U.S. airlines are getting a lot of attention of late, with dire tales of gridlocked traffic and passengers trapped for hours because of weather problems, stretched-thin logistics chains and full flights. It’s a zoo out there, which is good for business aviation because the alternative has never looked worse.
Open Travel Alliance
Pogo is the new name for the former iFly Air Taxi, a company that plans initially to use 75 Adam A700 very light twinjets as a start toward a national “air limo” network. “We wanted to find a name that conveys the idea of quickly hopping from one place to another,” said Pogo CEO Donald Burr, founder of People Express. Former competitor Bob Crandall, retired chief of American Airlines, is chairman of the new venture.
Private equity company The Carlyle Group, which has been steadily assembling business aviation assets in recent years, plans to add transportation communications and systems engineering specialist Arinc to its portfolio. Carlyle announced June 5 it had reached a “definitive agreement to acquire Arinc” from its current shareholders—a vast majority of which are both domestic and foreign airlines.
Finding a rental car at an FBO will be much easier soon as Enterprise Rent-A-Car signed an agreement to serve customers at Landmark Aviation’s 34 North American FBOs. The cars will be available either on-site or from local Enterprise locations, and Landmark customers will receive a discount on the Enterprise rentals.
Boeing’s abrupt exit from the aeronautical satellite broadband market last year left Rockwell Collins without a partner for its eXchange broadband service for business jets. Now, Collins has relaunched eXchange and announced that passengers will indeed have access to the Internet and e-mail over Arinc’s SkyLink network.
The Air Transport Association (ATA), which called the House’s bill “business as usual,” and its various airline members are still pushing hard for user fees. In an e-mail last week to frequent fliers, United Airlines chairman, president and CEO Glenn Tilton requested the airline’s most loyal customers support user fees, claiming that the fees will support air traffic modernization.
As the wheels of FAA rulemaking grind inexorably forward, the nation’s largest union of airline pilots executed a 180-degree turn on mandatory retirement for airline pilots at age 60.
Be sure to glance left the next time you step aboard an American Airlines Boeing 757 or 767. The airline has awarded a contract to avionics maker Innovative Solutions & Support for flat-panel cockpit display upgrades in nearly 200 airplanes in its fleet that will dramatically alter the flight decks’ look.
Northrop Grumman’s UK subsidiary, Park Air Systems, has been selected to supply air traffic control upgrades in Central and Eastern Europe worth approximately $15 million.
A new advertisement sponsored by the Air Transport Association (ATA) and targeted at airline passengers on the CNN Airport Network has NBAA and the Alliance for Aviation Across America (AAAA) striking back.