News Clips for Corporate Travel Management: January 2005

1  Airport News

London Heathrow Airport’s Piccadilly line Underground station at Terminal 4 is now closed and will remain so until August/September 2006 whilst the T5 connection is finished. Passengers from London should get off at Hatton Cross where a bus service is provided and should also allow for an extra ten minutes journey time. An alternative for those with restricted walking (Hatton Cross does not have lifts) is to go to the central area and take the Heathrow Express. Further information: www.baa.co.uk

London City Airport has reported a 16% passenger increase in 2004 to 1.7m. With the imposing Dockland Light Railway (DLR) link to Canning Town (for the Jubilee Line), Canary Wharf and The Bank on schedule to open in December 2005 (if not earlier) the airport says that throughput could double over the next four years. Presently LCY serves 23 destinations flown by 14 airlines. From 1 April KLM will offer a twice daily service to Rotterdam in direct competition with VLM, long established on the route with six daily rotations. Further information: www.londoncityairport.com

Southampton Airport is to continue with its Brussels link following BA’s decision to pull of the route. Starting today (Monday 10 January) VLM will operate two flights daily in both directions during the week and one on Sundays. The Dutch carrier airline already serves Brussels with five rotations from London City where it is easily the largest operator both in terms of passengers and departures. Further information: www.baa.co.uk

Source: Air & Business Travel News ; www.abtn.co.uk

2  If you want to help Asia - Continue booking your travel to the region

Based on its assessment of tourism infrastructure in tsunami-affected areas, the Pacific Asia Travel Association wishes to emphasise that most properties and attractions in Indian Ocean destinations have sustained little or no damage.

Of PATA's 45 Asia Pacific member countries, the coastal area of only eight were affected by the tsunami. Of those eight destinations, only the Maldives, Sri Lanka and Thailand suffered significant travel sector losses. PATA believes that to support the speedy recovery of destinations, local employment and local self-sufficiency, consumers must be encouraged to proceed with their travel plans to the region.

PATA President and CEO, Mr Peter de Jong, said, ''The human loss of this tragedy is unprecedented. However, the negative impact will only be exacerbated if travellers cancel or postpone their visits. Now more than ever, Indian Ocean countries want you to come visit. Not only will tourism maintain jobs and boost local economies, it will also be a sign of support and solidarity, giving new hope and confidence to those who have begun to rebuild their lives and livelihoods.''

PATA says the following key messages are important: - tourists and business people are welcome and needed - if you really care about our destination - come visit us - travellers' enjoyment of a destination will be tangible support for its recovery - you are assured of a very warm welcome

All airports in tourism-related areas in the tsunami-affected countries are operating normally.

PATA encourages all travel professionals to clearly communicate the facts to potential travellers and encourage bookings.

Source: Airline Travel News

3  BA shares take off on premium travel increase

The FTSE 100 index added 18.3 points to close at 4824, while the broader-based FTSE 250 gained 5.4 points and ended the day at 6920.9.

The biggest winner was British Airways, which added 11.5p to close at 242.5p – its highest price since July – after the carrier reported an increase in first and business class travel.

BA reported that it carried 2.7 million passengers in December; this was a 1.8% increase on the same month in 2003. Premium traffic was up 6.8% in December over the same month last year while economy passenger numbers rose by 2.7%.

Source: Travelmole.com

4  Busy Wizzy

Wizz Air is attempting to woo business travellers with dedicated tickets offering greater flexibility.

The Polish low-cost airline, which operates out of London Luton and Liverpool, is calling the product "Wizz Bizz". In order to buy the tickets, business travellers need to register on the website, which involves providing contact details and supplying a password.

The tickets are set at a price of £70 each way plus taxes, which average around £20. This applies to all tickets for flights out of the UK regardless of timing. The business tickets are fully flexible up to three hours before departure and can be bought up to 40 minutes before departure.

For travellers who can afford to travel with less flexibility, Wizz Air has launched a sale this week with free seats on flights from London to Budapest, Katowice and Warsaw and from Liverpool to Katowice and Warsaw - customers just need to cover taxes and charges. These tickets are subject to availability.

Source: BusinessTraveller.com

5  Development of Self Booking for Corporate Travel continues to Grow

According to research carried out by Carlson Wagonlit Travel in 2004, between 3-5% of all business travel in Europe was booked online using self-booking tools, compared with 31% in the US. For 2005, CWT expects Europe to get up to 10% with the growth coming from bigger corporations. Smaller businesses are likely to adopt self-booking tools during the current year as travel management companies start to develop and market tools specifically for SMEs.

CWT also said that adoption rates within Europe differ by territory with more companies in Scandinavia booking online than businesses from Spain and Italy.

