Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Airbus, Air Liquide and VINCI Airports announce a partnership to promote the use of hydrogen and accelerate the decarbonization of the aviation sector

 Airbus, Air Liquide and VINCI Airports, three major players in the aviation, hydrogen and airport industries, are working together to promote the use of hydrogen at airports and build the European airport network to accommodate future hydrogen aircrafts. The airport of Lyon-Saint Exupéry (France) will host the first installations as early as 2023. This partnership reflects the three groups' shared ambition to combine their respective expertise to support the decarbonization of air travel. 

Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport (VINCI Airports' center of excellence for innovation) has been chosen as the pilot airport by the partners. The implementation of this project includes several phases:

From 2023: deployment of a hydrogen gas distribution station at Lyon-Saint Exupéry airport. This station will supply both the airport's ground vehicles (buses, trucks, handling equipment, etc.) and those of its partners, as well as the heavy goods vehicles that drive around the airport. This first phase is essential to test the airport's facilities and dynamics as a "hydrogen hub" in its area of reach.
Between 2023 and 2030: deployment of liquid hydrogen infrastructures that will allow hydrogen to be provisioned into the tanks of future aircraft.
Beyond 2030: deployment of the hydrogen infrastructure from production to mass distribution of liquid hydrogen at the airport.
By 2030, the three partners will study the possibility of equipping VINCI Airports' European airport network with the hydrogen production, storage and supply facilities needed for use on the ground and on board aircraft.

This partnership illustrates the partners' shared commitment to decarbonizing air travel and is a major step forward for the development of hydrogen across the airport ecosystem. It relies on the know-how of Airbus in commercial aircraft, on Air Liquide's expertise in mastering the entire hydrogen value chain (production, liquefaction, storage and distribution) and on the global reach of VINCI Airports, the leading private airport operator with 45 airports in 12 countries, which will help create the desired network.

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Gulf Air Celebrates 5000th Flight Departure From Bahrain’s New Airport Terminal

Gulf Air, the national carrier of the Kingdom of Bahrain, celebrated the 5000th flight departure from Bahrain International Airport’s new terminal last week, as flight GF003 to London Heathrow marked the operational milestone. A small event was organized at the departure gate of the mentioned flight that was attended by the airline’s executive management and a number of officials from Bahrain International Airport, Bahrain Airport Services, Bahrain’s Civil Aviation Affairs and the Ministry of Interior. Passengers of that flight were also included in the celebration by handing them special commemorative giveaways marking the 5000th departure.

Gulf Air’s Acting Chief Executive Officer Captain Waleed AlAlawi commented: “When we moved to the new airport back in January 2021, we knew it would be a new beginning and new chapter in the Kingdom’s journey in aviation history, supporting the strategic vision for Bahrain to strengthening its position as a hub to facilitate the movement of millions of passengers. The state-of-the-art facilities and the varied options of entertainment for every type of passenger make the new terminal a great place to start and end a journey. Today we celebrate the 5000th departure which serves as a testament to our boutique strategy and our growing airline!”.

The new airport terminal features a dedicated check-in area for both Falcon Gold and economy class passengers of Gulf Air as well as a brand new Falcon Gold lounge that is double in size and capacity compared to the previous one in the old airport. Taking into consideration all of the updated health and safety measures, the new lounge reflects new concepts of modern premium lounges yet keeping with the legacy and rich history of the over 70 year old Gulf Air brand. A number of features are maintained from the previous lounge as well as newly introduced spaces such as a children's area, shower rooms, prayer space, a quiet area along with live cooking stations and new food & beverage concepts. Operational around the clock and with a capacity of over 400 passengers at any given time, the new Falcon Gold lounge is available to experience by the airline’s Falcon Gold passengers as well as its Black, Gold and Silver Falconflyer members.

