Air Transat celebrates 30 Years of flying

Air Transat celebrates 30 Years of flying

Air Transat (Montreal) on February 15, 2017 unveiled the first of its 30th anniversary aircraft, displaying their new anniversary logo.

This special livery will be displayed on 3 of its Airbus A330-300 aircraft, which fly Montréal–Paris and Toronto–London routes, and also serve Punta Cana and Cancun.

Copyright Photo: Air Transat Airbus A330-342 C-GCTS (msn 177) (30 Years-Ans) YUL (Gilbert Hechema). Image: 937315.

Air Transat aircraft slide show:

 

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Flybondi selects the Boeing 737-800 as its launch aircraft

Flybondi (flybondi.com) (Buenos Aires), a new low-cost carrier in Argentina, has selected the Boeing 737-800 as its launch aircraft. The new carrier is planning to launch operations in September 2017.

The new airline would also like to add the Boeing 737 MAX 200.

Video:

IAG to launch LEVEL, a new low-cost, long-haul carrier

International Airlines Group (IAG) is launching LEVEL – a new low cost longhaul airline brand that will take to the skies in June 2017 with flights from Barcelona to Los Angeles, San Francisco (Oakland), Buenos Aires and Punta Cana.

LEVEL will fly two new Airbus A330 aircraft branded in its own livery and fitted with 293 economy and 21 premium economy seats. Initially it will be operated by Iberia’s flight and cabin crew and will create up to 250 jobs based in Barcelona.

Barcelona has been chosen as the first European city for the launch of IAG’s new operation but LEVEL will look to expand its flights from other European cities.

Fares start from €99/US$149 one way.

Checked luggage (in addition to a free cabin bag), meals, seat selection and the latest movie releases will be complimentary for customers flying in premium economy. Those travelling in economy can chose what they want to buy based on a menu of choices. All customers will have access to next generation inflight technology with a wide range of onboard entertainment options. High speed internet connectivity will be available with prices starting at €8.99.

LEVEL’s customers will be able to earn and redeem Avios – the loyalty currency for IAG’s airlines. This will give them the opportunity to fly to 380 destinations across the Group’s network.

Willie Walsh, IAG chief executive, said: “LEVEL is an exciting new IAG airline brand which will bring a stylish and modern approach to flying at prices that are even more affordable. It will benefit from having the strength of one of the world’s largest airline groups behind it.

“LEVEL will become IAG’s fifth main airline brand alongside Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia and Vueling. It will complement our existing airline portfolio and further diversify our current customer base.

Image: IAG.

Ethiopian’s Airbus A350 goes “green” for St. Patrick’s Day

Ethiopian Airlines announced it is part of the annual Global Greening initiative of St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, 2017.

As part of the “Greenification of the World” campaign, launched by the Irish Tourism Board eight years ago, Africa’s first Ethiopian Airbus A350-900 operator joined a string of world landmarks in this campaign, including: New York’s World Trade Center, City Hall and Heron Tower in London, Plaça de Catalunya and the fountains on Gran Via in Barcelona, Pozzo di San Patrizio in Italy, Matsue Castle in Japan and the Diamond Bridge in South Korea.

The Axum Obelisks, symbol of the wealth and civilization of the ancient Ethiopian Axumite Kingdom, were turned green back in 2015. Ethiopian Airlines launched the first and only direct air route linking Africa with Ireland in 2015.

Many famous landmarks throughout the world go green to mark St Patricks Day. This is achieved simply by using green lights to illuminate famous landmarks

This “painting” of a commercial airliner is believed to be a first.

Photo: Ethiopian Airlines via Michael Kelly.

 

Sky Airline unveils a new livery and becomes a LCC carrier

Sky Airline (Santiago) on March 15, 2017 unveiled its new livery and revised brand. The green color of its early years has been kept, while the blue has been replaced by a new violet color.

The new concept includes a green “arrow” (above) in the “K” that is incorporated on the horizontal stabilizer. The modified K letter is always facing forward with the green arrow portion. All Ks in the logo are modified except the one on the left side of the fuselage (below).

The first Airbus A320 (CC-ABV) in the new livery will be unveiled in April after it is painted by Coopesa. The airline will also issue new uniforms for its employees.

The Chilean carrier starting today is also reinventing itself as a low-cost carrier.

All images courtesy of SKY Airline via ModoCharlie.

Alvaro Romero reporting from Santiago, Chile.

The current livery:

Sky Airline (Chile) Airbus A319-111 CC-AIB (msn 2378)  GRU (Rodrigo Cozzato). Image: 931932.

