It’s raining, its pouring, and the old man is snoring in Sydney today. However, that hasn’t stopped Travel Weekly from delivering this week’s aviation wrap.
Qantas welcomes US Department of Transport’s approval American Airlines JV, opens applications for flight academy
Qantas and American Airlines have welcomed the US Department of Transportation’s tentative approval of the carriers’ joint business for customers flying between the US, Australia and New Zealand.
Final approval of the joint business will allow for significant customer benefits not possible through any other form of cooperation, such as the opportunity to launch new routes and flights to new destinations (including to city pairs not currently served by either carrier), an expanded codeshare relationship and optimised schedules on trans-Pacific services, opening up more connections to more destinations and reduced total travel time, and more.
Applications have also opened for the new Qantas Group Pilot Academy, due to open its doors to the first student intake in Toowoomba in September this year.
Qantas has appointed Flight Training Adelaide (FTA) as the training provider for the Toowoomba site, in a partnership that will see it extend its reach to Queensland. FTA will bring a mix of modern single and twin-engine aircraft with glass cockpits to support the training with a mentoring program that will involve of some of the Qantas Group’s most senior pilots.
Emirates launches world’s shortest A380 flight, ventures to Amman and Boston, and renews partnership with Collingwood Football Club
Emirates is celebrating the renewal of one of its most enduring and successful sponsorship properties in the Australian market, marking 20 years as the Premier Partner of the Collingwood Football Club.
The airline has invested more than $100 million in the Australian market through the arts, community initiatives and sports industry, including the Sydney and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras.
Emirates is also gearing up for a big summer in Muscat with the deployment of double daily A380 flights from 1 July. The airline will operate the A380 on EK 862/863 and EK864/865 to and from Muscat International Airport (MCT).
Muscat will become Emirates’ shortest scheduled A380 flight, flying 340 kilometres each way. The new A380 services to Muscat demonstrate “the airline’s agile approach to fleet deployment and its commitment to providing an enhanced onboard experience for its passengers”.
Emirates’ first scheduled A380 services also recently touched down in Boston and Amman for the summer season peak.
The first scheduled A380 service landed in Amman on 1 June at 3:55pm local time and the second A380 service from Dubai to Boston landed at 1:50pm local time.
Led by Captain Arif Al Reyami and Jordanian first officer Laith Saudi, the A380 Amman service was greeted by a traditional water cannon salute.
Singapore Airlines confirms third aircraft change for Perth
Singapore Airlines confirmed a second Airbus A350-900 medium-haul aircraft will service the Singapore-Perth route from 1 July 2019.
The announcement comes as the first A350-900 medium-haul aircraft begins operating to Perth on SQ213/226.
From 1 July 2019, Perth will see a 12 per cent increase in capacity across the two A350-900 operated flights, with the changes coming a little over a year after the airline deployed their all new Boeing 787-10 to the West Australian capital last year on SQ215/216.
Aircalin’s ‘Kids Fly Free’ sale
Aircalin has announced its ‘Kids Fly Free’ deal to Noumea. Travellers can book an adult ticket until 6 June 2019 and a child (up to 11 years) will travel for free (excluding government and airport taxes).
The travel period is from 01 July 2019 to 30 November 2019 (blackout dates apply, but there are no blackout dates in July).
British Airways surprises former pilot for 100th anniversary
These days former pilot Frank Dell, 96, can be found soaring through the hallways of Bupa Aged Care in St Ives, but was just as familiar with flying high over Germany in World War II as he was with carrying Royals.
Despite these feats, the former Royal Air Force pilot, British Airways Captain and current aged care resident has always managed to keep himself grounded.
The end of the war led Frank to don a fresh uniform and secure the next stage of his career as a commercial pilot with British Airways. Now, 45 years after his retirement, the airline has worked closely with Bupa to make one of his wishes come true, as Frank ventured back into the flight deck of an aircraft.
The visit forms part of British Airways’ commitment to 100 acts of kindness across the world as part of its #BAMagic100 campaign, to celebrate its Centenary this year.
Finnair’s special fares
Finnair is offering special fares for everyone in Australia for either return itineraries to Baltic and Nordic capital cities (Helsinki, Tallinn, Billund, Bergen, Copenhagen, Gothenburg, St Petersburg, Oslo, Stockholm, Tromsø and Trondheim) or around the world via the same cities.
The special is valid for sale until (and including) 8 June 2019 for travel dates from 1 September 2019 to 31 March 2020.
The special fares are both available in economy class and business class on Finnair flights and partner carriers.
Star Alliance: IATA extends cooperation for passenger comfort, THAI Smile Airways becomes new connecting partner
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and Star Alliance have renewed their collaboration on traveller document verification to improve the passenger experience.
Star Alliance and IATA, in a signing ceremony at IATA’s 75th Annual General Meeting in Seoul, agreed that IATA’s Timatic AutoCheck solution will continue to power Automated Document Check (ADC) for Star Alliance member carriers.
IATA Timatic AutoCheck enables Star Alliance customers checking-in at the airport counter or online to verify that their travel documents are valid and complete for the whole journey, including any transit point before travel begins.
For more information on Timatic, click here.
Star Alliance has announced plans for THAI Smile Airways to become the next connecting partner in its global network.
The chief executive board of Star Alliance, meeting on the sides of the 75th IATA Annual General Meeting in Seoul, approved the application of THAI Smile Airways to become a part the Alliance’s connecting partner model.
Customers travelling on an itinerary that includes a transfer between a Star Alliance member airline and a connecting partner will be offered standard Alliance benefits such as passenger and baggage through check-in.
In addition, customers who have achieved Star Alliance Gold status in their frequent flyer programme will enjoy premium customer benefits.
THAI Smile Airways will add 11 new destinations to the Star Alliance network, which already comprises over 1,300 airports in 194 countries.
Sunshine Coast Airport Master Plan 2040 unveils visionary future for the airport
Sunshine Coast Airport has delivered its Draft Master Plan document charting the planned evolution of the airport over the next two decades and beyond.
The release of the draft Sunshine Coast Airport Master Plan 2040 will now be followed by a 50-business day community engagement period, ending on Friday 9 August 2019.
The Sunshine Coast Airport Master Plan 2040 incorporates the infrastructure being delivered by Sunshine Coast Council under the Sunshine Coast Airport Expansion Project (SCAEP) including a new 2,450-metre runway, with an associated 1,300-metre taxiway and other facility upgrades.
SilkAir expands Cairns services with introduction of daily flights
SilkAir has celebrated the launch of daily services from Cairns to Singapore, with direct flights increasing from the current five times weekly owing to increasing demand.
The expansion to daily services will see the total number of SilkAir seats per week from Cairns to Singapore increase by 40 per cent.
The introduction of daily services also coincides with the fourth anniversary of SilkAir flights to Cairns, with the service initially launching on 30 May 2015.