Tuesday, 22 November 2011
Each and every year, a large number of people move around the world to several countries. Often, they're taken abroad through their employers or for new jobs, and some are merely adventure-seekers searching for a different view. Either way, moving abroad is not any simple task. There are many small details to be taken care of beforehand, as well as packing for a long trip and getting rid of your beloved items at home. Moving abroad does not have to be a total task, though, if you keep these few suggestions in mind.
Consolidate. If you're just moving abroad for a short term contract and plan to be back to your old life at your home soon, this probably won't apply. For anybody going on a more long term move, the very first thing you have to do is consolidate your whole life. For many, this is very tough. It requires giving or selling most of your personal property, sometimes including your house or car, furniture along with other bulky day-to-day things.
Plan your packing. Remember that most airlines now limit passengers (even those on long haul flights across the world) to one bag that is 50 lbs (20 kg) or less. That's not much. You must figure out what stuff you can fit into that 1 bag and how much you are ready to pay for excess baggage. Remember the fact that, oftentimes, it's cheaper to ship your belongings than pay airlines for excess baggage fees. Compare and contrast postal rates with airline baggage rates for the cheapest price and plan accordingly.
Sort out your bank. You have to tell your banking and credit institutions of your impending move, and the sooner the better. Be sure to sign up for paperless statements if offered and confirm that the bank has lifted any international restrictions on using credit and ATM cards abroad. Also, double check the fees and exchange rates for using your cards internationally.
Cancel the utilities/give notice. If you have a lease, you will need to speak to your landlord as far in advance as possible to settle a termination of your lease. If you have a 1-year or more lease, you could possibly be fined for this procedure, particularly if you give less than 30 days notice. You will also need to call the gas, electric, telephone, cable and water companies, where applicable, to terminate services there. It is a good idea to speak to them as soon as you have given your landlord notice and let them know the date that you will have vacated the premises so that they can bill you appropriately.
Plan for the 1st few days abroad. The first week abroad is going to be the most difficult. That is the time during which you'll be getting a new home, getting your phone and daily utilities set up and learning your way around. Purchase a guidebook and/or map in advance and study as much as you can about the culture in which you are about to be residing. Search for online resources about which neighborhoods are good to live in and which parts of the city to avoid.
Get your documents together. Moving internationally needs a lot of paperwork. First and foremost, you need to make sure that you have a passport with blank pages which is valid for at least one year. If your passport is near to its expiration date, contact the passport office for a renewal right away. Based on which country you are traveling to, you might be required to get a visa. Be sure to check online for visa requirements at least 2 months prior to your trip. You should also carry copies of your bank statements, marriage certificate, birth certificate, international driving license and other pertinent documents.
As part of the new programme, Travelport's developer tools will continue to be built on open standards technology, so developers can program in the environment of their choice and build applications that easily integrate with existing Travelport databases and technologies.
Membership includes access to the Travelport Universal API providing access to extensive content and functionality through a single API connection.
In 2012, members will also gain access to the Travelport Universal Desktop Software Development Kit (SDK) which creates a wealth of new opportunities for developers. The extensive configurability can be further enhanced to meet agency needs with custom activities incorporated into workflows, shopping and booking from blended GDS and non-GDS content, and custom pop-up widgets with anytime access.
By working more closely with talented developers and enhancing our already strong relationships, we will be very well placed to offer the best possible applications to our travel agency customers worldwide, said Gillian Gibson, Chief Marketing Officer, Travelport. ?The focus on creating leading solutions is core to developers business and for many this leaves little time for other essential activities, such as lead generation, marketing and advertising. Because the Travelport Developer Network addresses this challenge, providing our developers with a single access point to our extensive content and agency network, along with providing technical support, it is indeed a win-win-win for developers, Travelport and our joint customers.?
Over twenty independent software developers, including Dolphin Dynamics, Rearden Commerce and flextrip, have already signed up to the new network ahead of its official launch at the PhoCusWright conference in Miami (15-17 November).
Flight TG953 is a 10-hour 35-minute flight, departing Copenhagen on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays at 20:45 and arriving in Phuket at 13:20 the following day, utilizing Boeing 747-400 aircraft.
On the return, passengers can take any of THAI's daily flights from Phuket to Bangkok and connect on flights to Copenhagen via Suvarnabhumi Airport.
According to the Winter Traffic Program, which started 30 October 2011, THAI operates daily flights between Bangkok to Copenhagen, with flight TG950 departing Bangkok 00:50 and arriving in Copenhagen on the same day at 06:35. On the return flight TG951 departing Copenhagen 14:00 and arriving in Bangkok 06:30 the next day.
THAI has also just started three additional flights per week on the route Bangkok to Copenhagen, with flight TG952 departing Bangkok on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays at 13:00 and arriving in Copenhagen on the same day at 18:45 hours, utilizing Boeing 747-400 aircraft.
The promotion includes flights to all of Tiger Airways? destinations including Phuket (from Sin$48 one-way), Ho Chi Minh (from Sin$68 one-way), Thiruvananthapuram (from Sin$128 one-way) and Guangzhou (from Sin$138 one-way), inclusive of taxes and charges.
The travel period is from 17 November 2011 to 31 July 2012, varying for each specific route.
Many Singaporeans love travelling. However, due to work commitments or budget constraints, they don't take holidays as frequently as they would like to, said Stewart Adams, Managing Director of Tiger Airways Singapore. ?We all work very hard and deserve regular short breaks to rejuvenate ourselves. Tiger Airways? great-value fares and list of exciting leisure destinations provide two additional reasons for Singaporeans to take more short vacations overseas, even if it's just for a weekend.
Hawaii Vacation Accommodation and Lodging
Incorporated as the 50th state in the United States of America on 21st August 1959, Hawaii is an archipelago of Hawaiian Islands lying in the central Pacific Ocean and is also known as the Aloha state. Hawaii is the southernmost part of the USA, lying 2500 miles from the mainland. They were known as the Sandwich Islands (named by the British explorer, Captain James Cook) and became U.S. territory in 1900. The Hawaii includes eight major islands – Kahoolawe, Lanai, Hawaii, Maui, Nihau, Oahu, Kauai and Molokai in addition to many islets. These islands were united under a ruler King Kamehameha the Great. With its capital at Honolulu, Hawaiian and English languages are widely spoken. The biggest industry in the Hawaii is tourism, contributing to more than 75% of its economy. The main attraction of the Hawaiian islands are its coral beaches, cloud shrouded volcanic peaks, lush green vegetation contributing to its apt name “paradise of the Pacific” with palm trees in abundant sunshine dotting the beauty line. A vacation to Hawaii can be truly memorable and highly cost saving if planned well in advance and with proper care. Hotels in Hawaii can be expensive and one could spend a fortune on them. There are other options that can provide a family or a group with better accommodation and good facilities if properly researched. Vacation accommodation in Hawaii can be arranged by looking for Hawaii discount vacation rentals, vacation rental homes in Hawaii or condos for vacation rental in Hawaii. Each and every one of the Hawaiian Islands are unique in their own way. Oahu, home of the Waikiki beach, Diamond Head, Pearl Harbor and the capital city Honolulu has big wave surfing. It is the most inhabited and most modern of the Hawaiian Islands and has great nightlife to offer. Kauai, the garden isle on the other hand is the oldest tropical island with scenic surroundings and marvelous nature. It houses the Mount Wai'ale'ale, the wettest spot on earth, Bali Hai and Hanalei. Maui also known as the valley isle has glamorous golf courses, is known for whale watching and the huge and famous Haleakala Crater. Hawaii, the big island boasts of big game fishing, lava fields, black sand beaches, tropical rain forests, volcanoes and waterfalls. The major attractions in the Hawaiian Islands are The Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail The Haleakala National Park and the Haleakala Wilderness The Hawaii Volcanoes National Park The Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary The James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge The Kalaupapa National Historical Park The Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park The Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge The Kona Historical Society The Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve The Oahu Forest National Wildlife Refuge The Palmyra Atoll National Wildlife Refuge The Puukohola Heiau National Historic Site The USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor The Akaka Falls etc. For those whoa re just planning the vacation, vacation rentals in Hawaii are usually comprised of stand-alone houses, apartments or condominiums equipped with full amenities and functional kitchens. In Hawaii, most condo rentals and other kind of vacation rentals are located right on the beaches and many also boast of private swimming pools, Jacuzzis and tennis courts. A normal staying period at a vacation rental is a minimum of one week. Vacation rentals work out to be cheaper if the number in the group is higher especially with the use of kitchen for meals. Vacation rentals facilitate staying in Hawaii, the way the rich and the famous do. Vacation rentals enable the tourists to stay in luxurious beach home rentals or condo rentals for a fraction of the cost of a staying in a hotel. Book early and enjoy the Hawaiian Islands in style.