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Gol, Brazil’s largest airline and Grupo Comporte, Brazil’s leading transport operator order 250 zero-emission aircraft

Avolon, the international aircraft leasing company, announces a partnership with Gol, Brazil’s largest airline and Grupo Comporte, Brazil’s leading transport operator, to commercialise an eVTOL ride-sharing platform in Brazil.

Avolon, Gol and Grupo Comporte will collaborate to identify and target local partners, infrastructure and certification requirements across a range of commercial models, launching one of the world’s first eVTOL ride-sharing businesses. As part of the agreement, Gol and Grupo Comporte has committed to purchase or lease up to 250 VA-X4 eVTOL aircraft.

The VA-X4, manufactured by Vertical Aerospace, will be the most advanced and safest eVTOL in the market on its introduction in 2024. Avolon is a launch customer for the aircraft which can transport four passengers and one pilot distances of 100 miles at up to 200 miles per hour. eVTOLs are central to the future of transport. They introduce the ultra-short-haul aircraft category to commercial aviation and will revolutionise air travel with VA-X4 zero-emissions aircraft.

Tuesday, 21 September 2021

Airbus and partners target more energy efficient flights

 Airbus, Air France and DSNA, the French Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP), have begun working towards the development of “most energy efficient flights”, following their inaugural demonstration flight from Paris to Toulouse Blagnac on the day of the Airbus Summit event. The aircraft flew an optimised trajectory, marking the first of a series of trials planned during 2021 and 2022 within the framework of the Single European Sky ATM Research Joint Undertaking (SESAR JU) “ALBATROSS” project.

Launched in February 2021, ALBATROSS is a large-scale initiative of major European aviation stakeholder groups led by Airbus. It aims to demonstrate, through a series of gate-to-gate live demonstration flights across Europe, the feasibility of implementing most energy efficient flights in the short term, by combining several R&D technical and operational innovations. 

“ALBATROSS” follows an holistic approach by covering all flight phases, directly involving all relevant stakeholder groups (such as airlines,  ANSPs,  network managers, airports and industry) and addressing both operational and technological aspects of aviation and Air Traffic Management (ATM). Many solutions will be put into practice during the flight demonstrations, from new precision approach procedures to continuous climb and descent, a more dynamic management of necessary airspace constraints, sustainable taxiing and  sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) usage. 

Thanks to the transmission of four-dimensional trajectory data, ATM will be able to optimise and better predict an aircraft’s trajectory, thereby enabling it to immediately and concretely reduce a flight's environmental footprint.

Starting from September 2021, these live trials will involve around 1,000 demonstration flights, showcasing mature operational solutions with potential fuel and CO2 emission savings. First results are expected to be available in 2022.

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easyJet to deployfive new aircraft across Malaga, Palma and Faro bases in 2022

More aircraft to be based in Spain and Portugal next year.

As the European aviation market continues to recover, the UK's leading budget carrier easyJet has confirmed it will be expanding its network of seasonal bases by adding five more aircraft across bases Malaga, Palma de Mallorca and Faro from May 2022. 

According to the airline, this investment will create around 120 direct jobs in Spain where the airline currently employs more than 400 people, all under local contracts along with 30 jobs in the Faro base.  


easyJet will add two aircraft in Malaga, two in Palma de Mallorca and one in Faro from May next year 

The investment will create around 150 direct jobs for pilots and crew under local contracts in both Spain and Portugal

Next summer easyJet will have five based aircraft in Malaga where it is the second-largest airline, and seven in Palma, bringing the Spanish fleet to 16 aircraft, including four in its base in Barcelona.

It will also add an additional aircraft into Portugal at the Faro base. This means the airline will have increased its fleet based in Portugal and Spain by 70% compared to pre-pandemic levels. These new based aircraft will allow easyJet to bolster existing services as well as adding new ones. 

Johan Lundgren, CEO of easyJet, said:  "The decision to add five aircraft to these bases is testament to the important role they play in our network now and in the post-pandemic recovery.   - We can now continue growing our presence in these key destinations from next May, demonstrating our confidence in the continued recovery of leisure and beach travel next summer.

