Posts

SME Travellers Remain The Winners Amid Airfare Fluctuations

SME business travellers will face incremental airfare increases in 2018 but the passenger experience will be better than ever according to the latest 4D FOCUS – Australian Aviation and Airfare Analysis.

The report, produced by Flight Centre Travel Group’s (FCTG) 4th Dimension Business Travel Consulting (4D) team, includes a statistical outlook for 2017 and year on year benchmarking of corporate and leisure airfares from 2014 to 2016.

Corporate Traveller General Manager Jess Anscombe said despite some forecast increases on the most popular domestic routes, the uptick in airfares would be offset by the increased quality of the passenger experience.

“Qantas and Virgin Australia have shifted from capacity battles to focus on shoring up their product.  Both are vying for customer loyalty by introducing innovative new features on the ground and in the air,” she said.

“Two of the most important recent airline innovations was Qantas’ launch of its SME focused Qantas Business Rewards program and Virgin Australia unveiling its new Economy X Class.”

Ms Anscombe said the continued investment of both carriers to boosting their fleets and facilities pointed to the underlying value for money proposition being delivered to business travellers.

The report also suggested a shift from the long-held belief that booking 14-21 days in advance delivers the best fares on the busiest routes. The introduction of Days of the Week fares in late 2016, which made certain fare types more expensive for travel on Thursdays and Fridays, being the clearest disruptor.

Ms Anscombe said the report also highlighted the continuing strong demand in key SME destinations of Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland with resulting cost increases for accommodation.

“Historically, airfares are still very competitive but using some professional expertise to match the market’s dynamic pricing is the best way to ensure you’re accessing the best airfares every time,” she said.

4D’s General Manager Felicity Burke said key international routes for SME travellers continued to show outstanding value.

“Flights between Sydney and Shanghai have dropped an astonishing 27 per cent in the last three years, the biggest fall of any major international route,” she said.

“Sydney and Los Angeles were the next best performing flights dropping 16 per cent in the same period.

“Other major destinations for SME travellers including Auckland, Singapore and Hong Kong all fell between three and nine per cent.”

Flight Centre Travel Group & Airbnb Host New Options for Corporate Travel

In an Australian and New Zealand first, Airbnb, the world’s leading community driven marketplace, has partnered with Flight Centre Travel Group’s (FCTG) corporate division to provide corporate customers with more options when travelling for business.

With five different corporate travel brands, FCTG corporate, offers the broadest range of travel management services for organisations across Australia and New Zealand. The new partnership with Airbnb means that FCTG’s corporate brands will now have an unrivalled pool of accommodation options to offer its corporate customers.

FCTG’s corporate brands, including FCM Travel Solutions, Corporate Traveller, Campus Travel and Stage and Screen, will have access to Airbnb for Business. The new accommodation offering will give FCTG’s corporate customers access to more than three million listings worldwide, which are available to be booked through the home-sharing platform.

Since its founding in 2008, Airbnb hosts have welcomed more than 180 million guest arrivals at Airbnb listings worldwide. Approximately 10 per cent of all travellers on Airbnb are business travellers, and in 2016, the number of business trips on Airbnb tripled.

Through this partnership, FCTG’s corporate travel brands will have access to Airbnb’s third party booking tool. Additionally the travel manager and the employee who is taking the trip, will be able to see trip details, make changes to the reservation, and message the Airbnb host with questions about the listing or neighbourhood.

Andrew Flannery, FCTG’s Executive General Manager of Corporate Travel, said today’s agreement would bolster the company’s award-winning corporate travel offering.

“Customers’ needs and preferences in the corporate travel sector are constantly evolving, and this agreement will deliver interesting new accommodation options that will appeal to sections of our customer base, particularly those who are looking to experience something a little different to a traditional hotel stay,” Mr Flannery said. “It will also benefit our corporate customers who are travelling to locations where there may currently be an under-supply of suitable hotel rooms.

“We are currently talking with a number of clients about the range of opportunities that Airbnb offers for travellers.”

David Holyoke, Global Director of Business Travel at Airbnb said, “We are thrilled to be working with FCTG’s corporate travel brands, in this sector of the travel industry, and look forward to helping Australian and New Zealand business travellers feel more at home while on the road.