Thursday, 10 November 2011
Passenger traffic was 5.6% higher than the same month last year and stronger than the 4.6% year-on-year growth recorded in August. Air freight on the other hand posted a 2.7% contraction for September compared to September 2010. This is a further deterioration from the 2.4% decline recorded in August.
Tony Tyler, IATA?s Director General and CEO, said, ?September?s strength in passenger demand was a pleasant surprise. Freight demand contracted for a fifth consecutive month and this trend is in line with falling business and consumer confidence. We are still expecting a general weakening in passenger traffic as we head towards the year-end.?
International Passenger Markets
International air travel volumes rebounded to levels reached in July, following a dip in August. The sharp decline in business confidence in most economies, and the weakness in US and European consumer confidence, suggest reluctance for both business and leisure travel. Continuing strong air travel markets may reflect the robust conditions in emerging markets and travel booked earlier in the year when there was more economic optimism.
Passenger load factors stood at 79.5% in September, slightly below the 80.1% recorded for the same month last year. Highest load factors were recorded in North America (82.6%) and Europe (82.4%). The load factor for Asia Pacific airlines slipped to 76% as the region absorbs the largest number of new aircraft deliveries.
Latin America carriers reported the largest increase in demand at 10.6% (up from a 6.4% increase in August), supported by robust economic conditions.
European carriers saw a 9.2% increase, slightly behind the 9.5% increase in capacity. This comes despite the continuing Eurozone crisis. The weak Euro is enhancing Europe?s attractiveness to tourists and creating export opportunities for business.
Traffic carried by Middle East carriers rose by 9.1%, ahead of a capacity increase of 8.5%--a step change from the 15% capacity increases seen in recent years.
Asia Pacific carriers saw a 4.3% increase in demand, well below the 6.3% increase in capacity. Despite strong domestic growth in India and China, growth rates for international markets slowed.
North American carriers recorded a 1.2% increase in demand, the weakest among the regions. It lagged behind a 2.9% increase in capacity.
African carriers experienced a 5% increase in demand, closely matching the 5.2% increase in capacity.
Domestic Passenger Markets
Domestic markets rose strongly in September at 3.8% (up from 2.2% in August). This was also significantly stronger than the 2.8% increase in domestic capacity.
India led the way with 18.4% growth, although slightly below the 20.1% increase in capacity. This was followed by China at 9.7% (more robust than the 8.1% increase in capacity) and Brazil where a 7.5% increase in demand was well below the 14.6% increase in capacity.
The recovery in Japan?s domestic market following March?s earthquake and tsunami stalled in September with traffic 14.5% below previous year levels. This is a step back from the 12.3% decline recorded in August.
Carriers in the US domestic market cut capacity by 0.7% but recorded an increase in demand of 1.6%.
Air Freight (Domestic + International)
Freight volumes have fallen significantly during the third quarter. By September, freight volumes were 5% below those carried at the end of the first quarter. This represents a deterioration in trade and economic conditions. Inventory to expected sales ratios have risen and shipments by air are being cut.
Asia Pacific carriers are the largest players in air cargo and have been the hardest hit with a 6.3% decline in demand compared to September 2010. This is despite robust economic growth in many countries in the region. The disruptions to supply chains as a result of the Japanese tsunami and earthquake continue to dampen air freight in the region.
European carriers also recorded a contraction in demand of 2.4% while North American carriers reported that September freight traffic was flat compared to the previous year.
Despite stronger than expected growth in passenger markets during September, the industry is bracing for more difficult times ahead. IATA?s recent Airline Business Confidence survey reported a significant decline in profitability expectations over the next 12 months. More worrying is the expectation that unit costs will increase with little optimism for yields. The majority expected no change in passenger yields while 90% of respondents were split equally among those expecting cargo yields to remain the same or decline. IATA is expecting profitability to decline from $6.9 billion in 2011 to $4.9 billion in 2012 for a margin of just 0.8%.
Airlines play a key role in connecting global business. At this time of economic uncertainty in many parts of the world, US plans to raise an additional $36 billion in aviation taxes over the next decade could not be more misguided. Last month the UK recognized the harm that its GBP2.5 billion Air Passenger Duty was doing in Northern Ireland and announced a major cut. It?s time to apply that lesson at a more global level. Increasing the cost of doing business by making air transport more expensive destroys competitiveness. Governments should protect the 33 million jobs and $3.5 trillion in economic activity supported by aviation with a sound policy framework?not by suffocating the industry with taxes,? said Tyler.
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The rebranded hotel is located right in the heart of Tokyo's Shinjuku centre and only three minutes away from the world's busiest train station.
Ibis Tokyo Shinjuku will bring in a fresh sensation to the economy hotel industry in the country's capital. As Accor's leading economy hotel brand, ibis has earned a worldwide reputation for excellent services at very competitive prices, said Patrick Basset, Accor's Vice President for Vietnam, the Philippines, South Korea and Japan. This hotel is the first ibis hotel brand to set foot in Japan, but it will be the 10th hotel in Accor?s Japan network.
The 206-room ibis Tokyo Shinjuku will begin an extensive refurbishment over the following months. Once complete, the hotel will become a key addition to the Ibis network, accumulating the numbers to almost 100 hotels and over 17,340 rooms in Asia Pacific region.
Shinjuku is a major commercial and administrative centre of Tokyo and one of the 23 special wards in the Capital. Shinjuku train station is the busiest train station in the world, with over 3.5 million passengers passing through each day. The hotel is 1.5 hour away by train from Tokyo Narita International Airport and 45 minutes away by train from Tokyo Haneda International Airport.
The project won ADAC 'the GCC Commercial Project of the Year' from the Construction Week Awards held on Monday 31 October at the Westin Hotel in Dubai.
The refurbishment project included an increase in the number of check-in and immigration counters, and the expansion and development of the retail and F&B space.
The project was carried out over 10 months as part of the programme to expand the airport capacity and meet the anticipated traffic growth, whilst completing the longer term expansion plans of the capital?s airport through building new terminals and facilities.