Copyright Photo Above: Sky Airline (Chile) Airbus A319-111 CC-AIB (msn 2378) GRU (Rodrigo Cozzato). Image: 931932.

Sky Airline aircraft slide show:

A new Cyprus Airways receives its AOC

Cyprus Airways (2nd) (Larnaca) is a new version of the original flag carrier. The new Cyprus Airways has secured its Air Operators Certificate (AOC). The company made this short statement on March 14, 2017:

We are delighted to inform you that Cyprus Airways received the Air Operator Certificate! We are very excited to begin flying soon!

The new carrier acquired its first aircraft, the pictured Airbus A319-114 5B-DCW (msn 1129, ex S7 Airlines VP-BTO), in December 2016 and operated a proving flight on March 4, 2017.

The original Cyprus Airways ended all operations on January 9, 2015.

All images by Cyprus Airways.

Air France-KLM announce their 2017 summer schedule

For the 2017 summer season (from 26 March to 28 October 2017), Air France-KLM is continuing its growth by launching 53 new routes. The group is increasing capacity by 2.9% compared to the previous summer season*, with growth driven by the long-haul passenger network (+ 2%), the medium and short-haul passenger network (+ 2.7%) and Transavia’s low-cost activity (+ 10.2%).

53 new routes**

On its long-haul network, Air France-KLM is operating 9 new routes**:

  • 3 destinations on departure from Paris-Charles de Gaulle operated by Air France: Accra (Ghana), Cancun (Mexico) and Cape Town (South Africa).
  • 6 destinations on departure from Amsterdam-Schiphol operated by KLM: Cartagena (Colombia), Freetown (Sierra Leone), Minneapolis (United States), Monrovia (Liberia), Tehran (Iran) and Windhoek (Namibia).

On its medium and short-haul network, the group will operate 25 new routes**:

  • 5 destinations on departure from Paris-Charles de Gaulle operated by Air France: Agadir and Marrakech (Morocco), Milan-Malpensa (Italy), Palma de Mallorca (Spain) and Porto (Portugal).
  • 10 destinations on departure from Amsterdam-Schiphol operated by KLM: Cagliari and Catania (Italy), Dublin (Ireland), Milan-Malpensa (Italy), Gdansk (Poland), Graz (Austria), London-City Airport (UK), Malaga (Spain), Porto (Portugal) and Split (Croatia).
  • 10 destinations on departure from the French regions operated by HOP! Air France:
  • On departure from Marseille: Athens (Greece), Ibiza (Spain) and Stockholm (Sweden);
  • On departure from Nice: Athens (Greece) and Tel Aviv (Israel);
  • On departure from Bordeaux: Copenhagen (Denmark) and Frankfurt (Germany);
  • On departure from Toulouse: Athens (Greece) and Malta;
  • On departure from Montpellier and Castres: Ibiza (Spain).

Finally, Transavia is continuing its development by launching 19 new routes**:

  • 10 destinations on departure from Amsterdam-Schiphol: Almeria (Spain), Belgrade (Serbia), Helsinki (Finland), Katowice (Poland), Ljubljana (Slovenia), Munich (Germany), Reus (Spain), Sofia (Bulgaria), Tirana (Albania) and Zurich (Switzerland).
  • 5 destinations on departure from Rotterdam: Bergerac (France), Pisa (Italy), Pula (Croatia), Valencia (Spain) and Venice (Italy).
  • 1 destination on departure from Eindhoven: Stockholm (Sweden).
  • 3 destinations on departure from Paris-Orly: Palma de Mallorca (Spain), Tangiers (Morocco) and Tivat (Montenegro).

Continued improvement of the fleet and services

This summer, the fleet modernization and the improvement of the group’s products and services are continuing with the arrival of 4 new Boeing 787 and the deployment of the new long-haul cabins on board 4 Boeing 777.

"Sunflower", delivered on November 12, 2015

Copyright Photo Above: KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner PH-BHC (msn 38760) AMS (Javier Rodriguez). Image: 932928.

KLM Aircraft Slide Show:

At the end of the 2017 summer season, Air France-KLM will have a total of 13 Boeing 787 in its fleet:

  • 10 aircraft operated by KLM will fly to 18 destinations, partially or totally operated by the airline: Cape Town (South Africa), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto (Canada), Chengdu, Beijing, Hangzhou, Shanghai, Xiamen (China), Bogota, Cartagena (Colombia), Atlanta, New York, Salt Lake City, San Francisco (United States), Delhi (India) and Osaka (Japan).
  • 3 aircraft operated by Air France will fly to 4 long-haul destinations: Cairo (Egypt), Montreal (Canada) and Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire) as a continuation of the flight to Bamako (Mali) as from 9 October 2017.

