Tourism Breaking News

Vistara removes reading material from flights and cleans aircraft at every turnaround to fight Covid-19 aircraft

Doing its bit to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, Vistara today announced temporary fleet-wide removal of all reading material from seatback pockets, including the Vistara in-flight magazine, newspapers and other magazines of passengers’ interest. The step has been taken to prevent the spread of the virus.   Vistara is also proactively cleaning all aircraft in its fleet at the turnaround of every single flight. Disinfectant cleaners approved by aircraft manufacturers are being used for the purpose. This means all cabins of all of Vistara’s aircraft, including seats, tray tables, latches, galley, seatbelt buckles, all lavatories and flight deck etc. are being disinfected after every flight. Additionally, Vistara is carrying out thorough deep cleaning of all aircraft every 24 hours using approved higher concentration of disinfectant cleaner, Callington 2200 (CH2200). The airline’s teams wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as hand gloves and face masks, as required, to perform the cleaning procedures.   OTHER PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES:   Vistara is continuously monitoring flights across its network for risks. If a suspected case (passengers exhibiting any symptoms of Covid-19) comes to the airline’s attention, either voluntarily or reported/observed by the crew, the airline’s operations and maintenance control centers are immediately informed for necessary action. The subsequent action includes immediate sanitization of the affected row including three rows ahead and behind, lavatory, sidewalls, tray tables, overhead compartments and carpets by approved disinfectant cleaners. If any confirmed cases are reported, Vistara will immediately carry out complete sanitization of the entire aircraft. Vistara’s cabin crew practice a high level of personal hygiene and wear disposable gloves during processes such as clearance of trays. Vistara’s fleet is equipped with the HEPA (High Efficiency-Particulate Arrestors) air recirculation filters that …

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Updated information on changes to Aeroflot’s flight schedule from Moscow

Aeroflot has adjusted its schedule of flights from Moscow. Aeroflot will continue to operate flights from Moscow to the following destinations in Europe: Amsterdam, Berlin, Brussels, Bucharest, Dublin, Geneva, London, Madrid, Paris and Rome. Following the decision by Russian authorities to halt flights between Moscow and Dubai, from 23 March one flight will operate daily on this route. From 29 March, Aeroflot will continue to operate flights to the US only between Moscow and New York. Aeroflot is working hard to help Russian citizens return home. We ask all passengers holding tickets for cancelled flights to regularly check the email associated with the booking, or check the booking on the Aeroflot website, or contact the airline directly to make changes. Passengers (Russian citizens) holding tickets for later dates on routes where service is being suspended are requested to contact the airline as soon as possible to rebook their flight on the earliest operated regular or charter flight. Aeroflot has temporarily suspended flights between Moscow and the following cities: — Aktau (23 March to 23 April) — Aktobe (23 March to 23 April) — Almaty (23 March to 23 April) — Athens (24 March to 18 April) — Atyrau (24 March to 23 April) — Baku (29 March to 30 April) — Barcelona (21 March to 23 April) — Beirut (18 March to 29 March) — Belgrade (21 March to 23 April) — Budapest (23 March to 30 April) — Bukhara (16 March to 15 April) — Cairo (19 March to 31 March) — Chisinau (16 March to 31 March) — Copenhagen (21 March to 23 April) — Delhi (22 March to 28 March) — Frankfurt (19 March to 23 April) — Helsinki (24 March to 2 April) — Karagandy (19 March to 23 April) — Kostanay (21 March to 22 April) …

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Etihad Airways to temporarily suspend all services starting March 25

Etihad Airways will temporarily suspend all flights to, from, and via Abu Dhabi following a decision by the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority, and the General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), to suspend all inbound, outbound, and transit passenger flights in the UAE. This decision has been made to limit the spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus and to protect citizens, residents, and international travellers. The suspension of flights to and from Abu Dhabi International Airport will commence at 23:59 (UAE local time) on Wednesday 25 March, and will last for an initial 14 days, subject to further directives by the relevant authorities. Cargo and emergency evacuation flights are exempt and will continue. Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said: “These are unprecedented times and unprecedented decisions are being made by governments, authorities and companies, including Etihad, to contain the spread of the coronavirus and to help minimise its effects around the world. “We stand with our loyal customers, who are having to endure disruption and inconvenience to their travel and their daily lives, and we dedicate all our efforts and resources to ensuring we do all we can to assist them with their travel planning during this challenging period. “As the national airline, we stand in full support of the UAE government’s decision, and are confident that we’re well prepared to weather the commercial and operational impact this suspension will have on our services.” Guests will be notified if their flight is cancelled. However, prior to proceeding to the airport, all guests should still check the status of their flights, using the Etihad Airways Flight Tracker at: https://www.etihad.com/en/manage/flight-tracker Etihad Airways continues to follow UAE and international …

