Thursday, October 28, 2010

Codeshare Agreement between Jet Airways and Alitalia

Italian visitors to India and Indian travelers to Italy would be interested in knowing that Jet Airways and Alitalia have entered into a code share pact. The two airlines signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) yesterday to operate codeshare flights in the winters of 2010.

The codeshare is a common practice between airlines for better penetration in the new markets and is often used to extend the route network of the airlines. The codeshare between Jet Airways and Alitalia spells advantage for both the airlines as well as their customers booking flights to India and Italy.

Jet Airways customers will be able to fly to more Italian destinations which are served by Alitalia flights and in turn the Alitalia customers will benefit by direct flights to India from Italy. It is reported that Jet Airways will operate direct services between Milan and New Delhi with effect from Dec 5 2010 on a daily basis.

As a part of the code share policy, Jet Airways will use its code ‘9W’ on the selected services which are operated by Alitalia and Alitalia will use its IATA code ‘AZ’ on the select services of Jet Airways including the airlines’ flights between India and Italy.

Alitalia is a member of SkyTeam global airline alliance and the agreement is likely to benefit the alliance by further contributing to its growth in the Far East sector where the alliance already has a strong hold position.

The codeshare agreement between the two airlines will cover the frequent flyers program as well as the ground activities and cargo services.

Jet Airways is one of the largest carriers of India and has Mumbai as its base while Alitalia is the national airline and the largest carrier in Italy.


Friday, October 22, 2010

Southall Travel Featured in the Sunday Times Top Track 250 League Table

travel company in Sunday times top track 250 2010London, 18 October 2010 - Southall Travel, one of the leading travel agencies in the country, has been listed in the Sunday Times Top Track 250 list of the UK's most successful mid-market private companies. The Sixth Annual Sunday Times HSBC Top Track 250 awards dinner was held at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower Hotel in London on the night of 14th October and was attended by owners and directors of country's leading mid-market private companies. The sixth annual Top Track 250 league table supplement was published in The Sunday Times on 17 October 2010 with HSBC as the title sponsor.

Southall Travel Featured in the Sunday Times Top Track 250 League TableThe award was received by Mr. Jaymin Borkhatria, Director of Sales for Southall Travel Ltd.

Showing up amongst some of the most well known mid-market brands, Southall Travel is the only travel agency in the UK to be included in the influential league table. The agency recorded astounding sales of £203.1 million for the year ending March 2010 and was ranked at 148th place.

Mr. Kuljinder Bahia, Managing Director of Southall Travel's expressed his pleasure with the listing. "This is the first time we've been ranked in the Top Track 250 and I'm extremely proud to be the only travel agent to make the list," he said.

Mr Bahia commended the entire team of Southall Travel and applauded their fruitful efforts. "Trading conditions have been difficult this year for the whole industry but we have a talented team in place and we have worked hard to innovate through online marketing, new technology, broadening our product range and call centre productivity." Mr Bahia stated.

"The listing is a great accolade for us and something we can use within our own marketing. We sit alongside some leading brands such as Harrods and Weetabix but also other outstanding businesses in their field." he said on the occasion.

Expressing his gratitude towards the agency's suppliers and customers, Mr. Bahia observed, "I'm thankful for our strong relationship with our suppliers and to our customers, many of whom book with us time and time again."

It must be noted that Southall Travel was also listed in the Sunday Times Fast Track 100 list in the year 2005.

Official website:

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Southwest Rink at Skyline Park in Downtown Denver

Downtown Denver is all set to add a further dash of spice to its winters. Yes, we are talking about the Southwest Rink at Skyline Park, which will come up in the grassy area of the Skyline Park next to the Southwest Porch at Skyline Park and the Daniels and Fisher Clocktower. The ice rink had been at the top of the wish list of Denver residents, hotel establishments and other businesses. It will become another reason for travel to the destination. The rink is slated to open on 26th November and skating here would be free of cost. Visitors can either bring in their own skates or pay a cheap rent for hiring a pair.

Combined Effort behind the Rink

The rink has been the result of a combined effort of Southwest Airlines and Downtown Denver Partnership, Inc. Southwest Airlines is one of the most famed airlines in USA offering irresistibly low priced flight tickets and deals across the country. The Downtown Denver Partnership, Inc. is a non profit oriented business organisation involved in the creative planning, management and development of Downtown Denver as a robust urban core in the Rocky Mountain region. The fact that growing numbers of families are opting to spend their holidays in Denver reveals the success of Downtown Denver Partnership, Inc. Denver is also popular for the availability of plenty of flights to Las Vegas, especially as a weekend getaway. The present skating rink had mainly been the initiative of Downtown Denver Partnership, Inc. and Southwest Airlines provided all the necessary support for this project.