“Airbnb for Business gives business travellers the ability to explore a city like a local, making it easy to travel for work without sacrificing the comforts of home.”

FCTG have run a trial with one of their clients over the last few months and they are already seeing a positive impact for their employees travelling for business using Airbnb, with employees included in the trial rating the experience 4.76 out of 5 stars and with an average daily rate of of $80AUD.

Airbnb listings will be available to Campus Travel and Stage and Screen in the coming weeks, and then progressively introduced soon after to FCM Travel Solutions and Corporate Traveller.

Daydream Island Announces Major $50 million Redevelopment

Daydream Island Resort Refurbishment Confirmed for 2018

Daydream Island Resort and Spa’s owners China Capital Investment Group (CCIG) has announced a more than $50-million-dollar redevelopment which will see significant infrastructure upgrades to the popular Whitsunday tropical island resort.

The works will see the resort closing in early 2018 for a period of time to ensure renovations can occur in the shortest possible time and with minimal disruptions.

Daydream Island Resort and Spa general manager Dawson Tang said the major redevelopment would see accommodation refurbishments as well as renovations to existing attractions and installation of new features which will transform Daydream into an upscale 4½ star world-class resort.

“This is a very exciting development in the history of Daydream Island and for The Whitsundays,” Mr Tang said.

“Our owners have recognised the need to revamp Daydream’s facilities especially as we embark on a greater push into international markets including the lucrative China market.

“Prior to commencing the redevelopment in 2018 it will be very much business as usual this coming year.

“With well-over 100,000 guests staying on Daydream Island each year we recognise the need to continuously improve our product and we will be improving the guest experience based on recent feedback right up until the redevelopment.”

“As Australia’s Famous Reef Island we will continue to deliver a unique connection through our Whitsunday location and proximity to the Great Barrier Reef, our fringing coral reef and the Living Reef on-island experience.”

Major works will include redevelopment of the Arrivals pavilion, Reception, main Atrium area, Waterfalls restaurant, Lagoons bar, all room types and Mermaids Restaurant. Additionally, the Lovers Cove function area will be expanded and a new Asian inspired restaurant will be built.

One of Daydream Island’s signature attractions, the Living Reef lagoons, will also be upgraded and receive some brand new features which will enhance interaction with guests.

The resort’s conference facilities will be significantly revamped and expanded.

To ensure minimal disruption to guests, some strategic projects will be implemented in 2017 on the South End of the island.  Fish Bowl bistro, Boat House Bakery and Ginger’s Hut will be closed for a period from the first week in February this year. Alternative food and dining facilities will be provided. Access to South End facilities including swimming pools, the outdoor cinema, motorised watersports and the Endeavour Wedding Chapel will not be affected.

CCIG purchased Daydream Island in March 2015 and has since completed many accommodation and facility upgrades and refurbishments plus a renovation to the resort’s main restaurant, Mermaids.

Located in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef, the 4.5 star Daydream Island Resort and Spa offers 296 beautifully appointed rooms, comprehensive facilities such as the Rejuvenation Spa and Living Reef lagoon, a wide variety of activities, sparkling bays and secluded beaches, which all combine to provide a superior tropical island experience.

For more information on Daydream Island visit www.daydreamisland.com

Rocky Mountains Tour & Alaska Cruise

Cruise1st has released a fantastic value 17-night fly, stay, tour and cruise holiday in Alaska and the Rocky Mountains from $4,299* per person twin share.

Departing on May 20, 2017, travellers will fly to Calgary in Canada where they will spend a night in the ‘Heart of the New West’.

The next day you will commence an eight-day coach tour of Western Canada & the Rocky Mountains. Highlights include Calgary, home of the famous annual stampede; Banff and beautiful Lake Louise; the dramatic scenery of Kamloops and Whistler before arriving into the coastal gem of Vancouver, where you will get to explore this picturesque city, known as the ‘jewel’ of North America’s Pacific Coast.

