Frontier Airlines revamps its frequent flyer program

"Cliff, the Mountain Goat"

Frontier Airlines made this announcement:

Frontier Airlines wants you to know that it’s Sweet to be Elite, so the low-cost carrier announced today that it’s giving customers a chance to try out Elite status with the airline’s reinvented frequent flyer program – a program that will change the way people think about collecting miles. Formerly called EarlyReturns, the program is now FRONTIER Miles, and along with the new name members will enjoy many new benefits as well as new, attainable Elite status. Like the airline, FRONTIER Miles is family friendly and the new program makes it easy for families to enjoy the rewards together, including family pooling of miles.

To try out Frontier’s new Elite 20k status – including a free carry-on bag, seat assignment and family pooling – all you have to do is book and complete travel on two round-trip itineraries by October 15, 2018. Then, you’ll enjoy Elite 20k status until the end of the year – meaning you’ll have all the benefits in time for your holiday travel. And if you think Elite 20k sounds good, there are two more Elite tiers of additional benefits for customers to earn.

“Frontier’s mission is to make it possible for more people to fly and fly more often,” Tyri Squyres, vice president of marketing said. “The reimagined FRONTIER Miles program makes that even easier. We recognized that earning awards and status with airlines is not easy and we aim to change that with our new program. Specifically designed to offer something for everyone – whether a customer travels a little or a lot– they will find our new program rewarding. We were careful not to eliminate any of our current benefits– our frequent flyers will only find new benefits to enjoy. More importantly, as an airline for families, we built benefits focused not just on the individual but the entire family.”

FRONTIER Miles is aptly named, because the airline is keeping its marquee benefit of letting you earn one mile for every mile flown – no funny formulas at Frontier. In addition, Frontier has not eliminated any benefits from its current Elite status.

ELITE STATUS

FRONTIER Miles has expanded its Elite status offering with two additional tiers. More importantly, all Elite members enjoy access to Family Pooling which makes all their miles more useable. At the first tier – Elite 20k, customers enjoy benefits like free carry-ons and seat assignments. At the new second tier – Elite 50k – additional benefits include upgraded seating for the whole family. At the highest tier – Elite 100k – customers receive both status and The WORKS for the whole family – this includes access to the best seats onboard, checked bag, carryon bag, full refundability and no change fees.

FAMILY BENEFITS

Frontier is on a mission to make family travel better and the program’s new Family Pooling benefit is a way for a group of up to eight people to share their FRONTIER Miles. And because all families are not the same, we leave it to the customer to define their family in the program. Unique to Frontier, there are no minimums or hidden fees associated with Frontier’s family pooling. Customers can access the benefits of family pooling in two ways: either by earning Elite status or becoming a FRONTIER Airlines World Mastercard® card holder.

NEW FRONTIER AIRLINES MASTERCARD

Along with the new mileage program, the airline is relaunching its card program which allows cardmembers the opportunity to unlock Elite Status solely through card spend. Frontier is the only U.S. airline where for every dollar spent, card members receive one Qualifying Mile toward Elite Status. The refreshed card program offers even more ways to earn miles with the dynamic 5-3-1 earning structure: for every dollar spent, card members earn five times the miles on purchases at flyfrontier.com; three times the miles on restaurant purchases; and one mile on all other purchases. New card members earn 40,000 bonus miles after spending $500 on purchases in the first 90 days and paying the $79 annual fee. And cardholders who spend $2500 on the card in a year receive a $100 Frontier voucher on each anniversary of their card membership

“Giving our card members opportunities to earn more miles, share miles as a family and the ability to earn Elite Status through credit card spend alone, makes our card unique in the marketplace,” Scott Fisher, Sr. Director of Ancillary and Loyalty for Frontier Airlines, said. “We are pleased to offer something for everyone with our new program and truly make both travel and status attainable and affordable.”

Unlike the traditional frequent flyer program, FRONTIER Miles program was designed to make it easy to understand how to get the most out of those hard-earned miles. In fact, Frontier wants to make it fun to collect and use them. To aid this, Frontier has built a new customer profile experience that is interactive, engaging and very customer friendly. It’s called myFRONTIER. Here customers can view all of their mileage, make changes to their profile and see their savings and current benefits. And, this is the fun part, customers can collect the animals featured on the Frontier aircraft tails as they fly. They can also track how far they have flown and “like” their favorite destinations and record those travel memories.

