JetBlue to Add Service Between San Francisco and Las Vegas

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JetBlue Airways today announces plans to launch new nonstop service between San Francisco International Airport and McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas. The award-winning airline will offer two daily roundtrips beginning January 5, 2015.

To celebrate this new route, flights are now on sale starting at $38 one way (a) for travel between January 10, 2015 and April 1, 2015 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays (blackout dates January 17, 2015 to January 24, 2015). Tickets must be purchased by October 3, 2014.

JetBlue will serve the SFO-LAS market with spacious 150-seat Airbus A320 aircraft featuring the most legroom in coach (based on average fleet-wide seat pitch of U.S. airlines), free seatback entertainment, and unlimited free snacks and soft drinks. In addition, customers now have access to fast, free Fly-Fi — the industry’s speediest in-flight internet service — on the majority of the airline’s A320 fleet.

“Our loyal San Francisco customers have long asked for a high-quality option to Las Vegas so we’re delighted to make this addition to our route map,” said Scott Laurence, the airline’s senior vice president of airline planning. “Plus, in just a few short weeks we’ll debut our popular new Mint service on flights between San Francisco and New York, yet another way we’re bringing a higher standard of service to the market.”

JetBlue’s schedule between Las Vegas and San Francisco, effective January 5:

From To Departs – Arrives
Las Vegas (LAS) San Francisco (SFO) 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Las Vegas (LAS) San Francisco (SFO) 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
San Francisco (SFO) Las Vegas (LAS) 1:15 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.
San Francisco (SFO) Las Vegas (LAS) 7:15 p.m. – 8:45 p.m.

Today’s new route announcement comes as JetBlue is ramping up service in both the San Francisco and Las Vegas markets.

On October 26, JetBlue will debut its popular new Mint experience on flights between San Francisco and New York. Mint offers transcontinental customers the widest seat and longest fully-flat bed in the U.S. domestic market, with four private suites among the 16 seats. Coinciding with the rollout of Mint, JetBlue will expand its JFK-SFO schedule from three roundtrips per day to five roundtrips by early 2015. JetBlue also serves San Francisco with service to Boston, Long Beach, and New York/JFK.

On October 29, JetBlue will expand in Las Vegas, with daily nonstop service to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, a new link to South Florida that also provides easy connections to JetBlue destinations across the Caribbean and Latin America. JetBlue currently offers flights between Las Vegas and Boston, Long Beach, and New York/JFK.

About JetBlue Airways

JetBlue is New York’s Hometown AirlineTM and a leading carrier in Boston, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Los Angeles (Long Beach), Orlando and San Juan. JetBlue carries more than 30 million customers a year to 86 cities in the U.S., Caribbean, and Latin America with an average of 850 daily flights. New service to Curacao begins in December. With JetBlue, all seats are assigned, all fares are one-way, an overnight stay is never required and the first bag is included with your standard fare (subject to weight and size limits and exceptions for itineraries including flights marketed or operated by other airlines). For more information please visit JetBlue.com.

(a) Fare includes government taxes/fees and must be purchased by 10/3/14 (the earlier of 11:59 PM ET or local) for flights between San Francisco, CA (SFO) and Las Vegas, NV (LAS) on Tues., Wed., and Sat. only between 1/10/15 and 4/1/15 (blackout dates 1/17/15-1/24/15). 14-day advance purchase required. Fare is subject to limited availability; may not be available on all days or all flights; may change without notice; must be purchased at time of reservation; and is one-way, nonstop, nonrefundable and nontransferable. Reservations made one week or more prior to a flight’s scheduled departure may be canceled without penalty up to 24 hours after the reservation is made. First checked bag is free (weight and size limits and exceptions for itineraries including flights marketed or operated by other airlines apply). Fare does not include fees for oversized/overweight/extra baggage or other fees for products/services sold separately. To view baggage fees and other optional services and fees, click here. $25 fee per person applies to fares purchased by phone or at an airport or ticket office. Cancellations/changes must be made prior to scheduled departure (otherwise all money for fare is forfeited); $150 change/cancel fee per person will apply, and for changes, there may be a fare adjustment. Cancellations receive JetBlue travel credit, valid for one year. Proper documentation required for boarding. Other restrictions apply.

Source: JetBlue Airways.

