Press Releases – Nov 2012


30.11.12 | GreenSky London biofuel plant preparing for lift-off

British Airways and Solena are gaining momentum in their goal of producing sustainable jet fuel with technology partners for their GreenSky London initiative now in place and British Airways confirming its financial commitment.

GreenSky London is a flagship project that will see the construction of a state of the art facility that will annually convert approximately 500,000 tonnes of waste normally destined for landfill into 50,000 tonnes of sustainable low carbon jet fuel, 50,000 tonnes of biodiesel, bionaphtha and renewable power.

Solena’s technology consortium continues to grow and includes:
Solena Fuels Corporation will provide the high temperature gasification process that converts waste matter into synthesis gas and the overall Integrated Biomass Gasification to Liquids (IBGTL) solution

Oxford Catalysts Group/Velocys will supply the Fisher-Tropsch (FT) reactors and catalyst which will convert the cleaned synthesis gas into liquid hydrocarbons

Fluor has started the pre-front end engineering and design (Pre-FEED) for the project. Fluor is a world leader in project execution and bio-fuel projects, and is providing engineering services to support Solena.

British Airways has committed to purchasing, at market competitive prices, the jet fuel produced by the plant for the next ten years which equates to US$500 million at today’s prices. Barclays has also been appointed as advisor to explore the optimal funding through Export Credit Agencies. A
Competitive Letter of Interest has been obtained from one of the Agencies including associated term funding.

GreenSky London has signed an exclusive option on a site for the facilityand consent work for the site has begun. More than 150 jobs will be created to operate the facility, as well as 1000 construction positions. The partners aim to have the site operational by 2015.

Keith Williams, chief executive of British Airways, said: “We are delighted that the GreenSky London project is getting ever closer to fruition. With world-class technology partners now in place, we are wellon our way to making sustainable aviation fuel a reality for British Airways by 2015.”

Robert Do, President and CEO of Solena, said: “Our GreenSky London project will provide clean, sustainable fuels at market competitive prices that will help address British Airways’ sustainability goals. The British
Airways off-take agreement represents the largest advanced biofuel commitment ever made by an airline and clearly demonstrates the airline’s leadership and vision in achieving its carbon emission reduction targets.
We are proud to have created a consortium of world class companies with expertise in the synthetic fuels sector to support our project.”

Roy Lipski, CEO of Oxford Catalysts Group, stated “Oxford Catalysts is pleased to be playing a key role in the enabling of GreenSky London. This project looks set to become a landmark in the development of the sustainable fuels market, both in the UK and worldwide”.


An independent Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), which focuses on greenhouse
gas (GHG) emissions has been carried out on the synthetic biojet fuel
produced using the Solena proprietary Integrated Biomass Gasification
to Liquids (IBGTL) solution by North Energy Associates Ltd. Results
show that the GHG emissions savings exceed the requirements of both
the EU’s Renewable Energy Directive (RED) (minimum 60 per cent) and
Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (RSB) methodologies (minimum 50
per cent).
Fischer-Tropsch derived fuels are certified as an aviation fuel in a 50
per cent blend with Jet A-1.
Enough sustainable jet fuel will be produced to power two per cent of
the British Airways’ fleet departing from London airports
British Airways’ goal is to reduce its net carbon emissions by 50 per
cent by 2050

About Solena Fuels Corporation
Solena Fuels is a sustainable energy company developing Integrated Biomass
Gasification to Liquids (IBGTL) facilities around the world utilising its
proprietary gasification technology as the initial processing block.
Solena’s sustainable jet and diesel fuels help airlines and shipping
companies cost-effectively utilise non-petroleum sourced liquid fuels.
Solena Fuels is a privately-held company headquartered in Washington DC,


30.11.12 | Air Canada and Turkish Airlines enter into Code Share Agreement

Air Canada and Turkish Airlines are pleased to announce today a reciprocal code sharing agreement that will make it easy and convenient for customers to connect between the two Star Alliance partner airlines. The agreement, to take effect the beginning of the second quarter of 2013, will leverage Air Canada’s planned Toronto-Istanbul route launching this summer pending receipt of government approval.

“Air Canada is delighted by this code share agreement with our Star Alliance partner Turkish Airlines as it will ensure seamless connections on a single itinerary for our customers traveling beyond Istanbul throughout Turkey and to points in Central Asia, Africa and the Middle East. We look forward to welcoming aboard our aircraft Turkish Airlines customers who want to explore or do business in Canada through our extensive network,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive of Air Canada, who signed a letter of intent for the agreement at ceremony during a Star Alliance chief executive meeting in Shenzhen, China.

“Customers on both airlines will receive the top-rated service and hospitality that is the hallmark of Star Alliance, the world’s largest airline network, including the opportunity to collect and redeem frequent flyer mileage and access to lounges for eligible customers.”

“We are extremely delighted to sign the code share agreement with Air Canada, as this code share partnership serves as an example of Turkish Airlines’ target to maximize the travel opportunities offered to passengers through the extensive networks of both airlines. This new code share agreement enables the customers to enjoy both the global network and the seamless service arising from the cooperation. We will have a chance to transfer our passengers to more US and Canadian domestic destinations via Toronto by connecting our networks,” said Temel Kotil, Ph.D., President and CEO of Turkish Airlines.

Under the code share agreement the two carriers will each place their flight designator code on select flights making it more convenient for travelers with such benefits as a single itinerary, through-checked bags and mutual status recognition. The agreement will include Air Canada’s code on Turkish Airlines’ Toronto-Istanbul flight and several destinations beyond Istanbul, not only in Turkey but also in the Middle East and Africa region. Turkish Airlines will also code share on Air Canada’s new non-stop service between Toronto and Istanbul providing connections to domestic Canada and several points from Toronto to U.S destinations. Moreover, with the loyalty program, passengers will have the opportunity to earn and use miles both on Turkish Airlines and Air Canada flights.


30.11.12 | Gulf Air Board accepts resignation of CEO Majali

The Board of Directors of Gulf Air announced today that it has accepted the resignation of the Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Samer Majali, submitted earlier this year following the appointment of the Gulf Air Board of Directors in mid-November. Mr. Majali will remain in his position until the end of 2012.

Mr. Majali joined Gulf Air in 2009, when he introduced a restructuring plan to build a national
airline that would effective serve the people and the economy of Bahrain and ultimately ensure its long term future and success. During 2010 the airline made significant progress towards commercial sustainability, significantly cutting costs, increasing revenue and reducing operating losses by over BHD 50 million despite, a difficult operating environment characterised by high-fuel costs and increased competition.

In 2011 the combination of local and regional developments and global economic pressures disrupted the airline’s financial targets. Despite this setback significant milestones were achieved across its customer product and service offering.

The Gulf Air Board of Directors expressed their thanks to Mr. Majali for his contribution to Gulf Air and the strong leadership he has shown over the last three years. Noting in particular the significant improvements made across the airline specifically in the areas of fleet renewal, service enhancement, operational efficiency and on-time performance.

They also recognised the achievement of Mr. Majali following the successful renegotiations of the airline’s order book resulting in the reduction of the long-term financial liability of the airline by approximately 50%.

Mr. Majali thanked His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa for his leadership, His Royal Highness the Prime Minister Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa for his support, and His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa for his trust, confidence and guidance and finally the Members of the Gulf Air Board of Directors for their counsel.

He also thanked the employees and management of Gulf Air for their support and their hard work towards achieving significant progress during the last three years in a challenging operating environment.

Finally he stressed the importance of Gulf Air to the Kingdom and economy of Bahrain and wished the airline every success in the implementation of the new stagey.


30.11.12 | Carlisle to Acquire Thermax-Raydex Business

Carlisle Companies Incorporated (NYSE:CSL) today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire the Thermax–Raydex business, a leading global supplier of high-performance hook-up, data and coaxial wire and cable for mission-critical applications for commercial aerospace, defense and industrial customers.

The Thermax-Raydex business is a unit of Belden, Inc. of St. Louis, Missouri. The transaction is structured as a purchase of the assets of Thermax and the stock of Raydex/CDT Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Belden, both for a combined enterprise value of $265 million.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory clearance, and is expected to close by December 31, 2012. The acquisition is expected to be accretive to Carlisle in the first year.

With annual sales of approximately $112 million, Thermax-Raydex has manufacturing facilities in Nogales, Mexico, Littleborough, UK and Fountain Valley, California.

The company is a supplier to the world’s leading aerospace, avionics and electronics companies. Thermax-Raydex designs, manufactures and sells customized, high-reliability wire and cable for transmission of data and power on aircraft and defense platforms, as well as in high-end industrial equipment.

The business will operate as part of Carlisle Interconnect Technologies, a global provider of specialty wire and cable and interconnect components for commercial and military aircraft, avionics systems, in-flight entertainment and communications systems.

David A. Roberts, Carlisle’s Chairman, President and CEO, said: “We are excited about the acquisition of Thermax-Raydex, as the company adds capabilities and technology to strengthen our interconnect products business in very attractive aerospace and industrial sectors. Thermax-Raydex expands our product, technology and service ranges to our customers. This acquisition is consistent with our focus on higher margin, highly engineered products and is an excellent fit with Carlisle.”


30.11.12 | Abul Rahman Appointed to the Position of Systems Development Manager

Stellar Entertainment is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Abul Rahman to the position of Systems Development Manager, effective December 1. A Network and infrastructure specialist, Dr. Rahman brings with him a plethora of knowledge and experience. With a Ph.D in Computer Networks, Dr. Rahman has expertise in Networking and CISCO, Network management and monitoring, network security and system administration. He also brings with him complex web programming experience.

Dr. Rahman is highly practiced in both the practical and theoretical aspects of networks and infrastructure, with an impressive working history that includes lecturing at the University of Technology, Sydney.

Stellar Chief Operating Office Michael Reilly says: “‘Abul’s appointment is perfect timing for us. Having just embarked on a re-brand to better reflect our range of services and customers across varied industries – and with many new projects lined up for 2013, his talents will be of great asset to the group. He will provide solutions that will increase efficiency, capacity and ultimately help us increase our productivity through the application of leading edge technologies. Stellar has always prided itself on the investment in and application of technology to underpin business growth.”

Dr. Abul Rahman says: “As an IT professional with a diverse and significant industry and academic experience and strong problem-solving and relevant technical skills, I am confident that I would make a productive addition to Stellar technical team. I am excited by the possibility of conducting leading edge technology research and deployment with Stellar. ”

Stellar Entertainment is a leading provider of entertainment content and technical services. Established in 1974, the company has five offices and technical facilities globally, and also jointly owns Sky Victory Technology in China.
The company specialises in:

• Content Creation, Programming/Licensing for Film, TV, Music, Games, e-Books/Magazines and more
• Video Production, Post Production, Motion Graphics & Branding, including a green screen filming facility.
• Standalone, full studio production services in our state-of-the-art studios
• Complete IFE Technology Management & Delivery – Compilation, Editing, Encoding and Duplication
• Complete IFE Digital Content Management – Metadata, QC, Integration & Rack Testing
• Print & Digital Design and Production
• IFE Technology Consultancy – iPad, Wireless Streaming and more


30.11.12 | Calin Rovinescu elected as Chairman of Star Alliance Chief Executive Board

Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada, has been elected as the new Chairman of the Star Alliance Chief Executive Board (CEB). He succeeds Rob Fyfe, CEO Air New Zealand, who held the post for the last two years.

“On behalf of all Star Alliance members I thank Rob for his personal commitment, support and leadership in driving our alliance forward and in strengthening relations between the alliance partners. Indeed, we have all benefited from Rob’s presence as Chairman of the CEB.

“Following a highly successful seven-year tenure as CEO of Air New Zealand, Rob has elected to retire at year-end and while we are very sad to see him leave, we know that his contributions to the Star Alliance will endure.” Rovinescu said.

In his role as CEB Chairman, Rovinescu will conduct the two annual board meetings and act as the designated spokesperson for the board.

Reflecting on his tenure, Fyfe commented: “I have been proud to lead the board over the past two years. The Alliance needs careful steering in these testing times for the aviation industry and Calin is an excellent choice to lead the group through the challenges to come.”

Rovinescu said he was looking forward to working with the board over the next two years to deepen the alliance and pursue shared priorities.

These would include strengthening the global network, focusing on providing a seamless travel experience and maintaining the loyalty of customers through superior service and convenience, he added.

“Partnerships are essential to succeed in this business and few partnerships have been as beneficial to their members and customers as Star Alliance,” Rovinescu said.

“It is my determination to see that we continue to foster commercial cooperation among member carriers to further strengthen our position as the leading global airline network.”

The CEB is the controlling body of the Alliance and each of the 27 member airlines is represented by their respective CEO.

The CEB provides the overall strategic direction of the Alliance, approves the appropriate funding and votes on the admittance of new member airlines.


29.11.12 | Alaska Airlines and Rose Festival Sign New Three Year Deal

Alaska Airlines has signed a new three-year sponsorship agreement with the Portland Rose Festival as its “Official Airline” and exclusive presenting sponsor of the Grand Floral Parade Telecast. The sponsorship highlights the airline’s commitment to the greater Portland community and their expanded air service from Portland International Airport. Alaska’s sponsorship includes involvement in the Spirit Mountain Casino Grand Floral Parade, the Portland General Electric/SOLVE Starlight Parade, and CityFair.

“Alaska Airlines sets a new standard for marketing activation and employee engagement,” says Jeff Curtis, CEO of the Portland Rose Festival Foundation. “We have never partnered with such a well-rounded and fully integrated sponsorship program from a corporate sponsor. Alaska Airlines is a model for corporate sponsorships across the country and the globe.”

Alaska Airlines has sponsored the festival since 2010, and this year was recognized by the International Festivals & Events Association with the Gold Pinnacle Award in the Best Sponsor category for creative marketing and employee involvement. In addition, the Alaska Airlines float won the Al Reser Sweepstakes Award for most outstanding float in the 2012 Grand Floral Parade.

“No other sponsorship has generated as much camaraderie and excitement among our 1,900 Portland-based employees as the Rose Festival and Grand Floral Parade has in the last three years,” said Joe Sprague, Alaska Airlines’ vice president of marketing. “We’re honored to serve as the official airline of Portland’s most cherished community event for another three years.”

Together Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air offer more nonstop flights (serving 35 different destinations), more daily flights (93 a day) and more California service (38 flights daily to 14 California destinations) from Portland International Airport than any other carrier.

About the Portland Rose Festival Foundation
The Portland Rose Festival Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit that serves families and individuals with programs and events that promote the arts, education and volunteerism. We value environmental responsibility, diversity, patriotism and our historic & floral heritage. Go to for more detailed information on all festival activities and times.


29.11.12 | Hawaiian Welcomes First Flight from Brisbane, Australia

Hawaiian Airlines this morning welcomed to Honolulu its first nonstop flight from Brisbane, Australia. The 229 passengers were greeted upon arrival in the tradition of the islands with fresh flower lei, Hawaiian music and hula.

Hawaiian is the only U.S. carrier serving Brisbane, capital city of the State of Queensland, and is offering nonstop flights, three days weekly, to and from Honolulu.

Hawaiian’s Brisbane service is adding 41,000 new air seats to the market annually and will generate for Hawai‘i’s visitor industry an estimated $79 million in visitor expenditures and $8.6 million in state tax revenue, according to the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA).

The Honolulu-Brisbane flights will also make it easier for travelers in Hawai‘i and North America to experience the scenic beauty of Queensland, popularly known as Australia’s “Sunshine State.”

Centrally located on Australia’s east coast, Brisbane is the gateway to a host of appealing sites and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the world-famous Great Barrier Reef, world heritage listed rainforests, the iconic Outback territory, and the renowned leisure destinations of Australia’s Gold and Sunshine Coasts.

Brisbane is also a key hub for onward travel throughout Australia. Capitalizing on this, Hawaiian has timed its flight schedule for travelers to connect with same-day flights to and from throughout Queensland and other states via an interline partnership with domestic carrier Virgin Australia.

Hawaiian’s Flight HA 443 departs Honolulu at 10:20 a.m. every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, crosses the international dateline, and arrives in Brisbane at 4:00 p.m. the following day.

The return flight HA 444 departs Brisbane at 6:35 p.m. every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, crosses the international dateline, and arrives in Honolulu at 8:05 a.m. the same day.

Hawaiian is offering the comfort and roominess of its wide-body, twin-aisle Boeing 767-300ER aircraft to operate the Honolulu-Brisbane route, seating 264 passengers in a two-class cabin, with 18 in Business Class and 246 in the Main Cabin.

Hawaiian’s signature ‘Mea Ho‘okipa’ (translation: I am host) onboard service adds to the enjoyment of the travel experience with its celebration of the culture, people, and Aloha Spirit of the Hawaiian Islands throughout the flight.

Brisbane is the seventh of eight new destinations that Hawaiian has introduced or announced new service to since November 2010, following Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, and Sapporo, Japan; Seoul, South Korea; and New York City. Hawaiian will launch service to Auckland, New Zealand, on March 13, 2013.


29.11.12 | Star Alliance Expands in China

Shenzhen Airlines today became the latest carrier to join the Star Alliance network. At a ceremony held at Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport, Mark Schwab, CEO Star Alliance, welcomed the airline into the family on behalf on the Alliance’s Chief Executive Board (CEB).

“Shenzhen Airlines is China’s fifth largest carrier and strengthens the Star Alliance presence in China and across Asia. Our customers now benefit from improved access throughout the economically important Pearl River Delta and across southern China. Shenzhen Airlines at the same time gains access to a global network with enhanced benefits for its passengers; truly a win-win situation,” said Mark Schwab.