By 2007, around 60% of US corporate travel is likely to be booked online

Source: E-Tid.com

6  Da Vinci Code adds travellers

Bosses at Eurostar have attributed a record-breaking performance – in part, at least – to the publication of a controversial book.

As reported, the company increased it’s passenger numbers last year by around 15 per cent, to just under 7.3 million, with a big rise in the number of business travellers visiting the continent by train.

But the huge success of the book has been cited as a big factor in this year’s success.

Paul Charles, Eurostar’s director of communications, is quoted in The Independent as saying: “Tour operators are telling us that passengers are travelling to Paris to visit some of the landmarks that feature in the book, such as the Louvre and St Sulpice. "More passengers are going to Paris because of this book. There is no doubt about it.”

Source: Travelmole.com

7  Stylish arrival for Small properties

Discerning guests staying at properties belonging to the Small Luxury Hotels of the World group can drive an appropriately stylish car to their hotel door following a deal with Hertz.

The companies have teamed up to offer guests staying at any of the 300 hotels in the group a 20% discount on Hertz Prestige Collection cars. This includes the BMW 7 and 5 series, the Mercedes Benz SL class, the Jaguar X-type and the Land Rover Discovery.

In a reciprocal deal members of the Hertz # 1 Club Gold staying in participating Small Luxury Hotels of the World get a 10% discount and gift on arrival at the hotel. Hotels in the collection include London's Athenaeum Hotel, in Paris the Hotel Vernet and in Baden-Baden the Belle Epoque.Go to www.hertz.com/slh or www.slh.com.

Source: BusinessTraveller.com

8  American Airlines lower prices

American Airlines on Friday broadly matched Delta's new fare structure, reducing the highest fares and lowering fares for last-minute travel in thousands of markets throughout the continental U.S. In most markets, the Saturday-night stay requirements have been eliminated. The new fares make it even easier to check fares and book flights through American's AA.com(R) Web site.

Here are highlights of American's new domestic fares, available throughout most of the continental United States:

  • Highest Coach and First Class fares are lower
  • Saturday-night stay requirements have been eliminated in most markets
  • There are fewer fare levels in each market
  • Round-trip discount fares are available with a zero-, three-, seven-, or 14-day advance purchase; a one-night minimum stay may be required

The new fares apply to flights operated by American Airlines, American Eagle and AmericanConnection(R).

Source: Airline Travel News

9  Air Berlin sues Lubeck over Ryanair aid

Air Berlin is taking legal action against Lubeck Airport, 50 miles north of Hamburg, claiming it has granted Ryanair unfair subsidies of up to €10m since 2000.

Air Berlin has filed a complaint with the regional court stating that the Irish carrier should be forced to return annual payments of €2m, which allegedly went ahead despite the airport recording losses of around €2.6m in 2002 and €3.7m in 2003. The complaint has been backed by seven other airlines.

The German carrier uses Hamburg Airport, just over five miles outside the city centre.

Germany is Europe’s biggest aviation market and is currently something of a battleground for low-cost carriers.

However, it is not the first time Ryanair has been involved in a complaint over airport subsidies. The airline is currently appealing a European Commission ruling that it received illegal incentives from Charleroi Airport, near Brussels, while Iberia is considering lodging a complaint against what it claims is illegal state aid given by Spanish regional airports.

Source: E-Tid.com

10  Travel Forum re-scheduled

Management Solutions UK are delighted to announce that they have been able to re-arrange the Corporate & Travel Expense Management Forum which that had originally planned to arrange for last November.  The new date is Tuesday 8th March and the location is the Charing Cross Thistle Hotel.

11  New Year Resolutions by Gene Ference of HVS International

Now that the New Year has arrived, have you thought about your professional resolutions? Now is the time to finalize your goals and create a strategic balance between your personal and your professional improvement plans.

The New Year is a time for fresh beginnings for many people. It is a time when most everyone is looking to make the coming year better than the last. It’s a time of personal commitment, to improve one or more aspects of one’s life to either be able to feel better about oneself physically or mentally. Usually, any New Year's resolutions are made so that personal values are the target for improvement.

But, what’s wrong with making a New Year's resolution or two that’s based on your work? After all, don’t you spend at least one third of your day, if not a great deal more, at your job? If one third of your day could be better than it used to be, wouldn’t that affect your total life in a positive manner? The simple answer is “yes.”

Let’s look at a brief list of possible resolutions you can commit to for this new year—as concerns your career. Pick one—or more resolutions and make them work for you—and your place of employment. And don’t be afraid to add one or two more resolutions that may apply specifically to you.

Source: Hotel Travel News

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