Posts Tagged ‘tourism’

Hertz snaps into action

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

Leading car hire company Hertz have just launched a new way of settling once and for all disputes over damage caused to rental cars. The company is introducing a photographic inspection system in which all cars will be photographed and documented before being hired out.

Sounds simple, but this measure will save the company a lot of trouble in disputes over damage caused. High-resolution photographic equipment will be used to take multiple images of each car, showing up every scratch and dent.

According to Hertz’s vice-president of communications and corporate affairs Richard Broome, the company currently is plagued by $170 million in damage payments each year and expects this new system to change all that.

Broome also went on to say that: “It will speed up the rental process and help to avoid any disputes over damage. Sometimes we may get into disputes with consumers that don’t get resolved.”

In the old, inaccurate and time consuming system, customers had to accompany a member of staff to give the vehicle a visual inspection at the start and the end of the rental period. After this, any dents or scratches noticed would have to be marked on a special form before the customer was free to leave.

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Stansted airport welcomes Enterprise

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

So successful is leading car hire company Enterprise Rent-A-Car that it has just managed to expand its rental network by opening a new branch at Stansted Airport. The new branch will be beneficial to both Enterprise Rent-A-Car and Stansted Airport as it will provide travellers with extra options and make leaving the airport even easier.

The new Enterprise branch is located in the Car Rental Returns area of Stansted Airport’s Car Park G and is the newest addition to the company’s 325 locations.

Khaled Shahbo is the Managing Director of the Enterprise South East Region. In a recent interview he commented that: “The new Stansted Airport branch is a great addition for us. We’ve seen the airport grow into a key international facility and this is a real opportunity to further demonstrate our commitment to the airport rental market. Enterprise now has branches at all four major London airports, as well as the other major international airports across the UK, giving renters the opportunity to benefit from the same high levels of customer service we deliver across our 325+ UK branch network.”

The opening of yet another new branch is a powerful statement to Enterprise’s customers and competitors. At a time when many other companies are going bust, Enterprise continue to go from strength to strength.

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Heathrow’s figures on the rise

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Staff at Heathrow airport may soon be popping the champagne as for the third month in a row the number of passengers has risen, making last month the third-busiest month of traffic on record in July.

The number of late bookings increased dramatically last month, as more than six million passengers passed through the airport, which was an increase of 0.9% compared to July 2008. Last month was the airport’s busiest month since July 2006, with a 5.5% increase in long-haul flights, with the average number of passengers per aircraft up to a record number of 162.

This is quite a contrast to the figures for the UK’s other airports. Examples of this can be seen at nearby Gatwick, where the traffic volume fell by 4.8 percent, while it feel by 12.9 percent at Glasgow and 5.7 percent at Stansted.

As a spokesman for BAA said in a recent interview: “Heathrow’s traffic has been gradually stabilising since last year. If you look at the trend, it’s not a huge surprise.”

However, most of the airlines operating out of Heathrow airport are still offering low tickets rates and great deals to entice customers, making this the ideal time to take to the skies.

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Aussie tour companies urged to go green

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

Australian tour companies are keen to be seen as environmentally aware. This week, a leading Australian tourism organisation released a study to aid and advise tour companies in ways to become greener and leaner.

The Sustainable Tourism Cooperative Research Centre (STCRC) has used key climate change projections to compile a scoping study which exploring the environmental impacts on five key tourism sites within Australian. They have used the information to develop a range of 40 different tourism-focused climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies.

Ian Kern is the CEO of the Sustainable Tourism Cooperative Research Centre. In a recent interview he stated that: “The Minister appointed a Committee to deliver a long-term vision for the Australian tourism industry and that committee identified climate change as a significant industry issue. This new research provides an overview of key adaptation and mitigation strategies that can provide resilience within the tourism sector, subject to further community and business coordination.”

The research group is now looking at ways to promote their information and persuade various agencies to adapt it into their travel strategies.

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Eastern inspiration for Emirates’ event

Tuesday, August 4th, 2009

As Australian citizens and travellers the world over eagerly anticipate the Melbourne Cup Carnival, Emirates have just announced the theme of their marquee. This year the airline will be adopting an Indian theme, drawing inspiration for some of the country’s most elaborate palaces such as the Taj Mahal and mighty monuments in Delhi and Jaipur.

