Tag Archives: HNL

9 air starts operations in China

9 air (9air.com) (Jiu Yuan Airlines) (Guangzhou-Baiyun) commenced operations on December 2. The first route connected Guangzhou with Zhanjiang. The new airline is a subsidiary of Juneyao Airlines.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8GP B-1715 (msn 39819) passes through Honolulu on delivery. B-1715 is one of three 737-800s leased from Transportation Partners (Lion Air).


Island Air prematurely pays a $4,000 Christmas bonus to its pilots, now wants it back

Island Air (Honolulu), owned by billionaire Larry Ellison, wants its pilots to pay back a prematurely-paid $4,000 Christmas bonus according to the Star Advertiser. The payment was sent prematurely last month “due to an internal administrative error”. Oops!

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. ATR 72-210 N342AT (msn 345) waits for the next flight departure at the Honolulu gate.

Island Air aircraft slide show:

QANTAS Airways and China Eastern Airlines announce a closer relationship

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) and China Eastern Airlines (Shanghai) today (November 17) announced a new joint venture, marking the start of a deeper level of commercial cooperation on flights between Australia and China.

The airlines will now submit an application for authorization to Australian and Chinese regulators. Subject to regulatory approval, it is anticipated that the joint agreement will commence in mid-2015.

The five year agreement was signed today by QANTAS Group CEO Alan Joyce and China Eastern Chairman Liu Shaoyong at Parliament House, in a ceremony attended by Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping.

Under the agreement, the airlines will deliver substantial benefits for customers and support the growing trade, tourism and corporate travel links between Australia and China. It is designed to complement the QANTAS-Emirates partnership for Europe, Middle East and North Africa and the QANTAS-American Airlines partnership for the US.

Through the new partnership, the airlines hope to ultimately open up new routes between Australia and mainland China, such as between Brisbane and Perth to Shanghai.

A key benefit of the agreement will be the co-location of both carriers’ operations in Terminal 1 at Shanghai International Airport, which will cut transit times by about an hour, open up a better range of onward connections and provide more choice for customers.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. The first Boeing 737-800 to wear the new 2014 China Eastern brand is this 737-89P registered as B-5689 (msn 41512) passing through Honolulu on delivery on November 7, 2014.

China Eastern Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Hawaiian Airlines celebrates 85 years of flying

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) yesterday (November 11) celebrating its 85th anniversary of continuous service for the Hawaiian islands and 85 years of flying as an airline.

Hawai’i’s first interisland passenger service was launched on November 11, 1929 as Inter-Island Airways (see video above), with a flight from Honolulu to Hilo, which took a total of one hour and 40 minutes. The first flight to Kaua’i was made the following day and all the Hawaiian Islands were soon receiving air service on a regular basis. During this time, the first inflight treat offered to passengers was a stick of Wrigley gum to relieve ear pressure. The 85-year-old airline is reviving that in-flight amenity by handing out Wrigley’s Doublemint® gum, which is also celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, along with a commemorative postcard and historic logo stickers to more than 12,000 passengers on all of its neighbor island flights.

Hawaiian logo

Additionally, Hawaiian Airlines has also published a special commemorative book highlighting 85 years of its history and legacy which will be available for sale online at Shop.HawaiianAirlines.com in late November.

Winners of Hawaiian Airlines’ social media contest series were given free rides throughout the day on the airline’s original airplane, a 1929 Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker (above), which was restored in 2009 in celebration of the company’s 80th anniversary.

Hawaiian Airlines’ 85th anniversary has been devoted to giving back to the community. In September, the airline unveiled a memorial wall at Kahului Airport honoring Capt. James Bertram Hogg, the pilot whose name was used for the airport’s three-letter code (OGG) (see video below). The event kicked off a three-month-long celebration that continued with an all-day community event in early October at the ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaii in Hilo, the airline’s first destination. On November 8, Hawaiian Airlines also showcased all of its flight attendant uniforms dating back to 1943 with a fashion show at Honolulu Fashion Week.

Throughout the month of November, Hawaiian Airlines Team Kōkua will be participating in statewide community service projects on the islands of Hawai’i, Maui, O’ahu and Kaua’i, restoring agricultural and historical sites.

Looking Back at Hawaiian Airlines’ 85-Year History:

On November 11, 1929, Inter-Island Airways (the company changed its name to Hawaiian Airlines in 1941) launched Hawai’i’s first-ever scheduled interisland air passenger service using two Sikorsky S-38 amphibian propeller planes that carried eight passengers and two crewmembers, and had a top cruising speed of 110 MPH.

Along with being Hawai’i’s first commercial airline, Hawaiian Airlines’ 85-year history of service has featured several other notable achievements, including:

Introducing airmail and air cargo service to the Hawaiian Islands in 1934.
Becoming America’s first federally certified air cargo carrier in 1942.
Introducing Hawai’i’s first aircraft with pressurized passenger cabins in 1952.
Introducing Hawai’i’s first interisland jet aircraft in 1966.
Becoming the nation’s first airline to operate a commercial flight with an all-female flight crew in 1979.
Being the first Hawai’i-based airline to offer scheduled service between Hawai’i and the U.S. Mainland in 1985.

Today, Hawaiian Airlines’ route network encompasses six of the eight Hawaiian Islands, as well as 11 International and 11 U.S. Mainland destinations. Hawaiian Airlines operates a fleet of 51 aircraft – 18 Boeing 717-200 jets for interisland flights in Hawai’i; 11 Boeing 767-300 and 19 Airbus 330-200 wide-body jets for transpacific and international service; and three ATR 42 for its new turbo prop service ‘Ohana by Hawaiian that launched earlier this year.

Hawaiian Airlines will have three more A330s joining the fleet by the end of 2015. By the end of year 2020, the airline plans to have 22 A330s total and 16 new narrow body A321neo aircraft. The airline will begin taking delivery of six new A330-800neo aircraft in 2019.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com.

Hawaiian Airlines aircraft slide show:

Video: How OGG became the airport code for Kahului:

Why does Kahului Airport use the airport code of OGG? Hawaiian Airlines answers the question as part of its 85th anniversary celebrations

Hawaiian OGG Jimmy Hogg Tribute

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) which is currently preparing to celebrate 85 years of flying on November 11, has answered the riddle for travelers to Maui; Why does the Kulului Airport use the three-letter code of OGG? Hawaiian issued this statement about the new wall at OGG:

Travelers to Maui will no longer have to puzzle over why Kahului Airport’s three-letter airport code is OGG. They need only spend a few minutes at a new wall paying tribute to Capt. Jimmy Hogg, the Hawaiian Airlines pilot and aviation pioneer for whom the airport is named.

The 8-foot tall, 42-foot wide wall at Gate 19 was presented on September 15 by Hawaiian Airlines, the State Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).

“We were approached with the idea of sharing the story of Captain Hogg’s life and career by TSA employees in Kahului, who are asked questions everyday about the origin of OGG,” said Mark Dunkerley, president and CEO of Hawaiian Airlines, Hawai’i’s oldest and largest commercial airline. “Kahului Airport officials offered to provide us with the space and we were delighted to design this fitting tribute to Jimmy, whose epic career ran from the earliest days of commercial aviation in Hawai’i to the dawn of the jet age.”

Born and raised in Līhu’e, Kaua’i on a sugar plantation, Hogg grew up watching airplanes land at Nāwiliwili and decided at the age of 12 that he was destined to become a pilot. He started his aviation career on January 1, 1930 at Inter-island Airways as a mechanic’s helper. He became a co-pilot in 1936, and captain the following year. He went on to achieve a series of “firsts” with the airline, which was renamed Hawaiian Airlines in October 1941. Hogg made the first commercial flight after the attack on Pearl Harbor, coming under ground fire from those mistaking his plane for an enemy aircraft. On January 14, 1958, he flew Hawaiian Airlines’ first trans-Pacific flight, delivering a DC-6 from the West Coast to Honolulu.

When the Civil Aeronautics Authority (CAA) began to standardize airport navigational beacons after World War II, it turned to Hogg for assistance. In 1957, when it was decided that Kahului Airport needed a three-letter code, the CAA took the opportunity to honor one of the pioneers of Hawai’i aviation. Hogg retired from Hawaiian Airlines in 1968 and passed away at the age of 84 in 1992. A video recap of his life is located at the bottom of this story.

Anniversary Activities

The dedication of the Capt. Jimmy Hogg Memorial Wall at Kahului Airport kicks off a series of celebrations leading up to Hawaiian Airlines’ 85th anniversary on November 11, 2014.

On October 4, 2014, Hawaiian Airlines will host an all-day community event at the ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaii in Hilo, the airline’s first destination. Residents of Hawai’i Island are invited to enjoy the museum as well as live entertainment and exhibits. Weather permitting, free rides will be offered on the airline’s original aircraft, a 1929 Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker NC251M (msn 154) is pictured at Honolulu.

Hawaiian Airlines Aircraft Slide Show: AG Slide Show

Trivia contests via Hawaiian Airlines social media channels will offer prizes throughout the months of October and November, including drawings for free sightseeing rides on the historic Bellanca.

On November 11, 2014, Hawaiian Airlines’ Team Kōkua of employees will be participating in simultaneous community service projects on the islands of Kaua’i and Hawai’i.

“Hawaiian Airlines has been flying almost as long as the advent of commercial aviation, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year—both of which are remarkable achievements,” said Dunkerley. “We thank our dedicated employees and our loyal customers, whom both are key reasons why Hawaiian Airlines is able to celebrate a successful and rich 85-year history of service to the Hawaiian Islands and the world.”

Celebrating 85 Years of Service

On November 11, 1929, Inter-Island Airways (the company changed its name to Hawaiian Airlines in 1941) launched Hawai’i’s first-ever scheduled interisland air service using two Sikorsky S-38 amphibian propeller planes that carried eight passengers and two crewmembers, and had a top cruising speed of 110 MPH.

The company’s inaugural flight 85 years ago from Honolulu to Hilo, with a stop on Maui, took one hour and 50 minutes. The first flight to Kaua’i was made the following day and all the Hawaiian Islands were soon receiving air service on a regular basis.

Along with being Hawai’i’s first commercial airline, Hawaiian Airlines’ 85-year history of service has featured several other notable achievements, including:

Inter-Island S-43 (Hawaiian)(LR)

Introducing airmail and air cargo service to the Hawaiian Islands in 1934.

Becoming America’s first federally certified air cargo carrier in 1942.

Hawaiian DC-3 (Flt)(Hawaiian)(LR)

Introducing Hawai’i’s first aircraft with pressurized passenger cabins in 1952.

Introducing Hawai’i’s first inter-island jet aircraft in 1966.

Becoming the nation’s first airline to operate a commercial flight with an all-female flight crew in 1979.

Being the first Hawai’i-based airline to offer scheduled service between Hawai’i and the U.S. Mainland in 1985.

Today, Hawaiian Airlines has a fleet of 50 aircraft – 18 Boeing 717-200 jets for interisland flights in Hawai’i; 11 Boeing 767-300 and 18 Airbus 330-200 wide-body jets for transpacific and international service; and three ATR-42 for its new turbo prop service that launched earlier this year, ‘Ohana by Hawaiian.

Hawaiian Airlines will have four more A330s joining the fleet by the end of 2015. By the end of year 2020, the airline plans to have 22 A330s total and 16 new narrow body A321neo aircraft, along with six new A330-800neo aircraft starting in 2019.