On May 28, 2017, travellers will be transferred to the port to board Celebrity’s five-star rated ship Celebrity Infinity for a 7-night cruise of Alaska and the Inside Passage. Port stops include Icy Strait Point, Hubbard Glacier, Alaska’s capital Juneau, and the ‘Salmon Capital of the World’ Ketchikan before returning to Vancouver. See tranquil fishing villages; wildlife including brown bears, eagles, moose and humpback whales; dramatic glaciers, icebergs and spring wildflowers.

alaska

Luxurious and comfortable, Celebrity Infinity features Broadway-style shows at the Infinity theatre, while children of all ages can find various activities to enjoy plus numerous pools, whirlpools and much more. At night, sample one of Celebrity Infinity’s four cocktail bars and lounges, or take a chance in Fortunes Casino.

Your return flight to Australia departs Vancouver 4th June, following the cruise.

For more information call 1300 596 345 or visit www.cruise1st.com.au.

*Subject to availability. Restrictions may apply. Prices are per person, twin share based on an inside stateroom. Prices and specified hotel subject to change at any time.

Prices per person twin share, inside stateroom 

From Sydney From $4,299*
From Melbourne From $4,299*
From Brisbane From $4,349*
From Adelaide From $4,499*
From Canberra From $4,599*
From Perth From $4,899*

 

The Wonders Beneath Daydream Island

Daydream Island Resort and Spa’s resident marine biologist and Living Reef manager, John Gaskell, is so impressed by the diversity of marine life found around Daydream Island that he decided to document it in a new book, Beneath Daydream Island.

Daydream is located just off Queensland’s Whitsunday Coast and only a two-hour boat ride from the heart of the world-renowned Great Barrier Reef.

Mr Gaskell said that Daydream has a rich diversity of marine life immediately off the island supported by a complex fringing reef habitat.

daydream island

“You can view much of this by simply snorkeling around the island or by scuba diving,” Mr Gaskell said.

“If you’re experienced then a night dive reveals a whole other world of animals and colour.

“The fringing reef off Daydream is one of the healthiest ecosystems in the Whitsundays.”

There is a combination of tropical species found throughout the inshore and outer reefs and a diversity of life comparable to some of the densest Australian marine habitats.

From tiny coral polyps to seasonal humpback whale visits, most major marine animal groups are represented here. This includes corals, reef fishes, sea turtles, crabs, shrimps, octopuses, sea stars, sharks and rays.

Some of the amazing marine animals to be found include sea snails, sea jellies, marine worms, sea cucumbers, surf parrotfish, honeycomb cod, and everyone’s favourite, red and black anemonefish – commonly known as clownfish.

“One of the more spectacular events we’ve witnessed here at Daydream is the coral spawning which occurs each year in late spring at night, roughly four days after a full moon,” Mr Gaskell said.

“The stony corals around Daydream have such a high density which makes for a spectacular sight. The spawning can be compared to a silent underwater snowstorm where millions of pink, yellow and white specks rise slowly to the surface.”

Mr Gaskell took all the images in the book during his many diving and snorkeling trips around the island.

“This book was produced in the hope that many others will be inspired to experience Daydream Island’s wonders first hand,” he said.

Beneath Daydream Island can be purchased at any retail outlet on Daydream Island for $20.

For more information on Daydream Island Resort and Spa visit www.daydreamisland.com

Cruise1st: Hawaii To Sydney Adventure Cruise

Sail from Hawaii to Sydney exploring idyllic Tahiti & French Polynesian islands and New Zealand along the way with a 19-night Cruise1st fly, stay and cruise deal.

Departing September 19, 2016, the package includes a flight to Honolulu and one night of pre-cruise accommodation before boarding Royal Caribbean’s Radiance of the Seas for an 18-night cruise.

The cruise stops in Papeete, Moorea and Bora Bora in Tahiti, French Polynesia; and Wellington and Picton in New Zealand.

Departures from Sydney are from $3599* per person twin share and include $100 of on board credit per cabin as well as onboard gratuities.

cruise
Radiance of the Seas offers a cruising experience like no other, with panoramic vistas, sleek surrounds and a range of dining and entertainment options.

There is a nine-storey central atrium; floor to ceiling windows; casual and formal dining options including a Brazilian steakhouse, Italian restaurant and sushi; three pools; fitness centre; rock climbing wall; mini golf; basketball court; jogging track; video game arcade; Royal Babies and Tots nursery; theatre; casino; clubs; lounges; duty free shopping and a teen lounge area and disco.

