Tag Archives: Star Alliance

Air Canada joins ‘The World’s Most Magical Celebration’ at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida

Air Canada Airbus A321-211 C-GITU (msn 1602) (Star Alliance) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 954943.

Air Canada is bringing the magic of the Walt Disney World Resort 50th anniversary celebration to Aeroplan members with new and exciting ways to experience the 18-month milestone event beginning October 1, 2021. From now until September 29, 2021, Aeroplan members can enter Air Canada’s contest for a chance to win one of 50 magical prizes, including one of five Air Canada Vacations packages to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. Air Canada is also adding Disney merchandise and Disney Gift Cards that can be redeemed using Aeroplan points on the Aeroplan eStore. Plus, Aeroplan members will continue to earn and redeem Aeroplan points when travelling with Air Canada and Air Canada Vacations to Walt Disney World Resort.

With up to 33 weekly flights between Canada and Florida, including non-stop service to Orlando from Montreal and Toronto, Air Canada is the largest Canadian carrier into Orlando for Canadians. Later this year, Air Canada will also be offering non-stop service to Orlando from Quebec CityOttawa and Halifax. Customers looking to simplify their vacation planning can take advantage of complete Walt Disney World vacation packages, including hotel and theme park tickets, when booking with Air Canada Vacations, a distributor of Disney travel products for over 15 years.

Air Canada makes family travel as easy as possible by offering dedicated family check-in lines and early boarding, as well as offering our Skyriders program for kids that includes special meals and kits for them while onboard. And through Aeroplan Family Sharing, earning and redeeming Aeroplan points has never been easier.

50 magical prizes to celebrate 50 magical years

Aeroplan members can enter the contest between September 9, 2021 and September 29, 2021, at aircanada.com/magical50 for their chance to win one of the five Air Canada Vacations packages to the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, as well as 45 other prizes that include Disney merchandise, Disney Gift Card eGifts and Aeroplan points. The total approximate value of all 50 prizes is $112,340.95 CAD. Not an Aeroplan member? Join now.

The contest is open to all active Aeroplan members in good standing who: (i) are residents of Canada, (ii) have reached the legal age of majority in their province or territory of residence, and (iii) enter the contest between September 9, 2021, at 12:01 a.m. and September 29, 2021, at 11:59 p.m. (EST). No purchase necessary.

Full contest rules and contest entry form available at aircanada.com/magical50.

New Disney Merchandise on Aeroplan eStore

Aeroplan members will have access to a dedicated Disney shop on the Aeroplan eStore where they can redeem points for Disney Gift Cards starting at $100 CAD, or to shop for popular Disney merchandise for their family and friends.

Aeroplan Member Benefits

Aeroplan members can redeem their Aeroplan points for flights to Orlando with Air Canada, or toward an entire Walt Disney World vacation package with Air Canada Vacations. They can also earn Aeroplan points on their flights when booking with Air Canada or Air Canada Vacations. Aeroplan credit cardholders can earn Aeroplan points even faster and receive additional airline benefits.

The Walt Disney World 50th Anniversary Celebration

Beginning October 1, 2021:

  • Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse will host “The World’s Most Magical Celebration” honouring the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.
  • This 18-month event will feature new experiences at the resort’s four theme parks and beyond, where shimmering EARidescent décor will appear as if by magic.
  • A new nighttime spectacular, “Disney Enchantment,” will help kick off the 50th anniversary festivities when it debuts Oct. 1 at Magic Kingdom Park.
  • Joining “Disney Enchantment” on Oct. 1 will be “Harmonious” at EPCOT, one of the largest nighttime spectaculars ever created for a Disney park.
  • An expanded France pavilion at EPCOT will be part of the festivities and feature a new family-friendly attraction, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, and a delicious new restaurant, La Crêperie de Paris.

Top Copyright Photo: Air Canada Airbus A321-211 C-GITU (msn 1602) (Star Alliance) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 954943.

