Alaska Airlines begins daily nonstop service to El Paso from Seattle/Tacoma and San Diego

Alaska Airlines launched daily nonstop service today between Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and El Paso International Airport, along with daily nonstop service between El Paso and San Diego International Airport.

 

El Paso is a new destination for Alaska, and becomes the 90th nonstop destination served from the airline’s largest hub in Seattle. El Pasoalso becomes the 31st nonstop destination served from San Diego. Alaska has the most nonstops from the West Coast, including the most flights to Hawaii.

Alaska is the only airline providing nonstop flights between Seattle and El Paso. The easier, more convenient connection between the cities will help improve the travel time for employees who commute between Western Washington and West Texas – two regions with significant industry and business ties.

El Paso is currently the largest underserved market from Seattle within the range of our Embraer 175 jets. The aircraft is a perfect fit for this route, which will be flown by Horizon Air. It has three cabin classes – including an exceptional first class, and premium class with complimentary cocktails, wine and beer plus extra legroom.

From San Diego, El Paso becomes the third nonstop destination to Texas that’s served by Alaska, joining Austin and Dallas Love Field.

Effective Date City Pair Departs Arrives Frequency Aircraft
Feb. 19, 2019 Seattle – El Paso 7:45 a.m. 11:47 a.m. Daily E175
Feb. 19, 2019 El Paso – Seattle 5:55 p.m. 8:15 p.m. Daily E175
Feb. 19, 2019 El Paso – San Diego 12:50 p.m. 1:40 p.m. Daily E175
Feb. 19, 2019 San Diego – El Paso 2:25 p.m. 5:10 p.m. Daily E175

Flight times based on local time zones.

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American Airlines now offers upscale private airport entrance, security screening and helicopter transfers

American Airlines is expanding its exclusive Five Star Service options for its top customers traveling through Los Angeles (LAX) and New York (JFK). The new additions offer off-terminal entrance and private screening service with The Private Suite in LAX and a unique effortless travel experience to JFK or LAX airports with Blade, a digitally powered aviation company.

Expedited security screening at The Private Suite’s terminal entrance

American Airlines Five Star Service is a premium and personal airport experience available for departures, connections or arrivals in select markets. Customers purchasing a Five Star Service experience can take the worry out of travel and customize their experience to fit their interests. The services provided by Blade and The Private Suite will be available as add-ons for customers purchasing Five Star Service or Five Star Select — an elevated Five Star Service experience with access to Flagship Lounge and Flagship First Dining.

“We understand the value our customers put on their time and a personalized end-to-end travel experience — whether it is a private travel experience, a little more luxury, fine dining in the airport or getting to the gate quickly, we have them covered,” said Janelle Anderson, Vice President of Global Marketing. “This gives our customers a range of choices when traveling on American.”

Customers in the Los Angeles or the New York areas can skip the traffic and get to the airport faster with a private helicopter transfer from Blade. When traveling with Blade, customers will be picked up in the city at a destination of their choice and flown to LAX or JFK where they’ll be greeted by an American Airlines team member and escorted via Cadillac to Flagship First Check-In. After clearing security, customers can spend their extra time relaxing or working in the Admirals Club, Flagship Lounge or Flagship First Dining before their flight. Blade service is also available for arriving customers.

Private helicopter transfer from Blade

“The No. 1 pain point of traveling from New York City and Los Angeles to the airports is traffic. Our Blade airport transfer product turns an hour-and-a-half drive into a helicopter flight that’s five to seven minutes,” said Rob Wiesenthal, founder and CEO of Blade. “Blade and American Airlines will now provide customers with a seamless experience from the door of the helicopter to their seat on their American flight.”

Premium cabin customers who value efficiency, luxury and privacy when traveling through LAX can choose to access The Private Suite’s private entrance to LAX, away from crowds and traffic. The exclusive, first-of-its-kind terminal offers customers with departing flights private, expedited security screening on site with Cadillac escort across the tarmac directly to their gate or to the Flagship Lounge and Flagship First Dining. Similarly, arriving customers can clear international customs in fewer than five minutes at The Private Suite’s own dedicated international arrivals hall.

“LAX is one of the busiest airports in the country,” said Josh Gausman, co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of The Private Suite. “Now, American Airlines customers will be able to skip typical airport congestion, clear security in seconds, and be whisked across the airfield directly to their flight or to the exceptional Flagship First Dining. There aren’t many better ways to experience LAX.”

Bahamasair acquires its first Boeing 737-700

Bahamasair on February 4, 2019 took delivery of its first 144-seat Boeing 737-700 from AerCap. Formerly with Lucky Air, Boeing 737-790 was delivered as C6-BFX (msn 30662) and will enter service serving the Florida – Bahamas market.

The new type arrived at the Nassau base on February 14, 2019.