Video: Do you know why the Kahului Airport code is OGG? The code of this Hawaiian Airlines station is named after Captain Jimmy Hogg, an accomplished pilot who started his career as a mechanic’s helper with Inter-Island Airways of Hawaii then later became the Captain of Flight Operation for Hawaiian Airlines.

Hawaiian logo

Route Map: Hawaiian Airlines today:

Hawaiian 9.2014 Route Map

Air China and Kunming Airlines sign a codeshare agreement

Air China (Beijing) and Kunming Airlines (Kunming) signed a codeshare cooperation agreement in the city of Kunming on September 3, 2014, and the two carriers will start code share in the form of free marketing on each other’s selected domestic flights from September 15, 2014.

According to the agreement, the two carriers will connect the city of Kunming to their respective route networks. With the cooperation, Air China will put its code CA on the nearly 500 weekly flights of 26 routes operated by Kunming Airlines, which will extend its route network to the cities of Yunnan province and other neighboring cities. At the same time, Kunming Airlines will put its code KY on about 210 weekly flights of 9 routes operated by Air China, which will extend its network to most of China’s big and medium-sized cities.

In financial news, Air China reported a first half net profit of CNY 510 million ($82.8 million), down 55% for the same period a year ago.

Top Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-89L B-5425 (msn 36743) of Air China arrives at the Beijing (Capital) hub.

Air China Aircraft Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/AirlinersGallery.com. Kunming Airlines’ Boeing 737-87L B-1926 (msn 41111) passed through Honolulu on delivery.

9 air takes delivery of its first Boeing 737-800, preparing to start operations

9 air (9air.com) (Nine Star Airways) (Guangzhou and Bangkok) as we previously reported is a new budget airline in China. On August 27 the new company took delivery of its first Boeing 737-800, the pictured 737-8GP B-1715 (msn 39819). The company hopes to launch scheduled passenger operations next month when a second aircraft is delivered.

According to Reuters, 9 Air finalized its order for 50 Boeing 737 jets, becoming the second Chinese carrier which operates an all-Boeing fleet.

The order includes a mix of Boeing Next-Generation 737 jets and 737 MAX aircraft.

9 air is owned by privately held Juneyao Airlines which is an Airbus A320 operator.

Nine Star Airways also intends to operate Airbus A320s from Bangkok.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. B-1715 passes through Honolulu. B-1715 is one of three 737-800s leased from Transportation Partners (Lion Air) which are being leased in order to start operations.


Malaysia Airlines struggles to fill its seats

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) continues to be in a crisis mode. Based on some recent online photos showing many open seats on its flights, The Mirror is reporting the airline is dispatching flights with rows of empty seats as it struggles in the wake of two highly-reported accidents.

Meanwhile a restructuring plan for the beleaguered company is expected to be announced soon.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/AirlinersGallery.com. Both Airbus and Boeing could suffer if the airline is downsized. Malaysia has been loyal to both manufacturers. Brand new Boeing 737-8H6 9M-MSJ (msn 40152) passes through Honolulu on delivery.

Video: Malaysia Airlines.

Malaysia Airlines: AG Slide Show

Is AirAsia considering an investment in Skymark Airlines?

Skymark Airlines (Tokyo-Haneda) has been retrenching. Besides the cancellation of its Airbus A380 order by Airbus, the low-fare carrier has also announced it will leave Tokyo Narita and concentrate its flights at Tokyo (Haneda). Now according to ZipanguFlyer, there may be a new development:

“On August 19, the Nikkei Shimbun reported that the AirAsia Group has started considering an investment in ailing Skymark Airlines (BC/SKY), including a possible takeover. It said that the Malaysian LCC, a very important customer for Airbus, is also talking with the European manufacturer to reduce the penalties they are seeking with Skymark for the canceled Airbus A380 order.”

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

AirAsia is currently working with new Japanese partners to launch the second version of AirAsia (Japan) next year. If this report is correct and it is consummated, it would probably be the end of Skymark Airlines and Boeing would lose a loyal Japanese customer.

Stay tuned.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Boeing 737-81D JA73NN (man 39422) passes through Honolulu on its delivery flight.

Skymark Airlines: AG Slide Show

Hawaiian to fly between San Francisco and Kahului, Maui

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has announced it will offer nonstop service between San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and Kahului Airport (OGG) beginning November 20, 2014.

The nonstop service between San Francisco and Maui will begin with flights four times a week from November 20, 2014 before moving into daily service beginning December 17, 2014. The new daily service will add a total of more than 210,000 seats to both San Francisco and Maui travel markets per year, and will be operated by Hawaiian Airlines’ wide-body, twin-aisle Airbus A330-200 aircraft, which seats 294 passengers, with 18 in First Class and 276 in the Main Cabin.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A330-243 N395HA (msn 1469) departs from the Honolulu base.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show


Malaysia Airlines considers a new name, brand and livery

Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur), owned by a majority share by a holding company of the Malaysian government, is considering changes in the the wake of the two tragic accidents this year.

According to RT.com, the government is considering a rebrand, a different ownership restructure, a possible new name and an adjustment of its route network.

Malaysia Airlines is very likely to change.

As far as the livery, the two ill-fated Boeing 777-200 ERs wore the older 1987 livery (above) which features the red and blue Kelantan Wau Bulan (Moon Dragon Kite) tail logo which has been seen in the headlines over and over, especially with the debris in eastern Ukraine. Any brand refresh would probably retire this iconic and historic logo.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8FZ 9M-MLH (msn 31723) is pictured in action at Phuket, Thailand in the 1987 color scheme.

Malaysia Airlines: AG Slide Show

Below Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/AirlinersGallery.com. Malaysia refreshed the red and blue Kelantan Wau Bulan (kite) livery in 2010 with this new twin arc look while retaining the kite tail logo. Boeing 737-8H6 9M-MSE (msn 40147) passes through Honolulu on delivery.

Below Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. When Malaysia introduced the new Airbus A380, the airline unveiled this special A380 livery (for only the A380s) in 2012. The red and blue kite morphed into a blue kite for the A380s. Is this enough of a change? Probably not. Airbus A380-841 9M-MNB (msn 081) departs from London (Heathrow).

Bottom Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati/AirlinersGallery.com. When MSA was split into Malaysian Airline System (MAS) and Singapore Airlines, Malaysian (later Malaysia Airlines) originally introduced this livery in 1972. As you will note, the original livery featured a red and white kite tail logo. Dropping this historic logo will be a tough decision for the airline but unfortunately it is now a tarnished logo. Boeing 737-2H6 9M-MBH (msn 20926) prepares to depart from the gate at Kuala Lumpur.



Island Air and American commence interline e-ticket sales

Island Air (Honolulu) and American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) are commencing interline e-ticket sales and airport through check-in for customers of both carriers. The new agreement allows both airlines to sell each other’s seats and place all flight segments on a single ticket. The agreement provides customers access to a larger route system to enhance their travel options.

At the airport, this relationship means boarding passes can be issued by either Island Air or American all the way through to the guests’ final destination without having to re-check in with the next carrier. The interline relationship relieves passengers holding a through, interline ticket of transferring baggage at the connecting airport.

“We continue to improve Island Air, and with this interline agreement with American Airlines, we will expand our customer base and offer even more value,” said Island Air CEO Paul Casey.

Island Air interline e-ticketing with American became available in all major computer reservations systems on June 27, 2014.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. Former American Eagle-Executive Airlines ATR 72-210 N342AT (msn 345) sports the new 2014 livery at the Honolulu base.

Island Air:

Aloha Air Cargo adds two Boeing 737-300 freighters

Aloha Air Cargo 737-300F N301KH (08)(Blessing)(AAC)(LRW)

Aloha Air Cargo (Honolulu) has announced the initiation of its fleet replacement plan with the purchase of two former Lufthansa Boeing 737-300SF all cargo converted aircraft. The first 737-300 (737-330 N301KH, msn 27904) was delivered on June 2, 2014 and recently entered operations with the second plane (737-330 N302KH, msn 27905) currently in its initial maintenance check, and scheduled to be delivered to Honolulu during the third quarter of this year – enhancing the carrier’s fleet mix to two Boeing 737-300s, two Boeing 737-200s, and three SAAB 340A turboprops.

The Boeing 737-300 boasts nine full cargo positions totaling upwards of 39,000 lbs of payload capacity; that is two positions and nearly 10,000 lbs more than its sister aircraft, the Boeing 737-200 that Aloha currently flies. With ETOPS (Extended Range Twin Operations) capability, more fuel efficient and quieter engines, and a greatly reduced environmental footprint, the airframe is superior in every way.

“Our current fleet of four Boeing 737-200 aircraft has served Aloha and our predecessor very well over the last several decades, but timing is key to begin transitioning to a newer airframe,” said Pat Rosa, Chief Operating Officer for Aloha Air Cargo. “We are excited to invest in the future of our company and its employees by adding the 737-300s to our fleet. With this addition, Aloha Air Cargo will continue to build upon its 30 year history for providing safe and reliable cargo services to our communities in Hawaii and beyond.”

Aloha Air Cargo delivers fast, economical and reliable transport of goods between the Hawaiian Islands of Oahu, Maui, Kauai and the Island of Hawaii. It became an independent cargo operator after the closure of Aloha Airlines passenger services in May 2008. Aloha Tech Ops is a division of Aloha Air Cargo and provides maintenance and engineering services to airlines in the State of Hawaii.

Aloha Air Cargo is owned by Seattle-based Saltchuk, which has been doing business in Hawaii since 2000 when it acquired Young Brothers/Hawaiian Tug & Barge. Committed to the welfare of Hawaii and strengthening the local economy, the company also acquired Hawaii Fuel Network, Maui Petroleum and Minit Stop Stores in 2006.

Copyright Photos: Aloha Air Cargo. Kahu Kordell Kekoa blessing the plane’s name: Kū Ha’aheo (meaning “to stand tall with unselfish pride”).

Aloha Air Cargo 737-300F N301KH (08)(Grd) HNL (AAC)(LRW)

Aloha Air Cargo: AG Slide Show

Aloha Air Cargo logo copy

Current Route Map:

Aloha Air Cargo 6.2014 Route Map

Spring Airlines Japan to launch operations on June 27

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

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

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

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

Spring Japan logo


Mokulele Airlines adds Honolulu-Kahului, Maui flights on April 1

Mokulele Airlines (Kona, Hawaii) began offering nonstop flights between Kahului, Maui and Honolulu on April 1 as part of its expansion plans for 2014. This summer, Mokulele will also begin offering service from Kalaeloa Airport on O’ahu which is located at the former Barber’s Point Naval Air Base John Rogers Field. To meet these expanding flight schedules, Mokulele is adding three new Cessna Grand Caravan aircraft to its fleet.

Mokulele is also reassuring the public that it is separate from go! Airlines and is still operating despite the shutdown of go! on April 1. In 2011, Mokulele’s parent company, TransPac Aviation, purchased the turbo prop division of Mesa Air Group, the operator of go! Airlines. Since that time, Mokulele and go! have operated as two separate airlines, which is why Mokulele flight operations are not being affected by go!’s April 1 shutdown.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/AirlinersGallery.com. Cessna 208B Grand Caravan N841MA (msn 1084) “Spirit of Kona” waits for the next assignment at Honolulu International Airport (HNL).

