3 Links I Love: Operation Care-Lift, OneJet in Milwaukee, Throwing Money into Meridiana

Links I Love

This week’s featured link:
Operation Care-Lift: Spirit, Lufthansa Technik Team Up For Puerto Rico Relief Flights: A First Person Account OnboardAirways
What a great story that really came out of nothing but a desire to bring a little assistance to Puerto Rico. Chris Sloan over at Airways had a friend from Puerto Rico who wanted to help her people after the hurricane tore through. A lot of work went into it, but what started as a small relief effort became enormous. If you prefer supporting grassroots organizations instead of gigantic ones, this is a great way to see your money help directly.

Two for the road:
OneJet plans operating base at Mitchell International AirportMilwaukee Journal Sentinel
We haven’t talked about OneJet in awhile, and that’s because it hasn’t really done much that’s newsworthy. It shifted its sold base to Pittsburgh when it was offered incentives. Now it’s opening a second base in Milwaukee thanks to backing by the former head of Midwest Express. This seems consistent with its existing model, but once you add a second base, things get more complex.

Qatar Airways goes Italian, picks up chunk of MeridianaWandering Aramean
Everyone knows that other than never getting involved in a land war in Asia, the most classic of all blunders is investing in an airline in Italy. But here we go again. I suppose this time, if Alitalia really does shrink dramatically in a takeover, Meridiana could be poised to succeed. But this is definitely one of the more questionable investments in another airline that Qatar is made. If usually prerers investing in successful airlines like IAG.

9 comments on “3 Links I Love: Operation Care-Lift, OneJet in Milwaukee, Throwing Money into Meridiana

  1. I laugh at the Qatar statement. Its possible in their situation they may be worried about long term ablility to serve their own country and think something in Italy would help in some odd way. Maybe like Hitler thought getting oil from Asia would help?

  2. Surprised you haven’t posted about Monarch considering how big its collapse was. I know the writing had been on the wall as early as last year, but man did a lot of things happen when it went bust.

  3. As someone who is currently waiting to deplane from a IG (Meridiana) 763… Meh, not impressed. Older planes, broken and very narrow seats, and the old school CRT screens in the aisles for entertainment, no AVOD or onboard WiFi.

    That said, it’s a low(er) cost airline, with some unusual nonstops from the US that other airlines don’t run, and the price was right. I just don’t think it’s anywhere near the same league of the Middle Eastern airlines.

    1. Do the have a denser configuration than 2-3-2, or super wide aisles with narrow seats? Usually 767s seem to have reasonably wide Economy seats compared to newer 787 (9 across) and 777 (10 across) configurations.

      1. Meridiana’s economy configuration is 2-4-2, with aisles that appear to be of normal width. As the team at Cranky Concierge pointed out when I raised this topic after the trip (booked through them to be safe, given some unconnected tickets on different airlines and given that I had a hard arrival deadline due to a tour), Meridiana doesn’t publish the distance between the armrests, probably for obvious reasons. However, American and Delta in the US run 2-3-2 on the same plane. The Cranky Concierge staff equated 8-across in the 767-300 (instead of 7-across) to 10-across (instead of 9-across) in the 777, and guessed that the hip room on IG’s 763s was in the 16-inch range (< 17").

        I flew B6 upon arriving in the US, and the extra inch or two of hip room made all the difference in the world for me. Mind you, I'm **FAT** (44" waist line, under 6' with a weight in the high 200s), so I know I can't complain much, but still. For ~$600 savings and avoiding a (probably redeye) connection in Europe I guess it was worth it, but this is something that I will definitely be looking into in the future before I book a flight. I'm generally pretty price sensitive, but I'll pay $200+ more per roundtrip to avoid this airplane configuration in the future, either by upgrading to seats with more room or by choosing another airline… Worth that much to be able to get some decent sleep on a long flight and to hit the ground running upon arrival.

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