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21 OCTOBER 2019


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ERA hails 2019 award winners

Top performers in the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) celebrated at the association’s 2019 General Assembly after being hailed at the annual awards ceremony for their achievements.

They were led by Spanish carrier Air Nostrum, which won the ERA Airline of the Year Gold Award.

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Don't forget British Summer Time ends in the early hours of next Sunday morning, 27 October.

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COMMENT: Thomas Cook What next?

With a government that has as many leaks as the Titanic after it hit the iceberg, maybe someone somewhere got it wrong and leaked what turned out not so much a false story but one that promised so much but was a damp squib.

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Airlines 2050 Conference report

The absence at short-notice of transport secretary Grant Shapps (pleading “other business”) at the Airlines UK, BAR UK and IATA Aviation 2050 event last Thursday did not spoil a most interesting day.  Hosted by Flight Global executive director content Max Kinsley Jones, the packed programme heard 20 senior managers make a series of varied presentations to more than 200 airline industry professionals at Westminster’s QEII Hall.

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Arora takes a Heathrow view

Visitors to Surinder Arora’s top floor office at the World Business Centre Heathrow North are always impressed with the 180deg view of runway 09L/27R. But it is no longer the finest lookout in the airline industry!  

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Aviation Club and the MAX

Working for an airline is not easy. Oscar Munoz, a Mexican/American who will be the guest of the Aviation Club at the Institute of Directors in London on 7 November, suffered a heart attack on 15 October 2015, just a month after becoming CEO of United Airlines.

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Balls backing for airport access plans

The Gatwick Transport Forum’s aim of creating an integrated regional transport system won the backing of former shadow chancellor Ed Balls when he gave the keynote speech at the group’s 2019 annual meeting last week.

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China presence for Virgin Atlantic

A new joint-venture partnership with China Eastern Airlines which will also include the Air France-KLM group is being planned by Virgin Atlantic on flights between Europe and China using the Far East carrier’s strong presence in the Asian nation.

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Flybe and Loganair in APD saving deal

UK and Europe regional connectivity entered a new era last week with Flybe and Loganair signing a co-operation agreement that the companies said offered passengers a broad range of new options for travel.

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Heathrow boosts carbon debate

Further industry-wide action on carbon was demanded by Heathrow last week in the aftermath of its biggest airline, British Airways, introducing mandatory carbon offsetting on all UK domestic flights and committing to net zero emissions (BTN 14 October).

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JetBlue, Norwegian accord

Ahead of plans to launch services between the US and London in 2021 (BTN 15 April), JetBlue has signed a letter of intent with Norwegian for an interline agreement which it says will allow passengers to combine low fares in a single booking for connecting flights between Europe and the Americas.

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Non-stop New York to Sydney

Celebrations were under way at Sydney Airport in the early hours of yesterday, Sunday, as Qantas landed the first non-stop commercial airline flight from New York after 19hr 16min in the air.

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Virgin Connect name confirmed

The familiar purple of Flybe’s livery is due to turn red soon after last week’s news that the airline is to rebrand under the name Virgin Connect under the new ownership of the Connect Airways consortium.

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ON TOUR: YORK (happily) revisited

BTN last visited York, one of our favourite UK cities, back in 2014. With this most recent trip we have kept away from those places viewed last time (with the exception of Bettys) and if you are thinking of a York experience read the previous review too. The reincarnation of LNER and arrival of Azuma was the excuse, and also the attraction of The Grand Hotel, now fully restored and once the headquarters of the famous railway company. 

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AND FINALLY: The jumbo testbed

For all those who wondered where old Boeing B747s go to die, BTN has at least part of the answer.

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Airlines break ranks in B737 saga

The Boeing B737 MAX saga continued last week with Southwest Airlines and Air Canada parting company with American Airlines over when the aircraft might re-enter commercial service.

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American looks to Brazil

In another twist last week to the battle over the US-South American market, American Airlines was reported to be negotiating with the Brazilian carrier Gol about forming a partnership that could lead to closer cooperation between the two.

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Cabin summit sets the date

Aircraft cabin innovation will be the spotlight at a special conference from 3-5 December organised by industry summit specialist RedCabin and hosted by Virgin Atlantic.

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Dublin welcomes its first Hyatt

The first Hyatt-branded hotel in Ireland has arrived in Dublin with the opening of the latest example of the company’s fastest-growing lifestyle division, the Hyatt Centric The Liberties. It is managed by the Hodson Bay Group.

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Fankhauser stalls over bonus

Former Thomas Cook chief executive Peter Fankhauser last week refused to tell MPs whether he would give back all or some of his bonus to help to pay redundancy to former staff and contribute to the cost of bringing stranded customers home after the company collapsed.

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Game changers in the spotlight

Game changers is to be the theme for the Advantage Travel Partnership’s fourth Business Travel Symposium which takes place on 22 November at the BMA House Conference and Events Centre in Tavistock Square, London.

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General aviation's new champion

Phil Dunnington, the first balloon pilot to cross the North West Arctic Passage, has been appointed by the Department for Transport as general aviation advocate to represent the general aviation sector and advise government on relevant policies.

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RAeS airport overview

The history of airports policy in London will be under the microscope at the next Royal Aeronautical Society lecture, to be delivered on Tuesday week, 29 October, at the society’s headquarters at 4 Hamilton Place, London. 

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United CRJ-550 cleared for take-off

The first batch of US domestic routes earmarked for service by the new Bombardier CRJ-550, the first 50-seater aircraft in the world designed with three classes, have been announced by launch customer United Airlines.

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