For more information call 1300 596 345 or visit www.cruise1st.com.au.

*Subject to availability. Restrictions may apply. Prices are per person, twin share based on an inside stateroom. Prices and specified hotels subject to change at any time.


Daydream Island Summer Getaways Sale On Now


Daydreaming of a tropical island getaway this summer? Now is the best time to book your next holiday at Daydream Island Resort and Spa in the Whitsundays with Daydream’s Getaway sale.

The Resort is offering a three-day package priced from $372* per person, twin share in a Garden Balcony Room – an amazing 20 per cent saving.

The package includes three nights accommodation, a scrumptious full buffet breakfast daily, a bonus $50 food and beverage voucher per room, per stay (children stay and eat breakfast free of charge), free shell necklace and mocktails on arrival, free Wi-Fi and a free holiday portrait during your stay.

Guests will also enjoy over 20 free guest activities including kayaks, catamarans, stand-up paddle boards, stingray and shark feeding show, open air cinema, rainforest walk, gym and much more.

north_beach (re-size)

Guests can also upgrade to an Ocean Balcony Room from only $462* per person twin share (a 20 per cent saving) or a Coral Ocean Balcony Room from only $522* per person twin share (a 20 per cent saving).

The special is on sale until 30 November, 2015 and valid for travel from now until 23 May 2016 (block out dates apply).

Daydream Island Resort and Spa is located in Queensland’s stunning Whitsunday Islands in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef.

The multi award-winning resort is home to one of the world’s largest man-made living reef lagoons known as The Living Reef, a great selection of restaurants and bars, a fringing coral reef and Rejuvenation Spa offering a selection of health and beauty treatments.

For bookings free call reservations on 1800 075 040, contact your local travel agent or visit www.daydreamisland.com

*Conditions apply: Subject to availability. On sale until 30 November 2015. For travel until 23 May 2016 (Blockout dates apply). Children 0-14 years inclusive stay and eat breakfast free of charge when sharing a room with parents/adults and utilising existing bedding. Max capacity of 4 people per hotel room/suite. Max capacity of 8 people per family room. Cots can be provided free of charge. Launch transfers are not included and must be booked at time of booking accommodation. Free Wi-Fi in atrium and all room types 24 hours per day. Prices quoted in Australian dollars.
 

AirAsia’s Network-wide Megasale Is Here!

Leading low-cost carrier AirAsia has brought back its highly anticipated Megasale with sale fares to Asia from Australia from as low as $99* one-way for a limited time.

Travellers can fly to Kuala Lumpur from Perth from $129* per person one-way; Gold Coast from $169*; and Melbourne and Sydney from $169*.

Some onwards one-way fares from Kuala Lumpur are as little as $4* one-way.

A330-300 AirAsia X_1Fares are available to Bali one-way from Darwin from $99*; Melbourne and Sydney from $169* and from Perth from $119*.

The Megasale fares are available for booking from now until 13 September 2015 with the fares valid for travel from 1 March 2016 to 29 October 2016. Bookings to www.airasia.com

AirAsia Commercial Head of Australia & New Zealand Stuart Myerscough said the Megasale was an excellent opportunity for travellers who were planning their forward travel next year and wanted to get some advance fares at a very good discount.

“AirAsia’s fly-through connectivity is proving very popular, ensuring that passengers have a smoother travelling experience right through to their final destination,” he said.

“With new direct flights from Sydney and Melbourne to a favourite destination like Bali proving popular the expansive AirAsia network also offers a range of alternative destinations which are becoming more popular including Sri Lanka and Indochina.”

AirAsia passengers are now able to fly into the brand new klia2 terminal in Kuala Lumpur, the carrier’s main hub, which provides an even better experience for travellers, particularly those transiting through to other destinations.

Some of the more than 100 destinations on sale include:

From the Gold Coast or Melbourne, fly one-way to Siem Reap or Ho Chi Minh City from $199*; Langkawi, Phuket or Bangkok from $209*; or Hong Kong from $229*.

From Sydney, one-way economy flights to Ho Chi Minh City are from $199*; Phuket from $209*; Hong Kong from $229*; Colombo from $259* and Osaka from $289*.