Adding Shenzhen Airlines to the network is part of Star Alliance’s strategy of improving access to current and future growth markets, thus providing the international traveller with more destinations and flights. In the case of
China, the foundation for this strategy was set many years ago, by Star
Alliance member carriers that have been successfully serving this market for several decades.

In December 2007 the Alliance added China’s Flag carrier Air China to the network.

Feng Gang, the president of Shenzhen Airlines said: “Today is filled with joy for all of us at Shenzhen Airlines. After 16 months of integration work, we have become a Star Alliance member. We know that today no single airline alone can tend to the needs of the international traveler. By joining Star Alliance we can now offer our customers global reach, while at the same time placing Shenzhen firmly on the map of world-wide air travel. We are proud to proclaim that
Shenzhen Airport, serving the 4th largest city in China, is now the newest Star
Alliance Hub, from which we will make our mark not only in China, but across the Asia-Pacific region.”

Air China Chairman Wang Chengshun said: “As Shenzhen Airlines’ mentor, we are delighted to see that Shenzhen Airlines in the last 20 years has achieved substantial growth. We believe that Shenzhen Airlines will leverage alliance resources to improve its own competitiveness, and to realise its strategic target of being a large network carrier covering Asian and intercontinental destinations with its hub in Shenzhen”.

As a Star Alliance member, Shenzhen Airlines offers its customers access to a global network, along with seamless travel and enhanced frequent flyer benefits.

The airline adds some 400 daily flights to 70 destinations to the Star Alliance network. Among these are five new destinations in China: Juzhou (Zhejiang Province), Linyi, Qinhuangdao, Shijiazhuang, and Zhoushan. In addition to improving connectivity from its home base in Shenzhen, international passengers benefit from a wider choice of transfer flights in China when connection via the international airports in Beijing, Guangzhou and Shanghai – Pudong. As part of seamless travel customer promise, Shenzhen Airlines offers through check-in for passengers connecting to and from other Star Alliance member airlines flights.

On a global basis, the 27 Star Alliance member carriers now offer more than 21,900 daily flights to 1,329 destinations in 194 countries.

Shenzhen Airlines’ PhoenixMiles Frequent Flyer (FFP) members can now collect and redeem miles on the entire Star Alliance network. By the same token, the FFP members of all other Star Alliance member carriers now receive mileage credits for eligible flights on Shenzhen Airlines and can redeem miles for travel on the Chinese airline. In addition, miles credited for flights on Shenzhen Airlines count towards achieving Star Alliance Gold and Silver Status. This entitles customers to enhanced benefits when travelling on the Star Alliance network, which include among others, increased luggage allowance as well as access to more than 1,000 lounges for Gold Card holders.

Star Alliance offers numerous fare products for both corporate and leisure customers and Shenzhen Airlines now sells and participates in a selection of these. In view of the strong business community located in Shenzhen Airline’s catchment area, the Star Alliance Corporate Plus product – which allows corporate clients to obtain corporate deals for travel on the Star Alliance network via one member airline – will enhance the carrier’s proposition to this market segment.

For the Conventions and Meetings market segment, the tailor-made Star Alliance
Conventions Plus and Meetings Plus products will increase in attractiveness, as
organisers and delegates can now include Shenzhen Airlines in their travel planning. Moreover it allows easier access to the Pearl River Delta as a meeting and conventions location.

Flights operated by Shenzhen Airlines can now be booked as part of the following Star Alliance fares: Round-the-World, Circle Pacific, Asia Airpass and China Airpass.


29.11.12 | Gulf Air selects SITA for optimised network connectivity

Gulf Air, the national carrier of the Kingdom of Bahrain and SITA, have signed an agreement that will all
ow Gulf Air to use SITA’s network services to optimize its operations across 48 destinations where it operates.

The agreement, announced today in Manama, includes the provision of all private network, internet, voice, messaging and reporting services for Gulf Air. SITA will provide a variety of connectivity methods to the airline’s offices at airports in more than 20 countries across four continents.

These will range from private MPLS-based connections to public internet connections and will include connectivity to Gulf Air’s air transport industry partners, a unique feature of SITA’s network which is embedded throughout its servicenet architecture. Through this optimization the airline expects cost savings of up to 22 percent in IP related services at airports worldwide.

Samer Majali, CEO, Gulf Air, said: “Gulf Air recognises the importance of technology as a key element of its business and has been proactively upgrading its technical capabilities to serve its customers faster, easier and more efficiently. The new technology optimisation not only improves efficiencies across our business but also saves our communications costs significantly. SITA is a long-standing partner of Gulf Air and its continued focus on optimizing network communications by leveraging the latest technology has ensured that our partnership continues.”

Because of its dedication to the air transport industry, SITA can also supply cost-effective and inherently redundant connectivity at airports which is based on its private MPLS networks. Gulf Air will use these community-specific services, called SITA AirportHub, for access to its departure control systems at the 20 airports in which it operates.

Hani El Assaad, SITA President Middle East, India & Africa, said: “Gulf Air leads the way in its deployment of smart technologies. SITA’s efficient network connectivity enables savings and improved productivity for airlines and will support Gulf Air as it continues to make its operations leaner.”


29.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Alaska Airlines Names Ron Calvin as Managing Director, Inflight Operations

Alaska Airlines has promoted Ron Calvin to managing director of inflight operations, with responsibility for the carrier’s flight attendant bases in Anchorage, Los Angeles, Portland and Seattle. Calvin is a 26-year veteran at Alaska Airlines, having held positions of increasing responsibility in the Customer Service – Airports division.

Most recently, as director of customer service for the eastern region based in Washington, D.C., Calvin managed Alaska Airlines’ customer service and ground operations at 17 airports.

Alaska Airlines employs about 3,400 flight attendants.

“Ron is a proven leader who fully understands the importance of customer service and the value of running a solid operation. He is a natural communicator and has built a reputation as a hands-on leader,” said Andy Schneider, Alaska Airlines’ vice president inflight services.

Calvin is the recipient of the Customer Service Legend Award, which is the highest honor an Alaska Airlines employee can receive. He earned a bachelor’s degree from San Jose State University and a master’s degree from Georgetown University.


29.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: LAN Airlines re-selects IFE Services as in-flight entertainment provider

IFE Services announced today that it has been re-selected by LAN Airlines as its in-flight entertainment (IFE) provider.

The agreement covers the provision of all IFE content across the audio visual on-demand (AVOD) and overhead systems onboard the South American airline’s fleet of wide and narrow bodied aircraft.

The entertainment package includes a broad range of Hollywood, classic and Latin American movies, TV programmes and music – all available in English, Latin Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese.

As well as managing content acquisition and supply, IFE Services will take care of the airline’s digital encoding and AVOD management requirements.

“We’re immensely proud to be chosen again by LAN Airlines as its in-flight entertainment supplier,” said Andy McEwan, CEO of IFE Services.

“Having been LAN’s content service provider for some years now, we are ideally placed to further establish their IFE offering as one of the very best in the industry.”


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: JAL and KFC Serve [AIR KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN] Onboard Select Flights to US and Europe

Japan Airlines (JAL) and Kentucky Fried Chicken Japan (KFC) have collaborated on the 7th installment of the popular AIR SERIES in-flight meal onboard select international JAL flights, and will be serving onboard, [AIR KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN] from December 1, 2012 to February 28, 2013.

Japan Airlines KFC Press Releases – Nov 2012During this period, customers traveling in Premium Economy and Economy Class on JAL from Narita to New York, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego*, London, Paris and Frankfurt, will be served KFC’s Original Recipe two-piece chicken meal during the second meal service.

It includes one drumstick, one boneless chicken breast fillet, a piece of complementing flat bread made especially for AIR KENTUCKY, a cup of coleslaw and lettuce leaves. Customers can savor the same, unique taste of KFC’s trade secret recipe of “11 herbs and spices” as it is, or as a sandwich by sandwiching the fresh lettuce leaves and fragrant fillet in the bread, and topping it off with special mayonnaise.

*Available on the San Diego route from the inaugural flight on December 2, 2012.

JAL and KFC have created an exquisite packaging just for this tie-up. The design features JAL and the famous founder and mascot of KFC, Colonel Sanders on a special box and tray mat, unavailable anywhere else but onboard these JAL flights.

KFC is widely popular in Japan particularly during the Christmas season. This year end, JAL and KFC will bring customers a festive cheer onboard with the original [AIR KENTUCKY FRIEND CHICKEN], and will continue to offer innovative, quality services in the New Year.


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Klaus Froese becomes new Managing Director of Tyrolean

Klaus Froese (49), managing director of Lufthansa CityLine, is to become the new managing director of Tyrolean Airways from 1 February 2013.

The flight operations of the Austrian Airlines Group have been bundled in Tyrolean Airways since 1 July 2012.

Jaan Albrecht, CEO Austrian Airlines, sai: “I am pleased Klaus Froese has agreed to our request for him to support the reorientation of the Austrian Airlines Group. The combination of management expertise in cabin, cockpit, technical operations and his personal experience as a pilot make him the perfect addition to our group. The quality of his expertise and proven ability to manage issues such as integration, safety and quality made it clear to us that he was exactly the person we were looking for.”

Froese takes over from Gaudenz Ambühl (61), who fulfilled the function exceptionally during the transitional period immediately following the transfer of flight operations to Tyrolean Airways. After working as the COO on the SWISS Executive Board, Ambühl had already retired, and was initially employed as a consultant on the restructuring efforts of the new management team under Jaan Albrecht at Austrian Airlines.

Klaus Froese began his career as a pilot in 1987, as a first officer with the predecessor of Lufthansa CityLine, Deutsche Luftverkehrsgesellschaft mbH, or DLT. He has working as a pilot for the Lufthansa Group since 1989. He has worked as a pilot on the Embraer 120 and 190/195, Bombardier CRJ 200/700/900, Fokker 50, Boeing 737, and Boeing 747, and as a training captain on the Airbus A320 fleet.

Klaus Froese began his management career whilst still a pilot in 1998, when he was appointed manager of Quality Management. In 2002, he took over the management of the Group Safety Pilot and Quality Management Operations department of Lufthansa.
In 2006, Froese, who was born in Bonn, was appointed as the managing director of Lufthansa CityLine GmbH. As part of overall commercial management, his immediate scope of responsibilities will take in flight operations, including cabin, ground operations, crew training and integrated technical operations. During this time, he will be called upon to oversee a wide-ranging fleet renewal programme and the restructuring of the company as a hub carrier within Lufthansa’s European traffic.

Lufthansa CityLine is a sister company of Austrian Airlines and a 100-percent-owned subsidiary of Deutsche Lufthansa AG. Its fleet includes 60 medium- and short-haul jets. Lufthansa CityLine employs around 2,300 people.


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Finnair to open direct route to Hanoi in summer 2013

Finnair will begin flying to Hanoi in Vietnam in summer 2013, continuing the airline’s strategic focus on traffic between Asia and Europe. Subject to regulatory approvals, Finnair will become the only European airline to offer a direct connection from Europe to the dynamic capital of Vietnam with a population of 6.5 million.

Starting on June 14, Finnair will begin service to Hanoi from its hub in Helsinki with three frequencies per week. From Helsinki, Finnair offers connections to more than 60 European destinations.

The Hanoi route will be operated during the summer schedule season, which lasts until Oct 27. Finnair is represented in Vietnam by its partner East Sea Travel & Air Service Group.

“We are delighted to be able add Hanoi as our 12th destination in Asia,” says CEO Mika Vehviläinen. “This is yet another important step for Finnair toward our long-term goal of doubling our Asian revenue by 2020.”

As a centre of higher education and R&D in the region, Hanoi is forecasted to have the world’s fastest growing economy between the years 2008-2025 (source: PricewaterhouseCoopers). The city is also noted for its historic Old Quarter, French colonial architecture, and pilgrimage site Chua Huong, a network of Buddhist temples and shrines carved out of the limestone hills and tropical forests around Huong Mountain. Near Hanoi is Halong Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site famous for its thousands of limestone isles.

Finnair has built on its Asian strategy during the past two decades, taking advantage of the geographical position of its Helsinki hub on the shortest routes between the great cities of Asia and more than 60 European destinations. The airline’s service and timetables are also optimised for transfer traffic. In addition to Hanoi, Finnair operates to Bangkok, Beijing, Chongqing, Delhi, Hong Kong, Nagoya, Osaka, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore and Tokyo.


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Hawaiian Launches Flights to Australia’s “Sunshine State” Only U.S. Carrier Serving Brisbane, Australia

Hawaiian Airlines today continued its expansion into new international markets, with the launch of nonstop service to Brisbane, Australia, capital city of the State of Queensland.

Passengers of today’s inaugural flight departing Honolulu enjoyed a festive island-style send-off, featuring live Hawaiian music and hula, a traditional Hawaiian blessing by Kahu Richard Kamanu of Kaumakapili Church, and fresh flower lei upon boarding.

Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian’s president and CEO, commented, “Brisbane is our second gateway city in Australia and the accessibility and convenience we are offering into an entirely new region will make it far easier to go and experience the vast appeal of this beautiful country. Likewise, Australians have a great affinity for the charms of Hawai‘i and we see these new flights providing our state’s visitor industry with a tremendous boost.”

Hawaiian also offers nonstop daily flights between Sydney and Honolulu using its 294-seat, wide- body, twin-aisle Airbus A330-200 aircraft.

Only U.S. Carrier Serving Brisbane
Hawaiian is the only U.S. carrier serving Brisbane, giving travelers in Hawai‘i and throughout North America a convenient new travel alternative for experiencing the scenic beauty of Queensland – Australia’s “Sunshine State.”

Centrally located on Australia’s east coast, Brisbane is the gateway to a host of appealing sites and attractions for visitors to enjoy, including the world-famous Great Barrier Reef, world heritage listed rainforests, the iconic Outback territory, and the renowned leisure destinations of Australia’s Gold and Sunshine Coasts.

Brisbane also serves as a key hub for onward travel throughout Australia. Capitalizing on this, Hawaiian has timed its flight schedule for travelers to connect with same-day flights to and from throughout Queensland and other states via an interline partnership with domestic carrier Virgin Australia.

Hawaiian’s Brisbane-Honolulu service is benefiting Hawai‘i’s visitor industry by adding 41,000 new air seats to the market annually, generating an estimated $79 million in visitor expenditures and $8.6 million in tax revenue for Hawai‘i, according to the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority.

Flight Schedule Information
Hawaiian’s Flight HA 443 will depart Honolulu at 10:20 a.m. every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, cross the international dateline, and arrive in Brisbane at 4:00 p.m. the following day. Starting November 28, the return flight HA 444 will depart Brisbane at 6:35 p.m. every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, cross the international dateline, and arrive in Honolulu at 8:05 a.m. the same day.

Hawaiian will operate its Honolulu-Brisbane service offering the comfort and roominess of its wide-body, twin-aisle Boeing 767-300ER aircraft, seating 264 passengers in a two-class cabin, with 18 in Business Class and 246 in the Main Cabin.

Adding to the enjoyment of the travel experience is Hawaiian’s signature ‘Mea Ho‘okipa’ (translation: I am host) onboard service celebrating the culture, people, and Aloha Spirit of the Hawaiian Islands throughout the flight.

Honoring the Southern Cross
Today’s inaugural flight from Honolulu to Brisbane is also honoring the famed transpacific flight of the Southern Cross, which in June 1928 – the year before Hawaiian was founded – became the first aircraft to fly from Hawai‘i to Brisbane.
Originating from Oakland, California, the Southern Cross captured international headlines with its successful completion of the world’s longest journey by air at the time.

Flown by Australian aviation pioneers Charles Kingsford Smith and Charles Ulm, the tri-engine Fokker monoplane took approximately 83 hours to fly from Kaua‘i to Brisbane’s Eagle Farm airfield, stopping en route in Fiji for the pilots to take a one-day rest break.

In honor of Kingsford Smith and Ulm’s pioneering flight, Hawaiian has placed a commemorative image of the Southern Cross near the cockpit window of the Boeing 767-300ER aircraft operating today’s flight.

Continued Long-Haul Expansion
Brisbane is the seventh of eight new destinations that Hawaiian has introduced or announced new service to since November 2010, following Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, and Sapporo, Japan; Seoul, South Korea; and New York City. Hawaiian will launch service to Auckland, New Zealand, on March 13, 2013.

Hawaiian’s continuing growth into new markets and expansion of existing operations in North America has been fueled by its long-haul fleet renewal and expansion program that began in June 2010. Since then, the company has welcomed nine new Airbus A330-200 aircraft to its fleet, and is scheduled to introduce 13 more A330s into service between 2013 and 2015.

Ticket Information
Tickets for any of Hawaiian’s routes can be purchased online at, by calling Hawaiian’s reservations department toll-free at 1-800-367-5320, or through any professional travel agent.


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Stellar Entertainment’s Kuala Lumpur Expansion Complete

Stellar Entertainment is pleased to announce the completion of the expansion of it’s production facility based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Asia’s only truly complete IFE facility.

The new expansion (click here to see photos) will cater for more than 20 additional staff as well as expanded video dubbing facilities and digital capturing, archiving and transcoding.

Stellar Entertainment Chief Operating Officer Michael Reilly said: “We’re very pleased to be able to continue to expand our KL facility, which is a sign of not only continued business growth in general, but the rapid growth of Asia as a whole. We are pleased that our strategy of backing significant growth in Asia some 7 years ago has well and truly paid off”.

