Monday, June 22, 2009

Frontier Airlines to be bought by Republic Airways

Republic. based in Indianapolis, has been one of three companies financing Frontier’s emergence from bankruptcy. A subsidiary, Republic Airlines, also is one of Frontier’s major unsecured creditors, having filed a $260 million damage claim for Frontier’s breaking an agreement with Republic to operate regional jet service after Frontier filed for bankruptcy protection in April 2008. Under terms of the deal, Frontier will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Republic Airways Holdings after the company serves as the equity sponsor for Frontier’s reorganization plan and buys 100 percent of the equity in the reorganized company. The cost to Republic will be $108.75 million. Frontier filed its proposed reorganization plan with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of the Southern District of New York Monday. Frontier will seek court approval of the investment agreement at a July 13 hearing and then conduct a roughly month-long auction process where other companies will have the chance to outbid Republic, Frontier spokeswoman Lindsey Purves said.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Southwest Airlines Celebrates Its 38th Birthday With $38 Fares

DALLAS - It's Southwest Airlines' birthday, but YOU get the gift! In celebration of the airline's 38th birthday, Southwest announced today special DING! fares as low as $38 one-way in select markets. These fares are customized for DING! subscribers and will only be available from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm CDT on June 18, 2009. In order to have your cake and eat it too, download DING! here.DING! is Southwest Airlines' downloadable desktop application that delivers discounted fares to a variety of Southwest Airlines destinations. The following are examples of city pairs included in this special $38 one-way fare offer (see Fare Rules below):-- Between New York LaGuardia and Baltimore/Washington for travel July 7 through August 31, 2009-- Between Los Angeles and the Bay Area (San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose) for travel July 7 through August 31, 2009-- Between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh for travel July 7 through August 31, 2009FARE RULESThe fares are available for purchase through the DING! application only. Travel dates for DING! fares other than those listed above will vary and are included in the specific DING! offers. Fares are available one-way. Seats are limited. Fares do not include a federal segment tax of $3.60 per takeoff and landing. Fares do not include airport-assessed passenger facility charges (PFC) of up to $9.00 and U.S. government-imposed September 11th Security Fee of up to $5.00 one-way. Fares are subject to change until ticketed. Tickets are nonrefundable but may be applied toward the purchase of future travel on Southwest Airlines. Fares are valid on Southwest-operated published, scheduled service only and are not available through the Group Desk. Any change in itinerary may result in an increase in fare.

'Travel Promotion Act' Introduced

The U.S. Travel Association today praised Representatives William Delahunt (D-MA) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) for introducing the "Travel Promotion Act of 2009" - much-needed legislation to create thousands of new jobs and boost economic growth nationwide by attracting millions of new international travelers to the United States.
The "Travel Promotion Act" establishes a public-private partnership to promote the United States as a premier international travel destination and communicate U.S. security and entry policies. The legislation specifies that travel promotion would be paid for by private sector contributions and a $10 fee on foreign travelers from countries that do not pay $131 for a visa to enter the United States. Nearly every developed nation in the world charges entry and exit fees and spends millions of dollars to attract visitors. Overseas visitors spend an average of $4,500 per person, per trip in the United States. However, since 9/11 international travelers have found ever-changing security policies and negative foreign press coverage to be a deterrent to visiting the United States. Oxford Economics estimates that a well executed promotion program, as outlined in the "Travel Promotion Act," would attract 1.6 million new international visitors annually, create $4 billion in new spending and drive $321 million in new federal tax revenue. An analysis by the U.S. Travel Association reveals that this program would create nearly 40,000 new American jobs.

Europe by Air Adds Low Israel fares

In a conversation with Bill Wolf, President of Europe by Air, Bill explained his unique approach to finding new low fares for his clients. "Europe by Air has been working with European tour operators to purchase excess seat capacity on their charter flights, allowing EBA the ability to offer them at an extreamly discounted rate to our clients. In these challanging times one has to think on their feet and be a bit more creative in their approach to marketing our products. For the past 12 years EuropebyAir Flight Pass has made hopping around Europe and beyond fun, cheap and easier. Adding Israel to our inventory of select fares is an exciting break through because these low one way fares are not available any where else. We were getting so many requests for Israel I have worked long and hard to obtain these exclusive contracts so they would be availble this season. EBA is pleased to welcome Israel as our new destination for hopping around Europe and beyond this summer" For more information go to NEW "INSIDER" FLIGHTS TO ISRAEL or call 1 888 321 4737

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Air France Crash Sparks Black Box Debate

