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Southern Africa’s Travel News Weekly

August 5 2009 I No. 2069

Terms and conditions apply.

086 11 00 424









Another cost for passengers? Page 4

Naked agent

Hotel brands need to up their game Page 10

Go all out to make the sale! Page 14

Airlines try to pass credit card buck Melody Brandon


SATA has joined the World Travel Agents Associations Alliance (WTAAA) in condemning United Airlines’ move to transfer credit card merchant fee costs to travel agents in the United States, with all parties waiting for the outcome of a congressional hearing on the matter, due to take place in September. “It is a sensitive issue. At this stage it is a proposal by the airline and may not necessarily happen, but if United does institute this, then other airlines will follow,” said Asata ceo, Robyn Christie. United informed US travel agents that, as of July 20, they would no longer be able to use the airline’s merchant facility when selling UA tickets but instead would have to use their own. “Globally, with the exception of Australia and the United Kingdom, credit card merchant fee contracts prevent any merchant passing on additional fees to a consumer for the use of a credit card. Obviously United is aware of this and is therefore passing those


charges on to travel agents, as they know the agent will have no choice but to pass those charges on to the customer,” said WTAAA chairman, Mike Hatton. The WTAAA has asked United not to go ahead with its plans yet and has called for congressional hearings to take place in the next few months. If plans go ahead, hearings will take place before the house of commerce, trade and consumer protection subcommittee. Robyn said Asata would have to wait for these hearings to take place, before anything could be done.

Implications for agents

Robyn added that, should United be given the go-ahead and other airlines followed suit, the implications for travel agents would be huge. “There is definitely a knockon effect. The agent will have two choices. Either to take the knock and pay 2% or 3% of the ticket in merchant fees, or to only accept cash, in which case their Iata guarantee will be increased. If they choose to pay the merchant fee they will also lose out. While 2% of a cup

of coffee is nominal, 2% of a R10 000 ticket is a different story. It is a loss of revenue for the travel agent, no matter what the percentage,” she said. Cheryl Watt, director of Development Training Strategies, said the client could also lose out if they had to pay cash, as credit card transactions for airline tickets included insurance on the ticket. “The travel agent will be in a catch-22 situation if this were the case,” she said. “It will be interesting to see what action credit card companies take in the face of this attempt to circumvent the terms of their merchant agreements and penalise individual card holders,” said Mike. Robyn says the airline could be using the proposal to try to drive online sales in an attempt to control costs, “a lose, lose situation for everyone”. “We don’t want to blow the issue out of proportion, but we are monitoring the situation closely. The implications of this move by United are certainly of great concern and we will not sit by and watch it happen.” To page 16

Thompsons’ new Disney! Thompsons Holidays has just launched its new Thompsons Walt Disney World Collection filled with helpful information to help you choose the right resorts, park tickets and dining plans for clients. Packages include return flights to Orlando on Delta, transfers to Walt Disney World, seven nights’ accommodation and entry to a different theme park each day. Inviting you to share the magic are Dumisani Khumalo Thompsons Holidays product co-ordinator – America; and Henuti Sukha product assistant – America Photo Tijana Huysamen

‘BAR is here to stay’ – hotels Melody Brandon HOTEL executives say that best available rate (BAR) is here to stay despite tour operators’ assertions that it will be a “thing of the past” after 2010 is over and hotels need beds filled. Protea Hotels sales, marketing and revenue director, Danny Bryer, says:

“While the current global economy has seen a natural tightening of all purse strings from corporate to consumer, this does not in our opinion necessitate the need for a war based on discounting price deals. “BAR has no restrictions and is priced competitively, therefore ensuring that To page 2


Holiday Aviation to sue Libyan airline Melody Brandon


EGAL proceedings are under way against Libyan airline, Afriqiyah Airways, for breach of contract after the airline allegedly reneged on an agreement with Holiday Aviation. In the March 11 issue of TNW, Afriqiyah Airways, representative, Lutfi Alfituri, is quoted as saying Holiday Aviation had been appointed as the airline’s gsa in South Africa and that the airline would be introducing thrice weekly flights to Johannesburg. However in TNW dated


June 24, German airline gsa, Aviareps announced that it would be representing Afriqiyah. According to Holiday Aviation ceo, Gavin Simpson, the airline allegedly failed to let him know the deal was off and “had to read about this development” in TNW. In a press statement, Gavin said Holiday Aviation had been told it had been awarded the tender to represent the airline in South Africa earlier this year. “Holiday Aviation duly set about preparing to accommodate the airline as an additional client in the busy

multi-airline aviation services operation,” he said. Following the June 24 article, Gavin said he had contacted the airline to confirm that the tender had been awarded to Aviareps and “expressed concern” at the fact that the decision had been made without notice being received. “Our credibility has clearly been compromised and in view of all the unfortunate circumstances associated with the way in which this matter has been handled, we believe there are grounds to file a damages claim against Afriqiyah Airways for breach of contract,” he said. ■

Etihad’s on the ball! Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways has signed a threeyear deal to be the official shirt sponsor and partner of Premier League side, Manchester City FC. The team unveiled their new branded kit at the recent Vodacom Challenge. Craig Thomas (centre front), country manager for Etihad in SA, is pictured here with the team.

‘BAR is here to stay’ – hotels TRAVEL NEWS WEEKLY

Published by Lugan Investments (Pty) Ltd trading as Now Media Printed by Juka Printing (Pty) Ltd Phone: (011) 327-4062 Fax: (011) 327-4094 E-mail: Web: Address: Now Media Centre, 32 Fricker Road, Illovo Boulevard, Illovo, Johannesburg. PO Box 55251, Northlands, 2116, South Africa.

EDITORAL Editor: Natalia Thomson Sub­-Editor: Ann Braun Cape Town Editor: Hilka Birns Journalists: Jeanette Phillips Natasha Tippel Melody Brandon Photo Journalist: Tijana Huysamen Founding Editors: John H Marsh (1914-1996) Leona Marsh (1923-2003) ADVERTISING Sales Manager Kate Nathan Advertising Coordinator: Lana Sachs PRODUCTION Design Head: Brendon Bester

Subscriptions: Subs Annual Subscription: RSA R460,00 Foreign R700,00 or annual debit order: RSA R365,00 Foreign R560,00 Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe – on request

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From page 1 the customer is receiving the best price at any point in time. Protea insists that there is absolute transparency by its distribution partners when it comes to commissions, booking fees, etc.” According to Danny, better planning leads to better and more cost-effective packages. “Look at the airline industry. Booking in advance allows consumers and tour operators to negotiate better deals and this is the same for the hospitality sector. “Protea Hotels was the first hospitality organisation in Africa to implement this method and has been able to correctly forecast demand. “It is therefore able to

offer upfront packages and determine BAR which is available to everyone who asks.” Gerhard Patzer, gm of the Hilton Durban says: “What I think will happen, is that BAR will be used more often by creating more inexpensive room rates during de-stressed times.” He added that they would also probably use shorter lead times and package special deals that would be communicated to the tour operators and agents. “The Best Available Rate is a tool to maximise your inventory which should benefit the seller and buyer.  Airlines have been using this tool for many years successfully and I feel it is here to stay in our industry,”

said Gerhard. City Lodge marketing manager, Peter Schoeman, says the group does not follow a BAR structure, but rather has separate corporate and public rates, neither of which have been appreciably changed. “We believe we offer value for money to tour operators and individual business and leisure travellers across our four brands. “There are signs that the business travel market is picking up a bit although the trend is a little haphazard. “The overall market is likely to remain at around current levels until the middle of next year,” he said. ● For the latest hospitality news, see the feature on page 10. ■


