News Clips for Corporate Travel Management: August 2010

  1. BA Mobile Apps now active

    BA customers flying from Heathrow to Edinburgh are now able to get their boarding pass sent directly to their iPhone, as part of the carrier's revamped mobile apps offering.

    British Airways relaunched its iPhone app on Monday July 19, at the same time as launching Blackberry and Google Android apps for the first time.

    The carrier first launched an iPhone app in 2008, and it has been downloaded by over half a million passengers. The relaunched application will be some way ahead of the Blackberry and Android alternatives, being the only platform (for now) offering mobile boarding pass technology.

    Users will need to be registered with BA's Executive Club to use the relaunched app, as it will use details of bookings stored in the member's account to enable functionality such as online check-in and the mobile boarding pass.

    The carrier plans to roll out the boarding pass service across its domestic routes, before gradually adding it to international services.

    Source: Business Traveller online - full report by Mark Caswell

  2. City get's Quicker to Copenhagen

    Passengers on the London City - Copenhagen route will have a much faster alternative when British Airways introduces a twice daily Embraer 190 service from 12 September.

    Currently the route is daily with a 50-seat ATR 42. BA will offer four times the capacity with a double daily service and an aircraft twice the size of its competitor. The Embraer is also a great deal quicker than the ATR.

    The introduction of the service is seen as a BA marketing move in Scandinavia from London City, a twice daily service to Gothenburg being recently announced.

    Source: AERBT - details

  3. Miles and More with Budget

    Members of the Lufthansa-led Miles and More scheme can earn points on rentals with Budget Rent-a-Car from August 1, and to celebrate the car hire firm is offering double miles and the chance to win a year's free rental.

    Members will earn a minimum of 500 miles per rental, with double miles on offer for bookings made in August and September (for rentals picking up before December 31).

    In addition members can enter a prize draw to win a year's free car rental with Budget (valid on car groups A and B) by visiting before September 30.

    The Miles and More programme now counts nine member airlines - Adria, Air Dolomiti, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Croatia Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, Lux Air, Lufthansa and Swiss.

    Source: BusinessTraveller Online - full story

  4. Stansted going Global

    Stansted to take the big jets.

    Stansted's ambition to raise its global profile has received a major boost after gaining approval for both the Airbus A380 and the new Boeing 747-8 to operate from the airport.

    The official CAA go-ahead, which follows months of work to demonstrate the airport's operational readiness to handle these aircraft, now opens the door for new airline growth for both passenger and cargo operations. Stansted has up to ten aircraft parking stands that could accommodate both aircraft.

    Source: AERBT - full article

  5. Autumn 2010 Forum update

    If you have not reserved your delegate's place at our Autumn event act now before it is too late, over 80% of capacity already sold.

    Theme for the day:- i-travel: the benefits and threats of emerging mobile technologies for company travel purchasing and management.

    The proliferation of new 'apps' and social networks focussed on the mobile enabled traveller will offer both threats and benefits. Social networks for travellers will begin to impinge upon a company's ability to get buy-in for travel policies but conversely a range of new applications will enable companies to track and communicate with their travellers like never before.

    More speakers details are being added daily to our web page as we receive their information so make a diary note now for Tuesday 14th September.

    You can book now or register your interest online - but be aware, the event has been over subscribed each of the last three years!

  6. ABode Hotel Opens In Chester

    ABode, the four star boutique hotel group member of Epoque Hotels opens its doors to Chester this Summer 2010 with a new site offering a selection of luxury rooms and suites along with choice of fine food venues, created by Michelin-starred chef, Michael Caines.

    The 85 room hotel, conveniently situated adjacent to Chester's popular 'Roodee' racecourse offers a stylish and contemporary base for visitors to explore the city's unique mix of Roman ruins, gothic grandeur of Chester Cathedral as well as fabulous boutiques nested amongst The Rows, the historic two-tier shopping galleries.

    Located in the centre of the city, ABode Chester also makes an ideal location for trips venturing into the Welsh countryside or nearby cities, Liverpool and Manchester.

    Source: Odyssey Media Group - full story

  7. BA widens Swedish Choice

    British Airways will commence a twice-daily service from London Heathrow to the Swedish city of Gothenburg this winter, challenging SAS on the route.

    From November 28 the flights will depart Terminal 5 at 0735 (arriving at 1035) and 1510 (arriving at 1810), with the return legs leaving Gothenburg at 1120 (arriving at 1230) and 1855 (arriving at 2005).