The expansion is the third since the company constructed and opened its original production facility in Malaysia in 2005.

“We opened KL in 2005 with about 12 staff and a hybrid video and audio facility of 4 studios. We originally expanded in 2010 and with our latest extension we own and occupy 3 entire floors with 7 studios dedicated to producing a huge volume of physical and digital IFE media – with 25 staff with more coming. We remain committed to investing in our people and technology to offer second-to-none service and support in the Asia Pacific”, said Reilly.

Stellar Entertainment is a leading provider of entertainment content and technical services. Established in 1974, the company now has 5 offices and technical facilities globally, and also jointly owns Sky Victory Technology in China.

The company specialises in:
Content Creation, Programming/Licensing for Film, TV, Music, Games, eBooks/Magazines and more Video Production, Post Production, Motion Graphics & Branding, including a green screen room.

Standalone, full studio production services in our state-of-the-art studios
Complete IFE Technology Management & Delivery – Compilation, Editing, Encoding and Duplication

Complete IFE Digital Content Management – Metadata, QC, Integration & Rack Testing

Print & Digital Design and Production

IFE Technology Consultancy – iPad, Wireless Streaming and more


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: JetBlue’s Live From T5 Concert Features Italian Operatic Teen Trio Il Volo

JetBlue Airways , New York’s Hometown Airline™, today proudly announces an exclusive live performance by critically acclaimed Italian operatic teen trio Il Volo (Italian for “flight”) on Tuesday, December 4, 2012 at 5 p.m. ET at its world-class Terminal 5 at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Celebrating the recent release of their second CD “We Are Love” and their recent tour with Barbra Streisand, Il Volo is spreading holiday cheer throughout New York, first with a performance at the Rockefeller Center tree lighting on Nov. 28 followed by a performance as part of JetBlue’s Live From T5 concert series on Dec. 4. To bring holiday cheer to some of New York’s most deserving residents, the airline and Il Volo have extended special invitations to the performance to JetBlue crewmembers impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

JetBlue’s Live From T5 concerts are held post-security at Terminal 5 (T5) at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York and are available exclusively to ticketed customers and contest winners. Over the past three years, JetBlue’s Live From T5 concert series has transformed the travel experience by producing live entertainment for customers traveling through JetBlue’s Terminal 5. These surprise shows have featured performances by an array of artist across musical genres including Ellie Goulding, Chris Isaak, Jason Derulo, James Blunt, Taylor Swift, Sarah McLachlan and rock band Daughtry.

“Il Volo is the perfect group to perform at our next Live From T5 concert given the group’s new CD and infectious holiday spirit. Our customers are sure to enjoy Il Volo’s unique mix of holiday tunes and selections from their new CD,” said Lisa Borromeo, JetBlue’s director of brand management and advertising. “This is also a great opportunity for us to reach out to some of our crewmembers that have been impacted by Hurricane Sandy and help spread a little holiday cheer.”

As a special holiday treat, JetBlue has also partnered with Interscope Records and Il Volo for a contest to provide tickets to some of the group’s most dedicated fans. Beginning November 27, fans can enter via the group’s website and social media channels for a chance to win passes (winner plus a guest) to this exclusive, intimate concert as well as a private meet and greet with the trio. Fans in the New York area who are members of the Il Volo mailing list can enter via

About Il Volo
Il Volo’s second album “We Are Love” was released on November 19, 2012. The group’s members are Piero Barone (19), Gianluca Ginoble (17) and Ignazio Boschetto (18). The CD, recorded in Los Angeles and Rome, was co-produced by Grammy-winning producer Humberto Gatica and Tony Renis and includes guest appearances by Placido Domingo and Eros Ramazzotti. “We Are Love” includes Il Volo’s soaring version of the Aerosmith/ Diane Warren hit “I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing” (“Questo Amore”), a cover version of the U2 Hit “Beautiful Day,” a new Warren song “I Bring You To My Senses” and the title cut “We Are Love.” The group recently wrapped up a tour as special guests on the Barbra Streisand Tour and also recently completed a series of U.S. tour dates following appearances on “American Idol,” “Good Morning America,” “The Today Show,” “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Ellen,” “The Talk,” “Rachel Ray” and the final episode of the HBO hit “Entourage”. The deluxe version of “We Are Love” includes the 12 track album plus five Christmas songs that were originally released as an EP last year. Their self-titled debut CD, released in 2011 has sold over one million copies to date.

About Live From T5
JetBlue’s Live From T5 concert series debuted in 2009 developed in partnership with Superfly Marketing Group. It has since grown into a concert series that transforms the travel experience by producing live entertainment for customers traveling through JetBlue’s world class Terminal 5 at JFK. Live From T5 features artists from around the world, including many Grammy Award nominees and winners. Over the past three years the series has hosted performances by Kany Garcia, Ellie Goulding, Chris Isaak, Jason Derulo, Robyn, James Blunt, Taylor Swift, Raphael Saadiq, Sarah McLachlan and rock band Daughtry, among others. All Live From T5 concerts take place post-security in the terminal marketplace.


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Astronics Corporation Announced Third Quarter 2012 Financial Results Conference Call and Webcast

Astronics Corporation a leading provider of advanced technologies for the global aerospace and defense industries, announced today that it will release its third quarter 2012 financial results before the opening of financial markets on Tuesday, November 6, 2012, followed by a conference call and webcast at 11:00 a.m. ET.

During the call and webcast, Peter J. Gundermann, President and CEO, and David C. Burney, Executive Vice President and CFO, reviewed the financial and operating results for the quarter and discuss Astronics’ corporate strategies and outlook.
A transcript will also be posted to the Company’s website,


27.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: OLT Express Germany optimizes flight operations with IT from Lufthansa Systems

Lufthansa Systems today announced that the newly established regional German airline known as OLT Express Germany has opted for its NetLine/Ops ++ IT solution and Lido/RouteManual navigation charts.

The airline will use the latest version of the successful operations control solution and will benefit from Lufthansa Systems’ lengthy experience with route charts. The two companies recently signed a five-year agreement to this effect.

NetLine/Ops ++ will enable OLT Express to make its flight operations more efficient by reacting optimally to short-notice disruptions in order to significantly lower the resulting costs.

The solution’s high degree of automation and support for decision-making processes will also make it possible to increase the punctuality of flight operations by up to six percent.

Contact Air, which was recently acquired by OLT Express, has been a satisfied user of products in the NetLine suite from Lufthansa Systems for over ten years.

In addition to introducing NetLine Ops ++, OLT Express has decided to change its long-standing partner for navigation charts and move to the Lido/RouteManual solution from Lufthansa Systems. Generated directly from the Lido navigation database, the charts contain all important route information including altitude and airport data.

Günter Daxhammer, Vice President Flight Operations at OLT Express Germany, said, “The punctuality aspect is very important to us. As a customer-focused airline, we place great value in minimizing the effects of any planned or unplanned schedule changes for our passengers. The modern NetLine/Ops ++ system from Lufthansa Systems offers the best promise of maximum punctuality. With NetLine/Ops ++, we can also further increase our operational efficiency and overall productivity. Having clear, user-friendly navigation charts for our pilots is equally important, of course, and Lufthansa Systems has won us over in this respect as well.”

Lufthansa Systems also welcomes the cooperation with OLT Express. “We are pleased to expand our cooperation with OLT Express through these products. With NetLine/Ops ++ and the NetLine/Crew crew management system which is already in use, we can assist the airline in making its flight operations even more efficient,” said Marco Cesa, Senior Vice President Regional Management Europe at Lufthansa Systems.

OLT Express Germany is a quality low-cost airline offering domestic flights within Germany and international flights within Europe. The key airports on our route network are Bremen, Dresden, Münster/Osnabrück, Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden and Saarbrücken. OLT Express plans to take over business operations of Contact Air on 1 September 2012. After the acquisition, the company will have more than 500 employees, primarily based in Bremen, Stuttgart and Saarbrücken, and its fleet will comprise a total of fifteen aircraft, including ten Fokker 100 jets.


25.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: More movie time and top TV with British Airways

British Airways will become the first UK airline to enable customers to watch their in-flight entertainment screens from the second they reach their seat to the moment they arrive at their destination.

From December 1, British Airways customers will be able to spend even more time – up to an hour more – enjoying movies, top TV shows and a wide selection of music onboard the airline’s flights.

Frank van der Post, British Airways’ director of brands and customer experience, said: “We’re continually looking for new services and products that will make travelling with British Airways even better for our customers.

“We know how much our customers enjoy our carefully selected in-flight entertainment so we’re delighted that now they’ll be able to pack even more of the programmes and films into their long-haul flights.

“And with the Christmas break coming up we’re sure that children flying with British Airways will love having more time to watch the great films we offer, and so will their parents!”

The extension to in-flight entertainment is part of a £5 billion investment programme by British Airways, which includes new aircraft, refurbished cabins and better lounges.

In line with other UK carriers, British Airways currently starts its in-flight entertainment system once the aircraft has taken off and following various announcements and turns it off 15-20 minutes before the aircraft lands.

The airline was given the green light by the Civil Aviation Authority to introduce extended in-flight entertainment on its fleet of long haul aircraft.


A Fish Called Wanda

The Parent Trap

Coming to America

Three Men and a Baby

Die Another Day

The Holiday


Valentine’s Day


Airport ‘79

The V.I.P.s


Local Hero

Nuns on the Run


Proof Of Life



Pushing Tin

Fierce Creatures

The Wild Geese


Air Crash Investigation

The Hunt For Red October


Mission: Impossible



Heston’s Mission Impossible

The Apprentice

Family Guy

Danger Mouse



Duty Free


Worzel Gummidge

Air Crash Investigation – various

My Big Fat Greek Wedding

Engineering Giants – Jumbo Jet Stripdown

Extreme Fishing

Blue Peter

Comic Relief

Only Fools and Horses


25.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: TransAsia Airways takes delivery of its first A330

TransAsia Airways of Taiwan has taken delivery of the first of two A330-300s ordered from Airbus. The aircraft was delivered at a ceremony in Toulouse today attended by TransAsia Airways Chairman Vincent Lin.

The A330 will be the first widebody aircraft to be operated by TransAsia. Featuring a high comfort two class layout seating 300 passengers, the aircraft will initially fly on services from Taipei to Japan and Singapore. These will be followed by new longer range operations to destinations currently under consideration, including Australia and New Zealand, as well as the Middle East. TransAsia has selected Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines to power its A330s.

“The delivery of the A330 will further enhance our quality of service, as well as our passengers’ flight experience,” said Vincent Lin, Chairman, TransAsia Airways, “They will service TransAsia’s international routes, providing passengers a more comfortable journey with advanced in-flight entertainment technology and spacious seating.”

“We are pleased to welcome TransAsia Airways as a new operator of Airbus widebody aircraft,” said John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer, Customers, Airbus. “With the A330 TransAsia will benefit from the aircraft’s low operating costs, proven reliability and great passenger appeal – as well as high levels of technical commonality with its existing A320 Family fleet.”

TransAsia Airways currently operates scheduled services to 46 destinations across Asia with a modern fleet that already includes nine A320 Family aircraft. In addition to its new A330s, the carrier has orders for 18 A321s for future delivery, comprising six A321ceo and 12 A321neo.

The A330 is one of the most widely-used widebody aircraft in service today. Airbus has recorded over 1,200 orders for the various versions of the aircraft and more than 900 are in service with 90 operators worldwide. In addition to passenger and freighter aircraft, the A330 is also available in VIP and military transport / tanker variants.


25.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Qantas gets new aircraft, improves east-west experience

Qantas has today announced it will deploy wide-body Airbus A330s on all weekday Sydney-Perth and Melbourne-Perth services as it continues to meet demand for business and premium travel on the routes.

A new Qantas A330, which landed in Sydney this morning from the Airbus factory in Toulouse, will become the ninth A330 flying on the Qantas domestic network and will start passenger flights within weeks.

Qantas Domestic Chief Executive Officer Lyell Strambi, who unveiled the new aircraft to over 1000 Qantas employees at an event in Sydney, said the A330 aircraft was a vital part of the Qantas domestic strategy.

“Qantas’ A330 aircraft offer superior space and comfort and have individual in-flight entertainment for all of our passengers, making them ideal for longer flights,” Mr Strambi said.

“From May next year, Qantas will deploy A330s on all weekday Sydney-Perth and Melbourne-Perth services which will enable us to better service the growing business market.

“One of Qantas’ key strengths in the domestic market is our wide-body aircraft, which are very popular with our customers.”

Qantas has 30 wide-body aircraft operating on domestic routes in Australia, made up of A330s and B767s.

Mr Strambi said Qantas had signed a number of major new corporate accounts over the past few months, many who have tried other airlines and returned to Qantas.

“In addition to our fleet of new aircraft, our superior network, frequencies, lounges, on-time performance, and frequent flyer program, have seen us maintain our status as best for business and premium travellers,” he said.

“We are also the only domestic airline that offers a meal and checked-in baggage to every passenger as part of their fare, no matter what time they are flying or which class they are in.”

The new Qantas A330 is configured with 36 seats in Business and 268 seats in Economy. Airbus has installed the latest Panasonic on-demand in-flight entertainment and laptop power in every seat.

Qantas currently operates around 100 return flights with more than 26,000 seats from Perth to Sydney and Melbourne each week – about 40 per cent more than our competitor.

Mr Strambi said with the A330, next generation Boeing 737-800 and a growing fleet of regional aircraft including the Boeing 717 and Bombardier Q400 aircraft, Qantas was well positioned for growth in Australia.

“The significant and ongoing fleet renewal is great for customers, great for our shareholders and great for our employees,” he said.

“The Qantas Group has taken delivery of 24 next-generation Boeing 737-800 aircraft with individual entertainment units for all passengers and over the next 12 months another eight will join the fleet.

“Our Boeing 717 aircraft, which we fly on our intra-West Australian and Queensland routes particularly for the mining and resources sectors, will also have new seats and updated interiors installed.”

“By March, Qantas will have refurbished 16 Boeing 767 (B767) aircraft with new interiors and individual in- flight entertainment streamed direct to iPads in every seat. These aircraft look and feel like new and we expect these changes to be very popular with our customers.”

In the past 12 months Qantas has resumed services from Sydney to the Gold Coast, built new lounges at Gold Coast, Gladstone, Mackay, Emerald, Davenport and Rockhampton airport, commenced services to a number of new regional and Fly-In-Fly-Out destinations and introduced a number of new initiatives to improve customer experiences including free Wi-Fi at airports and dedicated premium boarding.


22.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Danish Pilot Union members approve the new collective agreement

~ Following the ballot of Danish Pilot Union members, the new collective agreement that was concluded on 19 November as part of the 4Excellence NG plan has been approved.

~ New SEK 3.5 bn Revolving Credit Facility from Banks and Core Shareholders to secure financial preparedness now only conditional on final parliamentary approvals

On 19 November SAS announced that the Board had decided to consider that the conditions for the implementation of 4Excellence NG exist as all required eight union agreements had been signed. At the same time, SAS announced that the
Danish Pilot Union members would carry through a ballot amongst its members in relation to the collective agreement.

Danish Pilot Union has now completed the ballot amongst its members and informed SAS that the agreement has been approved.

The new revolving credit facility of SEK 3.5 billion is therefore now only subject to parliamentary approval where required. These propositions in relation to the government’s participation in the revolving credit facility will be presented to the parliaments in Sweden and Norway on 12 December 2012. The Danish Finance Committee is expected to make a decision in relation to this on 23 November 2012.


22.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: SAS launches 45 new routes in 2013

SAS, Scandinavia’s leading airline, will in 2013 launch 45 new routes. This means that SAS will offer direct flights to exciting new destinations from all of the main airports and a number of regional airports in the Nordic countries.

In addition to these new routes, SAS will also increase the frequency of current flights on a number of domestic and European routes.

“Many of our customers choose SAS when traveling on business and leisure. They appreciate our time-saving services, and our award-winning punctuality. Therefore, we are proud to offer our customers 45 new routes to choose from in 2013.

This means that we will continue to be the airline that has the largest selection of flights in the Nordic region”, says Joakim Landholm, Executive Vice
President Commercial.

The introduction of these 45 new routes is completely in line with the SAS goal
to meet our customers’ complete travel needs.

These new routes will start being sold successively beginning Monday, November

New routes from Sweden:
From Stockholm to Innsbruck, Pula, Palermo, Cagliari, Thessaloniki, Tel Aviv,
Pristina and Alanya
From Gothenburg to Nice, Pristina and Östersund

New routes from Norway:
From Oslo to Salzburg, Berlin, Budapest, Santorini, Cagliari, Palermo, Pristina,
Valencia, Malta, Lisbon, Athens, Tenerife and Pula
From Bergen to Dubrovnik and Antalya
From Trondheim to Split
From Stavanger to Antalya

New routes from Denmark:
From Copenhagen to San Francisco, Budapest, Prague, Newcastle, Cagliari,
Palermo, Alanya, Thessaloniki, Pula and Biarritz

New routes from Finland:
From Helsinki to Paris, Rome, Prague, Geneva and Östersund
From Turku to Kittilä
From Tampere to Kittilä
In combination with the 45 new routes SAS also increase


22.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Open Skies to fly as oneworld affiliate

OpenSkies, the British Airways subsidiary that offers premium airline services between the USA and continental Europe, is to become an affiliate member of oneworld®, the leading quality global airline alliance, with effect from 1 December 2012.

