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Qatar Airways Stops Taking A350 Deliveries As Airbus Row Drags On

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Qatar Airways has reportedly halted deliveries of its A350 jets due to dissatisfaction with the finish on the aircraft. According to reports, the surface below the paint is degrading unusually quickly and it will not take any more deliveries until Airbus resolves the issue.

Qatar A350
Qatar is halting deliveries of its A350s. Photo: Qatar Airways

An issue with Airbus

The row between Qatar Airways and Airbus has reached a new peak today as the Doha-based airline has reportedly halted all deliveries of new A350s. The airline previously said that an issue was causing concern, without specifying exactly what it was. In an interview, Group CEO Akbar Al Baker said,

“We have an issue with Airbus we need to settle, and if we are not able to settle that serious issue we have with them, we will refuse to take any aircraft from them.”

While declining to add any color on what the issue was, speculation pointed to a problem with the paintwork. However, Al Baker debunked this in a subsequent interview, stating simply that it was up to Airbus to resolve the problem swiftly, and threatening ‘industrial repercussions’ for the planemaker.

Now, it seems things have come to a head, as Reuters is reporting that the carrier has halted all incoming deliveries of the Airbus A350 until it is satisfied with the resolution. More specifically, the airline noted that,

“Qatar Airways continues to experience and has witnessed a condition in which the surface below the paint on some of its Airbus A350 aircraft has been degrading at an accelerated rate.”

Qatar A350
The airline is Airbus’ biggest customer for the type. Photo: Qatar Airways

This suggests that it is not a problem with the paintwork per se but rather an issue with the surface below the paint. Some aircraft have been grounded while Qatar Airways investigates the problem. The airline continued,

“Qatar Airways will require this condition and its underlying root cause to be fully understood and corrected before the delivery of any further Airbus A350 aircraft.”

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Wider problems

Qatar Airways is the largest customer of the A350 and was the launch operator for both the -1000 and the -900. It already has a fleet of 34 A350-900s and 19 A350-1000s, with a further 23 -1000s expected for delivery.

According to ch-aviation, the airline should have received two more A350-1000s in June, with one more in July and one in November. The rest were expected to arrive between 2022 and 2025. However, the problems for Airbus might not be limited to the disruption of this delivery schedule alone.

The Qatar chief has pointed out his influence with other global airlines. Photo: Airbus

When this issue first arose, Al Baker was quick to point out the influence he has within airlines around the world. He noted that any rift in the relationship between Qatar Airways and Airbus could also have an impact on Airbus’ standing with airlines in which he has a stake, including LATAM and IAG.

Airbus is remaining tight-lipped on the situation, saying only that the discussions it is having with a customer are confidential. However, it’s not the first time that an issue with the finish on the A350 has been indicated.

Lufthansa returned its four-year-old A350s to the paint shop in Toulouse, notionally to rebrand with the new livery. And as long ago as January, a Qatar Airways A350 was returned to Toulouse due to a paint/finish problem. The details of the issue will likely come out in the wash, but for now, Airbus is stuck with a customer unwilling to take any new A350 deliveries.

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Source: https://simpleflying.com/qatar-airways-stops-a350-deliveries/

Aviation

Air Belgium gears up for Airbus A330neo deliveries, A340-300 replacement

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Launched in 2018, Air Belgium made headlines after it expanded into new and somewhat untouched markets, notably from its homebase in Brussels-Charleroi Airport; a primarily low-cost airport and a significant base for Ireland’s Ryanair. Air Belgium became the first to offer scheduled long-haul flights to Hong Kong from the low-cost hub – a move that surprised many. Not only was the airline competing against Cathay Pacific, who operated to the more convenient Brussels-Zaventem Airport, but it also utilised four-engined Airbus A340-300s – which remain in the carrier’s core fleet to this date.

Air Belgium currently operates a fleet of Airbus A340-300s for its passenger operations. Photo by Anselm Ranta | AeroNewsX.

That is set to change however. Although yet to be communicated officially, two Airbus A330neos are undergoing preparation in Toulouse destined for none other than Air Belgium. The aircraft will equip the airline with a competitive advantage against the likes of Brussels Airlines and TUI Airlines Belgium – the country’s two largest airlines.

The two Airbus A330-900s sitting at Toulouse were originally destined for the now defunct Air Berlin. At the hands of Air Lease Corporation, Rwandair revealed interest in leasing the two and the aircraft were painted in the carrier’s livery. Eventually the agreement fell through and the planes were left without an operator.

F-WWCJ, the Airbus A330-900 that will soon be registered OO-ABF and painted in Air Belgium colours. Photo by Olivier Hoarau | AeroNewsX.

