Sunday, October 10, 2010

Air Canada and United agree to revenue sharing joint venture

Air Canada and United Continental Holdings, Inc. announced that the airlines have concluded a Memorandum of Understanding setting out the principles for a comprehensive revenue-sharing joint venture that would provide for an enhanced partnership on United States-Canada transborder flights, and generate substantial service and pricing benefits for consumers traveling between the two countries.

Air Canada said its transborder network of 59 US cities will be bolstered by United's presence in 210 US airports. United's network of 16 Canadian cities will gain the 59 communities that Air Canada serves.
The airlines expect to launch the venture in early 2011.

Air Canada said "By managing pricing, scheduling and sales through a stronger joint venture, the carriers will be better able to serve customers by offering more travel options."

Friday, April 9, 2010

United Airlines, US Airways Merger Could Be All-Stock Deal

The merger talks between United Airlines and US Airways revolve around doing an all-stock deal, with United paying US Airways shareholders a premium similar to that of the Delta-Northwest merger, people familiar with the matter said. Delta, which bought Northwest in 2008, paid Northwest shareholders a 17 percent premium to the closing price on the day before the announcement.
The two sides have been negotiating break-up fees and reverse break-up fees in the 2 to 6 percent range, to be implemented if either side walks away from the deal.
The companies see more than USD$1 billion in synergies from a potential deal, the sources said. Issues such as management will be discussed in the coming days, but United Airlines would be the continuing brand, the sources said.
A deal could be sealed in a few weeks, the sources said. But they also cautioned that talks could still fall through or that other airlines could approach either United or US Airways.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Foreign Companies Will Not Own Controlling Interest in US Airlines Anytime Soon

I never thought I’d see the day that the United States would make good on its promise to the European Union (EU) to allow for greater foreign ownership of US airlines in return for open skies policy.

Now a recent agreement confirms that is not going to happen and is a big win for the US. It makes the previous open skies agreement permanent, which is good for both sides of the pond, yet it dodges the foreign ownership demand that was there after the last round..
According to the US Department of Transport (DOT), the new agreement . . .affirms that the terms of the 2007 agreement will remain in place indefinitely. It also deepens U.S.-EU cooperation in aviation security, safety, competition, and ease of travel. In addition, it provides greater protections for U.S. carriers from local restrictions on night flights at European airports. It also includes a ground-breaking article on the importance of high labor standards in the airline industry.
The new agreement underscores the importance of close transatlantic cooperation on aviation environmental matters in order to advance a global approach to global challenges.
Hmmm, vagueness or real......

Saturday, February 6, 2010

I always thought my 2 bucks went to the SkyCap

American Airlines is set to lose quite a bit of money after a Boston judge ruled Skycaps from 85 airports can join a class action lawsuit against the airline.
At the heart of the ruling is an American Airlines $2 fee for curbside bag check-in at the airport. In the past, curbside check-in was considered free - but tipping the skycap was customary. Once American implemented the $2 fee, passengers assumed that covered the entire cost.
One Skycap testified that his daily tips dropped from $200 to $70.
Logan airport skycaps already won a ruling, awarding them $325,000 to be split between nine workers.
Sadly for American Airlines, their money making scheme may have backfired quite badly. If other skycaps win in this class action lawsuit, any money the airline made with the fee will probably be wiped out.

Major Airlines Have No Responsibility Once They Contract With Regional Airlines

The National Transportation Safety Board says it's a serious but little known problem: the fact that once a major airline contracts with a regional airline to fly a route, the major airline no longer has any responsibility for that flight's crew, training or safety.
Many of the passengers on Flight 3407 assumed they were flying Continental because that's who they had booked through.
But in fact, they were flying Colgan Air, and the Department of Transportation's internal watchdog says there is a two-tiered standard for safety when it comes to airlines: one for the majors, and a different, and lower standard, for the regionals.
The NTSB says this has been a long-standing problem.
"The Safety Board is going to be looking at these relationships and the oversight and the resources associated with safety functions," said the Board's Chair, Deborah Hersman.
"Should the major airlines have oversight and responsibility for their regional carriers?"
Randy Babbitt, FAA Administrator: "These are separate corporate entities - and this wouldn't happen at the FAA this would be a DOT view - and ultimately a congressional view as to whether or not that responsibility resides with the carrier, who simply makes a commercial arrangement to carry traffic."
"But sometimes it's flown under the major's name.
"Randy Babbitt: "Oh absolutely, and that's what may inspire congress and the DOT to take another look."
And in fact, congress is taking another look - in a pending Safety Aviation Bill, the senate would place two new safety requirements for regionals:
•First, that the the majors have oversight for safety, training and maintenance when contracting with regionals.
•Second, that the FAA be required to make random safety inspections of the regionals every year.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Honduras swears in Porfirio Lobo as President

