United Kingdom: News

UK to Increase Air Departure Tax in April

UK to Increase Air Departure Tax in April

The British government announced plans Friday to increase its air departure tax effective April 1.  Known as the Air Passenger Duty, the cost will increase for medium- and long-haul flights.
The tax, which is added onto the cost of a ticket, will go from £67 to £69 for a traveler flying in economy class from the U.K. to Canada or the U.S., for example, almost $113 at Friday’s exchange rate.  A …

Finnair Entry to British Airways, JAL Joint Business Venture Gets Green Light

Finnair Entry to British Airways, JAL Joint Business Venture Gets Green Light

The planned addition of Finnair to the joint business venture between British Airways and Japan Airlines was approved Wednesday by Japanese regulators.  The arrangement will allow the three airlines to share revenue and coordinate flight schedules and fares on flights between Europe and Japan.
Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism granted antitrust immunity to the three-way joint business venture, allowing the plan, first announced in July, to move forward.
The …

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Expands Global Entry

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Expands Global Entry

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency announced that it expanded eligibility for its Global Entry international trusted traveler program on August 9.  Eligibility for the program has been increased to include citizens of South Korea who are participants in the Smart Entry System (a trusted traveler program in that country) and a limited number of citizens of Qatar..
The CBP had previously opened up Global Entry to small numbers of …

Heathrow Dreamliner Fire: “No Evidence” of Lithium-Ion Battery Problem

Heathrow Dreamliner Fire: “No Evidence” of Lithium-Ion Battery Problem

The U.K. Accidents Investigation Branch said “there is no evidence” that lithium-ion batteries were involved in the fire that occurred on a parked Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 787 Dreamliner at London’s Heathrow Airport on Friday.   The agency further indicated that the cause of the fire remained unknown but termed it a “serious incident.”
In a four-page statement Saturday, the investigators said that the fire had caused “extensive heat damage in the upper …

Finnair to Join British Airways, JAL Joint Business Venture

Finnair to Join British Airways, JAL Joint Business Venture

British Airways and Japan Airlines announced plans to bring Finnair into their joint business venture. Under the venture, the three airlines would share revenue and coordinate flight schedules and fares.
British Airways and Japan Airlines began their joint business venture in October of last year. The two airlines cooperate on all nonstop flights between Europe and Japan operated by either carrier.
Finnair currently operates daily flights …

DOJ, EU Clear Delta-Virgin Atlantic Deal

DOJ, EU Clear Delta-Virgin Atlantic Deal

European and U.S. regulators gave Delta Air Lines the green light to buy almost half of Virgin Atlantic on Thursday.
Working “closely together,” the U.S. Department of Justice and the European Commission approved Delta’s plan to acquire Singapore Airlines’ 49% of Virgin Atlantic Airways for $360 million.  The regulators also approved plans for the two airlines to form a trans-Atlantic joint venture.
Delta first announced plans to acquire an interest in Virgin …

Snow and Ice Cause Flight Delays and Accidents Across Europe

Snow and Ice Cause Flight Delays and Accidents Across Europe

European airports and airlines from Frankfurt to London suspended well over 800 flights on Monday as heavy snow and freezing weather gripped the continent.  The cancellations came as airlines were trying to overcome bottlenecks caused by cancellations over the weekend, also due to weather.
Air France scrapped 252 flights, Lufthansa (including Lufthansa Cityline) cancelled 276, British Airways had to cancel 110, and KLM  89.   Frankfurt Airport slashed its schedule by 40% …