BA farewells 747s

“Sad Day for All” the understated words of an Air Traffic Controller at Kemble/Cotswold Airport summed up how I and so many 747 enthusiasts felt as the very last two British Airways Jumbo 747-400s departed the fleet. British Airways Boeing 747-400, G-CIVB and G-CIVY took off from London Heathrow Runway 27R on Thursday 8th October at 0646am and 0711am respectively. The airline had planned for the two Boeing 747s to have departed side by side from the airport’s parallel runways. As a result, of terrible weather, this spectacular double departure did not occur. G-CIVB (Negus…

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World’s 40 Best Neighbourhoods

Time Out (the global magazine that provides food, art and cultural recommendations for 328 cities in 58 countries worldwide), has compiled a list of the 40 coolest neighborhoods in the world based on the feedback from 38,000 readers (I was one of the respondents). The magazine notes they focused on local neighbourhoods because so many people across the world have been confined to their local areas with lockdowns, travel bans and curfews to stop COVID’s deadly spread. While one can quibble on the order and placement of the neighbourhoods, it is a fascinating list and…

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Airbus’ 2035 Zero emissions Hydrogen planes

With the drive to shift the world from fossil fuels, companies across the world are looking for new types of aircraft fuel. Norway’s government have already announced that they want domestic flights operated by electric planes by 2030. Hydrogen is becoming more and more appealing as the emissions free fuel to move a decent number of passengers long distances. Currently, hydrogen is expensive to produce and store but there is significant effort going into making hydrogen through “clean processes” such as solar, wind or geothermal methods. It is expected by the 2030s, we will have…

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Following the Farewell to 49 years of Qantas 747

What would I have given to be on this 747 as it made its last voyage across the Pacific? Sadly, no passengers were aboard, sadly,  nor any cabin crew. I would not have qualified as one of the half a dozen lucky pilots either who took the last ever Qantas 747 from Sydney to Los Angeles. After 49 years of service, COVID19 accelerated the retirement of Qantas’ Jumbo jet and their last plane of the type was ferried to the Mojave desert this week. With cooperation from Qantas, Air traffic control and the pilots entered…

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Farewell Air France’s 380

Another impact of COVID19 is Air France’s early retirement of their ten A380s, just eleven years after the airline first received them. The CEO of the Air France-KLM group Brian Smith indicated that he is absolutely not a fan of the A380 saying in 2019, that while passengers love it, the plane is not suitable for the airline as it is expensive, unreliable and too large. Smith in trying to reduce Air France’s complex fleet structure and confusing product range, indicated their ten A380s (five leased and five owned) would be gone by 2022.  The…

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Walking 116 miles across Bangkok for MS

  Multiple Sclerosis is a disease where the body’s own immune system eats away at the protective covering of nerves. This results in many different symptoms, including vertigo vision loss, pain, fatigue and impaired coordination. We still do not fully know how it starts, and how we can halt its destructive progress. Inspired by colleagues with MS, I have, every year, run or walked across multiple world cities to raise funds for research. This year, I chose to walk and/or run 100 miles (160km) through May in my 2020 home of Bangkok, Thailand. As you…

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The USA

Watching the US protests, riots and with frustration, sadness and anxiety. So many places I know and so many people I know are being impacted by a the current events. I have travelled to 46 US states and three of their territories. I know the cities where activity is taking place now. My friends live in the heart of New York City through to rural communities from Vermont to New Mexico. Stay safe people. Please protect each other instead of fighting each other. May the USA find a solution that gives all citizens their democratic…

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We Need a Holiday. WizzAir Flashmob Dance

Wizzair staff took advantage of downtime and an empty Budapest airport to remind us “we need a holiday“. Wizz Dance from WATER FILM GROUP on Vimeo. Budapest seems to be running less than half a dozen daily flights currently hence the very empty looking airport. Wizz are flyinga very small number of flights. All passengers must wear a face mask and cabin crew (as demonstrated) will wear masks and gloves throughout the entire flight. As for the song?  In the book The Complete Guide to Her Music Madonna, Rikky Rooksby states that “”Holiday’ is as…

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Russian Begpackers sent home from Indonesia

I have written previously about the phenomenon of “begpackers” where travelers find ways of earning money in their developing country destination through begging and/or busking. A Russian couple were videoed busking illegally at a market on Lombok island (Indonesia) two weeks ago. They reportedly told officials that they were street musicians who regularly travel around the world, and claimed that they were running out of money. A 29 year old man (MB), a 28-year-old woman (E), and their 2-year-old daughter (S), were taken into custody, as   “The activities of the three foreigners disrupted public…

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What to do with Virgin Australia

Once upon a time in 2000, Virgin entered the Australian airline market as a low cost carrier challenger. Months after its arrival, it found itself in a unique position as one of the country’s two main airlines (Ansett) collapsed in the wake of 11 September 2001. Qantas expanded to fill the vacuum left by Ansett. Virgin Blue nipped at their heels for over a decade. Qantas even started a new discount airline Jetstar in 2003, to take on Virgin in the low cost market. In 2010, Virgin Blue became Virgin Australia, repositioning itself as a…

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