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Tag Archives: McDonnell Douglas

Finnair to get out of the dedicated freighter business

Nordic Global MD-11F OH-LGC (white)(Grd) HEL (MF)(LRW)

Finnair (Helsinki) is getting out of the dedicated freighter business by the end of this month according to ch-aviation. The Finnish carrier will depend on belly cargo in the future using its own passenger aircraft. Currently its dedicated freighter operation is provided by partial owned (40%) Nordic Global Airlines (NGA) which operates four McDonnell Douglas MD-11F freighters mainly for Finnair. It is unclear if NGA will continue to operate its ACMI operations after Finnair stops all dedicated freighter operations.

NGA-Nordic Global Airlines logo

Nordic Global describes its operations:

Nordic Global Airlines Ltd (NGA) is a Finnish all cargo carrier based in Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, Finland. NGA focuses on ACMI and Cargo Charters worldwide and operates under EASA AOC.

NGA has a highly dedicated and experienced team to manage the operations. As a young and dynamic company we are able to deliver the right ACMI and Charter services to our customers.

At the beginning of 2014 NGA operates a fleet of four MD-11F freighters for long-term ACMI customers and on ad-hoc charter basis.

Since the commencement of the commercial operations in August 2011 NGA has performed more than 2,000 flights to our customers satisfaction.

Route Map for NGA:

Web

Copyright Photo: Marco Finelli. Former Finnair McDonnell Douglas MD-11 (F) OH-LGC (msn 48512) wears only small Nordic Global Airlines titles at its Helsinki base.

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Enter today: Win an overnight stay in a KLM MD-11 in Amsterdam

KLM MD-11 Entrance (LRW)

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) has started a contest to win a night in a converted McDonnell Douglas MD-11 at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport. Hurry, the contest ends today. Here is the announcement:

The contest runs until Thursday November 20. The prize consists of a night in a KLM airplane at Schiphol Amsterdam Airport of which the interior is remodeled to an apartment.Participants are requested to describe in maximum hundred words why the participant should win one night on a KLM airplane.

KLM MD-11 Living Room

The overnight stay will be at ​​Schiphol Airport on November 28, 29 and 30, 2014. KLM works with Airbnb because the two companies share a passion to offer customers a travel experience full of inspiration. The service that Airbnb offers fits perfectly with KLM in this respect.

KLM MD-11 bed

KLM MD-11 Layout

For more information: CLICK HERE

All images by KLM.

KLM aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

Video: The last MD-11 passenger flight:

Allegiant announces 14 new routes and five new cities

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) today announced new, nonstop jet service on 14 routes, including the addition of five new cities, to the Allegiant network. Allegiant will now offer service to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Indianapolis, Indiana, Omaha, Nebraska, Richmond, Virginia and Jacksonville, Florida.

New routes announced include:

Nonstop service to Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood via Fort Lauderdale / Hollywood International Airport (FLL) from:

Syracuse, N.Y. — begins February 13, 2015
Columbus, Ohio — begins March 13, 2015

Nonstop service to Jacksonville, Fla. via Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) from:

Cincinnati, Ohio — begins February 12, 2015
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — begins February 13, 2015

Nonstop service to Las Vegas via McCarran International Airport (LAS) from:

Indianapolis, Indiana — begins February 27, 2015

Nonstop service to Sanford via Orlando-Sanford International Airport (SFB) from:

Indianapolis, Indiana — begins February 12, 2015
Austin, Texas — begins February 13, 2015

Nonstop service to Punta Gorda, Florida via Punta Gorda Airport (PGD) from:

Indianapolis, Indiana — begins February 11, 2015
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — begins February 12, 2015

Nonstop service to St. Petersburg/Clearwater via St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) from:

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — begins February 11, 2015
Indianapolis, Indiana — begins February 12, 2015
Richmond, Virginia — begins February 13, 2015
Hagerstown, Maryland — begins February 27, 2015
Omaha, Nebraska — begins March 5, 2015

Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N869GA (msn 53294) arrives at the Las Vegas base.

Allegiant Air aircraft slide show: AG Slide Show

KLM operates the last passenger McDonnell Douglas MD-11 flight, the Douglas era ends

KLM MD-11 PH-KCB (02-KLM-Douglas Aviation History)(Nose) AMS (KLM)(LRW)

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) today (November 11) operated three enthusiast flights from Amsterdam with this McDonnell Douglas MD-11. The KLM crews operated three Amsterdam enthusiast flights as flights KL 9895, KL 9897 and KL 9899. The airline issued this statement:

With three special Farewell Flights over the Netherlands, those in attendance will have one last chance to enjoy their favorite aircraft. Tickets for these flights sold out within minutes. This last MD-11 flight also marks the end of a remarkable era in civil aviation. KLM is the last airline in the world to deploy the MD-11 for passenger traffic. The partnership between Douglas and KLM lasted more than 80 years, which is unique. Since 1934, KLM is the only airline in the world to have operated every series-built aircraft type manufactured by Douglas, from DC2 to DC10. It all began in 1934 with KLM’s first DC-2, which remained in service until 1946. The legendary PH-AJU “Uiver” (Stork), which won the handicap section of the London to Melbourne race in 1934, was a DC-2. The DC-3 Dakota will be on show on the apron during the farewell event at Schiphol. KLM is the only airline to have operated the DC-5, because it was the only airline that did not cancel its order for this aircraft during the Second World War. Today, KLM bids a fond farewell to this legendary aircraft and has the honor, as a loyal customer, of marking the end of the Douglas era. Over the last few years, KLM has invested in a modern, fuel-efficient and sustainable fleet, for which the MD-11 is no longer suited. The MD-11 will be succeeded by the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner in 2015. The Boeing Dreamliner can carry 294 passengers, generates fuel savings of around 30%, and produces less noise and CO2 emissions. This is how KLM is contributing to a more sustainable airline industry. The Airbus A330 and Boeing 777 will deployed instead of the MD-11 until the new aircraft are delivered.

Copyright Photo: KLM. McDonnell Douglas MD-11 PH-KCB (msn 48556) wears special markings for the “end of a Douglas era” flights.

KLM aircraft slide show: nAG Slide Show

Video: Flying the MD-11 from the cockpit.

 

FedEx Express increases the number of countries for its International First® early delivery service to 97

FedEx is expanding solutions for global customers who need their critical deliveries to arrive as early as the start of the next business day.

FedEx Express (Memphis), a subsidiary of FedEx Corporation, and the world’s largest express transportation company, is broadening the FedEx ‘International First®’ early delivery service, increasing the number of origin markets to include the following:

Austria

Bahrain

Belize

Bolivia

China

Czech Republic

Denmark

Ecuador

El Salvador

Finland

Guiana (Guyana)

Guyana

Honduras

Hungary

India

Indonesia

Korea

Kuwait

Malaysia

Nicaragua

Norway

Paraguay

Peru

Philippines

Portugal

Poland

Singapore

Suriname (Surinam)

Sweden

Thailand

United Arab Emirates

This expansion brings the total number of origin markets to 97, and means that customers can now use FedEx International First to ship packages from the above countries to any of the existing International First destination markets.

Depending on origin and destination, FedEx International First shipments arrive within one to three business days, often at the start of the business day. The service is most often used for business documents, electronic and high tech equipment, medical devices, clinical trials and gear for the entertainment industry–shipments that require delivery on a tight deadline.

About FedEx International First

FedEx International First is a time-definite, customs cleared, door-to-door express service with a pre-defined delivery commitment for shipments up to 150 lbs. per package. Customers receive International First deliveries as early as 8 a.m. in the United States, 9 a.m. in Europe, and 10 a.m. in Asia, Canada and Latin America. While the range of shipments is broad, it’s often the delivery service of choice for customers shipping time-sensitive materials.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas MD-11 (F) N644FE (msn 48444) lands in Anchorage.

FedEx Express: AG Slide Show

KLM operates its last McDonnell Douglas MD-11 regularly scheduled flight, ends a long Douglas relationship

KLM MD-11 PH-KCE Audrey Hepburn last flight (KLM)(LR)

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) this morning (October 26) operated the last regularly scheduled revenue flight from Montreal (Trudeau) to the Amsterdam hub. As previously reported, KLM will also operate special “Farewell Flights” of the last MD-11 on November 11. The airline issued this statement and historic photos:

This morning (October 26), KLM Royal Dutch Airlines welcomed its last McDonnell Douglas MD-11 passenger flight – KL 672 – at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. The flight operated by McDonnell Douglas MD-11 PH-KCE (msn 48559) named after the late actress Audrey Hepburn (above), arrived from Montreal, not only marks the end of KLM’s MD-11 operations worldwide, but also the end of a remarkable era in civil aviation. The partnership between KLM and aircraft manufacturer (McDonnell) Douglas lasted more than 80 years, which is truly unique.

Many MD-11 fans had bought a ticket to be aboard KLM’s very last scheduled service with the MD-11, which is popular among many travellers and aircraft photographers. In recent months, many fans also booked tickets on routes where KLM deployed the MD-11, even if it meant a longer journey.

Worthy farewell

KLM MD-11 PH-KCE water cannon salute last flight (KLM)(LR)

With a welcoming shower (above), KLM gave a worthy farewell to this aircraft, which had been in service for 21 years. KLM has in recent years invested in a modern, economical and sustainable fleet, in which there was no room for the MD-11. The aircraft, with its characteristic third engine in the tail, had become expensive to maintain and has relatively high fuel consumption. Spare parts are hard to come by and it is no longer feasible to maintain stocks.

