Thursday, 26 April 2018

BERMUDA: Ritz-Carlton To Open In Caroline Bay

Caroline Bay Ltd., developer of Caroline Bay, Bermuda (Caroline Bay), recently announced that construction is advancing at the 182-acre ultra-luxury waterfront destination located in the west end of the island on the peninsula formerly known as Morgan’s Point.

Both the Ritz-Carlton Reserve and the Ritz-Carlton Reserve Residences at The Cove are in full construction mode.

The extraordinary new Ritz-Carlton Reserve will offer 77 guest rooms and two presidential villas.

Construction is moving along with the first two guest villas comprised of 11 waterfront rooms and suites in each, with construction of the third guest villa to start this month.

First-phase construction – the building of 35 of the 149 Ritz-Carlton Reserve Residences is also swiftly progressing, and the first residential building comprised of seven homes will be complete and ready for delivery in the first quarter of 2018.

The entire phase one, called The Cove with five buildings representing 35 residences, will be complete by summer 2018.

We are thrilled to announce that Caroline Bay’s construction progress is well on its way, and not only is the first phase of the Ritz-Carlton Reserve Residences at The Cove projected to be delivered on time, but the development of the resort community has brought great prosperity to our island, creating an uptick in jobs and activity, said Craig Christensen, Director and Owner of Caroline Bay Ltd.

We have high hopes that this will add to the success we are already seeing for our development and look forward to what this destination will offer.

This one-of-a-kind destination for the island is already home to Caroline Bay Marina, which offers space for up to 33 transient superyachts.

80 berths exclusively for Ritz-Carlton Reserve Residence owners, the Caroline Bay Marina Yacht Club, state-of-the-art power, water, concierge services, MarineTech docking system and environmentally secure sewage waste systems.

Once complete, Caroline Bay will be the largest development the island has seen in more than four decades. Owners of the Ritz-Carlton Residences will enjoy:

- Two restaurants and a bar

- Two pools and beaches with water sports and activities

- A world class spa

- Conference space

With its enviable location and design, Caroline Bay is anticipated to be Bermuda’s most exclusive community as an oasis for adventure and escape.

Bermudians will be encouraged to enjoy the development’s public spaces, such as its world-class spa, conference center and restaurants.


Tourism Observer

TANZANIA: RIU Hotels & Resorts Acquires Former Nungwi Resort & Spa In Zanzibar

RIU Hotels & Resorts has just added Zanzibar to the catalogue of exotic destinations the chain offers to its loyal customers.

The Riu Palace Zanzibar is a luxury hotel with 102 rooms and suites located on the northern tip of Unguja, the main island of the archipelago of Zanzibar.

The Hotel is located less than an hour from the airport and the capital, Zanzibar City, the centre of which is known as Stone Town.

RIU formalised the purchase of the hotel today, 18 April 2018, from the Emerald hotel chain, which up to now has operated the hotel as the Hideaway of Nungwi Resort & Spa.

The New Riu Palace Zanzibar will be the perfect complement to RIU’s offer in the Indian Ocean, where it offers two hotels in Mauritius and one in Sri Lanka.

The hotel belongs to the exclusive The Leading Hotels of the World collection thanks to its excellent location right on Nungwi Beach, one of the loveliest of the island, to the tasteful decoration on display in every room and space, and to its excellent service.

It has three restaurants, the main one with a buffet serving international cuisine, an Asian restaurant and a grill—as well as two bars.

The hotel has a full-service spa, a children’s club, conference rooms, a gym and a tennis court.

RIU will maintain the characteristics of the hotel for this year’s season and, in the coming 2018-2019 winter season, will introduce the RIU 24-hour, all-inclusive programme and adapt its offer to the exclusive line of Riu Palace Adults-Only hotels.

Zanzibar is the semi-autonomous zone of Tanzania that has become very popular with travellers as part of a trip that combines a safari in the Serengeti National Park with a stay on the marvellous beaches of the island.

Zanzibar has a fascinating history influenced by Persians, Arabs, Muslims, Portuguese and the African continent itself.

The historic centre of Zanzibar City, the birthplace of singer Freddy Mercury, is known as Stone Town and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000.

ABOUT RIU
The international RIU chain was founded in Mallorca by the Riu family in 1953 as a small holiday firm and is still owned by the family's third generation.

The company specialises in holiday resorts and over 70% of its establishments offer its acclaimed All Inclusive by RIU service.

With the inauguration of its first city hotel in 2010, RIU is expanding its range of products with its own line of city hotels called Riu Plaza.

RIU Hotels & Resorts now has 92 hotels in 19 countries which welcome over 4 million guests a year and provide jobs for a total of 28,894 employees.

RIU is currently the world's 34th ranked chain, one of the Caribbean's most popular, the third largest in Spain in terms of revenue and the fourth largest in number of rooms.



Tourism Observer

IRELAND: Ryanair In $3 billion 25 - 737 MAX 8 Aircraft Deal, New Routes To Bosnia and Herzegovina

Ryanair has announced its commencing flights from Bosnia and Herzegovina with two new routes from Banja Luka to Brussels Charleroi and Memmingen.

Both routes will operate twice weekly from November, as part of its Winter 2018 schedule.

Bosnia is Ryanair’s 37th country of operation and customers can enjoy even lower fares and the latest with the Always Getting Better improvements including:

- Reduced checked-in bag fees, lower €25 fee, bigger 20kg bag allowance

- Connecting flights at Rome, Milan & Porto with more airports to follow

- Ryanair Rooms with 10% off Travel Credit

- Ryanair Transfers, wider choice of ground transport with new partner Car Trawler

- Punctuality Promise, 90% of Ryanair flights will be on time

- Price Promise, find a cheaper fare and Ryanair will refund the difference + €5 to your My Ryanair account

Ryanair’s Sales and Marketing Manager for CEE, Olga Pawlonka said:

Ryanair is pleased to announce our first flights to/from Bosnia and Herzegovina our 37th country of operation, initially with two routes from Banja Luka to Brussels Charleroi and Memmingen commencing in November.

Both routes will operate twice weekly as part of our Winter 2018 schedule, and go on sale later today from the Ryanair.com website.

To celebrate we are releasing seats for sale from €19.99 for travel from November, which are available for booking until midnight Wednesday (25 Apr).

Since these amazing low fares will be snapped up quickly, customers should log onto www.ryanair.com and avoid missing out.

Meanwhile, Boeing Co. (BA) announced on Tuesday morning that it finalized a deal with Ireland-based Ryanair Holdings PLC for 25 additional high-capacity 737 MAX 8 airplanes.

The order is estimated to be worth $3 billion at the current list price, and the first delivery is expected to be made during the spring of 2019.

The high-capacity 737 MAX 8 Gamechanger has emerged as the fastest-selling airplane for Boeing in its history, and it has successfully accumulated around 4,500 orders from 96 global customers.

The latest 737 MAX 8 Gamechanger has a total of 197 seats, which is eight more than Ryanair’s current 189-seater Boeing 737-800NG.

It will help Ryanair increase per-seat revenue, and is also said to be fuel efficient with 14 percent lower fuel consumption compared to current Next-Generation 737s being used by the low-cost European air carrier.

The 737 MAX fleet of planes feature the latest CFM International LEAP-1B engines, Advanced Technology winglets, Boeing Sky Interior, large flight deck displays and other features that help them operate efficiently.

Boeing and Ryanair have track record when it comes to this model. Ryanair first ordered the high-capacity 737 MAX 8 in late 2014 with a deal for 100 airplanes from Boeing.

Three years later, it was supplemented with an order for 10 airplanes during the 2017 Paris Air Show. The latest order will take Ryanair's 737 MAX order total to 135 planes.

In total, Ryanair has ordered more than 650 Boeing airplanes across different genres.

The low-cost carrier is the top customer of Boeing’s 737-800 fleet of planes in the world, and is also the largest operator of Boeing planes in Europe.

We are delighted that Ryanair is deepening their commitment to the 737 MAX as they continue to grow their fleet and expand their network, said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of commercial sales & marketing at Boeing.

Ryanair's follow-on order shows once again that the high capacity 737 MAX 8 is the perfect airplane for low cost carriers.

The airplane gives our airline customers more seats to serve their core markets, maximizing revenue potential at the best cost per seat in the industry.

The Gamechanger has eight more seats than our current 189-seat Boeing 737-800NG and incorporates the latest technology engines and winglets which reduce fuel consumption and noise emissions, ensuring we remain Europe's greenest, cleanest airline and lowest cost airline, said Neil Sorahan, chief financial officer at Ryanair.



Tourism Observer

INDIA: School Van Hit By Train Killing 12 Children And Injuring 12 Others In Uttar Pradesh State

A train crashed into a school van at an ungated railroad crossing in northern India on Thursday, killing 12 children, police said.

The van driver, who ignored a guard’s signal to stop, also was killed.