Lufthansa moves to Terminal 2, The Queen’s Terminal

Courtesy: Heathrow Airport.

Courtesy: Heathrow Airport.

Lufthansa will be relocating its flight operations to the new Terminal 2: The Queen‘s Terminal  at London Heathrow Airport from this coming Wednesday (1st October).

The move is the latest phase of the process to bring all Star Alliance members under one roof for the first time in Heathrow and sees Lufthansa joining United Airlines, Air Canada, Air China and ANA – the first airlines to move into the new terminal when it opened in June.

At the same time, Lufthansa is also opening its largest lounge outside Germany offering comfortable seating for 350 guests in 1,600 square metres featuring both a Senator and a Business Lounge. Until now Lufthansa passengers at Heathrow had access to contract or partner lounges to which Frequent Travellers had no right of entry. The new lounge will change this so that Frequent Travellers can look forward to using the new Lufthansa Business Lounge from Wednesday onwards.  As with all Lufthansa Senator and Business Lounges, the new London lounge will also welcome Star Alliance Gold Customers as well as those travelling in First or Business Class on any Star Alliance member carrier from Heathrow.

Welcoming the move Christian Schindler, Lufthansa General Manager UK & Ireland said: “The Queen´s Terminal sets completely new standards in customer service and seamless travel for passengers at London Heathrow thanks to its modern airport infrastructure. The terminal’s design, with its open, airy atmosphere, will vastly improve the customer experience at Heathrow, particularly when connecting between Star Alliance member airline flights.

Courtesy: Deutsche Lufthansa.

Courtesy: Deutsche Lufthansa.

“The 24 Star Alliance member airlines serving Heathrow represent over 20% of the airport’s traffic and 23 of them will be in our new home in Heathrow at Terminal 2 by the end of this year. The goal is to have all Star Alliance members operating at the airport in this single Heathrow terminal, creating a superior travel experience for passengers, new business opportunities for the member airlines and providing an improved working environment for our airline and airport employees.”

All Lufthansa Group airlines will be transferring operations into Terminal 2 in the next two weeks. Lufthansa and Austrian Airlines move in on 1st October, Germanwings on 8th October with SWISS and Brussels Airlines on 15th October. The relocation of all Star Alliance partners will be completed by the end of October and this will reduce the minimum connecting time within the new terminal from 75 to 60 minutes.

Lufthansa, together with the other Group airlines, will be located in Zone B, sharing ticket desks with Austrian Airlines and Germanwings. Premium passengers will have their own check-in and ticket desks within this area. The check-in area has been specially designed for speed and efficiency featuring common use self-service kiosks that can be used by any passenger to check in (if not already checked in on-line) and/or print a bag tag before they proceed to one of the 12 available fast bag drop desks to hand their luggage to an agent.  In addition, 14 full-service traditional check-in desks will be provided, around half of which will be for the exclusive use of First Class, Business class and Star Alliance Gold passengers. This passenger group also has a fast-track option to speed them through the security checks.

The new terminal also boasts a new multi-storey car park that is linked to the terminal. After passengers have passed through security and passport control they can make the most of over 60 shops and restaurants. These include brands such as Burberry, Hugo Boss, John Lewis and Harrods as well as The Perfectionists’ Café from multi-award winning chef, Heston Blumenthal, the traditional gastro pub ‘London’s Pride by Fuller’s’ and the authentic Italian coffee house ‘Ca’puccino’.

The Star Alliance airlines that serve Heathrow – Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air India, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, SWISS, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, THAI, and United – together provide over 120 flights a day to 46 worldwide destinations in 26 countries. These provide access to Star Alliance’s global network of 1,316 destinations.

Source: Deutsche Lufthansa.

Bombardier and Nok Air Showcase the Carrier’s 86-seat Extra Capacity Q400 NextGen Aircraft

Nok Air showcases Bombardier's 86-seat extra capacity Q400 NextGen aircraft. / Courtesy: Bombardier.

Nok Air showcases Bombardier’s 86-seat extra capacity Q400 NextGen aircraft. / Courtesy: Bombardier.

Bombardier Commercial Aircraft and Thailand’s premium low cost airline, Nok Air, showcased today the carrier’s second Q400 NextGen turboprop at Bombardier’s facility in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The extra capacity aircraft, the only commercial turboprop capable of comfortably accommodating 86 passengers, will join Nok Air’s fleet as part of a purchase agreement for up to eight Q400 NextGen airliners, six of which are firm.