Air Canada (historic) aircraft slide show:

 

Avianca El Salvador launches Ontario, CA – San Salvador service

Avianca (El Salvador) Airbus A319-132 N522TA (msn 5219) (Star Alliance) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 937568.

Ontario International Airport (ONT) officials are celebrating the launch of Avianca Airlines’ service to El Salvador – the first of its kind between the Inland Empire to Central America staring on July 1.

The Bogota, Colombia-based carrier will operate three flights a week from ONT to San Salvador International Airport (SAL) in the capital city of El Salvador. Flights will arrive at ONT at 11:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday with return service departing ONT at 1:15 a.m.

Flight #

Origin

Destination

Departure

Arrival

Frequency

Aircraft

AV530

SAL

ONT

7:10 p.m.

11:30 p.m.

Tue, Thu, Sat

Airbus A319

AV531

ONT

SAL

1:15 a.m.

7:05 a.m.

Wed, Fri,  Sun

Airbus A319

*All times local

Top Copyright Photo: Avianca (El Salvador) Airbus A319-132 N522TA (msn 5219) (Star Alliance) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 937568.

Avianca (El Salvador) slide show:

ANA to install world’s first hands-free lavatory doors on 21 aircraft

All Nippon Airways (ANA), Japan’s largest and 5-Star airline for eight consecutive years, has partnered with JAMCO Corporation to develop the world’s first hands-free door that allows easy access to lavatories on its aircraft. The innovative door was developed as part of the ANA Care Promise initiative, and will help limit potential vectors for the transmission of pathogens. The first hands-free doors will be introduced to domestic flights starting May 1.

“Guided by the principles of ANA Care Promise, we have continued to invest in the development and implementation of innovative technologies because the health and safety of passengers and our staff is the top priority,” said Shinichi Inoue, Senior Executive Vice President, Customer Experience Management & Planning. “The hands-free lavatory door is the latest example of us putting this principle into practice as we look for ways to make the travel experience safer and more convenient.”

The new lavatory door is equipped with a large inner door locking knob and an additional handle so that passengers can use their elbows to unlock the door. Because the door mechanism is different to those found on other aircraft, signage has been placed near the lavatory to provide operational instructions.

ANA (All Nippon Airways) - Air Japan Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner JA899A (msn 34519) (Star Alliance) NRT (Akira Uekawa). Image: 953557.

Above Copyright Photo: ANA (All Nippon Airways) – Air Japan Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner JA899A (msn 34519) (Star Alliance) NRT (Akira Uekawa). Image: 953557.

The hands-free lavatory will be installed on 11 Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners, two Boeing 787-9 aircraft, and eight Boeing 777-200s. The initial installation will be for aircrafts serving domestic routes, while ANA hopes to introduce the system to all domestic and international aircraft in the future.

To help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and other pathogens, ANA has instituted the ANA Care Promise program which goes above and beyond the recommendations from public health officials in order to keep passengers and employees healthy. With such efforts, ANA is the first airline in Asia and only the fourth in the world to receive the SKYTRAX Airline Safety 5-Star rating which confirms the effectiveness of ANA Care Promise.

ANA aircraft slide show:

Star Alliance to establish Center of Excellence in Singapore

The Star Alliance has issued this statement:

Star Alliance will establish a management office in the city state of Singapore later this year.

This was a decision taken by its Chief Executive Board, comprising the Chief Executive Officers of its 26 member airlines, who considered a new centre of excellence to be an important dimension of positioning the Alliance to deliver on its post-Coronavirus strategy, and for it to remain innovative, resilient and nimble.

All businesses are reimagining a post-pandemic world fundamentally changed by COVID-19, and the associated disruption to global networks, economies, and the livelihoods of many. A consequence of the world’s reaction to COVID-19 has been the destabilizing effect it has had on aviation.

This decision to future-proof the Alliance was made against this backdrop.

Effectively, Star Alliance will maintain two centers of excellence internationally, in keeping with the global character of the Alliance.

