SYDNEY, Australia, Aug. 18 /PRNewswire/ — The following weekly summary of news for business travellers in Asia and the Pacific was prepared by Asia Pulse (http://www.asiapulse.com/) the real-time, Asia-based wire With exclusive news, market intelligence and business opportunities.
S. KOREA GIVES GREEN LIGHT TO LOW-COST AIRLINE
SEOUL – Jeju Air, a recntly formed no-frills airline, is set to begin flights on four domestic routes, including one between the island of Jeju and Seoul that is expected to start in June next year. The fare for the Seoul-Jeju route is expected to be around 50,000 won (US$48.70), or half the price charged by Korean Air and Asiana Airlines. Jeju Air plans to launch flights on an additional route between Seoul and Uljin in the southeastern part of the country in 2008.
ALL NIPPON AIRWAYS TO USE BOEING 777-300ER ON LA ROUTE
TOKYO – All Nippon Airways (ANA) will use a new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft on its Los Angeles to Tokyo route, which is due to begin on October 8. The B777-300ER comes equipped with Internet service (ANA@AIR) for all passengers in each traveling class. ANA’s First Class offers an individual 33-inch wide seating space that comes fully loaded with a large private TV monitor that plays audio visual on-demand (AVOD), private workspace desk and a seat that reclines into a full flat bed. Club ANA Business Class comes with a 170-degree seat reclining capability, private 9-inch TV monitor, fully digital and AVOD. Premium Economy Class comes with 20% more seat width and pitch than Economy Class, television for every seat and a personal monitor with AVOD. Economy class comes with a 34-inch seat pitch and an in-seat TV with AVOD.
SHERATON HOTELS & RESORTS DEVELOPS NEW BED
SYDNEY – Sheraton Hotels & Resorts has developed the Sheraton Sweet Sleeper Bed. The hotel is putting over 7,000 new beds in Sheraton hotels in Asia Pacific starting from August 2005. The new multi-layered custom designed bed features an 11.5 inch thick, high coil count plush top mattress, cotton sheets, blanket, duvet and feather-down pillows. More than 4,000 new beds have been installed at Sheraton hotels and resorts located in key cities throughout Asia Pacific, including Bangkok, Beijing, Hong Kong, Saigon, Sydney, Taipei and Tokyo. By the end 2006, more than 7,000 rooms will feature the new beds.
AIRASIA LAUNCHES MOBILE PHONE BOOKING SERVICE
KUALA LUMPUR – AirAsia has today taken its online booking service one step further by offering a booking system targeting mobile phones and wireless devices. This new service enables AirAsia customers to search for flights, book, use a credit card to pay, and receive flight confirmation and itinerary details, from anywhere in the world, 24 hours a day.
QANTAS HOLIDAYS READYROOMS TO INCLUDE NZ PROPERTIES
SYDNEY – Accommodation in New Zealand has been added to Qantas Holidays ReadyRooms last minute online booking service. Hotel rooms and apartments in major cities in New Zealand and throughout Australia can be booked on the ReadyRooms website, which shows images of hotel rooms, facilities and location maps, as well as special offers. Bookings can be made on the day of travel and a flight booking is not required. Qantas Frequent Flyer members can earn points when making a booking for a Qantas Frequent Flyer partner hotel in New Zealand or Australia via the ReadyRooms website. Qantas Holidays is offering 1000 extra points for any Qantas Frequent Flyer member who books a Qantas Frequent Flyer partner hotel in New Zealand or Australia between 23 August and 7 September.
THAI AIRWAYS INCREASES FUEL SURCHARGE
BANGKOK – Thai Airways International has increased its fuel surcharge on both international and domestic flights. On all domestic flights, the surcharge will now be 300 Baht (one-sector flights) and 600 Baht (round-trip flights) per flight coupon. For international flights in the Asian and Middle East regions, the surcharge will be US$25, and from Australia and New Zealand at US$50.
CHINA SOUTHERN AIRLINES EXPANDS SERVICES TO INNER MONGOLIA
GUANGZHOU – China Southern Airlines has expanded its route system to include three cities of Inner Mongolia. The airline has launched new services from Guangzhou to Hailar, Manzhouli, and Xilin Hot in Inner Mongolia. The airline will use a Boeing 737-300 on the routes, and all flights have one stop in Hohhot.
JETSTAR ASIA LAUNCHES SINGAPORE TO KOLKATA SERVICE
SINGAPORE – Jetstar Asia launched its inaugural flight between Singapore and Kolkata in India. The budget airline will fly between Singapore and Kolkata three times a week on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. Departure from Changi Airport is at 1630hrs, arriving in Kolkata at 1800hrs. The return flight from Kolkata is at 1900hrs arriving in Singapore at 0135hrs the following morning.
QANTAS TO HIKE FUEL SURCHARGES NEXT MONTH
BRISBANE – Qantas will again increase its fuel surcharges because of the continued escalation of the price of crude oil and jet fuel. The surcharge on Qantas Australian and New Zealand domestic travel will increase to A$26 (US$19.65) from $20 per sector, QantasLink’s surcharge will jump to $22 from $20, Qantas Trans-Tasman will rise to $46 from $40, and Qantas and Australian Airlines international surcharte will climb to $75 from $60. At this stage, there will be no increase in the surcharge on Jetstar domestic services, which remains at $19. All new surcharges include GST and will be effective on tickets issued on or after Friday September 2.
AIR NZ TO INCREASE FUEL SURCHARGE FROM SEPTEMBER
MELBOURNE – Air New Zealand will hit its passengers with an increased fuel surcharge from September. The surcharge means Air New Zealand’s domestic flights will increase by an average of $NZ6.00 (US$4.20) while trans-Tasman and Pacific journeys will rise to $NZ52 per sector, up from the current $NZ42. Passengers flying to Europe will be asked to hand over $NZ152 each way, up $20 from the current $NZ132.
JETSTAR TO USE AIRBUS A320S ON TASMANIAN ROUTES
HOBART – Jetstar will upgrade its Tasmanian flight operations with the completed roll-out of its new Airbus A320 fleet, which feature all-leather, extra wide seats. From 24 September, Jetstar will replace all but one of its daily Boeing 717 services for Hobart with its larger A320 aircraft. Jetstar’s Launceston operations from October 30 will see the first introduction of its A320 fleet, initially operating twice daily on the Launceston-Melbourne city pair, with the remaining two daily Jetstar frequencies initially staying as B717 operations. Jetstar’s daily Launceston-Sydney return service will also convert to an A320 from October 30.
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