Last week Delta announced they were going to allow SPG (Starwood Preferred Guest) and Marriott Rewards Platinum members complimentary Comfort Plus upgrades, first class upgrades when available, priority check-in and a free checked bag. Basically, even if you have never flown on Delta before and you are platinum member of SPG or Marriott (25 stays or 50 nights per year) you get all the bennies of a super frequent flyer. I think Delta is very smart with this move as they know if someone stays 50 nights or more in a Marriott or SPG hotel they probably are the perfect business target who pays premium business airfares when they travel. Three cheers for Delta, SPG and Marriott.
Savvy travelers are figuring ways to make phone calls when flying –
This last week there was a big uproar when the DOT announced they were looking at new rules authorizing the use of cell phones using wi-fi service when flying. Currently the FCC prohibits cell phone calls when flying in the U.S. however, they are silent about using wi-fi to make VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) calls and videos. All U.S. airlines currently prohibit cellular and wi-fi videos and calls. However, things are a lot different when flying internationally as some international airlines allow video and phone calls using onboard wi-fi service. As many people know there are dozens of online apps (like Skype and WhatsApp) that can be used to make phone and video calls. The airlines try to put controls to prevent using these web sites but almost like Whack-A-Mole every time they knock one out a new App springs up. The biggest work around for business travelers is for them to use their company’s virtual private network (VPN) to access VoIP sites and apps. This is the best work around for people who must find a way to call from 35,000 feet in the sky. But be warned. The airlines say this is a no-no and if some one sees you on your phone you could feel the wrath of a flight attendant who wants to enforce their rules.
Beware – The next time a hotel chain wants to offer you a system- wide discount –
Hotel chains will often offer large companies a special system-wide discounts for making them your preferred hotel chain and moving incremental business to them. Executive Travel negotiates hundreds and hundreds of hotel deals for corporations every year. We have a crackerjack team that compares these hotel chain discounts with negotiated rates that we do for many companies. The bottom line is that many of the hotel chain discounts are very one-sided and often do not offer much if any discounts compared with other negotiated rates and dynamic pricing in the market today. If you are interested in saving money on your company’s travel management program one giant place to start is with your hotel program. Give us a call at 402-435-8888 and let us show you how we can help you build a hotel program that can save you thousands of dollars each month. And if your travelers are using Expedia to make their hotel reservations and you think those are the best hotel rates around then let us show you how you we can negotiate hotel rates that beat Expedia by over $20 a night.
Cuba opens the floodgates and allows 6 cruise lines to set sail –
The Cuban government moved quickly after the death of Fidel Castro and before the inauguration of Donald Trump to approve six cruise lines to sail to Havana in 2017. Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Oceania, Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, Azamara and Pearl Seas Cruises all received the green light to sale to Cuba the first 5 months of 2017. Many in the industry are worried that this title wave of tourism will overwhelm the third world infrastructure of Cuba. I think cruising might be the best way to see the country as there are not enough hotels to meet all the demand.
Oops! Southwest Airlines gets egg on its face when it forgets to get paperwork to fly to Mexico –
With big fanfare Southwest Airlines announced it was starting service from Los Angeles to Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta and Cancun this week. Oops! Turns out the airline forgot to get the operating permits approved from Mexico in time and had to cancel 40 flights during the 4 day suspension of service. I hope the same person in charge of the paper work at Southwest is not in charge of the paper work for fueling the planes.
Final Call for our Greek Yoga Retreat this coming May! –
Our Greek Yoga Retreat this coming May is filling up! We have four spots left, so if you would like to join our good friend, Mandy Ryle with Sound Method Yoga in Omaha, please let us know now. Greece has always been the synonym for health, healing and harmony, and this tour promise nothing less than a touch with century-old traditions, myths, art and ancient sites, all combined with practicing yoga in the perfect environment of peace and balance. We depart on May 27th and return home on June 10th. Extensions are available. CLICK HERE to see the full tour details. Call or email Janette immediately at 402-458-9842, firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Need information on any of the above?
Call our friendly travel advisors….
Lincoln – 402-435-8888 Toll-free 800-737-0582