    Scandinavian carrier SAS currently flies up to five-times daily from Heathrow to Gothenburg, while Ryanair serves the Swedish city from London Stansted. Easyjet has also announced it will commence a three-times weekly services from Manchester to Gothenburg on December 10.

    Source: BusinessTraveller online - full report by Mark Caswell

  8. Relax in Soho

    Make the most of Summer in the City in this location for Central London drinking and dining.

    Previously known as the Courthouse Kempinski, this 112-room hotel on Great Marlborough Street was renamed the Courthouse Doubletree by Hilton at the end of 2008.

    The hotel has recently opened up its 5th floor roof terrace as a "casual yet chic venue", offering cocktails including the Soho Sky Terrace Ice Tea, as well as afternoon tea from 3pm-5pm daily, "BBQ favourites" and light snacks.

    The terrace is half covered for those "showery summer evenings", and is open from 3pm-10.30pm until late September. The space is also available for private hire and group bookings.

    Source: Business Traveller Online - full story

  9. Ryanair adds eighth Spanish base

    Ryanair's 44th base will be Seville, where the airline will station two aircraft and operate 29 routes from November.

    The 29 include ten new routes: Bari, Eindhoven, Gatwick, Marseille, Palma, Paris, Santiago, Valencia, Venice Treviso and Zaragoza.

    Ryanair will operate over 250 weekly return flights to and from Seville, carrying around 1.5m passengers a year.

    The airline's other Spanish bases are: Barcelona El Prat; Barcelona Girona; Reus; Madrid; Valencia; Alicante; and Malaga.

    Source: e-Tid - full story

  10. ACTE in Berlin

    The Association of Corporate Travel Executives conference opens on an event unique to Berlin and renowned worldwide - Unity Day.

    Celebrating the country's reunification in 1990, the national day of Germany is an event that promotes peace, understanding, and bringing people together.

    ACTE could not have asked for a better day to kick off its conference, an event that year after year brings hundreds of people from dozens of countries together to work in harmony to promote even further cultural interactions through business travel.

    The association's president, Chris Crowley, described a setting "in which delegates will participate in small, intimate group sessions and work to openly tackle the most challenging issues facing the industry - locally, regional and globally."

    ACTE's talented team of steering committee members recently met and walked away with exceptional ideas and a commitment to creating the best program possible - but don't take our word for it - hear from the committee members directly by clicking here and scrolling down to the bottom of the page to see and hear their comments.

    The ACTE Global Education Conference will convene at the InterContinental Berlin in Berlin (3-5 October). Book now

  11. IHG's adds Android to Apple

    InterContinental Hotels Group has entered the second phase of its mobile app strategy, introducing Priority Club® Rewards app for the Android to the global market after its April launch for North America. The new app lets customers use corporate IDs to get corporate rates, enroll in IHG's Priority Club Rewards program as well as find and book hotel rooms, check rates and view or cancel reservations for all seven of IHG's brands.

    Together with each of its enhanced mobile brand websites and the iPhone app, IHG hotels have eclipsed $2.5 million in monthly revenue from these channels only one year after the mobile platform was launched.

    Other features for the new Android app include: view photos and amenities for each hotel; click-to-call the front desk of each hotel; use Priority Club Rewards account information to facilitate bookings; review and Priority Club member profiles and details; redeem reward points; and view special offers.

    Source: BTE - full story

  12. Airline card charges & how to avoid them

    Credit and debit card transaction fees charged by airlines are infuriating. Paying with a card can cost up to £10 per person.

    But there is always one that doesn't. Why? Because airlines are obliged to include all compulsory charges within their advertised fares, they get around the requirement of including this handling fee in the price by providing at least one way of paying that's free of charge. Naturally, they ensure that the free-of-charge cards are precisely the ones that few people have, typically Visa Electron or prepaid Mastercard.

    The answer, obviously, is to play the airlines at their own game and get one of these cards.

    Visa Electron (accepted for free by bmibaby, easyJet, Flybe and Jet2) is primarily designed for teenagers or students, doesn't have an overdraft facility and isn't as widely accepted as other cards.

    Prepaid Mastercards are available from a number of providers (including Ryanair) and, again, are largely aimed at the younger market. Terms and conditions vary depending on the issuer.

    If you're a regular flier and want to avoid transaction fees, it may be worth your while opening an account that provides these less commonly available cards. But read the small print carefully. You could find you're paying more in bank charges than you'd be paying the airline to book fares with your usual card.

    To read this entire fascinating report and learn more of how to get one of these cards read the in depth article by Sophie Butler of the Daily Telegraph

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