This Year's Trendy Destination? Tel Aviv: It's hard to call any destination trendy as passenger counts dwindle and business travel disappears. But if any place deserves the moniker, it's Tel Aviv, which appears to be 2009's hot city to serve. Consider the fact that US Airways will launch flights in July from its Philadelphia hub. Lufthansa, which already flies to Tel Aviv twice a day from its Frankfurt hub, adds four weekly flights from Munich on April 26. (Given the quality of Munich Airport and the fast connections there, flights from the United States to Tel Aviv via Munich are pretty attractive.) Austrian Airlines increases the capacity of its Vienna-Tel Aviv service by 30 percent in May; it'll get the bump by using larger Boeing 767s in place of the Airbus A321s currently on the route. And bmi, which flies London/Heathrow-Tel Aviv, is expanding, too. On March 30, it will launch a second daily flight on the route. Then, on May 3, it will switch the flights to larger Airbus A330s from A321s, which increases seat capacity by another 40 percent.
US Airways Comes Up Snake Eyes in Vegas: US Airways used to boast about its "night hub" at Las Vegas. But that was before Las Vegas hit the skids and US Airways itself decided it didn't like its night-flight service after all. After a big pull down of flights last year, the airline is planning to trim more in the coming weeks. Besides the end of flights to four cities, including New York-Vegas service, it will trim capacity on 17 other routes to/from Vegas. After this round of cuts, US Airways will fly from Las Vegas to 24 cities with 63 flights. That's about half the number of cities and flights it offered at Las Vegas last summer. … Mexicana has launched flights between New York/Kennedy airport and Guadalajara on March 1. … Virgin Atlantic now offers an around-the-world service in conjunction with V Australia. The route starts in Los Angeles and includes stops in London, Hong Kong and Sydney. Virgin America, the U.S. carrier launched by Richard Branson, is not part of the deal.
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Joe Brancatelli is editor and publisher of JoeSentMe.com, a non-commercial Web site for business travelers. Copyright 2009 by Joe Brancatelli. Licensed by contract for Orbitz use.