Aviation

Big Fat Airline Wrap

Our favourite thing about Tuesdays? This airline wrap! Oh, and the fact that it’s no longer Monday anymore. But that goes for the rest of the week too.

Emirates gives travellers a taste of home this Thanksgiving

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Emirates is firing up its ovens for Thanksgiving celebrations on board and on the ground. The airline will offer customers special holiday menus across all classes on flights between Dubai and the US and in the respective airport lounges.

The Thanksgiving menu will be available to customers travelling between Dubai and the US from November 22 to 25. First and Business Class passengers can choose from appetisers including: a smoked duck salad, served with poached fig, pickled beetroot, green beans, plum chutney and hazelnuts; a creamy cauliflower soup; a pumpkin soup with toasted pumpkins seeds and chives; or a smoked ocean trout with crème fraîche, cocktail onions and caper berries.

Customers in First and Business Class can enjoy a Thanksgiving Roasted Turkey served with chestnut stuffing, cranberry jus lié, mashed potatoes or pumpkin mash. For dessert, passengers can choose a pumpkin tart with whipped cream, caramel fudge, chocolate quenelle and pistachios. On routes with the Emirates A380 aircraft, customers will also get a taste of Thanksgiving in the iconic onboard lounge with limited edition pumpkin cupcakes.

Finnair invests in customer comfort with new ATR cabins in 2019 and new Premium Economy class for long-haul as of 2021

Finnair has announced it will renew the entire cabin of its ATR aircraft and introduce a new Premium Economy cabin class for its long-haul fleet in a move that reflects the airline’s commitment to offering a high level of customer comfort and increased choice for its customers.

Finnair’s ATR aircraft are currently used for domestic flights in Finland, as well as on flights to the Baltics, Gdansk in Poland and to Stockholm’s Bromma airport. The flights are operated by Finnair’s partner Norra. The cabin renewal will include new seats, new carpets and a harmonised and fresh cabin interior design.

The first ATR aircraft with the renewed cabin is expected to be in operation in summer 2019, and the refurbishment of the 12 aircraft will be completed by the end of Q1, 2020.

Finnair will also introduce a new cabin class, Premium Economy, for its entire long-haul fleet from 2021. Located in its own cabin, the Premium Economy class will feature highly customised designs for Finnair and provide customers with increased space and comfort along with an enhanced service offering.

Changi Airport wants Aussies to ‘Pack Their Bags’ to win a trip

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This November, Aussies are being urged to ‘pack their bags’ to stand a chance to win the ultimate holiday to Southeast Asia and S$5,000 worth of prizes. The Australian-wide promotion launches today at https://au.changiairport.com/packyourbags and closes on 18th December.

Over 1.08m Australian travellers visited Singapore in 2017, with the majority enjoying a multi-city stopover, twinning the tropical island of Singapore with one of 400 international city links available from Changi Airport.

To enter the game of chance, users will choose a dream holiday destination that can be reached via a stopover at Changi, the ideal gateway to southeast Asian hotspots – Surabaya, Indonesia; Luang Prabang, Laos; Koh Samui, Thailand; Siem Reap, Cambodia; Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. They’ll then select their most appropriate travel persona that best reflects their travel needs; the Documenter, the Indulger, the Backpacker, the Thrill Seeker, the Rejuvenator and the Work Tripper.

The user will be given S$2,500 in virtual money to pack their empty ‘suitcase’, selecting from a wide variety of items and products from the iShopChangi, Changi’s e-commerce store, that best suits their chosen holiday destination.

Air New Zealand adds more flights Auckland-Gold Coast

Air New Zealand is using its brand new A321neo (new engine option) aircraft to increase the number of seats available on its Auckland-Gold Coast route by almost 60 per cent.

From February 2019, the airline will add a new Monday return service between Auckland and the Gold Coast on the A321neo and move existing Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday return services to the new aircraft.

Air New Zealand Chief Revenue Officer Cam Wallace says the aircraft has 214 seats – 46 more than the current international A320 fleet and the move to five days a week will be great for holidaymakers.

Air New Zealand’s first A321neo (new engine option) aircraft arrived in Auckland early last week after departing the Airbus facility in Hamburg. The aircraft is the first of 13 new Airbus neo aircraft to join Air New Zealand’s fleet and is expected to enter commercial service on 23 November operating flight NZ739 from Auckland to Brisbane.

