News Clips for Corporate Travel Management: October 2006

1   British Airways Hand Baggage - as at 1st October

British Airways has already implemented revised measures, introduced by the UK government's Department for Transport, with effect from Friday September 22, 2006 that allow air travellers departing from a UK airport to carry onboard a larger industry standard-sized bag, no bigger than 56cm x 45cm x 25cm.

Customers travelling from or through a UK airport are asked to ensure they comply with the new hand baggage restrictions, put in place by the UK government, to prevent delays at airport security search points.

Travellers flying with BA are also advised to check in online to help reduce queues at the airport. If you have checked in online and have baggage to check into the hold, simply go to the fast-bag drop when you arrive at the airport.

Customers checking in at UK airports are asked not to arrive before their flight opens for check in to help prevent further congestion at the airport.

This is:
three hours before departure for longhaul flights
two and a half hours for shorthaul flights from London Heathrow and London Gatwick airports
one and a half hours for shorthaul flights from other UK regional airports.

All customers are asked to ensure they have sufficient time to clear security as this is taking longer than normal due to the additional checks.

At the airport:
If your cabin bag exceeds the new dimensions or contains prohibited items, you will be asked to repack it or check it into the hold. This may cause you an unnecessary delay.

If you have large electrical goods (eg laptops, digital cameras etc) in your hand baggage, please ensure these are easily accessible as you will be required to remove them for x-ray screening.

Source: BA.com

2  ACTE Forms India Council

Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE) has formed an "India Council" to focus on key business travel management issues in the country. Aditya Loomba, just named as ACTE's New Delhi City Champion, will be its premier member. Two more members of the Council will be introduced at the ACTE Global Education Conference in Barcelona on October 22-24.

The Council members will hold their first meeting early in 2007, during which time they will set an agenda for the year. The advisory nature of the Council will cover five primary areas.

Source Redline News

3  Railcards Go Online

Young Persons, Family and Senior Railcards are being made available to buy online for the first time.

Previously Railcards have been available from stations, rail-appointed travel agents and train operator telesales outlets.

The launch of the new service follows demand for alternative ways to purchase.

With a secure credit/debit facility, Railcards purchased online will be delivered within three working days, making train travel and - most importantly - saving money on tickets, quicker and more accessible than ever before.

The small initial outlay of just £20 for a Railcard can be recovered by the savings they make within the first couple of journeys. On average over 30%.

The launch of online sales is being accompanied by a number of added value offers available to each specific Railcard.

Additionally, Railcard holders will be able claim 20% off products from mainline railway station outlets of Upper Crust, Pumpkin Café, Bonapartes, Caffe Ritazza, Delice de France, The Pasty Shop, Burger King, Ixxy's Bagels, Taste!, A Piece of Cake and Millies Cookies to take with them on their journey.

As well as being able to purchase Railcards online, all three Railcards will remain available to purchase at stations across Britain.

Source: TraveleMole

4  Ryanair terminal for $10 million

Ryanair is to open its 17th European and second German base at Bremen Airport, after winning an EU tender to purchase a low-cost terminal there.

The airline will pay $10m (£5.3m) for the terminal and from April 2007 begin operating three Boeing 737-800 aircraft on nine routes: Barcelona-Girona, Murcia, Oslo-Torp, Pisa, Riga, Stansted, Tampere, Venice-Treviso and Verona.

Ryanair said the move would create 150 direct jobs and deliver over 1m passengers a year by 2009, increasing Bremen's international traffic by 50%.

Source: e-tid

5  Forum highlight

The managed business travel industry is in danger of sliding backwards unless it develops a self service tool that includes all types of transportation, Tony Berry, HRG's director of distribution services, said last Wednesday.

He said the industry itself had created barriers to entry on the GDSs to hotels, rail, taxis and car companies.

Tony Berry continued saying "companies like taxi companies could not afford to pay GDSs fee, which was a "huge barrier" for them. "If we do not solve this issue and get all these transportation types into a single source, the industry is in danger going backwards,"

He added later: "HRG and other TMCs are absolutely committed to raising these barriers to entry to all suppliers.

"It is a key issue. It is difficult to see how self booking tools can progress unless you get more transportation choices on them."

Mr Berry was speaking at the Travel and Expense Management Forum in London organised by Management Solutions (UK).

Source: BusinessTravelEurope.com

6  And on Anand

Also at the MS-UK Forum Dev Anand, founder of BedFare and MeetingFare and now managing partner of Impetus Marketing, said he thought restaurant spending could be the next area where travel managers sought to control spend.

Dev announced that he was the UK agent for a website called www.opentable.com which was set up in the US by industry innovator Barry Diller, ceo of IAC, as a booking reservation service for restaurants which also provided MI on a corporate's spend. Mr Anand said the UK branch had now signed up 180 restaurants in Britain, mainly in London.

Mr Anand went on to say "What's the point of making your poor traveller fly low-cost, stay in a contracted $100 room, make him go standard class on the rail journey - for him (or her) to blow the entire company profits on that fab meal at the latest trendy restaurant"

For more details contact Dev Anand on 020 8788 7293 or email to danand@OpenTable.com

7  Lower surcharge going Dutch

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines announced that it has reduced its fuel surcharge effective 28th September 2006.