We see so many opportunities for easyJet in this period of recovery across Europe where legacy airlines will retrench and we are ready and able to grab them with both hands.  We are ideally positioned to take advantage of these strategic growth opportunities with customers choosing us for our trusted brand, unrivalled network and low fares."

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Cathay Pacific Releases Traffic Figures For August 2021

This week the Hong Kong based Cathay Pacific released its traffic figures for August 2021 that continued to reflect the airline’s substantial capacity reductions in response to significantly reduced demand as well as travel restrictions and quarantine requirements in place in Hong Kong and other markets amid the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic.

Cathay Pacific carried a total of 135,353 passengers last month, an increase of 278.4% compared to August 2020, but a 95.3% decrease compared to the pre-pandemic level in August 2019. The month’s revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) rose 294.1% year-on-year, but were down 92.4% versus August 2019. Passenger load factor increased by 26.5 percentage points to 46.4%, while capacity, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), increased by 68.9%, but remained 86.9% down on August 2019 levels. In the first eight months of 2021, the number of passengers carried dropped by 92.2% against a 76.2% decrease in capacity and an 89.7% decrease in RPKs, as compared to the same period for 2020.

The airline carried 124,278 tonnes of cargo and mail last month, an increase of 21.7% compared to August 2020, but a 23% decrease compared with the same period in 2019. The month’s revenue freight tonne kilometres (RFTKs) rose 20.7% year-on-year, but were down 15.4% compared to August 2019. The cargo and mail load factor increased by 2.3 percentage points to 77.7%, while capacity, measured in available freight tonne kilometres (AFTKs), was up by 17.2% year-on-year, but was down 33.8% versus August 2019. In the first eight months of 2021, the tonnage decreased by 8.7% against a 21.8% drop in capacity and a 10.9% decrease in RFTKs, as compared to the same period for 2020.


Icelandair's Chief Operating Officer quits

Jens Thordarson the Chief Operating Officer of Icelandair Group since January 2018 has decided to resign from the carrier. He was previously the VP of Technical Operations at Icelandair, a post he held since October 2011 and has held many other roles during his time at the company. 

According to Icelandair, Jens will continue in his role over the next weeks to assist with the hiring and handover to a new Chief Operating Officer.

Bogi Nils Bogason, President & CEO of Icelandair Group: "I would like to thank Jens for his great contribution to the Company over the past years where he has led important developments in flight operations through challenging times. I wish him all the best for the future."

Jens Thordarson Chief Operating Officer of Icelandair Group: "I am grateful and proud of the over 15 years I have had the opportunity to work for Icelandair in diverse roles with fantastic co-workers. After a fruitful career so far I have decided to change course and seek other opportunities. Icelandair Group is a winning team with world-class capabilities and even though I am departing at this moment I will continue to excitedly watch the Company develop and grow for the coming years."

According to local media, Thordarson departure wasn't completely his own decision and there had been some disquiet in the top-level management at the group in recent times over the direction the company is taking. 

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Waking up the Delta fleet.......

When Supplier Ops Program Manager Rusty Foster reflects on the massive cross-functional undertaking to store over 550 Delta planes grounded because of the COVID-19 pandemic, he thinks of the motto his Navy Reserve construction team lived by. 

“The difficult, we do right away. The impossible takes a little longer.” 

When Rusty was first called to action, it was March 2020 and the pandemic was in full force. Customer demand was dropping, and there was an uneasiness settling in as flights took off with fewer and fewer passengers.  

Rusty had the day off and was getting ready to head back to Jacksonville, Florida, where he was performing heavy maintenance checks on aircraft. One of his leaders gave him a call and asked if he could go to Blytheville, Arkansas, to start parking part of Delta’s fleet.  

The pandemic was already rearing its head: a long drive to Memphis International Airport, a canceled flight and another eight-hour car trip later, Rusty was finally in Blytheville. 


