News

Hi pilots,

This past month we have made numerous changes throughout the VA.

The flight scoring processor has been updated to improve compatibility with various X-Plane add-ons. There have been a number of updates to VAS ACARS as well, there is now a visual and audible warning if VAS ACARS is no longer receiving data from FSUIPC. Besides this local log files are removed after 30 days, and any local flight data recorded by VAS ACARS is removed after 180 days.

The website has received a redesigned route and profile page based on feedback from the community. The new pages should be more easily viewable and more compact by reducing whitespace. The Pilot briefing page has received an update as well for giving it a more coherent lay-out. The aircraft substitution matrix has been updated to take the form of a comparison widget, allowing you to compare the bookable aircraft types with the aircraft type you would like to substitute. This widget can be found on the VASystem website.

To go along with these changes we have added Flybe, as this airline was sold to the Connect Airways consortium and will eventually operate under the Vigin Atlantic brand. Furthermore we have added a important regional partner, Etihad, whom holds large stakes in airlines that SkyTeam has strong joint venture ties with.

To conclude this update, the monthly tour is available to fly, as well as a more extensive tour which will run together with the Formula Championship.

Hello Pilots,

Over the past month we have changed and added various things both on the back-end of the VA as well as the front end.

The old documents and policies have been remade and distributed in the form of a Pilot Handbook. This document provides information on flight procedures, rules and regulations, possible troubleshooting steps, and links to the flight scoring guide amongst other things.

Our Flight and Pilot Policy has been updated to both increase realism and to prevent abuse. Please read these carefully as they will be enforced starting February 2nd.

The second change is that we have updated the tour progression system, changing its dependency from the booking to the flown route. This will streamline route updating and should keep tours and tour progression more consistent.

To close off this update as always the monthly tour is now available to fly, this time taking you throughout Europe.

We would also like to remind you we have a Discord server. To join it, use discord.gg/EAKR7Qe.

First of all happy new year and we wish you all the best in 2019!

As the nature of alliances changes we would like to hear from you what direction we may take the VA, with regards to China Southern's decision to no longer renew their commitment to being a full SkyTeam member. China Southern represents a significant airline in the Asian market and we are keeping CSN in the VA until the transition period expires at the end of 2019. However what we do after this is not clear yet and we would like some feedback regarding this.

To coincide with this we have added Sriwijaya Air, which was taken over by Garuda Indonesia in December 2018.

VAS-ACARS has been updated to include a recording timer and a better distance algorithm which shows the true distance remaining on trans-pacific flights. Besides this there is a new color scheme to better match the VA.

A number of tours have been updated and the underlying way tours work, and tour progression are detected has been changed to improve compatibility when updating routes to match their real-world schedules.

Check the new roadmap for 2019, which will be published in the coming days for more details on our plans throughout the new year.

Hi pilots,

As you might have noticed, numerous changes have been made to the website in the past few days.

First of all, our Flight Briefing alpha has been promoted to beta and has been enabled by default. We introduced the alpha in May of this year, so to view more information about the briefing, please see our May 2018 Update. Since then, the routing has been slightly improved, although there are still some routes it cannot handle properly. If you find such a highly unrealistic route, please let us know by creating a support ticket in the Flight Briefing Routes category. Please include the origin, destination and given route, so we can take a look and try to improve the routing.

Our live flights page has also been redesigned to use a more modern design. This will also allow us to more easily introduce new features in the future, such as an adding an ETA or distance flown.

We have also updated our route map to include filters for airlines and aircraft. Along with this, we have been able to improve the performance of the route map by quite a bit.

Updated Route Map

We have update all of our Delta routes using the Delta schedule, so they should now be much more accurate. It did resulting in a decrease in the number of routes, but we believe all routes should be present. If not, please let us know by creating a support ticket.

As always, our monthly tour has been published and will be available to fly until the end of the month. The East and West Coast USA tours will be retired and/or replaced next year, so you will only be able to fly these specific tours until the end of this month.

We would also like to remind you we have a Discord server. To join it, use discord.gg/EAKR7Qe.

We are happy to say that our growth has been stable throughout the last few months, and we have passed 7000 flight reports processed.