OpenSkies currently links Paris with the New York metro area with two daily round trips between Paris Orly and Newark.

From March, frequencies will rise to three daily round trips with the addition of one daily round trip between Paris Orly and New York JFK. It is the only airline offering flights to and from the USA at Paris Orly’s West Terminal – the closest to the city centre and with the widest choice of connections within France.

All OpenSkies services are operated by Boeing 757s in a special three-class configuration, with services being brought more into line with those offered on British Airways’ own mainline flights:
Biz Bed cabin features 20 seats that convert to fully-flat beds, similar to British Airways’ Club World (business class).

Prem Plus is an upmarket premium economy, with 28 leather seats in a roomy 2:2 configuration, reclining 130 degrees
Eco is an economy class offering comfort and personalised service, with 66 seats in a 3:3 configuration.

For in-flight entertainment, all passengers are offered a personal iPad with more than 70 hours of movies, TV shows and games.

Its flight attendants wear the usual British Airways uniform, and its aircraft are painted in a livery similar to the regular British Airways design, but the OpenSkies logo along their fuselages.

Its flights now all operate using the BA flight code and its frequent flyer programme is British Airways Executive Club.

At New York JFK and Newark, Biz Bed and Prem Plus passengers are able to use British Airways’ lounges. At Paris Orly, they are offered access to Iberia’s VIP lounge.

As a oneworld affiliate member, from 1 December it will offer the alliance’s full range of services and benefits – including, for members of any oneworld member airlines’ frequent flyer programme, the ability to earn mileage rewards and tier status points and redeem mileage rewards on all OpenSkies flights, and, for top tier cardholders, lounge access when flying OpenSkies.

At the same time, its flights will be featured in all oneworld fares and passengers holding oneworld Emerald and Sapphire status in any oneworld airline’s loyalty programme will also be able to use these facilities when flying on OpenSkies from 1 December, no matter in which cabin they are flying.

OpenSkies Managing Director Patrick Malval said: “With OpenSkies being brought closer to mainstream British Airways, we are delighted now to be able to offer our customers the full range of oneworld services and benefits and to bring our flights into the network of the world’s leading quality airline alliance.”

OpenSkies was launched by oneworld founder member British Airways in 2008 and has carried half a million customers since then. It operates a fleet of three Boeing 757-200s.

Besides its 11 full member airlines, oneworld also includes some 30 affiliate members. These are generally regional airlines with strong links with oneworld full member airlines.

British Airways has three established oneworld affiliate members – BA CityFlyer, which operates out of London City airport, and two airlines which operate as British Airways franchisees, in Denmark’s SUN-AIR and South Africa’s Comair.


22.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Qantas Foundation announces art awards winners

The Qantas Foundation has tonight revealed the winners of the 2012 Encouragement of Australian Contemporary Art Award, with artists from each state and territory taking home a share of cash and Qantas airfares in recognition of their artistic talents.
Each winner receives $8,000 cash and $10,000 Qantas voucher to help further inspire their quest for artistic excellence and support their ambitions.

The Qantas Foundation received a shortlist of 24 submissions, with the entries assessed by an esteemed judging panel including Elizabeth Ann Macgregor, Director of The Museum of Contemporary Art, and renowned art collector Pat Corrigan. Other judges included Julie Lomax and Frank Panucci (Australia Council), art advisor Alan Dodge and 2011 winner Ash Keating.

Qantas Foundation Director Olivia Wirth said the Foundation was delighted to support and encourage Australian artists who could well be the next Brett Whiteley or Peter Weir.

“The 2012 entries were an impressive line-up including contemporary painting, photography, sculptures and audio visual pieces. We applaud the creativity and the originality of these modern artists,” said M1s Wirth.

This year’s winners are:
• NT
• SA
• WA

Chris Carmody – inter-disciplinary (abstract, observational and conceptual art) Daniel McKewen- Digital Media
Jess Olivieri and Hayley Forward – (collective submission)
performance, sound, video, dance and installation
Min Wong – site-specific installation, video and photography
Heidi Kenyon – Sculptural Installation
Mich Meijers and Tricky Walsh (collective submission) – inter-disciplinary (drawing, sculpture, moving image and sound and performance)
Susan Jacobs – drawing, sculpture, performance and video
Andrew Varano – sculpture, model making, video and writing


22.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: SIA deepens commitment to Australia

Singapore Airlines has signed agreements with six tourism organisations in Australia in line with the Airline’s ongoing efforts to promote tourism to the country. The agreements are for a period of between two and four years, with the total investment for the current financial year amounting to more than A$5 million.

New agreements were signed between July and October with the South Australia Tourism Commission and Destination New South Wales, while existing agreements with Tourism Australia, Tourism Queensland, Tourism Victoria and Tourism Western Australia were expanded to increase their value and include new markets. Key markets covered under the agreements include selected countries in Europe and Asia including the UK, Germany, India, Indonesia and Singapore, among others.

Under the partnerships, Singapore Airlines and the tourism organisations are jointly funding marketing campaigns and activities, including mounting advertising campaigns and organising familiarisation visits for travel agents and media, with the aim of actively promoting tourism to the different states in Australia.

Singapore Airlines has been serving Australia for 45 years and continues to expand capacity to the country. Services between Singapore and Adelaide were recently increased to 10 flights per week from seven, while a fourth daily service has been introduced to Perth, up from three. The Airbus A380 superjumbo is also being used for two of the three daily flights to Melbourne, up from one, and for two of the four daily flights to Sydney.

“Australia has always been an important market for Singapore Airlines, and these partnerships serve to strengthen our ties with the country’s tourism organisations,” said Singapore Airlines Acting Senior Vice President Sales & Marketing, Mr Chin Yau Seng.
“Through our extensive global network we are continuing to promote travel to Australia, enabling visitors to discover the wide variety of experiences that the country offers, from rugged natural wonders to cutting-edge lifestyle offerings.”

Singapore Airlines operates 108 flights a week to five Australian cities, namely Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney, while subsidiary SilkAir serves Darwin with four weekly flights. Including codeshare services through a comprehensive alliance with Virgin Australia, SIA offers customers access to 32 Australian cities.


22.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Gulf Air’s Position as Important National Infrastructure Asset Reinforced by Recently Appointed Board of Directors

Gulf Air’s recently appointed Board of Directors led by H.E. Shaikh Khaled bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister met today to discuss the rapid implementation of an accelerated strategy designed to put the airline on a path towards long-term sustainability.

During the meeting the Board of Directors reinforced the airline’s position as the National Carrier for the Kingdom of Bahrain and gave their full support to the restructuring plans.

The board stressed the importance of Gulf Air as key national infrastructure asset helping to maintain an independent destination status for Bahrain by providing links to key regional and global markets, playing a key role in supporting the Kingdom’s economy and helping attract investment.

Recognizing that some tough decisions and choices would have to be made in the short term to ensure the long term sustainability of the airline, the Board passed a resolution to form an Executive Restructuring Committee from members of the board to oversee the implementation of the restructuring plan led by the airline’s management. The Committee will also monitor the spending of the funding granted by His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. Also formed were the Audit committee and Governance Committee.

His Excellency Shaikh Khalid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister & Chairman of the Board of Gulf Air said: “Following the issue of Decree-Law No. 54 for 2012 by His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa on 11 October 2012, pursuant to which funds of BD185 million were allocated to the restructuring of Gulf Air, we have appointed three committees the Executive Restructuring Committee, the Audit Committee and the Governance Committee. The formation of these committees demonstrates our commitment to support Gulf Air and transform it into an airline that serves the people and economy of Bahrain, contributing to its growth and diversity.”

To facilitate decision making and the implementation of the restructuring plan the Board of Directors of Mumtalakat were appointed as the airline’s Board of directors. The Board of Directors of Gulf Air is chaired by H.E. Shaikh Khaled bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister. The other Gulf Air Board members are H.E. Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa, Minister of Finance, H.E. Shaikh Mohammed bin Essa Al Khalifa, Political and Economic Adviser at HRH Crown Prince’s Court, H.E. Mr. Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed, Transport Minister, H.E. Mr. Essam Abdulla Khalaf, Minister of Works, Mahmood Hashim Al Kooheji, Chief Executive Officer of Mumtalakat, Dr. Esam Abdulla Fakhro, Dr. Samer Al Jishi, and Mr. Redha Abdulla Faraj.


20.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Alaska Airlines Rolls Out More Power Outlets at its Major Hubs

Alaska Airlines is powering up customer waiting areas at its major airports with electrical outlets that make it easier for travelers with electronic devices. At its airport gates in Anchorage, Portland and Seattle, the airline just finished installing 200 additional electrical outlets, each of which includes a 120-volt receptacle and two USB ports.

Power outlets in gate areas are also available at Alaska Airlines’ new Terminal 6 at Los Angeles International Airport and at Sacramento, San Francisco and San Jose airports, and the carrier plans to add outlets to more of its major airports.

“The project is part of our ongoing effort to improve the travel experience for our customers,” said Joe Sprague, Alaska Airlines’ vice president of marketing. “Additional power outlets at our gates—coupled with other recent enhancements for keeping customers connected, such as our new mobile apps, enhanced mobile website and inflight Wi-Fi—are just a few of the ways Alaska Airlines is making flying easier.”

In addition to its mobile apps for iPhone/iPod and Android devices, Alaska Airlines has in the past year:
Launched a new mobile website,, which allows travelers to purchase tickets; view and choose/change seats; check in and obtain an electronic boarding pass; and check flight status, schedules, and upgrade and standby lists; among other features.

Unveiled “Flight Status On the Go,” a text messaging tool that allows customers to text 252752 (ALASKA) for current flight status information, including city pairs, arrival and departure times, and gate information.
Partnered with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to offer Pre-Check, an expedited security screening, for eligible travelers at select airports.


20.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Gulf Air, Tune Hotels, and Virgin America Receive Kids First Teddy Bear Awards

The final bidding has closed on the 2012 International Online Travel Auction for Kids and it’s time to recognize three star performers associated with this year’s event.

 Virgin America donated airline travel to any US destination that generated total bid activity in excess of $1,700, more than any other single corporate donor.

 Tune Hotels of Asia provided 30 packages – an astounding number of auction items – which included hotels in Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, and the United Kingdom.

 Gulf Air was selected as the winner of the 2012 Family Friendly Airline Award in a Facebook poll prior to the auction.

Tune Hotels and Gulf Air received a Kids First Teddy Award in recognition of their support for this year’s auction. Each bear has been custom crafted by the Vermont Teddy Bear Company with the logo of the Kids First Fund and a sash recognizing the recipient company. Virgin America will receive its award at the MEGA

Awards Gala event on November 27, 2012 in San Diego. Phil Seward, director of loyalty for Virgin America, will accept the award. “This year’s auction was a global event because of donor airlines, hotels, and travel companies from all over the world,” said Jay Sorensen, president of the Kids First Fund. “The event will become bigger for 2013 through a new association with the Mega Awards.” Top donor companies for the 2013 International Online Travel Auction for Kids will be recognized at next year’s Mega Awards Gala, which has become the leading recognition event for genuine innovation in the airline and travel industry.

Mitul Lakhani (right), CFO of Tune Hotels, receives a Teddy Bear Award from Jay Sorensen, president, Kids First Fund.

Donor companies for the 2012 auction included: Airphil Express, Avis Car Rental, Choice Hotels, Estonian Air, Gogo Inflight Internet, Gulf Air, Hilton HHonors, Pegasus Airlines, SATA Air Acores, Tune Hotels, Vietnam Airlines, Virgin America, Virgin Australia, and Wyndham Hotels and Resorts.

About the Kids First Fund: The Kids First Fund helps abused and abandoned children. We protect children from abuse. We empower young adults to seek a positive future. We strengthen families. We build awareness of child abuse. We operate in countries where resources are limited. The Kids First Fund does not incur any expenses, since all staffing and services are donated. The organization has been granted special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. Learn more at and

About the MEGA Awards: The Mega Awards were created to honor genuine innovation in the airline and travel industry. The November 27, 2012 event represents the third annual award recognition of innovative campaigns, products, and people in the areas of ancillary revenue, loyalty marketing, and social media. The Mega Awards Gala is held in conjunction with the Mega Event, which an annual loyalty marketing and ancillary revenue conference attended by 400+ airline and travel industry executives from all over the world. Learn more at

About the Vermont Teddy Bear Company: The Vermont Teddy Bear Company has been making the best Bears in the Universe for over twenty years – and every bear is lovingly designed, cut, sewn, stuffed, and stitched right here in Vermont. We are proud to be one of the top-rated stores on the Internet. As a Circle of Excellence

Platinum Award-Winner, we have been recognized by online shoppers, year after year, as one of the “best of the best” online stores. Learn more at


20.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Deadline for Alaska Airlines’ Paint the Plane Contest Nov. 30

Ten days left for Hawaii keiki to submit artwork that may adorn a 737-800 aircraft

School-aged children in Hawaii have just 10 more days to submit their artwork for Alaska Airlines’ statewide “Paint the Plane” contest.

The contest is a partnership between the airline, Hawaii State Department of Education and the Hawaii Association of Independent Schools, and encourages students to create artwork honoring the unique culture of the Aloha State.

Students in kindergarten through 12th grade from public, private and home schools across the state have until Nov. 30 to submit designs that best capture the “Spirit of the Islands.”

A final selection panel comprised of 10 judges representing Hawaii’s government, community, arts, education and tourism leaders will select three top designs.

Residents of Hawaii will then vote on the top three designs and provide Alaska Airlines with their recommendation in an online public vote slated for Dec. 11-18.

“We’ve seen many creative and colorful submissions from students across Hawaii and encourage any student from public, private and home schools to submit their best artwork,” said Joe Sprague, Alaska Airlines’ vice president of marketing.

“This is an opportunity for a budding young artist to showcase the ‘Spirit of the Islands’ to travelers across the country—and the deadline is next week.”

The student with the winning submission will get his or her design painted on an Alaska Airlines aircraft, a trip for four to any of the carrier’s destinations and a $5,000 scholarship.

Second- and third-place winners will receive a trip for four to any Alaska Airlines destination, and 12 honorable mentions will be awarded a $1,000 scholarship each.

“What a great way for Alaska Airlines to celebrate five years of serving the Hawaiian Islands,” said Mike McCartney, president and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority and one of the contest judges.

“This is truly a unique opportunity for our young people and will allow Hawaii to share our aloha spirit on a flying mural across North America. I hope that students from all grade levels on every island will submit their best designs and I look forward to seeing what our talented keiki come up with!”

“Spirit of the Islands” contest schedule:

Nov. 30 – Entry forms must be postmarked and mailed to the designated Alaska Airlines P.O. box in Honolulu
Dec.11-18 – Hawaii residents vote online for their favorite design at
Jan.10, 2013 – Online voting results and winner announced
Spring 2013 – Painted plane unveiled

Complete contest details and judges’ biographies are available at, along with contest rules, instructions and entry forms required to participate. Randomly selected design entries are also on display under the “Art Gallery” tab.


20.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Oman Air boosts economic development‫ ‬with launch of new Muscat-Jaaluni charter service

The inauguration of Oman Air’s direct flight between Muscat and Jaaluni airport in Al Wusta Governorate, located on the southern coast of Oman, took place on Monday 19 November 2012, as the Sultanate celebrated its 42nd National Day. His Excellency Yahya bin Said Al Jabri, Chairman of the Board of the Special Economic Zone Authority in Duqm, was the chief guest.

· Sector will shorten distances, save time, effort and money, as well as accelerate the pace of development of both Duqm and Al Wusta Governorate
· Oman Air will operate 3 flights weekly between Muscat and Jaaluni
· This step supports the Royal directives to link infrastructure and social development


20.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Hawaiian Airlines CEO Signs New Three-Year Contract Extension

Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. Chairman of the Board Lawrence S. Hershfield today announced that Hawaiian Airlines President and Chief Executive Officer Mark B. Dunkerley has signed a new three-year contract extension to continue leading the airline through 2016.

“Mark’s leadership in the development and successful execution of Hawaiian’s long term business plan has been exemplary, and the Board is pleased that he will continue to lead the evolution of the business for years to come,” Hershfield said.

Dunkerley commented, “I’m thrilled to be continuing at Hawaiian Airlines. It’s a privilege to work with everyone at our company and I am more excited about the prospect of what lies ahead for our company than at any other time in my years at Hawaiian. I’d like to thank our Board of Directors for their continued support.”

Hawaiian Airlines has twice been rated higher than any other U.S. airline for overall service quality by the Airline Quality Rating (AQR) study and has led the industry in on-time flight performance for each of the past eight years (2004-2011), as reported by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Consumer surveys by Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure and Zagat have all ranked Hawaiian the highest of all domestic airlines serving Hawai‘i.


20.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: SIA & Virgin Australia announce codeshare expansion

Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia today announced the expansion of their codeshare agreement to cover further destinations in Australia, Asia and Europe.

Codesharing has been extended with immediate effect to all of Virgin Australia’s domestic destinations, offering SIA customers access to 32 Australian cities. SIA also intends to further expand codesharing in the coming months to include trans- Tasman flights between Australia and the New Zealand cities of Dunedin, Queenstown and Wellington, subject to regulatory approval.

In the first quarter of 2013, Virgin Australia will in turn extend its current codeshare with SIA to cover connections from the East Coast of Australia to Europe and additional cities in Asia, via SIA’s hub in Singapore. Virgin Australia currently codeshares on SIA flights to Europe from Adelaide, Perth and Darwin.

