News for Europe/MEA

Etihad Airways pushing sustainability agenda forward

22 November, 2022

Etihad Airways GM Australia & New Zealand Sarah Built, speaking at the CTC Australasia Corporate Travel Summit & Sustainability Awards, stated (22-Nov-2022) the airline has had "the same issues as everybody else" due to the COVID-19 pandemic, including supply chain and aircraft challenges. Ms Built said Etihad is focused on rebuilding trust, traveller confidence and capacity which will "come in time". She noted sustainability "is at the heart of everything we do, and we've really pushed that agenda forward". 

Etihad Airways: Biggest challenge has been keeping teams connected

22 November, 2022

Etihad Airways GM Australia & New Zealand Sarah Built, speaking at the CTC Australasia Corporate Travel Summit & Sustainability Awards, stated (22-Nov-2022) the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a "rollercoaster of dealing with things you never thought you'd have to deal with", adding: "Suddenly we were living a business contingency plan". Ms Build said the biggest challenge for the carrier has been keeping teams connected, noting Etihad is evaluating everything "as best we can" and working with strategic partners to build on existing relationships. She added: "As an industry we're all quite tired and crawling to the finishing line of the year". 

Eurowings reports revival of business travel bookings

21 November, 2022

Eurowings reported (15-Nov-2022) business travel bookings during Nov-2022 increased 60% year-on-year, while current bookings for summer 2023 are "twice as high". The carrier noted that for the first time since COVID-19 it is no longer recording a drop in demand toward the winter half-year and is instead recording "a revival in booking figures in the business travel segment". Eurowings highlighted its "top routes" in Europe currently include connections from Dusseldorf to Milan and Vienna, Hamburg to London and Stuttgart to Budapest. In addition, Eurowings' domestic connections from Berlin to Cologne, Dusseldorf to Berlin, Stuttgart to Berlin and Hamburg to Stuttgart "are far ahead". CEO Jens Bischof stated the carrier is observing "a rising dynamic in business travel across all industries", adding "travel is currently increasing in almost all sectors - also because the pent-up demand for face-to-face meetings is very high". The carrier outlined "many managers are starting to build up personal networks again, especially since the contact persons in many companies have changed after the long Covid break". [more - original PR]

BCD Travel appoints new VP of sustainability

18 November, 2022

BCD Travel appointed (17-Nov-2022) Olivia Ruggles-Brise as VP sustainability, effective 14-Nov-2022. Ms Ruggles-Brise replaces Kathy Jackson in the role, following Ms Jackson's retirement. [more - original PR]

HSBC Australia and Star Alliance launch HSBC Star Alliance Credit Card

15 November, 2022

HSBC Australia and Star Alliance launched (15-Nov-2022) the HSBC Star Alliance Credit Card in Australia. Australian customers can earn Star Alliance Points on eligible credit card purchases that can be converted to miles/points with Air Canada, Air New Zealand, EVA Air, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Thai Airways and United Airlines. HSBC and Star Alliance stated the card is the world's first credit card created with an airline alliance and will be issued exclusively on Visa credit. [more - original PR]

UAE lifts remaining COVID-19 restrictions

15 November, 2022

Etihad Airways announced (14-Nov-2022) United Arab Emirates lifted all remaining COVID-19 restrictions, including testing and vaccination requirements. Travellers are no longer required to provide any COVID-19 documents, including the Al Hosn Green Pass, which was previously required to enter public places. Mask-wearing is optional outside of health facilities. [more - original PR]

Doha Hamad Airport launches expansion project, Phase B to commence in early 2023

11 November, 2022

Doha Hamad International Airport launched (10-Nov-2022) its expansion project and announced the 'ORCHARD' garden located at the centre of the terminal expansion. Details include:

  • The expansion is designed to improve passenger transfers between terminal areas;
  • A second airport hotel in the transfer area. The 100 room Oryx Garden Hotel is located in the north plaza;
  • Four new lounges;
  • Retail features include the first Dior boutique at the airport, the only FIFA shop in the world, the only Thom Brown store in an airport and the largest Ray-Ban airport store;
  • The 'ORCHARD' indoor garden includes a water feature, more than 300 trees and 25,000 plants;
  • Four of the expansion projects achieved a four star rating under the Gulf Organisation for Research and Development's Global Sustainability Assessment System.

Phase B of the expansion is scheduled to commence in early 2023 and will increase capacity to more than 70 million passengers p/a. [more - original PR]

Emirates continues focus on restoring passenger network in H1FY2023

11 November, 2022

Emirates Airline reported (10-Nov-2022) it continued to focus on restoring its passenger network and connections through Dubai in H1FY2023, ended 30-Sep-2022. The carrier resumed services and added frequencies to meet customer demand. Details include:

  • Revenue, including other operating income, increased 131% year-on-year to AED50.1 billion (USD13.6 billion), driven by strong passenger demand for international travel;
  • Operating costs increased 73%, mainly due to a substantial increase in fuel costs, which more than tripled year-on-year. Fuel uplift increased 65%, in line with increased flight operations, and average oil prices doubled. Fuel accounted for 38% of operating costs, compared to 20% in H1FY2022;
  • Total capacity in ATKs increased 40% due to an expanded flight programme as more countries eased travel restrictions;
  • Passenger numbers increased 228% to 20 million and cargo volumes decreased 14% to 936,000 tonnes as the airline shifted capacity from 'mini-freighters' back to passenger operations;
  • Commenced Tel Aviv service in Jun-2022;
  • Launched codeshare and interline agreements with Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, airBaltic, Airlink (South Africa), Bamboo Airways, Batik Air, Finnair, Royal Air Maroc, Sky Express, Sun Country Airlines and United Airlines;
  • Took delivery of two new Boeing 777F aircraft and returned one older freighter;
  • Introduced new inflight menus in all cabin classes and launched a new hospitality programme;
  • Launched its full premium economy service to London, Paris and Sydney in Aug-2022. Emirates plans to introduce premium economy on five more routes before the end of FY2023;
  • Emirates operated passenger and cargo service to 140 airports as of 30-Sep-2022, using its entire 777 fleet and 73 A380 aircraft;
  • Emirates commenced a cabin retrofit programme for 120 aircraft in Nov-2022 and expects to receive new passenger aircraft from 2024. [more - original PR]

RwandAir commences nonstop Kigali-London service

8 November, 2022

RwandAir, via its official Facebook and Twitter accounts, announced (07-Nov-2022) it commenced Kigali-London Heathrow service with A330 equipment. As previously reported by CAPA, the airline will operate the service four times weekly, replacing Kigali-Brussels-London service.

Air Canada launches seasonal daily Vancouver-London Heathrow-Mumbai service

8 November, 2022

Air Canada launched seasonal daily Vancouver-London Heathrow-Mumbai service using Boeing 787-9 equipment on 30-Oct-2022, according to OAG. The service will operate through 24-Mar-2023. No other carriers operate the route.

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