Big Fat Airline Wrap

Happy Tuesday, readers! After spilling coffee all over ourselves and missing the bus, this airline wrap is the most successful thing we’ve done all morning. You’re welcome.

Qatar Airways wins ‘Best In-Flight Duty Free Program’, ‘Best Cabin Concept’ and four TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards


Qatar Airways has been awarded the PAX International Readership Award for ‘Best In-Flight Duty Free Program’ for the Middle East and Africa at an awards ceremony that took place at the Radisson Blu hotel in Hamburg on 11 April 2018. This is the second time that Qatar Airways has been given this distinguished award, and has been acknowledged as an industry leader for its outstanding in-flight duty free service, which is operated by Qatar Duty Free.

Qatar Airways has also won a Crystal Cabin Award for “Best Cabin Concept,” in recognition of its innovative new Business Class seat, Qsuite. The award, announced at the Aircraft Interiors Exposition taking place in Hamburg, Germany this week, was decided by a jury of 28 international experts from a shortlist of 91 submissions and 24 finalists, to distinguish pioneering on-board innovation by airlines.

The airline was also named ‘World’s Best Business Class’, ‘Best Business Class: Middle East’ and ‘World’s Top 10 Airline’ by the highly-respected 2018 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards, complementing a growing number of esteemed accolades that the airline has already received in 2018. Qatar Airways garnered additional praise from TripAdvisor as it was recognised asa Travelers’ Choice Winner for ‘Airline: Middle East’ and ‘Economy Class: Middle East’.

Buy one, get one free offer at the newly opened Plaza Premium Lounge Melbourne Airport


Plaza Premium Group (PPG) celebrated the grand opening of it first Melbourne lounge last week. To celebrate the opening Plaza Premium are offering two for one entry passes until the end of April and a walk-in rate of only $35 per person.

As the winner of Skytrax’s “World’s Best Independent Airport Lounge” Plaza Premium Lounge offers its guests everything that can be expected from a state-of-the-art independent airport lounge: Plaza Premium’s signature honeycomb seating offers extra privacy for guests to work or relax; complimentary high speed Wi-Fi, cable TV and a multitude of electrical outlets allow its guests to stay connected throughout their journey.

The food and beverage offerings include a delectable selection of mouth-watering fare, a live-cooking station, a buffet of hot meals including the Chef’s signature dish of slow cooked lamb shoulder, polenta chips and chimichurri, salad bar, freshly brewed barista-made coffee, and a variety of alcoholic beverages as well as soft drinks and juices.

The new lounge, located in Terminal 2 at Satellite Level Departures is open from 6am to 11pm, seven days a week and at 284 square metres seats 109 guests comfortably. The lounge access fee is $60 per person while children under 12 can access for $47.50.

Singapore Airlines new business class on show as launch date revealed

Singapore Airlines will showcase its brand-new medium-haul Business Class cabin products fitted in its new 787-10 aircraft from Wednesday 11 April to Friday 13 April at the ENEX mall, giving members of the public the chance to experience a new level of luxury.

People are welcome to visit the seat display between 8am and 5pm Wednesday and Thursday, and from 8am to 9pm on Friday. Visitors will have the opportunity to access special fares to a range of popular Singapore Airlines destinations and to try out the new Business Class seat.

Singapore Airlines is investing US$350 million in the new cabin products for the Boeing 787-10 aircraft, with the new Business Class seat converting to a 76” fully-flat bed, providing customers a new level of comfort on even the shortest flights. Singapore Airlines is the First-to-Fly the newest member of the Dreamliner family and has become the first airline group in the world to operate all three of the 787 variants with Scoot already operating the 787-8 and the 787-9 aircraft.

The 787-10 will be deployed on flights of up to eight hours, with Osaka and Perth the first two destinations. Singapore Airlines Regional Vice President, Mr Philip Goh, today revealed that the first flight of the new 787-10 to Perth will be on Monday 7 May.

Qatar Airways Announces Investment in JetSuite, Inc.


Qatar Airways, the national airline of the State of Qatar and one of the world’s fastest-growing airlines, and JetSuite, Inc., a leading U.S. private aviation company, announced today in the presence of the Qatari Minister of Finance and Chairman of Qatar Airways, His Excellency Mr. Ali Sharif Al Emadi, that Qatar Airways has taken a minority stake in JetSuite, Inc. and indirectly in JetSuiteX, Inc.

