50 SKY SHADES - World aviation news

Australia aviation news

Airports plan big lift in IT spending

Airports are responding to changing passenger expectations with greater investment in IT systems such as back-end improvements to speed up checkin and border processing, beacon technology to provide real-time notifications and greater accessibility to wifi. A survey of airport executives from technology provider SITA and Airports Council International (ACI) found airports around the world spent...

Final C-17 departs Long Beach

Boeing has marked the completion of  C-17 Globemaster final assembly at its Long Beach, California plant. The last of 279 C-17s to be built at Long Beach flew over the assembly facility there on Sunday (US time) before heading to the company’s San Antonio site for short-term storage ahead of delivery to Qatar early next year. “This is truly the end of an era. It&rs...

Rex in strong position to withstand weak economy

Regional Express (Rex) deputy chairman John Sharp says the airline is in a strong position to withstand the current weakness in the national economy. However, other regional operators may not be so fortunate. “The Australian economy, reflecting the worldwide one, continues to be weak and this will prolong the crisis affecting regional aviation,” Sharp told shareholders at Rex&rsq...

Xiamen Airlines arrives in Australia

Xiamen Airlines has become the latest Chinese airline to land in Australia with the Skyteam member’s inaugural flight Down Under touching down in Sydney on Monday morning. Boeing 787-8 B-2763, operating MF807 from Fuzhou, arrived at Mascot at 0955 local time and received an ARFF monitor cross during its taxi to the gate. The aircraft was on the ground for about two and a half hours b...

ACCC approves American-Qantas expanded alliance in draft decision

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has issued a draft ruling giving American Airlines and Qantas’s proposed expanded alliance on trans-Pacific routes the green light for the next five years. Although Qantas and American had an existing alliance that the ACCC approved in September 2011 for five years, the pair sought reauthorisation of a new agreement that included a...

Virgin Australia tops punctuality stats for October

Virgin Australia has returned to the top of the punctuality table, edging out Qantas as the nation’s most on-time domestic airline, government statistics show. According to figures from the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE), Virgin had the highest percentage of on-time arrivals in October, with 89.8 per cent of its domestic flights reaching their destinati...

Virgin Australia to start Christchurch-Rarotonga flights

Virgin Australia is making a smart utilisation play with a new back-of-the-clock winter weekend flight between Christchurch on New Zealand’s South Island and Rarotonga in the Cook Islands beginning in seven months’ time. Tickets are now on sale with an introductory lead-in fare of NZ$299. The airline will fly the roundtrip service once weekly between June 25 and October 8 2016 using...

First RAAF P-8A fuselage in production

Spirit AeroSystems began production of the fuselage for the first P-8A Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft for the RAAF last month. The Kansas-based aerostructures company announced on November 20 that it began production work on the 737 military derivative in October, with the first unit scheduled to be delivered to Boeing early next year. “Spirit has a unique...

ATR sees “good future potential” for Australian sales

ATR head of global sales John Moore says large numbers of older aircraft in the 50-70 seat category still in service should support demand for its family of turboprops in the period ahead, particularly in Australia. Moore noted there were about 200 regional aircraft operating in Australia currently, with about 80 per cent of those turboprops. “If you look at the average age of these ai...

Cathay touches down in Wellcamp

Brisbane West Wellcamp has become Australia’s latest international airport with the arrival of a Cathay Pacific Boeing 747-8F. The Cathay freighter, registered B-LJA, touched down a little after 1430 local time on Monday from Sydney and was due to be on the ground for about 90 minutes while cargo such as chilled beef, mangoes, pecan nuts and grains from the surrounding Darling D...

First Tigerair 737 breaks cover

The first of three Boeing 737s being transferred to Tigerair Australia to begin international services to Bali next year has emerged from the paintshop. Virgin Australia 737-8FE VH-VUB was towed out of the Flying Colours paintshop at Townsville on Sunday morning ahead of flying into Melbourne on Sunday afternoon. The aircraft is one of three 737s being transferred from Virgin to its who...

Qantas branches out into health insurance

Qantas plans to offer members of its frequent flyer program the opportunity to earn points from keeping fit as part of a new partnership with health insurance provider nib. The new program, called Qantas Assure, aims to capture between two and three per cent of Australia’s $19 billion health insurance market over the next five years. Qantas Assure will market nib’s health insuran...