Aviation Wrap: Boeing’s $74m 737 MAX relief, Emirates helps Arsenal prepare for EPL run in with Dubai training camp + MORE!

When writing this week’s Aviation Wrap, we could have sworn the sound of airplanes taking off was in the air. On second appraisal, we discovered it was just tinnitus.

Boeing to release next $74m in round of funding for 737 MAX relief

The Boeing 737-Max passenger plane in-flight, before being grounded for safety reasons (iStock.com/Oriaz)

Aircraft manufacturer Boeing has announced it has dedicated the remaining US$50 million ($74.7 million) of a previously announced fund to support humanitarian needs in communities affected by the Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 accidents.

Previously, half of the US$100 million Boeing Investment Fund was released to provide near-term financial assistance, with funds overseen by Kenneth Feinberg and Camille Biros.

Boeing has once again partnered with the pair on the fund’s creation, allocation and distribution.

Feinberg and Biros will immediately begin working with families, governments and other interested parties to identify eligible charitable organisations, Boeing said. All monies distributed by Feinberg and Biros will be independent of any resolution provided through the legal process.

To read more of Travel Weekly‘s Boeing 737 MAX coverage, click here.

Emirates helps Arsenal prepare for EPL run-in with Dubai training camp

Emirates helps Arsenal prepare for Premier League run-in with training camp in Dubai (Arsenal FC via Getty Images/David Price)

English Premier League football club Arsenal recently wrapped up its winter training in Dubai, enjoying the city’s warm weather, training facilities and attractions courtesy of Emirates and Arabian Adventures.

The visit represents the first time the full Arsenal squad has visited Dubai, with the team treated to a ‘sunset desert safari’, complete with a dune drive and sunset views, ahead of its return to the United Kingdom for the second half of the EPL.

The team enjoyed panoramic views of the desert at the Bedouin desert camp before enjoying traditional Arabic entertainment and food.

Emirates is also celebrating a milestone in its operations to The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, marking 30 years of service to Riyadh.

Since the first Emirates flight between Riyadh and Dubai in February 1990, the airline has carried more than 8 million passengers on the route, demonstrating strong links between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Emirates and Olympique Lyonnais will work together to reach fans across the globe (Supplied)

In separate news, Emirates has extended its partnership with France Ligue 1 football team Olympique Lyonnais to five years. Under the sponsorship agreement, Emirates will become the club’s official main sponsor from the start of the 2020/21 season.

Emirates’ ‘Fly Better’ logo will appear on the front of Lyon’s training kits and playing jerseys for all the club’s matches, including the French Championship and European Cup until June 2025.

In addition to being shirt sponsors, the agreement will provide Emirates with highly visible branding across Groupama Stadium, as well as hospitality, ticketing and other marketing rights.

Slower but steady aviation growth in 2019: IATA

The International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) full-year global passenger traffic results for 2019 show that demand (revenue passenger kilometres or RPKs) rose by 4.2 per cent compared to the full year of 2018.

However, the 2019 result is a slowdown compared to 2018’s annual growth of 7.3 per cent and marked the first year since the global financial crisis in 2009 with passenger demand below the long-term trend of around 5.5 per cent annual growth, IATA explained.

In addition, Asia-Pacific airlines’ full-year traffic increased 4.5 per cent in 2019, which was a large decline compared to 8.5 per cent growth in 2018.

According to IATA, this reflected the impact of the US-China trade war as well as weakening business confidence and economic activity. Capacity rose 4.1 per cent, and load factor ticked up 0.3 percentage point to 80.9 per cent.

Cebu Pacific launches sustainable travel initiative programme in the Philippines

Last week, the Philippines’ largest carrier launched the ‘Juan Effect’, a sustainable travel initiative that encourages tourists to make simple pledges to help preserve the beauty of the country.

After successful roll outs in Siargao and in Boracay, Bohol will be adopted as a Juan Effect destination with interventions put in place to support its sustainable tourism practices.

The initiative was formed in partnership with the Department of Tourism (DOT), Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Interior and Local Government.

Qantas seeks buyers for used Boeing 787s

Jetstar’s first Boeing 787 Dreamliner arrives at Melbourne Airport in 2013 (AAP Image/Juian Smith)

Three of Jetstar’s used Boeing 787s currently used on loss-making routes for the airline are up for sale.

Although it was speculated that Qantas would retain the jets for its own use, the six-year-old Dreamliners are being advertised by Qantas aircraft sales manager Martin Schembri to potentially interested parties, The Australian reported.

The removal of the three jets from Jestar’s fleet was flagged by chief executive Gareth Evans last year following a review of the airline’s fleet and network as part of contingency planning ahead of industrial action by pilots.

Air Canada to temporarily suspend Melbourne-Vancouver flights

Air Canada is set to hit pause on its non-stop services between Melbourne and Vancouver on 1 May 2020 with flights due to restart on 29 November.

The changes have been described as a result of ongoing adjustments undertaken by the airline to enhance and stabilise its fleet and global schedule.

Singapore Changi Airport steps up precautionary measures

Changi Airport, Terminal 3, Singapore

Changi Airport Group (CAG) is stepping up measures to safeguard and protect the health of airport workers, passengers and visitors at Changi Airport in response to the ongoing COVID-19 situation worldwide.

The airport is introducing some of the following measures:

  1. Increased number of hand sanitisers
  2. Increased frequency in cleaning and disinfecting of high contact areas
  3. Coating frequently touched surfaces with disinfectant
  4. Cleaning with ozone-infused water
  5. Increased disinfection of floors and cleaning of carpets, and
  6. Temperature screening of passengers and staff.

Alaska Airlines joins oneworld alliance

Alaska Airlines has announced it will join the oneworld alliance starting in summer 2021.

The airline previously announced its intention to join the alliance, in the wake of the news the Alaskan carrier plans to coordinate its domestic US schedule with American Airlines’ international network from Seattle and Los Angeles International (LAX).

Alaska and American loyalty members will enjoy benefits across both airlines, including the ability to earn and use miles on both airlines’ full networks, elite status reciprocity and lounge access to nearly 50 American Admirals Club lounges worldwide and seven Alaska Lounges in the US.

JetBlue founder offers details new airline

David Neeleman has revealed his new airline is set to be called ‘Breeze Airways’; set to take-off later this year, the entrepreneur and founder of JetBlue said the passenger experience of the airline will be among the best in the United States, as reported by Skift.

It has also been reported that the airline will pursue two models at once: flying unwanted older, used aircrafts on routes with little or no competition; and adding the first of 60 Airbus A220s, a new single-aisle airplane capable of flying coast to coast in the US, to Europe, and to South America.


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