Ukrainian 737 crashes in Iran killing 176

Ukrainian 737 crashes in Iran killing 176

A Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-800 has crashed in Tehran, killing all 176 onboard.  The aircraft UR-PSR (MSN 38124), operating as flight PS752 bound for Kiev, took off from Imam Khomeini’s runway 29R at 06:12, but lost contact with air traffic control just six minutes later before crashing near Tehran.  Reports from the Iranian Civil Aviation Organisation point to no survivors among the 167 passengers and nine crew members. Meteorological data from Imam Khomeini airport…

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Qantas chooses A350-1000 over 777X for Project Sunrise

Qantas chooses A350-1000 over 777X for Project Sunrise

Qantas has tentatively selected the Airbus A350-1000 over Boeing’s 777X for its Project Sunrise ultra-long-haul route initiative. The Australian carrier wants to be able to operate regular, non-stop commercial flights from the east coast of Australia to London and New York, and said today it would order up to a dozen aircraft. A final “go or no-go” decision is set to take place in March 2020, extended from February by Airbus to provide additional time…

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Emirates announces $16bn order for 50 A350XWB

Emirates announces $16bn order for 50 A350XWB

Emirates has announced an order for 50 A350-900 aircraft with an estimated value of US$16 billion (£12.4bn) at list prices. The announcment was made on the second day of the Dubai Airshow 2019, with delivery of the first A350XWB aircraft expected in May 2023. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates Chairman and Chief Executive, signed the deal with Guillaume Faury, Chief Executive Officer from Airbus. This purchase agreement replaces the heads of agreement signed…

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Cathay cuts flight capacity as Hong Kong unrest continues

Cathay cuts flight capacity as Hong Kong unrest continues

Cathay Pacific faced its fourth consecutive month of low traffic numbers, as the carrier flagged “significant pressure” on its overall passenger yield. Passenger load factor last month decreased four points year-on-year to 77.6%, a marginal improvement over September’s load factor of 73.6%. As widespread unrest continues in Hong Kong, the airline has also trimmed year-end capacity. From August to October, flight capacity has been cut by 2-4%. In November and December, capacity will be reduced even…

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IAG acquires Air Europa in €1bn deal

IAG acquires Air Europa in €1bn deal

International Airlines Group (IAG) has announced it will buy Madrid-based Air Europa for €1 billion. The Spanish airline will be acquired by IAG subsidiary Iberia, with the group stating that the brand “will initially be retained and the company will remain as a standalone profit centre within Iberia run by Iberia CEO Luis Gallego”. IAG said that the move would transform its Madrid hub “into a true rival to Europe’s four largest hubs: Amsterdam, Frankfurt,…

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Norwegian reports 64% rise in Q3 profits

Norwegian reports 64% rise in Q3 profits

Norwegian has reported a 64% rise in third quarter operating profit, to NOK 2.97 billion (£250m), after slowing capacity growth in the period. Revenue was up 8% at NOK 14.4 billion (£1.23bn), primarily due to the airline’s intercontinental flights. Passenger numbers declined 3% to 10.5 million. The airline increased capacity by just 3%, compared with 8% during the third quarter of 2018 and a 48% hike during last year’s second quarter. Norwegian’s return to profitability…

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Flybe to be rebranded as Virgin Connect

Flybe to be rebranded as Virgin Connect

Flybe will be rebranded next year as “Virgin Connect” to bring its brand in line with co-owner Virgin Atlantic, it has been announced. Earlier this year, Flybe was bought for £2.8 million by Connect Airways, a consortium of investors consisting of Virgin Atlantic, Stobart Group and Cyrus Capital. As part of the move, the UK regional operator will drop its purple colour scheme in favour of Virgin’s red branding.  Announcing the new name, Mark Anderson, Connect…

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LOT to launch flights to San Francisco

LOT to launch flights to San Francisco

LOT Polish Airlines will launch flights from Warsaw to San Fransisco, the airline has announced. The route will commence on 5 August 2020 and will operate four times a week using the airline’s Boeing 787 aircraft. The launch of the route coincides with the annoucement that Poland will be added to the United States’ visa waiver programme. LOT chief executive Rafal Milczarski commented, saying: “We do believe that now Poles will be more willing to…

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Delta takes 20% stake in LATAM

Delta takes 20% stake in LATAM

Delta Air Lines will be spending $1.9 billion (£1.5bn) in LATAM Airlines Group to take a 20% in the Latin American conglomerate, it has announced. The surprise deal will give Delta a much larger presence in the region, with the new partnership serving 435 destinations worldwide and carrying more passengers between North America and Latin America than any other partnership. As part of the deal, Delta will purchase four A350 aircraft from LATAM and will…

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Thomas Cook collapses following failed rescue talks

Thomas Cook collapses following failed rescue talks

Thomas Cook has filed for compulsory liquidation after last-minute negotiations on recapitalisation fell through. The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said this morning the tour operator had “ceased trading with immediate effect.” Just days ago, Thomas Cook Group said that it was in discussions to secure a £200 million standby fund on top of a previous capital injection — a £900 million rescue package from China’s Fosun Tourism Group and other lending banks and shareholders….

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