In total, Virgin Australia customers will now have access to 64 destinations in Asia and 12 destinations1 in Europe on the SIA and SilkAir networks from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Darwin.

“This codeshare expansion is a major step forward in our deepening partnership. With more cities covered, Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia can together offer even better connections for our customers between Singapore and Australia, as well as through our Singapore hub to many more points around the world,” said SIA Executive Vice President Commercial, Mr Mak Swee Wah.

Virgin Australia Group Executive of Alliances, Network and Yield, Ms Merren McArthur, said: “There is strong demand from our customers to be able to travel onwards from Asia to Europe. We currently offer this option to customers from Adelaide, Perth and Darwin, and today’s announcement will see this expanded to include the East Coast of Australia. We also welcome the expansion of Singapore Airlines’ codeshare on our domestic services as it will help to promote tourism in Australia.”

SIA and Virgin Australia entered into a wide-ranging partnership last year. In addition to codesharing, the alliance covers reciprocal frequent-flyer programme benefits and lounge access, coordinated schedules to provide seamless connections, and joint sales, marketing and distribution activities.

SIA and subsidiary SilkAir together serve 97 destinations in 36 countries across six continents. Virgin Australia serves 49 destinations in 14 countries.


20.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: LUMEXIS® WIPAX debuts ALTA Airline Leaders Forum in Panama

The Latin American and Caribbean Air Transport Association, ALTA, reported that Lumexis Corporation’s Wireless-To-PEDs IFEC System, WiPAX£, was a strong hit at the association’s annual Airline Leaders Forum held this week in Panama City, Panama.

“Our association always takes a leadership role in exploring new technologies for the benefit of our airline members, in this case, the important advances in providing full In- Flight Entertainment and Communication via WiFi directly to Passenger Electronic Devices”, reported Alex de Gunten, Executive Director of ALTA.

“Therefore, we invited Lumexis to provide its new WiPAX technology for the use of attendees during the conference. Our members were so uniformly impressed by its easy navigation of our ALTA-WiPAX site and consistent, super high-speed performance in streaming highest quality video, that several did not even recognize it was an airline IFEC system.”

“Lumexis was honored to have been able to support ALTA during this important annual event hosting several hundred senior executives from major airlines in the Latin American and Caribbean Region,” responded Douglas Cline, CEO of Lumexis Corporation.

“Our team worked closely with ALTA management in adapting our on-board system to the needs of this influential airline industry meeting. Thus, ALTA not only introduced key managers of Latin America’s leading airlines to wireless IFEC, but enabled them to experience firsthand the ease of use and high speed streaming capability for their passengers.”


19.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Qatar Flies First B787 with Inflight Connectivity – OnAir connects passengers to family, friends and work

Passengers on Wednesday’s historic first flight of Qatar Airways’ Boeing 787 Dreamliner sent text messages, emailed, tweeted, updated social media accounts and used the Internet throughout the journey. The plane is the first B787 with inflight connectivity.

It is provided by OnAir, delivering both Wi-Fi Internet and mobile phone access to passengers.

There were nearly 100 passengers on the 13 hour flight from Seattle to Doha. There were over 50 Internet sessions, using a total of 1,250MB of data, with the average usage per session being around 22MB.

The mobile phone network was used by nearly 75 phones. 340 text messages were sent and nearly 50MB of mobile data was used.

Comments from passengers were very positive and many of them enjoyed live tweeting throughout the flight, particularly sending pictures of the meals and the aurora borealis.

Mobile OnAir has already been in operation on Qatar’s A320 fleet for three years, enabling passengers to use their mobile phones and smartphones on flights in Africa, Europe and the Middle East.

“Qatar’s passengers are used to staying in touch with friends and family using OnAir: access to connectivity is now an integral part of any inflight experience,” said Ian Dawkins, CEO of OnAir.

“This is the first of Qatar’s B787s and OnAir will be on the entire fleet. These are the most modern aircraft being operated by an airline that prides itself on the highest levels of passenger services. It confirms why OnAir is leading the global inflight connectivity market.”

Qatar’s Dreamliner will enter commercial service on Tuesday 20 November. Qatar Airways has 60 B787s on order, all of which will be equipped with OnAir connectivity.

Using OnAir connectivity
OnAir inflight connectivity is very simple for passengers to use. Internet OnAir creates an onboard Wi-Fi hotspot that can be accessed by any Wi-Fi-enabled device, including smartphones, tablets and laptops.

As with any other hotspot, users pay by simply entering their credit card details when prompted. Mobile OnAir delivers a GSM mobile network. It works in the same way as international roaming, with costs being included in passengers’ monthly bills.

Passengers can use OnAir connectivity on over 14,500 flights each month, to over 510 cities in over 110 countries across Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, the Middle East and South America.

OnAir is available for all aircraft types, from the smallest business jets to the largest commercial airliners; nearly half the world’s A380 fleet is equipped with OnAir connectivity.


19.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: JetBlue Airways Calls All Customers to Help Design Next Tablet App in New ThinkUp Campaign

JetBlue Airways, the airline that listens to its customers, is taking transparency to new heights with the launch of ThinkUp, a campaign where customers can speak up on a multitude of products and services.

For the launch of this platform, JetBlue is asking customers for their ideas about what its new tablet experience should look like.

Starting today through Dec. 2, 2012, customers can submit their ideas for what features should be included in the airline’s new tablet app by visiting and clicking on the ThinkUp tab.

All submissions will be vetted by JetBlue and a public vote will commence for the top five favorite ideas on Dec. 10 through Dec. 17, across six categories: Educational, Fun, Ticketing, Functional, Loyalty and Other.

Each of the five grand prize winners will win travel on JetBlue for a year in the form of two travel certificates each month for a year, with each certificate good for the roundtrip base fare of a JetBlue flight that month. Plus, the winning ideas may be included into the development planning of JetBlue’s new tablet app in early 2013.

“ThinkUp is the next phase in our ongoing integration of customer feedback into the development of our products and services. We’re pleased to open up our tablet app research to the public for a truly transparent process,” said Mike Stromer, JetBlue’s vice president of customer connections marketing.

“We’re excited to see what new app features come out of this and reward those with the most popular ideas with a year of travel.”

A leader in the digital airline space, JetBlue recently celebrated its one millionth iPhone app download, and introduced its new app for Android. The new innovation comes on the heels of the airline’s digital refresh in early 2012, which included a redesigned and mobile site,
JetBlue Airways takes customer feedback into all new product and service offerings.

A panel composed of customers and crewmembers provides regular opinions on preview products and key findings are integrated into the rollout of new offerings.

The airline that listens also encourages a personal dialogue with its engaged social audiences and incorporates feedback via those channels into its existing policies and procedures, altering when necessary to continue to provide excellence in customer service.


19.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Recaro Aircraft Seating receives MX Award 2012

Recaro Aircraft Seating has received the Manufacturing Excellence (MX) Award in the “customer orientation” category. On November 16, 2012, representatives from the aircraft seating supplier accepted the award at the Axel Springer building in Berlin.

In accordance with the motto “recognizing strengths – setting standards,” best practice companies were once again honored with the MX Award this year. In the “customer orientation” category of the competition for excellence in production, Recaro Aircraft Seating was convincing in every aspect.

The panel of judges consisting of academic, industry and media represen- tatives were impressed with the aircraft seating manufacturer’s outstanding concepts, which, in addition to the market and customer-oriented development of products, primarily guarantee a consistently high level of quality and punctual deliveries.

“We are glad to receive this award, which clearly reflects our strengths in the area of production,” says Dr. Mark Hiller, Chief Executive Officer of Recaro Aircraft Seating. “This competition serves us as an excellent tool for assessing where we currently stand, and it is a valuable source of inspiration for further development.”

In the past year, the company has impressively demonstrated its innovative strength: Recaro Aircraft Seating reported record
production figures – along with exceptional delivery reliability. The company is also a just-in-sequence supplier for Airbus and received a gold performance rating from Boeing. “Our mission is to be the best seat manufacturer from the point of view of our customers,” says Dr. Mark Hiller as he sums up the high standards at Recaro Aircraft Seating. “This includes high quality and a zero-defect production strategy.”

“Efficiently manufacturing precisely what the customer desires within a very short space of time is not an easy task in the sector where we operate: It is characterized by immense diversity of variants and capacity fluctuations in production,” explains Joachim Ley, Vice President Supply Chain at Recaro Aircraft Seating.

“To be successful on the market, we need smoothly operating processes with direct and efficient communication paths and swift decision-making processes. The measures taken during our ‘Operations Excellence’ initiative have proven completely effective here.” A comprehensive optimization program was launched in 2007. Thanks to newly introduced lean production processes, today the company can react even more flexibly and rapidly to changes and current requirements.

Recaro Aircraft Seating has also embraced a special management philosophy. With shopfloor management, the company has developed a culture of consistent improvements to management performance and communication: Thanks to regular exchanges of information, problems are recognized at an early stage, there are immediate reactions to variations and solutions are quickly introduced. “Communication is the key,” says Joachim Ley.

“This occurs internally and always in direct, open exchanges with our customers.”


16.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: United customers can expedite travel process with TSA PreCheck As Program

United Airlines announced the launch of the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) PreCheck program at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) Terminal 3. TSA PreCheck also opened for United customers this week at Baltimore-Washington International (BWI) and San Juan – Luis Muñoz Marin International in Puerto Rico (SJU).

TSA PreCheck is a new, risk-based pre-screening initiative that allows customers to volunteer information about themselves that may make them eligible to expedite their screening experience.

Eligible United customers are allowed to leave on their shoes, light outerwear and belts and to keep their laptops and 3-1-1 compliant liquids and gels in their carry-ons when traveling through the Terminal 3 Premium Checkpoint at SFO, the Main Terminal Checkpoint D at BWI, and the Main Terminal Checkpoint 4 at SJU.

“We are excited that the TSA is expanding the PreCheck process to our San Francisco hub,” said Alex Marren, United’s senior vice president of network operations and United Express. “We now have PreCheck at seven of our United hubs and 15 other airports, and customers are welcoming the new process.”

The TSA manages and operates this program and is working with United and with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to identify possible participants. Eligible United MileagePlus members are being invited to participate in the initial phase.

Non-members may qualify by becoming eligible members of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Trusted Traveler programs. For customers who choose to participate, the TSA will determine eligibility for expedited screening prior to each flight and will embed this information in the barcode of eligible customers’ boarding passes.

TSA agents will scan the boarding pass and direct eligible customers to the assigned pre-screening lane. The TSA will always incorporate random and unpredictable security measures, so no customers are guaranteed expedited screening.

MileagePlus members participating in this program may be eligible for expedited security screening at Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago O’Hare, Cincinnati, Denver, Honolulu, Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Newark, Orlando, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Portland, Ore., Reagan Washington National, Seattle, and Washington Dulles, in addition to Baltimore, San Francisco and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

United customers can look forward to TSA PreCheck launching at additional airports in 2012.


16.11.12 | PRESS RELEASE: Dave Davis to serve as Vice President & CEO of Global Eagle Entertainment Inc. after closing of business combination

Global Eagle Acquisition Corp. today announced that Dave Davis, former chief financial officer of Northwest Airlines Corporation and US Airways Group and current director of Row 44 Inc. (Row 44), will join the company as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer upon closing of its proposed business combination transaction in which Global Eagle will acquire Row 44 and 86% of the issued and outstanding shares of Advanced In-flight Alliance AG.

On November 8, 2012, Global Eagle announced the signing of definitive agreements for the business combination to create the largest entertainment and connectivity platform for the worldwide airline industry.

AIA is the leading supplier of games, movies, general entertainment and applications to the airline industry, serving more than 130 airlines worldwide. Row 44 is a leading satellite-based broadband service provider to the global airline industry, with its in-flight entertainment connectivity system currently installed on more than 400 aircraft that operate over land and sea worldwide.

Global Eagle Acquisition Corp. will be renamed Global Eagle Entertainment Inc. upon the closing.

Prior to the closing of the business combination, Davis will serve as Chief Financial Officer of Row 44, reporting to John LaValle, Chief Executive Officer of Row 44. Upon closing, Davis will transition to take on the position of Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Global Eagle Entertainment Inc.

In his role at Global Eagle, Davis will be responsible for Global Eagle’s group finance functions including financial planning and analysis, controllership, tax, treasury, investor relations, and mergers and acquisitions activity.

“As the in-flight entertainment experience continues to evolve at a rapid pace, Dave’s keen insight will be crucial in developing the innovative products and services that move our business forward,” said Ed Shapiro, Chairman of the Board of Row 44 and Chairman-designate of Global Eagle Entertainment.

“Not only have I known and respected him for many years, but as a member of the Row 44 board, his advice has been invaluable.”

Added LaValle: “Dave brings us a history of leading the financial strategy and stewardship of numerous successful private and public companies. It is this unparalleled track record, combined with his reputation as one of the airline industry’s most respected financial executives, that made him our hands-down choice as we endeavor to build the largest integrated entertainment platform in the business.”

“This is an incredibly exciting time in the in-flight entertainment space and I’m thrilled to be taking on a key role at Global Eagle Entertainment,” said Davis. “I believe there is a lot of runway ahead for this business, and I look forward to working with Ed, John and the rest of the executive team as we define Global Eagle Entertainment’s future and take the in-flight entertainment experience to a whole new level.”

Most recently, Davis served as Senior Vice President, Enterprise Finance, at Best Buy, Inc. in Minneapolis.

Davis has accumulated years of experience in leading the finance functions and strategic planning in the airline industry. He joined US Airways Group in 2002 as Vice President, Financial Planning & Analysis before being promoted to Executive Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer in 2004. A year later, Davis joined Northwest Airlines Corporation as Senior Vice President, Finance and Controller. From June of 2007 to November of 2008, he served as Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer where he oversaw the Northwest Delta merger process.

From 2008 to 2010, Davis served as Senior Managing Director of Perseus LLC, a private equity firm with over $1.6 billion investment until he cofounded Bearpath Capital, LLC, a private equity and management advisory firm. While at Perseus, Davis led the firm’s investment in, and currently serves as a board member of, Lumexis Corporation, a provider of in-flight entertainment systems for commercial aircraft. Davis also became a board member of Row 44 in 2008 and has been working closely with the company on its expansion in the in-flight marketplace.

Davis brings over 20 years of in-depth experience in financial, operational and business management expertise to Global Eagle. Davis has also held key finance posts at Budget Group (home to Budget Rent-A-Car and Ryder Truck Rental) and Kraton Polymers, LLC, the world’s leading manufacturer of SBCs (Styremic Block Copolymers). Early in his career, he also worked for Rockwell International as a Flight Planning Engineer before moving to BF Goodrich Aerospace, Inc. as a Marketing Engineer. Davis is a graduate of the University of Minnesota earning a Bachelor of Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics degree. He also earned his MBA at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management.


15.11.12 | JetBlue Airways and KaBOOM! Build the First-Ever Playground for K.C. Wright Leadership Academy and the Children of Tamarac, FL

JetBlue Airways today is proud to announce a partnership with Kathleen C. (KC) Wright Leadership Academy and KaBOOM!, the national non-profit dedicated to saving play.

The kid friendly airline has partnered with KaBOOM! to build the first-ever playground at K.C. Wright Leadership Academy located in Tamarac, FL, further highlighting the airline’s commitment to Fort Lauderdale and the surrounding community. K.C. Wright Leadership Academy students did not previously have a playground to enjoy.

As children discover the world through play, the new playground now provides more than 150 children in the local community with a safe location for recreation. Since 2005, JetBlue and long-standing partner KaBOOM! have worked together to create safe play spaces for children across JetBlue’s communities and help fight the deficit of play for children in underserved neighborhoods.

The playground at K.C. Wright Leadership Academy was truly designed for students by students. The new playground’s blueprint is based on drawings created by children from the school who participated in a Design Day event in September. The students have also decided to “play it forward” with a penny wars campaign to raise funds to donate to a future playground build in another community in southern Florida. K.C. Wright Leadership Academy is a tuition-free, public charter school.

“Fort Lauderdale was JetBlue’s first destination, so we have a strong connection to the city and surrounding communities. We’re really excited to work with our longtime partner KaBOOM! and the Florida Panthers organization to provide the first playground for students at K.C. Wright Leadership Academy,” said JetBlue’s Chief Operating Officer Rob Maruster. “Play is such an important part of a child’s development. This playground will serve as a source of recreation and a safe place to play for the entire Tamarac community.”

More than 200 volunteers from JetBlue, the Florida Panthers, K.C. Wright Leadership Academy, organizers from KaBOOM! and residents of the Tamarac worked side by side to build the new playground at K.C. Wright Leadership Academy. Today’s kids spend less time playing outside than any previous generation in part because only one in five children live within walking distance of a park or playground. This play deficit is having profound consequences for kids physically, socially and cognitively. Children need a place to play every day in order to be active and healthy.

“KaBOOM! is thrilled to continue our tremendous work with our National Partner, JetBlue,” said KaBOOM! Founder and CEO Darell Hammond. “Every child deserves to have a great place to play and we made that possible for children at K.C. Wright Leadership Academy, while bringing KaBOOM! one step closer to our vision of a great place to play within walking distance of every child in America.”

