Business Traveller

The head of an airline pilot's union is saying American Airlines left more than 20,000 standby passengers at the gate when the airline was able to accommodate them. Nam Y. Huh / Associated PressSkift Take: General rule of thumb, given the fact that airlines tend to be more interested in meeting their bottom lines or getting on-time departure records: Try not to fly standby. — Deanna TingThe head of the pilots’ union said Thursday that American Airlines is leaving thousands of standby ...
Chinese tourism and leisure company Zhonghong Zhuoye Group Co. is buying a 21 percent stake in SeaWorld, making it the largest shareholder. In this photo, killer whales leap into the air at SeaWorld Orlando. SeaWorld OrlandoSkift Take: SeaWorld Entertainment has been making all kinds of moves to turn the company's performance around, but results have not paid off yet. Will this new long-term investment help? — Hannah SampsonChina’s Zhonghong Zhuoye Group Co. acquired a 21 percent equit...
Walt Disney Company chairman and CEO Bob Iger, shown in a file photo, extended his contract to lead the entertainment company through July 2, 2019. Mark J. Terrill / Associated PressSkift Take: This announcement that Bob Iger is sticking around at Disney an extra year is hardly surprising; he changed his previous tune and said he would be willing to extend his contract earlier this year. With a little extra time to play with, when will the company name his successor? — Hannah SampsonBob Ige...
This week’s featured link: Dear Virgin America – Richard Branson’s Virgin Blog Richard Branson is a sad panda. His weepy goodbye to Virgin America is book-ended with digs at Alaska. That’s pretty crappy since Alaska just made him a whole lot richer. He acts like there was nothing he could do to save Virgin America from this fate, and he’s right. He was able to keep the airline afloat while it lost hundreds of millions of dollars for years. So when the time came...
Many residents in Bruges, Belgium support tourism but challenges remain. Pictured are tourists taking boat rides in a canal in Bruges. Brigitte Mackscheidt / FlickrSkift Take: Residents of Bruges support tourism and feel that it's economically necessary but they also feel that it negatively impacts their quality of life. — Dan PeltierAs more destinations around the world wake up to the reality of overtourism, Bruges, Belgium went straight to the people most affected by millions of tour...
Economy seats are pictured on a Delta plane. Legacy airlines are dropping prices and providing fewer perks to travelers in some sections to compete with low-cost carriers. DeltaSkift Take: Our experts weigh in on why you should think twice before booking the very cheapest airfare these days. — Hannah Sampson Flying these days sounds like an incredible bargain. Low-cost is a key focus, not just for the Ryanairs and Spirit Airlines of the world that are historically known for cheap flights and l...
Ella, a marketing manager at Chinese search engine Baidu, is also a member of the company's basketball team. Baidu MobileSkift Take: Most Western travel brands are still in their infancy when it comes to understanding China's digital platforms and marketing norms. — Jeremy KressmannChina. It’s a country that’s on most travel executives’ minds these days as they seek to target what will soon be the world’s largest consumer market. But wanting to compete in China and...
The federal agency overseeing Donald Trump’s lease for a luxury hotel in Washington has ruled his election as U.S. President doesn’t violate the terms of his agreement barring government officials from profiting from the property. Alex Brandon / Associated PressSkift Take: So, remind me again what the definition of a government official is? — Deanna TingThe federal agency overseeing Donald Trump’s lease for a luxury hotel in Washington ruled Thursday that his inauguration as preside...
The detention of Stayzilla chief executive Yogendra Vasupal comes as startups face tougher funding conditions. StayzillaSkift Take: Stayzilla, a short-term rental marketplace, closed last month. A company has had the CEO jailed, claiming the man is liable for an unpaid bill. If intimidation is overriding bankruptcy law, then Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has a “Startup India” drive, should speak out. — Sean O'NeillEntrepreneurs around the world pay a price when their ventures fail, fro...
Royal Jordanian took to Twitter to encourage travelers to book more U.S. trips in case further restrictions are imposed. Pictured is a Royal Jordanian jet. John Taggart / FlickrSkift Take: Middle East carriers stand in opposition to the U.S. laptop ban but they're also making it an opportunity to highlight their superior in-flight experiences even if laptops aren't part of them. — Dan PeltierJordan’s national airline has taken up rhyming to cheer up customers following the new...
