First-Ever Free Inflight Spa on a Short-Haul Flight, United Axing Flights, and Thai Aviation at Risk

News and notes from around the interweb:

  • Air Malta launches “the first ever free in-flight spa experience onboard a commercial short-haul flight.”

  • Behind the scenes of Emirates’ catering facility in Dubai (the ‘largest in the world’).

  • United is eliminating its Guam – Cairns and Guam – Seoul flights. I’m always rooting for United’s Guam-based operation, which was once Continental Micronesia and Air Micronesia (“Air Mike”) before that. They serve places like Truk, Yap, and Saipan (and indeed used to be based in Saipan).

    Of course United’s and Continental’s fate were probably predestined from the beginning since United traces its roots to Varney Airlines and Continental to Varney Speed Lines. Continental was headquartered at Denver and then LAX, both United hubs at the time of the merger. (United had once operated a Cleveland hub, and that was a Continental hub at the time of the merger, and Continental only moved to Houston with its acquisition by Texas International Airlines in 1982 and the retirement of Bob Six, Continental’s Chairman who had once been married to Ethel Merman.)

    Now the fate of connectedness for the Mariana Islands and Micronesia are in the hands of United.

  • Thai airlines could be banned from adding new routes to the US over concerns about their safety regulator. Thailand claims they don’t deserve to have their safety rating downgraded, because they’re trying to address concerns. If Thai carriers were actually forbidden to fly to the US (unlikely at this stage for current flights, i.e. Thai Airways’ four times weekly Seoul – Los Angeles service) then Thai says they’d put passengers on other Star Alliance flights.

  • Inside American Airlines’ social engagement team. (HT: Traveling Better)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Ethel came first, 1953-1960. He was the third of her four husbands. I guess the marriage wasn’t all roses and daffodils, sunshine and Santa Claus, bright lights and lollipops…

  2. I think you’re overstating things on Guam. The Cairns flight was like once or twice a week. I don’t know the Seoul frequency but it probably wasn’t that high. Now, if they cut HNL-GUM or GUM-ROR then we have a problem.

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