Category Archives: Aviation

Etihad Airways launches new android mobile App

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, has extended its digital reach with the introduction of a new mobile application for Android smartphones, enabling guests to manage their journeys with even greater ease. The new mobile app provides comprehensive trip management and giving guests the information they need in a way that suits them. Guests can now organise their journeys directly on the app, which includes booking flights, checking in for flights, securing a mobile boarding pass, checking flight status, or viewing their Etihad Guest miles balance. Additional key features include a simple flight search function, a credit card scanner for payments, a passport scan facility to check in, and improved flight seat maps. Justin Warby, Vice President of Direct Sales for Etihad Airways, said: “This is a step forward in our innovation strategy to enable a convenient, more personalised digital travel experience.  Our guests are central to how we develop these services, and their feedback has been important in the creation of this latest app. Technological innovation will be vital in the development of our industry, and as a leading airline, we want to be able to provide services that make travel simple for everyone.” The airline recently launched an iOS application for iPhones, and partnered with Abu Dhabi Airports to enable guests to navigate their way around Abu Dhabi International Airport using indoor maps. This was a first for the Middle East and there have been over 350,000 downloads from the App Store since it launched in April of this year. The app has also delivered over 25,000 bookings and 130,000 check ins.

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DXB records 10% growth in Indian passengers during Jan-Sept

Dubai Airports welcomed 8.5 million Indian passengers during January-September, 2016. The total number of Indian passengers who travelled to Dubai (including transit passengers) in 2015 was 10.5 million. Lorne Riley, Director Corporate Communications, Communications and Business Development, Dubai Airports, says, “India is the largest source market for Dubai. Traffic from India till September has been recorded at 8.5 million but we will surpass the total traffic from last year by the end of 2016 and the total growth rate right now is 10 per cent between Dubai and India.” On an average 79 daily flights or 550 flights per week are operated between India and Dubai, informed Riley. He added, “Despite the capacity constraints, Indian airlines as a group are the fastest growing airlines that we have operating into Dubai International. Over the past 12 months, (November 2015 to November 2016) we have seen a 35 per cent increase in seats and 29 per cent increase in number of flights between India and Dubai.” Riley believes that by the end of 2020 Dubai International Airport will not only be the number one airport for international passenger traffic but also for total number of passenger traffic.

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Finnair celebrates 10 years of operations in India

Leading Nordic airline, Finnair is celebrating its 10-year anniversary in the Indian market. Finnair commenced operations to New Delhi on November 1, 2006, flying three times a week. Currently, Finnair offers three weekly services between Delhi and Helsinki during the summer timetable period and five weekly services during the winter period. Thanks to Helsinki’s optimal geographical position, flight time from Helsinki to New Delhi is only 6 hours and 35 minutes, over 30 minutes faster than on any other route from Western Europe to India. Finnair’s convenient day time departures from Delhi fly the short and efficient route via Helsinki, to more than 50 major destinations in Europe. The convenience of Finnair’s flights ensures customers arrive refreshed for business or leisure once they arrive at their destination. Finnair operates a modern Airbus fleet ensuring maximum passenger comfort while minimizing the environmental burden of air travel. “This is an important milestone for our airline. In the last decade, Finnair has offered excellent day time departures from Delhi and efficient flight connections to the European continent,” says Desmond Chacko, General Manager for Finnair in India. “With our modern fleet and the convenience of our Helsinki hub as a transit point for our Indian customer, we aim for another 10 years of successful operations.”

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Delta, Virgin Atlantic and Jet Airways expand codeshare

Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic announced expanded cooperation with Jet Airways to provide convenient codeshare connections for customers between key destinations across North America and India via London-Heathrow. Effective Nov 2, Jet Airways customers flying between India and North America will be able to connect through London-Heathrow on to nine U.S. destinations operated by Delta. These destinations include: Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Portland, Salt Lake City and Seattle. In turn, Delta and Virgin Atlantic customers flying between North America and India will be able to connect with Delta codeshare onto Jet Airways’ flights to Mumbai and Delhi via London-Heathrow and onward to 20 destinations within India. The new Delta codeshare destinations include Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Bengaluru, Calicut, Chennai, Cochin, Coimbatore, Goa, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mangalore, Pune, Trivandrum and Vadodara. The new routes complement Delta and Jet Airways destinations available through existing codeshare agreements via Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and Paris-Charles de Gaulle. “With up to 11,000 people flying daily between India and North America, and with trade and tourism flows increasing between the U.S., U.K. and India, we are giving our customers more versatile schedule options between North America and India,” said Nat Pieper, Delta’s Senior Vice President – Europe, Middle East, Africa and India. “For the first time, customers will be able to hold a single Delta ticket from North America through London to India providing coordinated customer service all the way through to their final destinations.”

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Vistara celebrates its 3 millionth customer

Vistara surprised its three millionth customer at Kolkata’s Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport with a grand welcome and a live acoustic music performance. The passenger also received a courtesy upgrade to Vistara’s Business Class cabin on his flight to Delhi. Expressing delight on the milestone achievement,  Phee Teik Yeoh, CEO, Vistara, said, “There’s nothing more satisfying for us than to see our customers reacting positively to our product and service. 3 million is not just any number to us. It is a significant milestone in our journey to become a world-renowned airline of choice esteemed for its exceptional customer service. This milestone celebration could not have been more timely, taking place just before Diwali. Our fast growing fan base is a strong endorsement of our brand and a fruition of our relentless commitment to transforming the flying experience in India, forever. This milestone achievement only strengthens our resolve further to delight our customers at every encounter, on every journey. We look forward to welcoming our five millionth customer on board soon.”

