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PROJECT SUNRISE: QUANTUM LEAP FOR QANTAS?

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t h e g l o b a l a i r l i n e s c e n e

Life After Greetings from

Flight
Greenland
A Very Unusual
Transatlantic Layover

From Fair
Arizona’s Verona
Aviation Air Dolomiti’s
Graveyard Premium
Prospects
Uncovered

SIVE
EXCLU Finnair CEO CityJet Avro
Interview Transformed
New Chief Sets From Commuter
Out Priorities Jet to Firefighter
FEBRUARY 2020 £4.99

737 MAX LATEST Boeing Suspends Production


M A S T E R I N G T H E A R T O F AV I AT I O N

W W W. AV T R A D E . C O M
Welcome

H
ello and welcome to your February issue for the narrowbody, as well as asking what the wider
of Airliner World. As the magazine goes to implications could be not only for the US manufacturer,

The Team
press, we’ve just received confirmation that but the wider aviation sector.
Boeing is to temporarily suspend production Staying on the topic of forthcoming stories, we’re
of its 737 MAX aircraft. The aerospace giant always keen to hear from our global readership about the
cited certification delays as one of the primary drivers features that you want to see in the magazine. You often Gordon Smith
Group Editor,
behind the decision, which has already seen shares in tell us that part of what makes Airliner World so special Commercial Aviation
the Chicago-based firm and some of its supply chain is its diverse mix of articles and insights from across Martin Needham
partners fall sharply. the commercial aviation spectrum. So don’t be afraid Assistant Editor
While the move was widely expected, seeing to drop us a note and let us know what you’ve loved or Carol Randall
Associate Editor,
production lines grind to a halt is a sobering reminder of loathed. Or perhaps there’s something we’ve missed Commercial Aviation
the seriousness of the problem which Boeing continues completely and is overdue a little attention?
Thomas Haynes
to face. With the company confirming The editorial team can be reached at Editorial Assistant
that it has approximately 400 MAX airlinerworld@keypublishing.com, with Andy O’Neil
examples in storage, joining hundreds full contact details available on page 98. Designer

of others grounded at dozens of sites Andy Mason


Advertising Manager
around the world, it simply wasn’t Wherever you are in the world this
practical to continue churning out a month, I hope you enjoy your Sue Blunt
Production Editor
model which will likely cause a seismic February edition.
David Taylor
shock to the commercial aerospace Associate Production
Editor
capacity once its return to service is Gordon Smith
finally approved by regulators. Group Editor Sally Hooton
Sue Rylance
With this in mind, don’t miss our Sub-Editors
March issue for a special Airliner
World report reflecting on a torrid 12
months for Boeing since the MAX was
THIS PHOTO: An impressive
first grounded. We’ll attempt to cut aeronautical display thrills
through the hyperbole and analyse crowds during November's
COVER PHOTO: A Boeing 727, N901RF
the past, present and future prospects Dubai Airshow.
(c/n 22476) gathers dust at the Kingman
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
aircraft boneyard in Arizona.
OLIVIER CORNELOUP
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/EUROPIX

www.airlinerworld.com 3
this
06 News
Airliner World’s comprehensive coverage of worldwide
news, including transatlantic transformation for United
Airlines, an MRO milestone for Air Astana, Norwegian's
South American sell-off and an impressive new
codeshare partner for Vistara.

month
22 From Research to Reality?
As Qantas takes long-haul to the next level under its
Project Sunrise initiative, Louise Jones examines the
history and logistics of linking London and New York
to Sydney and beyond.

30 Universally European
Supported by a growing fleet of Embraer E-Jets and
increasingly close ties to parent Lufthansa, Air Dolomiti
is striving to protect its niche. Matteo Legnani travels to
the airline’s Verona headquarters to find out more.

38 Desert Rows
Kingman has made a major contribution to civil
and military aviation for more than 90 years, often
reinventing itself to remain important and vibrant. David
Ransted goes access all areas at the Arizona airfield in
this special report.

53 Not Your Average Avro


Bomber...
When Hawker Siddeley’s designers finalised their plans
for a high-wing, quad-jet regional airliner in the early
1970s, few would have thought that the type would see
out its days as an aerial firefighter. Aidan Nolan shares
the remarkable story.

58 Sustainable Success
Twelve months into his new role, Finnair CEO Topi
Manner is preparing to launch an ambitious five-year
plan for the airline. Fellow Finn Satu Dahl travels to the
firm’s Helsinki headquarters to talk fleet, sustainability

53
and a rather big birthday.

64 From Start to Finnish


Captain Marko Valtonen, Finnair’s chief pilot for the
A330 and A350, talks to Airliner World and shares
insight into a training partnership between Virgin Atlantic

Aerial
and the Helsinki-based carrier.

66 Greenland Uncovered
Inspired by views from the window seat of many a

Firefighter
transatlantic flight, Andrew Pearce takes the plunge and
provides a personal account of his visits to this often
overlooked country.

76 Deliveries
The latest commercial acquisitions.

80 MRO News
Updates from maintenance, repair and overhaul
Not Your Average
Avro Bomber
providers.

82 Aviation Training
A round-up of recent developments.
SUBSCRIBE 64
84 Departure Gate
A selection of readers’ comments, photographs and
lighter stories from the industry. AND SAVE
A subscription to
86 Air Safety
Up-to-date accident reports and crash information.

88 Gateway to Four Continents


Blessed with enviable geography, a skilled local
population and ambitious new investors, Cabo Verde offers great savings on
Airlines is making waves in the mid-Atlantic. Sebastian
Schmitz meets the carrier’s Icelandic CEO to learn more
cover price.
about what has been dubbed by some as 'The Iceland
of the South'. See pages 20-21 for details
22

30

66
38 r i b e r
c
Subs IVE
C LU S
EX
See
page 52 for
full details

Your Aviation Destination

4-5 contents ALW Feb2020.indd 5 12/19/2019 4:23:35 PM


News Review • Europe

News The Brandenburg Wait…

Review
FLUGHAFEN BERLIN Brandenburg much to be done in the next 11 months.
(BER) – the operator of Berlin’s severely The finished building must become a
delayed new gateway – has confirmed functioning airport.”
that scheduled services from the airport In a statement, the operator also
are set to begin on October 31, 2020. provided an update on progress made.
AIRLINER WORLD’S COMPREHENSIVE COVERAGE OF WORLDWIDE NEWS The revised date is the fifth issued since It advised that the “installation of the
2011, with the site now expected to baggage handling system and other
open nine years later than planned. technical building equipment has
As part of the city’s move to a single started,” while “structural work on the
hub, flights originating from and federal police building directly adjacent
arriving at its current largest facility to Terminal 2 is in full swing”.
at Tegel are to be transferred in three TÜV Rheinland, the agency responsible
phases over a nine-day period – which for certifying the facility, anticipates
includes the opening of BER’s southern that its inspections “should be
runway on November 4 – before the completed in spring 2020”.
older facility closes on November 8. According to Deutsche Welle –
The transition to one central hub at BER Germany’s international public
began with the closure of Tempelhof broadcaster – problems that have
– Berlin’s iconic downtown site – on led to the continued delays included
October 30, 2008. Schönefeld, which 56 miles (96km) of defective
lies to the immediate north of the wiring, electric doors that weren’t
new airport, will remain open and connected, a lack of reinforcement
be renamed Terminal 5 as part of an causing car park floors to sag,
expanded Brandenburg site. and no one knowing how to turn
Rainer Bretschneider, chairman of the off the lights.

Binter Bags First E2 BER supervisory board commented:


“[This] opening date announcement
marks the beginning of a new stage on
It has been confirmed that both
Lufthansa and easyJet will operate
from Brandenburg’s Terminal 1, while
SPANISH REGIONAL airline, Binter John Slattery, president and CEO, the way to launching BER. The date also Eurowings will use T2. Ryanair will
Canarias has accepted delivery of its Embraer Commercial Aviation, added: shows that the company is on the right continue to base its operations from
initial Embraer E195-E2, becoming the “We’re extremely proud to deliver track. The supervisory board welcomed the existing Schönefeld facility (T5).
first European operator to receive the the first E195-E2 in Europe to such the announcement of the specific Brandenburg’s two terminals can
largest of the three E2 family jets. The an accomplished regional airline. relocation dates as a success for the handle up to 30 million passengers per
arrival is the first of a firm order for five Binter will showcase the very best airport company’s entire workforce.” annum (ppa), while this increases to
of the type, and forms part of Binter’s of the airplane as it expands its Engelbert Lütke Daldrup, BER chief more than 40m ppa with the inclusion
wider fleet modernisation initiative. network to more cities.” executive added: “The date is set: BER of T5. Around 34.7m travellers
The example, EC-NEZ (c/n 19020023) The new aircraft will be deployed will open on 31 October, 2020. All the passed through the doors of Tegel
is fitted with 132 seats in a single- across a route network that includes work that still needs doing at BER is and Schönefeld airports during 2018.
class configuration and joins 22 ATR eight destinations in the Canary being done intensively. There is still (Photo Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg)
72 turboprops and three Bombardier Islands, nine in Africa and two in
CRJ1000 jets within the carrier’s Portugal. This latest delivery follows
aircraft roster. the jet’s type certificate approval
Pedro Agustín del Castillo, Binter’s from three regulatory authorities in
president, commented: “This Embraer April 2019, with the Brazilian Civil
E195-E2 aircraft is an important step in Aviation Agency (ANAC), the Federal
the history of our company. This new Aviation Administration (FAA) and
milestone, which coincides with the the European Aviation Safety Agency
celebration of the 30th anniversary of (EASA) all giving the E195-E2 the
Binter, adds more advances to the ones green light. Embraer says the aircraft
that we have made in recent years.” exceeded its expectations during
Castillo went on to say that the new flight testing, including a 1.4% lower
jet will allow the airline to pursue its fuel burn per seat than anticipated
primary objective which is to improve – lowering the overall figure by
the connections between the Canary 25.4% compared with previous-
Islands, via both inter-island and generation examples.
external links. (Photo Binter Canarias)

Virgin Atlantic Bid Binned


PLANS BY Air France-KLM to In 2017, the Franco-Dutch group since 2012 when it was acquired said it would, “continue final
acquire a 31% stake in Virgin Atlantic agreed to buy nearly one third of the from Singapore Airlines for £224m. preparations towards the launch
have been dropped after the pair British airline for £220m as part of a Air France-KLM said it would of the expanded transatlantic
agreed that a deal was “no longer three-way arrangement with Delta. continue to pursue its investment joint venture.”
necessary”. The two firms stated that Virgin Group’s share of ownership plan to “regain leadership” in The sale had previously been
the decision will not impact a wider would have fallen from 51% to 20%, the long-haul market following approved by the US Department of
transatlantic partnership – that also while Delta would have retained pressure from carriers including Transport, the final step before the
includes Delta Air Lines – which is 49%. The American carrier has Norwegian and WestJet. A airlines could move forward with
currently under development. owned its stake in Virgin Atlantic statement from the group their alliance.

6 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

06-08 news_europe ALW Feb2020.indd 6 12/19/2019 3:02:32 PM


News Review • Europe

Fleet Focus for Air France


FRENCH FLAG carrier Air France due to be retired by the end of 2022. our leading position in Europe. It will our A350 aircraft have been selected
will accelerate its fleet renewal The arrival will also allow the company strengthen our performance from as part of this endeavour.”
programme by placing a firm order for to accelerate the departure of its both an economic and operational The extra ten airframes bring Air
ten additional Airbus A350-900s, as ageing and inefficient A340s during standpoint and will help us deliver on France’s A350 order to 38, including
the airline says it is pursuing a strategy the first quarter of 2021. our ambitious sustainability agenda.” three that have already been delivered.
of “rationalisation and simplification”. Benjamin Smith, CEO of Air Guillaume Faury, Airbus chief By the end of November 2019, the
The firm’s A350s are earmarked France-KLM Group, commented: executive, added: “[This is] an A350 XWB Family had received 959
to replace its A380s currently in “Rationalising and modernising the impressive transformation for Air firm orders from 51 customers around
operation – most, if not all of which are fleet is central to our effort to regain France-KLM and we feel honoured that the world. (Photo Airbus)

The Condor Soars Again


GERMAN LEISURE airline, Condor, in its fleet of 50 jets to receive to begin in June. The operator is also Condor – with history dating back to
has revised its livery to feature its pre- the makeover. scheduled to base a 767 at Munich 1956 – received a state-guaranteed
Thomas Cook corporate identity. The Ralf Teckentrup, the airline’s chief from May, enabling it to operate bridging loan of €380m in late 2019
move follows the collapse of Thomas executive officer commented: transatlantic services to Cancun, to assist the company to get through
Cook Group in September and the “After 16 years, the Condor logo Halifax/Stanfield, Punta Cana and what it called a “difficult” second half
acquisition of its ‘Sunny Heart’ logo by will return to the tails of our aircraft, Seattle/Tacoma. The move marks a of the year. (Photo Condor)
Sunclass Airlines – the new operating which makes every person working return to long-haul flying from the
name for Thomas Cook Airlines for Condor very proud. Our logo is Bavarian city by Condor.
Scandinavia – less than a month later. a strong brand that has signified Teckentrup added: “We are offering
With the exception of Condor’s two Germany’s most popular airline for our guests in southern Germany
retro-liveried aircraft – Airbus A320- 64 years.” an even greater selection of direct
200 D-AICH (c/n 971), and Boeing 767- Meanwhile, as part of its summer connections to their holidays and are
300ER D-ABUM (c/n 25170) – it is the 2020 schedule, the firm has strengthening our presence in Munich
first time that the iconic design has announced it will begin flying to with a stationed long-haul aircraft.”
taken to the air in recent times. Edmonton from Frankfurt for the
Condor chose D-ABUF (c/n 26985), first time. Flights to the capital of the
a Boeing 767-300ER to be the first Canadian province of Alberta are due

www.airlinerworld.com 7

06-08 news_europe ALW Feb2020.indd 7 12/19/2019 3:02:37 PM


News Review • Europe
in brief
Air Corsica has accepted delivery of its first
of two Airbus A320neos, becoming the only
French airline to operate the re-engined
type. The aircraft, F-HXKB (c/n 9348) was
ferried from Airbus’ Toulouse/Blagnac
facility to the carrier’s base at Bastia/
Poretta. Configured in a single-class layout
seating 186 passengers, the narrowbody is
powered by two CFM International LEAP-1A
engines and was acquired via ICBC Leasing.
The two new jets will replace older
types in the fleet and are to be rostered
on the airline’s core domestic and

SAS Joins A350 Club


European network. The French firm now
operates six A320 Family aircraft and six
ATR42/72 turboprops.
SCANDINAVIAN AIRLINES (SAS) it has on order with the European Configured in a three-class layout, the
has taken delivery of its first Airbus aerospace manufacturer. widebody seats 300 with 40 in SAS
A350-900 as part of an extensive Rickard Gustafson, the airline’s Business Class, 32 in SAS Plus and 228
fleet modernisation programme. president and CEO noted: “The A350 in SAS Go. The jet will first be used on
The aircraft, SE-RSA (c/n 358) is a milestone in the extensive renewal the carrier’s Copenhagen-Chicago/
was ferried from Toulouse/ of the SAS fleet which will consist of O’Hare service, with further long-haul
Blagnac to the airline’s hub the market’s most advanced and fuel- destinations in North America and Ahead of the 2020 summer season, Aer
at Copenhagen/Kastrup. efficient aircraft. With this aircraft Asia to follow. Lingus has published its largest ever
Following the latest addition, SAS we reduce the fuel consumption Complete with a carbon fibre fuselage capacity increase between Ireland and
now operates a fleet of 157 aircraft compared with the aircraft it replaces, and wings, the A350-900 is the North America. The Irish flag carrier is
made up of 68 Airbus jets as well which means reduced carbon smaller of two current variants within making almost two million seats available
as 51 Boeing 737s, 25 Bombardier emissions by up to 30 per cent. Also, the A350 XWB family. Powered by two during the peak holiday period – the most
it has ever offered. David Shepherd, Aer
CRJ900s and ten ATR 72s. In the the external noise footprint will be Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines, the
Lingus’ CCO commented: “Not only does
coming years – as part of its renewal reduced by 40 per cent. Along with type has a marginally shorter range of our increased capacity strengthen Ireland’s
plan – SAS will take delivery of 54 the new livery, the A350 is a symbol 8,100nm (15,000km) when compared connectivity with the United States, but it
additional A320neo Family aircraft of a more sustainable and competitive with the 8,700nm (16,100km) reach of creates a greater, more efficient connection
and the remaining seven A350-900s future for SAS.” the larger -1000 model. (Photo Airbus) via Dublin for our neighbours in the UK and
Europe.” (Photo Airbus)

German Transavia is to offer links to nine European


destinations from a new Brussels base.
The KLM subsidiary plans to connect the

Unification Belgian capital with Alicante and Ibiza in


Spain, Verona in Italy, Corfu, Heraklion and
Thessaloniki in Greece, Tel Aviv in Israel,
ZEITFRACHT GROUP has united its two Agadir in Morocco and Faro in Portugal.
regional airlines – WDL Aviation and Erik-Jan Gelink, commercial director of
Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter (LGW) – Transavia, said: “Our research indicates that
under a single name, German Airways. there is a gap in the market from Brussels
While the move brings the carriers closer, for low-cost leisure travel which Transavia
they will retain their respective can fill.” The Dutch low-cost carrier has yet
to confirm how many of its 42 Boeing 737s it
Air Operator Certificates. plans to base at the Zaventem hub in order
WDL has recently started to switch from specialist currently operates three former 100-seaters, replacing its 17-strong fleet
to operate the new services.
British Aerospace 146s to Embraer E190s, Copa Airlines Colombia E190s and a of Bombardier Q400s. The carrier was
with just one passenger-configured BAe further two are due to be taken on lease previously part of Eurowings, having Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) is to replace
146, D-AMGL (c/n E2055), remaining. from Azorra Aviation shortly. been one of several purchases made its Copenhagen/Kastrup to Tokyo/Narita
service with a new connection to the city’s
However, it is likely to continue using the Dortmund’s LGW – acquired by Zeitfracht by Lufthansa following the collapse of
second airport, Haneda. The carrier cites
Hatfield-built airliner on freight routes. Group in April – is also understood to airberlin. (Photo AirTeamImages.com/ easier access to downtown districts, with
The Cologne/Bonn-based ACMI lease be eyeing a move to the Brazilian-built Markus Mainka) Haneda located just 9.3 miles (15km) from
the city centre compared with Narita’s 37

First Look at miles (60km). The decision is timed well


for the Summer Olympic and Paralympic
games which arrive in the Japanese capital

Turkish A350 in July. Together with its Star Alliance


partner, All Nippon Airways (ANA), the route
will increase connectivity to 30 domestic
destinations within the Far Eastern nation.
Air Antwerp is due to adjust its Antwerp-
London/City rotations to better suit
passenger needs. The Fokker 50 operator is
to double the number of services it offers on
Sundays. Meanwhile, the carrier’s current
thrice-daily link provided on Tuesdays will
be reduced by a third with the loss of the
afternoon connection. The airline, which
The first Airbus A350-900 for Turkish Airlines has emerged from the European aerospace giant’s Roger Béteille Final Assembly began services in September, is a joint
Line at Toulouse/Blagnac Airport. The carrier signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in March 2018 for 25 examples of the
widebody airliner and is due to place the aircraft into service on its popular link to Heathrow from April. The London connection is venture between CityJet and KLM.
scheduled to begin on 13th of that month, with A350 operations to Dubai starting a day later. V1IMAGES.COM/CLÉMENT ALLOING

8 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

06-08 news_europe ALW Feb2020.indd 8 12/19/2019 3:01:42 PM


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News Review • CIS

Air Astana’s
C-Check Milestone
KAZAKH FLAG carrier, Air Astana our own heavy aircraft maintenance.
has completed its first independent With the expansion of our
C-check at its base at Almaty. experience and capability, we also
After receiving approval from the see the possibility of carrying out
European Aviation Safety Agency maintenance for external customers.
(EASA) in October 2019, the airline This in turn will increase revenue and
selected P4-KBH (c/n 7124), an Airbus
A320neo for its first inspection.
offset part of the cost of performing
our own C-checks.”
KrasAvia Announces
With the guidance of specialists from
S7 Technics, Air Astana engineers
Igor Panshin, deputy general
director for marketing and sales at
S7 Technics added that the desire
New Routes
carried out more than 170 safety RUSSIAN AIRLINE KrasAvia has Under KrasAvia’s plans, it will launch
checks, as well as minor cabin by Air Astana to develop its own announced it will be launching a rotations from Krasnoyarsk to Taksimo
restoration over a ten-day period. In heavy maintenance competencies number of new routes this year. The on a weekly basis and Noyabrsk
2018, the pair signed a memorandum was “not a whim” but a “logical step carrier plans to connect its hub in the and Ust-Kut with a twice-weekly
of understanding to establish heavy to reduce costs”. central city of Krasnoyarsk with three frequency. The airline intends to
maintenance facilities at Air Astana’s Elsewhere, the Kazakh company new destinations. The expansion operate all the new connections using
bases in Almaty and Nur-Sultan. has announced a new service from forms part of a route subsidisation Antonov An-24 and -26 aircraft.
Under the agreement, S7 Technics Almaty to Paris/Charles de Gaulle programme run by Russia’s Federal Now Russia’s largest regional carrier,
provides consulting services as well that will launch in June this year. Transport Agency. The Russian KrasAvia was founded in 1956 as
as training for the airline’s engineers The thrice-weekly service will use Federation has allocated 8,347m Turin Airline before being renamed
to expand their repair capabilities. the airline’s new A321LRs which rubles (approximately £100m) from Evenkia Avia in 2002, and its
The partnership also includes the entered revenue service at the end its budget to the scheme which will current designation in 2007. (Photo
sharing of tools and equipment of last year. This new route will be subsidise 262 connections this year. AirTeamImages.com/Felix Gottwald)
between the two firms. the carrier’s second connection
Keith Wardle, Air Astana’s vice with the French capital. In March
president, maintenance and
engineering commented: “Our
2015, the firm began flying between
Nursultan/Nazarbayev and Charles Successful Safety
primary goal is to minimise airline
costs by independently performing
de Gaulle using Boeing 757s.
(Photo Air Astana) Audit for Qazaq Air
KAZAKH REGIONAL carrier Qazaq throughout all levels of the company.
Air has successfully completed its [The] registration allowed our airline
IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) to become a full member of IATA
registration regaining its authorised giving great opportunities for the
operator status. The renewal follows development of co-operation with the
an audit in June 2019 that saw global aviation community.”
independent examiners perform Qazaq Air – which is owned by
a comprehensive check of nearly the state-run Kazakhstan Samruk-
1,000 standards and recommended Kazyna National Welfare Fund –
practices in all areas of the company’s began operations in August 2015
operational activities. with a service connecting Almaty to
Plamen Atanassov, Qazaq Air CEO Nursultan/Nazarbayev. The airline now
said: “A successful IOSA renewal has a fleet of five De Havilland Canada
confirmed the airline’s commitment DHC-8 turboprops which it uses to
to the highest safety standards connect 11 destinations.

Turkmenistan Resumes Flights to UK

TURKMENISTAN AIRLINES has 2019 after the European Aviation technical requirements related flights in the region.
resumed operations to the UK Safety Agency (EASA) raised to air operations of Third Country The connection links the airline’s hub
with the re-launch of its route to concerns over the safety Operators (TCO) within the EU. in Ashgabat to Birmingham once a
Birmingham. It comes after the of its operations. The TCO regulations apply to week and there are plans to roster a
carrier was banned from flying in In October that year, the company non-European aircraft operators Boeing 737-800 on the route. (Photo
the European Union (EU) in February confirmed it had complied with conducting commercial air transport Flickr Creative Commons/Alec Wilson)

10 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


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News Review • Africa/Middle East

Qatar Celebrates Botswana Inaugural


QATAR AIRWAYS has become the only tens of thousands of passengers to Kabo Phutietsile, acting chief executive an opportunity to fully utilise and
non-African operator to offer flights this wonderful country.” officer of Civil Aviation Authority benefit from the investments in
to Botswana following the launch The flight schedule shows an early Botswana, added: “The new route by infrastructure improvement
of its thrice-weekly service to morning departure from Doha/ Qatar Airways is expected to boost completed in the recent past.”
Gaborone/Sir Seretse Khama. The Hamad and a late afternoon arrival Botswana’s aviation industry and create The new route comes as the Middle
connection is the airline’s 23rd into Gaborone/Sir Seretse Khama employment opportunities and skills Eastern carrier plans to add Luanda in
destination on the continent. on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. transfer. It gives the country Angola this year. (Photo Qatar Airways)
The route – which originates at Doha/
Hamad – now flies onwards to the
Botswana capital from Johannesburg/
O R Tambo. The flag carrier has
rostered an Airbus A350-900
configured with 36 seats in business
class and 247 in economy.
Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways Group
chief executive, said: “Qatar Airways
is committed to expanding its network
in Africa, and this new route is another
step towards achieving that goal.
We take great pride in being the
first Middle Eastern airline to fly to
Botswana and look forward to bringing

South African Accepts A350s


SOUTH AFRICAN Airways (SAA) has The two Air Mauritius examples are
accepted four Airbus A350s as it looks currently being used for crew training
to replace its ageing and increasingly and have been operated between
inefficient A340 examples. Two Johannesburg/O R Tambo and
airframes have been sourced from Durban/King Shaka.
lessor Avolon, while the two most recent Meanwhile, plagued by debts and
deliveries are on loan from Air Mauritius. years of alleged mismanagement,
The Indian Ocean carrier had previously SAA entered into business rescue on
deferred the delivery of two A350s from December 9, 2019 – South Africa’s
2020 to 2023, when it ordered a pair equivalent of bankruptcy protection – in
of Airbus A330-900s in February 2017. a bid to rescue the flag carrier.
However, in the first quarter of 2019, the In a statement, SAA said that following
airline reported losses of €21.7m – this, a consultation with the shareholder, the

Wizz Air Announces along with the arrival of two A330-900s


and cabin upgrades for a pair of A340-
300s, is likely to have prompted the
South African government’s Department
of Public Enterprises, the “considered
and unanimous” conclusion was to
Abu Dhabi Airline lease agreement with SAA.
Speaking in June 2019, Zukisa Ramasia,
SAA’s acting CEO, said: “The introduction
“place the company into business rescue
in order to create a better return for the
company’s creditors and shareholders
EUROPE’S WIZZ Air has announced it of the local market, support and
intends to launch a low-cost airline in navigation in a new market for of these state-of-the-art aircraft to our than would result from any other
Abu Dhabi after provisionally agreeing Wizz is invaluable and will boost fleet is an important step-change as we available solution.”
a joint venture with the Abu Dhabi the successful development of continue to make progress to transform At the time of going to press, Les
Development Holding Company this low-cost airline. our business and return the airline to Matuson, the business rescue
(ADDH). The new carrier is expected to “Wizz Air Abu Dhabi will be an financial sustainability in the shortest practitioner appointed by the board,
launch in the second half of 2020. incremental path of growth for time possible. [They] present was due to report back with a plan to
Tentatively named Wizz Air Abu Wizz Air, built on our successful an immediate opportunity to offer rescue the company.
Dhabi, the airline will focus on ultra-low-cost business model, an improved product.” (Photo AirTeamImages.com/Dirk Grothe)
establishing routes to markets in bringing affordable travel to ever
which the Budapest-based operator more customers. We believe the
has existing, high-growth services. new airline has the potential to be
These include central, eastern and a significant player in the region.”
western Europe, as well as the Indian Mohamed Hassan Al Suwaidi, CEO
subcontinent, Middle East and Africa of ADDH, added: “Through our
in the future. With a fleet composed partnership with Wizz Air, we aim to
of Airbus A321neo aircraft, the new capitalise on the growing demand
airline’s offering will align directly for budget travel and support the
with that of Wizz Air. continued growth of Abu Dhabi
József Váradi, chief executive officer as a world-class cultural and
of Wizz Air Holdings, said: “We are tourist destination.”
proud that our first airline to be The establishment of the carrier is
established outside of Europe is in subject to definitive agreements
Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE. between the two companies, as well
ADDH’s deep-rooted knowledge regulatory approval. (Photo Wizz Air)

12 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

12-13 news_AFRICA ALW Feb2020.indd 12 12/19/2019 3:10:46 PM


News Review • Africa/Middle East
in brief
Oman Air has signed a codeshare
agreement with Air Italy which will add
seven destinations to the Middle Eastern
carrier’s network. Under the agreement,
Air Italy’s ‘IG’ code will be placed on Oman
Air’s flights between Milan/Malpensa
and Muscat. Meanwhile, the Oman flag
carrier’s ‘WY’ identifier will be attached to
the Italian airline’s services between Milan/
Malpensa and Rome/Fiumicino, Naples,
Cagliari/Elmas, Palermo/Falcone Borsellino,

