Categories
Vacation Travel

Ecuador – Galapagos Islands

Linda Smith just returned from South America were she spent a couple days touring Quito and it’s surrounding areas – visiting Otavalo and it’s famous outdoor market, crossing the Equator and then  getting on a plane to fly 600 miles to the Galapagos to cruise for several days on the Legend – a 100 passenger ship.  The summer months are  the dry season in the Galapagos – where you see frigates, blue footed boobies, albatross, marine iguanas and sea lions.

Categories
Travel News

Do I make myself Clear? Not!

Back in 2008, a new cool way to pass through security lines for frequent business travelers that do not have as much time as others was introduced at 18 selected airports. Clear, a company founded by Verified Identity Pass just announced this week that they would be closing up shop and would not be able to refund travelers who had prepaid or recently renewed their subsciption. That went over like a long tailed cat in a room full of rockers!
From the article written by Thomas Frank,  a statement on Verified’s website said the company “had been unable to negotiate an agreement with its senior creditor to continue operations.” There was no information about whether enrollees would get refunds.
TSA’s express security grounded
This was supposed to be the best thing out there for those who were traveling on a constant basis and needing to avoid long lines. The fee was a little steep, (around $200 annually) but heck, I pay $50 a month for the Carpool lane on I-15. Maybe if Clear would have monitored those who enter the carpool lane illegally, then they might still be in business.
We have become a society of quickness and ease. I guess for now our best option out there until someone comes out with a better plan than that of Clear, is to fly enough miles that you can access the medallion lines or travel with someone that does have that elite status…..You could always jump the lines like the car that did in front of me today!

Categories
Travel News

Travel A Worthy Experience

 
Wherever I go people ask me about travel destinations. My advice is always the same. I tell others to just go and see new places and don’t put off taking a cruise or that trip to Florida , Europe or even just a destination close to home. There is a fascination with traveling to different places , seeing how other people live and just taking time out from our regular routine. The travel environment may be in some ways more complicated today with airline restrictions and security procedures but there are also some real great opportunities. Just Today there are some great airfares out there :
Salt Lake to Los Angeles 169.90 round trip with taxes
Salt Lake to New York 359.90 round trip with taxes
Denver to Chicago 189.20 round trip with taxes
LAX to Honolulu 429.20 round trip with taxes
Give us a call at Christopherson Travel 1-866-327-7650

Categories
Travel News

TSA Secure Flight

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is enhancing the passenger watch lists program that matches reservation data with individuals that may pose a known or suspected threat to aviation, while at the same time helping to prevent the misidentification of travelers who have names similar to individuals on TSA’s watch lists. The name of the program is Secure Flight. Secure Flight will require that reservations be made using your legal first and last name and must match the name on your valid government issued photo ID. The enforcement of this rule is being phased-in while all the differing reservations systems are enhanced to comply with the Secure Flight data reporting process. While this sounds fairly simple and straightforward, the Secure Flight name requirement will require some adjustments. The name on your driver’s license should match the name on your passport so that you can use either ID and avoid confusion. You may be asked to provide additional information such as date of birth and gender to better differentiate you from individuals on the government lists. What about your frequent flier programs? Will you still get flight credit if the name on your account is different from your government ID?
Secure Flight is a behind the scenes screening process used to perform the watch list matching before a boarding pass is ever issued, so small differences in the way your name appears should not impact your check-in or security screening experience. However, if you currently travel using a nickname like Pat for Patrick or Deb for Deborah you will need to contact your frequent flier program to change your name on the account to your full name as it appears on your passport or Driver’s License to ensure your account is credited with award miles. Additionally, some reservation systems truncate initials or suffixes into last names and some do not; for example John A. Traveler becomes Traveler/JohnA. TSA and airlines are working to compare system differences and the affects these differences will have in complying with the Secure Flight screening process. While all this is being sorted out, it is probably a good idea to start thinking about how the new Secure Flight name ID program might affect you and begin making changes now.

Categories
Business Travel Vacation Travel

Family Travel

Cruising is the ultimate way to celebrate special occassions and spend time with family and friends.  I just returned from a Southern Caribbean Cruise to celebrate my daughters graduation from the University of Utah.  It was amazing how many family members and friends want to travel with people they know and love.  There are many advantages in traveling as a group.  Here are a few:

  1. You can block staterooms which allow you time to get the word out and build excitement.
  2. You will earn free berths.  One for every 15 paying passengers, and sometimes as low as 10 paying.
  3. Your group will get certain amenities.  Such as; on board credit, complimentary wine, private gatherings, photos, meeting rooms, etc.  The choices vary depending on size of group, sailing date, length of cruise, etc.
  4. Priority dining.
  5. Special assigned group coordinator on the ship to assist you with on board arrangements or special ship tours.
  6. Groups can arrange unique and private shore excursions for a better value than the tours offered by the cruise lines.
  7. Best of all, the chance to sail together and build lasting memories.

