Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Air Malta re-launches Malta-Leipzig service after seven years

Air Malta has re-launched this evening direct flights between Malta IAP and Leipzig (Germany).  This same route was last served by the national airline in October 2011.  

This first flight, operated with Airbus A319-100 (9H-AEJ), departed from Malta IAP at 1806lt (KM-310).  After turnaround, the aircraft is scheduled to return Malta IAP at 0015lt (KM-311).  Air Malta will be operating the route once a week, on Wednesdays.  (31-Oct-2018)

Monday, October 29, 2018

Vueling's Barcelona-Palermo flight diverts to Malta IAP

A Vueling Airlines Airbus A320-200 (EC-LAA), performing flight VY-6600 from Barcelona (Spain) to Palermo (Sicily, Italy), had to divert to Malta IAP this afternoon because of bad weather over Palermo.  The aircraft departed again to Palermo reaching destination with a delay of nearly 4-hrs.  (Source: flightradar24, 29-Oct-2018)

Friday, October 26, 2018

Lufthansa Technik Malta receives A350 base maintenance approval

Lufthansa Technik Malta is officially ready to perform all work required for the Base Maintenance of the Airbus A350-900, as the company has been licensed by the German Federal Aviation Office (LBA).

The granting of the "Base Maintenance Approval" certificate by the LBA marks the successful end of an intense period of preparation, in which employees were trained, processes were established and infrastructure was adapted.

Lufthansa Technik Malta kicked off this extensive program in November 2016 and has now been rewarded accordingly for its efforts. The first A350 is expected to arrive for base maintenance services at Lufthansa Technik Malta in spring 2019.

Lufthansa Technik's CEO M. Motschenbacher said: "More than 50 employees of Lufthansa Technik Malta spent just over three months in personal preparation acquiring the necessary qualifications and practical training to enable them to work on the A350.  Two out of six base maintenance lines at the facility have been outfitted to accommodate the A350-900 with an investment of over €3.2m to cover the first C-Checks.  A substantial investment in new tooling has included the purchase of more than 280 different tools including engine removal tooling."

Extensive docking modifications have also been undertaken in Hangar 1, extending the current capabilities of the mezzanine, wing and tail docks.  Investment in a new electrical installation was also made due to the A350's dedicated hydraulic rigs.  (Source: lufthansa-technik.com, 26-Oct-2018)

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Dassault Falcon 2000LXS joins TAG Malta’s growing AOC

TAG Malta has added a new Falcon 2000LXS to its growing fleet of managed aircraft, offering clients greater flexibility and cost-effective executive travel to a wide range of destinations.  The luxuriously appointed, wide-body, business jet will be based between Geneva and Cairo and is fully available for charter from the end of October.

"We are delighted to welcome the outstandingly versatile Dassault Falcon 2000LXS to the charter fleet which will open up exciting new opportunities for TAG Malta", said F. Sériès, Vice President Sales and Marketing, TAG Aviation Europe.  "This super-midsize twinjet is the third factory-new aircraft to join our Maltese AOC this year and is a great example of our continuing fleet expansion and ongoing commitment to meet the private aviation needs of our customers."  (Source: corporatejetinvestor.com, 24-Oct-2018)

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Air Malta is set to break even in the financial year that ended in Mar-18

Air Malta is expected to announce that it reached break in the financial year that ended in March 2018, MaltaToday has learnt.  This will be the first time in 18 years that the national airline has registered a positive financial performance, airline sources said.  The results are expected to be announced at the annual general meeting that will be held in December.  Air Malta's fiscal year is from April to March.

The airline underwent an intensive restructuring process since being on the brink of bankruptcy in 2010 when government stepped in with State aid that had to be cleared by Brussels.  The restructuring process, which involved downsizing the airline and cutting some of its routes, was supposed to turn the airline back to black within five years.  The airline failed to do so and in June last year, under incoming Tourism Minister K. Mizzi, Air Malta shifted to a growth strategy.

