Weekly Travel Update May 26th

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Travel News 26 May 2017

For week ending May 26th

This week's wrap up is jam packed with industry updates and there is plenty of news rolling in from the UK and all around the world: Finnair launches Far east sale, Emirates adds a second daily route to Birmingham and Marriot International launches promotions across its three loyalty schemes. All this and much more in our weekly round-up!

Gatwick enables “augmented reality wayfinding”

Gatwick has installed 2,000 indoor navigation beacons, which it says will enable “augmented reality wayfinding” at the airport. The London airport says that the beacons provide an indoor navigation system which is “much more reliable than GPS”, enabling third parties, airlines and the airport itself to develop augmented reality wayfinding tools within their apps. Gatwick said that the new navigation technology is currently being integrated into some of the airport’s apps, and it is in discussions with airlines for them to do the same.

Delta adds new upgrade purchase options

Delta has added new post ticket purchase upgrade options, available to customers regardless of whether they bought their tickets at delta.com or via a third party. The new option allows travellers to purchase separate upgrades on each individual sector (provided the itinerary is wholly operated by Delta), by either visiting delta.com or calling the airline’s reservations centre. The carrier said that the service will also “soon be available via the Fly Delta App”.

Finnair launches Far East sale

Finnair has launched its latest Far East sale, with fares starting from £419 in economy and £1,407 in business class. Discounts are available on routes from London Heathrow, Manchester, and Edinburgh, via Helsinki to 18 Asian destinations including Beijing, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore and Seoul. The offer is valid for bookings made by June 20, for travel between September 1, 2017, and March 31, 2018 (with a few variations on selected routes).

Hilton launches Asia-Pacific flash sale

Hilton has launched its latest flash sale, covering properties in the Asia-Pacific region (excluding Japan, mainland China and Macau). The group is offering up to 35 per cent off flexible and bed and breakfast rates (plus a further 5 per cent discount for Hilton Honors members). The promotion is valid for bookings made by 0800 GMT on May 29, for stays completed between May 25 and December 31, 2017.

Emirates adds second daily A380 to Birmingham

Emirates will be introducing a second daily A380 service between Dubai and Birmingham. From October 29, flights EK39 and EK40, which currently use a B777, will be operated by the superjumbo, adding to the existing daily A380 which is already on the route.

Marriott International has launched promotions across its three loyalty schemes

Marriott International has launched three promotions across its trio of linked loyalty schemes: Marriott Rewards, SPG and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards. The Marriott Rewards Mega Bonus Infinite Points promotion means members can earn up to 4,000 bonus points per stay. Guests will receive 2,000 bonus points on their second stay, plus an additional 2,000 points for each new brand they try. The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Summer Sojourns will give members double Ritz-Carlton bonus points for stays longer than two nights. Finally, the SPG Take Three offer will see weekend stays rack up triple Starpoints, with weekday stays earning double. Members must register for each promotion individually by August 30 and specific terms and conditions for each programme apply. The earning period starts from May 27 until September 4, 2017

China Southern to launch second daily service between Heathrow and Guangzhou

China Southern is set to double its daily service between London Heathrow and Guangzhou. From June 1, the airline will operate an additional year-round flight, operated by a B787 from Heathrow’s Terminal 4. It will depart earlier than the current service, allowing shorter transfer times for some onward connections.

Finnair and Alaska Airlines announce partnership

Alaska Airlines and Finnair have partnered so that members of their loyalty programmes can now earn miles across both airlines, as Finnair expands with new flights from San Francisco. Members of Alaska Mileage Plan can earn miles on Finnair from today, though award redemption will start later this year. Finnair Plus members can both earn and redeem points on Alaska Airlines from last week. Alaska Airlines recently announced a major expansion of its San Francisco service. Alaska, along with Virgin America, now has 83 daily departures from San Francisco to 35 destinations.

Main source: Business Traveller