KLM MD-11 PH-KCE arriving at the gate (KLM)(LR)

Sustainable fleet

From October 2015, KLM will begin welcoming the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner to its fleet. Air France-KLM has ordered 25 of these aircraft, the first of which is scheduled for delivery in October 2015. The Boeing Dreamliner can carry 276 passengers, burns 15% less fuel than its predecessor, and has lower noise impact and CO2 emissions. This coincides with KLM’s pledge to contribute to a more sustainable air transport industry. Until the new aircraft arrive, KLM will deploy its Airbus A330s and Boeing 777s to replace the MD-11.

KLM and Air France 787-9 (Air France-KLM)(LR)

KLM and Air France will operate 73 next generation aircraft through 2024: 43 Airbus A350-900s and 30 Boeing 787-9s. The first aircraft Boeing 787-9 will enter into service with KLM in 2016 and the first Airbus A350-900 with Air France in 2018. Later, both airlines will operate both types of aircraft.

The Airbus A350-900 will be equipped with Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines, the only engine provided for this aircraft by the manufacturer.

These new aircraft will reduce fuel consumption by over 15% and will give rise to a significant reduction in noise and gas emissions, confirming the Group’s commitments in terms of environment and sustainable development.

Farewell Flights on November 11

A series of MD-11 Farwell Flights will be operated on November 11, 2014. KLM has organized three special roundtrips over the Netherlands, giving fans a last chance to enjoy their favorite jetliner. Unfortunately, the tickets for these flights are sold out, but MD-11 aficionados do stand a chance of winning two last tickets in the social media campaign Bye-Bye MD-11, which will be on until Thursday, October 30.

Read more about the MD-11 and KLM’s partnership with (McDonnell) Douglas from the KLM blog:

Today – Sunday, October 26 – KLM’s last commercial flight with an MD-11 touched down at Schiphol. A fond farewell, that will be festively repeated in November, with three roundtrips over the Netherlands for fans of this popular jetliner.

The first MD-11

KLM’s first MD-11 landed at Schiphol in 1993 – on December 10 at 11.00, to be exact. It was stormy, with gusting gale-force winds causing delays at Schiphol. The PH-KCA “Amy Johnson” landed safely at the airport and entered commercial service on January 24, 1994, flying to Lagos. KLM had ordered ten MD-11s and took out options for ten more, which it eventually never used.

The arrival of the MD-11 got extensive coverage in the KLM staff magazine Wolkenridder. The new addition to the fleet was praised for its functional flexibility, which was considered a must, because developments in the airline industry were much the same as they are today. As the Wolkenridder put it: “The current challenges in the global airline industry are not so much caused by a decline in demand, but primarily by declining fares, a trend brought on by fierce competition and customer expectations.”

The problem solver

The fact that the MD-11 cabin was relatively easy to reconfigure was seen as an option to swiftly respond to seasonal fluctuations and changing market circumstances. The cabin could be simply converted from full passenger to combi or full freighter, or it could prepared for a single-class charter flight. In short, the MD-11 was a problem solver, but also a plane that attracted lots of fans. Many pilots and plane spotters have sung the praises of the MD-11’s characteristic features and idiosyncrasies, and many of them will greet its departure with heavy hearts.

A worthy send-off

We’ll be giving the MD-11 a worthy send-off, but will also be marking the end of an 80-year partnership between KLM and Douglas, and later McDonnell Douglas. KLM is the only airline to have operated all of the series-built DC types ever produced by this manufacturer. It began with the DC-2 in 1934 (below), which KLM operated until 1946. In fact, KLM’s legendary PH-AJU “Uiver” (Stork), which won the handicap section of the London to Melbourne Race in 1934, was a DC-2.

KLM DC-2 PH-AJU Uiver (Stork)(Grd)(KLM)(LRW)

The arrival of the DC-8 in 1960 marked the start of the jet age for KLM.

An important step forward that made air transport accessible to a much larger group of people. The predecessor of the MD-11 was the DC-10, which first joined the KLM fleet in 1972. In the late 1990s, McDonnell-Douglas was taken over by Boeing, and production of the MD-11 was stopped in 2000, after 200 of these aircraft had rolled off the line. Nowadays, spare parts are hard to come by, which makes maintenance costly. Technological innovations have also overtaken the MD-11. This month, KLM will be the last airline in the world to operate a passenger flight with the MD-11, a true honour for such a faithful customer of this legendary aircraft manufacturer.

All images above by KLM.

Message to all airlines: If you are retiring a long-standing aircraft type, make a big deal about it. Cherish and honor your colorful history. Honor the past via your employees who lived the history. Operate a nostalgic “last flight” and you will fill up the seats. This new type of flight makes money! It is a growing trend to honor the past with nostalgic “last flights”. Just ask KLM, they filled all of their seats of their two special flights on November 11. After November 11 you will not be able to fly on a passenger MD-11. Thank you KLM – Donald Douglas would be proud.

KLM Aircraft Slide Show: AG Slide Show

MD-11 Slide Show:

Bottom Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. PH-KCE was also the first KLM aircraft to wear the special “95 Years” emblem.

Allegiant Travel Company reports its 47th consecutive profitable quarter

Allegiant Travel Company (Allegiant Air) (Las Vegas) reported a third quarter net profit of $14.2 million, down 17 percent from the same quarter a year ago. The holding company has reported the following financial results for the third quarter 2014, as well as comparisons to prior year equivalents:

Allegiant 3Q14 Financial Box

“We are very proud to report our 47th consecutive profitable quarter,” stated Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr., Chairman and CEO of Allegiant Travel Company. “During this quarter we saw the departure of Andrew Levy, our President and COO. Andrew will be missed. He has left the company in great shape. His legacy includes building a solid, capable management team which ensures the company will maintain its strong performance into the future. In addition, we have also welcomed back Kris Bauer as the airline’s Senior Vice President of Operations and COO while we conduct our search for a replacement. Earlier this week, our Board of Directors approved an increase to our share repurchase authority to $100 million from its current level of $7.4 million. We continue to see strength in the business model and are demonstrating that confidence by actively returning cash to shareholders. Lastly, I want to thank all of our Team Members for their continued efforts during the past quarter.”

Notable company highlights

Repurchased 456,296 shares during the quarter, which brings the total to 1,199,740 shares for the first nine months of 2014. Since the inception of the share repurchase program, the company has repurchased 4,692,385 shares for a total of $316.3 million through the third quarter 2014

Purchased two A319s in August off operating lease

Added three new destinations to Cincinnati. Cincinnati has become the fastest growing origination city in the company’s history

In-service Airbus fleet accounted for over 21 percent of total ASM production in the quarter. In the quarter the company operated ten Airbus aircraft which is 14 percent of the total fleet

Third quarter 2014 revenue performance

East Coast TRASM declined 1.4 percent, however capacity in these markets grew 27.3 percent. Flying on the East Coast accounted for 40 percent of entire network versus 36 percent a year ago

Hawaii TRASM grew 12.7 percent versus the same period a year ago

Average fare – ancillary air-related charges increased 2.1 percent, as we implemented a fee to print a boarding pass at the ticket counter in

September 2014, and also due to continued strength in existing ancillary categories such as assigned seat fees, trip flex and priority boarding

Allegiant 3Q14 Fleet Plan

Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. The McDonnell Douglas fleet is holding steady at 53 aircraft while newer Airbus A319s and A320s are being added. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N418NV (msn 49615) arrives at the Las Vegas home.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

FedEx is forecasting another record holiday season with an 8.8% increase and December 15 as the busiest day

FedEx Corporation (FedEx Express) (Memphis) is forecasting another record holiday. The company expects to move more than 290 million shipments between Black Friday and Christmas Eve, an 8.8 percent increase in overall year-over-year Peak seasonal volume.

The season is expected to be bolstered by three volume spikes throughout December, occurring the first three Mondays of the month and each expected to surpass 20 million in volume.

December 15 is projected to be the busiest day in company history, with a forecasted 22.6 million shipments moving around the world. Peak projections are included in FedEx earnings guidance for FY15.

Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. An upgraded McDonnell Douglas MD-10-30F (DC-10-30F) registered as N321FE (msn 47836) arrives in Las Vegas.

FedEx Express Aircraft Slide Show: AG Slide Show

 

Win two tickets on KLM’s last McDonnell Douglas MD-11 passenger flight

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) has made this announcement:

On November 11, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines will operate three McDonnell Douglas MD-11 Farewell Flights. These popular roundtrips sold out within minutes of going on sale. But you still have a chance to win the last two available seats onboard this special flight!

Take part in the MD-11 quiz from today, Monday October 20, to Thursday October 30 at http://byebyeMD11.klm.com. KLM is also commemorating the MD-11 on this website in an historical overview of photos, films, facts and figures relating to this unique aircraft.

About the quiz

The campaign consists of two parts: a quiz with 11 questions and a timeline. The timeline gives an overview of MD-11 milestones and memories in photos, videos and words.

Anyone with a Facebook or Twitter account can take part in the quiz and stands to win various unique daily prizes, including an MD flight simulator session. If you don’t know an answer, the timeline will help you find it. Readers will discover how many tons of kerosene a KLM MD-11 can carry, which famous ladies KLM’s MD-11s are named after, and how many passenger seats there are aboard a KLM MD-11. Get all 11 questions right and you stand a chance to win the main prize.

The site will remain online for the rest of the year.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Here is one of the answers. The pictured MD-11 PH-KCE (msn 48559) with the special 95 Years emblem is also named after actress Audrey Hepburn.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines: AG Slide Show

Allegiant starts Cincinnati-Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood flights

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) yesterday (October 9) started nonstop service between Cincinnati and Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood.

The new flights will operate four times weekly from the Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL).

Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood begins the latest flight expansion by Allegiant at CVG announced in the summer. In November, Allegiant will begin nonstop flights to Mesa (near Phoenix), followed by Las Vegas in December, bringing the company’s total weekly flights to 20 before the end of the year.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N419NV (msn 53366) lands in Las Vegas.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

Happy Birthday KLM – You are 95 Years young

KLM MD-11 95 Years (LRW)

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) today celebrated 95 years of flying by adding this special logo to one of its McDonnell Douglas MD-11s.

