Beginning October 25, 2009, British Airways will start flying Male, Maldives nonstop on a 777 from London’s Gatwick airport. The flight operates 3x weekly and is a 3-cabin plane (Business/Premium Economy/ Economy). The outbound from London departs on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays arriving the next morning, while the return departs Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The return is a daylight service. It appears that the service will be year round.
Along with Maldives, Britsh Airways will launch Sharm El Sheikh and Punta Cana. It’s a shame they aren’t running the flights from Heathrow, but British Airways’ holiday flights now tend to operate from Gatwick.
I was wondering which full service European airline will take the “plunge” (pun intended) and fly to the Maldives first. I remember reading about LOT planning flights from Warsaw and Virgin Atlantic wanting to start flights from London- Heathrow. Guess they were too slow as Sri Lankan airlines launched the flights first. Personally, I was betting on Lufthansa from Frankfurt or Swiss from Zurich.
Normally, I don’t blog about other airline’s routes aside from Star Alliance, but the Maldives are a destination that’s close to my heart and to which I plant to return to. Plus, I could redeem some of my AA miles on the new flight and try out Club World cabin on British Airways.
If you’ve ever red any of my posts on aviation related forums like Airliners.net, USAviation.com or FlyerTalk.com, you’ll recall that I’ve been touting Warsaw as a necessary route for US Airways out of Philadelphia.
Sure, it is related to the fact that I’m Polish and I want to see my country suceed with new international air routes, but I also see it as a sound business decision for the Star Alliance member carrier.
I know for a fact that US Airways is interested in starting nonstop service to Moscow, Russia (DME specifically), and I’m sure the route will do well, but WAW is an established Eastern European Star Alliance hub. LOT offers daily service to major Eastern European cities- an area which is a “gap” within the alliance. Since the B757 doesn’t have the range to fly this route at full capacity, a 767 would be sufficient.
Other routes I’d like to see:
Salt Lake City (SLC) served from an East Coast hub
Washington Reagan (DCA) perimeter exemptions for US to fly DCA-LAX/SFO/SAN
Tokyo, Japan (NRT)
Viennia, Austria (VIE)
POS, Port Of Spain, Trinind & Tobago from CLT
PHX- San Juan, Puerto Rico
CLT-PVR (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)
Some are wishful thinking, I know. I’m actually riding a train as I type this, so I am sort of bored, bur I wanted to sharing some raw and just put it out there. Comments appreciated. If you have a route you deem interesting, yet still realistic, share that as well!
Was recently reading a thread on Airliners.net about LOT’s ongoing financial problems. Found a very unique, yet depressing picture of a LOT B767. I believe this was taken in Warsaw. I sure hope LOT can “ride out” the storm and receive delivery of a brand new B787. LOT will be the first airline to fly the B787 in Europe.
One my Mom’s friends turned to the King for help with booking a trip for her Mom. Her Mom is supposed to fly from WRO-ORD in June, stay for the summer and return back in September. Right off the bat, my options were limited, because my Mom’s friend said to only take LOT under consideration with a single connection in WAW. I guess it’s understandeable given that her Mom doesn’t really speak english and she has connected in WAW for many years. For an elderly lady travelling alone, it’s best to keep it as simple and as familiar as possible. Sure, LOT isn’t the cheapest and if I were the one flying, I would doing something more creative, and cheaper at the same time like an LH/SK combo, or LH via FRA to DUB, then US to ORD via PHL and CLT. Let’s back on topic however as I am not flying this time!
Here’s the part I’ve been meaning to talk about. My Mom’s friend is about 50 years old, so she’s not that old, but has this silly infantile notion that schedules never change. Let’s take flight LO3852 from WRO-WAW departing at 9AM. In the past, the flight would leave at 9:10AM, or so she claims. She can’t seem to understand that some flights get pulled or have schedule changes. She goes “No, No, there is no flight at 9:00AM, it leaves at 9:10AM!”. I am a perfectionist, so yes 10 minutes does make a difference, but in this case there is no flight at 9:10AM anymore. It now leaves at 9:00AM. Period.
Same, odd situation on the return. We were talking about LO4 which leaves ORD at 9:55PM and flies nonstop to WAW. ImmediatelyI heard her say, “9:50PM”. I let it slide, and later on when she was reading back the flights, she said “leaving Chicago at 9:50PM”. Back and forth we go. In the end I forced it in her hed. LO4 now leaves at 9:55PM. Good, the King is done here- put the flight on hold and will ticket tommorow over the phone or maybe on Orbitz.
I understand this post is more like a rant, but I’m curious to see if other people’s parents or older family/friends do that sort of thing? Maybe it’s a generational thing!