Friday, March 07, 2008

So where to?

It almost the weekend and a lot of cool stuff have occurred in the aviation world this week. It just seems like aviation is always a hot topic. It always interests me as to why the public is always so curious and keen on what happens in this industry...

A friend of mine is in Arusha, Tanzania for a meeting for two weeks and I want to go see him. Over the years, we've linked up in places such as Casablanca/Marrakesh, Morocco; Montreal, Quebec Canada; Buenos Aires, Argentina, to name a few cities.

Unfortunately, this weekend is proving difficult due to work commitments next week and flight availability. The idea is to fly to Amsterdam, Netherlands (AMS) and then on KLM to Kilimanjaro, Tanzania (JRO) and then drive 30 minutes to Arusha or take Kenya Airways (KQ) to Narobi, Kenya (NBO) then KQ again to JRO. I think I could even fly into Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (ADD) and then get to JRO or to Dar es Salaam (DAR) and then to JRO. So I have a few options to explore.

So what to do then?
Well, I talked about cool aviation stuff earlier and one of them is that Delta Air Lines (DL) acquired at new Boeing 777-200LR and will use it on its first inaugural flight on Saturday. The flight goes from Atlanta, GA (ATL) to Los Angeles, CA (LAX) at the 8:30a flight.

A friend who has a ticket on this flight told me about it a few weeks ago. I contacted him earlier tonight and he says that he is originating in Birmingham, AL (BHM), so it means I have to meet him there or in Atlanta and we will drive over. I think the flying into BHM option works better though...

The Space Shuttle
I'm also looking at doing a quick trip to see the Shuttle go up next week as one of my friends mentioned that. I've seen it launch before and it is spectacular. Endeavour is scheduled to launch on March 11 at 2:28 EST.

Singapore Airlines - from 181 seats to 100 seats
Singapore Airlines (SQ) will reconfigure its A340-500s to now have 100 Business class seats as opposed to the current 64 plus 117 in Executive Economy class. This for flights from Newark, NJ and Los Angeles, CA (LAX) to/from Singapore (SIN).

This will be the new Business class seats that are on the new A380. Ridiculous you may say, but no, actually, the demand is outstripping the supply says SQ. And since that aircraft has a restricted payload anyways; hence its current configuration, then why not? You can read my account of flying in Executive Economy class a few years back on the Newark, NJ (EWR) to Singapore (SIN) route.

Calgary to Toronto - all business class
A new airline, Corporate Jet Air is planning on flying the Calgary, Alberta Canada (YYC) to Toronto Ontario, Canada (YYZ) route in a Bombardier CRJ-200 fitted with 18 seats as opposed to 50 in the normal Economy class configuration. Riders will buy a pack of ten tickets for CAD 16,000 which are valid for a year. They anticipate adding Vancouver British Columbia (YVR) to Toronto and Calgary to Houston, TX (IAH) in 2009 and 2010 respectively. The dream never dies and I love it.

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