All posts in Did you know?

Did you know…Air Travel Fairness urges US DOT to halt approval of airline antitrust immunity without new consumer protection?

air travel fairnessAir Travel Fairness, one of the largest traveler advocacy organizations in the U.S., called on the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to reject any applications from airlines for either new or expanded antitrust immunity (ATI) agreements between carriers without first instituting new protections from the harm these schemes are causing consumers.

Airlines with antitrust immunity are able to freely cooperate between each other on fares, schedules, fleets, marketing programs and operations.  Essentially, these mega-joint ventures operate as if they are a single, giant airline.

For example, once approved for antitrust immunity, two airlines that previously competed against each other for travelers’ business, perhaps offering the only nonstop flights on a given route, behave as if they are one company. The two airlines can share costs and revenues on flights, set prices including minimum fares offered on each of their flights, reduce capacity if too many low-priced seats are offered, or do away with the type of bonus and discount programs offered to frequent flyer program members when two or more airlines are vigorously competing for travelers’ business in a truly competitive market. The airlines might call this efficiencies of scale, but consumers are the big losers.

The consumer impact is the same as when a market with two competitors changes to only having one. Two airlines, in this case, essentially merge into one, but there is no change in ownership. Continue reading →

Did you know…Chile has been named the top travel destination for 2018?

ExpertFlyer Hot Topics — Where the Rubber Meets the Runway

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2018 is the highly anticipated collection of the world’s hottest destinations that should be on every traveler’s wish list in the year ahead. The world’s leading travel media authority reveals its selections of the top 10 countries, cities, regions and best value destinations that Lonely Planet experts recommend travelers experience in 2018.

Chile takes the coveted top spot of the best country for travelers in 2018 (Check out our post with the Chilean Tourism Board). Seville receives the accolade of number one city in the world to visit next year. Hot on the Spanish city’s heels is the American comeback city Detroit and Australia’s oft-overlooked capital Canberra. The region which Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2018 declares the number one must-see in the coming year is Belfast and the Causeway Coast in Northern Ireland, with Alaska in second place. Tallinn, Estonia has been crowned Lonely Planet’s best value destination of 2018, closely followed by Lanzarote in the Canary Islands and Arizona in the USA.

San Juan is also showcased in the 10 best cities list. Lonely Planet’s Central America and Caribbean destination editor Bailey Freeman said, “While Puerto Rico’s capital was hit hard by the hurricane last month, San Juan’s resiliency will have it back on its feet for travelers in 2018.”

Deciding what destinations to include in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel annual selection is a considered process involving Lonely Planet’s most experienced travelers providing hundreds of recommendations of places not to be missed. These places are then shortlisted by a panel of in-house travel experts who consider criteria such as topicality, novelty, and wow-factor to decide what to include in the inspirational travel yearbook – available in hardback for the first time this year.

“These are the places you shouldn’t miss next year,” said Lonely Planet’s US magazine managing editor Alex Howard. “From Alaska to South Africa, our community of travel experts have named the top places to experience. Whether they’re coming into their own, celebrating an anniversary or have seen a resurgence in recent years, all these destinations are worth a visit in 2018.”

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2018 features trends and experiences to prepare for in the year ahead. Top trends include destination races, vegetarian and vegan travel, and exploratory cruises. Lonely Planet’s experts also rank the top 10 best new openings, places to stay and culture trips for families.

 

Did you know…Inflight wifi could be a $130B market by 2035?

ExpertFlyer Hot Topics — Where the Rubber Meets the Runway

In a report by Tnooz.com, the London School of Economics conducted a study that values the ancillary revenue contribution to airlines from Inflight Connectivity (IFC), as well as breaking down estimates of the types of ancillary opportunities in the IFC market and their relative contributions to airline revenue.inflight wifi LSE studyThe report explains that the study made a strong business case for the future of Inflight Connectivity (IFC), predicting a market worth $130 billion by 2035, and contributing $30 billion to airline revenue. LSE predicts a dramatic rise over the next seventeen years as the technology and its applications scale to meet market potential.

LSE expects an increase of 2,005% in airline IFC revenue per passenger from $0.23 in 2018 to $4.00 by 2035. Read the full story here.

Did you know…Plans are underway to develop battery powered planes?

ExpertFlyer Hot Topics — Where the Rubber Meets the Runway

easyjet

There was a time when consumers scoffed at the idea of electric-powered cars. Today, even experts like Total SA, one of the world’s largest oil producers, is predicting that EVs may constitute almost a third of new-car sales by the end of the next decade. So, why not a battery-powered airplane?

According to a Financial Times report, UK budget airline EasyJet has taken a step towards a future without jet fuel with plans to help develop a battery-powered plane. The group said on Wednesday that it had partnered with US aircraft designer Wright Electric to develop an electric aircraft for flights under two hours.

Read the full story here: http://ht.ly/N10530fwfr2.

Did you know…A recent court decision could lead to more space on planes?

seats on plane

According to a recent report by AirFareWatchDog.com, the District of Columbia U.S. Court of Appeals ruled last month that the FAA must show actual data to back up its unsupported assertions about the safety of tightly packed airline seats. The decision comes in response to a petition from the nonprofit group Flyers Rights, which requested that the FAA issue minimum seat width and pitch rules for airlines in the U.S. This could turn out to be a win for consumers, but it isn’t yet.

Read the full story here.