Monthly Archives: August 2018

FORSA Union recognized for Irish based cabin crew

Ryanair has released this statement:

Ryanair on August 30, 2018 announced that it has signed its fourth cabin crew union recognition agreement with FORSA, who will be the representative body for Ryanair’s directly employed cabin crew in Ireland.

Ryanair looks forward to working with FORSA and the elected Ryanair (Cabin Crew) Company Council to conclude an early CLA for Ryanair’s directly employed cabin crew based in Ireland. This agreement follows Ryanair’s cabin crew recognition deals with the Italian ANPAC, ANPAV and Fit-Cisl unions, UNITE the union in the UK and the Ver.di union in Germany.

Ryanair’s Chief People Officer, Eddie Wilson said:

“We are pleased to sign this cabin crew recognition agreement with FORSA in Ireland. We look forward to working closely with both Forsa and their Company Council to address issues of concern to our directly employed Irish based cabin crew. This is a further sign of the progress Ryanair is making with trade unions since our December 2017 decision to recognise unions, with over 65% of our cabin crew now covered by recognition agreements and we hope to sign more agreements in the coming weeks.”

Primera Air announces new trans-Atlantic routes from Berlin

Primera Air has announced another new trans-Atlantic destinatination – Berlin.

Flights to New York (JFK), Boston and Toronto will start in June 2019.

New York (JFK) daily starting on June 7, 2019

Boston four days a week starting on June 9, 2019

Toronto (Pearson) three days a week starting on June 10, 2019

All flights will be operated with the new Boeing 737-9 MAX 9 aircraft.

Austrian Airlines signs new collective bargaining agreement for flight personnel valid until 2022

Austrian Airlines Embraer ERJ 190-200LR (ERJ 195) OE-LWE (msn 19000423) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 943133.

Austrian Airlines issued this statement:

• Significant rise in entry-level salaries for flight attendants
• Enhanced flexibility of working hours

Employer and employee representatives signed a new collective agreement applying to the Austrian Airlines flight personnel lasting until 2022. This agreement was preceded by long negotiations. In May and June 2018, the negotiating parties ultimately agreed on a key points paper for the collective bargaining agreement. Negotiations over the past months focused on formulating the texts and contractual details.

“For the first time we have concluded a collective agreement applying over a period of four years. The long-term validity of the agreement brings peace and stability to the company. Furthermore, working as flight attendants and pilots has once again become more appealing. We have raised entry-level salaries to a good level and also opened up new perspectives for our existing flight and cabin crew”, according to Human Resources Manager Nathalie Rau and Accountable Manager Jens Ritter of Austrian Airlines, who led the employer negotiating team.

As already presented in the key points paper, current salaries for flight attendants and pilots will be hiked by 5.5% in 2018 and 2.5% in 2019, to be followed by a 1.83% rise in 2020 and by an increase of at least 1.4% in 2021. Particular attention was paid to raising starting gross salaries for flight attendants, which will be increased by 10.7%, from EUR 1,533 to EUR 1,700. Allowances for cabin managers will also be raised.

At the same time, flight duty regulations were made considerably more flexible, enabling the company to more effectively compensate for seasonal fluctuations in passenger demand.

Austrian Airlines currently employs about 7,000 people, including 1,200 pilots and 2,400 flight attendants. The company is seeking to hire new employees for its cockpit and cabin crew.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Austrian): Austrian Airlines Embraer ERJ 190-200LR (ERJ 195) OE-LWE (msn 19000423) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 943133.

Austrian aircraft slide show:

Aeroflot launches flights to new international destinations: Colombo, Gothenburg, Ljubljana

Named "N. Novikov"

Aeroflot opens regular flights to Colombo, Gothenburg, Ljubljana. Flights will operate under the winter schedule effective October 28, 2018 through March 30, 2019.


Colombo is the largest city of Sri Lanka and its financial and cultural centre. It is the main tourist hub from which travellers start their journeys across the country. Five weekly flights on Airbus A330 aircraft will operate on the following schedules:

Moscow-Colombo (all times local):

– flight SU 0286 will depart Sheremetyevo on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 22:05, and arrive in Colombo at 9:05.

