Aer Lingus has today, Thursday 17 January 2019, unveiled its new brand identity and livery.
It was unveiled by its senior management team at a press conference at Dublin Airport. This is the first major brand identity and livery update for Aer Lingus in over 20 years.
Aer Lingus is naturally keen to emphasise its modernity and geographically advantageous hub in Dublin as a gateway between Europe and North America. And, with an obvious nod to the interminable political turmoil in the UK, Ireland’s place in Europe and attractiveness to inward investment.
Ever since International Airlines Group acquired Aer Lingus in 2015, there has been the question of when it will join the transatlantic joint-business with American Airlines, BA, Finnair and Iberia.
This has long been anticipated so that all airlines can offer reciprocal codeshares and recognition of frequent flyers.
Courtesy of Airline Info, a formal motion has now been submitted to the US Department Of Transportation to add Aer Lingus to the joint-business.
This is a long document that few would want to read in the run up to Christmas.
Much of it covers what is anticipated, namely that Aer Lingus and American Airlines will add reciprocal codeshares on short-haul routes in Europe and the US. The two airlines will also be able to co-ordinate schedules between Ireland and North America, and share resources, such as co-locating at airports.
A few points of note are:
1. Aer Lingus will be free to maintain existing codeshares with JetBlue and United.
Since Aer Lingus joined IAG it has maintained its long-standing codeshare relationships with JetBlue and United.
If Aer Lingus joins the joint-business it will be free to maintain these codeshares and add new ones with more US airlines outside the joint-business.
2. This does not mean Aer Lingus is rejoining Oneworld.
The submission makes it clear that Aer Lingus rejoining the Oneworld alliance is an entirely separate decision from joining the transatlantic joint-business.
Aer Lingus is on the record that no work has been done on it rejoining Oneworld.
3. Codesharing between Aer Lingus and BA may be at risk if the application is not allowed.
Currently, Aer Lingus and BA codeshare on each other’s transatlantic routes outside of the joint-business. This does benefit Aer Lingus in particular, as it gains feeder traffic from London.
The submission suggests that this may be at risk to protect the integrity of the joint-business where all participating airlines must treat each other’s flights equally when selling tickets.
In terms of what happens next, rival airlines may make submissions to the Department of Transportation.
When Delta applied to combine its transatlantic joint-businesses with Air France-KLM and Virgin Atlantic into one, JetBlue, with an eye on remedy slots to launch its own transatlantic services to London, requested that the Department carry out further market analysis. If similar responses are received, this could delay a final decision by the Department of Transportation.
That said, at least there are signs of long-awaited tangible progress.
Aer Lingus continues its strong growth of transatlantic routes from Dublin with the launch of two new routes next summer.
The airline will fly from Dublin to Minneapolis – St Paul from Monday 8 July 2019 and Montreal from Thursday 8 August 2019.
Flights will operate daily. Minneapolis – St Paul will be operated with a Boeing 757 aircraft. Montreal will be operated with a brand new Airbus A321 neo Long Range aircraft, in respect of which Aer Lingus is yet to unveil interior images.
Whilst both routes are already served by direct flights from London, Aer Lingus passengers flying to Minneapolis – St Paul will benefit from US Custms & Immigration pre-clearance in Dublin.
There are ample connections to all flights from London City, Gatwick and Heathrow. If there’s one complaint we could make about timetabling it is that Aer Lingus’ flight arrives in Montreal close to BA’s own daily flight. If Aer Lingus had scheduled its flight earlier in the day, then Aer Lingus and BA would be offering a choice of departure times for passengers on a route where they have a lot of competition in Europe from Air Canada and Air France. Continue reading “Aer Lingus launches Dublin – Minneapolis & Montreal”
Aer Lingus is to fly direct from Dublin to Seattle from May 2018. The airline will fly to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport four times weekly on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. The route launches on Friday 18 May 2018.
Flights will be operated using an Airbus A330 aircraft in a two class, economy and business, configuration.
This is the latest addition to a growing portfolio of transatlantic routes for Aer Lingus from Dublin. It has recently launched Miami and announced Philadelphia. It has also launched Los Angeles, Hartford, Newark and Washington Dulles in recent years.
The route will be codeshared with BA and it will be possible, via ba.com to book a one-stop flight from London to Seattle via Dublin with the benefit of US customs & immigration pre-clearance and a direct flight back from Seattle to London. BA flies to Seattle up to two times daily on most days of the week.
It’s also worth noting that BA does have a codeshare partnership with Alaska Airlines at Seattle to destinations such as Anchorage and Portland. Aer Lingus may well follow BA and add Alaska Airlines as a codeshare partner.