2 n Wednesday August 5 2009



New aircraft for LAM Natasha Tippel


AM MOZAMBIQUE Airlines will take delivery of two new aircraft over the next few weeks. The Embraer-190 will replace most flights operated by the Boeing 737-200, including the JohannesburgMaputo route. The aircraft will also be used on Johannesburg flights via Maputo to Tete, Nampula, Pemba, and Lichinga. There will be significant changes to the airline’s schedule planning to optimise utilisation of the aircraft, bringing greater stability to the schedule between the summer and winter seasons. The acquisition of the new Embraer-190, which features nine business-class seats and 84 economy-class seats, is part of LAM’s fleet renewal programme, which will help lower operational costs, resulting in more attractive fares, and improve customer comfort, service quality, and safety. The new aircraft are

Airlines slow to take up extra frequencies Melody Brandon

From left: Paulo Almeida (Embraer business development – Europe, Middle East and Asia), Faustino Massitela (LAM gm), Cláudio Banze (LAM general sales manager), and Byron Bohlman (Embraer senior manager – market intelligence and commercial aircraft) Photo: Natasha Tippel also more environmentally friendly and will help the airline reduce its carbon emissions by up to 50%. The acquisition of the two new Embraer-190 aircraft will allow LAM to expand its operations, offering more frequency and capacity. Some developments to look forward to include: ● A third flight from Johannesburg to Maputo ● A fourth frequency to Vilanculous and Inhambane, increasing capacity over the

next six months ● Working on a timetable for direct flights to Pemba ● Opening a Luanda route from October 25, with flights on Tuesday and Friday ● Increasing flights to Dar es Salaam with a stopover in Pemba ● Increasing flights to Nairobi in codeshare agreement with Kenya Airways with a stopover in Pemba ● Researching the possibility of re-introducing a Harare route. ■

WHILE the Department of Transport (DoT) believes it has created enough capacity to meet demand for the next 15 to 20 years, it says airlines have yet to take up the frequencies. “We are comfortable that our agreements provide enough capacity for growth of 10% a year for the next decade,” said Anwar Gany, chief director of civil aviation at the DoT, adding that it was a “vital process” that skies over South Africa opened up to competition. The Airshift Strategy, which was approved by the government in 2006 and aimed to create capacity ahead of demand, has seen South Africa showing a more liberal approach to

competition. Among its key successes is the recent conclusion of an agreement between South Africa and Canada. For the first time since negotiations began in 1977, the agreement allows three frequencies from this year, increasing to five in 2012 and daily flights in 2015. Chief negotiator in bilateral agreements, Vuwani Ndwamato said the next challenge was opening up competition on the continent. While several African nations had agreed to liberalise in terms of the Yamoussoukro Decision, few had. “Our aim is to open up the continent country by country. We have made substantial process in west, east and north Africa,” he said. ■

“Today I enjoyed breakfast in Joburg, and watched the sun set in Kasane” Our new routes are: Johannesburg to Kasane plus Johannesburg to Francistown and Kasane to Maun in Botswana Central Reservations - Tel: (+267) 395 1921/390 5500. Fax: (+267) 395 3928. Johannesburg Reservations - Tel: (+27) 11 390 3070/1/2/3 QUICK READ FOR busiest people


Wednesday August 5 2009 n 3


APP – another cost for pax? Melody Brandon


OME Affairs will soon introduce measures to increase security and speed up airport queues but passengers may have to pay for this in increased surcharges. "We are targeting November of this year to deploy the system fully," said Khodr Akil, vp of IT aviation specialist Sita in the Middle East and Africa. Advanced Passenger Processing (APP), a Sita product, involves passenger preclearance prior to boarding an aircraft, instead of clearing passengers at the port of entry. "Essentially, it extends a country's border to the point of departure, as the decision whether to allow entry to a passenger is made at the time of check-in, when airlines receive immediate notification to allow, or not to allow, a passenger to board," Khodr said. He added that South Africa would be the first country in Africa to implement the new system. According to Khodr, most major airlines are already APP compliant and several

countries, including Australia and Canada, have already implemented the system. Airlines that were not compliant would not be allowed to fly to South Africa once the system had been implemented, he said. Home Affairs said the new system would be in place in time to deal with the expected 500 000 visitors coming to South Africa for the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

“In certain countries where APP has been implemented, the costs are added to the tickets but the benefits of such a system are huge.” “By the time 2010 comes, we would have already run some tests,” said Home Affairs spokeswoman, Siobhan McCarthy. "In certain countries where APP has already been implemented, the costs are added to the tickets but the benefits of such a system are huge. Every passenger has then been thoroughly checked. If I were a

passenger, it would give me a lot of comfort,” said Khodr. Siobhan said while the department would fund the start-up costs of the system, running costs could be funded through surcharges on tickets. Barsa chairman, Craig Thomas, said while most international airlines were already using the APP system, local airlines would need to adapt. “For airlines already using APP, there would be no additional cost, or a very small incremental cost. Having said that, the DoT will need to advise Barsa what airlines that aren’t compliant need to do to be APP ready,” he said. In terms of information needed when the new system comes into play, Craig says travel agents will need all the information on the front page of the passport, such as date of expiry, date of birth and other relevant information. “Of course, if the passenger is flying to the United States, they would need to give the address they will be staying at when they first arrive,” he said. ■

Tell us: Do you think passengers should have to pay more surcharges on tickets for the new APP system? Email

Save with Yachts of Seabourn The Yachts of Seabourn has announced deals on its 2010 yachting collection on cruises throughout Europe and Asia. All-inclusive fares start from US$2 749 (R21 285) per person sharing and early booking savings include one- and two-week cruises on board the award-winning Seabourn Pride, Spirit and Legend as well as the newly launched Seabourn Odyssey and Seabourn Sojourn, due to launch in London in June 2010.

Travel fair to host agent workshops Natalia Thomson GET bitten by the travel bug at next year’s World Holiday and Travel Fair, scheduled to take place in Johannesburg from April 16 to 18. Showcasing a range of outbound destinations, this new travel show will see retail travel groups, cruise lines, tour operators, tourism authorities and tourism suppliers exhibiting

their experiences, destinations and product to consumers and travel agents. Endorsed by Asata, the show will also offer travel agents access to a day of travel trade workshops taking place on April 16, brought to you by Travel News Weekly. Bringing you first-hand knowledge and advice, the workshops should be a must on any agent’s calendar. ■

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4 n Wednesday August 5 2009

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Get on top of your game Melody Brandon

are going, if they are going alone, what their budget is, if they have children going with them etc. If you don’t know what they want, you aren’t going to be able to sell them the right package.”


HILE low prices may lead to an increased interest in travel, agents must be able to translate feet through the door into sales. But this isn’t easy in a competitive market where customer service and efficiency have never been so important. “The surprising thing with sales is that sales people don’t necessarily need to do anything different now. They need to sell professionally and in a manner that guarantees results all the time,” says United Professional Sales Association (Upsa) chairman, Tony Cross.  “The catch is that, when the economy contracts like it has, sales people who have perhaps done well in the good times now struggle because their markets have shrunk considerably.  “Having an effective sales process will ensure teams survive now, and prosper when the markets return.” Melanie Wesson, manager of Pentravel Benmore, says keeping staff motivated at the moment can be difficult. “This time last year, most of us at our branch had made our target by the middle of the month. People had money and travel was selling fast and furiously. “Now the girls in the office are battling to reach target.” Melanie says the 24-hour quote is a thing of the

Upsell where you can

Kevin Banks past. She stressed that agents needed to take every telephone and walk-in query seriously and handle them immediately. “As the client comes through the door, you have to deal with that query then and there. If it is a complicated quote it may take a little longer, but in the time you could take to work on it, the client may have gone elsewhere.”