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Air New Zealand appoints Global Destinations as GSA

Mumbai-based Global Destinations will provide all General Sales Agency support to Air New Zealand in India effective November 1, 2016. Pranav Kapadia, Managing Director, Global Destinations, said, “With our strong knowledge of destination New Zealand, we will be a valuable partner to Air New Zealand. Over the coming months, we will appoint two new staff – a sales manager for Air New Zealand and a Market Development Executive for Air New Zealand. We are excited about this new partnership as Air New Zealand expands its sales and marketing activity in India.” Global Destinations has more than 18 years of experience in the industry. Mischa Mannix-Opie, Area Manager South & South East Asia, Air New Zealand, added, “While Air New Zealand continues to grow its sales and marketing activity in India, it’s vital we work alongside effective agency partners. We’re confident Global Destinations will help us to further strengthen our relationships across the India travel industry.” Air New Zealand’s alliance and code share services with Singapore Airlines connect customers from 11 Indian cities on Singapore Airlines and SilkAir services to Singapore. From there, customers can access three non-stop flights a day from Singapore to Auckland and Christchurch, four times a week to Wellington; connecting to Air New Zealand’s 21 domestic destinations within the country.

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Etihad Airways expands India–UAE service with Jet Airways

Etihad Airways will launch a fourth daily flight between Abu Dhabi and Kozhikode on 26 March 2017, capitalising on the strong traffic flows between the state of Kerala and the UAE, and beyond. The airline will also double its frequency between Abu Dhabi and Ahmedabad in the western state of Gujarat, from 1 February 2017 with the launch of a new daily service. Etihad Airways announced the expansion of scheduled services between Abu Dhabi and India as strategic partner Jet Airways unveiled new routes and additional frequencies to further strengthen their partnership. From early 2017, the two airlines will expand their services between the United Arab Emirates and India by adding 28 weekly flights and three further Indian cities. Jet Airways recently announced the launch of daily flights between Tiruchirappalli (Trichy), Tamil Nadu, and Abu Dhabi on 1 February 2017, offering travellers another option from southern India. Jet Airways will also introduce daily services from Kannur, the fourth Kerala gateway to Abu Dhabi. It also plans daily services from the northern Indian city of Chandigarh to Abu Dhabi, which will benefit travellers to and from the state of Punjab. The two routes are due to begin in the second half of 2017, subject to the completion of operational readiness at these airports. From 15 January 2017, Jet Airways will introduce a second daily service between New Delhi and Abu Dhabi. With Etihad Airways already operating three flights a day between the two capital cities, the enhanced operation will give guests a wider choice of departure times. Etihad Airways currently operates 175 weekly flights between Abu Dhabi and 11 Indian cities. Together, Etihad Airways and Jet Airways offer 252 weekly flights …

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Air India sets record with longest non-stop flight

Air India set a record with its longest non-stop flight from Delhi to San Francisco. The Boeing 777-200 long range aircraft took the Pacific route instead of the Atlantic route, adding an additional 1400 km to the route but was completed in 14 and a half hours, two hours lesser than the conventional flight due to the helpful tailwinds. “From October 15, the flight which connected Delhi and San Francisco via the Atlantic route has begun operations on the Pacific route and returns on the Atlantic route, making it the only flight that goes around the world,” says Pankaj Srivastava, Director-Commercial and Board Member, Air India. This route also saved around 13 tons of fuel. Air India currently operates flights on the Delhi-San Francisco route three times a week but its growing popularity has prompted the airline to double this from November, flying east each time for the next six months. Inputs from: The Telegraph UK

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Air India launches new App with SITA’s iTravel

Air India has launched a new app to its more than 18-million passengers which will take the user experience to a new level. Built on SITA’s iTravel platform, the Air India app offers the ability to book and pay for a flight by quickly and securely scanning both passport and credit card. Ashwani Lohani, Chairman and MD, Air India, said, “Mobile apps are becoming an important tool for making travel bookings by passengers who are tech-savvy and like to access information on the go. This mobile app provides Air India the right tool to access a growing passenger market that is connected both in India and beyond. The new app, developed by SITA, provides an elevated mobile experience where passengers can easily manage every step of their journey on their phone or tablet no matter where they are.” Passengers can fully manage their booking from their mobile device, including selecting their seat, making changes to their itinerary, buying additional services, choosing their meal and checking in. The app has also been integrated with Air India’s Flying Returns loyalty program where passengers can securely access details of points earned or other updates to their accounts.Today more than one billion Indians use a mobile phone. Of these, more than 300 million regularly use them to access the Internet, a trend that is expected to grow by 56 per cent per year. The new mobile service will be available on Android, iOS and Windows. This means at check-in, passengers can choose to receive their boarding pass on their phone or smartwatch. At the airport, passengers will receive regular updates on their flights and can use the app for mobile boarding. Maneesh Jaikrishna, SITA’s …

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Air China resumes non-stop Beijing-Mumbai flight

To mark its 10 years in India, Air China announced the resumption of its non-stop service between Beijing and Mumbai from Oct 30, 2016. The flight Mumbai, India to Beijing, P.R.China will operate four times in a week i.e., Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Passengers will also have return flight services from Beijing, P.R. China to Mumbai, India four times a week i.e., Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday & Sunday. Airbus A330-300 has a seating capacity of 301 passengers which offers 30 seats in Business class, 16 seats in Premium Economy and 255 seats in Economy Class. The outbound flight will depart from Mumbai at 02:30 IST and arrive in Beijing at 11:30 CST. The return flight will depart from Beijing at 19:40 CST and will arrive next day in Mumbai at 01:00 IST. In its endeavor to build its brand and increase loyalty among travellers, the airline has launched an offer of 30 per cent discount on base fare.

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