Thursday, September 28, 2017

AirMalta's flight to Amsterdam returns to Malta IAP for technical reason

An Air Malta Airbus A319-100 (9H-AEJ), operating scheduled flight KM-394 between Malta IAP and Amsterdam-Schipol (Netherlands) had return to Malta IAP this morning due to a technical issue. The aircraft landed safely RWY 31 at 0927lt (departed 0750lt). Flight KM-394 was subsequently operated by 9H-AHR (Airbus A320-200) reaching Amsterdam-Schipol with a delay of nearly 5-hrs and 40-mins on its original scheduled time. (28-Sep-2017)

Monday, September 25, 2017

Lufthansa's Frankfurt-Malta flight diverts to Catania

A Lufthansa Airbus A321-200 (D-AISN), performing flight LH-1312 from Frankfurt (Germany) to Malta IAP, had to divert to Catania-Fontanarossa (Sicily, Italy) yesterday evening due bad weather over Malta. The flight then continued to Malta reaching destination with a delay of 2.5-hours on its original scheduled time. (25-Sep-2017)

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Air Malta introduces cheap fares, hives off ground handling to separate company

Air Malta has introduced a new system of cheap fares and hived off its ground handling operations into a separate aviation services company, Tourism Minister Dr K. Mizzi said today.

Dr Mizzi confirmed this morning that agreement was reached with the General Workers Union to move around 450 Air Malta ground and passenger handlers to a new company. "The new company will offer services to other airlines and it will also manage cargo operations," he said, adding this was part of the reform process at the airline.

Dr Mizzi called on Air Malta unions to accept changes in work practices as the airline tried to survive in a cutthroat environment. He said collective agreements with unions had to be in place by a Jan. 1st. He acknowledged the stumbling block was the financial remuneration package but insisted workers will lose nothing from their take-home pay.

He said pilots and cabin crew were being asked to accept changes in work practices in line with international standards and called for understanding. “I am sure common sense will prevail and everyone will be reasonable otherwise the airline runs the risk of returning to insolvency and this time around taxpayers will not be able to foot the bill,” he said.

Dr Mizzi was speaking at the launch of a new cheap air fare intended to attract more customers, who prefer traveling with just a hand luggage. Labelled Go Light, passengers can buy a one-way ticket from €39 for almost all Air Malta destinations with no bag allowance (apart from the hand luggage). Baggage allowance can be bought at an extra charge.

Company officials said the system was introduced in the airline's booking platform last week to test the package and Air Malta sold 25,000 Go Light tickets. Booking activity increased between 20% and 35% as a result of the new package, the airline said.

P. Sies, Air Malta chief commercial officer, said the airline had to attract more passengers to fill its seats. He said the new package, part of a three-way choice for customers, would make the airline more competitive in a cutthroat business.

Air Malta chairman C. Mangion said the airline had to take quick decisions to survive, expressing hope in the airline's future. "The new turnaround strategy is based on the trust we have in our employees… we want Air Malta to be a Mediterranean hub linking Europe with North Africa and the Middle East," he said. (Source:, 19-Sep-2017)

Malaga route for Air Malta next summer

Next summer Air Malta will inaugurate a twice weekly scheduled service to Malaga, the second-most populous city of Andalusia and the sixth-largest in Spain. 

Paul Sies, chief commercial officer, said the airline would be announcing more routes for summer 2018. 

Besides connecting the popular Malaga area, the new route is also the ideal gateway for travelling to and from Gibraltar. Nowadays thousands of expats mostly working in the iGaming industry travel frequently between Gibraltar and Malta, he added. 

Malaga lies on the Costa del Sol on the Spanish southern coast, some 100 kilometres east of the Strait of Gibraltar. (Source:, 18-Sep-2017)

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Ryanair's Edinburgh-Malta flight diverts to Bergamo

A Ryanair Boeing B737-800 (EI-EBH), performing flight FR-6695 from Edinburgh (U.K.) to Malta IAP (Malta), had to divert to Milan-Bergamo (Italy) this morning due to a medical emergency on board. The flight then continued to Malta reaching destination with a delay of two hours on its original scheduled time. (17-Sep-2017)

French Navy Falcon 50 for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

The last few confirmations from much welcomed participants, keep trickling in, even in the last few days before the Airshow. This shows the dedication, commitment and enjoyment of aircrews, to participate in our Airshow, notwithstanding the fact that they are very much operationally constrained, which is the main reason why often, they cannot confirm earlier.

This late addition consists of the French Navy Falcon 50. This aircraft has participated in previous editions of our Airshow, including last year, but this time it will also take part in the flying display program, with some smooth flypasts, showing the gracefulness of this streamlined aircraft.

The basic air frame and design of this aircraft is that of a mid-sized long range business jet, but in time, Dassault developed a Maritime Surveillance and Environmental protection version of the aircraft, mainly for the French Navy.
More advancements may still be in sight for this aircraft as Dassault and Aviation Partners Inc. have announced that High Mach blended winglets, are being developed for the Falcon 50 as a retrofit kit.

The Malta Aviation Society would like to thank the French Navy for their continued support for our and we are grateful of having them back in both flying and static display. (Source:, 17-Sep-2017)

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Light aircraft crash lands at Malta IAP

A Piper PA-34A-200T Seneca II, operated by the European Flight Academy in Malta, crashed whilst landing at the Malta Int'l Airport.

Emergency teams were sent but no one was hurt, a spokesperson for the airport confirmed.

The incident took place at 1722lt.

Movement on runway 23/05 have been temporarily suspended following the incident.

