United Airlines issues travel waivers

Feb 8, 2010 0

With winter weather expected this week in the Midwest and the Northeast, United Airlines is encouraging customers ticketed for travel Febuary 9th-10th to, from or through certain Midwest airports – or ticketed for travel Feb. 10-11 to, from or through certain Northeast airports – to consider rebooking on an earlier flight, as certain change fees have been waived.

United strongly encourages customers to make use of the customer information tools available at united.com, including:

  • Flight status confirmation and notification, with updates to departure and arrival times sent via email or to a mobile device;
  • The ability to confirm and/or rebook an existing reservation;
  • Online check-in, which enables customers to print a boarding pass for a departing flight or view options if a booked flight has been canceled due to weather.

Customers may also book a new reservation, change an existing reservation, or get flight status via United reservations at 1-800-UNITED-1 or via their travel agencies. United strongly urges travelers, particularly those whose flights have been canceled due to weather, to visit united.com or to call reservations before going to the airport.

All changes must be made by midnight of the customer’s original travel date. Rescheduled travel may be subject to higher fares if it does not meet original rule and booking-code restrictions or is a new itinerary.

Midwest Waiver Details

The revised ticketing policies apply to all tickets purchased Feb. 8, 2010, or earlier, for travel Feb. 9-10 to, from and through Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin on any United, United Express or United code-share flight. Origin and destination cities must remain the same, and rescheduled travel must be completed within seven days of original travel date. Customers with canceled flights are eligible for a full refund.

Northeast Waiver Details

The revised ticketing policies apply to all tickets purchased Feb. 8, 2010, or earlier, for travel Feb. 10-11 to, from and through Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington D.C. on any United, United Express or United code-share flight. Origin and destination cities must remain the same, and rescheduled travel must be completed within seven days of original travel date. Customers with canceled flights are eligible for a full refund.

United will continue to monitor the weather situation and adjust ticketing policies on united.com.

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Boeing to continue providing F/A-18 engineering services to Royal Australian Air Force

Feb 8, 2010 0

Boeing Defence Australia, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Boeing Company, has been awarded a $1.5 million contract for the provision of engineering support services for the Royal Australian Air Force’s (RAAF) fleet of F/A-18A/B Hornet aircraft.

The 30-month contract, managed by the Tactical Fighter Systems Program Office (TFSPO) at RAAF Base Williamtown, requires Boeing Defence Australia to deliver repair plans for faults uncovered during F/A-18A/B Hornet maintenance.

“This contract maintains our F/A-18 engineering capability as it increases our overall business on the platform,” said Brad Hume, Boeing Defence Australia F/A-18 program manager.

Boeing Defence Australia has delivered engineering support services to the TFSPO for the past six years. It also continues to perform Hornet Upgrade Phase 2.3, which involves upgrading the Electronic Warfare Self Protection Suite on 68 aircraft and modifying 76 wing pylons. Phase 2.3 is expected to be completed in 2012.

“The RAAF’s decision to award this contract to us demonstrates their faith in Boeing’s ability to support the F/A-18 platform,” Hume said. “We will continue working closely with our customer to maintain the Hornet’s air combat capability.”

Under the new contract, engineering services will now be delivered under Boeing Defence Australia’s Authorised Engineering Organisation (AEO) certificate.


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ADAC & Al Jaber Aviation sign largest tenancy deal at Al Bateen Executive Airport

Feb 8, 2010 0

Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC) has signed a landmark 10-year leasing deal with Al Jaber Aviation (AJA), which will see the new leading provider of VIP aviation based at Al Bateen Executive Airport, in the heart of the UAE capital.

The deal makes Al Jaber Aviation the largest tenant to sign up at Al Bateen – the region’s only dedicated private aviation airport – since ADAC took over the management of the airport in 2009.

 Declared as a ‘win-win’ situation for both partners, AJA’s new office space now strategically locates the VIP aviation company in the heart of Abu Dhabi, while – for ADAC – the agreement complements its strategy of diversification of its airports.

According to the agreement, AJA will be signed up for a minimum of 10 years, with the office space having been delivered to the VIP aviation company in three phases. AJA confirmed that the final phase is near completion and the offices will be fully operational within two months.

On signing the deal, ADAC’s Chief Commercial Officer, Huraiz Al Mur bin Huraiz said: “We are pleased to welcome Al Jaber Aviation as ADAC’s first and now largest tenant at Al Bateen Executive Airport. The deal we are signing today is a clear indication of the growing importance of VIP and private aviation in the UAE capital, as well as the position Abu Dhabi, as a whole, is building as a key destination for VIP and executive travel.

“In addition, ADAC is equally committed to providing as much support to our national VIP aviation operators as needed, in order for them to achieve their expansion plans and build a peerless reputation in the industry.”   

