Turkey fumes over laptop ban

March 23, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, EUROPE, News

ANKARA, 23 March 2017: Turkey Wednesday stepped up its objections to US restrictions on large electronic devices on flights from some airports in the country and other regional hubs, saying it punished travellers instead of tackling the problem.

“It would be better to take measures together against those who are a threat instead of punishing normal passengers,” Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said during a visit to Washington.

“If there are concerns over security, our departments should come together and take the necessary measures. This work cannot be done with bans,” Cavusoglu added, quoted by state-run news agency Anadolu. Read more

World leaders condemn UK attack

March 23, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, News

PARIS, 23 March 2017: World leaders on Wednesday unanimously condemned the attack in the heart of London by a man who was shot dead by armed police, with many saying they “stand” with Britain.

Four people were killed and 40 injured in the attack outside parliament when a man mowed down pedestrians with a car then leapt out and stabbed a police officer.

In an address outside her Downing Street office, Prime Minister Theresa May described the attack as “sick and depraved” saying the assailant chose the site as an assault on Britain’s democratic values. Read more

10% of all jobs linked to tourism

March 22, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, News

LONDON, 22 March 2017: Travel and tourism generated 1 in 10 of the world’s jobs in 2016 as the sector grew by 3.3%, outpacing the global economy for the sixth year in a row, reads a new report by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).

WTTC’s Economic Impact Report 2017, which is conducted in conjunction with Oxford Economics, researches the economic impact of travel and tourism impact on global level, for 25 regions, and 185 countries.

According to the research, travel and tourism grew by 3.3% in 2016, generating USD7.6 trillion worldwide, which is 10.2% of global GDP when the direct, indirect and induced impacts are taken into account. The sector supported a total of 292 million jobs in 2016, which is 1 in 10 of all jobs in the world. Read more

Airport attacker on drugs

March 21, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, EUROPE, News

PARIS, 21 March 2017: The man shot dead at Paris’s Orly airport after attacking a soldier was under the influence of drugs and alcohol at the time, a judicial source said Sunday.

Investigators are still trying to understand what motivated Saturday’s assault by 39-year-old Ziyed Ben Belgacem, which led to a major security scare and the temporary closure of the capital’s second-busiest airport.

“Toxicology tests carried out on Sunday showed an alcohol level of 0.93 grams per litre in his blood, and the presence of cannabis and cocaine,” the source said. Read more

Happy Norway tops UN list

March 21, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, News

NEW YORK, 21 March 2017: A bit of cold isn’t keeping Norway from basking in the warmth of being the world’s happiest country, a UN report out Monday found.

And Norway surged from 4th place in last year’s assessment all the way to the top spot, even though oil prices are down, the World Happiness Report 2017 said.

The top four also included Nordic neighbours Denmark and Iceland as well as Switzerland. Read more

Alitalia faces deep cost-cuts

March 17, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, EUROPE, News

MILAN, 17 March 2017: Struggling Italian airline Alitalia on Wednesday announced a new strategic cost-cutting plan, as it seeks to head off turbulence and return to profitability by the end of 2019.

The airline aims to cut costs by 1.0 billion euros (USD1.07 billion) and increase revenue by 30% in that time, according to the plan adopted after more than six hours of boardroom talks.

Alitalia did not lay out possible job cuts but Italian media have speculated that between 2,000 and 3,000 jobs could be slashed. Read more

Sweden calls for tax on air tickets

March 17, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, EUROPE, News

STOCKHOLM, 17 March 2017: Sweden’s government said Wednesday it plans to propose a controversial tax on airline tickets to compensate for the lack of VAT on international flights and the low price airlines pay for greenhouse gas emissions.

The tax would range between 80 and 430 kronor (between 8.40 and 45 euros, or USD8.8 and USD48) per ticket depending on the length of the flight, deputy finance minister Per Bolund told reporters.

The proposal would be included in the 2018 budget bill, and the tax would take effect 1 January, 2018. Read more

Lufthansa cautious despite profit

March 17, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, EUROPE, News

FRANKFURT, 17 March 2017: German airline group Lufthansa said, Thursday, it had met its financial targets in 2016, but offered only modest forecasts for the current year, squeezed between falling prices and higher costs.

The Frankfurt-based firm reported net profit of 1.78 billion euros (USD1.9 billion) for last year in a statement, a 4.6% increase on 2015’s figure and in line with its own and analysts’ expectations.

“In a very demanding market environment, we successfully kept the Lufthansa Group’s margins at their record prior-year levels,” chief executive Carsten Spohr commented. Read more

Lufthansa ends wage battle

March 16, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, EUROPE, News

FRANKFURT, 16 March 2017: German airline group Lufthansa and pilots’ union Cockpit said Wednesday they had struck a new deal to end a years-long battle over pay, pensions and jobs.

Under the agreement, some 5,400 pilots flying for Lufthansa, Lufthansa Cargo, and low-cost subsidiary Germanwings will enjoy a salary increase of 11.4% over a period from May 2012 to June 2022.

The airlines will also pay flight crew a one-off bonus of 1.8 months’ salary. Read more

British tourists suffer funny tummies

March 15, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, News

BANGKOK, 15 March 2017: British tourists are getting a bad name for cheating their tour operators with false claim that they were served spoiled food during their tour.

TravelNews Switzerland noted in a news report, earlier this week, that tour operators such as Thomas Cook were confronted with the problem of “thousands of British vacationers claiming compensation”.

Most of the complaints related to the quality of food that they consumed during the package tour holiday. Read more

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