Norwegian Air Shuttle tries the U.S. market, and other stories from the week in aviation

Norwegian, a European discount airline, will soon fly from LAX to London, Oslo, Stockholm and Copenhagen. But can it make money?

Norwegian, a European discount airline, will soon fly from LAX to London, Oslo, Stockholm and Copenhagen. But can it make money?

What’s going on in the world of aviation? I’m glad you asked.

Here are some stories I have enjoyed recently.

Emirates and Virgin America will now be frequent flier program partners, writes Ben Mutzabaugh of Today in the Sky.

Norwegian Air Shuttle is trying to be the first major European low-cost carrier to operate a large transatlantic route network. The airline, which is taking delivery of a bunch of Boeing 787s will, by next summer, fly from Los Angeles to Oslo, London, Stockholm and Copenhagen. But will this strategy work? Brett Snyder, who runs the blog crankyflier.com, says he is skeptical. 

By January 1, airports are supposed to take over, from the Transportation Security Administration, the job of guarding terminal exit doors. Bart Jansen of USA Today reports that this change will save the TSA  $88.1 million per year. But many airport executives are not thrilled about this change.

Southwest started by offering double points system wide for passengers during a slow late fall period. United soon followed, with a double miles promotion.” Isn’t it great when competitive forces actually work in favor of consumers?” asks Tim Winship of frequentflier.com.

Delta and United and dueling for West Coast customers, and that’s generally good news for passengers, writes Chris McGinnis, editor of The Bay Area Traveler. 

For several years now, major airlines have tried to artificially keep capacity low in order to hold lower fares. That strategy has worked, and it’s a big part of the reason why most major airlines have been reporting recent profits. But it may not last forever. Edward Russell of Flight Global writes that airlines are adding capacity, especially in the West. 

The A350  hasn’t flown a single passenger flight yet, but the European conglomerate is already considering stretching it, writes Jens Flottau of Aviation Week. 

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