The latest A350 XWB aircraft from Airbus is making its way around the world on its certification tour. In Auckland on August 6, members of the Airbus team escorted local media throughout the innovative plane at Auckland Airport.
As well as the latest technology systems delivering a 25% reduction in fuel burn and operating costs compared to previous generation competing aircraft and reduction in CO2 emissions, the design features include an extra wide body cross section; touch screen IFE; large overhead compartments - apparently big enough to take a full size roller bag; numerous temperature control zones, draft free air conditioning and 6,000ft cabin pressure altitude.
For business class passengers, seats in the 1 x 2 x 1 configuration cabin feature lie flat beds and individual push button back massage options.
The A350 leaves Auckland for Santiago, then onto Sao Paulo, Moscow and Helsinki.
Adrian Littlewood, Auckland Airport chief executive (left) and Charles Berryman, Auckland Airport Iwi Relations manager (far right) with Isabelle Floret, senior VP Pacific for Airbus and Jean-Michel Roy, Airbus test pilot with their new All Blacks shirt and rugby ball.
Hot Off The Press
Over 500 guests from the travel industry, corporate and conferencing sectors travelled the world last night at the annual World of Accor at the Pullman, Auckland.
Forty Accor representatives from around New Zealand, Australia, South Pacific, Asia, UK, Europe and the Americas showed up to update and educate delegates on their market offerings.
The event coincided with Accor celebrating 20 years of business in New Zealand.
Garth Simmons, vice-president New Zealand, Pacific Islands & Japan with Accor, feels the situation in New Zealand is ‘reasonably buoyant.’
He says the low season is still an issue but he sees plenty to be positive about as the company celebrates 20 years here.
>>ProMag Publishing event manager Ally Eastaugh caught up with Chris Lethbridge, New Zealand regional manager, Emirates
Palazzo Versace took out the stand of the year award at Convene Q yesterday, with Saxton Speakers Bureau being named runner up. Judge Anna Stewart, of Queensland Conventions and Incentives, says the personnel on both stands were engaging and proactive. The women on the Palazzo Versace stand were 'dressed beautifully and reflected the brand'.Maui Jim Sunglasses and Sunshine Coast Businenss Events were both highly commended.
The awards topped off a successful inaugural event at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, which saw more than 200 local conference, meeting and event planners and 30 hosted buyers do business with some 60 exhibitors from around Queensland.
Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre General Manager, Bob O’Keeffe welcomed Convene Q 2014 to the centre’s calendar of events describing it as a boost for the local business events industry.
'It’s great to see a Queensland showcase back on the agenda providing an insight into the depth and diversity of what the Queensland business events industry has to offer and its unique appeal as an events destination.'
'The fact that it has attracted exhibitors from the Tropical North right down to the Tweed and buyers from all over Queensland, Australia and from New Zealand demonstrates the need for such an Expo.'
Easyway Holidays, a subsidiary of World Interline Tours, will discontinue operations effective July 30, 2014. World Interline Tours / Easyway Holidays was incorporated in 1980 and has served the industry these past 34 years, providing Positive Space holiday packages for many sectors of the tourism industry. Managing director Peter Black says that in today’s environment access and availability of industry travel privileges has changed markedly through many factors. 'Direct access via computerisation and direct offerings by many suppliers to the industry through their own channels has been a deciding influence on our ability to continue offering this special industry facility. Reservations will honour all existing bookings until all confirmed travel has been completed. The industry priced Easyway Travel Insurance will continue to be available on line or manually. On line can still be accessed through the web site, which will shortly be amended to reflect direct access to this on line facility.
Innovative Travel recently hosted the winners of its Turkey & Gallipoli sales incentive to the play ‘Once on Chunuk Bair’.
Robyn Galloway, Gail Littin and Lisa Wharfe, Pukekohe Travel; Gerald Patterson, HWT Howick; Elhamy Elzayat, Innovative Travel; Moira Walker, HWT Howick got to join in the fun
East Coast USA had its first sales mission to New Zealand mid-July, and delegates say it won’t be the last. Representatives from New York City, New York State, Washington DC and Florida hosted a travel trade function and then met with product managers and media in business to business sessions at The Nathan Club in Auckland.
In 2013, New York City welcomed 26,000 visitors from New Zealand and Christopher Heywood, senior vice president global communications of NYC & Company says there is definite potential fro growth from the market.
Malcolm McLeod, First Travel; Roxana Rivera, Newseum, Washington DC
Mandy Veale, Mondo Travel; Catharine Pear, Bike and Roll, Washington DC
Gabrielle Brown, House of Travel; Makiko Matsuda Healy, NYC & Company
Man Jae Kwon and Carl Amos, both Starwood Hotels and Resorts
Christopher Heywood, NYC & Company; Nadege Landa, Air New Zealand Holidays
New Caledonia Tourism's facebook competition has revealed a winner. Sheree Robinson from Waiuku, Auckland has won tickets for two flying Aircalin, return transfers in Noumea and accommodation at the Ramada Plaza.
