• easyJet moves up-market

    easyJet has announced trials of a seat booking possibility on some flights between the UK and selected destinations next month. What next?

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  • Lille FC coach beats airport offside trap

    March 2012 044.JPG

    Last Friday night the driver of the coach of Lille Football club performed miracles to turn things around. The team then beat Evian 3-0 in Annecy and are now in third place.

    It was late afternoon on Friday 23 March, when I was near the General Aviation centre, on the North (Jura) side of the airport, that I saw this luxurious red coach manoeuvering to get to near where the passengers on the private jets come through the customs and out into the car park. Knowing that region, I realised that he would be in big trouble, since that is a narrow road, at the end of which the area for turning round mostly has parked cars all over it, so I followed him down.

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    This coach turned out to be the official coach of Lille Football Club. The driver told me that he was there to meet the Lille FC players and staff, and then take them to Annecy to spend the night before playing Evian TG on the Saturday night. He would then bring them back to the airport, where they would fly back to Lille. I told him he would have two problems: turning his coach around and then queueing to go through the Vernier tunnel and the Bardonnex customs post.

    He started an attempt to turn the coach around, with me trying to indicate when he was getting too close to a wall, a building or a car. After 15 minutes he was still trying when, by a great stroke of luck, the owner of the critical parked car arrived and moved it: ouf!

    While waiting for the team to arrive, he told me that the opposing team, whose full name is Evian Thonon Gaillard F.C., had been promoted into the top league in France last season, after only one season in the second league. This rapid ascension seems to be in part because of support from the Danone Group. However, even when they were in the second league, their home ground did not meet the required standards, so they had to find a suitable ground to play their "home" matches. There was some talk of them playing in Geneva, but finally they opted to play in Annecy.

    Their flight, in a Dornier DO-328 registered as OY-NCO and operated by Sun Air of Scandinavia, landed at 7h35 pm. A quick passage through customs meant that they left at around 8pm, so they would probably have missed the worst of the Friday night jams, got to Annecy and had a good night's sleep. They then beat Evian 3-0, thus keeping their third position in the French league, and returned to Geneva to take a flight on a similar, but different, Sun Air aircraft (OY-NCN): it left at 11pm on the Saturday night.

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    Curiously, when I looked up the result on the Swiss teletext on the Sunday morning I saw that the match was goalless at half-time, before finishing as 3-0 to Lille. The first goal for Lille was a penalty transformed by Hazard in the 36th minute! Maybe the person updating the teletext sports pages did not get enough sleep?

    The next important encounter in Lille will take place next Wednesday, 28 March, when a team of lawyers of DSK United, renowned for their robust defensive play, will try to neutralise the attack of a team of state prosecutors.

     

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  • Swiss aircraft advertises shopping at Zurich Airport

    After trams painted to advertise, Swiss airline has decided to do likewise on one of their aircraft. The Swiss Avro RJ100 HB-IYS is painted to advertise shopping at Zurich airport.

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  • More carbon emissions menace Bangladesh

    More cars and more aircraft still mean more carbon emissions. The Bangladeshi Prime Minister recently warned that her country will suffer, but others will follow.

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  • German visitors to the Salon

    The motor show in Geneva always brings many visitors from Germany. On the last day, corresponding to the first day of the 2012 Formula 1 season, we can look back on them.

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  • Düsseldorf to Mallorca via Geneva

    Shortly after takeoff, and for a second time this year, the Air Berlin flight AB9422 from Düsseldorf to Palma Mallorca turned south to come to Geneva before continuing to Palma. Why?

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  • More easyJet (night) flights this summer

    Spring is here: the airline summer timetables will operate from Sunday 25 March. With another aircraft already here, easyJet will be running yet more (night?) flights this summer.

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  • Helicopters: good and bad!

    Helicopters to carry injured children to hospital: right and proper. Helicopters to carry healthy rich people to their mountain (secondary?) residences: wrong and should be checked.

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  • Three Czech / Slovakia incidents!

    A flight by a German company aborts a landing in Geneva. Later, it goes back to Slovakia avoiding overflying Czech airspace. Very late at night a small Czech private jet takes off!

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  • The limits of a single runway?

    20120311_circling.jpgYesterday, 11 March, between 5h30 pm and 6pm, six incoming aircraft had to circle over the Jura, near Morez. Perhaps the signs of a saturation on the single runway?

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  • Volkswagen flies with Cayman Island aircraft

    The Volkswagen car group has a fleet of 9 jet aircraft, including a big Airbus A319. All have been seen in Geneva this week and all are registered in the Cayman Islands!

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  • Motor show visitors from Serbia?

    Geneva airport had probably its first flight from and to Belgrade yesterday, 6 March: a flight by JAT Airways. The airport still calls the company Yugoslav Airlines!

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  • Can Swiss rival the cheap airlines?

    The airline Swiss is doing well at the moment and has a new service to China. Can it keep doing well in the face of the low prices for flights to Asia, and if so then how?

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  • Curious return of a Swiss flight to London

    When a Swiss Airlines flight to London had to turn around and return to Geneva it circled around over Morges. Why not directly in to land, as most aborted flights do?

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