Virgin Hawaii


Virgin Hawaii

February 2, 2016 – Virgin America, the airline known for reinventing domestic travel, today announces it will its service to Hawai’i with daily nonstop flights from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Honolulu, Oahu on May 5, 2016, and Kahului, Maui on June 14, 2016.  This new service adds to the airline’s recently-launched daily service from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to Honolulu International Airport (HNL) and Kahului Airport (OGG), allowing for roundtrip connecting service between HNL and John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS) and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA).

Virgin America’s expanded Hawai’i service also offers roundtrip connections between OGG and Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD), Boston Logan International Airport (BOS), San Diego International Airport (SAN), Dallas Love Field (DAL), Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD), JFK, SEA, and LAS. The Aloha state is the ‘most wanted’ destination by members of Virgin America’s Elevate® loyalty program and Hawai’i continues to be the number one tourism destination from the West Coast, with over 3.3 million visitors in 20141.

Virgin America’s service is uniquely tailored to the modern traveler and to the longer-haul Hawai‘i flight experience with new aircraft that offer three custom-designed classes of service, touch-screen personal entertainment and an award-winning on-demand food and cocktail menu on every flight – so travelers can kick-off their Hawai‘i vacation as soon as they step onboard.  Virgin America has been named the “Best Domestic Airline” in both Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards and in Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards for the past eight consecutive years.

To celebrate its expanded service to the Aloha state, Virgin America is celebrating with a nationwide “Hot Ticket to Hawai’i” fare sale now through 11:59pm CT tonight, with sale fares from $169 one way* (taxes and fees included, restrictions applying).  The new LAX-Hawai‘i flights are on sale now and can be purchased at or 1-877-FLY-VIRGIN**.  As of tomorrow, Elevate members can redeem reward flights to Hawai‘i – with no black-out dates, for as few as 8,278 points. Members can earn more points by signing up for the Virgin America Visa Signature Credit Card.

“Since we launched our Hawai’i service last year, we’ve seen firsthand why it is one of the most popular leisure destinations among West Coast travelers. The guest response to our new routes has been extremely positive, which is why we are so pleased to announce that we are expanding our nonstop service to the Los Angeles market,” said Virgin America President and Chief Executive Officer, David Cush. “This new service from LAX not only brings this world class destination to our guests and Elevate members in the Los Angeles area, it opens up a number of roundtrip connecting flights to markets across the country.”

“Virgin America is providing more airline choice and competition to our great state, and we could not be more pleased that they are already adding more routes to the Hawaiian Islands from Los Angeles – our largest originating travel market,” said Governor David Ige. “We look forward to Virgin America’s continued growth and success in serving travelers visiting the Islands.”

“The addition of more seats flying direct between Los Angeles and Honolulu and Los Angeles and Kahului will not only expand the availability to more islands, but provide our visitors with another excellent airline option. We are thrilled to have this easy access for both visitors and residents flying between the West Coast and Hawai’i,” said George D. Szigeti, president and CEO of the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority.

Virgin America first launched daily service to Maui in December 2015, which also provides convenient connections to New York (JFK).

The daily, nonstop flights will be operated with new Airbus A320 aircraft that Virgin America began taking delivery of last year, which are equipped with fuel-saving, ‘sharklet’ wingtip devices, allowing the airline to operate flights more efficiently, especially over longer haul routes.

Last November, Virgin America launched its first flight from San Francisco to Hawai’i with a series of festive events – including the opportunity for busy Bay Area workaholics to score the ultimate “Hawaiiscape” with Virgin Group Founder Richard Branson. Upon touchdown of the first flight in Hawai’i, Virgin America’s guests were feted with a red carpet lū’au reception on the Honolulu tarmac – with a traditional Hawai’ian welcome and blessing hosted by Governor of Hawai’i, David Ige, George Szigeti, president and CEO of the Hawai’i Tourism Authority, and HNL airport officials.  Photos from the day’s events can be found here.

