Monday, December 10, 2012

Meridiana fly to cut network, fleet and staff

One of the carriers MD-80 aircraft at Gate in Catania. This aircraft type is not  hidden by the current cost-saving programme.
The Italian airline Meridiana fly has announced massive cuts. The airline will retire both Airbus A330, and seven of the 13 Airbus A320 family aircraft. Furthermore it´s sister carrier Air Italy will retire one Boeing 767 but proceeding long-haul flights, while Meridiana fly will terminate all long-haul flights. The staff will be reduced by 650 employees from January 2013. The reason for the cut is the poor financial position of the carrier and the huge losses.

The remaining fleet consists of six Airbus A319/A320 (but it is unclear, if all A319 will be retired) and 10 aircraft of the MD-80 series.


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

CSA Czech Airlines to resume long-haul operations?

The Czech national carrier CSA Czech Airlines has announced plans to resume long-haul flights with an single leased Airbus A330 from summer 2013. CSA initially plans to operate just one single long-haul route from Prague to Seoul Incheon with two return trips per week. The route is currently served by Korean Air. Further routes are scheduled to follow. In the free time the A330 is planned to be used on the airlines short and medium-haul network.

CSA has operated long-haul flights in the recent years. Due to financial reasons the airline ceased it´s scheduled long-haul flights a few years ago. The remaining Airbus A310 were then used an short period for long-haul charter operations before the last A310 was withdrawn from use in 2010.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

1time to be acquired by FastJet, could resume operations

The failed South-African low-cost carrier 1time, which has been forced to cease it´s operations last month due to financial difficulties could be revived. The new pan-African budget airline FastJet, that just have commenced domestic operations in Tanzania with an single Airbus A319, has announced, that it is in talks with the liquidator of 1time. FastJet plans to acquire the company and resume operations with the former fleet of MD-80 series aircraft. Later the fleet will be replaced by new Airbus A319 and beaing rebranded as FastJet.

FastJet has already shown interests in acquisition of some of the 1times assets and it´s AOC some days after the closure of 1time.


Former PLUNA employees announces successor for the failed carrier

The union of employees of the failed Urugayan flag-carrier PLUNA has announced a successor for the former national airline. PLUNA was forced to cease operations on July 5, 2012 and was soon put into liquidation. The airlines fleet of Bombardier CRJ900 ware sold in October. The most of the airlines routes have been overtaken by BQB Airlines.

The successor is scheduled to commence operations on April 1, 2013 with an fleet of several CRJ900, according to several sources nine of those jets are expected (old PLUNA had 13 CRJ900). The airline shall start with 490 employees, an huge number of the former staff of 750 PLUNA employees. The airline is managed and owned by the worker´s union. The company name until now is COOPLUNA, but the final name is not clear until new. Maybe the airline will pick up the former PLUNA branding (like Swiss) or adopt a brand new name (like Brussels Airlines did). The company is based on Montevideo Airport.

The government of Uruguay has announced to subsidize the new airline with USD 15 million. According to the business plan, the new PLUNA will make losses around USD 7 million in its first year of operation.


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Monarch considers to order 45 new narrow body jets.

The UK charter an low-cost carrier Monarch has announced, that it consider to order 45 new narrow body jets. It is to expect, that the airline will prefer the Airbus A320neo, but it stated, that it also is interested in the Boeing 737MAX. The decision will take place in the next months, because the airline want´s to order in late 2013. The first aircrafts are scheduled to be delivered in 2021.

Monarch is currently undergoing a transformations of it´s business model. The carrier has increased it´s scheduled network rapidly in the recent years while reducing capacity in the charter market. In 2005, the airline carried around 2.6 million passengers on scheduled routes and 2.8 million passengers on charter flights. In 2011 Monarch already transported more than 4.5 million passengers on scheduled routes but just 1.4 million passengers on charter flights. In total, Monarch carried nearly 6 million passengers in 2011. The scheduled low-cost are expected to be increased further.

Currently Monarch fleet consists of seven Airbus A320, 16 Airbus A321 and three Boeing 757. On long-haul flights the airline using their two Airbus A330-200 and four Airbus A300-600. The Airbus A300 and Boeing 757 is to be retired by 2014. Originally, the A300 was planned to been replaced by new Boeing 787, but Monarch has recently cancelled this orders. Further Airbus A320 and A321 will be set in service in 2013. Scheduled flights and as well charter operations of Monarch are currently focussed on routes between UK airports and holiday destinations. Domestic flights or business routes are not offered.