Archive for the 'Szafi' Category

Special Iron Maiden Livery

It has been quite a while since we last wrote about Bruce Dickinson and his big jet. As you learn from that article, celebs often fly themselves as pilots. Bruce Dickinson, the lead singer of Iron Maiden for example is an official pilot for a UK based small charter airline called Astraeus.

Now the famous rock band Iron Maiden is again up for something fresh and new. They are on their new “Somewhre back in time” tour. Well, this is nothing special so far, is it?

The big thing is that now fans can join the band on board their tour jet – with Mr Brucwe Dickinson himself as first officer on it, fly with them to the scene of the next concert, stay at a hotel and fly back together with them the next day. The funky thing is that the whole package costs only £349 – £399 depending on the scene.

B757 with special Iron Maiden livery

Costs also include:

Captain Bruce Dickinson– Exclusive themed Bruce Air ED FORCE ONE goodie bag
– Personally signed photo of Bruce in Ed Force One
– Standing ticket to the Iron Maiden concert
– Bus transfers at destination to venue and to and from hotel where trip includes hotel.

The aircraft itself has a special Iron Maiden livery with the skull known from the album cover on the tail of the Boeing 757. You can book your flight on the special charter with Captain Bruce Dickinson on now. You can read more on Iron Maiden’s official website.


By Szafi

The Scandalous Road of A380

On 25 October 2007 the first scheduled flight operated by an Airbus A380 takes off from Singapore to Sydney. Tickets for the first flight were sold on e-Bay for USD 1,25 million. The total profit of the first flight will go to charity. Singapore Airlines is a very caring, proud new owner. They took part in the developments from day one. CEO Chew Choon Seng said at the delivery ceremony: “From today there is a new queen of the skies in air travel.”

The Supersize Queen

The Superjumbo is a record from many aspects. The following numbers present how outstanding this giant plane is. It is 73 m long (as a comparison the width of a soccer field is 73 m). Its wingspan is 80 m and its height is 24 m. The operating empty weight is 277 tons, while maximum take off wieght is 560 tons. Usable cabin space: 630 sq m. In the cockpit there are no more rod controls, normal PC joysticks are used isntead. The big lady requires more space on the ground, too. The early studies thought that the A380 will ruin all runways and taxiways, but the first tests show it harms concrete and asphalt less than Boeing 747 as A380 has 22 wheels, while Jumbo has 4 less. It seems that any airport can accept the A380, but still it needs more space on tha apron and during maneuvering in front of the terminal buildings. Bridges designed for double decker planes are also necessary for simultaneous passenger boarding. Naturally the huge engines make bigger turbulance than other frequently used passenger aircrafts, so more space is needed for taking off or landing after an A380.

Airbus A380 nose by Hervé Goussé (from

Flying Wonderland

The huge milady is definately luxurious. The new Singapore Airlines fleet member will carry 471 people on board (the plane itself can be seated up to 800, but the standard 3 cabin – economy, business, first – configuration can have 550 seats). The 399 economy seats will feature and a 23 cm widescreen for 100 movies, 180 TV programmes, 700 cd and 22 radio stations to choose from. The 60 business seats on the upper deck will be laid-out in a 1-2-1 formation, with each seat being 86 cm wide. The business seats convert to a fully-flat bed. The First Class Suites look something similar to old classy train cabins rather than airplane seats. They are cabins and not seats with a full size mattress, a wide screen on the wall and they can easily be transformed from a bedroom to a mini restaurant, where first class passengers can invite their first class mates for dinner. First class cabins can be paired up and opened to a bigger suite with a double bed.

A380 Interior as planned by Emirates (Business Class)

It is not just Singapore Airlines that wants to give special services to its high yield passengers. Emirates that has just reseated it 777 fleet with first class cabins resembling the spirit of the old Orient-Express. They are expected to present similar luxury on board their new A380s. They will probably create more social scenes as well, such as a bar or a fitness room at least that is what Virgin Atlantic plans to do, so they must keep themselves competitive. 🙂 Qantas also plans a bar and even their business class seats will have built-in massage function. Lufthansa has just presented the first part of their new First Class concept by opening a new First Class lounge at Frankfurt and Munich.

