Tuesday, November 25, 2008

New Southwest Ad - check bags

The check bags fees have gotten to be stupid. I never understand why the airlines can't just add a few more dollars to the fare instead of jerking the public around with these fees. People, learn to run a business.

I love the new Southwest Airline ads regarding the baggage fees.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Carnival Broke Guinness World Record

Carnival Cruise Line broke open the world's largest pinata in Philadelphia yesterday. CCL donated the contents to Charity - all 8,000 pounds of candy. Glad everyone had a good time. View the video on you-tube.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

10th annual President's Cruise 2008

Day 1 - Barcelona
cannot believe how fast time has passed. We arrived the first day in Barcelona and the gang scattered all over. Some guest visited the Gaudi architectural buildings and some visited Museums. Leonard and I visited the town of Sitges, just outside of Barcelona. A sleepy little seaside town that was not only quaint, the locals were friendly and helpful. If anyone has a chance to visit Sitges, they should.

Day 2 - At Sea
Everyone was out enjoying the open spaces. NCL has some wonderful places to hang out and enjoy the sea life. For me I spent the day in the spa. Some people spent it playing cards and others enjoyed family time.

Day 3 - Malta
This series of Islands were a surprise to me. The arrival into the port of Valletta is probably one of the most beautiful in all of Europe. I have never been to this unique little port. A lot of the clients took the jeep safari tour around the island, they saw breathtaking view including the site where Popeye, the movie was filmed. Cute and very quaint. We spent the day hiking into of the town and fort. In general, we had a relaxing and great time.

Day 4 - Naples
One of the largest cities in southern Italy. The ship pulled right into town with the train station, ferry service, and taxi right in the front door. From here you can visit, Pompei, Mt. Vesuvius, Sorrento, Amalfi Coast, and Capri. A lot to pack into one day. In general, we suggested the guest pick their favorites but not to over do it ALL. Our group went only to Capri since have been to Pompei and Sorrento before. We hiked to the top of Capri island, wander around had lunch, had Gelato, and had more Gelato.. you get the idea

Day 5 - Rome ( Civitavecchia )
This is the gateway to the great city of Rome. The Eternal City is hard to do all in one day, even though many will try! Between the Vatican City, Sistine Chapel, the Pantheon and Trevi Fountain; many will return exhausted. The day started at 7am and many are just returning now at 6:30pm. Leonard and I opted to take a biking trip through the Italian Countryside. We climbed and coasted through the street of Tarquinia & Clementina followed by visiting the main Palazzo in town and the we finished with a visit at a typical farmhouse for wine tasting and a sampling of local olives and Jams.

Day 6 - Livorno
Livorno is the gateway to Tucany and the cities of Florence and Pisa. Florence is the home of some the world's greatest Italian treasures. Almost everyone got off the ship early and visited both Pisa and/or Florence. Florence has one of the largest collections of art by Leonardo da Vinci and Botticelli. Or coarse one should never forget about the Duomo or the David by Michelangelo.

Since Leonard & I had visited Florence before we decided to take a shore excursion to Cinque Terre, The Five Villages. It was one of the most memorable trips we have ever taken. The day was rainy and crappy but it didn't bother us at all. The well preserved century old villages with their footpaths winding high above the sea, leading through olive groves and vineyards was a sight to behold. it is something that I will remember forever.

Day 7 - Villefranche
This small quaint little town is just east of Nice and Cannes and west of Monaco. it is the perfect place to port. Everyone had an agenda. As early as 7am people were off the ship visiting Nice, Cannes or Monte Carlo. Many of the clients took guided tours but many also walked into town and caught the trains into the different cities.

We took the day just relaxing in Villefranche and ended the day sitting in a cafe by the water, people watching. It goes to show you, no matter what you want to do, a cruise is a perfect vacation.

Tomorrow is the end of the 10th President's Cruise and we hope everyone had a great time. It is back Barcelona and back to work. We have set the date ffor next year's President's Cruise and if you are interested, please give us a call. 800.298.8688

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Carnival Interline Sale

Pack your bags and Go.... and bring up to 3 additional cabins at these amazing low rates!!