From Perth, grab some great one-way fares to Penang or Siem Reap from $159*; Phuket from $169*; Hong Kong from $189*; Seoul from $229*; and Osaka from $249*.

AirAsia X, together with AirAsia, provides Australians with low cost fares and access to over 100 destinations across 23 countries.

AirAsia X was just named the World’s Best Low Cost Airline Premium Seat for their business class flatbed and the World’s Best Low Cost Airline Premium Cabin titles at the 2015 Skytrax World Airline Awards. The AirAsia Group also received its seventh consecutive year title as the World’s Best and Asia’s Best Low Cost Airline at the awards.

For bookings or further information visit www.airasia.com Flights and fares are subject to availability.

Travellers can also log onto AirAsia’s one-stop travel portal at AirAsiaGo.com which offers a range of more than 80,000 three-star, five-star and boutique hotels to choose from.

*Flights and fares are subject to availability. Availability of connecting flights are subject to timings of the individual flights. Seats are limited and not available on all flights/days or at peak periods. Fares include airport taxes & surcharges. Processing fee is applicable for online bookings made by credit, debit or charge card. Processing fee does not apply to Australian customers paying with PayPal. Fees apply for checked baggage except on Business Class Flat Bed fares. Other terms and conditions apply. Booking period 7-13 September 2015 or until sold out. Travel period 1 March 2016 to 29 October 2016. Lowest possible sale fares are one-way online at airasia.com. Next best possible fare available via phone with additional $25 service fee. All amounts are in Australian dollars unless stated otherwise.

AirAsia’s Network-wide Megasale Starts Today!

Fares to Asia from $99*
Regional Asia fares from as low as $4*

Leading low-cost carrier AirAsia has brought back its extremely popular Megasale with sale fares to Asia from Australia from as low as $99* one-way for a limited time.

Travellers can fly to Kuala Lumpur from Perth for $99* per person one-way; Gold Coast from $169*; and Melbourne and Sydney from $169*.

Some onwards one-way fares from Kuala Lumpur are as little as $4* one-way.

Fares are available to Bali one-way from Darwin from $99*; Melbourne from $169* and from Perth from $119*.

The Megasale fares are available for booking from 22 June 2015 to 28 June 2015 with the fares valid for travel from 15 February 2016 to 31 August 2016. Bookings to www.airasia.com

AirAsia Commercial Head of Australia & New Zealand Stuart Myerscough said the Megasale was an excellent opportunity for travellers who were planning their forward travel next year and wanted to snap up some low-cost airfares early.

“AirAsia’s fly-through connectivity is proving very popular, ensuring that passengers have a smoother travelling experience right through to their final destination,” he said.

“Australians are keener now more than ever to get away for shorter overseas trips and with Asia right on our doorstep are utilising our broad network to explore some favourite destinations but also some new and emerging places like Colombo, and Kochi in India.”

AirAsia passengers are now able to fly into the brand new klia2 terminal in Kuala Lumpur, the carrier’s main hub, which provides an even better experience for travellers, particularly those transiting through to other destinations.

Some of the more than 100 destinations on sale include:

From the Gold Coast, fly one-way to Langkawi, Phnom Penh and Ho Chi Minh City from $199*; Phuket and Bangkok from $209*; Hong Kong from $219*; and Osaka from $279*.

From Melbourne, jet off one-way to Ho Chi Minh City and Phnom Penh from $199*; Phuket and Bangkok from $209*; Colombo from $229*; Kochi from $239* and Tokyo (Narita) from $279*.

From Sydney, one-way economy flights to Langkawi, Phnom Penh and Ho Chi Minh City are from $199*; Phuket and Bangkok from $209*; Kochi from $239*; and Bali from $229*.

From Perth, grab some great one-way fares to Bali from $119*; Langkawi, Phnom Penh and Ho Chi Minh City from $129*; Phuket and Bangkok from $139* and Tokyo (Narita) from $209*.

From Darwin, you can also fly to Bali from $99*; and fly onwards from Bali to Singapore from an additional $50*; Kuala Lumpur from $57*; Kota Kinabalu from $60*; and Bangkok from $82*.

AirAsia X, together with AirAsia, provides Australians with low cost fares and access to over 100 destinations across 23 countries.

