Japan Airlines, Boom to introduce supersonic air travel

(By JAL/BOOM)

Japan Airlines (JAL) and Boom Supersonic are pleased to announce a strategic partnership to bring commercial supersonic travel to passengers.

While new and advanced technologies are changing our lives significantly, flight times for air travel have stayed relatively constant.

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Photo: lasta29

Boom is developing a new-generation supersonic aircraft, which flies at Mach 2.2 and will cut flight times in half.

Through this agreement, JAL will provide its knowledge and experience as an airline to support Boom in developing the aircraft.

As part of the agreement, JAL has made a strategic investment of $10 million in Boom and is collaborating with the company to refine the aircraft design and help define the passenger experience for supersonic travel.

JAL also has the option to purchase up to 20 Boom aircraft through a pre-order arrangement.

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The two companies will cooperate closely to realize faster and more convenient air travel.

“We’ve been working with Japan Airlines behind the scenes for over a year now,” said Blake Scholl, founder and CEO of Boom Supersonic.

“JAL’s passionate, visionary team offers decades of practical knowledge and wisdom on everything from the passenger experience to technical operations. We’re thrilled to be working with JAL to develop a reliable, easily-maintained aircraft that will provide revolutionary speed to passengers. Our goal is to develop an airliner that will be a great addition to any international airline’s fleet.” (Full Story Here)

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Qatar Airways bares Europe and Russia expansion

(By Qatar Airways)

DOHA, Qatar – Qatar Airways has announced that it will increase daily frequencies to the Scandinavian capitals of Stockholm and Oslo, alongside the Italian cities of Milan and Rome from January 2018.

Due to an increase in demand to key European destinations, especially from the Asia Pacific region, flights to Rome, Milan and Stockholm will increase to 17 per week from Doha’s Hamad International Airport, while flights to Oslo are set to increase from seven to 10 frequencies per week.

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Saint Basil’s Cathedral, Red square, Moscow
Photo: Ludvig14 (https://commons.wikimedia.org)

The award-winning airline has also announced that double daily flights to the Russian capital Moscow will increase to three times daily from 14 December, just five days before Qatar Airways’ inaugural daily flight to the Russian city of St. Petersburg.

The additional frequency to Moscow will be operated by an Airbus A320 aircraft.

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said: “Qatar Airways continues to expedite its ambitious expansion plans and demonstrate strong growth across Europe and Russia.

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These additional frequencies will provide our passengers with an array of convenient travel options when traveling to Doha or further afield on our global network.”

The national carrier of the State of Qatar currently serves double daily flights to Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport, Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport, Milan’s Malpensa Airport and Rome’s Fiumicino Airport with a mix of Boeing B787, Airbus A330 and Airbus A321 aircraft.

With a seamless stopover at the five-star hub of the airline, Hamad International Airport, European travelers can reach more than 150 business and leisure destinations across six continents with the airline’s young fleet. (Full Story Here)

Qantas to operate first U.S.-Australia biofuel flight

(By Qantas Airways)
Qantas announced it will operate the world’s first biofuel flight between the United States and Australia.

The Los Angeles to Melbourne flight will take place early next year, in collaboration with World Fuel Services and Altair Fuels, and will see Qantas’ new Dreamliner being powered by Brassica Carinata (carinata), a non-food, industrial type of mustard seed.

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Carinata produces high quality oil, ideal for aviation biofuel.
Photo: Qantas Airways

Carinata produces high quality oil, ideal for aviation biofuel, bio-jet for aircraft and bio-diesel for airport vehicles.

The news of the flight follows Qantas’ siging of a landmark partnership with Agrisoma Biosciences (Agrisoma), the Canadian based agricultural-technology – company who developed the carinata seed.

The two organizations will work with Australian farmers to grow the country’s first commercial aviation biofuel seed crop by 2020.

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Qantas International CEO, Alison Webster said the historic flight and the partnership mark the first step in developing an aviation biofuel supply in Australia.

“We are constantly looking for ways to reduce carbon emissions across our operations but when it comes to using renewable jet fuel, until now, there has not been a locally grown option at the scale we need to power our fleet,” Webster said.

“Our work with Agrisoma will enable Australian farmers to start growing today for the country’s biofuel needs of the future. The trans-Pacific biofuel flight is a demonstration of what can be achieved locally,” Webster added. (Full Story Here)

U.S. DOT approves Delta, Korean Air joint venture

(By Debbie Egerton, Delta Air Lines)

Delta Air Lines and Korean Air took a significant step in the creation of their trans-Pacific joint venture with approval of the joint venture by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

The DOT approval reflects the consumer benefits that will be created by the new joint venture.

The two carriers will deepen their relationship, offering customers in the U.S. and Asia an enhanced and expanded flight network as well as more compelling travel options.

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Approval marks significant milestone in creation of leading joint venture between the United States and Asia.
Photo: Delta Air Lines

The airlines have also applied for approval for the joint venture from the Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport.

