Lufthansa upgrades TA in-flight entertainment Lufthansa German Airlines has upgraded its in-flight entertainment for business class passengers on various routes, including Tel Aviv, adding 40 channels to its program menu. The new entertainment system "Media World" brings the number of video channels on offer to 65 and will allow passengers to stop and start their viewing at will. Lufthansa already has the system in place on a number of routes out of Frankfurt and Munich and will be available on Lufthansa morning flights out of Tel Aviv, on the Airbus A340-600, in the coming weeks and on select afternoon flights on its Boeing B747. The company said the service would be available on all long haul, wide body flights by mid-2007. The launch of Media World comes as part of a â‚¬300 million investment Lufthansa made for a general overhaul of its business class section three years ago. Oil prices burn El Al passengers The dramatic rise in oil prices continued to hurt air travelers this week as El Al joined the list of airlines that have raised their fuel surcharges on tickets. Effective from May 7, El Al raised its ticket prices by approximately 3% "in light of the 20% increase in oil prices over the last month," the company said. El Al added $40 to ticket prices on long haul flights, $20 for European routes and $14 to neighboring destinations. Double Delta deal Delta Airlines is offering special bonus points for members of "SkyMiles," its frequent flier program, who fly the Atlanta-Tel Aviv route before the end of June. Tourist class passengers will earn double mileage points on their bookings while business class passengers in "BusinessElite" will triple their miles. Delta operates daily flights from Tel Aviv to Atlanta using a Boeing 777 aircraft. Israir serves new NY menu Following the lead of El Al and Continental Airlines which recently introduced changes to their food menus on flights out of Tel Aviv, Israir Israel Airlines said it has launched a new menu for its night flights to New York. The airline has commissioned the chief chef from the Dan Hotel in Eilat, Ofir Kedem, to prepare a light starter, the main dinner, snacks and breakfast. Airbus passes 180 minute test Aircraft manufacturer Airbus received approval for 180 minute extended range twin-engine operations (ETOPS) for its A320, A321 and A319 airplanes, a license permitting twin-engine commercial aircraft operators to fly routes up to 180 minutes flying time from the nearest airport. The approval was granted by the Federal Aviation Administration after European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) had granted the same approval in March 2004. Airbus said the first 180 minute ETOPS aircraft certified by the FAA, an A319 corporate jet, is planned to be delivered this month to an undisclosed US customer. Air France ups passenger count Air France-KLM reported a 7.3 percent rise in its global passenger count this April, carrying 6.2 million travelers during the month. The company said its European routes counted for the bulk of the traffic with 4.3 million passengers, up 5.6% from April 2005, while its North and South American flights grew 10.6% to 709,000.