Another 12 children were injured in the crash and taken to a hospital in Kushinagar, a town 200 kilometres (125 miles) southeast of Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh state.

Five of them were in critical condition, top police officer O.P. Singh said.

The children, all between 5 and 14 years of age, were on their way to school after the van had picked them up from several villages, he said.

A railroad guard posted at the ungated crossing signalled for the van to stop but the driver ignored the signal and crashed into the train, rail official Sanjay Yadav said.

Shocked parents and relatives of the children rushed to the accident site and the hospital after hearing the news of the crash.

Accidents are common on India’s railroad network, one of the world’s largest with 23 million people riding daily on about 11,000 passenger trains.

Crossings that lack gates to block traffic or are not guarded round-the-clock are common, especially in rural India, with poor financing often hindering efforts to improve safety.



Tourism Observer

SPAIN: Visit Crowded Ibiza Enjoy Parties, Music Drugs. Gomorrah Of The Mediterranean

Ibiza or Eivissa is one of the Balearic Islands. The maximum length of the island by highway is 42 km.

Ibiza is an island in the Mediterranean Sea off the east coast of Spain. It is 150 kilometres (93 miles) from the city of Valencia.

It is the third largest of the Balearic Islands, an autonomous community of Spain.

Its largest settlements are Ibiza Town - Vila d'Eivissa, or simply Vila, Santa Eularia des Riu, and Sant Antoni de Portmany. Its highest point, called Sa Talaiassa or Sa Talaia, is 475 metres (1,558 feet) above sea level.

Ibiza has become well known for its association with nightlife, electronic music that originated on the island, and for the summer club scene, all of which attract large numbers of tourists drawn to that type of holiday.

Several years before 2010, the island's government and the Spanish Tourist Office had been working to promote more family-oriented tourism, with the police closing down clubs that played music at late night hours.

In 2010 this policy was reversed. Around 2015 it was resumed.

Ibiza is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Ibiza and the nearby island of Formentera to its south are called the Pine Islands, or Pityuses.

Ibiza is a rock island covering an area of 572.56 square kilometres (221.07 sq mi), almost six times smaller than Majorca, but over five times larger than Mykonos in the Greek Isles or 10 times larger than Manhattan in New York City.

Ibiza is the larger of a group of the western Balearic archipelago called the Pityuses or Pine Islands composed of itself and Formentera.

The Balearic island chain includes over 50 islands, many of which are uninhabited. The highest point of the island is Sa Talaiassa, at 475 metres (1,558 ft).

Ibiza has a Hot-summer Mediterranean climate bordering on a Hot semi-arid climate (BSh). The average annual temperature of Ibiza is 18.3 °C (65 °F), being warm and mild throughout the whole year.

Ibiza lies at the same latitude as Atlantic City, yet it is much warmer for its location in the Mediterranean Basin.

The climate of Ibiza is typically warm, sunny and dry, with low variation between highs and lows. The sunshine hours of Ibiza are 2700-2800 per year, while the yearly rain amount goes from 400 to 450 millimetres (16 to 18 in).

The average high temperature is 22.2 °C (72 °F), while the average low is 14.3 °C (58 °F). Winters are slightly rainy and mild, from November to April normally the whole island turns green for the seasonal rains.

Summers are hot and very dry, with few rainy days, often accompanied by thunderstorms. During the coldest month, January, the average high temperature is 15.7 °C (60 °F), while the average low is 8.1 °C (47 °F).

In the warmest month, August, the average high temperature is 30.3 °C (87 °F), while the low is 22.2 °C (72 °F).

Extreme temperatures are rare for the influence of the sea. The average temperature of the sea in Ibiza is 19.7 °C (67 °F) and beach weather usually lasts 7 months, from May to November.

Demographically, Ibiza displays a very peculiar configuration, as census agencies diverge on exact figures.

According to the 2001 national census, Ibiza had 88,076 inhabitants against 76,000 in 1991, 64,000 in 1981, 45,000 in 1971, and 38,000 in 1961.

However, two years later, this figure jumped to 108,000, and by the start of 2010 had reached 132,637. This rapid growth stems from the amnesty which incorporated a number of unregistered foreign migrants.

In terms of origin, about 55 percent of island residents were born in Ibiza, 35 percent are domestic migrants from mainland Spain, mostly working-class families from Andalusia.

The remainder from Catalonia, Valencia and Castile, and the remaining 10 to 15 percent are foreign, dual and multi-national citizens of the EU and abroad.

The most commonly visiting foreigners are German, British, Latin American, French, Italian and Dutch, in addition to a myriad of other nationalities.

This mosaic reflects the fluidity of foreigners living and moving across the island, in ways that render impossible to exactly quantify the expatriate population.

The Spanish composer and music theorist Miguel Roig-Francoli was born in Ibiza, as was the politician and Spain's former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abel Matutes.

Notable former residents of Ibiza include: English punk musician John Simon Ritchie, the psychedelic rock band Philiac, comic actor Terry-Thomas, Hungarian master forger Elmyr de Hory, American fraudster Clifford Irving, and film director/actor Orson Welles.

Eivissenc is the native dialect of Catalan that is spoken on Ibiza and nearby Formentera. Catalan shares co-official status with Spanish.

Because of the influence of tourism and expatriates living in or maintaining residences on the island, other languages like English, French, German and Italian are widely spoken.

Ibiza is considered to be a popular tourist destination, especially due to its legendary and at times riotous nightclub based nightlife centred on two areas, Ibiza Town, the island's capital on the southern shore and Sant Antoni to the West.

Night life in Ibiza has undergone several changes since the island's opening to international tourism in the late 1950s. Origins of today's club culture may be traced back to the hippie gatherings held during the 1960s and 1970s.

During these, people of various nationalities sharing the hippie ethos would regroup, talk, play music and occasionally take drugs.

These would most often happen on beaches during the day, with nude bathing a common sight, and in rented fincas in the evenings or at nights.

Apart from this confidential scene, which nevertheless attracted many foreigners to the island, local venues during the 1960s consisted mostly of bars.

Bars which would be the meeting points for Ibicencos, ex-pats, seafarers and tourists alike. The Estrella bar on the port and La Tierra in the old city of Eivissa were favourites.

During the 1970s, a decade that saw the emergence of the contemporary nightclub, several places opened and made a lasting impact on Ibiza's nightlife.

Four of these original clubs are still in operation today : Pacha, Privilege formerly Ku, Amnesia and Es Paradis.

These four clubs mainly defined nightlife on the White Island, which has evolved and developed from several distinctive elements.

Open-air parties - Es Paradis, Privilege, Amnesia, held in isolated places, eventually old fincas - Pacha, Amnesia, that mixed in nudity and costume party - Es Paradis, Privilege, Pacha and enabled people from various backgrounds to blend.

The hippie ethos served as a common factor that infused all these venues and catalyzed the experience of a certain kind of freedom, accentuated by the holiday nature of most of the stays on the White Island.

During the 1980s, the music played in these clubs gained in reputation and became known as Balearic beat, a precursor of the British acid house scene.

As rave parties blossomed all over Europe, a DJ-driven club culture took hold of Ibizenca nightlife. It was the time when Space opened, thanks to Pepe Rosello, which found a niche in the after-hour parties.

The club would close at 6 AM and open again at 7 AM, when all the other clubs were still closed, enabling party-goers to flock from the other clubs to Space and continue dancing in broad daylight.

At the end of the 1990s, the after-hour parties held firm root on the island. In 1999, the Circoloco parties made their debut at DC10, with some of the original elements of Ibiza nightlife at the forefront.

Nowadays, during the summer, top producers and DJs in dance music come to the island and play at the various clubs, in between touring to other international destinations.

Some of the most famous DJs run their own weekly nights around the island. Many of these DJs use Ibiza as an outlet for presenting new songs within the house, trance and techno genres of electronic dance music.

The island has achieved renowned worldwide fame as a cultural centre for house and trance in particular, with its name often being used as a partial metonym for the particular flavour of electronic music originating there, much like Goa in India.

Since 2005, the live music event Ibiza Rocks has helped to redefine the Ibiza party landscape. Bands such as Arctic Monkeys, Kasabian, The Prodigy, and the Kaiser Chiefs have played in the courtyard of the Ibiza Rocks Hotel.

The season traditionally begins at the start of June with Space and DC10's opening parties and finishes on the first weekend of October with the Closing Parties.
A typical schedule for clubbers going to Ibiza includes waking at noon, early evening naps, late night clubbing, and disco sunrises.

Due to Ibiza's notable tolerance toward misbehaviour from young adult tourists, it has acquired the name Gomorrah of the Med.

Also well-known is Cafe del Mar, a long-standing bar where many tourists traditionally view the sunset made famous by Jose Padilla, who has released more than a dozen eponymous album compilations of ambient music played at the location.

