Airline News Round Up – 4 December 2013

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Cathay Pacific Increases Redemption Rate for Lounge Access

Dragon Air Airport-Lounge

Cathay Pacific increases mileage redemption for access to Cathay Pacific Business Class lounges and Dragonair lounges from 7,000 Asia Miles to 9,000 Asia Miles from 17 December 2013. Members of Asia Miles can redeem their mileage for access to the lounges for themselves and guests regardless of class of travel or mileage membership tier.

The Bridge - Cathay Pacific Lounge

The Bridge – Cathay Pacific Lounge

Cathay Pacific sixth passenger lounge at Hong Kong International Airport, The Bridge opened end October this year. The 2,567 square-metre lounge is located on level 5 of the West Concourse at HKIA near gate 35 for Firsta and Business Class passengers. The north wing of The Bridge features The Bakery offering freshly baked bread and pizzas, sandwiches, pastries, Asian and Western soups and fresh salads. Here you can also lounge at the Long Bar or the television lounge.  The south wing features The Bistro where you can help yourself to Asian and Western hot dishes and cold food selections, desserts and salads. There is also the Coffee Loft where you can enjoy a cup of freshly brewed coffee and specialty tea with freshly baked muffins, pastries and cookies.  There are nine Shower Suites in the South Wing. The Bridge is open from 5.30am till the last flight departure.

Cathay Pacific was named the “Best Airline Business Class” at the 2013 Business Traveller China Awards in November. The airline has also won other accolades including “World’s Best Cabin Staff” and “Best Transpacific Airline” in Skytrax’s World Airline Awards as well as “Best North Asian Airline” at the 24th Annual TTG Travel Awards.

Korean Air Serves Perrier-Jouët In First and Business

KOREAN AIR INTRODUCES PERRIER-JOUËT CHAMPAGNE

From 2 December 2013, Korean Air started serving its first and business class passengers on international routes Perrier-Jouët. Perrier-Jouët Belle Époque is known as the ‘floral champagne’ named after the ‘golden age’ in France during the 19th century. It features a delicate flavour blending flowers and fruit.  Perrier-Jouët Belle Époque will be served to first class passengers on routes between Korea, America and Europe. Blason Rosé will be available in first class on the Southeast Asian and Oceanic routes. Prestige business class passengers will be served Grand Brut on all routes.

First Class customers will get to enjoy their champagne in Austrian ‘O’ Riedel glassware. ‘O’ glass is the original stemless wine tumbler which is appropriate for the cabin environment. It is stackable for easy storage and easy to wash.

During the winter season from 1 December 2013 to 28 February 2014, Korean Air passengers travelling international from Incheon International Airport can store the winter coats for free at Incheon International Airport and collect them when they return from the international trip. To enjoy this service, just show your boarding pass at Hanjin Express counter located at Area A of the passenger terminal on the third floor of Incheon International Airport. To retrieve your coat when you return, just show the storage receipt at the same counter which operates between 4.30am and 9pm daily. This service is free for five days with a surcharge of KRW2,500 per day subsequently.

United Airlines Completes Redesign of p.s. ‘Premium Service’ Fleet

Singapore Airlines on Google Now

United Airlines is the first and only airline to offer premium-cabin, flat-bed seats on its transcontinental flight between New York John F. Kennedy International Airport and San Francisco and betweeen JFK and Los Angeles. It has completed redesigning 15 Boeing 757-200s that fly these p.s. “Premium Service” routes.

These aircraft offer 28 180-degree flat-bed United BusinessFirst seats with up to 6’4″ of sleeping space and more room for storage. In united Economy Plus, there are 42 extra-legroom seats.  In United Economy there will be 72 seats available.

Other features of the refurbished aircraft include:

  • Inflight Wi-Fi
  • Personal, on-demand entertainment at every seat – with 15.4″ monitors in United BusinessFirst and 9″ monitors in United Economy – offering hundreds of movies and television shows, plus other entertainment options
  • Power outlets and USB ports at every seat
  • Two additional inches of legroom in United Economy Plus compared to Economy Plus legroom on pre-renovation p.s. service
  • Multi-course meals in United BusinessFirst on most flights
  • Wine selections recommended by Doug Frost, United’s Master Sommelier and Master of Wine, including half bottles of premium wines for purchase in United Economy

Singapore Airlines Flight Information On Google Now

Singapore Airlines on Google Now

Now you can enjoy easy access to Singapore Airlines flight information on Google Now. Google Now provides you with information when you need it. Information such as the weather of the traveldestination before your flight departure or even photos of attractions around you after you have arrived in your destination. Google Now is available on iOS devices via Apple’s App Store and is built into Android 4.1+ devices.

If you have made a booking through www.singaporeair.com and indicated your Gmail address in the booking, you would be able to see the travel information such as flight schedule, airport terminal and departure gate in Google Now hours before your flight departure.

Etihad Airways Named Airline Of The Year By Global Traveler

 

Etihad Airways Business Class Seats

Etihad Airways Business Class

Etihad Airways has been named Airline of the Year by Global Traveler magazine in the United States. The national airline of the United Arab Emirates has also won other awards including Best Airline for First Class and Best Airport Lounges. Etihad Airways inflight service including the Chef in Diamond First Class, a Food and Beverage Manager in Pearl Business Class and the recently launched Flying Nanny were some of the airline’s innovations that made it stand out.

