Airline & Airport News.
Cathay to introduce new seasonal service to Christchurch
Cathay Pacific will introduce a new seasonal service between Hong Kong and Christchurch, operating from 1 December 2017 through to 28 February 2018. The thrice-weekly service will be the first direct link between the two cities, and comes as a result of customer demand for travel to New Zealand during the peak summer months.
Air NZ bumps up AUK-EXE
Air New Zealand will increase its services between Auckland and Buenos Aires to four-times-weekly, from 6 November 2017. The seasonal boost will include a fifth weekly service commence on 9 December, operated by a Boeing 777-200ER.
Qantas’ Premium Economy revealed
Boasting an extra 10cm in width, a generous recline and five different storage compartments, the final seating puzzle piece to Qantas’ 787-9 Dreamliner configuration has just been revealed. QF’s Premium Economy class will feature on select long-haul flights, including Melbourne – Los Angeles, and later Perth – London when it commences in March 2018. Find out more about the new Premium Economy seat: https://goo.gl/hY3CQz
Sneak peek: New Zealand International Convention Centre
The New Zealand International Convention Centre (NZICC) has recently released a series of immersive 360° videos, giving a virtual tour of the venue’s various spaces. The videos were showcased at the Asia Pacific Incentives and Meetings Expo (AIME), following NZICC’s announcement that it has already secured three major conferences ahead of its opening in 2019. Click here to take the virtual tour: https://goo.gl/QIo2jt
Qatar’s revolutionary new business class
Qatar Airways is making headlines after introducing its all-new ‘QSuite’ at ITB Berlin. The new business class suite offers a four-person seating configuration, complete with double beds and direct aisle access for everyone. QSuite private rooms facilitate business meetings, social conversations and group dining, with the new business class menu now offering shared dishes. Passengers will be able to enjoy this new business class experience from June 2017 on the Doha-London route which will be operated by a Boeing 777-300ER.
Delta now offers free meals
Delta Airlines is now offering free meals on domestic New York to Los Angeles and San Francisco flights. The airline how announced it will be expanding the service to 10 other domestic markets from 24 April 2017, as an investment in improving customer experience.
The third member of the 787 Dreamliner family makes its debut
Boeing’s third addition to its 787 Dreamliner family has made its debut in South Carolina, with thousands of employees and special guests att
ending the reveal. The all-new 787-10 jet is the largest of the Dreamliner models with capacity for 330 passengers in a two-class configuration. With 149 orders to date, the 787-10 Dreamliner will commence delivery to airlines in 2018.
Qatar amends restrictive baggage policy
Passengers travelling with Qatar Airways on multi-sector journeys will now receive a through-check of their baggage to their final destination, even when the flights are booked under separate bookings. The new rules apply to passengers boarding connecting flights on Qatar and Oneworld member alliances, as long as they meet the airport’s minimum connection time (MCT) of typically two hours.
United Airlines launches Boeing 777 Polaris business-class
UA has commenced services on its brand new Boeing 777-300, featuring a state-of-the-art Polaris business-class cabin. Business travellers are treated to sleeping cubicles, with seats that lie flat to 6-and-a-half feet. The airline is currently operating the 777 on domestic American routes, but will commence international operations from 25 March, with California to Hong Kong.
Cathay offers ‘dine on demand’ for business travellers
From 1 May 2017, Cathay Pacific will offer business class passengers a new ‘dine on demand’ service, allowing passengers to choose not only what they want to eat, but when they want to eat it. The service will be offered on a trial basis through to 31 May on London Gatwick flights CX343/CX344, and from 1 June to 30 June on the Hong Kong-Chicago route on flights CX806/CX807.
Business passengers to receive New Royal Silk Service on Thai
Thai Airways’ Royal Silk Business class passengers will now receive the New Royal Silk Service on international flights. The upgrade includes an all-day dining menu available at any time during the day or night on flights from Bangkok to Europe, and during the day on flights from Bangkok to Australia.
Fly Delta app upgrade
Delta Airlines has released an update to its Fly Delta app, now offering customers offline access to boarding passes and flight details, eliminating the stress of finding WiFi between connecting flights. Another new feature includes over 20 interactive airport maps, meaning customers can locate their gate, baggage claim and even the closest coffee shop with turn-by-turn walking directions. Fly Delta 4.2 is available for download on iPhones, with the Android version being released over the next few months.
Shenzhen introduces biometrics
China’s Shenzhen airport has introduced biometrics in the form of fingerprint scanning as a new security measure. Foreign passport holders between the ages of 14 and 70 will have their fingerprints scanned, with the exception of diplomats. The new measures will soon be rolled out across all airports in the county.
Auckland Airport to get 5-star hotel
Accorhotels will be opening a 5-star hotel at Auckland Airport, adding to its Pullman brand portfolio. Construction of the 250-room hotel is set to start this year, with completion expected in late 2019.