Browsing Tag: A350

An American Boeing 787-8 (N812AN) at LAX; the 787-9 is a stretched version of the -8

An American Boeing 787-8 (N812AN) at LAX; the 787-9 is a stretched version of the -8

This story has been updated to include new information about the availability of premium economy and anticipated dates for domestic operations.

American Airlines today announced new details and routes for its newest addition to the fleet, the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner (789), which is set to arrive in the last quarter of this year. While American already operates 17 Boeing 787-8s (788s), a total of four of the stretched -9s, with new business class seats and a cabin configuration to include a new Premium Economy section, will be delivered by the end of December 2016, with a total of 22 on order.

The 789s will initially be based out of American’s home base, Dallas-Fort Worth Airport (DFW), and on November 4 will commence service to Madrid-Barajas Airport (MAD) and Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport (GRU).

AirlineReporter has received exclusive details on the inaugural route the 789 will actually fly…

Etihad Airbus A380 in Dubai

Etihad Airbus A380 in Dubai

It seems like over the last few years, there have been almost weekly announcements of new routes from one of the ME3, the three major middle east airlines (Qatar, Emirates, and Etihad), to the United States.  As of now, these three airlines fly, or have announced, routes from the middle east to the thirteen U.S. cities.

As a Denver-based flyer, I have heard a lot of talk about whether we can expect to see some exciting new liveries at Denver International Airport in the near future.  I keep finding myself going back and forth between thinking, “yes, we’ll hear an announcement any day now” and “nope, it’s never going to happen.”

Warning: lots of analysis and numbers below. If you want the short version, skip down to the bottom. Otherwise, settle in and let’s look at some numbers.

The geographic reach of the ME3 airlines in the U.S. - Image: David Delagarza | AirlineReporter

The geographic reach of the ME3 airlines in the U.S. – Image: David Delagarza | AirlineReporter

As an engineer, I decided to do what I do best – start analyzing things and putting some numbers on paper. The first thing I did was chart the geographic reach of the ME3 within the United States.  That resulted in the map above. The green areas are within 100 miles of an ME3-serviced airport, the yellow areas are 100-to-250 miles out, orange areas are 250-to-500 miles out, and the red areas are more than 500 miles away from any ME3-serviced airport.

Combining this information with the 2010 U.S. Census data gives us some interesting numbers.  Of the U.S. population in the lower 48 states, approximately 44% live within 100 miles of an ME3-serviced airport, 64% live within 200 miles, and 95% live within 500 miles.

A Ryanair 737 taxis for a test flight at Boeing Field. Photo - Andrew W. Sieber FlickerCC

A Ryanair 737 taxis for a test flight at Boeing Field – Photo: Andrew W. Sieber | FlickerCC

Ryanair might soon start trans-Atlantic flights, but what does it mean?

At face value, this may seem like an earthshaking headline; after all, Ryanair has been either threatening or strongly implying that they will fly from various European airports to the United States.

But again, the truth is always in the details. Yes, Ryanair will be arriving on U.S. soil, but not tomorrow — not even next year. You see, the exact wording of the approval came in the form as part of their five-year plan.

The A350 flight deck being shown off by its joyful flight crew. Photo - Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter

The A350 flight deck being shown off by its joyful flight crew – Photo: Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter

For press, the delivery ceremony completion usually means it is either time to drive back home, or return to the hotel and pack for the flight.

Not this day.

Airbus and Qatar Airways decided that it would be a great way to enhance the press experience if everyone was given a demonstration flight aboard the Airbus A350.

This was a great idea, so there had to be some kind of drawback! For a demonstration flight that would last an hour with pre-selected passengers, all 200 of us present had to go through security screening. A process that felt like it took longer than the flight itself. What a surprise, no one had any contraband or ill intent!

Rant aside, after what felt like an eternity, I finally made it onto the jet bridge to a crowd that was more akin to being in the last row of economy on a domestic narrowbody. I realized then and there that taking any kind of photographic imagery was going to be a challenge.

Door L1 on Qatar Airways' first A350 XWB, long after the crowd had dispersed for lunch. Photo - Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter

Door L1 on Qatar Airways’ first A350 XWB, long after the crowd had dispersed for lunch Photo: Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter

We boarded via a choice of either L1 or L2, I chose L2 as I wanted to see the lovely dome light and the in-flight bar. The doors themselves do not create any temporary feelings of claustrophobia. In the case of L2, you immediately walk into a spacious and open atrium. The ceiling is higher than one has come to expect on regular passenger aircraft, the walls more vertical.