SITASITA introduces fast, secure connectivity to Kenya AirwaysSITA, the global air transport communications provider, is to roll out faster, new-generation connectivity across Kenya Airways’ global network, a vital investment in infrastructure needed to support the airline’s renewed focus on cost optimization and airline modernization.Among Africa’s top three airlines, Kenya Airways is seeking to leverage SITA’s latest communication technology to drive new efficiencies in the management of its route network while ensuring the best passenger experience across the airline’s global footprint.Through SITA Connect, the airline will have access to high-speed, secure connectivity, linking employees and sales offices around the world to Kenya Airways’ central systems and applications to manage everything from reservations, check-in and boarding.With a global presence, SITA is able to meet the airline’s complete connectivity requirements with tailored solutions for each location. Central to the delivery is SITA’s AirportHub™, a shared connectivity platform already used in more than 300 airports in over 100 countries. Using SITA’s common-use infrastructure eliminates the complexity of dealing with local telecom providers while enabling Kenya Airways to connect securely to their central systems and applications from any airport in the AirportHub network.Mbuvi Ngunze, Group MD and CEO of Kenya Airways said: “As we seek to position Kenya Airways for the future, we needed a single communications partner that could take care of all our connectivity requirements no matter where we operate. SITA, with its truly global footprint and experience, provided us with a world-class solution supported by a local presence in each destination, connecting even the furthest outstation to our hub in Nairobi.”Hani El-Assaad, SITA President, Middle East, India and Africa said: “Today connectivity on demand is the lifeblood of any airline, ensuring the smooth and rapid exchange of information needed to support effective operations no matter where in the world an airline operates, the size of their operation or their business model. We have used our global experience and presence to provide Kenya Airways with the latest communication solution that is able to cater to their own specific requirements.”Kenya Airways flies to 53 destinations including 43 destinations in Africa, carrying more than 4 million passengers every year. SITASource = SITA
Month: August 2019
L-R Paul Millan, Traveltek Regional Director, Tony Wilson, Breakaway General Manager, Anthony Cassar, Breakaway Managing DirectorBreakaway Travelclub’s NEW cruise booking engine.Breakaway Travelclub has today launched its NEW cruise booking engine which, an industry first, allows travel industry employees to search live availability and instantly book confirmed space cruises at industry rates.Anthony Cassar, Managing Director of Breakaway Travelclub, said “we have brought together the latest online technology with our expanded range of international industry rate cruises, to deliver live booking capability 24/7, for our verified industry members. This is always supported by our dedicated team of travel consultants ready to help”.Breakaway’s innovative new platform is powered by technology partner Traveltek whose Regional Director Paul Millan said “Traveltek are proud to partner with Breakaway Travelclub to launch an innovative cruise booking solution for the Australian & New Zealand travel industry. Through collaboration with some of the region’s leading cruise lines, travel industry members can now search and book industry rates online with just a few simple clicks”.A series of special deals are also on offer to launch the new site, including heavily discounted industry rates on Carnival Cruise Lines Australia and Royal Caribbean Cruises sailings, both bookable with instant confirmation 24/7. Breakaway Travelclub for more information, visitSource = Breakaway Travelclub
SWAPASWAPA condemns DOT approval of Norwegian Foreign Air Carrier PermitThe Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) strongly condemn the short-sighted, under-cover-of-darkness decision by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to approve a foreign air carrier permit to Norwegian Air International (NAI). This anti-worker decision runs afoul of the very rules that the Obama Administration itself negotiated and championed only six years ago.“By approving NAI’s application despite it being in direct violation of Article 17 bis of the EU-US Open Skies Agreement, the Obama Administration has unilaterally undermined every trade agreement the U.S. has ever signed – including the Open Skies agreements we have with more than 100 countries across the globe,” said SWAPA President, Captain Jon Weaks. “In the process, President Obama and Secretary Foxx have turned their backs on the tens of thousands of American workers employed in the aviation industry.”