Talking Italian at London City Airport

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Everyone is talking Italian at London City Airport this week where British Airways is celebrating the launch of new flights to the capital city of Rome.

The year-round service is the fourth Italian city to be served by British Airways direct from the Docklands and will operate every day except Saturday. A special bust of one of Rome’s most famous forefathers, Julius Caesar, was drafted in to greet customers on the first flight.

The bust was welcomed on board the Embraer 190 jet by British Airways’ in-flight business manager and fellow Italian Marco Tagliaferri, one of 15 Italian cabin crew and flight crew who work on board flights to and from London City.

British Airways is investing £4.5 billion pounds for its customers over the next five years. This includes the installation of the best quality WiFi and power in every seat, fitting 128 long-haul aircraft with new interiors and taking delivery of 72 new aircraft. The airline will also be introducing new Club World seat with direct aisle access next year.

Air Astana to launch a low-cost airline, FlyArystan

Air Astana is pleased to announce that it is to launch a low-cost airline in the first half of 2019. The airline will be called FlyArystan. It will operate a fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft configured to an all-economy class of 180 seats. It will operate a classic LCC model, strictly following the examples of highly successful airlines such as easyjet, Indigo, Cebu Pacific, and Air Asia.

It will offer low airfares – approximately half of what Air Astana offers today – on mostly domestic routes – but it is expected to expand onto regional international routes in the mid-term. It will operate initially four aircraft, growing to a fleet of at least 15 by 2022. FlyArystan will operate from multiple aircraft bases in Kazakhstan with routes and aircraft bases to be announced over the coming months.

FlyArystan’s management team has already been appointed and is drawn from Air Astana’s senior local managers, whom the airline has been developing for the last 16 years. The team will be led by Tim Jordan, a British-Australian national with more than 15 years’ senior LCC management experience at Cebu Pacific and Virgin Blue.

Although FlyArystan will be a low-cost airline, with very different service procedures to those of Air Astana, it is to be stressed that as a division of Air Astana, there will be no degradation of airline safety or reliability standards. All safety standards and regulatory processes to which Air Astana is subject will automatically apply to FlyArystan. Finally, and as usual with Air Astana, the project will be entirely self-funded. FlyArystan will require no capital from shareholders, no state subsidies or external financial support of any kind.

Emirates delivers a few sweet surprises in time for Diwali

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Emirates celebrated the festive Diwali spirit by bringing together UAE residents with the simple joy of special treats aboard its Mithai truck to mark the start of the festival of lights. The special Emirates Mithai sweets truck surprised City Walk and Bollywood Parks Dubai visitors, and Emirates Cabin Crew distributed traditional Indian treats. Watch the Emirates Mithai Truck spread the festive Diwali spirit across Dubai.

Visitors of all ages, particularly children, also enjoyed creating a mini Rangoli, a spectacular Diwali pattern with colourful sand.

Emirates will be offering passengers on-board Diwali delicacies from 7 November to 10 November 2018 across all classes on all flights from Dubai to India. Customers travelling during Diwali can enjoy Motichoor Ladoos with all hot tray meals. The celebratory delicacy is made up of small flour balls deep fried in ghee and simmered in a cardamom and saffron infused sugar syrup, decorated with silver leaf and pistachio.

Business and First Class passengers can also enjoy Anjeer Chakkar- a sugar-free sweet, loaded with cashew nuts, almonds raisins, pistachio, walnut, and dried figs presented in a circular form.

SAP and Singapore Airlines collaborate to boost corporate travel visibility for enterprises

SAP SE and Singapore Airlines (SIA) have come together to forge a strategic collaboration to boost travel visibility for businesses. As the first Asia-based carrier to sign an agreement with SAP Concur organisation, customers utilising the Concur TripLink Web service will soon realise the benefits of their corporate travel programme when they make reservations with SIA outside of the Concur Travel solution.

Concur TripLink connects travellers, itineraries, and receipts across multiple channels, allowing businesses to apply their travel policies to direct bookings. It also makes it easier for businesses to quickly locate and communicate with employees in the event of an emergency.

By seamlessly identifying corporate bookings made through SIA’s website, SIA will be able to enhance the overall corporate booking experience through personalised products and services for businesses and their employees. The ecosystem of connected travel-related apps that Concur TripLink is part of and the collaboration with SIA ease potential inconveniences caused by expense reporting and alleviate compliance issues arising from out-of-policy travel spend.

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