Congo Airways Signs for E175s Catania/Fontanarossa, Lamezia/Terme. The


next step – which is subject to regulatory
approval - will see Oman Air’s code added
KINSHASA-BASED CONGO Airways hub in Kinshasa.” Raul Villaron, vice president sales, to Air Italy’s North American services to New
has signed a firm order for two Bantu went on to say that the E175 Africa and Middle East for Embraer York/JFK and Miami.
Embraer E175s in a deal valued offers flexibility and is the right size Commercial Aviation, commented: Departing at full capacity, Emirates
at $194.4m based on list prices. for the airline’s market, adding that “It’s great to welcome another airline conducted its first passenger flight to
The agreement also includes an order for the E2 could be on the to the Embraer family of operators, Mexico. The Middle Eastern carrier left
purchase rights for a further horizon: “[The market] is growing especially in Africa, where the demand Dubai bound for Barcelona with more than
two airframes. so rapidly, so an additional order for regional travel is growing strongly. 300 passengers onboard. The Boeing
Desire Bantu, the airline's CEO, said: may be required, for which the E2 We look forward to supporting Congo 777-200LR then continued to Mexico
“These new jets will replace is a particularly compelling option.” Airways as they continue to upgrade City for the first time. Meanwhile, the
carrier announced an enhanced interline
our current turboprop offering and The aircraft will be configured their offering to their customers.” agreement with Interjet Airlines in a bid
allow us to serve routes both within in a dual-class layout seating 76 Congo Airways currently operates a to open routes for passengers travelling
the Democratic Republic of Congo passengers in total, with 12 in fleet of four aircraft comprising two beyond the Mexican capital. Emirates’
and regionally to West, Central and business class. Deliveries will Airbus A320s and two Bombardier passengers can now access 12 Interjet
Southern Africa, from our begin in the fourth quarter of 2020. Q400 turboprops. (Photo Embraer) services beyond Mexico City.
The flag carrier of Bahrain, Gulf Air,

Routes Galore for Cabo Verde and Turkish Airlines have announced a
codeshare expansion following the signing
of a memorandum of understanding
AS PART of a growing international between the two airlines. As part of the
expansion, Cabo Verde Airlines agreement, Gulf Air will place its ‘GF’ code
launched three new routes from its on the operator’s flights from Bahrain
base at Sal/Amílcar Cabral. The flag to Istanbul/Sabiha Gokcen and from the
carrier added Washington/Dulles, Turkish city to several destinations in
Lagos/Murtala and Porto Alegre/ Western Europe. Meanwhile, the deal will
see Turkish Airlines place its ‘TK’ code on
Salgado Filho to its list of destinations,
Gulf Air’s flights from Bahrain to Dubai,
which now total 16. Faisalabad, Multan, Sialkot and Manila/
The inaugural service to the US Ninoy Aquino.
capital operates three times a week. will be even more connected to the bolstered with an additional service
The airline says the new connection world – it will [now] be easier to travel which began in late December 2019.
“strengthens the company’s presence” to the United States, Brazil and Europe. Mário Chaves, deputy CEO and chief
in the North American market. To Cape Verde is also still unknown to the corporate affairs officer of Cabo Verde
this end, Cabo Verde has decided Nigerians, which I am sure will change Airlines, said: “The relations between
to reinforce its service to Boston by from now on.” Cabo Verde and Brazil go back in time
adding an extra rotation per week. To round off the route extravaganza, and we want to continue strengthening
Meanwhile, the carrier began the island nation carrier added a fourth these ties with another strategic route.”
operations to Lagos with a five-day destination in South America with The carrier has rostered its Boeing
weekly service on Mondays, Tuesdays, a service linking its hub with Porto 757-200s on the routes. To learn more
El Al Israel Airlines is to operate a series of
Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Alegre/Salgado Filho in Brazil. Starting about Cabo Verde Airlines, don't miss
proving flights between Tel Aviv and
Erlendur Svavarsson, board member with two connections a week on our special feature starting on page 88. Melbourne during April and May as part of
of Cabo Verde Airlines, said: “Lagos Wednesdays and Fridays, the route was (Photo Brian McDonough) plans to launch an ultra long-haul service to
the Australian city. The flights – presently

Etihad Chooses Well scheduled for April 2, April 23 and May 14 –


are to be operated by one of the Israeli flag
carrier’s 12 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. The
airliners are configured in a three-class,
282-seat configuration. (Photo Flickr
Commons/Melv_L)
Avmax Group has received two Viking
Series 400 Twin Otters for use in support
of oil and gas operations in the Republic of
Chad. The two turboprops are to be used
as corporate shuttles on behalf of China
National Petroleum Corporation on links
between the Chadian capital, N’djamena,
and locations in the south of the West
The eighth of Etihad Airways’ ‘Choose Well’ liveries, A6-BLC (c/n 39648) – a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner – arrives into African country. The two aircraft, c/ns 978
Washington/Dulles on December 5, 2019. The ‘Choose the USA’ themed paint scheme is part of a wider campaign by the and 981, were delivered at the end of
airline which has seen special liveries focusing on countries including the UK, China, Japan and Italy. According to the carrier, November and ferried to Chad soon after.
the campaign invites customers to make choices about how they travel and to “journey on their terms”. BRIAN MCDONOUGH

www.airlinerworld.com 13

12-13 news_AFRICA ALW Feb2020.indd 13 12/19/2019 3:10:50 PM


News Review • Americas
United’s Transatlantic Transformation
AS IT begins to phase out older aircraft The A321XLR can be operated by tanks into one, resulting in an increased with the increased load.
on key transatlantic routes, United the same crew as its standard neo fuel capacity and reduced weight. At the end of October, the A320neo
Airlines has placed a firm order for counterpart. Modifications to the extra Other significant changes feature Family had reportedly accumulated
50 Airbus A321XLRs. The American long-range variant include combining reinforcements to the structure more than 7,000 firm orders from over
carrier hopes to take delivery of the the A321neo’s two rear centre fuel and modified landing gear to cope 110 customers globally. (Photo Airbus)
first airframes in 2024 and expects
to begin international service with
the aircraft in 2025.
United currently operates services from
its hubs in Newark and Washington/
Dulles to a large number of destinations
in Western Europe, with the carrier
using ageing Boeing 757 and 767
examples to service some routes.
Andrew Nocella, United’s executive vice
president and chief commercial officer
commented: “The new A321XLR is
an ideal one-for-one replacement
for the older, less-efficient aircraft
currently operating between
some of the most vital cities in our
intercontinental network.
“In addition to strengthening our
ability to fly more efficiently, the [jet]
opens potential new destinations to
further develop our route network and
provide customers with more options
to travel the globe.”

Norwegian Sells Argentinian Subsidiary


IN A bid to return to profitability, Under the deal, JetSMART will phase exacerbated by the weakness of Norwegian’s employees will be
Norwegian has sold its Argentinian out the branding across the domestic the Argentinian peso. Geir Karlsen, picked up by JetSMART, with the
subsidiary to Chilean low-cost Argentinian network. acting CEO and CFO of Norwegian exception of the company’s
carrier, JetSMART Airlines for In the next six months, three Boeing said most of its costs are denominated Argentina-based call centre staff,
an undisclosed sum. 737s currently used by the carrier in dollars while revenue is obtained who will continue to provide
While the carrier will assume will return to Europe and be replaced in pesos only: “the sharp depreciation customer services to the Chilean
Norwegian’s operation with immediate by JetSMART’s Airbus A320. of the peso against the dollar has low-cost carrier and Norwegian’s
effect, the pair expect the integration The carrier said the difficulties in created a significant gap between long-haul operation between
process to take several months. generating a profit in the region were costs and revenue.” Europe and South America.

Delta Details The SKY’s the Limit


LATAM Codeshare CHILEAN LOW-COST carrier, SKY
Airline has signed a purchase
agreement with Airbus for ten
routes, always under our successful
low-cost model and extremely
convenient ticket prices. Now
FOLLOWING THE news in September more than 50 in South America. A321XLRs as the firm looks to passengers can enjoy new and
2019 that Delta Air Lines and LATAM The airlines are also working towards expand its international network. very attractive destinations on the
would be entering into a strategic introducing frequent flyer programme The operator’s fleet of 23 aircraft most modern airplanes in the market.”
partnership, the first fruits of the and lounge access reciprocity. (14 A320neo and nine A319-100s) To cover the expansion, SKY also
“transformative” relationship have Once fully implemented, Delta says connects its Santiago/Arturo Merino selected Airbus as its training provider,
begun to ripen as the pair announce the the enhanced co-operation will offer Benítez hub to 18 destinations in making the operator the launch
launch of a codeshare agreement. customers access to 435 destinations Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Peru. customer for the new Airbus Chile
Beginning in the first quarter of 2020, worldwide. Further plans are subject Holger Paulmann, CEO of SKY Training Centre. The facility will offer
the deal will offer customers increased to governmental and regulatory Airline said: “This new aircraft fleet flight crew training for its pilots and
connectivity between up to 74 onward approval. (Photo Wikimedia will allow us to expand our offer will include a full-flight A320 simulator.
destinations in the United States and Commons/Formulanone) of international and wide-ranging (Photo Airbus)

14 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


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News Review • Asia/Pacific

AUSTRALIAN FLAG carrier Qantas


Sunrise Status Report
the required performance. Qantas now has around 60 hours’ The airline says it has put forward
has issued an update on its Project Alan Joyce, Qantas Group CEO, worth of data on crew and passenger a number of suggestions to AIPA
Sunrise ultra-long-haul route said: “The A350 is a fantastic wellbeing following the three research on how the gap could be closed,
initiative. The announcement details aircraft and the deal on the table flights it conducted in 2019. which include a 3% annual pay rise
the aircraft choice, as well as the with Airbus gives us the best Australian regulator, the Civil and promotional opportunities. The
progress of regulatory approval possible combination of commercial Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), has battle to get pilots on side continues.
and pilot negotiations. terms, fuel efficiency, operating cost provisionally advised the airline A final go/no go decision from the
The airline revealed it has tentatively and customer experience.” that “it sees no regulatory obstacles Qantas board on whether to
selected the Airbus A350-1000 as Orders have yet to be placed, but to the Sunrise flights.” continue with the project will be
the preferred aircraft. In a statement, Qantas says it will work closely with Discussions are continuing with the made in March.
the operator said the European Airbus to prepare contract terms for Australian and International Pilots If you would like to read more about
manufacturer will add an additional up to 12 aircraft. The pair have agreed Association (AIPA) aimed at “closing Qantas’ Project Sunrise, turn to page
fuel tank and slightly increase the to extend the confirmation of delivery the last remaining gap in the Project 22 for an eight-page report on the
maximum take-off weight to deliver slots from February to March 2020. Sunrise business case.” initiative. (Photo Airbus)

Vistara Signs Codeshare Air Macau


with German Giant
INDIAN AIRLINE Vistara has signed a associations. Our codeshare with
Accepts A321neo
codeshare agreement with German Lufthansa is another important step AIR MACAU has accepted its first pleased to be the first to introduce the
flag carrier Lufthansa, further in this direction and helps us widen Airbus A321neo on a long-term lease A321neo to the airline.
strengthening their existing interline our customer base outside of India.” from Air Lease Corporation (ALC). "The ALC team has a long history of
partnership. The pair are planning George Ettiyil, senior director sales The aircraft, B-MBQ (c/n 9263), working with Air Macau and we are
to soon expand the scope of the for the Lufthansa Group Airlines in was manufactured at the company’s thrilled to continue to build our strong
deal, enabling frequent flyers of South Asia, added: “By teaming up Hamburg facility. relationship by providing the most
both airlines to earn miles when with Vistara we will strengthen and The narrowbody –which is equipped modern, fuel-efficient aircraft.”
travelling on each other’s networks. expand our position as the leading with two Pratt & Whitney PW1133G In total, Air Macau currently operates
As part of the arrangement, Lufthansa and most popular European airline engines – is the first of two to be an all-Airbus fleet of 23 aircraft.
will add its ‘LH’ designator to 18 in India – a country all set to delivered to the Far Eastern carrier. While the Airbus NEO variant is new
Vistara-operated flights covering become the third-largest aviation Jie Chen, executive vice president and to the operator, it received a set
ten Indian cities, including Delhi, market in just a few years’ time.” managing director, Asia – president, of four 158-seat A320neos
Bengaluru and Mumbai. Beginning operations in January ALC Hong Kong, commented: “We are during 2019.
Vinod Kannan, Vistara’s chief strategy 2015, Vistara has rapidly expanded
officer, said: “As a growing global and now has a fleet of 39 aircraft.
carrier, one of our key goals is to offer The carrier is now the sixth-largest
an extended international network to
our customers through such strategic
domestic airline in India.
(Photo Vistara)
First Hokkaido Air System
ATR 42-600

The first ATR 42-600 for Japanese regional airline Hokkaido Air System has broken cover in
Toulouse as the manufacturer prepares to deliver the turboprop. The aircraft – to be registered
JA11HC (c/n 1417) – is fitted with two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW100 engines and is configured
with 48 seats. Seen here on its first flight, the aircraft is one of two originally ordered at the
2018 Farnborough International Airshow. CLÉMENT ALLOING/V1IMAGES

16 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

16 News_ASIA ALW Feb2020.indd 16 12/19/2019 3:09:19 PM


News Review • International
Boeing Deliveries

Qatar Airways continues to accept Boeing 777Fs, receiving two during November. The airline now
boasts 21 examples, including A7-BFT (c/n 66338). AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/PHILIPPE NORET
Boeing delivered the following aircraft in November, 2019:
747-8F 1 UPS
767-300F 2 FedEx Express, UPS
777-300ER 2 China Southern, Swiss P&W-Powered
A319neo Certificated
777F 2 Qatar Airways (2)
787-8 2 El Al Israel Airlines, Japan Airlines
787-9 7 AeroMexico, Ethiopian Airlines, Juneyao Airlines, LATAM, Qantas, TUI Airways (2)
787-10 3 Etihad Airways, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Singapore Airlines THE FINAL member of the Airbus of type certifications across the
Total 19 A320neo Family has been issued its A320neo Family, comprising A320neo,
type certification by the European A321neo and A319neo – each with
Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). P&W PW1100G and CFM LEAP-1A
The Pratt & Whitney PW1100G- engine options.
equipped A319neo received approval Airbus holds 83 orders for the 160-seat
following a flight test programme of A319neo and has so far handed over
around 240 hours accumulated during two ACJ319neos. Deliveries to airlines
90 flights since last April. are expected to start this year.
European regulatory approval for the The first A319 to be powered by
variant, granted in November, follows PW1100Gs, D-AVWA (c/n 6464), made
that for a CFM LEAP-1A powered its maiden flight as such on April
example on December 14, 2018 and 25, 2019. It was previously used to

E175-E2 Maiden Flight the ACJ319neo corporate jet on July 9,


2019. This completes the programme
certify the type with CFM LEAP-1A
powerplants. (Photo Airbus)
EMBRAER HAS flown the third and unparalleled cost savings to our
final member of its E-Jet E2 family, customers, exceptional comfort for Airbus Deliveries
the E175-E2. The smallest variant, their passengers and fewer emissions
complementing the E190-E2 and for the planet. The E190-E2 and the
E195-E2, is set to complete a flight E195-E2 are already stellar performers
test campaign resulting in the airliner [and] the E175-E2 is just as impressive.
receiving type certification within We’re eager to get working
two years. on certification.”
The Embraer E175-E2 made its maiden Three examples of the type – which
flight from the company’s São José has yet to record a single customer –
dos Campos facility on December 12, will be used for its test campaign. The
returning after a 2hr 18min sortie. The first and second prototypes will be
crew, led by Captain Mozart Louzada, used for aerodynamic, performance
evaluated aircraft performance, flight and system trials, while the third
quality and systems behaviour. prototype will be used to validate
Speaking after the aircraft’s return, maintenance tasks and will be outfitted Air Corsica became the first French airline to receive an Airbus A320neo when it accepted F-HXKB
John Slattery, president and CEO with interior furnishings. (c/n 9348) on November 29. AIRBUS
of Embraer Commercial Aviation, The E175-E2 has one additional row Airbus delivered the following aircraft in November:
said: “Today’s flight of the E175-E2 of seats compared with the first- A220-100 1 Delta Air Lines
marks the completion of our vision to generation E175 and can be configured A220-300 3 EgyptAir (2), GTLK
produce a family of new-generation with 80 seats in two classes, or up to A320ceo 1 GECAS (Viva Air Colombia)
commercial aircraft that bring 90 in a single class. (Photos Embraer) AerCap (Azul), AerCap (Qingdao Airlines), Air China, Air Lease Corporation (Air New Zealand),
Air Lease Corporation (TAP Air Portugal), ALAFCO (Scandinavian Airlines), ALAFCO (Sky
Airline), Avianca, Avolon (SAS Scandinavian Airlines), Avolon (Jazeera Airways), CDB Leasing
A320neo 39 (Bamboo Airways), BOC Aviation (Air China) (2), BOC Aviation (Bamboo Airways), BOC
Aviation (Vistara) (2), China Eastern (2), China Southern, Comlux, easyJet, GECAS (Vistara),
GoAir (2), Gulf Air, ICBC (Air Corsica), IndiGo, Scandinavian Airlines (3), Shenzen Airlines (2),
Sichuan Airlines, SMBC (JetSmart), Spirit Airlines (4), Spring Airlines, Viva AeroBus
AirAsia Malaysia, Air China, Aviation Capital Group (Vietnam Airlines), BOC Aviation (Sichuan
A321neo 15 Airlines) (2), CDB Leasing (Azul), CDB Leasing (TAP Air Portugal), Cebu Pacific Air, easyJet,
GECAS (TAP Air Portugal) (2), jetBlue (2), Turkish Airlines, VietJet Air
A330-300 1 Aer Lingus
A330-900 4 Air Senegal, Garuda Indonesia, TAP Air Portugal (2)
Air France, Air Mauritius (South African Airways), ALAFCO, China Southern (2), DAE Capital
A350-900 10
(Fiji Airways), Iberia, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines (2)
A350-1000 1 British Airways
A380 1 Emirates
Total 76

18 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

18-19 news_INTL ALW Feb2020.indd 18 12/19/2019 3:18:21 PM


News Review • International

Lockheed Secures
Hercules Approval
THE LOCKHEED Martin LM-100J Royce AE 2100 turboprops as well as
– a civilianised variant of the US being 14% more fuel efficient and a
manufacturer’s C-130J Super Hercules 20% improvement in overall
– has been awarded its type certificate payload/range capability.
by the Federal Aviation Administration Rod McLean, vice-president and
(FAA). Like its military counterpart, general manager of Lockheed Martin’s
the aircraft is intended as a more
efficient successor to an earlier
Air Mobility & Maritime Missions line
of business, said: “Like its military Boeing Temporarily
Hercules variant. counterparts, the worldwide L-100
Lockheed Martin will deliver two
examples to Pallas Aviation, the
fleet is much tasked and much relied
upon. As this fleet reaches the end of
Suspends MAX Production
type’s launch customer, later this year. its operating life, customers told us the NINE MONTHS after the loss of concerning, the Administrator
Letters of Intent for ten examples of only replacement for the L-100 is Ethiopian Airlines flight 302, Boeing [Dickson] wants to directly address
the Marietta, Georgia-built transport an LM-100J. confirmed it would “prioritise the the perception that some of Boeing’s
aircraft have also been signed by ASL “This updated FAA certification enables delivery of stored aircraft” and public statements have been
Aviation Group and Brazilian defence the LM-100J to literally go anywhere “temporarily suspend production” of designed to force FAA into taking
and logistics agency Bravo Industries, in the world to fulfil the unique and the 737 MAX from January 1. quicker action.”
respectively. demanding requirements it was built Anticipating a much faster return This was addressed in the
The LM-100J is the modernised version to support. As the LM-100J enters to service, the Seattle-based manufacturer’s December 16
of the Lockheed Martin L-100 freighter, into service, we are proud that it will manufacturer had continued to statement: “As we have previously
more than 100 examples of which continue to exemplify and expand the build new airliners at a rate of 42 said, the FAA and global regulatory
were produced between 1964-1992. already unmatched capabilities of the per month. Almost 400 examples authorities determine the timeline
Improvements to the original offering C-130J Super Hercules family,” McLean are now stored at several Boeing for certification and return to service.
include modern avionics and Rolls- added. (Photo Lockheed Martin) facilities across Washington and We remain fully committed to
Texas, including 239 at Grant County supporting this process. It is our duty
International Airport, 140 miles east to ensure that every requirement is
of Seattle. fulfilled and every question from our
Acknowledging the challenges that regulators answered.”
still lie ahead, the company stated In American Airlines’ latest update
in a December 16 press release that to its schedules, the carrier expects
it knows “the process of approving its 24 737 MAX 8s will not return to
the 737 MAX’s return to service, service until April 6 at the earliest.
and of determining appropriate Southwest Airlines – which secured
training requirements, must be a compensation package with the
extraordinarily thorough and robust, manufacturer on December 12 –
to ensure that our regulators, is slightly more optimistic, with no
customers and the flying public have return for its 34 examples expected
Electric Beaver Takes Flight confidence in the 737 MAX updates”.
An email picked up by the media
until March 6.
Boeing believes that the decision –
HARBOUR AIR – North America’s largest of transportation – the aviation age – after being sent to key congressional which is likely to send shockwaves
seaplane operator – has successfully with the first flight of a powered aircraft. committees by Federal Aviation down its 737 MAX supply chain
flown the world’s first all-electric Today, 116 years later, with the first flight Administration (FAA) official Philip and further impact the company’s
commercial aircraft. The airline, working of an all-electric powered commercial Newman, reported that FAA chief share price – is “least disruptive to
with electric motor manufacturer aircraft, we launched the electric era Steve Dickson was “concerned maintaining long-term production
magniX, has fitted a magni500 of aviation. Now we are proving that that Boeing continues to pursue system and supply chain health”. It
propulsion system to the 1956-built de low-cost, environmentally friendly, a return-to-service schedule that also advised that affected employees
Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver, commercial electric air travel can be a is not realistic due to delays that “will continue 737-related work or be
C-FJOS (c/n 1030). reality in the very near future.” have accumulated for a variety temporarily assigned to other teams
The historic flight took place on the Harbour Air and magniX will now begin of reasons…”. It added: “More in Puget Sound”. (Photos Boeing)
Fraser River at Harbour Air Seaplanes the certification and approval process
terminal in Richmond, British Columbia, for the propulsion system and the
on December 10. retrofitting of aircraft. The seaplane
The six-seat aircraft was piloted by operator states that once regulatory
Harbour Air CEO and founder Greg approval has been granted, “the rest of
McDougall. Speaking after the event, the fleet can be magnified with magniX’s
McDougall said: “Today, we made all-electric propulsion technology”.
history. I am incredibly proud of Harbour However, the airline has yet to disclose
Air’s leadership role in re-defining whether this applies to its 14 DHC-2
safety and innovation in the aviation and Beavers, or a wider effort to also convert
seaplane industry. Canada has long held its 21 DHC-3 Otters and three Twin Otters
an iconic role in the history of aviation, to electric powerplants.
and to be part of this incredible world- In the DHC-2 Beaver, the 750hp (560kW)
first milestone is something we can all magni500 propulsion system replaces
be really proud of.” a Pratt & Whitney R-985 Wasp Junior
Roei Ganzarski, magniX chief executive, – also fitted to the Spartan Executive
added: “In December 1903, the 7W, Max Holste MH.1521 Broussard and
Wright Brothers launched a new era Grumman G-21 Goose.

www.airlinerworld.com 19

18-19 news_INTL ALW Feb2020.indd 19 12/19/2019 3:18:29 PM


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Project
22
Sunrise From Research to Reality?
AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 22 12/19/2019 3:14:49 PM


As Qantas takes long-haul to the next level,
Louise Jones examines the history and logistics
of linking London to Sydney and beyond...

I
t is little surprise that Qantas’ stop London to Sydney sortie, Qantas Qantas now has a total increase the maximum take-off
Project Sunrise research flights announced that following “detailed of 11 Boeing 787-9 weight” to deliver the performance
Dreamliners in its fleet.
were among the most talked about evaluation” it had selected a slightly QANTAS
required for the routes. The carrier
aviation stories of 2019. Hyperbole modified version of the Airbus A350- has stressed that while it is preparing
aside, there were genuine feats 1000 as its preferred aircraft for contract terms “for up to 12 aircraft”,
of engineering taking place; with any future commercial roll-out. Its no orders have been placed and a
the aptly titled QF7879 Boeing 787-9 December 13 statement put to bed any “final go/no go decision” by the Qantas
Dreamliner from London/Heathrow to speculation that the Aussie flag carrier board will take place in March 2020.
Sydney/Kingsford Smith crowned the could opt for a variant of Boeing’s Despite the developments of
world’s longest passenger flight by a 777X for the proposed ultra long-haul December 2019, some of the biggest
commercial airline for both distance connections. Qantas stated that the questions remain. Is there really
and duration. Scientists were on board A350’s Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines passenger demand? Will ultra long-
the ultra long-haul sectors collecting have “a strong reliability record after haul travel become the new normal?
valuable crew and passenger data to being in service with airlines for When exactly will it happen and –
help analyse the impact of travelling more than two years,” adding that perhaps the biggest question –
for almost 20 hours at altitude. the European manufacturer will add will non-stop services between the
Less than a month after the non- an additional fuel tank and “slightly east coast of Australia and cities such

www.airlinerworld.com 23

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 23 12/19/2019 3:15:10 PM


as London and New York come a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner covering
to fruition at all? more than 9,600 nautical miles
One thing is clear. Qantas chief (17,779km) non-stop from London to
executive officer Alan Joyce is genuine Sydney in 19 hours and 19 minutes –
in his intention to see Project Sunrise a neat numerical synergy with that
go from research to reality. Quizzed first flight in 1919. The jet flew over 11
by reporters about his aim to translate countries, including the Netherlands,
theory into practice, the CEO quipped Germany, Poland, Belarus, Russia,
that he wouldn’t expect some of the Kazakhstan, China, the Philippines
airline’s most senior pilots to submit and Indonesia, before crossing the
urine samples over three weeks for the Australian coast near Darwin and
sake of a PR stunt. tracking southeast across Australia
towards New South Wales.
Humble Beginnings Despite the fanfare, this wasn’t the
Project Sunrise may be pushing first non-stop connection between
the envelope with cutting-edge the two cities. In 1989, a brand-new
technology, but its foundations Qantas 747-400 VH-OJA (c/n 24354)
date back more than a century. covered the distance, spending 20
On November 12, 1919, Captain hours and nine minutes in the air –
Ross Macpherson Smith departed albeit with some stark differences to
Hounslow Heath aerodrome – close the 2019 sortie. To enable the jumbo
to the site of today’s Heathrow Airport. to clock up the miles, its interior was
His converted Vickers Vimy bomber, completely stripped out to make the
registration G-EAOU (whimsically said aircraft as light as possible. Despite
to stand for ‘God ‘elp all of us’), touched this, the jet’s fuel tanks were fully
down in Darwin, capital of Australia’s loaded to ensure the four-engine
Northern Territory, 28 days later on marvel was up to the job. Not a drop
December 10. The astonishing feat of kerosene was wasted, with the 747
covered the estimated 11,123 miles towed to the start of the runway to
(17,911 km) in a total flying time of save fuel during its taxi from the gate.
135 hours and 55 minutes. Compare this with a twin-engine
Fast-forward 100 years and aviators 787-9 Dreamliner that wasn’t stripped
with the same pioneering spirit flew out, carried 50 passengers and crew,
ABOVE LEFT • The first aircraft
to fly between the United took off with capacity left in its tanks,
Kingdom and Australia was and still had 13,889lb (6,300kg) of
a Vickers Vimy example. fuel remaining on arrival – roughly
VIA QANTAS
enough for a further one hour and 45
ABOVE RIGHT • Journey minutes in the air. The most recent
times between London and flight operated with approximately
Australia have improved
50% less fuel than its 1989 counterpart,
considerably since this
1952 advertisement. illustrating how far aviation
AVIATION ANCESTRY technology has come in a relatively
short space of time.
LEFT • A majestic pair of
Boeing 707-300s at Sydney/ With the advent of more efficient
Kingsford Smith in 1978. This long-range twin-engine aircraft has
Qantas jet VH-EAI (c/n 19629) come the opportunity to fly longer
is lined up in front of Dan-Air routes, often cutting out the need for
London, G-AZTG (c/n 17600).
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/ a stopover. Airlines around the world
THE SAMBA COLLECTION have seized the opportunities created

24 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 24 12/19/2019 3:15:22 PM


by ‘point-to-point’ – as opposed to
‘hub and spoke’ – networks to offer
passengers the choice to reach more
places via a direct flight. Carriers such
as Singapore Airlines, Qatar Airways
and Qantas rely on being able to fly
ultra-long sectors as part of their
business models. In February 2017,
Qatar’s Doha/Auckland route, operated
by a 777-200LR, completed the 9,032-
mile (14,535km) distance in 16hrs
RIGHT • The advent of the and 23mins to set what was then the
Boeing 747 revolutionised longest flight record. In October the
Qantas’ long-haul
operations. following year, Singapore Airlines’
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/ non-stop A350-900 ultra long-range
CARL FORD

