There is only one A380: one day spotting at Dubai International Airport

Hey there!
Welcome back!

Today my entry is dedicated to those aviation spotters around the world. I would like to show you how it is to spot here in Dubai International Airport, one of the world busiest airports, with the biggest terminal ever and home of the great Emirates airline.


The place is very interesting and not just another airport, it is full of arquitecture, councourses and angars, but specially: Airbus A380-800s. As you know, it is the largest aircraft ever done and Emirates has the largest fleet of these amazing “flying monsters”. I call them so, because it just seems crazy to see something so big moving and flying around.


You can see them going up and down, one by one. Each one following the next to end up in the sky. If you go there you will enjoy the beautiful views of the terminal, the Emirates fleet and many other aircrafts from other airlines landing and taking off, such as Qatar, Flydubai or like this one from Shaheen Air (Pakistan).


I never saw so many A380s taking off in a raw.


Each picture is a different one.


On going Pasarela. Lets see who looks pretiest


Am I looking good?


But you need to be quite…some on them are shy and difficult to spot…


I must say it is a difficult airport where to spot on, it is well hiden, pictures near are probihited and as normal, some patrol cars…but it is still worth it!!


I hope you enjoyed it

Thank you for your time and….Stay tuned!!!



Ebola and aviation: the fear caused by the international public emergency

Hey there!

Welcome back!

I would like to talk today about something that I am really interested on, about Ebola, aviation, its global propagation and potential risks. Imagine the magnitude of the problem, how little by little it might be spreading, it represents an international threat. There are thusands of flights daily, connecting people and places, from airport to airport.

Ebola: fatcs and characteristics of the illness

But, why is it of international concern? what is Ebola? is it dangerous to fly?


To talk about it, I have opened a debate and interviewed two professionals related to both industries. In the one hand, from the airline’s point of view, we have, John Pile, pilot of B747, and in the other hand, Julia Lopez, nurse of the intensive care unit, both currently based in Tokyo, Japan.

Julia helped us to understand more about Ebola. She explains that it is a severe, often-fatal disease that affects humans and animals. It is an hemorrhagic fever caused by Ebola virus. It is very contagious and with a high rate of mortality, more than 85% people die and there is no specific cure or vaccine for it. It is first carried by animals like fruit bats, and it was later passed on to humans. It is a huge mortal disease which may kill people within days or weeks. It is acquired by contact with infected blood and bodily fluids. Among the sympthons we find fever, malfunctioning of organs, hemorrhagia and severe bleeding problems, most probably ending in death.

She states that it is not a new illness, Ebola was first discovered in Democratic Republic of Congo, Africa, in 1976. It has more than 3 different variants and it is present in countries as Nigeria, Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Senegal or Cote de Ivore.

2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa

But now, it is on more time in the spotlight, because there is an overbreak in West Africa, which have already left over 900 victims this year.

Also, recent newspapers and media have stated that, as cases and deaths rise, governments and the World Health Organization WHO have declared the problem as an international health emergency. At the moment there is no exact cure for the illness, but if there is anything that might get closer, it is called Zmapp. It is a remedy which is still being tested and is still in developing stages. This miraculous serum is a mix of several antibodies obtained from the serum of mice exposed to the virus, treated and cultivated tabacco plants, which has already shown its effectiveness in monkeys. Also two Canadian companies are working in two possible vaccines.


Ebola and aviation

But what about planes? On the other hand, we spoke with John to ask him how he thinks the virus affects civil aviation. As airplanes are a fast type of transport and they can connect places that are far, the risks and worries of this matter in aviation are huge. Both virus with airplans make a potential world threat, which make organisations look out for the security of the passengers and to fight against the problem. As a pilot point of view, there is a risk and fear, but he states that organizations and airline are taking action to avoid any spreading.

Also, as stated by IATA in its last press release, they are coordinating closely with WHO and ICAO with respect to potential implications for air connectivity. WHO’s current risk assessment for travel and transport is not recommending any travel restrictions or closure of borders at points of entry. Also, they state that the transmission of the virus only occurs when patients are displaying symptoms of the disease which are severe, and in these cases, it is unlikely that someone would feel well enough to travel. Awareness-raising activities are being conducted for travelers to and from the affected region. The air transport industry has dealt with several outbreaks diseases in recent years and Airlines follow guidance material developed by WHO, ICAO and IATA to act accordigly. IATA said it will continue to monitor developments closely in the outbreak.

