#OneWorld News Updates

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Monday, 05 August 2019
oneworld and member airlines newsClick on a headline below to view the full article.

Competitor and industry newsClick on a headline below to view the full article.

oneworld and member airlines news in full

Royal Jordanian announces profitable first half year – best operating result in history

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Royal Jordanian (RJ) has presented its financial and operating results for the first half of 2019.

The results show significantly improved key performance indicators and a growth in the gross profit and net operating profit, due to measures taken as stipulated in the turnaround plan that the company has been implementing since 2017.

CEO Stefan Pichler said that in the first six months of 2019, Royal Jordanian flights saw a 1% increase in the number of passengers, compared to the same period of 2018.

Pichler also expressed optimism that RJ will end 2019 with net profits and will further enhance its competitive position, which means a better future for Jordan’s national carrier.

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Cathay Pacific launches new seasonal services to Japan

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The Cathay Pacific Group is giving customers more reasons to jet to Japan this winter with the addition of two extra seasonal routes.

Ski enthusiasts can look forward to a new twice-weekly service to Niigata starting 30 October 2019, opening up a new region of Japan renowned for its snowy winters.

The route will be operated by Cathay Dragon, subject to regulatory approval, and will be the only non-stop service connecting Niigata with Hong Kong.

Meanwhile, the popular seasonal service to Tokushima on Shikoku Island, launched last winter will be returning on 9 November, subject to government approval.

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British Airways’ first A350 touches down at Heathrow

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British Airways’ first Airbus A350, registration G-XWBA, touched down at London Heathrow this weekend, featuring the airline’s newest generation business class seat, Club Suite.

The airline will take delivery of 18 A350s, with four of the new aircraft joining the fleet before the end of the year.

The arrival of the A350 is part of the airline’s £6.5bn current investment programme and forms part of an exciting year for the airline as it celebrates its centenary.

Other activity includes the airline’s BA 2119 programme exploring the future of fuels, the customer experience of the future and aviation careers in the next 100 years.

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American Airlines expands Five Star Service to four additional airports

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American Airlines is expanding its exclusive Five Star Service to four new airports.

The premium experience will now be available at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport in Texas, Nashville International Airport in Tennessee and Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey. From 9 August, the service will also be available at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

The airline’s Five Star Service is a personalised airport experience available to customers travelling in a premium cabin that enhances their departures, connections and arrivals in select markets.

Customers purchasing the Five Star Service experience can take the worry out of travel with priority check-in, expedited security screening, access to the Admirals Club, an escort to their gate and other experiences tailored to their interests.

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Qantas and Destination NSW sign multi-million dollar marketing deal to boost tourism

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Qantas and Destination NSW have signed a new three-year marketing agreement designed to attract more tourists to the state of New South Wales (NSW).

The joint agreement, worth almost $25 million, will focus on promoting NSW across Australia and key international tourism markets including the USA, United Kingdom and Singapore.

In the year ending March 2019, New South Wales welcomed over 4.3 million visitors from overseas and 35.6 million overnight visitors from around Australia, up seven per cent from the previous year.

Qantas operates up to 2,200 flights in and out of NSW each week, offering close to 19 million seats a year in both directions. The Qantas Group’s presence in NSW supports more than 22,900 local jobs and contributes more than $4.4 billion to the state’s economy.

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Japan Airlines announces consolidated financial results for first quarter of fiscal year 2019

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The Japan Airlines Group (JAL) has announced the consolidated financial results for the first quarter of fiscal year 2019.

Favourable conditions for inbound travel demand were seen in the industry where the number of international passengers remained high.

For the domestic sector in Japan, the 10-day holiday period called Golden Week saw strong travel demand among the younger generation, as recent consumption patterns show a shift in value towards the experience gained in travel over goods in both international and domestic sectors.

In these economic conditions, the total international passenger and cargo demand saw limited growth but the domestic sector was rather strong throughout the first quarter.

The full report is available here.

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American Airlines wins multiple travel awards

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American Airlines has been recognised with 12 industry awards and acknowledged for two additional awards as part of the oneworld alliance.

The awards are part of annual travel recognition programmes from Global Traveler, the leading magazine for luxury business and leisure travellers, and Trazee Travel, a web-based sister publication to Global Traveler geared towards millennials.

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Japan Airlines announces freighter codeshare agreement with Kalitta Air

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Japan Airlines (JAL) has announced a freighter codeshare arrangement with US-based Kalitta Air.

According to the agreement, Kalitta Air will operate three codeshare flights per week between Tokyo and Chicago.

In recent years, JAL has chartered freighter flights based on seasonal demand, but through this codeshare arrangement, the carrier will now offer scheduled freighter services between Asia and North America.

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S7 Airlines blockchain platform operations exceed $1 million in July

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In partnership with Alfa-Bank, S7 Airlines is developing its own innovative blockchain platform.

