Category Archives: Aviation

James Hogan is Etihad Aviation Group President and CEO

James Hogan, who has served as Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer since September 2006, has been elevated to the post of Etihad Aviation Group President and Chief Executive Officer. Under his leadership, the key Etihad Aviation Group functions will be led by James Rigney as Group Chief Financial Officer, Kevin Knight as Group Chief Strategy and Planning Officer, Ray Gammell as Group Chief People and Performance Officer, and Robert Webb as Group Chief Information and Technology Officer. These areas will provide leadership, governance and strategic direction in their expert areas across all companies in the Etihad Aviation Group. Peter Baumgartner, who was Etihad’s chief commercial officer, is now Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Airways, will report to James Hogan, and will oversee the day-to-day running of Etihad Airways. Baumgartner will have overall responsibility for Flight Operations, Safety and Quality, Guest Services, Aviation Security, Sales, Network Operations, Etihad Airways Marketing, Etihad Airport Services – Ground, and Etihad Airport Services – Catering. He brings with him a wealth of experience in various aspects of the aviation business. He joined Etihad Airways in April 2005 from Swiss International Air Lines and has managed the airline’s intense global commercial efforts during a period of rapid growth, both in terms of commercial expansion and the introduction of new product and service innovations.

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Additional baggage allowance for students flying Cathay Pacific, Dragonair

Cathay Pacific Airways and Dragonair have announced additional baggage allowance for students travelling from India to Hong Kong, USA or Canada. This offer is valid for travel from May 1 till September 30, 2016, and from December 1, 2016, to January 31, 2017. Students booking a one-way or return ticket on the airlines’ websites or Mobile App before June 30, 2016, in the eligible economy and premium economy class, can avail of additional baggage allowance. They can avail of additional 10 kgs baggage allowance while travelling to Hong Kong and can carry one additional piece of 23 kgs while travelling to USA or Canada. In order to avail this offer, students will need to share a copy of their university admission letter / identity card from the university, student visa copy, passport copy and ticket copy.

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Nepal Airlines may add Hyderabad

Hyderabad may be the next city on Nepal Airlines’ radar, making it the fourth in India to be connected to Kathmandu after Mumbai, New Delhi and Bengaluru. CA Janak Raj Kalakheti, Director, Commercial Department, Nepal Airlines, who led a big delegation from Nepal, revealed, “In India, we are looking at adding another city to our India network, possibly Hyderabad by September-October but it is yet to be confirmed and we are still working on it.” He added that even Kolkata shows a lot of traffic movement to Nepal and Nepal Airlines is conducting a feasibility report on it. The airline is also keen on increasing current frequencies. “We are looking to up the current 10 flights per week from New Delhi to 14 flights per week probably by July end. We are also planning to increase Mumbai and Bengaluru frequencies during the upcoming summer holidays,” Kalakheti added. The delegation visited the three cities to organise a thanksgiving ceremony for its travel agent partners which was the first such event since it started these flights in India six months ago.

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Govt approves 14 new airports

The Government of India (GoI) has granted ‘in-principle’ approval for setting up of 14 Greenfield airports namely, Mopa in Goa; Navi Mumbai, Shirdi and Sindhudurg in Maharashtra; Shimoga, Gulbarga,Hassan and Bijapur in Karnataka; Kannur in Kerala; Pakyong in Sikkim; Datia/Gwalior (Cargo) in Madhya Pradesh; Kushinagar in Uttar Pradesh; Karaikal in Puducherry; and Dholera in Gujarat. Further, the government has laid down Route Dispersal Guidelines (RDG) of air transport services taking into account the need for air transport services of different regions of the country. However, it is up to the airlines to provide services to different regions depending on their commercial viability subject to compliance of RDG. This information was given by Minister of State for Civil Aviation, Dr. Mahesh Sharma in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.

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Flybe announces codeshare with Air India

Flybe, Europe’s regional airline, has announced the signing of its 10th codeshare partnership, this time with Star Alliance member Air India, enabling travellers using its multi-frequency Birmingham services from Belfast City, Edinburgh and Glasgow to book seamless flights onward to Delhi. Under the unilateral agreement, Air India (AI) will place its marketing code on these Flybe flights (BE). Seats will be available for booking through travel agents from 10th May 2016 with travel effective from 1st June. The partnership allows customers to use a single ticket to fly from their local airport to Delhi via a seamless connection through Birmingham Airport onto Air India’s daily flights to New Delhi. Ashwani Lohani, Chairman & Managing Director, Air India, says, “United kingdom is the residence of large number of Indian diaspora. However, this codeshare agreement will be a huge benefit not only to the Indians living in UK but also to tourists travelling to and from domestic sectors of the UK and India. Air India is continuously working towards providing seamless connectivity to its passenger across routes and with our agreement with Flybe, Air India passengers will have an unmatched connectivity in UK. ” Saad Hammad, Flybe’s CEO says, “Our new codeshare agreement with Air India is another exciting development for Flybe and tangible evidence of our continued growth. It further strengthens our commitment to connecting our regional customers with our ‘One Stop to the World’ proposition. “We can now give customers in the UK regions convenient access to the Indian subcontinent through Birmingham Airport. This relieves them of the need to undertake long road or rail journeys to and from the UK’s congested south east hub airports. It will also serve …

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Etihad’s A380 lands in Mumbai

