Monthly Archives: October 2012

This Week in Travel & Tourism — 10/22/2012


MGM gets approval for Macau casino-hotel

MGM Resorts International received approval from the Macau government to open its second hotel-casino on the China-controlled group of islands. MGM China Holdings, a joint venture between MGM Resorts and Hong Kong billionaire Pansy Ho, will build a $2.5 billion, 1,600-room hotel-casino on Macau’s Cotai Strip. Plans call for 2,500 slot machines and 500 gaming tables.

Airlift priority for Jamaica

The island of Jamaica is in good shape for the upcoming winter season, with advance bookings at many resorts pacing ahead of a year ago at this time.


PreCheck will check in at Honolulu airport

Honolulu Airport was expected to launch the Transportation Security Administration’s PreCheck program this week. Not all airlines participate in the program, and passengers must be eligible to go through an initial screening in order to participate.

Orlando, Fla., hotel activity in September was lower than a year ago

The hotel market in Orlando, Fla., declined in September, as 55.2% of rooms were filled compared with 56.2% the previous year, according to Smith Travel Research. The average daily rate decreased 1.4%, to $80.35, as children went back to school and fewer large-scale events took place.


US Airways Group reports record Q3 profit

US Airways Group posted a record third-quarter net profit of $245 million, up from $76 million a year earlier. Excluding special items totaling $192 million, the result was the second-best third quarter in the company’s history.

Delta posts $1B third-quarter profit

Delta Air Lines reported a third-quarter net profit of just more than $1 billion, aided by $279 million in one-time items. The result compared to a $549 million profit a year earlier.

Southwest will take over AirTran flights in 4 cities next year

Southwest Airlines has announced that starting in April, AirTran service at airports in Flint, Mich.; Portland, Maine; Rochester, N.Y.; and Charlotte, N.C. will be converted into flights under the Southwest brand. Southwest also unveiled new services that will launch also in April, including daily service between Boston and Kansas City, Mo., and between Houston and Pittsburgh.

Spirit: We don’t want you to pay our $100 carry-on fee

Spirit Airlines will be charging a $100 carry-on fee to passengers who do not pre-pay for bags. Some industry experts say it could hurt business, but Spirit says the fee will dissuade passengers from slowing the check-in process with last-minute bags.

This Week in Travel & Tourism — 10/8/2012


Delta eyes New York market with added routes, landing spots

Delta Air Lines has added more than 100 daily flights at La Guardia Airport in New York, a move that it hopes will increase market share in the region. The airline this year acquired landing spots from US Airways. “We’re trying to win New York. That’s really what this expansion is about,” said Gail Grimmett, a Delta executive.

Delta will cut number of nonstop flights to Europe

Delta Air Lines has announced that it is reducing the number of nonstop flights to European destinations including Barcelona, Spain, and Milan, Italy. The carrier says it will be shifting its capacity toward connecting flights through Paris, where it plans to add more flights in partnership with Air France.

Delta Air Lines plans expansion of flights from Seattle to Asia

Delta Air Lines is looking to capitalize on its partnership with Alaska Airlines to add flights from Seattle. The plan includes expanded service to Asian destinations such as Shanghai, China, and proposed service to Tokyo-Haneda, Japan.

Row 44, Allegiant team up for streaming success

Allegiant Travel Company subsidiary Allegiant Air will launch Row 44’s Video-On-Demand service on all of its Boeing 757 aircraft. It will be the first carrier to use the wireless, streaming in-flight entertainment system.


In Sin City, green goes beyond what you gamble

Las Vegas hotels are making even more of an effort to go green as tourists are in the market for sustainable hotels. MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment and Las Vegas Sands have incorporated sustainable practices into their business models. MGM’s CenterCity project, for example, earned six U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold certifications. Hotels in the city have embraced composting, rootop gardens, recycling and water-saving measures.


Cruise sellers expect improved business in Q4, 2013

Many travel agents reported weak business in the cruise segment during the third quarter, brought about by competitive pricing and slow bookings. However, agents’ optimism is high for the year’s remaining quarter, with prices expected to regain strength going into 2013. “There’s pent-up demand, an end in sight to the presidential election, and bookings are pretty attractive,” said Carolyn Spencer Brown of Cruise Critic.

This Week in Travel & Tourism — 9/24/2012


Virgin America to offer nonstop flight from N.Y. to Calif. for winter

Virgin America plans to add a nonstop route from New York’s JFK airport to Palm Springs, Calif., beginning Dec. 22. The service will run on Saturdays throughout the winter season. “We’re pleased to be expanding in the market and offering a new nonstop option for travelers coming from New York to the desert this winter,” said John MacLeod, a senior vice president at Virgin America.

British Airways eyes no-wait electronic check-in

British Airways has developed a system that checks passengers in the day before their trip, selects their seat and sends a boarding pass electronically. The system, which would eliminate the need to check in at airports, will roll out on a trial basis.

U.S. airlines collect $932 million in bag fees in Q2

U.S. passenger airlines collected a total of $932 million in baggage fees in the second quarter, up from $816 million in the first quarter, according to figures released by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics on Tuesday.

InterJet will launch Orange Country-Mexico City flights

InterJet plans to offer daily nonstop flights from John Wayne Airport in Orange County, Calif., to Mexico City and Guadalajara in mid-October.


More agents are collaborating with OTA network, Expedia leader says

Expedia’s Travel Agent Affiliate Program is enjoying healthy growth in the ranks of its affiliated traditional travel agencies, and agents are boosting engagement with its platform, says Diego Pedrani, a director at Expedia Worldwide. “We currently work with more than 25,000 travel agency affiliates worldwide, and new agent signups continue to accelerate. We signed double the number of agents in the first three months of 2012 compared to the previous year,” Pedrani said.


2 decks of relaxation await on Norwegian Breakaway

Norwegian Cruise Line will debut its 23,000-square-foot, two-floor Mandara Spa on the Norwegian Breakaway. The spa will feature 13 heated loungers, a salt room, vitality pool, whirlpools, sauna, solarium, steam room, salon and barber shop. It will include 22 treatment rooms and offer cosmetic medical treatments including Botox injections.


Six Vegas restaurants earn top honors from Wine Spectator

Six Las Vegas restaurants were honored with Wine Spectator’s Grand Award, the top honor in the publication’s annual Restaurant Wine List Awards. Aureole Las Vegas (at Mandalay Bay); Delmonico Steakhouse and Piero Selvaggio Valentino (both at the Venetian); Joel Robuchon Restaurant (MGM Grand); Picasso (Bellagio); and Restaurant Guy Savoy (Caesars Palace) earned Grand Award status.