The long and winding road

Airbus started planning the development of a Megaliner – as they called it at that time. Their goal was to break the dominance of Boeing in the giant planes segment with its very successful 747. Other competitors also tried to enter the market, but they all failed. It was clearly visible that this segment is too small for more than 2 models, therefore Airbus and Boeing joined efforts and wrote a feasibility study of a common plane together. The common development never started, so following the decision of Airbus’ Supervisory Board on 19 december 2000, a EUR 8.8 bllion project was started. The number 8 in the A380 is a symbol of the double deck and in many Far-Eastern cultures it is a lucky number (and as mentioned above, Singapore Airlines took part from the first day). The number was not that lucky in this case though as the project missed its deadline by 1,5 years and overdrafted its budget by EUR 2.2 billion. The first delay was announced in June 2005 blaming the enormous amount (530 km) of cables needed for each oaircraft. The next delay came in June 2006 followed by a 26% drop in the value of Airbus and the owner company EADS shares. At this point there were serious consequences and the CEO of EADS and Airbus and the A380 programme manager had to leave their companies. It was the new CEO who announced the biggest delay in October 2006 and successfully estimating the first delivery to happen a year later. In connection with the delays, a new scandal came into the sight of both the media and the French parliament. It appeared that before the June 2006 delay announcement, EADS and Airbus high level managers sold their shares. They are accused with internal trading and now a legal procedure is on against them.

What is next?

Seventeen airlines have ordered the A380, including an order from aircraft lessor ILFC. Total orders for the A380 stand at 190, of which 165 were firm as of 30 September 2007. Airbus expects to sell a total of 750 aircraft, and estimated break-even at 420 units, increased from 270 due to the delays and the falling exchange rate of the US dollar. In April 2007, Airbus CEO Louis Gallois said that break-even had risen further, but declined to give the new figure. Industry analysts anticipate between 400 and 880 sales by 2025. As of 2006, the list price of an A380 is US$ 296 to 316 million, depending on equipment installed.

CEO’s celebrating the delivery of the first A380 to Singapore Airlines

It is still unprojectable whether the business model of such a huge tin lady will be successful or not. It can be operated profitably by airlines taht have many long haul flights with huge number of passengers on these routes. The number of such airlines is limited and due to travel seasons it is not sure that even on these routes they can always fill this huge bird. Anyway we keep our fingers crossed, because when seeing such scientific development, we can always see our own evolution.

By Szafi and Balint01

100th Anniversary Post – Sex On An Airplane

Well, when we (actually Szafi first) started this blog, we didn’t think about how many articles we would write here, how often would we publish a post or how many visitors/readers we would get. But here we are, publishing our 100th post 104 days after the first article (03JUN2007). So we almost made it to have 100 posts in 100 days, but missed it with four days… Nevermind, if we round up the numbers, we end up with an average of 1 article per day, which we didn’t really plan at the beginning!! 🙂

We have grown in style and habits: we have teamed up with AvConet to feature aviation jobs, we have a weekly “column”: Friday Fun, and we have been following a few developing issues and stories: 100% E-Ticketing, Celebrity Planes, A380 and B787 developments, the launch of Air Mistral, the developments at our previous airline employer: Malév, not to mention airline IT related news and reviews of websites. It is now also known to us, that most people if search for something related to aviation, it will most likely be about an accident which is currently in the news, or celebrities and their planes in general. But of course you also search for other airline related stuff, such as “Dreamliner”, or “Tickets for A380”, but “John Travolta and his planes”, “Air China Fire” and the “Red Bull Air Race” are also among top search words.

We have also grown in terms of visitors, and this is the most important to us. It is probably directly linked with the more and more articles we have, but we also hope that there are many of you who check our blog regularly and have added it to your favourites! 🙂

And here comes the big question of the day: What shall we write our anniversary article about? 🙂 We thought of many-many things, such as:

  • funny airline jokes – we do that every Friday!
  • ourselves – please see our Authors page!
  • the weather – people always talk about the weather, why should we?
  • a compilation of the “Best of Airlineworld Posts” – it’s not really our task to come up with that
  • blog statistics – that would be too “dry”, right?
  • etc.

