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Europcar recognises best performing franchisees


Europcar, a leading car rental firm in Europe, has recognised its best performing franchisees at ITB in Berlin.

Franchisees were nominated within five categories:  “Best Performer”, “Technical Solutions”, “Customer Satisfaction”, “Commercial Vehicles” and “Best Newcomer”. This is the first time Europcar has rewarded its international franchisees’ network with dedicated trophies”.

2013 winners were:

  • Best Performer : Europcar Zambia:  Grant GATCHELL, General Director
  • Customer Satisfaction: Europcar Switzerland: Carlos SARDINHA, General Manager
  • Technical Solutions: Europcar Oman: Nitin SAPRE, General Manager
  • Best Newcomer: Europcar Chile: Cristian PEREZ MOORE, General Manager
  • Commercial Vehicles: Europcar Denmark: Poul TVEDE, General Manager

“We are very proud to reward our best franchisees for the first time. It is essential for Europcar that its franchisees’ network gets further integrated and recognised within our group. We have created our new Awards to highlight the best performances and share the best practices. Our franchisees give the Europcar brand a worldwide presence and high visibility, but also a great diversity to address our customers needs: this is a strong asset we wanted to acknowledge and emphasize as we plan to develop further the Europcar franchisees’ network within the next years”, explained Marcus Bernhardt, Chief Commercial Officer, Europcar International.

Europcar franchisees’ network includes already 132 countries, with more than 6000 employees in over 1650 locations. Europcar continues to expand its network with several openings planned in the course of 2013 such as Puerto Rico, Singapore, Paraguay, Bolivia, South Korea and Vietnam.

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Car Hire Excess Insurance change of website address


Car Hire Assistant, the car rental price comparison site has changed the website address for its Car Hire Excess insurance. With immediate effect, the new address will be: www.carhireassistant.travelexcess.com.

A spokesman for Car Hire Assistant apologised for the inconvenience, but assured users that the excellent offers previously available for these independent car hire excess insurance policies shall remain.

Car Hire Assistant providers hirers with the opportunity to take out an independent ‘pay and claim’ insurance police to cover the insurance excess imposed by car rental firms. Taking out an independent policy can save hirers a small fortune, when compared to the ‘daily’ charges imposed by most rental companies.

 

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Heathrow Airport trials new biometric departure technology



Compare Car HireHeathrow passengers are the first in the world to use an revolutionary technology as component of the airport’s drive to further enhance the passenger experience. Terminal 1 passengers are being asked to participate in a 2 month ‘self-boarding’ trial in collaboration with South African Airways, which makes use of biometric data to help them board their flights quicker and more efficiently.

Once passengers arrive at the ‘self-boarding’ gate, they pass through an automatic electronic barrier which takes an infrared scan of their face. This data is verified against the biometric data that was taken at the check-in stage. When the 2 sets of data scans are successfully met, the barrier opens and the passenger can pass through and board their flight. The technology means that a passenger’s identification only needs to be checked by airline staff once during the whole departure process, minimising the amount of time it takes for passengers to reach their seats in readiness for departure.

The technology also enables airline personnel to invest more time with those passengers who need more assistance. The personal data is stored securely and will be deleted at the end of the trial.

Heathrow’s Terminal 1 Director Ian Hanson said: “We are working in partnership with our airlines to trial this technology which should help make our passengers’ journeys smoother and simpler. Since its introduction we have had positive feedback from both airlines and passengers.’

To date over 300 South African Airways passengers have elected to use the technology as part of their departure passage.

New technologies are already being used by passengers in the course of the departure process, from checking in via mobile phones, ‘self-service bag drops’ to automated ticket presentation prior to passenger security. Introduced in November 2012, the self service bag drop permits passengers to produce and attach their own bag tags before putting their luggage onto the automated bag drop facility.

Heathrow Airport is the busiest airport in Europe and the 3rd largest in the world in terms of passenger numbers. Car Hire Assistant provides a car rental price comparison service for travellers to and from Heathrow airport.

 

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Dubai International sets new passenger record


Dubai International has broken another monthly record by receiving, for the first time, more than 5.5 million passengers in a single month. According to the traffic report issued by Dubai Airports, passenger traffic rose by 14.6 per cent to 5,559,760 in January 2013, up from 4,852,139 for the same period in 2012.

It is also acknowledged that most markets improved in January through a combination of holiday traffic and visitors to the ever popular Dubai Shopping Festival. In addition, flight links continue to be widened between Dubai and Saudi Arabia with Emirates, flydubai, Nasair and Saudi Arabian Airlines all adding new flights in 2012.Compare airport car hire prices

For example in the course of the year Emirates added new flights to Jeddah, Dammam and Riyadh while flydubai expanded its network to include Jeddah, Dammam, Riyadh, Taif, Yanbu and Tabuk. Saudi Arabian Airlines, also introduced flights from Medina and Riyadh to Dubai and low-cost airline Nasair introduced links between Riyadh and Dubai.

