American Express Consumer Travel has announced the creation of a new membership platform for non-franchisee agencies called the Travel Associate Platform. Later this year, franchisees of the American Express Representative Network platform will be able to choose which platform best suits them. Representatives pay a higher fee and have more access to lead generation tools and marketing programs than associates.
Mexico's San Miguel de Allende is appealing to the international crowd looking for a short getaway because of its flourishing food scene and festive atmosphere. Visitors will enjoy lodging at a boutique hotel, tasting local cuisine and premium spirits over a 12-course meal, taking a guided tour of the vibrant city and shopping for art and design pieces.
Writer Mike Marchev relates his experience at a garlic festival to target marketing. At the festival, he noticed that each vendor targeted a specific garlic-loving consumer. Since consumers have different tastes and wants, agents, like the vendors, should offer a variety of products and services to a target market of consumers who want what they are offering, he advises.
American Airlines reported a 1.6% increase in passenger traffic for January on a year-over-year basis. The carrier's load factor also rose 1.5% for the month as compared to January of last year.
Hawaiian Airlines named Jay Schaefer as vice president and treasurer. Schaefer, who has worked for Alaska for more than a decade, also previously served in finance for Amazon. "Jay’s leadership of complex financial operations, along with his extensive airline experience, will allow us to continue managing our resources effectively and stay competitive in a new year of growth," said Shannon Okinaka, CFO and executive vice president for Hawaiian.
Airlines for America applauded the International Civil Aviation Organization for setting standards on aviation carbon emissions. "We commend the work of the committee for its part in ensuring that ICAO continues to demonstrate leadership in setting environmental standards for global aviation," said Nancy Young, vice president for environmental affairs at A4A.
A coalition of 13 conservative groups sent a letter to Congress in support of a bill to reform the air traffic control system. "To us it is an axiomatic economic principle that user-funded, user-accountable entities are far more capable of delivering innovation and timely improvements in a cost-effective manner than government agencies," they wrote.
In honor of Black History Month, American Airlines is offering an inflight documentary on Tuskegee Airmen. "The Luft Gangster: Memoirs of a Second Class Hero" follows the life of a Tuskegee Airman who was taken as a prisoner of war in World War II. The documentary is available on flights with in-seat entertainment.
American Airlines offers a concierge service, Five Star Service, that can be purchased as an amenity. Chris Chamberlin tested out the service in Los Angeles and New York, and concludes "American Airlines' VIP service makes travelling as effortless as possible for seriously high flyers -- on departure, at least."
The 65th NBA All-Star Game will be played in Toronto on Sunday, marking the first time the game will be played outside of the US. Since the event coincides with Valentine's Day weekend, romantic travelers can partake of many sports- and romance-related activities. Travelers can go on a basketball, beer or candy tour, ice skate for free, attend an auto show or a music festival and stay at a hotel offering a romance package.
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