Hawaiian Airlines will connect the Hawaiian Islands with the Cook Islands starting in May 2023 with a weekly flight between Honolulu (HNL) and Rarotonga (RAR).
The service, which launches on May 20, 2023 in time for the U.S. summer travel season, will provide travelers from Hawaiian’s 15 U.S. Mainland gateway cities convenient one-stop connections to the Cook Islands.
Flight HA495 will depart Honolulu at 4 p.m. on Saturdays and arrive in Rarotonga at 10:25 p.m. the same day. The return flight, HA496, will depart Rarotonga at 11:35 p.m. on Sundays with a 5:50 a.m. Monday arrival in Honolulu.
The flights will be operated with Airbus A321neo aircraft.
Top Copyright Photo: Hawaiian Airlines Airbus A321-271N WL N202HA (msn 7917) LAS (Michael B. Ing). Image: 959493.
Finnair flights are set to end 2022 on a high, as the airline continues to recover its network.
During December, the carrier is expected to operate 8,252 flights, the highest number since March 2020, according to data from the aviation analytics firm Cirium.
The number of scheduled Finnair flights in December is also up 27% compared to the beginning of the year*, with the airline adding more popular flights to its network.
The Finnish flag carrier has also expanded its reach in the last year, with eight additional destinations being offered this December versus the start of the year.
The airline has also just announced that it will be expanding its services to Hong Kong from December, with flights from Helsinki rising from three to five times per week.
On November 29, the flag-carrier also resumed flights from Helsinki to Miami, in a boost to transatlantic travel.
This winter, Finnair and oneworld partner Qatar Airways established a long-term strategic cooperation, with the Finnish carrier also adding daily flights from Helsinki, Stockholm and Copenhagen to Doha.
The network expansion means Finnair will serve 16 long-haul destinations this winter across North America, Asia and the Middle East.
Top Copyright Photo: Finnair Airbus A330-302 OH-LTP (msn 1023) ARN (Stefan Sjogren). Image: 958836.
United Airlines today announced a strategic equity investment in Natron Energy, a battery manufacturer whose sodium-ion batteries have the potential to help United electrify its airport ground equipment like pushback tractors and operations at the gate. United has made substantial investments in companies developing technology to reduce aircraft emissions, but Natron is the first that has the potential to reduce the greenhouse gas footprint from United’s ground operations.
United has more than 12,000 pieces of motorized ground equipment across its operations, of which about one third are currently electric. Natron’s batteries could potentially be deployed in support of a number of uses, including:
Charging electric ground equipment
Charging anticipated future electric aircraft such as electric air taxis
Allowing airport operations to manage electricity demand
Greatly improving resiliency related to inclement weather
The sodium-ion batteries contain several features that distinguish them from existing battery technology. In addition to better output and cycle life than their lithium counterparts, testing performed by an independent testing service has shown these batteries to be nonflammable, a critical safeguard for the high usage and power that would be required for certain operations. The minerals used in sodium-ion batteries are abundant worldwide and are easily sourced, unlike lithium which is in short supply with demand expected to triple by 2025.
Natron plans to use the funds to accelerate production at its manufacturing facility in Holland, Michigan, where it will scale operations to begin mass production of UL-listed sodium-ion batteries in 2023.
Launched in 2021, UAV is a first-of-its-kind sustainability-focused ventures fund that targets startups, upcoming technologies, and concepts that will complement United’s goal of net zero emissions by 2050 – without relying on traditional carbon offsets such as planting trees. UAV’s portfolio now includes SAF producers and other technologies including carbon utilization, hydrogen-electric engines, electric regional aircraft, and urban air mobility.
Top Copyright Photo: United Airlines Boeing 777-224 ER N78005 (msn 27581) MUC (Gunter Mayer). Image: 959482.
Alaska Airlines today became the first U.S. airline to launch an electronic bag tag program, which enables guests to tag their luggage through the airline’s mobile app before they even reach the airport.
This week, 2,500 Alaska Mileage Plan members will begin receiving their electronic bag tag. Those elite status members included in the first wave of the program are guests who have traveled in the last 12 months, checked-in at least one bag and were among the first to register to use the device.
The three-by-five-inch devices are updated with a guest’s flight information through the Alaska Airlines mobile app during check-in; essentially allowing travelers to head straight to the bag drop area once they arrive at the airport.