Happy Birthday KLM.

Photo: KLM. McDonnell Douglas MD-11 PH-KCE (msn 48559) is the first aircraft to display the special “95 Years” logo.

KLM: AG Slide Show

Video: From the pilot’s viewpoint:

United Airways suspends all operations after its board fails to adopt a rescue plan, then resumes again

United Airways (Bangladesh) (Dhaka) suspended all operations at the end of the day on Wednesday, September 24, after the airline’s board of directors failed to agree on a rescue plan to keep the private cash-starved airline flying according to the Daily Star.

According to the report, founder Tasbirul Ahmed Choudhury was forced to resign creating the leadership void.

Previously the founder had this goal for his airline:

I intend to make United Airways the best in the world and pursue this goal seriously, as I am sure you pursue your goals equally seriously. I have always aimed at delighting you and giving you nothing but the best.

It is my passion to deliver a world-class experience. And since work and play can go hand-in-hand, I am sure you need some time to relax in the skies after several pressing commitments and stressful work obligations.

I make this happen, by being personally involved and ensure that every United Airways aircraft meets the global standards that I have set in terms of safety. I am proud of our fleet which incorporates the latest technology available.

Aboard every United Airways flight you will meet your crew that we have selected and approved after a rigorous training program.

So, leave the stress of daily life behind and enjoy the experience with United Airways. I try hard to exceed what you expect, however, if I have missed something or fallen short of meeting your expectations, please feel free to mail me directly at chairman@uabdl.com.

I invite you to fly United Airways and experience an unforgettable journey my team and I strive to create everyday.

Warm personal regards,

Captain Tasbirul Ahmed Choudhury
Chairman and Managing Director

The airline commenced scheduled passenger operations on July 10, 2007.

Update:  United Airways resumed domestic and regional operations on September 27, following a three day suspension. The new Board of Directors asked former chairman and captain Tasbirul Ahmed Chowdhury to return which he did.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) S2-AEU (msn 49790) arrives at Dhaka.

United Airways: AG Slide Show

United Airways logo

Previous Route Map:

United Airways Route Map

United Airways Fleet:

United Airways fleet

Schedule at the time of the shutdown:

United Airways 9.2014 Schedule

Video: A personal video for a domestic ATR 72 flight from Chittagong to Dhaka:

 

Allegiant Air’s pilots allege pilot attrition is accelerating at the company

Allegiant Air‘s (Las Vegas) pilots, represented by the Airline Professionals Association Teamsters Local 1224, have issued this statement:

Pilot attrition is accelerating at Allegiant Air as pilots, even senior captains with many years invested, have been leaving in increasing numbers for companies luring them with better and safer operations, better working conditions, better schedules and increased compensation and benefits packages.

A significant number of pilots have recently left and more indicate they are planning to leave Allegiant Air in pursuit of greener pastures. Flights have been cancelled and Allegiant Air continues to deploy sub service due to a lack of crews to fly their airplanes. The airline’s management and investors should equally be concerned with pilot attrition, as it has a direct impact on the operation.

Not only is Allegiant Air having trouble retaining qualified pilots, but the management team is struggling to replace the losses by attempting to hire from a dwindling pool of qualified candidates who, once exposed to the realities of employment at Allegiant Air and the difficult relationship with an anti-union management team, often elect to leave as well.

Even as the number of new hires replacing former pilots at the airline is steadily climbing, some new hires elect not to show up for training.

The accelerating loss of pilots is not a sustainable model for the company, it’s not favorable for shareholders, and it certainly doesn’t offer perks for the remaining pilots on payroll. Already flying full schedules, some of the remaining pilots are finding themselves forced into covering additional flights, keeping them away from home for weeks and even months at a time.

The pilots, and the union representing them, are urging the management team to address the underlying conditions at the root of the crew shortage.

“Addressing several key issues would go a long way towards stemming the company’s losses,” said Teamsters Local 1224 President Daniel Wells, speaking on behalf of the Allegiant Air pilots. “The Teamsters have presented the company with a comprehensive proposal, to which they have refused to reply. The proposal addresses key and legitimate concerns held by the Allegiant Air pilots. An honest effort by the company to reach an agreement during contract negotiations would have a positive effect, stem the unsustainable losses they are experiencing, and allow the company to succeed going forward.”

In August 2012 the pilots overwhelmingly voted for Teamster representation. Following the union vote, working conditions at Allegiant Air began to plummet. Many pilot benefits were reduced below prior negotiated levels, resulting in a lawsuit and a court-ordered injunction against the company which directed Allegiant Air to restore benefits to previous levels.

“We want to work with the management team at Allegiant Air to build an airline where pilots will want to come and stay,” said Wells. “It’s time to stop spending money fighting in Federal Court and blaming government regulatory agencies for operational challenges.”

The pilots have taken their concerns to management and repeatedly extended their assistance to help Allegiant Air become a sustainable, successful airline. However, offers for a team effort and support from the pilots are met with disregard and disdain.

The union has begun surveying pilots who are leaving Allegiant Air in order to best identify and trend the causal factors leading to a pilot’s decision to leave. As soon as enough statistical data has been documented to ensure sound statistics, the pilots intend to present the data to their management team in another effort to stem meaningful change.

The Airline Professionals Association Teamsters Local 1224 is affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Airline Division and represents nearly 4000 members among 11 air carriers that operate both passenger and cargo aircraft. Local 1224 is the certified bargaining unit that represents all flight crew members employed by ABX Air, Inc., Allegiant Air, Atlas Air, Inc., Brendan Airways, LLC, Horizon Air Industries, Inc., Hyannis Air Services, Inc., Kalitta Air, LLC, Kalitta Charters II, LLC, Miami Air International, Omni Air International, Silver Airways Corporation, and Southern Air, Inc.

Allegiant has not yet responded with a public statement.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Allegiant Air McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N881GA (msn 49708) arrives at the Las Vegas base.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

FedEx pilots to conduct informational picketing today

FedEx Express‘ (Memphis) 4,200 pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), will conduct informational picketing on Tuesday, September 23, in three cities to show, according to the union, “their continuing frustration with ongoing contract negotiations and their resolute support of their Negotiating Committee.”

Informational picketing will take place on Tuesday, September 23, at the following locations and times (all times are local):

Anchorage
Outside FedEx sorting facility at Ted Stevens
Anchorage Int’l Airport, corner of Postmark
Drive and Rockwell Avenue
11:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.

Los Angeles
Maguire Gardens (South Flower Street and
West 5th Street)
11:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.

Memphis
Outside FedEx Air Operations Center (3131
Democrat Road)
Noon to 12:30 p.m.

According to the union, “FedEx Express and its pilot group came to a historic collective bargaining agreement in 2011. What made this agreement historic was the commitment to continue bargaining so as to foster a more efficient negotiating climate when formal negotiations commenced in 2013 despite having achieved a contract. “There was a real opportunity to fix some difficult problems with well-developed long-term solutions and without the pressure that comes with traditional bargaining. Unfortunately, management chose a different route,” said Captain Scott Stratton, chairman of the ALPA FedEx Master Executive Council. “We should have had a new contract by now, but instead we have spent too much time mired in a ‘traditional’ bargaining situation that does not promote good labor-management relations. In spite of management’s actions, the pilots remain committed to achieving a responsible negotiated agreement that recognizes our contributions to FedEx’s remarkable profitability.”

Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas MD-10-10F (DC-10-10F) N554FE (msn 46708) lands at Raleigh/Durham.

FedEx Express: AG Slide Show

KLM to retire its last McDonnell Douglas MD-11 on November 11 with a special “farewell flight”

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam) is the last passenger operator of the McDonnell Douglas MD-11. KLM operated 10 285-seat MD-11s. Each MD-11 was named after famous women in history.

The airline will operate its last regularly scheduled revenue passenger flight on October 25 between Montreal (Trudeau) and Amsterdam. KLM has also announced an one hour farewell flight for $139 on November 11 from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.

More form KLM: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: TMK Photography/AirlinersGallery.com. The MD-11s are currently being operated to both Toronto and Montreal. MD-11 PH-KCB (msn 48556) departs from Toronto (Pearson) bound for the Amsterdam hub.

KLM: AG Slide Show

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Business review

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Medium-term financial targets to 2017

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

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

Read the analysis by Bloomberg Businessweek: CLICK HERE

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

Air France: AG Slide Show

KLM: AG Slide Show

Martinair: AG Slide Show

Transavia Airlines (Netherlands): AG Slide Show

Transavia Airlines (France): AG Slide Show

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

 

Allegiant to charge for the printing of a boarding pass at the airport

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) has announced a new initiative to encourage paperless boarding throughout its network, saving passengers time and money. Beginning tomorrow, September 2, 2014, customers who require the assistance of a ticket agent to print their boarding pass at the airport will pay a $5 charge per boarding pass printed. Customers who use a mobile boarding pass on their mobile device or tablet, or check-in online and print their boarding pass at home will save themselves the small fee, while helping the carrier keep fares low and ticket lines short.

Throughout 2013, Allegiant worked with many small and mid-size airports throughout its system to introduce mobile boarding pass scanners at the security checkpoints in every airport the carrier serves. Fifty-five of the airports Allegiant serves did not previously have scanners in place. Allegiant purchased scanners for these airports, worked with the airports and TSA to have them approved and installed and reached out to other carriers serving the airports to ensure that the mobile boarding pass scanners the company installed could be used by other airline passengers.