That and other bars nearby have become an increasingly popular venue for club pre-parties after sunset, hosting popular DJ performers.

The island's government is trying to encourage a more cultured and quieter tourism scene, passing rules including the closing of all nightclubs by 6 a.m. at the latest, and requiring all new hotels to be 5-star.

The administration wants to attract a more international mixture of tourists.

A number of novels and other books have been written using Ibiza as the setting, including - The White Island - by Stephen Armstrong, Joshua Then and Now by Mordecai Richler, Soma Blues by Robert Sheckley,Vacation in Ibiza by Lawrence Schimel.

A Short Life on a Sunny Isle: An Alphonse Dantan Mystery by Hannah Blank, They Are Ruining Ibiza by A. C. Greene, and The Python Project by Victor Canning.

In popular music, American singer-songwriter Mike Posner released I Took a Pill in Ibiza alternatively known as In Ibiza, or its clean title I Took a Plane to Ibiza in April 2015, as single on his Vevo account and in the exclusive The Truth EP; it was later released on At Night, Alone in May 2016.

Originally an acoustic guitar-based folk pop song, it was remixed by the Norwegian duo SeeB as a tropical house dance pop song, and released digitally as a single in the United States on July 24, 2015.

I Took a Pill in Ibiza peaked at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S., and reached #1 on seventeen other charts.

Tourism officials in Ibiza were reportedly annoyed by the song's apparent reinforcement of drug culture associated with Ibiza in the past, and Tourism Director Vicent Ferrer subsequently invited Posner to witness the island's culture and how it contrasts with the party typecast.

Though primarily known for its party scene, large portions of the island are registered as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and thus protected from the development and commercialization of the main cities.

A notable example includes God's Finger in the Benirras Bay as well as some of the more traditional Ibizan cultural sites such as the remains of the first Phoenician settlement at Sa Caleta.

Other sites are still under threat from the developers, such as Ses Feixes Wetlands, but this site has now been recognised as a threatened environment, and it is expected that steps will be taken to preserve this wetland.

Because of its rustic beauty, companies and artists alike frequently use the island for photographic and film shoots.

A monument - The Egg - erected in honour of Christopher Columbus can be found in Sant Antoni, Ibiza is one of several places purporting to be his birthplace.

Since the early days of mass tourism on the island, there have been a large number of development projects ranging from successful ventures, such as the super clubs at Space and Privilege, to failed development projects, such as Josep Lluis Sert's abandoned hotel complex at Cala D'en Serra.

The half-completed and now demolished Idea nightclub in Sant Antoni, and the ruins of a huge restaurant/nightclub in the hills near Sant Josep called Festival Club that only operated for three summer seasons in the early 1970s.

The transient nature of club-oriented tourism is most obvious in these ruins scattered all over the island.

Local artist Irene de Andres has tackled the difficult issue of the impact of mass tourism on the island local landscapes, both natural and cultural, in an ongoing project called Donde nada ocurre meaning - Where nothing happens.

In 2013, Ibiza property prices generally remained above market value, and many of the development projects on the island have now been completed or continue, as well as some new projects announced at the end of 2012.

Since 2009, Ibiza has seen an increase in tourist numbers every year, with nearly 6 million people traveling through Ibiza Airport each year.

The summer season has become concentrated between June and September, focusing on the clubbing calendar which is currently booming. In recent years, the luxury market has dramatically improved, with new restaurants, clubs, and improvements to the marina in Ibiza Town.

Ibiza's increased popularity has led to problems with potable water shortages and overrun infrastructure. This has led to imposition of a Sustainable Tourism Tax which went into effect in July 1, 2016.

Minister of Tourism Vincente Torres stated in an interview in 2016 that the government has instituted a moratorium and building in certain areas.

He said that with almost 100,000 legal touristic beds and about 132,000 inhabitants on the island's 572 square kilometres (221 sq mi) not much more tourism can be supported.

Ibiza is served by Ibiza Airport, which has many international flights during the summer tourist season, especially from the European Union.

There are also ferries from the harbour of Sant Antoni and Ibiza Town to Barcelona, Majorca, Denia, and Valencia.

There are also ferries to Formentera leaving Sant Antoni Harbour normally every Wednesday, and daily from Ibiza Town, Santa Eularia, and Figueretes–Platja d'en Bossa.

Several public busses also travel between Sant Antoni and Ibiza Town—every 15 minutes in summer and every half-hour in winter.

In addition, there are buses from Sant Antoni to Cala Bassa, Cala Conta and Cala Tarida, and to the Airport. From Ibiza there are buses to the Platja d'en Bossa, Ses Salines, the Airport, and Santa Eularia.

Ibiza's local cuisine is typically Mediterranean. Of the most common culinary products of the island are sweets known as flaons. Other savory dishes include sofrit pages, bullit de peix or fish stew, arros de matança or rice with pork and arros a la marinera.

Cities of Ibiza

- San Antonio

- Ibiza Town

- Santa Eularia des Riu

- Sant Josep

Formentera- neighboring tranquil and unspoilt island set in some of the cleanest, most turquoise waters of the Mediterranean, and a beautiful boat ride to get there.

Ibiza and Formentera are also known as the Islas Pitiusas from the Greek word pitys meaning pine tree because of the abundance of pines that cover their landscapes. Ibiza and Formentera are home to about 111,200 inhabitants.

Though Balearic Catalan is the official language of the Balearic Islands, and all sign posts etc. are in Catalan, Castilian (Spanish) is the main language of the island, with most natives speaking either English or German.

English is very widely understood throughout the island, and you can get by with just a basic knowledge of Spanish if you wish to make a slight effort

Enter Ibiza By Plane

- Aer Lingus, scheduled flights from Dublin.

- Transavia.com, daily scheduled flight from Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Copenhagen.

- Easyjet

- British Airways, direct flights from London Gatwick, Heathrow and Edinburgh. Economy and Business class, Club Europe available.

- Air Berlin

- First Choice, fly direct from most British airports but, being largely dependent on their own tour operator traffic, they're probably worth checking for late deals / stand-by offers

- Jet2.com, serve most of the airports in the north of England e.g. Manchester, Newcastle, Leeds, Blackpool, Edinburgh & Belfast.

- Iberia.com, the major Spanish carrier, adapting to the competitive dot.com airline world, worth checking if you can cope with unusual hours and Internet booking.

- Vueling.com, cheap Spanish airline.

- TravelMatch, for cheap flights to Ibiza and the other balearic islands.

- Thomas Cook, Charter and Schedule flights.

- BeatTheBrochure, Cheap holiday flights to Ibiza

- Flyniki, cheap flights from Vienna to Ibiza during summer season.

- Ryanair, Barcelona, Birmingham, Bologna, Bournemouth, Brussels, Dublin, Düsseldorf, East Midlands, Eindhoven, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London,Madrid, Milan, Pisa, Rome, Trapani.

Other airlines serving Ibiza are Air Baltic, Air Europa, BMI Baby, Condor, and Germanwings.

Enter Ibiza By Boats

- Denia from Ibiza and St. Antoni with Iscomar

- Alicante only in summer by Trasmediterranea

- Barcelona all year by Trasmediterranea, Balearia, Iscomar

- Valencia all year, by Trasmediterranea

- Palma de Mallorca by Trasmediterranea and Alquiler barcos Ibiza

Pictured at right is the wharf, located right down the street from the heart of town.

Moving around in Ibiza

- Buses, Ibiza Bus

- Rentals, require extra driving care, as the locals are terrible drivers. Many tourists have been run off the road trying to avoid deadly head-on collisions.

New road construction has led to the temporary development of detour roads which are poorly marked and dangerous. During the summer months many tourist drivers under the influence of alcohol, pose a potential threat.

- Car hire, renting a car on Ibiza is easy as long as you can show your driving license. During the summer months of July and August renting a car can be difficult due to high demand, best to book early.

Car hire prices are highly competitive. Ibiza Holidays,Ibiza Car Hire, Autos Tanit Ibiza, First rent a car Ibiza

- Taxis, can be used to get around the island and cost €20-30 to travel between cities. Don't use the fixed-prices taxis right after you leave the airport. Instead queue to use one of the licensed taxis, prices will be around 50% lower.

- Boats, sailing is also a very popular way to view the island of Ibiza as the coastline has many beautiful hidden caves and secluded bays worth visiting.

If you want to visit Formentera you will either have to buy a boat ticket or acquire a boat charter or yacht rental. There are a few places where you can rent a boat or a yacht for a few days, however, many require a boat license.

- Walking, the cities are small enough not to require any mechanical locomotion

Attractions in Ibiza

- Es Vedra, the mystical island rock off Ibiza's west coast.

- Atlantis, a hidden cove, but only if you can find a local who'll tell you its secret location.

- Passeig de ses Fonts in San Antonio.

- The old part of Ibiza Town.

- Visit nearby Formentera by boat.