The Alaska Airlines electronic bag tag is estimated to reduce the time guests spend in airport lobbies by about 40%, including reducing lines and the use of paper bag tags. In addition to the device’s impressive lifespan and durability (Alaska Airlines employees tested it by running it over with a truck), the devices don’t require charging or batteries.
The Alaska Airlines electronic bag tag will be available for purchase to all guests starting in 2023 and will operate on all Alaska Airlines marketed flights operated by Alaska Airlines, Horizon Air and SkyWest Airlines.
Along with the hardware, the software for the device is provided by BAGTAG, a Dutch company that is a pioneer in the field of baggage technology solutions.
Top Copyright Photo: Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-9 MAX 9 N943AK (msn 44084) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 959479.
Norse Atlantic Airways has announced the strengthening and expansion of its US-EU footprint with the launch of a new daily route connecting Paris (CDG) and New York (JFK).
The launch of this route marks Norse Atlantic’s first steps into the French Market, as the airline continues to provide luxurious, comfortable and most importantly, affordable travel options for visitors.
The first flight is set to take off from New York to Paris on March 26, 2023, at 11:55 p.m. EDT, and 12:30 a.m. EDT thereafter. However, you don’t have to wait until next year to plan your travels. The tickets will go on sale beginning November 29, 2022, with one-way prices as low as $159. With the new route, Norse Atlantic is entering yet another major international market, connecting New York to 4 European destinations – Berlin, London, Oslo and now Paris.
Top Copyright Photo: Norse Atlantic Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner LN-FND (msn 38788) LGW (Robbie Shaw). Image: 959452.
easyJet will add a 21st aircraft to its Manchester base and launch a new beach route to Murcia in South East Spain for this summer
The aircraft’s arrival will create around 40 local job opportunities at the airport
The new Airbus A320neo aircraft brings significant improvements in environmental and operational efficiencies compared to the previous generation of aircraft
Flights will launch on 2nd May 2023 and will operate twice weekly on Tuesdays and Saturdays, with seats on sale from 7th December
Results of a survey revealed by the airline today shows that 64% of Brits plan to fly abroad in 2023 and protecting holiday spend remains a priority for most as 70% will prioritise a holiday over other expenditure in their yearly budget
To protect their holidays next year, people will book with a low-cost carrier (66%), be flying short haul instead of long haul (74%) and travel to closer-to-home destinations in Europe (70%)
easyJet has revealed its plans for expansion at Manchester today, announcing that an additional Airbus A320 family aircraft will be based at the airport from May. The airline will also launch a new summer route between Manchester and Murcia in South-East Spain.
The 186-seat A320neo aircraft will be based in Manchester from May and operate throughout the summer season. It becomes the 21st Airbus family easyJet aircraft based at the airport, which now includes a total of six A320neo aircraft.
Top Copyright Photo: easyJet (UK) Airbus A320-251N WL G-UZHA (msn 7646) (NEO) PMI (Ton Jochems). Image: 959478.
MNG Airlines, which was established 25 years ago, aims to make Turkey stand out in the air cargo industry with its successful operations to all continents of the world.
With the mini-documentary released on November 30 (below), the anniversary of its first flight, tells the success story of a quarter-century with its employees.
MNG Airlines, which was established 25 years ago, first started to serve with scheduled cargo flights to Germany and England. Its business model is focused on providing flexible and solution-oriented services to its customer by offering scheduled and charter flights, cargo & ground handling, warehouse services as well as national/international road transportation services. MNG Airlines left behind 25 successful years as Turkey’s first private air cargo company. With vision of continuous improvement, MNG Airlines determines sustainability as a priority and says GoGreen.
For the 25th anniversary of its first flight on November 30, MNG Airlines produced the mini-documentary about mysterious anniversary special livery.
Scandinavian Airlines-SAS issued this report for its fiscal fourth quarter:
During the fourth quarter, we have noted the highest number of passengers since the pandemic started. Our capacity increased 15% compared with the third quarter and grew 52% year-over-year. We are also proud to see that our Customer Satisfaction Index is increasing, meaning that not only our valued customers are continuing to choose us, but it also indicates that they are appreciating our product offering.
Overall underlying demand for travel was healthy during the summer and the trend continued through the fourth quarter, with an expected minor dip in October. We are now entering the slower winter months but are preparing for another active summer season in 2023 and are both rehiring as well as hiring to be able to meet the expected increased demand going forward.