Route Map:

Mokulele 4.2014 Route Map

‘Ohana by Hawaiian launches its second route to Lana’i

‘Ohana by Hawaiian (Honolulu) yesterday (March 18) launched its inaugural flight to Lana’i, the second of two islands it has returned to the Hawaiian Airlines network. The Lana’i service will operate twice daily using a 48-seat ATR 42 aircraft operated by Empire Airlines (Idaho). Last week, ‘Ohana by Hawaiian also launched thrice-daily service between Honolulu and Moloka’i.

The departure of Flight HA 612 to Lana’i Airport was preceded by remarks from Hawaiian Airlines Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer Peter Ingram, followed by a traditional Hawaiian blessing at the gate.

The daily flights are scheduled below:


Flight Route Departs Arrives   Start Date
HA612 HNL-LNY 9:30 a.m. 10:00 a.m. March 18, 2014
HA616 HNL-LNY 2:40 p.m. 3:10 p.m. March 18, 2014


Flight Route Departs Arrives Start Date
HA613 LNY-HNL 10:40 a.m. 11:10 a.m. March 18, 2014
HA617 LNY-HNL 3:50 p.m. 4:20 p.m. March 18, 2014

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. ATR 42-500 N804HC (msn 623) operated by Empire Airlines taxies at Honolulu.

‘Ohana by Hawaiian: AG Slide Show


‘Ohana by Hawaiian starts operations

Ohana by Hawaiian-Empire ATR 42-500 N804HC (13)(Grd-1) HNL (IN)(LRW) 3.11.14

‘Ohana by Hawaiian (Honolulu), Hawai’i’s newest interisland operation, yesterday (March 11) launched its inaugural turboprop service to Moloka’i, the first of two islands it will return to the Hawaiian Airlines network. Twice daily service between Honolulu and Lana’i will be launched on March 18.

The arrival of flight HA 614 into Moloka’i Airport was followed by a cultural exchange featuring an oli kahea (chant of admission) presented by Hawaiian Airlines and ‘Ohana by Hawaiian staff asking for permission to enter the community, and an oli aloha (chant of welcome) from the Hawaiian language immersion students of Punana Leo o Moloka’i and ‘O Hina i ka Malama, and the seniors of Alu Like, Inc.’s Ke Ola Pono No Na Kupuna. Remarks were given by renowned Hilo-based artist Sig Zane, who designed the livery of the aircraft; Tim Komberec, president and chief executive officer of Empire Airlines; Moloka’i Senator Kalani English, chair of the Committee on Transportation and International Affairs; Stacy Crivello, Maui County council member; Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian Airlines president and chief executive officer; and Hadden Watt, ‘Ohana by Hawaiian managing director.

The festivities also included a lu’au with nearly 500 Moloka’i residents in attendance, live Hawaiian entertainment, tours of the aircraft and a blessing prior to the departure of flight HA 615 to Honolulu.

‘Ohana by Hawaiian will offer three daily flights between Honolulu and Moloka’i using a 48-seat ATR 42 aircraft. The daily flights, operated by Empire Airlines, are scheduled below:


Flight Route Departs Arrives   Start Date
HA610 HNL-MKK 7:00 a.m. 7:25 a.m. March 12, 2014
HA614 HNL-MKK 12:15 p.m. 12:40 p.m. March 12, 2014
HA618 HNL-MKK 5:30 p.m. 5:55 p.m. March 11, 2014


Flight Route Departs Arrives Start Date
HA611 MKK-HNL 8:05 a.m. 8:30 a.m. March 12, 2014
HA615 MKK-HNL 1:20 p.m. 1:45 p.m. March 11, 2014
HA619 MKK-HNL 6:35 p.m. 7:00 p.m. March 11, 2014


Flight Route Departs Arrives   Start Date
HA612 HNL-LNY 9:30 a.m. 10:00 a.m. March 18, 2014
HA616 HNL-LNY 2:40 p.m. 3:10 p.m. March 18, 2014


Flight Route Departs Arrives Start Date
HA613 LNY-HNL 10:40 a.m. 11:10 a.m. March 18, 2014
HA617 LNY-HNL 3:50 p.m. 4:20 p.m. March 18, 2014

The livery of ‘Ohana by Hawaiian’s aircraft was created by Sig Zane and his son Kuha’o, who both used Hawaiian Airlines’ interisland route map as inspiration for the design, weaving three kapa patterns: piko (navel), representing ancestry and progeny; manu (bird), representing both a bird in flight and the prow of a canoe, the traditional form of migration; and kalo (taro), representing family. The ATR 42 aircraft are named after a significant wind on each of the islands that ‘Ohana by Hawaiian will serve: Holo Kaomi of Paoma’i, Lana’i; Kaiaulu of Wai’anae, O’ahu; and Hikipua of Halawa, Moloka’i.

The ‘Ohana by Hawaiian operation creates more than 100 new Hawai’i-based jobs in various areas of air transportation including pilots, flight attendants and mechanics as well as ground-handling and customer service positions. Hawaiian Airlines handles reservations and sales for the new operation, allowing the interisland flights to integrate seamlessly into Hawaiian Airlines’ well-established route network. The new service operates out of gates 49 and 50 at Honolulu International Airport.

Hawaiian Airlines last flew to Moloka’i and Lana’i in 2004, operating on a Boeing 717-200 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group/AirlinersGallery.com. ‘Ohana by Hawaiian’s N804HC (msn 623) operated by Empire Airlines (Idaho) is pictured starting to taxi out as flight HA 614 to MKK on its first flight.

‘Ohana by Hawaiian: AG Slide Show

Hawaiian Airlines to suspend flights to Taipei in April, will start service to Beijing

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has announced plans to suspend its thrice-weekly service to Taipei, Taiwan in April and reassign that route’s 294-seat Airbus 330-200 aircraft to its nonstop service to Seoul, South Korea, which will operate five times per week.

Up-gauging to the newer A330-200 aircraft will provide South Korean passengers with enhanced amenities including in-seat in-flight entertainment throughout the aircraft and the airline’s new Extra Comfort preferred seating product. The new aircraft will be available on all flights to Incheon International Airport from April 23, 2014.

 Hawaiian logo

Hawaiian Airlines flight HA 807 will operate its final flight from Honolulu to Taipei on Sunday, April 6, 2014. Return Flight HA808 will operate for the final time on Monday, April 7, 2014 from Taipei to Honolulu. Hawaiian Airlines’ reservations department will be contacting passengers booked to fly after that date to accommodate them on other airlines.

Also in April, Hawaiian Airlines will launch thrice-weekly service to Beijing, China, subject to government approval, its 10th international gateway launched since November 2010. The airline has also scheduled new nonstop summer service from Los Angeles and Oakland, California to Kona, Hawai‘i Island and Līhu‘e, Kaua‘i.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Airbus A330-243 N382HA (msn 1171) climbs away from the Honolulu hub.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Route Map:

Hawaiian 3.2014 Route Map

SilkAir introduces a new brand campaign with its first Boeing 737-800

SilkAir (Singapore) introduced its first Boeing 737-800 into revenue service yesterday (February 20) with the 737-8SA 9V-MGA (man 44217). The carrier is celebrating its 25th anniversary. The subsidiary of Singapore Airlines has also rolled out a new brand campaign emphasizing its full-service amenities. The carrier issued this statement:

SilkAir, the regional wing of Singapore Airlines, has launched a new brand campaign that looks to rekindle the joy of flying. Moving away from the idea of travel as being purely transactional, the campaign focuses on how Asia’s most awarded regional carrier creates journeys worth taking by offering customers a seamless and enjoyable travel experience at all times.

From check-in to touch down, the full-service carrier caters to the needs of the well-travelled global customer, providing comfort and convenience to those looking to explore Asia’s newest frontiers. Titled ‘A Joy to Fly’, the campaign redefines true value for the discerning traveller, emphasising and bringing to life the many benefits that SilkAir offers through a set of distinctive icons that feature across all the ads.

Having established its personable and warm in-flight service in its previous campaign ‘Feel at Home in the Air’, SilkAir aims to further differentiate itself and cement its positioning as a full-service carrier. The new regional campaign presents a visual display of a range of these benefits, including 30kg and 40kg baggage allowance for Economy and Business class respectively, inflight meals, reliable flight schedule, the KrisFlyer frequent flyer programme and through check-in service. Additionally, a wireless inflight entertainment system that is currently on trial will progressively be rolled out from Q2 2014. This new system will allow for free wireless streaming of blockbuster hits, short features as well as chart-topping music to customers’ laptops and personal handheld devices, keeping them entertained throughout the flight.

“SilkAir has always endeavoured to deliver a flying experience that is enjoyable and assuring, by placing our customers’ needs at the forefront of our product offerings. With the aim of celebrating the joy of flying, our new campaign is a reflection of the commitment and effort that goes into ensuring that every single detail – from the check-in process to entertainment and meals on-board – makes it a joy for customers to fly with SilkAir,” said SilkAir’s Vice President, Commercial, Mr. Ryan Pua.

Beyond functional benefits, the campaign also illustrates the joy of flying by highlighting SilkAir’s extensive network of 47 exotic destinations around the region, as well as the seamless connectivity between Singapore Airlines and SilkAir that customers can enjoy.

Created in conjunction with SilkAir’s 25th anniversary and the delivery of the airline’s first Boeing 737-800, the campaign is set to run on print, out-of-home and digital platforms. The advertisements are currently on display at City Hall MRT station platforms.

To mark the launch of the campaign, SilkAir will also hold an online contest where fans can either visit silkair.com/ajoytofly or scan the QR code located below each aircraft window on the City Hall MRT platform to stand a chance to fly to their dream destination on SilkAir’s new Boeing planes by voting for their top 3 dream destinations. The contest closes on March 13, 2014, with 12 Economy Class return tickets up for grabs.

On top of dressing the airline’s first Boeing 737-800 in a specially designed livery to commemorate its silver anniversary, SilkAir will also be rewarding its customers with special promotional deals later this month, with 250,000 tickets made available at special rates for customers in Singapore and across the region.

The number of destinations includes two new destinations, Kalibo and Mandalay, which will be launched on May 27, 2014 and June 10, 2014 respectively.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Brand new Boeing 737-8SA 9V-MGA passes through Honolulu on its delivery routing on February 10, 2014.


SilkAir: AG Slide Show

Island Air to drop Molokai, Ohana by Hawaiian steps in

Island Air (Honolulu) will discontinue all passenger service to the island of Molokai and redeploy the ATR 72 to another route starting on April 1 per the Star Advertiser.

The decision was probably influenced by the plans of Ohana by Hawaiian to serve the route starting on March 11 from Honolulu.

Island Air now only serves three routes from Honolulu.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Freshly repainted ATR 72-210 N342AT (msn 345) displays the new 2014 livery at the Honolulu base.

Island Air: AG Slide Show

Route Map:

Island Air 1.2014 Route Map

Island Air introduces a new “pineapple” color scheme

Island Air (Hawaii) (Honolulu) has introduced a new colorful livery. The first aircraft to wear the new livery is this former American Eagle-Executive Airlines ATR 72-210 registered as N342AT (msn 345). The turboprop is named “Lana’i”. This new look replaces the short-lived 2012 “Lei” color scheme. N342AT was painted this month on the mainland.