Great news!!! We've extended this Carnival offer on virtually ALL ships and sailings now through September 29th, 2008, ONLY. Book your Interline reservations now and receive up to THREE additional cabins for your family and friends at the same Interline rate.

Carnival is featuring exclusive low rates for our interline guests. Check the website for interline discounted rates but you must book your friends and family rates with an Interline Agent. Call today for the best rates and availability. 800.298. 8688

Bad Day at O'Hare

Todd, an interliner sent me this picture of a bad day at O'Hare and he said "I'm thinking brake overheats were not a problem on this day"

Disney Annouced Meal Plans

Disney just annouced that you can now combine your Interline Discounted room rates with Disney Dinning and Wine Plan. These Plans are available as an add-on while staying at Disneyland or Walt Disney World Resorts. Advance reservations required and minimum length of stay requirements may apply for Friday or Saturday arrival. Call InterlineRates.com for details 800 298 8688

Friday, September 05, 2008

Alitalia Gives Union Deadline to Accept Cuts

ROME -- Italian government officials gave Alitalia SpA's labor unions a one-week deadline to accept deep job cuts, a key step in the turnaround of the troubled airline.

The Italian government has been touting the plan, which calls for a merger between Alitalia and smaller rival Air One SpA, as the only way to save the struggling carrier. People at a meeting with unions and government officials said Italy's labor minister, Maurizio Sacconi.

Latest Airline to Add Baggage fee

Continental Airlines Inc. became the latest airline to charge for the first checked bag on domestic flights in an effort to return to profit.

Rising fuel costs have forced airlines to charge for a range of services once considered part of the ticket price and to look for new ways to extract revenue from passengers.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Continental Unveil new Biz Class Seat

HOUSTON (AP) -- Continental Airlines Inc. on Monday showed off new fully reclining seats that it will put in business class of some jets beginning next year.
The airline said that the seats would go into Boeing 777 aircraft used mostly on trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific routes beginning in fall 2009, and later on Boeing 757 and 787 jets.

Continental unveiled the seats at a travel convention in Los Angeles. Airlines have been sprucing up their first- and business-class cabins, especially on international routes, to compete for lucrative business travelers.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Hole in Qantas 747

A Qantas 747 flying from Hong Kong to Melbourne made an emergency landing in Manila after a large hole appeared in the side of the plane.

Passengers heard a loud bang and heard wind swirling around the plane, but reportedly remained calm as the plane quickly lowered its altitude. No passengers or crew were injured.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Naked Man Subdued on Flight

Members of a Major League Soccer team helped subdue a naked man as he tried to open an emergency exit door while inflight.

The American Airlines flight from Boston to Los Angeles was diverted to Oklahoma City on Friday after a passenger stripped nude and later tried to open an emergency exit door before being subdued by members of a professional soccer team and others, the FBI said.

Craig Tornberg, the soccer team’s general manager, said he confronted the man as soon as he saw him emerge naked from one of the plane’s restrooms.

“I said he should get back into the bathroom and put on his clothes,” Tornberg said after the plane landed in Los Angeles. “He said something strange to me. He said, ‘I don’t hear you. I don’t see you.’

Full Interline Story

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Charge it: Alaska No Longer Take Cash

Alaska Airlines become the latest carrier to go cashless. Beginning August 5, Alaska Airlines will become the latest to not accept cash onboard fro in-flight services.

Others that have gone cashless include Frontier Airlines, JetBlue, AirTran, Virgin American and Midwest Airlines.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

United Cut 950 Pilots

More trouble in the airline industry - The second-largest U.S. carrier has already announced 1,600 upcoming layoffs - United Airlines said Monday it plans to eliminate about 950 pilot jobs beginning this summer in addition to an already announced plan to cut 1,600 salaried positions and reduce its fleet.

The second-largest U.S. carrier told its pilots union about the cuts Monday and said it’s still working out the reductions with the group. Dave Kelly, a spokesman for the United branch of the Air Line Pilots Association, declined to comment.

The initial furlough notices will go out in mid-July and take effect in September, United spokeswoman Megan McCarthy said. The cuts will continue into next year, she said.

