Monthly Archives: March 2013

Aeroflot to combine Vladivostok Air and SAT Airlines under a new company called Far Eastern Airline (DVA)

Aeroflot Russian Airlines (Moscow) has transferred its controlling 52.156 percent of the shares of Vladivostok Air (Vladivostok Avia) (Vladivostok) (a member of the Aeroflot Group of companies) to SAT Airlines (Sakhalin Airlines) (Sakhalin) (a 100 percent subsidiary of Aeroflot). This move was made following the decision of Aeroflot’s Board of Directors concerning the creation of Far Eastern Airline (DVA) within the Aeroflot Group.

According to Aeroflot, “the new member in Aeroflot Group of companies will satisfy the growing demand for regional flights offering the highest service standards in one of the most impressively developing regions of the country — Russia’s Far East.”

Aeroflot continues, “the creation of Far Eastern Airline (DVA) will contribute significantly to the social-economic development of this vast region with a powerful economic potential and will let Aeroflot Group become one of the leading air carriers in Asia-Pacific.

The establishment of Far Eastern Airline (DVA) is one of the key elements of Aeroflot Group strategy aimed at the creation of a large aviation holding which will successfully compete with the leaders of the global civil aviation.”

Vladivostok Air is the largest air carrier in Russia’s Far East, carrying about 1,100,000 passengers annually on its own fleet of planes. The airline flies to 24 domestic and 13 international destinations.

Vladivostok Air FAs

Copyright Photo: Vladivostok Air. V/A’s flight attendants.

Aeroflot recently celebrated its 90th anniversary of its creation as a state airline. Aeroflot is one of the world’s oldest airlines, founded on March 17, 1923 as Dobrolet. Operations commenced on July 15, 1923 from Moscow to Nizhniy Novgorod. The company adopted its current name Aeroflot on March 25, 1932.

Read the full report from Pravda: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl. Vladivostok Air’ Airbus A330-301 VQ-BEU (msn 055) arrives at Antalya.

Aeroflot: AG Slide Show

Vladivostok Air logo-1

Vladivostok Air: AG Slide Show

SAT Airlines: AG Slide Show

SAT Airlines logo

SAT Airlines Route Map:

SAT Airlines 3:2013 Route Map

Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. SAT Airlines’ (Sakhalin Airlines) Boeing 737-232 RA-73005 (msn 23100) completes its final approach at Beijing.

Golf Southwest Style at 35,000 Feet

Southwest Airlines (Dallas) has always had a fun persona, with cabin crews making funny announcement and creating unique “games” to pass the time for passengers and to stir up some fun while flying the airline. The latest is Southwest Golf:

Southwest Airlines: AG Slide Show

QANTAS and Emirates welcome their new relationship with a historic Airbus A380 fly over of Sydney Harbour

Emirates-QANTAS Tails and Crews

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) and Emirates Airline (Dubai) are celebrating their new relationship after receiving the final approvals.

QANTAS and Emirates welcomed the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) approval of their partnership for a period of five years.

The partnership will provide customers with a seamless international and Australian network, frequent flyer benefits and world-class travel experiences.

The decision follows a six month review process by the ACCC that included several rounds of public submissions, a pre-decision conference and a comprehensive analysis of the benefits the partnership will deliver to customers.

As part of the decision, QANTAS and Emirates have committed to maintain current levels of capacity on the four routes that both airlines fly between Australia and New Zealand. Subject to approval in New Zealand, the ability to cooperate on these Trans Tasman routes creates the potential for the two airlines to market both Australia and New Zealand to their global networks.

Emirates customers are now able choose from 32 Australian destinations that QANTAS operates to including Canberra, Port Lincoln, Cairns and Hobart, opening up Australia to passengers from all over the ever expanding Emirates network.

QANTAS and Emirates applied to the ACCC for authorization of their partnership in September 2012. In December 2012 the ACCC released its draft determination, indicating its intention to approve the partnership for a period of five years.

In January 2013, the ACCC approved an application for interim approval, which enabled the two airlines to coordinate pricing, schedules and capacity in advance of this decision. Fares on the joint network went on sale in mid-January for travel from March 31, 2013, subject to regulatory approval.

Preparations for the partnership, including QANTAS’ new operational hub in Dubai, are now complete. The first flight is scheduled from Sydney to London (via Dubai) on March 31.

The two airlines in order to celebrate the launch of their new relationship conducted a special Airbus A380 fly over of Sydney Harbour Bridge today. Read the full story from CLICK HERE

Copyright Photos: Emirates.

Fly-by video from phantomworks23:

QANTAS Airways: AG Slide Show

Emirates: AG Slide Show

Emirates-QANTAS Tails

Armavia suspends operations, will file for bankruptcy

Armavia Air Company (Yerevan, Armenia) suspended all operations yesterday (March 29) and plans to filed for bankruptcy on Monday (April 1) according to local reports. The company was previously planning to operate through tomorrow but this has changed. No flights are operating today.

At the end, the flag carrier was operating one Airbus A320, three Boeing 737-500s and three Bombardier CRJ200s. One Airbus A319 was operated for the government of Armenia.

Armavia Air company LLC was established in December 12, 1996 and had been struggling financially.

Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss. Airbus A319-111 D-AVYM (msn 3834) became EK32007 on delivery. However this airframe has since gone on to FlyGeorgia as 4L-FGA.