Other Initiatives by Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines takes keen interest in Denver and has also carried out other joint initiatives for the development of Denver. These include Friday afternoon concert series and Saturday evening movie series. Southwest Airlines also rolled out a fleet of pedicabs offering free rides through Denver.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Advance Flight Booking - The Early Bird gets the Worm

It is one of the cardinal travel rules of many a jaded traveller to book their flight tickets well in advance. Online research also reveals this to be the most favoured option for booking tickets. Here is a small sampling of what makes advance booking a highly popular travel mantra.

Airlines inflate ticket prices as the take off date draws nearer. Advance flight booking does ensure cheap tickets most of the time. Although, some airlines do sell attractive last minute deals, it is very risky to wait for such offers.

Besides cheap fares, an early booking also allows gives you more choice. For instance, if booking flights from London to Dubai, you can pick your favourite from plenty of airlines, most suitable departure time, besides choice of direct and connecting flights etc.

In case of overbooking which is a usual practice, airlines look for early bookers to volunteer to give up their seats and travel on a later flight. Often such volunteer acts of travellers are rewarded by the airlines with some great incentives, goodies and discounts on future flights.

Booking early provides travellers an opportunity to do online check-in and print their boarding passes and confirm their seats well before flight departure instead of a much rushed affair of a last minute deal traveller who often are unable to get by without the help of a customer agent.
Book in advance and you can plan your itinerary down to minutest details like arranging your transfers to and from the airport, finding the perfect parking place as well as some relaxation, entertainment and shopping opportunities at the airports.

Source of Information

Friday, October 15, 2010

Top Holiday Destinations for Merry Christmas

Christmas brings a smile to every face. This is the time when many people set out on long distance travel to find out how the rest of the world celebrates Christmas. In fact, one needs to be done with the booking of flight tickets well before Christmas so as to net those cheap deals. Online searches reveal the following to be the hottest Christmas getaways.


This Indian beach destination with a rich Portuguese heritage remains a classy but very economical amongst Christmas holiday destinations. In fact, most airlines offer excellent deals to Goa. Christmas holidays in Goa spell as endless sea food, electrifying beach parties, and mesmerising celebrations at the numerous churches and cathedrals.


Those looking for something flashier might want to consider Paris, the land of glamour and fashion. The French have their own set of Christmas holiday ideas and the occasion would be perfect to have a taste of French hospitality. In fact, Christmas holiday breaks in Paris have been a growing fad. Two of the main Christmas draws of the destination are the Champs Elysées lights displays and Notre Dame Cathedral celebrations.

Jerusalem and Bethlehem

Jerusalem and Bethlehem have their own share of ardent fans looking for Christmas holiday tours. The experience here is indescribably spiritual as one gazes at the processions passing through the Manger Square. Visiting the destination during Christmas lets one have a first hand feel of how Christmas is celebrated by Roman Catholics, Protestants, Armenians, as well as different Orthodox sects like Greeks and Syrians.

Bethlehem and Jerusalem

Bethlehem and Jerusalem quite deservedly enjoy a special status as far as Christmas holiday tours are concerned. While 25th December marks the celebrations by Roman Catholics and Protestants, 6th January comes alive with the version celebrated by Greeks, Syrians, and other Orthodox Christians.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Southwest Airlines to Take Over AirTran

Southwest Airlines announced plans to take over AirTran for a consideration of about $1.42 billion. The transaction would bring together two of the largest carriers known for their cheap tickets across the USA. The acquisition would increase Southwest’s market penetration into as many as 37 new cities. The largest in the circuit is Atlanta. In fact, the Hartsfield-Jackson International airport of Atlanta is the busiest in the country and a major business travel hub. In addition, Southwest would get a bigger market share of cities like New York, Boston, Key East Coast – the areas where the airliner has been on an expansion spree.

Passenger Benefits

Besides getting the combined benefits of both the airlines, passengers can look forward to further attractions. For instance, Southwest does not plan to retain AirTran’s bag fees. AirTran charges $20 and $25 for the first and second checked bags of passengers. Charges for the same service by big carriers like American Airlines and United Airlines is about $25 and $35. For Southwest, it translates as the possibility of adding customers of such airlines to its own portfolio. Furthermore, the new airline would be serving more than a 100 airports offering a slew of flights to over a 100 million passengers. The deal also has the potential to further boost the tourism sector as visitors booking flights to USA in the future would get the full advantage of this transaction. In fact, similar path breaking developments in the hotel industry coupled with such major decisions in the aviation sector constantly add value to the US holiday market.

