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Easyjet Allocated Seating Trial

Posted on Tuesday, August 14, 2012

  I think that most of us would say that budget air travel has become more stressful and not so "budget" in recent years. In fact I remember pre Ryanair, Easyjet and Germanwings when a flight to Aarhus with SAS was between £150 – £200 return, and by the time you load on your luggage, admin, web check-in charges, credit card fees, allocated seat, a snack on board your flight and the ridiculous and patronising fines put in place for forgetting or losing the print out for your boarding pass, we come fairly close to that figure anyway. In fact, quickly checking, a return flight to Aarhus on Ryanair on Aug 24th returning 27th (2012) with one bag came out at £218.78. But for me, the real difference between the likes of SAS or BA to the “budget” airlines...

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UK Border staff strike off

Posted on Wednesday, July 25, 2012

It was reported today that the government had sought a High Court injunction against the proposed strike by border staff that was due to start tomorrow, just a day before the opening of the London Olympics, based on “procedural errors” in the PCS’s ballot. But PCS union leaders called the strike off with just 45 minutes to the start of the hearing. PCS leader Mark Serwotka said "major progress" had been made and claimed that 1100 jobs would be created, but the government claims they know nothing of it. Immigration minister Damian Green said in an interview on the BBC today he didn’t recognise those figures and said “that they break it down to 300 new jobs in the passport service, but at the moment there are 319 vacancies in the passport service and what was said in the...

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OFT step in and rule that Airline headline prices must include debit card surcharges

Posted on Thursday, July 5, 2012

The OFT (Office of Fair Trading) have announced today (5th July 2012) that following an OFT enforcement action,  12 airlines have had to agree to include debit card surcharges in the headline price. These charges have until now been held back until the end of the purchase process and usually after a raft of “optional extras” such as hold luggage (£50 for 15kg on Ryanair), insurance, reserved seating, cabin bag, sports/musical/infant equipment, insurance and sometimes car hire and hotel options. It's no wonder that the OFT have stepped in.   The airlines who were subject to an OFT consumer law investigation and have now agreed to change their practices are Aer Lingus, BMI Baby, Eastern Airways, easyJet, Flybe, German Wings, Jet2, Lufthansa, Ryanair, Thomas Cook, Thomson (TUI) and Wizz Air.   The OFT believe that the debit card is...

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bmibaby to close

Posted on Friday, May 4, 2012

It has been confirmed that Bmibaby is to close its doors this september. It was originally hoped that a buyer would come in and save the company and its 470 employees. bmibaby flights to and from Belfast will end on 11 June, along with services from East Midlands to Amsterdam, Paris, Geneva, Nice, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Newquay, and from Birmingham to Knock and Amsterdam.   The airline said customers could still book summer holiday flights from East Midlands and Birmingham. Bmi mainline services from Belfast to London will continue.     IAG (International Airlines Group) who are also British Airways parent company, only bought bmi and bmibaby last month from Lufthansa, but maintained that the budget airlines were never part of their long term plans and the takeover could eventually cost over 2,000 jobs across the group. However, Willie...

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Brits 3rd in the “World’s Rudest” poll

Posted on Thursday, April 12, 2012

According to a recent poll conducted by Skyscanner, us Brits are one of the rudest nation of tourists in the world, beaten only by the French and the Russians with 19% and 17% respectively.   It is also claimed that the Russians with their recently relaxed visa laws and climbing economy are taking more holidays in destinations popular with Brits such as the Mediterranean. In fact, Skycanner tell us that Russian flight searches for these destinations are up over 200% every year. And contrary to what many believe, the stereotype of the sun-lounge loving German tourists are not as rude as us. And the big surpise is that the Chinese are in the top 5 with 4.3%. But how much of this is down to plain old fashioned rudeness rather than a misunderstanding of other languages and or cultures?...

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Stansted Airport Easter Strike Suspended

Posted on Tuesday, April 3, 2012

  Stansted Airport Easter Strike Suspended It seems that while talks between the GMB, Unite unions and Swissport continue, the threatened strike by ground handling staff at Stansted airport at Easter as been suspended. Originally, members and 150 Swissport handlers had backed a 3 day strike claiming shift changes could cut their pay by up to £1000. The strike action over Easter would have caused misery for thousands of travellers.  A statement released after today’s talks said: “We are pleased that passengers and families travelling over the Easter weekend will no longer face potential disruption.   “We will continue our talks in an attempt to reach a joint consensus that ensures we understand our commercial challenges and balance the need for the work life balance of our employees.”   Talks will continue later this month.      ...

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