Tag: David Cush

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Virgin America Ups the In-Flight Tech Ante By Announcing Bigger, Newer, WiFi-Connected TVs

September 13, 2011 at 2:54 PM | by | ()

A current RED system in First Class

This is getting crazy. Virgin America is upgrading their in-flight entertainment again. They don't need to! The RED system is awesome already! They're miles ahead of others in many ways! And it's precisely for all these reasons that VX is putting its head down and charging forward to the future; they want to stay at the head of the pack.

Have you spotted the special #nerdbird plane in the skies yet? Yes, it's a plane with its own hashtag—correction, the first plane with its own hashtag. The #nerdbird (tail number N841VA) is a Virgin America standard Airbus A320, but it's also the testing ground for all the fancy stuff the airline has up its sleeve for the rest of the fleet, which, from this month on, now includes playing around with Lufthansa Systems' "BoardConnect" hybrid entertainment technology. What the what?

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Virgin America's 'Air Drake' Lands in Toronto, with Richard Branson and Arnold Schwarzenegger in Tow

Where: Toronto, ON, Canada
June 30, 2010 at 1:26 PM | by | ()

Virgin America officially celebrated their international launch yesterday, of flights to and from LAX/SFO and Toronto, by naming the plane in honor of hip hop artist, Toronto native and most importantly, "DeGrassi High: The Next Generation" star Drake.

Here's a look at Air Drake complete with a mention of his new album, Thank Me Later, which just dropped on June 15. Ok, you still don't know who he is but check out Wikipedia for a brief introduction.

Onboard the flight was also Richard Branson, CEO David Cush, The Governator (just for the LA-SFO leg), Giles Martini (aka the Naked Man from Sex and the City 1), Eric Roberts, Audrina's ex-BF Ryan Cabrera, Cheryl Burke and hotelier Jason Pomeranc whose new hotel in Toronto--The Thompson Toronto—everyone onboard shacked up at later.

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Virgin America Going to Mexico and More? :: Our Chat With CEO David Cush

March 18, 2010 at 11:14 AM | by | ()

Best photo of Cush ever?

We weren't the only ones waking up early this morning, anxiously awaiting the now-released news that Virgin America is adding routes from SFO and LAX to Orlando and Toronto this summer; Virgin America CEO David Cush was up bright and early too, and he gave us a call to see how we were taking the news that our favorite city for a new route—Vancouver—didn't win...yet.

While chatting wtih Cush, we learned some exclusive new details about Virgin America's plans not only for the rest of 2010, but on into 2011 as well. And things might get a little more international than just Toronto...

Find out what's in store for Virgin America, after the jump

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What To Expect From Virgin America In 2010 :: We Chat With CEO David Cush

December 11, 2009 at 12:57 PM | by | ()

This morning, Virgin America released their third quarter financials, and things look on the up-and-up for the young low cost carrier with a sexy side. However, we're still anxious for them to draw more lines on their route map so that in-flight WiFi and mood lighting are options for travelers around the country. Plus, it's been a few months since we talked with them.

Hungry for any information on when we can expect new destinations, we gave VA CEO David Cush a call to talk about Christmas plans, Vegas' hotness, 2010 hopes, and of course Chicago. Read on to hear Cush's take on the future of Virgin America.

On the desire to add flights Chicago:
It seems like Virgin America has had the roughest time with cracking slots at Chicago's O'Hare airport, and yet Cush is optimistic that Chicago will be Virgin America's next destination: "We're still focused on Chicago as our next city; we'll be securing four new aircraft in the second quarter of 2010, with 2-to-3 of those allotted for Chicago."

On plans for cities after Chicago...

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Virgin Invades The Old Riot Hyatt for the Sunset Strip Music Festival

Where: 8401 Sunset Boulevard [map], West Hollywood, CA, United States, 90069
September 14, 2009 at 4:58 PM | by | ()

Where there's a party, there's usually a Virgin America logo.

We're used to attending all sorts of parties for Virgin America whenever they launch a new route or service but on Friday night, we were able to catch Virgin America and its sister airline, V Australia celebrate something different--the kickoff of The Sunset Strip Music Festival at the old Riot Hyatt aka The Andaz West Hollywood.