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Poona Hoteliers appeal to Chief Minister for interim relief amidst COVID-19 crisis

The Poona Hoteliers Association, taking cognisance of the situation owing to the COVID-19 infection and steps taken by the Government to curb the spread of infection has written to the Hon’ble Chief Minister on behalf of its member Hotels, Restaurants and allied Institutions seeking relief given the huge losses facing the industry. The plea highlights the critical state that hoteliers and hospitality professionals find themselves due to dwindling revenues and pressures to service debt and fulfil financial obligations towards the government. PHA has also sent copies of the appeal to relevant departments like the Tourism Ministry, Maharashtra, Commissioners of PMC and PCMC and the Hon’ble Collector of Pune. Poona Hoteliers Association (PFA) is a non-profit entity working in the interest of industry stakeholders. In the light of the drastic fall in occupancies and customers at the restaurants, PHA in its submission has requested the Government for assistance in offering relief in licence fees, levies, taxes, duties and GST on various amenities including electricity, fuel, excise and municipal levies to tide over the current crisis. “Our effort is merely to draw the attention of the Government towards the plight of Hoteliers and the industry, which is the single largest generator of employment in the Country. A favourable consideration will help the industry save several jobs, which are under threat right now, apart from keeping several ancillary businesses afloat. There are many families dependent upon employment generated directly by the industry and we only seek to do our bit to ensure we keep the kitchen fuel burning in their homes”, said Sharan Shetty, President of PHA. PHA members include over 90 major star and independently operated Hotels and Hotel Management Institutes in …

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67% drop in inbound, 52% in outbound tourists in Jan-Feb as compared to 2019

Tourism, hospitality and aviation are among the worst affected sectors that are facing the maximum brunt of the present crisis, revealed a report on impact of COVID-19 on Indian economy by FICCI. The survey suggests that there has been a drop in both inbound and outbound tourism of about 67% and 52% respectively since January to February as compared to the same period last year, owing to large scale cancellation of travel plans by both foreign and domestic tourists. Of all the segments of the hospitality sector, the M!CE segment has been hit the most with the cancellation of major trade events. The tourism industry expects the situation to further deteriorate in March and in the forthcoming summer season i.e. April-June, says the report.

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FHRAI advises members to refund travel agents

Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Association of India (FHRAI) has requested their members to refund 100% deposit on bookings made by travel agents. Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, Vice President, FHRAI, and President of HRAWI, has said, “We have advised all our hotel members to give 100 per cent refunds to the travel agents through whom the bookings have come. Some of them may have not done so. But they are definitely deferring the dates. We have advised them not to do this because at the time of crisis to gain the confidence of the guest, one must offer immediate and 100 per cent refund whenever asked for. Of course, deferment of dates is already there. We request the travel agents to try and influence the airlines – certain airlines have not been kind enough to refund. They are only offering a change of date. Unfortunately, that is not how it will work specially at a time like this. We are a service industry and customers are of prime importance.”

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IATO election: Last date for withdrawing nominations today

Nominations for IATO election, scheduled on 25th April at The Ashok New Delhi, have been released. The last date of withdrawal is today by 3pm. As of now, for the position of the President, there have been five nominations— Rajiv Mehra, Uday Tours & Travels; Amaresh Tiwari, AT Seasons & Vacations Travel; Lally Mathews, Divine Voyages; Rajesh Mudgill, Planet India Travels and EM Najeeb, Air Travel Enterprises. For Senior Vice President, the nominations are— EM Najeeb, Air Travel Enterprises; Lajpat Rai, Lotus Trans Travel; and Sarab Jit Singh, Travelite (India). For Vice President, nominations have been received from Raj Bajaj, Perfect Travels & Tours; Ravi Gosain, Erco Travels; Amaresh Tiwari, AT Seasons & Vacations Travel; Arun Anand, Midtown Travels; Lally Mathews, Divine Voyages; Rajesh Mudgill, Planet India Travels; and Lajpat Rai, Lotus Trans Travel. For Hony. Secretary, nominations have been received from Rajnish Kaistha, Paradise Holidays India; Raj Bajaj, Perfect Travels & Tours; Ravi Gosain, Erco Travels; Amaresh Tiwari, AT Seasons & Vacations Travel; Lally Mathews, Divine Voyages; Rajesh Mudgill, Planet India Travels; and Sanjay Razdan, Razdan Holidays. For Hony. Treasurer, the nominations have been received from Rajnish Kaistha, Paradise Holidays India; Viney Tyagi, Uni Crystal Holidays; Ravi Gosain, Erco Travels; Arun Anand, Midtown Travels; Sunil Mishra, Cosmos Tours & Travels; Atul Rai, Ananya Tours; Tony Marwah, Indian Travel Promotion Company; and Sanjay Razdan, Razdan Holidays. For Hony. Joint secretary, Rajnish Kaistha, Paradise Holidays India; Raj Bajaj, Perfect Travels & Tours; Viney Tyagi – Uni Crystal Holidays; Sunil Mishra, Cosmos Tours & Travels; Atul Rai, Ananya Tours; Tony Marwah, Indian Travel Promotion Company; Sanjay Razdan, Razdan Holidays; and Naresh Sharma – Inpac Tours. For EC Members – Active (5 posts), …

