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An all things aviation blog

Monthly Archives: March 2013

Internet check-in is a huge benefit. People can check-in online and skip some of the lines at the airport. Domestically this works really well, internationally not so much as one passenger found out.

The plan was to go from Puerto Plato, DR to Newark airport on United Airlines. The passenger in Puerto Plato was able to check-in online and print his boarding pass. When he arrived at the airport he was turned away from security for not having the right boarding pass and that he needed to get one from the check-in desk. It is easy to understand why that is. I assume most people traveling out of Puerto Plato are either unable or unwilling to use on-line check-in. So, the passenger went back to the check-in desk which had closed by the time he got there and was directed to the ticketing desk. The ticketing desk said since it was 55 minutes until departure and the cut off time is 60 minutes they were unable to issue a boarding pass. Not being able to get through security, the passenger was forced to purchase a walk-up ticket on another carrier.

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Sorry for being away for the past couple of days, I’ve been kind of sick. But anyways on the with the show.

Previously, I reported on American applying to start LA-Sao Paulo this year and Chicago-Sao Paulo next year. Now airlines had 15 days to file bids. After those 15 days had expired, US Airways and Delta both filed bids. You can read all of the information in the bids in the link at the bottom of the page. Now lets start with U.S. Airways bid.

U.S. Airways is asking for 7 frequencies starting this October for Charlotte-Sao Paulo and 7 starting in 2014 for Philadelphia-Sao Paulo. Currently, U.S. Airways is leasing the frequencies to run Charlotte-Sao Paulo from United, so getting these frequencies would obviate the need for the lease.

Delta is asking for 14 frequencies to run Atlanta/JFK- Sao Paulo to start this year and 7 frequencies to start Detroit Sao-Paulo next year.

So there are 14 frequencies to be allocated this year. Delta wants all 14, American wants 7, and US wants 7. There are also 14 slots next year Which Delta wants 7, AA wants 7, and US wants 7. More applicants than frequencies so some will win and some will lose. Let’s start with this year.

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Downright classy I think.

BA expects to take delivery of their A380’s this summer and after training flights expects to put them into service on London-Los Angeles and London-Hong Kong

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Doug Parker spoke today at the J.P. Morgan Aviation, Transportation, and Defense conference today on the proposed merger with American Airlines, who did not speak. Doug was speaking to a group of industry analysts so he was primarily in the roll of selling the merger to the bankers. He spoke and took questions for about 40 minutes and the entire webcast is archived at the link below for at least the next few months. Beyond the normal this merger is the greatest thing ever, I want to highlight a few pieces of information that he did say. Looking at the combined carrier, they expect to be the third largest on the West Coast, largest in Middle American and the largest carrier on the East Coast. Doug sold this as creating a viable third option to United and Delta. With the movement of US from Star Alliance to Oneworld it will give each alliance an equal share of the domestic market. This is just another way of stating that Delta, American, and United will all be about the same size. Finally as part of his presentation, Doug mentioned that the new AA would have over 100,000,000 members in the new loyalty program.

The question and answer section had a lot of interesting information if you look at it. In response to a question of merger difficulties he said that no matter the supposed cost benefits, the throughput costs of imposing the smaller airlines systems on the larger airline would be more expensive. This referring to United Airlines’ SHARES hiccup which wasn’t really that bad. But it does suggest that a lot of the systems will be coming from AA. Responding to a livery question Doug refused to pass judgment on AA’s new livery and said only that livery has to be professional and represent the brand. He also said what everyone already that passengers don’t care about what’s on the outside of the plane. In response to a route network question, Doug said to expect some Asia expansion but not to the level of Delta and United. Finally, when asked about the disparate nature of AA’s and US’ fleet Doug stated that there is no real advantage to eliminating large sub-fleets over 100+ aircraft but there is a distinct advantage to eliminating the small sub-fleets. Assuming current orders are correct, that would mean that Doug is going to look at eliminating AA’s 767-200s and some of their 757s. This is not unexpected, but on the US side it would include eliminating their entire widebody fleet A330’s and 767-200s, as well as their 757-200s and ERJ-190’s. Airbus has been cutting Doug sweetheart deals for aircraft for some time now. I don’t see them giving Airbus the boot, so it will be interesting to see what happens to US’ widebody fleet.

