SINGAPORE – Travellers on select flights between Singapore and London will be the first to experience new cabin products (First, Business and Economy) on Singapore Airlines flights from September. SIA is investing nearly US$150 million initially on eight Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, and this will be extended as new Airbus 350 aircraft on order are delivered.
KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia Airlines is adding two new destinations – Kochi (formerly Cochin) in India, and Darwin – to its network from September 1. Kochi will be serviced daily by direct flights from Kuala Lumpur, and there will be four return flights weekly between Kuala Lumpur and Darwin. MAS withdrew from the Darwin sector in 2002.
NEW DELHI – Hilton Hotels and resorts in India are offering daily rates from Rs5,500 for bookings before September 30. The special rates apply to properties in New Delhi, Gurgaon, Noida, Mumbai, Chennai, Vadodara, Pune, Goa and Shillim-Lonavala. Visit www.HILTONINDIA.COM (ATI).
SINGAPORE – Singapore Airlines has increased its frequency into Melbourne to four daily, with services into Adelaide lifted from 10 to 12 weekly. SIA now offers a total of 121flights weekly into Australia – to Adelaide, Brisbane, Darwin, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney – and remains Australia’s largest foreign carrier. Since linking with Virgin Australia in June 2011, SIA has increased its capacity into Australia by 20 per cent.
MELBOURNE - Melbourne airport handled 37,000 international passengers from China for the month of May, up 17.0% (5,000 passengers)from May 2012, continuing a trend that has seen the China-Melbourne market grow by more than 10% for the year ending March 2013, to reach 685,000 passengers. Over three years the Melbourne-China market has grown 66%. For the year ending March 2013, China was Melbourne's largest long-haul international market for the third consecutive year, ahead of the traditional US and UK markets, and other Asian growth markets.
SYDNEY – The International Air Transport AssocIation (IATA) has called on the Australian Government to reconsider the economic damage being done by the Passenger Movement Charge (PMC), which is currently AUD55 per passenger. Tont Yler, Director-General and CEO of IATA, told an Aviation Press Club luncheon in Sydney that the PMC was originally designed to fund Australia’s border agencies, including customs and border protection, quarantine and immigration, but at $55 per passenger it exceeds the cost of funding these agencies. It is estimated that about AUD800 million will be collected in the 2012-2013 fiscal year.