At the end of the 2017 summer season, KLM’s entire fleet of Boeing 747, Boeing 777 and Boeing 787, or 53 aircraft, will be equipped with the latest World Business Class cabins.

By the end of the summer season, Air France will offer 44 Boeing 777 equipped with its latest travel cabins on its long-haul network; 19 Boeing 777-300 and 25 Boeing 777-200, or the entire Boeing 777-200 fleet, as well as 3 Boeing 787 aircraft.

Long-haul: + 2%

North America: increased capacity to the United States and Mexico

On March 27, 2017, KLM will launch the Amsterdam-Schiphol – Minneapolis/St. Paul (United States) route, the largest cities in Minnesota. The route will be operated three times a week, in addition to a daily flight operated by Air France on departure from Paris-Charles de Gaulle and three daily flights operated by Delta between Amsterdam-Schiphol and Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Air France Airbus A380-861 F-HPJD (msn 049) NRT (Michael B. Ing). Image: 905920.

Copyright Photo: Air France Airbus A380-861 F-HPJD (msn 049) NRT (Michael B. Ing). Image: 905920.

Air France Aircraft Slide Show:

Air France is reinforcing the Paris-Charles de Gaulle – New York-JFK route by operating a second Airbus A380 on a daily basis. In total, Air France-KLM, together with Alitalia and Delta Air Lines, will offer 77 weekly services on departure from Paris and Amsterdam to New York-JFK as part of the vast transatlantic joint venture.

In Mexico, Air France will continue to serve Cancun with 3 weekly flights from Paris-Charles de Gaulle, a route previously operated only in winter.

Central and South America and the Caribbean: strong growth to Cuba

In Cuba, Air France-KLM is accompanying the market’s strong growth by offering 18 flights a week to Havana; six additional flights on departure from Paris-Charles de Gaulle (11 weekly frequencies operated by Air France) and Amsterdam-Schiphol (7 weekly frequencies operated by KLM).

In Colombia, KLM is suspending services to Cali and will offer Cartagena as a new destination from Amsterdam-Schiphol, as a continuation of the Amsterdam-Schiphol – Bogota flight.

KLM will continue to serve Saint Martin with 3 weekly non-stop flights to replace the Saint Martin – Curaçao – Amsterdam-Schiphol route.

Middle East and India: growth to Iran

Taking advantage of the expansion of the Iranian market, the group will continue to offer 7 weekly flights to Tehran: 4 weekly frequencies operated by KLM from Amsterdam-Schiphol and 3 weekly frequencies operated by Air France from Paris-Charles de Gaulle.

Air France-KLM is adapting its capacity in Egypt by suspending the Amsterdam-Schiphol – Cairo route, while maintaining a strong presence in this market with the deployment of Air France’s first Boeing 787.

KLM will be adjusting its flight schedule to the Middle East with the suspension of the service to Doha (Qatar) as of 25 March 2017. Instead, KLM will be increasing capacity to Bahrain by operating six weekly frequencies. Muscat (Oman) will be operated as a continuation of the flight to Dammam (Saudi Arabia), providing better connections at the group’s hub in Amsterdam-Schiphol.

Asia: consolidating our position

Air France is continuing its development to India by reinforcing its offer to Bangalore (1 additional weekly flight) and Mumbai (20% additional seats per day).

During the 2017 summer season, KLM will serve Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) with three additional weekly flights. These flights will be operated in addition to the daily Amsterdam-Schiphol-Kuala Lumpur-Jakarta (Indonesia) route.

In Greater China, passengers to and from Hong Kong will benefit daily from the latest long-haul cabins on board Air France’s Boeing 777-300 on departure from Paris-Charles de Gaulle throughout the 2017 summer season.

KLM and China Airlines are strengthening their cooperation by offering a direct flight operated by China Airlines between Taipei and Amsterdam-Schiphol, in continuation of the 2016-17 winter season. Thanks to a capacity-sharing agreement, KLM will be able to offer its customers 11 weekly flights.

Africa and Indian Ocean: strengthening the offer of destinations on an expanding market

KLM will operate 3 weekly services from Amsterdam-Schiphol to Freetown (Sierra Leone) and Monrovia (Liberia). Flights to Freetown will be offered in addition to Air France services. Monrovia is a new destination for the group.

In South Africa, Air France will extend services to Cape Town, previously operated only in the winter.