The completed project was also designed to deliver a high quality facility and upgraded services in Terminal 1 in line with the Terminal 3 offerings.
The terminal's refurbishment focuses on delivering to travelers a rejuvenated travel experience from start to end. Upon arrival to the airport, passengers are greeted through new entry gates, leading to passport control area, where the number of counters has increased by 40% to ensure a more speedy processing of travel documents. A designated area has also been especially allocated for First and Business Class passengers, with brand new security screening facilities.
The number of Immigrations Department in the departure area has been increased as well, as has the number of designated counters and E-Gates for travelers with special needs.
Additionally, passengers now enjoy an enhanced shopping and dining experience through the new developed layout of the retail and food & beverage space, which has been enhanced to offer 27 outlets.
The airport hotel and hospitality lounges have also undergone a thorough makeover.
At Abu Dhabi Airports Company, we are constantly striving to elevate the travel experience and ensure clients, whether passengers or airlines, enjoy a unique journey. Driven from this ambition, T1 underwent a thorough and carefully designed upgrade plan to bring it in line with Terminal 3, and ensure that customers using any part of Abu Dhabi International Airport will have a refreshing and efficient start or end to their journey, said Eng. Ahmed Al Haddabi, Chief Operating Officer at Abu Dhabi Airports Company. The refurbishment works were carried out in phases, taking into consideration the peak hours to ensure travelers? safety, convenience and comfort over the last 10 months, and to provide ADAC with a short-term solution to cater for the expected traffic growth at the Capital's airport in the coming few years.
All long-haul services will be operated by Boeing 757 / 767 aircraft, with the Business class cabin featuring lie-flat beds and KCTV personal inflight entertainment system.
Services from Almaty to Bangkok will increase to five frequencies a week, Almaty to Dehli will increase to four times a week and Almaty to Kuala Lumpur will increase to three times a week.
A twice weekly service from Almaty to Hong Kong will be launched in February 2012 and a winter season only service from Almaty to Ho Chi Minh city will commence in October 2012.
Expanding political, business and tourism links between Kazakhstan and Asia continue to drive strong traffic growth on services to the region, with increased feed from Central Asia into the expanding Almaty hub also making a significant contribution, said Peter Foster, President of Air Astana. Immediate frequency increases on existing services and the launch of new services to Hong Kong Kong and Ho Chi Minh city in 2012, reflect the fact that Asia is playing an increasingly important part in the strategic long-term development of Air Astana.
Air Astana currently operates a fleet of 25 aircraft comprising two Boeing 767-300, four Boeing 757-200, ten Airbus A321/A320/A319, three Embraer E190 and six Fokker 50. A fifth Boeing 757 will join the fleet in December 2011. The airline serves 23 domestic and 31 international destinations.
Located amidst a pristine reef within the southern rim of the Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll in the southern Maldives, 268 miles south of the capital Male, the island based resort occupies 150,000 square metres of undisturbed and indigenous vegetation and offers uninterrupted views of the breathtaking Maldivian landscape.
The 112-villa resort comprises 33 Beach Villas, 4 Beach Suites, 14 Sunset Beach Suites, 33 Ocean Villas, 11 Sunset Lagoon Suites, 16 Sunset Ocean Suites and a duplex Ayada Royal Ocean Suite.
Guests can enjoy a variety of dining experiences found in the seven restaurants, an extensive 3500 sqm AySpa & Health Club managed by ESPA, a dive and watersports centre and a kid?s club.
Mr. Firat Aydeniz, member of the board of directors of the Aydeniz Group, said, Our vision for Ayada Maldives was to provide a sanctuary for visitors whereby we offer luxurious accommodation and diverse dining options complemented by genuine warmth and hospitality from our employees. It was of paramount importance to us to showcase the beauty and tranquility of the location and thus, the design features large open spaces whereby the natural elements play an integral part of the guest experience with every villa offering plunge pools with large outdoor terraces and either direct lagoon or beach access and some villas with glass floor panels. We also wanted to infuse elements of the Ottoman culture into Ayada Maldives and as such subtle influences can be found in the decorative design of the villas, the Turkish Hammam in the spa and the Ottoman Lounge.
The Best Western Plus hotel reception lobby is located on the ground floor of the 31-storey tower whilst the sky lounge, fitness center and swimming pool are located on the 18th floor.
There are also 90 SOVO (small office variable office) suites available for the local and international business travelers.
Mr. Lim Thiam Huat, Executive Director of Lagenda Erajuta Sdn Bhd., said, ?Best Western International is the world?s largest hotel chain with 4,000 independently owned and operated hotels around the world. Best Western Plus is suitable for Port Klang as it?s a Free Trade Zone and surrounded by other international business development, which is right at 1Gateway?s doorstep. Foreign and local businessmen will find it convenient and comfortable to stay in and will enjoy the right ambience for conducting business.?
From 31 October 2011, Lufthansa will operate a daily A380 service between Singapore and Frankfurt, joining Singapore Airlines and Qantas in making Changi one of the world's busiest multi-carrier A380 hubs. To mark this milestone, and to promote Changi Airport?s air links to the various German cities, Changi Airport is organising a lively festival in true German style ? complete with fun-filled games, beer, music and delightful treats.
Running from 29 October to 13 November 2011, the ?Germanfest? will be held at Changi Airport Terminal 3, Basement 2. At the fair, visitors can try their hands at traditional German games such as ?Slide the Beer? and ?Pretzel Throw Challenge?.
On site, an eight-foot giant beer mug filled with many smaller mugs will be on display. One lucky participant with the correct guess of the number of mugs in the giant beer mug will walk away with Sin$1,000 in Changi Dollar vouchers (minimum spend and other terms and conditions apply).
On weekends and public holidays, visitors will be able to enjoy cultural dance and music performances, while children interested to experience more of German culture can sign up for workshops to learn how to make pretzels and German hats.
And, like a true German party, the ?Germanfest? would not be complete without some hearty German food. On weekends, visitors can enjoy a glass of beer or apple spritzer and German pastries.
Jet Airways offers daily non-stop services from its international gateways in Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai to its European Hub in Brussels, the international political centre and home to NATO and European Union headquarters. At Brussels airport, customers can transfer to non-stop Jet Airways flights bound for New York?s John F. Kennedy and Newark Airports.
In India, Jet Airways also offers an unrivalled domestic network to 53 cities including Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Kolkata, Goa, Hyderabad, and Thiruvananthapuram.
JetBlue is one of the largest domestic airlines in New York, offering more than 150 daily flights that feature all-leather seating, free inflight entertainment at every seatback, and unlimited free snacks and drinks. The airline offers non-stop services from JFK to dozens of destinations including Boston, Chicago, Fort Lauderdale, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, D.C and from Newark to Boston, Orlando and Ft. Lauderdale.
Through this partnership, customers will now be able to book a single combined ticket for JetBlue and Jet Airways-operated flights with one stop check-in and baggage transfer between the two airlines.
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Entebbe becomes the 16th destination in Qatar Airways? African network. The latest route is also the carrier?s third East African point in a regional network that already covers the Kenyan and Tanzanian capitals of Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, respectively.
The Doha ? Entebbe route is served with an Airbus A320 featuring up to 12 seats in Business Class and up to 132 seats in Economy. The aircraft offers seatback TV screens providing all passengers with the next generation interactive onboard entertainment system featuring a choice of more than 700 audio and video on demand options.