Oracle Corporation’s CEO Larry Ellison acquired most of the island of Lanai from David H. Murdock. On February 26, 2013, Island Air announced the sale of the airline to Ellison. Ellison appointed Paul Casey, former CEO of Hawaiian Airlines and President of the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau as the company’s new President and CEO. Casey has trimmed routes and settled on the ATR 72 to serve its routes in Hawaii.

The island airline issued this statement:

Island Air has introduced its new logo. The new symbol for the airline is the native ‘i‘iwi bird, which was prized by the Hawaiian ali‘i.


“The new logo is part of our company’s restructuring to align ourselves with an improved and enhanced level of service,” said Island Air CEO Paul Casey. “It symbolizes a revitalized company with deep roots in Hawaiʻi and a strong commitment to the community and our customers.”


Signage with the new logo has already been installed at airport ticket counters in Honolulu, Līhuʻe, Kahului, Lāna‘i and Moloka‘i. The new logo will be phased in over the next several months, and also be reflected in Island Air’s digital and print communications, collateral, vehicles, and on the airline’s ATR 72 64-seater aircraft.


The ‘i‘iwi bird is a species of the Hawaiian honeycreeper found on the islands of Hawai‘i, O‘ahu, Maui and Kaua‘i. It holds a special place in Hawaiian culture. One of Hawaiʻi’s most beautiful birds, the ʻiʻiwi was prized by Hawaiians for its striking vermillion feathers, which were used to make feather capes, helmets and other symbols of Hawaiian royalty.


Island Air also announced its support of The Nature Conservancy, by joining the Hawaiʻi Nature Conservancy’s Corporate Council, for the Environment, as a Corporate Conservator. Island Air’s donation will be used as part of The Nature Conservancy’s efforts to protect and preserve the native habitat of the i’iwi, a threatened indigenous Hawaiʻi species, found in Nature Conservancy preserves on Maui, Kauaʻi and Hawaiʻi Island.


“The Nature Conservancy is devoted to protecting Hawaii’s native forest habitat for all native species of animals and plants including the ‘i‘iwi,” said Suzanne Case, The Nature Conservancy’s Hawaiʻi executive director.  “Not only are these forest areas critical to the survival of Hawaiʻi’s globally unique creatures, they are also the source of all the fresh water for our islands.  We are thrilled and grateful to welcome Island Air into the Conservancy’s distinguished roster of sponsors from the business community.”


The new logo was designed by Wall-to-Wall Studios in Honolulu.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. N342AT shines on the ramp at the Honolulu International Airport after its long ferry flight from the mainland.

Island Air (Hawaii): AG Slide Show

Island Air logo

Current Route Map: Island Air has scaled back its operations since the Larry Ellison takeover.

Island Air 1.2014 Route Map

Makani Kai Air Cessna 208B Grand Caravan crashes into the water off of Molokai’s north shore, one dead

Makani Kai Air (Makani Kai Helicopters) (Honolulu) Cessna 208B Gran Caravan N687MA (msn 1002) (above) carrying eight passengers and a pilot crashed into the Pacific Ocean off the north shore of Molokai, Hawaii yesterday afternoon. State Health Department Director Loretta Fuddy died in the ditching. The single engine Caravan had departed from Kalaupapa bound for the Honolulu base.

According to the charter airline the company has been “providing air charter, air tours, aircraft management and aircraft maintenance since 1988″.

The airline specializes in aerial tours of Molokai from other points in Hawaii. Here is the information on this “Kalaupapa Experience” tour from the airline’s website:

Makani Kai Air Kalaupapa Experience

Read the full story from the Star Advertiser in Honolulu: CLICK HERE

Dramatic video of the Caravan ditching:

Video of a typical Molokai aerial tour:

Top Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. The ill-fated Cessna 208B Grand Caravan N687MA (msn 1002) taxies at Honolulu on October 25, 2013 (all others by Makani Kai Air).

Makani Kai Air logo

Xiamen Air takes delivery of its 100th Boeing jet


Xiamen Air (Xiamen Airlines) (Xiamen) has reached a significant milestone. On November 12 in Seattle, Boeing delivered a brand new 737-800 airplane to Xiamen Airlines, a SkyTeam member. It is the 100th plane in the airline’s all-Boeing fleet. Boeing 737-85C B-5688 (msn 41792) was handed over at the special event (pictured).

Xiamen Airlines commenced service in 1985 with two Boeing 737-200s serving three cities. The carrier is now China’s sixth-largest, serving 218 domestic routes as well as 26 international and regional routes. With delivery of the Boeing 737-800, Xiamen Airlines’ fleet now consists of 100 aircraft. It is China’s only all-Boeing fleet and one of the world’s youngest, with an average age of 5.08 years.

Over the next two years, Xiamen Airlines plans to add 30 more Boeing 737-800s and six more Boeing 787s, expanding its fleet to 136 airplanes, and to expand globally by gradually forming a route network that radiates across the Asia Pacific region and connects with Europe and the U.S.

Xiamen Airlines’ expects to keep growing of its Boeing fleet beyond 2016. The carrier has just signed Letters of Request to buy 70 Boeing 737NGs and Boeing 737MAXs. By 2020, the fleet will grow to more than 200 airplanes.

Xiamen Airlines’ rapid growth is a testament to the tremendous growth of China’s airline business. In 1972, China established the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) as the only player in aviation, with only nine registered aircraft in the fleet. At the end of 2012, China had more than 40 airlines, with an industry-wide fleet exceeding 2,000 aircraft.

Boeing projects investments of nearly $800 billion in China for the purchase of 5,580 new commercial aircraft during the next 20 years. It would account for 16% of global demand, and reflects an average requirement of nearly 200 single-aisle and over 60 wide-body aircraft each year.

Top Copyright Photo: Boeing.

Xiamen Airlines: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photos: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. B-5688 passes through Honolulu on the long delivery flight.

Second Photo: A close-up of the special markings.

UPS reports its financial results for the third quarter

UPS (United Parcel Service) (UPS Airlines) (Atlanta) has announced diluted earnings per share of $1.16 for the third quarter of 2013, a 9.4% improvement over adjusted results for the same period last year. Total revenue was $13.5 billion, up 3.4% driven primarily by U.S. e-commerce shipments and strong European export growth.

For the three months ended Sept. 30, 2013, UPS delivered more than one billion packages worldwide, an increase of 4.6% over the prior-year period.

Daily package volume growth was led by International export and U.S. Domestic Ground, up 6.7% and 3.0%, respectively. Customers around the globe continue to seek lower cost solutions as demonstrated by the 11% jump in International deferred export products per day.

Last year, on a reported basis, third quarter diluted earnings per share was $0.48 as a result of an after-tax, non-cash charge of $559 million to restructure pension liabilities for certain employees.

“UPS is continuing to build global capabilities that position the company to meet the evolving supply chain needs of customers,” said Scott Davis, UPS chairman and CEO. “We are making investments in emerging markets, healthcare distribution and our worldwide retail delivery models, ensuring that UPS delivers both the solutions customers require and the returns our shareowners expect.”

Cash Flow

For the nine months ended Sept. 30, UPS generated $3.6 billion in free cash flow after capital expenditures of $1.6 billion. The company paid dividends of $1.7 billion, an increase of nearly 9% per share over the prior year, and repurchased 33 million shares for $2.9 billion.

U.S. Domestic Package

U.S. Domestic third quarter operating profit was $1.2 billion, up nearly 16%, and operating margin expanded 140 basis points over the prior year adjusted result, to 14.4%. Revenue increased 5.0% to $8.3 billion. Volume growth, cost reductions due to efficiency gains and safety improvements, as well as the benefit of one additional operating day, contributed to the improvement.

On a reported basis, third quarter 2012 U.S. Domestic operating profit was $129 million and operating margin was 1.6% as a result of the pension restructuring charge.

Total U.S. Domestic revenue per piece was up 1.0%, as higher base rates were mostly offset by lower fuel surcharges, decreased average package weight and changes in both product and customer mix.

Daily package volume was 2.3% higher than the same period last year, driven by e-commerce shipments with growth in both B2C and B2B. Next Day Air volume declined 3.3% due to a contraction in letter shipments.

International Package

International revenue increased 2.5% to $3.0 billion on daily package volume improvement of 6.5%. Daily export shipments were 6.7% higher, with European exports up nearly 10%, while growth out of Asia was flat. Non-U.S. Domestic volume was up 6.3%, driven by strong growth across Europe and Canada.

Total operating profit was $417 million, a decline of $32 million on a year-over-year basis, due to a $75 million negative impact from currency and fuel. Operating margin of 13.8%, remains industry leading.

Currency-neutral export revenue per piece declined 5.4%, primarily driven by growth in lower-yielding deferred products. Lower fuel surcharges and changes in trade lane mix also pressured yields.

UPS has expanded its presence and service portfolio in Mexico, helping businesses bring manufacturing closer to U.S. consumers. Recently announced offerings include the industry’s first guaranteed ground service from the U.S., Preferred LCL Ocean service from Asia and expanded retail presence in Northern Mexico.

Supply Chain & Freight

Operating profit improved 7%, to $201 million and operating margin expanded 60 basis points, to 8.9%. Revenue in the segment was down slightly from the prior year period to $2.25 billion, as growth in UPS Freight was offset by declines in the Forwarding business.

The Distribution business improved operating profit and margin despite continued investment in Healthcare infrastructure and technology. Revenue growth in Healthcare and Mail Services was offset by a decline in the High Tech sector.

In Forwarding, both operating profit and margin expanded. Growth in Ocean forwarding and Brokerage, as well as cost management activities, drove the improvement.

UPS Freight LTL revenue climbed 5.5% as a result of improved tonnage and rate increases. Operating margin for the business unit declined slightly, due to higher compensation and benefit expense.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/AirlinersGallery.com. UPS Airlines’ McDonnell Douglas MD-11 (F) N286UP (msn 48453) taxies at Honolulu.

UPS: AG Slide Show

Boeing forecasts China’s airline fleet to triple over the next 20 years

Boeing (Chicago), China’s leading provider of passenger airplanes, projects a demand for 5,580 new airplanes in China over the next 20 years valued at $780 billion. The company’s annual China Current Market Outlook forecasts the country’s fleet to triple in size over the next two decades.

Tourism in China and intra-Asia travel will help spur a strong demand for single-aisle airplanes, with total deliveries in that segment reaching 3,900 through 2032. Tinseth said both the Next-Generation 737 and the new 737 MAX offer significant advantages in improved capabilities, fuel efficiency and maintenance costs, as well as enhanced environmental performance.

Long-haul international traffic to and from China is forecasted to grow at an annual rate of 7.2 percent. The international growth is primarily driven by anticipated passenger traffic between China and North America, Europe, the Middle East, Oceania and Africa. This growth in the long-haul segment is expected to result in demand for an additional 1,440 new fuel-efficient widebodies, such as the 787 Dreamliner, 777 and 747-8 Intercontinental.

New Airplane Deliveries to China: 2013-2032

Airplane type Seats Total deliveries Dollar value
Regional jets 90 and below 240 $10B
Single-aisle 90-230 3,900 $370B
Small wide-body 200-300 730 $170B
Medium wide-body 300-400 610 $200B
Large wide-body 400 and above 100 $30B
Total 5,580

(16% of world total)


(16% of world total)

Boeing projects investments of $4.8 trillion worldwide for more than 35,000 new commercial airplanes to be delivered during the next 20 years. The complete forecast is available at www.boeing.com/commercial/cmo/index.html.  China accounts for approximately 16 percent of the total demand in terms of both new deliveries and market value.