Listen to your clients

Kevin Banks, consultant at Travel247 agrees, saying constant communication and listening to your clients are vital in maintaining relationships and making sure you are on top of your game. “Find out if your client is looking elsewhere. Get hold of them and find out if there was something wrong with what you were offering and try fix it there and then. “There is nothing more important than listening to your client. Find out if they have a passport, where they

Low prices give agents a great opportunity to be innovative when upselling, but be careful not to offer too much of a discount to make a sale. You may undercut yourself more than you anticipated. “Cash is definitely worth more now than ever before, and margins need to be protected as far as possible. Having said this, there are innovative ways of offering a discount while getting something in return,” says Tony. Kevin advises agents – wait until you have made the sale before you try upsell a client. “I recently had a client who was travelling to Lagos. I gave him the quote and managed to upsell him to a business-class ticket after that. It’s far easier to upsell when the client has committed,” he said. Melanie said it was up to the agent to gauge to whom they could or couldn’t upsell. “You may have to offer a free day tour to get the client to commit to a timerestrictive low fare, or offer them free travel insurance. You have to keep yourself motivated and do everything you can to get the client to commit.”

To increase sales, have you… ● Found out what the client is looking for and got all the basic information? ● Considered working with your service providers and tourism bodies to get your brand out there? ● Looked at social media to

use it to advertise your brand and product? ● Taken an active interest in your client and found out how their trip was, ensuring that they will come back to you for repeat business? ● Contacted previous clients

AirHeads sponsored by Virgin Atlantic Airways APD tax ‘out of control’

SIR Richard Branson, president of Virgin Atlantic, has warned that the UK government’s plans to increase taxes on air passengers are out of control. "The increases will hurt passengers, the airline industry and developing regions such as the Caribbean and Africa, which rely on the airline industry to power their economies, and enable family and friends based in the UK to visit loved ones. Air Passenger Duty is one of the most unjust taxes out there. The UK government has been quietly increasing APD by huge amounts and claiming it is an environmental tax. Yet, there's not a shred of evidence to suggest the £2bn+ (R26bn) currently raised is going towards environmental or sustainable projects.” Virgin Atlantic has announced that all its e-tickets will now carry messages criticising the unjust tax increase by the UK government and asking passengers to visit a new information website www.virginatlantic. com/unjusttax, so that they can protest to their local MP in the UK about the increases. The APD paid by passengers leaving the UK is due to increase by up to 113% by November 2010, with the next phased increase due in November this year.

Air Namibia launches new JNB-Lusaka route

EFFECTIVE September 15, Air Namibia will introduce a new direct flight from JNB to Lusaka. The flights are on Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays with fares from R1 540, excluding airport taxes of about R1 436. Flights will depart JNB at 08h15, arriving in Lusaka at 10h15. The return service departs Lusaka at 18h20, arriving in JNB at 20h20.

QR updates

QATAR Airways has upgraded, its website for its frequent flyer programme, Privilege Club. South African members can now instantly redeem accrued Qmiles by booking and issuing their award tickets online as well as checking availability of award seats. Customers can also pay taxes online and receive an e-ticket. The new facility offers Privilege Club members who have accrued sufficient Qmiles to redeem an award ticket and to combine different cabin classes on their journey. For example, on a flight from Johannesburg to Singapore, the customer can choose to fly in first class from Johannesburg to Doha, and connect onwards from Qatar Airways’ hub in economy class to Singapore. Furthermore, if members do not have sufficient Qmiles for their desired award ticket, the new booking engine will offer them the opportunity to purchase additional ones. Members can now also choose to redeem their award tickets using Qmiles plus cash.

and let them know what specials you are offering? Log on to to listen to our panel discussion with Melanie Wesson and Kevin Banks on how to raise your upselling stakes. ■

Who flies to Douala? *via Cotonou

Telephone: (011) 616 0636

Visit us on TravelInfo or find our schedule in Amadeus, Galileo, Sabre, Worldspan. TNW3522SD

QUICK READ FOR busiest people


Wednesday August 5 2009 n 5


Domestic tourism – a gold mine for agents? Kate Els


OUTH African Tourism’s domestic tourism statistics for 2008 indicate that South Africans are travelling more, increasing their travel spend and travelling for longer. Speaking at the release of the statistics, Didi Moyle, ceo of SAT, said although the industry had seen a decline in the number of trips taken annually by South Africans, the number of travellers had increased in 2008. She also pointed out that more high-bracket earners were travelling locally, accounting for 20% of South African travellers. KwaZulu Natal was the province of choice for most domestic travellers, while the biggest source market for domestic

tourism was Gauteng. Didi said SAT’s domestic tourism promotion campaign, Sho’t Left, had gone a long way to show the population that South Africa was easily accessible for those with lower incomes.

“More high-bracket earners are travelling locally, accounting for 20% of South African travellers.” However, she added that there had been a marked decline in the amount spent on activities on a trip. “Travel agents are a critical connection between consumers and a destination,” she said, commenting on the role that

agents play in the domestic tourism sector. She added that SAT’s relationships with travel agents only tended to extend to those who were interested in the Sho’t Left campaign. Roshene Singh, chief marketing officer at SAT, said the organisation was working on making agents increasingly aware of the value of domestic tourism. “We see ourselves as having an educational role with travel agents.” She also referred to the organisation’s FUNDI programme, which has already certified over 600 South Africa experts. “As the South African market matures there will be more of a holiday market in South Africa,” said Roshene. ■

AF sports SkyTeam brand The first Air France plane sporting the new SkyTeam branding arrived in OR Tambo International Airport on July 18. SkyTeam, the global airline alliance partnering ten members and three associate carriers, is in the process of introducing its branding on member carriers’ aircraft. Each SkyTeam carrier will have one, featuring the logo on the side of the aircraft.

to the point

Authorities in Rwanda have banned the use of plastic bags in an effort to combat pollution and littering in the country. Travellers are prohibited from using or entering the country with any type of plastic bag, including duty free bags.

Travelinfo,s Michele Reynolds selects the top specials from Travelinfo ● Virgin Atlantic Airways – purchase two tickets to London and get the visa fee as a discount on the second ticket. Valid for published fares only, ex-JNB or Cape Town. The first ticket is valid for sales and ticketing until September 30 with outbound travel until November 30. The second is valid for outbound travel from October 1 to November 30. ● Naïade Holidays. Book Beau Rivage and the second person stays free (in the same room) on the same basis. A minimum stay of five nights as well as other terms and conditions apply. Valid until September 15. ● Travel Vision is offering Russia specials from R2 930pp. The rate includes two nights’ accommodation with breakfast, return airport transfers and a city tour. Valid Thursday to Monday during October. ● Uniworld River Cruises is offering a 50% discount on four of its luxury European river cruises. Includes on-board accommodation and meals on board, welcome and farewell dinners, wine, beer and soft drinks during dinner, shore excursions, on-board entertainment and return airport transfers. Valid for specified cruise departures from August to October.

Specials Spot

All Prices include Airport taxes

Valid from 15 June - 31 December 2009 Prices subject to change


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Swine flu – time to take cover Travel fair to host Melody Brandon


ITH the number of swine flu cases climbing rapidly worldwide, TIC is now marketing travel insurance for full swine flu cover. For the travel agent trying to sell to a nervous client, this may help allay travel fears. “If a traveller is quarantined in hospital overseas, the costs will be covered. Additional costs relating to changing return flights and accommodation costs will also be covered, such as cancellation or changing of tickets. At this stage, we cover swine flu as we would any other illness, however, we are monitoring the situation constantly and we will review the matter if necessary,” says TIC underwriter, Kim Waugh. Despite the World Health Organization not enforcing any travel restrictions, the UK government has advised

people not to return to Britain from abroad if they are suffering from the H1N1 virus. British Airways and Virgin Atlantic are among the first airlines to monitor passengers at check-in, turning them away if they appeared to have the virus. A BA spokesman was quoted as saying there had been a "very small number of cases" where people displaying symptoms had been advised not to travel, while Virgin Atlantic said people suffering from the condition and turned away would not be allowed on board without a 'fit to fly' certificate from their doctor or a hospital.

Is insurance necessary?