Qantas
Fast
Facts:
Founded in the Queensland outback
in 1920.
First registered as the Queensland
and Northern Territory Aerial
Services Limited (QANTAS)
By 1947, Qantas Constellations were
flying through-services from Sydney
to London, with stops in Darwin,
Singapore, Calcutta, Karachi, Cairo,
RIGHT • The author meets Castel Benito (Tripoli) and Rome.
some of the Project Sunrise
crew at an event ahead Qantas joined the Jet Age in 1959, with
of the record-breaking the addition of Boeing 707s to its fleet.
London to Sydney flight.
VIA AUTHOR The first Boeing 747 in Qantas colours
took to the sky in 1971.
In the first year of non-stop services
between London and Perth, 150,000
(ULR) flight between its hub and Health and Wellbeing
Newark, clinched the accolade of the The Australian flag carrier describes
passengers covered more than 5.7m
nautical miles (10.5m kilometres), longest commercial flight in regular Project Sunrise as a series of “ultra
enjoying 42,000 Tim Tam biscuits in service, covering more than 9,320 long-haul research flights.” These
the process. miles (15,000km) in 17hrs and 52mins. form part of wider “scientific studies
If the outcome of Qantas’ Project into minimising jetlag for passengers
Qantas applied a special Today, Qantas flies more than 50
Sunrise results in the airline launching and improving crew wellbeing.”
livery to its 787-9 to million passengers each year across its
domestic and international network. a direct service from Sydney to New The priority for Qantas is not only
mark the start of its
centenary celebrations. York and London, the Australian firm to collect data that can be used to
ALAN LIPPITT will top the leader board. design optimum crew rest and

www.airlinerworld.com 25

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 25 12/19/2019 3:15:38 PM


ABOVE • With more than
work patterns, but most importantly testing, with the factory-fresh 787-9 apparatus didn’t interfere with aircraft
19 hours in the air, there
to ensure sectors of such a length was plenty of time for the still technically on its delivery flight, systems and standard operations.
don’t come with increased risks to Qantas CEO to take a few having left Boeing’s Everett facility In addition, five GoPro cameras
safety from over-tired crew. Passenger souvenir photos. near Seattle a couple of days earlier. In were mounted inside the flight-deck
QANTAS
research was also a core focus, addition to standard first flight checks, to record crew alertness cues and
with six Qantas frequent flyers those in the cockpit kept a close eye operational activities.
on the November rotation from ABOVE RIGHT • The 40 on aircraft systems and performance To complement and enhance data
London to Sydney. passengers on board throughout the epic journey. collection, all of those on board
QF7879 were encouraged
The airline teamed up with to exercise during the Data collection began one week completed sleep diaries and tests
researchers from the University of marathon journey. prior to departure, when crew and of alertness and reaction time.
Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre and QANTAS passengers started wearing devices Passengers also used tablet computers
the Cooperative Research Centre for attached to their clothes and placed to play games that tested their
Alertness, Safety and Productivity TOP LEFT • Qantas CEO Alan around their wrist (similar to a response times. Scientists made the
(Alertness CRC) to collect passenger Joyce travelled to the United watch). To ensure the validity of the most of having human guinea pigs
and crew data. Kingdom to be on board the information, these were left on the and set a strict regime for the entire
19-hour journey.
Representing the first time a participants for a fortnight following journey. This included being advised
VIA AUTHOR
collaboration of this type had been the flight. The wrist-based gadget when to sleep, eat and exercise.
established between an airline and measured activity, while the second Prior to lift-off from Heathrow,
university, the ‘laboratory in the sky’ TOP RIGHT • Final checks are tool calculated the amount of light Professor Corinne Caillaud from the
sparked excitement and intrigue made ahead of departure entering the eyes at any given time. Charles Perkins Centre explained what
from London/Heathrow.
throughout the sleep research field. It QANTAS All four pilots, led by Captain was in store: “We’re looking forward to
was described by academics as a “once Helen Trenerry, also wore this second flight, which will involve
in a generation” chance to collect electroencephalogram (EEG) brain passengers eating supper at breakfast
information on the impact of alertness monitoring equipment for the time, with the aim of encouraging
and sleep for those who work long duration of the flight to track brain them to sleep at 10am in the morning
hours around the clock, and the effect activity and monitor alertness during London time to help avoid light and
of jetlag on the body when travelling their ‘on’ times and quality of sleep reset their body clock to Sydney time.
across multiple time zones. during rest periods. The team spent Passengers will board at 6am London
The crew, passengers and the aircraft time in a 787 simulator prior to the time. After take-off they will be offered
itself were subject to observation and research flight to ensure the EEG a range of high GI [glycaemic index]

26 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 26 12/19/2019 3:15:46 PM


supper options such as chicken broth ABOVE • Passengers and light is going to help you with your low impact exercises.”
with macaroni or a steak sandwich, crew on board the research jetlag more than anything else.” Putting the pioneering research
flight witnessed two
along with a glass of wine and a milk- sunrises – one not long The second phase of the flight aside, passengers were awarded a
based panna cotta dessert. Cabin after departing London and involved darkness to induce sleep, certificate for joining the “Rare and
lighting and temperature, stretching another over Indonesia. followed by the third and final stage Secret Order of the Double Sunrise”.
QANTAS These honours were originally given
and meditation will also play key roles of daylight and activity. Following a
in the research.” Caillaud explained ABOVE LEFT • Qantas meal including spices and caffeine to to passengers who flew Qantas’
that every organ in our body has its developed a special menu awaken the senses, Qantas boss Alan ‘double sunrise’ rotations between
for those travelling on the
own rhythm, with the ‘master clock’ flight, with the serving of Joyce joined passengers in the aisle Australia and the UK that took place
being the brain. The main cues that dishes timed to minimise for some light exercise and stretching: during World War Two. Singapore
determine this tempo are light, food jetlag. “We know that travellers want room to was previously a hub for all Australia-
and exercise. QANTAS move on these direct services, and the UK flights, so when the territory
Cabin lighting was also a key focus BELOW • The four-strong exercises we encouraged on the first fell to enemy forces in 1942, Qantas
of the research. Monash University flight crew was led by research flight seemed to work really improvised and rerouted, resulting
researcher Dr Tracey Sletten was on Captain Helen Trenerry and well. So we’re definitely looking to in a 30-hour multi-stop journey
included First Officer Ryan
the flight and stated: “It is all about the Gill and Second Officers incorporate on-board stretching zones that spanned the Indian Ocean
light. The timing of day that you get Chris Agnew and Tegan Gray. and even some simple modifications between Perth and Colombo in
light exposure and the intensity of that QANTAS like overhead handles to encourage today’s Sri Lanka.

www.airlinerworld.com 27

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 27 12/19/2019 3:15:56 PM


Is it Practical? of the aircraft and correct work-rest complex planning and permissions. Qantas has incorporated
Back to the present with the big balance. Flight plans for the research Sustainability is also high on the Project Sunrise research
flights into its regular
question: will Project Sunrise result flights were agreed well in advance, but agenda. Qantas promises to have net
Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner
in non-stop services to London, there are various regulations that will zero carbon emissions by 2050, so the delivery schedule.
New York and other far-flung need to be addressed to ensure regular airline will need to be positive that its AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
destinations, or will the research routes can be flown between the east goal remains achievable if ultra long- ROLF JONSEN
flights languish in the history books coast of Australia to and from London haul becomes the new normal.
as purely fact-finding missions? and New York without the need for Ultimately, it will come down to
Speaking in November, Joyce told financial viability. Joyce has expressed
reporters: “It will likely be [flying] Qantas Dreamliner Fleet: his confidence in the proposed routes,
from 2023 when the aircraft are Reg Variant c/n Delivered Name but ultimately the figures need to add
available… but I [also] have no Great Southern up. Will people pay more for a direct
VH-ZNA 787-9 39038 04/10/17
problem in saying ‘we gave it a Land flight, even if it means being on the
good try, but it didn’t work’.” VH-ZNB 787-9 39039 09/12/17 Waltzing Matilda aircraft for an exceptionally long time?
If Qantas opts to make the VH-ZNC 787-9 39040 23/01/18 Quokka The airline’s Heathrow to Perth route
rotations a permanent fixture Emily Kame suggests they would. Representing
VH-ZND 787-9 63390 02/03/18
Kngwarreye
in its flying schedule, agreeing Qantas’ most popular long-haul sector Our artist’s impression of
VH-ZNE 787-9 63391 30/06/18 Skippy
regulations around crew work and with consistent 95% passenger loads, how the Qantas livery
VH-ZNF 787-9 36239 18/08/18 Boomerang could have looked on Airbus
rest patterns will be critical to getting VH-ZNG 787-9 36240 13/11/18 Jillaroo
and a 20-30% premium being made
and Boeing's initial
the go-ahead. Arrangements must VH-ZNH 787-9 36241 21/11/18 Great Barrier Reef
on the service, it appears that the Project Sunrise offerings.
be agreed by the airline and unions VH-ZNI 787-9 66073 15/10/19 Kookaburra travelling public is prepared to pay a ROLANDO UGOLINI
to ensure operating sequences are VH-ZNJ 787-9 66074 07/11/19 Longreach premium to cut out the midway stop.
optimised for the safe operation VH-ZNK 787-9 66075 13/12/19 Gangurru While Joyce hasn’t revealed what the

28 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 28 12/19/2019 3:15:59 PM


cost of a ticket might be from London flight. I’ve also had a few parents tell a while yet. Qantas might be on the
to Sydney, it would be proportionately me they would rather not disturb verge of making our world a slightly
more than flying to Perth. their kids if they are settled in and smaller place, connecting people on
The Qantas chief added: “I’ve had avoid having to bundle them and either side of the planet with a non-
business travellers tell me they’d rather all their carry-on luggage off and stop service, but there’s still a long
stay on board and watch an extra back on a flight during a stopover. way to go before this can happen.
episode of their favourite show before So, there is definitely support for Whatever the outcome, there’s no Alan Joyce and other Qantas
staff are greeted upon
arriving at their final destination, the non-stop flights.” denying the incredible evolution
arrival in Sydney after the
rather than spending 90 minutes on Project Sunrise is an unfolding story, of commercial aviation. What record-breaking flight.
the ground waiting for a connecting and one that will keep us captivated for a difference a century makes. QANTAS

www.airlinerworld.com 29

22-29 Project_Sunrise ALW Feb2020.indd 29 12/19/2019 3:16:04 PM


Air Dolomiti:
Universally European
Europe’s commercial aviation scene has changed dramatically in the three decades that
Air Dolomiti has been operating. Today, supported by a growing fleet of modern Embraer
E-Jets and with increasingly close ties to parent Lufthansa, the Italian carrier is perhaps better
equipped than ever to protect its niche. Matteo Legnani travelled to Verona to find out more.

30 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


A
lmost 30 years after its
first flight linking the
northern Italian cities of
Trieste and Genoa, Air
Dolomiti is evolving from
a small regional operator into a truly
European carrier. The main catalyst
for this ‘second life’ is the arrival of
up to 12 Embraer 195s and 190s and
an unprecedented broadening of
its operations – its winter 2019/20
schedule features services to eight
destinations in Italy and a further 15
across the continent.
In preparation for this expansion,
the Italian airline took a series of steps flight academy that will guarantee a 400 candidates at the prestigious Prior to the introduction
of an all-Embraer fleet,
including joining the International steady flow of new pilots to support Deutsches Zentrum für Luft und
the carrier operated
Air Transport Association (IATA) in its anticipated growth. The first group Raumfahrt (DLR - the German Space ATR examples.
2019 and starting its own ab initio of 18 cadets, selected among some Agency) in Hamburg, will join the AVSTOCK/BASTIAAN HART

Almost all of Air Dolomiti’s


scheduled routes cross
mountainous terrain in
and around the Alps.
AVSTOCK/DAVIDE OLIVATI

www.airlinerworld.com 31
specifically for our fleet of ATR 72s
and then transferred to the E-Jets
when we started flying them. But the
new all-white fuselage with bigger ‘Air
Dolomiti’ titles fits better on a much
larger aeroplane like the E-Jet, and it
gives us a more international appeal.”
The tail fin, incorporating the
‘winged diamond’ company logo,
remains in the carrier’s traditional
turquoise colour, but more attentive
observers will note that the forward
tip of it has been painted white to
resonate with the new #LufthansaBlue
livery sported by the German flag
carrier, which has owned Air Dolomiti
outright since July 2003.
Eberhart added: “For an airline like
us – well known in the Italian and
German markets, but far less elsewhere
on the continent – it was important
to stress as much as possible our
relationship with Lufthansa. So, we
The British Aerospace
models were once line in 2021 and will remain with Air at East Midlands Airport in the UK at decided to add ‘Member of Lufthansa
a cornerstone of Air Dolomiti for at least five years, as a a cost of around €70,000 per aircraft. Group’ titles just under the windows
Dolomiti’s aircraft roster. compensation for the airline covering The updated branding contains on the forward fuselage where
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/HAMFIVE they’re easily visible to passengers
the cost of the two-year training relatively minor tweaks, but for
course. Additional cabin crew and president and CEO Joerg Eberhart it boarding the aircraft. This brand is the
ground staff are also expected to join has a far bigger relevance. Speaking guarantee of reliability and quality that
its ranks, with the total number of to Airliner World at the carrier’s we need to support our growth into
employees likely to rise from around headquarters near Verona Villafranca new markets.”
700 today up to approximately 1,000 Airport, the former Lufthansa Airbus In addition, Air Dolomiti is following
over the next four years. A320 captain and (until December 31, the global trend of decorating the
Along with Munich,
Frankfurt is one Outwardly, the most tangible sign 2018) Lufthansa CityLine’s managing underside of its aircraft – the new
of the airline’s of the new-look Air Dolomiti is an director, commented: “The old livery, livery features the words ‘Ad Astra’,
primary destinations. overhauled corporate livery that is with two turquoise bands running drawn from the Latin phrase ‘per
FRAPORT being applied by Airbourne Colours along the fuselage, was created aspera ad astra’, or ‘through hardships

32 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


In recent years, Air Dolomiti
to the stars’. Explaining its decision, has strengthened ties
the carrier reported: “With these with its parent company,
words, the airline intends not only the Lufthansa Group.
to accompany passengers during AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
CARLOS ENAMORADO
the flight, but also to wish them bon
voyage, no matter what their selected
destination may be or the reason for
their trip.”

Seventh Heaven A BAe146-300, I-ADJJ


Since its inception, Air Dolomiti has (c/n 3155), pictured
at Frankfurt Airport
been a forerunner for what are labelled in September 2006.
today as ‘boutique airlines’, where the AVIATIONIMAGENETWORK/
attention to customer service is the SIMON GREGORY

highest priority even though most Air Dolomiti


of its flights are one hour or less in IATA EN
duration. Consequently, the onboard ICAO DLA
service is in a class of its own among Callsign Dolomiti
regional airlines and remarkably Founded December 30, 1989
impressive given the relatively short Launched Operations January 1991
time its cabin crew have to deliver it Headquarters Verona Villafranca Airport, Italy
(for example, the flight from Verona Fleet Size 14
to Munich that Airliner World sampled Destinations 18
took just 45 minutes). Passengers Carried 2.3m (2018)
In economy, passengers are CEO Joerg Eberhart
treated to a cold snack and a full bar Website airdolomiti.eu

including Italian spumante, red and


white wines, beer, soft drinks, coffee late evening return featured grilled
and tea. In business, where one of the chicken bites with crispy vegetables,
two seats on each side of the cabin are and the same fruit salad.
blocked out to create more space and The onboard experience is further
privacy, Air Dolomiti has developed a enhanced by complimentary
unique product called ‘Settimocielo’ Wi-Fi, which enables passengers to
(‘Seventh Heaven’). Devised in download newspapers, magazines,
partnership with famous Italian chefs short videos, games and route maps
and wine producers, the airline offers on their own portable devices.
beautifully presented restaurant- In keeping with its highly
quality cold plates, served on white personalised level of service, Air
bone china with metal cutlery and Dolomiti rewards its most loyal
accompanied by refined reds, whites customers with gifts, as Eberhart
and spumante. explained: “We never had a proper
On the business class flights frequent flyer programme for those
undertaken by Airliner World passengers flying point-to-point
passengers were offered a bottle of between Italy and Germany. Rather,
water and a refreshing towel before we presented them with little surprises
departure. The meal service started like dinner at a fine restaurant, or free
after a mere ten minutes in the air – parking at the airport. We will continue
on the mid-afternoon outbound leg, to do that, of course, but from the
this consisted of a cheesecake with start of this year, all our passengers
apricots, along with a fruit salad of can collect Miles & More [Lufthansa’s
pineapple and candied cherries. The frequent flyer programme] points in

www.airlinerworld.com 33
This Air Dolomiti ATR 72-500,
I-ADCC (c/n 662), was a CEO Eberhart added: “As our name
frequent visitor to Munich suggests, we have always been an
before leaving the carrier’s airline whose business was built
fleet in October 2013. around hopping across the Alpine
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
FELIX GOTTWALD mountains [the Dolomites are a
mountain range in northern Italy
renowned for their beauty]. In this
context, the introduction of jets
allowed us to fly up to 41,000ft, well
above the weather, which in these
geographical areas can be challenging
not only in the winter but also during
summer where major thunderstorms
Intense competition from are an almost daily occurrence. That
low-cost carriers in Italy has gave us better reliability and, of course,
prevented Air Dolomiti from
more speed. If, on the short sectors
opening domestic routes.
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/ we serve, we’re able to cruise at Mach
CARLO MARCORA 0.80 and we can fly above the bad
weather rather than around it, we can
order to get class upgrades, discounted from turboprops – de Havilland cut 10-15 minutes off the journey. That
tickets or free flights.” Canada Dash 8-300s, ATR 42s and can make a significant difference for
72s – and smaller regional jets such our passengers, the majority of whom
Air Dolomiti operates
multiple daily rotations from
Higher and Faster as the Bombardier CRJ to larger jet travel for business. And then, at hubs
Operationally, the turning point equipment – initially the British such as Frankfurt and Munich, our
Verona/Valerio Catullo to
both Munich and Frankfurt. for the Italian carrier came around Aerospace 146-300 and, later, the 116- E-Jets can use the airbridges, which
VERONA AIRPORT ten years ago with the transition seat ERJ-195LR. simplifies and accelerates the entire

34 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


process for connecting passengers.
Finally, the cabin is not only much
quieter [than turboprops], but also
wider and taller. The 2-2 layout is the
one that our passengers love the most,
because they can either enjoy the
spectacular views of the Alps, or they
have direct access to the aisle. We don’t
have any ‘unfortunate’ middle seats.”

E-Jet Expansion
From a fleet perspective, one of the
most significant decisions made by Air
Dolomiti came in 2018: “At that time,
we operated 12 E-Jets. We were neither
‘big’ nor ‘small’, but we also had no
critical mass, meaning that our cost
per aircraft was very high,” Eberhart
revealed. It was an unsustainable
model and one that forced the Italian
carrier to rethink its strategy. “Working
closely with Lufthansa, it became
obvious that we would either have
to completely change our strategy
Sporting Air Dolomiti’s Air Dolomiti Current Fleet
or be better incorporated within the former livery, this Embraer general economic situation, traffic
Lufthansa Group. Fortunately, our E195, I-ADJU (c/n 290), trends and the various needs of the Type Reg C/n
parent has a lot confidence in the value joined the firm from Lufthansa Group at that time.” Embraer 195LR I-ADJK 19000245
of our airline as a brand, and in terms Lufthansa CityLine in This fleet expansion has only been I-ADJL 19000256
March 2017. I-ADJM 19000258
of flexibility, reliability and quality, AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/ made possible by Lufthansa CityLine’s
I-ADJN 19000270
so we decided collectively to further MATTHIEU DOUHAIRE decision to up-scale its own operation
I-ADJO 19000280
develop our business by adding more – each of the outgoing E-Jets are
I-ADJP 19000578
aircraft and expanding our network being replaced like-for-like by A319s.
I-ADJQ 19000587
into new markets.” Eberhart doesn’t anticipate Air
I-ADJR 19000595
The cornerstone of Air Dolomiti’s Dolomiti will follow suit: “The Airbus I-ADJS 19000597
revised approach is the lease of 14 new is too big for us and we’ll never get I-ADJT 19000606
aircraft – five E195s and nine E190s – them, even when they leave Lufthansa I-ADJU 19000290
from sister carrier Lufthansa CityLine, CityLine’s fleet. Rather, it’s more I-ADJV* 19000308
due to give the Italian operator a total probable that the future replacement I-ADJW 19000297
fleet of 26 aircraft by 2023. for our E-Jets will be either their E2 I-ADJX 19000305
The first two E195s, I-ADJW (c/n evolution or the smaller variant of (D-AEBB)** 19000316
19000297) and ‘JX (c/n 19000305), were the A220.” (D-AEMC)** 19000300
delivered in January and April 2019, (D-AEBC)** 19000320*
respectively, with the three remaining Beyond Italy *Star Alliance livery
**Due for delivery in 2020
examples expected to follow shortly. Until the end of the summer 2019
The smaller, 100-seat 190s are due to flying programme, Air Dolomiti’s
arrive between 2021 and 2023 though, operation focused almost exclusively of the carrier’s reach southwards along
as the CEO noted: “A decision will on connecting Italian cities to the Italian peninsula, with services to
be taken each year as to how many Lufthansa’s hubs in Frankfurt and Florence, Pisa, Ancona, Bari, Cagliari,
machines we’ll receive in the following Munich. Until this point, the most Catania and Palermo complementing
12 months. This will depend on the notable change was a slow migration its ‘traditional’ northern network

www.airlinerworld.com 35
Air Dolomiti currently has 14
Embraer E195s in its fleet. so many passengers are forced to use
AIR DOLOMITI/ other European hubs for their long-
ALEKSANDR DAL CERO haul journeys [more than 70% of Air
Dolomiti’s passengers connect through
Germany]. Munich and Frankfurt both
offer a vast array of options to reach
almost every corner of the world.” The
CEO added that there’s also an element
of geographical convenience with
passengers originating in northern
Italy, and especially those heading
to Asia or North America, generally
preferring to favour other European
hubs rather than flying south to Rome.
There are other factors at play –
what appears at face value to be a
typical feeder operation is in fact three
different models in one. On certain
routes, such as from Munich to Bari,
Bologna, Florence, Turin, Venice and
that included Venice, Trieste, Verona, German hubs to the Austrian cities of Verona, Air Dolomiti holds entire
Bologna, Genoa, Turin and Milan. Graz and Linz. This was followed at the commercial responsibility, including
All these cities boast direct links to start of the winter 2019/20 schedule by setting fares and selling tickets via
Munich – Air Dolomiti is the Bavarian links to Amsterdam, Bilbao, Brussels, its website. Many of its non-Italian
airport’s third largest incumbent by Copenhagen, Cluj, Lyon, Marseille, connections from Bavaria, meanwhile,
aircraft movements after Lufthansa Nice, Nantes, Prague and Zurich. are flown for Lufthansa which wet
and its CityLine subsidiary, and fourth These new services, all from Munich, leases its aircraft on a per flight basis.
by passenger traffic. These are joined are operated by Air Dolomiti under an The third model – ‘mixed operations’
by links from Frankfurt to Verona, aircraft, crew, maintenance, insurance – is employed on links such as
Turin and Florence. and overheads (ACMIO) arrangement. Frankfurt to Florence and Linz
The airline’s change in direction and “Hopefully, with the arrival of the new or Munich to Milan and sees the
expansion of its fleet has facilitated jets, we will be able to further expand two carriers flying alongside one
the growth of its network outside our operations in Italy too, connecting another. In the case of the latter route,
of its native Italy. A taster for this even more cities to the Munich hub Lufthansa flies five of the seven daily
development came in 2018 when while at the same time having more rotations with an A320 Family aircraft
Air Dolomiti opened routes from its and more commercial responsibility for while Air Dolomiti covers the other two
these flights,” the CEO remarked. with its E195s.
Air Dolomiti Historic Fleet
Type No. Operated More Than a Feeder Protecting its Niche
ATR 42-300 6 One of the secrets behind Air In the longer term, Eberhart
With Lufthansa CityLine in
ATR 42-500 10 Dolomiti’s success as a feeder airline the process of upgauging remains confident the airline’s future
ATR 72-500 13 has been the prolonged weakness of its fleet, Air Dolomiti lies beyond Italy’s borders and has
Bombardier CRJ200LR 5 expects to receive a
Alitalia as a true hub carrier. Eberhart repeatedly ruled out the possibility
British Aerospace 146-300 5 number of secondhand
admitted: “The Italian major has Embraer examples. of delving into the purely domestic
De Havilland Canada Dash 8-300 3 relatively few intercontinental services, AIR DOLOMITI/CABRAS market: “The obstacles met a few years

36 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


ago by Lufthansa Italia are the most
evident demonstration that there
simply isn’t any space for profitable
point-to-point flights by a full-service
carrier in Italy.”
The German carrier’s Italian offshoot
launched services in 2009 from its
Milan/Malpensa base to six major
cities across the country only to close
its doors just two-and-a-half years
later. The move was intended to
capitalise on the gap in the market left
by Alitalia’s merger with Air One, but
was ultimately thwarted by mounting
competition, particularly from the low-
cost sector.
Eberhart reflected: “Today, there
are even fewer market opportunities
than nine years ago, if you are not
an LCC [low-cost carrier].” He added
that such operators have effectively
reinvented the domestic market in
Italy, and elsewhere in Europe, to such
a degree that “it is almost unthinkable
to make money competing against
them directly, even if you’re offering a
The airline’s latest livery
far better product”. He continued: “For was specifically designed
us, connecting traffic is the key to our for its Embraer jets.
success and this is the market sector MATTEO LEGNANI
we’ll continue to focus on.”
This reluctance to compete directly
with low-cost rivals, and an
unwillingness to simplify its operation
or water down its impressive customer
offering, may just be what helps the
Italian carrier protect its niche. Throw
in a growing fleet of modern
narrowbody jets, a thriving pan-
European network and an enhanced
partnership with a leading global player A clean, new livery includes
in Lufthansa, and Air Dolomiti appears the words ‘Ad Astra’, drawn
to have assembled a formidable arsenal from the Latin phrase ‘per
that means it can enter its fourth aspera ad astra’, or ‘through
hardships to the stars’.
decade with justified optimism – per AIR DOLOMITI/
aspera ad astra. ALEKSANDR DAL CERO

www.airlinerworld.com 37
Desert Rows
Situated in the northwestern corner of Arizona beside the iconic Route 66, Kingman has made
a major contribution to civil and military aviation for more than 90 years, often reinventing
itself to remain important and vibrant. David Ransted examines this historic airfield.