Travelers can avoid paying $5 to have their boarding pass printed at the airport by checking-in online or on the Allegiant2Go mobile app and using express bag drop or proceeding directly to the gate. Through the Allegiant2Go mobile app, available for free on Apple and Android mobile devices, customers may check-in for their flight 24 hours prior to scheduled departure, add seat assignments, priority boarding or additional baggage and receive their boarding pass directly on their phone or tablet. The mobile boarding pass option will save travelers the time and trouble of waiting in ticket counter lines.

This charge does not apply to passengers who are ineligible for advance check-in such as passengers traveling with pets in the cabin, or to passengers with disabilities who are unable to print or download boarding passes.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N881GA (msn 49708) departs from Las Vegas.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

 

Allegiant announces Cincinnati-Las Vegas flights

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) today announced new, nonstop service from Cincinnati to Las Vegas beginning on December 18.

The new flights will operate twice weekly between the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) and Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS) beginning on Thursday, December 18, 2014. This announcement brings the total number of destinations served by Allegiant from CVG to seven, including service to Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Mesa (near Phoenix) announced just last month.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N424NV (msn 49421) departs from Las Vegas McCarran International Airport.

Allegiant: AG Slide Show

Western Global Airlines receives its Part 121 AOC, will start cargo operations with two MD-11Fs

WGA logo

Western Global Airlines-WGA (Sarasota/Bradenton) according to ch-aviation, will begin cargo operations with a fleet of two McDonnell Douglas MD-11 freighters (N415JN, msn 48415 and N435KD, msn 48435). Both freighters will be leased from Neff Air. The company has issued this statement:

Western Global Airlines LLC (WGA), a low cost, high quality all-cargo carrier, announced on August 4 that it received final FAA certification and has been issued a Part 121 Air Operator Certificate. In addition, WGA has been certified by the U.S. DOT to be fit, willing, and able to engage in interstate and foreign air transportation of property and mail. WGA plans to commence operations immediately.

Founder and CEO, Jim Neff, said, “We are very pleased by these approvals. As the first newly certified U.S. based wide-body air cargo operator in almost a decade, WGA is poised to offer the global marketplace a new large-scale, customer-oriented platform, focused on low cost, flexible service and high reliability. We also expect to benefit from the relative shortage of wide-body cargo carriers in the market today.” In addition to being WGA’s CEO, Mr. Neff also serves as CEO and Chairman of Helsinki based Nordic Global Airlines, Ltd. (NGA) and has had an unparalleled career in air cargo and aviation dating back to Flying Tiger Line, Continental Airlines, Emery Worldwide and Burlington Air Express. He was the founder and CEO of Southern Air Inc. from 1999 until 2010.

Mr. Neff added, “For me, this is the culmination of a lifelong dream. Having created and built the air systems for many of the leading U.S. based cargo operators over the past 30 plus years, I believe that the current global economic reality calls for freighter services to be both lower cost and more responsive to customers. This is the driving force and the vision behind WGA.”

WGA’s management team was hand-picked by Mr. Neff from among the industry’s most knowledgeable and experienced innovators. The company will begin operations with a fleet of MD-11Fs leased from Neff Air LLC, an affiliated leasing company which owns ten GE powered MD-11Fs and two GE powered 747-400BCFs directly without debt. WGA’s business plan is based on enabling its customers to profitably grow their air cargo business by seamlessly outsourcing all or part of their freighter operation to WGA. WGA’s sister company, NGA, has been providing low cost, flexible, and reliable service to the European market for the past three years with a fleet of four MD-11Fs leased from Neff Air. Going forward, the company expects to develop the WGA/NGA platforms jointly to achieve marketing and operational synergies to maximize service responsiveness, flexibility, and operating efficiencies.

 

Orange Air operates charter flights for the U.S. government

Orange Air DC-9-82 N918AV (white)(Grd) SFB (Orange Air)(LRW)

Orange Air, LLC (Sanford) is a relatively new FAR 121 Air Carrier located at the Orlando Sanford International Airport in Sanford, FL (north of Orlando).

The charter airline received its Air Operators Certificate (AOC) on June 3, 2014. On June 10, 2014 it operated its first charter flight.

Mission Statement:

Orange Air strives to be a leading service provider of passenger air charter for Commercial Customers, US and International Government Agencies and US Defense Contractors providing the safest, most reliable, highest quality service and to be the most competitive 121 non-scheduled airline in the industry.

Copyright Photo: Orange Air. The crews stand in front of the first aircraft, former Belle Air McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82 (MD-82) N918AV (msn 49104, ex ZA-ARD).

Orange Air logo (small)

 

Are the days numbered for Martinair?

Martinair‘s (Amsterdam) days could be number. The cargo subsidiary of the Air France-KLM Group could be sold to a third party and even shut down i.e. “internal restructuring”. The cargo divisions of the Air France-KLM Group continue to bring down the group financially. As part of its first half financial report, the Group issued this statement concerning the cargo divisions, including Martinair:

Second Quarter 2014 cargo revenues amounted to 669 million euros, down 5.1% and by 1.9% on a constant currency basis. Faced with a slower than expected recovery, the group continued to reduce full-freighter capacity (down 8.6%). In consequence, total capacity decreased by 2.0%. Traffic decreased by 1.6%, leading to a 0.3 point increase in load factor to 63.2%. Unit revenue per Available Ton Kilometer (RATK) increased by 1.1% on a constant currency basis (-2.1% on a reported basis).

The operating result improved slightly to -45 million euro, up 5 million euros.

The recovery in demand being slower than expected, the group has initiated a strategic review of its full-freighter business, with different scenarios under consideration. Having already decided in October 2013 to reduce its full-freighter fleet to 2 aircraft in Paris and 8 aircraft in Amsterdam by 2015, the group is now looking to further reduce its Amsterdam-based full-freighter exposure either through a partnership with a third party or through internal restructuring. In consequence, the group has recorded an impairment of 106 million euros in its Second Quarter 2014 accounts.

First Half 2014 cargo revenues amounted to 1,344 million euros, down 4.3% and by 1.6% on a constant currency basis. Traffic was stable for a -1.5% decline in capacity, leading to a 1.0 point increase in load factor to 64.0%. Unit revenue per Available Ton Kilometer (RATK) was stable on a constant currency basis (down 2.7% on a reported basis).

On a constant currency basis, cargo unit cost was down 1.7% in the First Half (down 3.9% on a reported basis). The operating result improved by 21 million euros to -79 million euros.

Will Martinair be sold or disbanded? It is unlikely to remain as it is today.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas MD-11 (F) PH-MCY (msn 48445) taxies at the Amsterdam base.

Martinair: AG Slide Show

Air Algerie/Swiftair flight crashes in Mali, wreckage found, there are no survivors

Swiftair (Madrid) McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) registered EC-LTV (msn 53190) operating for Air Algerie (Algiers) as flight AH 5017 from Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso to Algiers with 110 passengers and 6 crew members is missing. Contact with the airliner has been lost over Mali near Gao about 50 minutes after the takeoff. Both airlines have announced they have lost contact with the crew.

According to Reuters, the country of Burkino Faso stated the flight had asked ATC to alter its course due to a storm. There was a known sandstorm in the area according to local reports.

Swiftair said on its website the flight took off from Burkina Faso at 0117 GMT and was supposed to land in Algiers at 0510 GMT but never reached its destination.

Two French Air Force Mirage 2000 jets based in west Africa have been dispatched to try to locate the missing airliner according to Reuters.

Reuters is now reporting the plane has crashed:

“An Air Algerie flight crashed on Thursday en route from Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso to Algiers with 110 passengers on board, an Algerian aviation official said.”

Update: The wreckage has been found near the city of Gao, Mali (see the map below). There are no survivors of the 116 passengers and crew members on board.

Read the full report from The Telegraph: CLICK HERE

Update: From CNN:

“France has declared a three-day mourning period to commemorate the victims of the Air Algerie flight 5017 crash, French President Francois Hollande declared on Saturday (July 26).

Following a meeting with families of the victims, Hollande said flags will fly at half-staff on government buildings from Monday through Wednesday.

Fifty-four of the 118 victims were French nationals.

The second flight data recorder from has been found in Mali, a U.N. official said Saturday (July 26).”

Swiftair logo

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Sister ship McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) M814NK became EC-KCX on delivery (msn 49619).

Bottom Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com. The ill-fated DC-9-83 (MD-83) EC-LTV at Palma de Mallorca before the tragic crash.

Swiftair: AG Slide Show

Air Algerie: AG Slide Show

Google Maps:
Swiftair EC-LTV Mali Lost Contact Map

Allegiant adds more routes and flights from fast-growing Cincinnati

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) has announced new, nonstop jet service from Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) to Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood beginning on October 9, 2014 and Mesa (near Phoenix) beginning on November 12, 2014. In addition, Allegiant will also add additional weekly flights to Sanford (near Orlando), St. Petersburg/Clearwater and Punta Gorda all in Florida.

Allegiant began its service at Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport in February 2014 with nonstop flights to Sanford. The carrier has since added nonstop flights to two additional Florida vacation destinations as well as seasonal summer service to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. This announcement will more than double Allegiant’s footprint at CVG, increasing from seven weekly flights to 18, serving six destinations. Cincinnati is the fastest-growing origination city in Allegiant’s 15-year history, and the carrier attributes the expansion to the overwhelming demand for low-cost, nonstop flights to leisure destinations.

The new flights to Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood will operate four times weekly between Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL). The new flights to Mesa will operate twice weekly between Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) and Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport (AZA).

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N876GA (msn 53469) sets down at the Las Vegas base.