- Explore the many beaches all along the coast.

- The famous Es Canar Hippy Market held only on Wednesdays, on the east coast of the island and Las Dalias Hippie Market in San Carlos on Saturdays.

- Visit Bar Anita in San Carlos, the historical venue where the artists and writers of the 50s, 60s and 70s used to collect their cheques and stop for a drink.

- Visit Cova de Can Marça in Puerto de San Miguel, the biggest natural caves in Ibiza. A must in Ibiza.

The beautiful beach that settles just outside the main hub of town. Many young people will be seen flocking to pay for daily rentals on beach chairs, and hawkers scan the beach looking for young adults to attend their club of choice.

Explore some of the traditional countryside of this beautiful island that few people take the time to enjoy.

Take a boat or go parasailing.

Learn Spanish in some of the language schools around the island. Some of them are specialised on teaching Spanish as a foreign language.

Most of them are located in Ibiza town, where you also will be able to make use of your knowledge the best way and it also will be easier to stay in hostels near a school.

Take part in your own Professional Photoshoot.

Explore the wharf side festival. Hundreds of locals flock to the carnival-style stands for fresh foods, enticing smells, and quality made trinkets.

During the local beach front festivals, merchants offer a wide array of goods. Pictured above is a fragrant batch of healthful herbs, for making teas or incense.

The numerous stalls are alive with colors and patterns. Above are recognizable wooden figures, hand crafted from the skilled merchants.

In addition to incredible tastes and smells, there is a strong visual aspect to the festivals. A snake charmer is seen leading a small parade through the different stands at the glee and fright of small children everywhere.

If you're interested in craft beer, visit Ibiza's first microbrewery Ibosim Brewhouse located in Port des Torrent
Wed or get married in Ibiza. The combination of cheap flights from the UK and a large English speaking local population that migrated to the island in the 1960s and 1970s means that Ibiza is now becoming a very attractive proposition for those couples looking for an alternative location to host their wedding.

Wedding Organizers, Provides wedding support services, catering and locations for getting married in Ibiza.

Wedding Suppliers, Provides wedding services and supplilers

Tamas Kooning Lansbergen, Offers professional services for wedding photography.

Wedding Photographer. Established wedding and special occassions photographer from Ibiza.

Wedding Music, Pianist & Singer, Holly J Kotze Professional Pianist & Singer for Weddings and Private Parties

Don't forget to try two local specialities: ensaimada, a sort of flat, soft pastry coil, what a Danish pastry would be if it was more like a doughnut and flao, a sweet cheese and mint flan.

Most pastelerias and many bars sell ensaimada, flao is a bit more difficult to track down.

There is also plenty of fast food restaurants/outlets in San Antonio and Ibiza Town if you're after something quick to eat on the go.

Ibiza is famous for its nightlife. During the day most tourists are soaking up rays at one of the gorgeous beaches or sleeping off the past night's drinks. Bars do not get busy in Ibiza town or San Antonio until early evening, about 7PM.

Nearly every bar, particularly in the busier summer months, has drink specials that will be advertised more like hawked on the street outside the bar.

These are good options to save some cash in a notoriously expensive destination. Usually this will be a beer and a shot for €5, but the terms vary depending on the area, the time of night, and the bar.

The West End, near San Antonio center, is a long, wide street packed with bars and revelers. The party shuts down at around 3 or 4AM here.

Ibiza is most known for its large clubs. Examples are Privilege, Space, Pacha, Eden, Amnesia, and Es Paradis. Most of these clubs have hefty entry fees and the drinks will be extremely expensive.

Plan on paying €30-€55 for admission, unless you are able to find a special deal from one of the hawkers on the street and drinks from €7 beer in smaller venues to €20 cocktails at bigger venues/events.

Ibiza clubs attract some of the best DJ's in the world who play a weekly 'residency' on a particular night.

Jockey Club and Malibu both on Salinas beach, perfect places to drink and watch the beautiful people lying in the sun while DJs spin deep house and chill out tunes, one of the residents Nati Holland plays every saturday afternoon during the summer season

Pacha. The island's most expensive, and arguably best club. Plan on €50 entry and €12 for a beer though. Over recent years, Pacha has increasingly devoted a large proportion of its floorspace to VIP tables at the expense of areas for regular clubgoers.

If the VIP experience is your thing, Pacha will be your #1 choice on the island, but expect your credit card to glow red-hot.

Space nightclub. Playa d en Bossa attracts people from all over the world and has received many awards, such as Best Global Club.

Its opening and closing party weekends are widely regarded as the unofficial start and end of the Ibiza clubbing season. The superclub is hosted by house music legend Carl Cox on Tuesday nights.

Richie Hawtin's techno and minimal-based enter on Thursday nights has been gaining a large following in recent years.

Amnesia. One of Ibiza's most popular superclubs. Located directly in between Ibiza Town and San Antonio, their intimate main room and enormous terrace play home to Cream parties on Thursday nights; past residents have included Paul Van Dyk, Deadmau5, and Above & Beyond.

DC10. This little venue at the far end of Ibiza Airport's runway reopened fully in 2010 for the first time in 2 years following various closures and bans. Plays mostly underground dance music and techno.

When it comes to choosing a place to stay on Ibiza, it really depends on what type of vacation experience you are after.

Ibiza offers everything from basic hostel-style un-modernized accommodation to five star mega-bling, such as the Ibiza Grand Hotel in Ibiza Town.

Unless you enjoy surrounding yourself with mainly large groups of rowdy drunks who rarely leave their comforts in San An, then avoid the central West End bar strip of San Antonio, although its peripheries are far classier, offering sunset viewing at the hugely popular sunset strip.

This including Cafe Mambo for the Pacha pre-parties, the legendary Cafe Del Mar next door, plus a selection of other bayfront bars.

If you just want to relax and chill, and visit nice unspoilt beaches, then it's better to spend a little more on a nice villa and yourself rent a car.

The resort of Playa D'en Bossa has recently witnessed something of a reinvention, with upmarket beach bar/restaurants such as Nassau and Tides adding to a market that was once monopolised by the now rather passe Blue Marlin in Cala Jondal.

The resort has a wide range of hotels, with its proximity to Ibiza Town and the Airport being an advantage, although Ibiza is a small Island with a decent road network.

If you prefer a hotel, you have plenty to choose from. There are more than 300 licensed accommodation possibilities on Ibiza, that cover the entire budget range, from hostels to exclusive and intimate rural hotels.

Many are represented with web pages online and in numerous travel guides, but do not go there in August without a reservation.

You could wind up on the street or on the beach which is illegal. Furnished Room Rentals are also very popular.



Tourism Observer

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Air France Strikes Disastrous For KLM’s Finances, Reputation And Cohesiveness Of Air France-KLM Pact

The impact of the ongoing strikes at Air France is disastrous for the AF-KLM combine, KLM president Pieter Elbers said in a letter to KLM staff.

The 11th strike in a few weeks was staged at Air France on Tuesday.

The strikes are over pay and have cost Air France nearly €300m so far.

Elbers said the Air France strikes were bad for KLM’s finances and reputation as well as for the cohesiveness of Air France-KLM pact which, he said, is the true strength of the combine.

Air France CEO Jean-Marc Janaillac is organising a vote among AF workers to determine whether there is enough support for the company’s wage proposal.

The French aviation unions are campaigning for a ‘no’ vote.

Last Friday, Janaillac said he personally would bear the consequences of the vote if it went against him.

Air France KLM French unit said on Tuesday that a consultation period to reach a deal with workers striking over pay would run from April 26 until May 4.

This is as the airline seeks to end a strike estimated to have cost it some 300 million euros or $366 million.

Air France’s pay offer of a 7 percent wage increase over 4 years has not received majority backing from the unions.

The airline’s chairman Jean-Marc Janaillac has said it would be hard for him to stay if the pay talks failed.

The Air France strikes have coincided with strikes from workers at the SNCF state rail firm protesting against government plans to reform the SNCF, causing widespread travel disruption in France over the last month.



Tourism Observer

NETHERLANDS: Transavia Introduces New Flights

Transavia passengers can purchase airline tickets for the 2018-2019 autumn and winter seasons.

Compared to last winter, over 123,000 additional seats are on offer.

As well as for the four new routes, the additional capacity will primarily be used for the flight schedules from Schiphol Amsterdam and Eindhoven Airport.

The winter schedule starts on 1 November 2018 and ends on 31 March 2019.

In winter 2018-2019, Transavia is flying to 70 destinations, of which four are new.

Transavia will be flying Amsterdam – Beirut in Lebanon twice a week.

Beirut offers you everything you could want for an ideal city break.

The right temperature, good restaurants, shops and an extensive night life. Transavia is the only airline making Lebanon directly accessible from the Netherlands.

Furthermore, this winter Transavia will be flying from Schiphol Airport to Eilat in Israel.

