Boeing HQ logo at night

Bonza takes delivery of Boeing 737-8 MAX

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Boeing HQ logo at night

New low-cost carrier Bonza has become the first Australian airline to take delivery of Boeing’s 737-8 MAX.

Bonza welcomed the fuel-efficient 737-8 at its Sunshine Coast base this week, with Tim Jordan, CEO of Bonza commenting: “We are beyond excited to welcome our first 737 MAX to Sunshine Coast Airport and with so much buzz around the country for Bonza, we hope today is also exciting for the communities we’ll be flying to.

“Our teams have been working hard behind the scenes to reach this significant milestone and we cannot wait to launch operations in the near future. The efficiency, reliability and overall capability of the 737 MAX will enable us to provide our customers with low-cost flights and the highest level of comfort onboard.”

The aircraft will enable Bonza to optimise its domestic operations, and Boeing says it will reduce fuel use and carbon emissions by 20%. “This is a tremendous milestone for Bonza and Boeing as the airline joins many operators around the world who have launched service with the 737 MAX,” said Christy Reese, Vice President of Commercial Sales and Marketing Asia Pacific, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

“Bonza has created a new business model to create new markets in Australia’s dynamic commercial aviation market. We are confident that the fuel-efficient 737-8 airplanes will enable the airline to provide their passengers with a comfortable flying experience and a more sustainable option to travel throughout the country.”

Air New Zealand announces science-based emissions reduction target

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Air New Zealand is progressing on its Flight NZ0 journey by setting an ambitious science-based target to reduce carbon emissions by 2030.

The flag carrier of New Zealand says it interim target is validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) and requires a 28.9% reduction in carbon intensity by 2030 from a 2019 baseline.

Science-based targets validated by the SBTi show companies how much and how quickly they need to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to prevent the worst effects of climate change. Setting a science-based target allows businesses to set a robust and credible carbon reduction target that is independently assessed to ensure it aligns with the latest climate science.

Air New Zealand Chief Operational Integrity and Safety Officer David Morgan commented: “This interim target will drive activity today and set the airline up for success in achieving its net zero 2050 target. Getting the target validated by the SBTi was a rigorous process and something we are incredibly proud to have achieved. Our GHG emissions were reviewed in detail by the SBTi to ensure we had an accurate emissions baseline and science-based target set.

“This target makes us accountable today. Implementing our decarbonisation roadmap will be critical to achieving this target – with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), continued fleet renewal, operational efficiency, and zero emissions aircraft technologies all playing a role.

Morgan says the airline’s key focus areas are SAF and the adoption of zero emissions aircraft technologies as they have the potential to reduce the carrier’s emissions by approximately 70% by 2050. “We already have several initiatives in the works including a partnership with the Government to scope the feasibility of a SAF production plant in New Zealand and our world-leading Product Requirements Document currently in market to accelerate the development of hydrogen, electric, and hybrid aircraft. These are the initiatives that will drive real change in reducing our emissions and we’re incredibly focused on delivering them as quickly as possible.”

Etihad 787-9 aircraft

Etihad partners with 15below to implement new digital solutions

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Etihad 787-9 aircraft

Etihad Airways is partnering with automated passenger communications provider 15below to implement four new digital solutions that will further advance the airline’s ability to keep its passengers informed and empowered with timely, relevant notifications throughout their journey.

According to 15below, Etihad is migrating its guest communications platform, which already automatically manages itineraries and receipts and pre-departure communications, from Sabre to Amadeus Altéa.

The carrier will also be implementing 15below’s Disruption Communications, Queue Manager, and Flight Status Notifications solutions. 15below says Etihad’s operational teams will gain significantly from the automation of irregular operations (IROPS) management, queue management, and communicating flight status updates.

Etihad sends notifications to passengers via email, SMS and push to app via 15below’s industry-leading user interface that places everything in a single view, allowing the airline’s operational teams to manage operational guest communications effectively.

The partnership between 15below and Amadeus will also bring additional value for Etihad as there will be deeper integration between the two systems and a combined approach to common industry challenges.

“A key component of Etihad’s digital strategy is to deliver the most effective solutions which support high-quality services and products for its guests. As Etihad migrates to Amadeus Altéa, passengers will benefit from a range of new digital solutions – and 15below will collaborate to deliver empowered guest communications to enhance the customer experience in this ever-changing digital landscape” said Frank Meyer, Chief Digital Officer, Etihad.

Finnair A350

Finnair resumes flights to Guangzhou

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Finnair A350

Finland’s flag carrier Finnair has announced it is set to resume flights to the Chinese city of Guangzhou after an absence of over two years.