AirAsia X was just named the World’s Best Low Cost Airline Premium Seat for their business class flatbed and the World’s Best Low Cost Airline Premium Cabin titles at the 2015 Skytrax World Airline Awards. The AirAsia Group also received its seventh consecutive year title as the World’s Best and Asia’s Best Low Cost Airline at the awards.

For bookings or further information visit www.airasia.com Flights and fares are subject to availability.

Travellers can also log onto AirAsia’s one-stop travel portal at AirAsiaGo.com which offers a range of more than 80,000 three-star, five-star and boutique hotels to choose from.

*Flights and fares are subject to availability. Availability of connecting flights are subject to timings of the individual flights. Seats are limited and not available on all flights/days or at peak periods. Fares include airport taxes & surcharges. Processing fee is applicable for online bookings made by credit, debit or charge card. Processing fee does not apply to Australian customers paying with PayPal. Fees apply for checked baggage except on Business Class Flat Bed fares. Other terms and conditions apply. Booking period 22 – 28 June 2015 or until sold out. Travel period 15 February 2016 to 31st August 2016. Lowest possible sale fares are one-way online at airasia.com. Next best possible fare available via phone with additional $25 service fee. All amounts are in Australian dollars unless stated otherwise.
 
ENDS
Media enquiries Brenton Gibbs brenton@rgcommunications.com.au

AirAsia’s sale a day keeps holiday blues away

Phuket, Thailand

Phuket, Thailand

Get ready for seven-days of spectacular sales from AirAsia to some of their most popular destinations.

The leading low-cost carrier is excited to today introduce its amazing 7 Destination 7 Day Sale where one destination will be on sale for 24-hours, every day this week.

From the tropical paradise of Langkawi to the bustling Indian city of Kochi, there’s a holiday destination for everyone.
The seven destinations on sale are:

• Monday, February 16: Phuket
• Tuesday, February 17: Langkawi
• Wednesday, February 18: Ho Chi Minh City
• Thursday, February 19: Bangkok
• Friday, February 20: Tokyo (Narita)
• Saturday, February 21: Penang
• Sunday, February 22: Kochi

AirAsia is commencing the sale today (Monday 16th February) with some great fares to Phuket. Fares departing from Melbourne start from $229* one way, Sydney from $289*, Perth from $199*, Gold Coast from $229*.

The fares for each day’s sale destination will be released on AirAsia’s Facebook page www.facebook.com/AirAsiaAustralia and the
AirAsia website www.airasia.com.au

AirAsia Australia and New Zealand commercial manager Stuart Myerscough said the sale was an excellent opportunity for people to enjoy an affordable getaway in Asia.

“If you’ve been saving up for your dream holiday in Asia, then this is the sale that you’ve been waiting for,” he said.

“Travelling to Asia provides a wide variety of exciting and rewarding experiences and we’re proud to offer a range of exotic destinations on sale within our network.”

AirAsia provides Australians with low cost fares and access to over 100 destinations across 23 countries.

The AirAsia Group received its sixth consecutive title as the World’s Best and Asia’s Best Low Cost Airline at the 2014 Skytrax World Airline Awards. AirAsia X was awarded the World’s Best Low Cost Airline Premium Seat and the World’s Best Low Cost Airline Premium Cabin titles at the awards.

For bookings or further information visit www.airasia.com.  Flights and fares are subject to availability.

Travellers can also log onto AirAsia’s one-stop travel portal at AirAsiaGo.com which offers more than 80,000 three-star, five-star and boutique hotels to choose from.
*Flights and fares are subject to availability. Booking period 00:01 GMT+8 16 February 2015 till 23:59 GMT+8 16 February 2015, or until sold out. Travel period 01 March 2015 – 30 June 2015. Seats are limited and not available on all flights/days or at peak periods. Fares are for one way travel, hand luggage only and fully inclusive of all taxes and charges. Fees apply for checked baggage. Business Class fares come with complimentary services as advertised on airasia.com. Lowest fares available online at airasia.com. No processing fees are applicable for online bookings made with PayPal. Next best possible fare available via phone with additional $25 service fee. All amounts are in Australian dollars unless stated otherwise. See airasia.com for full details and Conditions of Carriage.

ENDS Media enquiries Brenton Gibbs