Time frame of the Deal

The takeover requires regulatory as well as shareholder approval and is expected to be over within the first two quarters of 2011. The complete merging of services is expected to take place in 2012.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Hong Kong Flooded with Shoppers in Golden Week

This past week Hong Kong was flooded with large crowds of shoppers. The city experienced and witnessed a tremendous shopping spree that remains matchless in the recent history. It was the famous Golden Week of Hong Kong.

The Hong Kong Tourism Board has reported that more than 600,000 people arrived from mainland China on the initial six days of Golden Week, which is the highest number in almost five years.

Most of the Hong Kong’s malls were converged with humanity. The popular designer stores such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Chanel saw massive crowd that was managed by security guards and barriers. And all this madness makes sense as there is no sales tax or other taxes in the region which enables people to indulge themselves into a variety of luxury goods.

Most shoppers land up in Hong Kong with huge empty suitcases which they stuff up with their purchases. It is almost a steal for the shoppers given the affordability of some of the most luxurious brands in the world.

The retailers in Hong Kong also do their part by offering exclusive discounts and organising promotional events. Additionally, for the convenience of mainland shoppers, the retailers put up signs in simplified Chinese rather than traditional Chinese used in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong is one of the world’s most popular destinations for year round holidays and has also emerged as one of the world’s best places to shop. Shopping, travel and hospitality businesses including Hotels in Hong Kong do brisk business during such events. Founded in 1999 to promote domestic tourism in China, Golden Week occurs twice in a year. Golden Week is one of the times when the country’s tourist destinations see a surge in travel activity and are at their colourful best. Golden week is one of the two 7 days national holiday periods and coincides with the nation’s national day on 1st October.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Backpacking Tips To Ensure Your Safety And Fun

Backpacking can be lot of fun if you follow right guidelines and are familiar with basic skills. Right information can truly augment the sense of adventure on your backpacking trip.

Backpacking tips can also offer a sense of security and safety to fellow backpackers and also individuals on solo travel tours. Get acquainted with such skills and tips before venturing into the wilderness of the wild or trekking the mountains.

First and foremost, decide the destination where you would like to have your adventurous holidays. Some factors that may assist you in determining the location of your choice can be the geography of a place (mountains or forests), the time you can afford (a week in Europe or a month in Africa) and the weather (the Caribbean in monsoons may not be such a good idea) in which you intend to travel. However, backpacking in off-seasons can surely get you some cheap deals.

Before actually booking your airline tickets for the destination of your choice, it is highly recommended that you should check online resources for latest and correct information for that particular region. Several parts of the world experience instability at some point or other and it is surely not a good idea to visit these places in such times.

Etiquettes like not littering and defiling the beauty of the nature is appreciated and backpackers must take care of that. Also the fundamental knowhow of first aid is indispensable as it can turn out be life saver for you. First aid knowhow is very essential and even for regular frequent flyers these travel tips are beneficial.

These are simple guidelines that will ensure your safe and enjoyable trip. Majority of these tips are plain commonsense, however few of them are quite crucial.

Find the complete Backpacking Tips here

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Auckland’s Rocking Food Scene

Whoever said that New Zealand is a sleepy country with dull culinary knowhow surely missed his cheap flight to Auckland. The nation’s largest city is as cosmopolitan as it gets and believe me when I say that Auckland is truly blessed with a first rate dining and drinking scene, one that makes London restaurants seem absolutely mediocre. The city’s subtropical climate, uncontaminated waters teeming with fishes and multi-ethnic buzz come together to craft a top-notch dining scene.

Prego, a famous restaurant in Auckland, is known for its delicious pizzas, seafood pastas and grilled fish. The eatery features a wine list that truly is a wine drinkers’ paradise and at prices that will almost convince you to pack your bags and shift your base to Auckland from London. Dine, another equally popular eating joint in the city screams class and dynamism. Across the road, Bellota is a Spanish-themed restaurant that is the sexiest and flirtiest bars in the region. If you are looking for a friendly crowd with a noisy environment then you can chill at The Fridge (no pun intended). And for casual, Italian/Mediterranean food head to Coco's Cantina and experience the scrumptious delicacies.

All these restaurants are the living and thriving proofs of Auckland’s rocking dining scene. After reading this yummy piece of writing on equally yummy New Zealand food, if you have the slightest inclination to buy Auckland flight tickets, then the period of mid-September is highly recommended as the Auckland’s annual Coffee Festival will be held shortly. Trust me after gorging on all the tasty food; you will surely need a coffee to wash it all down.