A sticker with the Air Belgium branding on it has been spotted on an Airbus A330-900neo in Toulouse, registered MSN1844. The aircraft will, upon delivery, be re-registered OO-ABF. The other aircraft is registered MSN1861. According to sources for French aviation news site, actu-aero,fr, Air Belgium could likely take delivery of at least one of its Airbus A330neos this summer. The aircraft are due to be painted with the entire Air Belgium livery shortly, as well as be fitted with an Air Belgium-selected interior.

At the CaribAvia conference that took place today, Air Belgium Chief Commercial Officer, Philippe Wilmart detailed plans to replace two of the airline’s Airbus A340-300s with a new aircraft type by the end of this year.

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Source: https://aeronewsx.com/air-belgium-gears-up-for-airbus-a330neo-deliveries-a340-300-replacement/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=air-belgium-gears-up-for-airbus-a330neo-deliveries-a340-300-replacement

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Aviation

Air Belgium gears up for Airbus A330neo deliveries, A340-300 replacement

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on

Launched in 2018, Air Belgium made headlines after it expanded into new and somewhat untouched markets, notably from its homebase in Brussels-Charleroi Airport; a primarily low-cost airport and a significant base for Ireland’s Ryanair. Air Belgium became the first to offer scheduled long-haul flights to Hong Kong from the low-cost hub – a move that surprised many. Not only was the airline competing against Cathay Pacific, who operated to the more convenient Brussels-Zaventem Airport, but it also utilised four-engined Airbus A340-300s – which remain in the carrier’s core fleet to this date.

Air Belgium currently operates a fleet of Airbus A340-300s for its passenger operations. Photo by Anselm Ranta | AeroNewsX.

That is set to change however. Although yet to be communicated officially, two Airbus A330neos are undergoing preparation in Toulouse destined for none other than Air Belgium. The aircraft will equip the airline with a competitive advantage against the likes of Brussels Airlines and TUI Airlines Belgium – the country’s two largest airlines.

The two Airbus A330-900s sitting at Toulouse were originally destined for the now defunct Air Berlin. At the hands of Air Lease Corporation, Rwandair revealed interest in leasing the two and the aircraft were painted in the carrier’s livery. Eventually the agreement fell through and the planes were left without an operator.

F-WWCJ, the Airbus A330-900 that will soon be registered OO-ABF and painted in Air Belgium colours. Photo by Olivier Hoarau | AeroNewsX.

A sticker with the Air Belgium branding on it has been spotted on an Airbus A330-900neo in Toulouse, registered MSN1844. The aircraft will, upon delivery, be re-registered OO-ABF. The other aircraft is registered MSN1861. According to sources for French aviation news site, actu-aero,fr, Air Belgium could likely take delivery of at least one of its Airbus A330neos this summer. The aircraft are due to be painted with the entire Air Belgium livery shortly, as well as be fitted with an Air Belgium-selected interior.

At the CaribAvia conference that took place today, Air Belgium Chief Commercial Officer, Philippe Wilmart detailed plans to replace two of the airline’s Airbus A340-300s with a new aircraft type by the end of this year.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://aeronewsx.com/air-belgium-gears-up-for-airbus-a330neo-deliveries-a340-300-replacement/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=air-belgium-gears-up-for-airbus-a330neo-deliveries-a340-300-replacement

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Aviation

Air Belgium gears up for Airbus A330neo deliveries, A340-300 replacement

Published

on

Launched in 2018, Air Belgium made headlines after it expanded into new and somewhat untouched markets, notably from its homebase in Brussels-Charleroi Airport; a primarily low-cost airport and a significant base for Ireland’s Ryanair. Air Belgium became the first to offer scheduled long-haul flights to Hong Kong from the low-cost hub – a move that surprised many. Not only was the airline competing against Cathay Pacific, who operated to the more convenient Brussels-Zaventem Airport, but it also utilised four-engined Airbus A340-300s – which remain in the carrier’s core fleet to this date.

Air Belgium currently operates a fleet of Airbus A340-300s for its passenger operations. Photo by Anselm Ranta | AeroNewsX.

That is set to change however. Although yet to be communicated officially, two Airbus A330neos are undergoing preparation in Toulouse destined for none other than Air Belgium. The aircraft will equip the airline with a competitive advantage against the likes of Brussels Airlines and TUI Airlines Belgium – the country’s two largest airlines.

The two Airbus A330-900s sitting at Toulouse were originally destined for the now defunct Air Berlin. At the hands of Air Lease Corporation, Rwandair revealed interest in leasing the two and the aircraft were painted in the carrier’s livery. Eventually the agreement fell through and the planes were left without an operator.

