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27 JANUARY 2020


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Conquering fear of flying

Britain’s smallest airline is to offer a free fear of flying course.

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Northern airports in connectivity review

Aviation minister Paul Maynard has launched a tour of UK regional airports as part of the recently-announced Regional Air Connectivity Review, starting with Liverpool John Lennon Airport.

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ON THE SOAPBOX SPECIAL: Tim Alderslade, Airlines UK

Previously with the Airport Operators Association, Tim Alderslade is chief executive of Airlines UK, the trade body for British registered airlines. The timing of these comments is appropriate. 

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777X first-flight success

The world’s largest twin-engine commercial aircraft, the Boeing 777X, took to the air for the first time on Saturday for its maiden test flight. Chief pilot Captain Van Chaney described the 3hr 51min sortie as “very productive”.

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Boeing controversy comes to Aviation Club

Last Saturday's (25 January) maiden test flight of the new Boeing B777X will provide another topical subject to be discussed at next month’s Aviation Club lunch in London, with the man in one of the industry’s currently most controversial jobs as guest speaker. (see also in the issue Further MAX delay to summer confirmed plus AND FINALLY.

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EasyJet gains from Cook collapse

A good start to the new year was reported last week by easyJet, which said it had benefited from the Thomas Cook collapse in September and had seen revenue increase by almost 10% in the first quarter of its financial year.

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Further MAX delay to summer confirmed

Official confirmation of a continued delay in the Boeing B737 MAX re-entering service came from the manufacturer last week in a public statement on the behind-the-scenes activity taking place to solve the crisis.

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LOT-Condor deal threat to IAG

In a new twist to the Thomas Cook story, one of the failed holiday company’s subsidiary airlines, Condor of Germany, has been acquired by the Polish aviation group PGL, the owner of LOT Polish Airlines.

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Nashville date for Virgin Hotels

The fourth and latest US property in the Virgin Hotels portfolio is due to open in Nashville in May with 262 rooms, known as Chambers, including suites. It follows hard on the heels of the company’s arrival in Dallas (BTN 4 January).

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New regional expansion for Eastern

New services between Teesside International Airport and Belfast City, Dublin, London City, Cardiff and Southampton beginning in March have been announced in a regional expansion by Eastern Airways.

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Norwegian cuts baggage allowance

Passengers buying the lowest fares on Norwegian have lost some of their luggage allowance or are facing higher charges after the airline last week changed its policy on hand baggage. The airline is also reported to have dropped lounge access to PremiumFlex passengers.

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Stansted growth plan setback

Plans for the expansion of Stansted suffered a setback on Friday when the local council’s planning committee ignored a previous recommendation to approve the developments.

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Which? rates cruises

“Predictable ratings up to a point”. So says Malcolm Ginsberg, editor-in-chief of Business Travel News, commenting on Which? magazine’s cruise review, published today. 

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With Sir Tim Clark confirming his forthcoming retirement (see BTN 6 January) a trip to the Dubai Air Show seemed a great opportunity to fly “Up Front” on the iconic Airbus A380, he the saviour of what is undoubtedly the finest mode of air travel.  Alison Chambers reports.

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AND FINALLY: Another Boeing invention

Boeing is known for its innovations, but its use of the Queen’s English is not one of its strengths.

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All-party aviation group back in business

The All-Party Parliamentary Group on General Aviation (APPG-GA) has officially re-formed after a brief hiatus for the general election and has held an inaugural meeting to re-appoint officers ready for the new parliament.

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Big UK expansion for Lufthansa

A “substantial” extension of its UK route network this year by the Lufthansa Group will see the German carrier plus group members Brussels Airlines and Austrian Airlines offering more capacity north and southwest of England to Europe.

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Brize Norton in view for Air League

The next visitor event organised by the Air League’s Friends of Brize Norton group will be held at RAF Brize Norton on the afternoon of Wednesday 26 February, beginning at 14:00 and scheduled to finish at about 17:00.

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Four Seasons Madrid sets opening date

After a seven-year restoration programme involving a collection of seven historic buildings, the new Four Seasons Hotel Madrid, the first property for the brand in Spain, has set 15 May as its opening date.

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Party time for points collectors

If you struggle to get your head around the intricacies of frequent-flyer and hotel-loyalty programmes, you would probably have found the answers at London’s Marriott Grosvenor Square hotel last week.

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Robot parking moves forward

The future of robot parking for passengers’ cars at airports is about to take a big step forward at Lyon-Saint Exupéry in France, where a trial in place for a year is to be extended this summer to cover four times more spaces.

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Technology takes the stage

Back for its 17th year, Travel Technology Europe (TTE) moves into London’s Olympia on 26 February for two days. The event is co-located with the Business Travel Show and a free entry badge gives access to both gatherings.

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World's largest Fairfield to open in Makkah

A landmark deal to open the world’s largest Fairfield by Marriott Hotel in the growing religious destination of Makkah, Saudi Arabia, was signed last week between Marriott International and hospitality company Nahdet Al-Mashaer.

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