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22 FEBRUARY 2016


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New Gatwick Express trains

Our rail expert, Andrew Sharp formerly of IARO (International Air Rail Organisation), reports that one of the 27 new trains being built for Gatwick Express is now running occasional trips in passenger service, on Thameslink, which as he says, is a bit odd.  They are supposed to start to enter service on Gatwick Express from the end of February.

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Profit for Air France

Air France-KLM returned to profit in 2015, helped by a drop in its fuel bill and growth in passenger traffic.

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ON THE SOAPBOX SPECIAL: David Chapple, director of the Business Travel Show

David Chapple has been involved with the Business Travel Show for 16 years and oversaw the very successful move from Earls Court to the present site.  He founded Travel Technology Europe in 2002 and the Business Travel Club in 2009. He was an associate director for the Institute of Travel & Meetings from 2011 to 2013.

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A380 news

Air France has introduced the first A380 operations to Central and South America with a daily service from Charles de Gaulle (CDG) Airport to Benito Juarez International Airport (MEX) in Mexico City.  This also marks the 50th airport and 102nd route to be served by the mega Jumbo in service with 13 airlines.

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Airport patent approved

Heathrow Hub, the independent proposal to extend the northern runway at Heathrow, has received a huge boost in its campaign to provide the UK with the additional aviation capacity that the country urgently needs.

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ANA 30 years international

On 3 March ANA will celebrate 30 years of international services since its inaugural flight from Tokyo to Guam on 3 March 1986.

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BA which way?

The enigma that is Willie Walsh has been at it again.

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Blue Islands 10 years

It may not be the best known British airline, except if you live in the Channel Islands, but Blue Islands based in Jersey has celebrated 10 years of operations. 

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British Airways update

BA has put its latest refurbished 747 into service.  The sixth out of 18 iconic Boeing 747s earmarked for a major make-over, last week flew to Boston as the BA213. 

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Cuba and US flights

Last week Cuba and US signed an agreement to allow, after 50 years, scheduled flights to operate between the two countries.  President Barack Obama will become the first sitting US President to visit Cuba in 88 years, when he visits Havana in March, the White House has confirmed. (see ON TOUR: Cuba - an enigma within an enigma)

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Jobs at Monarch

Monarch, the Luton Airport based UK independent airline group, will be attending a number of local recruitment fairs to highlight the varied roles available for candidates looking for careers in the travel and leisure industry.

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Low-cost taxis for Business Travel Show

Uber, the controversial low-cost private hire operator will exhibit at the Business Travel Show (BTS) for the first time alongside fellow sharing economy suppliers Hailo, Gett, Veeve, JetHunter and Magicevent.  BTS is at Olympia Wednesday-Thursday this week 24-25 February. (See ON THE SOAPBOX SPECIAL)

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ON TOUR: Singapore Airshow

Our visiting Editor Richard Cawthorne on his way to Australia stopped by to report on the biennial Singapore Airshow which took place last week followed by the traditional flying display weekend.  With the flurry of orders place by the major carriers over the last couple of years the 2016 event was likely to be quieter, and so it proved.

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AND FINALLY: The Boris riddle

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Airlines at the Business Travel Show

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APD and airports

The Airport Operators Association (AOA), the trade association, has urged the Government to use its upcoming Budget (16 March) to provide clarity to the future of Air Passenger Duty (APD). 

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Bombardier’s good and bad news

It was good news and bad news for Bombardier commercial aircraft last week.

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Gatwick’s merry go round

The airline merry go round at Gatwick is likely to take place in January following the airport's recent discussions with all parties involved. 

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Internet Delta

Delta Air Lines is now offering high-speed internet access on all trans-Atlantic flights between the United States and the UK, mainland Europe, Israel and West Africa.

From the UK, the US airline offers up to 11 peak-day flights from Heathrow and one from Manchester meaning more customers can get online at 30,000 feet with Delta.

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Priority Pass new lounges

Airport executive pass marketing operator Priority Pass has added 12 new lounges at popular business and leisure destinations around the world since the beginning of the year.

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Robert Goodwill opens Newquay Aerohub

Aviation Minister Robert Goodwill has visited Cornwall Airport Newquay and the adjoining Aerohub to see how Government investment is helping to regenerate interest in what was once RAF St Mawgan.  

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Rotterdam is Flybe’s latest

Flybe has launched a twice daily service from Manchester to Rotterdam The Hague Airport with a 68-seat Bombardier Q400.  Flight time is around 90 minutes. 

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Travel law seminar

ABTA's 18th annual travel law event has been set for 10-11 May at NatWest, The Auditorium, 280 Bishopsgate, London EC2M 4RB.

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