The airline added new routes, increased the number of aircraft in operation and negotiated collective agreements with its workers.  It also cut certain costs, such as free on-board meals.  The strategy appears to have paid off with the airline managing to carry more passengers.  The sources said that between January and August of this year, the airline registered a 35% increase in passenger numbers.  (Source: maltatoday.com, 22-Oct-2018)

Friday, October 12, 2018

Ryanair's Liverpool-Malta flight diverts to Trapani

A Ryanair Boeing 737-800 (EI-FZN), performing flight FR-8928 from Liverpool (U.K.) to Malta IAP (Malta), had to divert to Trapani (Sicily, Italy) this evening because of bad weather over Malta IAP.  The aircraft departed again to Malta reaching destination with a delay of about 3-hrs 15-mins.  (Source: flightradar24, 12-Oct-2018)

Proposed startup LeOne to be based in Malta

LeOne, a proposed startup airline, presented yesterday its business plan: New brand of Group Aerospace Engineering, which includes subsidiaries Aerospace Engineering Ldt and Aero-Engineering srl; Will be based in Malta and intends to provide ACMI/charter services on behalf of airlines and tour operators in Italy; Will operate one Boeing 737-500 aircraft with 126-seats and one 737-400 with 168-seats. The 737-400 is expected for delivery before the end of 2018 and the 737-400 in Feb-2019.  (Source: centreforaviation.com, 12-Oct-2018)

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Air Malta carries 35% more passengers in August

During the month of August, Air Malta registered a 35% increase in passengers on its Malta-based routes compared to last year and carried a total of 244,799 passengers to and from Malta.  August was the airline’s busiest month this year.

"For another month Air Malta was one of the main contributors to the 9.5% growth registered by Malta IAP during August.  In addition to that, during this month, the Maltese airline carried almost 11,000 passengers on 5th Freedom routes, namely Catania - Vienna, Catania – London-Southend and Cagliari – London-Southend routes," the airline said in a statement.

P. Sies, Air Malta’s Chief Commercial Officer said, "Every month, over the past year, we have increased our passenger loads substantially when compared to the previous year.  This month, once again, we achieved an average seat factor of 83%.  During August we operated 1,746 flights, an increase of 26% more flights than last year."  (Source: independent.com.mt, 8-Aug-2018)

Monday, October 8, 2018

Air Horizont B734 diverts to Ancona due to control problems

An Air Horizont Boeing 737-400 (9H-AMW) on behalf of Albawings, performing flight 2B-224 from Venice (Italy) to Tirana (Albania) with 135 people on board, was en route at FL290 about 80-nm eastnortheast of Ancona (Italy), almost overhead Zadar (Croatia), when the crew decided to divert to Ancona reporting control problems.  A massive emergency response was initiated at Ancona, rescue helicopters were dispatched to the airport.  The aircraft landed safely on Ancona's RWY 22 about 22-mins after leaving FL290.  (Source: avherald.com, 5-Oct-2018)

Sunday, October 7, 2018

M.I.A. plc releases traffic results for September 2018

With 706,814 passenger movements recorded, September was yet another busy month in what is proving to be a record-setting summer for Malta Int'l Airport.  September was, in fact, the third consecutive month during which more than 700,000 passengers were welcomed by the airport team.

September's traffic brought peak holiday season to a close with more than 2.2 million passenger movements, making this three-month stretch the best quarter in the airport’s history.

Translating into an upturn of 12.8% over 2017, much of September's traffic growth can be attributed to an increase in aircraft movements (+12.5%) and seat capacity (+14.1%) which stemmed from an enhanced summer flight schedule. September's seat load factor, which measures the success rate of airlines in filling up available seats, stood at 85.7%.

The U.K. continued to top the list of Malta IAP's top markets, followed by Italy, Germany, France and Spain.  While four of these markets experienced double-digit growth, traffic from Germany dropped 7.2%, following the introduction of a reduced schedule by TUI cruises.

While Rome-Fiumicino topped the list of most popular airports in July and August, last month it was knocked off the top spot by London-Gatwick's 40,763 passenger movements.

Total Traffic
706,814 passenger movements
Top Market
United Kingdom (174,410 passenger movements)
Most Popular Airport
London Gatwick (40,763 passenger movements)
Aircraft Movements
4,766 take-offs and landings
Busiest Day
23.09.2018 (27,330 passenger movements)
Seat Capacity
825,170 seats
Fastest-growing Market
(from top 5)
Spain (+35.3%)
Cargo and Mail
1,323 tonnes

(Source: maltairport.com, 6-Oct-2018)

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Two Malta bound flights divert to Catania because of bad weather over Malta

Two Malta bound flights had to divert to Catania-Fontanarossa this morning because of a thunderstorm over the Maltese Islands.

The two flights affected were Air Malta's KM-613 from Rome-Fiumicino (
Airbus A320-200, 9H-AHR) and British Airways' BA-2644 from London-Gatwick (Airbus A320-200, G-EUYM).

Both flights then continued to Malta reaching destination with a delay of nearly 3-hrs 15-mins (Air Malta) and 3-hrs 35-mins respectively on their scheduled time. (2-Oct-2018)