F-WWCJ, the Airbus A330-900 that will soon be registered OO-ABF and painted in Air Belgium colours. Photo by Olivier Hoarau | AeroNewsX.

A sticker with the Air Belgium branding on it has been spotted on an Airbus A330-900neo in Toulouse, registered MSN1844. The aircraft will, upon delivery, be re-registered OO-ABF. The other aircraft is registered MSN1861. According to sources for French aviation news site, actu-aero,fr, Air Belgium could likely take delivery of at least one of its Airbus A330neos this summer. The aircraft are due to be painted with the entire Air Belgium livery shortly, as well as be fitted with an Air Belgium-selected interior.

At the CaribAvia conference that took place today, Air Belgium Chief Commercial Officer, Philippe Wilmart detailed plans to replace two of the airline’s Airbus A340-300s with a new aircraft type by the end of this year.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://aeronewsx.com/air-belgium-gears-up-for-airbus-a330neo-deliveries-a340-300-replacement/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=air-belgium-gears-up-for-airbus-a330neo-deliveries-a340-300-replacement

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Aviation

LATAM And Aeromexico Introduce The IATA Travel Pass On International Routes

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This week, both LATAM and Aeromexico announced the launch of trial flights using the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Travel Pass. LATAM already operates this app on international flights, while Aeromexico is set to introduce it next week. Let’s investigate further.

LATAM introduced yesterday the IATA Travel Pass on four international routes. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

LATAM’s routes

LATAM launched the IATA Travel Pass trial on June 14, according to a statement from the company. The airline became the fourth to introduce this app in Latin America. First, Iberia was using it on flights from Madrid to Montevideo (Uruguay) and Panama City; then, there was Copa Airlines and Avianca.

Now LATAM is helping travelers organize their trips in this pandemic-related environment on four different routes. These are:

  1. Lima-Miami
  2. Lima-Santiago de Chile
  3. Santiago de Chile-Lima
  4. Santiago de Chile-Miami.

Paulo Miranda, Vice-president for Clients at LATAM Airlines Group, said,

“This is great news for our passengers that voluntarily want to adhere to the project. Having more automatized and touchless processes is the new reality for everyone, and this pilot test with IATA supports the industry transformation.”

Aeromexico Boeing 737
Aeromexico will launch a trial with IATA’s Travel Pass next week. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Stay informed: Sign up for our daily and weekly aviation news digests.

Aeromexico’s routes

Grupo Aeromexico will also launch the IATA Travel Pass on international routes. Starting on June 21, Aeromexico will test this app on routes connecting Mexico City to Chicago (US) and Madrid (Spain).

Both the US and Spain allow entrance to Mexican travelers, albeit they have to comply with some requirements. For instance, people flying to the US from Mexico must present a negative COVID-19 test, regardless if they’ve been vaccinated against the disease.

Meanwhile, people traveling from Mexico to Spain can only do it if they’ve received the complete COVID-19 immunization. Aeromexico aims to ease the travel experience.

“The trial with IATA is part of our digitalization strategy to keep innovating and offering a safe, agile and trustworthy flight experience,” said Andrés Castañeda, executive vice-president at Aeromexico.

Currently, the Mexican airline is offering over 4,400 weekly seats to Chicago and 4,900 to Madrid.

IATA Travel Pass
IATA Travel Pass allows passengers to meet health requirements, and streamline processes. Photo: LATAM.

What’s the IATA Travel Pass?

The Travel Pass is a digital health passport IATA uses to help the restart of international travel. Peter Cerdá, IATA’s regional vice-president for the Americas, recently said,

“The IATA Travel Pass allows governments to be confident that passengers have met health requirements, streamlines this process, simplifies the traveler experience, and encourages travel.”

Nevertheless, in the last few months, health passports have faced some roadblocks towards success.

The main obstacle towards the worldwide use of health passports such as IATA’s is government bureaucracy. Despite the airline industry lobbying, the world’s governments continue tackling the COVID-19 pandemic independently, slowing progress.

Even among airlines, there’s no common standard. Some are using IATA’s Travel Pass, while others, like Lufthansa, have the Common Pass. While IATA itself has said that there’s no problem in having many private initiatives launching digital health apps, it can become a new nightmare for travelers.

IATA still has to publish results backing up the Travel Pass trials it has undertaken worldwide. More than 20 airlines are using the trade group’s app worldwide, but there’s a lack of information regarding its effectiveness. How many people are using it? How much time did they save with it? Are governments willing to rely permanently on the Travel Pass?

Have you used the IATA Travel Pass? How would you grade the experience? Let us know in the comments.

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Source: https://simpleflying.com/latam-aeromexico-iata-travel-pass/

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