SFO votes goes Airbnb’s way

November 13, 2015 by  
Filed under Hospitality, News, North America

SAN FRANCISCO, 13 November 2015: Airbnb dialled down its battle rhetoric, Wednesday, promising to pay taxes and not cut into long-term housing amid criticism it unfairly competes with hotels and has exacerbated a San Francisco housing crisis.

The surging home-sharing start-up released a so-called Community Compact in which it vowed to pay its “fair share” of hotel and tourist taxes.

It also pledged to be transparent with information about home sharing activity, and to work to prevent short-term rentals from biting into the availability of long-term housing.

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China bid for Starwood?

October 28, 2015 by  
Filed under Hospitality, News, North America

NEW YORK, 29 October 2015: A trio of Chinese companies are consulting the Chinese government on a possible bid for US hotel giant Starwood, the Wall Street Journal reported earlier this week.

Shanghai Jin Jiang International Hotels, HNA Group and sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corp. have all expressed interest to the government in bidding for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, the Journal said, citing unnamed sources.

Starwood’s properties include the Sheraton, Westin and W hotel chains. The company currently has some 1,270 properties in 100 countries.

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Qatar spreads its wings

October 28, 2015 by  
Filed under News, North America

LOS ANGELES, 28 October 2015: Thousands of Los Angeles residents turned out to enjoy the “Discover Qatar Airways” pop-up event, hosted  last weekend at a downtown venue in the west coast city.

The event celebrated the upcoming daily, nonstop service between Hamad International Airport in Doha and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), scheduled to commence 1 January, 2016. Read more

US arrests online pimps

August 26, 2015 by  
Filed under News, North America

NEW YORK, 26 August 2015: Seven New Yorkers were arrested and charged with promoting male prostitution on Tuesday through an “Internet brothel” offering sex to paid-subscribers across the world, prosecutors said.

The website offered services at destinations as far away as Thailand and even Afghanistan.

Website rentboy.com hosts thousands of paid advertisements from men, primarily offering prostitution internationally and in cities across the United States, prosecutors said.

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Disney Shanghai in peek preview

August 17, 2015 by  
Filed under News, North America

ANAHEIM, 17 August 2015: Plans for a new theme park in Shanghai and a Florida attraction inspired by the blockbuster film “Avatar” stole the show Friday at the kick-off of a convention for fans of all things Disney.

While the Shanghai Disneyland Park is only due to open next year, visitors of the D23 Expo got an early tease of what to expect — Chinese lanterns, traditional tea house-themed restaurants, Disney characters cast as the signs of the Chinese Zodiac and Treasure Cove, the first pirate-themed land in a Disney park.

The park is the second to open in the vast greater China market, after one in Hong Kong.

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e-cigs cause fires

June 17, 2015 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, North America

OTTAWA, 17 June 2015: The International Civil Aviation Organisation announced, Monday, a ban on e-cigarettes in checked baggage, following reports they have sparked fires in aircraft cargo areas.

Airline passengers and crew are encouraged instead to carry the devices in the cabin “so that potential incidents could be immediately dealt with,” said the UN agency.

The ICAO, based in Montreal, works with 191 member states and airlines to develop international standards and safety regulations.

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Sabre latest trend report

June 15, 2015 by  
Filed under News, North America

SOUTHLAKE, TEXAS, 15 June 2015: Sabre Corporation released a new travel trend report Friday that outlines a path to help hoteliers successfully retail to modern travellers.

The Sabre Report, The Future of Hotel Booking – A Guide to Hotel Retailing, explores recent technological innovations within retail, technology, media and travel industries.

It offers practical recommendations to help hotels apply practices that will lead to a successful retailing strategy.

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Air travellers wish list

June 11, 2015 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, North America

MIAMI BEACH, 11 June 2015: What does the modern air traveller want? Is it the perfect sized carry-on? A wearable device that tells you how to avoid jet lag? Free Wi-Fi? Cheap flights? Better service?

Airlines are struggling to keep pace with the finicky desires of today’s passengers, many of whom are constantly connected to a mobile device and want something special on each trip.

During a panel discussion Tuesday at the annual meeting of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the largest trade group for airline executives, hundreds of industry representatives were asked in a quick informal poll how many think airlines are doing a good job meeting passenger demands.

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US airport security under fire

June 10, 2015 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, North America

WASHINGTON, 10 June 2015: The agency in charge of US transportation security came under renewed fire, Tuesday, as a report revealed that American airports had hired dozens of people with terror links.

The Transportation Security Agency is already reeling after a recent Department of Homeland Security report found that investigators could sneak fake bombs and weaponry through security with a 95% success rate.

Homeland Security Inspector General John Roth discussed before lawmakers his new report that found the TSA failed to detect at least 73 people with links to terrorism who were hired by US airports.

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IATA: North American airlines lead in profits

June 10, 2015 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, North America

MIAMI BEACH, 10 June 2015: As fuel prices drop and more planes fly filled to capacity, North America is leading the airline industry in profits while much of the world still struggles, officials said Monday.

Airlines are projected to make USD29.3 billion in collective profit on revenues of USD727 billion in 2015, said, International Air Transport Association director general, Tony Tyler, at the group’s annual meeting in Miami Beach, Florida.

Earlier profit projections had estimated a year-end profit of USD25 billion for the industry as a whole.

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