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One-on-One with Jonathan Spira, Editorial Director, Frequent Business Traveler

Jonathan Spira, editorial director, Frequent Business Traveler magazine

Jonathan Spira, editorial director, Frequent Business Traveler magazine

In this month’s One-on-One blog, ExpertFlyer talks with Jonathan Spira, Editorial Director, Frequent Business Traveler, a leading business and travel publication designed to cater to the travel and technology needs of the business traveler.  Frequent Business Traveler’s staff writers are frequent business travelers themselves. They provide readers with the best in travel information, including top hotels, airline cabins, restaurants, and automobiles because they are always on the go, looking for interesting hotels and restaurants to bring to their readers’ attention.

“We just published our findings on ‘Hotel Pet Peeves’ and even the best hotels fall flat when it comes to providing quiet rooms where business travelers can work and sleep.  While hotels are trying to best each other with in-room iPads and other technical wizardry, what business travelers really want is excellent service, great food, and a comfortable bed.”

Jonathan Spira, Editorial Director, Frequent Business Traveler

 

Frequent Business Traveler Magazine refers to its readers as being part of the iClass.  Can you talk about this new class of consumer and what their interests and expectations are when it comes to business and leisure travel?

The dawn of the Information Age brought with it a new group of consumers, one that thrives on information but also wants to have innovative ways to relax and disconnect.  This group, the iClass, eschews traditional signs of luxury and conspicuous consumption.  It’s a group of people that values function and that will pay more for things that will endure as well as once-in-a-lifetime experiences whose memories will endure.

Members of the iClass are bringing an entirely new ethos to travel and it’s evident everywhere you look. Continue reading →

“Did you know…Aer Lingus may get bought out by Ryanair?”

(Reuters)

Ryanair attempts Aer Lingus Buyout

Ryanair attempts Aer Lingus Buyout | Niall Carson/AP/File

 

Three times a charm?  That remains to be seen as Ryanair, Europe’s dominant budget airline carrier, attempts a third try at seizing control of  Irish rival, Aer Lingus.  Previous attempts have been blocked by the European Commission, but it has managed to build up a 29% stake in Aer Lingus since privatized in 2006.

Read the full story

“Did you know…ExpertFlyer’s Seat Alerts is a Business Traveler Innovation Awards Finalist?”

business traveler innovation awards

Business Traveler Innovation Awards

ExpertFlyer has been nominated for Seat Alerts by frequent business travelers and is a finalist for the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) and Fast Company Innovations of the Year Competition.

With your vote, Seat Alerts can win an Innovation Award for Traveler Comfort.  Please vote for us!

“Did you know…Delta’s new sub-economy fare means no more seat selection?”

Delta recently unveiled a new sub-economy bare-to-the-bone ticket option that’s gotten the attention of travel industry consumer advocates, like the Points Guy.

According to a recent story in the Chicago Tribune, If you like sitting in middle seats and having your travel party split up, you’ll love Delta Air Lines’ new “Basic Economy” class.

Delta Airlines logo

Delta Airlines

The Delta website describes some of the sacrificial features of the new low, low fares:

“We’re able to keep these fares low by limiting certain benefits found in other Delta Economy class fares. For example, Basic Economy fares are non refundable and no cancellations or changes may be made once the ticket is purchased. However, this fare is eligible for Risk Free Cancel and our Same-day Travel Changes programs.

Advance seat selection is not available with Basic Economy fares. Seat assignments will be auto-assigned for Basic Economy fare holders during check in.”

ExpertFlyer weighs in:

“As a company that exists largely to enable travelers to get the seat they want on an aircraft, we believe, for value travelers, the new “E-class” will be a way to save a few dollars, but for those who value more than just the cheapest ticket possible — like sitting with traveling companions — in this case, it’s a matter of bad money driving out good. We saw a similar situation with AA a number of years ago when they offered their “More room thru Coach” program, but it didn’t catch on as not enough travelers valued comfort over price. That said, since this is a legitimate way to pay less for less features, instead of paying more for more features, it will appeal to a subset of travelers. The interesting thing to see is if other carriers jump on the sub-economy bandwagon.”

– Chris Lopinto, President and Co-founder, ExpertFlyer

Did you know…Taking a trip can be a “degrading” experience for fliers?

(USA Today)
Ellen Davis says she has nightmares about her detention and interrogation for more than an hour by Israeli security agents who asked “nonsensical” questions before her flight from Tel Aviv airport in May.

The frequent flier from the Atlanta area says she was told to swallow one of her birth-control pills, asked repeated questions about her shoes and religion and ordered to remove her shoes and blouse, leaving her standing in a “revealing tank top.” Click image to read more about degrading flight experiences.