Sunday musings: Air Traffic Control to music, London to Vienna visually, LCCs go international


NextGen — New air traffic control paths set to music

This video shows the new flight paths vis-a-vis the current flight paths that the new NextGen air traffic control system will allow. The money and time savings will be spectacular. What the heck is DOT waiting for?

London to Vienna and back by train – a visually stunning and simple journey

It’s easy to forget about the pleasures of a train journey when air travel is so superficially attractive – vastly better advertised, and admittedly much easier to book. But for me, the sights, sounds and experience make a trip by rail an appealing alternative to the stresses of air travel.

Here is a video guide to the train journey from London to Vienna by Eurostar, ICE, and the link to the video about the EuroNight sleeper train along the beautiful Rhine Valley as the sun set.

TU_Ad_350-350Low cost airlines enter the international arena

One area of the aviation market that has not been successfully subjected to low-cost airlines is long-haul international flying. Now in Asia, AirAsia X is providing that model.

Norwegian Air International is trying to break into the USA-Europe market, but facing stiff headwinds from US airlines and airline unions. However, once low cost airlines make headway, airfares will plummet.

AirAsia X is a long-haul low-cost airline – a model that for much of the world simply does not exist. At the Farnborough Airshow on 15-Jul-2014, AirAsia X became the launch airline customer for the new A330-900neo, with 50 commitments. That is an important intervention, but it is made doubly special because AirAsia X is a long-haul low-cost airline, a model that is consistently written off by industry experts. What makes the story most significant for the purposes of this discussion about airline business models – and more challenging as the industry goes through its gentle process of disruption – is that AirAsia X has also very quickly become a network airline. Nearly half of its passengers through its Kuala Lumpur hub are transfer traffic; and that percentage is growing steadily. Many full service hub operators do not manage that level of connectivity.