Allegiant: AG Slide Show

Erickson Aero Tanker places its first McDonnell Douglas DC-9-87 into fire tanker operations

Aero Air (Hillsboro, OR) as we previously reported, acquired the Butler Aircraft (Redmond, OR) air tanker operation, including its three aging Douglas DC-7s, located at the Madras Airport, according to the Madras Pioneer. This air tanker operation is now known as Erickson Aero Tanker. Seven former SAS McDonnell Douglas DC-9-87s (MD-87s) are being acquired and at least four will be converted to air tankers. This is a new use for the versatile DC-9.

The new name comes from co-owner Jack Erickson, who was the founder and former owner of Erickson Air-Crane.

The new company has been awarded the next generation air tanker contract by the U.S. Forest Service. Erickson Aero Tanker has now received a FAA Supplemental Type Certificate for the DC-9-87 and in May placed the first aircraft into its fire fighting contracts which is a new role for this former airliner.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. The pictured DC-9-87 (MD-87) N293EA (msn 53209) was originally delivered to Iberia as EC-635 (later EC-FFA) on June 20, 1991. It would also serve with SAS as SE-DMN.

Video: Air Tanker 101, a McDonnell Douglas DC-9-87 (MD-87), is seen dropping retardant on the Shirley Fire near Lake Isabella, California on June 15, 2014. The video was filmed by Tim Walton of Photo One Productions.

 

 

Allegiant adds new seasonal routes from Los Angeles to Great Falls and Cedar Rapids

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) on June 6 started seasonal nonstop jet service between Great Falls, Montana and Los Angeles. Allegiant now operates Great Falls’ only nonstop service to Los Angeles in addition to Las Vegas and Mesa (near Phoenix). The new flights will operate twice-weekly through September 8, 2014.

The company on June 6 also inaugurated new nonstop, seasonal jet service between Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Los Angeles via Los Angeles International Airport.

As is customary on new Allegiant routes, the new flights will initially operate twice weekly, beginning through September 8, 2014, flying nonstop from The Eastern Iowa Airport (CID) to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and becoming the only nonstop service from Cedar Rapids to any destination in California.

Copyright Photo: Jacques Guillem Collection/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N416NV (msn 49555) holds for runway clearance for its departure from the Las Vegas base.

Allegiant: AG Slide Show

Allegiant starts two seasonal routes from Los Angeles

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) yesterday (June 5) celebrated the start of nonstop seasonal jet service between Kalispell, Montana and Los Angeles. Kalispell is the gateway airport for Glacier National Park.

Los Angeles becomes Allegiant’s third destination from Kalispell, joining current flights to Oakland and Las Vegas. The new flights will operate twice weekly between Glacier Park International Airport (FCA) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) beginning today through September 7, 2014.

In addition, Allegiant yesterday (June 5) also launched seasonal nonstop jet service between McAllen, Texas and Los Angeles.  McAllen serves the southern Rio Grande Valley and South Padre Island.

Allegiant offers McAllen’s only nonstop services to Las Vegas, Southern California and Florida. The new flights will operate twice weekly between McAllen-Miller International Airport (MFE) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) through September 7.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 N880GA (msn 49625) approaches the runway at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Allegiant: AG Slide Show

Allegiant Air today launches three seasonal routes to Myrtle Beach

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) today (May 29) began new nonstop, seasonal jet service between Lexington, Kentucky and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The new flights operate twice weekly beginning today through August 10, 2014, flying nonstop from Lexington’s Blue Grass Airport (LEX) to Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR) and becoming the only nonstop service from Lexington to any destination in South Carolina.

Allegiant first began service at Blue Grass Airport in November 2008 with nonstop service to Sanford and today serves five vacation destinations from the airport including Sanford, Punta Gorda, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, St. Petersburg/Clearwater and Myrtle Beach. Lexington becomes one of eight Allegiant cities with nonstop service to Myrtle Beach, including four new cities in 2014.

In addition, Allegiant today also began new nonstop, seasonal jet service from Columbus, Ohio to Myrtle Beach. The new flights will operate three times a week until September 7, 2014, flying nonstop from Rickenbacker Charter Terminal (LCK) to Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR). Myrtle Beach becomes the fourth destination available to Allegiant travelers flying out of Rickenbacker.

Allegiant first began service at Rickenbacker Charter Terminal in October 2012 with nonstop service to Sanford. In the last year and a half, Allegiant has added nonstop service to both St. Petersburg/Clearwater and Punta Gorda and has carried more than 15,000 passengers between Columbus and the company’s sunny destinations. Columbus becomes one of eight Allegiant cities with nonstop service to Myrtle Beach this summer.

Finally, the company operated its first nonstop flight between Syracuse and Myrtle Beach. The new nonstop flights will operate twice weekly between Syracuse Hancock International Airport (SYR) and Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR). Myrtle Beach becomes the second destination offered to local Allegiant travelers after less than a year in the Syracuse market.

Allegiant first began service at Syracuse Hancock International Airport in November 2013 with nonstop service to St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N874GA (msn 49643) approaches the runway at Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS).

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

Allegiant restores Colorado Springs-Mesa service and starts three new routes

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) on May 15 started three new routes and restarted another:

Allegiant restarted nonstop jet service between Colorado Springs and Mesa via the Phoenix/Mesa Gateway Airport. The service will operate twice weekly and becoming the only nonstop service from Colorado Springs to any destination in Arizona. Allegiant first began service at Colorado Springs Airport in February 2002 with nonstop service to Las Vegas and previously offered service to Mesa from 2010 to 2012. Mesa joins Las Vegas as Allegiant’s second nonstop destination from Colorado Springs.

Additionally at Mesa, Allegiant launched the first nonstop flights between Stockton and Mesa via Phoenix/Mesa Gateway Airport. The new nonstop flights will operate twice weekly. Mesa becomes the third destination offered to Allegiant travelers flying out of Stockton. Allegiant first began service at Stockton Metropolitan Airport in June 2006 with nonstop service to Las Vegas. Since then, Allegiant has added nonstop seasonal flights to Honolulu.

In the East, Allegiant also started nonstop, year-round jet service from Cincinnati to St. Petersburg/Clearwater. Allegiant originally announced the route as seasonal nonstop service on March 4, 2014, and after seeing overwhelming demand for the flights, decided to offer the flights year round. The twice weekly service to the Tampa Bay area is the carrier’s third route from the CVG Airport. Allegiant currently flies to Sanford (near Orlando) and Punta Gorda. Finally on May 15,

Allegiant started new nonstop, low-cost air service from Asheville to Palm Beach, a new Allegiant destination. The new nonstop flights will operate twice weekly between Asheville Regional Airport (AVL) and Palm Beach International Airport (PBI). Palm Beach becomes the fifth destination offered to Allegiant travelers flying out of Asheville. Allegiant currently flies to St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Sanford (Orlando), Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Punta Gorda. Allegiant first began service at Asheville Regional Airport in November 2011 with nonstop service to Sanford. Since the start of operations in Asheville, Allegiant has taken more than 60,000 passengers on vacation.

Copyright Photo: Steve Bailey/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82 (MD-82) N406NV (msn 49900) taxies past the camera at Boeing Field-King County Airport (BFI) in Seattle in the old 2003 livery.

Allegiant: AG Slide Show

Lufthansa Cargo shows you where their aircraft are in real time

Lufthansa Cargo (formerly German Cargo) (Frankfurt) on its website has introduced a new tracking service using FlightRadar 24 that shows you in real time where each of their aircraft and flights are located.

CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Bernhard Ross/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas MD-11F D-ALCR (msn 48581) is pictured at the Frankfurt cargo hub.

Lufthansa Cargo: AG Slide Show

Centurion Cargo to retire its McDonnell Douglas MD-11F freighter fleet

Centurion Cargo (Miami) and Sky Lease Cargo (Miami) (both owned by Alfonso Conrado Rey) will retire its nine McDonnell Douglas MD-11F freighters over the next two to three years according to a report by Cargo Facts. The two carriers are adding larger Boeing 747-400F freighters.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Centurion Cargo’s McDonnell Douglas MD-11F N985AR (msn 48430) taxies at a snowy Amsterdam, its European terminus.

Centurion Cargo: AG Slide Show

Sky Lease Cargo: AG Slide Show

Centurion Cargo Route Map:

Centurion Cargo 4:2014 Route Map

Allegiant Air posts its 45th consecutive profitable quarter

Allegiant Travel Company (Allegiant Air) (Las Vegas) reported net income of $34.2 million for the first quarter, up 7.2 percent from the same quarter a year ago. The travel company issued the following financial results for the first quarter 2014, as well as comparisons to prior year equivalents:

Allegiant 1Q14 Results

“We are very proud to report our 45th consecutive profitable quarter,” stated Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr., Chairman and CEO of Allegiant Travel Company. “We are pleased to produce another profitable quarter despite significant operational challenges and unusually high one-time costs that impacted our overall financial performance. This was a very difficult operational quarter as we navigated through significant flight crew availability issues stemming from external factors that occurred last year. I am happy to report that our Team Members overcame this adversity and pulled together another solidly profitable quarter.”

Notable company highlights:

Integrated A320 aircraft into scheduled operations. Ended the quarter operating three A319 and seven A320 aircraft

A319 and A320 fleet accounted for 17.9 percent of total ASM production during the quarter

Integrated two MD-80 aircraft configured with 166 seats to the fleet in March. Ended the quarter operating 53 166 seat MD-80 aircraft

Completed the reconfiguration of the 757 fleet from 223 seats to 215 seats and added six Giant Seats per aircraft

Announced a seasonal base in Myrtle Beach, SC, which will support two aircraft beginning in late May

Announced 12 new routes to begin operation in the second quarter

Returned $114 million to shareholders through share repurchases and a special dividend paid in January
In April, prepaid $121.3 million term loan facility using unrestricted cash and proceeds from a new $45.3 million loan through Wells Fargo Bank, collateralized by 53 MD-80 aircraft

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N420NV (msn 49424) brings another group of vacationers to the Las Vegas base.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

 

 

Former airline McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10 continues to serve as a flying hospital

ORBIS FLYING EYE HOSPITAL

The Orbis Flying Eye Hospital utilizes this McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10 as a flying hospital. The former wide-boday airline previously served Laker Airways (as G-BELO), American Trans Air (N183AT), Cal Air International (G-GCAL), Novair (G-GCAL) before going to Project Orbis as N220AU (msn 46501) on November 27, 1991. The venerable jetliner has a new look livery (above).