“That day they started flying in MD-88s. It was like watching the skyline in Atlanta in the evening when you can see the pattern planes are flying in, just one after another,” Rusty said.  

That first day they parked 14 planes. The next day, another 14. 

Throughout 2020, Rusty worked in Blytheville; Kansas City; Marana, Arizona; and Birmingham, Alabama. At the peak of the pandemic, we parked 571 mainline aircraft across the country. Each location came with its own challenges— whether it was the humidity in Birmingham or the desert critters and extreme heat in Marana.  

An undertaking that massive would require a seasoned touch. That’s where Bob Warde came in. He’d worked for 10 years storing MD-88s and MD-90s in Blytheville, some for parts, some for an eventual return to service. 

Monday, 20 September 2021

Kim Daenen named as new Head of Corporate Communications at Brussels Airlines

Kim Daenen has been appointed as the new Head of Corporate Communications at Brussels Airlines, directly reporting to Peter Gerber, CEO of the company. She hereby succeeds Wencke Lemmes who has taken up the role of Head of Customer Experience, Product & Marketing since May 15th. In her new role, Wencke will remain responsible for Public Affairs and Lobbying, a function she took on recently.

Kim Daenen, who has a Master’s degree in Translation & Business Communication as well as a Master’s degree in Journalism, started her journey at Brussels Airlines in 2009. As part of the e-commerce department and later as the airline’s Social Media Manager, she contributed to the airline’s online reputation and developed its social media communication strategy. In 2014, Kim Daenen joined the Corporate Communications department of Brussels Airlines as a Media Relations Manager and Spokesperson, managing and building further on the reputation of the Belgian airline. With her vast experience in internal and external communications, crisis communication and public relations and her extensive knowledge of the company and the aviation sector, Kim will further develop the public relations and communication strategy of Brussels Airlines.

“With our turnaround plan REBOOT Plus, a new Brussels Airlines will emerge, in which change will be the one constant. To make this new Brussels Airlines and the profound investments in our future a success, transparent and extensive communication will be key. We are convinced that Kim is the perfect fit for this challenge and will make the communications and public relations strategy future-proof.”
- Peter Gerber, CEO Brussels Airlines
“Our company has gone through tremendous change in recent years and will continue to do so. In the coming months and years, one of our key priorities will be to transparently communicate our sustainability ambitions. Next to this, our focus will continue to be on our Belgian ambassadorship, our key market Africa and our ongoing improvements and investments to become a structurally sustainable company, offering perspectives to our employees and stakeholders.”
- Kim Daenen, Head of Corporate Communications at Brussels Airlines

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U.S. to allow British travellers back in the country in ban to end

The Biden Administration has confirmed it will relax its ban on travellers from the UK and EU during November, providing they have been fully vaccinated and produce a negative result. 

The White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients made the announcement earlier today, "This is based on individuals rather than a country-based approach, so it's a stronger system. Most importantly, foreign nationals flying to the US will be required to be fully vaccinated," 

Foreign travellers will need to demonstrate proof of vaccination and show proof of a negative test result under the new rules. They will also be required to provide contact information, but they will not be required to quarantine. According to officials, there are to be some exceptions to the new rules, such as children who are not currently eligible to be vaccinated.

At the moment, it is still unclear if the U.S. will allow those vaccinated with the Oxford Astra Zenica vaccines to enter, as this is not yet approved by U.S regulators.  Zients said this would be determined by the US Centers for Disease Control at a later stage.

The news has been widely welcomed, former IAG and British Airways boss, Willie Walsh, now the Director-General of IATA said:. “Today’s announcement is a major step forward. Allowing access to the US for those vaccinated will open travel to the US for many who have been locked out for the past 18 months. This is excellent news for families and loved ones who have suffered through the heartache and loneliness of separation. It’s good for the millions of livelihoods in the US that depend on global tourism. And it will boost the economic recovery by enabling some key business travel markets,”

United Airlines said:  "The Administration’s decision to safely expand international travel to the United States is welcome news for our customers and United is ready to implement these new requirements. We support this decision and look forward to working closely with the administration as the details of this policy are further solidified."

