Even though regional airline traffic is up 13 percent from the second quarter of last year, and regional airliners account for 34 percent of the overall domestic fleet, the industry cannot continue to pay for security expenses.
Open Travel Alliance
Obstacles against the development of a thriving regional airline industry in Latin America in many respects look as formidable as ever. Lack of capital availability, inadequate airport infrastructure, government interference and a lack of open-skies treaties between nations continue to hinder progress in a region that, in terms of sheer size, holds as much potential for growth as any other in the world.
When UAL Corp. announced earlier this year the creation of United BizJet Holdings, and that the new stand-alone enterprise would include a fractional-ownership program, some in the industry considered this a plain and simple “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” strategy.
Gulfstream and Arinc late last month were preparing for initial flight trials in a GIV of the dish antenna and other hardware components to power a new airborne broadband datalink service called SkyLink.
There was no disguising the subdued, even solemn, mood of Europe’s regional airlines as they gathered for their annual general assembly in Salzburg, Austria, from October 1 to 3. At 6.3 percent, passenger growth for the first half of this year is markedly down from the double-digit growth enjoyed in recent years and, more seriously, yields are down right across the industry.
Orlando, Fla.-based low-fare carrier AirTran Airways took a page from the book of North America’s full-service airlines last month when it enlisted Air Wisconsin to replace some of its Boeing 717 capacity from Atlanta with 50-seat Bombardier CRJs.
European regional airlines strengthened their ties with their major airline counterparts from across the Atlantic last month, when Italy’s Air Dolomiti signed a code-share contract with United Airlines, and the UK’s Flybe entered a similar agreement with Continental Airlines.
In a major vote of confidence for Arinc’s new SkyLink airborne broadband data service, Gulfstream announced it is buying 40 complete systems for installation in customer airplanes. This is the launch order for the system, which Arinc claims offers Internet connections that are five times faster and a third the price of Inmarsat’s rival Swift64 service.
Goodrich has received technical standard order approval from the FAA for the company’s new solid-state VRS-3000 vertical reference system. Designed as a replacement for conventional spinning mass gyros, the VRS-3000 is particularly well suited for aircraft that are subject to high vibration, such as helicopters, but also appropriate for fixed-wing applications.
Arinc announced it has successfully tested a “true broadband communications receiver for aircraft” called SkyLink, which the company said provides Internet surfing capability aboard business jets at speeds unparalleled by competing offerings. The Annapolis, Md.