Furthermore, the aircraft is equipped with a special OnAir service allowing passengers to use their mobile phones onboard for SMS, MMS messaging and emails.
?Since we announced plans to serve Uganda with daily passenger flights, this new route has been highly anticipated by the travel trade, business community and the travelling public. I would like to stress that we are here to stay, building strong relationships with our business partners for the long term,? said Qatar Airways CEO, Akbar Al Baker. ?I am extremely confident Entebbe will be just as successful as our other destinations in Africa and this will further strengthen our position across the Continent where we now operate to 16 cities from Doha.?
Uganda is known as the Pearl of Africa for its abundant wildlife, natural lush green scenery and rich culture. From eco tours, white-water rafting, hiking, safaris and the country?s most famous attraction ? the elusive and treasured mountain gorilla ? Uganda has plenty to offer for leisure visitors.
Kampala is also fast becoming a business hub, helped by the Ugandan government offering incentives to overseas investors.
In Southeast Asia, Jetstar Asia, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways and Tiger Airways will operate 50 additional weekly flights to and from Bangkok while AirAsia and Jetstar Asia will operate 42 additional weekly flights to and from Kuala Lumpur. In total, Changi will be connected to and from Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur by 364 and 607 weekly flights respectively.
Separately, Changi will be connected to all nine of Singapore?s ASEAN neighbours later this month when Lao Airlines commences thrice-weekly services from Vientiane, the capital of Laos.
Changi Airport will also strengthen its connectivity to China with an additional 6,700 weekly one-way seats to Beijing, Changsha, Chongqing, Guangzhou and Shanghai.
SilkAir launched thrice-weekly services to Changsha, a new city link for Changi, from 31 October. Changi is now connected to 25 Chinese cities via more than 650 weekly flights.
Passenger traffic between Singapore and Japan experienced its third consecutive month of growth in September 2011, after the earthquake and tsunami in March this year. With Singapore Airlines having restored an additional daily service to Tokyo Haneda from 30 October, the frequency between Singapore and Tokyo (both Narita and Haneda) returns to pre-earthquake levels with some 150 weekly flights connecting the two cities.
Along with the commencement of Lufthansa?s A380 operations in Singapore this week, Changi?s connectivity to Europe has been boosted by KLM?s additional weekly service to Amsterdam.
In January 2012, Changi Airport will welcome Transaero?s weekly service to Moscow and Singapore Airlines will increase capacity on its existing Singapore-Frankfurt-New York route with an A380 service.
With the increase in frequencies for the Northern-Winter 2011/12 season, Changi Airport is set to serve more than 6,200 weekly flights by the end of March 2012. This is an increase of about 5%, compared to the over 5,900 weekly flights Changi handled at the end of the Northern-Summer 2011 season.
On the cargo front, there is also additional capacity from Changi Airport to Germany and Europe with the commencement of Lufthansa?s all-cargo freighter operations at Changi and Singapore Airlines Cargo?s new twice-weekly services to Frankfurt. Using the 89-tonne MD11F aircraft, Lufthansa?s all-cargo carrier will complement its existing Aerologic services. Lufthansa will operate twice-weekly services to Frankfurt with stops in Cairo, Dhaka, Mumbai, New Delhi and Sharjah. Singapore Airlines Cargo?s services to Frankfurt will include stops in Bengaluru, Chennai and Sharjah.
As at 1 November 2011, Changi Airport serves 14 all-cargo carriers operating more than 380 weekly scheduled flights, an increase of 17% compared to a year ago.
KLM now operates 24 flights to and from destinations in Central America, and 28 flights to and from destinations in South America.
Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires and Havana/Punta Cana are also served by Air France.
With the dual-hub strategy through Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and Paris Charles de Gaulle, the schedules of Air France and KLM are designed to connect seamlessly.
Together, the two airlines operate 17 weekly flights to Rio de Janeiro, 13 weekly flights to Havana, 10 weekly flights to Buenos Aires, and 7 weekly flights to Punta Cana.
With this contract, JetBlue also converts 30 of its pre-existing orders for A320s to the larger A321 model with enhanced wingtip devices called Sharklets.
In total JetBlue currently has on order 40 A320neo aircraft, 30 A321s and 22 A320s.
The airline has not yet unveiled its engine selection for the A320neo order.
We commenced operations with Airbus aircraft nearly 12 years ago, and have since used the A320 family as the backbone of our fleet, receiving great feedback from our customers and crewmembers, said Mark Powers, Chief Financial Officer of JetBlue Airways. ?Our business model is focused on a sustainable growth strategy with emphasis on cost control, while providing the most comfortable experience to our customers. We believe the A320neo fleet with help us meet these goals.?
The A320neo family is one of the fastest selling airliners ever, with more than 1200 orders and commitments since its launch in late 2010. The new A319, A320 and A321 models feature a choice of two new engines ? the PurePower PW1100G from Pratt & Whitney or the LEAP-X from CFM International. The aircraft also feature large wingtip device known as Sharklets. Together, Airbus says this results in a 15% fuel burn reduction, corresponding to an annual carbon dioxide reduction of 3,600 metric tons per aircraft.
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The airline will operate direct regular flights to Lagos, the economic and financial capital of Nigeria, starting 3 December 2011. It will start operating to Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, on the 16th of the same month.
Royal Jordanian will operate two weekly flights with its wide-bodied, 280-seat Airbus A330s to Lagos. The flight will depart from Amman on Wednesdays at 12:40 after midnight, and reach Lagos at 06:30; it comes back from Lagos the same day, leaving at 8am and reaching Amman at 15:15.
A second weekly flight to Lagos will be on Saturdays. It will leave Amman at 14:45, reach Lagos at 20:35 and come back from Lagos at 10pm the same day, reaching Amman the next morning at 05:15.
The narrower-bodied A319 will operate four weekly flights between Amman and Nairobi. The flights will operate on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, departing from Amman at 20:30 and reaching Nairobi at 02:55 the next day. The flight back from Nairobi is on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 03:50, reaching Amman at 8am the same day.
RJ President/CEO Hussein Dabbas said the company?s effort to inaugurate these two routes comes in line with the expansion strategy RJ in undertaking in an attempt to find new tourism and travel markets, given the decline in tourism movement from the traditional markets of Europe and North America.
Connecting Amman with these African cities is expected to attract large numbers of tourists to the Kingdom, particularly Muslim pilgrims who wish to continue their flights to Mecca and Medina, in Saudi Arabia, and Christians, who come to Jordan to visit the Baptism site and other Christian holy sites. Moreover, transit travelers can use Queen Alia International Airport as a hub for their travel to the east.
The airline is conducting studies to see whether it is feasible to inaugurate routes to Accra, capital of Ghana, and Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia.
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Wednesday, 9 November 2011
Fair Work Australia granted the Australian Government?s application to terminate all industrial action by the Australian Licenced Engineers Union, the Transport Workers Union, the Australian and International Pilots Union and Qantas.
Under the orders issued by Fair Work Australia, there will now be up to 21 days of negotiations between the parties. No industrial action can take place during this period. If no agreement is reached during this period, binding arbitration will take place under the control of Fair Work Australia.
Qantas Chief Executive Officer Alan Joyce said the decision would provide certainty for Qantas passengers and all of our employees.