To relaunch the service, the airline will operate a direct weekly flight from Helsinki as it continues to rebuild its long-haul Asian network. Finnair also flies to Shanghai once a week, as well as a range of popular Asian destinations, including Tokyo and Bangkok.

The Nordic carrier flies from Helsinki to London Heathrow, Manchester, Dublin and Edinburgh, allowing easy connections to China from the UK and Ireland.

Ole Orvér, Finnair Chief Commercial Officer, said: “We are excited to return to Guangzhou and look forward to gradually increasing our offering for the Chinese market.”

The flights will be operated on Finnair’s state-of-the-art A350, which generates around 25% less emissions than previous generation aircraft. The new service will offer transfer customers a smooth transition between Europe and Asia, with the required Chinese COVID-19 testing available at Helsinki Airport.

airBaltic uniforms

airBaltic adjusts uniform regulations for cabin crew, pilots and ground staff

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airBaltic uniforms

Latvian airline airBaltic says it has recently adjusted its uniform regulations, loosening rules for cabin crew, pilots and ground personnel.

Tattoos, hairstyles and piercings are now acceptable according to the carrier, and can remain visible while staff are performing direct duties.

Alīna Aronberga, SVP Human Resources of airBaltic commented: “Until now we applied the same rule as the majority of airlines – tattoos were permitted only if they could be easily hidden underneath the standard crew uniform.

“Now we have significantly eased these rules, enabling our staff to demonstrate their own individuality through their tattoos, piercing and hairstyles if they choose so, while proudly wearing our stylish uniforms. Aiming to become even more diverse and inclusive we welcome more motivated professionals to join our team.”

airBaltic provides a paid eight week training programme for cabin crew candidates and says successful candidates must be at least 18 years old and have a high school diploma, as well as good Latvian and English knowledge. The airline is looking for friendly, positive and adventurous personalities and says neck, face and head as well as potentially offensive tattoos should be covered while performing duties.

airBaltic has more than 1,900 employees, including 560 cabin crew. The company is continuing active recruitment, and currently has more than 40 open vacancies. To find out more about job opportunities at airBaltic, visit http://careers.airbaltic.com.

JetBlue A321neo tail fin

JetBlue and Spirit Airlines to merge

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JetBlue A321neo tail fin

JetBlue and Spirit Airlines have confirmed the boards of directors of both airlines have approved a definitive merger agreement under which JetBlue will acquire Spirit for $33.50 per share in cash.

This will include a prepayment of $2.50 per share in cash payable upon Spirit stockholders’ approval of the transaction, as well as a ticking fee of $0.10 per month starting in January 2023 through closing, for an aggregate fully diluted equity value of $3.8 billion1 and an adjusted enterprise value of $7.6 billion2.

“We are excited to deliver this compelling combination that turbocharges our strategic growth, enabling JetBlue to bring our unique blend of low fares and exceptional service to more customers, on more routes,” said Robin Hayes, CEO of JetBlue.

“We look forward to welcoming Spirit’s outstanding Team Members to JetBlue and together creating a customer-centric, fifth-largest carrier in the United States. Spirit and JetBlue will continue to advance our shared goal of disrupting the industry to bring down fares from the Big Four airlines. This combination is an exciting opportunity to diversify and expand our network, add jobs and new possibilities for crew members, and expand our platform for profitable growth.”

Ted Christie, Spirit Airlines’ President and CEO said: “We are thrilled to unite with JetBlue through our improved agreement to create the most compelling national low-fare challenger to the dominant U.S. carriers, and we look forward to working with JetBlue to complete the transaction.

“Bringing our two airlines together will be a game changer, and we are confident that JetBlue will deliver opportunities for our guests and team members with JetBlue’s unique blend of low fares and award-winning service. We especially appreciate the commitment of our Spirit Family throughout this process. Today’s exciting announcement reflects JetBlue’s admiration for Spirit and a shared belief in what the combined airline can bring for our guests.”

Norse

Norse announces new airline partnerships

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Norse

Norse Atlantic Airways has announced a connectivity partnership with easyJet, Norwegian and Spirit Airlines.

The virtual interline agreement, which is powered by Dohop, will provide over 600 weekly connections to Norse’s transatlantic services in Oslo, London, Berlin, New York, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando and Los Angeles.

The partnership with easyJet will provide access to an extensive range of European destinations that connect with Norse’s flights from London Gatwick to New York JFK, Berlin to New York JFK and Berlin to Los Angeles.

The carrier’s partnership with Norwegian will allow customers to easily book flights from Oslo to domestic, Scandinavian and European destinations with connections onto Norse’s services to New York JFK, Fort Lauderdale, Los Angeles and Orlando.

