News Clips for Corporate Travel Management: May 2011

  1. Compliance Management on the move

    ConTgo, the company best known for facilitating two-way mobile communications between companies and their travellers, is expanding beyond its core security management role into policy compliance management. The new version of its Mobile Travel Assistant tool, released this month, links to a travel data warehouse and alerts companies to overpriced, noncompliant travel bookings.

    Every four hours ConTgo takes booking data feeds from clients' global distribution systems and travel management companies for tracking purposes, and now is using the same passenger name record information to view expenditures.

    Source: BTN - , click on this link for the full story

    If you are taking part in our Travel Forum (see item 5) - you will be able to quiz ContGo's Chief Executive Johnny Thorsen to llearn more about their latest innovation.

  2. Easyjet increases booking fee

    Budget airline Easyjet has increased its booking charges from £5.50 to £8.

    The move means passengers in the UK booking with a debit card must pay £8 per booking, while those paying with a credit card will pay at least £12.95.

    The credit card fee is calculated by adding £4.95 or 2.5% of the total cost of the booking, whichever is greater, to the £8 booking fee.

    Last year Easyjet charged less than half of the current booking fee - in September 2010 the figure stood at £3.50!

    There is no additional charge for passengers paying by visa electron.

    Source: ABTN - full story by Sara Turner

  3. bmi pull-out sparks expansion

    British Airways and easyJet are both adding Glasgow International flights to London after the pull-out of its Heathrow service by bmi at the start of the summer season.

    British Airways is adding a further rotation from London City Airport, its fifth, and also bringing in further capacity by swopping its normal Embraer 170 (78 seats) operation for the larger EMB 190 (98 seats).

    easyJet is upping its Gatwick services to five flights daily for the summer and four for the winter programme. It also flies to both Luton and Stansted four times daily.

    The Luton-based airline also announced last week that it will re-introduce Glasgow - Amsterdam from 31 October, a route it has not flown for some years. It is expected to appeal to both business and leisure passengers. In April the airline launched a daily Jersey service. By next winter easyJet will serve 15 destinations from Glasgow.

    Source: AERBT - full article and others

  4. Travel and Expense Management Needs in India met by Concur

    Concur has announced the establishment of operations in India - a move that perfectly aligns with the company's strategic initiatives to expand its existing customer base while also expanding into new geographic markets.

    In addition to helping Concur continue to serve the needs of the hundreds of multi-national companies in the region that already use Concur services, the company's presence in India will also enable the company to deliver sales, service and development capabilities to better serve the local needs of the burgeoning Indian business travel market.

    Source: Odyssey Media Group - full story

  5. Spring 2011 Corporate Travel & Expense Management Forum

    With just under two weeks to go we have the "Sold Out" signs in place with over 90 delegates already booked representing 70 different companies.

    If you are interested in picking up a cancellation then please register your interest by clicking here

    To see the Agenda please click here

    Here you can view a brief synopsis of our speakers and moderators who make sure that the day keeps lively .

    Our sponsors include BCD Travel, Lufthansa,, NH Hesperia Hotel and Concur, to ensure that the MS-UK / ACTE Global Forums continue to set the pace in the Corporate Travel industry in Europe. Buying Business Travel continue to be our Media partners.

    What makes our event different - No Powerpoint No sales pitches - just freewheeling discussion that involves everyone plus loads of Networking including the opportunity to avoid the rush hour afterwards at the Reception sponsored by Concur.

    If you missed our event in September you can still get a flavour of the day by clicking through to these pages to see the video interviews and the gallery of pictures taken during the day.

    If you cannot make the May Forum you might like to make a diary note now to ensure that you don't miss our Autumn 2011 event on Thursday 22nd September.

  6. Starwood to inaugurate 50 Luxury properties in Europe, Africa and the Middle East

    Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. announced that the company is soon going to launch 50 hotels in Europe, Africa and Middle East over the span of next three to five years.

    The company is planning to unveil 12 of these hotels in these locations this year only.

    The major forthcoming launches include five brand new St. Regis hotels in primary locations such as United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Italy and Mauritius. The list also includes, the inauguration of W Hotels in London, St. Petersburg and Paris - the three prime European cultural and financial regions. It also encompasses the debut of Le Meridien in Turkey, a major fast growing market of Starwood.

    Source: HotelResortInsider - full story

  7. More Choice

    Choice Hotels International has announced the opening of the Comfort Inn Hyde Park, bringing the number of Choice-branded hotels in London to eighteen.