?This is a good outcome that will enable us to begin operating flights this afternoon on a limited schedule with the approval of the regulator, CASA,? Mr Joyce said. ?Operations will resume progressively from this afternoon. Our focus is bringing our schedule back to normal as soon as possible. Safety will remain our first priority at all times ... The industrial process has now passed into the hands of the independent umpire. All parties will be treated equally and we will respect the decisions that are made. We have new and existing agreements with 12 unions. We now anticipate the conclusion of agreements with the remaining three.
This has been a challenging period for Qantas, its employees, its customers and its shareholders. We sincerely regret the impact on customers of industrial action over recent months, and the effect on employees.?
Tourism Australia Managing Director Andrew McEvoy welcomed the decision by Fair Work Australia to terminate all industrial action and allow Qantas to resume international and domestic operations.
?This is a breakthrough for Australian tourism - an industry which generates $250 million a day in spending for our economy,? Mr McEvoy said. ?The decision provides certainty for tourism operators and, most importantly for the tourism industry, allowing Qantas to progressively resume flights. ?Australian tourism is open for business and we need to ensure whatever existing damage to our industry can now be minimised.
?There will be a backlog to clear, in particular from our international markets. Interestingly, we have become very good at clearing backlogs given recent issues such as the volcanic ash cloud and should see normal service start to resume within the next 24 hours,? he said.
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Fox, who will oversee Fairmont's collection of hotels and resorts, brings extensive experience in hotel operations, brand development, marketing and sales, and hotel transitions to her new role.
"I've known Jennifer for many years and we are extremely fortunate to be adding someone of her calibre to our executive team," said Chris Cahill, chief operating officer, Fairmont Raffles Hotels International. "I'm excited to have the opportunity to work with Jennifer and firmly believe her leadership abilities, combined with her vast industry experience, branding expertise, and proven track record on driving hotel performance, will help enhance Fairmont's position as a global leader in the luxury hotel market."
With more than 25 years of hospitality related experience, Fox arrives at Fairmont from InterContinental Hotels Group, where she most recently served as chief operating officer, managed operations, Continental Europe, responsible for operations, financial performance, talent management and service delivery.
Prior to that, she held a range of senior leadership positions in brand marketing, including global brand manager for both Sheraton and InterContinental, and also served as general manager at some of the world's finest luxury hotels including assignments in Hong Kong, Europe, Australia and the United States.
Fox succeeds Chris Cahill, who yields the role of president to focus on his duties as chief operating officer, Fairmont Raffles Hotels International, Fairmont's parent company.
"Fairmont is already one of the world's most distinctive brands," said Jennifer Fox. "I have always admired Fairmont, so I am excited to be given the opportunity to lead the Fairmont team as we continue to grow and introduce the brand to new markets around the world, while continuing to provide an unrivalled experience for our guests, and deliver and enhance value for all of our stakeholders."
Fox holds an MBA from Baylor University in Texas and is currently completing her doctorate in Business Studies (DBA) at the International School of Management in Paris, France.
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Suntec Singapore which has hosted more than 18,000 events over the last 16 years that included some of the world?s biggest exhibitions and conventions such as the World Trade Organisation Ministerial Conference (1996), the 2006 Annual Meetings of the Board of Governors of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group as well as the 2009 APEC Singapore Leaders? Week will receive its makeover commencing mid 2012.
The redesign of the venue will pay particular attention to flexibility, functionality and convertibility while integrating a high degree of advanced technology which will include an impressive 2-storey interactive digital wall and a modernized facade.
Suntec Singapore will operate from levels 2 to 7 with the grand entrance on level 3, served by express escalators.
Pieter Idenburg, Chief Executive Officer says that the venue that was designed and built more than 15 years ago, was extraordinarily planned and robustly built. ?The building has served us extremely well. Suntec Singapore has played a major role in advancing the MICE industry in Singapore and being established as a premier MICE destination. With the implementation of these planned enhancements, we will be well placed to meet the changing needs of our customers and to ensure that our business partners at all points of the supply chain have a fantastic experience and will enjoy the finest of our offerings - well into the next decade,? Mr. Idenburg said.
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An additional 31 flights each week will be operated by the Doha-based airline between the State of Qatar and Iran, representing an 150% increase in overall frequency.
The capacity rise to 52 services a week, up from the current 21, will be phased in over a four-month period, starting 1 December 2011.
The capital Tehran will be served with an additional daily flight; Iran?s second largest city of Mashhad is to get nine extra flights; Shiraz, the economic centre of southern Iran, will be given eight new flights; and, starting 11 January 2012, services will begin to Isfahan in central Iran.
Shiraz: 8 new flights ? currently twice-weekly, rising to daily, effective December 1, and a further three flights introduced each week from March 2012.
Isfahan: new route ? daily flights from 11 January 2012.
Mashhad: 9 new flights ? from the current five flights-a-week to 14 services (double daily), beginning March 2012.
Tehran: 7 new flights ?.from the current 14 flights each week (double daily) to 21 services (thrice-daily), beginning March 2012.
All flights will be operated by Airbus A320 aircraft in a two-class configuration of 12 seats in Business Class and 132 in Economy.
Qatar Airways began flying to Iran in 2004 with the launch of services to Tehran. Flights to Mashhad started the following year, with Shiraz introduced to the network almost five months ago.
Isfahan, home to textile and steel mills and located on the country?s main north-south and east-west crossroads, is the heartbeat of central Iran?s economy. With fine historic Islamic architecture, palaces and tree-lined wide boulevards, the city is regarded as one of the most beautiful in the Middle East.
?Almost five months ago, Qatar Airways introduced the Iranian city of Shiraz to our network. We have been working with the authorities in Iran for increased capacity across the country and delighted to have reached agreement to make this announcement,? said Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer, Akbar Al Baker. ?Additional flights will ultimately benefit passengers travelling to and from Iran and with our large international network of destinations, we facilitate travel with more ease, more flexibility and more choice, particularly for the large Iranian expatriate community around the world.?
So far this year, Qatar Airways has launched flights to 12 cities worldwide ? Bucharest (Romania), Budapest (Hungary), Brussels (Belgium), Stuttgart (Germany), Aleppo (Syria), Shiraz (Iran), Venice (Italy), Montreal (Canada), Medina (Saudi Arabia), Kolkata (India), Sofia (Bulgaria) and Oslo (Norway).
Three further routes are planned during November alone ? to the Libyan port city of Benghazi from 1 November 2011; Ugandan city of Entebbe effective 2 November 2011; and the central Chinese city of Chongqing on 28 November 2011.
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Tuesday, 8 November 2011
The first relief goods were delivered to Bangkok via the KE653 flight from Seoul/Incheon on 31 October 2011 and the rest will be transferred through Korean Air?s regular scheduled flights with timing dependent on the situation in Thailand and flight schedules.
Once the relief goods arrive in Bangkok, they will then be handed over to the Thai government for distribution via the Korean embassy in Bangkok.
Due to the devastating flood in Thailand, which started in July, more than 8 million civilians are estimated to have been affected so far and more than 600,000 workers have lost their jobs as industrial areas have been flooded.
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Inbound tour operator SkiJapan.com is making the free nights offer for accommodation between 17 December 2011 and 2 March 2012 as an incentive for skiers to travel to Niseko, which this year celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first ski lift opening in the area.
Now with 61 ski runs and 30 lifts in the four-resort area, including a new high-speed gondola that opens this year, Niseko attracts more than 20,000 foreign skiers and snowboarders each season, making it one of the leading ski destinations outside Europe and North America.