Eilat is one of the better-known destinations in Israel and it will be flown twice a week this winter, alongside the flights to Tel Aviv.

Eilat is known as a perfect holiday destination for sun lovers because it has summer temperatures almost all year round.

Eilat is a great addition to the popular winter destinations such as Dubai and the Canary Islands.

This winter, Transavia will be flying to Krakow in Poland four times a week from Eindhoven Airport.

Transavia already flies to Poland, to Katowice, from Amsterdam. With the new destination of Krakow, we are making this popular region in Poland even more accessible for people travelling from the Netherlands.

Last but not least, this winter the airline will be flying from Rotterdam The Hague Airport to the Moroccan Nador.

Nador was already one of Transavia’s charter destinations, and you can soon book it directly as a scheduled flight.

With the addition of the new routes Rotterdam-Arrecife and Groningen-Tenerife, these Canary Island destinations are served from no fewer than four Dutch airports Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Groningen and Rotterdam.

With 71 flights per week form its home bases in Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, Eindhoven Airport and Rotterdam The Hague Airport.

Transavia is also the best choice for winter sports enthusiasts. Convenient flight schedules with a regular choice of three flights per day allow passengers to tailor their trip to their needs from a short weekend trip to a long ski holiday.

The winter schedule starts on 1 November 2018 and ends on 31 March 2019.

Transavia acknowledges overcapacity in some European leisure markets, but notes North Africa is not struggling right now for tourism and that Turkish demand has made a small improvement.

I think the trend in the past couple of years has been a bit of over-capacity towards Spain, says Oliver Newton, network planner at low-cost leisure operator Transavia at the Routes Europe event in Bilbao.

A lot of people have moved capacity, for example, from Turkey towards Spain and Portugal.

But Newton states that North Africa is actually doing really well, adding that the Morocco market is growing each year and Tunisia will eventually come back as well.

Further boosting fortunes for the Air France-KLM Group carrier is the improving Israeli market, which prompted it to add a service from Amsterdam Schiphol to the resort town of Eilat during the coming winter season.

We’re constantly looking for new destinations, especially in the winter, that have a good climate, that have year-round sun, says Newton.

Eilat was a really good opportunity for us as an alternative to the Canary Islands, Egypt or Dubai.

The Eilat flights will be in addition to new winter services from Amsterdam to Beirut, its first scheduled operations from Rotterdam to Nador in Morocco and a link to Krakow from Eindhoven.

Those markets are helping to offset the impact of reduced demand on Transavia’s mainly charter services to Turkey, he says, where security concerns and political instability in recent years have damaged the country's appeal to tourists.

Demand has reduced quite significantly since about five years ago, he states.

There was a small improvement since last year but it’s not quite reached the levels of five years ago.

He adds that Transavia's overall yields and load factors have been on an upward trend.

Transavia busiest routes from its Netherlands bases are to Spain and Portugal.

Tel Aviv, Nice and Athens also rank highly in terms of seats.


Tourism Observer

OMAN: Oman Air To Phase Out Embraer 175 Jets And Replace With Dreamliner Or Airbus A350 Jets Before 2023

Around 9.8 million passengers are expected to fly with the airline this year

Oman Air is considering adding more flights to Asia, including to China and South Korea, but is delaying its break even date to beyond this year, its new chief executive said on Sunday.

The state-owned airline, which no longer relies on government funding, had earlier delayed its break even date from 2017 to this year.

It could now potentially break even in the next two to three years, Chief Executive Abdulaziz al-Raisi in Dubai. He later said it was difficult to set a date because stemming losses would partly depend on external factors.

Middle East air traffic has been disrupted in recent years by conflict in Iraq and Syria.

A political dispute in the Gulf since last June has also barred flights from Qatar to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt.

Oman has remained neutral.

Raisi said he was concerned about escalating conflict after a warning this month for airlines to exercise caution in the eastern Mediterranean ahead of air strikes by the United States, Britain, and France on Syria.

Parts of the Middle East airspace are already congested and any changes to flight paths usually mean higher fuel costs and longer flying times for airlines.

Raisi, a 33-year Oman Air veteran, was appointed as CEO earlier on Sunday having held the position in an acting capacity since October.

He said the airline would focus on carrying more passengers to and from Oman.

We are not trying to compete with the three big ones, Raisi said, referring to the region’s biggest airlines Emirates, Qatar Airways, and Etihad Airways, which focus on connecting passengers through their Gulf hubs.

Oman Air could fly to more destinations in Asia from as soon as 2019 after starting flights to Istanbul, Casablanca, Moscow, and the Maldives this year, Raisi said at the Arabian Travel Market exhibition in Dubai.

Around 9.8 million passengers are expected to fly with the airline this year, up from 8.5 million, he added.

Oman Air intends to phase out its four Embraer 175 jets this year and will place a new order for Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft or Airbus A350 jets before 2023 to replace its A330s, Raisi said.

He did not disclose how many jets they could order.

Oman Air already operates 787 Dreamliners.



Tourism Observer

UAE: Flydubai Operate In Both Dubai International And Al Maktoum Airports

Flydubai says it will operate from both Dubai International, Al Maktoum Airport.

Budget carrier flydubai confirmed on Monday it will not be moving its operations out of Dubai International Airport and into Al Maktoum Airport, and that it will expand its operations in both airports.

We already have operations in Al Maktoum, and we will grow our operations in Al Maktoum and we will operate in both airports.

The word is not move, it’s expanding in both airports, said Ghaith Al Ghaith, chief executive officer of flydubai.

Flydubai currently operates out of both airports, with its hub at Dubai International, the busiest airport in the world in terms of international passenger traffic.

Dubai has been working to expand the city’s second airport, Al Maktoum International to absorb expected growth in visitors to Dubai.

Al Ghaith also discussed the carrier’s expansion plans as well as challenges in the operating environment.
The CEO said he saw lots of opportunities in Europe, especially in east and southern Europe.

On Sunday, flydubai announced it will launch direct flights to Helsinki from October 2018.

The launch will make flydubai the first UAE-based carrier to offer year-round services between Dubai and the Finnish capital.

Al Ghaith said flydubai will be launching flights to other routes with a similar DNA to Helsinki.

He said these routes, which are now more viable given flydubai’s partnership with Emirates Airline, will be in Europe, Asia, and Africa.

In July 2017, Emirates and flydubai announced a partnership agreement that include code-sharing and schedule alignment.

On Monday, Emirates and flydubai released passenger numbers for the first six months of their partnership that was announced in July 2017.

The first code-share flights started in October 2017, and in the six months since then, over 400,000 passengers have taken advantage of the partnership.

The two airlines currently code-share on more than 90 destinations, with more routes expected in the coming months including Catania, Thessaloniki, and Helsinki.

Al Ghaith said the next phase of the deal will be to add more destinations, and said the partnership has enhanced revenues for flydubai as it attracts more passengers.

With its partnership, flydubai is now on an expansion drive for the long-term.

At the Dubai Air Show in November, the carrier announced a $27-billion-order for 225 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, a deal that will more than triple its fleet of around 60 aircraft.

While Al Ghaith did not provide details on how the carrier plans to finance that purchase, he confirmed that flydubai will not be tapping financial markets through a bond issuance to raise capital.

He said, however, that the company is looking at all available instruments, including its own resources, bank loans, and sell and leaseback deals.

Discussing the overall operating environment, the CEO cited fuel prices as a key challenge.

The challenge this year will definitely be fuel prices, which have been definitely beyond what we expected.

I think everyone forecasted it would be in the $60-plus range.

Now, it’s $70-plus; it’s too high, he said.



Tourism Observer

FRANCE: Air France Starts Flights From Paris-Charles de Gaulle To Taipei

On Monday 16 April, Air France inaugurated its new Paris -Charles de Gaulle – Taipei (Taiwan) service.

The company now offers its customers 3 weekly flights by Boeing 777, equipped with the new long-haul travel cabins.

This new route between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Taipei is operated on a code-share basis with SkyTeam alliance member, China Airlines.

AF552: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 13:35, arrives in Taipei at 8:15 the next day

AF557: leaves Taipei at 10:25, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 18:20.

Flights operated on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays as from 16 April 2018 on departure from Paris-Charles de Gaulle.

14 weekly flights between Europe and Taipei

In addition, Air France-KLM offers 11 weekly flights on departure from Amsterdam-Schiphol: a daily flight operated by KLM by Boeing 777 and 4 weekly codeshare flights by China Airlines by Airbus A350.

In this way, in 2018, the group offers its customers 14 weekly flights between Europe and Taipei together with its partner China Airlines.

This summer, Air France and KLM customers will benefit from 203 weekly flights to 19 Asian destinations(1): Taipei, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Xiamen, Tokyo, Osaka, Seoul, Singapore, Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Denpasar-Bali, Kuala Lumpur and Manila.