– return flight SU 0287 will depart Colombo on Mondays, Tuesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 10:45, and arrive at Sheremetyevo at 17:30.

Gothenburg is the second-largest city in Sweden and one of the cultural capitals of Scandinavia. Part of Gothenburg lies on the Southern Archipelago just off the coast and is connected to the mainland by public boat and ferry services.

Daily flights on Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft will operate on the following schedules:

Moscow-Gothenburg (all times local):

– flight SU 2180 will depart Sheremetyevo on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 21:05 and arrive in Gothenburg (Landvetter airport) at 21:40. Flight SU2180 will depart SVO on Tuesdays at 21:25, arriving in Gothenburg at 22:00.

– return flight SU 2181 will depart Gothenburg (Landvetter airport) daily at 00:20 and arrive in Moscow at 04:45.

Ljubljana is the capital of Slovenia, its main political, financial and cultural centre. It is popular among tourists for its architecture and the medieval Ljubljana Castle complex standing on a hill above the city’s downtown. Daily flights on Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft will operate on the following schedules:

Moscow-Ljubljana (all times local):

– flight SU 2610 will depart Sheremetyevo at 9:05 and arrive in Ljubljana at 10:20.

– return flight SU 2611 will depart Ljubljana at 11:30 and arrive at Sheremetyevo at 16:40.

Copyright Photo (all others by Aeroflot): Aeroflot Russian Airlines Sukhoi Superjet 100-95B RA-89063 (msn 95099) ARN (Stefan Sjogren). Image: 941869.

Aeroflot aircraft slide show:

Fleet: Aeroflot fleet comprises 243 passenger aircraft, as of August 2018. The average age of the fleet is just over 4 years, which makes it one of the youngest in the world! All airliners are named after outstanding people.

CR Smith Museum: A reflection of American Airlines

When Betty Overstreet (above) walked into the CR Smith Museum on a recent afternoon, she didn’t get far before she was greeted by familiar faces. Fellow volunteer Ron Coleman came up for a hug and a quick chat. There was more catching up with team members Judith Clark and Judy Bunch in the museum store.

A lanyard around her neck, displaying an American Airlines logo from the 1940s, held her company retiree badge, but she can recite her seniority without reference or hesitation: April 2, 1951. She worked at the City Ticket Offices in Dallas. Her husband, H.A. Jack Overstreet, was a pilot for 10 years before moving to Dispatch, where his flight deck knowledge was helpful.

Betty has been volunteering with the museum for 27 years. “I’ve been volunteering longer than I was an employee,” she said. “I know how important this museum is to the people who work for the airline.”

The museum celebrated its 25th anniversary this summer. For two years before it opened, Betty joined the grassroots efforts of American team members to gather donations, drive membership and catalogue artifacts. She remembers the ribbon-cutting ceremony on July 3, 1993.

“We had a grand opening. You walked through those revolving doors and everything was bright and shiny and beautiful. I can almost get emotional over it. We never thought we could have something like this. This place. It showed that all of us, all the different departments in the airline, were all working for the same team. We were proud of the airline, and we wanted to be the best.”
— Betty Overstreet

The museum recently went through a redesign to put more focus on that team. The new exhibits share the history of aviation through the experiences of American Airlines team members, working together. Team members directly contributed to the new permanent exhibits, which highlight how each of them is crucial to the success of the airline.

“There are so many facets of getting that airplane to the gate and then back into the air,” said Dominic Orlando, a Fleet Service Clerk who has been with the company for 41 years. “There are so many groups that make it happen and some of those are unseen by the public. This will illuminate that just a little bit — shine a light on all the workgroups that people are not aware of.”

Dominic stars in the Baggage Loader exhibit, an interactive gaming demonstration that allows visitors to pretend to be Fleet Service team members and load baggage into the “front” and “aft,” all while the clock ticks to ensure an on-time departure.

A guy that’s not used to attention, he said he stepped out of his comfort zone to film the project. But he said he was committed to doing his best. He had a new uniform he hadn’t worn. He packed all his official protective gear. He said he is proud of the airline and all it does for the communities that he and his fellow team members live in and serve, and was excited to be able to participate.

