NORWEGIAN AIR’S SLOW START. Norwegian Air’s inaugural Boeing 787 Dreamliner flight from Stockholm to Oakland arrived at 1:30 am last Sunday morning, about seven hours late, due to mechanical issues. The flight was scheduled to arrive at 6pm for a big welcome party from the mayor, media and other dignitaries), then turn around and depart for Stockholm at about 7:30 pm. Norwegian Air will operate two weekly flights between Oakland and Stockholm on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Starting May 28th, it will add three weekly flights between Oakland and Oslo on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
VIRGIN IN DALLAS. Virgin’s vision of a new mid-country hub at Dallas Love Field is still up in the air. Even though the Dept of Justice has given Virgin the nod, it’s not a done deal until the Dallas City Council gives its blessing. Virgin has mounted a vigorous campaign for the gates, and is bringing in its biggest gun, Richard Branson, to help with the lobbying effort. See the video above for a look at his clever antics to woo the Texans.
SFO SLOW? Don’t forget that the shutdown of two of SFO’s four runways goes into effect next Saturday, May 17, the effect of which is currently unknown. (But we are hoping for the best!) Let us know if the runway shutdown impacts your trips.
UBER IN CHICAGO. Uber is bumping up against the taxicab/limo machine in Chicago, which has put a temporary ban on UberX pick-ups at O’Hare and Midway airports. UberX fares from ORD to the city run $27 to $37. What’s interesting there is that Ari Emanuel, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s brother, holds a stake in Uber, according to the Chicago Sun Times. Speaking of UberX, did you know that it recently added a $1 “Safe Rides Fee” for rides in SF? What cities do you WISH had Uber that don’t? Please leave your comments below. Have you tried Uber yet? If not, use our link and you’ll get $10 off your first ride! (Did you know that non-surge UberX rides SFO to/from the city are now cheaper than cabs?)
UNITED IN BOSTON. United has finally consolidated its Boston Logon operations at the airport’s shiny new $170 million Terminal B. (From previous dual locations in A and C) The new digs include an 8,000 square foot United Club. Have you seen it yet? What did you think?
SOUTHWEST SLOWDOWN. Southwest Airlines is taking some heat for its unfortunate fall from grace when it comes to on time performance. It came in 12th place in 2013, behind all the big legacy carriers with only 77% of flights arriving on time. Southwest is now saying that it’s adjusting schedules and slowing down its quick turn around time. Much of this has to do with Southwest moving into crowded east coast markets and filling up larger planes with more passengers, which take longer to board. Have you noticed a big change in Southwest on time performance? Leave your comments below.