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Singapore Airlines makes significant capacity cuts and grounds aircraft

Singapore Airlines will be cutting 96% of the capacity that had been originally scheduled up to end-April, given the further tightening of border controls around the world over the last week to stem the Covid-19 outbreak. This will result in the grounding of around 138 SIA and SilkAir aircraft, out of a total fleet of 147, amid the greatest challenge that the SIA Group has faced in its existence. The Group’s low-cost unit Scoot will also suspend most of its network, resulting in the grounding of 47 of its fleet of 49 aircraft. The SIA Group diversified its network and set up Scoot to spread its risks and cater to a wide range of passenger and market segments. However, without a domestic segment, the Group’s airlines become more vulnerable when international markets increasingly restrict the free movement of people or ban air travel altogether. It is unclear when the SIA Group can begin to resume normal services, given the uncertainty as to when the stringent border controls will be lifted. The resultant collapse in the demand for air travel has led to a significant decline in SIA’s passenger revenues. The Company is actively taking steps to build up its liquidity, and to reduce capital expenditure and operating costs. As mentioned on 17 March 2020, SIA will continue to aggressively pursue all measures to address the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on the Company. These include: • ongoing discussions with aircraft manufacturers to defer upcoming aircraft deliveries. If agreed, this will consequently defer payment for those aircraft deliveries; • salary cuts for the SIA Group’s management with the Company’s Directors also agreeing to a cut in their fees, and a voluntary …

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SriLankan Airlines brings home 829 stranded pilgrims from India

As initiated and facilitated by the Government of Srilanka, SriLankan Airlines, brought back 829 Sri Lankans who were stranded in India. They have been arriving in the country, as Sri Lanka was going into 48-hour quarantine curfew, since Friday , March 20,to Sunday 22nd 2020. The Airline wishes to state that these passengers had travelled to India on other airlines and were stranded there as the carriers concerned stopped operations to Colombo due to travel restrictions. The National Carrier took every measure to bring them home swiftly and safely, given that these passengers mainly consisted of senior citizens, an age group that has been advised to take extra precautions to be safe from the virus. Ever since the global outbreak, SriLankan Airlines has been playing a pivotal role in facilitating passage home to many Sri Lankans, which includes the mercy flight that was operated to Wuhan. The Airlines’ operational areas have been fully functional despite the government declared holidays and ‘work-from-home’ , and the staff members have been attending to their work dedicatedly and diligently, understanding fully the role that they are expected to play during these difficult times. SriLankan Airlines, going above and beyond the call of duty and not aiming at any commercial fulfillment despite the irretrievable impact this has made on business, has continued to step in and fulfil what is expected of the National Carrier, thus playing its part of staying united as a country in this crucial hour. Our Global Contact Center(0197331979), including Airport ticket office offering 24×7 service to our valuable customers for their ticket related services.

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KLM’s support to their customers during Corona Crisis

KLM’s contact centers have been overloaded by the corona crisis. Currently, the airline receives ten times more messages via social channels and receives four times more calls per day than usual. The expectation is that the number of questions will only increase due to future cancellations. The developments cause great uncertainty for customers. KLM wants her contact centers to be easily accessible again so that employees can make maximum efforts to assist passengers. In order to further aid this, KLM has created a video to assist customers, informing them about all the important links concerning their bookings. In addition to that KLM’s social media team is working day and night to support their passengers and solve all their queries. updates.klm.com provides the latest information on the commercial measures, FAQs and rebook policy. KLM trusts her clients to understand this exceptional situation and measure.  

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