In addition to a Main Cabin that offers custom-designed leather seating with a deeper, more comfortable pitch, Virgin America’s First Class cabin offers plush white leather ‘cradle sleeper’ seating with 55 inches of pitch, 165 degrees of recline and lumbar massagers.  The carrier’s Main Cabin Select service offers 38-inches of pitch, free food and cocktails, an all-access pass to media content, dedicated overhead bins and priority check-in/boarding.  The Red® in-flight entertainment platform offers guests their own seatback touch-screen TV, with more than 20 films, TV***, interactive Google Maps, videogames, a 3,000 song library and an on-demand menu, which allows flyers to order a cocktail or snack from their seatback any time during a flight.  With a full service First Class menu and a unique on-demand menu in the Main Cabin, Virgin America was named Travel + Leisure’s “Best Domestic Airline for Food” in 2014.

Meet The Rejected Flight Attendant Who Started Her Own Aviation Company


The hard truth is that its not easy to setup an aviation company, but its possible, Sibongile Sambo is a South African that owns Africa’s fully empowered first black female operated air-borne services known as SRS aviation ( pty ) Ltd.

Sibongile first applied as a flight attendant with South African Airways, but unfortunately she was not considered because of her minimum height requirements, but this did not stop her from following her dream and passion.

Because of the passion she had towards aviation sector, she decided to go for plan “B” by selling her vehicle and also use her mom’s pension money to setup her own aviation company known as SRS Aviation which is an African distributor of new and overhauled aircraft spare parts for the commercial, commuter, corporate, Military and Cargo aerospace Industries.


SRS Aviation is in partnership with MCC Aviation which has more experience in Aviation business, operational and technical support as well as sophisticated fleet of aircrafts.

The South African female entrepreneur is planning to expand her SRS Aviation’s helicopter services and operations in other African countries.



Nightmare explosion sucks passenger out of plane in mid-air

Somali plane

A passenger was sucked out of a gaping hole in an airliner after an explosion from a possible bomb rocked the jet at 10,000 feet over Somalia 1 of February.

The charred remains of the tragic flier were discovered in a town north of Mogadishu after the blast forced the Daallo Airlines Airbus A321 to make an emergency landing in Mogadishu,according to CNN.

The explosion occurred shortly after takeoff as the plane, en route to Djibouti, was ascending to 30,000 feet.

When it landed back at Mogadishu International Airport, about 75 people were evacuated, and there were only two minor injuries among the ­remaining passengers.

As officials tried to account for all of the people on board, reports from a small town north of Mogadishu said a person may have been sucked from the jet in the apparent blast.

A police officer in the town of Balad said residents found the body of an elderly man who they suspect fell from the aircraft.

Later on, Somali authorities confirmed to CNN that one passenger had been blown or ejected from the hole created by the explosion.

“The missing one is reported to have been fallen and found in Bal’ad district in middle Shabelle region,” officials said at a news conference in Mogadishu.

The explosion jarred passengers and forced the pilot to make a ­dramatic descent as panic ensued.

“I think it was a bomb,” said the ­pilot, Vladimir Vodopivec. “Luckily, the flight controls were not damaged, so I could return and land at the airport. We lost pressure in the cabin. Thank God it ended well.”

An aviation expert, a former member of the US ­National Transportation Safety Board, said that given the extent of the damage, it appeared a “device” blew the hole in the fuselage.

“We don’t know a lot, but certainly it looks like a device,” said the aviation safety expert, John Goglia.

There are only two things that could have caused a hole in the jet that looks like the one in photos circulated online — a bomb or a pressurization blowout caused by a flaw in the plane’s skin, said Goglia.

A Somali UN diplomat on board the flight posted cellphone video on Facebook that showed passengers donning oxygen masks as the jet descended.

The envoy, Awale Kullane, said he “heard a loud noise and couldn’t see anything but smoke for a few seconds.”

Another passenger said that he and others heard a bang before flames opened a gaping hole.

“I don’t know if it was a bomb or an electric shock, but we heard a bang inside the plane,” Mohamed Ali said.

What happens when you’re born on an airplane?

Born on a plane

Renewing a passport and border checks are not the easiest of tasks for Shona Owen thanks to the unusual location of her birth.

About 36,000 feet in the air.