    Previously independently run as the Park Lodge Hotel, the re-branded Comfort Inn Hyde Park has 29 newly re-furbished guest bedrooms, all with modern en-suites and featuring flat screen LCD televisions, free wi-fi, and tea and coffee making facilities.

    Guests also benefit from the free full English breakfast served everyday in the breakfast room.

    Located 200 metres from Queensway and Bayswater tube stations with easy access to both Central London and London Heathrow, the hotel is an excellent base for both business and leisure travellers.

    Source: Breaking Travel News - full story

  8. Stansted Express trains now have wi-fi

    The rail service linking London to Stansted Airport has initiated an on-board wi-fi service on its brand new air conditioned Bombardier trains.

    The first Derby-built Bombardier 379 carriages were introduced by Transport Minster Philip Hammond last month.

    Passengers can work on-line whilst waiting for the train to start at the station. Capable of 100mph, and with much quicker acceleration, some 120 units are being introduced on the National Express East Anglia services from London to Stansted and Cambridge. A full refreshment trolley service is provided on the 50-minute journey.

    Source: AERBT - this and other stories

  9. Heathrow's vision for future rail access

    Heathrow Airport recently set out a new rail strategy with a view to improving passenger experience, taking cars off the road and placing the economic benefits of the UK's only hub airport at the centre of the national rail network.

    Heathrow has already invested more than £1 billion on Heathrow Express and other rail services, and has committed £230 million to Crossrail, making the airport operator the largest private sector contributor to the project.

    The new programme, called the Wider Heathrow Integrated Rail Strategy (WHIRS), will seek to build on previous investment by ensuring that Heathrow has fast, frequent and comfortable rail connections for passengers, whilst at the same time significantly improving links to the surrounding community to get the local economy moving.

    The first priority for WHIRS will be to ensure that Crossrail provides passenger-friendly, convenient connections for Heathrow travellers. The airport operator will also continue to invest in enhancements to Heathrow Express to ensure that passengers continue to have the choice of a premium, express service into central London.

    There is a strong case for rail access from the west of Heathrow, providing a direct connection with Slough, Reading and the Thames Valley for the first time, as well as the South West via the Great Western Mainline.

    Source: Breaking Travel News - full story

  10. Keep fit with a Doyle Property

    A partnership between the Marylebone hotel and the Third Space gym company means guests of the luxury London property now have free access to extensive new fitness facilities.

    Adjoining the hotel in premises formerly run by Virgin Active, the Third Space is a high-end three-level gym and health club.

    It features a wide range of Technogym cardio equipment and free weights, a "retro gym" with ropes and beams, spinning and Power Plate zones, a studio offering a range of classes, an 18-metre swimming pool and sauna and steam rooms.

    Source: BusinessTraveller online - full report by Michelle Mannion

  11. Air safety

    With so many new airline names emerging around the globe how can you be sure that you and or your travellers are being carried safely?

    The EU have taken a lead and they publish a list of airlines banned within the EU.

    Effective aviation safety standards in Europe have rendered our safety record amongst the best in the world. Whilst the European Union and its Member States are working with safety authorities in other countries to raise safety standards across the world, there are still some airlines operating in conditions below essential safety levels.

    To improve safety in Europe further, the European Commission - in consultation with Member States' aviation safety authorities - has decided to ban airlines found to be unsafe from operating in European airspace.

    These are listed here

    The first list includes all airlines banned from operating in Europe. The second list includes airlines which are restricted to operating in Europe under specific conditions. These lists will be updated regularly and published in the Official Journal of the European Union where they are included as annexes A and B to the Commission Regulation. Before taking any action based on the information in these lists, all users should ensure they have the latest version.

    Source: European Union Mobility and Transport - full story

  12. Only in America - Airline going to the dogs

    Pet Airways, the only airline designed specifically for you know who, this summer plans to extend their service.

    It will begin flights to St. Louis, Houston, Austin, Dallas and Orlando. The Orlando facility will have a new style of pet lounge with enhanced services, such as grooming.

    The new destinations bring the number of cities served by the airline, which began operations in 2009, to 14. The others are Los Angeles, Phoenix, Denver, Omaha, Chicago, Baltimore, New York, Atlanta and Fort Lauderdale.

    Source: Travelmole, USA - full report by David Wilkening

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