“Our entire school community is honored to have been chosen by KaBOOM! for this playground build. Our teachers, administration, staff, and parents at Kathleen C. Wright Leadership Academy have worked collaboratively with our partners to ensure a successful build for our deserving students. In keeping with our mission, we know that this playground will have a profound impact on our students both inside and outside the classroom by creating positive and healthy experiences for them through fun, physical activity that will help to increase their concentration and focus at school,” said Kathleen C. Wright Leadership Academy Assistant Principal, Donald G. Nicolas.

“In addition, the benefits of play also encourage high academic achievement which is the expectation for our students. We anticipate continuing this relationship with JetBlue and the Florida Panthers that has been forged through the building of this play space. This playground will make a tremendous impact on our school campus and our neighboring community for years to come.”

JetBlue and KaBOOM! have worked together over the last seven years to create play spaces for children. This partnership has successfully engaged more than 3,600 volunteers to move 15 tractor trailers full of mulch and build 15 playgrounds, which now benefit more than 10,000 children.

The playground at K.C. Wright Leadership Academy marks the 16th playground build, four in Florida, through the collaboration. This is also JetBlue’s fifth build in 2012 (Long Beach, CA; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Boston, MA: San Francisco, CA; and Fort Lauderdale, FL). JetBlue Airways is a KaBOOM! National Partner, a group of organizations providing long-term guidance and support to KaBOOM! and its mission.


15.11.12 | Alaska Airlines Announces Daily Service from San Diego to Boston and Kauai

Alaska Airlines announced it will begin new service between San Diego and Boston starting March 29 and between San Diego and Lihue, Kauai, on June 7, 2013. Tickets are available for purchase today at or by calling 1-800-ALASKAAIR (800-252-7522 or TTY/TDD line 800-392-0228).

“Bolstered by strong demand from the business community and vacation travelers alike, we’re thrilled to announce convenient nonstop service from San Diego to historical ‘Beantown’ and the beautiful ‘Garden Isle,’ ” said Joe Sprague, Alaska Airlines’ vice president of marketing. “With the addition of these two new routes, Alaska Airlines will offer 160 flights a week from San Diego to a dozen cities by next summer.”

Alaska has added four flights from San Diego this year, including nonstop service to Orlando, Fla., and daily service to Fresno, Monterey and Santa Rosa, Calif. In addition to Alaska’s new San Diego-Kauai service, the carrier also flies daily from San Diego to the Hawaiian Islands of Oahu and Maui.

To celebrate the new service, Alaska Airlines is offering introductory fares starting from $129* each way between San Diego and Boston and $209* each way between San Diego and Kauai. Tickets must be purchased by Nov. 23 and can be used for travel between San Diego and Boston from March 29 through May 17, and for travel between Kauai and San Diego from May 7 through July 18, 2013. Members of Alaska Airlines’ Mileage Plan can also earn double miles on San Diego-Boston flights between March 29 and July 17 and on San Diego-Kauai flights between June 7 and Aug. 7, 2013. To qualify, customers must first register at


15.11.12 | Latin American airlines will require more than 2,100 new aircraft in next 20 years – Region’s airlines to benefit from second highest traffic growth in the world

According to the recently released Airbus Global Market Forecast (GMF), Latin American airlines will require 2,120 new aircraft between today and 2031, including 1,660 single-aisle, 420 twin-aisle and 40 very large aircraft estimated at $242 billion. Globally, by 2031 some 28,200 new aircraft valued at $4 trillion will be required to satisfy future robust market demand.

With GDP currently growing above the world average, socio-economic indicators predict Latin America’s middle class will double between 2012 and 2031. Additionally, Latin America has become the second most urbanised region worldwide after North America, and by 2031, 10 out of the 92 mega-cities with more than 10,000 daily long-haul passengers will be in the region.

As a result of this region’s dynamic economic growth, Latin America’s air traffic will rise 5.3 percent per year over the next 20 years, well above the world average of 4.7 percent. Benefiting from this, the region’s airlines will grow their own traffic by almost 6 percent per year, the second highest growth globally, only exceeded by those airlines based in the Middle East. Additionally, Latin American airlines’ market share on long-haul routes increased by 8 percent between 2005 and 2011, to reach 21 percent today, showing that they have significant development potential for intercontinental networks.

Increased aircraft demand is also leading Latin American airlines to ordering larger aircraft. Between 2000 and 2012, average aircraft seat capacity increased by more than 13 percent, while the average age of Latin America’s fleet in service decreased below the world average to 10 years of age.

“The Latin American market has become smarter, seeking out highly-efficient, cost-effective and versatile aircraft,” said Rafael Alonso, Executive Vice President of Airbus for Latin America and the Caribbean. “Airbus is perfectly positioned to serve the market’s requirements and future aviation demand with its A320, A330 and A350 Families, as well as the A380.”

Another important trend in Latin America is the rise of low cost carriers throughout the region. Brazil and Mexico have become leaders of the low-cost-carrier segment in the region, with the two countries combined contributing to 95 percent of the market.

With more than 700 aircraft sold and a backlog of almost 350, over 450 Airbus aircraft are in operation throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. In the last 10 years, Airbus has tripled its in-service fleet, while delivering more than 60 percent of all aircraft operating in the region.


15.11.12 | Interjet adds 10 options to its firm order of 20 Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft

On the occasion of ALTA Airlines Leaders Forum, held in Panama City, SuperJet International – joint venture between Alenia Aermacchi and Sukhoi Holding – announced that the Mexican airline Interjet, first SSJ100 western customer, added 10 options to its current firm order for 20 SSJ100 aircraft.

Based on the aircraft list price, the total Interjet order has a potential value of over 1 billion dollars, including options.

The first “green“ Interjet SSJ100 landed at Venice Marco Polo airport (Italy) on October 6th 2012 for completion and customization at SuperJet International’s facility. The Company is currently developing the EASA STC, Supplemental Type Certification, for the interiors’ installation, which will be branded by Pininfarina Italian Style.

SJI plans to deliver the first Interjet SSJ100 in March 2013 with a consequent delivery-rate of one aircraft per month.

Originally Interjet signed a contract for the purchase of 15 SSJ100 aircraft with a configuration of 93 seats plus 5 options. During the last Farnborough Airshow Mr. Miguel Aleman Velasco, Chairman of Interjet announced the decision of the airline to convert its five options into firm orders, thus bringing to 20 the number of firm aircraft.

Now the Customer extends the agreement covering the 10 additional options.
“This new agreement confirms the solid relationship we have established with Interjet since the signature of our deal and it proves the strong belief of the Customer in the SSJ100 product and services – states Nazario Cauceglia, Chief Executive Officer of SuperJet International – We are currently working in Venice to grant a first-class service and we are also confident that these 10 options will be soon converted into firm orders”.

The SSJ100 aircraft, developed and built by Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company (SCAC), a Sukhoi and Alenia Aermacchi Company, is a technologically advanced regional aircraft which provides the maximum efficiency in the high altitude/high temperature typical of Mexico and fits with Interjet’s high operational and customer service standards.

In April 2012 the SSJ100 received the Mexican Certification confirming its compliance with the requirements of the Mexican Aviation Authority.

SuperJet International will be also in charge of training. By the end of November 2012 the first Full Flight Simulator (FFS) will arrive in Venice and it will be installed at the SJI Training Center to enable the Mexican carrier’s pilots to start training in January 2013.
The Sukhoi Superjet 100 is currently the most important industrial program between the Russian Federation and the rest of the world in the field of the civil aviation.


15.11.12 | Boeing, Avianca Announce Order for Three 787s

Boeing and Avianca Airlines, Colombia’s flagship airline, today announced an order for three 787 Dreamliners. The order was attributed to an unidentified customer on Boeing’s Orders & Deliveries website and is valued at approximately $620 million at published list prices.

Today’s order brings Avianca’s 787 order count to 15 Dreamliners, which includes the 12 787s ordered in 2007, for a total value of more than $3.1 billion USD.

“Adding more 787s to our order aligns well with our expansion and service improvement plans for the airline,” said Fabio Villegas, CEO of Avianca Airlines. “The range and efficiency of the airplane make it a great fit into our overall fleet plans and interior of the airplane will bring a unique flying experience to our passengers that only Avianca can provide.”

“Avianca is one of the region’s leading airlines and we are happy we can play such a pivotal part of their future growth plans,” said Van Rex Gallard, vice president of Sales for Latin America, Caribbean, & Africa, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

“The Latin American market continues to show signs of growth and prosperity. The 787s unmatched operating economics and passenger appeal will help Avianca continue to position itself as a preferred airline and grow its market share in the region.”

Made primarily from composite materials, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner is the first mid-size airplane capable of flying long-range routes. As a result of innovative technologies, the airplane offers unparalleled operating economics, fuel efficiency and passenger comfort.

The 787 Dreamliner has received more than 850 orders from 58 customers since the launch of the program, a testament to the airplane’s unique capabilities.

Avianca is part of AviancaTaca Holding. With a modern fleet of more than 140 short, medium and long-haul aircraft and a team of more than 17,000 employees, Avianca and Taca directly service more than 100 destinations in the Americas and Europe, which connect to more than 750 destinations in the world through interline and codeshare agreements with partner airlines around the world.

With more than four million members in its loyalty program, the airline group reports combined annual sales of more than three billion dollars. Its multi-hub operating model offers passengers convenient and varied flight options, through Bogota, Colombia; San Salvador, El Salvador; Lima, Peru and San Jose, Costa Rica.


15.11.12 | ViaSat CEO Mark Dankberg Named Visionary Executive of the Year in the first annual Satellite Markets and Research Vision Awards

Mark Dankberg, chairman and CEO of ViaSat Inc. (Nasdaq: VSAT), has been named Visionary Executive of the Year at the first annual Satellite Markets and Research Vision Awards in New York City. The award goes to the outstanding senior executive of a satellite company who demonstrated a keen sense of mission for his company and a forward-looking vision of where his company and the industry is heading. and Satellite Markets and Research provide subscribers with news analysis, industry forecasts, and market intelligence covering the key trends on the global satellite communications market. The Vision Awards ceremony took place last night at SATCON 2012. Application Technology Strategy LLC co-sponsored the first Vision Awards.

“I’m delighted to accept this award and I thank Satellite Markets and Research and the distinguished panel of judges,” said Mr. Dankberg. “I looked up visionary in the dictionary. As an adjective the dictionary uses words like unreal, impractical, and imaginary, and as a noun it says someone with keen foresight. If that second description is what is intended here, then I truly am honored by this award.

“And the difference between those two definitions is a team of people who can bring that unreal vision to life. That’s what this is about. ViaSat has 2500 incredibly talented people and without them, I would not be here.”

“Our readers selected Mr. Dankberg to receive this award due to his visionary leadership of ViaSat, from a -three-person startup in a spare bedroom in his home 26 years ago to a billion dollar, vertically-integrated company that’s a leader in several key market segments in the satellite industry,” said Virgil Labrador, editor-in-chief of Satellite Markets & Research and chairman of the Awards Board of Judges. “We congratulate Mark and ViaSat on this success.”


15.11.12 | Hawaiian, Virgin America announce frequent flyer partnership, code share agreement

Hawaiian Airlines and Virgin America, two award-winning U.S. airlines, today announced new cooperative marketing agreements that expand the reach of their respective networks and provide a range of new travel benefits for their customers.

Starting today, members of HawaiianMiles, the Hawaiian Airlines loyalty program, are able to redeem their miles for award travel on all Virgin America routes, and members of Virgin America’s Elevate® frequent flyer program can now redeem Elevate points for flights on all routes flown by Hawaiian.

The two airlines also announced that Hawaiian Airlines has placed its two-letter booking code on Virgin America flights to Boston, Dallas, Fort Lauderdale, Washington D.C. (IAD); New York (JFK); Las Vegas; Los Angeles; Chicago; Philadelphia; Portland, Oregon; Seattle and San Francisco.

This agreement, only the second code share agreement for California-based Virgin America, now offers seamless booking and one-stop check-in on a single ticket for guests traveling between Hawai‘i and multiple Virgin America destinations in the U.S.

“Through this new partnership with Virgin America, HawaiianMiles members have convenient access to a host of new cities across the country with high quality service throughout their journey,” said Peter Ingram, Hawaiian’s executive vice president and chief commercial officer.

“We look forward to sharing our island hospitality with all of Virgin America’s Elevate members and welcoming new guests from cities we do not serve directly today.”

Under the code share agreement, travelers can purchase tickets on Hawaiian’s website at, through its Reservations call center at 1-800-367-5320, from a travel agent or via online travel agencies.

Both Hawaiian Airlines and Virgin America will check bags through to guests’ final destinations and will issue boarding passes at initial check in for connecting flights on Virgin America and Hawaiian. HawaiianMiles members are able to earn mileage on all code share flights covered by the agreement.

“This agreement enables us to offer guests a seamless travel experience as they travel on our two airlines – between us, we’ve won countless travel awards for excellent guest service – and our Virgin America teammates look forward to welcoming Hawaiian Airlines guests onboard our flights,” said John MacLeod, Virgin America’s senior vice president for planning and sales.

“The addition of Hawaiian to our roster of partners is a very special Virgin America ‘mahalo’ for our loyal Elevate members, who can now redeem points for Hawaiian reward travel. Our guests have been asking us for a way to get to the Aloha State since our launch, and we were listening.”

Hawaiian is the third airline partner added to join Virgin America’s Elevate program and the first Elevate airline partner outside the Virgin airline family – Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia were already Elevate partners.

The linkup will make it possible for Elevate members to fly to Hawai‘i for as low as 20,000 Elevate reward points.* Elevate members may now start booking on Hawaiian by calling Virgin America 1.877.FLY.VIRGIN (1.877.359.8474).

Earlier this year, Virgin America rolled out enhancements to its Elevate frequent flyer program – including Elevate Gold and Elevate Silver status levels that offer perks such as: priority check-in, security clearance and boarding; points earning bonuses; free checked bag allowances; enhanced digital/social rewards; private discounts; an expanded advance purchase upgrade window for the airline’s exclusive eight-seat First Class; complimentary space-available upgrades to the carrier’s premium Main Cabin Select service; and complimentary access to the best seat assignments within Main Cabin.


15.11.12 | JAL to Serve San Diego Daily from March 1, 2013; Commemorates Inaugural Launch with Exclusive In-Flight Menu

JAL to Serve San Diego Daily from March 1, 2013; Commemorates Inaugural Launch with Exclusive In-Flight Menu

Japan Airlines (JAL) is launching the first-ever nonstop service between San Diego and Asia on December 2, 2012 with the 787 Dreamliner aircraft, starting with four weekly flights on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays initially.

From March 1, 2013, JAL will increase the frequency to once daily and customers can make reservations and purchase tickets for these flights from tomorrow, November 14, 2012.

To commemorate the launch of the brand new service, JAL will be also offering a special in-flight menu exclusive to this route and for the limited period between December 2, 2012 and February 28, 2013 only.

Customers travelling in Business Class bound for the Californian city will be treated to Mexican delights, starting with the amuse bouche of corn tortilla chips served with a rich salsa and cheddar cheese dip, marinated prawn Ceviche, and aspic-glazed roasted lamb with Mexican rice for customers who have opted for the Western menu. For entrées, customers will have the option of freshsea-bream boiled with saffron and garlic, topped with a flavorful Guindilla cream and to complete the meal, customers can enjoy the California Orange Chocolate Mousse for dessert.

In its a la carte menu available to customers at any time after the first meal service, JAL will offer options that include a special Caesar salad, Mexican seafood burritos and JAL Original Hamburger in Sasebo Style – inspired by Sasebo, the sister city of San Diego in Nagasaki, Japan.

In Economy Class, customers who have selected the Western meal option will be served with a special beef stew that has been braised over long hours to achieve a soft and creamy texture, best savored with the buttered rice or bread served with it, alongside a bowl of Caesar Salad with creamy dressing and a generous amount of cheese and crunchy croutons.

Beef Wellington can traditionally be found in first class menus but onboard JAL’s flights from San Diego to Tokyo during the campaign period, business class customers will be offered to try JAL’s Reconstructed US Prime Beef Wellington. Alternatively, customers preferring seafood can delight in the other special entrée option “Lobster Termidor”, one half of a seared lobster from the bountiful coast of US Maine.

For second meal service onboard flights bound for Tokyo, customers can enjoy a comforting bowl of steamed rice in Japanese kelp tea brimming seafood like salmon, scallops, sea urchin and roe, as well as avocado.

In Economy Class, JAL will bring back the AIR YOSHINOYA – Beef Bowl – one of several popular AIR SERIES installations of JAL’s novel in-flight menus created in collaboration with well-known Japanese food chains. Served as the second meal and just before landing, customers can have a taste of Japan onboard even before they arrive.


15.11.12 | Alaska Airlines Offers Holiday Travel Tips

Alaska Airlines offers the following tips for passengers to help ensure their travel is as stress-free as possible during the busy holiday season. Learn more about Alaska Airlines’ “Top Five Tips for Holiday Travel” at

Use technology to save time. Passengers can check in and pay baggage fees online for domestic and international flights up to 24 hours before departure at International passengers can also enter passport information online. Alaska Airlines provides kiosks at airports and many off-site locations, which allow customers to check in and pay baggage fees. Alaska also has a new mobile website and mobile apps that allow customers to check in, display an electronic boarding pass and keep track of flight information all via a smart phone.

Plan for transportation to the airport. Passengers should allow extra time for parking, as some lots may be full. Travelers are encouraged to take public transportation or a shuttle to the airport, or park at a nearby satellite lot. At Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, travelers are encouraged to take advantage of off-peak times at drop-off areas. When picking up passengers in the evening, meet them at the less congested “Departures” level. Likewise, passengers traveling outbound in the busy morning hours will find less congestion by using the lower “Arrivals” level for drop-off and accessing the ticketing level via the elevators and escalators inside.