Air France’s best cabins take off to Taipei

On board the Boeing 777 to Taipei, passengers enjoy all the comforts of the latest Business, Premium Economy and Economy cabins.

In the Business cabin, Air France offers excellence in the sky. The seat adapts to the shape of each individual, from seating position to a real 2-metre long bed.

At the heart of the curved structure, each passenger creates their own space, enveloping and protective, according to their desires.

The seat’s soft foam is designed to offer impeccable quality of sleep.

With a soft duvet and XXL-sized feather down pillow, everything has been designed to ensure peaceful sleep among the clouds.

Each passenger has a wide 16-inch (41 cm) HD touch screen.

In the Premium Economy cabin, customers enjoy more comfortable seats and a multi-position footrest, which enhances the comfort of this cabin even further.

In the Economy cabin, the seat has been entirely redesigned, with additional legroom, new seat cushions, softer headrests and a larger tray table.


Tourism Observer

MIDDLE EAST: Uber's Growth In Middle East Is Not Slowing Down

Per-kilometre fares have risen from AED1.83 to AED2.25 per km while per minute charges have dropped from AED0.5 to AED0.25 per minute.

Ride-hailing app Uber has revealed a change to its fare structure on all UberSelect and UberVIP trips in Dubai, resulting in higher and lower fares on diverse trips effective immediately.

The change will see base fares fluctuate based on the day of the week and time of the day. While the previous static base fare was AED8, the new dynamic fee ranges from AED5.4 to AED10.6, and may change during public holidays.

Per-kilometre fares have also risen from AED1.83 to AED2.25 per km while per minute charges have dropped from AED0.5 to AED0.25 per minute.

Waiting charges have remained the same at AED0.5 per minute. While minimum fares have been changed from AED17 excluding AED3 booking fee to AED15 excluding AED5 booking fee, the overall fee remains the same as well.

Uber said in a statement the change is in compliance with local regulations in Dubai, and in line with maintaining full transparency with riders regarding its prices.

Uber remains committed to providing you with the best quality service at any time of the day. We look forward to keeping Dubai moving, it said.

Uber's drive in the Middle East shows no signs of slowing down.

How the ride-hailing app plans to double down on a successful 2017 by further expansion in the UAE and Saudi Arabia

For Anthony Khoury, the general manager of Uber Middle East, the dizzying pace of change in the region – exemplified by Saudi Arabia’s sweeping reforms and the hustle and bustle surrounding Dubai Expo 2020 – mean one thing: opportunities.

Explaining how the ride-hailing app plans to evolve, Khoury says that Uber will build on a great year of regional expansion in 2017, when it extended the service to previously under-served communities and areas in Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

At the end of 2017, we were able to serve 80 percent of the Saudi population. Dubai was very similar. We’re now seeing trips being started and ending in very remote areas, he says.

As an example of the company’s success in the region, Khoury points to Uber getting the green light for additional growth in Saudi Arabia, a certificate for regulatory alignment by the kingdom’s Public Transport Authority issued in April.

Uber’s original objective was to enlist 100,000 Saudi drivers by 2020, but even that ambitious number has now been surpassed, much to Khoury’s delight.

We set this target at the end of 2016 but achieved it much quicker. In 2017, we were able to get 140,000 Saudi drivers, he says, adding that Saudi Arabia has been a huge success for the company.

And last September’s royal decree allowing women to obtain driving licenses, starting in June of this year, is definitely an opportunity, despite media speculation that it may harm Uber’s business if women are able to drive rather than be driven to their destinations.

First of all, you look at all the other markets in the world where women can drive, and there’s still both men and women finding the value of using Uber. I don’t foresee people in Saudi thinking otherwise.

The difference in Saudi, of course, is that it remains a socially conservative country, where there will be some women who do not want to or who are encouraged not to ride with men.

Khoury responds by saying that he’s going to try to see if we can cater to that issue.

He explains how in addition to hiring Saudi women as drivers a process that is expected to begin shortly before they can apply for driving licenses,Uber will launch a dedicated female partner support centre for Saudi women.

It will involve everything from driving lessons and how to use the Uber app, to vehicle financing if they need it, Khoury says.

It’s what we internally call a green light hub. Our driver partners go into the centre and submit their papers and from there the process begins.

You will also be able, potentially, to get financing and a mobile phone. It’s a centre that will have everything available.

Uber sees the recruitment of female drivers as another way of empowering women, something he believes his company started doing long before the announcement that women in Saudi would be able to drive.

Don’t forget it was not super easy for women there to commute to work, he says of how Uber made ride-sharing popular in a country where that was previously not the case.

As Khoury sees it, women driving on the Uber platform and supporting other women creates a stronger economy.

In Dubai, Khoury says Uber is working to keep pace and expand with the emirate’s ambitious plans, particularly around the development of large new areas as part of Dubai’s Expo 2020.

To this end, Uber last year launched a three-month trial period of UberX, which aims to provide residents and visitors with greater access to affordable travel.

It’s a great collaboration between us and the RTA the Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority to pilot an affordable transportation method.

It’s about 30 percent cheaper than Uber Select, which is amazing because people in transportation deserts are now able to have this type of transport,he says.

Khoury, however, is careful to note that UberX isn’t meant to compete with Dubai’s existing taxi infrastructure the prices of which are roughly on par with the UberX service, nor with the emirate’s wider public transportation infrastructure.

Instead, he notes that Uber is, in a way, feeding passengers to Dubai’s transportation infrastructure.

We’ve seen during the pilot period that not only are we able to target transportation deserts, but we are also adding value to public transport.

What we’ve seen is a lot of people that are leaving these transportation deserts go and end their trip next to public transportation.

He gives the example of how a customer transiting from Sports City to Rashidiya might take a super affordable Uber to the metro.

The idea is to complement public transportation by targeting what we call the ‘last mile’ where you can use Uber, which makes a lot of sense.

In October, Uber launched UberONE in Dubai, allowing users to request rides from a fleet of 50 premium electric cars, which the company is hailing as a viable, long-term solution to achieving a sustainable, clean ride vehicle network for the smart cities of the future.

Khoury says the reaction to this service has been tremendous, before explaining how Uber intends to align itself with the city’s Vision 2020 goals, which includes being not only a smart city of the future, but also a green one.

We have about 50 cars that are owned by the city and are on the platform. We want to continue growing this product offering, but we’re just starting and taking baby steps.

Using the UberONE option on the Uber app, users are now able to request a ride from one of 50 Tesla Model S or Model X vehicles operated by RTA’s Dubai Taxi Corporation, for the same price as an UberBLACK, the company’s premium limousine service.

It’s a new experience. It’s still affordable and not extremely expensive. A lot of people are also conscious of pollution and a lot of people are using it to help green environment,Khoury adds.

We’re definitely playing on separate angles and we’ve seen it really start very well.

When asked what’s next for Uber in the UAE and Saudi Arabia, Khoury says the company plans to double down by ensuring it offers the right products for the right people.

In Saudi Arabia, that means continuing to expand and determine the requirements of the kingdom’s soon-to-be-driving female population.

In Dubai, Uber plans to continue pushing UberX as an affordable transportation option, helping more people travel to and from the emirate’s transportation deserts.

Just as importantly, Khoury says that Uber will continue to work with regulators to help Uber expand into other parts of the UAE, including Abu Dhabi, where services were suspended in August 2016.

We definitely want to continue expanding our offerings throughout different cities in the countries that are ready. We’re in discussions with Abu Dhabi and want to get back.

But he admits that the reality is that our vision is to be able to provide affordable transportation. The current regulations do not really permit us to do that. This is why we want to first work with the government to get to that point before we launch again.

Khoury also points to Sharjah, where Uber doesn’t currently operate. I believe there are also discussions, but I think what is important for us today is to have the proper framework and regulations so that we can achieve what we want.

These challenges, Khoury notes, are a natural growing pain whenever Uber enters the fray in any new city, which in the case of the UAE is already blossoming into a relationship that is growing “tremendously fast.

When we enter markets it is normal to see a little bit of what isn’t really a clash, but a little bit of tension with the regulator.

It’s a completely new way of looking at things, he says. At the beginning it was definitely a bit difficult, but today it’s an amazing relationship and it has really started to bear fruit.

Uber Technologies isn’t a publicly listed company but they have released some statistics on their performance over the last year.

Last month it revealed that it attracted $7.5bn in sales for 2017 worldwide but also accumulated losses of $4.5bn.

But it’s not all doom and gloom for the company. In January, SoftBank Group led a $9.3bn investment deal, making it the company’s largest shareholder.

It is betting that more people will book rides through an app instead of driving themselves in the coming years, and that Uber will find a way to make a profit from that sea change in user habits.

What other services Uber has now started to offer customers as its offerings continue to grow

In January, Uber unveiled its latest product offering in Dubai, UberHIRE, an on-demand, time-based option that allows users to book a car and driver on a time rate rather than kilometres driven.