Recently these days, many airports are starting to implement measurements for passengers, scanning and controlling passengers temperature. We must say that no major things has been done, the potential risk is high but it is save to travel amd the risk of contagion is low.


Regarding the lastest news about Ebola and aviation, we can find:
– Spanish priest Pajares died yesterday morning (12 agust 14) after being repatrieted to Spain last week. He was infected by the virus and he was among the only three people in the world, with another two americans, who got the virus antidote, the other two are still alive.
– EEUU will send 50 experts to west africa to fight against the outbreak.
– Airlines cancelling flights to some destinations, such Emirates Airline, which finishes flights to Conakry, Guinea, or British Airways, cancelling flights to Sierra Leone and Liberia.
– Airports and airlines take measurements and screen passengers, but nothing major has been done yet.

Well, lets see how it develops, but definetily, it is a global concern it is risky but is not the first outbreak in history. Hopefully we could be over this and medicines will be created and given to patients.

Until then, stay tuned and thank you for reading!


Question: is it safe to fly over conflict zones….??

Hello everyone!

With the news we have been receiving lately about aircarfts, it is impossible not to leave a question regarding this trending topic, is it safe to fly over conflict areas???

As you all know, there are wars and problems going on worldwide, among these hot spots we can find: Israel and Gaza, Ukraine or Iraq.


The problem is, how safe is to fly over these countries? are airlines taking meassurements about it? Is there any organism who give guidelines? on who depends to fly?

Well, these days many airlines are changing their decisions regarding where to fly over. The fact of having the MH17 shot down by a missile last month have changed the way airlines see conflict zones. Before, safety was given as granted, but now is seems not totally safe to fly over confronted zones.

In this case there are many things involved, such as security of the passengers, maximising flight routes, profits of airlines or who is who decides what to do…

It depends on the airline to decide if it still wants to fly over a country or not, but government agencies and airport operators will give guidance and issue NOTAMs, which stands for Motive to Airmen, guidelines to advice of potential hazards along a flight path. These documents can cover many aspects, such as weather problems, closed runways, flights flying with VIP passengers, etc.

Many airlines, such as Emirates or Qantas, have decided to stop flying over Iraq, but for example British Airways don’t. This is confusing to passengers. A recent article on the matter has been written by BBC reporter Theo Legget.

At the end, it is the airline who decides, but what is your opinion as passenger? are we informed if we are passing those areas? would you fly over or is better to live without knowing? is it ethic?

I think we should trust airlines, aircrafts are still safe and we should think airlines watch over us and our safety. More over, statistics say that despite the unlucky chain of aircrafts crashes, It is not the worst data for commercial aviation and that we have been enjoying an overall safe period.

So far, keep tuned with aviation news and you are welcome to follow me on Twitter: @airwaysgeorge!

Thank you,


Welcome to the business of flying….with…UD Almeria!!

Hey there!

I am pleased to make this entry talking about Airlines, Business Class and Soccer!

As you know, Emirates Airlines is a great supporter of football, sponsoring some of the world best teams, such as Real Madrid or AC Milan; betting all in for sports, competition and pride, strong values that they share with many other sports.


In this case, it is a coincidence, but the magic started crushing into some famous people on the plane: I was lucky enough to enjoy a flight surrounded by the UD Almeria Football Club Team!!
Amazing experience!

A club with spirit, history and a lost of hidden treasures, such his old coach Unai Emery, the Team is now playing in the famous La Liga!


They were on their way to Thailand, to celebrate the new sign up of the Thai player Teerasil Dangda, and enjoy some scheduled matches, and who knows, get a hint of Thailand and its beautiful culture or beaches,

I was fortunated to be seating next to the player Edgar Mendez! what a champion! We enjoyed the flight chilling and talking about airlines, soccer and muslim culture!


It was a packed flight, operated by a Boeing 777-300ER, with no bumping areas and with beautiful night views leaving Adolfo Suarez Madrid-Barajas (MAD) and arriving in a sunny and hot Dubai (DXB).


