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Low Cost Airline News - Europe.

Jan 14, 2008

Air Berlin

Air Berlin now is Airberlin following the release of a revised identity and logo that the airline said will be part of its repositioning as a global company. First aircraft with the familiar red color but new logo, featuring a red tail and stylized lower-case a, will roll out this month, along with a new advertising campaign. Rapp Collins led the rebranding effort. Jan 8, 2008

Blue1

Blue1 Pilot Pay Talks Halted, Strike Possible. Finland's national mediator halted talks between pilots and SAS's Finnish unit Blue1 on Friday due to disagreements over pay increases, increasing the chance of a strike, a union said. Blue1 pilots' contract ran out at year-end and they have banned overtime work since January 3. Eskola said the pilots would assess the situation over the weekend and announce further plans on Monday. Blue1 was not available for comment, but spokesman Tom Christides said on Thursday the overtime ban had so far resulted in a few cancelled flights. Jan 11, 2008

Clickair

Clickair, which is 20% controlled by Iberia, will add some 10 routes this year, including Barcelona-Asturias on Feb. 1, BCN to Alicante and Dubrovnik on Feb. 24 and Barcelona-Brussels on March 1. It also will add a new product to increase ancillary revenue, a "premium plus" seat that can be bought for 30 at time of booking and secures an empty middle seat in the first three rows. Jan 9, 2008

Clickair

Spain's Clickair to grow cautiously in second year. Clickair carried 4.5 million passengers in 2007, in line with its business plan, but full-year revenue came in lower than forecast, CEO Alex Cruz said while also confirming the LCC will scale down its planned fleet expansion this year. Two new Airbus A320s are scheduled to be delivered in February and March, but deliveries beyond that are being put on hold. Clickair ended 2007 with 23 aircraft and had planned to grow to 30 by the end of this year. However, he revealed he is "extremely pleased" with the operational side of the airline's first full calendar year. Unit cost averaged 0.046 ($0.068) including fuel and 0.033 excluding fuel, he said. He declined to disclose load factors or revenue though conceding that average income per passenger was lower than expected in the second half owing to a fare war in Spain. Jan 9, 2008

Clickair

Clickair flew 4.5 million passengers last year, in line with its expectations, and it plans to carry 7.2 million in 2008, he said. The airline's rival Vueling had a turbulent 2007 -- its share price dropped 73 percent over the year -- as fuel prices and a fierce price war on domestic routes forced it to issue two profit warnings and to overhaul senior management. Jan 7, 2008

Clickair

Clickair Scales Back Growth Plans. Spanish low-cost airline Clickair is scaling back its expansion plans because of price wars, high oil prices and difficult market conditions, a company spokesman said on Monday. The airline, in which Iberia and four other shareholders each have a 20 percent stake, will add just one plane to its fleet of 23 jets this year, scaling back an original plan to introduce five, the spokesman said. He declined to comment on a report in newspaper Expansion that Clickair might not reach profitability until 2009, one year later than it forecast after starting operations in late 2006. But he confirmed that average income per passenger was lower than expected in the second half of 2007. Jan 7, 2008

EasyJet

Deutsche Bank cut its 2008 earnings forecast for EasyJet by 7.4 percent, saying: "(The) 10 percent passenger volume growth was lower than our 15 percent estimate in what is an important trading period. EasyJet shares, which had outperformed other London-listed travel and leisure sector companies by 8 percent over the past 12 months, fell 14 percent to 459.5 pence to value the business at GBP2.0 billion pounds. By 1130 GMT, they had recovered to 477 pence. Jan 9, 2008

EasyJet

EasyJet Shares Hit By Disappointing December. British airline EasyJet said passenger numbers rose 9.9 percent in December, failing to match extra capacity added in the past year and sending its shares diving to a six month low on Tuesday. EasyJet said while it sold 2,899,349 seats in December, its load factor fell 2.2 percentage points to 78.9 percent. When EasyJet posted a 48 percent rise in underlying annual profit in November, it forecast a 20 percent rise in 2007/08 profit. Fitchie said that since then retail sales, a reasonable proxy for airline revenues "have undershot expectations... jet kerosene has traded up to USD$880 per ton versus management's estimate of USD$735, and the pound has fallen 5 percent to USD$1.98 (which is) not helpful with 40 percent of costs in dollars". Jan 9, 2008

