Also, In the Skies: 21 Hot Aviation Happenings in Week 39

Hot happenings in the skies this week. Some were very turbulent, others beautifully clear.

Airlines Are Making More Bucks, But Only Half Starbucks

Airline profits have improved, but only about enough to buy making enough to buy a round or two of espressos. That was one of the key points highlighted during the Opening Session of IATA’s Annual General Meeting this morning in […]

Feast Your Eyes: The Making of Cathay Pacific A350

I love watching “how it’s made” videos. This one takes us through the manufacturing process of Cathay Pacific Airways’ new A350 aircraft which landed for the first time in Hong Kong yesterday.

Cathay is the sixth airline to fly Airbus’ sleek wide body introduced in 2014.

The Cathay A350-900 feautres a three class layout with 280 seats in all, including 38 Business Class seats convertible to fully lie-flat beds, 28 in Premium Economy seats and 214 Economy seats..

Airbus Chairman Hints at New Single Aisle Plane, But What Size?

While greeting press gathered for Airbus Innovation Days in Hamburg, Klaus Richter, Chief Procurement Officer, Airbus and Chairman of the Board for Airbus Germany, caught our attention when highlighting the importance of Hamburg in the group’s plans by saying, “If there’s a new plane it will be a single aisle plane.”

Richter mentioned Hamburg’s growing development capabilities in fields of research into new materials, through the ZAL Technical Centre, and also significant in-house capabilities including for full-sized aircraft simulations. As he said, all in the interest of “shooting for a single aisle development that needs to enter the market.”

What Kind of Traveller Are You Really? Take the SITA Quiz

SITA Passenger Survey, man using smartphone on Airplane. Source: SITA, Getty Images.

Travellers don’t like dealing with people. That’s the conclusion of SITA’s latest Passenger Survey revealed during the Air Transport IT Summit this year.

Instead, most travellers are happiest using technology, but how passengers respond to the various self-service travel services available depends on the individual passenger type. SITA has put its Passenger Quiz on-line. Take it and find out what category you fall under.

Ryanair Warns Of ‘Brexit’ Impact to UK, Reports Strong Traffic and Profits

Fly Home to Vote "Remain" promotion. Source: Ryanair, Facebook

Ryanair warns a ‘Brexit’ could hurt the UK Economy, in its annual report published today which shows growth in traffic and passenger numbers.

Ryanair reported a rise in full year profit of 43% to €1,242M.

Traffic grew by 18% to 106 million passengers, and the airline’s load factor rose by 5% points to 93%.

The airline’s average fare dropped 1% to €46, and unit costs fell 6% (ex-fuel down 2%)

Ryanair reports it is 44% hedged for FY18 and that hedging will deliver fuel savings of circa €200m (as price savings are offset by increased flight hours).

“We plan to pass on most if not all of these fuel savings to our customers in lower air fares particularly as we grow capacity over the next 12 months in key markets around Europe,” Ryanair states.

Tyler Addresses Issues of Airline Sustainability Parity in Montreal

View of Geneva Airport from IATA Headquarters, © FCMedia 2015

Speaking at the ATAG (Air Transport Action Group) Global Sustainable Aviation Forum in Montreal, IATA’s Director General and CEO, Tony Tyler, addressed the tricky question of whether it is fair to impose a single global standard on smaller aviation markets as the industry works towards a reduced carbon footprint.

Bernie Sanders: NAI Approval Is “Race to the Bottom” for Airlines

Bernie Sanders has entered the ring on the Open Skies debate concerning Norwegian Air International, expressing his strong opposition.

Etihad Airways Makes Critical Appointment of New GM for China

Etihad Airways announced the critical appointment of Mr. Peter Li as the airline’s new General Manager for China.

Mr Peter LiMr. Peter Li will lead the development of the airlines’ commercial strategy in China, and be responsible to strengthen Etihad Airways’ partnerships within the travel trade and with corporate customers.