All cabins were full. But if you fly business, you will enjoy and greeting glass of bubbling champange, you will choose from a different variety of products in the menu, enjoy a good film and then get some sleep in a amazing flat bed seat.

After a good sleep it just feels you are just at home…and like when you are home…you don’t want to leave, haha, do you?

What a nice experience is to fly with the best airline and with a bunch of people who follow their dream and enjoy their lives!!


Definitely a beautiful experience to remember!

Thank you And Stay tuned!

Come in……!! we are Open!!

Hello Hello!
I am happy to tell that the 80 days closure is over!
Dubai International Airport has successfully return to its normal activity with both runways operative!!!


The closure was due to a major upgrade and the need of refurbishment, it commenced the 1st of May and finished the 21th July 14. It was done in two phases, first the southern runway and later the northern one. Both runways were approaching the end of its design life, resurfacing was needed and also some upgrades, like lighting, construction of rapid taxiways to reduce occupaying time and increase potential. Everything to make them new and shiny! ready to accomodate FLOW and future traffic!


To optimise capacity flights to DXB were reduced, airlines increased seat factor with bigger aircrafts and many flights were diverted to DWC, Dubai World Central.

“The opening of the runways and ramp up to a full schedule, when combined with the upcoming Eid holidays (celebration of end of Holy month of Ramadan) will result in a significant surge in passenger numbers from July 21,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports.

Lets see the closure in figures!
– 26% less flight movements.
– Emirates and Flydubai contributed by 53% of the needed reduction.
– 18 new airlines applied for slots in DWC and its traffic increased with more than 600 passenger flights a week.
– Apart from the figures the passengers only decreased by 2%!!! WAW.
– More than 150.000 loads of trucks with concrete, 1.050km of cabling, 800.000 tonnes of aggregates amd more than 2.500 employees were involved in the construction.

The refurbishing was warnfull, it is bad to have to reduce flights and traffic, but it was totally needed and already over! That means DXB is back on truck and flights are fulling the place again! making out the best of the airport and its potential! DXB is back to where it belongs!


Thanks for your time!!!


is it a bird?…is it a rocket?…NO!… It is an AirShow!!!

Hello Hello! As some of you may know, these days (14-20th July) is taking place the Farnborough International Airshow (FIA’14), so it’s a good opportunity to enumerate the most known Airshows around the world, see where they are, their activities and some news from these events! 20140717-144509-53109560.jpg People love them, they are suitable for all publics, from a family day plan, to aviation enthusiasts or trade companies (inverstors, airlines, etc). Happening every year or not, it depends, in these events there are air exhibitions, shows, you can get into aircrafts, know about the sector, its trends and innovations and the best: it is time for international airlines to buy some airplanes!! 20140717-152941-55781204.jpg There are many around the globe, the most known are: – Farnborough International Airshow FIA, near London in Hampshire, UK. Happening Now. – Dubai Airshow , United Arab Emirates. – Singapore Air Show. – The Australian International Airshow, also called Avalon Airshow, it is located in Avalon Airport, between Melbourne and Geelong, Victoria, it is the largest in the southern hemisphere. – EAA Air Venture Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA. – Berlin Airshow, few weeks back. – China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition. But please, bear in mind that there are so many, in size of the event, by type of aircraft displaying, etc! 20140717-152527-55527305.jpg Among the greatest news regarding Airshows, Airlines ans Aircrafts now, we can find: – Cathay Pacific wins the Best Airline 2014 Awars given by Skytrax. – In the Dubai Airshow of Nov’13, Emirates Airline announced the biggest order of aircrafts in history, 150 Boeing 777X aircraft valued at US$ 76 billion, with additional 50 purchase rights and an additional 50 Airbus A380 aircraft valued at US$ 23 billion. What? YES. – In this FIA’14, Qatar airways is upset because Airbus couldn’t get his first A380 on time for the show, but he fixed it ordering 50 Boeing 777-9X planes worth around $19billion. The Gulf carrier also said it had agreed purchase rights to buy a further 50 777X aircraft, potentially doubling the size of the deal. – The A350 XWB in following its trials and flight test programs successfully to deliver the first aircraft to Qatar Airways before the end of the year. – Boeing 787 Dreamliner keeps it up! Many airlines are receiving their aircrafts, such as Air New Zealand, which got his first one, they made it all black! Beautiful! – BREAKING NEWS Malaysian Flight MH17 shot down while flying over Ukraine territory yesterday (17th July). Terrible news. 20140717-152825-55705134.jpg These are the air news, so if you blink you will miss it! Stay tuned! and thank you George

Excuse mee..!! I am landing….!!!

hey there!
As we can see this pilot might have skipped my last post, I thought it was clear that aircrafts should have separation and follow their turns for landing or take off… Well, thanks God no tragedy took place and everything remained just as an spooky anecdote.