“To be clear, this decision gives a single foreign carrier an advantage unavailable to a single one of its competitors – including those in the U.S.,” explained Captain Weaks. “Norwegian Air International will possess an unparalleled advantage over U.S. carriers if allowed to proceed with its Flag of Convenience scheme. This reckless decision sets a dangerous precedent in aviation and further underscores the unwillingness to ensure a level playing field for American workers when executing trade agreements that have been a hallmark of the Obama Administration.”The decision comes on the heels of the American people electing a new president who has vowed to stand up for American workers and negotiate from a position of strength. Just as he did with the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Indiana Carrier plant, the men and women of SWAPA call upon President-elect Trump to intervene in the NAI decision and undo yet another trade blunder by President Obama.Weaks continued, “SWAPA is committed to protecting the careers of SWAPA pilots and will oppose any trade agreement that places U.S. workers at a disadvantage to foreign competitors. I urge the President-elect to weigh-in on this evening’s ill-advised decision and reverse the approval of NAI’s application. President Obama has yet again proven that he is unwilling to enforce trade agreements and protect U.S. workers, and SWAPA hopes that President-elect Trump will seize the opportunity to undo another Obama mistake.”Norwegian Air Shuttle (NAS), NAI’s parent company, currently flies to the U.S. using Norwegian crews, operating under Norway’s labor and social laws. NAS could expand its current operation to meet its growth plans but instead chooses to evade Norwegian labor and social laws and establish an Irish-based subsidiary. This scheme is in direct violation of Article 17 bis of the U.S.-EU Open Skies agreement.Finally, Captain Weaks noted that “the NAI subsidiary and its use of contract workers hired by a foreign staffing agency also poses potential serious safety risks. Crewmembers working under employment contracts with no direct line of communication to airline management often lack the ability to highlight potential safety or operational issues. Clear and open communication between frontline operators and airline management is critical to running a safe and efficient airline.”SWAPA condemns the DOT decision and calls upon President-elect Trump to preserve a fair and level playing field for U.S. workers by denying NAI the Foreign Carrier Permit unjustly awarded by President Obama.Located in Dallas, Texas, the Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) is a non-profit employee organization representing the more than 8,400 pilots of Southwest Airlines. SWAPA works to provide a secure and rewarding career for Southwest pilots and their families through negotiating contracts, defending contractual rights and actively promoting professionalism and safety. SWAPASource = Southwest Airlines
Lonely Planet Names Australia’s Red Centre One of 2019’s Top RegionsGlobal travel authority Lonely Planet has chosen The Red Centre, Australia as one of the world’s Top 10 Regions for next year in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2019, released this morning.Best in Travel 2019 is Lonely Planet’s 14th annual agenda-setting collection of the world’s hottest destinations, experiences and trends for the year ahead. The best-selling inspirational travel yearbook highlights the top 10 regions, cities and countries that Lonely Planet’s experts recommend travellers experience in 2019.The Red Centre, Australia is ranked fourth on the book’s list of Top 10 Regions 2019.“At the spiritual heart of Australia’s Red Centre is the country’s most recognised natural wonder, Uluru,” Lonely Planet says. “In 2019, this sacred site is finally closing to climbers, almost 150 years after explorers decided to ‘conquer the rock’. Instead, visitors will find that this World Heritage site – recognised for its outstanding natural and cultural values – conquers them.”“Learn about the unique world view of the traditional custodians of this place,” the book encourages, “and see the stars and the desert with new eyes. Explore Uluru-Kata Tjuta (Ayers Rock and the Olgas), Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon) and Alice Springs nearby.”Lonely Planet’s Top 10 Regions for 2019 are:1. Piedmont, Italy2. The Catskills, USA3. Northern Peru4. The Red Centre, Australia5. Scotland’s Highlands and Islands6. Russian Far East7. Gujarat, India8. Manitoba, Canada9. Normandy, France10. Elqui Valley, ChileThe Northern Territory also features on another of the book’s top 10 lists for 2019 – Best New Openings – #3 Litchfield National Park: “The most visited park in Australia’s Top End, Litchfield is about to undergo extensive improvements to make it even more attractive to visitors seeking adventure. In total, there will be five new swimming spots, at least three new campgrounds and new routes for both mountain biking and 4WDs.”Other Australian destinations and attractions to be ranked on Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2019 lists are:Best New Places to Stay – #9 The Tasman, Hobart: “The Tasman’s doors aren’t opening until 3 June 2019 but it’ll be worth the wait. This luxury hotel is to be set within a group of heritage buildings, including Hobart’s grand, Georgian-style St Mary’s Hospital, built in the 1800s. The historical