Dr. Mark Pierotti, Chief Operating Officer of Al Jaber Aviation described the deal as a reiteration of AJA’s partnership with ADAC, saying it will significantly empower the company’s plans to grow and achieve its development objectives, adding:

“With AJA planning to further build our aircraft fleet, over the coming years, we recognise that Al Bateen combines a strategic location with fully equipped operational, administrative as well as maintenance facilities managed by ADAC – the largest operator of airports in the UAE.  Furthermore, basing AJA at Al Bateen will help us continue to deliver world-class services to our elite guests with fast-on-fast-off processing; an advantage that we could not obtain in other international or larger airports in the region.”

“We thank ADAC for their support and their trust in AJA.  Our decision to base our offices at Al Bateen Executive Airport, which I understand now makes us the largest leasing tenant, is based on our future plans to expand our activities in the medium and long term. 

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Boeing completes 747-8 Freighter taxi tests – should fly tomorrow

Feb 7, 2010 0

Boeing completed taxi tests on the first 747-8 Freighter today. With Chief Pilot Mark Feuerstein at the controls, the airplane reached a top speed of approximately 90 knots (103.5 mph, 166.6 kph).

“The airplane performed well,” said Mo Yahyavi, 747 program vice president and general manager, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “Based on early indications, the airplane is ready to fly.”

This was the last functional test planned before first flight. The first flight of the 747-8 Freighter is scheduled for Monday, 8th February.

To follow the first test flight live just click here. The fun starts from 10am (local time).

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Air China to add more flights from Vancouver to Beijing

Feb 6, 2010 0

Air China, China’s national airline and official flag carrier has announced it will add three more flights a week in addition to its daily non-stop flights from Vancouver to Beijing. The new flights will begin in June 2010 arriving in Vancouver on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. Flights to Beijing will depart Vancouver in the early morning on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, using Airbus A330-200 aircraft.

When asked to comment about the increased flight frequencies, David Solloway, Air China Canada’s senior advisor said “It has been a pleasure for Air China to work closely with the Vancouver Airport Authority, the B.C. Government and other tourism stakeholders to expand our existing daily non-stop service. Our goal is to stimulate both business and leisure travel to open up opportunities for Canadian companies to increase business in China and vice versa. While Beijing is an important destination in its own right, it is also a convenient connection hub for passengers who wish to travel beyond. From our hub in Beijing, we can offer connections to 123 destinations in 28 countries and regions throughout the world.” 

“After 20 years of welcoming Air China to Vancouver International Airport, we are delighted that they are increasing the frequency of their non-stop service from Beijing,” said Tony Gugliotta, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Commercial Development for Vancouver Airport Authority.

“This demonstrates the success of YVR’s gateway strategy, generates jobs and economic growth here in B.C., and allows Air China to expand its business in Canada.”

Air China is a member of Star Alliance. In order to become members, all members must comply with the highest industry standards of customer service, security and technical infrastructure.

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Iberia adds a new Airbus A319 to its fleet

Feb 5, 2010 0

This afternoon Iberia will take delivery of a new A-319 from the Airbus plant in Toulouse, France. Christened the Visón Europeo [“European Mink”], it is the first aircraft to join the fleet since deliveries were suspended more than a year ago as the company reduced capacity to cope with the global economic slump.

Configured to carry up to 141 passengers, it will operate on Iberia’s domestic, European, and African routes.

Registered as EC-LEI, the new aircraft bears the name and picture of the European mink on the fuselage. The name will be changed when and if the animal is removed from the list of endangered species. In January, 2007 the Spanish airline instituted this naming policy as a way of bringing attention to Spain’s rich biodiversity to people at all the destinations it serves, and to highlight the endangered wildlife species, some of them unique on the Earth, and the need to protect and preserve them.

With the new aircraft, Iberia has now 22 Airbus A-319s, and the 12 delivered since 2007 are all named for endangered species. Iberia operates a total of 77 aircraft in the Airbus A-320 family which includes the A-319, A-320 and A-321.

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NASA Invites public to tweet their way into Space next week

Feb 4, 2010 0
The Twitterverse and universe will converge during space shuttle Endeavour's upcoming mission to the International Space
Station. NASA is inviting the public to send questions for the astronauts via Twitter and have them answered live from space. 

Astronaut Mike Massimino will be accepting questions for the crew from the public via his Twitter account until Thursday, Feb. 11. Massimino
will be a shuttle Capcom, or spacecraft communicator, at NASA's Mission Control in Houston during Endeavour's flight, scheduled for
launch Feb. 7. 
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Boeing delivers 4th KC-767 Tanker to Japan Ministry of Defense

Jan 12, 2010 0

The Boeing Company on January 8th delivered the last of four KC-767 aerial refueling tankers to the Japan Ministry of Defense, completing one of the International Tanker team’s most significant milestones.

Boeing’s partner on the Japan Tanker program, Itochu Corp., handed over the KC-767 advanced tanker to Japan Ministry of Defense officials. Assigned to the 1st Airlift Wing of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force at Komaki Air Base, it is the third consecutive KC-767 tanker to be delivered to Boeing’s Japan customer within the contracted schedule and budget.