As you probably saw on the news, couple of days ago, the airport normality got suddenly banished at the spanish airport of Barcelona (BCN), when a Boing 767 from the russian airline Utair, just about to land, spots an Airbus 340 from Aerolines Argentinas crossing all the way from the taxiway into the runway, probably without realizing what was going on above him!


The terrible moment

The pilot quickly aborted the landing and set full speed rising up in the air like a firework! doing an emergency go-around procedure and saving us all from a big problem. makes my hair stand on end.

The question is, what was the problem? what happened really? was it the pilot misunderstanding? was there enough space for both to land and take off simultaneosly as AENA stated? We will just need to see and wait for clarifications! but until then, stay tuned and enjoy! you never know!


Stop and put your hands up!! This is the Air Police!!

I would like to have a look on the organisms that we consider as the “air police”, by this I mean, who controls the civil aviation activities, which are the regulatory institutions involved worldwide, who coordinates, who does what to make the whole thing work safely with coordination, order and safety. Two topics are together here, firstly the regulatory framework and also, the air traffic control.




Did you get stressed by looking to the pictures too? How do they coordinate this to avoid chaos???? Who ensures procedures and how do they control airplanes??

There are many institutions worldwide, each country is integrated taking into account international, regional and national organizations, such as:

Internationally the key instituions are:
IATA is the International Air Transport Association for world airlines, with headquarters in Canada and created in 1945. It supports airline activity and helps formulate industry policy and standards. Among its functions and priorities we can find: safety, security, simplification of the business (initiative that includes creation of electronic tickets, bar coded boarding pass, etc.), environmental issues, services (provides consulting and training services, accreditation to travel professionals) and it writes multiple publications and standards. IATA’s work importantly expanded. IATA has consolidated its position as the voice of the aviation industry in recent years, even though it has no legislative powers.

ICAO is the International Civil Aviation Organization, is a specialized agency of the United Nations. It gives standards in a very big extend to the indusrry, its sets the principles and techniques of international air navigation (city codes, communication, air traffic management, etc), it plans and develops international air transport ensuring safety and orderly growth, adopts recommended practices, defines protocols for air accident investigation and it is also develops guidance for environmental and climate change issues.

A momentum in history was the Convention of Chicago on International Civil Aviation, signed in 1944, which sets an open skies or freedom of the air policy, it prepared a framework for civil aviation. One of the achievements was the so called freedoms of the air, which states rights for flying within countries (for example, the right of a foreign plane to fly across one country, the right to transport people from one home country to another and viceversa, etc). The countries will sign bilateral or multilateral agreements, most of this agreements include: free market competition, pricing determined by market forces, equal opportunity to compete, cooperative marketing arrangements (like code-sharing) or safety and security procedures.

CANSO is the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization, it is the global voice of the companies that provide air traffic control, and represents the interests of Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) worldwide, the companies that handle traffic control in each country. Its members are responsible for supporting over 85% of world air traffic, members share information and develop new policies, with the ultimate aim of improving air navigation services on the ground and in the air.

ATAG is the Air Transport Action Group, is a coalition of aviation industry experts focusing on sustainable development issues regarding aviation.

Regionally we can find so many organizations, but lets focus in US and Europe as an example:

FAA: is the Federal Aviation Administration, is the national aviation authority of the United States. An agency of the United States Department of Transportation, it has authority to regulate and oversee all aspects of American civil aviation.

EASA is the European Aviation Safety Agency, created in 2003 to conduct analysis and research of safety. It authorise foreign operators, gives advice, implementing and monitoring safety and certifies aeronautical products.