Video of the arrival at Nassau:

British Airways’ BOAC-painted Boeing 747-400 lands at London Heathrow, heads to New York JFK

British Airways made this announcement:

  • The BOAC-liveried Boeing 747, reg: G-BYGC, arrived back at Heathrow from the paint factory on the morning of February 18 in the rain (above) and entered the airline’s flying schedule, heading first to New York (JFK)
  • Arrival coincides with the Boeing 747 first flight anniversary just days earlier

Monday, February 18, 2019 – Large crowds gathered at Heathrow in the rain to watch the much-anticipated arrival of a British Airways Boeing 747-400 painted in the iconic design of its predecessor British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) (top).

The aircraft entered the IAC paint bay at Dublin Airport on February 5 where it was stripped of its current British Airways Chatham Dockyard design before being repainted with the BOAC livery which adorned the BOAC fleet between 1964 and 1974 (below).

Alex Cruz, British Airways’ Chairman and CEO, said: “The enormous interest we’ve had in this project demonstrates the attachment many people have to British Airways’ history. It’s something we are incredibly proud of, so in our centenary year it’s a pleasure to be celebrating our past while also looking to the future. We look forward to many more exciting moments like this as our other aircraft with heritage designs enter service.”


Picture by: Stuart Bailey

From the paint bay at Dublin Airport, the BOAC Boeing 747-400 flew directly to Heathrow on the aptly named BA100 touching down in the morning (top). Its next flight is today, Tuesday February 19, when it departed for New York JFK operating as flight BA117. This flight is particularly significant as it was the first route the Boeing 747-100 flew in BOAC colors.


Picture by: Stuart Bailey

After this, the aircraft will continue to fly British Airways’ 747-operated routes proudly showcasing the design as part of the airline’s centenary celebrations. The aircraft can be tracked using Flight Radar, which will feature a special image of the livery.

The BOAC livery will remain on the Boeing 747-400 until it retires in 2023, to allow as many customers as possible to have the chance to see it. By this time, British Airways will have retired the majority of its 747 fleet, replacing them with new state-of-the-art long-haul aircraft. This includes taking delivery of 18 A350s and 12 Boeing 787 Dreamliners in the next four years – which feature new cabins and are more environmentally efficient – as well as another 26 short-haul aircraft, all part of the airline’s £6.5bn investment for customers.

Top Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

Air Canada flight departs Port-au-Prince, Haiti with 209 passengers

Air Canada flight AC1815 departed Port-au-Prince, Haiti on February 18 with 209 customers and 16 crew and support employees onboard a Boeing 767-300ER Air Canada Rouge aircraft.

Air Canada normally operates two flights weekly between Montreal and Port-au-Prince, Haiti on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Following the Government of Canada’s advisory to avoid all travel to Haiti, Air Canada’s next scheduled flight on Wednesday to Haiti is cancelled. Air Canada is monitoring this situation closely to determine when it will be safe to resume flights.

Schiphol Airport starts facial recognition boarding using Vision-Box platform

Passengers traveling with Cathay Pacific can now participate in a trial of facial recognition self-boarding at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. This trial is part of the first phase of Seamless Flow, the program that intends to make paperless travel possible in the long term.

After checking in, passengers are invited to take part in the trial. Participants are escorted to one of the special registration kiosks. At this moment, the passport and the boarding pass are scanned, while a high-quality face image is captured, in order to generate the traveler’s single token.

This will allow passengers to self-process through a boarding gate without having to show any documents. At the departure gate, they use a dedicated biometric-enabled eGate, where they simply have to look at a camera that scans their face. The live photo is automatically compared with the scan that was made at the registration process. When the face is identified, the gate opens and the passenger is boarded on the airline system. This only takes a few seconds.

Schiphol Airport _GoLive Seamless Flow_Vision-Box_2   Schiphol Airport _GoLive Seamless Flow_Vision-Box_4

“It’s all about the passenger. The whole idea of Seamless Flow is to modernize the airport landscape to improve the convenience, simplify the processes, propose modern interactions and deliver effective value to passengers. We’re very excited to continue working with our partners in this landmark program, offering Cathay Pacific customers with a pioneering seamless travel platform that will absolutely reshape how we travel.”, says Miguel Leitmann, Vision-Box CEO

By making self-boarding available, Schiphol is closer to achieving a completely Seamless Flow, which aims at offering passengers more convenience and a frictionless flow across the airport.

“For passengers, the journey from arrival at the airport to boarding becomes easier and more efficient”, says Wilma van Dijk, Schiphol’s Safety and Security Director. “Now you have to show your passport, your boarding card or both at various checkpoints at the airport, for example, when dropping your luggage, at the entrance to the security check, when passing the border and when you go boarding. In the future you can pass these control points more smoothly because you are recognized by your face. You can leave your passport and boarding pass in the bag. ”

“Cathay Pacific is always looking for ways to improve the experience of our customers at every stage of their journey with us, and the experience at the airport is an important and integral part of that journey. We are therefore happy to be part of this innovative trial, in order to prepare ourselves and our passengers for the future way of traveling”, says Will Kerr-Muir, Cathay Pacific Country Manager Benelux & France.

