Thursday, August 13, 2009

Thursday's Travel InsideOut

Super-sleuth Tom Botts noticed that the under-the-radar Travelzoo launch of in the U.K. is under way. You can take a look at the U.K. incarnation here, and notice that the domain name is not, which is owned by another travel comparison-shopping company. Oh the confusion.

Hudson Crossing Travel Industry Insight: A New Way for the UK to Search for Aeroplane Trips: TravelZoo property has quietly launched a UK version of their meta search site. For curious US users, simply click on the flag in the upper right hand corner. UK users are redirected automatically. Read more

----- notes that major hotel chains, to a great extent, have gone missing on competitor and the Name-Your-Own Price folks can name some reasons why.

Dennis Schaal Blog: Nothing Opaque About Priceline's Take on So what are's and Hotwire's opinions about and its model? Read more


The Arison family, which will retain a substantial piece, about 28 percent, of Carnival Corp.’s voting rights, will sell millions of shares of the company. You can call it a repositioning sail (actually, sale). The family has made this sort of move before.

USA Today Cruise Log: Arison family to sell some Carnival Corp. shares: Members of the Arison family, which owns a substantial chunk of Carnival Corp., plan to sell up to 8.5 million shares, the company said. Tax planning, estate planning and diversification purposes are the reasons given. Read more


The off-again, on-again merger of the two leading corporate travel organizations in the U.S., NBTA and ACTE, may be off again as due diligence and name games appear to be getting in the way.

Travel Weekly: NBTA-ACTE merger talks apparently on again: Merger talks between the Association of Corporate Travel Executives and the National Business Travel Association are at the point of resuming, judging by a blog entry posted on Thursday by Kevin Maguire, NBTA president. Read more


Arthur Frommer goes to the calculator and figures that JetBlue’s new All-You-Can-Jet Pass for $599 may just not add up to a bargain for some travelers.

Arthur Frommer Online: JetBlue's Seemingly-Cheap $599 One-Month Pass Is Perhaps Less Than First Meets the Eye: Though it's been greeted with rapture by some travel websites, I'm not entirely enthused about JetBlue's recently-announced All-You-Can-Jet Pass for $599. That device gives you the right to make unlimited flights on JetBlue, for one month between September 8 and October 8, for all of $599. And quite clearly, if there were a reason for you to make daily flights on JetBlue for 30 consecutive days, you'd save big by first buying the Pass. But that would involve an abnormal amount of flying. Read more


Barry Sternlicht, who departed as chairman of Starwood Hotels in 2005, still has his hand in a few hotel -- or should I say, real estate -- ventures. His Starwood Property Trust just made its mark as the largest IPO to date of 2009. Location, location, location.

Canadian Business Online: Starwood Property Trust shares decline on 1st day of trading, IPO prices at $20 per share:
NEW YORK - Shares of hotel magnate Barry Sternlicht's Starwood Property Trust Inc. initially declined on their first day of trading Wednesday before closing unchanged, even as the broader markets edged up after the Federal Reserve left a key interest rate at a record low. Read more


Travel InsideOut is a Dennis Schaal Blog daily feature. Get a thorough-going look at the day's travel industry top and tangentially interesting stories. Feel free to comment on them below.

Travel InsideOut is Copyright (c) 2009 by Dennis Schaal. All rights reserved.

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