El Al’s new CEO Dina Ben Tal Ganancia has big plans for the Israeli flag carrier. As it emerges form pandemic-related restrictions, she is keen, among other things, for Tel Aviv to become a transit hub, rather than just a destination.
Airplanes and Airports
Northern Pacific Airways is taking a somewhat unusual approach to funding ahead of its expected launch later this year. The carrier is running an open call to unaccredited investors, hoping to boost its visibility in the market, as well as its cash balance.
US airlines can, once again, operate commercial flights to nine smaller airports in Cuba. Significant restrictions on charters are also gone. The moves reverse US diplomatic policy from 2019-2020.
JetBlue’s new service between Boston and London will have to wait a couple more weeks. The carrier will delay service launch to both Gatwick and Heathrow airports, owing to delays in aircraft deliveries from Airbus.
Adding a new aircraft type to a fleet is a challenging task. Switching from props to jets is even harder. And adding international routes further ups the complexity. Northern Pacific is discovering many of these issues as it pushes forward with plans to fly to Korea and Japan from Anchorage, hopefully later this year.
JetBlue will further trim its Summer 2022 schedule. The carrier plans “further tweaks” to the network, in response to elevated fuel prices and in support of its reliability goals.
Can a merger of competing airlines improve customer choice and lower prices? History suggests, time and again, the answer is no. But that did not stop Avianca from suggesting that a buyout of Viva would do precisely that.
With the pilot shortage challenge becoming ever more acute, regional carrier Republic Airways is looking for a different way to get more pilots into its operations. The carrier filed an application with the US Federal Aviation Administration last month seeking permission for pilots with 750 hours of flight experience – half the current requirement – to be licensed as a Restricted Air Transport Pilot (R-ATP), eligible to operate commercial service for the company.
With delivery timing on its 777X fleet still uncertain, Lufthansa is turning to the 787-9 to help backfill missing capacity. The carrier added seven new passenger aircraft to its order book, while also expanding its Boeing freighter operations.
The A321XLR should make its first flight by the end of next month, kicking off the certification process. But Airbus now expects certification to take a bit longer than previously planned.