Monday, 25 June 2018

Expanded Delta-GOL codeshare connects Florida to Brasilia and Fortaleza

Delta Air Lines and GOL Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes SA announced last week they would cooperate on a codeshare deal for four daily non-stop codeshare flights connecting Miami and Orlando with Fortaleza and Brasilia.

"This is the most significant expansion we have done with GOL since last year, when we announced international codeshare in South America, and it is the next step as we grow our alliance partnership," said Luciano Macagno, Delta's Managing Director - Latin America and the Caribbean. "Codesharing on these flights shows our commitment to Brazil and to Florida and our desire to offer our customers more access between Northern Brazil and the U.S."

Increasing schedules for Uzbekistan Airways

Uzbekistan Airways has expanded its Tashkent – Moscow Domodedovo route by adding an additional flight on Mondays and Saturdays. 

The additional flights will leave Tashkent at 1300 to arrive in Moscow at 1515, while the return flight leaves at 1645 getting back into Tashkent at 2235 local time.  The airline will operate the extra rotations with a Boeing 757 on Saturdays and an Airbus A320 on the midweek servce.  

The carrier has advised will deploy a Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner on a route from Tashkent to Istanbul in Turkey from 13th November 2018.  The airline says it will operate the route on the Dreamliner 10 times a week during the winter season. 

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Etihad pilots can fly for Emirates in new deal.

Etihad Airways pilots can now take advantage of a special collaboration with neighbours Emirates Airlines and fly for the Dubai based carrier for up to two years.

The Abu Dhabi airline confirmed on Sunday that its close collaboration with one-time rival Emirates is getting a step closer this time by allowing its flight deck crew to take up opportunities with Emirates. In a memo to staff, Etihad said pilots could go for up to two years and fly with Emirates, for which they would receive full benefits and salaries from Emirates.

Pilots flying for Emirates would have to take a leave of absence but would continue to retain their seniority with Etihad. “The opportunity will see these pilots that successfully complete the Emirates selection process seconded to Emirates for two years, upon completion of line training,” the memo reads. “We will be organising an on-site roadshow at Etihad Airways Headquarters where the Emirates requirement team will be available to discuss further details about this opportunity.” the memo comes from Majed Al Marzouqi, Etihad’s vice president of fleet operations.

This is the second public step to greater cooperation between the two Gulf carriers in recent times, the first was a deal to collaborate in various aspects of aviation security.   It is understood there will be a further alignment of some ground operations announced within the new few weeks. While both airlines have dismissed a possible merger, various industry commentators and airline insiders foresee a merger in some form a distinct possibility. 

New security checks for US and UK bound Philippine Airlines passengers as they launch new route to Seoul

A new route linking South Korea's Seoul Incheon airport with the popular resort of Palawan in the Philippines has been launched by the national carrier Philippine Airlines.

The new daily flight will be served by a 199-seat Airbus A321 and marks the first direct route between South Korea and the island province. Airport officials indicate they expect some 120,000 passengers each year will use the direct link.

Meanwhile, Philippine Airlines has complied with new US and UK regulatory requirements and enhanced its security measures concerning powders.  For the carriers, US-bound flights the airline will screen powder-like substances on a random continuous basis aside from screening all electronic devices larger than a mobile smartphone effective 30 June 2018. The airline advises passengers that there will be slightly different check-in counter and gate screening set up and to arrive at the airport at least 3 hours before flight departure.

Philippine Airlines is now implementing enhanced security measures for its UK-bound flights – Manila-London Heathrow - by way of additional random screening of check-in baggage and gate screening procedures of passengers and hand carry baggage, again it asks passengers to arrive at the airport at least three hours prior to departure. 

JetSuiteX Three-Day Flash Sale Takes Off Between Reno And Oakland

 JetSuiteX will also make a donation to Angel Flight West, to help transport patients around the West Coast to treatments at some of the nation's best medical facilities.

JetSuiteX is taking off in Reno, and making semi-private travel available for a great price, and for a great cause. For three days only, starting Monday, June 25, through Wednesday, June 27, select tickets* onboard JetSuiteX will be available for just $29. For every ticket sold,

10 years of operations in Ukraine for WizzAir

Wizz Air, one of Europe’s fastest-growing airlines and a leading low-cost carrier celebrated a major milestone on Thursday with its 10th anniversary of operations in Ukraine.