Orbis International (New York) is an international non-profit non-governmental organization (NGO) dedicated to saving sight worldwide according to Wikipedia. Orbis programs focus on the prevention of blindness and the treatment of blinding eye diseases in developing countries. Since 1982, ORBIS capacity-building programs have enhanced the skills of 325,000 eye care personnel and provided medical and optical treatment to more than 23.3 million people in 92 countries.

Orbis logo

The charity issued this statement:

The Orbis Flying Eye Hospital (FEH) is visiting Jinan for the second time to conduct an intensive and comprehensive training and skills exchange program aimed at strengthening ophthalmic services in Shandong Province. Alongside its longtime sponsor, Alcon, the global leader in eye care, the Orbis program will focus on providing intense training in the areas of cataract, glaucoma, medical and surgical retina.

China accounts for about 18 percent of the world’s blind and out of the estimated 1 million children suffering from blindness in Asia, approximately 400,000 live in China. To address the growing need for pediatric eye care in the country and in support of the long-term Orbis pediatric project in the region, the FEH program will also offer intense subspecialty training in pediatric strabismus.

The Jinan program marks the 39th visit of the Flying Eye Hospital in China and this program will continue to help raise public attention on the eye care conditions and challenges faced in the country. The needs of the eye care communities and the challenges they face vary across provinces, but at the national level, the major causes of blindness reflect global trends and include: cataract, glaucoma and corneal disease.

“Orbis has had a long history of working in China and our training programs have helped improve the quality of ophthalmic services and raise awareness around eye care conditions throughout the country,” said Dr. Ahmed Gomaa, the Orbis Flying Eye Hospital Medical Director. “Orbis is grateful for the generous support of our longtime sponsor Alcon, and we look forward to working together to eliminate avoidable blindness and deliver the highest standards of training.”

In partnership with the Shandong Red Cross Eye Hospital and Shandong Medical College, the program will provide Chinese eye care professionals including optometrists, nurses, anesthesiologists and biomedical engineers with continued medical education through workshop, lectures and hands-on training. In addition to ophthalmologists, the program will also provide practical and clinical training to residents who receive little hands-on training as part of their standard residency curriculum.

“Alcon’s partnership with Orbis of more than three decades is grounded in our shared vision of providing access to quality eye care around the world,” said Bettina Maunz, President of the Alcon Foundation. “The Jinan program gives us the opportunity to partner with Orbis to help deliver sustainable eye care solutions that can make a long-term impact and help prevent and treat blindness in China.”

As part of a global initiative to combat preventable and treatable blindness, and in support of Orbis’s skills exchange program approach, Alcon has been a longtime sponsor of the Flying Eye Hospital programs and donates medical equipment, pharmaceuticals and supplies. In addition, Alcon biomedical engineers volunteer their time on Orbis programs to provide technical assistance by working side-by-side with local technicians and share their skills on managing and maintaining the much needed ophthalmic equipment.

About Orbis

Orbis prevents and treats blindness through hands-on training, public health education, improved access to quality eye care, advocacy and partnerships with local health care organizations. By building long-term capabilities, Orbis helps its partner institutions take action to reach a state where they can provide, on their own, quality eye care services that are affordable, accessible, and sustainable.

Due to demand, Allegiant changes the new Cincinnati-St. Petersburg/Clearwater route to year-round service

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) has expanded scheduled service between Cincinnati and St. Petersburg/Clearwater from seasonal summer service to year-round.

Nonstop flights from Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) to St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) will begin on May 15, 2014.

Allegiant first took flight from Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport on February 12, 2014, with service to Sanford (near Orlando), and shortly thereafter, celebrated the start of service to Punta Gorda on February 14, 2014.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N868GA (msn 49554) departs from Las Vegas.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

 

World Airways operates its last flight

World Airways‘ (Atlanta) CEO John Graber informed staff today (March 27) the company would cease operations immediately. In addition, North American Airlines (New York) will see a reduction in flying. World operated its last flight yesterday (March 26). The company was not able to obtain further funding to keep it flying.

World Airways issued this statement:

“Today (March 27) World Airways announced that the company operated its last flight on Wednesday, March 26. World Airways was founded in 1948 and operated cargo and passenger charter flights using Boeing 747-400 and McDonnell Douglas MD-11 aircraft. The U.S. Military was their primary customer.

Global Aviation Holdings and many of its subsidiaries, including World Airways, began restructuring on November 12, 2013. World Airways has been in the marketplace for some months seeking funding to help it restructure in chapter 11 bankruptcy, and has been unable to secure that financing. Tuesday, World Airways’ first lien holder declared World in default on its loan and stopped providing the airline funding. World Airways has started the process of winding down its operations. Today the company laid-off 325 employees, including 109 pilots and 146 flight attendants.

Eric Bergesen, World Airways’ Chief Operating Officer, said, “The battle to save World has been difficult. A lot of people have worked hard to try to save our airline. Despite this regrettable outcome, I sincerely thank each of our employees for their dedication and continued support as we attempted to build a future for the company.”

North American Airlines will continue operations with plans to emerge from bankruptcy in the near future. North American was founded in 1989 and operates passenger charter flights using Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft.”

World Airways has been a long time operator going back to May 1948.

Previously on November 12, 2013, parent Global Aviation Holdings and its subsidiaries, including its two operating airlines World Airways and North American Airlines, filed voluntary petitions again for relief under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code in the United States Bankruptcy Court for Delaware. During the reorganization, Global Aviation Holdings announced it intended to continue to operate.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. It has been stormy skies for World Airways lately. McDonnell Douglas MD-11F N382WA (msn 48411) arrives at Baltimore/Washington (BWI).

World Airways Slide Show (aircraft through the years): AG Slide Show

Video: The many exploits of World Airways through the years:

Insel Air Aruba to introduce Aruba-Miami service on April 11

Insel Air Aruba (Aruba) will introduce a new route from Aruba to Miami on April 11 with six flights a week.

This will be followed by Aruba-Valencia service starting two days later on April 13.

Finally on June 18 the airline will launch a twice-weekly route to Georgetown, Guyana on June 18.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82 (MD-82) PJ-MDD (msn 49972) with “Aruba” titles taxies at Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT).

American Airlines ends McDonnell Douglas DC-9-80 (MD-80) service at LaGuardia Airport

American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) today (March 5) is ending scheduled McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82/83 (MD-82/83) “Super 80″ service at New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA) according to Airline Route. The aging type was being deployed on the Chicago (O’Hare)-LGA route.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. The older AA aircraft are now being repainted in the new livery as they will be replaced. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82 (MD-82) N3507A (msn 49801) departs from runway 27R at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.

American Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

American Airlines (historic): AG Slide Show

Allegiant Air announces 12 new routes and a new city: West Palm Beach

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) today announced new, nonstop jet service on 12 routes, including a new destination in the Allegiant network – Palm Beach, Florida.

New routes announced include:

Seasonal Nonstop Service to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) from:

  1. Cedar Rapids, Iowa – begins June 6, 2014 with fares as low as $92*
  2. Great Falls, Montana – begins June 6, 2014 with fares as low as $88*
  3. Kalispell, Montana – begins June 5, 2014 with fares as low as $89*
  4. McAllen, Texas – begins June 5, 2014 with fares as low as $99*

Seasonal Nonstop Service to Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR) from:

  1. Cincinnati, Ohio – begins May 30, 2014 with fares as low as $59*
  2. Columbus, Ohio – begins May 29, 2014 with fares as low as $54*
  3. Lexington, Kentucky – begins May 29, 2014 with fares as low as $54*
  4. Syracuse, New York – begins May 29, 2014 with fares as low as $64*

Seasonal Nonstop Service to St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) from:

  1. Cincinnati, Ohio – begins May 15, 2014 with fares as low as $59*

Year-Round Nonstop Service to Palm Beach International Airport (PBI) from:

  1. Asheville, North Carolina – begins May 5, 2014 with fares as low as $64*

Year-Round Nonstop Service to Phoenix-Mesa International Airport (AZA) from:

  1. Colorado Springs, Colorado – begins May 15, 2014 with fares as low as $49*
  2. Stockton, California – begins May 15, 2014 with fares as low as $58*

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N420NV (msn 49424) prepares to land in Las Vegas.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

 

Biman Bangladesh Airlines operates the last McDonnell Douglas DC-10 passenger flight

Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Dhaka) as planned, operated the last revenue passenger flight of a McDonnell Douglas DC-10 yesterday (February 24). The last flight was a charter flight (flight 008) from Birmingham with the pictured DC-10-30 S2-ACR (msn 48317) with 200 passengers eager to fly the last flight. The DC-10 type has flown passengers for nearly 43 years and continues today as a freighter with several cargo airlines.

Read the full report from the BBC: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Nik French/AirlinersGallery.com. S2-ACR departs from Birmingham on the the next-to-last charter flight.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photos: Allan Huse. A picture of the flight crew and the cockpit for the last flight from Birmingham. The seats in the middle were not sold. Only the window and exterior aisle seats were sold on the last flight.