The Singapore office will complement the long-standing office in Frankfurt, Germany and will focus on progressing its strategy in digital customer experience. Two members of the Alliance, Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines, have established innovation hubs in the City, another benefit as the Alliance continues its ground-breaking digital customer experience innovations.

Singapore was selected based on considered criteria, such as access to innovation and global competitiveness. Singapore has also been ranked highly for the ease of doing business by the World Bank on a consistent basis and has been ranked the most competitive country in the world on several occasions.

Avianca Brasil to exit Star Alliance

Ocean Air Linhas Aéreas S/A, headquartered in São Paulo and formerly doing business as Avianca Brasil, will formally leave Star Alliance with effect from September 1, 2019. Star Alliance maintains a competitive network in the region.

Ocean Air’s withdrawal follows several months of bankruptcy protection and the withdrawal of its Air Operator Certificate (AOC) by Brazilian regulator ANAC. The Star Alliance network maintains a significant and long-time presence in the Brazilian market continuously since its founding in 1997. As of September 1, 2019, the Alliance will number 27 member airlines.

 

Lufthansa to add two new destinations from Munich this winter

Lufthansa Airbus A319-114 D-AILF (msn 636) (Star Alliance) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 927603.

Lufthansa has made this announcement:

Lufthansa will be flying towards two new European destinations this winter. Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, will be offered from Munich for the first time, starting on November 4, 2019.

Newcastle in northeastern England will follow on February 3, 2020.

Both destinations will be served by an Airbus A319.

Tallinn (above), for example, features an impressive medieval old town: its historic center has been a UNESCO cultural heritage site since 1997. The capital of Estonia is considered one of the most beautiful medieval capitals of the Baltic and is the cultural center of the country. But Tallinn is also the economically strongest city in Estonia. Among other things, it is home to the largest banking sector in the Baltic states. Lufthansa will be flying to Estonia’s capital every Monday, Thursday and Saturday as of November 4.

Newcastle upon Tyne (above) is a significant industrial and transportation center in northeastern England. The city is also considered a stronghold of art and science. Newcastle is the ideal starting point for visits to a variety of national parks and for round trips through northern England. One special attraction is Alnwick Castle, which served as a location for a number of Harry Potter films. As of February 3, 2020, air travelers will be able to reach the English metropolis nonstop from Munich every day but Saturday.

Top Copyright Photo: Lufthansa Airbus A319-114 D-AILF (msn 636) (Star Alliance) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 927603.

Lufthansa aircraft slide show:

Star Alliance unveils a refurbished lounge at Paris Charles de Gaulle

The Star Alliance has made this announcement:

Star Alliance has officially completed the refurbishment of its lounge at Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) Airport. The 980 square metre facility offers seating for more than 220 guests and features stylish elements inspired by Parisian design and architecture.

The lounge is available to First and Business Class customers as well as Star Alliance Gold members travelling from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport – Terminal 1 on the following Star Alliance member airlines: Aegean, Air China, ANA, Asiana, EGYPTAIR, Eva Air, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways, Turkish Airlines and United Airlines.

Christian Dräger, Star Alliance VP Customer Experience, commented: “The newly renovated Star Alliance Lounge at Paris Charles de Gaulle ties in seamlessly in our strategy of making the customer journey better. We are delighted to be able to offer our guests travelling from or transiting through Paris now with an unparalleled hospitality experience in a well equipped environment, where they can sit back, relax and enjoy their journey.”

The lounge, which was first opened in 2008, is located behind passport control at the highest point of the terminal building – levels 10 and 11 – and provides a panoramic view of the airport from the upper floor. Open daily from 05.30am to 10.00pm depending on the flight schedule, the refurbished lounge offers a range of facilities catering to the diverseneeds of today’s frequent travellers. A particulary striking feature is the landscaped garden, which gives guests the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful outdoor area reminiscent of the green spaces of Paris before their flight.