According to the company, this allows users particularly working professionals with multiple meetings or commitments across the city to have an on-call car service for between three and eight hours a day.

Dubai is the first city in the Middle East in which the service is available.

UberFREIGHT launched in 2016 in the US, the entrance into the long-haul trucking business was seen as a plan to build on Uber’s $650m acquisition of Otto, a self-driving trucking company that aimed to reinvent freight transportation.

UberFREIGHT’s first initiative was a marketplace to connect a shipper with a truck, much like the Uber app connects drivers and riders.

It offer shippers real-time pricing based on supply and demand, cutting out the traditional brokers.

Analysts see the long-term goal as being another gateway toward autonomous driving, and also the desire of Uber to be the number one mover of people and things. The service is not currently available in this region.


Tourism Observer

UAE: Flydubai To Commence Direct Flights To Helsinki From 11 October 2018

Flydubai has announced the launch of direct flights to Helsinki.

The daily service will start from 11 October 2018. Flydubai becomes the first airline to offer a year-round service between Dubai and Helsinki.

The carrier will operate the new route on its brand-new Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft with flat-bed in Business Class and enhanced Economy Class offering.

The Helsinki route will be code shared with Emirates as part of the Emirates’ and Flydubai’s partnership.

Dubai airlines reveal strong passenger numbers for first six months of tie-up.

Emirates and flydubai revealed on Monday strong passenger numbers for the first six months of their partnership.

The first codeshare flights began at the end of October and between November 2017 and this March, over 400,000 passengers have taken advantage of the partnership and more than 250,000 passengers have already planned their trip for the year ahead, a statement said.

The partnership initially began with codeshare flights to 29 cities, and this has since expanded to meet growing demand.

Emirates currently flies to 141 passenger destinations.

Last year, the airline launched new passenger routes to Newark via Athens, Zagreb and Phnom Penh, and later this year, Emirates will begin services to London Stansted and Santiago de Chile.

flydubai currently flies to a total of 97 destinations, 80 of which are not served by Emirates, bringing the total combined network offering to 206 unique destinations.

Both Dubai-based airlines said they will continue to offer customers greater choice and flexibility across their networks, with codeshares to more than 90 destinations today.

New codeshare flights recently launched include Krakow, Dubrovnik and Kinshasa with more destinations expected in the coming months such as Catania from June 13, Thessaloniki from June 15 and Helsinki from October 11.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saaed Al Maktoum, chairman and CEO of Emirates Group and chairman of flydubai, said: We’re really pleased with how well the Emirates and flydubai partnership is going – based on bookings and the feedback from our customers and trade partners.

We have seen a strong demand for travel on combined Emirates-flydubai itineraries from Europe and the United States to the Middle East and West Asian destinations.


Tourism Observer

GERMANY: Lufthansa Flight LH428 In Emergency Landing

Lufthansa LH428 non stop flight from Munich, Germany to Charlotte Douglas International Airport, North Carolina, USA took off Sunday at 12.40h Munich time.

The captain of the Lufthansa Airbus 330-343 declared an emergency when approaching Irish Airspace and turned around.

The flight was diverted to Glasgow due to an unknown emergency.

The plane lowered altitude to 15,000 feet and stayed at this altitude bypassing Glasgow, bypassing Birmingham, crossing over to the Netherland, Belgium and just crossed back into German airspace at 15.57 German time – all keeping a low altitude of 15,000 feet, less than 5000 meters.

Lufthansa Public Relations shortly after LH428 was in emergency mode.

LH428 was approaching Munich at 16.25 and Lufthansa putting an end to the mystery around this fight.

Lufthansa flight LH428 en route from Munich to Charlotte had to return to Munich today as a purely precautionary measure due to a momentary unusual smell in the cabin.

The safety on board was not impacted at any time.

Lufthansa regrets any inconvenience caused and will provide an alternative aircraft that will fly the passengers to Charlotte tomorrow.

The safety of our passengers and crew members is our top priority at all times.



Tourism Observer

OMAN: Oman Air To Introduce First Class Suite On Dreamliner 787 -9 Fleet

Oman Air unveiled the new First Class Mini Suite of its Dreamliner 787 -9 fleet, on the opening day of Arabian Travel Market, a key travel and tourism event taking place from 22-25 April, held at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

HE Maitha Al Mahrouqi, Undersecretary, Oman Ministry of Tourism unveiled the Mini Suite at the Oman Air stand on Sunday 22 April.

Trade guests present at the ceremony witnessed first-hand some of the industry leading features available to guests flying First Class with Oman Air.

The suite offers un-paralleled levels of comfort and ultimate luxury with one of the longest lie-flat seat available on any commercial airliner, electronically controlled privacy divider, à la carte dining as well as an in suite minibar.

Oman Air is currently undergoing an exciting fleet and network expansion programme, which will see the airline operate up to 70 aircraft to around 60 destinations by 2022.

The airline is committed to constantly improving its product, whilst undergoing its dynamic fleet and network expansion, developing its brand and offering guests an unrivalled experience.

Al Mahrouqi, said, It is an honour to be unveiling Oman Air’s new First Class Mini Suite at the Arabian Travel Market.

man Air works hard to maintain high levels of guest satisfaction and attention to detail in the First Class Mini Suite highlights this.

We want visitors to our country to experience the very best of Oman culture from the moment they board our aircraft and travelling with Oman Air, in all classes, offers a real flavour of Omani warmth and hospitality.

Abdulaziz Al Raisi, Acting CEO of Oman Air, said, Oman Air is truly committed to ensuring all of our guests have a comfortable and a seamless experience when travelling with us.

The launch of the First Class Mini Suite on board our Dreamliner 787 -9 fleet, comes as a result of responding to the needs of our travellers and providing them with industry leading luxury.

We are very proud of our new product and are confident our guests will enjoy the ultimate experience travelling with us to Oman and beyond.

Dreamliner 787 -9 Mini Suite offers:

- Fully enclosed, extra tall, Suite with doors to ensure privacy, 55” tall surrounds

- Fully flat bed, 180 degrees.

- Full size bed length with ottoman 76” to top of headrest, 78” to soft wall.

- Seat width Between the arms 23”, Bed width 30”

- Seat pitch of 82 inches

- Touch Screen Electrically controlled Backrest/Seat bottom/ Leg rest/lumbar

- Electrically controlled privacy divider

- Dedicated wardrobe

- Dedicated stowage for cabin-approved size baggage

- One-piece large meal table

- Cocktail table

- Chilled in-suite minibar

- Literature pocket

- Latest Touch Screen IFE handset

- Headset compartment / hanger

- Life vest compartment

- Ottoman belted seat

- Reading and mood light and Do Not Disturb light controls Touch Screen controlled

- 22 inch Gen. V Video Screen Monitor

- Two High power USB plugs

- PC power outlet


Tourism Observer

GERMANY: Lufthansa To Operate 85 Additional Flights To Russia World Cup

Lufthansa Group is offering 85 additional flights to Russia on occasion of the 2018 World Cup.

This means that football fans have up to 18,000 additional seats than usual to travel to the tournament and support their teams.

Lufthansa will be increasing its offering to Moscow (Domodedovo), namely flights from Frankfurt will be increased from four to up to six times a day, and from Munich from two daily flights to up to four flights a day.

Starting 1 June until 31 July, an Airbus A330, with flight numbers LH1440 and LH1441 will be operating between Frankfurt and Moscow once a day, except on Fridays.

Depending on the aircraft configuration, passengers will have up to 255 seats to choose from, including 42 Business Class seats for more comfort.

Passengers will have a great in-flight entertainment program to choose from.

More than 160 feature films, over 250 TV options, more than 200 music albums and highlights from the world of football to get in the mood for the tournament.

During the flight you can even watch live World Cup matches broadcasted via the Live TV Channels on your in-seat screen and via your personal electronic device via FlyNet connection.

As a partner of the German Football Association (DFB), Lufthansa will by flying the German national team from Frankfurt to Moscow Vnukovo Airport on 12 June.

For further information or to book Lufthansa flights, please visit LH.com or call the Lufthansa Service Center at (069) 86 799 799, rates may apply.

Flights can also be booked at Lufthansa travel agency partners and at Lufthansa sales counters at airports.


Tourism Observer

Pilots And Flight Engineers

Pilots navigate the flight of fixed-wing, multi-engine aircrafts, usually on scheduled air carrier routes, for the transport of passengers and cargo.

Pilot And Flight Engineer

Daily Tasks / Routine Activities:

Pilots typically do the following:

1. Work as part of a flight team with other crew members, especially during takeoffs and landings.

2. Use instrumentation to guide flights when visibility is poor.

3. Start engines, operate controls, and pilot airplanes to transport passengers, mail, or freight, adhering to flight plans, regulations, and procedures.