American Airlines has been using new Boeing 787s to open new routes in Asia. But it is still smaller in the region than United and American, so buying a stake in China Southern could help it expand. American AirlinesSkift Take: Both Delta Air Lines and United Airlines have partners in China. American does not, and its OneWorld alliance does not even have a mainland Chinese airline in it. American must play catch-up, and buying a small stake in China Southern is one way to do that. — Brian Su...
A promotional photo from Freebird, one of our top startups in the corporate travel space. FreebirdSkift Take: We've been tracking disruption in corporate travel for the past year, and this week we're happy to deliver a roundup of some of the most innovative new companies shaking up the industry. — Hannah SampsonThe Skift Corporate Travel Innovation Report is our weekly newsletter focused on the future of corporate travel, the big fault lines of disruption for travel managers and ...
The new automated security checkpoints at United Airline's Terminal C at Newark Airport. United AirlinesSkift Take: Passengers traveling through Newark's Terminal C have some more efficient security lines to look forward to thanks to a new integration from United Airlines. — Grant MartinAdvanced screening lanes at security checkpoints have been around for years at airports such as London Heathrow, but only recently have they started expanding into the United States — largely driven by...
An EasyJet aircraft. The airline is one of the carrier’s affected by the ban. Mark Lennihan / Associated PressSkift Take: The fact that Grayling’s comments came on the same day as a terrorist attack on London underlines the threat posed. Nevertheless, so many questions remain unanswered: why are the destinations covered different to the U.S.? What about those traveling with hand luggage only? What about insurance? For the moment, there is plenty of confusion. — Patrick WhyteChris Grayling...
Elements of President Trump's travel bans will now be essentially enforced by the U.S. Department of State. A U.S. Customs and Border Patrol officer interviews people entering the United States from Mexico at the border crossing in San Ysidro, California, U.S. on October 14, 2016. Mike Blake / ReutersSkift Take: U.S. embassies are now tasked to single out specific groups for extreme vetting. These enhanced screenings will slow down the pace of new visas being issued, creating a situation simila...
European nations will meet Monday to decide the fate of a possible new border wall between Greece and Hungary. In this February 8, 2016 file photo, Macedonian Army soldiers erect a second fence on the border line with Greece, near the southern Macedonia's town of Gevgelija. Boris Grdanoski / Associated PressSkift Take: Right-wing leaders are chipping away at German chancellor Angela Merkel's effort to preserve open borders in the European Union. — Andrew SheivachmanSo where should the n...
Passengers push luggage at Warsaw’s Frederic Chopin airport in March 2016. European airports may soon loosen restrictions on carry-on liquids. Czarek Sokolowski / Associated PressSkift Take: The ban on liquids greater than 100 milliliters has been around so long most travelers are used to it, and many have developed strategies to ease the burden. Still, passengers will probably cheer if the ban is curbed. It'll make it easier to pack toiletries. — Brian SumersWhile travelers face the...
Boom Technologies believes it could sell hundreds of the subscale supersonic aircraft. Boom TechnologiesSkift Take: Boom will get a supersonic jet to test, Ixigo will get help with its Indian expansion, and Eventerprise will expand beyond South Africa — all thanks to fresh rounds of funding. — Sean O'NeillEach week we create a roundup of travel startups that have received or announced funding that week. The total amount raised this week was more than $86 million. Earlier this week we noted t...
The long-awaited branding decision has been made, and as expected, Alaska will be retiring the Virgin America brand in the next couple of years. I had the chance to speak with Alaska’s Chief Commercial Officer and EVP Andrew Harrison as well as VP of Marketing Sangita Woerner yesterday about the changes that come along with this decision. The airline has made a conscious move to chart its own course with an old-school strategy and buck competitive trends, especially in the transcon marke...
Oliver Heckmann, who oversees Google's travel product, will discuss progress in Europe and the changing ways consumers are using Google on desktop and mobile. SkiftSkift Take: Companies often chase and vie to sign on influencers for marketing purposes, but all can agree that Google is one of the most powerful forces in travel. Despite Facebook's inroads, Google travel products are ascending and Heckmann will shed light on their trajectory. — Dennis Schaal On April 4 in London, hundreds o...