Emirates, who are based in Dubai, are the Principal Partner of the Melbourne Cup Carnival this year as well as being the title sponsor of the Emirates Melbourne Cup.

Stephen Pearse is the Vice-President of Emirates Australia. In a recent interview he said that: “It certainly does not get much more exciting for a marquee theme than India. The Emirates marquee promises to bring everything that is India to life in the very heart of Flemington Racecourse. We look forward to welcoming our guests and taking the on a lively journey through this amazing destination, as they enjoy the thrill and excitement of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.”

A wide range of traditional Indian dishes will be served in the marquee, which will be created using authentic and fragrant ingredients to add some real spice to the Melbourne Cup Carnival. Guests will step through the elaborate carved entrance of the marquee to gaze upon brilliantly coloured saris, textured turbans, rustic swing seats and ancient artwork of Maharajas.

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Holidaymakers to suffer if immigration officials strike

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

Faced with major changes in work practices after from the merging of customs and immigration controls into one UK Border Agency, British Airways baggage handlers and check-in staff are considering a two day walkout.

In addition, 4,100 immigration officials who check passports at the air and sea ports in the UK are also considering striking this summer after the announcement of proposals which would force them to take over several of the traditional jobs associated with customs staff, including body searches.

A ballot has been held by the 1,300 members of the Public and Commercial Services Union to determine whether or not the majority want to strike. The results will be announced next week, with possible further one or two-day strikes to follow.

PCSU spokesman Alex Flynn said in a recent interview that it seemed likely that members would vote in favour of a strike: “We wouldn’t have called a ballot if weren’t confident of winning it. “We are in talks with the management and there is a possibility of strike action.”

Unfortunately, if the strike does take place it will be holidaymakers who get caught in the crossfire, with many being stranded at borders for up to a day or two.

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Aussie tourism aimed at the young

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009

Acting on a recent brainwave, the tourist board in New South Wales is setting its sights on those aged between 18 and 30 who want to visit Australia in order to travel, work and study.

The new marketing promotion, which is part of the Global Youth Program in UK, is making efforts to contact young overseas travelers through social platforms such as MySpace, YouTube, Twitter and Facebook. The Seven Days in Sydney campaign will be published on networks throughout the UK and Ireland to present the weeklong travel experience of a pair of young travellers who will be randomly selected to visit Sydney and report back through online media.

Jodi McKay is the New South Wales Minister for Tourism. In a recent press statement she announced that: “Two young travellers will come to Sydney for a fun-packed seven day itinerary and report online about their experience. Between them they will compile up to 40 video diaries, 350 photos, 70 blogs and 280 tweets, with their content to be published on a variety of online networks including Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, Twitter and”

Anyone who has dreamed about their 15 minutes of fame may soon have their dreams come true. However, the NSW tourist board has yet to select anyone.

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UK sees decrease in overseas visitors

Friday, July 17th, 2009

The UK is experiencing 2.7% decline in visits from overseas travelers, marking the first time in seven years that the numbers have declined. The figures were just made public in the Travel Trends report published by the Office for National Statistics.

Likewise, Britons are choosing to take their holidays closer to home in response to the economic downturn. British travelers that manage to make the trip abroad are sticking with the traditionally popular destinations such as Spain, France, and the United States.

On the bright side, the tourists that do come in are spending more. David Savage, one of the authors of the report, said: “Spending in the UK is holding up very well. The increase in spending is due to the exchange rate. People will come here with a budget and the difference works in our favour.”

The last time that the numbers declined was in 2001 after the September 11 tragedy at the World trade Center.

Compiling the survey entailed the daunting task of interviewing over 250,000 travelers as they passed through major airports, tunnels, and ports in the UK.

Tourism officials point to the global recession as the cause for the decline which was at its worst during the final quarter of 2008 when the numbers dropped a whopping 13%.

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Uluru soon to be out of bounds to climbers

Friday, July 10th, 2009

Anyone who has ever dreamed of travelling to the center of Australia and climbing Uluru may soon be disappointed. A plan set out by the Director of National Parks has scheduled the gradually banning of climbing the mighty rock over the next ten years.

Also known as Aires Rock, Uluru stands at an impressive 346 meters high. Climbing of the rock has long been condemned by local aboriginals as the rock has a sacred status in their culture. (more…)