I
t was the forerunners of TWA site during a storm, the first aviators
(initially Transcontinental and to establish Kingman as a stopping
Western Air – later Trans World point, but Wallapai proved too small and
Airlines) who put Kingman on poorly located for the larger, heavier
the aviation map. Originally there aircraft needed for the route and it was
were no fewer than three predecessors used only sporadically until 1929 when
of today’s airport. The first being it was replaced by Berry Field and Port
Wallapai Field (aka Hualapai Field), Kingman airfields.
with its single dirt runway, located The small Berry Field, located near the
close to the Mountain View cemetery, Berry railroad siding, was established
INSET • Today, Kingman
Airport and Industrial Park Port Kingman
National Old Trails Highway (later to by Western Air Express (WAE) in the is a modern transport hub, TAT had pioneered coast-to-coast
become the famous Route 66) and the late-1920s and was briefly used prior with road and rail links on New York-Los Angeles scheduled
Santa Fe Railroad. Established in 1918, to the airline’s 1930 merger with its doorstep. ALL PHOTOS services, combining air and rail,
AUTHOR UNLESS STATED
on January 18, 1919 it was chosen by Transcontinental Air Transport (TAT) beginning in July 1929 and Kingman
the US Aerial Mail Service as a stop on to form TWA. Berry Field also proved became the first/last stop between its
the Chicago-Los Angeles route, which too small and the newly merged airline Glendale Grand Central Air Terminal
ran through Albuquerque and Wichita, chose to decamp to TAT’s Port Kingman in Los Angeles and points east, the
although in practice it was seldom – which remained in use until the route continuing via Winslow, Arizona
establishment of a new airfield in World More than 80 former Delta
used as the shorter and more northerly and Albuquerque to Clovis, New
Connection CRJ200s, now
routing via Salt Lake City and San War Two – but in its heyday Berry Field withdrawn from use and Mexico. Its Port Kingman airfield, the
Francisco was preferred. Local legend attracted such aviation luminaries as some minus their engines, first commercial airport in Arizona,
has it that two pilots had landed at the Amelia Earhart and Ruth Nichols. are lined up at Kingman. was located not at the present

38 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


At its peak, the rows of
aircraft awaiting scrapping
at Kingman stretched for
six and a half miles. Boeing
B-17 Flying Fortresses
and Consolidated B-24
Liberators accounted for
many of the heavy bombers
stored at the Arizona facility.
KINGMAN ARMY AIR FIELD
HISTORICAL SOCIETY & MUSEUM

www.airlinerworld.com 39
Kingman Airport site but beside the by the carrier’s Ford Tri- record attempt – which traced the TWA
now downtown Bank Street, a location
Post-War Storage Motors, afforded passengers routing – and on July 10, 1936 Grand
selected by Col Charles Lindbergh as Aircraft 5,443 an unparalleled view of Canyon Airlines began daily airmail
Comprising: Meteor Crater and the eastern service between Grand Canyon and Las
one of ten stops on the transcontinental
Heavy bombers 4,463
route he planned for TAT. The airport Grand Canyon, while flights Vegas via Kingman, Chloride, Arizona,
Fighters 615
was dedicated on June 25, 1929 (in this heading west embarked and Boulder City, Nevada, while later in
Medium bombers 226
era of Prohibition it was christened on the 330-mile (531km), the year a flying club was established
Reconnaissance aircraft 85
with a bottle of ginger ale, poured over three-hour leg across the at the field. Port Kingman, still referred
Light bombers 54
the American flag), with the short-lived southern California desert to to locally throughout the 1930s as TWA
Including:
Maddux Air Lines – soon to merge with Consolidated B-24 Liberators 2,567
Glendale. TAT scheduled just Airport, was closed to commercial
WAE – also sending an aircraft to the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses 1,832 15 minutes on the ground traffic in 1942, by which time a new US
opening ceremony. An initial flight was North American B-25 Mitchells 142 at Kingman and initially Army Air Corps airfield had opened
piloted by Lindbergh himself. Lockheed P-38 Lightnings 678 facilities were somewhat on the current Kingman Airport site,
TAT had built the airfield, with its rudimentary, with meals for but not before it had been used to
terminal, built in a pueblo style, and ABOVE • Wunderlich the departing flights prepared at the train cadet pilots for the Army Air
intersecting dirt runways – the longest Contracting Company was downtown Harvey House eatery. Force on Curtiss P-40s.
tasked with the destruction
at 5,200ft (1,585m). Kingman became of 5,540 aircraft at Kingman After TWA was created in 1930 it
something of a transport hub, with on August 9, 1946. continued to operate through Kingman Gunnery School
both the Route 66 Highway and the until 1934, when it routed its service As war loomed on the horizon the
Atlantic and Pacific (now the Burlington non-stop between Winslow and Los US Army Air Corps embarked on a
Northern Santa Fe) Railroad, linking Angeles, transferring its local office and rapid build-up of airfields, keen to train
California with the east, running radio station to Las Vegas in 1937. But crews for the new Boeing B-17 heavy
through the town. Eastbound, the 186- Port Kingman remained a well-known bombers that had recently been put into
mile (299km), two-hour flight between waypoint; in 1935 aviatrix Laura Ingalls production. Kingman Flexible Gunnery
Kingman and next stop Winslow, served landed here as part of her cross-country School, situated in the flat, wide

40 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


Hualapai Valley, was at the forefront of
this expansion, chosen for its climate
and great open spaces and conveniently
located beside the Atlantic and Pacific
Railroad and Route 66 Highway, eight
miles northeast of the city of Kingman.
Approval to begin construction was
given in May 1942 and the gunnery
school, the sixth of its kind in the
US, was set up at a cost of more than
US$9m. Construction started in August
on runways, hangars, machine shops,
barracks and offices, and it eventually
included a sub-base at nearby Yucca
(which later became Yucca Army Air
Field) and five other auxiliary fields for
emergency use at Red Lake, Hackberry
(Antares), Topock, ‘Site 6’ (Havasu)
and Signal.
The decision was made early in the
war that Kingman would specialise
in training B-17 gunners. This began
with the basic firearms and progressed
to orientation, safety, knowledge of
equipment, gun installation, use of KAAF Focus Kingman’s large hangars
and expansive apron make
with up to 15,000 personnel on the base
gunsights, turret training, combat The Army Air Forces Flexible Gunnery it an ideal home for both at its peak and by the end of the war
tactics and aircraft recognition, as School became Kingman Army Air Field general aviation users and more than 36,000 trainees had passed
well as familiarisation with all the (KAAF) on May 7, 1943. The base took MRO facilities. through the gunnery school.
gun positions aboard the B-17. After care of most of the men’s needs with
classroom tuition students progressed a cinema, gymnasium, sports fields, Warbird Heaven
to the ground training facility before swimming pools, restaurants, chapel, In September 1945 the decision
moving on to air-to-air gunnery library, post exchange, bank, tailor, was made to convert KAAF to a
flying. Completion of the course photo lab and a hospital. From March Reconstruction Finance Corporation
meant promotion to Sergeant or Staff 1943 the base gained its own newspaper, Storage Depot. Preparations progressed
Sergeant, award of gunner’s wings and The Cactus, and a map-lined Base quickly and on October 10 the airfield
assignment to a tactical unit and then War Room kept troops updated on the received the first aircraft for storage and
combat duty. Wanting to boost morale, progress of the war, while for weekend it was around this time that many of the
the base adopted Bugs Bunny as its R&R, gunners could hitch a ride on one Fairchild C-123K Provider, most famous photographs of the airfield
N546S (c/n 20064), is
mascot, inspired by the of the transport aircraft heading to San one of a small number of
were taken. Tales of more than 7,000
abundance of rabbits Francisco or Los Angeles. The influx of ex-military aircraft at war surplus aircraft stored at Kingman
in the area. trainees made Kingman a boom town the airfield. at one time are exaggerated, however,

www.airlinerworld.com 41
by the end of 1945 KAAF was home over 14 months as part of a project
to no fewer than 4,693 aircraft and at to clear the airfield. A smelter was
times new arrivals landed every few constructed on site, but before the
minutes. Some were even flown directly aircraft even got that far valuable
from overseas by their combat crews revenue was generated from draining
with many showing the scars of battle. the fuel in their tanks. The salvaged
Eventually more than 5,000 aircraft – flight instruments also proved a
predominantly heavy bombers – would lucrative revenue stream and some were
be stored in rows stretching for 61⁄2 even sold back to the US government at
miles (10.5km), claimed at the time to a healthy profit during the Korean War.
be the world’s greatest concentration of
aircraft in one place at the same time. At Post-war
one-point brand new B-17s were flown Kingman achieved a major milestone
straight from the factory to Kingman for when Arizona Airways, founded by
The former terminal building scrapping as the heady pace of wartime Phoenix entrepreneur Rocky Nelson,

70
Kingman in Numbers

230
has not seen scheduled production wound down. In addition commenced three routes on April 7,
flights since 2015. It has
since been repurposed to the B-17s, hundreds of nearly new 1946 with its fleet of three Douglas
as a café. Consolidated B-24 Liberators were DC-3s, including Phoenix-Prescott-
stored and treated against corrosion Kingman, using the old Port Kingman
stored aircraft to maintain their readiness. The larger airfield. The airline later joined a

330
bombers were not easily convertible to strength-in-numbers merger with
businesses passenger or cargo aircraft and they Denver, Colorado-based Monarch

4,200 2,600
Current area: TOP • Lockheed produced were sold off for their instruments Airlines and Challenger Airlines to
114 examples of the L100- (especially radar, radio equipment and form Frontier Airlines in 1950, but
stored aircraft expected 30 Hercules – a civilian
by 2024 version of its famous
bombsights) and for scrap metal, but when Arizona Airways dropped
acres C-130 – including N404LC some smaller aircraft were bought by Kingman service in the late-1940s,
(c/n 4763). It first flew in private citizens. local entrepreneur, George Steinke,

65 92
Planned area:

6,000
workers
1977 and was delivered to On February 26, 1946 KAAF became created his own airline – Steinke
Alaska International Air
in November of that year, Storage Depot 41 and on August 9 the Airlines – to operate popular daily
acres later serving with MarkAir War Asset Administration awarded a commuter services between Kingman
in Alaska and Southern Air contract to the Wunderlich Contracting and Phoenix and sightseeing flights
Transport. The aircraft was Company to destroy 5,540 aircraft to the Grand Canyon. In July 1948
acquired by Lynden Air Cargo
in 1998 and has been stored at Kingman – virtually the entire Steinke moved his business interests
at Kingman since 2014. inventory of aircraft stored there – – including aircraft servicing,
based general aviation
hangars aircraft

42 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


engineering and storage – from the instrumental in growing business at the Essential Air Service
old Port Kingman airfield, transferring new airport. From the 1970s Kingman endured
his lease on that airport to the newly Local service carrier Bonanza Air an on-again-off-again link to
civilian former KAAF airfield and Lines began interstate operations scheduled airline service. Following the
opening his own flying school on the with Douglas DC-3s on December deregulation of US domestic airlines
site. A former barnstorming aviator 19, 1949 along a newly awarded route in 1978, the Essential Air Service (EAS)
who had made his first solo flight between Reno and Phoenix, including programme sought to protect local air
after only an hour of dual instruction, Kingman as one of six en route stops, services by providing federal subsidies
Steinke had settled in Kingman and an early-1950s timetable showing the to commuter airlines to connect small
served as manager of the new airport single fare for the 20-minute hop from towns and rural communities with
for many years. He assiduously Kingman to Las Vegas at a grand total the national air transportation system.
cultivated the airport’s appeal, with of $5.95 (around $57 today) plus tax. Kingman was a participant in the
its expansive paved parking, large The airline, with its trademark orange- scheme from its early days, served
hangars, workshops and ready supply and-black livery, became a familiar firstly by SkyWest Airlines and then by
Former DHL Airbus A300s, of engineering and maintenance sight at Kingman, later upgrading to the locally based Golden Pacific Airlines’
N362DH (c/n 084) and expertise, and attempts were made to Fairchild F-27A – a licence-built Fokker ten-strong fleet of Cessna 402s serving
N367DH (c/n 265), await
their fate, their yellow and persuade TWA to return to Kingman Friendship – and still faithfully serving Las Vegas and Phoenix via Prescott,
maroon liveries fading in now that it sported new 6,000ft (1,829m) the airport in 1968 when the carrier was followed in turn by Cochise Airlines,
the bright Arizona sunshine. all-weather runways, but to no avail. merged in to Air West, which continued Republic Airlines
Both aircraft were delivered His Kingman Flying Service – which the city’s links to Las Vegas, Phoenix
new to Thai Airways
International as HS-TGP and among its many activities provided and Tucson.
HS-TGY respectively. free pilot training to veterans – was

www.airlinerworld.com 43
and Mesa Air (an affiliate of United Douglas C-54G, N90203 of ten boarding passengers per service Here and Now
Airlines and America West) and its (c/n 35934), was delivered day and that the subsidy be capped Today Kingman Airport and Industrial
to the United States Army
subsidiary, Air Midwest, who again Air Forces as 45-0490 just at US$1,000 per passenger. Kingman Park, to give it its full name, covers
provided routes to Phoenix, Las Vegas two months before the had averaged just 2.7 passengers per 4,200 acres (1,700ha) and houses 92
and Prescott, Arizona. end of World War Two. It day in 2013 and consequently lost general aviation aircraft and around
later served with several
When Air Midwest ceased operations its EAS status along with 12 other 230 stored airliners.
operators, including the US
in June 2008, Great Lakes Airlines took Coast Guard, SAM Colombia cities. The city argued strongly for the The airport provides maintenance,
its place the following year, linking and Royal Air Cambodge. It continuation of airline service, but fuelling, charter, rental and air
the city with Ontario, California, and was flown into storage at schedules ended on April 30, 2015. ambulance services and supports
Kingman in 2006.
Farmington, New Mexico, where it The Cheyenne-based carrier ceased Bureau of Land Management and
ran a maintenance base. Stationed in scheduled flying altogether in 2018, Mohave County Sheriff Department
Cheyenne, Wyoming, Great Lakes was although it still provides other services. aviation activities as well as being home
at the time the biggest EAS provider,
the programme accounting for 48 of its Originally delivered to
United Airlines in 1969 as
66 destinations, and in 2010 it replaced
a DC-8-62 and registered
Ontario with a link to the Kingmanites’ N8966U (c/n 46067), this
most preferred destination, Las Vegas. aircraft was converted to a
The following year, disappointing loads DC-8-72 in 1985, trading its
Pratt & Whitney JT8Ds for
on that route caused by difficulties with CFM International CFM56s. It
schedules and connections prompted was purchased by Sky Bus in
a further switch, with a twice-daily November 2016 but arrived
service to Phoenix that enabled day at Kingman just three
months later. Eagle-eyed
trips to Arizona’s largest city replacing readers will note its previous
the Vegas route. registration, VP-BHS, on the
Great Lakes Airlines provided underside of its port wing,
from its days with previous
schedules to Kingman initially as a
owner, Brisair.
United Express affiliate and later in
its own right and in January 2013 the
airline was awarded a further two-
Former-Tianjin Airlines
year EAS contract to provide Kingman Embraer ERJ-145LI, N152EC
with flights to either Phoenix or Los (c/n 14501040), had a
Angeles. The following year the carrier 12-month stint at Kingman
was linking the city with Los Angeles from March 2018. It has
since been returned to
and Denver, but a change to the EAS flight and was delivered
eligibility criteria in 2014 as a result of to its new Indonesian
escalating costs mandated a minimum owner in October 2019.

44 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


to engineering, manufacturing and The third, closed in 1984, is now used 66 a growing number of companies
light industrial companies. Kingman for aircraft storage. engaged in manufacturing,
may no longer host transcontinental or Little of the original airfield remains engineering and an array of aviation-
even regional flights, but with its semi- beyond a few hangars and the radio related support activities occupies
arid climate and enormous capacity, it tower, the foundations of long-removed Boeing 737-3H4, N619SW the space which once hosted
has an important role in commercial barracks, offices and swimming (c/n 28035), spent 22 years thousands of military personnel.
flying for Southwest Airlines.
aviation as a centre for storage and pools playing silent sentinel to its A short distance from the
Delivered new to the
disposal of surplus airliners. bustling military heritage. A modern, company in November 1995. administration block, the former
The airport retains two of its three purpose-built administration building, It was retired to the Arizona terminal building is now home to
original runways, the 6,827ft-long also hosting the fire station, was desert in August 2017 and is the Airport Café, its walls lined with
being repurposed for aerial
(2,081m) 03/21 and 17/35, which commissioned in 2008 while in firefighting duties
memorabilia and photos of the airfield’s
measures 6,725ft (2,050m) in length. the area between the airport and Route by Coulson Aviation. past, while the former departure gate

www.airlinerworld.com 45
OPPOSITE • Copyright © now provides the exit to an outdoor
2019 Jeppesen All rights
reserved. The charts are viewing area beneath the historic World
available to the flight War Two-vintage radio tower. The tower
simulation community via is one of only three remaining in the
Navigraph Charts, https:// US and was originally intended as a
www.navigraph.com. (Not
for airborne/operational fire watch platform in neighbouring
use) New Mexico. It was diverted to Arizona
to fulfil Kingman Air Field’s pressing
need to replace a temporary wooden
structure. Inside the entrance to the old
terminal building the check-in desks
This Aero Commander 560-A
N2775B first flew in 1956. are still present, a hopeful sign that
It is one of more than 90 regional commercial links may return,
general aviation aircraft although currently there are no plans for
based at Kingman.
a resumption.
Beyond the immediate apron, used
by based and visiting general aviation
aircraft, lie the storage areas of surplus
and obsolete airliners and transports.
These days propliners and first-
generation jet airliners are thin on the
ground, but the airport is host to many
more modern airliners that are currently
surplus to requirements, including more
than 80 Bombardier CRJ-200 regional
jets in the colours of Delta Connection.
During the author’s visit, more exotic
Ameriflight operates types included examples of the Fairchild
services to UPS’ Phoenix hub C-123K Provider and Douglas C-54,
on behalf of the cargo giant. as well as a Lockheed L-100-300, the

Airport statistics
IATA code: IGM
ICAO code: KIGM
Location: 35°15’32.4”N 113°56’36.2”W
Elevation: 3,449ft (1,051m)
Area: 4,200 acres (1,700ha)
Storage space (apron): 740,500 sq yards (619,152m²)
Runways: 03/21 6,827ft (2,081m) x 150ft (46m)
17/35 6,725ft (2,050m) x 75ft (23m)
Website: www.cityofkingman.gov/business/airport-authority

46 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


civil version of the C-130 Hercules. On Work has been underway since 2005 to
the ramp are a smattering of Douglas clear the dross sites and minimise the
DC-8s, Boeing 727s and Airbus A300s, risk of contamination, an ongoing and
although modern regional jets dominate costly exercise.
the line-up. Many of these aircraft
are kept in a state of readiness to be Master Plan
returned quickly to revenue-earning While much of the airport’s revenue
duties while others are sacrificed, comes from the storage of surplus
parted-out to keep airworthy examples airliners, Kingman encourages a diverse
flying. The airport’s high plateau range of activities. In 2016 the airport
location protects it from the temperature played host to the US Navy, which over
extremes of some other parts of a two-week period carried out training
Arizona, making it ideal for storage, that included more than 16,000 touch-
but while most aircraft are stored and-go landings in Beechcraft T-6B
outside, Kingman boasts 65 individually Texan IIs, repeating the exercise the
enclosed hangars of varying size. following year. More recently, in early
2019, Kingman hosted a US Air Force
Aluminium Dross Mid-Air Collision Avoidance Training
Sadly, there is little trace now of programme and a Boy Scout Aviation
the rows of B-17s, B-24s and other Merit Badge Day saw many scouts gain
warbirds that once crammed in to the their first experience of flying.
airfield, although the airport workers Airport Manager Steve Johnston
still occasionally find small artefacts came to Kingman in September 2018
on the site – aircraft components mixed with lime and material from This 2001-built Bombardier with 27 years of airport management
from a bygone era that continue to aircraft that couldn’t be smelted, such as CRJ200, N8477R (c/n 7477), experience, including helping Marina
work their way to the surface of the upholstery, were buried on site. These heads a line of Municipal Airport in California
soil. Unfortunately, a less welcome toxic ‘dross sites’, containing traces of other examples that transition from a military facility to
also served on behalf of
hangover of Kingman’s former role has heavy metals, arsenic and ammonia, Delta Connection. a civilian airport. Johnston also ran
also resurfaced: ‘aluminium dross’, a have produced gasses which are now AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/ Arlington Municipal Airport, a former
by-product of smelting process, it was breaking through the asphalt and soil. ADRIAN JACK World War 2 Navy base in his native

www.airlinerworld.com 47
Washington, which gave him an
appreciation of aviation history and
heritage. Before coming to Kingman
he was a director of Lake Havasu City
Airport, Arizona, for ten years.
Johnston, a general aviation pilot
himself, is keen to drive the economic
contribution of the airport to the local
community. At a public information
workshop at the airport in mid-2019
he presented a master plan that draws
on both the aviation and industrial
side and stated: “A large part of this
is public participation in that huge Embraer E175, PP-XJD
economic driver, which is the airport… (c/n 17000014), took to
There’s a lot of unrealised potential the air for the first time
that with a little bit of work, we can on June 14, 2003. The jet
was only ever used by the
build those foundations to grow Brazilian manufacturer as a
the community down the road and developmental aircraft.
make it better.” He cites the 1,400-
acre site, close to Interstate 40, that is acres (445ha), is a hive of activity, with became an aerial waypoint between
earmarked for a proposed Santa Fe 70 businesses employing 2,600 workers America’s eastern and western
Parkway interchange. He and his team and generating more than US$540m seaboards and almost 80 years after the
are working with the FAA to release in economic benefit to Kingman current airfield site began training
the land for industrial use, with direct each year. These include Kingman thousands of the country’s ‘Greatest
access to I-40. He enthuses: “With a Airline Services Inc (KASI), an FAA- Generation’ for World War Two,
railroad and major highway, you have a approved facility offering repair and Kingman continues to play a valuable
great airport. It can be industrial, it can storage and providing maintenance role in the evolving story of American
be airport or it can be a combination. for Boeing, Embraer, Bombardier CRJ, air transportation.
It’s an economic development centre.” Saab and McDonnell Douglas aircraft
He adds that several companies have and Air’Zona, a fixed base operator The author would like to express
already approached him about locating providing hangar space, maintenance, thanks to Steve Johnston, airport
at Kingman Airport and Industrial Park. fuelling and pilot care. Other providers general manager, Rob Chilcoat,
The ten-year Master Plan details the are Straube’s Aircraft Services base historian, and Paul Snyder,
airport’s future aims, including the (aircraft painting), Guardian Air and operations maintenance specialist
acquisition of 1,800 additional acres Careflite (aeromedical transportation), at Kingman Airport, and to Shawn
(728ha), facility development, land use, Arturo’s Aircraft Interiors (aircraft Byrne, editor, Kingman Daily Miner,
airfield layout and environmental and restoration) and Alpha-Zulu Composites for their invaluable help in
financial sustainability and forecasts (maintenance), while Ameriflight carries preparing this article.
that stored aircraft will increase to 330 cargo to Phoenix aboard Beechcraft
within five years. The airport is also 1900s on behalf of United Parcel Service
embracing its heritage, displaying (UPS). A recent newcomer is Dillon
uniforms and artefacts held in Transportation, a Tennessee-based
Kingman’s Mohave Museum of nationwide road haulage company that
These Boeing 727-200s
History and Arts. previously flew for Guam-
chose Kingman as its second hub.
The industrial park, covering 1,100 based Asia Pacific Airlines. Today, 90 years after Kingman

48 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


Feb 24, 2020: Summit
Conrad Dubai

Feb 25-26, 2020: Exhibition


Dubai World Trade Center
(Za’abeel Halls 2&3) DESTINATION DUBAI
Co-located with
Attend the region’s leading conference and exhibition
for commercial aviation maintenance.
• 5,000+ attendees from airlines, manufacturers and the supply chain
• 3 days of networking and learning with a 1 day summit and 2 day exhibition
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Register at mromiddleeast.aviationweek.com
The
Centre
Spread
FEBRUARY 2020
Spotted at
London/Stansted,
this Boeing
747-8BBJ, TC-TRK
(c/n 42096), was
one of two jets
used to bring
the Turkish
contingent to
a major NATO
summit held
in December.
PHOTO • KEITH BURTON

50 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

50-51 centres ALW Feb2020.indd 50 12/19/2019 3:07:25 PM


www.airlinerworld.com 51

50-51 centres ALW Feb2020.indd 51 12/19/2019 3:07:30 PM


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Airliner World Key Aero pocketmags fp.indd 52 08/10/2019 15:48


M
uch like you or I
consider when is best
to replace the fridge or
the washing machine,
airlines must make
similar decisions with their fleets
of Airbuses, Boeings and Embraers.
While carriers previously operated
aircraft for as long as 20-25 years,
the average airliner now does well to
reach a little over half that. Even before
reaching their ‘teenage’ years, some
jets are worth more in spares than as
airworthy aeroplanes.
While this is the case, not all airliners
are destined for desert boneyards,
being cherry-picked for components
and left to wait for the pneumatic jaws
of an excavator. Indeed, a handful of
Boeing 727s soldier on as airborne
palaces for the rich and famous,
Antonov An-12s continue to ply their
trade on cargo routes. Even former
British Caledonian Airways Boeing
707s are still flying, having found new
lives as tankers with the Israeli Air and
Space Force and US Air Force E-8 Joint
STARS surveillance aircraft.

New Lease of Life


One aircraft that has been
repurposed for alternative work –
controlling wildfires across North

NOT YOUR
America and beyond – most recently
flew for CityJet; a carrier that is
currently undergoing a transformation
of its own. In July 2018, the Dublin-
based firm confirmed it was to merge
with Spain’s Air Nostrum and six
weeks later announced it would cease

AVERAGE AVRO
scheduled operations within two
months to concentrate on aircraft,
crew, maintenance and insurance
(ACMI) leasing.
The Irish carrier is well known for
its long association with the British

BOMBER...
Aerospace 146 – having operated 56
examples of the type since December
1993. While the Woodford, Cheshire-
built Whisperjet has provided the
airline with more than a quarter of a
century of service, it is now gradually
being phased out and just six remain.
The Avro RJ85 – a later variant of
the BAe 146 which entered airline
service in April 1993 – accounted for
almost half of CityJet’s models. Many
When Hawker Siddeley’s Hatfield were acquired from Mesaba Airlines
designers finalised their plans – which operated the jets on behalf of
Northwest Airlink – until 2007, when
for a high-wing, quad-jet regional the regional carrier moved to an all-
airliner in the early 1970s, few could Bombardier CRJ fleet.
have thought that examples of CityJet’s RJ85s operated initially
in the airline’s own colours, while
the type would see out their days examples also wore the corporate
as aerial firefighters, tackling identity of parent company, Air France.

blazes in the United States, A unique livery celebrating the airline’s


connections to Leinster Rugby was
Canada and Australia. A Conair-converted Avro applied to EI-RJX.
Aidan Nolan reports. RJ85 drops a load of
fire retardant over a
Popular with aviation enthusiasts, the
Californian wildfire. 95-seater’s tenure with the Irish carrier
ALL PHOTOS VIA AUTHOR came to an end on April 5, 2019 with a
UNLESS STATED connection between Paris-CDG and

www.airlinerworld.com 53

53-57 Firefighting ALW Feb2020.indd 53 12/19/2019 4:16:10 PM


54 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

53-57 Firefighting ALW Feb2020.indd 54 12/19/2019 4:16:14 PM


CityJet acquired 27 BAE
Systems Avro RJ85s from
Mesaba Airlines, which
operated the jets on behalf
of Northwest Airlink.
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/JEAN

The Leinster Rugby-liveried


airliner touches down
at Paris-CDG, one of
its regular haunts.
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
PHILIPPE NORET

Six ex-CityJet Avro RJ85s


have been acquired by
Aero-Flite, including
EI-RJR (c/n E2364).
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
JAN SEVERIJNS

Dublin. The Honeywell LF507-powered The company has been fighting


airliner was then placed into storage at wildfires from the air since 1963,
CityJet’s MRO facility on the western operating an array of aircraft
side of the airport, its titles removed including Boeing B-17s, Douglas
and readied for its new owner. C-54s & DC-4s all modified for the
A three-day ferry flight to Spokane, role, as well as Canadair CL-215
Washington, began on the 21st of that Scoopers and, currently, Bombardier
month, with fuel stops in Keflavík, 415 Superscoopers. A dozen Avros
Iceland and Kangerlussuaq, Greenland, – previously operated by Lufthansa
to cross the Atlantic. The Avro then CityLine and Brussels Airlines as well
flew the width of Canada, calling at as CityJet – are the latest additions to
Iqaluit, Timmins, Regina, Bellingham the fleet and converted examples have
and Abbotsford before touching proven efficient, quick and reliable fire
down at its new home on April 24. retardant delivery aircraft.
Now registered N403AC, the jet As part of the conversion process
An Avro RJ85 airtanker
drops a line of retardant on required major surgery before it from passenger airliner to firefighter,
the Eight Mile Fire near Soda could take up its new role as an aerial each Avro RJ now appears a little
Springs, Idaho, during 2018. firefighter with Aero-Flite. swollen around the gills, with the

www.airlinerworld.com 55

53-57 Firefighting ALW Feb2020.indd 55 12/19/2019 4:16:24 PM


centre section increasing in width
to accommodate the 3,300 US gallon
(12,492 lit) external tank which
envelops the mid-underbelly fuselage.
Loads are dropped via a mechanism
not unlike a bomb bay door fitted to
the underside of the fuselage, which
is released through a sophisticated
computer-controlled system.
Aero-Flite currently has a fleet of ten
aircraft ready to be deployed in support
of ground-based fire services, which is
composed of dedicated and converted
types. The purpose-built Bombardier
415 is capable of landing on water
and replenishing its tanks to deliver a
series of 1,621 US gallon (6,136 lit) drops
over a short period of time in support
of wildland fire management and fire
services. Conversely, the Avro is unable
to refill its tanks mid-flight and needs
to return to an airfield. However, its
time off-station is reduced by its faster
cruise speed. Its larger range is also
beneficial, especially in areas without
Fleet no.164 releases
nearby expanses of water where the
retardant close to San
Super Scooper can land. Bernardino, California.
The British-built regional airliner
is an ideal fit for Aero-Flite’s
operations, because of its excellent
high and low speed performance,
four-engine reliability, superb short BELOW • Water is released
airfield performance and strong from former-Lufthansa
rugged design. It is also pressurised, CityLine example, N355AC
(c/n E2293), at Avalon,
Australia in February 2016.
Aero-Flite has deployed
aircraft to Victoria on several
occasions to assist local
fire services.

56 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

53-57 Firefighting ALW Feb2020.indd 56 12/19/2019 4:17:10 PM


Aero-Flite Fleet Listing
BAE Systems Avro RJ85
Current Previous Fleet
C/n Previous Operator
Reg’n Reg’n no.
N248AC E2364 EI-RJR - CityJet
N325AC E2371 EI-RJW - CityJet
N354AC E2256 D-AVRA 161 Lufthansa CityLine
N355AC E2293 D-AVRN 162 Lufthansa CityLine
N366AC E2288 D-AVRM 163 Lufthansa CityLine
N374AC E2266 D-AVRG 164 Lufthansa CityLine
N379AC E2246 D-AVRO - Lufthansa CityLine
N403AC E2372 EI-RJX - CityJet
N416AC E2345 EI-RJH 168 CityJet
N430AC E2366 EI-RJT - CityJet
N635AC E2330 EI-RJB 167 CityJet
N839AC E2270 D-AVRI 160 Lufthansa CityLine This head-on view of
N635AC (c/n E2330) –
Operated by Conair Aviation
the former EI-RJB –
C-GVFK E2268 D-AVRH 465 Lufthansa CityLine illustrates the type’s
C-GVFT E2253 D-AVRB 466 Lufthansa CityLine increased width once the
BAE Systems Avro RJ100 aerial firefighter conversion
N448AC E3308 OO-DWA - Brussels Airlines
has been completed.
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
Bombardier 415 Superscooper SERGE BAILLEUL
N385AC 2095 - 263 -
N386AC 2093 - 262 -
N389AC 2089 - 260 -
N392AC 2092 - 261 -

enabling efficient ferry capability


when deployments are needed – the
company has on several occasions
dispatched aircraft transpacific to
Victoria, Australia, for a period of
three months between December The modified regional jet
is equipped with 3,300 US
and March. gallon (12,492 lit) tanks.
Wildfires are becoming an increasing AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
problem, not just in the United SERGE BAILLEUL
States and Canada, but globally. In
2017, 71,499 wildfires, burning more his name, said: “As expected, the RJ85 Canada and Australia have been very
than 10m acres of land, had cost the has adapted to its new role extremely impressed with the RJ85 platform and
United States Forest Service (USFS) well. The handling characteristics the drop pattern.
$2.4bn. Similarly, in Canada, costs and performance of the tank/airplane While 2006-build Airbus A340-600s
of combating wildfires have risen in combination have come through as are currently being torn down by Air
the last decade from about C$500m expected and allowed it to become Salvage International at Cotswold
(£284.2m) a year to more than C$1bn an excellent airtanker. I have been Airport, Aero-Flite foresees the RJ85
(£568.4m) annually. proud to tell all who would listen how Airtanker serving in its fleet for the
To help combat North American BAE Systems was involved with our next 20-25 years, by which time the
wildfires during 2017, Conair/Aero- programme from the start and helped jets will be well into their fifth decade.
Flite had seven RJ85s operating in us to build, retrofit and test fly the RJ, That Aero-Flite expects such a lengthy
the USA and one based in British which ultimately led to its certification service life in such demanding
Columbia, Canada. Combined, as a premier airtanker. OEM [original conditions is testament to the original
they flew more than 206,000 miles equipment manufacturer] involvement 1970s Hawker Siddeley design.
(331,500km) – equivalent to eight with such a programme is not a
times around the world – and made luxury. It’s a necessity.”
The author would like to thank to
2,200 drops of retardant totalling 19.6 Adding to this, Jeff Berry, Conair’s
Joanne Goodridge and Jeff Berry of
million litres – which would fill about director of business development,
Conair Group and the management
eight Olympic swimming pools. In said the wildfire agencies that
and staff of Aero-Flite.
order to ensure the reliability of its they have worked with in the USA,
fleet, Aero-Flite operates an FAA-
approved Part 145 repair station and Aero-Flite operates
four Bombardier 415
maintains its Superscoopers and Avro Superscoopers alongside its
RJ85s in-house. eight-strong fleet of Avros.
This is likely cause for the expansion AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
of Aero-Flite’s fleet to 13 examples, SERGE BAILLEUL
and it is probable that the firm’s
parent company, Conair Group, has
its eye on CityJet’s remaining
examples – two of which are
contracted to operate services between
Dublin and London/City on behalf of
Aer Lingus until October 2021.
Speaking to BAE Systems during a
deployment to Australia, Ray Horton,
a Conair airtanker pilot for more than
30 years with thousands of sorties to

www.airlinerworld.com 57

53-57 Firefighting ALW Feb2020.indd 57 12/19/2019 4:18:12 PM


Finnair:
Sustainable Success
Twelve months into his new role, Finnair CEO Topi Manner is preparing
to launch an ambitious five-year plan which aims to future-proof the
airline. Fellow Finn Satu Dahl visited Manner at the firm’s Helsinki
headquarters to talk fleet, sustainability and a rather big birthday.

