Monthly Archives: May 2004

Vacation Time

Hi all. I’m headed out on vacation, so there’ll be limited-to-no news from me until June 7th. If I get to an Internet cafe I’ll try to write, but I won’t be counting on that. When I return, I’ll be sure to bore you with my tales of flights on EasyJet and Ryanair. See you in 10 days.

CDG Collapse and the A380

The New York Times suggests that the collapse of Charles de Gaulle’s terminal 2E could delay Air France’s delivery of the new A380 (you’ll remember that Virgin postponed delivery of the same plane last week). The article is a bit odd, in that everyone involved denies that the collapse will affect delivery, but the reporter is rather convincing.

Australia…and Amtrak

The Webflyer blog mentions that United has a very inexpensive $639 fare from DC to Sydney Australia—just about the lowest I’ve seen from the east coast. The same blog also provides a bunch of discount codes for Amtrak (including discounts on Acela trains, which is quite rare). (Max, a co-worker, just pointed out that United has a $599 r/t from JFK to Sydney. Even better. Perhaps I should actually do some research before I post stuff…anyway, you can get it at under their e-Savers.)

Incidentally, you know it’s a slow news morning when I’m posting train discounts.

Virgin and New York

Any out-of-work airline employees in San Francisco or New York may be interested to hear that the new Virgin USA has narrowed its search for a home city to those two areas. The airline, which most suspect will most resemble JetBlue, will launch sometime next year.

Job Posting

Are you an out of work airline Chief Operating Officer? If so, I may have a job for you. Blackstar, which was supposedly going to begin “luxury” service between Los Angeles and Paris and Frankfurt, is looking for someone to actually run the company after the departure of its president. The, ahem, airline says that it will now launch a year later than expected, perhaps by next March.

Flying Cheap…and Safe…to Israel

OK, not cheap, but safe. EL Al is placing an anti-missle system on its aircraft beginning next month. Flight Guard will fire flares designed to confused a heat-seeking missle if the aircraft comes under missle attack.

Flying Cheap in First Class

US Airways announced its new GoFirst fares as part of its new fare restructuring. The new fares offer extremely low first class travel. Yes, I sound a bit like an ad. But this is really quite a good deal…you can fly r/t in first class from Philly to Phoenix for $698. Seriously. That’s crazy. A bunch of other cities are available and are oftentimes cheaper than flying in coach from Newark.

Flying Cheap to Iceland

A follow up to last week’s story about Cheap Tickets loading $0 fares from JFK to Iceland…after much back-and-forth, the airline and the online agency have agreed to honor the tickets, which totaled $60 after taxes. It is believed that more than 800 people received the $0 fare, most of whom are gloating about it on the forums.

Flying Cheap to London

What’s the cheapest way to fly from Dhaka, Bangladesh, to London? Why stowaway in a space above a toilet, of course! Five Indians were found hiding on a Biman Bangladesh flight from Hong Kong to Dhaka, with continuing service to London. The stowaways were found hiding in a space above a toilet on the DC-10, apparently trying to get to London. The five were arrested but not injured.

Competition Heats Up at Dulles

United said it would match most of Independence Air’s new low fares from Dulles on competiting routes, plus they’d throw in 2500 bonus miles for the effort. United certainly has every right in the world to try to compete, but as a bankrupt airline currently being propped up by taxpayer-funded loans, this feels icky to me. Sure, United’s fares are now low—but you and I are subsidizing it.

Independence Air has rolled out its frequent flyer program, i-Club. First rule about i-Club is that you don’t talk about i-Club. Also, you earn one dollar for every dollar spent on the airline. Accumulate 1500 points, get a free ticket to anywhere they fly less than 1500 miles away. No blackout dates, no restrictions. Smells a lot like Southwest’s program, and that’s a good thing.