“Providing Japan with the fourth and final KC-767 tanker on-schedule and on-cost, as we did the previous two KC-767s, means a great deal to our company and our relationship with this important customer,” said Dennis Muilenburg, president and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security. “Because of these tankers, Japan now has the capability to perform vital self-defense, refueling and airlift missions. Also, when necessary, it possesses the capability to perform critical humanitarian and disaster-relief missions across the Pacific region and beyond using the KC-767.”

“We are proud to have been a partner in the successful delivery and implementation of the KC-767 aerial refueling tanker into the Japan Air Self-Defense Force,” said Greg Kasagawa, executive officer and COO of the Aerospace and Industrial Systems Division of Itochu Corp. “The fleet of tankers is playing a significant and key role in the strategic self-defense needs of Japan.”

The fourth tanker flew to Japan on Dec. 20 from Boeing’s tanker modification facility in Wichita, Kansas. The KC-767 is a military derivative of the proven 767-200ER commercial widebody airplane built at Boeing’s commercial production facilities in Everett, Washington.

Boeing delivered the first three KC-767 tankers to Japan in February 2008, March 2008 and March 2009.

The Japan KC-767 fleet is currently undergoing Operational Evaluation by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force, a process that should be completed early this year. The fleet achieved Initial Operational Capability (IOC) in March 2009.

The tanker has an open architecture cockpit and is configured with the advanced Boeing air refueling boom and the associated Remote Aerial Refueling Operator (RARO) II system. Japan selected the convertible freighter configuration, allowing it to carry cargo or passengers while maintaining its primary role as an aerial tanker. With a convertible freighter interior, the Japan tanker can be rapidly converted from all-passenger to all-cargo configurations.

Boeing also is on contract to deliver four KC-767s to the Italian Air Force. Three of the four tankers are in flight test, with the fourth airplane still being modified.

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Second Boeing 787 Dreamliner completes first flight

Dec 23, 2009 0

The second Boeing 787 Dreamliner, ZA002, completed its first flight today. The all-new airplane, which features the livery of the Dreamliner’s launch customer, ANA (All Nippon Airways) of Japan, took off from Paine Field in Everett, completed a two-hour flight and landed at Boeing Field in Seattle.

“We are delighted that the second Dreamliner is in the livery of our launch customer, ANA,” said Scott Fancher, vice president and general manager of the 787 program. “We are honored by the airline’s support and look forward to delivering ANA the first production airplane next year.”

Captain Randy Neville was at the controls for the flight, with Chief Pilot Mike Carriker operating as co-pilot. Neville and Carriker took the airplane to an altitude of 13,000 feet (3,962 m) and an airspeed of 200 knots, or about 230 miles (370 km) per hour. The airplane took off at 9:09 a.m. PST and landed at 11:10 a.m. PST.

This is the second of six 787s being used in the airplane’s flight-test program. Each of the airplanes will be used for a specific set of tests, with this airplane focusing on systems performance. Like its predecessor, ZA001, the airplane is powered by two Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines.

“We would like to convey our sincere congratulations to the Boeing team for its achievement of this milestone, and we look forward to the delivery into our fleet next year,” said Shinichiro Ito, president and CEO of ANA.

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Etihad’s Chief Commercial Officer wins top Sales and Marketing Award

Dec 21, 2009 0

Etihad Airways’ Chief Commercial Officer, Peter Baumgartner, has been voted ‘Sales and Marketing Manager of the Year’ at the 2009 Aviation Business Awards, an annual awards program which celebrates and pays tribute to the people and organisations who have established the GCC as an industry leader on the global stage.

Peter Baumgartner was recognised for his role in helping to build Etihad’s world class global brand and for his unrelenting focus on product and service offerings. The award is the latest in a string of prestigious awards the national airline of the United Arab Emirates and its staff have collected recently, including the World Travel Award for ‘World’s Leading Airline’.

Peter Baumgartner said: “I am thrilled to receive this great honour at the 2009 Aviation Business Awards and for Etihad to be recognised in this way.

“As a relatively young airline, we have a unique opportunity to create and implement a leading brand from scratch. Our company’s sales and marketing strategies are focused on challenging accepted industry standards at a time when the window of opportunity remains open.

“Quality product and customer service excellence is undoubtedly an area where an airline can stand out from the crowd. We are committed to ensuring Etihad remains the number one choice of air travellers and that our reputation for quality and respect is closely aligned to everything we offer.”

The marketing strategy Etihad has employed over the past year to enrich its brand is based on a philosophy of Inspired Service – on the ground and in the air, a concept that dovetails with Etihad’s vision to become the best airline in the world and supports one of its core values: sharing the warmth and hospitality of modern Arabia with the world. Inspired Service aims to make flying personal for each customer by offering a tailored experience.

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