The SkiJapan.com 'Free Nights Frenzy' package applies to its self-contained apartments and provides four nights free accommodation for visitors who pay for ten nights. Those paying for seven nights receive three free nights, while five paid nights receives two free nights and four paid nights receives one night free.
"Niseko was completely unaffected by the earthquake in March and is more than 600 kilometres away from the affected area on Honshu," said SkiJapan.com general manager, Marcus William. "Being situated on the northern island of Hokkaido, Niseko, its businesses and people have not been directly affected."
Nevertheless, as an extra assurance, SkiJapan.com is offering customers staying in selected properties an 100% money-back guarantee if their clients' home government raises a 'Do Not Travel' warning and they are forced to cancel within thirty to seven days of their scheduled arrival date in Niseko.
Another option is for Niseko visitors who do not wish to travel through Tokyo to fly via Hong Kong, from where there are direct connections to Sapporo on Cathay Pacific.
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The JW Marriott Manama, Bahrain Hotel is scheduled to open in 2016. The hotel will have 274 rooms and suites and 102 residences in Bahrain Bay, adjacent to Bahrain Financial Harbour and opposite the diplomatic quarter.
The 50-story hotel tower is part of Bahrain Bay, a $2.5 billion development master planned by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. The project is designed by renowned architect Yousif Daoud Al Sayegh and Associates who designed the Six Senses Hideaway Zighy Bay, Oman (Winner of the Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council?s first Estidama Sustainability Award 2008).
?The JW Marriott Bahrain will be a spectacular addition to the Bahrain Bay development,? said Mr. Abdul-Aziz Al-Rabban chairman of Khaleejcapita B.S.C. ?Bahrain has an under supply of luxury 5-star hotels and we are confident that the project will be a great success?, he added. He also explained that this project represents the first entry for the group in the hospitality field and that there are many other hotel and resort projects in the pipeline for Bahrain and Qatar.
The development has a prime business location and will also cater to the thriving fine dining market in Bahrain, with five luxury restaurants.
The hotel will have an executive lounge with ocean view; one casual and five specialty restaurants; four lounges, including a lobby lounge and bar, a pool bar, quiet bar and rooftop lounge/bar; and 17,119 square feet of meeting space.
Recreational facilities will include a health and leisure club and spa, indoor and outdoor pool, tennis and squash courts.
?Our currently open hotels in Bahrain, the Marriott Executive Apartments and The Ritz-Carlton, have been tremendously successful, and we believe that this JW Marriott Manama is ideally located for a luxury hotel in Bahrain?s commercial and financial center,? said Ed Fuller, president and managing director of International Lodging for Marriott International. ?Our JW Marriott brand is reserved for select luxury hotels in key gateway cities around the world, and Bahrain is certainly one of these.?
The JW Marriott Manama Bahrain Hotel will be the first JW Marriott property in Bahrain and the fifth JW Marriott hotel in the Middle East/Africa region. Marriott International will also open a 78-unit Residence Inn by Marriott in 2012 and the 318-room Renaissance Bahrain Amwaj Island Hotel in 2013.
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SIA first announced that it would launch a new low cost airline in May of this year.
The new airline will compete directly with AirAsia X, the long haul affiliate of the hugely popular Malaysian low budget airline AirAsia, as well as other low cost long haul airlines in the region.
Operations are expected to begin within the next six months, though no firm date has been fixed. The airline is wholly owned by Singapore Airlines, but will be operated independently and managed separately from SIA.
Scoot will use Boeing 777-200 aircraft, but more details of its branding, terminal to be used, products, services, and exact route network have not yet been revealed.
In a recent survey, nearly 85% of Starwood Preferred Guest members said they find value in consumer ratings and reviews on travel sites.
The open forum gives travelers a place to share and search for genuine hotel reviews ? both the positive and the negative says Starwood ? so they can plan their ideal hotel stay.
Taking authenticity a step further, Starwood is also making sure all comments are from guests who actually stayed at the hotel. Reviews are verified by a hotel reservation confirmation.
?Our goal is to provide everything a guest needs to select and book their best hotel experience and there?s no better place to offer this information than on our own websites,? said Chris Holdren, Senior Vice President, Starwood Preferred Guest. ?Starwood?s new ratings and reviews platform provides a valuable new way for guests to learn from the experiences of fellow travelers.?
Guests can now post ratings and reviews based on a variety of criteria including: Overall Rating, Room Comfort, Staff Met My Needs, Room Cleanliness and SPG Recognition.
Helping to create a more personalized experience, guests can also filter review content to see the information that is most relevant to them including: Star Rating, Purpose of Travel, Frequency of Travel, SPG Level, Above/Met Expectations and Below Expectations.
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Monday, 7 November 2011
In its second year, TravelRave 2011, consisting of ten events, each with their own unique, yet synergistic attributes, started with the Singapore Experience Awards, and culminated on a high note with the Cornell Hotel Society Asia Pacific Regional Conference.
The festival saw more than 9,500 attendees, representing a 15% growth over 2010.
?It has been a fruitful week of meaningful discussions and meetings. Many who attended TravelRave this year have made valuable contacts and gained useful insights from the various sessions. All in all, we have seen the industry really coming together to make TravelRave a success, and it would not have been possible to achieve this without the strong support of all our partners,? said Ms. Aw Kah Peng, Chief Executive of the Singapore Tourism Board (STB). ?With the satisfactory conclusion of TravelRave 2011, we look forward to an even bigger and extensive edition in 2012, as the cluster of events grows into a platform for Asian tourism.?
The by-invitation only Asia Travel Leaders Summit once again gathered leaders for an intimate dialogue on issues pertinent to the Asian travel and tourism industry. Leaders in attendance included Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWO), David Scowsill, President and Chief Executive Officer of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), Zhuang Chenchao, Co- Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Qunar, and Rattan Keswani, President of Trident Hotels.
Speaking from the viewpoint of someone who attended TravelRave for the first time, Mr. Henning Boysen, Chairman of the Kuoni Group, said ?The way TravelRave has been put together and run has been seamless, professional and very efficient. The whole set up has been organized the way we try to put together travel experiences for our guests - seamless travel. Absolutely, if you want to grow and develop your business in this region, you'll greatly benefit from participating at TravelRave.?
Mr. Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of the UNWTO, added ?UNWTO is very happy to have been part of TravelRave with the organization of a High Level Meeting dedicated to debate tourism opportunities and challenges in Asia. TravelRave is an innovative initiative and a perfect platform to leverage the dynamism of Asian?s tourism. According to UNWTO?s longterm forecast Tourism Towards 2030, Asia will be the fastest growing region for international tourism within the coming two decades. TravelRave enables the sector to harness this vast growth potential."
Apart from congregating travel and tourism industry professionals and opinion leaders to leverage the growth presented in Asia, there is also a need to develop and interest the next generation of industry leaders. To this end, a regional youth competition, the inaugural TravelRave Talent Challenge, was launched this year.
The challenge winner was a student from Singapore Management University, and sharing her experiences in TravelRave, Ms. Mabel Fu said, ?It was a great opportunity for me to attend the events held during the TravelRave week. I was exposed not only to the business side of travel and tourism, but also to more in-depth industry insights, the current issues prevailing, entrepreneurial ideas and the future of the sector. Through interaction with these thought leaders, I have gained a better understanding of the sector and it has opened my eyes to parts of the business I never knew existed. Their passion for the travel industry is truly inspiring. I would definitely consider joining the industry upon my graduation.?