Biman Bangladesh DC-10-30 S2-ACR (cockpit)(AHE)(LRW)

Biman Bangladesh DC-10-30 S2-ACR (cabin)(AHE)(LRW)

Video: Amateur video of one of the enthusiast charter flights from Birmingham:

 

 

Biman Bangladesh Airlines operates the last McDonnell Douglas DC-10 passenger flight

Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Dhaka) today (February 20) operated the last McDonnell Douglas DC-10 passenger flight in the world with DC-10-30 S2-ACR (man 48317). The final flight today flew from Dhaka to Birmingham, England via a refueling stop in Kuwait City. Current plans are reportedly to scrap the wide body airliner for its parts and residual metal value.

Before the final disposition of S2-ACR, Biman will operate scenic flights from Birmingham this weekend. The airline issued this statement about the scenic flights:

Due to an overwhelming response from aviation enthusiasts from around the world, we are going to operate scenic flights on the weekend of February 22, 23 and 24 from Birmingham Airport. The first flights to go on sale will operate on the Monday, February 24 at 0900, 1200 and 1500 with a block time of an estimated one-hour. If as expected, they sell out quickly we open up the Sunday, February 23 flights up for the same times of 0900, 1200 and 1500. As these sell out then we will open up the Saturday flights also at the same times – 0900, 1200 and 1500. As with the last commercial flight from Dhaka, we are keeping the prices for these scenic flights at reasonable levels with prices of ₤150 for a window seat and ₤100 for an aisle seat. Please note that for the last commercial flight ever on Monday February 24 @ 1500, prices have been set slightly higher at ₤200/₤150. In order to keep the flights as “special” as possible we are only selling 152 of the 319 seats on the aircraft – therefore all are window or aisle seats.

Read the full story from the BBC: CLICK HERE

The retirement came as a result of a new Boeing 777-300 ER delivery. Biman issued this statement on the new arrival of 777-3E9 S2-AHM (msn 40120):

Biman Bangladesh Airline’s newest aircraft, the Boeing 777-300 ER is the world’s largest twinjet aircraft, this long-range wide-body plane is popularly known as the “Triple Seven”. Our newest 777-300 ER is the third extended range 777 to join our modern fleet.

The latest 777-300 ER is named “Akashprodip” and replaces the retired DC-10 for long-range flights to serve destinations such as Frankfurt, Rome, London, and Birmingham.

Biman’s Managing Director and CEO Kevin Steele personally took delivery of latest 777-300 ER from Boeing’s Seattle headquarters on February 6. The new plane, painted in Biman’s bi-colored livery, traveled on a nonstop flight from Seattle to Dhaka.

The receiving ceremony of the newest 777-300 ER was held February 11, 2014 at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka, inaugurated by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. At the ceremony she said, “Biman acts as the representative of Bangladesh abroad and it flies across the world as the symbol of our independence.”

Biman will soon take delivery of its fourth Boeing 777-300 ER, named “Rangaprobhat” on March 21. The delivery is part of a ten aircraft contract with Boeing. Future plans are to secure two Boeing 737-800s and four Boeing 787-8s by 2019.

Top Copyright Photo: SM Fitzwilliams Collection/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by Biman). McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 S2-ACR 9msn 48317) arrives at London (Heathrow) on a previous flight.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines: AG Slide Show

Allegiant Air to resume two routes from Los Angeles on June 6

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) on June 6 will resume two routes from Los Angeles. The ultra low fare carrier will resume twice weekly service to both Billings, Montana and Pasco (Tri-Cities), Washington per Airline Route. Both routes were dropped in August 2012.

Allegiant today also began new nonstop jet service between Burlington, Vermont and Sanford International Airport (near Orlando) in Florida.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 N422NV (msn 49381) prepares to land at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

Orange Air plans to fly with a McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82 (MD-82)

Orange Air logo

Orange Air (flyorangeair.com) (Sanford, Florida) is a new paper airline that is in the process of obtaining its Air Operators Certificate (AOC). The airline on its website is advertising as “Coming Soon” although no announcement has been made. The would be airline has reportedly taken delivery of the former Spirit Airlines (N804NK) and Belle Air (ZA-ARD) McDonnell Doug;as DC-9-82 (MD-82) as N918AV (msn 49104). N918AV was ferried from Sanford to Opa-locka on January 30 with an Orange Air tail logo according to Skyliner.

Allegiant to drop Charlottesville, Virginia and Manhattan, Kansas on February 23

Allegiant Air‘s (Las Vegas) business plan is to enter a small market and initially fly twice-weekly to a vacation destination. If it fills up the airplanes, it adds additional days of the week. If the new speculative route does not pan out, the airline quickly drops the airport and the route.

This is the case for both Charlottesville, Virginia and Manhattan, Kansas, both university towns. Allegiant began flying to Charlottesville in November to Sanford, Florida (near Orlando). This route did not work and the ultra low-fare airline is dropping the route on February 23, 2014 according the USA Today and pnj.com.

Manhattan received Allegiant service on November 7, 2013 to Mesa, Arizona (near Phoenix). It too will be dropped on February 23.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

In other news, Allegiant Air today announced a month-long campaign to spotlight local travelers, commemorating the 15th anniversary of the carrier’s first scheduled service. According to the carrier, “The campaign will celebrate Allegiant’s success and commitment to making leisure travel possible with real stories from loyal customers who have changed the way they travel because of the carrier’s unique brand of low-cost, nonstop service.”

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N424NV (msn 49421) approaches the runway at the Las Vegas base.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

Biman Bangladesh Airlines to now retire the last DC-10 on February 20, will host enthusiast flights from Birmingham

Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Dhaka) has delayed the retirement of its last McDonnell Douglas DC-10. Here is the updated message by the airline:

On, or about February 14, 2014 this three-engine wide-body  will be withdrawn from scheduled service and prepped by engineering for its final flights. The last commercial flight will be on Thursday, February 20 when flight BG 1015 takes to the skies at 0830 from Dhaka enroute to Birmingham in the United Kingdom. Operating via Kuwait this flight will arrive in Birmingham the same day at 1620. Priced at only ₤ 600 (plus taxes) for a window seat or ₤ 500 plus taxes, for all the other seats, we have kept the pricing at minimal levels to ensure the flight is accessible to as many as possible.

But this is not its final operation. Due to an overwhelming response from aviation enthusiasts from around the world, we are going to operate scenic flights on the weekend of February 22, 23 and 24 from Birmingham airport. The first flights to go on sale will operate on the Monday, February 24 at 0900, 1200 and 1500 with a block time of an estimated one-hour. If as expected, they sell out quickly we will open up the Sunday, February 23 flights up for the same times of 0900, 1200 and 1500. As these sell out then we will open up the Saturday flights also at the same times – 0900, 1200 and 1500. As with the last commercial flight from Dhaka, we are keeping the prices for these scenic flights at reasonable levels with prices of ₤150 for a window seat and ₤100 for an aisle seat. Please note that for the last commercial flight ever on Monday February 24 @ 1500, prices have been set slightly higher at ₤200/₤150. In order to keep the flights as “special” as possible we are only selling 152 of the 319 seats on the aircraft – therefore all are window or aisle seats.

We want to make sure these flights only sold to aviation enthusiasts and not to third parties or wholesalers, so you must book on-line at www.biman-airlines.com. For the last commercial flight ever, on February 24 @ 1500, we have teamed up with Ian Allan travel in the UK at www.ianallantravel.com/aviationtours/ who will also sell tickets.

Biman Bangladesh is the last passenger operator of the DC-10.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 S2-ACQ (msn 47817) arrives at London’s Heathrow Airport.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines: AG Slide Show

Delta operates its last DC-9 flight with N773NC, expands Boeing 717 operations

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) yesterday (January 6) as planned and previously announced, operated its last DC-9 flight. The pictured McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51 N773NC (msn 47775) (above) and crew had the honor of operating the very last DC-9 revenue flight as flight DL 2014 between Minneapolis/St. Paul and Atlanta.

With the cold temperatures in both MSP and ATL there was not the traditional water cannon salute.

N773NC was originally delivered to North Central Airlines on October 26, 1978. With the merger with Southern Airways it became Republic Airlines on July 1, 1979. With the Republic merger into Northwest Airlines it took on the red tail on October 1, 1986. Finally it joined the Delta fleet on October 29, 2008 with the Delta-Northwest merger.

Delta operated 13 DC-9-51s in January up to the last flight operated by N773NC. Five DC-9-51s were retired in 2013, six in 2012 and 10 in 2011 according to Airliners.net. One DC-9-51 will be reserved for a museum. Delta is reportedly holding on to two DC-9-51s as spare aircraft for a few days while the newer Boeing 717s replace the DC-9-51s. The other DC-9-51 will end up in the desert where they will be broken up for the parts and the recyclable metal.

Read the full story from the Associated Press: CLICK HERE

Read the full story from Time: CLICK HERE

In other news, Delta is expanding the number of routes served by the new Boeing 717. The airline is introducing the 717 from Atlanta to Augusta (April 1), Chicago (Midway) (April 1), Dallas (Love Field) (October 13), Fayetteville (April 1) and Houston (Bush Intercontinental) (April 1) per Airline Route.

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51 N773NC (msn 47775) faithfully served four airlines right up to the last flight. N773NC arrives at MSP.

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Airline and Aircraft Galleries: AG Galleries

Bottom Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. The Boeing 717 started operating to Baltimore/Washington (BWI) yesterday (January 6) with the DC-9-51 retirements. Delta painted the first ex-AirTran Airways Boeing 717 in September 2013, namely the pictured N935AT, which is pictured arriving at BWI. Delta is leasing the entire AirTran fleet of 88 Boeing 717s from Southwest Airlines (Dallas). The new type was introduced on September 19, 2013 between the Atlanta hub and Newark. The DL 717s feature 12 seats in First Class, 15 seats in Economy Comfort and 83 seats in Economy. N935AT was originally delivered to TWA as N402TW on April 11, 2000.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines to retire its last McDonnell Douglas DC-10 on January 30, ending an era

Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Dhaka) is currently now planning to operate the last passenger McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 revenue flight on January 30 on a regular flight between Kuwait City and Dhaka as a stand-by aircraft. This retirement is always subject to change due to operational requirements. Biman currently has two DC-10-30s which are also the last passenger DC-10s operating in the world. The airline is offering a ferry flight to Birmingham and possible scenic flights in the UK in which it will sell seats.