Celebs that showed up and worked the red carpet for the start of the three-day rock event on the Strip included Chris Cornell; legendary music producer Lou Adler (yes, father to Cisco); The Donnas; Caridee English; Taryn Manning;the Swedish "sleaze rock" band Vains of Jenna and Kristen Bauer from True Blood.

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Jaunted Interview: Chatting With Virgin America CEO David Cush

August 11, 2009 at 9:49 AM | by | ()

This morning, Virgin America not only announced that their 10th destination would be Fort Lauderdale from SFO and LAX beginning in November, but they hinted at other cities soon to possibly pop up on their route maps.

Curious to get the straight dope, we gave VA CEO David Cush a call to talk fun in the sun, international routes, and of course Chicago. Read on to hear Cush's take on the future of Virgin America.

On the addition of Fort Lauderdale:
Cush understands that "everyone is excited for new routes," but this one especially so since it's their tenth and only the beginning of a period of southern expansion.

On how they are deciding on future destinations:
"If you look at Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 corporate bases, those are pretty good places to start. You've got Atlanta, Dallas with their telecom, the semiconductors and computer companies in Austin and even on to Newark and Philadelphia." We also made sure not to forget about good old Raleigh-Durham, which Cush assures is an option as most corporate cities are fair game for them right now.

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Sorry, Chicago: Virgin America Is Headed To Boston

December 8, 2008 at 9:17 AM | by | ()

Just three days after scrapping plans to touch down at Chicago O'Hare, Virgin America has announced it will start flights to Boston Logan on February 12, 2009. Three flights a day will connect BOS and LAX, and two round-trips daily will link Boston to San Francisco. Sorry, New York: No shuttle flights for you just yet.

While hyping low fares (starting at $149 each way for BOS-LAX) and the fact that this is the carrier's eighth city (!), Virgin also managed to get in a few digs at Chicago, the city that apparently couldn't bully the majors into giving up a few of their precious gates at O'Hare. Says CEO David Cush:

We thank the state, city and airport for their support and warm welcome, and we can’t wait to introduce our upscale, high value service to Boston travelers--especially on the SFO-BOS and LAX-BOS routes that until today offered no low fare competition.

So while Boston will likely now see fares drop, passengers flying out of O'Hare will continue getting hosed. If you're looking for someone to send those angry letters to, Chicago, your Department of Aviation commissioner is Richard Rodriguez--and here's how to get in touch with him!

Related Stories:
· For Lack of Gates at O'Hare, Virgin Cancels Chicago Flight Plans [Jaunted]
· The History of Virgin America's "Expansions" [Jaunted]

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The History of Virgin America's "Expansions"

November 25, 2008 at 2:08 PM | by | ()

While newly wireless Virgin America is holding off on acquiring new planes for now, that didn't stop CEO David Cush from talking up some new cities that his airline is eyeing. Where might we see VA in the next couple years? Austin-Bergstrom International and Hartsfield-Jackson in Atlanta.

Back in 2007, all the speculation was focused Miami and Boston, two cities that Virgin still says might be on the route map in the future. Then, of course, there's the Chicago situation, which VA says should be resolved soon.

Even more esoteric expansions we've heard mentioned in the past include Vancouver and Cabo; haven't seen flights to either of those cities yet, despite previous claims that Virgin would be in 10 cities by the second half of this year. Heh: This recession is killing everyone!

Related Stories:
· Virgin America Raises More Cash [Aviation Week]
· What's Next for Virgin America? [Jaunted]

[Photo: davitydave]

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In-Flight WiFi Wrap-Up

November 24, 2008 at 9:00 AM | by | ()

Virgin America CEO David Cush speaks before boarding begins on the airline's WiFi demonstration Saturday.

We were so jazzed during our Virgin America in-flight WiFi liveblog, we never really answered the question: So, how was the WiFi anyway? We can safely say: It was great.

Gogo's service runs on the EVDO network delivered through 92 on-the-ground towers, but it was faster than we've ever been able to pick up on our terrestrial cell phones. It has the potential to get faster as well, Tim Maxwell of Aircell told us, with the addition of more towers--but unless you're on a T1 line on the ground, you probably won't notice any need for improvement.