This month we have added two large joint venture partners of SkyTeam, WestJet and Virgin Australia. These airlines provide service were the full-members do not, opening up new route and fleet possibilities for the VA. This includes previously underrepresented turboprops such as the DeHavilland Dash 8-400. Our staff members are working hard to update our entire route database to provide more accurate service to our pilots.

WestJet

Virgin Australia

We are working with our partners to provide events for pilots which will grant a score bonus when participating as well.

Other changes that have been done are with regards to the delivery flight system. This system has been overhauled to provide an accurate delivery ferry route for all new aircraft. Flights can be booked on the new deliveries page. New tours have been added to complement our existing selection, but be aware from January 1st 2019 onwards the East Coast USA and West Coast USA tours will be retired and replaced by new tours. If you would like to receive the badge please be sure to complete the tour before then.

As always the monthly tour is available to fly, this time the tour will take place around the Indian Sub-Continent.

This month will see numerous changes throughout the VA. We are happy to welcome seven new staff members, including five route managers to update and correct our route network, and two PR managers who will assist our existing staff in providing support for our pilots.

We are also happy to announce we are now officially IVAO partnered! You can view our airline page on IVAO. If you fly on IVAO, we would like to ask you to use our call sign, so IVAO can track hours flown for this VA.

Based on pilot feedback we have made numerous changes to our UI. First of all, we have changed our flight analysis page to better show which points were achieved. We now also provide a brief description of each flight phase, which can help you to understand why you have missed a phase.

We have also added weather information to our Alpha Flight Briefing page. This will show the current METAR of both your departure and arrival:

Live Weather Information

Tours will now show the first leg which is yet to be flown with all others being collapsed to ease navigation of the page as well.

Airports now show which aircraft may be returned to their original destination and thus which aircraft might be eligible for a bonus after having been stationary for seven days.

We will also be making a change to counting of transfer hours. Right now, we are basing most active pilots and the total flight time on the sum of the flight time on this VA and transfer hours. As of October 15, this will change to include only flight time on SkyTeam Virtual to better reflect activity in SkyTeam Virtual. With this change, we will also be allowing transfer hours from all virtual airlines. If you would like to have transfer hours applied to your profile, please create a support ticket in the Hour Transfer category.

We would also like to remind you we have a Discord server. To join it, use discord.gg/EAKR7Qe.

As always, we have also published our October 2018 tour, which you can fly here. This time around, we are flying in Europe.

Hello pilots,

This past month has seen a few minor front end improvements and some major back-end ones.

First of all, we are happy to report we have now surpassed 5,000 approved flight reports!

Our database has been migrated to a substantially faster server, which has led to decreased loading times and increased responsiveness, especially on larger pages such as the route map. Further improvements have been made to the flight briefing page whereby the correct route should now be shown more consistently when booking a flight. For information on how to activate the new Flight Briefing page please refer to the May 2018 update.

Czech Airlines's parent company, Travel Service, has been added as a new airline and all of their SmartWings scheduled flights have been added. Travel Service have a significant charter division compromised of twelve 737 aircraft, and pilots are free to use these aircraft for both scheduled and ad-hoc charters within Europe.

We have also been working on a new version of VAS-ACARS to improve stability and user experience. This version is still in the early stages, but you will hear more about it in the coming months.

As always, we have also published our September 2018 tour, which you can fly here. This time around, we are flying in the US and Mexico.

Hello Pilots,

In the last month we have made small improvements to our website, but nothing major.

First of all, you can now view how many destinations you have visited on your profile page. In addition, you will receive a badge when you have reached 25, 50, 100, 250, 500 and 1000 unique destinations.

Second, you can now view aircraft that need to be delivered and for which you will get a 100% score bonus for doing so. This page can be found by going to our Fleet page and clicking "View new deliveries" or by visiting the page directly here.

We have also made it easier to book a route when you are searching for routes in our routing system. There is a now a button on every route's page to either jumpseat and book the route if you are not currently at the departure airport or book the route directly if you are. You will still need to select the aircraft, but this should make it a lot easier to book routes when trying to find an interesting route. Please note that this button will not be visible when you currently have a flight booked.

