Stories by Howard Slutsken

CORRESPONDENT - VANCOUVER, BC. Howard's lifelong passion for aviation began when he was a kid, watching TCA Super Connies, Viscounts, and early jets at Montreal's Dorval Airport. He's a pilot who loves to fly gliders and pretty well anything else with wings. Howard is based in Vancouver, BC.

http://www.wingborn.ca

Western Canada’s first scheduled Airbus A380 service began on Sunday evening, with the arrival of British Airways flight BA85 at Vancouver International Airport. YVR is the airline’s only Canadian A380 destination, and is one of only nine city-pairs worldwide served by one of British Airways’ eleven megajets.

The A380 replaces British Airways’ daily London-YVR Boeing 747 service for the summer season. “This is a terrific market for us, it does tremendously well, so the A380 just perfectly suits the market” says Robert Antoniuk, British Airways VP Customer Service and Operations, North America West & Mexico. “This flight is absolutely full to capacity today.” The four-cabin A380 has a total of 469 seats, a significant jump from the 345-seat 747 it replaces.

Air New Zealand's "Pleased to Seat You" truck on display in Terry Fox Square in Vancouver.

Air New Zealand is in the midst of refurbishing its Boeing 777-200ER fleet, and is showcasing the planes’ new Premium Economy and Economy Skycouch seats during a North American “Pleased to Seat You” tour.

The seats are on display in a 26 foot, 5 ton, glass-walled truck that will cover more than 7,000 miles, giving the public a chance to see and sit in the -200’s new seats. The airline introduced the innovative Skycouch in its Boeing 777-300s – the footrest in a row of three seats can be positioned at the same height as the seat cushions, giving a flexible space for passengers.

With the update of the -200s, all of the long-haul aircraft in Air New Zealand’s fleet will include the Skycouch, along with the new Premium Economy seats also found in its Boeing 787-9s.