A
fter touching down at an care about our customers, our safety,
ever-changing Helsinki the performance of the company and,
Airport and marvelling at of course, each other.”
the wealth of development While it is unsurprising to hear
since my last visit, I make CEOs praise their workforce, the
the short journey to Finnair’s equally corporate culture in Finland and at
stylish headquarters. It is there that Finnair in particular is noticeably
I meet the airline’s chief executive different from elsewhere. The airline
officer, Topi Manner who is feeling has a dynamic focus on equality and
buoyant upon reflecting on his first the wellbeing of its employees, of
twelve months in the job. “Finnair is a which 56% are women. This pursuit
really fascinating company. We have of gender balance is apparent at the
Topi Manner started his
new role as Finnair CEO an amazing team here and I’ve been very top of the company, with three of
in January 2019. really taken by how competent and the eight members of the firm’s board
FINNAIR committed our people are. They really of directors being female. “We have

58 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


Finnair was the first airline
a very strong culture here at Finnair, “When you enter a new industry, convenient for customers when it in Europe and only the
which is fantastic and great to build there is of course a lot to learn, but comes to total travel time, they are also third in the world to begin
on,” reflects Manner. aviation has many similarities with the most environmentally sound – shorter commercial operations
The year was a particularly busy financial industry where I come from. route equals less fuel burn,” Manner with the Airbus A350-900.
AVSTOCK/MIKKO HEISKANEN
one for the chief as he got to grips Both sectors are heavily regulated, says. “Also, when you add to this the
with the various divisions within capital-intense and data-heavy, with fact that our long-haul fleet consists
the organisation’s global business. trust and safety at the very core of mostly of Airbus A350s which have
“Touring our Asian destinations their operations.” an optimal fuel burn range of eight or
in Japan, China, South Korea and nine hours – and many of the Asian
Singapore and taking part in test East Meets West megacities in our route network are
flights have definitely been among As an airline, one of Finnair’s within that distance – flying with us is
the highlights. It has also been really primary strengths is connecting the more efficient choice in terms
interesting to visit each Finnair Europe and Asia by optimising the of the environment.”
unit, from our kitchen and technical enviable geographical position of As a key market for Finnair, the
Located to the north of
services department to cargo facilities Helsinki to offer quicker journeys. airline’s operations in Asia have been
downtown, Helsinki/Vantaa
and revenue management. However, I “What is worth considering is that expanding at a steady pace, with is Finnair’s home and hub.
think getting to know our people and while shorter routes are naturally more Manner stating that the carrier has FINAVIA
all the stakeholders has been the single
most energising experience for me,”
he continues.
Manner also hints at the scale of
the work he and the wider Finnair
leadership team have been putting in
to develop a new strategy for 2020-
2025: “This is something that we
have been working on intensely on
for the past couple of months,” he
reveals. At the heart of the plan is
economic, social and environmental
sustainability, with the airline aiming
to announce its detailed strategy on
the subject during the first quarter of
the year.
Before entering the aviation world,
Manner had an impressive career
within the financial sector and says
the two are alike in many ways.

www.airlinerworld.com 59
achieved continuous growth on its
routes to the region. Destinations
slightly off the beaten track are also
increasingly feature in the airline’s
network. Within the all-important
Japanese market, the carrier’s latest
new destination is the northern city of
Sapporo. “Finnair is the only European
airline that operates direct scheduled
flights to Hokkaido. We also have the
biggest route network in Japan out
of all European airlines,” the chief
executive says proudly.
In addition to operating the firm’s
existing rotations to Tokyo/Narita,
In his first year in the job, Finnair will also be opening a new
Manner has visited all areas
route to Tokyo/Haneda on March 29.
of the Finnair business,
including its cargo division. Manner’s enthusiasm for the new
FINNAIR connection is tangible, “I feel this will
most likely become the ‘crown jewel’
in our Asia network.”
Moving on to discuss Finnair’s
market presence in China, Manner
is keen to highlight that in addition
to its daily flights to Beijing/Capital,
the firm is now flying to the city’s
state-of-the-art Daxing facility thrice
weekly. This brings the total number
of direct connections between the
pair to ten, complementing Finnair’s
wider footprint across Mainland
China which includes secondary cities
such as Nanjing/Lukou and Xi’an/
Xianyang. The airline was one of
the first carriers to announce that it
The recently opened Finnair would be supplementing its existing
Platinum Wing is the Beijing services as opposed to simply
most exclusive lounge
at Helsinki/Vantaa. transferring them when the super-hub
FINNAIR opened in September 2019.

60 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


A Finnair Airbus A319,
OH-LVC (c/n 1309) on
final approach to Corfu.
AVIATIONIMAGENETWORK/
SIMON GREGORY

A further notable route is the new While Busan is yet to be added to and Shanghai but really like Singapore
seasonal link to the South Korean city the route map, is there a destination too, so let’s say all of those three!”
of Busan from this summer. Finnair that Manner personally loves visiting
are pioneering direct long-haul the most? The CEO is – perhaps Transatlantic Ties
services from Gimhae International unsurprisingly – unable to name just Helsinki is not quite as well Finnair joined the oneworld
direct to the Finnish capital as the a single city: “It’s extremely difficult to placed to leverage its geography for alliance in December
1998 as the first in a
first and only carrier to offer non-stop choose just one as there are so many transatlantic flying, but Manner says
new wave of recruits.
flights to a European destination from great destinations. I think I will have to Finnair’s North American destinations AVIATIONIMAGENETWORK/
the airport. go with Asia – I’m torn between Tokyo continue to perform well, noting BAILEY

www.airlinerworld.com 61
uncertainty, the CEO describes
the airline’s strategy of increasing
capacity from its UK gateways as a
“Brexit bet”, offering some insight into
the wider thinking of international
carriers when it comes to current
inward investment.
Beyond its own network – which
stretches from the US west coast to
Japan – Finnair is a long-standing
member of the oneworld alliance.
“Partnerships for us are all about
customer service and connectivity
– oneworld as an alliance is very
important to Finnair.” He added:
“Codeshares are of course very
valuable for us too.” The Helsinki-
based carrier recently announced a
tranche of new agreements, including
with Fiji Airways and LATAM Airlines.
“We are very excited that through
our codeshare with Fiji Airways we
can offer our customers the fantastic
option to literally fly around the world
with a stopover in Fiji,” says Manner.
Connection times with
Finnair can be as little as 45
Finnair to significant growth on our European LATAM Airlines, on the other hand,
minutes at its Helsinki hub. Base: Helsinki/Vantaa routes. As an example, passenger provides strategic connections to
FINAVIA Founded in: 1923 numbers on our Russian services South America, and although it was
IATA Code : AY travelling to the US have grown 30%, announced LATAM will be leaving
ICAO Code : FIN and the German market is also up by oneworld, Finnair’s agreements with
IATA Number: 105 almost 30%; these passengers the airline will continue.
Callsign: FINNAIR are connecting with both Asia and
Website: www.finnair.com the United States.” Environmental Focus
Finnair’s distinctive blue and white Carriers around the world are
the additional capacity added on tailfin is a regular feature at Heathrow, launching various initiatives to
some services. “Currently, we fly to Manchester and Edinburgh airports, facilitate a more balanced approach
New York City, Chicago, Miami, San complementing the firm’s seasonal to aviation, with Finnair among
Francisco and Los Angeles, which Lapland services from Gatwick those taking a lead. The company’s
is our latest addition; we have built – but how are they performing? sustainability initiative, titled Push
a very good customer base for the Manner confirms that British for Change, allows air travellers to
LAX route.” He also reveals that its customers are “mostly travelling to offset their flight’s CO2 emissions in
Later this year, Manner transatlantic rotations have played our Asian destinations” with strong two ways, either by supporting CO2
will publish a further
a fundamental role in boosting the passenger figures. “We have seen reduction projects or by decreasing
update to Finnair’s global
sustainability plans. firm’s regional numbers. “Our North 17% growth this year, despite Brexit!” the CO2 emissions of their flights
AVSTOCK/ MIKKO HEISKANEN American operations have contributed he quips. Amid the ongoing political by purchasing biofuel alternatives. 

62 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


A new seasonal service to
In August 2019, the airline operated the Nordic region to speed up the Finnair Fleet the South Korean port city
two flights from San Francisco Airport development of electric flying. Our Model Number of Busan is due to launch in
to Helsinki that were both powered hypothesis is that electric flying Airbus A319 8 March this year.
by a 12% mix of biofuel, resulting in a will play a role in short-haul flying Airbus A320 10 FINAVIA
reduction in total CO2 emissions for from late 2030 onwards, improving Airbus A321 19
the pair of flight of approximately 32 aviation sustainability.” Airbus A330 8
tons (32.5 tonnes). “My main message Airbus A350 14
is that aviation as an industry and Forward Thinking Embraer E190 12*
Finnair as an airline can and should Finnair has proven time and again ATR 72 12*
do more to prevent climate change. that it is not afraid to take the lead. *Operated by Norra on behalf of Finnair

In fact, we are communicating this The flag carrier was the European
strongly through our long-term launch customer of the Airbus “The economic pillar is all about
roadmap for the company and will be A350XWB and only the third to making sure that we are financially
releasing our sustainability plan in Q1 receive the aircraft globally after Qatar sound and our customers can trust
[of 2020]. Acquiring new technology, Airways and Vietnam Airlines. Now, us. Employee satisfaction is one
new engines and new airframes are with an all-Airbus long-haul fleet of of our key targets regarding social
all key parts of the plan.” A330s and A350s and a blend of A320 responsibility – we have been
Manner states that sustainable Family and Embraer E-Jet examples recruiting 2,000 new employees in
aviation fuels and innovative plying shorter routes through its the past two years and the key thing
technologies have played – and Norra subsidiary, what could be next? is that our people are happy. Happy
will continue to play – a big role in “During our next strategy period people equal happy customers and
Finnair’s environmental strategy. “We – running until 2025 – we will be that is in the very core of our social
operated our first sustainable aviation investing €3.5-4bn in new fleet, sustainability. Relating to this, we were
fuel flight back in 2011. Further down predominantly narrowbodies,” states recently voted as the most attractive
the line, we will be looking into new Manner. Pressed on exactly what employer for commercial bachelor and
sustainable technologies such as shape these new additions could take, masters students in Finland.”
hybrid and electric aircraft for flying he says he and the team are currently Manner reveals that new initiatives
shorter distances, as well as power- “analysing different options to decide regarding passenger experience are
to-X and power-to-liquid [advanced which aircraft we’ll be ordering. We also on the cards. “Our mission is to
renewable] fuels. All kinds of will be investing predominantly in be a modern premium airline and,
operational improvements, including narrowbody aircraft but there will in terms of customer experience, we
a ‘weight-watchers programme’ to also be some widebody investment are introducing new initiatives such
reduce the weight of our aircraft in the next six years. We have five as premium economy class and are
and optimising flight paths using A350 deliveries coming up in the next investing in our digital channels and
continuous descent approach are also couple of years; we currently have 14 distribution. We will be offering more
part of the strategy. We want to be the Airbus A350s and eight A330s. When choice and – by utilising data – a
front runners for sustainability and it comes to our fleet investment, one more personalised experience to drive
are committed to invest in carbon third of this is to meet our growth and customer satisfaction and loyalty.”
neutrality for the long-term.” two thirds are for aircraft replacement As for Finnair’s 100th birthday in
Finnair is a project partner in the and renewal,” Manner reveals. 2023, the CEO is remaining
Nordic Network for Electric Aviation, While network expansion for the reasonably tight-lipped. He does
working with other airlines in the carrier is expected, Finnair’s aim is however confirm that “big
region including SAS Scandinavian to do so responsibly. Manner says his celebrations are being planned”,
Airlines, Air Greenland, BRA vision for the airline can be summed adding: “We want to surprise our
Braathens Regional Airways and up in three words: “Sustainable, customers and make it really exciting
Icelandair. These act as a catalyst profitable growth”. Elaborating on for all of us.” With even a ‘normal’ year
for commercial electric aviation in this, he emphasises the importance for Finnair involving plenty of
and around their respective home of “addressing all three pillars of innovation, originality and Finnish
nations. “Through this initiative, we sustainability – environmental, social flair, all eyes are on Helsinki to see
are collaborating with partners in and economic responsibility." what could be next.

www.airlinerworld.com 63
From Start
to Finnish While Virgin Atlantic took flight with its first Airbus A350-1000s in
September 2019, Finnair has been operating the -900 variant since
October 2015. Gordon Smith caught up with Captain Marko Valtonen,
the Finnish flag carrier’s chief pilot for the A330 and A350, who offered
some insight into a training partnership between the two carriers.

F
innair is easily the most While the two carriers are not known Theory and Practice
experienced A350 carrier as being commercial partners – The Finnair team led sessions in a
in Europe, so when Virgin Finnair is a long-standing member classroom environment to share their
Atlantic contacted the of oneworld and Virgin Atlantic is experience with Virgin representatives
flag carrier with a view to 51% owned by SkyTeam stalwart before they began practical tuition
creating a partnership, it seemed like a Delta Air Lines – the two companies on the Finnish airline’s aircraft. “We
conversation worth pursuing. Captain shared a single vision. “As we were had to have some operator conversion
Marko Valtonen confirmed that the the third airline in the world to take courses – to share with them how we
initial approach was made back in early the A350 and the first in Europe, our do things at Finnair – which perhaps
February 2017 and that, despite the two common goal was a successful entry has a few differences to the SOPs
companies opting for different variants, into service,” noted Valtonen. “We [standard operating procedures] from
the enormous commonality between had knowledge about the key things Virgin Atlantic. Then we went into the
the -900 and -1000 helped the project that needed to be taken into account simulator. After that, some [Virgin]
to take off. Speaking from Finnair’s for an airline to enter this great new pilots flew to Oulu and Rovaniemi and
Helsinki headquarters, he noted: “From aeroplane into operation.” Of particular we also performed the regular A350
the pilot’s perspective they are pretty value to Virgin was Finnair’s extensive flights to London/Heathrow. When we
much the same. Of course I haven’t experience in flying in cold weather operated the aircraft commercially,
flown the -1000 myself, but the cockpit conditions. “As we are located in there were always mixed crews; a flight
Captain Marko Valtonen is
Finnair's most senior Airbus is similar, and the flying characteristics Helsinki in the north, we are quite instructor captain from Finnair as
A330 and A350 pilot. are almost identical so the difference in used to winter operations,” the chief commander for the flight, and a Virgin
VIA AUTHOR variants isn’t an issue.” pilot said modestly. Atlantic captain helping us.”

64 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


The Finnish flag carrier was
Despite logistical constraints, the the first in Europe to enter
Valtonen confirmed that many believe our co-operation with the
Finnair team were able to juggle a the Airbus A350 into upcoming A350 operators around the professional Virgin Atlantic pilots will
busy schedule to balance the various revenue service. world had shown an interest in tapping continue. We are currently in contact
needs and demands of the airline’s AVIATIONIMAGENETWORK/ into Finnair’s expertise. Asked if the and further discussions are taking
BAOLUO
training facilities. “We only have one Virgin Atlantic partnership is likely to place. Hopefully we will be able to do
FFS [full flight simulator] in Helsinki lead to further opportunities, the chief some more training with them
for the A350, so it really is fully packed. pilot was upbeat: “I really hope it will. I someday.”
Thankfully our team at the Finnair
Virgin Atlantic launched its
Flight Academy did a perfect job to A350-1000 on the airline's
get all the pieces together to make the flagship Heathrow-
time for the Virgin Atlantic teams to New York/JFK route in
undertake their training. Our own fleet September 2019.
VIRGIN ATLANTIC
is growing all the time, so it required
some flexibility and teamwork.”
Valtonen is in no doubt that Virgin
Atlantic will enjoy flying the state-of-
the-art widebody. “The A350 really is a
nice aeroplane. Compared to previous
generation aircraft, it is really easy
to fly; it is a huge step forward. It’s A Finnair A350-900, OH-LWC
(c/n 20) is de-iced before
incredibly stable and does exactly
taking off from Runway 22
what you tell it to do straight away; at Helsinki/Vantaa.
it reacts immediately to any MIKKO HEISKANEN/AVSTOCK
commands you make.”
As one of the very first to fly the
A350, Finnair didn’t have the luxury
of receiving guidance from an
established operator. Despite this,
Valtonen and his team have developed
a world-class pool of pilots who take
the widebody around the world,
leveraging existing experience from
the previous generation examples.
“At our initial entry into service
for the A350, all of our pilots were
A330 qualified. We undertook a CTR
[common type rating] course to get
them on to the A350, and we have
around 400 A350 pilots now.” With
14 XWBs in the Finnair fleet and an
ever-expanding route network, the
captain confirmed that Finnair is now
bringing some its brightest and best
narrowbody pilots on board with the
A350 programme, leapfrogging older
A330 technology.

www.airlinerworld.com 65
Icebergs and Fjords
GREENLAND UNCOVERED
Inspired by views taken in from the window seat of many a transatlantic flight,
Andrew Pearce took the plunge and organised a pair of spectacular trips to Greenland.
He provides a personal account of his visits to the staggeringly beautiful country.

66 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

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F
or many passengers, a Some of the ice in Ilulissat its majestic beauty. Routing overhead habitation is instead limited to sporadic
transatlantic flight is something Icefjord, which is located on a clear day, the views from 33,000ft settlements clinging on to and around
155 miles (250km) north of
to be endured. Forced to spend can be staggering – ice so cast that it the long coastline. And then there’s
the Arctic Circle, is estimated
many hours cooped up in an to be 250,000 years old. fills the view across the entire horizon, the vast Greenland ice sheet which,
aeroplane, they pass the time ALL PHOTOS AUTHOR home to various active and historic at more than 660,000sq miles (1.7m
between meal and drink services Arctic research stations and feeding km2), is the second biggest of its kind in
dozing or casually watching whichever glaciers that twist and snake into the world after the Antarctic ice sheet
movie happens to be showing on the semi-frozen bays along stunning and makes traversing this fascinating
small seat-back screens. Very few, Arctic coastline. nation especially challenging, time
however, are aware of the spectacular Having basked in incredible sights of consuming and expensive. So, unless
views that are potentially unfolding this wild and unforgiving landscape time and budget are of no concern,
behind the inevitably closed from the window of many a passing most tourists will have to research and
window blinds. jet over the years, I decided it was time plan their visit to Greenland carefully.
Much can depend, of course, on the to finally see this spectacular, unspoilt The west coast is by far the most
prevailing weather conditions and destination up close. populous. It is home to the capital
flight routing on a given day, but those INSET • The icefjord was
Such an endeavour is not Nuuk, the biggest city in the country,
lucky enough to have seen Greenland declared a UNESCO World particularly easy. There are no together with Kangerlussuaq, a former
from above will undoubtedly attest to Heritage site in 2004. bustling metropolises here – human US air base and now Greenland’s

www.airlinerworld.com 67

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largest international commercial air
hub. The east coast is far less inhabited,
with only a few mentionable towns
and villages sandwiched between the
ice sheet and the sea. But its relatively
close proximity to Europe, together
with regular turboprop connections
from neighbouring Iceland, mean the
region is attracting a growing number
of tourists. Many are on day trips, while
those with a little more disposable
income may choose to travel south to
hike around the scenic fjords or head
north to adventure in the otherworldly
high arctic.

Greenland Calling
A mid-summer heatwave gave
me the ideal excuse to head north
for three weeks to the cooler climes ABOVE • Icelandair Boeing
of Iceland and Greenland. The trip 757-200, TF-FIJ (c/n 25085),
kicked off with an Icelandair Boeing is readied for its return flight
to Keflavík International
757 service to Reykjavík and a week Airport at London
spent exploring the southwest of the Heathrow’s Terminal 2.
island before catching another flight
to Copenhagen – one of the very
few places offering direct links to
the autonomous Danish dependent
territory of Greenland. RIGHT • Airbus A330-200,
OY-GRN (c/n 230), was
After bidding farewell to my family delivered new to then
at the airport, I checked in for flight Belgian flag carrier
GL779 to Kangerlussuaq surrounded Sabena in 1998. It joined
by large expedition bags and outsized the Air Greenland fleet
four years later.
luggage. There was little need to the carrier’s core route between
consult the flight information boards Greenland and Denmark. The Big Fjord
to find my gate: a glance out of the Flights to the country are limited. Waiting in the departure lounge
terminal window quickly revealed Flag carrier Air Greenland previously it was immediately apparent that
Air Greenland’s sole Airbus A330- offered links from Copenhagen to my fellow passengers were travelling
222 OY-GRN (c/n 230), its striking all- Narsarsuaq in the far south using a for very different reasons. Among
red livery standing out prominently 757 and, later, a 737 leased from Jet the diverse group were tourists,
on the apron. This unusual colour Time, but this has been withdrawn. citizens of Greenland returning
scheme makes the aircraft a popular Today, international connections are home and workers flying north to
subject for aviation enthusiasts and restricted to Air Iceland Connect’s join the country’s various heavy
photographers, but while the jet plies De Havilland Canada Dash Bombardier Q400 services from industries such as mineral and natural
its trade across the North Atlantic 8-200, OY-GRH (c/n 488), Keflavík to Nuuk and Kangerlussuaq, resource exploration.
daily, it’s seldom seen outside of awaits its next departure. and Air Greenland’s Copenhagen link. After departing from Copenhagen,

68 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

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Flight GL779 approaches
we routed northwest to leave Danish able to take in my first low-level views passenger terminal. Unsurprisingly, the east coast of Greenland
airspace, before heading towards of this stunning landscape – and they the small facility is relatively sparse and en route to Kangerlussuaq
Norway and the North Atlantic. Clear didn’t disappoint. The final approach lacks airbridges, so the forward and aft Airport, the country’s main
skies greeted our arrival over Iceland was a real highlight as the A330 picked port-side doors were opened as stairs gateway. Air Greenland
has only one jet aircraft –
and the stunning views continued its way through valleys once covered were manoeuvred into place and I soon an Airbus A330 – in its
as we cruised over the east coast of by glaciers now long extinct, and took my first step on Greenlandic soil. eight-strong fleet.
Greenland where it was possible to between the hills which surround It quickly became clear that most
view the glaciers flowing from ice Greenland’s ‘Big Fjord’. of passengers who arrived from
sheet down to the sea. Landing was met with a round of Copenhagen were not staying in the
Much of the descent towards applause from those onboard and we relatively remote Kangerlussuaq, but
Kangerlussuaq was shrouded in cloud quickly reached our parking stand rather were connecting on to the
but, once clear of the overcast, I was on the apron directly in front of the domestic network operated by the

Ilulissat
Kangerlussuaq
Kulusuk
Nuuk Reykjavik

www.airlinerworld.com 69

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flag carrier’s seven-strong fleet of de
Havilland Canada Dash 8-Q200s. Some
were fortunate enough to be booked
on to the waiting aircraft, while others
were forced to wait in the terminal for
the second wave of departures later in
the day. Most of the latter elected to pass
the time eating, drinking and chatting
with fellow travellers in the terminal
cafeteria or casually watching the
aircraft movements on the airfield.

Sitting on the DEW Line A signpost with flight times


After eating lunch and spending some to a host of worldwide
time observing the comings and goings destinations indicates
associated with a typical day’s activity the remoteness of
Kangerlussuaq Airport.
at Kangerlussuaq, I decided to find
my hotel and explore the surrounding
area. The town itself is split in half by
the airport but houses all the essential
facilities the small group of permanent
and transient inhabitants require.
The airfield itself is the former
Sondrestrom Air Base which served,
along with 62 other sites, as part of
the Distant Early Warning (DEW) Line,
a Cold War-era ‘trip wire’ traversing
North America, Greenland, Iceland
Air Greenland operate seven
and the Faroes and intended to detect examples of the de Havilland
incoming Soviet bombers. Situated Canada Dash 8-200,
just north of the Arctic Circle, the including OY-GRM
settlement was built primarily around
the operating requirements of the a popular technical stop for flights mean it often serves as an alternate
base while the airfield has a 9,219ft crossing the North Atlantic, though destination for transatlantic and
(2,810m) runway able to handle even the advent of increasingly capable transpolar traffic.
the biggest transport aircraft. It was aircraft with longer range mean that
this infrastructure that made the such visits are now relatively few and Icebergs Galore
site – as remote as it is – well suited far between. Today Air Greenland One of the quirks of flying
to become the country’s primary The view from a boat as
accounts for almost all the traffic, save domestically within Greenland is that
international gateway. it sails among towering for the occasional charter flight, while there’s no seat assignment. As such,
The airport has also traditionally been icebergs in Disko Bay. the airfield’s location and long runway even though I was the first to check in

70 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

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Dramatic views of the
for an early morning flight to Ilulissat, during the height of summer, of a convoluted option, incorporating six
mountainous scenery are
I quickly headed to the departure gate afforded on approach to and night-time sail beneath the midnight separate flights and several days back at
to ensure I could grab a window seat. departure from Kulusuk. sun among the towering icebergs that home in the UK.
Boarding Dash 8 OY-RGJ (c/n 434), I drift through Disko Bay – a truly awe- Leaving Ilulissat on the first departure
asked the lone cabin crew member inspiring experience. of the day to Kangerlussuaq proved
which side of the aircraft would Another recommended excursion is rather fortuitous. My steed for the
afford the best views. A quick chat the helicopter flight aboard a chartered ride south, Dash 8 OY-GRO (c/n 482),
with the flight deck confirmed the Air Greenland Bell 212 to a remote a spit had overnighted in the northern town
starboard side, but my efforts were in of land at the top of the Ilulissat Icefjord. meaning no inbound delays and
vain – for, no sooner had we departed It’s a spot which showcases Greenland’s a reduced risk of missing my
Kangerlussuaq, then we entered natural beauty at its very best. connection (both the second and
thick cloud cover which remained third daily rotations arrived
very firmly in place for almost all the Coast to Coast significantly later than scheduled).
40-minute flight north. The next destination on my itinerary After a short layover, I boarded A330
Thankfully we emerged from the was the east coast settlement and OY-GRN once again for flight GL780,
overcast as we neared our destination island of Kulusuk. It lies just 450 miles a four-hour trip back to Copenhagen,
and the promised sea ice of Disko (725km) away from Ilulissat, but there where a sunset arrival provided
Bay came into view: the experience are few options open to those wishing an impressive conclusion to an
of flying alongside icebergs that to undertake the trip: a prohibitively unforgettable first visit to Greenland.
seemingly reached up into the clouds expensive twice-weekly flight from Another two flights took me to Bristol
was remarkable but rather unnerving. Nuuk or a month-long expedition via Amsterdam and back to work for
Fortunately, we made our northerly The incredible view over the ice sheet. a few days before I embarked on the
on approach to
approach to Runway 07 without Ilulissat Airport. Naturally, I opted for the most second leg of my mission. This time I
incident and were soon on the ground.
Sitting on the edge of Disko Bay,
Ilulissat (Kalaallisut for ‘Icebergs’) has
a population of around 5,000, making
it the country’s third largest town after
Nuuk and Sisimiut. It is, however, a
major draw for tourists: the nearby
Ilulissat icefjord, which was designated
a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004,
is the most productive glacier in the
northern hemisphere. It flows at around
66-115ft (20-35m) per day, resulting
in around 20bn tonnes of icebergs
entering the fjord each year.
Daily flights bring a constant stream
of visitors, delivering a sizeable boost to
the local economy. Among the various
activities on offer is the opportunity,

www.airlinerworld.com 71

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RIGHT • Air Greenland’s
1980-built Bell 212 elected to travel with Icelandair, opting
helicopter, OY-HDN (c/n for the lunchtime service – operated
31136), at the top of the by 767-319ER TF-ISW (c/n 28745) –
Ilulissat Icefjord. to Reykjavík/Keflavík. A scorching
hot summer’s afternoon, combined
with the unloading of rather aromatic
Icelandic fish from the aircraft’s
cargo hold, did not make for the most
pleasant walk down the airbridge, but
did serve as a timely reminder of just
how important such exports are to
the nation’s economy.
The settled weather meant I was able
to enjoy stunning views of the Scottish
Highlands during the flight north and
then the eerie volcanic landscape of
Iceland once again as we descended
to land, turning above the village of
Grindavík to line up for Keflavík’s
Runway 01.
The airport sits well outside the
RIGHT • Air Iceland Connect capital, but the regular bus transfer
de Havilland Canada DHC- covers the 30-mile (48km) trip in
8-200, TF-FXK (c/n 446), around 45 minutes and drops you
awaits passengers for a
return flight to Iceland. It is rather conveniently at the BSI bus
joined on the Ilulissat ramp terminal. From here, it was just a short
by a Vulcanair P-68 Victor. walk to my accommodation for the
night, a hotel overlooking the city
centre Reykjavík Airport.
The following morning, I made my
way to the small passenger terminal
where space in the departure lounge is
so limited that I had to wait to check-
in (the respective desks opening in
order of departure time). Eventually,
Air Iceland Connect’s flight NY231 to several routes to Greenland, offering a Fortunately, the weather remained
Kulusuk was called and we were led to welcome alternative for the discerning beautiful during the 457-mile (735km)
the waiting Q400, TF-FXB (c/n 4038). traveller looking to avoid Copenhagen flight, so I was able to enjoy the
Crossing the North Atlantic in a or Kangerlussuaq. Seasonal stunningly scenic approach to Kulusuk.
widebody jet is one thing but doing destinations include Nuuk, Narsarsuaq, After disembarking the aircraft,
so in a decidedly smaller turboprop Ilulissat and Nerlerit Inaat, together a short walk through the small
concentrated the mind a little, the vast with Kulusuk where, on certain days terminal revealed a stunning view
A flight on an Air
Greenland Bell 212
ocean making the 76-seat aircraft feel during the peak summer months, the of the bay surrounded by a backdrop
affords stunning views rather insignificant. carrier offers day trips for tourists with of Greenlandic peaks. Crystal clear
of the Ilulissat Icefjord. Notably, Air Iceland Connect operates limited available time. water with drifting and anchored ice,

72 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

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encircled by high peaks and cliffs all A boat is silhouetted against
Greenland's magnificent
added to the grandeur. midnight sun.
Visitors to the area can choose to
walk into the village or arrange
transport with the local hotel.
Alternatively, you can take advantage
of the local Air Greenland helicopter
transfer between Kulusuk Island and
Tasiilaq, a small town in a nearby fjord.
Kulusuk is relatively basic and features
only the bare essentials. Indeed, many
homes lack running water and must
instead rely on a communal pump
from a nearby lake, a stark contrast to What would be considered a
diverse range of operations
the more affluent west coast. at most airports are
After spending a few days exploring commonplace at many of
the island it was time to return to the Greenland’s airfields.
airport for my ride home. The airfield
is a ten-minute drive (or 30-minute
walk) from the village and was built
in 1956 to support the Dye 4 DEW line
station which eventually closed in 1991.
The latter sits on the top of a peak at the
south of the island and is a worthwhile
excursion, affording dramatic views
and unusual Cold War-era architecture.

