Friday, November 28, 2014

Cattle to Coddle Class; Tips from JetBlue, Turkish and Others

My friend enjoyed first class treatment on Thai
I don't often sit outside of the economy cabin when I fly and neither do most of my friends. So when I or someone I know gets an upgraded experience it is fun to compare what the various airlines consider a lux experience.

An acquaintance told me that he cashed in all his mileage points for a first class seat from somewhere in Asia to San Francisco. His journey required him to fly one leg on Thai Airways and change in Bangkok to United.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Dreamliner Fuels the Boom in International Flying

A UA 787-9 photo courtesy United
Passengers on United Flight 98 from Los Angeles to Melbourne, Australia on October 26, participated in small slice of aviation history; flying on the world's longest Boeing 787 route. They not only flew the longest route, but on the first American airline to fly the new stretched version of the Dreamliner, the dash-9.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Malaysian Artist's Mixed Media View of Aviation

Masnoor in his studio in April 2014
One night in Spain, I took a walk down to the edge of the Mediterranean where a brilliant white moon seemed to turn the water into a sea of graphite. I had no camera and so I challenged myself to recreate the scene with words. In his 2012 trip across the Atlantic in a Pilatus PC 12, Malaysian painter Masnoor Ramli Mahmud was asked to do the opposite, tell the story of trans-oceanic flight in pictures.  The result is the one-man show, PATHFINDER#PC12, which will open in Kuala Lumpur on November 27th. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Pilots Didn't Want to Fly With Capt. Who Crash-Landed SW Flight 345

Flight 345 on the runway NTSB photo
The Southwest Airlines captain who flew a Boeing 737 into the runway nose first at LaGuardia Airport last summer had been on the receiving end of multiple complaints by first officers at the airline who did not want to fly with her, according to an employee at the airline who asked not to be identified. The process, called a bid avoidance, is not unique to Southwest. Delta Air Lines, United and others also give their pilots a way to opt out of sharing the cockpit with captains they find difficult to work with.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Hawaiian Weapons in Battle for Market Share; Seaweed and Ukulele Charm

Flight attendant Kama Iona, on an Ohana by Hawaiian flight
When I peeled back the foil on my in flight meal somewhere over the Pacific between Tokyo and Honolulu, I was not thrilled to discover a thin sheet of seaweed, a rectangular wad of rice and a chunky slice of spam. "This can't be a traditional Hawaiian dish," I harrumphed. "Where are the Waikiki meatballs with pineapple?"  But the funny thing about authentic cuisine is that sometimes it has a way of undoing Betty Crocker-inspired notions of what various cultures eat.