Lynx Jet Advertisement Excerpt

So we come up with the idea of writing about something that would interest everyone: sex. But how is sex related to aviation? Now, I think everybody knows the answer – sex on the plane. Let us admit we all think about it every now and then when we fly. And why is it? Believe it or not it is not just the effect of movies. You would be surprised how often it happens that passengers (and shhh, but sometimes crew as well) get too horny during flying. It is believed to be due to the combination of lack of oxygen, too much alcohol (1 glass of drink in the air equals 2-3 glasses on ground) and boredom. The most common thing passengers do is that they meet up in one of the toilets and sometimes they forget there is an alarm button in the toilet that gives a signal to flight attendants if somebody gets in trouble inside. So sometimes the flight attendants know about what is going on inside as they can see the signal switched off and on continuously…

Many times people do not bother going to the toilet. They simply do their things under some clothes or a blanket at their seats. But again I have to say: flight attendants who see way more things than anyone can imagine know it perfectly well what is going on.

You can find more technical explanations and suggestions about sex on an airplane as a passenger a’la Airplane Safety Card style here

How about the cabin crew? Well, on long haul flights in bigger aircrafts, there is a small galley for the crew where they can get some rest. That is the most common place for a little hide-away for them. But to be honest, most long-haul flights would make the crew sleep-over at their destination (sometimes for a few days), so they have other chances in the hotel, as well, but this is a different story…

There is one more thing to add to the kinky side of flying. There are many airlines who are very tough with their crew about their outfit. They must be between a certain height (too tall people cannot fit into some aircrafts and too small people cannot assist passengers with the overhead compartments) and they must not be overweight. There are airlines that do not allow the flight attendants to wear too tight uniforms, because the silhouette of their panties is visible on the skirt itself. Therefore most flight attendants at these airlines simply do not wear panties. But we do not have to know that to find uniforms themselves exciting.

There are other, legal ways of having sex above the clouds, such as renting a small, special equipped aircraft from Flamingo Air in Cincinnati, OH or from Bob Smith in Georiga, and of course if you rent or buy a private jet, it’s yet again a different story…

We hope we could add some spice (and not just with this article, but the other 99 as well) to your thoughts about flying. 🙂

by balint01 and Szafi

Red Bull Driving and Flying Circus in Budapest

Budapest is hosting the 11th round of the 2007 Formula-1 Championship this weekend. This will be the 22nd Hungarian F1 Grand Prix. This weekend’s events took off with a small parade in the city center. As you all know Red Bull is the main sponsor of the Red Bull Racing and Toro Rosso teams. Red Bull on the other hand also sponsors the so called Red Bull Air Race. The idea of this air race came from a Hungarian pilot, Peter Besenyei. He has been world champion in stunt flying several times and probably he found it boring just to fly around, so he came up with the idea of this race. Besides pilots, we spectators enjoy it, too and downtown Budapest has been a traditional venue of the Air Race World Championship as well, on August 20th, every year.

The aircraft of Mr BesenyeiRed Bull Toro RossoThe aircraft of Mr Besenyei

So the point in the parade today was that we could see an F1 car and a stunt flight meeting up at the famous Chain Bridge in Budapest. Meeting up meant that Mr Besenyei flew through under (!) the bridge, while the Red Bull F1 car drove over it.

Besides this weird randez vous, there were several other interesting participants of this short parade today. Actually there was more action and more vehicles on the ground than in the air, but for us, airline world bloggers, the air stunts were more a bit more eye catching, even though we loved the cars as well. So besides the Edge 540 stunt plane of Besenyei, we saw the following cars: the Official safety car of the F1 Championships: a Mercedes-Benz CLK 63 AMG, several participants of the Dakar rally (Hungarians and Red Bull associates), the current Red Bull Renault RB3 and Toro Rosso STR-02 F1 cars driven by Mark Webber and Vitantonio Liuzzi, and then came some historic F1 cars (McLaren MP4 from 1987 driven by Gerhard Berger, two old Tyrells from the early 1970’s and a red-and white 1971 Surtees).

As you may know Red Bull is an Austrian company and as Hungary is a neighbouring country, they tend to consider the Hungarian GP as their “closest to home” race each year. Gerhard Berger has always admitted that he loves Budapest and feels home over here, especially as when he was still racing, many of his home fans came to cheer him over here. Now he’s a team owner but still likes this event very much, that’s why accepted the invitation to drive an older F1 car on the streets of Budapest after so many years of not driving.

And here are the pictures:

By balint01 & Szafi

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