“We thank the DOT for approving this world-class partnership, which will create more choices, frequencies and destinations for customers traveling between the key markets in the U.S. and Asia,” said Ed Bastian, Delta’s Chief Executive Officer.

“We look forward to offering our customers the leading customer experience across the Pacific, with seamless connections, world class facilities and amenities on the ground and in the air, as well as substantial frequent flyer benefits.”

The joint venture will create a combined network serving more than 290 destinations in the Americas and more than 80 in Asia, providing customers of both airlines with more travel choices than ever before.

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The joint venture will provide both airlines with the expanded scale and scope to offer new alternatives to customers.

The two airlines will also expand codeshare flights on trans-Pacific routes. Customers will benefit from enhanced frequent flyer benefits, providing customers of both airlines the ability to earn and redeem miles on Delta’s SkyMiles and Korean Air’s SKYPASS program.

In addition, co-location at key airports including Incheon Terminal 2 which will provide customers with a seamless connection and baggage transit experience.

Under the agreement, the airlines will share costs and revenues on flights within the scope of the joint venture as they work to expand service options for travelers. (Full Story Here)

Airbus gets 510 aircraft orders and commitments

(By Airbus)

The Airbus product line of commercial jetliners, military airlifters and helicopters reached new heights at this week’s Dubai Airshow with transactions and business announcements for 510 aircraft.

Validating the company’s slogan: ‘We make it fly,’ these orders and commitments involved 500 aircraft from Airbus’ single-aisle A320neo Family and two widebody A330neo jetliners (worth a combined total of $58.3 billion at list prices), along with five of the company’s multi-role C295 transports and three ‘H generation’ H160 rotorcraft.

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Airbus has a major presence at Dubai Airshow 2017.
Photo: S. Ramadier/Airbus

Leading the activity was the historic Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for 430 A320neo Family jetliners negotiated by private equity firm Indigo Partners for operation by four ultra-low-cost airlines in its portfolio.

This represents Airbus’ largest single commercial jetliner announcement by aircraft numbers, while setting a company record in terms of its $49.5 billion value at list prices.

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All four of these carriers, located on three continents, are current A320 Family operators and will significantly increase their Airbus single-aisle fleets with aircraft from the new agreement.

They are Frontier Airlines of the U.S., JetSMART of Chile, Mexico’s Volaris, and Wizz Air of Hungary.

Bill Franke, the Managing Partner of Indigo Partners and an entrepreneur who is considered an architect of the ultra-low-cost airline segment, stated the 430-aircraft MoU underscored his confidence in the Airbus A320 Family – which he said brought a “winning combination” to the bargain-fare air travel model that he helped develop. (Full Story Here)

Middle East: $730 billion market for new airplanes

(By PRNewswire)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Boeing forecasts that airlines in the Middle East will need 3,350 new airplanes over the next 20 years, valued at an estimated $730 billion.

Boeing presented its 2017 Current Market Outlook (CMO) for the region during the Dubai Airshow.

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Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Photo: Jan Michael Pfeiffer (https://commons.wikimedia.org)

“Traffic growth in the Middle East is expected to grow at 5.6 percent annually during the next 20 years,” said Randy Tinseth, vice president of Marketing, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

“The fact that 85 percent of the world’s population lives within an eight-hour flight of the Arabian Gulf, coupled with robust business models and investment in infrastructure, allows carriers in the Middle East to channel traffic through their hubs and offer one-stop service between many cities.”

Twin-aisle airplanes are expected to make up nearly 50 percent of the new airplanes in the Middle East, and more than 70 percent of the value at $520 billion. Both percentages are significantly higher than the global average.

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The strong long-term demand for wide body airplanes was reinforced at the show as Emirates Airline announced a commitment to purchase 40 Boeing 787-10 Dreamliners in a deal valued at $15.1 billion at current list prices.

More than half of the total deliveries in the Middle East will be single-aisle airplanes such as the 737 MAX. Operators in the region will need 1,770 single-aisle airplanes valued at $190 billion, driven by the growth of low-cost carriers.

Boeing’s presence and support for the Middle East also includes Global Services, the company’s third and newest business unit that is expanding its service capability offerings to better support the region’s airlines and aircraft. (Full Story Here)

Emirates buying 40 Boeing 787 Dreamliners for $15.1 billion

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Beefing up it fleet, Emirates has placed a $15.1 billion order for 40 Boeing 787-10 Dreamliners.
Photo: Emirates

(By Emirates)

Dubai, U.A.E. — Emirates, the world’s largest international airline, has announced a $15.1 billion (AED 55.4 billion) commitment for 40 Boeing 787-10 Dreamliners.

In the presence of Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates airline, signed the agreement with Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Kevin McAllister on the opening day of the 2017 Dubai Airshow.