“Self insurance is not recommended for any traveller, especially in the current climate. We receive about 100 claims a day, and medical claims constitute some 80% of these submissions,” said TIC’s

claims department manager, Noel Joseph. “In addition, the approximate cost of a doctor’s consultation in the UK is £120 (R1 525) while a standard consultation in the US could cost US$200 (R1 542). “If you are covered by a comprehensive travel insurer, you don’t have to worry about this when you travel and will have peace of mind that if you do get sick, you are covered.” George Novis, TIC md, advises the whole family to get travel insurance, especially if going to a high-risk swine flu area. “All travellers are exposed to illness, therefore all members of a family should have cover. Our family policy automatically covers children, who share the benefits with their parents. All travellers in any travel party must be insured – it is not advisable to only insure ‘select’ members of a family," he said. ■

StayEasy opens in Witbank

Natalia Thomson GET bitten by the travel bug at next year’s World Holiday and Travel Fair, scheduled to take place in Johannesburg from April 16 to 18. Showcasing a range of outbound destinations, this new travel show will see retail travel groups, cruise lines, tour operators, tourism authorities and tourism

suppliers exhibiting their experiences, destinations and product to consumers and travel agents. Endorsed by Asata, the show will also offer travel agents access to a day of travel trade workshops taking place on April 16, brought to you by Travel News Weekly. Bringing you first-hand knowledge and advice, the workshops should be a must on any agent’s calendar. ■

to the point

Turkish Airlines has advised that VMPDs can now be issued on the airline. Agents issuing or revalidating a Turkish Airlines ticket need to relate the VMPD number to the relevant record locater. Any record locater without a VMPD number will be charged to the passenger.


Jeanette Phillips SOUTHERN Sun has announced the opening of the 135-room StayEasy Emalahleni in Witbank this month, aimed at business and leisure travellers. Accommodation options include double or twin-bed configurations and all rooms contain flat-screen televisions with selected DStv channels, air-conditioning and tea- and coffee-making facilities. Business facilities at the hotel include meeting rooms and wireless Internet hotspots and workstations. The hotel is conveniently located with access from the N4 that connects Gauteng with Mpumalanga.

agent workshops

o pt




Mozambique flight Special

Pay just R1600 for a one-way, webfare ticket to the beautiful resort town of Vilanculos, with Pelican Air Services. Flights depart from JHB. Southern Sun’s StayEasy Emalahleni It is situated on the Ridge Casino premises, adjacent to the Highveld Mall, and guests can also visit the nearby dining, casino and entertainment complex. Accommodation at the StayEasy Emalahleni is available from R695, including

QUICK READ FOR busiest people

a continental breakfast. Southern Sun has five StayEasy hotels in South Africa – Emnotweni in Nelspruit, Century City in Cape Town, Eastgate, Pretoria and Rustenburg. StayEasy Pietermaritzburg is under construction. ■

For full terms and conditions visit: Telephone: ± 27 11 973 3649 Email: A Subsiduary of for more details TNW3535SD

Wednesday August 5 2009 n 7

Pete’s Greet

It already seems like a distant memory, but my family and I enjoyed a wonderful few days in Thailand while the rest of you were all caught up in the Confederations Cup, the British Lions Tour and other good things. With the busy and stressful lives we all lead these days, getting away to somewhere totally different is always brilliant – and Thailand is just the place where service is great, people are friendly and prices are pretty similar to those back home. While I was sunning myself in Phuket, Rose Bischoff was ably flying the City Lodge Hotels flag in South Korea and Japan, countries from which South Africa gets a lot of business travellers, but still not enough tourists considering the size of those populations. She’s travelled to some pretty exotic places over the years on City Lodge’s behalf, has our Rose, including India, Kenya, the Middle East, the Far East and more! What all of us in the travel trade need next year is for Koreans, Japanese, Thais and people from all over the world to transform our country into a cosmopolitan melting pot of languages and cultures during the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup. From all accounts, apart from a few logistical hiccups, the Confederations Cup went off extremely well, setting us up for a magnificent event next year. Even Sepp Blatter, who is a stickler for detail, gave us 75% - but let’s do our best to get a BIG distinction in his post-world cup appraisal. On a different tack entirely, wasn’t that Federer-Roddick Wimbledon final something to savour for a long, long time? It made me think that tenacity is a characteristic we all need, enabling us to deal with the curve balls that can come our way, far away from the tennis court! Au revoir!


Watch out for City Lodge Fourways! A stone’s throw from the hugely popular Monte Casino entertainment complex, this is what the 211-room City Lodge Fourways will look like on completion. Its first rooms will open in December and the hotel will be fully operational in February 2010, great news for business and leisure travellers in northern Johannesburg.

nd (WWF) ildlanifearmFu meJulyW1,ortheldSoutWh Afric lcot from We of the World Wide With effec

one of the four charities which Fund for Nature (WWF) has become se as a beneficiary. As a group, choo can s room online bookers of our WWF which plays such a vital the we are excited to be involved with around the world. The other three and a Afric h Sout in role l environmenta h African Golf Development Sout the er, charities are Operation Hung Training Centre. You can choose to Board as well as the CWD Jobstart to one of our four charities when donate a percentage of your booking on behalf of City Lodge at no cost ly pure is booking online. This amount to you.

Did you know? We are currently building two new hotels in Pretoria – City Lodge Lynnwood and City Lodge Hatfield. While three quarters of City Lodge Lynnwood’s 202 rooms will be available for the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup, City Lodge Hatfield’s 187 rooms will be opened in the last quarter of 2010.


COURTYARD ARCADIA – A JEWEL IN THE CAPITAL As soon as you arrive at Courtyard Arcadia in the heart of Pretoria’s embassy district, you get a pretty good feeling that you’re going to have a pleasant experience. The grand manor house that greets you has been tastefully decorated and restored to combine Pretoria’s graceful past with the modern era. Reception is situated in the house, as is the lounge, the boardroom, the expansive breakfast area and a few upstairs bedrooms. So

whether you stay in one of the external suites, or in the house, you will come into contact with this grand old lady who celebrated her 100th birthday a few years ago.

Menlo’s marvellous makeover Town Lodge Menlo – situated on Atterbury Road in Pretoria – is looking fantastic after a recent makeover. As these photographs show, its clean, fresh, new look provides the ideal “home away from home” experience for both business and leisure travellers.

And the winner is….

The winner of our previous competi tion is Tefelo Xaba Travels in Pretoria . from Sure Viva


Win a free weekend at any Courtyard, City Lodge or Town Lodge.

When will City Lodge Fourways’ first rooms open? Send your entries to: Entries close on 31 August 2009

Hospitality Adding value is key to enticing your clients when selling accommodation, explains Natasha Tippel ...

Hotel brands need to up their game


S the economic downturn continues, forcing corporate and leisure travellers to change their travel patterns to save costs, hotel brands are putting greater focus on longer-term sustainable relationships and adding value to accommodation options. Recent surveys show that the average length of hotel stays has fallen. Business travellers in particular are opting for shorter trips, rather using teleconferencing facilities and other means to do business.

Room service please! Talking trends... Leisure, corporate and incentive travel planner for Infinite Destinations, Shannon Manson, shares her views on the hospitality sector: What are hotels and other accommodations doing to keep bookings up in the current economic climate? There seems to be a fair amount of e-advertising offering specials. How have travellers changed their travel patterns as a result of the current economic situation? There has definitely been a drop off in travel all round. Businesses have become very cost-conscious, travelling less often and using low-cost airlines when flying. Corporate companies and leisure travellers alike are booking online to avoid the fees charged by agents, unless booking an FIT package. Have you noticed a trend toward travellers downscaling on accommodation from four- and five-star hotels to guest houses and B&Bs? Not really. I find that it’s a preference with most travellers. They either like staying in hotels or prefer the guest house option as it affords them privacy and flexibility. 10 n Wednesday August 5 2009

Last-minute bookings

“The trend has changed completely as to when bookings are being made, especially those of the corporate traveller,” says ce of City Lodge, Clifford Ross. “The majority of bookings are last minute, whereas a year ago they were at least 10 days in advance. The economy is certainly ‘biting’ at the moment and a quick way for corporates to save on costs, is to stop travelrelated expenditure.” But this is not limited to corporates. Leisure travellers are also cutting back on their travel spend, says sales manager of Sun International Dreams, Stacey Barnett. “Clients are opting for shorter breaks more frequently, rather than two- to

three-week holidays. Clients are also looking for value-formoney deals, which include value-added benefits.” Increasingly companies are also selecting cheaper accommodation options to ensure maximum value for spend.