During a celebratory event surrounding the colorfully-painted Q400 NextGen turboprop and opened with a cheerful dance performance, Bombardier executives and employees hosted Nok Air representatives as well as local and Thai media.

 The song “Happy” provided a wonderful soundtrack for dancers during the celebration. / Courtesy: Bombardier.

The song “Happy” provided a wonderful soundtrack for dancers during the celebration. / Courtesy: Bombardier.

“While our 86-seat Q400 NextGen turboprops are positioning us to offer increased capacity on already popular routes, they will also allow us to grow into new destinations while increasing our profitability,” said Patee Sarasin, Chief Executive, Nok Air. “We are eager for the Q400 NextGen aircraft to enter service and to offer our passengers an improved, more comfortable cabin environment.”

“As it makes regional air service more convenient and accessible to travelers in South East Asia, Nok Air will certainly showcase beautifully the flexibility and productivity of the extra capacity Q400 NextGen turboprop – always with the fun and friendly hospitality for which Thais, and particularly Nok Air, are known,” said Frank Baistrocchi, Regional Vice President, Sales, Asia-Pacific, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. “We are confident that the aircraft’s unbeatably low seat-mile costs and superior performance will be key assets to Nok Air’s bold growth strategy and we couldn’t be prouder to be associated with such a forward-thinking airline.”

“We again extend our appreciation to Nok Air for introducing the Q400 NextGen airliner to the region and launching the 86-seat version, and we look forward to a long future of strong friendship and collaboration,” he added.

Bombardier presented the airline with a sculpture of a Canadian bird. / Courtesy: Bombardier.

Bombardier presented the airline with a sculpture of a Canadian bird. / Courtesy: Bombardier.

About Q400 NextGen aircraft

With the introduction of the Q400 NextGen aircraft, Bombardier invented the modern turboprop. Optimized for short-haul operations and seating up to 86 passengers, the aircraft is a large, fast, quiet and fuel-efficient turboprop that provides the perfect balance of passenger comfort, performance and operational flexibility with the lowest seat-mile costs in the short-haul regional market. With the flexibility to fly at both turboprop and jet-like speeds, the Q400 NextGen aircraft can be profitably deployed over short-range turboprop missions and in medium-haul jet markets. Now available in optional dual class, extra capacity and passenger-cargo combi configurations, the Q400 NextGen aircraft’s versatility positions it to again reshape the turboprop market through profitable growth.

The Q400 NextGen aircraft features an enhanced cabin environment with the introduction of LED lighting, new ceiling panels, dished window sidewalls and larger overhead luggage bins. These features, combined with the aircraft’s Active Noise and Vibration Suppression (ANVS) system, provide an excellent cabin experience for passengers.

Bombardier has recorded firm orders for a total of 511 Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft. Worldwide, Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft have transported more than 295 million passengers and have logged over 4.7 million flight hours and more than 5 million take-offs and landings. The Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft program includes over 50 customers and operators in approximately 40 countries on five continents.

Source: Bombardier.

First A350 XWB for Vietnam Airlines enters final assembly

Courtesy: Airbus.

Courtesy: Airbus.

Final assembly of the first A350 XWB for Vietnam Airlines has begun at the Roger Béteille Final Assembly Line (FAL) in Toulouse, France.

Scheduled for delivery in mid-2015, the aircraft will see Vietnam Airlines become the first Asian airline to fly the A350 XWB and the second operator in the world of the all-new, fuel-efficient widebody.

Vietnam Airlines has a total of 10 A350 XWB on order. The aircraft will be operated on the carrier’s premium long range services.

The five A350 test aircraft currently flying have accumulated some 2600 flight hours in over 600 flights, with entry into service planned for Q4 2014. The A350 XWB (Xtra Wide-Body) will bring a step change in efficiency compared with existing aircraft in this size category, using 25 per cent less fuel and providing an equivalent reduction in CO2 emissions. To date, the A350 XWB has already won 750 firm orders from 39 customers worldwide.

Source: Airbus.

Aegean took off at the “Athens flying week- Αirshow 2014″

Courtesy: Aegean Airlines.

