Carry On: News for business travellers
Qatar again named top airline
The relatively new Gulf airline owned by Qatar again topped the Skytrax World Airline Awards. Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker was presented with Airline of the Year 2012 award at the annual Farnborough Air Show in the UK. Among carriers in this part of the world, Air New Zealand and Qantas both dropped dramatically in the rankings, Air New Zealand falling from seventh to 17th and Qantas from eighth to 15th. By contrast, Virgin Australia rocketed from 32nd to 12th. Jetstar was named best low-cost carrier for Australia-Pacific. Full details are World Airline Awards.
The “ultimate” world cruise, operated by Silversea Cruises, will sail from Los Angeles on January 5, 2013, for 115 days, following the sun, crossing the equator four times and visiting 52 destinations in 28 countries, before arriving in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on May 1, 2013. The Silver Whisper will carry just 382 guests and the trip is priced from $US48,114 per person double occupancy. Destinations include French Polynesia, New Zealand, Australia, Asia, India, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Mauritius, Madagascar and Mozambique. The Silver Whisper will then offer extensive cruising around South African harbours and calls along the West African coast, before heading for Central America, the Caribbean and finally Fort Lauderdale. Some sectors, ranging from 11-29 days, are also available. Speakers during the cruise include writer Nigel West (Cape Town to Ft Lauderdale), hostage negotiator Terry Waite (Los Angeles to Sydney) and Eats, Shoots and Leaves author Lynne Truss (Sydney to Hong Kong). Details at www.silversea.com
Train trips in the Outback
AAT Kings has launched a new online Outback Rail Breaks brochure packaging travel on one of the great train journeys of the world, The Ghan, with touring experiences in the Northern Territory. The six-page online brochure showcases two seven-day itineraries, travelling in each direction between Uluru and Darwin, and combining the rail journey with arrival and departure transfers, sightseeing and accommodation in the Red Centre and the Top End. Valid for sale and travel to March 31, 2013.
Philippines wants to see return tickets
Passengers travelling to and from the Philippines on Cathay Pacific must from now on hold a printed copy of their return or onward e-ticket. The airline says these instructions have been issued by the Philippines Department of Justice, the Philippines Bureau of Immigration and by the Republic of Philippines, so they presumably apply to all airlines. A ticket image presented on an electric device, such as a laptop or a smart phone will not be acceptable. Cathay says these instructions will be strictly enforced and passengers arriving without a printed e-ticket will be refused entry by the Philippines authorities. No reason has been given but media in the Philippines have reported on a new bill to assert passenger rights after a range of complaints about over-booking, cancelled or delayed flights, and airport congestion.
Qantas to launch Hooroo
Qantas Group will next week launch Hooroo, promising an exciting new entrant into the Australian online accommodation marketplace. For an exclusive preview, check out www.hooroo.com.