British Airways is further protecting the Tier status of Executive Club Members........

British Airways is further protecting the Tier status of Executive Club Members.  From today, any tiered Executive Club Members with a Tier Point collection end date between January – March 2022 will receive another year of their current status.

It means that no British Airways Executive Club Member renewing over this period, including Bronze, Silver and Gold cardholders will lose their Tier status, regardless of how many Tier Points they have earned.  This benefit comes in addition to a 25% threshold reduction in Tier Status which applies until June 2022.

From today, British Airways is also launching benefits for some of its most loyal Executive Club Members with an upcoming flight.  All Silver and Gold Members, regardless of their cabin of travel can enjoy pre-flight dining, which is available at selected North American lounges, including New York JFK, Boston, Chicago and Washington.  Meanwhile, the exclusive Concorde Room which is situated in Heathrow Terminal 5 and New York JFK only, will now be accessible to our exclusive Gold Guest List Members[1], regardless of how many Tier Points they earned in their previous Tier Point collection year.

Bronze: 225 Tier Points or 18 eligible flights
Silver: 450 Tier Points or 37 eligible flights
Gold: 1125 Tier Points 

Airbus joins DAX stock exchange index in Germany

 Airbus SE has become a member of the new DAX40 index in Germany, effective today.

On 3 September 2021, Deutsche Börse completed the expansion of the DAX from 30 to 40 companies as part of a comprehensive reform process and appointed Airbus, among others, to the German premium index.

"We are very pleased to be appointed to the newly formed DAX. We believe that Airbus has found its place in this index due to its economic size and performance. This inclusion allows us to better represent Airbus' historic industrial significance in Germany and highlight our innovative and diverse portfolio of activities too," said Guillaume Faury, Airbus Chief Executive Officer. "The inclusion in Germany's most important stock market index is both a motivation and a responsibility to continue our strong strategic presence in the country. We are proud of our European roots."

With this inclusion in the DAX40, Airbus will no longer be a member of the MDAX, to which it has belonged since the listed European aerospace group was founded in 2000.

Airbus shares are traded at three European stock exchanges: in Paris, where Airbus has been a fixed component of the premium CAC40 index since 2000; in Frankfurt and in Spain (Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao and Valencia).

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With two daily flights Iberia really opens up Mexico for European travellers.

Spanish airline Iberia has recently amended its schedules from Madrid to Mexico to now offer up to 14 weekly flights.

With partner airline Aeromexico it offers connections to another 40 Mexican cities.

Mexico is one of the countries without entry restrictions of most Europeans that have been double jabbed and offers up a destination of such amazing variety.  

Iberia has increased its operations to Mexico from Madrid which will help open up the country for families and tourists alike. Plus with the special codeshare deal with Aeromexico, Iberia expands its network of connections in the interior of Mexico to 40 other Mexican cities, such as Monterrey, Cancun, Guadalajara, Acapulco or San Luis Potosí, among others.

The schedules of the flights Madrid-Mexico City are:



Flight No.

Days of operation

Departure time

Arrival time

Madrid-Mexico City



1:20 p.m.

5:55 p.m.

Madrid-Mexico City



11:55 p.m.

04:30h the next day

Mexico City-Madrid



12:10 p.m.

06:00h the next day

Mexico City-Madrid



8:05 p.m.

13:55h the next day










Onboard the most advanced aircraft on the market, the Airbus A350

Since June 2020, Iberia has scheduled its Airbus A-350/900 aircraft on its Madrid-Mexico City route to make its customers aware of the features and improvements offered by the quietest aircraft on the market, equipped with two Rolls-Royce Trent XWBengines.