The airline marked the birthday by the allocation of a third Airbus A320 aircraft at its Kyiv base and the commencement of 4 new exciting routes from Kyiv to Lisbon, Tallinn and Berlin and from Kharkiv to Katowice.  Along with the new services, the airline is increasing the weekly frequencies to seven popular destinations from Ukraine, adding in total 24 additional weekly flights.

As the pioneer of affordable travel in Ukraine, Wizz Air has created in the past 10 years new travel opportunities for its customers constantly expanding its low-fare network. Since its first international flight from Kyiv to London Luton in 2008, the airline has carried over 6.1 million passengers from and to Ukraine.

Pobeda sues smoking passengers for causing diversions and wins

Is the Russian budget airline Pobeda starting a precedent by suing unruly passengers whose bad behaviour forces an aircraft to divert?

The low-cost airline has recently won a number of court cases it took to reclaim the costs of diversions against the passengers that caused them by bad behaviour - in the most recent three cases the bad behaviour was smoking during the flight.

The airline told the courts the flights were diverted to "exclude the possibility of fire" after smoke alarms had been triggered.  Flights DP188, DP189 and DP855 operating between Moscow and the cities of Gyumri and Makhachkala in August-September last year were diverted either to Mineralnye Vody or Volgograd and Pobeda decided to go after the passengers financially to recoup some of the costs associated with each diversion.  

In all three recent cases, the courts sided with the airline granting them legal damages of Rb700,000 ($11,000) in total. General director Andrei Kalmykov says that would-be smokers should "think a hundred times" before smoking on Pobeda's flights. He warned that the airline was working closely with financial recovery specialists to collect all the claims in full.

Pobeda is not the first airline to take legal action against passengers, in 2015 British budget airline Jet2 said it was taking legal action against a passenger, Jamie Ferguson, in Ibiza following Ferguson's abusive behaviour on a flight from Glasgow.  At the time the airline said it had banned Mr Ferguson for life and would be "pursuing legal action against the troublemaker in the Spanish courts".

Are the Pobeda cases about to set a precedent for airlines taking legal action against passengers who cause disruption through excess alcohol consumption, aggression or just plain bad behaviour?

"I firmly believe all airlines should take legal action against passengers you cause disruption to flights through being drunk on a flight or acting aggressively and dangerously." Our chief aviation correspondent Jason Shaw says. "The cost of a diversion can soon mount up for an airline, especially if the crew are coming to the end of their allowed duty hours and so, therefore, it seems only fair to recoup those costs, in full or in part, from the direct cause of those unexpected extra costs. It would also act as a deterrent to some people if they know that airlines will come after them legally for the extra costs their drunkenness of aggression costs."


SAS to lease two new Airbus A320-200neo

 Air Lease Corporation announced long-term lease agreements with SAS for two new CFM LEAP-1A26-powered Airbus A320-200neo aircraft scheduled for delivery in November 2019 and April 2020.

“We are pleased to announce this new lease placement with SAS,” said Steven F. Udvar-Házy, Executive Chairman of Air Lease Corporation. “ALC looks forward to building our long-term relationship with SAS as they continue to add new aircraft to modernize their fleet and grow their network, as well as maximize their competitive advantage in the market.”

Marc Baer, Air Lease Corporation’s Executive Vice President added, “ALC expects these two Airbus A320-200neo aircraft additions will be key to SAS as the airline continues to enhance their fleet operations and provide their passengers with elevated comfort and excellent service.”  SAS carries more than 30 million passengers annually and is Scandinavia’s leading airline with close to 800 daily flights on 272 routes to 123 destinations in Scandinavia, Europe, USA and Asia. SAS is a member of Star Alliance™ and can together with its partner airlines offer more than 18,400 daily flights to 1,300 destinations around the world in over 190 countries. 

KLM helps seven-year-old surprise his great-grandfather Nol Neuhaus

Arnold Neuhaus (Grandpa Nol) recently turned 90. 
His great-grandson, Jagger, teamed up with KLM
 to surprise Arnold with the flight of a lifetime.

Little Nol took part in a KLM contest in 1935 and won an airborne excursion over Amsterdam. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to collect and enjoy his prize at the time due to a sister who was ill. 83 years later, his seven-year-old great-grandson and KLM arranged the airborne excursion for the ninetieth birthday of grandpa Nol.

In this video, Arnold’s great-grandson, accompanied by two KLM stewardesses, comes to pick “Grandpa Nol” up for an unforgettable flight, making a dream come true after 83 years!