Know when to go — the earlier the better. Passengers should arrive at the airport at least two hours before domestic departures and three hours before international departures to allow additional time to check in and pass through security. Specific information for each airport is available at Passengers must be checked in, at the gate and ready to board at least 30 minutes prior to domestic departures and 40 minutes before international departures. Travelers checking bags must have their luggage processed at least 40 minutes prior to domestic departures and 60 minutes before international departures.

Know the baggage and carry-on limits. Alaska Airlines charges $20 for each of the first three bags. Additional fees apply to check more than three bags and for overweight or oversized items. First class and Gold-level Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan members may check two bags free of charge. Club 49 members are allowed to check two bags at no charge when traveling to or from Alaska and all customers traveling solely within the state of Alaska may check three bags free of charge. Customers flying to or from Mexico City and Guadalajara, Mexico may check one bag free of charge. Travelers are strongly advised to provide a clear label on each piece of luggage. Tags should be placed outside and inside each piece of luggage and include the passenger’s name, street address, e-mail address, permanent phone number and a phone number at the destination.

All airlines allow each traveler to carry onboard one bag and one personal item, such as a briefcase, laptop or purse. Bags should fit in the overhead bin and personal items under the seat. Passengers may bring shopping bags containing unwrapped gifts with them onto the plane in lieu of a carry-on suitcase. Details on size limitations for carry-on items are available at Travelers planning to transfer to flights on Alaska or other carriers must adhere to standard carry-on limits. Passengers should always carry prescription medications, passports, cameras, film, electronics, cash, jewelry, business papers and other valuables in their carry-ons.

Be savvy of security screening: Travelers are advised to allow additional time for passenger security screening procedures. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) requires all passengers to present government-issued identification at the security checkpoint. Passengers traveling between the United States, Canada and Mexico are required to have a passport. For more information, visit the U.S. Department of State website at www.

Travelers can pass through security faster by limiting the number of electronic devices they carry and by removing shoes, metal objects and laptop computers before entering the screening area. The TSA has strict rules for liquids, gels and aerosols in carry-on bags. Each passenger is permitted to bring these items in three-ounce or smaller containers, and all containers must be packed in one quart-sized, clear plastic zip-top bag. The TSA requires each passenger to place this bag in a bin on the conveyor belt for X-ray screening. TSA rules permit prescription medications through security checkpoints and require them to be declared.

Fee information: Alaska Airlines’ charge for transporting pets in the cabin is $100 one way. The pet carrier is considered one of the traveler’s two carry-ons. The fee for unaccompanied minors (children traveling alone) is $25 one way. The airline’s reservation change fee is $75, plus any change in fare.


15.11.12 | Boeing Celebrates Delivery of LOT Polish Airlines’ First 787 Dreamliner

Boeing and LOT Polish Airlines today celebrated the delivery of the airline’s first Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The Polish carrier is the first European airline to take delivery of the 787.

Senior LOT and Boeing executives, as well as Polish and US government officials, celebrated the historic delivery at an event at the Future of Flight Aviation Center in Mukilteo, Wash., near Boeing’s 787 final assembly plant in Everett.

“This is a historic moment for LOT,” said Marcin Pirog, chief executive officer of LOT. “I am convinced that the addition of the Dreamliner to the fleet of one of the world’s oldest airlines is a crucial moment that will launch a new era of European aviation. I believe it is also the beginning of an exciting journey for LOT with the most modern passenger airplane in the world.”

LOT will operate the 787 on short-haul flights across Europe in December, and will introduce the Dreamliner on its long-haul passenger service from Warsaw to Chicago in January 2013. LOT will also use the 787 to operate routes from Warsaw to New York, Toronto and Beijing.

“Today’s 787 delivery represents a very significant milestone in the partnership between Boeing and LOT Polish Airlines,” said Ray Conner, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “As LOT becomes the first European airline to operate the 787, this delivery marks the next chapter in history for both LOT and the European aviation industry.”

The 787 Dreamliner is composed of light-weight composites and features numerous systems, engine and aerodynamic advancements, making it more efficient to operate compared with its competition. It is the first mid-sized airplane capable of flying long-range routes, providing airlines with unprecedented fuel economy and low operating costs and enabling airlines to open new, non-stop routes preferred by passengers.

This delivery is the first of eight Dreamliners that LOT has on order. The cabin is configured with 18 Elite Club seats (Business Class), 21 Premium Club seats (Premium Economy) and 213 seats in Economy Class. Customers will experience unparalleled levels of comfort with the 787′s improved lighting, bigger windows, larger overhead bins, lower cabin altitude and enhanced ventilation systems, among other features.

LOT’s first Dreamliner will land in Warsaw tomorrow, Thursday, Nov. 15, where LOT will celebrate the 787′s arrival into its fleet with a reception led by the airline and Poland’s prime minister Donald Tusk.


15.11.12 | JetBlue Airways Takes Flight to its 74th Destination: Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands

– Service from JFK set to begin three times weekly today; Saturday service from Boston to begin on Nov. 17, 2012 –

– Customers can book sale fares as low as $139 one way from New York’s JFK or $149 one way from Boston today through Nov. 19, 2012 at for travel Dec. 1, 2012 through Feb.11, 2013 (blackout dates apply) (a) –

JetBlue Airways today takes flight to its newest Caribbean destination, Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands, from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) with three times weekly service on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays JFK to Owen Roberts International Airport (GCM). Saturday-only service to the Cayman Islands from Boston’s Logan International Airport (BOS) will begin this Saturday, Nov. 17.

To celebrate the airline’s 74th destination, today through Nov. 19, 2012 flights to GCM from New York are on sale from $139 one way and from Boston as low as $149 one way for travel beginning Dec. 1, 2012 through Feb. 11, 2013

(a). JetBlue Getaways vacation packages to Grand Cayman, including hotel and airfare are also on sale now at starting at just $599 for a three night/four day stay from New York

(b).”Grand Cayman is a beautiful destination that offers incredible diversity from cultural, culinary, and lifestyle perspectives, and we’re pleased to offer the most seats between New York and the island,” said Scott Laurence, JetBlue’s vice president of network planning and partnerships.

“The pristine white-sand beaches, friendly people, and host of dining, shopping and nightlife options make for a perfect vacation.”

“We are delighted to welcome JetBlue, one of the world’s leading airlines, to our island,” said Premier and Minister of Tourism Hon. McKeeva Bush. “The new services from New York andBoston respectively will greatly enhance our Islands accessibility for Southbound travel and will provide visitors with more choice and flexibility. JetBlue’s commitment to excellence and service is well renowned and we believe this winning partnership will yield mutually beneficial results well into the future.”

“In a few days, these Islands will record 60 years of land-based aviation. It is most coincidental that the Cayman Islands have recorded another important step in our aviation history with the arrival of JetBlue Airways. On behalf of the Cayman Islands Airports Authority, our Board of Directors, Management Team and Employees; and in fact, the Cayman Islands on a whole, I extend our warmest and most sincere welcome to our Islands. We look forward to a long and successful association with JetBlue Airways!” remarked Mr. Richard Arch, Chairman of the Board for the Cayman Islands Airports Authority.

To support the local community, JetBlue also announced today a Gold Sponsorship with the Blue Iguana Recovery Program, an endangered species on the island. The Blue Iguana Recovery Program works to restore a self-sustaining, free-roaming population of Grand Cayman Blue Iguanas in the wild. In addition, the airline is launching a “name the iguana” contest on JetBlue’s Facebook page.

Visit today through Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012 to submit a name or vote on those submitted names. The winner gets bragging rights and a Blue Iguana named after their winning submission.

JetBlue’s Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer Eash Sundaram joined the Premier of the Cayman Islands the Honorable McKeeva Bush; Richard Arch, MBE, JP, Chairman, Cayman Islands Airports Authority; Mr. Shomari Scott, Director of Tourism; Jeremy Jackson, CEO, Cayman Islands Airports Authority; and Miss Cayman Islands to celebrate the new service at GCM today.

Customers on the inaugural flight from JFK received plush, blue iguanas and blue pirate hats in honor of Pirates Week on the island, and were greeted by local music and dancers for a festive arrival to the airline’s new destination.

Customers interested in booking a complete JetBlue Getaways vacation package to Grand Cayman including their flight, hotel, wheels and more can visit for more information. JetBlue Getaways vacations include the Best Price Guarantee and an exclusive 24-hour support desk, plus Concierge On Call to answer questions and make recommendations, dinner reservations, tee times and more.

JetBlue’s schedule between New York and Grand Cayman:
Depart – Arrive Depart – Arrive
7:05 a.m. – 11:02 a.m. 12:00 p.m. – 3:49 p.m.
- Flights operate three times weekly on Mon., Thurs., Sat. -
- All times local -
JetBlue’s schedule between Boston and Grand Cayman:
Depart – Arrive Depart – Arrive
10:10 a.m. – 2:34 p.m. 3:30 p.m. – 7:40 p.m.
- Flights operate on Saturdays beginning Sat. Nov. 17, 2012 -
- All times local -
JetBlue’s flights to Grand Cayman from Boston and New York will be operated with its comfortable Airbus A320 fleet and award-winning service featuring convenient, assigned seating; a first-checked bag free (c); complimentary and unlimited name brand snacks and drinks; comfy leather seats; and more legroom than any other carrier in coach (d).


14.11.12 | Qantas Group announces debt reduction, share buy-back

The Qantas Group today announced it will repay $650 million in debt ahead of schedule and invest up to $100 million in an on-market share buy-back.

The share buy-back represents up to approximately 4 per cent of Qantas shares on issue1 and is expected to begin in December 2012.

Qantas Chairman Leigh Clifford said the Group was well positioned in terms of its portfolio of businesses, its balance sheet and its strategy to deliver long term shareholder value.

“The Board believes the current Qantas share price does not reflect fair value of the Group, particularly considering the underlying strength of its domestic, loyalty and Jetstar businesses and the proposed partnership with Emirates,” said Mr Clifford.

“Our continued progress towards the turnaround strategy for Qantas International, plus cash inflows from recent transactions, gives the Board confidence to approve these capital management measures.

“The share buy-back and accelerated debt reduction reflect the Board’s goal of returning value to shareholders and maintaining a strong balance sheet, as well as retaining the flexibility to pursue current growth initiatives,” Mr Clifford added.

The accelerated debt reduction involves repayment of all outstanding 5.125 per cent notes originally due in June 2013. This repayment will be completed five months ahead of schedule in January 2013 and will form part of a program of $1 billion in debt reduction for the Qantas Group in FY13.

The measures will be funded by the recently-completed sale of Qantas’ stake in road freight company StarTrack and the settlement from Boeing in relation to the Group’s B787 order. These two transactions will deliver combined net proceeds of $750 million in FY13.

As these transactions are outside normal operating cash flows, the debt reduction and share buy-back will have no impact on the Group’s current BBB-/Baa3 (stable outlook) credit ratings. Citigroup Global Markets Australia will act as broker for the buy-back.

Following the recent refinancing of the Group’s $400 million undrawn loan facility, together with its strong cash balance, the Group will retain a strong liquidity position on an ongoing basis.

The Qantas Group continues to invest, adding 24 unencumbered aircraft to the balance sheet since July 2010, including six in FY13. The Group continues to maintain access to a broad range of funding sources including cash, structured leases, sale and leaseback, bank and ECA loans.

In line with ASX Listing Rules for a share buy-back, Qantas has today provided additional information to the market, including an outlook for the first half of FY13, detail on the proposed partnership with Emirates and a pending Fair Work Australia determination.


14.11.12 | LATAM Airlines Group reports preliminary monthly statistics for October 2012

LATAM Airlines, the leading airline group in Latin America, today reported its preliminary monthly traffic statistics for October 2012 compared to October 2011. System passenger traffic increased 8.8% as capacity rose 5.7%.

As a result, the Company’s load factor for the month increased 2.2 points to 77.8%. International passenger traffic accounted for approximately 52% of the month’s total passenger traffic.

Domestic passenger traffic in LATAM Airlines Group´s Spanish speaking operations (Chile, Argentina, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia) rose 13.1%, as capacity increased 17.7%. As a consequence, the domestic passenger load factor decreased 3.1 points to 75.8%.

Domestic passenger traffic in Brazil rose 10.7%, as capacity decreased 3.7%. As a consequence, the domestic Brazil passenger load factor increased 9.9 points to 76.1%.

International passenger traffic rose 6.4%, while capacity increased 9.9%. Accordingly, the international passenger load factor for the month decreased 2.6 points to 79.4%. International traffic includes international operations of both LAN and TAM on regional and long haul routes.

Cargo traffic for LATAM Airlines Group decreased 3.7% as capacity increased 0.2%. As a consequence, the cargo load factor decreased 2.4 points to 59.4%. The decrease in traffic continues to be driven by weaker imports into Latin America, especially Brazil. Regarding capacity, the company received its fourth B777 freighter during October.


14.11.12 | United Airlines named best place to work for LGBT equality

United Airlines has earned a 100 percent rating for the fifth consecutive year in the 2013 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), an annual survey administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

The CEI ranks top companies and law firms based on their policies regarding lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees.

“As a global company, it is our mission to foster an inclusive and diverse culture in which every employee is accepted, valued, respected and treated fairly,” says Mike Bonds, executive vice president of Human Resources and Labor Relations at United Airlines.

“We are very proud to be recognized for our culture of working together and our commitment to making United a great place to work.”

The CEI rates companies on specific policies and practices related to LGBT equality.

To achieve a perfect score and the distinction of “Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality,” companies are required to have fully inclusive equal employment opportunity policies, provide equal employment benefits, demonstrate organizational LGBT competency, evidence their commitment to equality publicly and exercise responsible citizenship.

United believes that the rich diversity of ideas, experiences, cultures and lifestyles that make up its workforce of more than 85,000 allows the airline to deliver great service and products to its customers around the globe.

United is committed to creating a work environment where all employees feel included and empowered to make a measurable difference in its success. United offers policies, programs, benefits, privileges and recognition designed to reward and support the success of its diverse workforce.

The airline is equally committed to its multicultural community sponsorships as well as supplier diversity initiatives.


14.11.12 | Automatic check-in soon to be available for Finnair’s customers

Finnair customers will soon be able to enjoy the world’s easiest check-in service. From November 28 onwards, Finnair will check in customers automatically and send boarding passes to the customer’s mobile phone.

The check-in confirmation includes the seat number and a link to the mobile boarding pass.

The automatic check-in service is available to customers who have provided a mobile telephone number when booking the ticket.

Customers are always advised to provide a current mobile phone number when making a booking, as on exceptional circumstances, Finnair sends information via text message to customers.

The service is automatically turned on, when customer’s information is filled in their Finnair Plus profile.

Check-in via SMS service has been available since 2004. Previously, customers had to reply to a Finnair text message confirming their check-in; now this is unnecessary, as the check-in is completed automatically.

For morning departures, customers receive check-in confirmation and boarding cards on the night before, between 17:00 and 19:00. For other flights, customers are checked in about three hours before departure.

If the customer has already checked in, no message will be sent. Check-in for Finnair flights opens 36 hours before the flight’s departure.

If customers wish to change seating or check in accompanying travellers, this can be done either by the link in the mobile boarding pass or on the Finnair website.

At the airport, the mobile boarding pass must be opened and presented to the authorities.

The mobile phone must have an Internet connection to open the link. Otherwise, the customer needs a paper boarding pass, which can be picked up at an automatic kiosk or the Bag Drop desk. Checked baggage is left at the Bag Drop desk during normal check-in times.

The world’s easiest check-in is available on Finnair flights and Flybe-operated AY2000-series flights departing from Helsinki and other airports in Finland as well as from select European airports.


14.11.12 | Boeing and AVIC to collaborate on interior supply capability in China

Boeing and Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), China’s largest state-owned aviation company, announced today they will work together to expand AVIC capabilities to include interior commodities such as passenger seats, galleys, lavatories and in-flight entertainment systems for commercial airplanes.

Geng Ruguang, executive vice president of AVIC, and Stan Deal, vice president and general manager of Boeing Commercial Airplanes Supply Chain Management and Operations, signed a memorandum of understanding for this interior payload initiative at the 2012 Zhuhai Airshow.

“This cooperation will enhance AVIC as a competitive supplier of world class airplane interior payload products, as well as help Boeing deliver more competitive products to its customers,” said Geng Ruguang.

“This expands the fields of cooperation for both companies, which will further strengthen and deepen our strategic partnership.”

“AVIC has been an important partner to Boeing for many years, and this mutually beneficial collaboration will further enhance their capabilities, while adding value for Boeing and its customers,” said Deal.

“AVIC’s ability to develop and deliver world-class payload interiors to airline customers increases their options and improves Boeing’s competitiveness.”

Global demand for Boeing airplanes is at an all-time high with more than 4,200 airplanes in the company’s backlog. The collaboration with AVIC will support China’s growing aerospace manufacturing industry and expand opportunities for airlines around the world to continue to customize airplane interiors to create market differentiation.

“For 40 years, Boeing has been deeply engaged in China to support the long-term development of China’s commercial aviation industry,” said Marc Allen, president of Boeing China.

“We are pleased to play a critical role in the continued development of China’s aerospace industry while taking another positive step forward in expanding our relationship with AVIC and other Chinese industry stakeholders.”