“January’s record passenger numbers confirm that the growth trajectory recorded last year has continued into 2013 and Dubai Airports has taken another steady stride towards the 98 million passengers a year we expect to pass through our airport by the end of the decade,” said chief executive Paul Griffiths.

 

South Africa boosted by exposure to UK travellers


South African Airways Extreme Fares campaign has seen exceptional 2013 figures for the airline in the UK, with income up 70 per cent year-on-year across some channels. The unprecedented improvement in January bookings comes after the recent launch of South African Airways’ focused winter adventure travel marketing campaign.

This witnessed the airline partner with adventurer Charley Boorman for his 4 part TV series Charley Boorman’s South African Adventure, which was broadcast on Channel 5 and exhibited South Africa’s ultimate experiences throughout January. The country was also in the limelight last month on the BBC as a consequence of David Attenborough’s ‘Africa’ show. Both shows generated interest which SAA were able to expolit.

Jon Danks head of UK&I marketing & communications, SAA said: “The integrated campaign ran across key digital, print, and social media channels, anchored to the range of adventures showcased in both shows.

“Our tie up with Charley and Channel 5 presented a cost effective broadcast solution alongside great support from partners such as Lonely Planet and tourist boards from across Southern Africa.”

UK January progress is even more remarkable given that in January last year the airline flew direct to both Johannesburg and Cape Town, since which it has dropped the direct service to Cape Town to focus on its network. The new campaign focused on the wide range of destinations across Southern Africa accessible via SAA’s Johannesburg hub.

The TV show has been hailed a success by broadcaster Channel 5 with nearly 4 million people in the UK watching, in turn engaging with SAA’s brand.

 

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Eitad Airways extends codeshare agreement with Air France


Etihad Airways has further developed its relationship with Air France-KLM, with the announcement that the UAE flag carrier will lease an Air France Airbus A340-300 for use on the Paris-Abu Dhabi route from May 15 to November 30. Under the arrangement, Air France will run the 272 seat aircraft as one of Etihad Airways’ 2 daily Paris-Abu Dhabi return services.

Last October, Etihad Airways and Air France-KLM forged a tactical collaboration which allowed the 2 airline groups to work together to create value for each airline.

The agreement extended the UAE flag carrier’s European network with code-share services beyond Paris to Bordeaux, Copenhagen, Madrid, Nice and Toulouse, and saw Air France place its AF flight code on Etihad Airways operated flights between Paris Charles de Gaulle and Abu Dhabi, and to cities further afield. The agreement also played a crucial role in Etihad Airways revealing direct Amsterdam-Abu Dhabi services effective May 15, in addition to KLM boosting its direct Amsterdam-Abu Dhabi services to daily from summer 2013.

Kevin Knight, Chief Strategy and Planning Officer at Etihad Airways, said: “This agreement to wet-lease an Air France A340-300 aircraft demonstrates the mutual benefits generated by our close relationship with Air France-KLM. On the back of recent announcements, this latest cooperation deal is good for both carriers in terms of better optimising our fleets for the rest of 2013.

“The temporary wet-leased EY37 and EY38 return service will also see Etihad Airways cabin crew on board, working alongside Air France attendants to provide our guests with an inspired travelling experience that the world’s leading airline is best known for.”

 

Car Hire Assistant provide a price comparison service for car rentals in 175 countries, utilising 800 suppliers, supported by 30,000 rental locations. The service is free to use and nothing is added to the rental price.

 
 

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easyJet expands flights to Copenhagen


Budget carrier easyJet is expanding its services between London Gatwick and Copenhagen with an early morning departure from Copenhagen and an evening departure from London Gatwick. The approach will see easyJet’s flights boosted from 3 to 4 every day from 24 May 2013.

Paul Simmons, easyJet’s UK Director said: “We are actively improving our product choice, flexibility, availability and quality to help our business passengers by offering early morning and evening flights seven days a week which are supplemented by two afternoon departures.

“Our flights to Copenhagen are available from as little as £29.99** (one way including taxes) and we deliver outstanding value with our regular fares proven to be cheaper in eight out of ten occasions and flexi fares nine out of ten, so it really does make business sense to fly easyJet.”

easyJet has also enhanced the number of flights from London Gatwick to the Croatian cities of Split and Dubrovnik as well as Nice in France and currently also serves Copenhagen from Bristol, Edinburgh and London Stansted.

Car Hire Assistant is a car rental price comparison site serving 175 countries, including 100’s of airports in Europe, such as; London Heathrow, Barcelona Airport, Dusseldorf and Frankfurt.

 
 

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