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Booking easyJet via GTM!

easyJet has introduced further enhancements to the fares it offers business travellers who book via a Travel Management Company (TMC). When reservations are made via a Global Distribution System (GDS) new benefits have been added which are not available to passengers who book via easyJet’s web site.

For example, easyJet can now identify those passengers who have booked via their TMC’s GDS, enabling those customers to change to an earlier flight at no additional cost (the transfer can be made at the airport Customer Service desk).

Furthermore, those passengers who also book an easyJet Flexi fare are now offered a £5 / 7EUR voucher to spend on food and drink once on board their flight. To redeem the voucher you simply need to show the crew your Flexi boarding pass.

Germany: Update – Lufthansa pilots to strike on 23 November

Pilots at Lufthansa will go on strike on Wednesday, increasing pressure in a long-running pay dispute with the airline’s management, their union said on Monday.

 

The strike will run for 24 hours from midnight and affect short-haul and long-haul flights, Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) said in a statement.

 

The pilots are striking after pay talks between management and the union broke down earlier this month. The two sides are trying to agree contracts dating back to 2012 and the union is calling for a pay increase of an average 3.7 percent a year over a five-year period.

 

Lufthansa has offered 2.5 percent increase, which the pilots’ union has said equates to a virtual pay freeze.

Japan: Some flights cancelled at Sendai airport after earthquake triggers tsunami, bullet train service disrupted

Rail, air and road transportation services were disrupted Tuesday morning in northeastern and eastern Japan, including the Tokyo metropolitan area, following a strong earthquake that rocked the country’s northeastern region earlier in the day.

Sendai airport was temporarily closed after the Japan Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami warning for the area following the quake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.4, forcing Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways to cancel incoming and outgoing flights, according to the transport ministry.

Bullet train services were temporarily stopped on the Tohoku, Joetsu, Hokuriku and Yamagata Shinkansen lines, East Japan Railway said.

Fare Finder Tool ensures the best price on every flight booking

We designed and created Fare Finder to help clients ensure they have the best fare available on every booking. This means either the lowest-possible cost for the flight they have chosen, or a great price on the same flight in a better class.

We search fares on Galileo – the Global Distribution System we use to select and book flights – and, with the client, select the best itinerary for the journey, taking into account preferred airlines, routes, dates of travel, times of flights, etc. We then price that itinerary using Galileo to ensure we have the cheapest-possible fare (also pricing up the best fare in the class above). We also establish whether there are corporate fares available that the client may not be aware of. And our experts search for any other means of reducing the cost for that fare. We then switch to Fare Finder to run automatic checks – and we do this every time we book a flight.

 
• First, Fare Finder runs up to 16 simultaneous searches on Galileo to make sure we have considered every possible combination of fare for that flight.

• Second, Fare Finder runs automatic searches on web-based booking engines (for example airlines’ own websites or flight aggregators). This can determine whether there are “web-exclusive” fares we might not see within Galileo.

• Third, Fare Finder interrogates several foreign-based travel agencies. This is to ensure we can make use of fares that might be published in countries outside the UK. When these fares show up, we can make them available to purchase in the normal way.

• Fourth, Fare Finder checks whether there are other flight times on the same airline and date as the original itinerary. If so, and the fares on these flights are cheaper, we can discuss with the client whether they want to switch flights to secure a lower fare, or remain on the originally-chosen flight.

Running Fare Finder only takes around 15 seconds. So, we do this every time we search for an itinerary, which is around 150 times a day. It’s worth doing so to secure the best price for an itinerary, because we find that 30% of the time we use it, Fare Finder does, in fact, find a better priced fare than the original itinerary.
Fare Finder is Global Travel Management’s means of ensuring that, every time a client books a flight, we have done everything we can to secure the lowest-possible fare. We like to say: we don’t miss a fare when you want to book a flight.

Virgin Atlantic to launch new passenger systems

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Virgin Atlantic has announced that it will move to AIR4, an innovative suite of passenger service systems (PSS). AIR4 offers reservation, ticketing and departure control functionality, as well as enhanced web, kiosk and mobile capabilities, featuring customer-centric options such as automated bag drop and disruption management.

The best-in-class suite of systems has been built on Delta’s proven PSS technology platform and has been selected by Virgin Atlantic following a thorough tender and evaluation process. AIR4’s implementation represents a step change in Virgin Atlantic’s technology portfolio and will cement the Virgin Atlantic/Delta joint venture as the most customer-focused transatlantic airline partnership, ensuring seamless experiences for both Delta and Virgin customers.

AIR4 (Access Information Real-time for Customers) will be fully distinct from Delta’s PSS but close alignment will allow Virgin Atlantic to benefit in full from Delta’s extensive development pipeline, creating huge opportunities for innovation and customer service improvement.

Virgin Atlantic Director of Network and Alliances Joe Thompson said:

“This is a further example of how our partnership with Delta Air Lines can bring extensive benefits both to our customers and to our business. By accessing Delta’s expertise and development plan we can build even better customer journeys, and offer an even more joined-up experience for customers travelling on our joint venture services.”

Perry Cantarutti, Delta’s Senior Vice President for Europe, Middle East and Africa, added:

“Virgin Atlantic’s decision to use Delta’s core customer service technology platforms will simultaneously eliminate passenger experience seams and means that we can share long-term IT investments and direction which are key differentiators for our joint venture.”

The migration to AIR4 is scheduled for implementation Saturday 12th November 2016 at 13:30 and completed by Sunday 13th November at 06:00.  During this time, the Virgin Atlantic website and call centre will both be available, but they will not be able to accept any new bookings, amend existing reservations or amend chauffeur car bookings.

Passengers are advised to check in and arrive to the airport extra early

Virgin Atlantic is migrating from its existing host system for reservations known as SHARES.

Delta is the only U.S. airline to directly control its critical technology systems making it possible to build the next generation of technology that will improve the travel experiences of customers.

 

Canadian eTA mandatory from 10Nov

From Thursday 10th Nov the Canadian authorities will be checking whether customers have an ETA to travel to Canada where required. Customers with a Canadian resident permit card do not require an ETA.

For further information

See Canadian Government website http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/eta.asp

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Bans.

The U.S. Department of Transportation & the Canadian equivalent, the TCCA, have issued an emergency order banning all Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphone devices from air transportation to, from, or within the United States and Canada; this includes flights from the UK.

Other countries banning the transportation of these devices are: Hong Kong & Mexico. In order to help its (Samsung’s) customers the South Korean company is establishing ‘exchange points’ at numerous airports worldwide.

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New British Airways Route To New Orleans.

Staring from Monday 27th March 2017, British Airways will start flying from London Heathrow to New Orleans (MSY).

The Louisiana city, known as ‘The Big Easy’, will be served four times a week from London Heathrow Terminal 5. The new service will also be the first direct flight between Europe and New Orleans.

The service will operate on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays & Saturdays using a new Boeing Dreamliner 787-8 aircraft, with a 3 cabin configuration (World Traveller, World Traveller Plus & Club World).

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Important Change Of Check-In Time At London Heathrow.

From 30th October 2016 the minimum check-in time for British Airways long-haul flights at London Heathrow Airport will be 60 minutes prior to departure.

Check-in for short-haul flights will remain unchanged at 45 minutes.

Mumbai international airport update.

On 18 October 2016 the main runway at Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport will close for 4 hours. The secondary runway is expected to remain open. Then from 31st October to 28th November both runways will close every Monday and Thursday between noon and 5pm. All flights scheduled during these times are likely to be affected by delays and cancellations, if you’re travelling to/from or connecting to flights in Mumbai please do call us to discuss any possible implications.