Courtesy: Aegean Airlines.

This year, Aegean supported for another time as a grand sponsor the International “Αthens flying week – airshow 2014″, which took place from 22 to 28 September 2014, in Faliro and the military airport of Dekelia (Tatoi).

The air spectacles started on Thursday with an air display in Floisvos. An Aegean Airbus Α320 and an Olympic Air DASH8 Q-400 flew in formation during the “Athens Flying Week-2014″ pre-show. The guests were impressed by the two aircraft in a show which took place for the first time and which had a special symbolism since next month the one-year anniversary of the two companies’ union shall be celebrated.

On Sunday 28 September, the surprises and the spectacle continued at the “Tatoi Air-show”, where Aegean’s pilots met in the air with the F-16 Demo Team “ΖEUS” of the Greek Air Force. Aegean’s Airbus Α320 and the Greek fighter F-16 “ΖEUS” flew together creating impressive formations offering the guests a breath taking spectacle. This was the first time in Greece, when a Greek Air Force aircraft and a passenger aircraft flew together.

Furthermore, the guests enjoyed the first landing ever of a passenger jet aircraft at the Tatoi airport and the spectacular low pass of Aegean’s Airbus Α320.

“Athens flying week” took place for the third time and has been established as an international event, while it is a unique event of this kind in Greece. More than 50,000 guests attended the “Tatoi Air-show” on Sunday to watch aircraft and the world’s most experienced fleets performing impressive aerobatics, taking part in daring formations and performing parachute dropping during this aviation honouring weekend. Aegean took part in the celebrations offering presents and surprises for guests of all ages.

Source: Aegean Airlines.

Airbus A350-900 receives EASA Type Certification

Courtesy: Airbus.

Courtesy: Airbus.

The world’s latest generation commercial airliner, the A350-900, has received Type Certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) on 30th September 2014. The certified aircraft is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification will follow shortly.

The EASA A350-900 Type Certificate was signed by EASA’s Executive Director, Patrick Ky. The document was handed over to Airbus’ Executive Vice President Engineering, Charles Champion and Airbus’ A350 XWB Chief Engineer, Gordon McConnell.

Courtesy: Airbus.

Courtesy: Airbus.

“Receiving the A350-900 Type Certification from EASA is a great achievement for Airbus and for all our partners who have contributed to designing, building and certificating this fantastic, new generation aircraft. The A350-900 is now ready to fly from the nest and be enjoyed by airlines and passengers,” said Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO. “The A350 XWB embodies many extra innovative technologies which make all the difference in passenger comfort and airline efficiency.”

“The A350 XWB manufacturing programme has also been innovative and ambitious, aiming for a fully mature aircraft at entry into service and this is what we are proud to be delivering to our first A350 XWB customer, Qatar Airways, before the end of the year. Our fleet of five test aircraft completed the certification campaign, on time, cost and quality. Accumulating more than 2,600 flight test hours, we created and successfully achieved one of the industry’s most thorough and efficient test programmes ever developed for a jetliner,” said Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO.

Courtesy: Airbus.

Courtesy: Airbus.

The A350-900 Type Certification comes after successfully finishing a stringent programme of certification trials which has taken its airframe and systems well beyond their design limits to ensure all airworthiness criteria are fully met.

The A350 XWB is Airbus’ all-new mid-size long range product line and the newest member of Airbus’ leading widebody family. The A350 XWB stands out in its class thanks to its combination of passenger comfort, technological innovation and its unique industrial process. Built hand-in-hand with our customers, the A350 XWB sets new standards in terms of passenger experience, operational efficiency and cost-effectiveness. At the end of May 2014, the A350 XWB had won 750 orders from 39 customers worldwide.

Editor’s Note:

Source: Airbus.

Qantas launches world’s largest passenger aircraft on the world’s longest route

Qantas customers will now enjoy the luxury of the world’s largest passenger aircraft on the world’s longest route, with non-stop A380 services between Sydney and Dallas/Fort Worth launched yesterday.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said Qantas has a proud history of endurance, setting records and connecting Australians to the world.

“Today, Qantas is leading the way again with the introduction of the world’s largest passenger aircraft on the world’s longest route, Sydney to Dallas/Fort Worth, with a flying time of almost 16 hours,” said Mr Joyce.