Top and Bottom Copyright Photos: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. China Southern Airlines‘ Boeing 737-71B B-5283 (msn 38919), the 4,000th Next Generation 737, passes through Honolulu on its long delivery flight to China.

China Southern Airlines: AG Slide Show


Virgin Australia Holdings loses A$98.1 million for its fiscal year

Virgin Australia Holdings (Virgin Australia Airlines) (Brisbane) reported a statutory loss after taxes of A$98.1 million ($88.3 million) for its fiscal year ending on June 30, 2013. The airline issued this full financial statement for its past fiscal year:

Financial Highlights

Results in line with guidance:

  • Statutory Loss After Tax of $98.1 million – in line with previous guidance of a loss of $95 to $110 million
  • Pre-tax loss (excl. one-off transformation costs and Skywest1 loss) of $35.2 million – in line with previous guidance of a loss of $30 to $50 million
  • Outperformed main competitor on Group Yield growth
  • Strong underlying cost performance – underlying CASK2 (excl. fuel) approximately equal to FY12, inclusive of major product and service enhancements
  • Total cash position of $580.5 million and positive operating cash flows – several initiatives identified and in progress to supplement and diversify the Company’s liquidity position

Operational Highlights

Completed major restructuring and transformation as part of Game Change Program:

  • Managed critical transition to global ticketed environment and single airline designator, with SabreSonic system implemented and delivering benefits
  • Completed acquisition of 100% of Skywest and 60% of Tigerair Australia3, enabling repositioning of business across all key aviation market segments, creating new competitive landscape

Delivered on key targets of the next phase of the Game Change Program:

  • Business efficiency project generated sustainable efficiency gains of more than $60 million4 for FY13
  • Velocity Frequent Flyer membership of approx. 3.7 million, up by approx. 500,000 on FY12
  • Improved access to global markets – interline and codeshare revenue increased 45% on FY12 and forward domestic bookings approx. 6% higher than PCP5, on a capacity increase of less than 4%
  • Significant enhancements to customer experience – upgrade program for major lounges and airport terminals, business class roll-out complete and new in-flight entertainment installed in 30 aircraft
  • Leading airline in Roy Morgan’s Domestic Airline Business Satisfaction for FY136

Virgin Australia Holdings Limited (ASX: VAH) reported a Statutory Loss After Tax of $98.1 million, consistent with previous guidance. A number of factors impacted the financial performance for the 2013 financial year, including the difficult economic and competitive environment, significant one-off pre-tax restructuring and transformation costs and the carbon tax.

Virgin Australia Chief Executive Officer John Borghetti said: “While the financial results clearly did not meet our initial expectations, the 2013 financial year was a pivotal year for Virgin Australia, in which we completed our major restructuring and transformation program and reshaped the competitive landscape of the Australian aviation market, despite a very difficult economic environment and intense competition.

“As part of this program, we secured access to the growing budget, charter and regional market segments, we successfully executed the crucial transition from a ticketless to a global ticketed airline environment with the implementation of the our new booking and check-in system, SabreSonic, and we further enhanced the Virgin Australia customer experience. Each of these initiatives is critical to our success going forward.

“Furthermore, we exceeded our business efficiency program target of $60 million in sustainable efficiency gains, we expanded Velocity Frequent Flyer and improved its value proposition, increased our access to global markets and further developed the most important part of our airline, our people.

“We continued our strong focus on yield, with consistent yield growth in each month of the last quarter of the financial year. This reflects our success in attracting higher-yielding customers, while ensuring we are well-positioned in the market as we enter the 2014 financial year.

“We maintained a disciplined approach to cost management, with underlying CASK growth (excluding fuel) for the 2013 financial year approximately equal to last year, notwithstanding the significant investment in product enhancements.

“The 2014 financial year represents the fourth year of our five-year Game Change Program strategy in which we will focus on consolidating our market positioning in order to drive earnings growth.

“As we move into the new financial year, we continue to grow yield and build loads, supported by our improved access to global distribution channels, through SabreSonic. Preliminary operating statistics for July 2013 indicate positive yield7 growth and domestic loads of 79.6 per cent.

“We now have the right structure in place to compete vigorously in all key market segments and achieve sustainable performance in the future”, Mr Borghetti said.

Financial and Operating Performance

“Revenue and income increased 2.6 per cent on the 2012 financial year, following growth of 19.8 per cent on the 2011 financial year. This reflects the weaker trading conditions experienced during the 2013 financial year and the impact of the introduction ofSabreSonic, which includes approximately $25 million from the waiving of ancillary fees in order to protect the customer experience, as well as forgone revenue due to the scheduled cutover of the booking system.

“Excluding Skywest and not adjusting for approximately $25 million of waived ancillary fees, the underlying loss before tax for Virgin Australia is $72.8 million8.

“Due to our strengthening relationships with international airline partners, interline and codeshare revenue continued to grow strongly, with a 45 per cent increase on the prior corresponding period.

“Domestic Business Class passengers continue to increase, with passenger traffic in the Business Class cabin more than doubling compared to the 2012 financial year.

“The result includes the underlying pre-tax trading loss of $9.4 million for the recently acquired Skywest business, reflecting the investments being made to integrate and facilitate the growth of the business.

“Our international operations continue to perform well as a result of the network changes we made as part of the Game Change Program and our alliance partner strategy. International revenue increased by 6.4 per cent compared to the 2012 financial year, off capacity growth of 3.0 per cent, and the business continues to be EBIT positive.

“Virgin Australia outperformed our major competitor on Group Yield growth for the second year running, with relatively flat Group Yield9 growth for the 2013 financial year.

“We incurred $105.1 million of significant one-off pre-tax costs as a result of the major restructuring and transformation program. The transition to a global ticketed environment, a single airline designator code and new core IT systems (including a new data warehouse and a new revenue accounting system) comprised the majority of this cost, totalling $81.5 million. This incorporated a comprehensive 12 month staff training program, technical costs of the system cutover, resources for customer management and communications, and other costs associated with the transition. Other one-off restructuring and transformation costs include the restructure costs associated with the Skywest and Tigerair Australia transactions, the integration of Skywest and business transformation initiatives, totalling $17.3 million. The business also incurred $6.3 million of costs associated with accelerated depreciation on legacy assets.

“While significant one-off costs affected our profitability for the year, we maintained strong controls on costs, with underlying CASK10(excluding fuel) for the 2013 financial year approximately equal to that of the 2012 financial year, even with significant enhancements to product and service.

“The company was also impacted by the carbon tax during the 2013 financial year, with a $47.9 million cost of which we were unable to recover due to strong competition in the market.

“Importantly, we have made significant progress in our plan to streamline the ongoing costs of the business as it grows. In its first year, our business efficiency program has exceeded targets, delivering sustainable efficiency gains of over $60 million and is on track to deliver cumulative productivity gains of approximately $400 million over the three years to 30 June 2015.

“Our tiered hedging policy continues to be successful in providing short term certainty in a volatile environment, while enabling us to maintain flexibility in the longer term.

“In line with guidance11, we recorded capacity growth of 6.3 per cent across our domestic network for the 2013 financial year. As previously stated, we expect domestic capacity (excluding Tigerair Australia) to grow between 3 and 412 per cent in the first half of the 2014 financial year.

“On Time Performance for the Virgin Australia brand was roughly in line with that of our major competitor’s branded operations, at 81.1 per cent for the 2013 financial year13. This includes the impact of the transition to SabreSonic, which affected On Time Performance during the third quarter of the year”, Mr Borghetti said.

Liquidity and Cash Flow

“We finished the 2013 financial year with a total cash position of $580.5 million and an unrestricted cash position of $326.5 million as at 30 June 2013.
“Improved underlying cost disciplines across the business have supported positive cash flow generated from operations14 of $184.2 million across the 2013 financial year.

“We continue to review Virgin Australia’s assets to ensure we are utilising our resources in the best way possible. As part of this process, over the year we have executed the sale and lease-back of the Virgin Australia hangar at Brisbane Airport and several other initiatives have also been identified and are underway to supplement and diversify our liquidity position.

“This includes conditional commitments for a new term loan facility from Air New Zealand (NZX: AIR), Etihad Airways and Singapore Airlines (SGX: SIA) for an aggregate amount of AUD90 million, as part of our focus on supplementing and diversifying the Company’s liquidity position”, Mr Borghetti said.

Game Change Program Strategy Update

“We have concluded the first phase of the Game Change Program with the completion of significant restructuring and transformation initiatives, which are essential to ensure the Group can compete effectively in all market segments and to create a solid platform for growth”, Mr Borghetti said.

Systems and Processes

“Central to the Game Change Program is building a strong flexible operating platform, through strengthening our systems and processes.

“Thanks to the significant work undertaken internally we have now created this platform. Over the past three years we have implemented a new Treasury management framework, an improved group-wide procurement framework, improved operating and financial disciplines and a business efficiency program to drive better cost efficiencies and operational effectiveness.

“During the 2013 financial year, we completed one of the most significant initiatives in Virgin Australia’s thirteen year history. We transitioned from a ticketless environment to a global ticketed environment, moving from a low cost carrier system to become a full service airline with better access to global distribution channels and the ability to provide a more seamless customer experience. This involved moving from two booking and check-in systems and two airline designator codes to one globally-recognised system and one airline designator code, with the implementation of SabreSonic in January 2013.

“This new system is critical to our ability to continue to grow the business, increasing our exposure to the corporate and government market and to travel agents both in Australia and around the world. It was therefore crucial that we implemented the system as quickly as possible, with minimal disruption to the customer experience, even though that meant significant one-off costs for the business during the 2013 financial year.

“The new SabreSonic system is already supporting our ability to increase yield. For example, domestic bookings made within the final three weeks prior to departure have experienced a doubling of yield premium to 20 per cent, whilst the number of domestic bookings has improved by 15 per cent over the prior corresponding period15.

“The system will also make it easier for us to work with our current alliance partners and to add new alliance partners, as it aligns with industry standard practices and supports IATA protocols.

“SabreSonic is central to providing an improved travel experience, making it easier for customers to transfer between our flights and those of our partner airlines and offering customers more online self-service options and a greater choice of flights”, Mr Borghetti said.

Product and Service Enhancements

“One of the key aims of the Game Change Program is to establish a superior position in customer experience, while maintaining our cost advantage. This has been a priority during the 2013 financial year as we implemented the final initiatives of our major transformation program and continued to innovate in order to maintain our leadership in this area.

“During the year we completed the roll-out of business class to our domestic fleet, with new cabins on our Embraer 190 aircraft, giving travellers in Australia choice in business class for the first time in over a decade.

“We have expanded existing lounges in key capital cities to meet growing demand and we have launched a new 300 seat lounge in the nation’s capital, Canberra. The refurbishment and extension of our Sydney lounge is now complete. By the end of the 2013 calendar year, we will have completed the expansion of our Melbourne lounge and opened a new lounge in Cairns, with new lounges in Darwin and Perth to open in calendar year 2014.

“We also continued to enhance the airport terminal experience for our customers. In the 2013 financial year we launched Virgin Australia’s state-of-the-art terminal facilities in Canberra and completed the refurbishment of terminal facilities in Melbourne and our extended pier at Sydney Domestic Airport’s Terminal 2.

