Great Moments in Travel History – April 2015

A Boeing 737 in American Airlines old livery and a Boeing 787 Dreamliner

The Fairmont Hotel San Francisco was ready to open, when on April 18, 1906, the city suffered a devastating earthquake.  Fires from the quake consumed much of the property, and the hotel had to be reconditioned before reopening exactly one year later.  The property is still in operation today, and is a member of the Historic Hotels of America.
On April 24, 1909, Wilbur Wright brought along a photojournalist on a …

Boeing Employees in South Carolina File with NRLB for Union Election

Boeing Employees in South Carolina File with NRLB for Union Election

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers moved to unionize workers at Boeing’s South Carolina plant Monday, filing a petition with the National Labor Relations Board.
The petition calls for the NLRB to hold an election for the 2,400 production employees at the North Charleston plant.  The NLRB will first review IAM’s filing to determine if the requirements for a unionization vote have been fulfilled.  If it determines that they …

Virgin Atlantic Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner – Virtual Tour and Review


Boeing almost didn’t build the Dreamliner. It saw the future of air travel as one in which planes would circumnavigate the world at close to the speed of sound and, accordingly, planned an aircraft called the Sonic Cruiser that could attain Mach 0.98. In part due to rising fuel costs at the turn of the century, airlines had something else in mind: long-range planes that were more fuel efficient and …

Great Moments in Travel History – March 2015


The St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco opened on March 21, 1904.  Notable individuals including Theodore Roosevelt, Helen Keller, Woodrow Wilson, Charlie Chaplin, Ronald Reagan, and Queen Elizabeth II have all stayed at the California property, which is in operation today as the Westin St. Francis.
On March 10, 1910, William Boeing bought Heath’s Shipyard in Seattle, Washington.  The shipyard, located on the Duwamish River, would become Boeing’s first airplane factory.
Le Canard …

Alaska Airlines Orders Six Boeing 737-900ERs

Alaska Airlines Orders Six Boeing 737-900ERs

Alaska Airlines announced that it placed an order for six Boeing 737-900ER aircraft.  The order is valued at $594 million at list price, and the airline is scheduled to take delivery of the planes by 2017.
Alaska says that it plans to replace its current 737-400s with its new 737-900ERs over the next few years.  The 737-900ERs are capable of transporting 25% more passengers on the same amount of fuel as …

Transavia Orders 17 Next Generation 737-800s

Transavia Orders 17 Next Generation 737-800s

Boeing announced that Transavia, a low-cost subsidiary of Air France/KLM, ordered 17 Next Generation 737-800s.  The order, which includes options for three additional aircraft, is valued at $1.6 billion at list price.
The Boeing 737-800 is part of the 737 Next Generation family, which consists of the -600, -700, -800, and -900 models of the aircraft.  It is the third generation of the 737 and has been in production since 1996.  …

Great Moments in Travel History – January 2015

London Heathrow from the air

Christopher Columbus concluded one of the first transatlantic business trips on January 15, 1493, when he began his return trip to Spain, after crossing the Atlantic westward in 1492.
On January 7, 1785, the English Channel was traversed by air for the first time, when Frenchman Jean-Pierre Blanchard and American John Jeffries flew across the Channel from Dover, England, to a forest near Calais, France, in their hydrogen-filled balloon.
The Fairmont Hamilton Princess …