elements will be merged with modern artworks and cutting-edge glass and steel structures.”Best New Food Experiences – #4 Laura, Mornington Peninsula: “This sophisticated merging of food, wine and art on Point Leo Estate enjoys phenomenal sunsets from all angles. Named after a 7m-high cast-iron statue by Spanish sculptor Jaume Plensa, Laura offers views across sparkling Western Port Bay and its sculpture park, one of Australia’s largest privately owned collections.”Best New Attractions for Kids – #2 Live Wire Park, Victoria: “Billing itself as the ‘ultimate elevated adventure’, the park allows children aged between seven and 15 to take part in the Short Circuit, where they have to complete 26 activities involving obstacle courses and suspended trails through the Otway treetops.”In addition, Darwin’s Royal Flying Doctor Service attraction is highlighted in the book’s “Top Trends” feature on “Augmented Attractions”, while Queensland’s Electric Super Highway is showcased as one the “The Great Places for Electric Road-Tripping”.Each year, Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel lists start with nominations from Lonely Planet’s vast community of editors, researchers, locals and influencers, and ultimately are decided and ranked by a panel of judges. The outcome is an eclectic list of destinations with unique, compelling and topical reasons to visit in the year ahead – as well as underlying travel trends to look for.“These are the places to experience in 2019”, says Lonely Planet’s spokesperson Chris Zeiher. “They might be coming into their own, celebrating a once-in-a-lifetime event or simply have been overlooked for too long – whatever the reason, now is the time to plan a trip.”Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2019 landing page, www.lonelyplanet.com/best-in-travel, features tips and videos on visiting each destination as well as a chance to win a trip for two to Lonely Planet’s number-one city for 2019, Copenhagen. Most of the top 10 cities can also be explored with Lonely Planet’s Guides app.Other Best in Travel 2019 highlights include:Top 10 Countries 2019Sri LankaGermanyZimbabwePanamaKyrgyzstanJordanIndonesiaBelarusSão Tomé and PríncipeBelizeTop 10 Cities 2019Copenhagen, DenmarkShēnzhèn, ChinaNovi Sad, SerbiaMiami, Florida, USAKathmandu, NepalMexico City, MexicoDakar, SenegalSeattle, USAZadar, CroatiaMeknès, MoroccoBest Value Destinations 2019Southern Nile Valley, EgyptŁódź, PolandGreat Smoky Mountains National Park, USAMaldivesHouston, USAArgentinaBangladeshAlbaniaEcuadorSloveniaLonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2019Embargo: 10:01am (AEDT) / 8:31am (ACST), 23 October 2018Landing page: www.lonelyplanet.com/best-in-travelImages: Top 10 countries, cities, regions and best value lists available for media use with permissionInterviews: Lonely Planet spokesperson Chris Zeiher is available for interview on requestBehind-the-scenes: www.lonelyplanet.com/blog/2018/10/23/making-best-in-travelTrip competition: Chance to win a trip for two to Copenhagen, in association with Booking.com, Viator and World NomadsHashtag: #BestinTravelAbout Lonely PlanetLonely Planet is a leading travel media company and the world’s number one travel guidebook brand, providing both inspiring and trustworthy information for every kind of traveller since 1973. Over the past four decades, we’ve printed over 145 million guidebooks and grown a dedicated, passionate global community of travellers. Lonely Planet can be found on lonelyplanet.com, mobile, video and in 14 languages, nine international magazines, armchair and lifestyle books, ebooks and more. Visit us at lonelyplanet.com and join our 14 million followers on Facebook (facebook.com/lonelyplanet), Twitter (@lonelyplanet), Instagram (instagram.com/lonelyplanet) and Snapchat (@lonely.planet).Source = Lonely Planet
Ethiopian Airlines announced that it has finalised preparations to start double daily flights to Mumbai International Airport starting March 2015. The airline currently has daily flights to Mumbai and New Delhi.Both daily flights to Mumbai will be operated with the ultra-modern B787 Dreamliner aircraft, which offers passengers unparalleled onboard comfort with the largest windows in the sky, higher level of cabin air humidity greatly reducing fatigue, high ceiling, the latest in-flight entertainment system and much reduced noise.With the double daily flights to Mumbai, Ethiopian aims to provide optimal connectivity options for passengers travelling between India and its 49 destinations in Africa.Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian Airlines Group said, “We are very bullish on the prospects of Africa-India market. By increasing our frequency to double daily to Mumbai and expanding our code share agreement with Air India, fellow Star Alliance partner with the inclusion of domestic points in India and major destinations in Africa, we aim to become the airline of choice for travel between Africa and India by offering seamless and convenient connections thru our main hub in Addis. Going forward, we plan to increase our current frequency to New Delhi and start operations to additional destinations in southern India.”