We had no problem connecting and there were no noticeable interruptions or stoppages in the service--something we reflected on ruefully when we were unable to connect to our in-room WiFi at the W San Francisco the next morning.

If there was any blip to the in-flight entertainment, it happened during the YouTube Live portion of the evening.

After teasing us with the prospect of a segment being broadcast from the plane to The Internets, the powers that be decided to shoot it in first class where "30 Rock"'s Keith Powell and Katrina Bowden were sitting. Because everyone in the aisles rushed to the front to get a glimpse of the goings on, we couldn't see a blessed thing--nor did we hear a peep, except for the beginning and end of the shoot. So you'll have to tell us how it went, because despite being there, we have no idea.

Still, it's hard to question that, for tech-savvy travelers, having access to the internet will change the flight experience completely. On the other hand, now there's no escape from the pressures of the office, so make sure to fly non-wired airplanes when you need a chance to kick back on company time.

Somewhere, Richard Branson is laughing at us.

Related Stories:
· Virgin America Inflight Wifi Liveblog [Jaunted]
· Funky Flight Safety Videos and Scenic Flybys on Virgin America's New YouTube Channel [Jaunted]
· Virgin America coverage [Jaunted]

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Virgin America May Try Fuel Hedging To Eke Out A Profit

November 23, 2008 at 1:03 PM | by | ()

The biggest news surrounding Virgin America this weekend was the roll out of in-flight WiFi with a special beta flight on Saturday. (Why yes, we were in attendance.) But more news happened to shake out Saturday that sheds light on the still-young carrier's future.

CEO David Cush told Reuters that with prices at roughly a third of the highs hit this summer, now might be the time to secure some good deals on fuel:

We see a pretty unique opportunity with what's going on in the fuel markets right now to go in and lock in some long positions. I would imagine over the course of the next several weeks that we will be going out two and three, and perhaps even four, years into the fuel market and locking in some of the prices that are there today.

Cush also revealed that Virgin America probably won't turn a profit until 2011; previously VA was aiming to make money by 2010. There might not be a chance to revise that date again: After asking investors for another infusion of capital in October, there's currently enough cash in the bank to last another three years.

Related Stories:
· Virgin America Sees Fuel Hedge Opportunity [Jaunted]
· Virgin America Could Scrap Chicago Plans [Jaunted]

[Photo: Virgin America]

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Jaunted Interview: Chatting with David Cush

May 13, 2008 at 10:30 AM | by | ()

A Jaunted Exclusive

Virgin America will ask the FAA for a share of the Chicago market this week, and if all goes well, VA will be flying to O'Hare by November.

After Virgin confirmed the expansion plans, we were excited to talk with CEO David Cush, posing here with Cisco Adler, about the future of the airline, how the FAA allocates landing rights and what it's like to compete with a former employer.

Jaunted: We've been hearing rumors about Chicago for months. Why make the move into that new market now?

DC: You're not an airline until you fly to Chicago. We want to fly four flights a day from LAX and SFO to ORD because this is third largest travel market in the US and we think Chicagoans are going to love our product.

Currently, Chicago/O'Hare has virtually no low-fare competition to the West Coast and none from SFO or LAX. We think we can compete with the big guys and inject a little healthy competition into a market that desperately needs it.

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In-Flight Entertainment: The Rock Show on Virgin America's Newest Route

April 10, 2008 at 1:02 PM | by | ()

Yesterday Virgin America kicked off its new LAX-SEA service with some live music in LA followed by an in-flight concert. The standout had to be our Sundance buddy Cisco Adler who serenaded VA's David Cush on the way to Seattle.

Also rocking the flight were Shwayze, Michael Tolcher and Bamboo Shoots. Pre-flight in LA, The Donnas played Gate 67B, and on arrival in Seattle the party continued at The Showbox at the Market with a performance by Thurston Moore.

Related Stories:
· Jaunted at Sundance: Virgin America Flirts with Paris Hilton [Jaunted]
· Sex Sells Travel: Virgin America's In-Flight PJ Party [Jaunted]
· Seattle Music Venues: The Showbox at the Market [Jaunted]

[Photos: AP Photo/Virgin America, Bob Riha, Jr.]