The reduction is a result of the reduced price of a barrel of oil and is part of KLM's policy to review fuel surcharges on a ongoing basis.

UK passengers booking with KLM will receive a GBP1 reduction per stretch on all intra - European flights and a GBP3 reduction per stretch on all intercontinental flights.

Source: Airline Travel News

8  High speed link from Paris to Germany

Last week the final joint was welded in a new high-speed rail line between Paris and Germany as France celebrated the 25th anniversary of a train that has shrunk the map and transformed the life of the country.

Dominique de Villepin, the Prime Minister, officiated at the ceremony at Chauconin-Neufmontiers, which finished the £2 billion route of the TGV-Est, the eastern train à grande vitesse. Trains running at up to 200mph (320km/h) will put Rheims within a 45-minute commute from Paris and bring Strasbourg within 2 hours 20 minutes instead of 4 hours.

The imminent arrival of the link has boosted property prices along its stops. It is likely to knock out airline services between Paris and Strasbourg and Metz, in the same way as it has taken most of the traffic between Marseilles, London and Brussels.

In another anniversary act, SNCF tested TGV trains at 225mph on the Mediterranean line on Monday with a view to raising their cruising speed. (The fastest British trains do not exceed 125mph).

The TGV runs on separate high-speed lines that keep it away from the mixed traffic on which fast trains in Britain and elsewhere operate.

Source: The Times Online

9  Hand Luggage Postscript

Restrictions on liquids being taken onto flights are to be lifted.

It means objects such as perfume and toothpaste will be allowed to be carried in hand luggage from November.

But passengers flying to the US will still be banned from taking liquids on board, even if they are bought in air-side shops.

The ban on all but essential liquids in hand luggage was imposed following last month's security alert at UK airports.

From November passengers will be allowed to take on board 100ml containers of liquid in a transparent plastic bag, under a Europe-wide agreement due to be approved next week, the Press Association reported.

US authorities said on Tuesday that liquids could be taken on flights leaving America if purchased from secure airport shops.

Source: TravelMole

10      London hotel boom continues

London hotels enjoyed a record-breaking August with the highest daily rates since 2000, according to figures from consultants PKF.

During the month, PKF said London hotel average daily rates rose by 8.1% to £100.92 while room occupancy was up 26.9% to 83.5% compared with the same month in 2005.

Its daily room yield for the month rose by 37.2% to £84.22, the highest figure since 2000.

PFK said that figures for August 2005 were affected by the aftermath of the July 7 bombings in London a few weeks earlier.

Source: BusinessTravelEurope

11 Survey Results Strip away expenses

According to a recent TripAdvisor survey of more than 2,100 travellers from

around the world, 68 percent of travellers regularly stay at the same hotel chain when on business trips.

Thirty-four percent of respondents plan to take one to three business trips this year, and nearly ten percent will take ten or more trips for work this year.

Other Business Travel Tidbits

Forty-six percent of travellers are likely to tip more generously when they know it is a reimbursable business expense. Almost half of those surveyed (48 percent) said they sometimes fly into secondary airports, just for the convenience when travelling for work. Twelve percent of respondents acknowledge having visited a strip club while on a business trip.

Top Five Cities for Business Travellers:

New York City
Chicago
London
San Francisco
Washington, D.C.

Top Five Most Popular Hotel Chains for Business Travellers:

Marriott
Hilton
Holiday Inn
Sheraton
Best Western

Source: AirlineTravelNews

12 City expands Italian Connection

London's City airport (LCY) is poised to see a big boost in services to Italy. Currently the capital's own airport only boasts a single daily flight to Milan Malpensa operated by BA Connect.

But Italy's privately-owned Air One expects to launch twice daily flights to Milan starting on November 20. Services to Rome, Genoa and Turin will follow next January.

Significantly, Air One has chosen to operate to and from Milan's Linate airport (10 km from the city centre) rather than Malpensa (48 km from downtown). Flights will be operated by BAe146 jets with return fares starting from £107 in economy and £330 in business class.

Schedules are geared for the Italian rather than the UK market. But they are still more business-friendly from LCY than those currently offered by BA Connect. From Linate there are connecting possibilities to a few Italian domestic destinations.

Air One's weekday flights leave LCY at 1010 and 1730 arriving in Linate at 1310 and 2030. Inbound flights leave Linate at 0840 and 1600 to reach LCY at 0940 and 1700 respectively. There is one flight on Saturdays at 1010 from LCY (0840 ex-Linate) and one on Sunday leaving LCY at 1730 (1600 ex-Linate).

The airline has also published details of its schedules from LCY to Rome's main Fiumicino airport from next January. Timings are similar to those on the Milan route with double daily services on weekdays and a single flight every Saturday and Sunday.

Source: BusinessTravellerOnline; www.londoncityairport.com

13 No truth in Rumour

Breaking news - Reacting to the rumour that the company is in the process of being taken over by American Express, a spokesperson said "HRG is not and has never been in any kind of merger or takeover talks with American Express, I've no idea where that story came from."

sssource
ACTE
Management Services (UK) Ltd  |  P.O. Box 1887  |  London  N2 0NZ  |  email us    © Management Solutions UK Limited