“I wanted to represent the company properly and do it right,” he said. “I have 41 years of loyalty in me, and to be able to do something like this — I feel left my mark and hopefully some kids get some fun out of it and learn something from it. If one little girl looks at her mom or dad and did well doing that game and smiles, then I think it’s worth it.”

Betty is just now getting a chance to become familiar with the new exhibits. She wants to be able to knowledgably guide guests when they start visiting. When she sees the Airport Command Center, a new interactive exhibit where visitors make decisions such as deviating, delaying or cancelling flights to get customers safely to their destinations, she’s in awe. “I wish my husband and his coworkers could see,” she said. “They would be speechless. The way the airline is set up now. And this exhibit. I’m not adept at electronics, but I’m very interested in seeing how this one works.”

In appreciation of team members’ contributions, the CR Smith Museum opened its doors to them as the first visitors to the redesigned space. The museum opens to the public this weekend with extended hours. Visit for more information.

All photos by American Airlines.

SAS reports strong earnings in peak seasons

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS Airbus A320-251N WL SE-DOZ (msn 7565) PMI (Ton Jochems). Image: 943344.

Scandinavian Airlines-SAS has issued its financial report, ending on July 31, 2018:

MAY 2018 – JULY 2018

  • Revenue: MSEK 13,146 (12,210)
  • Earnings before tax and nonrecurring items: MSEK 1,978 (1,863)
  • EBT: MSEK 2,004 (1,973)
  • Net income for the period: MSEK 1,546 (1,535)
  • Return on invested capital (ROIC), LTM: 13% (13%)
  • Earnings per common share SEK 3.97 (4.39)
  • Outlook for 2017/2018 is upgraded to around SEK 2 billion (page 10)

Top Copyright Photo: Scandinavian Airlines-SAS Airbus A320-251N WL SE-DOZ (msn 7565) PMI (Ton Jochems). Image: 943344.

SAS aircraft slide show:

California Pacific Airlines adds Mesa, Arizona

California Pacific Airlines (CPA) which earlier this week announced the details of its inaugural west coast service, today announced it will add PhoenixMesa, Arizona to its growing list of destinations served from its base of McClellan – Palomar Airport in Carlsbad, California.


CPA service to the Phoenix metro area will commence November 15, 2018.  CPA will be announcing additional western routes in the near future.

The initial flight schedule between Carlsbad and PhoenixMesa, effective November 15, 2018 will consist of one round trip each week day with a single round trip each Saturday.

Flights from Carlsbad to Phoenix-Mesa, AZ

Flights from Phoenix-Mesa, AZ to Carlsbad







2:30 pm

4:35 pm


5:05 pm

5:15 pm


10:45 am

12:50 pm


1:20 pm

1:30 pm


California Pacific Airlines (CPA) service is operated by Aerodynamics, Inc. (ADI), a certified FAA 121 Air Carrier (Cert# BUEA634C).

Photo: CPA.

Air China Limited announces its 2018 interim results

1st Airbus A350-900, delivered on August 8, 2018

Air China Limited, together with its subsidiaries, announced its results for the 6 months ended June 30, 2018.

Results Highlights

  • Revenue rose 11.96% year-on-year to RMB64.242 billion
  • Operating expenses increased 12.53% year-on-year to RMB59.574 billion
  • Earnings per share attributable to equity shareholders of the Company increased 4.05% year-on-year to RMB3.476 billion
  • Profit per share slightly decreased 0.04% year-on-year to RMB0.25

In the first half of 2018, China passenger aviation market grew steadily in demand and supply while outbound travel and international traffic demand continued to rise with a rapid growth, and there was a faster growth in capacity supply. The Group has capitalized on market opportunities by prudently optimizing its production organization, stabilizing income level and strengthening cost management to reinforce its competitive advantage in the core business. In spite of unfavorable factors such as higher jet fuel prices and depreciation in exchange rates, the Group has delivered solid results for the Period.

Advance Strategic Arrangement and Continue to Expand Route Network

In the first half of 2018, the Company newly launched (resumed routes included) 28 domestic and international routes, comprising 21 domestic and 7 international routes.

