reached thanks to new initiatives to restructure the network and reduce costs, together with the creation of a single business unit combining HOP and the Air France point-to-point operations.

The accelerated development of Air France-KLM in the European leisure market, under the Transavia brand, based on the two existing companies – Transavia France and Transavia Netherlands – and new bases to be created in other European countries. In a growth market, the Group plans to build on the results achieved within the framework of Transform 2015 to move to a more pan-European scale. By 2017, Transavia will rank amongst the leading low cost carriers in Europe, operating a fleet of 100 aircraft and carrying more than 20 million passengers. This business should contribute an additional €100 million of EBITDAR in 2017. With profitability being impacted by ongoing ramp-up costs, the Group is targeting operating profits by 2018.

The finalization of cargo repositioning: a significant reduction in the full-freighter fleet, from 14 aircraft in operation in 2013 to 5 aircraft at the end of 2016, should enable this business to return to operating breakeven in 2017 (versus a loss of €110 million in 2013 and a €200 million loss including bellies). The group will maintain a small full-freighter fleet as an important commercial lever to support its revenue premium on bellies. The Group will remain a major player in the European cargo sector thanks to its extensive belly network, but with only very limited remaining exposure (15% of capacity) to full-freighter volatility.

The recent development of the maintenance business has proven successful, with increased profitability and rapid growth in the order book. The Group will pursue its growth in this segment, particularly in engines and components, including via targeted acquisitions. This business should generate an additional €50 million to €80 million of EBITDAR in 2017, depending on acquisitions.

From a selective capex management while adopting a disciplined approach to growth opportunities. financial perspective, Air France-KLM plans to pursue the reduction in its unit costs and The Group will leverage the structured approach implemented within the framework of Transform 2015 to maintain unit cost reduction at an annual rate of 1% to 1.5%. To achieve this target, the group will go beyond traditional efforts directed at reducing unit costs (e.g. reduction in external expenses, purchasing policy and renewal of the long-haul fleet). This will involve the ongoing restructuring of uncompetitive activities and implementing a systematic review of processes using benchmarking based on profit centers. It will also entail negotiating with staff on the achievement of productivity gains paving the way to growth.

A progressive increase in fleet capex will be undertaken within the framework of strict capex control. Investment will remain below its pre-2012 level. Dedicated sources of funding will be allocated to significant development opportunities to ensure control over credit ratios. For example, the first phase in Transavia expansion will be financed by the €339 million proceeds generated from the partial disposal of Amadeus shares on September 9.

Medium-term financial targets to 2017

As a result of all these initiatives, Air France-KLM has set itself the following Group financial targets:

  •   EBITDAR up by 8% to 10%5 per year between 2013 and 2017
  •   An adjusted net debt/EBITDAR4 ratio of below 2.5 in 2017
  •   Base businesses to consistently generate annual positive free cash flowThese targets are consistent with a ROCE of 9% to 11% in 2017.

Read the analysis by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/AirlinersGallery.com. Martinair’s McDonnell Douglas MD-11 (F) PH-MCS (msn 48618) prepares to land at London’s Stansted Airport.

Air France: AG Slide Show

KLM: AG Slide Show

Martinair: AG Slide Show

Transavia Airlines (Netherlands): AG Slide Show

Transavia Airlines (France): AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Transavia Airlines’ (Netherlands) Boeing 737-8K2 PH-HZA (msn 28373) with a Kulula underside taxies at the Amsterdam base.

 

LOT Polish Airlines returns to the black

LOT Polish Airlines (Warsaw) is enjoying a financial turnaround, especially with the help of its new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners. The airline issued this statement:

LOT Polish Airlines has consistently improved its financial standing and is now in the black. At the end of August, the airline exceeded the cumulative breakeven point, thus making a profit on its core business of flying following years of losses. This is in line with the assumptions of the restructuring plan.

Sebastian Mikosz, CEO of LOT Polish Airlines said, “Compared to the corresponding period of 2013, we have attained a better result of PLN 100M ($30,934,000). LOT is seeking to achieve sustainable profitability and we have consistently pursued our goals to meet our annual financial forecast. According to the Restructuring Plan, approved by the European Commission, we are expected to achieve a return of approximately PLN 70M ($21,654,000) in 2014. Our improved effectiveness is marked in all aspects of our operations. Reaching the breakeven point is the exclusive success of the company’s activities. There are no market-specific factors, such as aviation fuel prices or currency exchange rates that helped us achieve these results, as was the case partially last year.”

LOT began to improve its financial results in 2013. Last year closed with a slight loss on the core business of PLN 4M ($1,237,360). This result was still better than assumed in the Restructuring Plan. Last year was also the first year of many in which LOT recorded a net profit. It amounted to PLN 26M ($8,042.840).

LOT continues to finance the difficult restructuring process exclusively with its own resources. By the end of September, the airline will not apply for the second tranche of public aid, which will be smaller than assumed.

LOT owes its positive results to continuous transitions. The carrier continues to improve the quality of services, launch new products, expand its portfolio and approach new passenger groups.

LOT has also increased its transit capacities by as much as 40%, meaning passengers travelling via Warsaw are able to change more comfortably on their way to other cities in Poland and destinations in Central and Eastern Europe.

2014 marks the first year of the “Dreamliner’s effect”. The first LOT Boeing 787 jets started flying in June with now all long-haul flights operated with Dreamliners since August. This aircraft is not only popular among the passengers, but brings tangible benefits, such as fuel savings.

In July 2014, the European Commission made a positive decision about LOT. The Restructuring Plan was approved and public aid was granted. The restructuring process of the company will end at the end of 2015. Until that time, LOT may not operate new flights. However, the first new flights are to be announced at the beginning of 2015.

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. The restructuring program and the new Boeing 787s are game changers for LOT. The 787s have also changed the way people think of the airline. Boeing 787-8 SP-LRC (msn 35940) arrives in Toronto (Pearson).

LOT Polish Airlines: AG Slide Show

Alaska Airlines starts Seattle/Tacoma-Detroit service

Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) yesterday (September 4) launched nonstop service from its Seattle/Tacoma hub to Detroit. Detroit becomes Alaska Airlines’ 77th nonstop destination out of Seattle/Tacoma.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Alaska is proud to be all Boeing, a close partnership for the crosstown companies. Boeing 737-890 N512AS (msn 39043) in the special Boeing Dreamliner scheme arrives in Los Angeles.

Alaska Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

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