In the coming months, scanning of the face, passport and boarding pass will be experienced during registration and boarding. The next phase will add passport control to the trial.

To bring this program to life, a partnership has been established by the Dutch Government, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, Cathay Pacific, KLM and Vision-Box, who is responsible for the seamless flow technology platform.

Etihad Airways to deploy the Boeing 787 on all routes to China, reduces aircraft on order, will retire the last Airbus A330-300

Etihad Airways will introduce the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner on its daily service from Abu Dhabi to Chengdu, effective July 1, 2019, replacing the Airbus A330-200 currently operating the route. Also from July 1, the airlines’ daily service from Abu Dhabi to Shanghai will be upgraded from the 787-9 to the larger 787-10 Dreamliner.

  • Chengdu to be served daily with Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner from July 1, 2019
  • Shanghai to be upgraded to larger 787-10 Dreamliner from July 1, 2019

Once the changes take effect, the airline will fly all 28 weekly services to China’s four main gateways – Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai and Hong Kong – with the next generation Dreamliner aircraft.

Etihad Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner A6-BLU (msn 39675) AMS (Ton Jochems). Image: 945709.

Above Copyright Photo: Etihad Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner A6-BLU (msn 39675) AMS (Ton Jochems). Image: 945709.

The 787-9 service to Chengdu will feature Etihad Airways’ next-generation Business and Economy cabins, configured with 299 seats – 28 Business Studios and 271 Economy Smart Seats. The upgrade of aircraft will also see an increase in belly-hold cargo capacity of four tonnes.

The 787-10 service to Shanghai will be configured with 336 seats – 32 Business Studios and 304 Economy Smart. Belly-hold cargo capacity will be increased by two and a half tonnes.

Etihad Airways recently celebrated 10 years of direct flights between Abu Dhabi and China, the capital-capital airlink was launched in 2008. Since 2008, the airline has carried over four and a half million passengers between Abu Dhabi and China.

Timetables: Abu Dhabi – China schedules

Flight

Origin

Departs

Desti

Arrives

Freq

Aircraft

EY 818

Abu Dhabi

08:15

Cheng
du

19:40

Daily*

Boeing 787-9

EY 811

Cheng
du

21:00

Abu Dhabi

00:25

Daily*

Boeing 787-9

Note: All departures and arrivals are listed in local time. *Daily operation during summer timetable, three weekly flights during winter timetable.

Flight

Origin

Departs

Desti

Arrives

Freq

Aircraft

EY 862

Abu Dhabi

21:45

Shang
hai

10:35

Daily

Boeing 787-10

EY 867

Shang
hai

00:45

Abu Dhabi

05:55

Daily

Boeing 787-10

Note: All departures and arrivals are listed in local time. Shanghai to be upgraded to 787-10 from July 1, 2019. Departure of 1st 787-10 from Shanghai will be on July 3, 2019.

Flight

Origin

Departs

Desti

Arrives

Freq

Aircraft

EY 888

Abu Dhabi

21:30

Beijing

08:50

Daily

Boeing 787-10

EY 889

Beijing

01:25

Abu Dhabi

06:10

Daily

Boeing 787-10

Note: All departures and arrivals are listed in local time. Beijing upgraded to 787-10 Dreamliner on Jan 1, 2019.

Flight

Origin

Departs

Desti

Arrives

Freq

Aircraft

EY 834

Abu Dhabi

22:05

Hong Kong

10:05

Daily

Boeing 787-9

EY 833

Hong Kong

19:45

Abu Dhabi

00:05

Daily

Boeing 787-9

Note: All departures and arrivals are listed in local time. Hong Kong to be served by 787-9 Dreamliner from March 31, 2019. Departure of 1st 787-9 from Hong Kong will be on April 1, 2019.

In other news, the airline is also reducing its aircraft on order. In a statement, the airline stated it will take delivery of five Airbus A350-1000s and 26 A321neos plus six Boeing 777-9s “over the coming years” (no specific delivery dates).

The carrier stated it will also continue to take delivery of new Boeing 787 Dreamliners, but did specify the number. Etihad has so far received 28 of 71 Dreamliners it has on order.

With these fleet changes, Etihad Airways will also retire its last three remaining Airbus A330-300s in March 2019.

Below Copyright Photo: Etihad Airways Airbus A330-343 A6-AFF (msn 1245) (Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2014) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 927297.

Last three A330-300s to be retired in March 2019

Etihad Airways aircraft slide show:

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