As for the Beijing Hub, the Company launched international routes of BeijingBarcelona, BeijingHoustonPanama, BeijingCopenhagen, BeijingHanoi, etc.; as at the end of the Period, the Company launched around 30 direct routes from Beijing to the countries along the Belt and Road. The capacity of Beijing as one of the key bases increased by 6.8% year-on-year by optimizing the capacity deployment structure of the Beijing Hub and increasing the deployment of wide-body aircraft for key routes departing from Beijing.

The Group delivered through check-in baggage services on routes from 19 European cities to domestic destinations via Beijing. As at the end of June 2018, this service has covered 35 waypoints in Europe, America and Australia; the number of O&D connected in the Beijing Hub increased to 6,050 from 5,918 as at the end of 2017; the onward transit products of the Beijing Hub were promoted and the passengers transfer services were enhanced. The number of onward transit passengers via Beijingincreased by 25.4% year on year.

The Chengdu International Hub launched new international and domestic routes such as ChengduBangkok, Chengdu-Huai’an and Chengdu-Hotan, and the capacity contributed increased by 10.3% year-on-year. Shanghai and Shenzhen international gateways have continuously improved the planning of route network and deployment of wide-body aircraft through interconnection with surrounding areas. In addition, the quadrilateral strategic layout has been continuously optimized and the route network has been further developed as the Company launched new international and domestic routes such as HangzhouNha Trang, DalianShijiazhuang– Yinchuan, and Hangzhou-Xi’an-Karamay.

As at the end of June 2018, the Company’s passenger routes have expanded to 434 in total, across six continents of the world, comprising 308 domestic, 109 international and 17 regional routes. The Company’s network covered 42 countries and regions and 189 cities, including 69 international, 4 regional and 116 domestic cities. Through Star Alliance, the Company’s route network extended to 1,317 destinations in 193 countries.

Top Copyright Photo: Air China Airbus A350-941 B-1086 (msn 167) TLS (Marco Finelli). Image: 943021.

Air China aircraft slide show:


Republic Airways welcomes the first aviation training academy class

Republic Airlines (2nd) Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N173HQ (msn 19000206) DCA (Brian McDonough). Image: 909600.

Republic Airways Holdings issued this statement:

The first class of future pilots at the Republic Airways Holdings’ LIFT Academy will “take off” on Tuesday. LIFT Academy, a U.S.-based aviation training school located at the Indianapolis International Airport (IND), launched in May of 2018 and makes aviation training affordable, accessible and attractive. Over 600 applications were received for the first class.

LIFT Academy makes a career as a commercial pilot more accessible to all by reducing the cost and structural barriers to entry in aviation.  Applying to LIFT is free, and total tuition for the flight academy is $65,000, which is lower than most other aviation training schools in the U.S.  Further, graduates of LIFT are guaranteed a First Officer job with Republic Airways. To further help students with tuition costs, Republic is also offering financing opportunities and loan assistance to those who qualify.

“We are thrilled to welcome our first class to LIFT Academy,” said Matt Koscal, Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, Republic Airways Holdings. “LIFT Academy is revolutionizing pilot training by introducing the most technologically advanced flight program, while removing barriers such as cost and accessibility that today limit the pilot career to a narrow demographic.”

LIFT Academy features a structured aviation education environment and curriculum that combines flight, flight simulator, online and in-classroom training. Throughout the training program, students train on a fleet of advanced new aircraft and flight simulators produced by Diamond Aircraft Industries, including the DA40 single-engine and the DA42 twin-engine aircraft.  Both aircraft possess the most advanced technology in the industry, including the most sophisticated avionics suite in the market. The program will be further enhanced with Diamond Flight Simulator Training Devices (FSTD) built to achieve the most realistic cockpit simulation environment.

Republic currently hires nearly 700 commercial pilots annually, and that number is expected to grow by 50% over the next decade. The airline industry is currently facing a significant pilot shortage. Reports indicate 637,000 new commercial airline pilots will be needed worldwide by 2036 to meet demand because of contributing factors like pilot retirements and worldwide aviation growth.

