Top 5 airline and aviation stories from this week
This week, NASA announces plans to work on supersonic jet prototype, a study shows airplane food can be marked-up more than 2000%, a couple marries mid-flight, a $5 billion resort will be built at an airport in South Korea, and the "world's busiest airport" tries to rebrand.
NASA has announced it is trying to develop a quieter supersonic passenger jet that could break the speed of sound without creating a loud sonic boom. A supersonic passenger plane – the Concorde – has operated commercially in the past, but the noise it made when it broke the sound barrier meant it could only fly at high speeds over the ocean. Creating a quieter supersonic plane would mean faster flights over land. NASA has awarded a contract to Lockheed Martin to begin a design of a “low boom” aircraft. According to NASA, they are trying to make flight "greener, safer and quieter – all while developing aircraft that travel faster, and building an aviation system that operates more efficiently”.
Would knowing that you’re paying a more than 2000% mark-up on airline food deter you from buying that snack? A study from travel search engine Kayak found that passengers are charged as much as 2646% more for food on board a flight as they would in a supermarket. The highest mark-up was on Cup a Soup, which costs as low as 12p in a shop, but £2.50 on a flight.
An American couple who met on board a flight decided to make a plane the place they’d tie the knot. Kristy Stratton, a flight attendant, married her fiancé Jim on a plane to mark their love of travel.
Soon travellers will be able to hit an amusement park, a rainforest and a casino without ever leaving their airport terminal. The South Korean government approved plans for a luxury hotel with an indoor-outdoor amusement park, eco-adventure park, casino and more, attached to Incheon International Airport. The development is set to be the only destination resort with an adjacent private air terminal.
A US airport is hoping to shed its reputation as the world’s busiest airport is favour of being the “world’s most travelled airport”. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport has long seen the most passengers per year, but now the airport is hoping to move away from the negative-sounding term ‘busy’. In 2015, the airport became the first in the world to see 100 million passengers in one year.