SAS continues to make progress in our transformation plan SAS FORWARD and we reached important milestones in the Chapter 11 process during the fourth quarter. In August, SAS secured USD $700 million in debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing from Apollo Global Management. This substantial financing commitment gives us a strong financial position to support our operations throughout the Chapter 11 process. Over the past months, we have struck agreements with aircraft lessors regarding concessions and various cost-savings initiatives in line with our objectives.
We look forward to continuing collaboration with all our stakeholders, to succeeding with the SAS FORWARD plan and to becoming a competitive and financially strong airline.
AUGUST 2022–OCTOBER 2022
Revenue: MSEK 10,651 (5,762)
Income before tax (EBT): MSEK -1,701 (-945)
Income before tax and items affecting comparability: MSEK -1,626 (-911)
Net income for the period: MSEK -1,238 (-744)
Earnings per common share: SEK -0.17 (-0.12)
NOVEMBER 2021–OCTOBER 2022
Revenue: MSEK 31,824 (13,958)
Income before tax (EBT): MSEK -7,846 (-6,525)
Income before tax and items affecting comparability: MSEK -7,941 (-6,382)
Net income for the period: MSEK -7,048 (-6,523)
Earnings per common share: SEK -0.97 (-0.94)
SIGNIFICANT EVENTS DURING THE QUARTER
In the beginning of August, SAS entered into a debtor-in-possession (“DIP”) financing credit agreement for USD 700 million with funds managed by Apollo Global Management. The initial tranche of USD 350 million was drawn in September.
SAS has signed a letter of support with Heart Aerospace for the option to add their new electric aircraft to the SAS regional aircraft fleet.
“Journeys That Matter” is the name of a new communication concept launched in September.
The SAS FORWARD plan is progressing and new agreements were reached on amended terms and conditions for existing aircraft and equipment leases in the quarter with ten lessors for 36 aircraft. SAS has also rejected a number of lease contacts.
SIGNIFICANT EVENTS AFTER THE QUARTER
Further agreements were reached regarding aircraft and equipment leases after the end of the quarter (in total, agreements have been reached with 13 lessors for 46 aircraft).
SAS currently targets to complete its court-supervised process in the U.S. during the second half of 2023, the implementation of which is likely to entail additional legal proceedings in other jurisdictions than the U.S. As a result, there is no assurance that there will be any recovery for the shareholders of SAS AB. SAS expects that its operations will be unaffected by such legal proceedings and that it will continue to serve its customers as normal.
The year-end report includes a financial outlook on p. 10
The fourth quarter is yet another quarter where we have noted the highest number of passengers since the pandemic started. Compared with the previous quarter, passengers flying with SAS increased 13% and the flown load factor reached approximately 77%. Our capacity increased 15% compared with the third quarter. SAS needs to continue its transformation to adapt to the new market conditions in order to be able to become more flexible, competitive and financially strong for the long term. Earnings before tax ended at negative SEK 1.7 billion, representing a quarter-on-quarter improvement of SEK 0.3 billion, or a year-on-year decrease of SEK 0.8 billion. As with previous quarters in 2022, the currencies and jet-fuel price have brought strong headwinds for our business.
Cost reductions across the business remain in focus to secure our cost competitiveness. Total operating expenses during the quarter ended at SEK 10.7 billion and total operating revenue landed at SEK 10.7 billion for the quarter. Total revenue increased 24% compared with the third quarter, a year-on-year improvement of approximately SEK 4.9 billion, but still 21% below the fourth quarter in 2019, which was unaffected by COVID-19.
The cash balance at the end of the quarter was SEK 8.7 billion. Operational cash flow during the quarter amounted to an inflow of SEK 0.4 billion, compared with an inflow of SEK 1.1 billion for the same period last year.
UPDATE ON PROGRESS WITH OUR TRANSFORMATION PLAN SAS FORWARD
SAS FORWARD is a comprehensive business transformation plan that was launched in conjunction with the publication of the first quarter report for FY 2022 at the end of February. The aim of the plan is to secure long-term competitiveness for SAS in the global aviation industry. The plan aims to strengthen our financial position and achieve a sustainable cost structure with an annual cost reduction of approximately SEK 7.5 billion. As part of SAS FORWARD, we also plan to raise at least SEK 9.5 billion in new equity and convert more
than SEK 20 billion of debt into equity.
