4 APRIL 2016
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Volatility in the China aviation market was underlined this week after the country’s major carriers reported big 2015 profits but were cut back by losses in foreign exchange following the devaluation of the yuan.
American Airlines has applied for a licence to operate daily service between Los Angeles (LAX) and Beijing (PEK) from 16 December in a move to solidify LA’s status as American’s West Coast gateway to Asia.
This week's BTN is brought to you by Richard Cawthorne. Please make sure he is on your mailing list for stories. firstname.lastname@example.org
Declan Collier became CEO at London City Airport (LCY) from heading the Dublin Airport Authority and Aer Rianta exactly four years ago in April 2012 and has seen the airport grow in that time from just over 3m passengers to more than 4.3m in 2015. This figure marked an 18% increase in growth compared with 2014, the largest among London's airports, and a record total for LCY.
Collier is president of the World Board of the Airports Council International (ACI), the representative body of airports worldwide. In this month’s ON THE SOAPBOX he argues how expansion at LCY will support business travel growth.
The latest new direct routes to European capitals to be launched by Romanian carrier Blue Air from Turin have taken off to London and Madrid, joining a network that already includes Rome and Bucharest. Blue Air will also connect Turin to Berlin from 2 May and Athens from 4 June.
Heathrow (LHR) last week welcomed a Network Rail finding that there was a ‘strong case’ for a new southern rail access link to the airport, regardless of whether LHR expands and there were ‘feasible solutions’ to explore further.
ON TOUR takes a different slant this week, the tour in question being round a kitchen – but not just any kitchen. With inflight food a constant source of comment among passengers, BTN’s Richard Cawthorne took up an invitation from Delta Air Lines to check out one of the airline’s main suppliers, Gate Gourmet, at its complex near Heathrow.
This week’s BTN is brought to you partly via the editor-in-chief on board Cunard’s Queen Victoria. Look at the ship’s web cam to find out where she is, bearing in mind when it gets dark you cannot see anything. He saw the ship in Liverpool last summer, but no chance then of getting on board. (see BTN 1 June 2015) BTN’s Richard Cawthorne viewed Victoria in Sydney and was impressed.
CRUISE INTELLIGENCE is all about the mega-yachts which seem to be in vogue now. These are for fare-paying discerning holidaymakers and not oligarchs.
Over the past 176 years, 248 ships have flown the Cunard flag since the company inaugurated the first scheduled service across the North Atlantic in July 1840 and the company fleet list certainly contains the names of some of the most famous ships ever built.
But what is in a name?
Boeing is poised to land an order from Air India for more wide-body aircraft as the airline moves to expand its long-haul network. Newspaper reports in India suggest an announcement is expected later this year.
Flybe is to launch a new daily route between Cardiff and Berlin Tegel as part of expanded winter schedules with the first flight on Sunday 27 November. It is also adding a special series of flights from the Welsh capital to London City Airport to assist with the closure of Severn Tunnel rail link between 12 September and 21 October (see also BTN 14 March LCY to Tegel).
Heathrow Hub, the independent consortium, continues to promote its scheme for an extended runway as a solution to the Cabinet committee’s dilemma in announcing a new runway in the South East, expected in July.
Qatar Airways last week inaugurated the airline’s fourth UK gateway after Heathrow, Edinburgh and Manchester with the launch of eight weekly direct flights between Doha and Birmingham, all operated by B787 Dreamliner.
London’s Eccleston Square Hotel, which bills itself as ‘Europe’s most technologically advanced boutique property’, has introduced free smartphones for guests to use during their stays, and free international and national mobile calls as well.
Hilton International and the controversial online transport provider Uber announced an expanded partnership deal this week aimed at bringing the two companies’ respective mobile apps closer together.
A new codeshare agreement between Virgin Atlantic and Flybe took off on Saturday. Passengers can now book on Virgin Atlantic’s website to travel from one of 18 UK or European airports, and connect to VS flights at Manchester, Glasgow or Gatwick airports.