“In-flight entertainment is critical to customer satisfaction in the air and we have made substantial progress on the implementation of the wireless content streaming technology, with 30 aircraft fitted out and the rest of the domestic Boeing and Embraer fleet to be completed by the end of the year.

“Innovation will remain core to the Virgin Australia brand and we have a range of new product and service initiatives planned for the 2014 financial year to ensure we retain our leadership position, while maintaining a low cost base”, Mr Borghetti said.

Velocity Frequent Flyer

“Membership of the Velocity Frequent Flyer program has grown to approx. 3.7 million, an increase of approximately 500,000 members from the end of June 2012. We continue to see steady growth across all metrics of the business and we are confident that we are on track to achieve our target of 5 million members by the end of the 2015 financial year.

“Over the 2013 financial year we increased the number of hotel partners by 80 per cent and added a range of new partners, maintaining the widest retail offering of any loyalty program in Australia.

“We have launched a number of successful new initiatives aimed at engaging members. We were first to market with a new multi-currency pre-paid travel card, the Global Wallet, combining the Velocity membership card with a Visa pre-paid travel card capability. We also launched Australia’s first pet frequent flyer program and a Velocity Frequent Flyer Facebook presence.

“Going forward, we are focused on continuing to strengthen and mature the business to optimise Velocity Frequent Flyer for ongoing growth”, Mr Borghetti said.

Network and Alliances

“We have further expanded our extensive global network over the 2013 financial year, offering a range of benefits to travellers and providing access to more than 460 destinations across five continents, with the ability for our Velocity Frequent Flyer members to earn Points and Status Credits on all flights. This represents an increase of 27 destinations on the prior corresponding period.

“We are very pleased to have the support of our strong airline alliance partners, Air New Zealand, Delta Air Lines, Etihad Airways and Singapore Airlines, which is critical to the success of our business.

“We continue to work closely with these partners on improving our offering for customers and also on identifying other opportunities to create efficiencies and enhance the customer experience”, Mr Borghetti said.

Regional Operations

“In May 2013 we launched Virgin Australia’s regional operation, following the acquisition of the Western Australia based Skywest).

“We have made significant progress with the integration of Skywest into the Virgin Australia Group, including the roll out of Virgin Australia branding across the airline’s operations and the transition to the same SabreSonic system as Virgin Australia, aligning website and airline designator codes.

“Work is well advanced on integrating the networks of the two airlines to explore opportunities for growth and to enhance the customer proposition. For example, earlier this month we launched Virgin Australia’s two-class Embraer aircraft to the important mining hub of Kalgoorlie, as well as Fokker 100 services to the oil and gas port of Onslow.

“We are now well positioned to compete in the regional and charter markets in the 2014 financial year”, Mr Borghetti said.

Tigerair Australia

“We completed the acquisition of 60 per cent of Tigerair Australia in July 2013, enabling us to re-enter the high-growth budget market segment, which is a key part of our overall strategy.

“We have observed positive performance trends to date and we expect performance improvements to be driven by three key factors.

“Firstly, increasing the scale of the business by growing the fleet to 23 aircraft, with the potential to increase up to 35, which we believe will bring economies of scale and deliver a further cost advantage. Secondly, improving operational and service standards to enable the business to increase yields.

Recent performance indicators have been positive, with load factors for July 2013 at 92.0 per cent, an increase of 8.2 points on the same time last year.

Thirdly and finally, we believe margins will be improved by extracting synergies through leveraging off shareholders for certain functions such as procurement”, Mr Borghetti said.

Our People

“Our people and the service they deliver continue to be our main differentiator in the market. During the 2013 financial year we implemented an organisational change program designed to develop a more customer-centric culture in all aspects of our business.

“Virgin Australia has received a range of accolades over the year for its achievements in customer service, including our recognition at the Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction Awards as Domestic Airline of the Year and at the World Airline Awards for ‘Best Airline Staff Service” in the Australia/Pacific region for the third consecutive year. The Roy Morgan Customer Satisfaction results for the 2013 financial year demonstrate that we are leader in Domestic Airline Business Satisfaction, with 81 per cent of customers very or fairly satisfied.

“I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all team members for their tireless dedication to Virgin Australia as we continue to progress our Game Change Program strategy. In a year of major restructuring and transformation, they have demonstrated great passion and tremendous skill and they will continue to be the drivers of our success going forward”, Mr Borghetti said.


“Given the uncertain economic environment we are unable to provide guidance for the 2014 financial year at this time”, Mr Borghetti said.

11Refers to Skywest Airlines Pte Ltd (formerly known as Skywest Airlines Ltd). Acquisition was completed 19 April 2013
2Underlying CASK is a non-statutory measure and is defined on page 10 of this media release
3Refers to Tiger Airways Australia Pty Ltd. Acquisition was completed 8 July 2013
4This figure has not been audited or reviewed by KPMG
5As at 30 June 2013, compared to the prior corresponding period (PCP) of 30 June 2012
6Source: Roy Morgan Research, July 2012 – June 2013. Finished the 2013 financial year at 81.0% domestic business travellers very or fairly satisfied compared to Qantas at 78.8%
7For the purposes of comparison this excludes the Regular Passenger Traffic segment previously operated by Skywest
8Underlying Profit / (Loss) Before Tax (PBT) excludes Skywest and is a non-statutory measure used by Management and VAH’s Board as a primary measure to assess financial performance of Virgin Australia and individual segments. Refer to page 9 of the media release for a reconciliation of Statutory and Underlying PBT
9Group Yield excludes Skywest
10Underlying CASK is a non-statutory measure and is defined on page 10 of this media release
11Capacity growth includes Virgin Australia Regional (previously Skywest) for May and June FY13 figures
12FY14 growth target takes into account Virgin Australia Regional for the full prior comparable period, and excludes Tigerair Australia
13In accordance with the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport & Regional Economics definitions, flight departure is counted as “on time” if it departs the gate within 15 minutes of the scheduled departure time shown in the carriers’ schedule. Compares the departure OTP results of Virgin Australia-branded operations (Virgin Australia and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines) with Qantas-branded operations (Qantas and QantasLink), which recorded a result of 81.9%
14Excludes business transformation and net finance costs
15Refers to domestic bookings made through all sources and compares the 4 trading weeks of July 2013 to 4 weeks of trading in July 2012

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Boeing 737-8FE VH-YIA (msn 37824) passes through Honolulu on its long delivery segment of flights.

Virgin Australia: AG Slide Show

Shandong Airlines introduces a new Tenth China Art Festival Boeing 737-800 logojet

Shandong Airlines-SDA (Jinan, Shandong, China) on August 6 took delivery of this brand new Boeing 737-800. The pictured 737-85N B-5786 (msn 39127) is painted in a special promotional scheme for the Tenth China Art Festival.

According to the official website, the “China Art Festival is the top, largest and most influential state-level art festival in China. It is held every third year and has successfully staged nine sessions up to now. The Tenth China Art Festival will be held in Shandong in October 2013, cosponsored by Ministry of Culture and Shandong Provincial People’s Government.

With the purpose of “art event, people’s festival”, the Tenth China Art Festival takes “developing advanced culture, boosting cultural industry, promoting civilization progress” as the theme and “government taking lead, benefit for the people, highlighting special characteristics, mass participation, open and innovative, pragmatic and thrifty” as the principle.”

Shandong Airlines is the official airline sponsor of the event.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Beautifully-decorated B-5786 is pictured passing through Honolulu yesterday (August 7) on its delivery routing. The airliner wears the event logo on the forward fuselage.

Shandong Airlines: AG Slide Show

Virgin Australia moves one step closer to acquiring 60% of Tiger Airways Australia

Virgin Australia Holdings Limited (Virgin Australia Airlines) (Brisbane) today (May 28) welcomed confirmation from the Foreign Investment Review Board that it has no objections to the proposed acquisition of 60 percent of the existing shares in Tiger Airways Australia Pty Ltd (Tiger Australia) (Melbourne).

This confirmation satisfies another condition for the proposed acquisition of Tiger Australia, which will enable Virgin Australia to access the budget market segment and expedite the growth of Tiger Australia.

The proposed transaction still remains subject to certain conditions and Virgin Australia expects the transaction to be completed by mid-July.

Top Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Virgin Australia’s brand new Boeing 737-8FE WL VH-YFF (msn 40994) and crew pass through Honolulu on delivery.

Virgin Australia FAs (Virgin Australia)(LR)

Above Copyright Photo: Virgin Australia.

Virgin Australia: AG Slide Show

Tiger Airways (Australia): AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Peter Gates/AirlinersGallery.com. Tiger Airways’ Airbus A320-232 VH-VNH (msn 3734) stops at Brisbane.

Virgin Australia Romance is back (VA)(HR)

Romance is Back Video:

Newsworthy Photo of the Day – May 27, 2013

Batik Air-Lion Group Boeing 737-9GP ER WL PK-LBO (msn 38731) HNL (Erik Nugal). Image: 912276.

Copyright Photo: Erik Nugal.

Batik Air: AG Slide Show

Pacific Wings to shut down its Hawaiian operations on June 15

Pacific Wings Airlines (Kahului and Mesa) is planning to close down its inter-island Hawaiian scheduled passenger services on June 15 according to local media reports by HawaiiNewsNow. The airline has not yet made an announcement or confirmed the report.

The airline will apparently continue to operate its mainland Essential Airline Services (EAS) as New Mexico Airlines.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Pacific Wings has recently scaled back its colorful rainbow livery (below) to this unspectacular white livery (above). Cessna 208B Grand Caravan N302PW (msn 0984) sits at Honolulu between flights. All other photos by Pacific Wings Airlines and New Mexico Airlines.


Pacific Wings logo

Pacific Wings Cessna 208B Grand Caravan fleet (Pacific Wings)(LR)

New Mexico Airlines Cessna 208 Grand Caravan N208TD (New Mexico)(LR)

Batik Air to launch operations on May 3

Batik 737-900ER WL PK-LBG (13)(Grd) HNL (IN)(LRW)

Batik Air (Jakarta), the new subsidiary of Lion Air (Jakarta) was originally planning to launch its full-service operations on April 26 from Jakarta to both Balikpapan and Manado. However this launch has been delayed to May 3.

In addition, the new carrier will launch two-class Boeing 737-900ER service from Jakarta to Pekanbaru and Ambon on May 8.

Batik Air: AG Slide Show

Batik Air logo


Top Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. The first aircraft for Batik Air is the pictured Boeing 737-9GP ER PK-LBG (msn 38688) which is seen passing through Honolulu on delivery. The aircraft was handed over on April 15.

Bottom Photos: Batik Air.

Batik Air crews

Batik Air first class

Hawaiian Airlines’ flight attendants ratify a new narrow-body aircraft agreement

Hawaiian Airlines‘ (Honolulu) flight attendants have ratified a tentative agreement reached earlier this month between the company and the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) on new contract terms covering the operation of long-range, single-aisle aircraft the company plans to acquire to complement its current fleet of wide-body aircraft serving Hawai’i from the U.S. West Coast.

On January 7, Hawaiian announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with airframe manufacturer Airbus to acquire 16 new A321neo aircraft between 2017 and 2020, with rights to purchase an additional nine aircraft.

The company also announced that the acquisitions are contingent upon the signing of new agreements with its pilots’ and flight attendants’ unions covering operation of the new aircraft type.

Hawaiian’s pilots ratified a similar agreement between the company and the Air Line Pilots Association on January 28.