Interested students can call 317.471.2200 or 1.800.435.2552 and visit Republic Airways officials are available to answers questions regarding the pilot shortage and LIFT Academy.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by Republic): Republic Airlines (2nd) Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW N173HQ (msn 19000206) DCA (Brian McDonough). Image: 909600.

Republic aircraft slide show:


Taking new roads in the sky: NASA and Alaska Airlines are making it happen

From the Alaska Airlines blog:

Have you ever been stuck in traffic and thought: “There has got to be a better way to get where I’m going”? Pilots often think the same thing up in the air.

In the hours before takeoff, airline dispatchers specifically plan flights and file flight plans using the best information available at the time. But conditions change: turbulent weather moves in, the airspace suddenly becomes more congested or better flying lanes open up but go undiscovered.

What if pilots – much like drivers – could hop off a busy thoroughfare and jump on a less crowded backroad? Today, it’s not that easy. Soon, it could be.

Alaska Airlines is partnering with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) on a possible game changer – aircraft technology that can choose the best routes for pilots in real time.

In addition to getting you to your destination faster, NASA estimates between 8,000 to 12,000 gallons of fuel could be saved annually per Alaska Airlines aircraft, along with 900 to 1,300 fewer minutes flying each plane. All those savings and reductions could add up quickly.

The software is called TAP, or Traffic Aware Planner. It’s part of NASA’s Traffic Aware Strategic Aircrew Requests (TASAR) program, which automatically monitors for potential flight trajectory improvements while in the air, passes that information on to pilots and helps them to get permission to make the changes.

16a0390r 6x4 sea air2air resized Taking new roads in the sky: NASA and Alaska Airlines are making it happen

Today, airline dispatchers plan flights using the best information available at the time. What if pilots – much like drivers – could hop off a busy thoroughfare and jump on a less crowded backroad? Credit: Chad Slattery

Right now, pilots make those requests to Air Traffic Control (ATC) with limited awareness of what’s happening around them.

“This type of moment doesn’t come along that often. It’s a transformative time,” said Bret Peyton, Director of Fleet Tech Support at Alaska. “We’re proud to be out in front partnering with NASA on this program. Alaska is known for its ‘tech forwardness,’ and this collaboration is another great example of that.”

TASAR focuses on maximizing opportunities, such as taking advantage when severe weather moves out of the way, other aircraft head in a different direction or when better flying lanes with more favorable winds are discovered.

At the space agency’s Langley Research Center in Virginia, engineers designed the cutting-edge technology to help reduce the amount of time planes are flying, which cuts down on fuel consumption and carbon emissions.

The software is currently undergoing flight trials on three Alaska Airlines’ 737-900ERs. So far, results are promising with significant fuel and time savings.

“We’re the first airline in the world to use the technology. We believe we can make some tremendous changes in how efficiently we fly our aircraft while we’re en route to a destination,” said Jared Woodward, Alaska’s TASAR program manager. “As pilots and dispatchers try to find ways to optimize a flight, this tool enables us to verify we are on the best route or to find a more efficient route based on real-time data.”

180823 alaska ipads 020 resized Taking new roads in the sky: NASA and Alaska Airlines are making it happen

NASA’s Traffic Aware Planner (TAP) software gets tested on the flight deck. The software automatically monitors for potential flight trajectory improvements and helps pilots make changes in real time. Credit: Ingrid Barrentine

The TAP software accesses onboard aircraft systems to learn the plane’s current position and route. The system checks to see if more efficient routes are available. The software then connects with the plane’s other avionics and scans the broadcast signals of nearby air traffic to make sure there are no potential conflicts.

All of this makes it easier for air traffic controllers to okay a pilot’s route change request.

“TASAR’s mission is simple: Give pilots recommended flight paths and changes in altitude that air traffic controllers are more likely to approve,” said David Wing, who leads the TASAR project for NASA. “TASAR allows more efficient flying without adding more work for those on the flight deck or those in the control center.”

The first flights with Alaska pilots using the TASAR technology started July 24, 2018. The operational evaluation of the system will last through September 2020. With continued success, more and more pilots could rely on TAP’s guidance.

Read more about the program on NASA’s blog.