More interline News

Friday, June 20, 2008

Continental Joins Star Alliance

Continental & United has announced a "extensive cooperation" linking global networks and eliminating route duplication.

"The planned trans-Atlantic joint venture, in which Continental, United, Lufthansa and Air Canada will pool revenue, will permit the carriers to compete more effectively with the proposed joint venture involving certain SkyTeam members that was recently granted antitrust immunity.

The trans-Atlantic joint venture will combine the strength of the carriers to create a more efficient and comprehensive trans-Atlantic network for the carriers' customers."

It will be interesting to see where this will lead the two U.S. Carriers.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Delta & NWA Merger

Delta & Northwest Airlines have made it official. They are merging to created the largest airline in the world.

Does this mean higher fares in the horizon?

According to Delta & Northwest, you'd think it is a done deal but in reality the "Deal" is already facing chanllenges.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Skybus Files for Bankruptcy

Another one bits the dust...

Skybus know for their $10 fares has decided to call it quits after one year of service. I guess it it was too good to be true... $10 fares?

Thursday, April 03, 2008

ATA Files Bankruptcy

A few days after Aloha files for Bankruptcy, ATA also files for bankruptcy protection. Indianapolis based airlines says it can't maintain its business without a key miltary charter contract.

"The decision to shut down was just totally unexpected and happened very quickly," ATA spokesman Michael Freitag said.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

United Grounds 11% of Fleet

UAL temporarily grounded 11% of her fleet and cancelled 31 flights on Wednesday, so they can test the Cargo suppression system on their 777s.

United carried out unscheduled maintenance on seven of its Boeing 747 jets last month but found no safety-related issues.

The Federal Aviation Administration has been checking maintenance records at all domestic airlines after revelations surfaced about missed safety inspections at Southwest Airlines Co.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Aloha Air Quits after 60 yrs

After 60 years of being in business, Aloha Air will end passenger service March 30, 2008. The writing has been on the wall. With the increase in fuel cost and inter-island fares of $19 meant their end was inevitable. Their air cargo unit will continue to operate while under bankruptcy.

The 1,900 employees who are affected, we are sorry. Aloha Air you will be missed.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Nipple Ring NO NO NO

A Texas Woman was forced to remove her nipple ring with a pair of pliers before she was allowed to board a plane. Ouch ...

I cannot believe these stories with TSA... Oh wait, yes I can !

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Carnival's Circle C

CARNIVAL CRUISE LINES is also continuing its push for the family market by introducing an onboard program targeting the 12- to 14-year-old set called Circle C, which fills the age gap in Carnival's youth-oriented programming (Camp Carnival is for younger kids and Club O2 is for 15- to 17-year-olds). Circle C, which is overseen by a trained staff, includes facilities with a dance floor, movies and music videos screens and gaming pods with video games; activities will include basketball, ping-pong, water games and nighttime pool parties. Facilities are in place on the Carnival Legend, Pride, Victory and Valor, and the rest of the fleet will be outfitted in stages by 2010.

Continue Shakeup at Carnival

CARNIVAL CRUISE LINES saw a continued shakeup in its top ranks. Maurice Zarmati, a 36-year veteran of sales at Carnival Cruise Lines, was named president and CEO of Costa Cruise Lines North America, another Carnival Corp.-owned company. Zarmati assumes his new role at Costa on March 31, where he will be responsible for sales and marketing efforts for Costa's North and Central American regions. The Costa role was most recently held by Lynn Torrent, who left Costa to join Carnival Cruise Lines as its senior vice president of sales and customer service. Roberto Martinoli, Carnival's executive vice president of operations, meanwhile told the line he would leave on March 7. Martinoli is moving back to Monaco and returning to the consulting business.

CARNIVAL CORP. is also losing an executive: Jack Anderson, vice president of marketing for Carnival Corp. and the executive director of the World's Leading Cruise Lines, a marketing identity for Carnival's North American cruise brands, is retiring at the end of March. He has been with Carnival Corp. since 1999; prior to that he spent 25 years with Carnival Corp. brand Holland America Line.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Southwest: too pretty or too bitchy?