“If travellers are receiving value for their money with value-adds they will continue to make use of the same standard of accommodation they are accustomed to.” “There is a definite downscale on accommodation by corporates who still need to travel. Five-star accommodation is seen as an extravagance, which can be ill afforded in the current economic climate,” says Clifford. “With products in the one- to four-star markets, we are seeing that the corporate travellers are becoming very price conscious in their decision making and choosing hotels which suit their budgets rather than as a status decision.” Whether travellers are opting for alternative accommodation types as a result is still undecided. “The jury is still out on

whether or not business travellers are using B&Bs and guest houses, as these alternatives are sometimes more expensive than hotels,” says Clifford. Those in the hospitality sector are looking at innovative ways to ensure they provide travellers with the best return on investment for their accommodation budget, finding new and better ways to continue adding value to the market in these tough times. Stacey believes “if travellers are receiving value for their money with value-adds they will continue to make use of the same standard of accommodation they are accustomed to”. Sun International Dreams is adding value to its product by including dinner as a standard at two of its popular resorts as well as offering ‘pay for two, stay for three nights’ specials. Meanwhile, despite the economic downturn, Beachcomber Hotels is not letting up on investing in the continual upgrading of its properties in Mauritius and the Seychelles. “Beachcomber’s four-star hotels are doing well and all-inclusive packages are assisting with keeping costs in check for holidaymakers,” says marketing manager, Colleen Broadley.

Value-adds for agents

Sun International Dreams offers ongoing training so that travel agents can inform their clients of the best available options for their budgets. Dreams booking system will also include an online booking system with direct access to availability of products in the near future. The curtain will go up on the Dinarobin Hotel’s new look in early September. The fivestar property in Mauritius has received upgrades to its pool facilities, restaurant spaces, and other public areas. The hotel also features a new Italian restaurant and a new clubhouse. Five of the six suite clusters will have their own 75-sqm private swimming pools. Travel agents get a 50% discount on their extras bills from September 8 to December 19. Add to this a B-Line discount and a holiday at Dinarobin becomes a very affordable option. 

Make a ‘B-Line’ for Dinarobin


Discover moments that will capture your soul.


2 Nights, breakfast incl.


R5315 p/p sharing


Excl. approx. taxes of R1520 p/p

Excl. approx. taxes of R1520 p/p

Includes flights, transfers & insurance

Unlimited access to Vic Falls & park fees

p/p sharing

2 Pay for 3 r stay fo

Complimentary Dreams travel bag

3 Nights, breakfast Includes flights, Unlimited access to Complimentary & dinner incl. transfers & insurance Vic Falls & park fees Dreams travel bag

With Dreams your journey into the adventure and romance of The Royal Livingstone will be uninterrupted. Allowing you to savour every moment of this palatial Zambian getaway. A place where you are waited on hand and foot, where your only pressing engagement is sundowners, overlooking a natural world wonder – the Victoria Falls.

Let our Dream Makers take you on an adventure into the heart of Africa. Resting on the banks of the mystical Zambezi River, a mere stone's throw away from the thunder of the Victoria Falls. The Zambezi Sun embraces the warmth and generosity of the African continent. Here, time is meaningless and life enchanted.


Call your nearest ASATA travel agent or one of our Dream Makers on 011 217 5555 or visit

Zambezi Sun package valid until 23 December 2009. Royal Livingstone package valid until 30 November 2009. Sunday to Thursday nights, excluding peak periods. Valid for South African residents only. Includes return economy class airfare ex JNB, return transfers, 2 nights (3 nights in the Zambezi Sun package) midweek accommodation in a standard twin room, breakfast daily (dinner included in the Zambezi Sun package only), Dreams travel bag, 3 days (4 days in the Zambezi Sun package) travel insurance including hazardous pursuits. Excludes airport tax as stated above and items of a personal nature. Rates quoted per person sharing. Only valid for individual reservations. Subject to availability and definite terms and conditions. Subject to currency fluctuation. E&OE.


Confidence in the performance of SA’s hotel industry drops


ONFIDENCE in the hotel sector for the third quarter of 2009 has dropped from previous quarters, according to the Horwath Hotel, Tourism and Leisure Group’s (HTL) Hotel Performance Confidence Indicator Survey. Some 195 hotel managers participated in the analysis, with survey results segmented by star grading, hotel size, and geographic location. Overall, the majority of respondents (64%) anticipate

occupancy will decline in the upcoming quarter when compared with occupancy achieved in the third quarter of 2008. At least 12% of hotel managers interviewed forecast occupancy will increase and 24% anticipate that occupancy will remain unchanged in the upcoming quarter. The majority of hotel managers interviewed are confident of an increase in Average Room Rate (ARR). Of respondents, 38% expect

the rate to increase and a further 33% anticipate it will remain unchanged, while 29% forecast a decrease. Of all hotel managers interviewed, 53% forecast a decrease in total revenue for the upcoming quarter when compared with total revenue achieved in Q3, 2008. Some 26% of respondents anticipate total revenue will increase in the third quarter, while 21% forecast that total revenue will remain unchanged.

sh!City Lodge continues to upgrade and refurbish its hotels and will soon a fl complete a roll-out to introduce coffee shops offering light meals, into all of ws


Pay for two, stay three

the City Lodge brand hotels. Other upgrades include a fitness room, boardroom, Internet stations, and WiFi access in all rooms and commercial areas.

Sun International Dreams is offering a ‘Pay for two nights stay for three’ special at the Zambezi Sun in Zambia. Pay R4 100pps and spend three nights at the Zambezi Sun, including return economy-class airfare, return airport transfers, four days’ travel insurance, unlimited access to the Falls, and a Dreams Travel Bag. Rates exclude airport taxes of approx. R1 520. The offer is valid until December 23

City Lodge grows Pretoria footprint THE City Lodge Hotels group is developing two new hotels in Pretoria, bringing 389 additional rooms to the city in the second half of 2010. The 202-room City Lodge Lynnwood is expected to have most of its rooms open in time for the 2010 Soccer World Cup and the 187-room City Lodge Hatfield is expected to have a phased opening between September and December next year. “We have wanted to

increase our footprint in Pretoria for quite some time so it is exciting and significant for us that we are working on two new hotels in the city at the same time,” says Clifford Ross, the group’s chief executive. The group is also currently working on three other new developments around the country at a cost of around R369 million – the 211-room City Lodge Fourways (expected to open

between December 2009 and February 2010); the 303-room City Lodge OR Tambo (expected to open in mid-2010); and Road Lodge Umhlanga (expected to open this month). Other expansion plans at various stages of regulatory approval include Road Lodges at Bloemfontein and Port Elizabeth airports, a Town Lodge in Port Elizabeth and a Road Lodge at Southgate in southern Johannesburg.

Formula 1 hotels’ new-look bedroom design

Formula 1 hotel rooms to get a new look IN South Africa, Accor Hospitality’s Formula 1 budget hotel rooms are being renovated. The first hotel to be refurbished will be the Formula 1 at OR Tambo International Airport, which is to be complete by the end of this month. Specialised in low-cost design and ergonomic solutions, the Priestman Goode design agency developed the new concept for the rooms, along with Accor’s Innovations and Design teams, which promote flexibility and well-being. The two types of room that will be offered are a triple room and a double room.