Etihad Airways’ Flight EY204 from Abu Dhabi landed at ChhatrapatiShivaji International Airport in Mumbai last night (on May 1) on the occasion of Maharashtra Day, the 56th anniversary of the state’s formation. Mumbai becomes the airline’s fourth A380 destination following London Heathrow, Sydney and New York, with Melbourne set to join on June 1. Etihad Airways introduced Mumbai to its A380 network with the launch of daily scheduled flights featuring its award-winning The Residence – the world’s first three-room suite on a commercial airliner. Etihad Airways senior management team led by Mohammed Al Bulooki, Vice President Commercial UAE, flew on the inaugural flight, arriving to a traditional lamp lighting ceremony attended by officials from the airline and Mumbai airport operator, GVK. Etihad Airways’ one-way fares, including taxes and surcharges, in The Residence in either direction between Abu Dhabi and Mumbai are approximately $5,000; between London and Mumbai, approximately, $26,000; and between New York and Mumbai approximately $38,000.

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India, NZ sign deal for direct flights

India and New Zealand have signed a deal on Sunday that opens the door for direct flights between the two countries that could boost tourism and trade sectors. The signing ceremony of the bilateral air services agreement was witnessed by visiting President Pranab Mukherjee and New Zealand Prime Minister John Key. New Zealand airlines now have the opportunity to code-share to seven Indian cities – Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai and New Delhi. For code-sharing operations, India will have any point in New Zealand. As intermediate points, India can have Singapore, Hong Kong and Bangkok and any two points in Australia, according to the text of the agreement. “India is an emerging superpower, and its population of 1.25 billion people presents enormous opportunities for New Zealand,” the minister said. “Our annual trade with India is worth more than 1 billion dollars. In the year to March 31, 2016, almost 52,000 Kiwis travelled to India and close to 60,000 Indians visited New Zealand. In addition, more than 160,000 people of Indian descent live here. Since the Government’s Air Transport policy was introduced in 2012, Bridges said 50 new or amended air agreements had been negotiated, bringing the total to 78. Most of the major airlines in the world are now able to operate services to New Zealand without restriction, with 18 new air routes announced in the past year alone, the report said.

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Vistara commences flights to Chandigarh

Vistara flew its inaugural flight to the city of Chandigarh from IGI airport, Delhi at 1320hrs on May 2. The fares for Delhi to Chandigarh flight start from Rs 3700+ one way on Economy super saver and Rs 4900+ in Premium Economy saver. The airline will operate daily direct returnflights to Chandigarh from Delhi and Hyderabad (same aircraft service between Hyderabad and Chandigarh via Delhi). The new service will also offer convenient connections via Delhi between Chandigarh andBengaluru, Pune, Mumbai, Bhubaneswar and Ahmedabad. International travellers from the city will also be connected to global destinations via Vistara’s hub at T3 Delhi, making it a convenient connection for them to travel overseas with 12 global interline airline partners of Vistara.

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JetSmart.in gets investment to make private flying affordable

Jetsmart.in, a real-time e-commerce platform, has got investments from Travel Capitalist Ventures to make private air charter affordable in India. The Bengaluru-based private air travel company is looking at expanding their present charter and non-scheduled operations through innovations such as selling empty seats or ferry flights on a real-time basis. JetSmart.in has got an investment from Travel Capitalist Ventures, one of the leading multi-stage investment firms globally that focuses on travel private equity and venture capital investments and No Border Investments, a Doha-based investment firm, which has secure a key stake in the company. Speaking at the launch Abrar Ahmad, Partner, Travel Capialist Ventures, said, “The Jetsmart offering allows corporate to service the needs of their key executives, provide discreet offerings to celebrities and HNW individuals to airports closer than legacy offerings all while saving valuable time and money.” ErfanHaque, CEO, JetSmart.in, said, “India is on the cusp of being an aviation super-power—we intend to be there on the stage when it happens.”

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Air Canada to fly Vancouver-Delhi non-stop

Air Canada is all set to start non-stop flights from Vancouver to Delhi, India starting October 20, 2016, in time for Diwali festivities. It is the first airline to offer a non-stop service between the two hubs. The seasonal, three-times weekly flights complement Air Canada’s Toronto-Delhi non-stop service launched last fall. To promote the new Vancouver-Delhi route, Air Canada is offering special introductory fares starting as low as $999 round trip, all-inclusive. The tickets can be booked on aircanada.com and through travel agents. Flights will operate three-times-weekly October 20, 2016 to April 8, 2017 with Air Canada’s state-of-the-art Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft featuring 30 International Business Class lie-flat pod suites, 21 Premium Economy and 247 Economy Class seats with upgraded in-flight entertainment at every seat throughout the aircraft. “Customer response to our Toronto-Delhi service has been extremely positive, and with this new seasonal Vancouver route, we are strategically increasing our presence in the important Asia-Pacific market in time for Diwali festival celebrations. Our non-stop Dreamliner flights from our Vancouver hub will also offer the shortest elapsed flying time from Calgary, Edmonton, Seattle, Portland and Los Angeles to Delhi,” said Benjamin Smith, President, Passenger Airlines at Air Canada. “The operating economics of the Dreamliner together with the efforts of the Vancouver Airport Authority who have maintained airport operating costs at levels among the lowest in Canada, have enabled us to grow our Vancouver hub. Together with our extensive western Canada domestic and western US transborder network combined with the seamless connection experience through YVR’s US in-transit pre-clearance facilities, position YVR to be the preferred gateway hub for trans-Pacific travel to and from North America,” he added.

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