Two Coeds from University of South Florida claims they were discriminated because they were young and too pretty... give me a break.

"I think they were just discriminating against [us] because we were young decent-looking girls," Williams told TampaBays10.com. "I mean, nobody else on the plane looked like us except us. [The flight attendants] were like older ladies. We were younger. Who knows, they could have been just jealous of us because we were younger.”

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Flight Attendant Sues After being Slapped

A Singapore Airlines flight attendant is suing after a passenger slapped her on a flight between Singapore and Tokyo last September. The Passenger was the wife of CEO Venture Corp, Wong Ngit Liong, one of Singapore's richest men.

Ms Then Jiamin, SIA flight attendant, is suing for "general damages and damages for consequential loss and emotional and mental distress" she suffered as a result of the "wrongful assault and battery". She is also claiming damages for defamation.

The wife, Madom Tan Siew Hoon, allegedly slapping Ms Then and saying loadly: "Why are you talking to my husband!"

Can we say insecure...

Delta Merge with Northwest

The NY Times is reporting that Delta and Northwest Airlines are close to a merger and supposedly it will follow with a merger between Continental and United. Yikes !

As I had myself gone through two mergers with Continental and let me tell you... DON"T. Mergers are never easy for the employees and seldom benefits the consumers. I guess only time will tell as to what will really happen.

Hang on tight it's going to be a bumping ride !


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Bye Bye Pride of Hawaii

The Pride of Hawaii, owned by NCL, sailed its final cruise from Honolulu last week, a 5-night trip to Los Angeles, where it entered a 6 day wet dock to transform her into the Norwegian Jade. NCL America's Pride of Hawaii left the Hawaiian waters and gave up it's U.S.-flag status in hope of better yields in the European cruise market this coming summer. The newly named Norwegian Jade is slated to arrive in Barcelona on March 13 and will undergo another wet dock, where NCL said it would add a casino to the ship and she begins her first Europe cruise March 30.

Is Fuel Surcharges Legal?

THE FLORIDA ATTORNEY GENERAL is investigating the legality of cruise line fuel surcharges, after more than 150 consumer complaints were filed with the attorney general's office since November. The office is reviewing whether the charges were properly and legally administered, and if cruise lines can retroactively impose a fuel surcharge on passengers. The cruise lines cited record-high fuel costs before instituting the charges in November; Carnival Corp.'s six North American brands added a charge of $5 per person, per day, on all sailings departing after Feb. 1, and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and NCL Corp. shortly followed suit, each with different policies.

Monday, February 11, 2008

New Celebrity Solstice

THE CELEBRITY SOLSTICE will boast 10 restaurants when it debuts in November. Some of the eateries will be designed by Adam Tihany, who created some of New York's best known restaurants, including Per Se, Jean Georges and Le Cirque. Tihany designed the Solstice's two-level Grand Epernay dining room with a two-story wine tower; the Tuscan Grille steakhouse; and the casual Oceanview Cafe and Grill on the ship's lido deck. The ship's menus, meanwhile, were created by Celebrity's Vice President of Food and Beverage Jacques Van Staden, who previously headed kitchens in Las Vegas and Washington. Van Staden is also redesigning the menus on the rest of the Celebrity fleet.

Independence Being Scaped

THE INDEPENDENCE made its final departure from a U.S. port last week: The 57-year-old ocean liner left its berth in San Francisco en route to a scrap yard in Asia. Norwegian Cruise Line, which bought the vessel for a reported $4 million in 2003, sold it to an interim purchaser, which has renamed the ship the Oceanic and is sending the ship to Singapore to be sold for scrap. NCL bought the Independence along with the United States, another U.S.-flagged ocean liner, in 2003, but the Independence was said to be in worse shape than the United States. The Independence is a sister ship to the Constitution, an ocean liner that sank while being towed to Asia to be scrapped in 1997; that ship had also been renamed the Oceanic.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Princess New Disembakation

PRINCESS CRUISES said it streamlined its disembarkation system by giving passengers a letter the day before the end of the cruise telling them where and when to meet depending on their return air arrangements. A crew member will wait with them in their assigned room until it is time to escort them to the gangway. In some ports, passengers can opt for express disembarkation if they choose to carry their own luggage off the ship as part of the first group to leave. The new disembarkation process complements Princess' early embarkation program, the line said.