President Porfirio Lobo was sworn today in at a ceremony at Carias Andino stadium, Tegucigalpa.
Honduras has sworn in newly-elected Porfirio Lobo as President, after months of crisis over the fate of his ousted predecessor, Manuel Zelaya.
Mr Lobo has said his first task as president will be to guarantee Mr Zelaya's safe passage out of Honduras.
The removal last June of Mr Zelaya, who is holed up in Brazil's embassy in the capital. Several nations refused to recognise the legitimacy of November's election.
Election pledge
While Mr Lobo was sworn in at an open air ceremony, in the capital Tegucigalpa he said
"Can you imagine starting a government with a President imprisoned in an embassy... it wouldn't be fair"

Presiden Lobo also said: "I pledge to be faithful to the republic and ensure its laws are enforced." The newly-elected President wishes to restore international ties and ensure the resumption of foreign aid, principally from the US.
Former President Zelaya has indicated that he is ready to leave Honduras.

Manuel Zelaya who has been staying in Brazil's embassy since September said. "I have an invitation... to go to the Dominican Republic and I will accept... obviously with the approval of the new government," Mr Zelaya told local radio.
His departure will mark the end of his efforts to return to office after soldiers forced him into exile at gunpoint on 28 June. He returned in September and took refuge in the Brazilian embassy.
Mr Zelaya was removed amid a dispute over his plans to hold a vote on whether a assembly should be set up to look at rewriting the constitution to extend the Presidency.
His critics said the vote, which was ruled illegal by the Supreme Court, aimed to change the current one-term limit on serving as President and pave the way for on going re-elections.
The media elected to inappropriately refer to this legal process of his removal from office as a coup.
Mr Zelaya repeatedly said he really had no interest in staying in power, but wanted to rewrite an outdated constitution to guarantee fairer representation for all Hondurans.
Military cleared
His ousting provoked international condemnation , but diplomatic attempts to persuade the interim government to allow Mr Zelaya to return to office proved futile. Several Latin American countries, including Brazil and Venezuela, said recognising the election would amount to condoning a coup.
President elect Porfirio Lobo says he is determined to normalise foreign ties .The US agreed that Hondurans had the right to elect a President in an election that was scheduled long before the crisis erupted.
While Mr Lobo faces the challenge of bringing Honduras back into the international fold, the country's institutions have taken steps to put the crisis behind them.
On Tuesday, the Supreme Court cleared six military commanders of exceeding their authority when they ordered soldiers to expel Mr Zelaya. And the Honduran Congress voted to approve an amnesty for both the military and Mr Zelaya, who had faced charges of treason.
Along with restoring the countries confidence in this new government. It's also a great opportunity to reach out and convey the all important message, that Honduras's Eco and sustainable tourist market is back stronger than ever. Honduras is prepared to meet the ever increasing challenges to grow their toruism infatructure in one of the most beautiful countries in Central America...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Round-Trip Last-Minute Airfares out of TPA for Travel This Weekend

