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Congratulations! You've made it through the busiest travel day of the year, but with some 45 million projected to fly on U.S. airlines over the next 19 days, the rush is hardly over.
As a passenger, it's your desire to simply get where you're going with as little stress as possible. It's up the flight's crew, both in front of and behind the cockpit door, who make that wish come true. Show them your appreciation during this holiday season with a small gift, and watch the smiles spread. Some suggestions:
At the airport
· Starbucks $5 gift cards (or gift cards from other small eateries at the airport)
· A Thank You card, signed by your whole travel party (or, if you're feeling ambitious, the whole plane)
· A travel-themed drawing by your children (here's an example)
· Clear plastic box of Ferrero Rocher chocolates
Fashion Travel / Airline Uniforms / KAUFMANFRANCO / American Airlines / Flight Attendants / Pilots / → All Tags
It seems American Airlines is on the cusp of releasing their updated uniform designs to debut in 2015, on both AA and US Airways crew as the companies continue their merger.
The process began way, way back in January 2013; that's nearly two years of work before actual garments were available to preview. In the meantime, the designers, duo KAUFMANFRANCO, were also working on their seasonal runway collections; it's in their Fashion Week credo that they share their raison d'être and a sense of what to expect from the AA uniforms: "We deliver clothes that are deceptively understated but when you take a closer look at them, they are actually quite complex, not based on decoration but on the cut, fabric and detailing.”
AvGeek / Flight Simulator / Flight Experience / Boston Travel / 737 / Pilots / Video Game Travel / → All Tags
Imagine: You’re inside a 737, flying over the Atlantic at 40,000 feet. Food poisoning incapacitates the pilots. A flight attendant cries over the intercom:
“Attention! Is there a passenger on board who knows how to fly a plane? We repeat: Is there, a strong, brave passenger with sinewy, rope-like muscles who is capable of displaying such great heroism that men and women everywhere will fall forever at their feet?”
You stand. You’ve got this. Why? Because you’ve conquered Flight Experience, a flight simulator that just opened its first American location in Boston. (Well, it’s actually in Burlington, Massachusetts, about 15 miles north of the city.)
This New Zealand-based line of simulators is so realistic, it’s actually used around the world for professional pilot licensing. American regulations don’t allow for that, but you can still experience every aspect of piloting an airplanefrom takeoff to landing to turning on the “no smoking” signinside a to-scale replica of a 737 cockpit.
Space Travel / Space Tourism / Virgin Galactic / SpaceShipTwo / WhiteKnightTwo / MHV / Richard Branson / Tragedies / Accidents / Virgin / Astronauts / Pilots / Scaled Composites / The Spaceship Company / → All Tags
The accident immediately killed test co-pilot Michael Tyner Alsbury [memorial fund] and wounded pilot Peter Siebold, who emergency ejected and parachuted to the ground.
Preliminary NTSB reports note that no explosion occurred, and that an early deployment of the craft's feathering systema function that adjusts SS2 into something of a shuttlecock shape for re-entrymay have been the cause of the spacecraft's breaking apart.
Many are wondering if this will shut down the program, but Richard Branson and Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides are clear in their statements that this tragedy is an obstacle, not an end. "Space is hard—but worth it. We will persevere and move forward together."
A curious storefront in Soho has been delighting New Yorkers this week and last. We just spotted it, but Eater NY beat us to the spot, explaining that it's all just an ad campaign for a new bars app, Bartendr.
Hopefully that will lessen the shock at seeing the "coming soon" ads for Blackbox Bar, which calls itself "NYC's only bar for on-duty pilots," offering such perks as "free shuttle service to LaGuardia, Newark, JFK."
Vivienne Westwood has every reason to celebrate this month, as it's more than just time to show her next collections during Fashion Month but it's also the time when thousands of Virgin Atlantic staff begin wearing her designs for their new uniform.
The revamp, launched this year as part of the fanfare around Virgin Atlantic's 30th Anniversary, first debuted back in July and his slowly showed up on Upper Class crew and beyond since. September 1 marked the date for full rollout, and you can expect the crew of your next Virgin Atlantic flight to be sporting the shiny duds, all inspired by Westwood's actual runway collections.
To know exactly what to look for, check out our full gallery and details of the new uniforms and, of course,
[Photos: Jaunted, Virgin Atlantic]
The last book we recommended to you shed some light onto the dark side of the travel industry, showing that, for all the good it can bring, tourism has the capacity to become a virus that diminishes the cultures of destinations around the globe. This time, we're suggesting something a little more uplifting. And, believe it or not, it's about the airline industry.
Cockpit Confidential: Everything You Need to Know About Air Travel: Questions, Answers, and Reflections, written by commercial pilot Patrick Smith, attempts to unblur the line between fact and fiction when it comes to all things air travel.
While we know commercial airline pilots are real people with thoughts and feelings (usually), we passengers rarely get even the slightest glimpse into the other side of the flight deck door.
Commercial airline pilot of 28 years, Chris Manno, has flipped this with the release of Flight Crew. . .like you, a collection of illustrations showcasing the behind-the-scenes view of a career pilot.
Photo Gallery / Fashion Travel / Flight Attendants / Pilots / Virgin Atlantic / Virgin / Airline Uniforms / Vivienne Westwood / Vivienne Westwood for Virgin Atlantic / Richard Branson / Travel News / London Travel / Britain Travel / Beauty Travel / → All Tags
The Virgin Atlantic look is sharp, iconic, sizzling; there’s no denying the head-turning appeal of a crisp white blouse tucked into a scorching red pencil skirt, topped off with red heels. But, with the celebration of the airline’s 30th Anniversary this year, it’s about that time for a snazzy refresh so as to continue “flying in the face of ordinary,” as the airline’s slogan goes. For this, Virgin Atlantic paired with UK designer and punk powerhouse Vivienne Westwood. The new uniforms were just unveiled July 1 in London, and will roll out for all Virgin Atlantic staff, from cabin crew to flight crew, and desk agents to Clubhouse hospitality.
Alas, a flash of the new uniform as it swishes down the airplane aisle isn't enough to appreciate the detail. Aside from the fact that it’s now easier to care for with a new tech “nano finish" (the earlier uniform was dry clean only) and yarn made from recycled plastic bottles, there are small secrets hidden in every dart and under each lapel, telling the story of the collaboration between England’s flag-carrying airline and one of the country's most iconic fashion influences.
Although the uniforms don’t officially take flight for the entire Virgin Atlantic fleet until September 1, keep an eye out for a preview on your next VS flight; crew have been heading to the airline’s Base near Gatwick Airport to pick up their full looks since this past weekend. Here's what to look for:
New Airplanes / Airplanes / Air Canada / Canada Travel / Air Canada 787 / Boeing 787 Dreamliner / Boeing 787 / 787 / 787 Dreamliner / Dreamliner / Boeing / Airline News / Airplane News / Videos / Pilots / → All Tags
Canada is psyched.
Why? Well, simply because they've finally received a Boeing 787 Dreamliner to call their very owntheir first 787 landed in Toronto on Sunday, fresh from Boeingand the campaign to promote it is one of the most endearing airline projects yet.
It begins with Air Canada's 787 slogan, "Everything You Dreamed Of," and continues to slick promises like, "All Jet. No Lag."
Beyond the snazzy photos of interiors and that icy blue livery, however, we're most in love with a touching video series introducing the aircraft with a sentimentality that's so delightfully Canadian.
Air Canada has 37 Dreamliners on order, and an incredible 15 of them will hit the skies come this autumn, with the full lot delivered by 2019.
In the above "Born to Fly" video, the experience of such a technologically advanced aircraft is paired with the journey of one Air Canada 787 First Officer to his spot in the right seat. With it, Air Canada is answering a question we always find ourselves asking those lucky enough to sit up front in a brand new airplane: "where did this passion of yours originate?"
We've waxed enthusiastic about Instagram for what seems like forever, including trends like carpet designs and even celeb travel selfies, but a new trending hashtag (with over 320,000 images!) has us shaking our heads.
This hashtag#crewlifedocuments the more casual aspects of what it's like to be part of an airline's crew. All these flight attendant selfies on social media means cabin crew are snapping while in uniform. On planes. Quite possibly while working.
Awesome Stuff / Legos / Toy Travel / Instagram / Facebook / Twitter / Social Media / Airlines / AvGeek / Pilots / → All Tags
Lindbergh. Earhart. Yeager.
Let's face itaviators are the epitome of cool. Heck, even fictitious pilots like Top Gun's Maverick get all the girls, so frankly we're shocked it's taken so long for the internet generation to devise a character as brilliant as The Lego Pilot.
Jetting around the world in his perfectly pressed uniform, The Lego Pilot spends days sharing his "office views" and favorite layover locations with fans on social media. Though his body may be made of plastic building blocks, his personality is very much alive on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. He's essentially a fully conceptualized and storified version of Lufthansa's "Pilot Diary" Instagram series from August 2013, which we heralded as "a revelation for airline social media."
Recent travels have transported The Lego Pilot to London, Hong Kong, Spain's Costa del Sol, Dubai, and Marrakech...and that's only since the beginning of March when the accounts initiated.
We won't spoil all the fun for you (follow him!), but below are a few of our favorite The Lego Pilot moments. Enjoy!