The fleet expansion is expected to generate roughly 1,000 new jobs at Hawaiian.

The long-range, single-aisle A321neo aircraft will complement Hawaiian’s existing fleet of
wide-body, twin-aisle aircraft used for long-haul flying between Hawai’i and the U.S. West Coast.

At 146-feet-long, the A321neo will seat approximately 190 passengers in a two-class configuration (First and Coach) and has a range of 3,650 nautical miles. The aircraft will offer the more comfortable seat widths found in the twin-aisle A330.

Copyright Photo: Andy Jung. Hawaiian currently operates the narrow-body Boeing 717 in the inter-island network. The new A321s will open some new thin long-range Mainland routes previously pioneered by Aloha Airlines and largely filled recently by Alaska Airlines with its Boeing 737-800s. The pictured Boeing 717-2BD N488HA (msn 55101) arrives at the Honolulu hub.

Hawaiian Airlines: AG Slide Show

Island Air is sold to a mysterious new owner

Island Air (Hawaii) logo

Island Air (Honolulu) has disclosed it has entered into an agreement to sell the company to an undisclosed new operator (Empire Airlines?). The new owner should take control of the company within six to eight weeks according to the current management.

Hawaiian Airlines is getting ready to start its inter-island ATR feeder operation with Empire Airlines and Empire may be interested in consolidating with Island Air. If not, the new owners will have to compete against the new Hawaiian/Empire operation.

Read the full story from the Star Advertiser in Honolulu: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo Below: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. This colorful new 2012 livery for the airline could be short-lived if the new owners decide to retire the Island Air brand. The first ATR 72-212 (now N941WP, msn 349) arrived at the pictured Honolulu base on September 23, 2012. The airframe was formerly operated by American Eagle Airlines-Executive Airlines as N348AE.

Island Air (Hawaii) ATR 72-200 N348AE (N941WP)(12)(Grd) HNL (IN)(LRW)

Island Air: AG Slide Show

Please click on the map for the full view.

Please click on the map for the full view.

Shenzhen Airlines joins the Star Alliance today

Shenzhen Airlines (Shenzhen) today became the latest carrier to join the Star Alliance network. At a ceremony held at Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport, Mark Schwab, CEO Star Alliance, welcomed the airline into the family on behalf on the Alliance’s Chief Executive Board (CEB).

“Shenzhen Airlines is China’s fifth largest carrier and strengthens the Star Alliance presence in China and across Asia. Our customers now benefit from improved access throughout the economically important Pearl River Delta and across southern China. Shenzhen Airlines at the same time gains access to a global network with enhanced benefits for its passengers; truly a win-win situation,” said Mark Schwab.

Adding Shenzhen Airlines to the network is part of Star Alliance’s strategy of improving access to current and future growth markets, thus providing the international traveller with more destinations and flights. In the case of China, the foundation for this strategy was set many years ago, by those Star Alliance member carriers who have been successfully serving this market for several decades. In December 2007 the Alliance added China’s Flag carrier Air China to the network.

Feng Gang, the president of Shenzhen Airlines said: “Today is filled with joy for all of us at Shenzhen Airlines. After 16 months of integration work, we have become a Star Alliance member. We know that today no single airline alone can tend to the needs of the international traveler. By joining Star Alliance we can now offer our customers global reach, while at the same time placing Shenzhen firmly on the map of world-wide air travel. We are proud to proclaim that Shenzhen Airport, serving the 4th largest city in China, is now the newest Star Alliance Hub, from which we will make our mark not only in China, but across the Asia-Pacific region.”

Air China Chairman Wang Chengshun said: “As Shenzhen Airlines’ mentor, we are delighted to see that Shenzhen Airlines in the last 20 years has achieved substantial growth. We believe that Shenzhen Airlines will leverage alliance resources to improve its own competitiveness, and to realise its strategic target of being a large network carrier covering Asian and intercontinental destinations with its hub in Shenzhen”.

As a Star Alliance member, Shenzhen Airlines offers its customers access to a global network, along with seamless travel and enhanced frequent flyer benefits.

The airline adds some 400 daily flights to 70 destinations to the Star Alliance network. Among these are five new destinations in China: Juzhou (Zhejiang Province), Linyi, Qinhuangdao, Shijiazhuang, and Zhoushan. In addition to improving connectivity from its home base in Shenzhen, international passengers benefit from a wider choice of transfer flights in China when connection via the international airports in Beijing, Guangzhou and Shanghai – Pudong. As part of seamless travel customer promise, Shenzhen Airlines offers through check-in for passengers connecting to and from other Star Alliance member airlines flights. On a global basis, the 27 Star Alliance member carriers now offer more than 21,900 daily flights to 1,329 destinations in 194 countries.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Brand new Boeing 737-87L B-5671 (msn 39153) passes through Honolulu on delivery.

Shenzhen Airlines: 

Hawaiian Airlines arrives in Brisbane with a special salute to the Southern Cross

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) yesterday (November 27) continued its expansion into new international markets, with the launch of nonstop service to Brisbane, Australia, capital city of the State of Queensland.

Passengers on the inaugural flight departing Honolulu enjoyed a festive island-style send-off, featuring live Hawaiian music and hula, a traditional Hawaiian blessing by Kahu Richard Kamanu of Kaumakapili Church, and fresh flower lei upon boarding.

Brisbane is the second gateway city in Australia for the carrier. Hawaiian also offers nonstop daily flights between Sydney and Honolulu using its 294-seat, wide-body, twin-aisle Airbus A330-200 aircraft.

Hawaiian is the only U.S. carrier serving Brisbane, giving travelers in Hawai’i and throughout North America a convenient new travel alternative for experiencing the scenic beauty of Queensland – Australia’s “Sunshine State.”

Centrally located on Australia’s east coast, Brisbane is the gateway to a host of appealing sites and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the world-famous Great Barrier Reef, world heritage listed rainforests, the iconic Outback territory, and the renowned leisure destinations of Australia’s Gold and Sunshine Coasts.

Hawaiian’s Flight HA 443 will depart Honolulu at 10:20 a.m. (1020) every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, cross the international dateline, and arrive in Brisbane at 4:00 p.m. (1600) the following day.

Starting November 28, the return flight HA 444 will depart Brisbane at 6:35 p.m. (1835) every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, cross the international dateline, and arrive in Honolulu at 8:05 a.m. (0805) the same day.

Hawaiian will operate its Honolulu-Brisbane service offering the comfort and roominess of its wide-body, twin-aisle Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft, seating 264 passengers in a two-class cabin, with 18 in Business Class and 246 in the Main Cabin.

The inaugural flight from Honolulu to Brisbane is also honoring the famed transpacific flight of the Southern Cross, which in June 1928 – the year before Hawaiian was founded – became the first aircraft to fly from Hawai’i to Brisbane.

Originating from Oakland, California, the Southern Cross captured international headlines with its successful completion of the world’s longest journey by air at the time.

Flown by Australian aviation pioneers Charles Kingsford Smith and Charles Ulm, the tri-engine Fokker monoplane took approximately 83 hours to fly from Kaua’i to Brisbane’s Eagle Farm airfield, stopping en route in Fiji for the pilots to take a one-day rest break.

In honor of Kingsford Smith and Ulm’s pioneering flight, Hawaiian has placed a commemorative image of the Southern Cross near the cockpit window of the Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft operating the inaugural flight.

Brisbane is the seventh of eight new destinations that Hawaiian has introduced or announced new service to since November 2010, following Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, and Sapporo, Japan; Seoul, South Korea; and New York City. Hawaiian will launch service to Auckland, New Zealand, on March 13, 2013.

Hawaiian’s continuing growth into new markets and expansion of existing operations in North America has been fueled by its long-haul fleet renewal and expansion program that began in June 2010. Since then, the company has welcomed nine new Airbus A330-200 aircraft to its fleet, and is scheduled to introduce 13 more A330s into service between 2013 and 2015.

Copyright Photo: PRNewsFoto/Hawaiian Airlines. Capt. Todd Mihara flashes a “shaka” sign, signaling ‘all clear’ from the cockpit of Hawaiian Airlines’ inaugural flight to Brisbane, Australia moments before departure from Honolulu on November 27. Below the cockpit window of Boeing 767-3CB ER N588HA (msn 33466) is a commemorative image of the Southern Cross in tribute to the pioneering flight between Hawaii and Brisbane in 1928, piloted by Australian aviators Charles Kingsford Smith and Charles Ulm. Sister ship N589HA also wears the special logo.

Hawaiian Airlines: 

SkyTeam welcomes Xiamen Airlines

SkyTeam, the global airline alliance, yesterday (November 21) welcomed China’s Xiamen Airlines (Xiamen) as its 19th member. Xiamen Airlines is also the fourth member from Greater China. The airline strengthens SkyTeam’s footprint in China and its overall #1 position in the Greater China Region by adding three new hubs – Xiamen, Fuzhou and Hangzhou – combined with a comprehensive domestic and growing international network.

China’s sixth largest carrier, Xiamen Airlines is also one of the world’s most profitable, having posted positive financial results for 26 consecutive years. The airline flies more than 15 million passengers annually to more than 50 cities including Macau, Hong Kong and Taipei. Founded in 1984, it is headquartered in the coastal city of Xiamen in the dynamic province of Fujian. This area of China boasts a thriving and diverse industrial economy as well as a growing tourism market.

Xiamen Airlines’ fast expanding international network includes Southeast and Northeast Asia and the airline has announced plans to launch flights to Europe, North America and Australasia by 2014 after the introduction of the Boeing 787. SkyTeam membership offers Xiamen Airlines’ customers greater connectivity onto international routes from China operated by other alliance members. This includes carriers from the region: China Airlines, China Eastern and China Southern, and nine additional SkyTeam airlines: Aeromexico, Aeroflot, Air France, Alitalia, Delta, Kenya Airways, KLM, Korean Air and Vietnam Airlines.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group. Brand new Boeing 737-85C B-5658 (msn 38395) passes through Honolulu on its long delivery flight across the Pacific Ocean. B-5658 also displays the new 2012 livery which shortened the titles to Xiamen Air.

Xiamen Air: 

Island Air takes delivery of its first ATR 72 and introduces a new look

Island Air (Hawaii) (Honolulu) has taken delivery of its first ATR 72-200. The pictured former American Eagle Airlines (Executive Airlines) ATR 72-212 registered as N348AE (msn 349) arrived at the pictured Honolulu base on September 23. N348AE will become N941WP with Island Air. The new type also introduces this new livery.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group.

Route Map:

Please click on the map for the full view.

Lion Air celebrates its 70th Boeing Next-Generation 737 with a new logojet

Lion Air (Jakarta) is celebrating the hand over and acceptance of its 70th Boeing Next-Generation 737 with a new logojet.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K Nishimura. The pictured Boeing 737-9GP ER registered as PK-LJZ (msn 37296) was handed over to the Indonesian carrier on August 9 and is pictured passing through Honolulu on the same day.

Hot New Photos: 

Lion Air: 

Xiamen Airlines introduces a new brand

Xiamen Airlines (Xiamen) on July 21 took possession of brand new Boeing 737-85C B-5653 (msn 38391). The arrival has ushered in a new era for the Chinese carrier. The company took the opportunity to introduce this new look which also includes calling the airline “Xiamen Air”.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. B-5653 passed through Honolulu on the delivery route.