Previously CEO Kevin Steele issued this statement on November 10, 2013:

There has been a lot of interest lately from press, aviation enthusiasts and the general public, on what will be happening with Biman’s last DC-10s, which will be phased out in the coming months with the arrival of new aircraft. These are the last flying passenger DC-10-30 aircraft in the whole world. So I thought I would take this opportunity to brief you with the latest news, which will be updated when further firm news becomes available.

Biman currently has 2 DC-10-30s flying. As their fuel consumption is higher than other aircraft in our fleet, they are used sparingly. One of those DC-10s will come to the end of its economic life on November 10, 2013 and will be scrapped locally. The last DC-10 will continue normal flying until December 7, 2013, the start of the revised schedule for the fog period here in Dhaka. Thereafter, it will only be used as a standby aircraft, in case another aircraft in our fleet become unserviceable for any reason. We will not be scheduling it on any route though.

This last DC-10 will continue as a standby aircraft until sometime in February 2014. The exact date is not known yet, as it is being coordinated with the arrival of our brand new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft from Boeing. We expect to know the exact date in early January 2014.

The last DC-10 is being donated to a museum in the USA, a fitting end for an aircraft that has served Biman loyally and well over many years. Accordingly, we will then offer for sale, as a last opportunity to travel on a passenger DC-10, anywhere in the world:

a.  Seats on a last flight Dhaka to Birmingham (UK). Note this will need a technical stop
somewhere.

b. 2 (or more if demand requires it) one hour ‘scenic tours’ to/from Birmingham

c. We are unsure if the US authorities will give us traffic rights on the Birmingham to USA
sector. If they do, this will also be offered for sale.

d. We are also discussing with the UK Post Office, about the carriage of ‘Last day Covers’
on the last sector Birmingham-USA, for sale at a later date.

Tickets will only be sold via our website, hopefully from early January, so do not buy tickets elsewhere, we want these tickets to go to genuine aviation enthusiasts. If there is a demand for more ‘scenic tour’ flights at Birmingham, we can consider these too.

We hope you will join with us in celebrating the farewell of a loyal, beautiful aircraft, but also to recognize that the time has now come for Biman to equip itself with the very latest in new aircraft and technology.

Copyright Photo: Michael Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 S2-ACQ (msn 47817) prepares to land in Singapore.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines: AG Slide Show

Delta officially announces it will retire its last Douglas DC-9 on January 6

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) has now officially announced on what we previously reported. The airline today issued this statement on the last Douglas DC-9 flight in the history of the airline.

Delta Air Lines on January 6, 2014 will retire its remaining Douglas DC-9 aircraft following flight DL 2014 scheduled to depart Minneapolis/St. Paul for Atlanta at 4:20 p.m. (CST) (1620), the last scheduled commercial flight of the DC-9 by a major U.S. airline.

“The DC-9 has been a workhorse in our domestic fleet while providing a reliable customer experience,” said Nat Pieper, Delta’s vice president – Fleet Strategy. “The aircraft’s retirement paves the way for newer, more efficient aircraft.”

Since 2008, Delta has removed or retired more than 350 aircraft from its fleet including 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200s; SAAB 340Bs and McDonnell Douglas DC-9s; while adding economically efficient, proven-technology aircraft such as the Boeing 777-200 LR; two-class, 65 and 76-seat regional jets and variants of the 737 and 717, largely on a capacity-neutral basis.

The DC-9 retirement comes just months after Delta began taking delivery of its orders of 88 Boeing 717-200 aircraft and 100 Boeing 737-900 ER aircraft, which began entering service in October and November, respectively. Each aircraft features a First Class cabin and slim-line seats throughout Delta’s Economy Comfort and Economy cabin along with Wi-Fi connectivity and in-seat power ports. Additionally, the Boeing 737-900 ER offers on-demand entertainment throughout the cabin. Delta also recently announced its order for 40 Airbus aircraft including 30 narrowbody A321s, which will begin to be delivered in 2016.

Delta was the launch customer for the original 65-seat version of the DC-9-14 in 1965 as the airline replaced propeller aircraft on high-frequency, short-haul domestic routes. The twin-engine plane was removed from the Delta fleet in 1993, but larger variants reentered service following the merger with Northwest Airlines; those aircraft joined Northwest after it acquired Republic Airlines in 1986. Delta has flown a total of 305 DC-9s since 1965.

To acknowledge the DC-9’s retirement, the last flight has been tagged DL 2014 noting the final year of service, while the preceding flight operating from Detroit to Minneapolis/St. Paul will be flight DL 1965, the aircraft’s initial year of service.

The last DC-9 to be operated by Delta is the pictured DC-9-51 (top). It is unclear at this time which aircraft will be flown on the last historic flight.

Well done Delta for recognizing and honoring your rich history.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51 N787NC (msn 48149) arrives at the MSP hub.

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Video: Inside the cockpit of DC-9-51 N774NC:

 

 

Delta Air Lines to retire the last Douglas DC-9 on January 6, 2014

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) although not yet officially announced, but published in the schedules, is currently planning to operate the last McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51 on January 6, 2014. An appropriately named flight DL 1965 will operate from Detroit to Minneapolis/St. Paul departing DTW at 3:39 pm (1539) and arriving at MSP at 4:43 (1643) followed by flight DL 2014 which will operate from Minneapolis/St. Paul to Atlanta as the last scheduled flight, departing MSP at 7:20 pm (1920) and arriving at ATL at 8:47 pm (2047) local time. An unspecified DC-9-51 will operate the last flights. Photos of the last flights are welcome.

Delta has been gradually dwindling down the former Northwest Airlines (and North Central Airlines) DC-9-51 fleet with 10 retirements in 2011, six in 2012 and four so far in 2013. According to Airliners.net, 14 were still in service as of November 19, 2013. One of these 14 aircraft will operate the last revenue flight on January 6, 2014. The aircraft will be ferried to the desert and eventually broken up for scrap metal.

This is actually the second Delta retirement of the DC-9. Delta previously retired its last original DC-9-32 on January 1, 1993. With the merger of Northwest Airlines on October 29, 2008, the DC-9 type was re-introduced back in the Delta fleet under the Delta name.

Delta Air Lines took delivery of its first 65-seat Douglas DC-9-14 (N3304L) (see N3314L below) on September 18, 1965. The new type entered revenue service on November 29, 1965 as flight DL 791 on the Atlanta-Memphis-Kansas City route.

177 total DC-9s were operated. Delta in its history operated the following DC-9 types:

16 DC-9-14s

1 DC-9-15 (leased from Jet International)

114 DC-9-31/32s

12 DC-9-41s

34 DC-9-51s

Information from the Delta Museum:

Delta DC-9 History

Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com.  McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51 N773NC (msn 47775) completes its final approach into Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

Delta Air Lines: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. Douglas DC-9-14 N3314L sits at the old Atlanta maintenance base on January 27, 1970. The original delivery color scheme of the DC-9-14s included this forward-pointing widget which was later changed to the standard upright widget.

Allegiant to operate twice-weekly seasonal flights between Portsmouth and Punta Gorda

Allegiant Air (Las Vegas) will add new seasonal, nonstop jet service between Portsmouth and Punta Gorda Airport beginning on February 12, 2014. The new flights will operate twice weekly between Portsmouth International Airport at Pease (PSM) and Punta Gorda Airport (PGD).

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) N422NV (msn 49381) lands in Las Vegas.

Allegiant Air: AG Slide Show

SAS operates its last McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82 (MD-82) flight, ending a long relationship with Douglas airplanes

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS (Stockholm) operated and quietly retired their last McDonnell Douglas DC-9. The last MD-80 was operated on October 26, 2013 on flight SK403 from Stockholm-Arlanda to Copenhagen. This is the first time SAS will be without a Douglas aircraft in its fleet. SAS has operated every Douglas and McDonnell Douglas type since the DC-3 (except the DC-5 and the MD-11).

The last revenue flight (flight SK 403) was operated by McDonnell Douglas DC-9-82 (MD-82) SE-DIR “Nora Viking” (msn 53004) between Stockholm (Arlanda) and Copenhagen on October 25. A special employee-only farewell flight was flown by DC-9-82 (MD-82) LN-RMM (msn 53005) on October 26 over Denmark.

DC-9-82s SE-DIR, OY-KHE (msn 49604) and LN-RMM all operated on the last day of revenue operations (October 25).

One of the aircraft will be donated to the SAS Museum outside of Oslo.

According to a Danish newspaper, the SAS MD-80s operated 3,134,900 flights with the 66 aircraft in the fleet. 2,977,195,000 km were flown since the type was introduced in October 1985.

All of the above information is from Airliners.net.

In other news, SAS recently finalized its Airbus long-haul order. On June 25, 2013, SAS and Airbus signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the order of 12 new long haul aircraft.

This month, SAS and Airbus signed the final long haul aircraft order agreement comprising 4 A330-300 Enhanced and 8 A350-900 plus 6 options for A350-900. The Airbus A330 will be delivered 2015/16 and the Airbus A350 will be delivered from 2018.

Copyright Photo: Moritz Riemer/AirlinersGallery.com. DC-9-82 (MD-82) OY-KHE (msn 49604) in the Star Alliance livery arrives at Copenhagen.

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS: AG Slide Show

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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

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