October 2007

Vol 7 - No. 4
 

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Travel | October 2007

 


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News Briefs

 

Air Canada celebrated its 70th year anniversary in September and the addition of Boeing 777s to its fleet. It recently received the "Best Airline in North America" and "Best Airline in Canada" awards from readers of Global Traveler magazine. Air Canada's Aeroplan has been given two Freddie Awards for making innovative decisions. In 2003, Aeroplan received an industry impact award for its decision to allow elite members to choose their benefits and customize their elite package. Last year, Aeroplan received an award for its decision to make the program public via an initial public offering. Boeing 777 offers special luxuries. Business class and first-class passengers on the planes can enjoy privacy suites, lie-flat seats, personal video systems and power sources, and even a stand-up, self-service bar.

Air Canada is a member of the Star Alliance, which celebrated its 10 Years in May this year.

 

Chile and India sign open skies air cargo treaty. Chile and India have signed a bilateral agreement establishing an open skies policy for air cargo and liberalizing passenger transport services, Chile's Civil Aeronautic Council (JAC) said on Monday. The two countries previously had a more limited agreement, but the new treaty grants cargo transport "unlimited numbers of these services from and to Chile or India, using any type of aircraft and with full traffic rights to, from, or via any intermediary," the government said in a statement. The statement said rights to cabotage – the transport of cargo between two points within a country by a foreign carrier – were excluded. The government said the agreement would also help to increase air passenger traffic between the two countries. The Chilean government said trade between Chile and India has increased six times in the last five years. 
Source: Reuters

 

New York passes 'passenger bill of rights,' first of its kind in U.S. The New York legislature passed and Gov. Eliot Spitzer signed into law last week a "passenger bill of rights" outlining requirements for airlines during extended ground delays, making the state that is home to busy New York JFK and LaGuardia the first in the U.S. to act on passenger complaints of poor customer service. Largely in response to the much-publicized incident in which JetBlue Airways passengers were forced to stay on parked aircraft at JFK for up to 10 hours during an ice storm, the new law claims to cover flights at New York airports and mandates fines of as much as US$1,000 per passenger for carriers that fail to comply, although airlines question whether it is enforceable under federal law. The law requires carriers to provide food, water, clean restrooms and fresh air to passengers stranded on aircraft for more! than three hours. It also requires airlines to provide passengers with a phone number to register service complaints and establishes an "office of airline consumer advocate" within the New York state government. The Coalition for an Airline Passengers' Bill of Rights, which is lobbying the U.S. Congress to include passenger rights provisions in FAA reauthorization legislation, praised " New York's tough new airline passenger rights law" and called on Congress "to finish the job for all travelers nationwide." The group wants Congress to mandate that airlines allow passengers to leave aircraft after a ground delay of more than hours, something the New York bill does not do and that carriers have opposed strenuously. "Legislating something with fixed time limits is just unpractical in terms of day-to-day operations," Delta Air Lines COO James Whitehurst told reporters last week in Washington. 

Source: Air Transport World

 

Star Alliance scoops Business Traveller’s best alliance award twice in a row. Star Alliance has scooped the Best Airline Alliance Award at the Business Traveller (U.K.) star-studded ceremony for the second year running. “Winning this award twice in a row is a significant achievement for us, especially considering that we have achieved this in one of the world’s most competitive aviation markets, the United Kingdom”, said Jaan Albrecht, CEO Star Alliance. “It is of course also a nice birthday present, since we are celebrating our 10th anniversary this year. My thanks go to all the employees who deliver the Star Alliance customer promise on a consistent basis, day in and day out, across the entire network, a fact which has once again been acknowledged by our customers with this award.” The Business Traveller (U.K.) awards are recognized throughout the industry as the premier honours for business travel, and span 46 categories from hotels and airlines to car rental companies and luggage brands. The readers of Business Traveller U.K. were polled between April and June 2007, with the results having been analyzed by an independent research company. 

 

Star Alliance, the world's first ever multilateral aviation alliance celebrated 10 years of existence. What started off as an alliance of five like minded airlines, has grown to currently 17 member carriers flying more than 406 million passengers a year to some 855 destinations in 155 countries.

“We have defied many sceptics who saw us as a marketing gag which was only going to last two years”, said Jaan Albrecht, CEO Star Alliance. “Today, nearly 30% of global air travellers use the services of our member carriers or looking at if from an overall industry perspective, two thirds of world-wide air travellers is one of the three airline alliances.”

Source: Star Alliance

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Publisher and Managing Editor: Suresh Jaura
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