Homeward Bound
With my time in Greenland at an
Kulusuk Airport’s method
end, I boarded Air Iceland Connect of returning baggage to its
flight NY246 back to Reykjavík. To pass owners involves a forklift
the time during the 1hr 40min truck in place of the more
conventional conveyor belts.
trip I took to perusing the Shared
Stories onboard travel journal provided
by the airline for passengers to write
their own personal travel log to pass
on to future travellers – I even made
an entry of my own. It was a
fascinating addition to the journey
and one which provided a personal
insight into the lives of the people
before me who had sat in the very
same seat. It also gave me time to
reflect on what had been a remarkable
double trip to a stunning, unique and
fascinating part of the world.
Even if a trip to Greenland is out of Back again! Icelandair’s
reach, be sure to open your window Boeing 767-300ER, TF-ISW
blind next time you’re crossing the (c/n 28745), is prepared
ahead of another flight from
Atlantic – you never know what Heathrow to Keflavík. Built
beautiful sights you may just in 1997, the aircraft initially
be missing. flew with Air New Zealand.

www.airlinerworld.com 73

66-73 greenland ALW Feb2020.indd 73 12/19/2019 4:12:18 PM


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Airliner
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The latest
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Kuwaiti low-cost carrier


Jazeera Airways received
its second Airbus
A320neo, 9K-CBB (c/n
9002), on October 18.
It has primarily been
used on the airline’s Pakistan International Airlines [PK/PIA ‘Pakistan’] C-FEVD B737-8Q8 41795 ex OK-TSD, reg’d 22.11.19, lsd fr SmartWings
flight J901/02 rotation AP-BMX A320-214 4392 ex HZ-AS20, dd 20.11.19, lsd fr Alafco C-FEVJ B737-8Q8 29351 ex OK-TVJ, reg’d 22.11.19, lsd fr/op by SmartWings
between Kuwait Etihad Airways [EY/ETD ‘Etihad’] C-FHZZ B737-8K5 37262 ex G-FDZZ, reg’d 26.11.19, lsd fr TUI Airways
International A6-BND B787-9 42373 ff 03.10.19, dd 16.10.19 C-FVWA B737-8K5 37264 ex G-TAWA, reg’d 02.12.19, lsd fr TUI Airways
and Gatwick Airport. A6-EYD A330-243 658 ferried TEV-AUH 21.11.19 after storage C-GAWV B737-8K5 41662 ex G-TAWV, reg’d 06.11.19, lsd fr TUI Airways
JAMES RONAYNE
Gulf Air [GF/GFA ‘Gulf Air’] C-GKVL B737-8FN 37076 ex OK-TVL, reg’d 05.11.19, lsd fr SmartWings
A9C-FG B787-9 39986 ex N1012N, ff 16.08.19, dd 18.10.19 C-GKVU B737-86N 38025 ex OK-TVU, reg’d 12.11.19, lsd fr SmartWings
9 Air [AQ/JYH ‘Trans Jade’] C-GKVV B737-86N 38027 ex OK-TVV, reg’d 29.11.19, lsd fr SmartWings
B-7105 B737-84P 61321 dd 31.10.19, lsd fr VEB-Leasing C-GQWM B737-8K5 37249 ex G-TAWM, reg’d 04.11.19, lsd fr TUI Airways
Chengdu Airlines [EU/UEA ‘United Eagle’] C-GTVF B737-8FH 29669 ex OK-TVF, reg’d 05.11.19, lsd fr SmartWings
ex B-000P, ferried TSN-CTU 30.10.19, was handed G-TAWW B737-8K5 41663 ex D-ATUQ, dd 12.11.19, lsd fr/op by TUI Airways
B-30CP A320-214 8709
over 15.02.19
Swoop [WO/WSW ‘Swoop’]
ex F-WWD, ferried TLS-CTU 07-08.11.19, handed over
B-30CQ A320-214 8784 C-GNDG B737-8CT 40337 dd 08.11.19
21.03.19
B-304A ARJ21-700 127 ex B-001W, dd 30.11.19 JetSMART [JA/JAT ‘Rocksmart’]
B-604C ARJ21-700 128 ex B-001H, dd 22.11.19 ex F-WWDA, ff 17.09.19, dd 03.10.19, lsd fr SMBC
CC-AWJ A320-271n 9194
Aviation Capital; Colibri de Arica
B- A320-214 9185 ex F-WWBS, ff 11.09.19, dd 15.10.19, std TLS
LATAM Airlines Chile [LA/LAN ‘Lan’]
China Eastern Airlines [MU/CES ‘China Eastern’]
CC-BHD A320-271n 8140 ex D-AVVU, ff 26.09.19, dd 02.10.19
B-30AV A320-251n 9143 ex B-000N, ff 25.09.19, dd 31.10.19
SKY Airline [H2/SKU ‘Aerosky’]
B-308W A320-251n 9064 ex F-WWIT, ff 20.06.19, dd 30.10.19
CC-AZM A320-251n 9146 ex D-AXAM, ff 08.10.19, dd 24.10.19, lsd fr Alafco
B-308Y A320-251n 9023 ex B-000G, ff 03.07.19, dd 31.10.19
CC-AZO A320-251n 9317 ex F-WWIE, ff 22.10.19, dd 30.10.19, lsd fr Alafco
B-309A A320-251n 9129 ex B-000V, ff 12.09.19, dd 28.10.19 Amaszonas Línea Aérea [Z8/AZN ‘Amaszonas’]
B-5808 B737-79P 39305 dd 01.11.19 CP-3135 ERJ190-100LR 19000469 ex M-ABMI, dd 15.11.19
China Southern Airlines [CZ/CSN ‘China Southern’] TAP Air Portugal [TP/TAP ‘Air Portugal’]
B-30AJ A320-251n 9158 ex B-000T, ff 08.10.19, dd 16.10.19 CS-TUN A330-941 1921 ex F-WWCT, ff 11.07.19, dd 04.10.19
B-30A8 A320-251n 9142 ex B-000W, ff 20.09.19, dd 16.10.19 Amazonas Uruguay
B-30A9 A350-941 339 ex F-WZNX, ff 11.09.19, dd 21.10.19 CX-IVO ERJ190-100LR 19000477 ex M-ABMJ, dd 11.19, lsd fr CDB Aviation
B-306M A320-251n 8851 ex D-AXAL, ff 24.09.19, dd 10.10.19, lsd fr AerCap AeroLogic [3S/BOX ‘German Cargo’]
B-309J A321-271n 8995 ex D-AZAW, ff 19.10.19, dd 30.10.19, lsd fr AerCap D-AALN B777-F 66632 ff 11.10.19, dd 21.10.19, lsd fr Boeing Capital
B-309W A350-941 334 ex F-WZNB, ff 05.07.19, dd 17.10.19 Eurowings [EW/EWG ‘Eurowings’]
Colorful Guizhou Airlines [GY/CGZ ‘Colorful’] ex OE-LCS, ferried BUD-DUS 06.11.19 for entry into
D-AEUB A321-211 1994
B-30AS A320-251n 9300 ex F-WWIR, ff 16.10.19, dd 24.10.19, lsd fr GECAS service
Joy Air [JR/JOY ‘Joy Air’] Air Europa [UX/AEA ‘Europa’]
B-20E5 B737-8JP 41121 oo, ex N476DM EC-NEI B787-9 65249 ff 11.10.19, dd 29.10.19, lsd fr BOC Aviation
B-20E6 B737-8JP 41125 oo, ex N475DM Air Nostrum [YW/ANE ‘Air Nostrum’]
Loong Air (Zhejiang Loong Air) [GJ/CDC ‘Loong Air’] EC-NFR ATR 72-600 1145 ex 2-ATRD, dd 11.11.19, lsd fr Nordic Aviation Capital
B-30A0 A320-251n 9269 ex F-WWIN, ff 01.10.19, dd 22.10.19, lsd fr AerCap Binter Canarias [NT/IBB]
Qingdao Airlines [QW/QDA ‘Sky Legend’] ERJ190-
EC-NEZ 19020023 ex PR-EHB, ff 11.11.19, dd 29.11.19
B-30AT A320-271n 9181 ex B-000D, ff 14.10.19, dd 26.10.19 400STD
Shenzhen Airlines [ZH/CSZ ‘Shenzhen Air’] Plus Ultra Líneas Aéreas [PU/PUE ‘Spanish’]
B-30AE A320-271n 9039 ex B-000L, ff 02.08.19, dd 25.10.19 EC-NFP A340-642 933 ex 2-FIEX, dd 20.11.19 Teruel – Madrid
B-30AP A320-271n 9084 ex B-007C, ff 22.08.19, dd 22.10.19 Volotea [V7/VOE ‘Volotea’]
Key to Abbreviations
Sichuan Airlines [3U/CSC ‘Sichuan’] EC-NDG A319-112 3364 reg’d 21.10.19
a/c aircraft Vueling [VY/VLG ‘Vueling’]
als airlines B-308P A330-243F 1386 ex D-ALAB, dd 21.11.19 CRK-CTU, lsd fr BOC Aviation
Spring Airlines [9S/CQH “Air Spring’] EC-NFK A320-271n 9287 ex F-WWBZ, ff 15.10.19, dd 24.10.19
awys airways
bf bought from ex F-WWDG, ff 24.09.19, dd 11.10.19, lsd fr BOC Wamos Air [EB/PLM ‘Pullman’]
canx cancelled B-30AR A320-251n 9239 EC-NCK A330-243 840 ret fr Air Austral lease
Aviation
cls colours EVA Air [BR/EVA ‘Eva’] Aer Lingus [EI/EIN ‘Shamrock’]
cn manufacturer’s
B-17805 B787-10 63512 ff 27.09.19, dd 04.10.19 ex D-AYAD, ff 09.10.19, dd 14.10.19, lsd fr Air Lease
construction/serial EI-LRC A321-253nx 8965
Starlux Airlines [SJX ‘Starwalker’] Corp
number
cnvrtd converted B-58201 A321-252nx 9208 ex D-AZAX, ff 23.10.19, dd 25.10.19, lsd fr GECAS ASL Airlines Ireland [ABR ‘Contract’]
dd delivery date Air Borealis [LBR ‘Northlight’] EI-STI B737-476(F) 24435 ex HA-FAW, tfd fr ASL Airlines Hungary
ex previous reg'n Hibernian Airlines [HG/HBN ‘Finch’]
ff first flight C-GHVV DHC-6 300 391 ex OB-1913-P, reg’d 14.11.19
EI-HBB CRJ.1000 19049 ex EC-MLN, reg’n 22.11.19
frtr freighter C-GIMK DHC-6 300 352 ex N300EH, reg’d 14.11.19
lsd fr leased from Regional Jet [EE/EST ‘Reveal’]
C-GJDE DHC-6 300 471 ex C-GMPK, reg’d 28.10.19
lsd to leased to ex G-CKZO, dd 28.11.19 Maastricht – Tallinn, lsd fr
msn see cn C-GNFZ DHC-6 300 719 reg’d 14.11.19 ES-ACP CRJ.900LR 15242
Falko Regional Airlines
oo on order Air Transat [TS/TSC ‘Transat’]
ES-ATI ATR 72-600 1075 ex EI-GIX, dd 18.11.19, lsd fr GECAS, lsd to/op for SAS
op operated C-FTXQ A321-211 5603 ex OE-IDS, reg’d 02.12.19, lsd fr Air Lease Corp
pax passenger SmartLynx Airlines [MYX ‘Tallinn Cat’]
C-FTXU A321-211 6114 ex OE-IEH, reg’d 28.11.19, lsd fr Air Lease Corp ES-SAK A320-214 0888 ret fr TUI Airlines Belgium lease
reg’d registered
reg’n registration C-FTXZ A321-211 6548 ex OE-IDF, reg’d 26.11.19, lsd fr Air Lease Corp ES-SAO A320-214 0936 ret fr TUI Airlines Belgium lease
ret fr returned from C-GEZX A321-211 7237 ex OE-IIW, reg’d 15.11.19, lsd fr Air Lease Corp ES-SAQ A320-214 0984 ret fr Jet2 lease
ret to returned to C-GTZX A321-211 6515 ex OE-IEI, reg’d 29.11.19, lsd fr Air Lease Corp
rr re-registered ES-SAS A320-214 1725 ret fr easyJet lease
rts return to service Conair [FGD ‘Fireguard’]
ES-SAU A320-214 1657 ret fr easyJet lease
std stored C-GFKW DHC-8 402 4597 ferried SUS-YXX 12.11.19 after water bomber conversion
ret fr TUI Airlines Belgium lease, lsd to/op for Albatros
tba to be advised Jazz Aviation (Air Canada Express) [QK/JZA ‘Jazz’] ES-SAV A320-214 2123
Airlines
tfd transferred C-GJAN CRJ.900LR 15101 ex N815SK, dd 28.10.19, lsd fr Avmax Aircraft Leasing
unk unknown
Sunwing Airlines [WG/SWG]

76 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


ANA – All Nippon Airways [NH/ANA ‘All Nippon’]
JA220A A320-271n 9253 ex F-WWBO, ff 03.10.19, dd 14.10.19
Airliner
Ethiopian Airlines [ET/ETH ‘Ethiopian’] JA797A B777-300ER 61516 ff 17.10.19, dd 28.10.19
Deliveries
ET-AWO A350-941 345 ex F-WZNF, ff 06.09.19, dd 04.10.19; São Paulo Japan Airlines [JL/JAL ‘Japanair’]
ET-AXP DHC-8 402 4607 ex C-GJOK, ff 29.10.19, dd 15.11.19 JA04XJ A350-941 352 ex F-WZNP, ff 06.09.19, dd 24.10.19 We welcome
TezJet Airlines [TEZ ‘Tezjet’] JA846A B787-8 35435 ex N1003M, ff 16.09.19, dd 07.10.19 any feedback
EX- MD-83 53487 ex N878GA, dd 18.11.19 Peach [MM/APJ ‘Air Peach’] on this listing.
Eritrean Airlines [B8/ERT ‘Eritrean’] JA10VA A320-214 7411 ex F-WHUS, dd 12.11.19, lsd fr SMBC Aviation Capital
UR-CNP B737-4Y0 23980 ex EY-538, dd 27.11.19, lsd fr/op by YanAir Star Flyer [7G/SFJ ‘Starflyer’] (The listing is
Air Corsica [XK/CCM ‘Corsica’] JA27MC A320-214 8964 ex D-AUAP, ff 26.09.19, dd 02.10.19 alphabetical with
F-HXKJ A320-251n 9392 ex F-WWDD, ff 22.11.19, dd 17.12.19 JetSMART Argentina [WJ/JES ‘Smartbird’] reference to the
Air France [AF/AFR ‘Air France’] LV-IVN A320-232 8730 ex CC-AWI, dd 15.11.19, lsd fr Aviation Capital Grp registration of the
F-HTYB A350-941 349 ex F-WZFQ, ff 05.10.19, dd 29.10.19 Avion Express [X9/NVD ‘Nordvind’] country of origin.
ASL Airlines France [5O/FPO ‘French Post’] LY-NVR A320-214 1370 ret fr SunExpress lease Columns indicate
F-GZTX B737-4Y0(F) 25180 ex N124WF the registration,
LY-NVT A320-214 3949 ret fr SunExpress lease
Amelia (Regourd Aviation) type, construction
LY-NVU A321-231 1421 ret fr Onur Air lease
ex N181EC, reg’d 10.09.19. Châteauroux – Perpignan number and notes.)
F-HESR Emb-145LR 14501013 LN-NVY A320-232 1909 ret fr SunExpress lease
as F-HTAC 25.11.19
British Airways [BA/BAW ‘Speedbird’] LY-NVZ A320-214 0921 ret fr SunExpress lease
G-NEOW A321-251nx 8984 ex D-AVYW, ff 15.10.19, dd 25.10.19 & reg’d same day ret fr Thomas Cook Scandinavia lease, ferried HHN-
LY-VEA A321-231 2234
SGN, lsd to/op for VietJet Air
G-POWU A321-211 3708 ex OE-LCA, dd 07.11.19, lsd fr/op by Titan Airways
ret fr Thomas Cook Scandinavia lease, ferried HHN-
Eastern Airways [T3/EZE ‘Eastflight’] LY-VED A321-211 3334
SGN, lsd to/op for VietJet Air
Jetstream LY-VEI A320-233 0902 ret fr SunExpress lease
G-MAJA 41032 ret to service 21.11.19 after temp storage
4100
LY-VEL A320-232 1988 ret fr SunExpress lease
easyJet [U2/EZY ‘Easy’]
LY-VEQ A320-232 0709 ret fr SunExpress lease
G-UZLF A320-251n 9103 ex D-AUBJ, ff 04.10.19, dd 11.10.19
Jet2.com [LS/EXS ‘Channex’] LY-VEW A320-214 1005 ex 9H-AMA, ferried CHR-LFBF 05.11.19
G-DRTM B737-85P 33981 ex EC-KCG, reg’d 19.11.19 Bul Air [LB/BVL ‘Bulgary’]
LZ-BOO B737-341 26852 ret fr Ellinair lease
G-DRTR B737-86N 35209 ex B-5175, reg’d 01.11.19
Loganair [LM/LOG ‘Logan’] LV-BVL B737-33S 29072 ret fr Ellinair lease
ATR 72-212A(F) ex OY-YAN, reg’d 04.11.19, lsd fr Nordic Aviation Alaska Airlines [AS/ASA ‘Alaska’]
G-LMRZ 570 N930VA A321-273n 8829 ex D-AVXO, ff 13.06.19, dd 10.10.19, lsd fr GECAS
(500) Capital; RMA Western Isles Flyer
Titan Airways [ZT/AWC ‘Zap’] Allegiant Air [G4/AAY ‘Allegiant’]
G-POWN A321-211 3830 ret fr Jet2 lease & ferried STN-LGW 05.11.19 N236NV A320-214 2106 ex VP-BDK, reg’d 27.11.19
ret fr Jet2 lease & ferried STN-LHR 07.11.19, lsd to/op N280NV A320-214 5320 ferried BQN-SFB 01.11.19 for entry into service
G-POWU A321-211 3708
for British Airways American Airlines [AA/AAL ‘American’]
G-POWV A321-211 3749 ret fr Jet2 lease N405AN A321-253nx 8800 ex D-AVZI, ff 08.10.19, dd 11.10.19, fleet #405
Wizz Air [W6/WZZ ‘Wizz Air’] N407AN A321-253nx 8898 ex D-AVXJ, ff 07.1019, dd 11.10.19, fleet #407
HA-LVG A321-271nx 8997 ex D-AVYH, ff 07.10.19, dd 11.10.19 N409AA A321-253nx 9178 ex F-WZMN, ff 10.10.19, dd 17.10.19, fleet #409
EasyFly [VE/EFY] Delta Air Lines [DL/DAL ‘Delta’]
HK-5341 ATR 42-600 1415 ex F-WWLP, dd 29.11.19 N128DU A220-100 50047 ex C-FPBZ, ff 10.11.19, dd 21.11.19, fleet #8128
GCA Airlines (Gran Colombia de Aviación) N386DN A321-211 8947 ex D-AVZR, ff 12.10.19, dd 15.10.19, fleet #3086
HK-5338 B737-4B7 24862 ex YV3187, reg’d 07.10.19 Endeavor Air [9E/EDV ‘Endeavor’]
Searca [SRC] N367CA CRJ.701ER 10069 ex C-GICL, dd 22.11.19, lsd fr Delta Air Lines
HK-5339 Beech 1900D UE-383 ex N383AW, reg’d 10.10.19 Envoy Air (American Eagle) [MQ/ENY ‘Envoy’]
HK-5340 Beech 1900D UE-106 ex N106AW, reg’d 06.11.19 N286NN ERJ170-200LR 17000827 ex PR-EHL, ff 03.10.19, dd 07.11.19
Asiana Airlines [OZ/AAR ‘Asiana’] N287NN ERJ170-200LR 17000828 ex PR-EHM, ff 11.10.19, dd 07.11.19
HL8362 A350-941 335 ex F-WZGD, ff 23.09.19, dd 15.10.19 N288NN ERJ170-200LR 17000829 ex PR-EHN, ff 18.10.19, dd 21.11.19
T’Way Air [TW/TWB ‘Teeway’] ExpressJet Airlines [EV/ASQ ‘Acey’]
HL8378 B737-86N 36815 ex 2-VJTG, reg’d 14.11.19, lsd fr CDB Aviation N620UX ERJ170-200LL 17000824 ex PR-EHI, ff 13.09.19, dd 06.11.19
Thai Lion Air [SL/TLM ‘Mentari’] N621UX ERJ170-200LL 17000825 ex PR-EHJ, ff 23.09.19, dd 13.11.19
HS-LAK A330-941 1933 ex F-WWCO, ff 27.09.19, dd 21.10.19 N622UX ERJ170-200LL 17000826 ex PR-EHK, ff 02.10.19, dd 13.11.19
HS-LAL A330-941 1939 ex F-WWYX, ff 10.10.19, dd 31.10.19 FedEx Express [FX/FDX ‘Fedex’]
HS-LVJ B737-9GPER 37290 ex PK-LJL, dd 08.11.19 N181FE B767-300F 63112 ff 11.10.19, dd 17.10.19
flyadeal [F3/FAD ‘Purple’] Frontier Airlines [F9/FFT ‘Frontier Flight’]
EC-LLJ A320-214 4661 ex F-WWII, dd 12.11.19, lsd fr/op by Vueling ex F-WZMP, ff 07.10.19, dd 17.10.19; Ruby the
N360FR A320-251n 9180
EC-LVO A320-214 5533 ex D-AXAS, dd 12.11.19, lsd fr/op by Vueling Reindeer
EC-LVU A320-214 5616 ex F-WWIU, dd 12.11.19, lsd fr/op by Vueling N361FR A320-251n 9221 ex F-WZMQ, ff 14.10.19, dd 24.10.19; Wylie the Coati
Saudia – Saudi Arabian Airlines [SV/SVA ‘Saudia’] N362FR A320-251n 9222
ex F-WZMR, ff 17.10.19, dd 25.10.19; Wellington the
HZ-AR25 B787-10 40051 ff 18.10.19, dd 24.10.19 Black-Footed Ferret
Luke Air [BV/BPA] Hawaiian Airlines [HA/HAL ‘Hawaiian’]
9H-AGP A330-202 473 ex A7-ACA, dd 08.11.19, lsd fr Castlelake N227HA A321-271n 9223 ex F-WZMS, ff 26.10.19, dd 31.10.19; Olopua

Qantas has marked its


100th anniversary with
this special liveried Boeing
787-9 Dreamliner, VH-ZNJ
(c/n 66074). It became only
the second commercial
airliner in history to fly
non-stop between London
and Sydney as part of
a Project Sunrise trial
on November 14-15.
JOE G WALKER

www.airlinerworld.com 77
Airliner
Deliveries

The first Airbus A320neo for


Bamboo Airways, VN-A596
(c/n 9306), was handed
over on October 30.
YANNICK DELAMARRE