Armavia: AG Slide Show

Armavia logo

airBaltic to transition to an all-Bombardier fleet with four additional Q400s

Nordic Aviation Capital A/S (NAC) (Billund, Denmark) has signed a firm purchase agreement to acquire four Q400 NextGen airliners.

The four aircraft will be operated by airBaltic (Riga, Latvia) and will join eight DHC-8-402 (Q400) NextGen airliners ordered directly from Bombardier as the airline transitions to an all-Bombardier fleet.

In December 2012, airBaltic announced it was in the process of transitioning to an all-Bombardier fleet of CSeries and Q400 NextGen aircraft. The airline has placed a firm order for 10 CS300 aircraft and holds purchase rights on a further 10 CS300 airliners. These aircraft will replace older Boeing 737 and Fokker 50 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner. Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) YL-BAY (msn 4331) taxies at Zurich.

airBaltic: AG Slide Show

LOT Polish Airlines to wet lease an Airbus A330-200 from Hifly to replace its grounded Boeing 787-8s

LOT Polish Airlines (Warsaw) is wet leasing an Airbus A330-200 from Hifly (Lisbon) until at least the end of May to replace its grounded Boeing 787-8s according to Air Journal. The leased aircraft will be operated to New York (JFK) and Chicago (O’Hare).

LOT will also be asking Boeing for additional compensation for its grounded fleet.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best. LOT Polish Airlines Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner SP-LRA (msn 35938) prepares to land at London (Heathrow) when it was flying.

LOT Polish Airlines: AG Slide Show

US Airways launches Charlotte-London Heathrow service today

US Airways (Phoenix) today (March 30) will begin daily, nonstop service between its largest hub in Charlotte, North Carolina and London’s preferred business airport, Heathrow. The daily flight will supplement the airline’s existing daily service between its international gateway in Philadelphia and Heathrow, and replaces its current service between Charlotte and London’s Gatwick airport, which ended yesterday.

US Airways will operate the service between Charlotte and London Heathrow with Airbus A330 aircraft that features Envoy, the airline’s international business class. Customers traveling in Envoy will experience the remarkably comfortable and private Envoy Suite equipped with an adjustable seat that reclines into a fully flat bed. The Envoy Suite also features personal in-flight entertainment and a 110-volt universal power outlet.

The flight schedule is as follows:

Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) – London Heathrow Airport (LHR) London Heathrow Airport (LHR) – Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT)
Flight Departure Arrival Flight Departure Arrival
730* 7:05 p.m. 8:05 a.m. 731** 10:05 a.m. 2:10 p.m.

* Flight arrives next day.

** First day of Charlotte-bound flight is March 31, 2013.

The flight will originate in Miami offering customers in South Florida convenient one-stop service to London via the airline’s Charlotte hub.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum. Airbus A330-323X N275AY (msn 370) arrives at the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport hub.

US Airways: AG Slide Show

Alaska Airlines starts San Diego-Boston service

Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) yesterday (March 29) launched nonstop flights between San Diego and Boston—the sixth new city the carrier has begun serving from San Diego in the past year.

During the past year alone, Alaska Airlines has launched service from San Diego to Orlando, as well as to Fresno, Monterey and Santa Rosa, California, in addition to Boston and Kauai.

Summary of new service
Start date City pair Departs Arrives Frequency
March 29 San Diego-Boston 9:30 a.m. 5:55 p.m. Daily
March 29 Boston-San Diego 6:55 p.m. 10:13 p.m. Daily
All times based on local time zones

The flights will be operated using Boeing 737 Next Generation aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. Boeing 737-790 WL N612AS (msn 30162) completes its final approach into Los Angeles International Airport.

Alaska Airlines: AG Slide Show

Virgin Atlantic prepares to launch “Little Red” on Sunday

Virgin Atlantic Airways (London) is preparing to launch its new UK feeder service called “Little Red” on Sunday, March 31. The first route will be London (Heathrow)-Manchester. London (Heathrow)-Edinburgh will follow on April 5 and finally London (Heathrow)-Aberdeen will be launched on April 9. The new service will be operated with four Aer Lingus A320s now being painted in the Virgin Atlantic brand.

Virgin Atlantic Careers website:

Copyright Photo: Malcolm Nason. Aer Lingus’ A320-214 EI-DEO (msn 2486) “Queen of the Cobbles” poses for the camera at Shannon on March 28 after the repainting was finished.

Virgin Atlantic Little Red logo

Hot New Photos: AG Hot New Photos

Virgin Atlantic: AG Slide Show

Austrian Airlines to concentrate all Tyrolean Airways administration functions in Vienna, 100 jobs to be cut

Austrian Airlines (Vienna) is making further changes at its lower-cost Tyrolean Airways (Innsubruck) subsidiary. All Austrian Airlines aircraft, except one aircraft, are now operated by Tyrolean in the Austrian brand since July 1, 2012. Boeing 777-2Z9 OE-LPB was kept on the Austrian certificate to maintain Austrian as an operating airline.

All Tyrolean aircraft maintenance and the call center functions will remain in Innsbruck. However all administrative functions will now be centered in Vienna. All crew operations and traffic control will also be concentrated in Vienna. This will result in the loss of 100 positions.

Austrian expects to turn to profitability this year.

Read the full report (in German): CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. The only true Austrian Airlines-operated aircraft, this former Lauda Air Boeing 777-2Z9 ER OE-LPB (msn 28699), arrives at Bangkok.

Austrian Airlines: AG Slide Show