Eurocontrol: is the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navegation. Founded in 1960, it is an international organisation working for air traffic management. It coordinates and plans air traffic control for all of Europe. This involves working with national authorities, air navigation service providers, civil and military airspace users, airports, and other organisations. Its activities involve all gate-to-gate air navigation services: management of air traffic flow, trainning for traffic controllers, regional control of airspace or collection of air navigation charges.


Civil Aviation Authority, may adopt other names depending on the choice, but every country has one. It is a government authority in each country that overseas the approval and regulation of civil aviation. The country will make an Act for which empowers it to make regulations to all the activities related to civil aviation in that country. Among the aspects they regulate we can find: design and operation of aircrafts and ground equipment, licensing (pilots, engineers, airports, etc), standards for air traffic control, investigation of accidents, etc.

Each country should have also a company, either private or public, that manage all the airports and aviation activities within that country’s territory, such as AENA in Spain or DFS Deutsche Flugsicherung in Germany or NATS Holdings in the UK.

All this complex net of institutions will set the framework in which the industry will work, the rules of the game. and now, having the paper work done, lets understand how the action happens! how they control air traffic.

Air Traffic Control


This nice picture shows the journey of a plane and the different systems that track its way, from the airport of origin up to the one on arrival. As you know, all it starts with the air traffic control tower at one airport, which controls the flow traffic of aircrafts on ground and a certain area of range within the airport, preventing colisions and providing information and other support for pilots.


The traffic inside the airport is carefully scheduled and calculated, to allow organising the flow of traffic but also to maximize it. There are slots to land and take off, taking care of the estimation of time needed from aircraft to aircraft, etc. If there is any problem there is a holding time, the aircraft will be told to wait flying until its given the ok to land. Even before leaving an airport, the aircraft can estimate and schedule with the arriving airport when the arrival will take place.


When the aircraft leaves the airport, the Aviation Route Traffic Control Center will take over. As you can see on the picture below, all the countries territory are controlled and divided in zones, so when the aircraft enters in each region, it will be monitored by each center.


The big question is, what happens when the aircraft leaves the country and sets to open seas? As ocean is bast, the amount of water covered by the centers is limited, so rather than knowing exactly where is the plane all the time, oceanic airspace controlles will have to estimate the position of the aircraft from pilot reports. While flying planes follow routes planned, they also fly in air roads, even though its open air, there is like fake motorways, fake roads where planes circulate. They also have systems to ensure separation with other aircrafts which pass or cross on its way.

Arriving to the airport of destiny, the plane will land safely after being given the permission to land and then will drive all the way to the gate, allowing the flow of passengers, out and in, on and on.


This draws a picture of worldwide management of air navigation. It is a complex system, an uninimaginable amount of work, investigation and passion, to be able to organise such a huge thing and amount of airplanes flying non stop, daily to more than the 50.000 airports worldwide. There are so many systems, hours of work, etc, all to ensure a safe and pleasant journey and to guarantee the flow of people.


Thanks for your time!

The Air Big Ban: history of airline industry and its evolution

Hey there!
This is the air Big Ban! an explanation of the evolution of aviation and airline industry, how the whole thing started, the reasons that made it evolve, everything to understand how it changed from the beginning, to how we see airlines today.


Since the beginning of history, men tried to rise up to the sky and fly, from kites, to hot balloons, all type of amazing and many times crazy inventions. The beginning of aviation was a period of experiments and developments, and it was understood that man power alone was not enough to fly, some type of engine would be necessary. Throughout history, there are many names of inventors who contributed to concieve an airplane. Among them we can find: Otto Lilienthal (the first ever flight gliding), Sir George Cayley (called the father of the aeroplane) or the Wright brothers (first flight in a heavier-than-air machine in 1903). Long way until a practical aircraft that could be used was developed, especially one that could start carrying passengers.

During the pioneering era, the first airline was born, in 1909, it was DELAG (Deutsche Luftschiffahrts-Aktiejgesellschaft), just over 100 years ago. The airlines started to flourish and the industry grew fast, some of the first airlines exist still today, like KLM (1920), Avianca (1919) or Qantas (1920).