Sheikh Ahmed said: “Emirates’ orders today will be delivered from 2022, taking the airline well into the 2030s. Some of these will be replacements so that we maintain a young and efficient fleet, and others will power our future network growth. We see the 787 as a great complement to our 777 and A380 fleet, providing us with more flexibility to serve a range of destinations as we develop our global route network.”

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“It has always been Emirates’ strategy to invest in the most advanced and efficient aircraft, and today’s orders reflect that. Today’s announcement is also speaks to our confidence in the future of aviation in the UAE and the region,” he said.

McAllister said: “We are excited that Emirates has selected the Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner to power its fleet expansion and future growth. This is an airplane that will set a new benchmark for operating economics in the commercial aviation industry when it enters service next year. Emirates’ endorsement of the 787 Dreamliner extends our long-standing partnership and will sustain many jobs in the United States.”

Emirates is evaluating engine options for its Dreamliner order. (Full Story Here)

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United Airlines flies the “Queen of the Skies” one last time

(By PRNewswire)

SAN FRANCISCO — United Airlines (UAL) on Tuesday flew – for the final time – a Boeing 747 aircraft, the jumbo jet with the unmistakable silhouette that once represented the state-of-the-art in air travel.

United says farewell to the Queen of the Skies with final flight from SFO to HNL.

Serving as the ultimate throwback, the airline recreated the first 747 flight operated by United in 1970 for the historic farewell journey.

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Photo: United Airlines

Flight UA747 departed from San Francisco with service to Honolulu with more than 300 customers, employees and distinguished guests onboard.

From a 1970s-inspired menu to retro uniforms for flight attendants to inflight entertainment befitting of that first flight, the “Queen of the Skies” is being sent off in style.

Seats for this flight sold out in less than 90 minutes when this farewell celebration was announced in September.

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“The iconic 747 is a remarkably special aircraft that signaled a new era of air travel and was equally recognizable and beloved by our customers and crew alike,” said Oscar Munoz, CEO of United.

“While today is bittersweet, we’ll continue to honor the Queen of the Skies’ game-changing legacy of connecting people and uniting the world with our next-generation of long-haul aircraft,” he added.

The send-off began in the morning at SFO with a gate party featuring a 747 gallery, 1970s costumes for use in a retro photo booth, a life-size retirement card for customers and employees to sign and of course, cake.

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Munoz addressed the crowd alongside State Senator Jerry Hill and executives from Boeing and Pratt & Whitney.

Upon landing in Honolulu, local employees will welcome the aircraft with final festivities to close out the historic day, including remarks from United leaders and Hawaii State Representative Henry J.C. Aquino. (Full Story Here)

New Seattle-Mexico City service launched

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Seattle, Washington

(By Delta Air Lines)

SEATTLE, Washington — Delta Air Lines and its partner Aeromexico, Mexico’s global airline, have launched nonstop service between Seattle and Mexico City.

A Delta hub, Seattle is home to firms such as Amazon, Boeing, Microsoft and Starbucks.

This new route will connect these two cities enabling bilateral exchange to increase business and investment opportunities in both destinations.

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Delta is the largest global carrier at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and has more than tripled flights and destinations in Seattle since 2012.

Customers flying in from Mexico City can connect to different destinations beyond Seattle through Delta’s hub.

Aeromexico Chief Revenue Officer Anko van der Werff noted, “As the only airlines offering nonstop service to Mexico City from Seattle, we connect customers in North America to our main hub in Mexico and beyond, facilitating transborder exchange like never before.”

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This new flight is part of the strategic plan between Delta and Aeromexico to provide service between their hubs while also transforming Mexico City into Latin America’s global hub. (Full Story Here)

Air Canada, Sky Reg’l Airlines end purchase agreement’s 10-year extension

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Air Canada
Photo: Abdallahh (https://commons.wikimedia.org)

(By CNW Telbec)

MONTREAL — Air Canada and Sky Regional Airlines said they have concluded a 10-year extension to their existing capacity purchase agreement (CPA), effective April 1, 2017.

“This 10-year extension to the existing capacity purchase agreement with Sky Regional Airlines underscores our confidence in our Air Canada Express partner to provide a seamless operation and customer experience on behalf of Air Canada in a number of our key domestic and transborder regional markets on a cost competitive basis,” said Kevin Howlett, Senior Vice President, Regional Markets and Government Relations at Air Canada.

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“With its fleet comprised exclusively of Embraer 175 jet aircraft that has grown to 25 in recent years, Sky Regional strengthens Air Canada’s competitive position in the rapidly evolving North American regional markets as low cost operators continue to grow, both in Canada and the United States,” Howlett added.

“We are very pleased that Air Canada has recognized our commitment to the passenger experience, and are looking forward to continued success as Air Canada offers more regional options for Canadians,” said Russell Payson, Chairman, Sky Regional Airlines. (Full Story Here)