To the constant bemusement of immigration officials, her passport reads: “Holder born on an aeroplane.”

Owen is one of a small community of people who made their entrance into the world in this most dramatic of ways.

In 1990, Shona’s heavily pregnant mother Debbie Owen, accompanied by four-year-old daughter Claire, was flying from Ghana, where she worked, to London on a British Airways flight.

Unexpectedly, she went into labor.

She was moved into first class, which was cleared of passengers and an announcement was made for anyone with medical training to come forward.

The expectant mother was in luck.

Dutch doctor Wym Bakker, who had been helping women give birth in the bush in Ghana, was also on board.

Fearing being left alone with a new baby and Claire if the plane was forced to land in Africa, Debbie tried desperately to hold on until the plane reached Europe.

On approach to London’s Gatwick airport, with the blinds drawn, soft music playing, her very own doctor and cabin crew on standby, Shona Kirsty Yves — spelling out the initials SKY — was born, increasing the passenger list by one.

“I’ve always been told I was born to travel and I am working in the travel industry at the moment,” says Shona who now works as an online marketing executive for a luxury tour operator. “It’s quite a good story and it’s a good ice breaker.”

OwenShona Owen

It also became a topic of interest for Shona who decided to focus on the subject for her dissertation while studying for a masters degree at London’s Goldsmiths University.

“When I do tell the story, I’m always asked how rare is it? Or how many babies have been born on a plane? And I didn’t have an answer,” she says.

“So when I did my masters I thought this is my great opportunity to spend six months researching to see how many of us there were.

“It was really interesting reading all these stories and to talk to another person who was born on a plane.

“My mother has met another lady who gave birth on a plane, I have talked to the pilots and it’s kind of creating a community of us.”

She also came into contact with Debs Lowther.

Lowther gave birth to her son Jonathan, just four months before Shona was born, on a British Airways flight in remarkably similar circumstances while flying back to the UK from Malawi.

Most airlines don’t keep records of births so statistics are hard to come by, but Shona’s story is rare as airlines have rules safeguarding women and their babies.

Though it varies, most carriers allow expectant mothers to travel until they are 36 weeks pregnant but from 28 weeks onward, a signed letter from a doctor or midwife confirming the due date is required.

Nevertheless, it does still happen.


n May 2015, Ada Guan and Wes Branch were flying from Calgary to Tokyo when Ada gave birth over the Pacific Ocean.

This was a big surprise for the couple who had no idea she was pregnant.

Guan had seen a doctor before heading for a vacation in Japan and, after gaining weight, had even taken a pregnancy test which came back negative.

There were several doctors on board who offered help and the newborn, named Chloe, was born before the plane landed.

One of the issues that arise in cases of babies born in the air is nationality.

In October 2015, a mother was flying from Taipei to Los Angeles when she went into labor six hours into the flight, eventually delivering a healthy baby girl with the help of a doctor who was also traveling.

Later, she was criticized as speculation in Taiwan mounted that the woman had intended to give birth in the U.S. so that her baby would be given citizenship.

Citizenship laws differ depending on the country. For example, in the UK, citizenship is not automatically conferred to those born in Britain.

In the United States, even a child born in the country’s waters or airspace is a U.S. citizen by birth in accordance with the principle of jus soli (right of the soil) — that’s the right of anyone born in the territory of a state to nationality or citizenship.

Free flights for life?

Popular rumor claims that people born on airplanes get free flights for life.

Any truth in that?

Sadly, it seems to be something of a myth.

Very few airlines are known to have granted a newborn free flights for life.

The only carriers to have done so are Thai Airways, Asia Pacific Airlines, AirAsia and Polar Airlines. Virgin Atlantic granted one baby free flights until the age of 21.

Shona, meanwhile, received two free first-class flights to Australia on her 18th birthday, enabling her to visit her grandmother.

She was later used in an advertising campaign for the airline.

Was she disappointed not to get a lifetime’s supply of free travel?

“It would have been nice but from an airline’s perspective, it’s slightly dangerous to give birth on a plane and it’s not this wonderful celebration.”