On August 11th, we will be organizing an event in collaboration with Indonesia vACC. More information can be found here. You will get a 100% score bonus for booking a flight in the event, so we encourage you to participate!

Finally, as usual our monthly tour is available here. You will get a badge for completing the tour before September 1st.

If you have any questions, please submit a ticket using our support system. If you have any suggestions, please post them on the forum.

Regards,

SkyTeam Virtual Staff

July 2018 Update

Jul 7, 2018

Hello Pilots,

The past few weeks have seen numerous changes to the website and scoring system. Two new scoring bonuses have been added, namely 'return to hub' and 'delivery flights'. The first gives a 100% score bonus (double score) when you return an aircraft to its hub after remaining dormant for at least 7 days using a regular scheduled flight. The bonus requires that the aircraft was flown to its initial destination; relocating the aircraft does not give the bonus. The latter is a new feature that we have implemented: all newly delivered aircraft are delivered to their place of manufacture: Boeing Field (KBFI) for the Boeing 737 and 737 Max families of aircraft, Paine Field (KPAE) for the 747-8, 777 and 787 families of aircraft, Hamburg Finkenwerder (EDHI) for the A320 and A320neo family of aircraft and finally Toulouse Blagnac (LFBO) for the A330, A350 and A380 families of aircraft. The newly delivered aircraft can be flown to their airline hub using the charter flight system for a 100% score bonus. The score bonus is only valid on the first flight from the delivery location.

To find the return to hub bonus, select a route on the flight booking page and look for the icon:

Book flight bonus preview

To get the delivery flight bonus, book a charter flight from a new delivery. You will then get the following text at the bottom of the flight briefing page, which indicates that your flight has been booked correctly:

Delivery flight preview

The bonuses will also be shown on the flight analysis page, where indicates the delivery flight bonus.

Further changes have been made so that the FSLabs A320 and Majestic Q400 add-ons are now correctly scored in our flight processor. The flight briefing page now has downloadable flight formats for FSX/P3D, X-Plane, PMDG, QualityWings. It will also allow you to prefile your flight on VATSIM. This list will keep expanding to support more popular add-ons on the market. Furthermore, the flight briefing page now shows a gate allocation when flying to or from one of our major hubs. This is only available on our new flight briefing page; for information on how to enable it please see our May update.

We now also allow hour transfers if you have a near complete set of all your flight data. We currently support RDV/AFV (which includes SimVA) and we are looking to expand this list in the future. If you would like to transfer your hours, please create a support ticket in the Hour Transfer category.

Finally, we have implemented a donation system which can be reached at skyteamvirtual.org/donate. We will only use your donations for our server costs and will never offer extra VA functionality to those who have donated, except for the badges you get now.

If you have any questions, please submit a ticket using our support system. If you have any suggestions, please post them on the forum.

Regards,

SkyTeam Virtual Staff

June 2018 Update

Jun 1, 2018

We're happy to report we've passed 2,000 flight reports this month!

We've added Virgin Atlantic, Jet Airways and JetStar Pacific. Whilst these airlines are beyond the SkyTeam alliance, they have far reaching partnerships with SkyTeam and serve markets which were currently not served by SkyTeam Virtual. To enhance your experience flying these and our other airlines, we've added compatibility for the P3Dv4 QualityWings 787 to our flight processor, such that it will be possible to get all points.

To better support ourselves and by extension, our pilots, we've also hired an additional staff member: David Lebduska, who will be helping to manage the day-to-day operations of the virtual airline.

Additionally, due to the increase in the size of the staff, we've implemented a better support system, which has gone live today. When you click on the question mark icon in the menu, just right of your messages icon, you will be able to create and view your tickets. We would encourage you to submit your issues and questions through this new system instead of messaging us directly. Using this new system, all staff members will be able to respond to you and hopefully your questions will be resolved faster. For now, this system is still in a beta phase, so if you do not receive an answer from us in 24 hours, please send a message to one of our staff members, who will look into your question directly.

Lastly, we've (hopefully) improved loading speeds by using a Content Delivery Network which hosts assets around the world instead of just on our single server, located in Europe.

If you have any questions, please submit a ticket using our new support system. If you have any suggestions please post them on the forum.

Regards,

SkyTeam Virtual Staff