While search teams search the Atlantic ocean for the black boxes of Air France flight AF447 before their signals die out, aviation experts are considering satellite data streaming to collect vital flight data in future. An airliner's black box -- which is made up of a flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder -- is designed to withstand a crash and emit a signal for about 30 days afterwards. If it is not found by then, the data is unlikely to be recovered. Many military aircraft already use data streaming, sending flight information real-time via satellite to ground stations. But the massive bandwidth and sophisticated infrastructure needed to manage and process data from tens of thousands of commercial flights per day could make it prohibitively expensive.
"Data streaming is currently technologically possible, but technologically impractical," Dan Elwell, Vice President Civil Aviation of the US-based Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) industry group, said at the Paris Air Show.
Bruce Coffey, President of the Aviation Recorders division of L-3 Communications -- the world's largest supplier of crash-survivable recording units -- said the use of data streaming in conjunction with traditional recording units could provide a "belt and suspenders" approach. However, only one of L-3's black boxes has ever been lost after a crash -- from the American Airlines flight that crashed into the World Trade Center on September 11 2001.
Richard Hayden, President of Canada's Aeromechanical Services, thinks he has an answer to the question of cost. The company's automated flight information recording system compresses data, allowing it to send 10 times more from an aircraft in the same bandwidth than with a standard satellite communication, dramatically cutting the cost to the operator. Hayden said the system can be programmed to start transmitting data non-stop as soon as there's a problem on board, and that this could have sent crucial information about the June 1 Air France crash that killed all 228 people on board. "Today we have a situation where there's a possibility, if not a probability, that the FDR won't be recovered. All we have left is a very small set of messages," Hayden said, referring to the automated maintenance messages the A330-200 sent in its final moments, charting problems in all onboard systems. Data streaming may be able to supplement black boxes, but not replace them, L-3's Coffey said. "If you're not able to recover the black boxes, there are going to be a lot of questions that remain unanswered, that should be answered." But industry specialists want guarantees that the highly sensitive data -- in particular the cockpit conversations -- will be properly protected, and pilots' privacy preserved. "There is a huge sensitivity among pilots at the thought of every utterance being recorded and transmitted to some faraway place

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

British Airways Asks Staff To Work For Nothing

British Airways, which reported a record annual loss last month, said on Tuesday it had asked its staff to work for nothing as part of the company's battle for "survival" in tough market conditions. The appeal to its British-based employees, which featured in the company's staff magazine, asks workers to volunteer for between a week and a month in unpaid leave or in unpaid work. Chief executive Willie Walsh, who along with the chief financial officer Keith Williams has promised to work for nothing in July, said the idea was part of BA's across the board cost-cutting measures. "Many of you from across the airline are stepping up to help the company," Walsh said. "I am looking for every single part of the company to take part in some way in this cash-effective way of helping the company's survival plan. It really counts."

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Alaska Airlines board to buy back millions in stock

A plan to repurchase $50 million worth of Alaska Air Group stock was approved by the airline holding group’s board, the company announced Friday. Alaska Air Group is the SeaTac-based holding company for Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air. The repurchases will come from cash on hand. Bill Ayer, the airline’s chairman, said the program will reward stockholders without threatening the airline’s cash situation. Stock buyback programs are designed to enhance stock prices by reducing the number of public shares outstanding

400 Years of History on Lake Champlain

2009 marks the 400th anniversary of French explorer Samuel de Champlain’s first visit to the lake that now bears his name. The celebration will include exploration tours of over 300 shipwrecks at the bottom of the lake, a 13-day international waterfront festival, Heritage Days to celebrate French ancestry and much more. For more information on Summer-Fall Events Celebrate 400 Years of Culture, Beauty And History on Lake Champlain

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Finland Summer Fun For Families

Finland thrives in the summer as the days get light and long. Several theme parks and zoos open their gates, and there are hundreds of festivals of song, dance and theater to keep the whole family entertained. And in a land of thousands of lakes and a beautiful seacoast with many islands, a summer cruise is a must. For more information

EuropebyAir Adds Israel Special Fares

Europe by Air known for their Flight Pass to hop around Europe, has recently added fares beyond Europe. Israel is their lastest addition and if your travel arrangements are flexible you can find considerable savings. One example is TEL AVIV - Barcelona/Munich $199 one way which includes all taxes and fees. This and other destinations are available on the EuropebyAir website.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Travel Perks ?

This was recently posted by Jill K Robinson and felt it was worth sharing.
Have you ever gotten excited about a travel “perk,” only to realize later that it isn’t all that? Here are a few we’ve come up with at TravelMuse that bug us: Swim-up bars. It may sound nice to luxuriate in a swimming pool and not have to get out and drip at the bar just to order a drink. But when you look at the people sitting at the swim-up bars and see how long they stay there (hours) while drinking, you just have to wonder: How do they not need to use the bathroom? First class on domestic flights. We all appreciate the larger seats, free beverages and silverware, but first-class seats and service on domestic routes are never quite as special as those on international ones. Sure, it’s probably about the money you spend. Isn’t everything? Airline clubs. Some are better (Continental—free alcoholic beverages) than others (American—no free booze), and sitting in a cushy seat while you’re waiting for your flight certainly is better than the waiting areas at the gate. Usually, when we spend money on a membership, we expect a little more than a nice seat and free Wi-Fi, like free (or inexpensive) drinks and more than nuts to chew on. Don’t you? Wireless Internet in hotels. Why is it that it often seems cheaper hotels offer free Wi-Fi and more expensive ones charge you a fee? Shouldn’t that be covered in the rate you’re paying already? And if you’re paying a fee, shouldn’t the Wi-Fi work? Complimentary breakfasts. Yum! We always appreciate eating, especially when a hotel throws it in for free. Not to look a gift horse in the mouth, but a soggy croissant and warm orange juice isn’t worth advertising as “complimentary breakfast.” And is it really necessary to tack on that tacky supplement for lukewarm eggs and meat with your “free” meal?