EasyJet

EasyJet bag rule. EasyJet says it is maintaining its allowance of just one piece of hand baggage per passenger in order to minimise customer confusion and avoid unnecessary increases in fares, despite the fact that restrictions have been lifted at some UK airports. From today Jan. 7, 22 airports will have the security upgrades allowing carriers to change their baggage policies if they wish. But many airports still have restrictions, including easyJet bases at Bristol, Belfast, East Midlands, Liverpool and Luton. Although most airports have said they will absorb the cost of new security measures, EasyJet says Gatwick has applied to the CAA to introduce a u1.30 ($2.57) charge per passenger to airlines for the new security measures. Jan 7, 2008

Norwegian

Norwegian Air international passenger traffic was up 64 percent, and international capacity increased 45 percent, producing a passenger load factor of 78 percent, up from 69 percent in the same period last year. Domestic passenger traffic increased 9 percent, and domestic capacity rose 8 percent, resulting in a passenger load factor of 75 percent, compared with 74 percent last year. Norwegian also repeated that its operations in Poland showed improvement on the same period last year. Jan 10, 2008

Norwegian

Norwegian Air Traffic Rose In December. Budget airline Norwegian Air Shuttle said on Thursday that its December traffic volume rose, boosted by the company's ongoing expansion. Norwegian carried 487,067 passengers, up 26 percent from a year earlier, while its yield -- an indicator of average fares -- fell 15 percent. Total passenger traffic (RPK) increased by 45 percent compared with last year, the company said. Norwegian is a low-cost rival to SAS Scandinavian Airlines. Norwegian estimated its yield, or average revenue per passenger carried and kilometre flown, fell to 0.60 Norwegian kroner (USD$0.112). In November, the yield was estimated at 0.62 kroner. Jan 10, 2008

Ryanair

Ryanair will establish its 24th European base at Bournemouth on England's south coast. From April the LCC will base one Boeing 737-800 there and launch service to Malaga, Murcia, Nantes, Palma and Wroclaw, lifting to 12 the number of routes it serves from the airport. It also will add a second daily flight to Glasgow Prestwick. It expects to bring 1 million passengers per year to Bournemouth. Jan 10, 2008

Ryanair

Ryanair attacks CAA. Ryanair says the Civil Aviation Authority s (CAA) complete failure to regulate is the reason the BAA s monopoly continues to ride roughshod over the reasonable interests of users and passengers Authority s monopoly abuse has resulted, the carrier says, in a doubling of passenger charges since April, a decline in passenger traffic and appalling security queues, while boosting BAA profits. Ryanair also says the CAA refused to intervene in BAA plans to impose a u4bn gold-plated Taj Mahal development for a second runway and terminal when such facilities should be provided sensibly and efficiently for one quarter of the cost." Jan 9, 2008

Ryanair

Ryanair might open new bases and routes in Italy this year but it had yet to reach any agreements, she added. Ryanair presented its plan to Malpensa in September following news of a reorganization plan that would have halved the number of Alitalia's flights out of the airport. Ryanair's plan would base 12 planes at Malpensa to fly 50 European and 10 Italian routes. Jan 9, 2008

Ryanair

Ryanair Still Interested In Malpensa. Ryanair is still interested in flying out of Milan's Malpensa Airport, but it will not revise its offer after it was rejected by the airport, a senior manager for the Irish discount airline said on Tuesday Jan. 8. In the meantime, Ryanair will focus on developing its operations at Orio al Serio airport in Bergamo, east of Milan, the country's financial and fashion capital, she said. The airport is one of three bases from which it flies in Italy. Ryanair carried 12 million passengers on its Italian routes last year and aims to raise that number to about 14 million in 2008, Dowling said. Jan 8, 2008

Ryanair

Ryanair transported 3.95 million passengers in December, up 18% from the year-ago month. Load factor slipped 2 points to 79%. Jan 7, 2008

ZZ

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Date:Jan 14, 2008
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