In Ghana, Air France will operate flights to Accra, inaugurated on 28 February 2017, with 3 flights a week from Paris-Charles de Gaulle. This new offer is in addition to the KLM services operated from Amsterdam-Schiphol, bringing the Group’s offer to 10 weekly flights. This new service will provide optimized connections for customers connecting to and from North America and Europe.

Finally, in continuation of the winter season, KLM will operate 3 weekly flights from Amsterdam-Schiphol to Windhoek (Namibia), as a continuation of the flight to Luanda (Angola).

Medium and short-haul: + 2.7%

With increased capacity, the group is once again demonstrating its agility on the European network and is expanding its offer with 25 new routes this summer.

On departure from the hubs at Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol

On departure from Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Air France will launch flights to Marrakech and Agadir (Morocco), Palma de Mallorca (Spain) and Porto (Portugal). This new offer is in line with Air France-KLM’s offensive strategy as part of its Trust Together project. The growth of the group’s fleet combined with a more intensive use of its aircraft allows it to offer new destinations in Europe during the peak summer period.

On departure from Amsterdam-Schiphol, KLM will launch flights to Cagliari and Catania (Italy), Gdansk (Poland), Graz (Austria), London-City Airport (UK), Malaga (Spain), Porto (Portugal), and Split Croatia). In continuation of the winter 2016-17 season, KLM will continue to serve Dublin (Ireland).

Air France and KLM will resume service to Milan-Malpensa with 5 and 4 daily frequencies respectively from Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol, in addition to 2 daily flights connecting Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Milan-Linate and a daily flight connecting Amsterdam-Schiphol to Milan-Linate.

On departure from Paris-Orly and the French regions

On the HOP! Air France network, in continuation of the 2016-17 winter season, 10 daily flights will be operated to Montpellier, the fifth La Navette destination on departure from Paris-Orly after Toulouse, Bordeaux, Marseille and Nice.

Hop! For Air France Embraer ERJ 170-100STD F-HBXE (msn 17000286) BSL (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 937279.

Copyright Photo: Hop! For Air France Embraer ERJ 170-100STD F-HBXE (msn 17000286) BSL (Paul Bannwarth). Image: 937279.

Hop Aircraft Slide Show:

On departure from the French provinces, to meet the high demand in the busy summer months, Air France will operate direct flights to Athens (Greece), Ibiza (Spain) and Stockholm (Sweden) from Marseille, to Athens (Greece) and Tel Aviv (Israel) from Nice, to Athens (Greece) and Malta from Toulouse, to Copenhagen (Denmark) and Frankfurt (Germany) from Bordeaux and to Ibiza (Spain) from Montpellier and Castres.

In addition, capacity will also be increased to Corsica, which will be served on departure from 16 French regional cities: Aurillac, Bordeaux, Brive, Caen, Castres, Clermont-Ferrand, La Rochelle, Lille, Metz-Nancy, Nantes, Quimper, Pau, Poitiers, Rennes, Strasbourg and Toulouse.

The underside markings of the 2015 livery

Copyright Photo: Transavia Airlines (Netherlands) Boeing 737-8K2 WL PH-HSK (msn 41330) BFI (Joe G. Walker). Image: 930150.

Transavia (Netherlands Slide Show:

Transavia: + 10.2%

This summer, Transavia will be offering 19 new routes**:

  • 10 on departure from Amsterdam-Schiphol: Almeria (Spain), Belgrade (Serbia), Helsinki (Finland), Katowice (Poland), Ljubljana (Slovenia), Munich (Germany), Reus, (Spain), Sofia (Bulgaria), Tirana (Albania) and Zurich (Switzerland).
  • 5 on departure from Rotterdam: Bergerac (France), Pisa (Italy), Pula (Croatia), Valencia (Spain) and Venice (Italy).
  • 1 on departure from Eindhoven: Stockholm (Sweden).
  • 3 on departure from Paris-Orly: Palma de Mallorca (Spain), Tangiers (Morocco) and Tivat (Montenegro).

Air France-KLM’s low-cost activity will offer a total of 133 destinations in 36 countries. 7 new Boeing 737-800 will join the fleet for a total of 70 aircraft.

In this way, Transavia, which is growing rapidly, is continuing its development on departure from France and the Netherlands. On departure from Paris-Orly, Transavia is strengthening its offer to Israel and Morocco. From Amsterdam-Schiphol, Transavia is developing new markets to the Eastern European countries.

* Capacity measured in available seat-kilometres compared to the 2016 summer schedule

**Compared to the 2016 summer season.