Jun 9 2008

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Brancatelli: British Airways launching new airline

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Ontheroad
Joe Brancatelli is editor and publisher of JoeSentMe.com, a
non-commercial Web site for business travelers.

ROUTE MAP

Southwest steps it up in Denver: Southwest Airlines continues
to up the pressure on United and Frontier in Denver. Beginning
September 2, it will add daily round trips to San Francisco and Omaha.
The carrier had previously announced it would launch flights to
Portland, Oregon, and Indianapolis (June 4) as well as service to
Sacramento, Fort Lauderdale and New Orleans (August 4). That means
Southwest will operate 95 flights a day from Denver to 30 cities.

Alaska Airlines is adding two new routes from its Seattle hub. Flights
to Minneapolis begin on October 26; service to Kona launches on
November 17. … On the flip side, be prepared for some huge service cuts
later this year. American Airlines has already announced a 10 percent
capacity reduction in the fourth quarter. Other airlines have already
planned 5-10 percent cuts and make reduce more service as the economy
falters.

INTERNATIONAL AGENDA

BA gets OpenSkies up and running for June 19 launch: British
Airways has received approval to launch its new-wave carrier called
OpenSkies. The airline begins June 19 with nonstop flights between New
York/Kennedy and Paris/Orly and has even struck a code-share deal with
L’Avion, the all-business-class start-up that flies between Newark and
Orly. OpenSkies has configured its Boeing 757 with three classes: a
24-seat business class equipped with BA’s first-generation lie-flat
beds; a 28-seat premium economy class called "prem+," which features
seats with 52-inch pitch; and 30 coach seats.

Singapore Airlines now
offers iPod and iPhone connectivity on some of its flights. It allows
travelers to run their own media on the airline’s seatback monitors and
through the sound system. … Delta Air Lines says it will launch flights
between its Atlanta hub and Kuwait on November 7. The route will be
operated with Boeing 777-200ERs.

LOBBY LIFE

Labor woes at the Greenbrier Resort: The fancy, clubby
Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia is losing meeting and convention
business due to a simmering labor dispute. The resort’s master labor
contract expired at the beginning of the year and that has frightened
meeting planners, who are reluctant to book at a property where a
strike could begin at any time. Groups have shifted meetings elsewhere,
notably to The Homestead, a Virginia resort about 40 miles away.

Doubletree has put its flag on the former Hotel LaBella, a 151-room
property in Jefferson City, the capital of Missouri. Another Doubletree
conversion: the 183-room former Radisson Northlake in Tucker, Georgia,
an Atlanta suburb. … A $10 million renovation has converted the
289-room Sheraton in Billings, Montana, into a Crowne Plaza hotel. …
The Westin Princeville Ocean Resort has opened on Kauai in the
Princeville complex near Hanalei, Hawaii. The property features studio
and one- and two-bedroom suites. Prices start at $600 a night.

Read more "On the Road with Joe Brancatelli" at
roadwarrior.orbitz.com.

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Copyright 2008 by Joe Brancatelli. Licensed by contract for Orbitz use.

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