Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Can This Airliner be Saved?

Photo by Brian Walker
Armchair airline pilots may be asking why the crew of Delta Air Lines Flight 159 from Detroit to Seoul opted to fly through a hail storm on June 16th, rather than insist on an altitude deviation from air traffic control in China.

The decision to maintain flight at 36,000 feet resulted in some dramatic looking damage to various parts of Delta's Boeing 747 registration N664US and some shaken passengers - none of whom was injured.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Pirep and My-rep on Three Travel Products

When I travel I am often on my own so compact is best, especially since my Lenovo laptop and assorted techie accoutrement is one entire (albeit small) backpack unto itself. So I was delighted to find that the portable, lightweight travel clothes washing machine sent to me by The Scrubba Wash Bag worked as billed. This product gets a free ride in my suitcase and starting position in my latest wrap up of travel products for the aviation crowd. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Monitoring the Well-Being of Passengers but Some Airline Workers Are on Their Own

IATA boss Tony Tyler with the SkyZen app
Airline executives meeting at the industry confab in Miami were pleased to be talking about a new app that coordinates with health monitoring programs for iPad, Android and Apple watch devices. The SkyZen wristband will “offer passengers personalized insights on their flight activity and strategies to minimize jet lag before and after flight,” said Tom Windmuller, Senior Vice President of lots of stuff including the passenger experience with the International Air Transport Association.

At this point the SkyZen is in the experimental phase. No one is sure if travelers already keeping track of their steps, their heart rate and their stress levels want to elevate the self-exam to include how long they sleep and how many times the get up to go to the bathroom while traveling from  A to B.

Growth, Profitability and Timing Lifts Airline Industry

Tyler addresses the executives Photo by IATA
Writing from Miami - It seems strange to me that under the guidance of the soft spoken and urbane Tony Tyler, the airline industry should be experiencing its strongest growth and profitability but there you have it. Just four years after the former chief of the International Air Transport Association, Giovanni Bisignani nominated himself the best director general of the association ever in the pages of his book, Shaking the Skies, in waltzes his polar opposite and actually sees much of  Bisignani's big wish list getting accomplished.

Yes, it’s a happy group of global airline bosses here in Miami and why not?

Monday, June 8, 2015

Global News Events Play Out on World's Runways

Writing from Miami -- If you want to see the down-to-earth impact of world events there's no better place to be than Miami this week where the leaders of aviation are assembled for the International Air Transport Association's annual meeting. Like the wheels of an airliner touching down on the runway, the rubber meets the road on issues like civil war, international monetary policy and the technology boom.

Each news event adds another multi-pronged piece to the 3 dimensional puzzle that one airline might incorporate and use to grow while another struggles to find a way to work around it.