SAS has made important progress in implementing the SAS FORWARD plan, having identified the full value of the SEK 7.5 billion target in reduced annual costs and we have continued to invest in our digital capabilities and sustainability efforts. The 5.5-year collective bargaining agreements reached between SAS and the SAS Scandinavia pilots’ unions in July are also a key element of SAS FORWARD. These important agreements have resulted in increased flexibility and productivity, but are still subject to approval by the US court. SAS also received support for the plan from the Swedish, Danish and Norwegian governments. All three states have indicated an intention to convert SAS debt and hybrids into equity, subject to certain conditions including regulatory approvals. Denmark has also published that, potentially, it may invest new capital, subject to all stakeholders’ participation in SAS FORWARD. However, much remains to be done.
To accelerate the implementation of key elements of the plan, SAS voluntarily filed for Chapter 11 in the U.S. on July 5. Chapter 11 is a legal process for financial restructuring conducted under U.S. federal court supervision. It has previously been used by a number of large international airlines to restructure. Through this process, SAS aims to reach agreements with key stakeholders, restructure our debt obligations, renegotiate our fleet contracts and emerge with a significant capital injection. SAS’ operations and flight schedule are unaffected by the Chapter 11 filing and we continue to serve our customers as normal. SAS targets to complete its court-supervised process in the U.S. during the second half of 2023, the implementation of which is likely to entail additional legal proceedings in other jurisdictions than the U.S. As a result, there is no assurance that there will be any recovery for the shareholders of SAS AB.
During the fourth quarter, SAS took important positive steps in the process by reaching agreements with several lessors to amend the terms of existing aircraft and equipment lease agreements. As of the date of publication of this year-end report, SAS has reached agreements with a total of 13 lessors, representing 46 aircraft. SAS has also rejected a number of lease contacts. For additional information, please refer to Note 1. This constitutes a major step in reconfiguring the fleet and achieving the SEK 7.5 billion in annual cost savings under the SAS FORWARD plan.
SAS SECURES USD 700 MILLION IN DEBTOR-IN-POSSESSION FINANCING
In August, SAS secured USD 700 million, or approximately SEK 7.0 billion, in debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing from Apollo Global Management. DIP financing is a specialized type of bridge financing used by businesses that are restructuring through a Chapter 11 process. The DIP financing, along with cash generated from our ongoing operations, enables SAS to continue meeting its obligations throughout the Chapter 11 process.
A NEW COMMUNICATION CONCEPT IS LAUNCHED
The pandemic brought about changes in demand as well as travel patterns. In order to stay relevant in the overall travel market we launched a new communication concept in September. The campaign highlights the importance of traveling and represents SAS’ first brand campaign since 2020 and is called “Journeys that matter.” The new communication concept speaks to this new, wider target group. It emphasizes that traveling gives us new perspectives, experiences and lifelong memories. The revised and updated visual identity adds new warm and personal elements while retaining our characteristic core.
THE COMING WINTER SEASON
We have entered the winter season, and we remain cautious due to the prevailing uncertainties around the world. Traffic to and from Asia remains affected by COVID-19 restrictions as well as by the geopolitical situation in Eastern Europe, and Russian airspace remains closed.
In comparison with last winter, SAS has noted a general increase in demand for travel both to classic ski destinations and to warmer holiday destinations. For the winter program SAS continues to open new routes and schedules more flights to popular destinations. During the coming winter, SAS will operate more than 170 routes to 90 destinations. More capacity will be added and SAS is returning to popular winter destinations such as Miami, Sälen/Trysil, Innsbruck and Salzburg.
Looking ahead to the next summer season we are preparing for substantial recruitments and rehirings that have been initiated in order to meet the expected increased future demand.
The SAS FORWARD plan includes positioning SAS as a leader in sustainable aviation. SAS will continue to invest in modern fuel-efficient aircraft, sustainable aviation fuels, emerging technologies, and sustainable products and services. By 2025 we will reduce our CO2 emissions by at least 25% compared with 2005. During the quarter, we signed an important letter of support with Heart Aerospace for the option to add their new electric aircraft, ES-30, to the SAS regional aircraft fleet. This has the potential of being a significant step on SAS’ sustainability journey, enabling zero-emission flights on routes within Scandinavia.