If you book via AerLingus.com direct from Dublin it will also be possible to buy an “unbundled” saver fare which does not include a checked bag, seat selection nor blankets and headphomes.
Aer Lingus is due to join the transatlantic joint-business with American Airlines, BA, Finnair and Iberia which is pending regulatory approval. However, based on comments by its CEO this week, there are no immediate plans for Aer Lingus to join the Oneworld alliance.
Aer Lingus is to fly direct from Dublin to Philadelphia from late March 2018. The airline will fly to Philadelphia International Airport four times weekly on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. The route launches on Monday 26 March 2018.
Aer Lingus has confirmed it is to launch a new route from Dublin to Miami.
The airline will fly to Miami three times a week from Friday 1 September 2017.
The route will operate using an A330 aircraft in a two class, economy and business, configuration.
Whilst Miami is served by a number of airlines direct from London Heathrow, this news is of particular interest as Dublin offers US Customs & Immigration pre-clearance and passengers can avoid long immigration queues at Miami airport.
The route will be codeshared with British Airways and by the time the route is operating Aer Lingus should be a member of the Oneworld alliance so members of Oneworld member airline frequent flyer programmes should be able to earn miles and asssociated benefits on these flights.
Separately, Aer Lingus has also announced more flights to Los Angeles, Orlando and Chicago for the summer of 2017. Flights will operate daily to Los Angeles, 4 times weekly to Orlando and twice daily to Chicago.
The airline has also announced new short haul routes to Porto in Portugal and Split in Croatia.
In terms of what hasn’t been announced, there is still no date for Aer Lingus rejoining Oneworld or a date for the start of co-operation between Aer Lingus and American Airlines.
Aer Lingus and British Airways continue to extend co-operation with each other under the umbrella of their parent company International Airlines Group.
The two airlines are now codesharing on each other’s transatlantic flights between London, Dublin, Shannon and the USA.
This means that Aer Lingus flights from Shannon to Boston and New York JFK and from Dublin to Boston, New York JFK, Washington Dulles, Chicago O’Hare, Orlando and San Francisco can be booked under a BA flight number on ba.com
Codeshares can be booked whether connecting from London or starting your journey in Dublin or Shannon.
The main benefit of this arrangement is that members of the British Airways Executive Club can earn Avios points and Executuve Club tier points in the same manner as a British Airways flight.
All passengers also benefit from US Customs & Immigration pre-clearance in Dublin and Shannon and connections are available from London Gatwick for those who would prefer to avoid London Heathrow.
Similarly, the Aer Lingus code has been placed on all BA transatlantic flights from London Heathrow and Gatwick, giving Aer Lingus passengers access to a more extensive route network.
It’s also worth noting that codesharing does not apply to BA routes to Canada and Central & South America.
Furthermore, a date has not yet been set for Aer Lingus to join the transatlantic joint-venture with American Airlines which is subject to commercial negotiation and regulatory approval.
Nor has a date been set for Aer Lingus to rejoin the Oneworld alliance.
International Airlines Group has today confirmed that WiFi will be rolled out across the short-haul and long-haul aircraft of its airlines: Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia and Vueling.
To date, IAG airlines have adopted a piecemeal approach to WiFi. BA has WiFi on just one Boeing 747. Aer Lingus has WiFi on its transatlantic Airbus A330s. Iberia and Vueling also have WiFi on some aircraft.
On short-haul aircraft IAG is expected to adopt an Inmarsat “Air To Ground” system which should deliver fast internet access speeds. The first aircraft will be in service by 2017.
On long-haul aircraft, new deliveries of Airbus A330 (to Aer Lingus & Iberia), Airbus A350 (to British Airways and Iberia) and Boeing 787-10 (to British Airways) are expected to be fitted with WiFi.
IAG will also aim to retrofit 100 long-haul aircraft (primarily British Airways aircraft) with WiFi. IAG will target rolling out WiFi to 90% of long-haul aircraft by 2019.
The fit-out of WiFi on long-haul aircraft is likely to be subject to IAG being satisfied that the technology is sufficiently robust for the global long-haul networks of BA and Iberia and the cost of retrofitting aircraft makes the investment worthwhile
IAG has not yet indicated what pricing model it will adopt for WiFi, which is likely to vary by airline.
As well as providing passengers with in flight internet access and the opportunity for new In Flight Entertainment services, it will be interesting to see what customer service initiatives will arise as consequence of equipping cabin crews will in flight internet access.