Price Depart Destination/Airline

$132 TPA Chicago, IL (ORD): United

$140 TPA White Plains, NY (HPN): United

$148  TPA  Milwaukee, WI (MKE): United

$156 TPA  Knoxville, TN (TYS): United

$160  TPA Baltimore, MD (BWI): United

$194  TPA Columbus, OH (CMH): United

$198 TPA Charlotte, NC (CLT): US Airways

$202 TPA Louisville, KY (SDF): United

$212 TPA Washington, DC (DCA): United

$214 TPA Pittsburgh, PA (PIT): United

$216 TPA Springfield, MO (SGF): United

$218 TPA Moline, IL (MLI): United

$218 TPA Philadelphia, PA (PHL): US Airways

$222 TPA Des Moines, IA (DSM): United

$222 TPA Wichita, KS (ICT): United

$224 TPA Appleton, WI (ATW): United

$224 TPA Green Bay, WI (GRB): United

$228 TPA Sioux Falls, SD (FSD): United

$228 TPA Washington, DC (IAD): United

$236 TPA Bismarck, ND (BIS): United

$528  TPA Winnipeg, MB, Canada (YWG): United

$564 TPA Saskatoon, SK, Canada (YXE): United

$582 TPA Calgary, AB, Canada (YYC): United

$586 TPA Edmonton, AB, Canada (YEG): United

TPA = Tampa

Check with the airline for booking instructions and the most recent fares:

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

David Leadbetter Golf Academy opens in Casa de Campo, Dominican Republic

Dr. Claudio Silvestri, President and CEO of Premier Resorts & Hotels that manages the resort said. “Golfers can now come to Casa de Campo not only to experience our globally acclaimed courses, but to also receive high quality instruction year around with our fabulous tropical weather.”

For information on the golf academy contact the Golf Director’s office at: 809-523-8115. For hotel reservations or additional information contact: 1-800-877-3643 or

Friday, January 8, 2010

EBA has posted LA to Paris Special - Buy 1 Ticket, Bring a Companion for Free!

Been thinking about a Valentines gift? How about this special posted on EuropebyAir's website....Purchase one round-trip ticket from LA to Paris for $628 by 12 January and you can take a companion for free...or any day from now to 14 March....Is it true Romance is in the air?...Ck out this great special....
For more details and information you can call 1-888-321-4737 or go to their website EuropebyAir. com

The who will and who won't use body scanners

The constant debate of using body scanners is changing day by day....Today France announced it will use body scanners at some of its airports, initially to search passengers flying to the United States. France also said it would tighten security measures at its airports after the failed attempt to blow up a US plane heading for Detroit on Christmas day.

Initially, a scanner will be installed at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris within the next two weeks and another at the city's Orly airport at a later date.

Washington has asked other countries to improve their aviation security technology after the failed attack highlighted US intelligence and security faults.

Canada, the Netherlands and Britain have said they plan to use body scanners. Italy is considering them and Nigeria, the country of origin of the man who tried to blow up the Detroit-bound flight, will install them.

The big issue sure to come is the re-action of privacy issue advocates....Stay tuned....

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The debate over privacy concerns likely to impede body scanners in Europe

Britain's government wants to quickly deploy full body scanners at U.K. airports to fight an expanded terrorist threat. Amsterdam's Schipol Airport plan a major expansion for use to screen U.S.-bound flights. In Germany, officials said the scanners would only be considered once privacy concerns are resolved. In France, lawmakers discussed the scanners in 2008, but the idea of deploying them was dropped after privacy concerns were also raised.

The issues range from general rights of adults to fears that children may be exploited. Some say the machines cannot be allowed because they can clearly show a child's genitalia when a boy or girl walks through the airport scanners

Privacy campaigners and children's rights groups say the technology, now being tested at Manchester Airport, violates British and European law by producing sexually explicit images of children.

Ian Dowty, UK legal adviser to Action on Rights for Children, said he believes it would be a criminal offense to operate the scanners or to direct anyone to operate them if they are used to produce images of children under the age of 18.

"If anything produces an indecent image of anyone under 18, that is unlawful and is in fact a criminal offense," he said. "As we've seen on the Internet, these machines clearly show genitalia that in our view must result in an indecent image by any definition."

Others, including a British lawmaker, have said the machine would not have been useful in spotting the explosives intended for use over Detroit. "The machines amount to little more than gimmickry, and the government is going to face a huge legal obstacle," said Simon Davies, director of Privacy International. "It can't identify a substance, it can only identify an abnormality, and the rest of it is human judgment."

At Amsterdam's Schipol Airport the scanners in use there differ from the ones being tested in Britain, and officials say they are being fitted with software that addresses privacy concerns by projecting a stylized human figure onto the computer screen rather than using the actual body image of the person being scanned.

So, the question remains will the privacy issue slow down or deter the use of full body scanners or will airports revert to the profiling system used effectively in Israel……Because it is quite clear privacy concerns and fears that children and adults may be exploited seem likely to slow the plan.

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