Mr. Kerry Gumas, President and Chief Executive Officer of Questex Media Group, said, ?Without question, for anybody who has not been to TravelRave, the key business benefit of coming here is that you have all of the different participants in the industry here at one place, at one time. Although they are different events, they take place at one very convenient, fun, informative location where you can get all of your networking and business meetings done while having a good time. We think it has been a total success, and we are very much looking forward to coming back again in 2012.?
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The new contracts follow successful agency trials and positive feedback from global launch partner, Flight Centre and UK beta test customer Global Travel Management in the UK.
The new Travelport Universal Desktop test partners in the Asia Pacific region are: MP Travel and Orba Travel Brokers in Australia, Quotient Travel and Serangoon Air Travel in Singapore as well as SkyJet and Shalom in Hong Kong.
All customers are expected to commence beta testing shortly.
Travelport Universal Desktop provides travel agents with an intuitive interface and access to multi-source content and pricing. It is designed to improve efficiencies and boost productivity, through its introduction of clever travel management tools and streamlined workflow processes.
?Travelport Universal Desktop delivers our travel partners with a revolutionary new way to search and book travel. It reflects our ongoing investment in innovative technology and builds on our position as Asia-Pacific?s leading GDS,? said Simon Nowroz, President and Managing Director, Asia-Pacific, Travelport. ?We are committed to ensuring Travelport meets customer needs in today?s marketplace, but also identifies the opportunities of tomorrow.?
The desktop tool is currently being launched across the Flight Centre global network following a successful pilot program. UK travel management company, Global Travel Management has also just commenced accessing a live version following its own successful beta trial.
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Vladivostok Air will operate the A320 aircraft in a two-class configuration on the route, departing Vladivostok International Airport on Tuesday and Friday mornings to arrive in Changi Airport at 18:20 on the same day.
The return flight will depart Changi at 20:10 hours to arrive in Vladivostok the following morning.
Vladivostok, in the Russian Far East, is the ninth new city link for Changi this year. Since the launch of the Russia-Singapore Business Forum in 2006, bilateral trade between the two countries has more than doubled to reach Sin$5.2 billion in 2010.
With several Singapore-based companies already establishing inroads to the Russian Far East, Changi?s new connection to Vladivostok will stimulate further business links between Singapore and Vladivostok as well as the greater Primorsky Krai region ? the largest economy in the Russian Far East.
Passenger traffic between Singapore and Russia reached an all-time-high of 65,000 in 2010, representing a 31% growth year-on-year. Singapore also welcomed 55,000 Russian visitors in 2010, an increase of 9% compared to 2009. During the first eight months of this year, air traffic movements and visitor arrivals from Russia increased by a further 34% and 5% respectively compared to the same period last year.
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The 227-room Ramada Taizhou East, set to include 35 suites, will offer easy access to Jiangsu?s key cities, including Nanjing and Suzhou and will feature a spa, fitness center and game room as well as a restaurant with all-day dining options. Owned by Jiangsu Huangting Real Estate, the hotel is due to open October, 2012.
The 212-room Ramada Plaza Rizhao, set to include 12 suites, will be located just a short distance from Rizhao beach and will feature an indoor swimming pool, sauna, spa, fitness center, a ballroom and a roof-top lounge. Owned by Rizhao Wingfat Real Estate Development, the hotel is due to open December, 2012.
The 201-room Ramada Yangzhou Baoying will lie within the heart of the city?s new development area and will offer guests an indoor swimming pool, fitness center, and tennis court as well as a grand ballroom. Owned by Yangzhou Saierda Real Estate Development, the hotel is due to open in March 2013.
The 220-room Ramada Wuxi City Center, set to include 18 suites, will be situated in Wuxi?s city center, within walking distance to the main shopping malls, and will feature six meeting rooms, a fitness center, spa and game room. Owned by Wuxi Hengwei House Development, the hotel is due to open October, 2013.
The 300-room Ramada Plaza Dongxing City Center, set to include 32 suites, will be situated along the China-Vietnam boarder and feature one of the largest Chinese restaurants in the area. The hotel will offer six meeting rooms, a fitness center and game room. Owned by Dongxing Huida Real Estate, the hotel is due to open November, 2015.
The properties will join Wyndham Hotel Group?s 43 Ramada hotels already in operation in China.
?China continues to be an important growth market with an abundance of development opportunities for a number of our brands,? said Ken Greene, president and managing director for Wyndham Hotel Group in Asia Pacific. ?We are thrilled to announce the signing of these five new properties, which will not only cement the Ramada brand?s position in China, but will strengthen the greater Wyndham Hotel Group portfolio in the Asia Pacific region.?
Wyndham Hotel Group currently has a portfolio of 425 hotels and over 61,700 rooms in the Asia Pacific region under the Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, Ramada, Howard Johnson, Days Inn, Super 8, Microtel Inns & Suites and Dream brands.
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Sunday, 6 November 2011
The Wyndham Istanbul Kalamis Marina owned by Reisler Deri Sanayi Ve Ticaret Limited Siketi, is due to open in autumn 2012.
The signing of the Wyndham Istanbul Kalamis Marina adds to Wyndham Hotel Group?s steady growth in the country, following last month?s announcement that Turkey?s first Wyndham hotel, the Wyndham Petek Istanbul, is set to debut in 2012. Wyndham Hotel Group currently has seven hotels open and operating in the country under the globally renowned Ramada brand.
With views of the Marmara Sea, this five-star property will be located directly across from the exclusive Kalamis Marina on the Asian side of Istanbul.
The hotel will feature 211 rooms over five floors, one presidential suite and eight meeting rooms. A large spa and fitness centre will offer 12 treatment rooms, one indoor pool and one rooftop pool. Dining options will include three restaurants: one offering all-day dining and two speciality restaurants. A lobby bar and room service will also be available.
?Turkey plays an important role in our plans to expand Wyndham Hotel Group?s portfolio in Europe and the Middle East and continue providing travellers with first-rate accommodations around the world,? said Eric Danziger, president and chief executive officer of Wyndham Hotel Group. ?The opportunities in Istanbul make for an exciting time to introduce a second Wyndham hotel here. With its incredible location and five-star offerings, the addition of Wyndham Istanbul Kalamis Marina further demonstrates our commitment to work with respected partners to bring high-caliber products to key, vibrant markets.?
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To commemorate this event, AirAsia X, the Malaysian-based long haul, low cost affiliate of AirAsia, is offering travellers the opportunity to walk the streets of London and explore the wide variety of museums and monuments for RM 689 (?151) from Kuala Lumpur to London.
Travellers who prefer a more luxurious long haul flying experience can grab this opportunity to try the Premium Fly Flat bed seats from Kuala Lumpur to London for RM 3,389 (?743). These seats are equipped with standard business class specifications of 20? width, 60? pitch and stretches out to 77? in full recline position. The Premium Fly Flat bed seats also includes universal power sockets, adjustable headrests and built-in personal utilities such as tray table, drink holder, reading light and privacy screen.
AirAsia X?s decision to switch from Stansted to Gatwick Airport is to provide guests with a larger variety of connectivity options as travellers arriving into London via Gatwick Airport can conveniently choose to either connect domestically or internationally from its wide range of available flights, trains and buses to get into London City, Europe and beyond.