Current EarlyReturns and Discount Den customers are automatically transferred to the new program – they simply need to login at myFRONTIER. Joining the new FRONTIER Miles program is not just rewarding, it’s free. In addition to rewards on Frontier, customers will have access to more than a dozen of our travel partners. The same when it comes to redeeming miles on things other than flights.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Frontier): Frontier Airlines (2nd) Airbus A320-251N WL N305FR (msn 7387) (Cliff, the Mountain Goat) SNA (Michael B. Ing). Image: 943100.

Frontier aircraft slide show:

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KLM: “Disbelief and disappointment regarding VNV’s attitude”

KLM issued this statement:

KLM yesterday presented the Dutch Airline Pilots Association VNV with an improved proposal for a new collective labour agreement (CLA) that better complies with the pilots’ wishes to reduce work pressure and improve work-life balance. We are not fully complying with the last bid presented by the VNV, but are prepared to lay down an adjusted KLM proposal. This proposal is a revised version of KLM’s earlier proposal, using ingredients from the VNV’s last bid. In so doing, we are prepared to surmount a great number of objections. This is a final bid to ensure that a new CLA is laid down as swiftly as possible. This is in everyone’s interests. The fact that the VNV has rejected this proposal so swiftly, without assessment of the contents and without further discussion with KLM and its members, is incomprehensible and neither in the interest of the pilots, nor KLM. KLM remains open to further discussion on the contents of the proposal.

Images: KLM.

“Tulip” KLM’s latest Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines welcomed its 13th Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner bearing registration PH-BHP to Schiphol today, August 17, concluding its flight from Everett, where it took off yesterday bound for the Dutch airport. The aircraft carries the name “Tulip”.

KLM’s Dreamliners are named after flowers or flowering plants; a typical Dutch export product that therefore resonates with KLM perfectly. Other aircraft in KLM’s B787s fleet carry names such as Orchid, Sunflower, Carnation, Lavender and Marguerite. The name of the 13th Dreamliner is no coincidence either. The Netherlands is famous for its tulips and is one of the most important exporting countries for tulips and tulip bulbs.

KLM continues to invest in fleet renewal

In the interests of customer satisfaction, KLM again invested in renewing its fleet in 2018. The Tulip is the third Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner to arrive on Dutch soil so far in 2018. The two other Dreamliners touched down earlier this year in January and April. What’s more, KLM added seven new Embraers to its fleet. The latest Dreamliner is the last Boeing 787-9 to arrive for the time being. Expectations are that in June 2019, KLM will take delivery of its first Boeing 787-10.

Boeing 787 emits less CO2

The Boeing 787 produces less surrounding noise, uses less fuel and therefore emits less CO2. This makes the aim of lowering CO2 emissions by 20% in 2020 (compared to 2011) feasible. Less waste is generated during the production phase because the Dreamliner consists largely of easy-to-cut carbon fibre composites.

The aircraft offers a range of passenger benefits in terms of travel comfort. For example, greater air pressure in the cabin means that passengers arrive feeling more rested. And for passengers wanting to stay online during their flight, there’s WiFi on board. The aircraft seats 30 passengers in business class, 48 in economy comfort and 216 in economy.

Photos: KLM.

Swoop adds its fourth aircraft

Today Swoop entered its fourth aircraft into service with the launch of a seasonal summer route between Abbotsford International Airport (YXX) and Winnipeg Richardson International Airport (YWG). The sold-out inaugural flight departs YXX at 6:00 p.m PST. Flights are offered daily until Labour Day, after which time they will be offered five times per week until the end of the summer schedule on October 27, 2018.

“We have received our fourth aircraft in perfect time to offer this daily service for end-of-summer vacations and to aid students who are relocating to attend post-secondary in the fall,” said Karen McIsaac, Senior Advisor of Communications at Swoop. “It’s a highlight for us to see the results of our low fares connecting friends and families in different provinces, such as on this sold-out flight today.”

The addition of the Abbotsford to Winnipeg route has doubled the weekly frequency schedule in Winnipeg, and added 7 flights to the Abbotsford weekly frequency schedule.

“The Abbotsford International Airport continues to expand flight options for passengers in our region,” said Mayor Henry Braun. “I’m pleased by the launch of Swoop’s summer service to Winnipeg and welcome more travellers to YXX.”

“Increased service to the lower mainland is good news for travellers from Winnipeg Richardson International Airport” said Scott Marohn, Director of Air Service and Product Development for Winnipeg Airports Authority. “Swoop has been a great addition to our airport and this new route further enhances their presence in our region.”