Tourism Australia is revamping its Aussie Specialist Program (ASP), in a move aimed at giving travel sellers globally the knowledge and skills to better promote and sell Australia.Details of the new-look program were unveiled on June 22 at this year’s Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE15) in Melbourne.The relaunch follows an extensive review of the global online training program and includes a new digital platform as well as training resources which will be shared by Tourism Australia and all eight of its state and territory tourism partners.Tourism Australia Managing Director John O’Sullivan said the changes were critical to the industry achieving its Tourism 2020 goals.Fundamental to the changes is a new digital platform, including a new website which features interactive training modules, itinerary suggestions, factsheets, latest industry news updates, destination FAQs and an interactive map. The site works across all mobile devices.As part of the ASP website relaunch, Tourism Australia’s Premier Aussie Specialist program will be extended to all key markets. The program, which incorporates the very top sellers within the Aussie Specialist Program, was previously only available in four key markets.In addition to the new website, a team of Aussie Specialist trainers is being recruited to help provide face-to-face training in key markets for frontline travel sellers.O’Sullivan said that underlying the changes was a fundamental recognition of the vital role played by frontline travel sellers in selling Australia. “Our research and experience tells us that traditional distribution channels remain critically important when it comes to selling Australia. Through these changes we are better equipping travel sellers with the knowledge and the skills to promote and sell Australia more effectively,” said O’Sullivan.O’Sullivan said a key principle behind the relaunch had been securing the support of all state and territory tourism bodies, enabling Australia to speak with “one voice” when promoting the country and its tourism product to the world.“The feedback that we have had from industry is that they want to see all levels of Government working more collaboratively in relation to international distribution, and that has certainly been central to our thinking as we have sought to improve the program,” O’Sullivan added.The program will be available in 11 languages and rolled out progressively across all markets over six months, starting August 2015.
Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) recently announced the appointment of Alfa Destination Marketing Private Limited as its representative firm in India to manage travel trade strategy, public relations and industry alignment across both countries.India is proven to be a strong market for Penang and is one of the top five markets for business events in Penang. Over the past year, Penang has received encouraging interest from event planners and conference organisers. In 2017, 13% of business events of Asia Pacific origin were from India, contributing RM 190 million or USD 46 million. In 2018, Penang’s largest business event – V-CON 2018 – which saw a participation of 16,000 delegates from around the world reported that 80% of their delegates were from India. The number of Indian travellers flying into Penang has also increased in recent years. The Penang Immigration Department reported that for the period between January to November 2018, 7,250 Indian travellers flew into the Penang International Airport, compared to 6,569 in the same period in 2017. The 10.37% increase came despite there not being direct flights between Penang and India.To further attract the Indian outbound meetings and conference market, PCEB has introduced attractive support packages specially tailored for India.PCEB recently held the 2nd sales and media mission in India with partners from the Penang meeting with over 1000 travel trade contacts and media across four cities – Chennai, Ahmedabad, Mumbai and New Delhi.“We are so pleased and excited to add Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau to our existing client portfolio. Alfa’s focus will be to align and enhance the ‘Experiences Unfiltered’ campaign under PCEB through cooperative strategies with key wholesale, airline and trade partners, as well as increase awareness with key media stakeholders in India. Ultimately, this will increase the length of stay and contribute to grow the number of Indian visitors to Penang,” commented Kapil Pant, Director, Alfa Destinations Marketing Private Limited.With an estimated RM 685 million in development revenue in 2018 and more than 700 hotel rooms in the pipeline, there are many new ways for Indian families to experience the state.“We are proud to appoint Alfa Representatives in continuing our marketing and promotional efforts in India and its subcontinent markets. With their expertise of over 23 years, we look forward to welcoming more businesses from this segment to Penang,” said Ashwin Gunasekeran, Chief Executive Officer for Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau.