With 348 seats -31 in Business Class and 293 in Economy -this aircraft model incorporates Premium Economy Class,an intermediate product with 24 seats that offers: 20 percent more separation between rows of seats (94 cm), 40% more recline, wider seats (48 cm), 12-inch full HD screens, higher baggage allowance or a differentiated on-board service, among other benefits.

For customers, the cabin of the Airbus A350/900 has great advantages: high-speed Wi-Fi,panoramic windows, wider aisles and higher ceilings that give a greater sense of space and an air renewal system that improves humidity levels on board by between 11 and 16 percent.  

In addition, Business Class offers larger screens of 18 inches, wider seats (58 cm), wider footrests and more space for personal belongings.

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VINCI Airports network passenger traffic was down 56.6% in August compared to pre-pandemic levels.

In August 2021, passenger traffic in the VINCI Airports network was down 56.6% compared to August 2019, confirming the recovery observed in July. 

In continental Europe – primarily Portugal and France, traffic benefitted from the health pass and positive trends in intra-European tourist markets. In the United Kingdom, conversely, restrictions on foreign travel have prevented any recovery in traffic. 

Some American airports –Dominican Republic and Costa Rica– have returned to traffic levels close to those before the health crisis. In Asia, traffic remained very weak in Japan – due to the country closing its borders – and virtually zero in Cambodia, due to travel restrictions imposed by other countries in the region, including China. 

Change in airport traffic......

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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Cathay Pacific celebrates 75 years of bringing people together

Cathay Pacific celebrates an important milestone in its history as it marks 75 years of creating meaningful human connections.

Over the past 75 years, Cathay has grown from a small regional airline to one that now spans the globe from Hong Kong – its energetic, ever-changing home. Throughout it all, its enduring purpose has been to connect passengers to the people, places and experiences they love the most.  To mark this special occasion, Cathay Pacific is unveiling a variety of exciting opportunities for customers to join it in marking 75 years of bringing people together, from paying homage to history, celebrating the power of connection or looking forward to a re-energised future.

Chief Executive Officer Augustus Tang said: “Cathay Pacific has seen exhilarating successes over the past incredible 75 years. We’ve connected people to many new destinations, welcomed the arrival of state-of-the-art aircraft and introduced exciting customer experience enhancements, to name a few.  We have also experienced unprecedented challenges, such as the global pandemic, which we are all still overcoming. What these over seven decades have shown is that we are a resilient brand.

“What has never changed is our unyielding commitment to our loyal customers, our dedicated people and our wonderful home city, Hong Kong. We wouldn’t be the company we are today without the enduring support they have shown us, and we are incredibly grateful to each and every one of them. We hope they will join us in marking our 75th anniversary, and we look forward to many more journeys together.”

Own a piece of history

Cathay Pacific has created a special series of limited-edition merchandise commemorating more than seven decades of connection.

Customers have the opportunity to get one of 1,000 special collector’s box sets each featuring seven aircraft models, from the airline’s very first Douglas DC-3 aircraft, “Betsy”, to the newest member of its fleet, the Airbus A321neo.

Meanwhile, 435 limited-edition pen and cardholder sets have been crafted out of aluminium reclaimed from B-HUJ, the airline’s final Boeing 747-400 passenger aircraft, and engraved with a unique serial number.

Story image

CAA launch autumn Virtual Voyage 2021 General Aviation Summit

The UK's CAA is inviting participants for its Virtual Voyage 2021 General Aviation Summit, brought to you by the UK Civil Aviation Authority on 6, 7 and 11 October 2021.

There will be a 70-minute interactive discussion with a 20 minute live Q&A at each event this October.  Hosted by Sophie O'Sullivan, Head of the General Aviation (GA) & Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) team, our agenda is taking shape.