Xiamen Air: 

Hawaiian Airlines to establish an inter-island subsidiary

Hawaiian Airlines‘ (Honolulu) parent company, Hawaiian Holdings, has signed a Letter of Intent to acquire turbo-prop aircraft with the aim of establishing a subsidiary carrier to serve routes not currently in Hawaiian’s neighbor island system.

The announcement came in a press release about lower inter-island fares. Hawaiian Airlines has implemented a new fare structure for neighbor island travel that lowers ticket prices across all of its fare classes from 4 to 25 percent.

Under the new fare structure, the lowest fare for a one-way nonstop interisland flight (including taxes and mandatory federal fees) is $65 for travel from Honolulu to Kahului and Lihu’e.

The new fare structure complements the additional neighbor island capacity and routes Hawaiian introduced earlier this year. Over the past year, Hawaiian has increased capacity by 13 percent and created a Maui hub to increase service between the Valley Isle, Kaua’i and Hawai’i Island. The turbo-prop subsidiary will allow Hawaiian to further expand capacity with daily flights to rural areas.

Hawaiian has operated turboprops in the past including the de Havilland Canada DHC-7 Dash 7 for its inter-island services.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. Today Hawaiian operates the Boeing 717 on its inter-island network. Boeing 717-22A N475HA taxies at the HNL hub.

Hawaiian Airlines: 

Hawaiian Airlines to fly to New Zealand

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has announced it will open a new international gateway to New Zealand with new nonstop service between Honolulu and Auckland three days weekly beginning on March 13, 2013.

The company’s market research indicates that Hawaii is an underserved market for New Zealand, as tourism figures show there are currently 30 percent fewer visitor arrivals coming from New Zealand than in 1999 when more nonstop flights were offered between the two destinations. In addition, New Zealand residents made more than one million trips to the South Pacific and Asia in 2011.

Hawaiian’s new service will add more than 40,000 seats annually between Auckland and Hawaii.

According to Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA), the New Zealand market is a strong source of visitors for Hawaii. In 2011, Hawaii received 20,730 arrivals from New Zealand – an increase of 15.4% compared to 2010 – which were responsible for generating $38 million in visitor expenditures. Year-to-date through May 2012, arrivals from New Zealand have increased by 5.1% year-over-year.

Hawaiian will operate the Auckland-Honolulu flights using its fleet of wide-body, twin-aisle Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft, seating 264 passengers – 18 in Business Class and 246 in the Main Cabin.

Auckland will be the eighth new destination that Hawaiian has introduced or announced new service to since November 2010, following Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, and Sapporo (October 30, 2012), Japan; Seoul, South Korea; New York City, and Brisbane, Australia (November 27, 2012).

Hawaiian’s growth into new markets and expansion of existing operations in North America has been fueled by its long-haul fleet renewal and expansion program that began in June 2010. Since then, the company has welcomed nine new Airbus A330-200 aircraft to its fleet, and is scheduled to introduce five more A330s into service in 2013.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. Boeing 767-3G5 ER N586HA (msn 24259) climbs away from Honolulu International Airport.

Hawaiian Airlines: 

Route Map:

GE Capital Aviation Services to lease 10 new Boeing 737-800s to China Southern Airlines in 2014

GE Capital Aviation Services Limited (GECAS) (Stamford, CT), the commercial aircraft leasing and financing arm of GE, announced it will lease 10 new Boeing 737-800 aircraft to China Southern Airlines (Ghangzhou) as part of the airline’s fleet renewal program.

The 10 aircraft come from GECAS’ existing order book with Boeing and are scheduled for delivery in 2014.

China Southern has been a GECAS customer since the early 1990s. It is one of the largest airlines in Asia with a fleet of more than 400 aircraft flying to more than 200 destinations.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group.

China Southern: 

Hawaiian to add Brisbane to its growing route map on November 27

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) will begin offering nonstop flights between Honolulu and Brisbane, Australia, three times weekly starting Tuesday, November 27, 2012, becoming the only US carrier to operate service to Brisbane.

Adding Brisbane service will increase Hawaiian’s weekly flights between Honolulu and Australia to 10, with daily services already operating to Australia’s largest city, Sydney.

Centrally located on Australia’s east coast, Brisbane is the capital city of the State of Queensland, home of the world-famous Great Barrier Reef, world heritage listed rainforests, iconic outback locations and the renowned leisure regions of the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.

Hawaiian Airlines flight HA 443, will depart Honolulu at 10:20 a.m. (1020) every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, cross the international dateline and land in Brisbane at 4:00 p.m. (1600) the following day, in time for onward connections to destinations throughout Australia. Journey time is approximately nine hours.

The return service, flight HA 444, will depart Brisbane at 6:35 p.m. (1835) every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, cross the international dateline and arrive in Honolulu at 8:05 a.m. (0805) the same day, providing not only an early arrival into Honolulu, but the ability for passengers to connect with onward Hawaiian Airlines flights to Maui, Kaua’i and Hawai’i Island.

Hawaiian’s Brisbane flights will be operated with Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft, seating 262 passengers in a two-class cabin – 18 in Business Class and 244 in Economy Class.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura/Blue Wave Group.

Hawaiian Airlines: 

Hawaiian’s first Airbus A330 arrives in Hawaii, will enter service on June 4

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. This interesting wide-angle view documents N380HA's arrival at HNL. The new airliner is named "Makalii".

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu yesterday (May 3) welcomed its fleet of the future to Hawaii – its first new, long-range Airbus A330-200 aircraft that will set the company’s course for growth and expansion.

The wide-body, 294-seat A330-243 registered N380HA (msn 1104) touched down at Honolulu International Airport at 10:49 a.m. on May 3. The wide-body airliner was piloted by Captain Robert Mixand Captain Mark Dawson. The 13-member flight crew was greeted by Hawaiian Airlines employees with fresh flower lei, Hawaiian music, and hula.

Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian’s president and CEO who was among a crowd of employees greeting the plane’s arrival, said, “What a special moment for all of us at Hawaiian, to see more than three years’ planning and coordination come to fruition. This first A330 heralds a new era for Hawaiian, one of growth and new services for our customers.”

Hawaiian’s new A330 is scheduled to begin service on Friday, June 4, as Flight HA 2, departing Honolulu at 1:15 p.m. (1315) for Los Angeles.

Hawaiian took possession of the A330 on April 28 in a Hawaii-themed acceptance ceremony at the Airbusfactory in Toulouse, France attended by more than 200 Hawaiian Airlines employees and their guests. The aircraft was flown nonstop from Toulouse to Seattle on April 30 for scheduled modification work before making its flight into Honolulu this morning.

Hawaiian plans to introduce up to 27 new Airbus aircraft into its fleet by the end of this decade. Hawaiian is leasing three A330s that are joining the fleet this year, and has signed a purchase agreement with Airbus to acquire seven A330s (starting in 2011) and six A350XWB-800 (Extra Wide-Body) aircraft (starting in 2017), as well as purchase rights for an additional five A330s and six A350s.

Island Air adds a 30th Anniversary logo

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. A close-up of Bombardier DHC-8-103 N829EX (msn 146) at Honolulu showing the new sticker.

Island Air (Honolulu) has added a special 30th Anniversary logo (to the left of the forward door) to its Bombardier DHC-8-103 N829EX (msn 146).

The company was incorporated as Princeville Airways in 1980 by Colorado-based Consolidated Oil and Gas. It began scheduled services on September 9, 1980, between Honolulu and Princeville (a resort town on Kauai) using two de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otters. The company served the regular route between Princeville and Honolulu, primarily for Princeville Resort hotel guests.

In May 1987, Consolidated Oil and Gas sold Princeville Airways to the Aloha Air Group, the parent company of Aloha Airlines. Princeville Airways was renamed Aloha IslandAir and served the growing inter-island commuter routes that Aloha Airlines could not accommodate with its Boeing 737s. In June 1992, Aloha IslandAir registered the name of Island Air as its trade name. In 1995, newly renamed Island Air was granted FAA certification to operate larger aircraft in the islands.

Go! adds Mokulele titles to its CRJ200 fleet


Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) N77278 (msn 7278) is pictured at Honolulu in the more subdued 2008 livery with the new joint titles.

Go! (iflygo.com) (Mesa Air Group) (Honolulu) is adding Mokulele titles to its Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) fleet.


As previously reported, last month Mesa Air Group and Republic Airways Holdings merged their competing subsidiaries, go! and Mokulele Airlines into a joint venture called go! Mokulele. Mesa’s 50-seat CRJ200s continued to operate inter-island services, supplemented by Mokulele’s Cessna 208B Grand Caravan turboprop aircraft. Shuttle America’s Embraer ERJ 170s, operated on behalf of Mokulele Airlines, were removed from Hawaii service. Mesa maintains a 75 percent share in the joint venture, with Republic holding the remaining 25 percent.

Hawaiian brings back the original Bellanca

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura.  Please click on photo for other photos.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. Please click on photo for other photos.

Hawaiian Airlines (Honoulu) yesterday (October 8) brought its original Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker NC251M (msn 154) back to the islands to help celebrate its 80th Anniversary on November 11. NC251M is the last flying CH-300 in the world. The company had the aircraft restored into flying condition and the original 1929 Inter Island Airways markings for the upcoming ceremonies. The Bellanca started sightseeing flights on October 6, 1929 over Oahu to and from Koko Head. Two Sikorsky S-38 amphibians were also acquired in order for the new airline to start scheduled passenger service on November 11, 1929 from Honolulu to Hilo via Maui. On October 1, 1941 the company adopted the current name.

Press release:


Pacific Air Express enters Hawaiian cargo market

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura.  Please click on photo for full view, more information and other photos.

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. Please click on photo for full view, more information and other photos.

Leis Air (Honolulu) will be operating cargo flights in the Hawaiian market for Pacific Air Express.

JAL retires the last Boeing 747 Classic


The crew of the last JAL classic posed for the cameras in front of 747-346 JA812J (msn 23067) at Honolulu before the historic departure.  Copyright Photo: Shigeyoshi Sakaki.

The crew of the last JAL classic posed for the cameras in front of 747-346 JA812J (msn 23067) at Honolulu before the historic departure. Copyright Photo: Shigeyoshi Sakaki.



Boeing 747-346 JA812J (msn 23067) had the honor of flying the last JAL 747 Classic flight from Honolulu to Tokyo (Narita). The Jumbo was wrapped in a giant lei at HNL before it made the last revenue departure.  Copyright Photo: Shigeyoshi Sakaki.

Boeing 747-346 JA812J (msn 23067) had the honor of flying the last JAL 747 Classic flight from Honolulu to Tokyo (Narita). The Jumbo was wrapped in a giant lei at HNL before it made the last revenue departure. Copyright Photo: Shigeyoshi Sakaki.



Please click on photo for full view, information and other photos.

Please click on photo for full view, information and other photos.

JAL-Japan Airlines (Tokyo) today (July 30) will retire its last Boeing 747-300 after 26 years of faithful service. Subsidiary JALways will operate flight JO 073 between Honolulu and Tokyo (Narita). JAL added the first 747-100 in 1970 and during the 1987-1989 period it operated the world’s largest 747 Classic (747-100/200/300) fleet (65).

Hawaiian posts a $27.5 million 2Q net profit


Please click on photo for full view, information and other Hawaiian photos.

Please click on photo for full view, information and other Hawaiian photos.

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