We appreciate the feedback we receive from our passengers. We are looking to increase personalization and improve our digital tools, as well as develop partnerships to increase our customer offering. We will continue to launch new exciting routes and will increase our frequencies.
We are engaging with other stakeholders as part of the next phase of the Chapter 11 process, which includes launching an equity solicitation process to obtain the capital necessary to implement our SAS FORWARD plan and working to build consensus for a plan of reorganization.
My colleagues at SAS are working really hard and are doing their very best to ensure that every aspect of the customer journey is as good as it possibly can be. I am extremely grateful for all their efforts.
As always, we look forward to welcoming our customers on board our aircraft.
Anko van der Werff
President and CEO
Top Copyright Photo: Scandinavian Airlines-SAS (SAS Connect) Airbus A320-251N WL EI-SIK (msn 10716) CPH (Tony Storck). Image: 959475.
Frontier Airlines has announced an expansion of its new all-you-can-fly GoWild! Pass™ to include kids.
The GoWild! Pass offers passholders exclusive access to unlimited flights to all destinations the airline serves both within the U.S. and internationally for one low annual price. Between now and Nov. 30, the pass is available for purchase at a discounted price of $799 per person. Passes purchased through Nov. 30 for kids under age 18 will also include a $200 flight voucher.
GoWild! passholders can enjoy an unlimited number of flights for one low annual price. Flights to and from U.S. destinations may be booked and confirmed the day before flight departure. Flights to and from international destinations can be booked and confirmed starting 10 days prior to flight departure.
Passes for children under the age of 18 must be purchased by an adult 18 years or older. Both the purchaser and child must be U.S. residents. Passholders under the age of 13 must be enrolled by their parent or legal guardian. Children under the age of 15 years old must travel accompanied by a passenger who is at least 15 years old.
The GoWild! Pass is on sale now for travel starting May 2, 2023 and is valid for a 12-month period.
Here’s how it works:
1. Buy the GoWild! Pass
2. Login to your FRONTIER Miles account
3. Search & Book on flyfrontier.com the day before flight departure and starting 10 days before flight departure for international travel. Your pass will be valid for one year beginning May 2, 2023. For each flight, you’ll pay $0.01 in airfare plus applicable taxes, fees, and charges at the time of booking. When you book, you can also purchase options like bags, seats, and other ancillary products, for each flight to customize your travel.
5. Repeat and book an unlimited number of flights for as long as your pass is valid
– Flights do not include any add-on products like bags or seats
– Access to all destinations Frontier serves
– Taxes, fees and charges apply at the time of booking
– A fare of $0.01 will be charged for each segment booked
– Flights and seats are subject to availability; last seat availability is not guaranteed
– Travel is not eligible to earn miles or status
– Travel qualifies as activity and will extend your Frontier Miles expiration
– The GoWild! Pass is non-transferable. The passholder is the only allowed passenger to travel with GoWild! Pass privileges
– Your Pass will automatically renew for successive one-year terms unless you cancel
– You must be 18 years or older and a resident of the United States to purchase the GoWild! Pass. The pass holder may be under the age of 18 but must be a resident of the United States. Pass holders under the age of 13 must be enrolled by their parent or legal guardian. Children under the age of 15 years old must travel accompanied by a passenger who is at least 15 years old.
Top Copyright Photo: Frontier Airlines (2nd) Airbus A320-251N WL N389FR (msn 10743) (Rocky, the Sawwhet Owl) BWI (Tony STorck). Image: 959474.
Atlas Air Worldwide has announced that its shareholders voted to approve the Company’s pending acquisition by an investor group led by funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management, Inc., together with investment affiliates of J.F. Lehman & Company and Hill City Capital at its special meeting of shareholders held on November 29.
As announced previously, the transaction was unanimously approved by the Atlas Board of Directors, which recommended that Atlas shareholders approve the transaction. Approximately 99.3% of the votes cast were voted in favor of the adoption of the merger agreement, which represented approximately 80.9% of the outstanding shares of Company common stock. The final voting results will be set forth in a Form 8-K filed by Atlas with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
The Company expects to complete the transaction in the first quarter of 2023, subject to customary closing conditions and receipt of regulatory approvals. Upon closing, Atlas Air Worldwide will become a privately held company and shares of Atlas Air Worldwide common stock will no longer be listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange.
Top Copyright Photo: Atlas Air Boeing 747-4B5F ER N445MC (msn 33515) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 959472.