The CAA hope to bring updates on new initiatives as well as programmes of work including:

  • GA Consultation update
  • UK - EU transition impact on licensing
  • Licensing and medical updates

"The maiden Virtual Voyage event in the Spring reached an audience of over 3,500 members of the UK GA community and we hope to bring you a bigger and better series of events. Comments and suggestions as well as responses to our feedback survey have helped to create an agenda we hope will cover those topics we believe matter the most to you. 

We have invited FLYERFTN and AOPA to host the live Q&A sessions across the three events where questions will be posed to our CAA panel. Here are full details of event dates, times and live Q&A details."

For any questions on see the Virtual Voyage | UK Civil Aviation Authority (

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Female cabin crew have been told not to come to work in Afghanistan

Afghanistan: The 'shattered dreams' of the Ariana cabin crew

The BBC's chief international correspondent Lyse Doucet has gone to meet the female cabin crew working for the national carrier of Afghanistan, Ariana Airlines who had hoped to resume flights and be once again the welcome face of the nation.

However, now with the Taliban in control of the country, these flyers have been told not to come to work.  Eleven of the women have come together to hide in an abandoned house, out of fear for their future.

Filmed by Robbie Wright

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British boxer Amir Khan removed from American Airlines flight.......

The British boxer Amir Khan claims to have been banned from American Airlines after he was removed from a flight by police after his friends face mask was not on his chin.

The 34-year-old Bolon boxer used social media to say he had been offloaded from the Newark to Dallas flight along with a colleague by police because someone complained his friend's mask "was not high enough".

Khan was on the way to a training camp in Colorado following a brief stay in New York claims to be "disgusted" by the treatment. "I was taken off the plane today when I was going to training camp to Colorado Springs, by the police. Obviously, a complaint was made by American Airlines staff, they said that my colleague's mask was not high enough and not up, that they had to stop the plane and take me and my friend off when I did nothing wrong."

The former boxer stated: "Now I have to reschedule another airplane to travel back to training camp which is really upsetting, for no reason this was and I'm just so disgusted that American Airlines would do this to us and ban me from travelling."

SWISS is trialling the possibility of offering its customers unsold food items at reduced prices on its services from Geneva, in collaboration with its partner “Too Good To Go”.

Swiss International Air Lines - SWISS has decided to trail a new way to be more sustainable onboard its flights from its Geneva home base. In a way to reduce the amount of fresh food items which remain unsold on its flights and must therefore be thrown away, the company is now teaming up with its partner “Too Good To Go” to offer at reduced prices any fresh food items which remain unsold. To test customer acceptance, a trial of the new approach is being conducted in August and September on the last flights of the day from Geneva on SWISS’s European network.  SWISS already uses historical sales data for each flight to tailor its fresh product uplifts as closely as possible to likely passenger demand.

A simple procedure

The new concept consists in offering any fresh food items that remain unsold on certain services at the end of the flight concerned. These items’ availability is communicated via an inflight announcement, and interested passengers are offered a bag containing one, two or three such fresh food items at one third of their usual price. The bag’s contents are not revealed in advance and remain a surprise for the purchaser.

The new approach is being trialled in collaboration with “Too Good To Go”, the world’s biggest app platform for connecting companies with users to reduce food waste. “Managing waste on board is an important part of our commitment to greater sustainability, “ stresses SWISS CCO Tamur Goudarzi Pour. “We hope to significantly reduce unused food onboard our aircraft by introducing this service. Thinking about sustainability in all our products, services and processes is part of our SWISS DNA.”

 “The first results from these trials have been promising,” adds SWISS’s Head of Western Switzerland Romain Vetter. “The new approach has been well received by our passengers on the flights concerned. We’re now awaiting a final analysis of the trials’ findings to decide if we should extend it to further routes.”

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Condor's flights to Canada take off.....

Following the lifting of restrictions at the Canadian border, the german leisure airline Condor has started flights to Toronto.  Leaving from Frankfurt airport, German tourists now have a new way to connect to the wider province of Ontario after a month-long pause. The airline has also reintroduced connections to Halifax in Nova Scotia, another great gateway to other Canadian cities and regions.