12 n Wednesday August 5 2009

An artist’s impression of Legacy’s DaVinci Hotel

DaVinci Hotel to open in 2010 THE DaVinci Hotel, which is part of Legacy Corner, is currently being constructed at the corner of Fifth and Maude Streets in Sandton and is set to open in 2010. The hotel will feature 170 rooms spanning six floors and 5 000sqm of retail and entertainment space over three floors. It will also feature an infinity heated swimming pool, full business facilities, an à la carte restaurant and delicatessen, and a health spa and gym. QUICK READ FOR DECISION-MAKERS

Protea Melrose Arch to open in 2010


HE new Protea Hotel Melrose Arch, situated in the Melrose Arch Precinct, will open in the first quarter of 2010. The 197-room property was developed with the business traveller in mind

and will feature four multifunctional conference rooms, six executive meeting rooms, and a business centre. The hotel is 6km from Johannesburg’s CBD and 26km from OR Tambo International Airport.

Legacy moves into Lagos Get connected! Business travellers can now stayed connected with the launch of the Link@Sheraton experienced with Microsoft. One of the group’s newest facilities has opened at the Sheraton Pretoria Hotel and Towers. The business hub includes access to free Wi-Fi, free PC workstations, TV on PC workstations, and printing facilities

Camp Shawu closed for refurb

The Wheatbaker, Legacy Hotels’ first property in Nigeria, will open at the end of the year. Located in the residential heart of Ikoyi, Lagos, the five-star hotel will have 70 luxury rooms and suites, an à la carte restaurant, a deli, a health spa and gymnasium, full business facilities and conferencing for 200 delegates

THREE Cities’ Camp Shawu, part of the Shishangeni Private Game Lodges in the private concession of the Kruger National Park, has been closed to undergo refurbishments in all its public areas. During the closure, guests have the opportunity of staying at a

sister camp, Camp Shonga,a five-tented bush retreat, or Shishangeni Private Main Lodge. All tents are equipped with an en-suite bathroom, outdoor shower, ceiling fan, fireplace, private gameviewing deck with recliner chairs and umbrella.



Self-catering apartments in Sandton with Signature SIGNATURE Life Hotels is focusing on the corporate market with the new addition to its portfolio, the Hydro Executive Apartments on Grayston Drive in Sandton. The 68 fully furnished executive one- and twobedroom apartments are fully serviced and equipped. Each apartment has an 80cm LCD television with DStv, DVD, Mp3 and CD player.


ALL INCLUSIVE at Le Mauricia, Le Canonnier and Le Victoria

Broadband Internet facilities are available at a nominal charge. Room service, undercover parking, a swimming pool and gymnasium are among the additional facilities available. Guests are invited to pre-order their continental breakfast which will be delivered to the apartment between 06h30 and 09h00. Reservations can be made via GDS.



Shishangeni Private Main Lodge offers 22 luxury chalets equipped with a fireplace, en-suite bathroom, outdoor shower, lounge area with private deck. Interleading rooms are available for families. Camp Shawu is expected to reopen early September.



REDUCED Rates for all inclusive option

DISCOUNT UP TO 30% Prices for food & beverages at hotel

EARLY BIRDS Early Bird Discount valid for booking and prepayment in full 30 days in advance of departure.





From 01 June to 30 Sept 2009





REDUCED Rates for airfares for certain validities

Book the Icon of the Cape One of the country’s oldest private estates in Constantia, dating back to 1657.

GDS codes Galileo/Worldspan 18185 Amadeus CPT 785

See incentive rules on Travelinfo under “Queensgate”


QUICK READ FOR busiest people

Indian Ocean Island Lifestyle For information call Beachcomber on 0800 500 800


Wednesday August 5 2009 n 13




Go all out to make the sale! Scenario: An international cruise package for a retired couple

■ AZ representation in SA

AIR France KLM has announced that, effective August 1, all enquiries regarding Alitalia will be directed to a dedicated number. The trade are asked to please ignore the previous numbers as a number still needs to be advised.

■ Trafalgar extends Rand Recovery offer

AS a result of the current strengthening of the rand, Trafalgar Tours has extended its Rand Recovery offer until August 31. Travellers will receive a 20% discount on any summer Trafalgar tour, including travel on any length of tour on any 2009 departure to any destination. The offer applies to new bookings until August 31, and is valid for travel until December 31, subject to price confirmation at the time of booking. Full payment is due within five days of booking. Brochure discounts may be combined. This offer does not apply to river cruises and autumn, winter and spring tours.

Sure Zenojet Travel, Dunvegan

The staff at Sure Zenojet Travel have restored my faith that there are travel agents, not only passionate about their jobs, but also determined to sell to every customer who walks through that door. The receptionist asked me preliminary questions about what I was looking for, offered me tea or coffee and made me feel at home. This was a refreshing welcome and instilled immediate confidence. Sarah McGowan was more than able to give me sound product information, which I later found out was due to her team’s initiative. A week earlier they had asked the Cruise Academy to come and give them training on cruises so they could sell the product better. She was able to offer a number of different cruising options, including cruises in Dubai and the Mediterranean, took down all the relevant information and went out of her way to find out exact prices in rands, airfare and more. The lengthy consultation was useful and made me feel that handing over R20 000 plus for this product was the best thing I could do. Although it was nearing the end of the working day, Sarah’s enthusiasm and energy really sold me on the trip and I was ready to hand over my credit card and book right away!

■ Changes to BA UM charges

Winning consultant: Sarah McGowan Sarah was professional, knew her product and there was no doubt she wanted to make the sale.

★★★★★ Club Travel Edenmeadows

Flight Centre, Greenstone

There can be no excuse in the current downturn for an agent not to ask a client for their contact details to follow up. Telling the client to “call me when you are ready” is just saying “I don’t care one way or the other whether I make this sale or not”. The agency was warm and welcoming – unfortunately the service didn’t match it. The agent did not introduce himself or ask my name until five minutes into our conversation. He offered little information besides what could be painfully extracted by asking specific questions. I was horrified when he told me towards the end of the conversation that he had worked on cruise ships for three years. Surely if you have had first-hand experience with the product you are trying to sell you would attempt to explain how magnificent it is? While he did take out his calculator and work out the prices of the product in rands, I was disappointed with the nonchalant attitude and the fact that he did not get any of my details to follow up, or even offer to give me a quote.

Although the agent was friendly and got my details at the start, it did not instil much confidence when she said “there is this awesome ship, but I can’t remember its name”. No rand comparison was offered and I was told to take the brochure home and work it out for myself. No information was offered that I could not have Googled myself. I wasn’t told what the price included and she didn’t ask what my budget was. The meeting was brief and rushed. For a retired couple, who have saved for years to make their dream of a cruise come true, this encounter would have ruined it for them. What was even more disconcerting was the fact the agent told me it would take her four to five days to send me the quote. By that stage, the client would have gone to another agency, booked, paid and started packing for the trip already.



Sarah’s tips

is without a doubt 1 Service your top priority. Follow up

what you do, if you 2 Enjoy don’t, you aren’t going to

with the client, re-quote if you need to, but always stay in touch with them.

sell anything.

14 n Wednesday August 5 2009

your product. We 3 Know can’t afford one of us to be out the office so we ask people to come in and give us training together at the office.

BRITISH Airways has announced that the Unaccompanied Minor (UM) service supplement will change for long-haul travel for sales made from July 28 for travel commencing from October 1. All unaccompanied minors will pay full fares, meaning that on those fares where there is a child discount, this will only apply to accompanied children. For travel commencing October 1, for sales made on or after July 28, US$75 (R581) or equivalent for a single journey will be charged. For short- and long-haul travel before October 1, $50 (R387) or equivalent will be charged. Other shorthaul and domestic levels remain unchanged. Bookings must be fully completed and the following details included in the PNR: ● Passport details and date of birth ● Name and address and telephone number of the person escorting the UM to the airport and their relationship to them ● Name, address and telephone number of the person collecting the UM and their relationship to them ● A 24-hour contact telephone number where parents or guardians can be contacted at departing and arriving airports. Should an unaccompanied minor report at the airport to check in and the PNR does not identify them as a UM or show their details, they could be refused travel.

■ Earn points with Sure Tours

Sure Tours has announced that all agents can now earn Agent Points on every booking no matter how small. The least amount of points to be earned is one for credit-card bookings of R1 to R4 999. Points are capped at 100 per booking for credit card bookings and 200 per booking for electronic transfers.

