Luxury travel is making a slow rebound
Luxury travel, even for business, continues its comeback from the depths of the recession, the industry is finding.
But an erratic economy is making for a slow and spotty return that remains below the highflying days before the financial collapse of 2008.
The investment bankers, Wall Street lawyers and other elite business travelers served by high-end travel service Ovation Travel, for instance, are buying just 3% more first-class airline tickets this year than they were last year, according to Ovation senior executive Michael Steiner.
Tourist-bashing turns ugly in Berlin
Tourism to Berlin is booming as never before and filling the debt-ridden city’s coffers with much-needed cash, but not all Berliners are cheering the influx of visitors.
Some blame the tourists, especially the young 20-something “Easyjet set” who ride the budget airline to party through the night in the uber-cool, hedonistic German capital, for a host of ills from rising rents to noise pollution.
“Noisy tourists go home!” reads one hostile sign in the eastern district of Friedrichshain. “Berlin doesn’t love you,” say stickers plastering traffic lights in nearby Kreuzberg.
Airlines ‘playing chicken’ with passengers, charging ‘you-get-to-sit-with-your-kid’ fee
You know about airline change fees, baggage fees, premium seat fees and food fees. But how about a “you-get-to-sit-with-your-child” fee?
John Parish is giving his 5-year-old daughter the birthday present every child dreams of: a trip to Disney World. But he’s afraid American Airlines has booked a travel nightmare for his family and other fliers. There’s only one way out of the nightmare, he was told: Pay an additional fee, months after booking the trip.
Parish bought his tickets months ago, in March, and scored three seats together on a flight from Dallas to Orlando, Fla., for his wife, Amanda, and daughter, Megan. Then, in July, bad news arrived. American Airlines had changed the flight schedule for the return trip, and it had changed the plane, too. It was a bigger plane, but no longer could the family sit together. In fact, Megan had been moved onto the other side of the plane, rows away.
Parish, himself a frequent business traveler and American customer, thought that it was a simple mistake that and a quick phone call could correct the problem. After all, who wants a 5-year-old separated from her parents on a three-hour flight? Parish was only half-right.
There were three seats together, an American customer service agent told him. But the only way he could get them was to pay $60 in extra fees for what was now considered premium seating. Parish was outraged. But a discussion with a supervisor got him nowhere.
Four Seasons Lanai Announces Pinterest Contest – Win Trip to Lanai
On Monday, September 17, the Four Seasons Lanai launched the #iHeartLanai Pinterest contest. Now through October 26, 2012, you can pin your favorite photos to create the ultimate Lanai dream vacation for a chance to win your own Lanai dream vacation. Fans have the opportunity to win a four-night stay, plus roundtrip air for two, to the beautiful island of Lanai.