Archive for September 4th, 2007

Air Europa, Copa Airlines and Kenya Airways Join SkyTeam’s Associated Partner Program

Today, SkyTeam, the global airline alliance, welcomed Air Europa, Copa Airlines and Kenya Airways as the first official SkyTeam Associate Airlines. As of September 1, passengers traveling with Air Europa, Copa Airlines and Kenya Airways receive the same benefits offered to passengers traveling with the 10 current SkyTeam member airlines, including frequent flyer programs and improved access to airport lounges. The SkyTeam Associate Program was launched to serve carriers in strategic regions who are interested in becoming affiliated with SkyTeam and its alliance benefits.

Earlier this year, Air Europa, Copa Airlines and Kenya Airways each signed an agreement outlining their commitment to meet a set of predetermined safety, security and quality standards to be recognized as an Associate Airline.  As part of the Associate Program, the carriers also adopted a current member’s loyalty program.  Air Europa and Kenya Airways recognized Air France-KLM’s “Flying Blue” program, while Copa Airlines accepted Continental’s “One Pass” program.  Upon completion of all membership requirements, each Associate Airline candidate received a formal approval from the SkyTeam Governing Board to become an official Associate Airline.

Moving forward, SkyTeam will continue to evaluate opportunities to expand the alliance’s global network and enhance SkyTeam’s benefits to more than 378 million alliance passengers around the world. SkyTeam is preparing for the addition of China Southern, the largest airline in the People’s Republic of China, as a Member Airline later this year.

SkyTeam expanded its network this time with 47 additional destinations and nearly 500 additional daily flights.

Air Europa

With a fleet of 37 aircraft, Air Europa serves over 9 million passengers annually and flies to 44 destinations in 15 countries, including destinations throughout Spain and Western Europe as well as cities in North Africa and Latin America. Air Europa is Spanish registered.

Copa Airlines

With a fleet of 35 aircraft, Copa Airlines currently offers approximately 126 daily scheduled flights to 40 destinations in 21 countries in North, Central and South America and the Caribbean. In addition, Copa Airlines provides passengers with access to flights to more than 120 other international destinations through codeshare agreements with Continental Airlines and other airlines. Copa Airlines is registered in Panama.

Kenya Airways

With a fleet of 23 aircraft, Kenya Airways serves more than 2.6 million passengers annually and flies to 43 destinations in 36 countries, including cities across Africa, as well as Amsterdam, Paris and London and select destinations in Asia, including Dubai, Mumbai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Bangkok. Kenya Airways is registered in Kenya.

By Szafi 
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Less Oxygen In-flight

I found some interesting search phrases in the blog stat today. This was one of them:

“Why we feel less oxygen in flight”

So here is the answer: the average cruising height of commercial aircrafts is around 11 000 m (36 000 ft). As you might know, air pressure is decreasing as we rise above. So imagine the aircraft as a perfectly closed box. It was closed under earth circumstances and it begins to take off. It rises up to 11 000 m, where the air is so rare and the air pressure is so low, that the much higher internal pressure simply explodes the aircraft. Therefore engineers solved this problem the following way. Air pressure inside the cabin can be controlled. When the plane starts to rise, they start to decrease air pressure until the plane reaches 2 000 m, which is the equivalent of a middle size mountain, so it will have no harm to human health. At that point they simply stop decreasing air pressure and they keep it during the whole flight.

The effect you will feel is:

– you will always feel sleepy – which is good when stressed

– all objects containing air that were closed under earth circumstances will increase their cubic content, so for example when you open a yogurt or a cream for your coffe, always do it in a way that you keep it away from yourself, otherwise it will land on your clothes.

– your stomach is such an object, too. So no matter what you eat, drink, what pills you will take, you will suffer from gas. This can be bad on a long haul flight and trust me, there are always some people who have no idea about toilets.

– you get drunk much easier. 1 drink in the air equals with 2 or 3 on the ground. This is in connection with your blood’s oxygen content.

There is one more effect I wanted to talk about. When the aicrafts descends, your ears might hurt. This is because while decreasing altitude air pressure raises again and it presses your eardrums. Again as I mentioned earlier, cabin pressure can be controlled by the captain. So when you see the whole plane suffering from ear problems, you should tell about it to the flight attendants. Although I must admit I once asked the stewardess on a Malev flight to tell the captain to turn on the pressure controller, she started to laugh and told me there was no such thing. So when I explained her I am also a Malev employee and by chance I happen to know it exists, she finally went to the captain to tell him about the problem.

I hope this will help everyone interested in such questions.

By Szafi 

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