12 JANUARY 2015


© 2022 Business Travel News Ltd.

Air Asia 'black box' found

Indonesian divers have retrieved the flight data recorder of crashed AirAsia Flight QZ8501, say officials.

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Aviation Festival Asia

Singapore’s Aviation Festival Asia has detailed some of the major companies participating in the event which takes place at the Suntec International Convention & Exhibition Centre 12-13 February.  These include AAR Corp, Airbus, HP Asia, Information System Associates, iQuest Technologies, Microsoft, SITA, Tata Consultancy Services and TripFactory as well as IATA.

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Birmingham Airport’s simulator

Whilst it may not be as large as the full size A380 and Boeing 777 simulators at West London’s Emirates Air Line, Birmingham Airport (the Dubai carrier has twice daily services) has opened a new flight training device in the landside arrivals area for those who are licensed pilots, aviation enthusiasts or people just looking to try something new.

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Children at Heathrow

Airport Parking and Hotels (APH) has conducted a survey of children’s facilities at Heathrow.  The ‘Meet & Greet’ experts are helping families to plan ahead and enjoy a stress-free journey, comparing the facilities available across Heathrow’s five terminals.  The research highlights all amenities including family lounges, mothers’ nursing rooms, baby changing facilities and play areas, and is available in the Know Before You Go section of the APH website.

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COMMENT: Airbus A350 XWB at Heathrow

In what is probably a unique occasion Qatar Airways will stage a special promotional flight for the all new Airbus A350 XWB at Heathrow Airport this morning (Monday 12 January 2012).  Heathrow may be very busy but slots have been found.

Making this ‘party’ so special is that not only is it a pure two-hour air experience (other inaugurals have always been to a destination) but the aircraft will not even be a Heathrow user.  On 15 January Qatar Airways will introduce the A350 on its daily Frankfurt – Doha services.  At some point in the future British Airways is expected to take on the A350, but that is a long way off.  Looking ahead with 41 operators ordering 771 A350s to date no doubt the 'plane, in other paint schemes, will be seen at Heathrow before the BA delivery.  All the airlines will be watching today.

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Airmanship supreme

The Editor would like to share with readers the video published by the Daily Telegraph showing landings during high winds Friday 10 January at Leeds Bradford Airport.

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Aer Lingus and British Airways

Late on Friday (9 January) IAG issued the following statement.

“International Airlines Group (IAG) notes recent press speculation and confirms it submitted a revised proposal to make an offer for Aer Lingus on 29 December 2014, which has been rejected by the Board of Aer Lingus.  The revised proposal consisted of a cash offer of €2.40 per Aer Lingus share, subject to certain pre-conditions, representing an improvement to the €2.30 per Aer Lingus share that IAG had originally submitted.

There can be no certainty that any further proposal or offer will be forthcoming.  A further statement will be made if and when appropriate”. 

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Aircraft to report position

ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation), a UN body, is to propose a new standard that requires commercial aircraft to report their position every 15 minutes as part of a global tracking initiative in the aftermath of the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

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Airline coup for Heathrow

Vietnam Airlines is leaving Gatwick to launch a direct service from Heathrow to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.  It is a major coup for the west London airport as it battles with Gatwick to secure the recommendation of the Airport Commission for a new runway when Sir Howard Davies and his team reports later in the year.  Gatwick has not commented.

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Boeing and 2014

Boeing set a company record in 2014 with 723 commercial aircraft delivered.  The company's sales team also booked 1,432 net orders, carrying a value of US$232.7bn at list prices, breaking the previous all-time high set in 2007.

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Luton Airport record year

In what will probably see a rush of figures this week Luton Airport was first out of the blocks last Friday publishing its 2014 passenger movements, a record 10.5m and 8% more than 2014.

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ON TOUR: Santorini – sometimes called Thira – It is a Greek island

There are not many places that offer entry by scheduled air services, cable car, or by donkey.  And cruise ship or ferry.

Santorini you will not find in OAG or airline schedules but it does have an airport called Thira (JTR) which also features in this issue of Business Travel News,  British Airways  offering services this summer from London City Airport.  Other established non-stop ex-UK summer operators include easyJet, Thomson and Thomas Cook Airlines.  Just to get it in perspective it is 200 miles south east of Piraeus (Athens) in the Aegean Sea covering just 28 square miles.

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MOTORING UPDATE: Volvo V40 D2 (Powershift R-Design Nav)

On Test with Ted Wilkinson of The Guild of Motoring Writers

Versatility With A Sporty Touch

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AND FINALLY: The Xmas Quiz

Was it that hard?  www.btnews.co.uk/article/8262

BTN would like to thank those whose notes caused us to smile. 

Here are a few of the many comments received.

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Belfast City to Amsterdam

In what is clearly seen as a bid to persuade Northern Ireland travellers that there is an alternative to long haul connections to Heathrow, Skyteam KLM is to commence operations from George Best Belfast City Airport to Amsterdam.

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Bill Boeing, Jr

Jim McNerney, Chairman and CEO of Boeing, has announced the passing of Bill Boeing, Jr (92).

“Bill’s impact on the social and economic development of the Puget Sound has greatly benefited generations in the community.

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Business Travel Survey

With its annual  Business Travel Show  looming up (25-26 February, Olympia Grand, London) Centaur Exhibitions Ltd has announced the results of the annual buyer survey. 

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Cyprus Airways grounded

The Cyprus government has suspended operations at its flag carrier after the European Commission ordered the struggling airline to pay back over €65m.

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Heathrow air traffic

A trial to cut the amount of time aircraft spend circling in ‘holding stacks’ at Heathrow Airport has started to reap rewards.

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InterContinental Dublin

The former Four Seasons Dublin has rebranded from 1 January as an InterContinental taking the IHG luxury brand to Ireland for the first time.

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London City to Greece

British Airways, for the first time, will operate flights to the Greek islands from London City Airport during the summer peak season 2015.  All the services will be flown by 98-seat Embraer 190 aircraft in a 2+2 configuration with an 18” seat width and 31” pitch.

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Qatar to Amsterdam

There is little doubt that 2015 will be a busy year when it comes to new routes.  Perhaps predictably Qatar Airways has jumped in first when it comes to announcements confirming Dutch capital Amsterdam from Doha 16 June.  It will take the airline’s European destination count up to 34.  Daily non-stop flights will be operated by Boeing 787 Dreamliners.

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Toronto City Airport

Air Canada is considering ceasing flights out of Billy Bishop Airport in downtown Toronto amid a continuing push to gain more access to the waterside operation.

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Virgin Hotels – Chicago

This coming Thursday (15 January) will see the opening of the very first Virgin Hotel, in Chicago, often called ‘The Windy City’ and HQ of Boeing among many major companies, sitting on Lake Michigan.

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