Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
BANGKOK: A plane skidded off the runway and crashed into an air traffic control tower after landing on the Thai resort island of Samui, killing the chief pilot and injuring at least seven people on board, officials say.
The co-pilot and six others were injured after the Bangkok Airways flight landed in stormy weather yesterday and hit the airport’s old tower, said Kanikka Kemawutanond, director-general of the Department of Civil Aviation.
Police said the front of the aircraft, where the pilot was, suffered the worst damage. The co-pilot, who was stuck in the aircraft, was among the last to be evacuated.
The managing director of Bangkok Airways, Puttipong Prasartthong-Osoth, said the foreign passengers included nationals of Italy, Spain, Switzerland, France, Germany and Britain. He said two Britons, one Italian and one Swiss suffered broken legs, while two other Britons suffered less severe injuries. The co-pilot also had leg injuries. There were no reports of Australians on board.
Ferries and other vessels rushed to the crash site to rescue passengers who were standing on the plane's wings as it floated in the water.
The plane ditched in the river shortly after take off from LaGuardia Airport in New York on its way to Charlotte, North Carolina. Initial reports said a bird strike had knocked out two of the aircraft's engines.
The pilot brought the plane down in a cloud of spray in the fast moving river, which runs to the west of Manhattan Island.
The Federal Aviation Authority said the plane had 148 passengers and five or six crew aboard and confirmed all passengers had been safely rescued. US Airways said everyone on board the plane was accounted for.
Police helicopters hovered overhead, while four large ferries and several smaller boats gathered near the plane and the Coast Guard dropped life jackets into the water for survivors amid frigid temperatures.
Singapore Airlines today unveiled the luxurious cabin interior on its new Airbus A380. The cabin was revealed for the first time at the aircraft delivery in Toulouse, France.
The Singapore Airlines A380 is configured with 471 seats in three classes, with 12 Singapore Airlines Suites - a cabin class beyond first - on the main deck, 60 Business Class on the upper deck, and 399 Economy Class seats, across both decks. This new cabin design ensures that the A380 will deliver unprecedented comfort, space and luxury to Singapore Airlines customers.
The design process began over five years ago, with some of the airline's most frequent travellers invited to participate in workshops to help the airline understand what was most important to customers on a new aircraft.
Some of the new cabin products have already made their debut, to global acclaim, on Singapore Airlines new Boeing 777-300ER long-haul aircraft
Coupled with the service of the Singapore Airlines award-winning cabin crew, the A380 will provide customers in all three classes with a luxurious travel experience.
Today, Singapore Airlines enters a new era in long-haul air travel, with the formal handover of the world's first A380 at Airbus headquarters in southern France.
The handover took place at the Henri Ziegler Delivery Centre, Toulouse, at a ceremony attended by over 500 people, and officiated by Chief Executive Officers Tom Enders (Airbus), Sir John Rose (Rolls-Royce) and Chew Choon Seng (Singapore Airlines).
The first delivery marks the culmination of an engineering project unrivalled in the aerospace industry. The A380 is the largest passenger plane ever built and the first completely new design of a passenger aircraft in decades.
Components have been built in plants around the world before being brought together for assembly at key Airbus facilities in Europe. Final assembly took place in Toulouse, France, while the painting of the livery and installation of the aircraft cabin took place in Hamburg, Germany.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Singapore made great preparations to welcome the world’s largest plane Airbus A380, European consortium that is all set to fly next week to carve another laurel in its record-history. After its flight to Singapore and then Changi Airport, the plane will make its first commercial flight to Sydney on 25 October. At an investment of $13 billion, this double-decker aircraft took more than seven years.
True, its entry is the after the
gap of two-years behind the scheduled year of 2005 but this feature-packed revolutionary jetliner justify the delay. The plane has been discovered as a highly fuel-efficient aircraft offering silent cabin in all large passenger jets. The entry of the jet is like a golden feather to the existing fleet of Singaporean airlines.
The front side of the plane is equipped with 12 first class luxury groups with each offering elite amenities including a proper bed, a 23-inch flat panel TV, working table, a lounge chair and epicurean food. Out of the 12, two suites are privileged with double bed facility.
The second potential owner of a private Airbus A380 doubledecker jet has been revealed. Never heard of him? I hadn't either. Michael Ezra is a tycoon said to be the richest man in Uganda. He is just 34 and is known as a "sports philanthropist" who has supported Uganda's sports teams and once made a move to buy the Leeds United soccer
team. The Daily Monitor has reported that he is paying $260 million for a the Airbus A380 and that his plane will be available in 2010. He could spend another $150 million for the custom designed interior. Preliminary plans for his plane include an office, full satellite communication equipment, a conference room for 12 persons, a karaoke room, a movie room, a gymnasium, medical center four self-contained VIP bedrooms, another four executive bedrooms, as well as a spa.
This isn't Ezra's first spendy maneuver in 2006 he spent $250,000 in Dubai for an exclusive Centennial Mont Blanc watch as part of was part of an Emirates charity promotion to help disadvantaged children of the world.
Of the various things that the first of Emirates' 58 Airbus A380s might be known for, the shower is perhaps the most dramatic. The doubledecker jet landed at Dubai international airport this week in grand style. His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group, was on board with a delegation of senior Emirates executives that flew in from Hamburg on the aircraft.