■ SAA reintroduces Special Saver Whiz Fares

SAA has reintroduced its Special Saver Whiz Fares from South Africa, Windhoek and Zimbabwe to Australia and New Zealand. The airline has also introduced special D-class fares from South Africa and Windhoek to Australia and New Zealand. Both offers are valid for sale until August 31.

■ Air France Customer Care

Air France advises agents of its Customer Care policy: The Air France customer care department is centralised. Should a passenger have to submit a claim, they can do so in writing. The claim has to be submitted via the Internet complaint form This form can be found at > contact us > contact Customer Care department.

See Travelinfo for more details QUICK READ FOR DECISION-MAKERS


Thompsons’ winter warmer!


our website is updated daily! visit

The Thompsons sales team dropped in to Now Media’s offices with their new Thompsons Ski Collection brochure and hearty soup to warm up the winter chill. Watch out for them – they will be calling on the trade shortly. Pictured here Brennen Wing Yip – sales executive Thompsons, Hayley Cochran Travelinfo account executive and Jacque Botha – Thompsons sales executive

Reservations Manager Midrand R14000 + commission Min 5 year mgt. experience, customer service background, sales target driven, extensive excel knowledge. Email cv to:


Personnel with the personal touch

Data Analyst/Report Writer Compile various statistical travel management reports to client specification plus various other projects for large highly successful travel group. Advanced knowledge in Crystal Reports, SQL and Excel are essential. Must also have experience in electronic data analysis and interpretation. A tertiary qualification in accounts and statistics and/or computer science is required. An excellent opportunity for candidates with these qualifications. R300K Tracey ITC – looking for fixed income? Take away the stress and earn a decent fixed income plus commission! An opportunity to bring along some of your clients and join Sandton based agency. Tracey Senior Inbound Consultant – Sandton Your solid inbound skills will be greatly appreciated by this highly successful operation. An opportunity to thrive & flourish within this stable environment. Tracey Italian Inbound Consultant – Sandton If you are fluent in Italian and have inbound experience you are in the pound seats!! These skills will give you the opportunity to join top inbound operator! Tracey German Inbound Consultant – Sandton Excellent infrastructure and exceptional service standards makes this a very attractive company to work for. Candidates must have excellent inbound consulting skills and be fluent in German. Tracey



Information Systems – Airline Sandton Join well known airline. Responsibilities include: providing systems administration services and effective support; managing all outsourced I.S. as well as business continuity and disaster recovery plans. R18000/R22000. Tracey

Galileo essential and  excellent typing skills for this wonderful opportunity! /"5*0/"-4"-&4."/"(&3 /035)&3/46#63#4


Application Support Supervisor – E/Suburbs Take responsibility for supplier info and tariffs department of reputable airline. Min 1 year's supervisory experience essential. Kati

#3"/%."/"(&3 FINANCIAl MANAGER/SANDTON Experienced person with B.Comm/ /035)&3/46#63#4 1FSTPOTUSPOHJO.BSLFUJOHJOWJUFEUPKPJO Higher Bookkeeping Diploma MFBEJOH8IPMFTBMFS to join Market Leader!!

Event Manager – Sandton Previous experience handling Association meetings and conferences is essential, and only candidates with this background should apply. Join this established, reputable conference and events company and be well rewarded. Kati

 SENIOR INBOUND 4&/*03$0/46-5"/5#0,4#63(


Cargo Sales Executive – Based ORTIA International carrier requires a pro-active, self-motivated sales executive to drive the cargo side of the business. Previous cargo experience will be an advantage. Kati

TNW2048 TNW2048


TOP SENIOR CONSULTANT- Braamfontein Busy In House 8+ years exp. handling all aspects. Regional and Full International bookings. Diploma/ Degree in Travel and Tourism, Certified in Galileo/ Amadeus. Ann

CORPORATE SALES EXECUTIVE Sunninghill Excellent communication and Interpersonal skills. Hard Driven sales skills. 5+ years exp. in the Travel Industry. Ann

TOP INTERMEDIATE CONSULTANTBraamfontein 5+ Years exp. Handling all aspects of Travel on Worldspan. All bookings for VIP Clients. Busy In House. Salary R12000 plus Cell Allowance. Ann

NEW BUSINESS SALES SUPPORT EXEC - Parktown Knowledge of Travel Industry, 2+ years exp. in tender preparation and new business sales. Tertiary or related qual. in sales and marketing. Experience in compilation of Tenders, Proposals and Database registrations. Salary R16 500. Ann

SENIOR FIT CONSULTANT- ASIAN & GERMAN MARKET - Sandton 5+ Years exp. with extensive SA and Regional product knowledge, Tailor made itineraries. Tourplan an advantage. Asian language an advantage, German Language - speak, read and write. Travel qualification. Salary- R12000- R18000 ctc. Ann SENIOR TRAVEL CONSULTANT- Sunninghill 6+ Years exp. handling all aspects of Travel using Galileo, Domestic, Regional and Full International bookings, Quicktrav, Good customer service with good communication and interpersonal skills. Ann

INTERMEDIATE CONSULTANT- West Rand 4+ years exp. in the travel industry, must be certified in Amadeus. Good communication skills. Ann TEMP JUNIOR CONSULTANT- Paulshof Temp for 3 months. Strong knowledge on Amadeus and Quicktrav. Salary R5000- R6000 neg on exp. Nono

lee botti & associates JOHANNESbURG


SENIOR LEISURE LOVER – VAAL TRIANGLE Work closer to home! Ideal opportunity for the Senior Consultant who thrives dealing with leisure travel. Be part of close knit team and flaunt your excellent international expertise. Makes those leisure holiday dreams come true‌ R12 000 plus commission.


Fancy some cocktails watching the African sunset amongst the wildebeest? This riveting luxury lodge operator needs your related degree coupled with min 7 years Financial Management expertise to oversee admin team. Budget preparations, cash flow statements, statutory tax etc. Regular travel required. R30 000 Neg



Exclusive inbound operator in FIT’s, tailor-made & special interest groups. Small intimate team requires Intermediate Consultant with solid Southern Africa product knowledge. Role combined with website maintenance, newsletters & more. Excellent telephonic & written skills ess. From R6500







Fantastic opening with market leading inbound operator! Deal with FIT’s to South and Southern African and flaunt your creative flair in drawing up itineraries & marketing this hot spot! German fluency a prerequisite as is a passion for Africa! Woza! Salary negotiable.

Tel: Tracey (011) 803 6606

QUICK READ FOR busiest people

Super opportunity awaits if you’ve actually travelled to East Africa, have in depth knowledge of products, travel times & luxury suppliers based there. Manage, lead plus motivate a small team into closing sales confidently. High spend UK markets who love to travel “off the beaten track� Oozes exclusivity! Salary neg

Tel: Wayne (021) 418 1084

Tel: Mandy (031) 201 8330

Call on Travel Trade! Well known hotel group requires a Sales Executive to call on the travel trade. R12000. Kati PCO - Sales Executive Represent top hotel group calling on PCO’s. Must have established relationships with PCOs and a proven track record. Kati New Business Sales Executive - Based Parktown area Secure new business for well established corporate retail travel agency. The company has an excellent reputation for providing top service standards and is an agency you can represent with confidence. Candidates must have a proven track record of calling on corporate companies and have played a role in business development. Kati Sales Executive – Cape Town Top hotel group is looking for an experienced Sales Executive to present one of their properties. A company you can represent with pride! Tracey

E mail:


Sales Executive An established, up-market company is opening a branch in Jhb and requires a Sales Executive to call on corporate companies to secure conference, incentives and events business. An opportunity to use your strong interpersonal and presentation skills. Will be provided with a laptop and 3G card. Although new in Jhb the company is established and has an excellent reputation. Enjoy being part of their growth! Commence 01 Sep. Kati

Top travel company is in need of a figures guru who is able to contract for 12 months at this young, dynamic company. Be prepared to be rushed off your feet for 12 months. Do you have Pastel Accounting, min 3 years senior experience in the finance field and related finance degree or diploma? Call us now or miss out on this golden opportunity. Travel industry experience a bonus. Salary R12 000 – R15 000 CTC neg. on experience. See our website for a further selection of exciting vacancies!

