PLAY Set To Take Delivery Of Its 3rd Airbus A321neo

PLAY is gearing up to receive its third A321neo later this week. The aircraft, another former Interjet plane,…

PLAY Set To Take Delivery Of Its 3rd Airbus A321neo

PLAY is gearing up to receive its third A321neo later this week. The aircraft, another former Interjet plane, has emerged from the paint shop in Texas, ready to be ferried to Iceland on Thursday. That brings the startup airline’s fleet to three A321neos, giving it the opportunity to bolster capacity for the rest of the summer season.

PLAY’s third A321neo is ready for delivery. Photo: PLAY

Three for PLAY

Iceland’s newest airline is gearing up to add more capacity to its fleet this week, as its third A320neo is ready for delivery. The plane was pictured leaving the paint shop in Texas, ahead of its delivery to Iceland on Thursday.

The A321neo will be registered TF-PLB once PLAY takes delivery. It is a 3.3-year-old aircraft, originally delivered to Interjet in 2018 as XA-NEO. Both PLAY’s existing A321neos were former Interjet aircraft too, and all have the same rather generous 192 seat all-economy configuration.

According to data from RadarBox.com, the aircraft was stored in Arizona for much of the previous 12 months. 10 days ago, it was ferried to Amarillo, Texas, for painting. International Aerospace Coatings (IAC) took care of the neo’s new gleaming coat of paint.

PLAY third neo getting painted
The neo had a shiny new coat of paint ahead of its long flight to Iceland. Photo: PLAY

The addition of another neo for PLAY will help the airline to ramp up its capacity for the remainder of the summer season. From just 130 flights in July, PLAY will operate 198 in August, keeping things at that level through to October. From November to March, capacity will hover around 160 – 170 flights per month.

Where has PLAY been flying so far?

PLAY launched as a new startup to much fanfare at the end of June. Its inaugural destination was London Stansted, but more connections quickly followed. By the end of July, it had added Tenerife, Copenhagen, Paris, Berlin, Barcelona and Alicante to its route map.

PLAY in Paris
Paris welcomed PLAY for the first time last month. Photo: PLAY

For August, the airline is scheduled to fly to all those destinations but with increased capacity. The airports getting the most PLAY love are Stansted, Copenhagen, Paris and Berlin, all with 18 flights for the month. Barcelona, Tenerife and Alicante stick at around eight or nine flights.

PLAY in Denmark
Copenhagen is getting lots of PLAY love. Photo: PLAY

No new destinations are loaded into the schedule until December when we see it operating a one-off flight to Warsaw, as well as two rotations to Gran Canaria. January sees the addition of Saltsburg, with a couple of rotations a month to start, while Gran Canaria sees increasing numbers of flights as we move into 2022.

Barcelona will see its last flight at the end of October. This seasonal service will return in summer 2022. As yet, no transatlantic flights are loaded in, but we can hope to get more news on that later in the year as PLAY increases its fleet size and lays out its plans for next summer.

Have you tried PLAY yet? Let us know in the comments.

Source : Simple Flying More   

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Rail + Plane: easyJet Partners With DB For Connected Ticket Sales

Since Berlin Brandenburg Airport opened in 2020, the new travel hub has become a key base for low-cost…

Rail + Plane: easyJet Partners With DB For Connected Ticket Sales

Since Berlin Brandenburg Airport opened in 2020, the new travel hub has become a key base for low-cost carrier easyJet. As well as serving a wide range of destinations from BER, the airline has also formed a partnership with German rail operator Deutsche Bahn (DB). This allows seamless connectivity between flights and onward train journeys.

easyJet operates both year-round and seasonal routes out of BER. Photo: Getty Images

Connected ticketing

easyJet’s partnership with DB is part of its ‘Worldwide by easyJet’ program. This scheme has seen the orange-clad budget airline form partnerships with other carriers to allow its passengers to enjoy easier onward connections. The deal with DB has a similar aim, albeit with passengers connecting onto trains rather than flights. easyJet explains that:

You can now book Deutsche Bahn trains directly with us, and seamlessly connect to and from a wide range of German destinations via Berlin Brandenburg Airport, by combining flight and train tickets in one booking process.”

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With passengers increasingly factoring in environmental concerns when making travel plans, trains are becoming a bigger factor. Indeed, Simple Flying reported earlier this year that they could be set to replace planes on certain German domestic routes. easyJet’s deal with DB taps into this trend, and makes onward travel from BER more integrated.

Deutsche Bahn ICE
DB’s ICE trains offer high-speed trips between German cities. Photo: Jake Hardiman | Simple Flying

How does it work?

Let’s take a closer look at the specifics of this impressive integration, which commenced last month, according to Skift. The tickets, which are bookable through the Worldwide by easyJet website, are available on routes to cities in the center, north, and east of Germany. These destinations include Dresden, Hannover, Leipzig, and Wolfsburg.

DB and easyJet work with travel search engine Dohop to provide connecting itineraries. Dohop is on hand to assist passengers in the event of delays to their journey. The itineraries have a minimum connection time of 90 (Schengen flights) or 120 (non-Schengen) minutes between plane and train to minimize the risk of missing your connection.

For further peace of mind, passengers can choose a transferable Flexticket for the rail leg. On the other hand, the more restrictive Sparticket is a cheaper option. Dohop is also the platform via which passengers access their train tickets for the onward train journey. Boarding passes for the flight are accessed via the easyJet app as normal.

easyJet, Berlin Brandenburg, Berlin Airport
easyJet passengers landing in Berlin can use the scheme to connect to various German cities by rail. Photo: Getty Images

Similar partnership at Lufthansa

Interestingly enough, easyJet isn’t the only airline to have established a partnership with Germany’s largest passenger train operator. Indeed, none other than German flag carrier Lufthansa also has a long-standing relationship with Deutsche Bahn.

In a program known as Express Rail, Lufthansa passengers can make use of DB’s high-speed ‘ICE’ (Inter City Express) services to travel to and from the airline’s Frankfurt hub. This sees DB trains to and from 19 cities given ‘flight numbers’ with Lufthansa’s LH prefix.

The scheme allows, once again, for greater integration between air and rail transport, while also having the environmental benefit of not requiring passengers to connect onto another flight. Passengers using this program also have the safety of a transfer guarantee. They can even check their baggage in at Frankfurt Aiport’s station, rather than in the terminal itself.

What do you make of easyJet’s partnership with Deutsche Bahn? Have you made use of this connected ticketing system yourself? Let us know your thoughts and experiences in the comments!

Source : Simple Flying More   

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