Emirates' first A380 has 489 seats: 14 in first class suites, 76 in business and 399 in economy. The first class passengers on Emirates A380 will be the only ones with access to the shower. Emirates' first A380 commercial service is scheduled for 1 August and will operate between Dubai and New York.
On April 7, the
Washington Wizards' Andray Blatche and Dominic McGuire along with members from the Wizards Dance Team and G-Wiz visited employees from Southwest Airlines. The event allowed Wizards' players the chance to visit with, learn from, take pictures and sign autographs with many of the Southwest employees and customers at Baltimore Washington International Airport.
"Today was a lot of fun. It was great to interact with the employees from
Southwest," said McGuire. "It always makes you feel good when you know you have brightened someone else's day."
Throughout the afternoon, the players had the chance to go behind-the-scenes of the
Southwest Airlines operation, seeing everything from where the cargo orders take place to the holding area for all drinks and snacks that are served on the flights. The event marked the third straight year where member from the Wizards' franchise have visited Southwest Airlines' employees.
1. Singapore Airlines – I’ve had the pleasure of flying with this airline a few times, and hearing that they are number one isn’t surprising at all. They’ve always had a good reputation among regular travelers, and for good reason.
2. Thai Airways – Yet another excellent airline! Some consider them to be Singapore Airlines’ true competitor, both being based in Southeast Asia and both being considered to be some of the best in the world. Like in Singapore Airlines, you’re guaranteed satisfaction with them.
3. Cathay Pacific – A consistent competitor ever since the conception of the awards, you are sure to have a good experience with them.
4. Qatar Airways – If you’re flying first class, look no further! Qatar Airways has the best first class seats in the business, and isn’t a slouch in the other categories either.
5. Qantas – Another consistent performer like Cathay Pacific, it’s considered to be the best airline based in Australia. It does well in many of the comfort categories, and is known to be a top choice for flights.
I may have spent today at the celebration for Qantas’ first scheduled A380 flight to the US, but as far as I’m concerned this plane stole the show.
Yes, that’s John Travolta’s immaculate 707. John is the Goodwill Ambassador for Qantas, and his 707 is painted in
vintage Qantas colors. As he said in the press conference for the A380 today, “When I was 5 years old, I collected airline memorabilia from all airlines. I was . . . an airline geek.” Unlike most of us, however, he was able to buy his own private jet to fly around. I’ll have more on the A380 tomorrow, but I’ll leave you tonight with this great shot of the two aircraft meeting.
The Indian Economy is booming with a steady pace for quite some time. With this many job opportunities are being created in various domains. The Aviation industry is one such domain. In early days, scope of a career in this sector was very limited. But now, due to the arrival of a number of domestic and international Airlines with cheap airfares, the need for airline staff has risen.
The current growth rate in domestic and international travel exceeds 25%, the highest in the world. The Indian domestic market grew at almost 50% in the first half of 2006.
India's aviation industry leaders lay much of the blame at the feet of Air India which they accuse of unfairly competing with India's newer airlines, slashing fares while at the same time enjoying the luxury of government subsidies.
The airline has been unprofitable since 1997 and has received government bailouts of $625 million and is requesting more before the end of the fiscal year that ends in March 2012, according to company figures.
No doubt, in Thailand, English is the common language used between Thai people and farangs from all parts of the world: Europeans, Americans, Africans, Asians, etc. English is inevitably becoming the universal language. As Thailand continues to join the global community through business and tourism the ability to speak the language will continue to open up more doors for its people.
Those with strong English skills mainly move on to become tour guides, flight attendants, document translators, and international business professionals. Flight Attendant positions, though, do not bode well with many of the vertically challenged Thai people. I had a student come to me last month terribly upset. She had just come from an interview with a flight attendant school and was told that she was 1 inch shy of the height requirement. This ends world travel for many Thai women.
The vast majority of Thais will never leave the country, nor do they have the desire to. While they may not desire to leave, many do have aspirations of knowing English in order to understand our music and movies, communicate with people from other cultures, and earn higher salaries -a huge motivating benefit for a country that is moving on up.
Ethos Consultancy, a customer service consultancy firm, has conducted an independent study into the service quality of airlines that provide longer-haul flights out of the United Arab Emirates. The survey was designed to capture customer satisfaction at all points throughout a typical flight experience - from flight booking and check-in to boarding, in-flight services, disembarkation and final baggage claim. A total of seven international airlines were included in the study, including Emirates, Etihad, Virgin Atlantic, British Airways and Air France.
“The aviation industry has never been tougher or more unforgiving, margins are paper-thin and airlines need to strive for continuous improvement by focusing on delivering consistently high levels of customer service that extend beyond in-flight service. We conducted this study to provide a window into the service quality levels of airlines during one of their busiest and most competitive periods - December and January," stated Barry Judge, director of marketing at Ethos Consultancy".
Arriving on time is important for all sorts of reasons: making a connection; attending a big meeting; or even just starting your vacation on the right foot.
And when it comes to on-time arrivals, not all airlines are created equal. Sure, sometimes it depends what airports they fly into after all, regulars at LaGuardia, JFK, and Newark have to deal with a lot more congestion than airlines flying into, say, But sometimes the arrival record is also a function of the airline itself.
So as we do each year, Travel + Leisure went to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, which tracks the percentage of on-time arrivals for 19 airlines. We looked at the period from February 1, 2008, to March 31, 2009.
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