But if airlines do start to feel generous, she’s adamant that it’s the mothers who should benefit, not the babies.

“My mum is the one who went through it all so maybe she should get the free flights not me.”


In-flight fist fight: Airplane grounded following mid-air cabin crew brawl


Delta Airlines flight was forced to make an unscheduled landing after two female flight attendants had a punch-up 37,000 feet in the air.

Two staff members aboard flight 2598 traveling from Los Angeles to Minneapolis last week had disagreements over “work issues,” eventually leading to the two having a fist fight in the cabin.

A third staff member tried to

It’s not the first time airline staff have ended up having an in-flight fight.

In September 2012, two flight attendants with United Airlines ended up arguing in front of passengers over a shared jump seat. Only thirty minutes into the journey, the captain turned the plane around, and the flight attendants were removed before the plane set off once again, Flyers Pulse reported. reported.

Two replacement flight attendants had to be found for an American Airlines flight the same month, after the two rostered staff members were kicked off the flight for having “an altercation” over a mobile phone.

break it up, but ended up getting punched herself, at which point she informed the captain of what was happening.

The captain told passengers he was diverting the plane to Salt Lake City as he “wanted to hear from his flight attendants,” the Aviation Herald reported.

Passengers were forced to sit on board the plane for 80 minutes before continuing their flight once again – without the quarrelling staff members.

“Some of our team members did not display their best behavior,” airline bosses wrote in a letter of apology sent to all passengers after the flight.

“We expect our flight crew to be nothing but courteous and professional at all times and what you experienced was far from that.”


Cathay Dragon

Cathay Pacific group enters new era with rebranding of Dragonair as Cathay Dragon

Cathay Dragon

The Cathay Pacific Group today announced a new era of growth and opportunity for its two airlines. Cathay Pacific’s wholly owned sister airline Dragonair is to be rebranded as Cathay Dragon. The two will remain as separate airlines, operating under their own licences.

By more closely aligning the two brands, this rebranding will capitalise on Cathay Pacific’s high international brand recognition and leverage on Cathay Dragon’s unique connectivity into Mainland China – one of the world’s fastest-growing business and leisure travel markets. The airlines’ customers will benefit from greater convenience and a more seamless travel experience.

Since Dragonair became a wholly owned subsidiary of Cathay Pacific in 2006, it has added 23 new destinations and the number of passengers travelling across both carriers has grown five times to more than 7 million in 2015. The combined annual passenger number of the two airlines grew from 22 million to more than 34 million last year.

This spectacular growth has been made possible by the Cathay Pacific Group’s efforts to channel international passengers to and from Mainland China, regional and long-haul markets through Hong Kong International Airport.

Cathay Pacific’s Chief Executive Ivan Chu said: “We are very proud of what we have achieved together. Cathay Dragon is a brand that will be recognisably part of the Cathay Pacific Group for our customers from different parts of the world. The rebranding will enable us to capture the fast-growing passenger flows across the two carriers by creating a more seamless travel experience.

“We are building on what is a true Hong Kong success story that has made our city a leading international aviation hub and gateway to and from Mainland China markets. This rebranding will sharpen our competitive edge by offering an attractive Cathay-led brand package that carries the assurance of a consistently high-quality customer experience.”

Cathay Dragon
The rebranding will see a new livery created for Cathay Dragon that features a Cathay-style brushwing logo. This livery will appear for the first time on one of Cathay Dragon’s Airbus A330-300 aircraft in April and will be progressively introduced to the rest of the airline’s fleet.

Cathay Dragon’s Chief Executive Officer Algernon Yau said: “We can assure our customers that Cathay Dragon will continue to provide the same high level of products and services that made us a four-time winner of the World’s Best Regional Airline award. We will have the same dedicated team continuing to offer their friendly and caring service style. We will also continue to build on our experience and understanding of what our passengers like and treasure, such as speciality Chinese and Asian dishes as well as popular local Hong Kong snacks.”

The Cathay Pacific Group will launch a major international advertising and marketing campaign later this year to promote recognition of Cathay Dragon and the benefits this rebranding will bring to passengers.

Cathay Dragon