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Airline Industry News – Week Ending 12.23.06

“There may be 50 ways to leave your lover, but there are only 4 ways out of this airplane”

American Airlines, along with its regional partner American Eagle, is adding new routes with daily nonstop service from Chicago-to-Shannon, Ireland beginning May 1, 2007. Daily nonstop service
between Chicago O’Hare and Birmingham, Alabama will begin April 10, 2007, as well as daily nonstop between O’Hare and Mobile, Alabama. Nonstop service between Miami International Airport and Cozumel International Airport will start March 2, 2007. On April 10, nonstop service from Austin, Texas and Seattle, Washington will begin. In addition, they have applied to the United States Department of Transportation for authorization to begin codeshare cooperation with Royal Jordanian Airlines beginning March 25. Finally, they will begin new food for purchase offerings on select flights.

Delta Air Lines has shot down US Airways in their proposed take over. They plan to emerge from bankruptcy in tact.

Emirates Airlines plans to launch mobile phone usage in its planes in January, making it the first airline to allow passengers to make cell phone calls on its flights.

Frontier has added several new routes, most of which are currently offering mileage deals. [Frontier New Routes]

Mesa Air Group is set to become the first U.S. carrier to operate an airline within China with a new Beijing-based regional airline in a joint venture with Shenzhen Airlines, China’s biggest private airline. Beginning February 1, 2006, Mesa Air Group will begin daily service between Chicago Midway and Decatur, Marion, and Quincy, Illinois.

Pinnacle Airlines announced it has reached agreement with Northwest Airlines for an amended and restated Airline Services Agreement between the two carriers, subject to confirmation by the bankruptcy court overseeing Northwest’s chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings. Among other things, the agreement provides that Pinnacle will continue to be a long-term partner of Northwest through at least 2017.

Qantas Airways has announced it will increase non-stop service between San Francisco and Sydney from three to five flights per week effective March 26, 2007, in response to the increasing demand for travel to Australia.

Southwest Airlines is partnering with the NWA to launch the “Slam Dunk One Sweepstakes.” The sweepstakes will offer a grand prize of two tickets to an NBA playoff game with an NBA legend, including round trip tickets on Southwest for the winner and a guest. Other top prizes such as an autographed LeBron James jersey and a pair of SWA tickets. The effort will be supported online at and

Spring Airlines’ Jinan Spring Holiday Travel Agency has been fined for selling tickets between Shanghai and Jinan for 13 cents each. Wish I would have gotten in on that deal.

Virgin America has completed the last formal step in the FAA’s airline certification review with the flight proving runs. Now the airline only awaits approval from the U.S. Department of
Transportation before they can begin operations.