tip off

BEN SANDILANDS | February 18, 2015 | PLANESPOTTERS | 6 |

Goodbye first Qantas 747, but hello plane spotters, Buzzfeed

Part of the big picture on plane spotters by Buzzfeed

The announcement that 8 March is the preferred date for the last flight of the first Qantas 747-400 to an aviation museum south of Sydney coincides with one of the few serious media reports on the hidden lives and motives of the plane spotters, who are expected to besiege its sensational touch down on the tiny Albion Park airstrip near Wollongong.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 17, 2015 | AIR SAFETY | 5 |

Did Australia mislead ICAO over the Pel-Air crash?

Minister Truss in action. Tell us more about the donations and Pel-Air?

Updated with partial response from Minister Truss. The Pel-Air accident scandal now threatens to undermine Australia’s nomination of the former chief of  CASA, John McCormick, as the next secretary general of ICAO, the International Civil Aviation Organisation.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 13, 2015 | CORPORATE AIRCRAFT | 11 |

Airbus sees big changes in Billionaire tastes for jets

Billionaires like to travel with larger parties: Airbus

Billionaires are upsizing their jets, while sovereign states are looking for aircraft which increasingly offer a VIP zone at the front and airline style seating at the back, according to Airbus.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 11, 2015 | LOW COST CARRIERS | 4 |

Qantas Jetstar move jointly on more Whitsunday flights

Catseye Beach, Hamilton Island. Where you go to forget peak hours or frosts

Qantas is covering all bases with its new dual brand strategy for developing the potential of the Victoria-Whitsunday Coast market with its premium and low fare operations.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 09, 2015 | AIR SAFETY | 14 |

ATSB forgets Pel-Air in study of fuel exhaustion accidents

Apt illustration from today's bizarre ATSB recycling of old study

Amnesia can now be again added to the failings of integrity and safety focus in ATSB reports on the repeated release today of  its study titled Starved and Exhausted: Fuel Management Aviation Accidents.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 09, 2015 | RAIL | 64 |

Sydney opens two more rail stations for $1.8 billion

Yeah! Premier and Transport Minister celebrate toy train tunnel progress.

Sydney has just opened an extravagently costly SW Rail Link which will never, ever, be able to accommodate the trains that will be run on its incomplete NW Rail Link after it opens in four years time.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 08, 2015 | SPACE | 8 |

Ceres, dwarf planet of mystery, comes into sharper view

Ceres, as seen by Dawn 5 February 2015: NASA

Those moments when a spacecraft turns a faint and distant point of light in the night sky into a newly seen world are among the most sublime that astronomy can offer.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 07, 2015 | AIR CRASHES | 32 |

It looks like TransAsia is in really big trouble over crash

Can airline operations can become so fixed on adhering to schedule that the safety culture degrades to the point where ‘pressing on regardless’ can end in slaughter?

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 06, 2015 | FINANCIAL RESULTS | 9 |

Virgin Australia back in the money in latest results

Struggling to bank the money? Better times for Australia's second domestic carrier.

Virgin Australia has posted second quarter results for the current financial year that show a big turnaround in the profitability of its full service brand as well as low cost unit Tigerair Australia.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 05, 2015 | INFLIGHT WI-FI | 6 |

Etihad reports surge in wi-fi use, but there are problems

Are airlines keeping up with demand for inflight internet, or are you risking your money on crummy connections?

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 04, 2015 | AIR CRASHES | 31 |

Social media records Taiwan turbo-prop crash

Alarming photos of a crashing TransAsia Airways ATR72 in Taipei have been captured by dash cams today, while the numbers of people killed and rescued in the accident remain undetermined.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 04, 2015 | ROUTES | 10 |

Qantas extends Canada services, solves two travel issues

Trail riding in the Canadian Rockies

There are two special attractions, in addition to travel in Canada, in Qantas putting on more holiday season flights to Vancouver.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 03, 2015 | SEATING | 4 |

Singapore Airlines ‘spoils’ economy flyers with more choices

A somewhat detached and unrealistic view of Singapore Y+ seats

If you are looking for an even higher quality experience flying in economy with Singapore Airlines its introduction of a premium economy product in the second half of this year will give the curious consumer some interesting dilemmas to consider.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 03, 2015 | JUSTICE | 4 |

Pel-Air damages claims finally reach NSW Supreme Court

The damages claims of two people injured in the Pel-Air ditching near Norfolk Island in 2009 have finally reached the New South Wales Supreme Court.

The reports from day one are not pretty.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 02, 2015 | STRATEGY | 11 |

Etihad posts huge growth stats, but leaves rivals in the dark

Coming to Sydney-London in June, the Etihad A380

Etihad has posted another stunning year of operational growth, and as it seems to always relish doing, left analysts struggling for epithets because it isn’t relating this to its financial performance.

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BEN SANDILANDS | February 02, 2015 | UFOS | 9 |

Is someone firing rockets at airliners near Perth?

Tycho Brahe amateur rocket payload, a serious but unsuccessful venture

Update: Both incidents are now confirmed as occurring in the same part of Perth air space.

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BEN SANDILANDS | January 31, 2015 | LOW COST CARRIERS | 13 |

AirAsia X fires its CEO, but will it restore consumer trust?

An AirAsia X Airbus A333. Hopefully being readied for a flight with route approval

The then CEO of AirAsia X, Azran Osman-Rani, was removed from his office last Friday immediately before the announcement of a major restructuring of the management of the longer haul wide body franchise of the AirAsia low cost airline brand. 

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BEN SANDILANDS | January 31, 2015 | STRATEGY | 4 |

Qatar investment in British Airways owner might rattle cages

Qatar Airways unwraps its first A380 five months ago. It now flies four of them

There is an unpleasant sub text to the success of non western airlines that could crawl out from under the rocks over the purchase by Qatar Airways of 9.99 percent of IAG, the holding company which owns British Airways, the Spanish flag carrier Iberia, and has plans to take over Irish carrier Aer Lingus.

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