Condor flies from Frankfurt three times a week to Toronto and twice a week to Halifax.  "Our guests have had to wait a long time to be able to travel across the big pond to North America again. Now Canada has invited all North America fans who are fully immunized to join them again and we are pleased to offer five connections per week from Frankfurt to Canada," said Ralf Teckentrup, CEO of Condor.

"We are very pleased that Condor is offering attractive destinations in Canada again as of today after a long break. The relaunched weekly connections to Halifax and the metropolis of Toronto are not only a positive signal for Frankfurt Airport and the entire region, they also underline Condor's important role at Germany's central air traffic hub. This is a tradition for us, as Condor has been connecting Frankfurt with destinations around the globe for more than 60 years. We wish Condor "Always Happy Landings" at Frankfurt Airport on its new routes" said "Dr Pierre Dominique Prümm, Executive Board Member Aviation and Infrastructure, Fraport AG"

Toronto and Halifax are ideal starting points for round trips to experience the famous Indian Summer. From there, guests can also reach ten other destinations in Canada with Condor partner WestJet. The best time to travel for the colourful natural spectacle is September and October.

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Hilton Honors Extends Global Loyalty Benefits and Unveils 2022 Policies

As people continue to navigate the changing dynamics of travel and getting back on the road, Hilton remains optimistic and committed to providing flexibility to its more than 118 million Hilton Honors members worldwide. Again leading the hospitality industry, Hilton Honors announced that its members can expect to retain their Points and elite status for an extended period of time and earn status more easily in 2022. 

Hilton Honors, the guest loyalty program of Hilton’s world-class portfolio of 18 brands, has implemented the following global benefit changes to help members maintain or achieve elite status, even as travel remains limited in some parts of the world. The changes announced today include: 

  • Extending status through March 31, 2023, so members can maintain their status perks and benefits longer.
  • Pausing Points expiration until Dec. 31, 2022, so members have more time to use their Points towards free nights at more than 6,600 Hilton hotels, exclusive Hilton Honors Experiences, live events, charitable donations and more.
  • Relaxing 2022 qualifications around earning Status, Milestone Bonuses, and Status Gifting from 2019 requirements to make these benefits easier to achieve.  In 2022, Hilton Honors members will earn the following:
    • Status Tier Requirements
      • Silver status at seven nights, three stays or 17,500 Base Points.
      • Gold status at 28 nights, 14 stays or 52,500 Base Points.
      • Diamond status at 42 nights, 21 stays or 84,000 Base Points.
    • Milestone Bonuses
      • 10,000 Bonus Points at 30 nights.
      • 10,000 Bonus Points for every 10 additional nights (after 30 nights).
      • One-time 30,000 Bonus Points at 60 nights.
    • Elite Status Gifting
      • A one-time gift of Gold status for a friend or family member at 40 nights, which can be upgraded to Diamond status at 70 nights.
  • Extending Rollover Nights for members of every status level, so all completed 2021 nights automatically roll over and count toward 2022 tier qualifications.
  • Continuing flexibility of certain benefits for U.S. Hilton Honors American Express Card Members through Dec. 31, 2022.
    • Free Weekend Night Certificates, including those issued in 2022 can continue to be used any night of the week (not just on weekends).
    • Hilton Honors Bonus Points earned from eligible purchases on any Hilton Honors American Express Card will continue to count as Base Points toward Elite tier qualification and Lifetime Diamond status through Dec. 31, 2022.

“As we get back to a new season of travel together, we want our loyal guests to know that we made these program changes with them top-of-mind,” said Jenn Chick, vice president and global head, Hilton Honors & Customer Engagement, Hilton. “We are proud to lead the hospitality industry in providing flexibility, once again, to our valued Hilton Honors members to help them make new memories when they’re ready to travel again.”

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