Browsing Tag: Seattle

Sir Richard Branson inaugurated Virgin Atlantic service to Seattle in his inimitable style.

Sir Richard Branson inaugurated Virgin Atlantic service to Seattle in his inimitable style

On the heels of Alaska Airlines’ announcement that it will soon do away with the Virgin America brand, after having purchased the airline last year to the tune of $2.6 billion, Virgin Atlantic inaugurated daily service from London to Seattle on March 27.

Branson had publicly opposed the merger, but as a minority shareholder of Virgin America, there wasn’t much he could do. The new route will allow the Virgin brand to retain a presence in the Pacific Northwest, and perhaps help to restore a bit of Branson’s entrepreneurial dignity. The route had been announced last year, not long after news first broke about the sale of Virgin America to Alaska Airlines.

Coinciding with the upcoming Veterans Day holiday, Alaska Airlines has unveiled its newest special livery, a patriotic-themed scheme titled “Honoring Those Who Serve.”

The Oct. 26 event had all the seriousness and dignity of a military function, and attention was called to the airline’s Fallen Soldier Program, which is designed to ensure that a fallen soldier’s remains are treated with respect and dignity while being transported on Alaska’s aircraft. The livery includes a special crest near the rear cargo door that represents the program.

The event was held inside Alaska's huge maintenance hangar at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

The event was held inside Alaska’s huge maintenance hangar at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

The brand-new 737-900ER (registration number N265AK) entered revenue service the following day, and will be used across Alaska’s network.

Sea-Tac Airport cargo workers push a pallet of freight onto the loading ramp of an Air China Cargo 747-400F.

Sea-Tac Airport cargo workers push a pallet of freight onto the loading ramp of an China Airlines Cargo 747-400F

In what has become an annual early-summer ritual at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, air cargo operators serving Asian ports have increased operations in Seattle for the duration of the roughly two-month long Washington state cherry harvest.

Pallets of cherries destined for Asian markets await shipment at a Port of Seattle warehouse.

Pallets of cherries destined for Asian markets await shipment at a Port of Seattle warehouse

Carriers making stops in Seattle to pick up pallets of Washington cherries include EVA Air Cargo, NCA, China Airlines Cargo, and Singapore Airlines Cargo. Freighter loads vary, but seldom are the large jets filled solely with cherries; mixed loads are far more common, especially as routes can include stops in one or more U.S. cities before crossing the Pacific.

Big network expansion out of LAX for American, with eight new destinations all starting June 2.

Big network expansion out of LAX for American, with eight new destinations all starting June 2

On June 2, American commenced a major expansion of its route network, with 21 new nonstop routes this month. This includes 10 new destinations just from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), marking the largest expansion ever at LAX.

Thursday saw the largest number of inaugural flights, with eight ribbon-cutting ceremonies in Los Angeles that day, something the carrier had never done before in its history. I was invited to be part of the festivities and join the entourage, which included Jim Moses, the Managing Director (MD) for American at LAX. What does a day full of ribbon cutting ceremonies look like, you ask…?