4. Contact control towers for takeoff clearances, arrival instructions, and other information, using radio equipment.

5. Monitor gauges, warning devices, and control panels to verify aircraft performance and to regulate engine speed.

6. Respond to and report in-flight emergencies and malfunctions.

7. Steer aircraft along planned routes, using autopilot and flight management computers.

8. Check passenger and cargo distributions and fuel amounts to ensure that weight and balance specifications are met.

9. Monitor engine operation, fuel consumption, and functioning of aircraft systems during flights.

10. Choose routes, altitudes, and speeds that will provide the fastest, safest, and smoothest flights.

11. File instrument flight plans with air traffic control to ensure that flights are coordinated with other air traffic.

12. Inspect aircraft for defects and malfunctions, according to pre-flight checklists.

13. Order changes in fuel supplies, loads, routes, or schedules to ensure safety of flights.

14. Confer with flight dispatchers and weather forecasters to keep abreast of flight conditions.

15. Direct activities of aircraft crews during flights.

16. Brief crews about flight details, such as destinations, duties, and responsibilities.

17. Record in log books information such as flight times, distances flown, and fuel consumption.

18. Make announcements regarding flights, using public address systems.

19. Perform minor maintenance work, or arrange for major maintenance.

20. Test and evaluate the performance of new aircraft.

21. Coordinate flight activities with ground crews and air traffic control and inform crew members of flight and test procedures.

22. Conduct in-flight tests and evaluations at specified altitudes and in all types of weather to determine the receptivity and other characteristics of equipment and systems.

23. Instruct other pilots and student pilots in aircraft operations and the principles of flight.

24. Plan and formulate flight activities and test schedules and prepare flight evaluation reports.

25. Load smaller aircraft, handling passenger luggage and supervising refueling.

26. Evaluate other pilots or pilot-license applicants for proficiency.

Many aircraft used for hire use two pilots. The most experienced pilot, the captain or pilot in command, supervises all other crew members and has primary responsibility for the flight.

The copilot, often called the first officer or second in command, shares flight duties with the captain.

Some older planes require a third pilot known as a flight engineer, who monitors instruments and operates controls.

New technology has automated many of these tasks, and new aircraft do not require flight engineers.

There are mainly 2 log books, the pilot's log book for their progress record like hours flown, aerodromes visited, air crafts flown and the aircraft's maintenance log where all the info concerning the aircraft is.

That is the pilot's who flew it, fuel used, when it last had a maintenance check, etc.

Testing aircraft is mainly done by test pilots but generally speaking any qualified pilots can do it if authorised to.

The test pilots usually double as the maintenance crew in the hangar.

Generally all planes have dual controls so that any present pilot can have control at any one moment. What one does with his controls happens to the other's as well.

The ones that have single controls are the very small, very light, usually single seat personal aircraft.

The flight engineer is actually required as a third person because he/she is the one who enters the information desired altitudes, speeds, total weights of personnel, luggage, fuel, the plane itself, etc, into the flight computer and monitors any changes during flight as the computer handles those aspects of the plane.

This is for planes equipped with flight computers as a major participant during flight, mostly the jet airliners.

Before you fly as Pilot In Command of a plane, you must have flown a specified no. of hours as Copilot in that particular plane model.

Licensing for Pilots

There are 3 major licenses

- The Student Pilot's License : Allows one to train to become a pilot.

- The Private Pilot's License : Qualifies one as a pilot, however one can't work with it, one will be used mainly for leisure personal flights

- The Commercial Pilot's License :Enables one to work as a pilot

After progressing to the commercial Pilot's License, one can move onto other licenses like the Instructor's License, Airline Pilot's License, Acrobat Pilot's License, etc.

For each of these there is a separate license for Planes and Rotor craft.

Pilots must have good teamwork skills because they must work closely with other pilots on the flight deck, as well as with air traffic controllers and flight dispatchers.

They need to be able to coordinate actions and provide clear and honest feedback.

Pilots plan their flights carefully by making sure the aircraft is operable and safe, that the cargo has been loaded correctly, and that the weather conditions are acceptable.

They file flight plans with air traffic control that they may modify in flight because of weather conditions or other factors.

Takeoffs and landings can be the most difficult parts of the flight and require close coordination between the pilot, copilot, and flight engineer, if present.

Once in the air, the captain and first officer usually alternate flying activities so each can rest. After landing, pilots must fill out records that document their flight and the status of the aircraft.

Many pilots will have some contact with passengers and customers.

Charter and corporate pilots will often need to greet their passengers before embarking.

Some airline pilots may have to help handle customer complaints.

Commercial pilots employed by charter companies usually have many more nonflight duties than airline pilots have.

Commercial pilots may have to schedule flights, arrange for maintenance of the plane, and load luggage themselves.

Pilots who routinely fly at low levels must constantly look for trees, bridges, power lines, transmission towers, and other dangerous obstacles.

This is a common danger to agricultural pilots and air ambulance helicopter pilots, who frequently land on or near highways and accident sites that do not have improved landing sites.

The following are examples of types of pilots:

Airline pilots are commercial pilots who primarily work for airlines that transport passengers and cargo on a fixed schedule.

Commercial pilots are involved in unscheduled flight activities, such as aerial application, charter flights, aerial photography, and aerial tours.

Flight instructors are commercial pilots who use simulators and dual-controlled aircraft to teach students how to fly.

The pilot has the final say on matters concerning the aircraft and the flight therefore he/she is responsible for the lives of all on board the aircraft.

Key knowledge areas

1. Transportation — Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.

2. Geography — Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.

3. Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

4. English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

5. Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

6. Psychology — Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

7. Mechanical — Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

8. Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

9. Physics — Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.

10. Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

11. Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

12. Telecommunications — Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

Top Skills / Important Qualities

Communication skills. Pilots must speak clearly when conveying information to air traffic controllers. They must also listen carefully for instructions.

Observational skills. Pilots must regularly watch over screens, gauges, and dials to make sure that all systems are in working order.

They also need to maintain situational awareness by looking for other aircraft or obstacles. Pilots must be able to see clearly and judge the distance between objects, and possess good color vision.

Problem-solving skills. Pilots must be able to identify complex problems and figure out appropriate solutions.

When a plane encounters turbulence, for example, pilots may assess the weather conditions and request a route or altitude change from air traffic control.

Quick reaction time. Pilots must be able to respond quickly and with good judgment to any impending danger, because warning signals can appear with no notice.


Tourism Observer

USA: Florida Tourism Boosted By Canadian Visitors

Florida’s tourism arm is touting marketing efforts that attracted an increase in travelers from America’s northern neighbor, less than a year after admitting the state had taken its Canadian visitors for granted.

Visit Florida announced Monday that its expanded attention on Canada played a role in the nearly 4 percent growth in tourism from 2016 to 2017.

The rise in Canadians comes as the state continues to experience a decline in overseas travel, which has fallen more than 6 percent over the past two years.

By creating innovative programs such as the Canadian Power Play Program and the Canada Takeover, we made it more exciting and affordable to visit the Sunshine State, Visit Florida President and CEO Ken Lawson said in a press release.

We will keep working to send a warm, open and welcoming message to our Canadian friends, and let them know that there is no better time than right now to visit Florida.

The power play program offered 20 percent discounts on airfare, rental cars and lodging to balance the stronger American dollar.

The takeover was the fall and early winter marketing campaign, which included wall murals; digital columns and digital billboards; advertising on underground transit networks in Toronto and Montreal; partnership programs with The Weather Network, Air Canada Vacations and Expedia.

As well as a paid push on social media sites Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Visit Florida spent $1.8 million last year on its Canadian marketing efforts, up from $1 million in prior years.

Susan Harper, Consul General of Canada in Miami, said in the press release the marketing effort resonated with Canadians for its focus on warmth, diversity, openness and inclusion.

Last July, Lawson told a group of Canadian tourism industry leaders that the public-private tourism agency had taken this market for granted.

We have the snowbirds with their Florida vacation homes. They're kind of like, We've been there, done that.

We have new Canadians. And we have the millennials, and they're saying, We don't want to do what our grandparents did, Lawson said while in in Toronto for meetings with travel industry leaders.

Scott traveled to Toronto in November for a two-day tourism and business mission to announce the marketing plans.

The estimated number of Canadian tourists grew from 3.35 million in 2016 to 3.48 million last year.

The latest numbers from Visit Florida were slightly revised upward, using input from Statistic Canada, since first posted on March 20.

Tourism numbers from Canada had been falling since a high of 4.2 million in 2013, due in part to the weakened Canadian dollar against its U.S. counterpart.

Overall, the state recorded 102.3 million domestic travelers last year, up from 97.9 million in 2016 and 91.3 million 2015.

Overseas travel to Florida dropped for the second consecutive year, from 11.4 million in 2015 to 11.1 million in 2016 and 10.7 million last year.

The tourism numbers for the first quarter of 2018 are not expected until mid-May.



Tourism Observer