Snr Credit Controller – Cape Town Plan and coordinate daily activities of the Credit Control Team for large, highly successful travel company. Job description also includes executing debt collection processes; conducting age analysis; reconciling accounts and maintaining customer relationships. A minimum of 3 years supervisory experience within credit control will be appreciated. Tracey Jnr Bookkeeper/General Accounts – Bedfordview A varied job description. Your basic bookkeeping skills is all that is required to join well known company. Scope to develop further. R8000/R10000. Tracey Bookkeeper - Sandton Report to the Financial Manager of highly regarded Tourism company. Will be responsible for the GL of a number of entitites; will prepare management accounts; intercompany loans, VAT returns and assist with completion of budgets. Accpac and advanced Excel is essential. R15000/R17000. Tracey Bookkeeper – Edenvale area Handle books up to balance sheet for established, well-reputed agency. Will be responsible for all financial aspects. Remuneration dependent on experience. Tracey Payment Administrator - Sandton Collect pre-payments of bookings, liaising with agents investigating queries, reconciling accounts, allocating receipts and filing. Highly regarded company. Tracey

Office Hrs (011) 884-9113 Website: e-mail:


CONTACT WENDY/KIM TEl: 011Contact 704 4909 FAx: 086 538 5889 Wendy/Kim E-MAIl: (011) 704 4909 or e-mail:

SpecialiZed Travel perSonnel

Wednesday July 29 2009 n 15

TNW NEWS Business as usual for OA Natalia Thomson “IT’S business as usual,” says Christalla Cost, Olympic Airlines gm Southern Africa, in response to a TNW query regarding the continuation of the Johannesburg-Athens route in future. This follows reports that with the rebranding of Olympic some of the airline’s international routes would be under review. The Greek Ministry of Transport and Communications has confirmed that until September 30, everything remains as is, but from October 1 they are unsure

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what routes will be cut. “All flights are still available for sale in all GDSs and we have not been advised of anything to the contrary,” said Christalla. The Greek government received a €2m fine last month from the European Court of Justice for failing to recover “illegal” state aid from Olympic Airways. In March, Marfin Investment Group was given the green light to buy Olympic Airways. Since then, the new owners have ordered new aircraft for inter-island routes and have redesigned their corporate logo and uniforms. ■


No-show fees – no thanks! Would you support a move by airlines to start charging no-show fees?

■ Yes 40% ■ No 60%

“If the no-show is due to segment abuse, unticketed reservation then, yes, I would support no-show fees. Other than that, the airline should carry the loss and not pass on the no-show to the agent or passenger.” Deryck Venter, Lynns Travel CC “No thank you – the no-show fees will be sent directly to the travel agent, and once again we'll be liable to fork out the payment!” Cornelia Stengel, Harvey World Travel “I only agree with the no-show fee if the airline can find a way to charge the clients direct. Most times the agents are unaware that passengers have not arrived for a flight and then receive an ADM for a no-show and to have that reversed is an absolute nightmare.” Shaheema Bassa, SATC Odyssey “The intricacies with missed domestic connections, cancelled domestic flights connecting with international flights and various other reasons including weather will be a nightmare. I received a no-show fee from Emirates a few years ago, only to find on the client's return that Emirates was overbooked and they then put the passenger on SAA. What fun and games this would be in the short and long term.” Tony Borg, Sure Non-Stop Travel, Durban eTravel assists senior Travel Consultants to realise their own potential and dreams. If you have ever dreamt of owning your own travel business then you should be calling eTravel. We run the back office for over 180 Independent Travel Companies and specialise in making your travel business a success. If you have a client base, 5 years retail experience, want to double your salary and run your own business then contact us, you’ll be amazed at how easy it is! /

16 n Wednesday August 5 2009

Virgin’s ‘visa’ – how it works Melody Brandon


T’S a great marketing ploy. This is how the trade responded to Virgin Atlantic’s announcement that it would reimburse passengers for their visas when they book two consecutive tickets to the UK in the next year. Virgin Atlantic chairman, Sir Richard Branson, made the surprise announcement during his recent visit to Johannesburg. “Why should people bother to travel to the UK if they can visit the rest of Europe without having to pay such a high price for a visa,” he told journalists. “We have turned the government upside down, shaken them and they won’t budge, so we will pay for visas. It’s our way of stimulating travel to the UK.” The first return ticket must be valid between September 23 and November 30, while the second return ticket must be valid for travel between October 1 and November 30, 2010. The ticket must be in the same cabin as the first and for the same passenger. Sixty-day advance purchase applies for all tickets. This means that if the passenger has paid R938 for a six-month visa, they will be refunded the price of the visa on the second ticket, if they are flying either economy class or premium economy. If the passenger has applied for a two-year visa at a cost of R3 010, they will be refunded on the second ticket if they are flying premium economy or Upper Class. If they have paid for a five-year visa, they will be refunded R5 600 on the second ticket if flying Upper Class. The same applies to

“We will pay for visas” – Richard Branson a 10-year visa, where the passenger will be reimbursed R7 000 on their second ticket. If the visa application is rejected within 30 days of purchasing the first return ticket, Virgin Atlantic will refund the first ticket without penalty. “The Home Office is unlikely to change their minds about visas in the next two years, but we will continue to lobby against this and high airport taxes. The UK has higher taxes than any other government. Some are good taxes, others bad. This is another one of those stupid taxes,” he said.

Mixed responses

Michelle Minnaar senior travel consultant at Harvey World Travel Plettenberg Bay, said: “I suppose any seat booked on the plane is a good thing, but they must be pretty desperate to be doing this. Richard Branson is an astute businessman and must be worried to be doing this,” she said, adding that many of

her clients had been put off travelling to the UK because of the high cost of visas. But for Allan Wollman from title XL Rosebank Travel, it isn’t just the cost of the visa, it’s the process one has to go through that is the issue. “I book a lot of passengers to go to trade fairs in Europe and not one group has booked to go through the UK. I think the cost of visas is obscene. You can get a 10-year visa for the US for R1 000. Why should anyone go to the UK if they are charged so much? “Hoorah for Sir Richard! However what a sad state of affairs we have arrived at that an airline needs to foot the bill to try to stimulate travel to the UK. Let’s hope that other UK carriers will come to the party.” Wally Gaynor, Club Travel md, said while the offer might be useful for businessmen, leisure travellers might not be so keen. “It’s a very good marketing ploy but I don’t think it will have a big impact.” ■

Ed’s note: Do you think Virgin Atlantic’s offer will stimulate travel to the UK? Email

Airlines try to pass the credit card buck From page 1

What you had to say “We encourage clients to pay with their credit cards because we are trying to keep our Iata guarantee as low as possible. We can’t go back to Iata and change our guarantee every year. If airlines do follow United’s lead then we will just start off selling to airlines that don’t. It is ridiculous, the airlines don’t pay us any commission and they expect us to pay for their products to be sold! They must realise that travel agents are still generating revenue for them and the reality is if you can sell the client the same product at a cheaper price, then the agent will do just that.” Sarah McGowan, operations manager, Sure Zenojet Travel, Edenvale.

“They are basically screwing us every way we turn. It’s pathetic! We could cope with the fee transfer, but the impact for the agent who tries to sell cash only to avoid the merchant fees will be huge. There are a number of Iata agents who just would not be able to cover the guarantee and would probably be put out of business. Airlines have been able to negotiate their merchant fees with credit card companies because of the volumes they sell. Travel agents can’t compete with that. I hope the status quo stays, but airlines will do what they want.” Wally Gaynor, md, Club Travel. ■

Tell us what you think: What would be the implications for your agency if other airlines followed United’s lead? Email QUICK READ FOR DECISION-MAKERS

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