In July, the volume of payments with S7’s agents via the blockchain platform exceeded $1 million.

S7 Group Sales Director Ekaterina Dmitruk said the Siberian carrier is planning to deploy its first online agents on the platform within this year.

The oneworld airline sold the world’s first air ticket in 2017, when a ticket was bought by connecting to a banking system through a blockchain.

The introduction of the platform has increased the processing rate of payments and reduced the amount of paperwork, while also ensuring the safety of operations.

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Japan Airlines announces nonstop service to Vladivostok

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Japan Airlines (JAL) has announced its inaugural nonstop service between Tokyo-Narita and Vladivostok, which is scheduled to start in the summer of 2020.

The move further reinforced JAL’s commitment to enhancing economic development and cultural exchange within Japan and Russia.

The carrier is also committed to introducing the destination of Vladivostok to the Japanese market.

For those planning to travel to domestic destinations in Russia, Japan Airlines’ oneworld partner S7 Airlines provides flights via Vladivostok to several cities across the country.

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Malaysia Airlines and Dorak Holdings sign agreement for charter services between Kuala Lumpur and Istanbul

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Malaysia Airlines has signed a three-month agreement with Dorak Holdings, one of Turkey’s most prominent tourism players, to provide charter flights between Kuala Lumpur and Istanbul from October until December 2019.

The agreement will see the airline operating three times weekly charter flights using its Airbus A330 aircraft.

Malaysia Airlines’ A330 aircraft comes with 287 seats comprising of 19 seats in Business Class and 268 seats in Economy Class.

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Competitor and industry news in full

IATA releases 2018 airline industry statistics

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The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released performance figures for 2018 showing that global air connectivity continues to become more accessible and more efficient.

The IATA World Air Transport Statistics confirms that:

  • 4.4 billion passengers flew in 2018
  • Record efficiency was achieved with 81.9% of available seats being filled
  • Fuel efficiency improved by more than 12% compared to 2010
  • 22,000 city pairs are now connected by direct flights, up 1,300 over 2017 and double the 10,250 city pairs connected in 1998
  • The real cost of air transport has more than halved over the last 20 years.

The full report is available here.

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U.S. Department of Transportation announces $478 million in infrastructure grants to 232 airports in 43 states

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U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao has announced that the Department will award $478 million in airport infrastructure grants to 232 airports in 43 states, including American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands, and Puerto Rico.

This is the fourth allotment of the total $3.18 billion in Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) funding for airports across the United States.

Selected projects include runway reconstruction and rehabilitation, construction of firefighting facilities, and the maintenance of taxiways, aprons, and terminals.

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Airbus reports half-year 2019 results

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Airbus reported half-year 2019 consolidated financial results and maintained its guidance for the full-year.

Gross commercial aircraft orders totalled 213 with net orders of 88 aircraft, compared to 206 aircraft at half-year 2018.

The order book stood at 7,276 commercial aircraft as of 30 June 2019.

A total of 389 commercial aircraft were delivered (compared to 303 aircraft at half-year 2018), comprising 21 A220s, 294 A320 Family, 17 A330s, 53 A350s and 4 A380s.

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Star Alliance and NEC Corporation partner to enhance passenger experience

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Star Alliance and IT specialist NEC Corp. have signed a partnership agreement to develop a biometric data-based identification platform that will improve the travel experience for frequent flyer passengers of the alliance’s member airlines.

The partners plan to introduce the first biometric solution at a Star Alliance airport hub by the first quarter of 2020, giving passengers who opt-in – via their mobile devices – a seamless and hands-free passenger experience.

They will be able to pass through check-in kiosks, bag-drop, lounges and boarding gates by using a secure identity management solution featuring facial recognition technology instead of a passport and boarding pass.

Moreover, the platform will help airports and the Star Alliance members increase operational efficiency.

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Airlines for America applauds congressional waiver allowing Dan Elwell to continue as FAA Deputy Administrator

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Airlines for America (A4A), the industry trade organisation for the leading U.S. airlines, has commended Dan Elwell on receiving a congressional waiver which will allow him to continue serving at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the position of Deputy Administrator.

A4A President and CEO Nicholas E. Calio said, “We look forward to working with Steve Dickson as the FAA Administrator and Dan Elwell as Deputy Administrator to ensure that the U.S. aviation system continues to be the best in the world.”

Elwell has been serving as Acting FAA Administrator since January 2018. As he and Captain Steve Dickson, who was confirmed as FAA Administrator, are both former U.S. military officers, Elwell needed a waiver from Congress to serve as his deputy.

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Air France-KLM signs commitment for 60 A220 aircraft

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The Air France–KLM Group has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for 60 A220-300 aircraft to modernise its fleet.

According to Airbus, the SkyTeam member will benefit from a significant reduction in fuel burn and CO2 emissions.

These A220s are intended to be operated by Air France, which currently operates a fleet of 144 Airbus aircraft.

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