Norse says its partnership with Spirit Airlines will provide even greater choice for customers looking to travel between Europe and the U.S. as new destinations such as Las Vegas, Dallas, Nashville and Salt Lake City become accessible via Ft. Lauderdale, Orlando and Los Angeles.

“Since the launch of Norse Atlantic Airways we have made long haul transatlantic travel available to all thanks to our affordable fares and exciting destinations. Customers can now explore further and connect onto the services of our partner airlines across Europe and the U.S. These agreements will further boost transatlantic travel which will benefit local tourism and businesses on both sides of the Atlantic,” said Bjorn Tore Larsen, CEO Norse Atlantic Airways.

Alaska Airlines tail fins

Alaska Airlines unveils new vegan & plant-based options on board

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Alaska Airlines tail fins

Alaska Airlines says it is now offering more gluten-friendly, plant-based and vegan meal options in all of its cabins.

The airline says it is following feedback by guests who say they are looking for more plant-based menu options when travelling. A new vegan option called the “Soy Meets World” is now offered on board and is a vegan salad developed in partnership with Evergreens, a West Coast-based company that makes gourmet, freshly chopped salads.

“We’re thrilled to offer our guests more healthy and nutritious choices when they fly with us,” said Todd Traynor-Corey, Managing Director of Guest Products. “We built our menu thoughtfully to offer more plant-based, vegan and gluten-free options, which include a range of fresh, bright flavours inspired by the West Coast and ingredients that are authentically healthy by nature such as roasted broccoli, crisp romaine and baby lettuce greens, quinoa, fresh fruit and more.”

The carrier says it also offers ample food options in Premium Class and Main Cabin, which include up to four fresh options on flights over 1,100 miles and up to five snack items on flights over 223 miles, such as the Mediterranean Tapas Pack (vegan and gluten-free).

Vistara A321neo in flight

Vistara introduces e-tech logbook solution

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Vistara A321neo in flight

Indian carrier Vistara has introduced an e-tech logbook solution, going paperless in its operations.

ULTRAMAIN ELB will fully replace the airline’s aircraft paper technical log, cabin log, journey log, damage log, and fuelling log, providing a validated electronic certificate of release to service (e-CRS) on flights operated by Vistara.

Vistara says the application, which is currently in the airborne proving stage, will be used by flight crew, cabin crew and engineers on iOS devices to provide integrated workflows with Vistara’s maintenance and operational systems.

“As Vistara marches on its digital transformational journey, the focus on digital data capture, integration and automation will continue. ULTRAMAIN ELB will help digitise our aircraft paper logs and improve operational effectiveness.” said Vinod Bhat, Chief Information Officer, Vistara.

Sisira Kanta Dash, Senior Vice President – Engineering & Maintenance of Vistara commented: “Vistara remains committed towards constantly improving operational efficiency across processes through automation and we’ve been investing in right technologies to achieve this goal. We are delighted to partner with Ultramain Systems, which will provide the first Electronic Logbook to seek operational approval to operate a fully electronic Technical and Cabin Logbook in India.

“ULTRAMAIN ELB will be integrated with various live processes like AMOS, ACARS, and ARMS for seamless operations. This application, with its completeness and ease of use, is one step towards building enterprise application integration while also focussing on sustainable operations.”

qatar airways farnborough airshow 2022

FIA2022: Qatar Airways showcases Boeing 777 with FIFA World Cup Livery

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qatar airways farnborough airshow 2022

Qatar Airways is showcasing its specially-branded Boeing 777 aircraft painted in FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ livery at Farnborough International Airshow. The airline is offering tours on board the state-of-the-art aircraft which is equipped with the carrier’s Business Class Qsuite.

The bespoke aircraft was hand-painted to commemorate the airline’s partnership with FIFA and was first revealed in November 2020. Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, said: “On our road to 2022, seeing the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ brand an entire aircraft and display it at such a prestigious event, is an exciting moment for everyone involved in delivering this historic tournament. Qatar’s readiness to host FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ is evident to all around us here in Farnborough.

“We hope to see many of those attending the airshow take advantage of the incredible packages Qatar Airways is offering to transport fans to the biggest tournament in the World.”

On the second day of the show, Tuesday 19 July, Inflight Editor Satu Dahl attended an insightful round table discussion with Akbar Al Baker that covered a wide range of topics from the World Cup and Qatar Airways fleet to sustainability and the carrier’s private jet charter division Qatar Executive. Qatar Airways is showcasing the division’s Gulfstream G650ER at the show, as well as the carrier’s Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner.

According to Al Baker, the airline had a record-breaking financial year with a $1.54 billion profit which comes at an important milestone for Qatar Airways, as it celebrates 25th anniversary.

Qatar Airways round table 2022