Qatar Airways joins JetBlue Airways, which will be increasing its investment, and a number of private investors as stakeholders in both JetSuite and JetSuiteX.With this investment in JetSuite, Inc., Qatar Airways will help fuel the growth of JetSuite’s private aviation business, which currently focuses on light and very light jets. The investment extends to JetSuiteX, the sibling company to JetSuite, further accelerating the expansion of its acclaimed semi-private air service on the U.S. W est Coast and beyond.

JetSuiteX fills a niche in underserved short haul markets and small airports, and enjoys a Net Promoter Score over 90, higher than the major U.S. airlines. JetSuiteX operates its fleet of Embraer 135 aircraft from private terminals in California and Nevada, with no lines, no waiting and no stress, at a price competitive with commercial travel. The Qatar Airways investment will enable faster expansion of this fleet and the ability to reach new destinations, including the potential to bring the semi-private model to additional U.S. regions.

Emirates SkyCargo flies champion horses to Dubai and across the globe

Emirates SkyCargo, the freight division of Emirates, has transported leading equinesfor a variety of championship events across the globe.

The carrier most recently flew in some of the world’s most highly rated racehorses to Dubai for the Dubai World Cup Championship, one of the most anticipated and prestigious horse racing events in the world. Some of the leading contenders for the Dubai World Cup such as West Coast, Mubtaahij, and Talismanic had made their journey from their homes to Dubai on Emirates SkyCargo’s fleet of freighters.

Emirates SkyCargo has transported some of the past champions of the Dubai World Cup including Arrogate in 2017and California Chrome in 2016. Every year, during the racing season in Dubai, Emirates SkyCargo plays an important role in flying horses from their homes to Dubai. The air cargo carrier transported horses from across six continents in the months running up to Dubai World Cup.

For the third year in a row, Emirates SkyCargo is transporting close to 100 horses across continents during the first three legs of one of the world’s leading show jumping events-the Longines Global Champions Tour.

Tigerair launches Domestic Airfare Sale – Fares across Australia discounted by up to 40 per cent

Tigerair Australia has today announced a sale to and from the majority of domestic destinations the airline flies to, offering airfares that are discounted by up to 40 per cent off the standard lead in fare.

The sale, which begins at midday today (AEST), provides thousands of great value fares to/from many popular Australian leisure destinations such as Sydney, Gold Coast, Cairns, Perth, Hobart, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane, Coffs Harbour, Whitsunday Coast, Townsville and Canberra.

The sale commenced yesterday and runs until midday (AEST) Thursday 19 April, or until sold out. Bargain hunters are urged to get in quick to avoid disappointment. The best value fares are always those snapped up first.

Boeing, Qatar Airways sign Letter of Intent for five 777 Freighters


Boeing and Qatar Airways signed a letter of intent to purchase five 777 Freighters, valued at $1.7 billion at list prices. When a purchase is finalized, it will be posted to Boeing’s Orders and Deliveries website.

The letter of intent was signed during a ceremony attended by Qatari Minister of Finance and Qatar Airways Chairman His Excellency Mr. Ali Sharif Al Emadi, Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, Boeing Commercial Airplanes President & CEO Kevin McAllister.

The 777 Freighter is capable of flying 4,900 nautical miles (9,070 kilometers) with a payload of 112 tons (102 metric tonnes or 102,000 kg). The airplane’s long range translates into significant savings as fewer stops mean lower landing fees, less congestion, lower cargo handling costs and shorter delivery times.

Sounds Air enlists Sabre technology to support domestic growth


Sabre Corporation, the leading technology provider to the global travel industry, today announces a long-term distribution agreement with Sounds Air, which recently celebrated its 30th anniversary. Under this new agreement, Sounds Air will now be able to expand its sales and agency reach though Sabre’s global distribution system (GDS).

Based in Blenheim, New Zealand and gateway to the islands of the Marlborough Sounds, Sounds Air links the North and South Islands with scheduled flights to nine destinations, supporting the country’s growing demand for domestic travel and offering routes that cater to both locals and tourists. With annual tourism consistently on the rise in New Zealand[1], the airline has recorded a 75 percent increase in passenger bookings over the past three years. Its connection to the Sabre travel marketplace will further benefit Sounds Air as it continues to grow its operations.

Sabre delivers innovative technology that is instrumental to achieving our growth plans, as we continue to set high objectives for ourselves and maintain our passion for the people and places we serve. This has been a long-term project between Sabre and our service provider, Takeflite Solutions.