“We know our customers will value the comfort of the A380 on this route, particularly for our award winning seat in every cabin, the sense of space and quiet, our entertainment options and the inflight hospitality.”

Mr Joyce said the A380 was well-suited for this long haul route, previously flown by the B747. With the change in aircraft, Qantas has introduced a new schedule to offer more seats and greater options for customers flying to and from the US.

“Not only will the A380 increase seats on the route by more than 10 per cent each week, it will also provide us with greater fuel efficiency and the range to operate the return service direct back to Sydney,” said Mr Joyce.

“Our customers also now have the choice of four cabins to both Los Angeles and Dallas/Fort Worth as we introduce our Marc Newson designed First Class Suites on the Dallas/Fort Worth route for the first time.”

Qantas recently announced increased services to the US, and will now offer customers 41 services per week to North America. About half of these services are operated by A380 aircraft and the other half by B747s with A380-style interiors.

Mr Joyce said introducing A380 services between Sydney and Dallas/Fort Worth, which is the only direct flight from Australia to inland United States, would also provide greater convenience for customers.

“The Dallas/Fort Worth service offers direct access right into the heart of the US with over 50 connections to all US major cities all within four hours, including Orlando, Boston and Houston.

“Since starting on the route in 2011 the feedback from our corporate customers, especially those in the resources, technology and agricultural sectors, tells us they like flying into the Dallas hub because it gets them closer to their final destination in the US and offers great onward connections.”

The new A380 service will also create further opportunities for both tourism and trade between Australia and the US.

“Dallas/Fort Worth is home to our partner American Airlines, and it’s the perfect hub for both business and leisure travellers heading in either direction across the Pacific,” added Mr Joyce.

Destination NSW Chief Executive Officer Sandra Chipchase said: “The new non-stop services, supported by Destination NSW, will deliver an extra 13,700 visitors to Sydney every year, providing a boost to the State’s economy and making it easier for Americans to experience our pristine beaches, vibrant and diverse events, Aussie hospitality and our State’s outstanding food and wine.

“The US is one of our top five key inbound visitor markets. In the past financial year 317,000 visitors from the United States contributed approximately $546 million into the NSW economy, so the more we can do to encourage them to visit Sydney and NSW the better,” she said.

The new A380 service is the result of several scheduling changes designed to unlock more flying time of the Qantas fleet, as part of the wider Qantas Transformation program.

Qantas will operate the new A380 service six times per week (every day except Tuesdays). QF7 will depart Sydney at 1310 and arrive at DFW International Airport at 1345 local time (the same day).

The return service QF8, will depart DFW at 2215 local time and arrive in Sydney at 0605 two days later (due to an evening departure and the international dateline). Flying time from Sydney to DFW is around 14 hours 50 minutes, and flying time from DFW to Sydney is around 15 hours 30 minutes.

Through its codeshare partnership with American Airlines, Qantas offers onward connections to more than 100 destinations across the US, with more than 50 of those from Dallas/Fort Worth including Orlando, Boston, Houston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Washington, Toronto, Vancouver, Cancun and Mexico City.

This new service comes in the 60th anniversary year of Qantas services between Australia and the US. In 1954, Qantas operated a Super Constellation from Sydney to San Francisco – its first trans-Pacific route to North America.

Qantas recognises Destination NSW and Sydney International Airport for their support with the new A380 service to Dallas.

Special Livery:

To celebrate the milestone, Qantas painted its A380 aircraft operating the route with a special livery; the kangaroo on the tail features a traditional Stetson hat with a neckerchief in the American-stars print, with a “G’Day Texas” emblem next to the forward doors.

Special Menu:

To celebrate the new service, Qantas will offer customers a special Texas-inspired onboard menu from Sydney to Dallas/Fort Worth until 5 October:

  • First: A mouth-watering 28-day Nolan dry aged cowboy rib eye complete with mac & cheese, wedge salad and a choice of mustard
  • Business: Chipotle pork tortillas with sour cream and roasted corn and tomato salsa
  • Premium Economy: Texas hot dogs with chilli black beans and chipotle mayonnaise;
  • Economy: A selection of old favourites including Dr Pepper, Cream Soda, Root Beer and Jolly Ranchers and pulled beef sliders as a snack option until March.

Source: Qantas.

All media in this article is courtesy of Qantas.