The earliest fixed wing airline was the Aircraft Transport and Travel in 1916, imagine a plane with just two passengers in a former military aircraft crossing the English channel or the first routes at £21 per passenger! The airline grew fast and soon it started the competition, like Handley Page Transport (1919), running London-Paris with a capacity of 19 passengers. The airlines and countries were quick to follow, like dutch KLM, , France, Finland, Pan Am and American Airlines from USA or the soviet union. One of the main purposes of the activity was the delivery of mail, not only carriage of people. First, there were long flights, with many challenges as weather or relatively capabilities of pilots. It seems crazy to find people scared to fly today! Isn’t it? Imagine those flights, pure Indiana Jones style!

By the early 1920s, small airlines were struggling to compete and there was a movement towards increased rationalization, many airlines started to merge and the sector started to get shape and consolidate. Many routes started, one of the reasons is colonization, to integrate both empire and colonies in trade and economy, business or research! i love it!

As names of airlines of that time we can find: Imperial Airways or as a result of merging and union, Air France, Deutsche Luft Hansa, etc. Global expansion routes appeared like mushrooms, like UK to Cape Town, or farther to Melbourne, Bristish India, Cairo, Hong Kong, etc. By the end of the 1930s, Aeroflot, airline of the former soviet union, was the world’s largest airline, with around 3.000 aircrafts and 4.000 pilots.

In the mid century, we live a time of regularisation, like in all industries, institutions make a lot of impact on how the industry is and how its structure will behave, they set the rules of the game, to ensure standards, safety and harmonization. In 1938, the Civil Aeronautics Board made an important act, giving a lot of outlines, determining routes, regulating prices and passengers fares. Airlines couldn’t compete with each other by offering lower fares, so they fought by giving quality service.

In the 70s, there will be a process of deregulation in the EEUU and in the 90s, in the European Union, that allows flexibility and more freedom to airlines, increasing competition and lower fares. In europe this makes also a shift into budget airlines, like EasyJet and Ryanair. Many national airlines start with privatization and less government intervention, like in Air Lingus or British Airways. This makes a tough end of century for airlines and many went bankrupt.

In 2001, the industry dealt with the effects of another economic downturn, business travel decreased substantially, while labor and fuel costs increased. Followed by the terrorist attacks of 9/11, which magnified the airlines’ issues, leading to a sharp decline in customers to fly and significantly higher operating costs. Losses continued for years; after there as a big bailout and the industry needed help. Is not until 2006 when it return to profitability, followed by a relatively stable period. We need to bear in mind that, even though, there is a general trend in the industry, there are differences on behaviour between world zones, USA, Europe, Asia, etc.

These are the big highlights of the sector, it is hard to squeeze it in one page, but it will give us reasons to understand the present, looking a bit to the past. We need to appreciate the willingness to invent, grow and develop the unknown. A progressive way and a chain of events which ended up in what we see airlines as per today . Each part of history with its problems and challenges and respective solutions.

We now know what happen until today, but the question is, how will the airlines evolve? What will be the sector like in 50 years time?
We will just need to wait! But so far, just keep on flying with what as today is available!


sources include: articles and pictures from wikipedia,, The aim of this blog is not to violate any copyright or intelectual property at any time

This is the captain speaking: cabin crew prepare for take off!!!

…. Pin pin…

You can now unfasten your seatbelts… get cousy in your blanquet…. and start enjoying. As appetizer I will point some concepts and interesting facts about the industry. Within the business aviation we can find three types of activities: the commercial (for passengers, cargo or mail), corporate (non-commercial carriage of passengers or goods) and the owner operated (for an individual, i know! We all want our own aircraft!).

To give you an idea, about 70 percent of industry revenue comes from scheduled passenger flights, 10 percent from carrying cargo and a 3 percent from charter flights! Where is there rest? A little bit everywhere!

I will focus on the commercial, think about the amount of people moving worldwide, about the cargo, the goods that need to be freighted daily, etc, can you see the importance and reach?

There are aproximately over 250 airlines in the world, 100 in North America, 26 in Central America, 76 in Europe, 15 in Africa, 14 in the Middle East, 36 in Asia, 16 in Australia and Oceania and 1 in Antarctica!

How many people are flying every year, worldwide? ATAG (Air Transport Action Group) says in 2012 there were “over 3 billion” passengers, but it gives no source. According to IATA (International Air Transport Association) in 2010, 2.400.000 people flew everyday in more than 36.800.000 flights around the world. That is a big amount!

I leave you now with this amazing picture! See you very very soon!