Monday, October 4, 2010

New York is ready to Rock You. Find Out How

The empire state of New York is well worth a visit anytime of the year. Be it lip smacking culinary delights or legendary shopping and a galaxy of amazing sightseeing wonders – there are plenty of reasons to jump aboard flights to New York. The destination counts amongst the most popular hot spots in USA. In case, you are planning to travel in the recent future, there are some additional charms to look forward to.

On 19th September, Harlem’s wide boulevards will play host to the gala annual African American Day Parade. Watching this parade is a very cheap but exhilarating way to while away the time. This colourful spectacle of humanity complete with jazzily attired dancers swaying to heart thudding music snakes its way from 111th Street and Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard to 142nd Street and onwards to Fifth Avenue.

The Catskill Mountain Thunder in East Durham’s Blackthorne Resort is an epic motorcycle festival and will definitely add a thump to your holidays. Bikers from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New England, and New York, all converge here to participate in the event. While the bikers are up to their dare devil antics, the onlooker may simply indulge in safe flights of fancy from the sidelines. The festival spells as four days of endless fun and excitement packed with numerous events from 16th to the 19th September. Two of the major highlights are a delectable Sunday pig roast accompanied with free beer and an antique motorcycle display.

Another forthcoming attraction is the world famous New York Fashion Week from 9th to 16th September, which will see gorgeous models decked up in spring collections setting the catwalk on fire. Menswear dominates the first two days. After that it is an all out time for women’s wear. The venue is Lincoln Center and the top names from the world of fashion would gather in New York. This is also the time to steal magnificent hotel deals in New York. Book your flights to New York right now to enjoy the extraordinary fun and lifetime holiday experience.

Summary Points: Empire State in New York, sightseeing in new york, popular hot spots in USA, Annual African American Day Parade, motorcycle festival, New York Fashion Week 2010

Friday, October 1, 2010

Europe Hit as Austerity Sparks Strike in Spain

Spain is truly in pain as it faces its first general strike in eight years. The strike is expected to rock the nation as two of the biggest workers unions participate in the agitation. As the demonstrators plan to march towards Brussels, the administrative centre of the European Union; the protestors in Spain disrupt the broadcasts and transportation in the nation.

The unions across the country are protesting against the various austerity measures implemented by the government of Spain. The Spanish government aims to control budget deficits with the help of such measure. The Government has implemented deepest budget reductions in nearly 30 years and has weakened the job security of employees in an effort to bring down the unemployment rate, which is the highest in Europe. The socialist Prime Minister of Spain has affected these changes under pressure from other European nations and investors to thin down the budget deficit.

People are bound to suffer as a result of the strike. Just about a quarter of local train services will be operational during the strike. Even the bus and truck movement will be affected.

The strike will also spell doom for Holidaymakers who are expected to travel to and from Spain as number of flights will be cancelled or delayed. The tremors of this strike are expected to be felt throughout Europe as several flights from London to Spain are cancelled or delayed. The Cardiff Airport at UK has announced the cancellation of numerous Spain-bound flights. Various airlines have advised travellers to check respective websites for more information.

Please read the detail about first general strike in eight years

Latest on Virgin Blue Check-in Systems Failure

A number of travelers booked with Virgin Blue woke up with a sigh of relief when the airline announced that all was ok. These travelers had faced inconvenience of a high degree as the airline’s check-in systems were thrown out of operations on Sunday and remained precarious until early this morning.

The systems have been brought back on track not before another jolt surfacing at 0500 hours local time this morning which reduced the airline’s functionality again and cast fear in the minds of those who were to get some relief today. Good news is that the airline described the problem as minor and a result of some tests that were run on the systems. The situation is largely under control and the airline sources state that the staff is working to reduce the backlog of passengers who were affected by the delay in flights. It is to be noted that the airline is Australia’s second biggest and is popular for cheap flights.

The airline issued a press release at 1600 hours on its website stating that the minor trouble in the check-in systems caused some consequential delays due to cancellation of two domestic flights. The passengers of the two cancelled flights had been put on alternative flights.

There have been apologies from the airline’s top brass which include the Virgin Group’s boss Richard Branson and the CEO John Borghetti. The outage is identified to have been caused by a hardware failure at Navitaire which is the provider of the New Skies airline check-in platform.

Although the situation has been controlled, experts believe that Navitaire may face legal proceedings from Virgin Blue and the payout may run into many millions as Mr. Borghetti indicated that the carrier is planning to seek compensation for the failure.

Please read the detail news here on Virgin Blue Check-in Systems Failure