The lounge also offers an exclusive zone for customers travelling in First Class on Air China, Singapore Airlines and Thai Airways operated flights.

Customers are offered a wide range of complimentary drinks and can choose from a selection of international hot and cold menus featuring some typically French delights.

Comfortable and quiet work spaces are located on both levels and complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access is available throughout the lounge. Specific attention was paid to a significant increase of power sockets to make sure guest can stay connected at all times. Shower facilities, state-of-the-art television screens and a wide selection of international newspapers and magazines round off the service.

The lounge at Charles de Gaulle Airport, Terminal 1 is among seven other Star Alliance branded lounges, which are located at Amsterdam (AMS), Buenos Aires (EZE), Los Angeles (LAX), Nagoya (NGO), Rio de Janeiro (GIG) Rome (FCO) and Sao Paulo (GRU).

In total, 21 Star Alliance member carriers operate from Paris – CDG, offering 142 daily flights to 41 destinations in 25 countries: Aegean, Air Canada, Air India, Eva Air, Air China, Ethiopian Airlines, Adria, Lufthansa, Lot Polish Airlines, Swiss, Egyptair, All Nippon Airways, Austrian, Croatia Airlines, Asiana Airlines, Scandinavian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airlines, Turkish Airlines and United Airlines.

All photos by the Star Alliance.

United Airlines expands partnership with Copa Airlines and Avianca

United Airlines Boeing 777-224 ER N78017 (msn 31679) (Star Alliance) LHR (Keith Burton). Image: 944609.

United Airlines today announced it has reached an agreement with Compañía Panameña de Aviación S.A. (Copa Airlines), Aerovías del Continente Americano S.A. (Avianca) and many of Avianca’s affiliates, for a joint business agreement (JBA) that, pending government approval, is expected to provide substantial benefits for customers, communities and the marketplace for air travel between the United States and 19 countries in Central and South America.

Many more choices for customers

By integrating their complementary route networks into a collaborative revenue-sharing JBA, United, Avianca and Copa plan to offer customers many benefits, including:

  • Integrated, seamless service in more than 12,000 city pairs
  • New nonstop routes
  • Additional flights on existing routes
  • Reduced travel times

Drive economic benefits for consumers and the communities we serve

The carriers expect the JBA to drive significant traffic growth at major gateway cities coast to coast, which is expected to help bring new investment and create more economic development opportunities. Further, the JBA is expected to provide customers with expanded codeshare flight options, competitive fares, a more streamlined travel experience and better customer service, resulting in significant projected consumer benefits.

Better serve our customers

Additionally, allowing the three carriers to serve customers as if they were a single airline is expected to enable the companies to better align their frequent flyer programs, coordinate flight schedules and improve airport facilities.

“This agreement represents the next chapter in U.S.-Latin American air travel,” said Scott Kirby, United’s president. “We are excited to work with our Star Alliance partners Avianca and Copa to bring much-needed competition and growth to many underserved markets while providing a better overall experience for business and leisure customers traveling across the Western Hemisphere.”

“We are delighted to further solidify our existing partnership with United Airlines and look forward to increasing service options for our customers by working more closely with Avianca,” said Pedro Heilbron, Copa Airlines’ chief executive officer. “We believe this agreement benefits our passengers by providing competitive fares and a superior network of more than 275 destinations throughout Latin America and the U.S., and promotes further growth and innovation within the airline industry in the Americas.”

“We are certain that together we are stronger in the United StatesLatin America market than any of the three airlines individually,” said Hernan Rincon, Avianca’s executive president – chief executive officer. “This partnership will allow Avianca to strengthen its position as a first-level player in the airline industry in America as we will expand our scope in the continent with United and Copa, offering better connectivity to our customers.”