With better connectivity to various countries and cities, AirAsia X hopes to drive in more passengers from its feeder network in South East Asia to visit and explore the vast travel opportunity in London and Europe via Gatwick Airport.
Head of Commercial AirAsia X, Darren Wright said, ?From our first flight into London back in March 2009 till today, we are strong supporters of our Kuala Lumpur ? London route and are always looking for ways to improve ourselves to increase passenger traffic in and out of London. With that being said, we believe that our move into Gatwick Airport will help this route grow as we are now providing guests with greater choices for connectivity such as better and faster rail and bus connections into London, Europe and beyond via Gatwick Airport.?
Travellers from Australia, New Zealand, China and Taiwan can also take advantage of this celebration with Fly Thru flight deals with fares to London from Australia (Perth, Melbourne) from as low as A$539, New Zealand (Christchurch) for N$669, China (Hangzhou) for RMB 2,679 and Taiwan (Taipei) for T$11, 490.
These Fly Thru flights provides guests transiting in Kuala Lumpur with a seamless connection to their onwards flight into London by eliminating the need for immigration clearance or a transit visa when they arrive in Malaysia. Upon arrival in Kuala Lumpur, guests will be given access to the transit hall linking to the departure lounge where guests can rest, eat and shop before their connecting flight arrives.
AirAsia X will commence flights from Kuala Lumpur Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) to Gatwick Airport with 3 flights weekly for the month of November and increasing it up to 5 or 6 flights weekly during winter from December 2011 till March 2012.
The promotional fares are available until 30 October 2011 for travel between 10 January ? 31 March, 2012. Terms and conditions apply.
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The new service is being operated by Air New Zealand regional subsidiary Air Nelson, with 18 return flights per week between the Kapiti Coast and Auckland.
Air Nelson General Manager, Grant Kerr, says it?s an exciting time for those living on the Kapiti Coast, with the new direct service set to save customers time and money. ?Those living on the Kapiti Coast will no longer have to make the one-hour drive into Wellington Airport - instead they?ll be able to fly direct to Auckland in one hour ten minutes,? he said.
There is a large catchment area for the new service, with around 110,000 people living in the area that stretches from Levin in the North to Tawa, near Wellington.
?I genuinely believe this airport will have a huge impact on the Kapiti Coast for many generations to come,? said Kapiti Coast Airport owner, Sir Noel Robinson. ?The Kapiti community has got so many things going for it?a new airport, great rail services and future national roading improvements as well as 46kms of beautiful beaches, wonderful park lands and a fantastic climate. It?s a great place to bring up families ?and now with the airport up and running I know it?s going to be one of the most sought-after destinations to visit and live in New Zealand.?
Passengers choosing the new service instead of a jet service will benefit from Air New Zealand?s FastBag service - which allows Gold Elite, Gold and Koru members travelling on Link services to drop their bags off at the aircraft and pick them up right after landing. The will also be eligibile for the Starfish Discount, which enables all travellers flying between regional destinations to obtain up to a 30% discount off each flight.
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The new hotel is located at 35 Robinson Road, an heritage building within walking distance from the Marina Bay area and close to premier shopping belt, Orchard Road.
Sofitel So Singapore will have 134 guestrooms including 23 suites and is owned by Royal Group Holdings, a Singapore-based organisation that focuses on the development of hospitality projects at unique locations with historical relevance.
The development at 35 Robinson Road will commence next month, while Sofitel So Singapore is schedule to open in the first quarter of 2013.
?We are proud and excited to have our first Sofitel Luxury Hotels footprint in Singapore with Royal Group? stated Markland Blaiklock, Senior Vice President of Sofitel Asia Pacific. ?The 35 Robinson Road building with its iconic fa?ade is an ideal place to showcase Sofitel So, the label that brings together the essence of design and city soul.?
With the addition of Sofitel So Singapore, the group currently has a network of four hotels under its Sofitel So label. The first was the Sofitel So Mauritius, which opened in December 2010. Sofitel So Bangkok, the first urban Sofitel So, is expected to open in the first quarter of 2012 and the fourth Sofitel So hotel in the pipeline, Sofitel So Mumbai, is set to open in 2015.
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Saturday, 5 November 2011
This multi-million dollar, seven-year deal includes departure control services and self-service check-in along with SITA?s new generation weight and balance system, and the connectivity and messaging associated with the operations including IP VPN, and SITA?s shared telecommunications infrastructure solution AirportHub.
SITA will connect Air Arabia?s multi-hub destinations and provide seamless passenger services across its growing network while using Air Arabia?s own service agents and ground handling partners.
Hani El Assaad, SITA Regional Vice President Middle East and North Africa said, ?SITA?s comprehensive managed solution allows Air Arabia to control costs effectively as our departure control, network and messaging solutions are charged per passenger checked-in, mirroring the airline?s business activity and requiring minimal capital investment. We also provide a single help desk for integrated and responsive customer support ... Having an innovative airline like Air Arabia chose SITA Horizon is a clear endorsement of our investment strategy in the platform and confirms SITA as a major player in this exciting market.?
Air Arabia, which has been profitable since its first year of operation, flies to 70 destinations in the Middle East, North Africa, the Indian subcontinent, Central Asia and Europe from three hubs in UAE, Morocco and Egypt.
Since its first flight in 2003 the Air Arabia fleet has expanded to 28 Airbus A320-200 aircraft and the airline has an order for 44 aircraft of this type to support its future growth.
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A statement from the airline reads, "Air Canada is disappointed to see an additional government fee levied on air travelers. This decision by the U.S. government comes at a time when initiatives should be undertaken to encourage economic growth, not burden consumers with additional costs. Moreover, there is no indication that the monies raised from these additional fees will be used where they are sorely needed - to make the necessary investments in U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) pre-clearance resources at Canadian airports in order to better meet demand for U.S.-bound travelers. Air Canada urges the U.S. government to address staffing shortages at these U.S. pre-clearance facilities, consistent with the objective of improving the flow of passengers and goods between Canada and the United States as both governments have committed to do."
Air Canada is one of the largest commercial airlines in the world and serves over 32 million customers annually. It provides scheduled passenger service directly to 60 Canadian cities, 57 destinations in the United States and 60 cities in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America.
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The rebranded hotel is located right in the heart of Tokyo?s Shinjuku centre and only three minutes away from the world?s busiest train station.
?Ibis Tokyo Shinjuku will bring in a fresh sensation to the economy hotel industry in the country?s capital. As Accor?s leading economy hotel brand, ibis has earned a worldwide reputation for excellent services at very competitive prices,? said Patrick Basset, Accor?s Vice President for Vietnam, the Philippines, South Korea and Japan. ?This hotel is the first ibis hotel brand to set foot in Japan, but it will be the 10th hotel in Accor?s Japan network.?
The 206-room ibis Tokyo Shinjuku will begin an extensive refurbishment over the following months. Once complete, the hotel will become a key addition to the Ibis network, accumulating the numbers to almost 100 hotels and over 17,340 rooms in Asia Pacific region.
Shinjuku is a major commercial and administrative centre of Tokyo and one of the 23 special wards in the Capital. Shinjuku train station is the busiest train station in the world, with over 3.5 million passengers passing through each day. The hotel is 1.5 hour away by train from Tokyo Narita International Airport and 45 minutes away by train from Tokyo Haneda International Airport.
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