Swoop’s domestic and international winter schedules have also been released with flights available for booking through to April 27, 2019. The international schedule includes the addition of routes from Edmonton to Las Vegas and Mesa; Hamilton to Las Vegas, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando and Tampa Bay; and Abbotsford to Las Vegas.

This week, Swoop is celebrating their growth with a system-wide seat sale detailed in the table below†:

Departing

Arriving

Air transportation
charges. Base
fare from

Taxes, fees
and 

charges

Total one-way
price from

Abbotsford

Winnipeg

$30.02

$8.98

$39.00*CAD

Winnipeg

Abbotsford

$24.07

$34.93

$59.00*CAD

Abbotsford

Edmonton

$1.45

$7.55

$9.00*CAD

Edmonton

Abbotsford

$0.02

$38.98

$39.00*CAD

Hamilton 

Winnipeg

$11.24

$37.76

$49.00*CAD

Winnipeg

Hamilton

$14.55

$34.45

$49.00*CAD

Hamilton

Halifax

$28.94

$40.06

$69.00*CAD

Halifax  

Hamilton

$24.88

$44.12

$69.00*CAD

Hamilton

Abbotsford

$37.79

$41.21

$79.00*CAD

Abbotsford

Hamilton

$58.89

$10.11

$69.00*CAD

Edmonton

Hamilton

$28.59

$40.41

$69.00*CAD

Hamilton 

Edmonton

$28.94

$40.06

$69.00*CAD

Departing

Arriving

Air transportation
charges. Base
fare from

Taxes, fees
and 

charges

Total one-way
price from

Edmonton

Las Vegas

$8.60

$90.40

$99.00*CAD

Las Vegas

Edmonton

$41.77

$37.23

$79.00*CAD

Edmonton

Mesa

$27.97

$91.03

$119.00*CAD

Mesa

Edmonton

$52.04

$36.96

$89.00*CAD

Hamilton

Orlando

$11.69

$87.31

$99.00*CAD

Orlando

Hamilton

$56.17

$22.83

$79.00*CAD

Hamilton

Las Vegas

$29.87

$89.13

$119.00*CAD

Las Vegas

Hamilton

$74.90

$24.10

$99.00*CAD

Hamilton

Tampa

$10.82

$88.18

$99.00*CAD

Tampa

Hamilton

$65.60

$23.40

$89.00*CAD

Hamilton

Fort Lauderdale

$10.82

$88.18

$99.00*CAD

Fort Lauderdale

Hamilton

$65.60

$23.40

$89.00*CAD

Abbotsford

Las Vegas

$38.92

$60.08

$99.00*CAD

Las Vegas

Abbotsford

$47.00

$22.00

$69.00*CAD

 

†Book by August 17, 2018 (11:59 p.m. MT) for travel between September 4-October 31, 2018. 9900 seats available.

Photos: Swoop.

Ethiopian Airlines registers record success in 2017/18 fiscal year

Named "Lake Tana"

Ethiopian Airlines, Africa’s largest Airline Group, has announced that it has registered record success in the just ended 2017/18 fiscal year.  In line with its 15 year strategic roadmap, Vision 2025, the airline registered historical success in financial, commercial, operational and customer service areas.

During the 2017/18 fiscal year:

  • Ethiopian introduced additional +14 new aircraft, more than one aircraft per month;
  • The airline opened 8 new international destinations, namely Geneva (Switzerland), Chicago (USA), Bahrain, Kaduna (Nigeria), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Kisangani and Mbuji-Mayi (Democratic Republic of Congo) and Nosy-Be (Madagascar);
  • The number of passengers carried grew by +21% topping the 10 million mark for the first time in the airline’s history and reaching 10.6 million passengers;
  • Freight carried grew by +18% from previous fiscal year to attain 400,339 tons;
  • Operating revenue grew by +43% from previous fiscal year to culminate at 89.1 billion Ethiopian birr (ETB);
  • Net profit stood at 6.8 billion ETB. 

During the fiscal year, the airline was given for the first time in its history a 4 Star rating by SKYTRAX, the leading customer service rating organization in the airline industry, putting it on par with other global airlines. SKYRAX also recognized Ethiopian as Best Airline in Africa; Best Business Class in Africa and Best Economy Class in Africa. 

Ethiopian reached and passed the 100th aircraft in service milestone during the year, becoming the first African airline in history to do so.

Recapping the exceptional 2017/18 fiscal year performance, Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam, Group CEO Ethiopian Airlines, said:

“It was an exceptional year for Ethiopian with record performance in financial, operational, commercial and customer service areas. This historical performance is, due first and foremost, to the commitment, hard work and competence of my 16,000 colleagues with each one of them at all echelons of the company playing a critical role in this success.