Saturday, 23 June 2018

Skymark Airlines set to start Saipan service

Saipan and Palau in the south Pacific look likely to get a new air service from Japan as the Tokyo-based Skymark Airlines says it will introduce a service to the islands.

The initial plans are for Skymark will operate charter flights to Saipan, in the Northern Mariana Islands, and Palau, this year, with a scheduled services following next year.

The carrier will use a 737-800 on the service and according to local media is starting the charter flights after the island governments approached the low-cost carrier to establish the air route.  The request follows Delta Air Lines termination of the route last month.

Micronesian islands are major tourist destinations, particularly with people from Japan, around 52,000 Japanese tourists visited Saipan last year, however, the figure was down on previous numbers because of the reduced air services. 

30 new Airbus A320neo's for Aegean Airlines

Greece’s biggest airline, AEGEAN Airlines, has firmed up an order for the purchase of 30 A320neo Family aircraft at a ceremony in Athens.   

The purchase agreement, comprising 10 A321neos and 20 A320neos, was signed by AEGEAN Chairman Eftichios Vassilakis and Airbus Chief Executive Officer Tom Enders. 

It follows an earlier Memorandum of Understanding signed in March 2018. Currently, AEGEAN operates a fleet of 49 Airbus aircraft (37 A320s, 11 A321s and 1 A319).

After failing to find a buyer for Air India they revamp its business class!

In a surprise move the Indian Government has decided to revamp the first and business class offerings of the state-owned Air India, following its failed sell-off.

The Governent had hoped to sell the major stake it holds in the airline but received no bidders for the 76 percent chunk of the loss-making carrier. The government is committed to supporting the airline and to making it competitive, junior civil aviation minister Jayant Sinha said, adding Air India was also looking at flying to new destinations in Australia, Africa and even North America.

The unexpected revamp of the premier cabins will include an overhaul of the meal service is designed to attract more high-yielding passengers to its international flights. Currently, Air India only sells around 60% of the seats in business and first classes on its international flights and hopes the revamp will increase the load factor to around 80 percent.

Air India will start making the changes over the next two months and will include new meal services, passenger amenities and new uniforms for airline staff.  The changes could raise an additional 0 billion rupees ($147 million) per year, according to the carrier's chairman and managing director Pradeep Singh Kharola.

"It is a surprise that they are going to be spending more money on a service that is already failing, but they have little choice as no company wants to invest in an airline that has such vast debts and little chance of returning to profit within the foreseeable future" our chief correspondent Jason Shaw said on Saturday. 

Cabin smoke causes concern for Peru football fans in Russia

An aircraft packed with football supporters from Peru supporting the national team at the Fifa World Cup in Russia filled with smoke after an engine malfunction on Friday.

The Utair flight was taking the Peruvian from Ekaterinburg to Tyumen in Siberia before flying onwards to Moscow, on Friday when it developed a fault,  the aircraft landed safely and there are no reports of any injuries to either passengers or airline crew. 

The Russia aviation agency, Rosaviatsiya, said at the weekend,  £During the landing approach there was a failure in the second turboprop engine.  As a result of the abnormal engine activity, smoke from overheated oil got into the passenger cabin of the aircraft through the air-conditioning system.”

Rosaviatsiya advised that the smoke soon cleared from the passenger cabin and that the pilot was able to safely land the plane powered by one engine.

“The crew acted as instructed and landed the aircraft as usual. The plane taxied in independently, the passengers left via the stairs without using the emergency equipment,” a Utair spokesperson said. An investigation is now underway and that Utair was cooperating fully with that. 

Delta boosts LAX network, adds Paris, Amsterdam flights

With the addition of nonstop flights from Los Angeles to Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol airports, Delta has linked all its U.S. hubs to its two largest hubs in Europe.

The new year-round flights from L.A. to Paris will operate three times weekly, while flights to Amsterdam will operate on four days. Customers flying via both European hubs will have access to destinations across Europe, the Middle East, India, Africa and Asia thanks to Delta’s partner airline network offered by Air France, KLM, Alitalia and Jet Airways.

China Southern Airlines Sanya to London flight to start 12th July

Sanya Government and China Southern Airlines have announced that the first direct flight from Sanya to London will be launched on July 12th and the Airbus A330-200 wide-body jet will be put into service. This is the first regular route and the first international line from Hainan Province to European opened by CAAC after the policy of Hainan Free Tread Zone (Port) construction and the Visa-free Policy for 59 countries.

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