JetBlue Airways [B6/JBU ‘Jet Blue’] Azul Línhas Aéreas [AD/AZU ‘Azul’]
ex D-AZAU, ff 27.09.19, dd 01.10.19; Aruba, Jamaica, ex F-WWKR, ff 24.06.19, dd 25.10.19, lsd fr Avolon;
N2016J A321-271nx 8893 PR-ANY A330-941 1895
Blue I Wanna Take Ya Azul Sem Fim
JSX Air (Delux Public Charter) [XE/JSX ‘Bigstripe’] ERJ190-
PS-AEA 19020020 ex PR-EDQ, ff 15.10.19, dd 05.11.19; Azul é Rosa
400STD
N268JX Emb-135LR 145499 ferried BGR-VNY 15-16.11.19 for entry into service
ERJ190-
N270SK Emb-145LR 145304 ex PT-SKV, reg’d 05.11.19, N242JX reserved PS-AEB 19020021 ex PR-EDV, ff 30.10.19, dd 22.11.19; Azul, é nóis
400STD
N273SK Emb-145LR 145331 ex PT-SMX, reg’d 15.11.19, N244JX reserved GOL Linhas Aéreas [G3/GLO ‘GOL Transporte’]
N275SK Emb-145LR 145345 ex PT-SNL, reg’d 05.11.19, N243JX reserved PR-GZJ B737-800 62577 ex PH-HXO, dd 09.11.19, lsd fr Transavia
N277SK Emb-145LT 145355 ex PT-SNU, reg’d 21.11.19, N245JX reserved PR-GZK B737-85R 36553 ex N553CG, dd 21.11.19, lsd fr Aviation Capital Group
N281SK Emb-145LR 145391 ex PT-SQP, reg’d 05.11.19, N241JX reserved PR-GZL B737-800 62157 ex PH-HXK, dd 10.11.19, lsd fr Transavia
Miami Air International [LL/BSK ‘Biscayne’] PR-GZR B737-800 63623 ex PH-HXN, dd 03.11.19, lsd fr Transavia
N735MA B737-8K5 37260 ex OO-JAH, reg’d 20.11.19, lsd fr SMBC Aviation Capital PR-HSB B737-8K2 34171 ex PH-HAS, dd 11.11.19, lsd fr Transavia
PSA Airlines (American Eagle) [OH/JIA ‘Blue Streak’] LATAM Airlines Brasil [JJ/TAM ‘Tam’]
N531EG CRJ.702ER 10309 ex C-GIAO, dd 04.11.19, lsd fr American Airlines PR-TYU A320-214 6871 ex PR-OCY, dd 14.11.19, lsd fr AMCK Aviation
N533AE CRJ.702ER 10311 ex C-GIBR, dd 18.11.19, lsd fr American Airlines Surinam Airways [PY/SLM ‘Surinam’]
N610NN CRJ.900LR 15476 ex C-GICL, ff 03.11.19, dd 21.11.19 PZ-TCU B777-212ER 32336 ex N943BC, dd 21.11.19, lsd fr Boeing
Republic Airline [YX/RPA ‘Brickyard’] Aeroflot Russian Airlines [SU/AFL ‘Aeroflot’]
N233JQ ERJ170-200LR 17000226 rr 04.11.19 VP-BUS B737-8MC 44435 ex EI-RUR, dd 23.11.19, lsd fr Sberbank Leasing
N235JQ ERJ170-200LR 17000233 ex PT-SFJ, dd 08.11.19, lsd fr Delta Air Lines Azur Air [ZF/KTK ‘Azur Air’]
N636CZ ERJ170-200LR 17000253 ex PT-SJE, dd 04.11.19, lsd fr Delta Air Lines VP-BRA B767-33AER 27477 ferried SAW-VKO 14.11.19 for entry into service
Silver Airways [3M/SIL ‘Silver Wings’] iFly Airlines [F7/RSY ‘Russian Sky’]
ex F-WWLC, ff 22.06.18, dd 21.11.19, lsd fr Nordic EI-GPJ A330-343E 965 ex F-OONE, dd 28.11.19, lsd fr Air Lease Corp
N405SV ATR 42-600 1403
Aviation Capital; Flip Flops Optional/Zoë Ural Airlines [U6/SVR ‘Sverdlovsk Air’]
ex F-WWLE, ff 19.10.18, dd 22.11.19, lsd fr Nordic VP-BOP A321-251nx 8955 ex D-AZAK, ff 18.10.19, dd 30.10.19, lsd fr GECAS
N406SV ATR 42-600 1405
Aviation Capital; Pinky Promise
CEBU Pacific Air [5J/CEB ‘Cebu Air’]
SkyWest Airlines [OO/SKW ‘Skywest’]
RP-C4109 A320-271n 9244 ex F-WWIM, ff 30.09.19, dd 10.10.19, lsd fr Avolon
N221JS CRJ.200ER 7889 ex C-FMLI, reg’d 12.11.19
RP-C4120 A321-271nx 8921 ex D-AVYB, ff 18.09.19, dd 01.10.19
N246PS CRJ.200ER 7920 ex C-FMLQ, reg’d 22.11.19
Norwegian Air Sweden [LE/NSW ‘Nordic’]
N298SY ERJ170-200LL 17000832 ex PR-EHV, dd 25.11.19
SE-RRS B737-8JP 40869 ex LN-DYQ
N299SY ERJ170-200LL 17000833 ex PR-EHW, dd 25.11.19
SE-RRT B737-8JP 40867 ex EI-FHT
N8475B CRJ.200ER 7475 ex C-FMNH, reg’d 25.11.19, for spares use?
SE-RRV B737-800 42084 ex EI-FVL
N8477R CRJ.200ER 7477 ex C-FMNX, reg’d 25.11.19, for spares use?
SE-RRX B737-8JP 39019 ex EI-FHU
Swift Air [WQ/SWQ ‘Swiftflight’]
SAS Scandinavian Airlines [SK/SAS ‘Scandinavian’]
N627SW B737-3H4 27935 dd 28.11.19
ex EI-GIX, dd 18.11.19, lsd fr/op by Regional Jet; Rorik
United Airlines [UA/UAL ‘United’] ES-ATI ATR 72-600 1075
Viking
ferried XMN-AMA 08-10.11.19 for paint, AMA-IAH SE-ROS A320-251n 9074 ex D-AUBM, ff 23.10.19, dd 30.10.19; Helsing Viking
N871UA A319-132 1971
21.11.19 for entry into service
Enter Air [E4/ENT ‘Enter’]
UPS – United Parcel Service [5X/UPS ‘Ups’]
SP-ESE B737-8Q8 30688 reg’d 19.11.18
Key to Abbreviations N368UP B767-300F 65907 ff 18.10.19, dd 25.10.19
SP-ESF B737-8AS 40287 reg’d 31.01.19
a/c aircraft ex I-AIGJ, dd 21.11.19, lsd fr Cargo Aircraft
N391UP B767-304ER(F) 28039 Ryanair Sun [RR/RYS ‘Magic Sun’]
als airlines Management
awys airways N618UP B747-8F 64264 ff 01.10.19, dd 25.10.19 SP-RKA B737-8AS 44690 ex EI-FEI
bf bought from Aquiline Austria SP-RKB B737-8AS 44729 ex EI-FOW
canx cancelled OE-LAB B737-3B3(QC) 26850 ex AP-BME, dd 07.11.19 SP-RKC B737-8AS 44738 ex EI-FRD
cls colours SP-RKD B737-8AS 44736 ex EI-FRH
cn manufacturer’s Austrian Airlines [OS/AUA ‘Austrian’]
construction/serial OE-LZF A320-214 5841 ex N680AC, dd 05.11.19, lsd fr Aviation Capital Group SP-RKE B737-8AS 44743 ex EI-FRM
number Lauda [OE/LDM ‘Expert’] SP-RKF B737-800 44749 ex EI-FRZ
cnvrtd converted SP-RKG B737-800 44826 ex EI-GJI
OE-LOX A320-214 3272 ex RP-C3244, reg’d 18.11.19, lsd fr Pembroke Capital
dd delivery date
ex previous reg'n ACG – AirCargoGlobal [CW/CCC ‘Global Cargo’] SP-RSZ B737-8AS 44688 ex EI-FEG
ff first flight OM-ACJ B747-433(F) 25075 ferried SHJ-LGG 08.11.19 after storage Air Arabia Egypt [E5/RBG ‘Arabia Egypt’]
frtr freighter AirExplore [ED/AXE ‘Galileo’] SU-AAF A320-214 6444 ex A6-AOF, dd 06.11.19
lsd fr leased from Egyptair [MS/MSR ‘Egyptair’]
OM-KEX B737-8BK 33018 ret fr El Al lease 22.10.19
lsd to leased to
msn see cn Go2Sky [6G/RLX ‘Relaxair’] SU-GCF A330-243 610 cnvrtd to A330-243(F) at DRS, ferried DRS-CAI 09.11.19
oo on order OM-GTF B737-86J 28070 ret fr Enter Air lease ex C-FOUY, ff 04.11.19, dd 15.11.19, op by Egyptair
SU-GFB A220-300 55063
op operated Brussels Airlines [SN/BEL ‘Beeline’] Express
pax passenger ex C-FOVX, ff 25.10.19, dd 07.11.19, op by Egyptair
reg’d registered OO-SFH A330-343 679 ex B-LAC, dd 26.11.19, lsd fr AerCap SU-GFD A220-300 55062
Express
reg’n registration Great Dane Airlines [DW/GDE ‘Great Dane’]
ret fr returned from
ZilAir
OY-GDC ERJ190-200LR 19000204 ex EI-GBB, dd 27.11.19, lsd fr Propius Leasing
ret to returned to S7-ADM Tecman P2012 unk dd 11.19
SunClass Airlines [DK/VKG ‘Viking’]
rr re-registered Freebird Airlines [FH/FHY ‘Freebird’]
rts return to service ex EI-GRC, dd 29.11.19 Toulouse LFBF – Copenhagen,
OY-TCI A321-211 6468 TC-FHN A320-214 5673 lsd to/op for Bamboo Airways
std stored lsd fr GECAS
tba to be advised KLM Royal Dutch Airlines [KL/KLM ‘Klm’] TC-FHY A320-214 3891 lsd to/op for Bamboo Airways
tfd transferred ff 02.10.119, dd 16.10.19, fleet #KC-051; Vlijtig Liesje/ Onur Air [8Q/OHY ‘Onur Air’]
unk unknown PH-BKC B787-10 42503
Busy Lizzie TC-OCS A330-343E 908 ex B-6098, dd 24.11.19, lsd fr CDB Aviation
Citilink Indonesia [QG/CTV ‘Supergreen’] Turkish Airlines [TK/THY ‘Turkish’]
Thanks to Dave ex OY-YCH, dd 28.11.19, lsd fr Nordic Aviation Capital, TC-JZN B737-8JP 39026 ex LN-NGO, dd 15.11.19
PK-GJT ATR 72-600 972
Richardson and op as Citilink Express TC-LJR B777-F 66578 ff 21.09.19, dd 01.10.19, correct previous info
LAASI Aviation for PK-GTK A320-251n 9280 ex F-WWIB, ff 04.10.19, dd 22.10.19 TC-LSJ A321-271nx 8957 ex D-AZAR, ff 26.10.19, dd 30.10.19
the above

78 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


TC-LSK A321-271nx 9082
Tunisair Express [UG/TUX ‘Tunexpress’]
ex D-AYAY, ff 23.10.19, dd 30.10.19 Just-Us Air [JOC] Airliner
TS-LBF ATR 72-600 1582 ex F-WWEQ, dd 19.11.19
YR-URS A319-132 3614
Avianca El Salvador [TA/TAI ‘Taca’]
ret fr Sundair lease
Deliveries
YanAir [YE/ANR ‘Yanair’] N788AV A320-251n 8938 ex D-AUBW, ff 19.06.19, dd 01.10.19 to Avianca
UR-CNF B737-3Z0 27126 ret fr Eritrean Airlines lease Albatros Airlines [G0/GAL ‘Errante’] We welcome
Coleville Aviation Services ES-SAV A320-214 2123 ex HK-5202, dd 12.11.19, lsd fr/op by SmartLynx Airlines any feedback
VH-IZH BN2A-26 719 ex G-BCAG, reg’d 05.11.19 LASER Airlines [QL/LER ‘Laser’] on this listing.
Network Aviation Australia (QantasLink) [NWK ‘Netlink’] YV3465 MD-83 49452 ex N434AA, dd 02.11.19
VH-JQL A320-232 2185 ex F-WWDB, entered service 28.11.19, lsd fr Qantas Air New Zealand [NZ/ANZ ‘New Zealand’] (The listing is
QANTAS Airways [QF/QFA ‘Qantas’] ZK-NZR B787-9 65088 ex N1020K, ff 24.09.19, dd 21.09.19 alphabetical with
VH-ZNI B787-9 66073 ff 03.10.19, dd 19.10.19 Mount Cook Airline (Air New Zealand Link) [NM/NZM ‘Mountcook’] reference to the
VH-ZNJ B787-9 66074 ff 29.10.19, dd 07.11.19 ZK-MZB ATR 72-600 1578 ex F-WWEL, dd 02.11.19, lsd fr Air New Zealand registration of the
Virgin Australia Regional Airlines [OZW ‘Ozwest’] Awesome Aviation [ASM ‘Awesome’] country of origin.
VH-VNF A320-232 3332 ex 9V-TAL, reg’d 22.11.19, lsd fr Pembroke Capital ZS-JAY Beech 1900D UE-427 ex VT-DND, reg’d 29.08.19 Columns indicate
Bamboo Airways [QH/BAV ‘Bamboo’] Cemair [5Z/KEM ‘Cemair’] the registration,
type, construction
TC-FHN A320-214 5673 ex EC-LVX, dd 11.11.19, lsd fr/op by Freebird Airlines ZS-CMF CRJ.200ER 8037 ex ST-…, reg’d 13.09.19
number and notes.)
TC-FHY A320-214 3891 ex CS-TKO, dd 11.11.19, lsd fr/op by Freebird Airlines ZS-CMG CRJ.200ER 8028 ex N934EV, reg’d 10.09.19
VN-A595 A320-232 3453 ex VT-INR, dd 18.11.19, lsd fr Avolon Global Aviation Operations [GE/GBB ‘Globe’]
VN-A596 A320-251n 9306 ex F-WWIU, ff 23.10.19, dd 30.10.19, lsd fr CDB Leasing ZS-GAL A320-231 0064 ret fr Corendon Airlines lease
VN-A597 A321-211 5271 ex YL-LDC, dd 30.10.19, lsd fr SmartLynx Airlines ZS-GAR A320-231 0053 ret fr Corendon Airlines lease
VietJet Air [VJ/VJC ‘Vietjetair’] ZS-GAS A320-231 0076 ret fr Corendon Airlines lease
LY-NVV A320-232 2085 ex F-WTDG, dd 17.11.19, lsd fr/op by Avion Express ZS-GAW A320-231 0054 ret fr Corendon Airlines lease
LY-NVW A320-232 2173 ex F-WTDD, dd 17.11.19, lsd fr/op by Avion Express ZS-GAZ A320-231 0081 ret fr Corendon Airlines lease
LY-VEA A321-231 2234 ex OE-IGB, dd 17.11.19, lsd fr/op by Avion Express South African Airways [SA/SAA ‘Springbok’]
LY-VEG A321-211 2115 ex EC-ITN, dd 17.11.19, lsd fr/op by Avion Express ZS-SDC A350-941 226 ex B-304Z, dd 01.11.19, lsd fr Hainan Airlines
Vietnam Airlines [VN/HVN ‘Vietnam Airlines’] ZS-SDD A350-941 245 ex B-305A, dd 06.11.19, lsd fr Hainan Airlines
ex D-AYAW, ff 27.09.19, dd 09.10.19, lsd fr Aviation Air Tanzania [TC/ATC ‘Tanzania’]
VN-A507 A321-272n 9051
Capital Group 5H-TCJ B787-8 66133 ff 12.10.19, dd 24.10.19
VN-A873 B787-10 60288 ff 09.10.19, dd 17.10.19, lsd fr Air Lease Corp Air Peace [P4/APK ‘Peace Bird’]
AirAsia India [I5/IAD ‘Red Knight’] ex PH-HZY, dd 07.11.19, lsd fr/op by EuroAtlantic
CS-TQU B737-8K2 30646
VT-AMD A320-214 4887 ex F-WXAP, dd 22.11.19, lsd fr Aviation Capital Group Airways
VT-ATQ A320-216 5430 ex 9M-AQR, dd 12.11.19, lsd fr Babcock & Brown Air Peace Hopper [APL]
VT-NAG A320-214 3750 ex VT-IDW, dd 21.11.19, lsd fr Aircastle 5N-BXF Emb-145LR 145486 ex N291SK, dd 10.10.19
Go Air [G8/GOW ‘Goair’] 5N-BXG Emb-145LR 145379 ex N279SK, dd 10.10.19
VT-WJN A320-271n 9264 ex F-WWIV, ff 01.10.19, dd 28.10.19 Groupe Transair [R2/GTS ‘Transgroup’]
IndiGo [6E/IGO ‘Ifly’] YR-AMB B737-530 24943 ex N943AU, dd 08.11.19, lsd fr/op by Blue Air
VT-IJO A320-271n 9118 ex D-AUBZ, ff 14.10.19, dd 24.10.19 Flyme (Villa Air Pvt Ltd) [VP/VQI ‘Villa Air’]
VT-IJT A320-271n 9283 ex F-WWBX, ff 18.10.19, dd 29.10.19 8Q-VAY ATR 72-600 1588 ex F-WWEW, ff 28.10.19, dd 04.11.19
VT-IUH A321-271nx 8968 ex D-AVYD, ff 27.09.19, dd 10.10.19 Manta Air [NR/MAV ‘Sea Wing’]
VT-IYT ATR 72-600 1544 ex F-WWEZ, ff 24.01.19, dd 08.11.19 8Q-RAA DHC-6 300 447 ex C-GKBQ, reg’d 18.11.19, lsd fr Kenn Borek Air
TruJet [2T/TRJ ‘Trujet’] 8Q-RAB DHC-6 300 454 ex C-GDSO, reg’d 12.11.19, lsd fr Ashe Aircraft
ex M-ABME, dd 20.09.19, lsd fr Constellation Aircraft Hi Fly [5M/HFM ‘Moonraker’]
VT-TMM ATR 72-500 825
Leasing 9H-STY A330-243 1453 ex 9V-STY, reg’d 29.10.19
Vistara [UK/VTI ‘Vistara’] Malta Air [AL/MAY ‘Blue Med’]
VT-TNP A320-251n 9203 ex F-WWBG, ff 10.10.19, dd 23.10.19, lsd fr Avolon 9H-QAP B737-8AS 44689 ex EI-FEH, tfd fr Ryanair
VT-TNQ A320-251n 9277 ex F-WWDK, ff 04.10.19, dd 22.10.19, lsd fr Avolon 9H-QBL B737-8AS 44709 ex EI-FIZ, tfd fr Ryanair
VT-TNR A320-251n 9296 ex F-WWIS, ff 14.10.19, dd 25.10.19, lsd fr Avolon 9H-QBM B737-8AS 44708 ex EI-FOA, tfd fr Ryanair
Aeroméxico [AM/AMX ‘Aeromexico’] 9H-QBO B737-8AS 44714 ex EI-FOC, tfd fr Ryanair
F-GZHI B737-86J 36120 ex C-FTVI, dd 28.11.19, lsd fr/op by Transavia France 9H-QBP B737-8AS 44715 ex EI-FOD, tfd fr Ryanair
Interjet (ABC Aerolineas) [4O/AIJ ‘ABC Aerolineas’] 9H-QBS B737-8AS 44711 ex EI-FOG, tfd fr Ryanair
XA-DQR A320-251n 9250 ex F-WWBI, ff 25.09.19, dd 22.10.19 9H-QBT B737-8AS 44717 ex EI-FOH, tfd fr Ryanair
Volaris [Y4/VOI ‘Volaris’] 9H-QBU B737-8AS 44712 ex EI-FOI, tfd fr Ryanair
N543VL A320-271n 9070 ex D-AYAG, ff 01.10.19, dd 16.10.19, lsd fr AerCap 9H-QCB B737-8AS 44723 ex EI-FOP, tfd fr Ryanair
Cambodia Angkor Air [K6/KHV ‘Cambodia Air’] 9H-QCH B737-8AS 44731 ex EI-FOZ, tfd fr Ryanair
XU-357 A321-231 3315 ex VN-A356, dd 30.10.19 9H-QCS B737-8AS 44744 ex EI-FRN, tfd fr Ryanair
airBaltic [BT/BTI ‘Air Baltic’] 9H-QCY B737-8AS 44747 ex EI-FRV, tfd fr Ryanair
YL-AAU A220-300 55064 ex C-FOVL, ff 20.11.19, dd 29.11.19; 100th A220 marks
9H-QEB B737-800 44808 ex EI-GDO, tfd fr Ryanair
SmartLynx Airlines [6Y/ART ‘Smart Lynx’]
9H-QEF B737-800 44824 ex EI-GJC, tfd fr Ryanair
YL-LCL A320-214 0533 ret fr TUI Airlines Belgium lease
9H-QEH B737-800 44823 ex EI-GJE, tfd fr Ryanair
YL-LCO A320-214 1873 ret fr TUI Airlines Belgium lease
9H-QEI B737-800 44828 ex EI-GFF, tfd fr Ryanair
YL-LCQ A321-231 2211 ret fr Jet2.com lease
9H-QEK B737-800 44830 ex EI-GJH, tfd fr Ryanair
YL-LCT A320-214 2233 ret fr SunExpress lease
Jazeera Airways [J9/JZR ‘Jazeera’]
YL-LCU A320-214 1762 ret fr easyJet lease
9K-CBB A320-251n 9002 ex D-AUAV, ff 04.10.19, dd 18.10.19, lsd fr Avolon
YL-LCV A321-231 2216 ret fr Jet2.com lease Kuwait Airways [KU/KAC ‘Kuwaiti’]
YL-LCY A321-211 2903 ret fr Condor lease 9K-AKN A320-251n 9303 ex F-WWDR, ff 23.10.19, dd 31.10.19; Al Jahra
YL-LDA A321-211 2903 ret fr Condor lease Singapore Airlines [SQ/SIA ‘Singapore’]
Blue Air [0B/BMS ‘Blue Messenger’] 9V-SMZ A350-941 348 ex F-WNZA, ff 11.10.19, dd 30.10.19
YR-AMB B737-530 24943 lsd to/op for Transair Sénégal

Ethiopian Airlines has


now accepted three De
Havilland Canada Dash
8-400s since the regional
airliner’s production
line was transferred
from Bombardier to the
Longview Aviation Capital
subsidiary. The third, and
the African carrier’s 27th
example overall, ET-AXP
(c/n 4607), passed
through Manchester
Airport on November 17.
SPENCER BENNETT

www.airlinerworld.com 79
MRO Aerostar Celebrates Avia
The latest
news from
15 Years of MRO Acquires
maintenance,
repair and
overhaul
JAT Tehnika
In a bid to expand its capabilities,
providers. Czech-Polish aviation group Avia
Prime will purchase a 99% stake in
Serbian MRO provider JAT Tehnika.
The acquisition will add 14 additional
heavy maintenance lines to the
company’s portfolio.
JAT Tehnika, which is based at
Belgrade/Nikola Tesla airport,
operates two hangars totalling
Romanian aerospace company Aerostar is currently being constructed at Iasi 215,000 sq ft (20,000m²). The
is celebrating 15 years of providing International Airport that will add a bigger of the two buildings can
maintenance, repair and overhaul further four spaces. accommodate code E types –
services. The firm was founded in 1953 Ioan Dan Velescu, civil aviation division typically jets with wingspans of more
and made its first venture into the director, said: “Aerostar has come a than 170ft (52m) but less than 213ft
commercial MRO sector in 2004, when it long way on its civil MRO journey, (65m), which includes Boeing 777
conducted a heavy maintenance check and we are justifiably proud of our and 787 aircraft.
on a Flyglobespan Boeing 737-300. achievements over 15 years in this Piotr Kaczor, CEO of Avia Prime
In the years since, Aerostar has carried highly competitive sector. The opening Group, commented: “Our greatest
out more than 700 heavy checks for a of our new facility at Iasi shows that [we asset is the complexity of the offer.
wide customer base of more than 50 are] not standing still. With a relentless We can cover multiple locations along
operators, mainly from Europe, Africa focus on quality, on-time delivery with different aircraft types, so even
and the Middle East. The Bacău-based and customer service, we are looking big airlines with a dissimilar fleet can
firm now specialises in the maintenance forward to continued growth over the find a good partner in our group.
of the Boeing 737 Classic and Next next decade and more.” We also address the issue of the
Generation 737 families, as well as the The Romanian firm says it places an ever-changing European market.
Airbus A320 CEO and NEO types. emphasis on encouraging young talent The 34 heavy maintenance lines
In 2012, a new state-of-the-art facility into the industry. The average age of and new certificates brought with
was built to extend the company’s employees in the civil aviation division JAT Tehnika will significantly
capacity to seven bays. A new hangar is 35. (Photo Aerostar) strengthen our services.”
The Serbian firm is the third MRO
provider to be acquired by the group.
Lufthansa and ANA’s The conglomerate was founded by
LINETECH Aircraft Maintenance in
777-9 Collaboration 2014 to purchase a 100% share in
Slovenia-based Adria Tehnika.
German MRO service provider Centre, said: “Combining the strengths
Lufthansa Technik and ANA All Nippon
Airways have signed a memorandum
of our respective companies will
allow us to leverage our superior Fiji Signs
of understanding regarding a technical
collaboration project for the Boeing
777-9. Lufthansa Technik is currently
capabilities and experience to
keep the Boeing 777-9 operating
at peak efficiency.”
A350-900
preparing its MRO-readiness for the
arrival of the aircraft.
David Doyle, vice president corporate
strategy, business development and
Support Deal
The two partners plan to share innovation management at Lufthansa Fiji Airways has struck a long-term
insights and best practise in Technik, added: “We are convinced Airbus A350 component support deal
engineering services and want to that within our collaboration we will with Air France Industries and KLM
collaborate on aircraft production generate fast and early learnings Engineering & Maintenance (AFI
inspections. Also contained in the as well as relevant insights for both KLM E&M). Under the contract,
agreement is material planning and companies. This knowledge will the airline will receive component
sharing, line maintenance services and help Lufthansa Technik to efficiently repair, logistics and spare parts
aircraft-on-ground support. support not only Lufthansa but also services via a main base kit and
Toshihiro Miyamae, vice president of our other customers who will order the parts pool.
ANA Engineering and Maintenance 777-9.” (Photo Lufthansa Technik) The signing of this deal expands
AFI KLM E&M’s relationship with the
South Pacific carrier, which began in
2013 for the latter’s fleet of A330s.
Fabrice Defrance, SVP commercial at
AFI KLM E&M said: “Our group has
designed tailor-made solutions for this
ultra-modern aircraft, with targeted
innovation to ensure our maintenance
services remain at the forefront of
efficiency and reliability.”
The South Pacific airline has leased
two A350-900s from DAE Capital.

80 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


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878 ALW Subs fp Feb20.indd 81 16/12/2019 15:50


Aviation
Training AirBaltic Reveals New Simulator
Latvian flag carrier airBaltic has unveiled including performance-based
The latest its new Airbus A220 full flight simulator, navigation and upset prevention and
training aids the first brand-new system to be recovery capabilities.
available for purchased by the airline. The operator, Martin Gauss, CEO of airBaltic, added:
the aviation which holds a 21-strong fleet of the type, “We are truly delighted that now
professional. revealed the flagship training device to we have a state-of-the-art full flight
an audience including airline partners simulator located right next to our
and Tālis Linkaits, Latvia’s minister headquarters, making the studying
of transport. process for our pilots more efficient
At the event, Linkaits commented: “I am and accessible. This is also a great
happy to see our national airline keeping opportunity for further development of
up with the times by investing wisely in our airBaltic training facilities as such
the areas that ensure development and [an] advanced simulator opens [up]
growth of the company. The new A220 safety, mobility and convenience.” various opportunities.”
simulator is not only state-of-the-art The CAE 7000XR full flight simulator AirBaltic plans to introduce up to
training technology for our pilots, it is has been qualified in accordance with 80 A220s in the coming years. The
also the airline’s contribution to a cleaner the latest European Aviation Safety airline says the device will be crucial in
environment as well as passenger Agency (EASA) issue 2 requirements, supporting pilot training. (Photo airBaltic)

Pegasus’ Pilot Training Partnership


The Cork-based Atlantic Flight Training said: “As part of the pilot training
Academy (AFTA) has been selected agreement we signed with AFTA, our
by Pegasus Airlines to train 20 cadets Turkish pilot candidates will be trained
for future careers as commercial in Cork for around 18 months, which is
pilots. The partnership will see the a source of great pride for us. We wish
selected students fly AFTA’s Cessna [the] greatest success to our students,
172s for the elementary phase of flight who have devoted their lives to
instruction, before transitioning to becoming a pilot, a profession of great
Diamond DA42 Twin Star aircraft for responsibility, and we look forward to
the advanced components. seeing them on our Pegasus flights.”
Mehmet Nane, Pegasus Airlines’ CEO, (Photo Pegasus Airlines)

Ab Initio Investment Farnborough’s


for BAA Training
Vilnius-based BAA Training is set to by more than 70% this year. For 2021, it
Flying Scholar
Farnborough Airport in Hampshire
grow its ab initio operation with the has allocated an additional €10m. has announced that the recipient of
addition of a second flight base in Egle Vaitkeviciute, CEO at BAA its flying scholarship is 18-year-old
Spain and a fleet expansion. Training, commented: “Adding one Tom Ferguson.
In 2019, the firm opened its first base more flight base in [the] south not The award forms part of the facility’s
in the country at Alguaire/Lleida airport only allows us to deliver year-round Aviation to Education programme,
in a bid to allow for all-year-round instruction to our current students but providing training towards a private
operations. The company’s second expands our capabilities to meet the pilot’s license (PPL).
facility will be based at Castellón/ growing market needs for pilot training.” Under the auspices of the
Costa Azahar. BAA Training has provided ab initio Honourable Company of Air Pilots’
Alongside infrastructure expansion, the instruction since 2009 and has scholarship scheme, Farnborough
firm is now supplementing its fleet with collaborated with a number of major grants one young person the
additional airframes. It plans to invest airlines on cadet programmes since opportunity to gain flying experience
up to €6m to expand its aircraft roster 2016. (Photo BAA Training) and ultimately achieve their PPL.
Currently studying for his A Levels,
Tom wants to pursue his dream of
becoming a fast-jet
pilot in the Royal Air Force: “This
flying scholarship has brought me
one vital step closer to achieving
my goal and allowing me to make
my dreams a reality.”
Brandon O’Reilly, CEO Farnborough
Airport added: “Encouraging
young people and helping them
to reach their potential is extremely
important. I am pleased to award
Tom with this scholarship as he starts
his career in the world of aviation.”

82 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


The World’s Favourite Flight Simulation Magazine
JUST FLIGHT – CLASSIC JETLINERS
IN DEVELOPMENT
We caught up with Martyn Northall from
Just Flight to get the latest gen on four
classic airliners currently in development:
the 747 Classic, BAe 146 Professional,
Fokker F28 Fellowship and the Airbus
A300B4.

FLYING LIGHT AIRCRAFT – A


BEGINNER’S GUIDE: PART 2
In our previous issue, we looked at the
world of light aircraft and discussed why
it is such an important place to start
your flight simulation journey. This edition,
we examine some of the great aircraft,
scenery and utilities available to enhance
your experience.

MICROSOFT FLIGHT SIMULATOR –


GLOBAL EVENT: PART 2
In part two of the Global Launch Preview
event in Seattle, Thomas Haynes covers
how the new simulator handles the
cockpit elements and talks in detail
about his hands-on experience with the
simulation.