The aircraft with registration number 9H-AEB, is a twin-engined turboprop light aircraft, used by the academy for instrument rating training. (Source:, 14-Sep-2017)

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Ukrainian AF AN-30 for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

The Ukrainian Air Force has officially confirmed the participation of an AN-30 ''Open Skies'' for the static display at the 2017 Malta International Airshow.

The AN-30 aerial photographer was developed on a basis of the AN-24 passenger airplane. It is the first in the history of domestic aviation building machine designed with the only purpose – to perform aerial photography. From basis version it differs with the navigator's nose glass cock-pit and photo-doors in the floor of the cabin. It has nine modifications. It can be used in a cargo version.

The Treaty on Open Skies entered into force on Jan. 1st, 2002, and currently has 34 party states. It establishes a program of unarmed aerial surveillance flights over the entire territory of its participants. The treaty is designed to enhance mutual understanding and confidence by giving all participants, regardless of size, a direct role in gathering information about military forces and activities of concern to them. Open Skies is one of the most wide-ranging international efforts to date promoting openness and transparency of military forces and activities.

The Malta Aviation Society organisers of the Malta International Airshow is overwhelmed with the confirmation by the Ukrainian Air Force participation in the static display of the AN-30. We are very grateful for such an addition in this ever listing growing list of participants. (Source:, 13-Sep-2017)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

AFM's 2017 Open Day to be held at the Air Wing facility

The Armed Forces of  Malta (AFM) will hold their popular Open Day on Sep. 30th between 11am and 7pm. This year's edition will be held at the Air Wing facility in Kirkop, where the AFM will be able to showcase its new fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, and hangars.

Equipment by the other sections of the AFM, including the Maritime Squadron, the infantry, the explosive ordnance unit and the band will also be on display. The entrance will be free. (Source: & AFM, 11-Sep-2017)

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Ryanair to introduce 12 new Malta routes next summer

Ryanair has announced plans for 12 new routes from Malta next summer and says it intends to base a fifth aircraft on the island. D. O’Brien, chief commercial officer, told a press conference that the low-cost airline will operate 54 routes to 18 countries from Malta next summer.

The new routes are Aberdeen, Belfast, Seville, Pescara, Bratislava, Gothenburg, Paris-Beauvais, Porto, Tallin and extended services to Barcelona, Naples and Riga. Services to Naples and Riga are being introduced from this winter. The service to Barcelona will fly to the city's main airport. 

"This is good news for Malta as new routes will enhance diversification of inflows and outflows," Tourism Minister K. Mizzi observed. He said most of the services were new for Malta and there was hardly any overlap with Air Malta. 

Mr Mizzi said plans were also in train for cooperation between Ryanair and Air Malta in sales and commercial aspects, including sales on the Ryanair commercial portal. Talks are in hand on cooperation on connecting flights.

It was also announced that Ryanair will make a bid for ailing Italian flag carrier Alitalia in the coming weeks. (Source:, 10-Sep-2017)

Friday, September 8, 2017

Three flights en rotue to Malta IAP diverts to other airports due to bad weather over the airfield

Three flights en route to Malta IAP this afternoon where forced to divert to other airports due to a thunderstorm over the airfield. 

The first aircraft to divert was a Gryphon Airlines McDonnell Douglas MD-87 (ZS-TRJ), operating scheduled flight UG-1300 for Tunisair Express between Tunis-Carthage (Tunisia) and Malta IAP. After a missed approach the crew decided to return to Tunis airport. The flight was subsequently cancelled.

Next to divert was a Volga-Dnepr Airlines Ilyushin IL-76 (RA-76951), operating cargo flight VDA-4044 between Châlons-Vatry (France) and Malta IAP. The IL-76 diverted to Palermo airport (Sicily/Italy). The flight was subsequently re-scheduled to tomorrow.

The last flight to divert was an Alitalia Airbus A320-200 (I-BIKA), operating scheduled flight AZ-886 between Rome-Fiumicino (Italy) and Malta IAP. The A320 diverted also to Palermo airport (Sicily/Italy). The flight then continued to Malta IAP reaching destination with a delay of 1-hr 35-mins on its original time.

Besides these diversions, numerous fights that had depart from Malta IAP had to be delayed too. (8-Sep-2017)

Friday, September 1, 2017

USN P8 and MH-60 for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

Visitors to the Malta Airshow can hardly realize how fortunate we are, to once again, have the United States Navy’s (USN) latest asset, in the form of a Boeing P-8 Poseidon Maritime Patrol Aircraft, gracing our static park for the whole weekend and even with a possibility of having the aircraft performing a flying display over Smart City (flying to be confirmed).

The Boeing P-8 Poseidon has been developed by Boeing, based on the Boeing 737-800ER (extended range) airliner air frame. The P-8 conducts anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, and shipping interdiction, along with an early warning self-protection ability, otherwise known as electronic support measures. This involves carrying torpedoes, depth charges, Harpoon anti-ship missiles, and other weapons. It is able to drop and monitor sonobuoys.

Accompanying the P-8, the U.S. Navy MH-60 Seahawk will also be returning to the Malta International Airshow static park, after previous participation.

The Sikorsky MH-60 Seahawk is a twin engine, multi-mission U.S. Navy helicopter based on the U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk and a member of the Sikorsky S-70 family. The most significant air frame modification for seaborne naval use, is a hinged tail to reduce its footprint aboard ships, when parked.

Both U.S. Navy assets will be flying-in from nearby U.S. Navy Air Bases in Sigonella (Sicilly) and Naples (Italy).

The Malta Aviation Society is proud that once again the U.S. Naval Air Forces is participating with their assets at our show. (Source:, 1-Sep-2017)