“It is a great pleasure to open up new fields for cooperation in the airplane interior payload areas, building on the continued cooperation in subcontracting production,” said Liu Chunhui, president of AVIC Aircraft.

“This will enrich the contents of the industrial engagement between the two companies.”
Boeing has been working with AVIC for more than 20 years, and AVIC currently manufactures parts for the Next-Generation 737, 747-8 and 787 Dreamliner. As the largest non-Chinese customer of China’s aviation

industry, Boeing has purchased more than US $1.5 billion in hardware and services from China since the 1980s and expects to double its annual procurement in coming years. Some 6,000 Boeing airplanes fly throughout the world with parts and assemblies built in China.

China is one of the world’s fastest-growing aviation markets. The Civil Aviation Administration of China has forecast that passenger traffic in China will reach 300 million in 2012 and 1.5 billion in 2030.

Boeing has estimated that Chinese airlines will need to buy 5,260 new airplanes by 2031 to meet this extraordinary demand.


14.11.12 | Air Canada Announces New Appointment to Board of Directors

Air Canada today announced the appointment of Annette Verschuren, O.C. to the Board of Directors of Air Canada.

Ms. Verschuren is the past president of The Home Depot Canada where she oversaw the company’s growth from 19 to 180 Canadian stores and led its entry into China. Prior to joining The Home Depot, Ms. Vershuren was president and co-owner of Michaels of Canada, a chain of arts and craft stores.

She is currently Chair and CEO of NRstor Inc., a new venture focused on commercializing energy storage technologies.

Ms. Verschuren is a board member of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, a Boston, Massachusetts-based insurance company, the North West Company, a retailer in remote communities across various countries including Canada and Icynene, a manufacturing supplier to the construction industry.

She serves as Chancellor of Cape Breton University and is a board member of numerous non-profit organizations including the CAMH Foundation, the Conference Board of Canada and Habitat for Humanity’s national leadership council.

The appointment is effective immediately and will bring the total number of board members to ten.

Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline serving more than 175 destinations on five continents. Canada’s flag carrier is the 15th largest commercial airline in the world and in 2011 served more than 33 million customers.

Air Canada provides scheduled passenger service directly to 59 Canadian cities, 56 destinations in the United States and 63 cities in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America.

Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, the world’s most comprehensive air transportation network serving 1,356 destinations in 193 countries.

In 2012, Air Canada was ranked Best International Airline in North America in a worldwide survey of more than 18 million airline passengers conducted by independent research firm Skytrax.


14.11.12 | Diners Club partners with Qantas to give members exceptional value

Diners Club has partnered with Qantas to launch a new rewards payment card giving members exceptional value on their purchases. Members also have access to a companion World MasterCard on the Diners Club account which increases acceptance with merchants to over 34 million locations around the globe.

The Frequent Flyer Diners Club card with World MasterCard offers consumers some of the most competitive earn rates for Qantas Frequent Flyer points. For the first $60,000 spent each year on eligible purchases on the Diners Club card, the member earns a high 1.5 Qantas Frequent Flyer points per dollar and 1.25 points per dollar thereafter. For the first $60,000 spent each year on eligible purchases on the World MasterCard, the member earns 1 Qantas Frequent Flyer point per dollar and 0.75 points per dollar thereafter*.

The cards also offer travel benefits. The Diners Club card entitles members to entry at over 450 international airport lounges as well as travel insurance and a discounted limousine service. The World MasterCard offers travel benefits such as VIP treatment at some of the best hotels, restaurants, events and stores.

The fee for the Frequent Flyer Diners Club card with World MasterCard account is $260 for a primary card and $50 for a supplementary card.

Richard Wilde, Head of Diners Club Australia, said Diners Club is providing direct competition to increasingly popular debit card products.

“Debit card accounts enable consumers to pay as they go, much like a charge card, but without the rewards. Diners Club requires its members to pay their balance off at the end of each payment cycle while earning Qantas Frequent Flyer points at some of the most competitive earn rates in the market,” said Mr Wilde.

In Australia, Diners Club is part of the Citi family of companies. Julian Potter, Head of Cards for Citibank, said “The Frequent Flyer Diners Club card is designed to be the ‘hero’ Qantas offer for Citi in Australia. We believe this new card is the market leading payment product for consumers who value the Qantas Frequent Flyer program and the extensive travel services Diners Club offers”, said Mr Potter.


14.11.12 | Air Canada Welcomes EU Emissions Trading Moratorium

Air Canada today said it welcomed the European Commission’s announcement on Monday that it intends to suspend the inclusion of flights to and from non-European Union destinations in its emissions trading scheme.

“We are pleased with the Commission’s recommendation to suspend the inclusion of international aviation in the EU’s trading scheme in order to give ICAO the opportunity to fulfill its mandate and address aviation emissions through a global approach,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer.

“Air Canada is fully committed to improving its emissions footprint. We have increased our fuel efficiency by 30 per cent since 1990.

“Moreover, Air Canada wholeheartedly supports IATA’s published industry targets of improving fuel efficiency by 1.5 per cent annually to 2020, carbon neutral growth beyond 2020, and reducing them by 50 per cent relative to 2005 levels by 2050.

“As an international airline in a country subject to ICAO and the Chicago Convention, we expect the regulators from both the EU and ICAO to work together to address global emissions with a consistent and rational regulatory and policy approach.

“The EU’s unilateral approach was unacceptable to Air Canada, as was the case for most international airlines and their governments. We urge ICAO to resolve this issue within an acceptable timeline.”

Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline serving more than 175 destinations on five continents. Canada’s flag carrier is the 15th largest commercial airline in the world and in 2011 served more than 33 million customers.

Air Canada provides scheduled passenger service directly to 59 Canadian cities, 56 destinations in the United States and 63 cities in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America.

Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, the world’s most comprehensive air transportation network serving 1,356 destinations in 193 countries.

In 2012, Air Canada was ranked Best International Airline in North America in a worldwide survey of more than 18 million airline passengers conducted by independent research firm Skytrax.


14.11.12 | JetBlue Launches its Sixth Destination in the Dominican Republic: Samana

JetBlue Airways, New York’s Hometown Airline™, launched today its award-winning service to its sixth destination in the Dominican Republic, Samana.

JetBlue is the Dominican Republic’s largest airline, with more flights in and out of the country than any other carrier. The airline now operates twice weekly flights between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and President Juan Bosch International Airport (AZS) in Samana on Wednesdays and Saturdays – the only service between the United States and this coveted beach destination.

Flights are on sale now for as low as $159 one way from JFK to Samana through November 19, 2012 at for travel between November 17 and February 13, 2013. Blackout dates apply (a). Customers can also purchase a full JetBlue Getaways vacation package from only $459 per person, including a three-night stay for two at the Gran Bahia Principe Cayacoa Hotel (b).

“Samana is a beach paradise in the Dominican Republic, a secret worth discovering. We have no doubts our customers will rush to learn everything that this tropical location has to offer,” said Scott Laurence, JetBlue’s Vice President of Network Planning and Partnerships.

“We are very pleased, as the country’s largest carrier, to add more options for locals and visitors alike to continue exploring and enjoying everything the country has to offer. Samana is a destination we’ve long had our eye on; today we thank the Dominican government and communities for the support we continue to receive.”

“Dominican Republic’s Samana Peninsula features pure ecological bliss with breathtaking coastline, Los Haitises National Park, El Limon Waterfall, secluded beaches and charming towns like Samana, Las Galeras and Las Terrenas,” said Francisco Javier Garcia, Minister of Tourism for Dominican Republic. “JetBlue’s direct flight to Samana will bring new visitors to our Northeast Coast, create a stronger economy, and ensure dozens of unique hotels, resorts, shops, diverse attractions and delightful restaurants will receive more visitors.”

“The government, through the Ministry of Tourism (MITUR) and the private sector, represented by Bahia Principe, AMHSA Marina Grand Paradise Samana, Sublime Samana at VIVA Residence, Puerto Bahia Marina & Residence, Coral Hospitality Corporation, Vista del Cayo, Balcones del Atlantico and El Portillo Beach Club & Spa, all members of the Samana Hotel and Tourism Companies Association (AHETSA), and our company, did not rest until we managed to get an airline like JetBlue to lay their eyes this paradise in the country,” said Monika Infante Henriquez, Aerodom’s General Director. “We trust this new route will be warmly embraced by the Dominicans traveling from the United States and the thousands of Americans that choose theDominican Republic for their vacations every year.”

JetBlue’s schedule between JFK and AZS:
Depart – Arrive Depart – Arrive
8:20 a.m. – 1:09 p.m. 2:05 p.m. – 5:02 p.m.

- Flights operate on Wednesdays and Saturdays effective November 14, 2012
- All times local
As part of the launch JetBlue will also make a computer and book donation to the Liceo Manuela Mullix Fermin – a school just outside of Samana – through its longtime community partner, the DREAM (Dominican Republic Education and Mentoring) Project. The DREAM Project is an American and Dominican non for profit organization that believes quality education is critical for the future of the Dominican Republic. JetBlue has been DREAM’s official ambassador since 2010 and has helped with educational programs for thousands of kids in the country.

In the Dominican Republic, JetBlue also serves La Romana, Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, Santiago and Santo Domingo with service to Boston, Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood, New York, Orlando and San Juan. Just last week the airline announced plans for two more routes linking San Juan with Punta Cana and Santiago. JetBlue’s service to Samana will operate with the airline’s fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft, featuring convenient, assigned seating; a first-checked bag free (c); complimentary and unlimited name brand snacks and drinks; comfy leather seats; more legroom than any other carrier in coach (d); and its award-winning customer service.


13.11.12 | Average Personal Electronic Device Users Spends Over 40 percent of Their Flight Time Using Their Devices

A consumer survey conducted by IMS Research recently acquired by IHS Inc. which examined inflight Wi-Fi usage in the U.S. this year has found that, on flights lasting longer than one hour, passengers who used a personal electronic device (e.g. tablets and smartphones) onboard spent, on average, over 40 percent of their flight time on it.

The survey asked more than 1,000 U.S. respondents the percentage of flight time they spent using at least one of their electronic devices. Although less than 30 percent of respondents did not use any personal electronics devices during flight, of those who did, almost 50 percent used the devices for up to 40 percent of their flight time. Approximately 8 percent of respondents spent more than 80 percent of their time on at least one of their electronic devices.

Rose Yin, market analyst at IMS Research, commented, “Although not all passengers use inflight Wi-Fi, it is clear that many still brought along and made use of their electronic devices to help pass time onboard. We also found that regardless of whether inflight Wi-Fi is offered or not, the amount of time spent on these devices varies little; as passengers can just prepare enough offline content prior to boarding to help entertainment themselves later on.”

Further breakdowns showed that MP3 players are the most popular device used inflight, with almost a third of respondents using them onboard, followed closely by laptop PCs. Despite the rapid growth in uptake of tablet PCs, fewer than 1 in 5 passengers made use of these during flight. However, this proportion is still much higher than the percentage ownership of tablet PCs in the general population, and is expected to continue to rise in the future.

“With the trend of ‘bring-your-own-device’ growing in the air, airlines are continuing to look into opportunities to offer an enhanced service to passengers, from wireless in-flight entertainment to in-flight Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity,” Yin added. “One of the key challenges is to offer something that passengers are willing to pay extra for, whether it’s content or games they can download and enjoy, or access to the Internet to check emails and use social networks. Additionally, airlines that seek to target users need to keep in mind that there is already a wealth of content and games people can download for little or no cost prior to boarding. However, if airlines can offer the right product for these devices at the right price, the potential for ancillary revenue could be significant.”

As the bandwidth provided by in-flight connectivity improves, IMS Research projects that in-flight Wi-Fi and other wireless offerings for consumer devices will have a profound effect on the future landscape of the in-flight entertainment market.


13.11.12 | Airbus extends RFID part-marking across all its aircraft families

Airbus has become the first commercial aircraft manufacturer to deploy Radio-Frequency-Identification (RFID) part-marking to aircraft components on all its aircraft families. This innovation, which will bring value-chain visibility, error-proof identification and efficiency savings in component lifecycle management, will be progressively rolled-out in 2013 to all seats and life vests for the A320, A330 and A380 aircraft families.

The annual volume of this RFID part marking extension is estimated to reach 160,000 RFID tags, roughly split across 120,000 life vests and 40,000 seats for these aircraft families. This complements the existing RFID part marking initiative on the A350 XWB which is already underway.

Tom Williams, Airbus’ Executive Vice President, Programmes says: “Permanent RFID part marking is an answer to the growing need for efficient and error-proof identification of aircraft components throughout their life.” He adds: “The use of RFID part marking will enable the automation of multiple operational processes and is a benefit for all involved in managing the component during its lifecycle: vendor, integrator, airline and MRO.”

The scope of efficiency savings with permanent RFID part marking is substantial. For example, in the past, each one of several hundred life-jackets and seats in the cabin would need to be manually checked and noted, necessitating lengthy manual data entry. But as each Airbus aircraft will soon come pre-equipped with RFID tags on these parts, just one person can read the RFID tags within a few minutes using a lightweight hand-held RFID reader.

The process automatically confirms the presence of each required item, verifies its location and looks-up the associated data about the part (e.g. maintenance history, expiration date etc.). This information can then be used to determine the aircraft configuration and prioritise maintenance planning for items due for inspection, overhaul or replacement.

Airbus is the world’s leading aircraft manufacturer offering the most modern, innovative and efficient family of passenger airliners on the market, ranging in capacity from 100 to more than 500 seats. Airbus has design and manufacturing facilities in France, Germany, the UK, and Spain as well as subsidiaries in the US, China, Japan and in the Middle East. Headquartered in Toulouse, France, Airbus is an EADS company.


13.11.12 | Red Cross Chooses Exede by ViaSat Enterprise Service for Disaster Response

Economics and performance provide more data throughput for disaster response operations

American Red Cross Disaster Services is using Exede® Enterprise satellite services from ViaSat Inc. (Nasdaq: VSAT) to provide satellite connectivity during disaster response. Exede Enterprise services can provide download speeds up to 15 Mbps using the transformational high-capacity satellite system created by ViaSat, extending the economic and performance benefits of high-capacity Ka-band satellites to customers beyond residential Internet subscribers.

High-capacity satellite broadens the capabilities of disaster responders:

• Affordable high-speed bandwidth and compact terminals enable improved communications within the same budget

• Bandwidth capacity “depth” reduces the need to compete for limited bandwidth with other on-scene responders, unlike the limited, thin layer of coverage provided by other alternatives

• Variety of choices for terminal configuration, such as fly-away, vehicular auto-point, and fixed for different disaster scenarios

“Reliable satellite communication is a vital part of getting help to the public during emergencies.” said Keith Robertory, American Red Cross Disaster Response Emergency Communications manager. “That’s why we are bringing ViaSat on board as a partner in our disaster response efforts.”

Using the ViaSat service, responder teams can establish communications in areas with no cell connections or vehicle access for site command and control, live video and imagery, and two-way information sharing.


13.11.12 | Recaro Aircraft Seating to be fitted inside Qatar Airways‘ Boeing 787

Qatar Airways is taking delivery of its first Boeing 787: On November 13, 2012, the “Dreamliner” is taking off for its first flight from Seattle to Doha – with economy-class seats from Recaro Aircraft Seating on board. Qatar Airways ordered several thousand Recaro Comfort Line 3620 seats for the airline’s B787 and A350 fleets.

“We are proud that Qatar Airways selected Recaro seats for installation in the new Boeing 787 fleet”, says Dr. Mark Hiller, Chief Executive Officer of Recaro Aircraft Seating. “The 5-star airline places high priority on cabin interiors. That is why it chose the Recaro CL3620, our top-class product for the economy class. This seat set new standards in ergonomics and design for long-haul flights.”

“The CL3620 proves that comfortable travel with great passenger comfort and living space in economy class is possible”, adds Chief Sales Officer Andreas Lindemann. “Thanks to the seat’s lean shape based on the single-beam concept, passengers can enjoy more legroom even with a relatively short seat pitch.” The ultra-thin backrest offers outstanding comfort. Other features include flexible materials in the headrest and in the backrest as well as the latest IFE system integration.


13.11.12 | JAL to Serve San Diego Daily from March 1, 2013; commemorates inaugural Launch with exclusive in-flight menu

Japan Airlines (JAL) is launching the first-ever nonstop service between San Diego and Asia on December 2, 2012 with the 787 Dreamliner aircraft, starting with four weekly flights on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays initially.

From March 1, 2013, JAL will increase the frequency to once daily and customers can make reservations and purchase tickets for these flights from tomorrow, November 14, 2012.

To commemorate the launch of the brand new service, JAL will be also be offering a special in-flight menu exclusive to this route and for the limited period between December 2, 2012 and February 28, 2013 only.

Customers travelling in Business Class bound for the Californian city will be treated to Mexican delights, starting with the amuse bouche of corn tortilla chips served with a rich salsa and cheddar cheese dip, marinated prawn Ceviche, and aspic-glazed roasted lamb with Mexican rice for customers who have opted for the Western menu.

For entrées, customers will have the option of fresh sea-bream boiled with saffron and garlic, topped with a flavorful Guindilla cream and to complete the meal, customers can enjoy the California Orange Chocolate Mousse for dessert.

In its a la carte menu available to customers at any time after the first meal service, JAL will offer options that include a special Caesar salad, Mexican seafood burritos and JAL Original Hamburger in Sasebo Style