Search Results for "ASIA".

Travel & Leisure Readers on Crack

I love ‘best of the best’ hotel lists, and this year’s Travel & Leisure‘s 500 best hotels around the world — as voted on by readers of the magazine — is no exception. (Hat tip HotelChatter.) This one, I love to hate. While there are lots of wonderful properties on the list, the rankings are truly bizarre. If you believe this list, there are more top luxury hotels in the United States than in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Carribean, Australia, New Zealand (and the rest of the South Pacific) combined. This has to be a function of the limited travel experience of T&L readers. Some of the stranger U.S. listings: The St. Regis isn’t the best hotel in Manhattan. And the Pierre isn’t better than the Ritz-Carlton Central Park, the Peninsula, and the Mandarin…

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Massive SAS Award Discount TODAY ONLY

Some 80,000 mile awards between Europe and Asia are on sale today for 25,000 miles. We wish you all dear members a Merry Christmas and to celebrate we’ve got a super offer for you today on bonus flights with SAS between Scandinavia and Beijing, Shanghai and Tokyo. The deal is out there and are going quickly, valid only if you book today! … Rules and conditions for our Christmas offer • Only bookable today 00.00CET until 23.59CET, December 24, 2005. • Travel between January 1 – 31, 2006 • Children receive the same discount 25 000 points • Only available in Economy and the number of seats available is limited • Only SAS operated flights and on new reservations only • You can book this offer online and we will reward you with 500 Extra…

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Wall Street Journal: Mouthpiece for Labor?

As part of Northwest’s bankruptcy, they’re trying to reduce labor costs. This creates strained relations with their unions. So far, so good. But to borrow Brad DeLong’s phrase, “why oh why can’t we have a better press corp?” This Susan Carey piece (originally in the Wall Street Journal offers a rather odd definition of outsourcing: Those intra-Asia flights are mostly staffed by nearly 700 Asian attendants from bases in Japan, China, South Korea, the Philippines and other countries. They operate under different pay and work rules but have language skills for Asian destinations as well as English. The current union contract allows this limited but longstanding outsourcing. (Emphasis mine.) According to Susan Carey (and the PR voice of the Northwest flight attendants union), staffing planes flying within Asia with flight attendants from Asia is outsourcing?…

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Why not hire two caterers?

One area of aviation that I’m not too familiar with is the process of airline catering. In light of the catering strike at Heathrow that crippled British Airways, Lynne Kiesling asks why airlines don’t hire multiple caterers. If the pricing/reliability benefits outweigh the economies of scale, they should be willing to hire different caterers. They can have them specialize in different terminals, or hire one caterer to do meals for flights to Asia, one for Middle East, one for Europe and US, etc. Then, even if you are still facing a duopoly, at least you contract with both of them and you increase your probability of getting a Bertrand outcome. Either I’m missing something, or they’re not thinking very strategically. Which is it? Maybe someone who knows more about airline catering than I do can…

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The End of eBay Anything Points

ebay anything points
Jul 18 2005

eBay Anything Points is being phased out. eBay is discontinuing a 2-year-old incentive program for sellers and partners in the United States, the company announced on Monday. eBay Anything Points, which operates like a “frequent flyer” program to stimulate customer loyalty, will be phased out by Feb. 28, the company said. Points earned under the program will be honored through August 2006. …eBay will prevent sellers from offering the incentive points on new listings starting Aug. 15. eBay said it would, on Sept. 30, remove remaining points from listings still offering them. The Anything Points program on eBay Canada will continue. This is very disappointing news for me. Other than signing up for some free trial offers a year ago, I only used this on my Priceline bids. But the value proposition was compelling —…

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Bonus Miles for Flying US-Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific

Jun 25 2005

You can earn triple Cathay Pacific AsiaMiles (August 1 – September 30) when flying from LA or San Francisco to Hong Kong on first, business, or qualifying (Y, B, H, K, L, M, V) coach fares. You could also choose to earn double American AAdvantage miles through August 31 on these flights, but only when flying first or business class (“I” business fares are not eligible for the AA offer). Personally I’d opt for the AsiaMiles, both because coach fares are eligible and because AsiaMiles are hugely valuable — they allow upgrade redemption on Cathay, American, and British Airways and 60,000 AsiaMiles gets you a business class award on BA from the US East Coast to most destinations in Europe (it would take 100,000 BA miles).

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In Sydney

Jun 21 2005

In Sydney We stopped by the Sydney Fish Market on the way to my family’s place from the airport to pick up dinner, then Thursday went to the Taronga Zoo (let me know if anyone wants pictures, for the moment I’ll just share this sign which particularly amused me). Then lunch on the water and back to change for the evening. My family had arranged a private tour of the Opera House, and then we had prime seats for a new play, Two Brothers. (Which was fine, some of the humor a bit too locally Australian for us really to get, but for a political play it was way too unsubtle for my tastes – in the very first scene we learn that conservatives are characterized by their heartlessness and desire to see immigrants die…

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Cathay Pacific Visa for Canadians

May 24 2005

Canadians can get a Cathay Pacific Visa Platinum card from RBC Bank. The annual fee is stiff at CA$150, but the card earns 1 AsiaMile per Canadian dollar spent — pretty good earning — on top of the 5000 AsiaMiles with first purchase. The AsiaMiles program permits upgrading on British Airways and American in addition to Cathay Pacific, and some of its awards are incredible values. 60,000 AsiaMiles buys you a business class award of less than 5000 miles each way. That would yield a British Airways ticket from the U.S. East Coast to most destinations in Europe. American charges 50,000 miles in coach for that. AsiaMiles is my program of choice for transferring eBay Anything Points, by the way, since 1 eBay point yields slightly more than 1 AsiaMile.

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More Intercontinental Hotels with Presidential Suites Available as Awards

May 06 2005

Following on the recent spate of Presidential Suites available for award redemption at Intercontinental hotel properties (using the standard room 30,000 Priority Club points per night rate, see here and here), Flyertalk’s Savage25 surveyed all the Intercontinental hotels to see where this glitch is currently coming up. The report: For kicks, I tried a random date in October for reward nights at all ICs. ICs that are out of the way seem to have great redemption deals. Figures are Best Flexible rates for the respective room types on the date of redemption. Asia ==== IC THE GRAND PALACE SRINAGAR KING PRESIDENTIAL SUITE $1,000 Middle East and Africa ========== INTERCONTINENTAL DOHA 1 KING BED DIPLOMATIC SUITE $563 INTERCONTINENTAL RIYADH 1 KING EXECUTIVE SUITE $933 MASSARAH TAIF INTERCONTINENTAL 1KNG 1QN 2 BEDROOM ROYAL SUITE $1,119 2 KING…

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The End of Airport Club Lounges?

airport lounge
Apr 06 2005

In yesterday’s Washington Post, Keith Alexander suggests that airline club lounges are becoming less relevant: Those plush airport clubs began to lose their appeal after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Duffy frequently found herself stuck in long security lines and often had to rush through concourses just to catch her flight, leaving little time to relax in the club. And because of heightened security, Duffy could no longer hold meetings with clients in the clubs as she once did. So she began renting meeting rooms or suites at nearby hotels. Though it requires a bit more of a cumbersome process in the past, it’s still generally possible to hold meetings in airline clubs even if you aren’t traveling. Renting a club conference room or attending a meeting in one is usually enough to get a…

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