Corporate Travel News – January 2019

Industry News.

Industry News Section (16)CTM wins at 2019 Business Travel Awards

CTM has reinforced its award-winning status, taking home the top award for Best Travel Management Company (>£200m UK annual sales) at the 2019 Business Travel Awards in London this month. CTM was nominated for four awards in 2019, including Best Sales Account Management Team, Best Self-Booking Tool and Rising Star of the Year – of which Robert Cope, CTM Finance Services Manager, was awarded as Highly Commended. Read more. 


Airline & Airport News.

BA Premium Economy upgrade

BA upgrades Premium Economy

British Airways’ premium economy cabins, World Traveller Plus, are undergoing an extensive makeover, with the upgraded product to feature on BA’s A350 aircraft arriving later this year. Passengers will be treated to new amenity kits and bedding, with upgraded menus to launch from 1 February featuring a third main meal and the ability to pre-order up to 24 hours prior to departure.


UA Polaris LAXUA Polaris LAX lounge opens

Arriving fashionably late after several months of delay, United Airlines Polaris Lounge in Los Angeles has officially opened its doors to United Polaris business class and Star Alliance first and business class passengers on 12 January 2019. On offer is a variety of locally-inspired Californian dishes including LA fish and chips, a street taco trio, churros and the famous Polaris burger.


BA SME ChileBA releases top SME destinations in 2018

Data from British Airways’ On Business loyalty programme has shown some surprising results for the fastest-growing routes for SMEs in 2018. Non-traditional business destinations saw significant growth, such as Santiago in Chile (+18%), Keflavik in Iceland (+ 39%) and Abuja and Lagos in Nigeria (+10%). The data suggests small to medium business are diversifying their business travel to new and upcoming global markets.


UA Poalris 787United to launch Polaris business class on Dreamliner’s from 2020

Following the opening of United Airlines’ Polaris lounge at LAX this month, the airline has confirmed plans to complete its Polaris business class fitting across the Boeing 787 fleet by the end of 2020. The upgrade is scheduled to start in the fourth quarter of 2019 and will offer passengers direct aisle access for every seat, additional storage and luxury bedding for an even better sleep. UA will also be introducing a Premium Plus economy cabin across the fleet.


EK A380 to GlasgowEmirates A380 to Glasgow

For the first time in Scottish aviation history, Emirates will start regularly flying its A380 superjumbo to Glasgow Airport. The jet is scheduled to start services at the airport on Tuesday 16 April and will operate through to the end of October. An £8 million upgrade of the airport’s infrastructure is currently underway in preparation for the aircraft’s arrival.


BA to IslamabadBritish Airways London to Islamabad

British Airways has announced it will once again begin flying to Islamabad, with a new direct service operating three times a week from London Heathrow, starting June 2019. READ MORE.


QF A380 upgradeQantas A380 upgrade

From March 2019, Qantas will begin upgrades to its A380 fleet with all 12 aircraft expected to reach completion by the end of 2020. The refurbishment project will see business class fitted with the airline’s newest Business Suite product, currently found on QF’s Dreamliner aircraft. Qantas will also be adding additional seats in business class (70 up from 64), and a newly designed café-inspired business lounge on-board.


Manchester – Aarhus with SASManchester – Aarhus with SAS

From 1 April 2019, SAS will commence a three-times-weekly service between Manchester and Aarhus, Denmark. The outbound flight will depart AAR at 09:45 on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, returning at 12:00 the same day.


London City AirportLondon City Airport concept

The concept for London City Airport’s new terminal has been announced, with design elements representing the famous Thames river. Through the use of curves and a natural colour palette, the terminal hopes to capture the essence of The Thames and celebrate the diversity that makes up London’s cultural and art scene. A selection of new retail shops, bars and restaurants are also included in the plans for the new terminal, which is expected to reach completion by 2022.


Google Home check inCheck-in to your flight with Google Home

Google’s AI-operated personal assistant, Google Home, is shifting its focus to the travel space, with a new feature allowing consumers to check-in to their flight via voice command. United Airlines has become the first airline to trial the new technology, allowing US-based travellers to check-in to domestic flights and source their digital boarding passes.


Lufthansa new lookLufthansa unveils new-look

With the arrival of Lufthansa’s newest A380 aircraft in Munich last month came a brand-new livery design, marking the end of the company’s 100th year anniversary of the symbolic Lufthansa crane. The dynamic new design represents the modernization of the Lufthansa brand through a bright white body and striking deep blue tail. So far 30 aircraft have been repainted with the new design, with the final repaint scheduled for 2025.



Hotel News.

Orient ExpressAccor’s new luxury hotel brand to launch in 2019

The Orient Express, a new luxury hotel brand for Accor Hotels, is expected to open its first hotel in Bangkok by the end of 2019. Ten hotels have been planned by 2030, with Asia and Europe being the two main regions to accommodate the six-star properties.


Village hotel BristolVillage Hotel Bristol

Located just north of Bristol in Filton, Village Hotels’ new Bristol property officially opened in December 2018. With a pub, restaurant, work-space and state-of-the-art gym, guests have everything they need for a comfortable and productive stay for work or leisure.


Village expansionVillage Hotel Club expansion plans

Village Hotel Club has announced an ambitious plan to open five Village Hotels by 2020, with another 15 hotels to open by 2026. The £480 million expansion project will focus on creating vibrant, high-tech hotels that act as ‘hubs’ for the community, with state-of-the-art gyms, business facilities and the Village Hotel Pub and Grill.