Cathay Pacific Flies A350 To Manila


 

Cathay Pacific reveals first Airbus A350 flights from May

Cathay Pacific is revving up for its Airbus A350 flights to take wing in May to Taipei and Manila, followed by Singapore, Bangkok and Ho Chi Minh City in July, following an expected “late April” delivery of its first A350.

The airline overnight updated its booking system to reveal the first raft of regional services which will help crew and ground teams become familiar with the A350 in a working environment before the next-generation jetliner is rostered onto long-distance international flights.

The schedule – which is of course subject to change – shows the A350 winging its way to Manila and Taipei on May 1, then extending its reach to Bangkok and Ho Chi Minh from July 1, and Singapore from July 3.

Cathay’s A350 will turn towards the UK from September 2 with the start of scheduled flights between Hong Kong and London’s Gatwick Airport (initially running four days a week).

The airline also expects to list Auckland as another A350 destination soon after.

Inside Cathay Pacific's all-new Airbus A350

Cathay Pacific is due to pick up the keys to 12 A350-900s this year with ten more to follow in 2017, plus 26 of the larger and longer-range A350-1000s from 2018.

CAPA Analysis: PAL Closes In On A350-900 HGW


The A340-300s are now slated to be phased out as new generation wide body aircraft are delivered. PAL is close to committing to at least six A350-900s for delivery from 2017. A formal announcement is expected by the end of 2015.

PAL is looking to acquire a new high gross weight (HGW) version of the A350-900 which is available from 2017 and will enable non-stop Manila-New York flights in both directions without payload limitations. Airbus has informed PAL that it does not need the recently launched A350-900ULR, which will be available from 2018 and has been ordered by Singapore Airlines for non-stops to the US.

Trans-Pacific flights from Manila are about three hours shorter than flights from Singapore. But flights from eastern North America to Manila are still slightly too long for the current version of the A350-900 or the 777-300ER.

PAL is also looking at using A350-900 HGW aircraft to potentially upgrade Toronto to non-stop and launch a fourth destination in the US. Chicago is the most likely new destination for the A350-900 HGW.

PAL has also been evaluating other potential US markets in both the east and west coasts. New destinations in the western US can be launched using the existing wide body fleet, potentially as early as late 2016 as the two additional 777-300ERs are delivered. PAL previously served Las Vegas and at one point was considering San Diego, which has a large Filipino community.

A fleet of eight 777-300ERs and six A350-900s will enable modest growth of the long-haul network with a focus on North America. Even if PAL ultimately opts for a few more A350s the long-haul growth should be manageable.

PAL is likely to remain for at least the medium-term the only non-stop operator between Philippines and continental North America, which has a large a loyal Filipino population. PAL is fortunate to only have to compete against North Asian carriers in the Philippines-North America market as one-stops via the Middle East is a much longer option.

Source: http://centreforaviation.com

PAL Cancels 5 A330 Orders, Airbus Drops Behind Boeing in 1Q Jet Orders


A321_A330_PAL

(Reuters) – Airbus dropped behind U.S. rival Boeing (BA.N) in the race for new airplane deals in the first quarter after a pair of wide-body order cancellations, while Boeing finalized a major Canadian sale, company data showed on Friday.

Airbus, a subsidiary of Airbus Group (AIR.PA), said it had won new 40 orders in March, led by a diplomatic deal that saw China unblock 27 orders for A330 jets during a state visit to Europe by President Xi Jinping.

However, it suffered two order cancellations, including 12 A350-800 aircraft from a company linked to struggling Italian airline Alitalia CAITLA.UL and five A330s from Philippines Airlines.

Airbus ended the quarter with 158 new orders or 103 net orders after adjusting for cancellations.

Boeing said on Thursday it had won 275 gross orders or 234 net orders in the first quarter. Cancellations for both planemakers ran at about the same level during the quarter.

Boeing leapfrogged its arch-rival in gross orders after winning an order for 61 narrowbody jets from Air Canada, marking a shift of suppliers by the Montreal-based airline. The order, first announced in December, was finalized this week.

Airbus said the canceled A350-800 order came from Aircraft Purchase Fleet, a Dublin-based leasing firm originally set up to provide capacity for Alitalia.

While the immediate effect of the cancellation is to dent Airbus’s order book, it also reflects a deliberate effort by the jetmaker to wean customers off the least-sold version of its newest aircraft as it focuses on the larger A350-900.

That may help clear the air for a possible decision by Airbus later this year to give a new lease of life to an existing model by putting new fuel-saving engines on the A330.

People familiar with the project say the revamp would be incompatible with putting much investment in the A350-800, which is a similar size but has been relatively unpopular because it is a scaled-down version of the A350-900.

Such “shrink” aircraft tend to be less efficient than planned because they inherit some unnecessary structure and weight from the larger base model.

Orders for the $261 million A350-800 peaked at more than 180 aircraft in 2008 but have dwindled to 34 following the latest cancellation as attention focused on two larger A350 models.

Aerospace analysts say the future of the smallest variant of A350 now hinges on its remaining five customers including Russia’s Aeroflot (AFLT.MM), South Korea’s Asiana Airlines (020560.KS) and Hawaiian Airlines (HA.O), who may demand concessions in return for changing their fleet plans.

U.S. carrier Delta Airlines (DAL.N) officially launched a competition on Thursday to renew the top end of its fleet with new jets and its decision could shed further light on whether Airbus goes ahead with the revamped “A330neo”.

In terms of deliveries, Boeing remained the industry leader in the first quarter with 161 commercial aircraft deliveries compared with 141 for Airbus.

China’s decision to unblock 27 A330 jet orders reflected a reduction of tensions between China and the European Union over EU policies on aviation emissions, but fell short of forecasts of a major new plane order pending final resolution of the row.

On Thursday, the European Parliament voted to exempt international flights from paying for their carbon emissions following intense pressure from national governments not to extend current rules beyond domestic air travel.

Source: TIM HEPHER, REUTERS