Carnival Names Sr. VP of Sales

CARNIVAL CRUISE LINES named Costa Cruises executive Lynn Torrent as its senior vice president of sales and guest services. Torrent replaces Vicki Freed, who resigned from the post at Carnival after almost 30 years with the line to take the top sales position at Royal Caribbean International. Torrent is currently president and CEO North America for Costa. She previously served as vice president of marketing for Carnival Corp., the parent company of Carnival Cruise Lines and Costa, where she worked with Gerry Cahill, who was Carnival Corp.'s CFO before becoming CEO of Carnival Cruise Lines last year. Torrent starts in her new role March 3.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

MSC Double Caribbean Presence

MSC CRUISES will double its presence in the Caribbean next winter when it brings the MSC Orchestra to the region in January 2009. The 2,550-passenger, 92,400-ton Orchestra is currently the line's newest and largest vessel; it will operate seven-day Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries from Fort Lauderdale between Jan. 2 and April 25, 2009. The MSC Lirica will continue to operate 10-day trips to the southern Caribbean. Richard Sasso, president and CEO of MSC Cruises USA, said that the Orchestra's arrival in the Caribbean market would be the beginning of MSC's "real presence" in North America.

You know what that means... More Interline Discounts for the Caribbean with MSC Cruises.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

China Warns Airline - Don't be late !

China has warned the airlines not to be late for the up coming Beijing Olympics. Airlines that fails to keep up with the standards being set will not be allowed to expand their services for two years.. oouch ! I have a feeling China's General Administration of Civil Aviation, Li Jiaxiang is not kidding around.

Hmm, I wonder if our Head of US Aviation has that kind of pull to try to straight out some of our problems.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Windstar Cruise Sale

InterlineRates.com has several Windstar sailing available at an interline discount of $1000 per person. Check out the details.

Wind Surf
7 Night Exotic Caribbean
Roundtrip - Barbados (Northbound)
Ports Include: St. Kitts - Nevis - St. Martin - St. Barthelemy - Guadaloupe - Iles des Saintes - St. Lucia
2/3, 2/17 & 2/24, 3/16 & 3/30/08
$1000 - Ocean View

Wind Surf
7 Night Exotic Caribbean
Roundtrip - Barbados (Southbound)
Ports Include: Grenadines (Bequia) - Dominica - St. Lucia - Grenadines (Mayreau) - Grenada - Tobago
2/10, 2/24 & 3/23/08
$1000 - Ocean View

Wind Spirit
7 Night Exotic Caribbean
Roundtrip - St. Thomas
Ports Include: St. John - St. Martin - St. Barthelemy - Tortola - Jost van Dyke - Virgin Gorda
2/9 & 2/16/08
$1000 - Ocean View

Call Cruise Vacations for details and booking 800 298 8688

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Delta Merger Talks

As many have speculated and now acknowleged, Delta is now seeking a merger with Northwest or United.

Yet another committee has been formed and yet another talk of reducing capacity...

You be the judge. I lived through two mergers when I worked for Continental and I can tell you, it is NOT easy. Airlines seldom share, technology, way of doing business, labor force etc. It will not be easy no matter what.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Princess expands Chef's Table Program

PRINCESS CRUISES will expand its Chef's Table dining program to most of its fleet over the next few months, citing positive reception on the Emerald Princess, the Crown Princess and the Caribbean Princess, where it is currently available. The $75 per person meal offers guests a dining event that begins with appetizers and cocktails in the ship's galley and then continues with a custom-designed, multi-course tasting dinner paired with wine in the main dining room with the ship's executive chef. The meal can be reserved by up to 10 passengers per night. It will debut aboard most vessels in the fleet in early 2008, with the exception of the line's smaller ships, the Tahitian Princess, the Pacific Princess and the Royal Princess.