CHALLENGING AIRPORTS – SAINT-


N LY
TROPEZ, LA MOLE (LFTZ) O 4.99
For this issue, we travel to La Mole in the
south of France. Just inland from the sun-
£
drenched shores of Saint-Tropez, it is the
point of entry for the rich and famous with
stunning beaches, world-class dining and
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864 PCP latest fp.indd 17 11/12/2019 15:55


Departure

Gate Super
Information
for the Connie’s
traveller.
Mega Project
The world-renowned Qantas
Founders Museum has given locals
a sneak peek around its brand-new
star attraction.
On December 7, people living in
and around Longreach, Queensland
received an exclusive preview of its
new Super Constellation display. The
exhibition – which is due to officially design, and a week for seven
open to the public later in 2020 – people to install.
has been five years in the making, Tony Martin, CEO of the museum
following the purchase of the Connie said the completion of the scheme
from the Philippines in September represented an important milestone:
2014. The museum acquired the “The Super Constellation Project has
example from the Manila International been a challenging and long project
Airport Authority where it had been for our museum but detailed planning,
abandoned 26 years ago. dedicated volunteers and contractors
The final phase of the project and ongoing support of our sponsors
started in early 2019 and included and the Queensland Government,
volunteers restoring the cockpit, has ensured this project has
while contractors and museum staff delivered an incredible display. Super
created the interior display. The Constellations are not only iconic for
exhibits inside the iconic aircraft help their beautiful design but [they also]
explain the history and significance had a significant role to play in the
of the Qantas Constellations and Constellation cockpit in its original history of Qantas, and this display
Super Constellations between 1947 state and had to rely on photographs enables us to tell this story in a unique
and 1963. They also include the to scope the amount of work involved and memorable way.”
recreation of part of a passenger and materials needed. Finding the While the specific aircraft was not
cabin, multimedia screens and correct instruments to replace missing owned or operated by Qantas, it has
various interpretative displays. It was parts required enormous planning, been restored by the museum in
a mammoth undertaking, with the with input from various networks honour of Southern Spray VH-EAM
cockpit alone taking 945 hours, of and organisations around the world (c/n 4801), to help illustrate the type’s
which more than 400 were taken up including a volunteer’s daughter-in-law pivotal role in the carrier’s evolution.
by volunteers cleaning and preparing bringing a spare part from the The aircraft will officially be open to
instrument panels. Planning the United States. the public from April 2020, ahead
restoration of the flight deck proved Other painstaking tasks included the of the start of the museum’s Qantas
particularly challenging as the Super Connie’s fuselage display which centenary celebrations.
team had not seen a Qantas Super took seven months to research and (Photos Qantas Founders Museum)

Towards a world to explore and implement the


very latest technologies, from artificial

3D Future? intelligence to speed up turnaround


times, to biometrics helping us to
deliver a seamless airport experience
Technical experts at British Airways for customers – 3D printing is yet
(BA) are examining practical another advancement that will keep us
applications for 3D printing within the at the forefront of airline innovation.”
commercial aviation sector. The The 3D printing process has
long-term aim of the research is to developed enormously in recent
enable bespoke aircraft parts to be years. Modern techniques are able to
printed at airports around the world, produce parts that are as strong and
reducing the amount of transport time durable as traditional components but
required. In addition to minimising impact the safe operation of the flight, weigh up to 55% less. BA estimates
delays, it is also hoped that emissions they can affect the number of seats that every kilogram removed saves up
will be lowered as fewer spares will or toilets available for customers and to 25 tons of CO2 emissions during
need to be flown in. cause delays as engineers wait for the the lifespan of an aircraft.
The airline’s innovation team predicts components to arrive. The research forms part of British
that “non-essential cabin parts” will Ricardo Vidal, head of innovation Airways’ wider BA2119: Flight of the
be first on the list to be generated, at the Heathrow-based carrier, said Future programme, in celebration of
including components of tray tables, 3D printing has never been more the centenary of forerunner company,
entertainment systems and toilets. important: “We work with start-ups and Aircraft Transport and Travel.
While the required sections do not innovation partners from around the (Photo British Airways)

84 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


Departure

Gate
Information
for the
traveller.

Los Angeles in a New Light


Matthew Givot has been in touch to project was officially started.” Dsmc2 Monstro 8k camera, is
share details of a short film that he and The result, in Matthew’s own words available to view now via
some friends have just wrapped up at is “some very unique footage”, which www.vimeo.com/373928777, along
Los Angeles International (LAX). As offers a fascinating insight into with full credits for those involved. As a
Matthew explains: “The idea was simply operations at one of the world’s busiest special treat for Airliner World readers,
to capture the beauty of LAX airport, commercial aviation hubs. Partners Matthew has also shared an 18-minute
but as we started to capture this from on the project include Los Angeles long-form edit that offers even more
the normal vantage points, we quickly Tourism and Convention Board, Los detail and beauty. It is available at
realised that we were going to need Angeles World Airports and American youtu.be/3R-YIefioG4 and on our new
access. My friend Chris was able to Airlines. A final cut of the video, which Key Aero website: www.Key.Aero.
arrange this, and [three years ago] the the team partly shot on a $100,000 Red (Photo World Way: The City of LAX)

Events
Enthusiast shows and events worldwide may be listed
here. Organisers are invited to send correspondence to the
editorial department: airlinerworld@keypublishing.com
East Midlands
May 10
Heathrow Aircraft Enthusiasts’ Fair, Kempton Park
Racecourse, Sunbury-on-Thames TW16 5AQ
Carl McQuaide, 07903 848726, email: speedbird707@aol.
Debunked
com www.aircraftenthusiastfair.co.uk Following our discussion in the change. In fact [the facility] has
Oct 18 January 2020 issue of Airliner World changed enormously and grown
Midland Air Museum (Coventry) Aviation Fair, Coventry
Airport, CV3 4FR
regarding the ‘true home’ of East significantly over the years and I
Carl McQuaide, 07903 848726, email: speedbird707@aol. Midlands Airport, readers from around for one always prefer to fly from
com www.aircraftenthusiastfair.co.uk the UK and further afield have been a regional airport rather than via
Shows/Displays in touch to share their understanding London, whenever I can.
Feb 11-16 on the matter. Long Eaton-based I am happy it is called East Midlands
Singapore Airshow 2020, Changi Exhibition Centre John Dandy was good enough to Airport and it is in the East Midlands,
www.singaporeairshow.com dig out his Ordnance Survey map, but not tied to one town, county or
Mar 31-Apr 5 which he said “most definitely” places postcode so it can serve all of them
FIDAE 2020, Arturo Merino Benitez Airport, Santiago, Chile
www.fidae.cl the facility within Leicestershire, but successfully – long may that continue.
May 13-17 he also acknowledged the airport’s Sean Sadler
ILA 2020, Berlin ExpoCenter Airport, Germany Derbyshire postcode (DE74) and
www.ila-berlin.de telephone area code (01332). We also Dear Editor,
May 26-28 heard from a reader with expertise The airport was originally owned
European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition
(EBACE), Geneva, Switzerland www.ebace.aero within the fields of policing and and jointly run by Nottinghamshire,
Jul 20-24
counter-terrorism. They indicated that Derbyshire and Leicestershire county
Farnborough International Airshow, Farnborough, UK “any incident [at the airport] would councils and the city councils of
www.farnborough.com primarily be dealt with by the county, the aforementioned shires before
Events are subject to change without Airliner World’s which is Leicestershire Constabulary.” becoming a public airport company
knowledge. Please check details prior to travel.
Thanks to everyone who shared their on April 1, 1987 due to government
knowledge on the topic. A couple of privatisation enforcement. It has since
Look, Then Leap further insights are detailed below: gone through various name changes
such as East Midlands International Do you have
Eagle-eyed readers may have spotted Dear Editor, Airport and – to try to make people a quandary
a mistake in our 2020 wall planner that You ask about the ‘true home’ of East abroad have a better understanding that the global
was included with the January edition. Midlands Airport – it lies between of where the place is – Nottingham Airliner World
Due to a production error, February three major East Midlands towns East Midlands Airport. readership
was given just 28 days, with a perky – namely Derby, Nottingham and The airport is in fact in Leicestershire could help
SAS jet occupying the space rightfully Leicester. Having lived in North West but is close to the borders of the solve?
belonging to Saturday, February 29. Leicestershire and flown regularly other two counties and has a Derby Get in touch and
Rest assured that March kicks off on the from the airport for well over 30 postcode. we’ll try our best
correct foot – i.e. Sunday March 1 – and years, I never liked it being called Hopefully the above goes some way to get you an
the remainder of the year continues Nottingham East Midlands Airport. It to clear the confusion. answer.
without any further deviation from just annoyed residents of the other Bruce Robinson As always, full
convention. We would like to apologise towns for the period of the name contact details
for any confusion caused. are on page 98.

www.airlinerworld.com 85
Air
Safety
Reports
and details
of recent
incidents.

Saab 340 Runway Excursion


The Finnish Safety Investigation of contact, the nose and right main later ascertained that the recordings
Authority (SIAF) has said in its final landing gear moved outside the made available to the investigative
report that it believes the crew of an cleared runway area. The crew body were not from the incident
RAF-AVIA Saab 340B failed to notice attempted to return the 33-seat flight but from a flight the month
the aircraft had drifted left of the turboprop to the clear area, but it prior. This significantly hampered
runway centreline before landing at began to skid to the left. the investigation.
Savonlinna Airport on January 7, 2019. While the pilot’s corrective control Following an investigation conducted
The Swedish-built turboprop, YL-RAF inputs failed to keep the aircraft on by the UK’s Air Accidents Investigation
(c/n 340B-228), was positioning from the runway, the report states that “at Branch (AAIB) into an incident involving
RAF-AVIA’s Riga, Latvia base ahead no time did the pilots consider aborting a British Aerospace ATP, a safety
of a passenger service between the approach or landing”. The General recommendation regarding magnetic
Savonlinna and Helsinki/Vantaa when Electric CT7-powered airliner stopped tape recorders was issued in April
the incident occurred. in half a metre of deep snow beyond 2019. The AAIB advised the European
Owing to poor weather, the 7,546 x the runway, at a 110° angle in relation Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA)
148ft (2,300 x 45m) runway had been to runway 12. to set an end date to prohibit the
cleared to a width of 37m (121.4ft) ahead The investigative body stressed: “No use of magnetic tape as a recording
of the aircraft’s arrival. While the runway single factor explains the failed landing. medium in FDRs. While EASA had
was free of ice, there was packed snow It is known that the following factors, previously banned the use of CVRs
at its edges. Snow continued to fall combined, stressed the flight crew’s that use magnetic tape from January
during the two periods that clearance performance in this situation: the crew’s 1, 2019, it did not believe the AAIB’s
vehicles were operating on the runway. shift had already begun during the recommendation was justified as it
The report states that the landing night, and, at the time of the landing, it was thought it would apply to very
“proceeded normally until the aircraft was dark and a crosswind was blowing, few, if any, aircraft.
passed the threshold”, after which point and snow was drifting in the wind. SIAF also criticised the Finnish
it “floated close to the runway surface Furthermore, there was only a little time Transport Agency’s awarding of
for 6-7 seconds”. The Saab 340B before the next scheduled take-off and contracts for public service obligation
touched down around 307m the passengers were already waiting.” air routes, stating that the safety
after the optimal touchdown point The flight data recorder (FDR) fitted to records of the two airlines that
and to the left of the centreline. the 1991-built Saab was of a type most submitted bids to operate the Helsinki-
While it has approach and precision often found in airliners manufactured Savonlinna link were not considered
approach path indicator (PAPI) lighting, in the 1980s. During the process of prior to the cheaper option being
Savonlinna’s runway does not feature downloading data from the FDR, it was chosen. In its findings, SIAF stated that
lights along its centreline. discovered that the magnetic tape on “operating licences and air operator
The aircraft initially touched down which the recordings were made was licences issued by the EU Member
with its left main gear contacting a worn producing poor quality recordings States’ aviation authorities do not
snowbank on an uncleared area of that had parts missing. guarantee constant and uniform safety
runway, followed by the nose gear. Data from the cockpit voice recorder levels among air carriers”. (Photo Sami
After around 100m from the first point (CVR) was also extremely poor. It was Nordlund/Flickr Creative Commons)

DATE REG’N C/N TYPE OPERATOR FATALITIES LOCATION NOTES


Nov 26 - - Cessna 208 Grand Caravan Tropicair 0 Papua New Guinea Hijacking
Dec 1 C6-FER - Beechcraft 99 Flamingo Air Charter 0 Bahamas Runway excursion
Dec 3 C-FKAL 25285 Basler BT-67 North Star Air 0 Canada Landed short of runway
Dec 3 N469RJ 258067 British Aerospace 125-800 Business Jet Managers Inc 0 United States Runway excursion
Dec 9 N4602B 208B0140 Cessna 208B Super Cargomaster Martinaire 1 United States Crashed en route
Dec 10 ET-AQC 4421 Bombardier Q400 Ethiopian Airlines 0 South Sudan Runway excursion

86 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020

86 safety ALW Feb2020.indd 86 12/19/2019 4:00:09 PM


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www.airlinerworld.com 87
A New Gateway to
Four Continents Blessed with an enviable geographic position, uncongested
airspace, a skilled local population and ambitious new investors,
Cabo Verde Airlines is making waves in the mid-Atlantic.
Sebastian Schmitz travelled to the archipelago to meet
the carrier’s Icelandic CEO and learn more.

C
ape Verde, an island nation ABOVE • A Cabo Verde
off the West African coast, Boeing 757-200, D4-CCG
(c/n 24760) departs Lisbon/
is one of the region’s
Portela in November 2019.
great success stories. AVIATIONIMAGENETWORK/
Despite its lack of natural WIZZARD
resources, this country of around
540,000 inhabitants – which only
gained independence from Portugal in
1975 – enjoys a stable democracy and
has recorded significant economic
growth. With an enviable climate
and the islands’ natural beauty, it is
unsurprising that tourism is a main
pillar of the economy.
It isn’t just the clear blue skies
which work in Cape Verde’s favour.
Its location, close to the African coast
and equidistant between the Iberian
Peninsula and Brazil, has made it a
natural stopover point for seafarers Management at the carrier
for centuries. When commercial long- is hoping to boost point-
haul flight started, the islands’ main to-point tourist traffic in
addition to developing Sal
airport on Sal gained importance as a as a connecting hub.
strategic place to refuel for operations ALL IMAGES AUTHOR
linking Europe and South America. UNLESS STATED

88 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


During apartheid, South African TOP • A pair of Cabo Verde
Airways (SAA) was not permitted 757-200s on the apron
at Sal await their next
to land in, or fly through many
intercontinental sortie.
neighbouring nations as part of a
wider boycott of the country. One of
the few to grant authorisation was
Cape Verde, with SAA frequently RIGHT • Spotted in its former
taking up the offer from the 1960s TACV colours, this ATR
to as recently as 2006. 72-500, 2-DCBT (c/n 747)
paid a visit to Maastricht/
Fast forward to 2020, and the latest Aachen in October 2017.
chapter in the island’s aviation history AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
is starting to take shape. Icelandair, JAN SEVERJINS
which operates one of the world’s best-
established hub airports in Keflavík,
saw the untapped potential, not only
within the incumbent flag carrier
TACV Cabo Verde Airlines, but also in
transforming Sal Airport into a mid-
Atlantic hub.

TACV History This 757-200 example,


Having launched in spring 2019, D4-CBP (c/n 30045)
previously saw service with
Cabo Verde Airlines is considered Aeromexico as N301AM.
to be one of the youngest airlines AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/
in the air – but in actual fact, the PHILIPPE NORET

www.airlinerworld.com 89
Paris
Milan
Lisbon Rome
Boston
Washington D.C.

Cabo Verde Dakar


Lagos

Luanda

Fortaleza
Recife
Salvador NEW ROUTES
IN 2019

Porto
Allegre

Cape Verde is strategically


placed to act as a
mid-Atlantic hub to
connect Europe, Africa
and the Americas.
CABO VERDE AIRLINES

carrier’s history dates back decades. The turboprops were later partly
Its forerunner company, Transportes replaced by newer ATR 72s and ATR
Aéreos de Cabo Verde (TACV) was 42-500s and, in 2012, a pair of 737-
founded in 1958, long before the 800s joined the carrier’s growing fleet.
islands gained independence from Throughout its existence, TACV
Portugal. For decades, its core business was vital for the island’s inhabitants,
was connecting the various islands as well as connecting the Cape Verde
with one another. Over time, a regional diaspora to their homeland. The
route serving the Senegalese capital latter is not to be overlooked, with
of Dakar followed and between 1978 more Cape Verdeans, or people of
and the middle of the 1980s, links to Cape Verdean descent living overseas
Lisbon, Boston and Amsterdam – than on the islands themselves.
all destinations with a large native The largest international
diaspora – joined the network. concentrations are found in the
In 1994, three ATR 42s replaced United States, Portugal, Spain and
the airline’s Hawker Siddeley HS 748 With the exception of a small provided by other airlines such as Angola. With a focus on intra-island
examples on the inter-island flights. number of ad-hoc wet lease LAM Mozambique for any long-haul traffic and tourism, the concept
Two years later, the carrier’s first examples, Cabo Verde’s rotations. In 2002, a single 737-300 of transit traffic was seldom
operates an international
Boeing 757 joined the fleet; a type fleet comprising exclusively was delivered, perfect for thinner considered a priority for airline
which continues to be a backbone of Boeing 757-200 jets. routes and regional flights to Dakar, management. All of that is now
of the airline to this day. Prior to the Freetown and Abidjan. A couple of changing, as the single greatest
introduction of the American single- years later, a second 757 followed, transformation in the carrier’s
aisle jet, TACV relied on capacity offering improved network integrity. history takes shape.

90 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


The Rebirth Begins became aware of the untapped had hardly ever been seen before:
OPPOSITE • Sal/Amilcar
Cabral was chosen as
In spring 2019, Icelandair (through opportunity in the mid-Atlantic passengers were transiting in Sal in the hub for Cabo Verde’s
its subsidiary Loftleidir and along and started giving the idea some large numbers. growing network.
with Icelandic investors) became serious consideration. Such was the scale of the early
the majority owner of TACV and In late 2017, Loftleidir – a firm success, in March 2019, after more
relaunched the company as Cabo that typically offers ACMI (aircraft, than a year of gaining in-depth BELOW • D4-CCF (c/n 25808)
taxies to the parking stand
Verde Airlines. While the two crew, maintenance, and insurance knowledge of TACV and its operation, at Sal after landing
countries might not appear to be arrangements) and aviation consulting Loftleidir and its partners signed a deal from Fortaleza.
natural bedfellows, the links between services to global clients – landed a to purchase 51% of the airline. To sell a
Icelandair and TACV stretch back management contract with the Cape majority share to foreign investors is
decades. Examples of this curious Verdean government. The mission rather unusual in the airline business,
BOTTOM • Staff on the
relationship include the Icelandic was to restructure and strengthen the but it underlined the trust the Cape ramp prepare to meet
flag carrier providing ground handling country’s ailing carrier, helping create Verdean government had in their new- this example, D4-CCG
for TACV’s jets at Boston/Logan, and a connecting hub which in turn would found associates. Of the remaining (c/n 24760) which has just
the African company leasing 757s attract more tourists to the islands. 49%, airline employees and some of touched down from Recife.
as temporary replacements during Two 757s were leased and the first the diaspora received 10%. With 39%
major maintenance events. It was connecting flight city pairs followed remaining in public hands, there were
through a series of personal contacts shortly afterwards. Before they knew possible plans to dispose of this share
that Icelandair’s management team it, something started happening that in the near future.

www.airlinerworld.com 91
Aside from its enviable location,
a further element which sealed the
deal included strong local aviation
expertise in operating and
maintaining commercial aircraft, at
much lower costs than in Iceland.
This combined with a business-friendly
government, a relatively stable
and transparent financial system,
excellent weather and uncongested
airspace added up to a rather
attractive proposition.
Almost immediately after the ink
dried on the contract, the first 757 During 2019, Cabo Verde
in the airline’s new corporate expanded its footprint within
identity was delivered. Registered the United States, with the
addition of a new route to
D4-CCF (c/n 25808), the example Washington/Dulles.
previously saw service with British
Airways between 1995 and 2008, D4-CCG (c/n 24760), wearing a Hub Selection
before joining the firm’s OpenSkies purple and pink livery, followed One of the first jobs the new
subsidiary. The new corporate in May 2019. management team gave itself was
identity, with a strong local flavour, While the Icelandic investors have centralising and streamlining the
was developed by Icelandic agency made their mark, they continue to airline’s operation. The former
Íslenska. Its design team visited Cape uphold a central promise given to TACV operation was spread out,
Verde and noted the native colours Sal to Lisbon is the most the Cape Verdean government, with the company headquarters and
popular standalone route
of the islands, which later became within the carrier’s network. stating that pilots, cabin crews maintenance base located at Praia
part of the corporate design sported AVIATIONIMAGENETWORK/ and maintenance staff will Airport and flights operating both
on the Boeings. A second 757, WIZZARD continue to be recruited locally. from Praia and Sal, the country’s two

92 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


to the capital Praia. While both of them market. Completing the flurry of new
are perfectly adequate facilities, in destinations added in the latter stages
the end it came down to location and of last year is Washington DC, which
infrastructure. Praia enjoyed strong saw a thrice-weekly rotation launched
support by local politicians – most of on December 8.
whom are based in the capital – but in The latest additions to the network
the end Sal was chosen as the hub. The complement more-established
airport benefits from a longer runway links including daily services to
– 10,735ft (3,272m) compared with the Senegalese capital of Dakar and
6,890ft (2,100m) – and offers almost Lisbon in Portugal (the latter being
unlimited room for future expansion. the strongest standalone route in the
A further major plus in favour of Sal network), as well as frequencies to
is its proximity to the beach resorts other cities such as Rome, Milan and
which form the cornerstone of Cape Paris. Given the lack of affordable
Verde’s tourism proposition. connections between Europe, Africa
and Brazil, Cabo Verde’s flights to
Stretching its Wings Recife, Salvador and Fortaleza, all
By December 2019, the airline’s route popular destinations in Brazil, are all
Each Cabo Verde aircraft primary gateways. Choosing a hub network from Sal had grown beyond performing well. Speaking to Airliner
is named after a popular would inevitably result in favouring recognition. Five-weekly flights to World, Bjarnason revealed that as of
landmark within the
archipelago. one of the two and be to the Lagos, Nigeria supplementing twice- autumn 2019, sales between Europe
detriment of the other. weekly frequencies to the Angolan and Brazil accounted for almost half of
While there are other international capital, Luanda. Meanwhile, Porto the airline’s revenue. Therefore, it
airports on Cabo Verde, the two Alegre has become the carrier’s fourth is easy to see why the airline is keen
airports given consideration were destination in Brazil – a city that Jens to create additional links like the one
Amilcar Cabral International on Bjarnason, CEO of Cabo Verde Airlines to Porto Alegre, with the possibility
Sal Island and Nelson Mandela has high hopes for, given it is currently of São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro joining
International on Santiago Island, close underserved and a relatively high yield at a later stage.

www.airlinerworld.com 93
Seen wearing a stripped
back corporate livery, With the Boeing 757, the carrier
this Cabo Verde 757-200, has the right aircraft to explore
D4-CCF (c/n 25808) smaller niche markets. As Bjarnason
was originally delivered explained: “The 757 is perfect for
to British Airways in
March 1995. us. We have sector lengths between
AIRTEAMIMAGES.COM/ four and six-and-a-half hours on our
MATTHIEU DOUHAIRE flights, a job the aircraft is perfect for.”
Unlike Keflavík, which operates
almost exclusively as a lynchpin
between North America and Europe,
the carrier’s Sal hub can leverage
four different directions. As such,
Cabo Verde Airlines is able to capture
traffic from Europe to Brazil (or
South America as a whole) as well as
from West Africa to North America.
Irrespective of the specific routing, the
airport is often strategically placed en
route, enabling the airline to develop a
compelling proposition for passengers.
Until relatively recently, passengers
travelling from West Africa to North
America often had to route via Europe
or even the Middle East due to the lack
of direct options.
By moving to a hub and spoke model,
Cabo Verde Airlines is able to offer
highly efficient city pairs that would
otherwise not be financially feasible
as a non-stop service; sectors such
as Paris-Salvador, Rome-Fortaleza
or Luanda-Washington. So far, the
airline appears to be making a success
of its new routes and sometimes,
as Bjarnason explained, there are
pleasant surprises “that even we did
not see coming”. One such example
is Milan/Malpensa to Dakar. When
Cabo Verde relaunched flights to the
Italian city after a two-year hiatus
(previously TACV served Bergamo),
there was incredibly strong demand
for the connection to the Senegalese
capital, often comprising more than 50
passengers. While Bjarnason admitted
A rare insight into the that no one within the company
workings of the flight deck anticipated this, the hope is that there
on Cabo Verde’s 757,
D4-CCF (c/n 25808). will be a few more positive surprises as
AVSTOCK/ALESSANDRO IGLESIAS further city pairs are added.

As for future routes, Bjarnason


revealed that services to London
are very likely, with a route to Porto
possibly complementing existing
operations into Lisbon. As for further
North American growth, he hinted
that Toronto could be the perfect first
Canadian airport in the network. As
far as the traffic mix is concerned,
Bjarnason expects around half of
all passengers to be connecting,
with tourists visiting Cabo Verde
accounting for 30-40%, and the
remainder coming from the native
diaspora visiting friends and family.
If this mix sounds familiar, it may be
because it is remarkably similar to
what Icelandair records in Keflavík.
Despite the Sal hub only recently
coming online, the airline is recording
rapid growth already: in 2018, TACV
carried 152,814 passengers. The plan
for 2019 was to more than double this

94 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


figure to approximately 371,000.
As for the 757 itself, Cabo Verde
operates the single-aisle jet in a two-
class configuration with 22 seats in
the Morabeza premium class and 161
During the author’s visit, in economy. The word ‘morabeza’ is
this 757-200, TF-FIJ (c/n
25085) in Icelandair colours a quintessentially Cabo Verdean term
was visible on the apron at signifying a feeling of being welcome,
Sal. The jet was being flown an open spirit and hospitality – but it
by Icelandic pilots and Cape
primarily conveys a feeling that is
Verdean cabin crew.
hard to translate, perhaps comparable
with ‘aloha’ in Hawaii. Passengers in
all classes enjoy free meals and
beverages, so the positioning is as a
full-service carrier.

Aircraft Acquisitions?
As Airliner World went to press, a
further pair of 757s – each arriving
with a new variation of the refreshed
Binter CV – a subsidiary of
Binter Canarias – operates
livery – were scheduled to be delivered
various inter-island services before the end of 2019. The original
within Cabo Verde. plan, which seemed eminently

www.airlinerworld.com 95
the deep connection of the airline
with its home, all examples will be
christened after a landmark on the
islands. Take for example D4-CCF,
which is called Praia de Santa Maria,
after the most famous beach on
Sal Island, and D4-CCG, which is
named Baía de Tarrafal after a
beautiful bay on Santiago Island. All
landmarks are chosen by the public
in internet surveys.

Future Outlook
The gap between the ATRs used on
inter-island flights and the Boeing
757 is significant. As such, could
an aircraft somewhere between the
sensible up until recently, was to pass hit by the crisis in relation to its overall While the complex at Sal
two in terms of size be a good idea?
on as many ex-Icelandair 757s to size. With a total fleet of 37 aircraft, is currently well-suited Bjarnason is not so sure, explaining
Cabo Verde as necessary, as and when six 737 MAX currently stuck on the to requirements, there is that the addition of a further aircraft
examples were replaced by the 737 ground can have a significant impact ample space to grow should type to an otherwise homogenous
the need arise in future.
MAX. With the global MAX grounding on operations and future planning. fleet would add operational complexity
grumbling on – following fatal crashes Despite the uncertainty surrounding and costs. While a medium-sized or
in October 2018 and March 2019 – the the MAX’s return to service, for the regional jet might be suitable for routes
proposed arrangement has caused time being, plans to equip Cabo Verde The carrier’s new look to the nearby African nations, as its
headaches, with 757s continue at the planned was developed by Íslenska, introduction would complicate the
the same design agency
with Icelandair pace, forming part of the airline’s aircraft portfolio, there would have to
that was responsible
one of the largest 2023 vision to operate a fleet for Icelandair’s current be a strong business case and revenue
airlines hardest- of a dozen aircraft. Underlining corporate identity. opportunity for it to be justified. That

96 AIRLINER WORLD FEBRUARY 2020


said, the current lease of a single connecting passengers and tourists ABOVE • Cabo Verde’s visitors by 2030 compared with
Airbus A320, EC-MQH (c/n 1296) from visiting the archipelago. He has Boeing 757 business class approximately 700,000 at the moment,
Spanish company Gowair Vacation reasons to be optimistic: just ten years product is typically in a the government’s ambitions are bold.
2-2 configuration .
Airlines, and the previous use of a ago, Iceland saw fewer than 500,000 For as long as its close neighbours in
Cobrex Trans 737-300 shows that there tourists annually. More recently, this mainland Africa – with a huge
ABOVE LEFT • This Boeing 737-
is some demand within the airline for figure has reached nearly 2.5 million. 300, YR-CBK (c/n 25162), population and increasing prosperity –
an aircraft slightly smaller than the 757. Closer to home, the Canary Islands, was leased from Romanian remain woefully underserved by local
Looking beyond fleet requirements, one of the nation’s nearest ‘rivals’, charter carrier Cobrex and global carriers, there lies further
Trans between August and
Bjarnason is optimistic Cabo Verde records far higher visitor numbers October 2019. It has since
opportunity there too. The stage
Airlines can replicate Icelandair´s than Cape Verde, so there is potential been replaced by a Gowair appears set for the carrier's Sal hub to
success story at Keflavík in the mid- to tap into that market segment. With Vacation Airlines Airbus become ‘the Iceland of the south’ over
Atlantic; attracting a heady mix of a target of three million annual A320 on services to Lisbon. the coming decade.

www.airlinerworld.com 97
next month
The MARCH 2020 issue of Airliner World includes:
On sale
Feb 12*

737 MAX: One Year On Hawaii 9-0 plus


Twelve months after global regulators banned the As Hawaii Airlines celebrates an illustrious 90 years Airliner World’s comprehensive 20+ pages of
MAX from the skies, we’ll have an Airliner World of flying, we travel to the Pacific archipelago to learn global NEWS.
special report chronicling Boeing’s turbulent year. more about the past, present and future of the airline.
(contents subject to change)

Women in Aviation Ringway Remembered (*UK scheduled on sale date. Please note that
To coincide with International Women’s Day on As Manchester Airport heralds an exciting new overseas deliveries are likely to be after this.)
March 8, we examine the efforts being made to era, regular contributor Bob O’Brien delves into his
boost gender diversity within the aviation industry. archive to reflect on a golden age for the gateway.

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