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OpenSkies Airline progresses toward launch as Open Skies Agreement goes into effect

As the Open Skies agreement goes into effect on March 30th, OpenSkies, a new transatlantic airline from British Airways, continues to make progress toward launch this summer. OpenSkies is the first new airline created as a result of the Open Skies agreement, which allows airlines to fly between any U.S. and E.U. destination. OpenSkies plans to offer a truly premium and intimate travel experience from Continental Europe to New York.

OpenSkies plans to fly retrofitted Boeing 757s. Its first airplane is now in the hangar being transformed both inside and out to fit OpenSkies’ specifications. Winglets have been added to the plane to increase fuel economy and aircraft range and reduce carbon emissions. OpenSkies is also refitting the cabin into a three-class, 82-seat configuration. OpenSkies "Biz" class will feature 24 seats that convert into 6-foot, fully flat beds. "Prem+" class will offer 28 premium seats with more legroom than any other premium economy offering, and "Economy" will have 30 comfortable leather seats.

"OpenSkies combines the proven expertise of one of the world’s biggest airlines with the passion and commitment of a start up," said Dale Moss, Managing Director of OpenSkies. "We’re out to do things differently and have total focus on creating the best customer experience on our routes. We want to deliver an unforgettable premium flying experience and an atmosphere focused on personalization and comfort. As the Open Skies agreement goes into effect, we’re building a new kind of airline for a new world of transatlantic travel."

Pending regulatory approval, OpenSkies aims to provide service from a number of European cities to New York, beginning with Paris. OpenSkies will offer guests superior service, competitive fares and exceptional value. The airline’s travel experience will include:

  • Lie-flat seats in business class.
  • More legroom than any other premium economy seat in the world with a 52-inch seat pitch.
  • No more than 30 passengers per class.
  • Personal entertainment units with 50+ hours of programming.
  • Fresh, healthy and creative meal service and extensive wine list.

OpenSkies anticipates operating a second Boeing 757 later in 2008. The airline plans to increase its fleet to six Boeing 757 aircraft by the end of 2009.

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Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.