JBAs drive competition that benefits customers

Although JBAs have been proven around the world to benefit consumers and enhance competition, currently 99 percent of the U.S. carrier passenger traffic that makes connections in Central and South America does so without a JBA. Competition in the U.S.-Latin American market has grown and includes a diverse set of carriers offering service across multiple price points. Yet the market lacks a comprehensive revenue-sharing, metal-neutral network of carriers and the associated heightened competitive forces that drive value and better consumer experiences. The JBA represents an innovative, best-in-class new product offering that will make competition in this robust market even stronger.

“Our analysis shows that a metal-neutral JBA among United, Copa and Avianca will provide substantial benefits to consumers traveling between the relevant countries,” said Dr. Darin Lee, executive vice president of economic consulting firm Compass Lexecon and airline industry expert. “This JBA will enable United, Copa and Avianca to compete more effectively, offer competitive fares, and increase service, encouraging innovation and establishing a more robust and vibrant marketplace.”

To enable the deep coordination required to deliver these benefits to consumers, communities and the marketplace, United, Copa and Avianca plan to apply in the near term for regulatory approval of the JBA and an accompanying grant of antitrust immunity from the U.S. Department of Transportation and other regulatory agencies. The parties do not plan on fully implementing the JBA until they receive the necessary government approvals. The JBA currently includes cooperation between the U.S. and Central and South America, excluding Brazil.  With the recently concluded Open Skies agreement between the U.S. and Brazil, the carriers are exploring the possibility of adding Brazil to the JBA.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by the airlines): United Airlines Boeing 777-224 ER N78017 (msn 31679) (Star Alliance) LHR (Keith Burton). Image: 944609.

United aircraft slide show (Boeing):

United Airlines announces new international routes

United Airlines Boeing 767-322 ER N653UA (msn  25391) (Star Alliance) LHR (SPA). Image: 924670.

United Airlines has made this announcement:

Strengthening the world’s most comprehensive route network, United Airlines today announced customers have new international routes to choose from in 2019 including daily, year-round service between San Francisco and Amsterdam and new nonstop seasonal summer service between Newark and Naples, Italy, the only nonstop flight from North America to Naples, as well as Newark and Prague, subject to government approval.

New Daily, Year-Round Service Between San Francisco and Amsterdam

Beginning March 30, 2019, United will be the only U.S. carrier to offer nonstop service between San Francisco and Amsterdam and is the airline’s fifth nonstop flight to the Netherlands. United currently operates daily, year-round services between Amsterdam and Chicago, Houston, Newark and Washington Dulles.

United has operated nonstop service to Amsterdam for more than 25 years and currently offers daily nonstop service between Amsterdam and its hubs in Chicago, Houston, Newark and Washington, D.C.

Flight

Frequency

City Pair

Depart

Arrive

Aircraft

UA 968

Daily

SFO – AMS

2:55 p.m.

10:20 a.m. +1

Boeing 787-9

UA 969

Daily

AMS – SFO

2:50 p.m.

4:50 p.m.

Boeing 787-9

New Summer Service Between Newark and Naples, Italy

United will be the only carrier offering customers nonstop service between the U.S. and Naples, Italy, beginning May 22, 2019 through October 4, 2019.

United’s daily, summer service will connect customers traveling from New York/Newark to Naples, Southern Italy’s largest city. Visitors to Naples enjoy the city’s castles, architecture, art and world-famous cuisine as well as nearby Mount Vesuvius, the volcano that destroyed the nearby Roman town of Pompeii. Naples also serves as a gateway to the Amalfi Coast, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and popular tourist destination.

United’s new service to Naples will be its sixth nonstop service to Italy and is conveniently timed for connecting customers from more than 60 destinations across the United States.

Flight

Frequency

City Pair

Depart

Arrive

Aircraft

UA 964

Daily

EWR – NAP

5:25 p.m.

8:05 a.m. +1

Boeing 767-300

UA 965

Daily

NAP – EWR

10:10 a.m.

2:05 p.m.    