In order to qualify to win the trip Facebook users had to simply LIKE the New Caledonia page to be in to win
General manager Simon Duffy says they received a great many LIKES and Sheree was selected from over 1500 entries. 'That is the beauty of Facebook as it generates interest and conversation and we have people talking about their experiences in New Caledonia. We see conversations about couples who went to Noumea for their honeymoon and want to return as well as the destination being on many 'wish lists'.
Kevin Blackford, industry stalwart and founder of TravelMemo is retiring at the beginning of August and passing on the baton to ProMag Publishing.
Affectionately known as The Memo, the bi-weekly news sheet was developed by Blackford 14 years ago and has become a crucial source of news for the travel industry ever since.
Blackford’s last issue of The Memo will be published on August 1, after which the ownership switches to ProMag Publishing – publisher of TRAVELinc and The TAANZ Book. ProMag also organises the annual Pacific Area Incentives and Conferences Expo (PAICE) and several other business events related expos and publishes Meeting Newz Magazine and annual Fiji book in partnership with Tourism Fiji.
ProMag director Stu Freeman says readers will see little change in TravelMemo and can be assured it is ‘business as usual’ with the publication.
‘The masthead will have a slight tweak and the publication will be know as TRAVELinc Memo,’ says Freeman. ‘But we will still keep Kevin’s format and live up to his history and reputation of delivering all of the news the travel industry needs on Tuesdays and Fridays. Obviously, we will be honouring all current commitments and working to strengthen existing relationships and develop new ones with the industry.’
Freeman will head the editorial team with journalists Ruth Scott and Aleisha Moore, while Cherie Final will manage advertising sales. Final says she excited to have the Memo as part of TRAVELinc's multi-platform offering. 'It makes sense to merge our existing TRAVELinc and The Memo into one digital publication which will supported by the indepth bi-monthly print magazine.
'I look forward to offering the high level of service that Kevin has provided to his clients over the years,' she adds.
Blackford says it has been ‘full on’ for him since TravelMemo moved from print to online a decade ago.
I’m looking forward to slowing down a bit and actually getting to travel again. I’m delighted that the Memo is going to a good home. I know Stu and his ProMag team will take it to new heights.’
For advertising bookings contact Cherie Final
Double award-winning chef and television host Robert Oliver has just wrapped up a week of filming in Fiji for series two of Real Pasifik show.
The Real Pasifik crew filmed two Fiji episodes earlier this year, one of which was based at the Volivoli Beach Resort in the north of Veti Levu Island.
The second series of Real Pasifik will hit New Zealand television screens in September, with the Pacific networks to follow.
Robert Oliver with VoliVoli Beach Resort owner, Nick Darling
Etihad Airways has announced plans to operate daily non-stop flights between Brisbane and Abu Dhabi from June 1, 2015.
The airline’s new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft, featuring first suite, business studio, and economy smart seat, will operate the flights.
The non-stop flights will replace the current daily one-stop services, which operate via Singapore with a two-class Airbus A330-200 aircraft.
Etihad Airways’ president and chief executive officer, James Hogan, said the introduction of non-stop flights was a response to strong two-way demand for travel on the Brisbane – Abu Dhabi sector and beyond to the Middle East, Africa and Europe.
Air Tahiti Nui services departing from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport to Los Angeles will be required to abide by new security directives from the United States Transportation Security Administration.
Effective immediately, customers departing Paris will be required to demonstrate that all electronic devices in their possession at the time of boarding, including telephones, tablets, laptops, e-books, game consoles, cameras and camcorders are in working order and functioning under battery power.
Checks will be made at the time of boarding, and equipment that is defective or not functioning will not be permitted aboard the aircraft.
Air Tahiti Nui General Manager New Zealand Mark Hutchinson said the security measures would only apply on the airline’s flights from Paris to Los Angeles and there had been no impact to flight schedules.
Meanwhile, it is recommended that passengers keep their battery chargers in their cabin baggage should they need to charge their equipment prior to boarding their flight.
For more information visit www.airtahitinui.co.nz or call the airline on 09 972 1217.
The Expedia group has entered into an agreement to acquire Wotif.com Holdings Limited (Wotif Group), an Australian-based online travel company, for total cash consideration of A$703 million or A$3.30 per share.
Dara Khosrowshahi, president and CEO of the Expedia group, says the Wotif Group is well positioned in the Asia-Pacific region with a portfolio of leading travel brands. ' The acquisition will allow both companies to continue driving growth opportunities by leveraging the strengths each brings to the table.'
Wotif Group operates online travel brands in the Asia-Pacific region including, Wotif.com, lastminute.com.au, travel.com.au, Asia Web Direct, LateStays.com, GoDo.com.au and Arnold Travel Technology.
The completion of the acquisition is subject to approval by the shareholders of Wotif.com Holdings Limited and other customary closing conditions, including applicable regulatory approvals. Subject to receipt of such approvals, the transaction is expected to close during the fourth quarter of 2014.
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