in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing, Technology Share Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2012-06-15 Abby Gregory Late Night Funnyman Lists Historic Los Angeles Home June 15, 2012 425 Views Another comedian is set to sell his California estate. Funnyman and host of “”The Late, Late Show””:www.cbs.com/shows/late_late_show/ on CBS, Craig Ferguson, has put his Los Angeles home “”on the market””:http://luxe.truliablog.com/2012/06/craig-ferguson-selling-home/ for $1.995 million. The property, which is located in the city’s Beachwood Canyon area, was built in the 1930s, and the Spanish-style villa is said to reflect a classic, Old Hollywood aesthetic. The 2,385-square-foot house is well preserved, and the home still features its original stained glass windows, tile, and hardwoods. According to “”Trulia Luxe””:http://luxe.truliablog.com/2012/06/craig-ferguson-selling-home/, Ferguson is already on the move, having purchased a $4.1 million Craftsmen home on nearby Canyon Drive in April.[COLUMN_BREAK][IMAGE]
in Government, Secondary Market, Servicing Fannie, Freddie Directed to Restrict Force-Placed Insurance Practices Share The “”Federal Housing Finance Agency””:http://www.fhfa.gov (FHFA) announced Tuesday that it has directed the GSEs to prohibit servicers from being reimbursed for expenses associated with captive reinsurance arrangements. The announcement follows a notice that FHFA published in the Federal Register last March regarding its views on these lender-placed insurance practices and accepting public input. The notice also cited concerns that the practices expose Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to potential losses as well as litigation and reputation risks. [IMAGE][COLUMN_BREAK]””FHFA remains concerned about the cost of lender-placed insurance for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and consumers,”” said Edward DeMarco, acting director of FHFA. “”One of our primary responsibilities as conservator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is to preserve and conserve their assets on behalf of taxpayers. This directive is intended to reduce their costs as we consider additional measures.”” FHFA also established a regulatory working group consisting of federal and state regulatory agencies to ensure that all parties with an interest and role in the subject of lender-placed insurance are engaged in the discussions. The views of the working group were carefully considered along with the more than 30 replies FHFA received from consumer advocates, state regulators, lender-placed insurance carriers, servicers, managing general agents, individuals, and trade associations in response to the notice. This recent action reflects this input. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will provide aligned guidance to sellers and servicers to prohibit these practices, including implementation schedules. November 5, 2013 422 Views Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac Mortgage Insurance 2013-11-05 Ashley Harris
in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News Leading Economic Indicators Up for Fourth Straight Month June 20, 2014 435 Views Conference Board Federal Reserve Forecast GDP Leading Economic Indicators 2014-06-20 Tory Barringer A gauge of leading economic indicators points to a more promising second half of the year after a lackluster first half.The Conference Board’s Leading Economic Index (LEI), which tracks signs of future developments, rose 0.5 percent in May to 101.7, building on gains of 0.3 percent in April and 1.0 percent in March.The index measures 10 major components, including average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance, average consumer expectations for business conditions, and building permits for new private housing. Ataman Ozyildirim, an economist for the Conference Board, said May’s increase—the fourth straight one—was “broad based.””Housing permits held the index back slightly but the LEI still points to an expanding economy and its pace may even pick up in the second half of the year,” Ozyildirim said.Both the coincident and lagging indices also improved, increasing 0.3 percent to 109.0 and 0.4 percent to 123.8, respectively.Looking forward, Conference Board economist Ken Goldstein says data suggest the economy “is finally moving up from a 2 percent growth trend to a more robust expansion.”How much more robust is a matter of debate, however. In its latest outlook, the Federal Open Market Committee projected economic growth of 2.1–2.3 percent for the entire year, a slowdown from forecasts of up to 3.0 percent growth predicted before news of a first-quarter contraction came out. Share