Boeing 767-300

New Summer Service Between Newark and Prague, Czech Republic

Beginning June 6, 2019 through October 4, 2019, United will offer daily nonstop seasonal service between Newark and Prague, also known as the Golden City, the City of a Hundred Spires and the jewel in the crown of Central Europe.

Flight

Frequency

City Pair

Depart

Arrive

Aircraft

UA 188

Daily

EWR – PRG

6:05 p.m.

8:25 a.m. +1

Boeing 767-300

UA 187

Daily

PRG – EWR

10:10 a.m.

1:30 p.m.

Boeing 767-300

Next year United will resume nonstop seasonal service between eight U.S. airports and more than 20 destinations in Europe, the Caribbean and Mexico including popular destinations like Porto, Portugal; Reykjavik, Iceland; Athens, Greece and Venice, Italy. As previously announced, United will also begin the only nonstop service between Washington Dulles and Tel Aviv, Israel next year.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by United): United Airlines Boeing 767-322 ER N653UA (msn 25391) (Star Alliance) LHR (SPA). Image: 924670.

United aircraft slide show (Boeing):

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Star Alliance expands connection service to Toronto Pearson Airport

The Star Alliance Connection Service is now available at Toronto Pearson Airport. This assists passengers with tight connections between two Star Alliance member airline flights. Dedicated Connection Service staff use special software to monitor the transfer window for customers with onward flights. Cases where passengers and checked bags appear in danger of missing a connection are automatically highlighted. The Connection Service agent can thereby already consider the various options available to ensure that the customer reaches the onward flight, or if necessary book alternative options, before the inbound flight even lands.

“With Connection Service now available in Toronto, we will ensure that more passengers with tight connections can make their onward flight, thereby improving the travel experience at one of our main hubs in North America. We are presently working on the expansion of this service to more key hubs in our network”, said Christian Draeger, Star Alliance Vice President Customer Experience.

Toronto is the 13th biggest Star Alliance transfer hub world-wide, with more than 400,000 passengers connecting from one Star Alliance carrier to another each year.

In addition to home carrier Air Canada, the following Star Alliance member carriers serve Toronto:  Austrian, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Copa Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, TAP Air Portugal, Turkish Airlines and United. Together they offer more than 6,000 flights per week connecting Toronto to 159 destinations in 59 countries.

“Connection Service helps enhance the airport experience for our customers travelling on Star Alliance itineraries by streamlining the behind-the-scenes processing when handling tight connections which may arise. This further strengthens the position of our Toronto Pearson global hub offering convenient connections to almost anywhere in the world,” stated Benjamin Smith, President, Airlines and Chief Operating Officer at Air Canada.

Star Alliance has been operating Connection Centres for more than a decade. In place at 11 hub airports, these have largely been working behind the scenes on expediting checked bags at risk of missing their onward flight. In addition, assisting passengers with tight connections was an additional service offered in Frankfurt, Houston and Munich. As part of the Alliance’s strategy of further improving the customer journey, the Star Alliance Connection Service brand was rolled out last year, along with the plan of adding passenger assistance at all locations and expanding the overall product to more locations.

Chicago (ORD) was the first airport where the Connections Services brand was introduced last year and passenger assistance added to the baggage expedite. With Toronto (YYZ) now also offering Connection Service, the combined passenger and baggage expedite is now available at the following Star Alliance hubs: Chicago (ORD), Frankfurt (FRA), Houston (IAH), Munich (MUC) and Toronto (YYZ). At present, baggage-only expedite is offered at Denver (DEN), London(LHR), Los Angeles (LAX), Newark (EWR), San Francisco (SFO) and Washington (IAD).

Marketing Campaign
In order to increase the awareness of this service, Star Alliance is currently running a multi-channel marketing campaign. The centrepiece is a short entertaining film which illustrates the product’s benefits. A press ad, a wide range of social media assets and a dedicated web presence on connection service round off the campaign. The content will be broadcast in the Alliance’s owned channels, as well as across the member carriers’ own outlets and via local market sales channels.

Photos: Air Canada and Star Alliance.