I’ll have the other participants summaries up as I write them.

Happy Travel!


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Allegiant Airlines today started service with their new acquired A319s. Allegiant is set to take delivery of 7 A319s from EasyJet and 9 A320’s from Iberia.

American finalized a sale and lease-back deal with ILFC for 15 737-800’s delivery to start in May and one 777-300er with delivery this month.

Currently, I am going over the webcasts from the J.P. Morgan Aviation, Transportation, and Defense Conference. Speakers are from JetBlue, Southwest, Boeing, United, Delta, US Airways, and Alaska Airways.

Happy Travels!


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Last Week Airlines 101: Fare Class

If you haven’t read last week’s post about fare class you’ll need to go back read that to understand Fare Buckets.

Last week we discussed all the different fare classes for a one-way united ticket from PHX to MCO on October 1, 2013. This week are going to change it up a little and use July 1, 2013 as an example. So last week we discussed “S” being the cheapest published fare in the market. Great we want to purchase said “S” fare for PHX-MCO on July 1, 2013. So we go on to and search for lowest fare flights we see this flight:

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Back on February 20th I wrote a post about how the DOT was putting additional US-Brazil route authorities up for bid. The deadline to submit a bid is today and so far only one airline has applied for the slots. American Airlines submitted an application yesterday to start Los Angeles-Sao Paulo on Nov 21 of this year and Chicago-Sao Paulo on November 20, 2014. They plan to start service using 777-200s. For the United customers in LAX this will mark a welcome change from having to first get to IAD, IAH, or EWR, and will bring some competition with United on the ORD-GRU route.!documentDetail;D=DOT-OST-2013-0041-0001

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What you haven’t heard of the MA700? Chinese aircraft manufacturer Avic Aviation today approved the MA700 for production starting next year with first flight sometime in 2016. The MA700 is a 70-80 seat turboprop regional commercial airliner designed to compete with the Q400 and ATR-72. Currently this aircraft like other Chinese commercial aircraft has seen limited orders from outside of China. Like the COMAC C919 regional jet and Yun-20 cargo plane unless the Chinese can market the airliner outside of their state owned leasing companies it will not be commercially successful on the world market. Now I have read some reports claiming that the MA700 will be 20% more efficient than existing turboprops. This is a I’ll-believe-it-when-I-see-it sort of claim, though if true the MA700 will be very marketable to European and American carriers.

China is new to the commercial aviation market. However, the major benefit planned economies have over free-market economies is that the government can keep dumping money into development until results are achieved . While current Chinese offerings are inefficient compared to their western counterparts, that gap will narrow as Avic and COMAC become more experienced in the science and art of commercial aircraft development.

The link to the production storyis in Spanish

Happy Travels!


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So the thing for kids to do this moment is the Harlem Shake, it’s the latest meme. Here’s how it works, one person is dancing alone for 15 seconds then after a jump cut the frame is filled with dancing people. All of this set to the first thirty seconds of, you guessed it, “Harlem Shake.” Now the Colorado College ultimate frisbee team was traveling from Colorado Springs to San Diego for a tournament and they made this video.

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With an Airlines 101 post, china post, and a FAA post I just don’t have time to publish about each piece of news that came out this morning. Where sometimes you famine, today you feast.

Boeing announced they are going to cut up to twenty percent of their staff at the Charleston SC 787 plant. While Boeing did not announce a specific number 20 percent would be 1200 jobs. Best of luck to all those affected by the cuts.

Virgin Atlantic published their domestic schedule to start in April. London-Aberdeen will be three daily, London-Manchester will be three daily moving to four daily, and London-Edinburgh will be three daily moving to six times daily. published an article on Airline fees. I am not sure their math adds up, but I still find it funny that United Airlines maxes out at $666.00.

Finally, from the Travel Goods association in Las Vegas, we have a pillow blindfold combination that looks quite functional even though it looks like it came out of an alternative lifestyle store.

Happy Travels!


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