On 31 October, Oman Airports Management Company (OAMC) welcomed British Airways’ first non-stop service to Muscat from London Heathrow. The welcome ceremony of the first direct BA flight to Muscat was attended by: H.E Mohammed bin Awadh Al Hassan, Acting Undersecretary of the Foreign Ministry for Diplomatic Affairs; H.E Jonathan Wilks, British Ambassador in Oman; Aimen bin Ahmed Al-Hosni, CEO of OAMC; and Anjulika Dutton, British Airways Spokesperson/Commercial Country Manager in Oman, UAE, and other Middle Eastern countries. BA will link Heathrow to Muscat non-stop five times weekly on its 777-200s.
On 1 November British Airways commenced 787-9 services to Moscow Domodedovo from London Heathrow. The oneworld member will operate the 2,543-kilometre link from the UK capital weekly on its Tuesday morning flight – BA233 – according to OAG schedule data. This becomes BA’s first intra-European 787 route. The airline operates a regular thrice-daily service between the two airports using its short-haul Airbus fleet as well as its 767-300s.
On 31 October Blue Air opened its seventh base at Cluj-Napoca, with the Romanian LCC stationing one 737-800 at the airport. To celebrate the airport had commissioned a tasty looking cake. Seen taking part in the press conference that coincided with the base opening are: Marius Manzat, VP, Cluj County Council; Tudor Constantinescu, CCO, Blue Air; and David Ciceo, CEO, Cluj-Napoca Airport. The airline will open its next route from the airport on 16 December – a link to Birmingham. From S17 routes to London Luton, Larnaca, Nice, Hamburg and Constanta are planned to be launched.
Faro Airport in Portugal last week celebrated the milestone of passing seven million passengers since the start of January, with the passenger claiming the title – who flew in from Amsterdam with Transavia – being treated to a unique cycling and gastronomic experience in the Algarve. This gift from the Faro Airport Management was intended to offer its primary customer a unique and unforgettable experience of the Algarve, and at the same time, emphasise the strategic initiatives for product diversification in the region as fundamental aspects in the promotion of the sustainability of what is a tourist region of excellence, all year round. So far this year traffic at Faro is up by nearly 18% when compared to the same period of last year.
On 19 October Tokyo Narita Airport welcomed the arrival of Iberia and its new service from Madrid, a sector that returned after an 18-year hiatus. Seen celebrating at the Japanese airport, along with Kutan the Narita mascot and inaugural crew are: Shigeo Kimura, Administrator of Narita International Airport, Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism; Makoto Natsume, President & CEO, Narita International Airport Corporation; Luis Gallego, CEO & Chairman, Iberia; and Gonzalo de Benito, The Spanish Ambassador to Japan.
This week, Fraport Twin Star Airport Management AD – the operator of Varna and Bourgas airports – officially celebrated the 35th million passenger to use its twin airports on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast since the company began its operating concession 10 years ago. In 2006, the Bulgarian government awarded Fraport Twin Star a 35-year concession to operate and develop the two airports. To date, Fraport Twin Star has invested more than 350 million Bulgarian Lev for developing and modernising the infrastructure, upgrading all technical facilities and equipment, and for training and qualifying employees at both airports. The airport also celebrated that achievement with a cake.
On 14 September 1936, the very first Aer Lingus Dublin to Liverpool flight took to the air and to celebrate the occasion, the Aer Lingus Charitable Foundation brought its 1936 De Havilland DH-84 Dragon aircraft named ‘Iolar’ to Liverpool Airport to celebrate the 80-year anniversary. On hand to welcome the aircraft, which received a water arch salute on its arrival, was the airport’s oldest serving employee, 80-year-old Cliff Johnson who works for Omniserve at the airport and who provides assistance for passengers with reduced mobility, helping them to pass through the airport and onto and off aircraft smoothly.