Etihad Airways operates flights between Abu Dhabi and Chicago, New York and Washington and will introduce daily return flights between Abu Dhabi and Los Angeles on 1 June 2014. Diamond First and Pearl Business Class passengers get to enjoy the luxurious premium lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport. The airline intends to open other Eithad Airways lounges int he U.S. next year.

The airline has also boosted capacity between Melbourne and Abu Dhabi from 1 December 2013 with a Boeing 777-300ER. The Boeing 777-300ER offers 328 seats in a three class configuration. There are eight seats in Diamond First Class, 40 in Pearl Business Class and 280 in Coral Economy Class. The aircraft also offers a bellyhold cargo capacity of around 14-16 tonnes.

Finnair Offers new Destinations and Increased Frequencies

FINNAIR A330 Metsanvaki LIVERY

Finnair’s summer traffic schedule which comes into effect 30 March 2014 will include flights to three new seasonal destinations – Pisa in Italy (two x weekly) , Biarritz in France (two x weekly) and Alanya in Turkey (three x weekly). The airline will add more frequencies to Düsseldorf, Zürich, Antalya and Vaasa. Flights to Xi’an in China continues on 30 March and to Hanoi in Vietnam on 2 June 2014. It will also double its daily frequencies to Düsseldorf and Zürich from two to four.  Extra frequencies will be added to Vaasa with an evening flight departing 6.10pm from Helsinki. Finnair will then operate six daily flights to Vaasa.

Extra frequencies will also be added to Copenhagen, Dubrovnik, Malaga, Paris, Rome and Tel Aviv in the period from June to August. Popular destinations returning to the summer schedule include Toronto, now operated with upgraded Airbus 330 aircraft from June 1 to September 21, and Chicago as a codeshare with oneworld partner American Airlines.

New route to Tromsø in Norway for the 2014 winter season will be opened. Finnair will fly three times a week from 1 January to 28 March 2014.

Japan Airlines Introduces Select Winter Menu

JAL Winter Menu

Japan Airlines introduces enhanced inflight meals on international flights from December 2013. Two new star chefs Mr. Hiroki Yoshitake and Mr. Shinichi Sato joined the dream team of JAL BEDD – SKY AUBERGE on 1 December to create new menus for flights from Paris to Japan. The two chefs will take turns every three months to create western 1st meals in First and Business Class.

The menu from 1 December 2013 has been created by Chef Hiroki Yoshitake, Executive Chef of one Michelin Star “Sola” in Paris. The menu from 1 March 2014 will be created by Chef Shinichi Sato, Executive Chef of “Passage 53” in Paris. He is the first Japanese to receive a Michelin two star rating for France.

The First Class menu will feature Charolais Beef Fillet with Three Sauces. The Business Class menu will include a six bowls selection Hors d’ouevre and lobster Ravioli for the main course. The Hors d’oeuvre will include Salmon Tartar and Celeriac Cream, Burrata Cheese, Shrimp and Tomato Jelly, Smoked Scallops and Boietus Puree, Foie Gras Mouse, Caramel & Xeres Vinegar, King Crab Slated Japanese Custard and Country pate and Chickpea with Conssome. The Amuse Bouche in First Class and Hors d’oeuvres in Business Class will be served on Japanese Arita dishware made specially for JAL to commemorate the collaboration.

Tonkotsu style Ramen in collaboration with Kyushu Jangara also be served on First and Business class as part of the Any Time You Wish service.  This healthy ramen does not contain any meat or extract.  The tasty milk-white soup is served on routes from Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, London, Frankfurt and Paris to Japan.

In Premium Economy and Economy, Ore-no Kinaishoku menu has been created in collaboration with Ore-no Italian and Ore-no French for Honolulu flights. The new menu will be created by Chef Toshihiro Yamura and Kazuhide Nose. The menu contains Ore-no Chicken Cacciatora and Lasagna, Ore-no Appetizer “Salmon Terrine with Seasoned Sea-urchin sauce”, Ore-no Dessert “Classic Chocolate Cake” on flights from Tokyo/Narita, Osaka/Kansai and Nagoya/Chubu to Honolulu. This menu is available till 28 February 2014.

As part of the airline’s Air Series, Air Kentucky Fried Chicken will offer chicken bites, fresh salad, biscuit with honey maple, coleslaw and chocolate walnut on flights from Tokyo/Narita to Los Angeles, San Diego, Chicago, Boston, New York, London, Frankfurt, Paris and Helsinki till 28 February 2014.

For flights from Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco to Japan, the Air Yoshinoya menu will include beef with rice and lots of sauce. This menu is available till 28 February 2014 and is also available in First and Business Class as part of the Any Time You Wish Service.

KLM Boards Passengers Based on Boarding Number at Gate

KLM Boeing 747 (model aircraft)

KLM introduces new way for passengers to board on three European flights including Berlin, Budapest and Helsinki a day out of Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport. This is part of a trial that allows KLM to fine tune the procedures of this new boarding method. It intends to expand this service to other European and intercontinental flights next year.

Passengers are given a boarding number at the gate based on their seat in the aircraft. When boarding begins, the numbers are displayed in a sequence on screens at the gate. The order in which the numbers are displayed ensures that passengers with a window seat board first, starting at the rear of the aircraft. Passengers seated in the midsection of the aircraft come next then finally passengers with aisle seats. Disabled passengers and parents with babies will be allowed to board first followed by SkyPriority passengers.

KLM is also giving away free external battery in Singapore when you book your next flight with them before 24 December via mobile booking at klm.sg or the KLM app. To top it all, the airline will delivery your battery to your doorstep at no charge.

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