I wish to thank them for their dedication, hard work and contribution in enabling our national carrier to fly high in the sky and defend the colors of our country and our continent.They are the backbone of the airline and the architects of its success.

This performance is all the more exceptional given the very tough operating and competitive environment in Africa, where jet fuel price, our main cost driver, has soared during the year and is on average 30% more expensive in Africa, our home market, than in the rest of the world, putting the continent’s carriers at a severe competitive disadvantage. This remarkable result was also achieved in the backdrop of aggressive foreign carriers’ penetration into the African market with the African airline industry collectively forecasted to loss money.

The historical performance attests the soundness of our fast, profitable and sustainable growth plan, Vision 2025. During the next 2018/19 fiscal year, we aim to further grow our network, introduce record number of modern fleet and greatly enhance the on-ground customer service at our main hub with the opening at the end of 2018 of the newly expanded and significantly upgraded airport terminals in Addis Ababa.” 

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Ethiopian and Airbus): Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner ET-AOO (msn 34743) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 940818.

Ethiopian aircraft slide show:

Finnair and Finavia bring together two directors from east and west to create a film about beautiful connections

Finnair has been connecting east and west for 35 years, and Helsinki Airport has grown into a major hub for travel between Asia and Europe. Finnair and Finavia, the operator of Helsinki Airport, are celebrating this milestone with a short film that speaks of meaningful encounters that take place when people travel.

To illustrate the concept of meaningful encounters, Finnair and Finavia brought together two filmmakers from opposite sides of the globe to create a short film. The end result is a 13-minute short film titled “East and West Side Story”, directed by Swedish director Johan Storm and Korean directorWookie, both celebrated directors in their respective countries. The film will be introduced during an exclusive premiere at Helsinki Airport on September 6, 2018.

Each director shot their own perspective of one emotional story, written by screenwriter Danny Sangra. The leading roles are played by Scandinavian actress Anne Bergstedt, best known for her work in Boardwalk Empire and in the Black Swan, and Korean Jae Hoon, who has appeared in several theater and film productions in his home country.

The short film is the third and final event of the Match Made in HEL concept series, a joint marketing campaign by Finnair and Finavia. In 2015, Match Made in HEL turned Helsinki Airport into a skate park for professional skateboarders. In 2016, Finnair and Finavia held a stunning fashion show with seven designers from Europe and Asia on the actual runway of Helsinki Airport.

“Travel enriches people’s lives and opens new perspectives,” says Johanna Jäkälä, Vice President, Brand, Marketing and Customer Loyalty at Finnair. “We see this every day on our flights. Everyone travels for a reason – and all of us carry our own stories with us. The film is about how these stories change when you put yourself in someone else’s shoes, but also about the need for personal space. Something that is very Nordic.”

“Helsinki Airport is a true crossroads for east and west. Travelling unites people and cultures, and increases understanding towards each other,” says Katja Siberg, Senior Vice President Marketing, Communications and Customer Experience at Finavia. “You always learn something new. Every day, we see at the airport how tens of thousands of people from different parts of the world meet each other and experience meaningful moments. Art, as a universal language, can also combine these two worlds uniquely, and a movie is a natural way for telling stories about these encounters. We are excited to soon share these airport moments with the world.”

Finnair connects 19 destinations in Asia and seven in North America to over 100 destinations in Europe via its Helsinki hub, and is undergoing the fastest growth phase of its history. This summer, Finnair flew 97 flights per week to Asia, more than ever before. At the same time, Helsinki Airport is undergoing a massive expansion program to serve up to 30 million passengers annually.

SAS upgrades Boston to daily departures

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS Airbus A330-343 LN-RKU (msn 1715) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 937556.

Starting with the 2019 summer program, SAS will offer departures every day to Boston from Copenhagen. From four departures a week, SAS will fly daily.

More SAS flights to Boston. To meet growing demand from both business travelers and holidaymakers, SAS will operate daily flights starting with the 2019 summer program.

SAS will have daily departures from May 6 to September 27, 2019.

Following a short break in the winter program, the route will re-open in the summer program when demand is particularly strong.

The route re-opens on March 31, 2019 with four weekly departures. From May 6 to September 27, 2019 SAS will have daily departures from Copenhagen and Boston.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by SAS): Scandinavian Airlines-SAS Airbus A330-343 LN-RKU (msn 1715) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 937556.

SAS aircraft slide show: