Friday, September 22, 2017

Royal Navy of Oman RNOV Shabab Oman II calls at Valletta Port

The Royal Navy of Oman tall ship RNOV Shabab Oman II sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit. RNOV Shabab Oman II serves as a training ship for the Royal Navy of Oman

The Royal Navy of Oman full-rigged ship is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-3 wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Monday, Sep. 25th (22-Sep-2017)

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Air Malta introduces cheap fares, hives off ground handling to separate company

Air Malta has introduced a new system of cheap fares and hived off its ground handling operations into a separate aviation services company, Tourism Minister Dr K. Mizzi said today.

Dr Mizzi confirmed this morning that agreement was reached with the General Workers Union to move around 450 Air Malta ground and passenger handlers to a new company. "The new company will offer services to other airlines and it will also manage cargo operations," he said, adding this was part of the reform process at the airline.

Dr Mizzi called on Air Malta unions to accept changes in work practices as the airline tried to survive in a cutthroat environment. He said collective agreements with unions had to be in place by a Jan. 1st. He acknowledged the stumbling block was the financial remuneration package but insisted workers will lose nothing from their take-home pay.

He said pilots and cabin crew were being asked to accept changes in work practices in line with international standards and called for understanding. “I am sure common sense will prevail and everyone will be reasonable otherwise the airline runs the risk of returning to insolvency and this time around taxpayers will not be able to foot the bill,” he said.

Dr Mizzi was speaking at the launch of a new cheap air fare intended to attract more customers, who prefer traveling with just a hand luggage. Labelled Go Light, passengers can buy a one-way ticket from €39 for almost all Air Malta destinations with no bag allowance (apart from the hand luggage). Baggage allowance can be bought at an extra charge.

Company officials said the system was introduced in the airline's booking platform last week to test the package and Air Malta sold 25,000 Go Light tickets. Booking activity increased between 20% and 35% as a result of the new package, the airline said.

P. Sies, Air Malta chief commercial officer, said the airline had to attract more passengers to fill its seats. He said the new package, part of a three-way choice for customers, would make the airline more competitive in a cutthroat business.

Air Malta chairman C. Mangion said the airline had to take quick decisions to survive, expressing hope in the airline's future. "The new turnaround strategy is based on the trust we have in our employees… we want Air Malta to be a Mediterranean hub linking Europe with North Africa and the Middle East," he said. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 19-Sep-2017)

Malaga route for Air Malta next summer

Next summer Air Malta will inaugurate a twice weekly scheduled service to Malaga, the second-most populous city of Andalusia and the sixth-largest in Spain. 

Paul Sies, chief commercial officer, said the airline would be announcing more routes for summer 2018. 

Besides connecting the popular Malaga area, the new route is also the ideal gateway for travelling to and from Gibraltar. Nowadays thousands of expats mostly working in the iGaming industry travel frequently between Gibraltar and Malta, he added. 

Malaga lies on the Costa del Sol on the Spanish southern coast, some 100 kilometres east of the Strait of Gibraltar. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 18-Sep-2017)

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Ryanair's Malta-bound flight from Edinburgh diverts to Bergamo

A Ryanair Boeing B737-800 (EI-EBH), performing flight FR-6695 from Edinburgh (U.K.) to Malta IAP (Malta), had to divert to Milan-Bergamo (Italy) this morning due to a medical emergency on board. The flight then continued to Malta reaching destination with a delay of two hours on its original scheduled time. (17-Sep-2017)

French Navy Falcon 50 for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

The last few confirmations from much welcomed participants, keep trickling in, even in the last few days before the Airshow. This shows the dedication, commitment and enjoyment of aircrews, to participate in our Airshow, notwithstanding the fact that they are very much operationally constrained, which is the main reason why often, they cannot confirm earlier.

This late addition consists of the French Navy Falcon 50. This aircraft has participated in previous editions of our Airshow, including last year, but this time it will also take part in the flying display program, with some smooth flypasts, showing the gracefulness of this streamlined aircraft.

The basic air frame and design of this aircraft is that of a mid-sized long range business jet, but in time, Dassault developed a Maritime Surveillance and Environmental protection version of the aircraft, mainly for the French Navy.
More advancements may still be in sight for this aircraft as Dassault and Aviation Partners Inc. have announced that High Mach blended winglets, are being developed for the Falcon 50 as a retrofit kit.

The Malta Aviation Society would like to thank the French Navy for their continued support for our and we are grateful of having them back in both flying and static display. (Source: maltairshow.com, 17-Sep-2017)

Friday, September 15, 2017

French Navy FS Cdt. Ducuing at Valletta Port

The French Navy D'Estienne d'Orves-class corvette FS Commandant Ducuing (F 795) sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit. 

FS Cdt. Ducuing is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-4 wharf and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Monday, Sep. 18th. (15-Sep-2017)

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Light aircraft crash lands at Malta IAP

A Piper PA-34A-200T Seneca II, operated by the European Flight Academy in Malta, crashed whilst landing at the Malta Int'l Airport.

Emergency teams were sent but no one was hurt, a spokesperson for the airport confirmed.

The incident took place at 1722lt.

Movement on runway 23/05 have been temporarily suspended following the incident.

The aircraft with registration number 9H-AEB, is a twin-engined turboprop light aircraft, used by the academy for instrument rating training. (Source: 
maltatoday.com.mt, 14-Sep-2017)

U.K Border Force HMC Protector recalls at Valletta Port

The United Kingdom's Border Force cutter HMC Protector sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) early this morning on a brief visit. This was her eighth visit in Valletta Port this year. The Border Force cutter departed Valletta Port after a few hours visit. (14-Sep-2017)

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Ukrainian AF AN-30 for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

The Ukrainian Air Force has officially confirmed the participation of an AN-30 ''Open Skies'' for the static display at the 2017 Malta International Airshow.

The AN-30 aerial photographer was developed on a basis of the AN-24 passenger airplane. It is the first in the history of domestic aviation building machine designed with the only purpose – to perform aerial photography. From basis version it differs with the navigator's nose glass cock-pit and photo-doors in the floor of the cabin. It has nine modifications. It can be used in a cargo version.

The Treaty on Open Skies entered into force on Jan. 1st, 2002, and currently has 34 party states. It establishes a program of unarmed aerial surveillance flights over the entire territory of its participants. The treaty is designed to enhance mutual understanding and confidence by giving all participants, regardless of size, a direct role in gathering information about military forces and activities of concern to them. Open Skies is one of the most wide-ranging international efforts to date promoting openness and transparency of military forces and activities.

The Malta Aviation Society organisers of the Malta International Airshow is overwhelmed with the confirmation by the Ukrainian Air Force participation in the static display of the AN-30. We are very grateful for such an addition in this ever listing growing list of participants. (Source: maltairshow.com, 13-Sep-2017)

U.K. Royal Navy HMS Diamond calls at Valletta Port

The Royal Navy Daring-class destroyer HMS Diamond (D 34) has sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit. She has an AgustaWestland AW-159 Wildcat HMA.2 helicopter on board, serial ZZ380.

The British destroyer is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-4/5 wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port in the coming days. (13-Sep-2016)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

TM/DCA: Malta Aircraft Registry update

Transport Malta/Directorate of Civil Aviation published today the latest update of the Maltese Aircraft Register.

New addition/s: 

  • 9H-SKM - Gulfstream G450 (c/n. 4024), registered to Sky Prime Malta Aviation Services Ltd.
Cancellation/s: none

(Source: Transport Malta, 11-Sep-2017)

AFM's 2017 Open Day to be held at the Air Wing facility

The Armed Forces of  Malta (AFM) will hold their popular Open Day on Sep. 30th between 11am and 7pm. This year's edition will be held at the Air Wing facility in Kirkop, where the AFM will be able to showcase its new fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, and hangars.

Equipment by the other sections of the AFM, including the Maritime Squadron, the infantry, the explosive ordnance unit and the band will also be on display. The entrance will be free. (Source: timesofmalta.com & AFM, 11-Sep-2017)

Sunday, September 10, 2017

U.K Border Force HMC Protector recalls at Valletta Port

The United Kingdom's Border Force cutter HMC Protector sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this early morning on a courtesy visit. This is her seventh visit in Valletta Port this year.

The British cutter is presently berthing alongside at Coal wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Wednesday, Sep. 13th. (10-Sep-2017)

Ryanair to introduce 12 new Malta routes next summer

Ryanair has announced plans for 12 new routes from Malta next summer and says it intends to base a fifth aircraft on the island. D. O’Brien, chief commercial officer, told a press conference that the low-cost airline will operate 54 routes to 18 countries from Malta next summer.

The new routes are Aberdeen, Belfast, Seville, Pescara, Bratislava, Gothenburg, Paris-Beauvais, Porto, Tallin and extended services to Barcelona, Naples and Riga. Services to Naples and Riga are being introduced from this winter. The service to Barcelona will fly to the city's main airport. 

"This is good news for Malta as new routes will enhance diversification of inflows and outflows," Tourism Minister K. Mizzi observed. He said most of the services were new for Malta and there was hardly any overlap with Air Malta. 

Mr Mizzi said plans were also in train for cooperation between Ryanair and Air Malta in sales and commercial aspects, including sales on the Ryanair commercial portal. Talks are in hand on cooperation on connecting flights.

It was also announced that Ryanair will make a bid for ailing Italian flag carrier Alitalia in the coming weeks. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 10-Sep-2017)

Saturday, September 9, 2017

AFM to display at 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

Naturally synonymous with the Malta Airshow, is the ever present air assets of the Air Wing of the Armed Forces of Malta (AFM), both in the static display and in the flying program. The Air Wing is the aerial component of the Maltese military. 

The Air Wing has responsibility for the security of Maltese airspace, conducts maritime patrol and Search and Rescue duties, and provides military assistance to other government departments of Malta. It is based at apron 7 of the Malta International Airport.

One of the assets we will be enjoying during the Airshow is the new rotary wing workhorse of the Air Wing – the AugustaWestland (now Leonardo) AW-139. Three of these helicopters were acquired by the AFM. They carry a crew of five, including two rescue swimmers. It can carry a total of 15 persons. The helicopters are equipped with state-of- the-art avionics and imaging systems, a hoist for SAR operations and a stretcher for medical evacuations.

Another Air Wing asset planned to take part in our flying program, is the fixed-wing Hawker Beechcraft B200 King Air MPA. This is a state-of-the-art maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) for border control. It has the capability, and sustainability, to enable the AFM to continue effectively patrolling the E.U.'s maritime borders both by day and night, and in support of other E.U. border-related missions.

The Malta Aviation Society organizer of the Malta International Airshow 2017 are proud to have the Armed Forces of Malta Participating with their air assets during the show. (Source: maltairshow.com, 8-Sep-2017)

Friday, September 8, 2017

Three flights en rotue to Malta IAP diverts to other airports due to bad weather over the airfield

Three flights en route to Malta IAP this afternoon where forced to divert to other airports due to a thunderstorm over the airfield. 

The first aircraft to divert was a Gryphon Airlines McDonnell Douglas MD-87 (ZS-TRJ), operating scheduled flight UG-1300 for Tunisair Express between Tunis-Carthage (Tunisia) and Malta IAP. After a missed approach the crew decided to return to Tunis airport. The flight was subsequently cancelled.

Next to divert was a Volga-Dnepr Airlines Ilyushin IL-76 (RA-76951), operating cargo flight VDA-4044 between Châlons-Vatry (France) and Malta IAP. The IL-76 diverted to Palermo airport (Sicily/Italy). The flight was subsequently re-scheduled to tomorrow.

The last flight to divert was an Alitalia Airbus A320-200 (I-BIKA), operating scheduled flight AZ-886 between Rome-Fiumicino (Italy) and Malta IAP. The A320 diverted also to Palermo airport (Sicily/Italy). The flight then continued to Malta IAP reaching destination with a delay of 1-hr 35-mins on its original time.

Besides these diversions, numerous fights that had depart from Malta IAP had to be delayed too. (8-Sep-2017)

Friday, September 1, 2017

TM/DCA: Malta Aircraft Registry update

Transport Malta/Directorate of Civil Aviation published today the latest update of the Maltese Aircraft Register.

New addition/s: none


Cancellation/s: 

  • 9H-NGX - Bombardier Global 6000 (c/n. 9451), registered to Elit'Avia Malta Ltd. (rrg N668JS)
(Source: Transport Malta, 1-Sep-2017)

USN P8 and MH-60 for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

Visitors to the Malta Airshow can hardly realize how fortunate we are, to once again, have the United States Navy’s (USN) latest asset, in the form of a Boeing P-8 Poseidon Maritime Patrol Aircraft, gracing our static park for the whole weekend and even with a possibility of having the aircraft performing a flying display over Smart City (flying to be confirmed).

The Boeing P-8 Poseidon has been developed by Boeing, based on the Boeing 737-800ER (extended range) airliner air frame. The P-8 conducts anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, and shipping interdiction, along with an early warning self-protection ability, otherwise known as electronic support measures. This involves carrying torpedoes, depth charges, Harpoon anti-ship missiles, and other weapons. It is able to drop and monitor sonobuoys.

Accompanying the P-8, the U.S. Navy MH-60 Seahawk will also be returning to the Malta International Airshow static park, after previous participation.

The Sikorsky MH-60 Seahawk is a twin engine, multi-mission U.S. Navy helicopter based on the U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk and a member of the Sikorsky S-70 family. The most significant air frame modification for seaborne naval use, is a hinged tail to reduce its footprint aboard ships, when parked.

Both U.S. Navy assets will be flying-in from nearby U.S. Navy Air Bases in Sigonella (Sicilly) and Naples (Italy).

The Malta Aviation Society is proud that once again the U.S. Naval Air Forces is participating with their assets at our show. (Source: maltairshow.com, 1-Sep-2017)

TM/DCA: Malta Aircraft Registry update

Transport Malta/Directorate of Civil Aviation published today the latest update of the Maltese Aircraft Register.

New addition/s: 

  • 9H-RWM - Hawker Beechcraft Corp B200GT (c/n. BY-102), registered to Air CM Global Ltd. (ex EC-LIH)
Cancellation/s: 
  • 9H-GMT - Dassault Falcon 900LX (c/n. 247), registered to Skyfirst Ltd.
(Source: Transport Malta, 30-Aug-2017)

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Russian Navy RFS Perekop calls at Valletta Port

The Russian Navy Project-887 (Smolny-class) training ship RFS Perekop (310) sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this evening on a courtesy visit. 

The Russian training ship is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-4 wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Friday, Sep. 1st. (29-Aug-2017)

Monday, August 28, 2017

U.K. Border Force HMC Protector recalls at Valletta Port

The United Kingdom's Border Force cutter HMC Protector sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this early morning on a courtesy visit. This is her sixth visit in Valletta Port this year.

The British cutter is presently berthing alongside at Coal wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Thursday, Aug. 30th. (28-Aug-2017)

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Air Malta carried more than 12,200 pax last weekend

Air Malta carried more than 12,200 passengers last Saturday and Sunday, considered to be the busiest weekend of the year so far. In a statement, the national airline said it had carried 1,200 passengers (+11%) more than in the corresponding period last year for a total of 12,210 pax and registering a seat load factor of about 90%.

"For many of our guests, last weekend was the start of holidays and we are happy that they chose to travel on Air Malta. With over 80 flights running on-schedule, we had a very busy operation," said P. Sies, the airline" chief commercial officer. He said Air Malta was the airline that offered "the most interesting schedule with excellent timings” to travel to the best airports in Europe." (Source: timesofmalta.com, 26-Aug-2017)

Friday, August 25, 2017

USAF KC-135 for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

Another welcomed addition to our ever growing static display park is the United States Air Force (USAF) KC-135 Stratotanker, a favorite with many aviation enthusiasts.

Based on the Boeing 707 commercial airliner, the KC-135 is USAF main aerial refueling tanker. It has been refueled other military aircraft in the air since its entry into service 60 years ago, in 1957. This makes the presence of the legendary KC-135 at our airshow even more significant. 

The participating aircraft is one which is based in Europe, namely at RAF Mildenhall, in the U.K. The Malta Aviation Society is extremely grateful to welcoming back the USAF at the Malta International Airshow 2017. (Source: maltairshow.com, 25-Aug-2017)

Two French AF Alpha Jets for 2017 Malta Int' Airshow

We are pleased to announce a further addition to the flying and static display program, with the confirmation of two French Air Force Dassault/Dornier Alpha Jet. 

The Alpha Jet was originally designed and co-produced by Dassault in France and Dornier in Germany, as a light attack aircraft, although it was primarily and extensively used, as an advanced/lead in, jet trainer aircraft, produced in large numbers by both the French and the German AF.

The aircraft has already participated in our airshow in past editions, both in the static display and also in our flying programs. Moreover, the aircraft is also used for the French AF's National Display Team – the Patrouille de France, who have also participated in our past editions, namely in the very first Malta airshow, back in 1993.

The Malta Aviation Society organizers of the Malta International Airshow would like to publicly thank the French AF for confirming their participation once again in Malta. (Source: maltairshow.com, 25-Aug-2017)

Maleth-Aero to add maiden Embraer aircraft to its fleet

Maleth-Aero has confirmed it will shortly be introducing its maiden Embraer regional jet equipment in the form of four ERJ-145s. The Malta-based ACMI/charter specialist said in a statement the first aircraft of the type, 9H-REY (c/n. 145036), would be delivered shortly ahead of its deployment into service in September.

"We are very pleased to be introducing this product to our fleet and expect 9H-REY to be on the ramp next month. Thereafter we expect to take up the remaining units prior to the year end," M. O'Brien, Chief Executive Officer of Maleth-Aero, commented. (Source: ch-aviation.com, 24-Aug-2017)

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Irish Naval Service LE William Butler Yates recalls at Valletta Port

The Irish Naval Service Samuel Beckett-class offshore-patrol vessel LE William Butler Yates (P 63) has sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit. This is her second visit in Valletta Port this year.

The Irish patrol vessel is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-3 wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Saturday, Aug. 26th. (22-Aug-2017)

Friday, August 18, 2017

RCAF to participate in 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow with a CF-188

It is with great pleasure that we announce the participation of a CF-188 Hornet from the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF). The Hornet wll increase the variety of static display aircraft at the 25th edition of the Malta International Airshow.

The supersonic CF-188 Hornet can engage both ground and aerial targets. Its twin engines generate enough thrust to lift 24 full-size pick-up trucks off the ground. As the RCAF's frontline multi-role fighter, the modernized CF-188 is used primarily for air defence, air superiority and tactical support.

After successful Canadian participation in the 1994,1998 and 2015 editions this year will see the debut of a CF-188 Hornet on our shores, a great edition to the airshow.

The Malta Aviation Society organisers of the Malta International Airshow would like to publicly thank the Royal Canadian Air Force for confirming their participation once again in Malta. (Source: maltairshow.com, 18-Aug-2017)

Air Malta to restart Malta-Manchester route next year

Air Malta will be restarting flights to Manchester on a weekly basis as of May 2018 after the service was axed earlier this year. The airline announced last December that the popular route would be scrapped from May 2017 to focus on other, more profitable services.

The decision was met with widespread criticism, but Air Malta said it had been projected to lose up to €2 million in variable costs by operating the route with four flights per week this summer, and that the “expensive” route should have been axed “many years ago”.

But industry sources told this newspaper Air Malta had now secured a commitment, as of May next year, for a significant portion of seats to be taken up by tour operators on the Manchester route, making the route viable. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 18-Aug-2017)

GdiF to send an AW-139 to 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

The Italian's Guardia di Finanza (GdiF) aviation unit has confirmed it's participation in the 25th Edition of the Malta International Airshow with a static display of a Leonardo (AgustaWestland) AW-139 helicopter.

The GdiF is an Italian law enforcement agency under the authority of the Minister of Economy and Finance and part of the Italian armed forces. The GdiF is essentially responsible for dealing with financial crime and smuggling. It maintains more than 100 aircraft to serve in its mission of patrolling Italy's territorial waters.

In the rotary wing of the GdiF, the Leonardo AW-139 is tasked with maritime patrol, search, exploration, medical evacuation flights and further logistical transport. Its missions take place around the Italian territory on land and even on sea. (Source: maltairshow.com, 18-Aug-2017)

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

TM/DCA: Malta Aircraft Registry update

Transport Malta/Directorate of Civil Aviation published today the latest update of the Maltese Aircraft Register.

New addition/s: 

  • 9H-CAM - Avions Pierre Robin HR 100-210 (c/n. 170), registered to 'Private'
  • 9H-CBB - Cessna 340A (c/n. 340A-0441), registered to Piltz Praezisionswerkzeuge GmbH & Co., Germany
Cancellation/s: none

(Source: Transport Malta, 14-Aug-2017)

Monday, August 14, 2017

U.K. Border Force HMC Protector recalls at Valletta Port

The United Kingdom's Border Force cutter HMC Protector sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit. This is her fifth visit in Valletta Port this year.

The British cutter is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-3 wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Wednesday, Aug. 16th. (14-Aug-2017)

Friday, August 11, 2017

Saudi Hawks display team for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

The Malta Aviation Society proudly announces that the Saudi Hawks, from the Royal Saudi Air Force, will be participating in the 25th edition of the Malta International Airshow being held between the 23rd and the 24th of September 2017.

The Saudi Hawks display team will be showing off their skills during the aerial display of the Airshow, while the general public will have the unique opportunity to meet the pilots at the Airshow Grounds in Luqa. This will be the first time that this team will be participating in the local Airshow.

Painted in an eye catching green and white livery inspired by the Saudi national flag, the team was established in 1998 and is based at King Faisal Air Base in Tabuk city.  The team flies with specially modified BAE Hawk Mk65 aircraft fitted with smoke generators.

During the show, the team will show off its most iconic manoeuvre known as The Logo, for which they hold the Guinness World Record for the largest sky drawing for their logo. During this complex manoeuvre, all aircraft will paint the nations national emblem in the sky, a palm tree with crossed swords representing prosperity and justice.

Following The Turkish Stars and the Swiss PC-7 Team, The Saudi Hawks are the third aerobatic team to be confirmed for the 25th edition of Malta International Airshow which will feature over 40 different aircraft participating in the static and flying display. The participation list so far features seven countries. (Source: maltairshow.com, 11-Aug-2017)

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Aegean to increase the Athens-Malta service to five times weekly as from June 2018

Aegean Airlines in recent schedule update adjusted planned European service increase in summer 2018, based on comparison of peak summer season in 2018 vs 2017. The Athens-Malta-Athens service will increase from the current four to five flights per week as from Jun. 27th, 2018. All flights will be operated with Dash 8-Q400s, instead of the current Dash 8s/A320s combination. (Source: routesonline.com, 8-Aug-2017)

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

M.I.A. plc releases traffic results for July 2017

Summer is in full swing at Malta International Airport, with the number of travellers passing through the terminal in July increasing by more than 90,000 passenger movements. This translates into an upturn of 15.5% over the same month last year. July's 675,111 passenger movements exceeded the airport's previous passenger traffic record, held by August 2016, by 12%.

As noted also in previous months, July's thriving numbers resulted from an increase in aircraft movements. These grew by 13.6% to reach an all-time record of 4,562 take-offs and landings by the end of July. In parallel with this growth, seat capacity registered an increase of 16.5%. Despite a slight drop of 1.3%, last month's seat load factor still stood at a healthy 86.7%.

The top five drivers of traffic to Malta IAP remained unchanged from June, with the United Kingdom topping the list followed by Italy, Germany, France, and Spain. These markets recorded varying levels of growth, and cumulatively were responsible for a leap of around 53,000 passenger movements when compared to July 2016.

Passenger numbers from these markets flourished as a result of enhanced capacity and flight frequencies on routes such as Glasgow, Bari, Frankfurt, Lyon, and Madrid, as well as the launch of new routes including Bordeaux and Valencia.

July's traffic brought the total number of travellers welcomed at Malta IAP in the first seven months of the year up to around 3.3 million. Towards the end of the month, the airport published its mid-yearly forecast, whereby it announced that it is expecting circa 5.8 million passengers to go through the terminal by the end of the year. (Source: maltairport.com, 8-Aug-2017)

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

TM/DCA: Malta Aircraft Registry update

Transport Malta/Directorate of Civil Aviation published today the latest update of the Maltese Aircraft Register.

New addition/s: 

  • 9H-YUM - Dassault Falcon 900DX (c/n. 610), registered to TAG Aviation Malta Ltd. (ex OD-MIK)
Cancellation/s: 
  • 9H-LDV - Bombardier Challenger 605 (c/n. 5756), registered to Hyperion Aviation Ltd. (rrg N60TK)
(Source: Transport Malta, 7-Aug-2017)

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Air Malta A320 grounded at Paris-Orly

An Air Malta aircraft (A320, 9H-AEI) is stranded in Paris, which is expected to delay a number of flights today. Air Malta confirmed that passengers scheduled to travel on the Orly flight were given complimentary accommodation for the night and refreshments.

The airline said that the aircraft meant to operate flight KM467 from Paris-Orly to Malta on Friday was grounded for technical reasons and that a group of Air Malta engineers is travelling to Paris to inspect and fix the aircraft.

A number of flights today, including KM116/7 to/from London-Gatwick and KM102/3 to/from London-Heathrow, will be delayed. Affected passengers today will be offered assistance that includes snacks, depending on the extent of the delay. They will be given compensation in line with statutory requirements.

The airline apologised for any inconvenience caused by circumstances beyond
its control. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 5-Aug-2017)

Friday, August 4, 2017

Four RAF Hawk trainers for 2015 Malta Int'l Airshow

The U.K.'s Royal Air Force (RAF) committed further support for the 25th edition of the Malta International Airshow. This time four further aircraft will be added to the static display line-up.

For the first time ever during the event, we will be able to see closely RAF Hawk T.2 aircraft coming from IV(R) Squadron from RAF Valley, while 100 Squadron at RAF Leeming will support the event with two Hawk T.1s.

The Hawk T.1 is used primarily in the advanced flying-training role, it is equipped to an operational standard and is capable of undertaking a war role.

The Hawk T2 is a fully aerobatic, low wing, transonic, two-seat trainer with mission avionics that are representative of front-line aircraft. It is used to train pilots for Tornado GR4, Typhoon and F-35 Lightning II.

The Malta Aviation Society organisers of the Malta International Airshow are delighted for the further commitment by the Royal Air Force. (Source: maltairshow.com, 4-Aug-2017)

Thursday, August 3, 2017

TM/DCA: Malta Aircraft Registry update

Transport Malta/Directorate of Civil Aviation published today the latest update of the Maltese Aircraft Register.

New addition/s: 

  • 9H-ELI - Cessna 750 Citation X (c/n. 750-0115), registered to Luxwing Ltd. (ex ES-ELI).
  • 9H-GIO - Cessna 525 CitationJet (c/n. 525-0121), registered to TRTO Agency Ltd. (ex D-ICSS).
  • 9H-MJD - Canadair Challenger 601 (c/n. 3031), registered to Air CM Global Ltd. (ex 9H-IJK).
Cancellation/s: 
  • 9H-IJK - Canadair Challenger 601 (c/n. 3031), registered to Air CM Global Ltd. (rrg 9H-MJD)
(Source: Transport Malta, 1-Aug-2017)

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Air Malta carriers record 12,000 passengers in two days

Over 12,000 passengers traveled on Air Malta aircraft last weekend in what the airline described as a record 48 hours performance for recent years. On Saturday and Sunday the airline operated over 80 flights achieving an average seat load factor of 93%.

P. Sies, Chief Commercial Officer at Air Malta commented; "This was a great achievement by all our staff and especially those in commercial and operations. It was our best weekend over the last two years surpassing even mid-August figures which are usually the airline’s best performing period. 

"This performance was even more significant particularly when we note that it surpassed our performance two years ago when we operated with two more aircraft and there is more competition from other airlines on our more popular routes.

"Last weekend some of our flights including those to/from Switzerland and Russia ran with over 95% load factors. This is good news for the airline and we believe we can surpass this figure in the coming weekends." (Source: timesofmalta.com, 2-Aug-2017)

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

easyjet to add weekly flight on Manchester-Malta route

easyjet will be adding a weekly flight to its route between Manchester (U.K.) and Malta as of this coming winter. Flights will operate four times a week in winter and daily in summer as of Nov. 7th, the airline said.

Tourism Minister K. Mizzi said the additional flight confirmed the government's commitment to increase the frequency of existing flight destinations. Malta IAP CEO A. Borg said this development was in line with the airport's endeavours to secure better capacity and connectivity in winter. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 1-Aug-2017)

Italian Navy ITS Palinuro calls at Valletta Port

The Italian Navy sail training ship ITS Palinuro (A 5311) sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit. The port visit in Valletta marks the commencement of the 53rd training campaign in favor of the Chief Petty Officers (CPO) cadets, coming from the Italian Navy CPO school located in Taranto.

The Italian training ship is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-3 wharf. The public will be able to visit the ship on Aug. 1st from 1600 to 1900; Aug. 2nd from 1000 to 1200 and from 1600 to 1800; Aug. 3rd from 1000 to 1200 and 1600 to 1900; and on Aug. 4th from 1600 to 1900.

ITS Palinuro is scheduled to sail from Valletta Port on Saturday, Aug. 5th. (1-Aug-2017)

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Hellenic Navy HS Prometheus calls at Valletta Port

The Hellenic Navy replenishment ship HS Prometheus (A 374) sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit.

The Hellenic auxiliary is presently berthing alongside at Boiler wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Tuesday, Aug. 1st. (29-Jul-2017)

HeliFly to launch transport service between Malta and Gozo by helicopter

In the first week of August, HeliFly Limited will launch a transport service between Malta and Gozo by helicopter. But not only – during this summer, there will also be a helicopter transport service for tourists visiting the three islands.

The innovative service has been conceived by Italian lawyer E. Blasio, CEO of HeliFly. "There are four activities that HeliFly will hold in Malta. These include Malta to Gozo transport, touristic tours around Malta, Gozo and Comino, trips to and from Sicily such as Taormina, Panarea and North Africa, and a flight training school,” Dr Blasio said.

HeliFly will operate in Malta in partnership with two business groups: Eurotech-Ariane, one of the most important Italian and international companies specialising in aerial works, and the Maltese Falcon Alliance and European Pilot Academy. With these two partnerships, HeliFly will provide the first helicopter training school in Malta.

HeliFly will work with different types of helicopters, including a Robinson R22 and Agusta A109. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 28-Jul-2017)

Friday, July 28, 2017

Three Polish military aircraft for 2017 Malta Int'l Airshow

The Polish Air Force (Siły Powietrzne) and Polish Naval Air Arm (Marynarka Wojenna RP) will be once again supporting the Malta International Airshow this year.

The Polish AF will be sending two assets for the static display line up. For the first time ever we shall be hosting an F-16 Fighting Falcon Block 52. Supporting the F-16 visit we shall also have a C-295M transport aircraft. 

The M-28B Bryza from the Polish Navy will again visit our island and increase the line up for the static display.

The three aircraft will fly high the Polish flag which in the last year's has become a firm participant during our airshow. (Source: maltairshow.com, 28-Jul-2017)

M.I.A. plc releases half-yearly results, revises projections for 2017

Malta Int'l Airport's revised projections indicate that circa 5.8 million passengers are expected to pass through the terminal by the end of the year, establishing a new traffic record for the airport. In the first half of the year, Malta IAP had already registered 2,639,712 passenger movements, amounting to an increase of 20% over the same period in 2016.

This solid six-month performance encouraged the company to revise its original forecast announced in January, while taking into account the growth rate reached so far, traffic developments for the winter season, and trends observed in the aviation industry.

CEO A. Borg presented this forecast at a press conference, noting that while passenger numbers have recently been experiencing an increase across all months, Malta International Airport will be persisting in its efforts to ascertain that the upcoming winter season maintains the momentum gained thus far.

Detailed traffic results for the first half of 2017 revealed that June was the third consecutive month to register over half a million passenger movements. The growth experienced in the first six months was bolstered by an upturn of 15% in aircraft movements and 19% in seat capacity.

Despite the increase in seat capacity, with over 3 million seats available on flights operated to Malta IAP in the first six months, a healthy seat load factor was maintained, which stood at 80.7%.

Looking ahead, important developments for winter 2017-18 include the introduction of four new winter routes operated by Ryanair and EasyJet, and the extension of a number of routes from summer into winter by Air Malta, Wizz Air and Aegean Airlines. In addition to this, increased flight frequencies during the upcoming season will also be offered by SAS, Lufthansa, Vueling, and Jet2.

By the end of the year, the airport will have invested EUR16 million in its infrastructure, with the heftiest injection being in the terminal reconfiguration project. Completed project milestones include the opening of a new La Valette lounge, a re-conceived observation deck, and the security screening area relocation. Upon conclusion of the project’s first phase, the terminal will also be furnished with eight additional check-in desks and a new baggage handling system. (Source: maltairport.com, 27-Jul-2017)

Jet2 announces new route to Malta from London-Stansted

Leisure airline Jet2.com has added further to its Stansted schedule for summer 2018, with three new routes and extra flights to nine other destinations. Jet2.com and is sister package holiday company Jet2holidays will now also fly to Malta, Naples (Italy) and Nice (France) next summer, bringing its total number of destinations from Stansted for the season to 33. (Source: ipswichstar.co.uk, 27-Jul-2017)

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Turkish Navy TCG Bayraktar calls at Valletta Port

The Turkish Navy Bayraktar-class landing ship TCG Bayraktar (L 402) sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this evening on a courtesy visit.

The Turkish landing ship is presently berthing alongside at Pinto-3 wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Wednesday, Jul. 26th. (23-Jul-2017)

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Air Malta to add another plane to its fleet next summer

Air Malta is to add a plane to its current fleet of eight aircraft as of next summer, with the airline saying the addition will give it more flexibility to service popular routes and add new ones. The decision to grow its fleet of aircraft was sanctioned by the company's board of directors earlier this week, on the recommendation of the carrier's management. 

In a statement, the company said that the decision was in line with its growth strategy and would allow Air Malta to boost its seat capacity and fuel growth in passenger numbers. The national airline's commercial team is currently carrying out market research into potential destinations Air Malta can expand into.

The airline currently carries an estimated 1.6 million passengers every year. It has been hobbled by financial difficulties, despite an E.U.-sanctioned bailout some years back. Tourism Minister K. Mizzi has said that his main focus will be on turning the airline's fortunes around and ensuring it can stand on its own two feet. (Source: timesofmalta.com, 22-Jul-2017)

Italian Navy ITS Carlo Margottini calls at Valletta Port

The Italian Navy Bergamini-class frigate ITS Carlo Margottini (F 592) sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit. She has on board an NHIndustries NH-90 helicopter, serial MM81598.

The Italian frigate is presently berthing alongside at Boiler wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port on Tuesday, Jul. 25th (22-Jul-2017)

Irish Naval Service LE William Butler Yates calls at Valletta Port

The Irish Naval Service Samuel Beckett-class offshore-patrol vessel LE William Butler Yates (P 63) has sailed into Valletta Port (the Grand Harbour) this morning on a courtesy visit.

The Irish patrol vessel is presently berthing alongside at Wine wharf, and she's expected to sail from Valletta Port this evening. (22-Jul-2017)

TM/DCA: Malta Aircraft Registry update

Transport Malta/Directorate of Civil Aviation published today the latest update of the Maltese Aircraft Register.

New addition/s: none


Cancellation/s: 
  •  9H-VVB - Boeing B737-400 (c/n. 24901/1854), registered to Aerotron (Ireland) Ltd., Ireland (rrg SX-MAI)
(Source: Transport Malta, 21-Jul-2017)