Below is a beautiful pictures of our groups favorite island, St. Lucia, where we enjoyed a private full day tour of the island.  I also arranged a private catamarran sail from Tortola to Virgin Gorda, stoppin at “The Baths” to snorkle along with other beautiful snorkle stops and guided tours.  It was enjoyed immensely.

So lets get your family vacation planned.  Call us to arrange your next Family/friends cruise and we will provide you with all the details and handle all the booking process.

Categories
Vacation Travel

Summer Festival Guide

Summer Festival Guide
 Art
Vermont Festival of the Arts:  Visit the studios of dozens of local artists and attend concerts by the likes of the Vermont Philharmonic.  Mad River Valley, VT.; August 1st – September 6th 800-517-4247 vermontatfest.com.
Music
Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival:  This year’s inaugural concerts, on July 19th and 20th, feature works by Caplet and Debussy with narration by actress Claire Bloom.  Santa Fe, NM.; July 19th – August 24th  888-221-9836 santafechambermusic.com
All Points West Music $ Arts Festival:  Only in its second year, this thriving newcomer will showcase rockers from the Beastie Boys to Coldplay and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, on a grassy site with rare Manhattan views.  Liberty State Park, Jersey City, NJ.;  July 31st  – August 2nd  apwfestival.com.
Food & Wine
The Edible Garden:  The New York Botanical Garden is holding an 11-week-long celebration of edible plants and local food, with gardening demonstrations and lectures by celebrity chefs such as Lidia Bastianich.  Bronx, NY.;  through September 13th  713-817-8700 nybg.org.
Festival Del Sole:  California wine country’s top summer festival, which takes place at venues throughout Napa, combines classical music, including a recital by Renee Fleming with wine tastings.  Napa Valley, CA.; July 17th – 25th  888-337-6272 fdsnapa.org.
DH

Categories
Travel News

Those hidden charges when you travel

As I was sitting here trying to come up with a good topic for today’s article, I took a call from a client who wanted to know why the airfare that I quoted yesterday had gone up $50.00 and why the advertised price on the airline website showed a lower price until it was booked, when the price jumped up considerably.
I explained to my client that airfares are not guaranteed until the ticket has been issued.  He said that he knew that but he couldn’t believe that the airlines would raise the fare that much and that quickly.  I then pointed out that domestically the airlines change fares about a million times a month according to a number of industry reports.  Sometimes they go up and sometimes they go down but they change constantly.  What was harder to explain was the fact that the base price of the airfare had remained unchanged overnight, what changed was the fuel surcharge.  The fuel surcharge is a means for the airlines to cover the higher cost of fuel without having to raise the fare.  Why would they want to do that?  It’s really a case of marketing and nothing more.  The airlines have learned that if you can advertise a low fare, you get increased business, even if the actual cost include taxes, surcharges, etc. is significantly higher.  People plan on going and once they get into the process of booking, they don’t like to back out, even if it is more expensive than they had originally thought that it would be.  There are those out there who accuse the airlines of bait and switch, I’m not one of them because they aren’t offering one thing to get you in the door and then switching to a more expensive item, no, I think what they are doing is deceptive but it doesn’t really fit the traditional definition of bait and switch.
Let me give you an example of what I mean.  Right now, Icelandic Air is offering a roundtrip fare from New York City to London and back for $68.00.  That is the advertised price.  There generally is an asterik that directs your attention to the fine print.  Some restrictions apply, the price doesn’t include taxes, fuel surcharges, etc. and so forth.  This disclaimer allows the airlines to advertise one price but that price doesn’t include a lot of what you might expect to be included in the price of an airline ticket.  In the case of Icelandic Air, the base fare is $68.00, there is currently a fuel surcharge of $111.00 in each direction or $222.00 roundtrip, so just for the seat and the fuel, you are looking at $290.00.  Then comes the taxes that are levied on your airline ticket.  There is the $5.50 Customs User Fee, the Immigration and Naturalization Service Fee of $7.00, the US tax of $32.20, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Fee of $5.00, the USA Passenger Civil Aviation Security fee of $2.50, then there is the British tax of $73.42, the Air Duty fee $34.59 and last but by no means least, the Passenger Facility Charge of $4.50.  That’s $156.55 in government imposed taxes and fees.  That brings your grand total to $468.55 for the airline ticket that is advertised at $68.00 roundtrip.
And to be fair, we can’t single out the airlines for this, the car rental companies do the same sort of thing.  The daily rate for your car rental might be $45.00 a day, plus taxes and surcharges.  A couple of weekends ago when I rented a car and they were running down the list of fees, which included a fee for recovering the cost of doing business at the airport and an “energy surcharge”.  When I asked about that one I was told that it had to do with covering the cost of filling the vehicles up.  I pointed out that I return the car full or they charge me some outrageous amount per gallon to fill it up or if I’m going to be doing a lot of driving I take the prepaid fuel option.   Either way, I’ve already covered the cost of filling up the car.  I don’t think it is right to ask me to pay to cover the cost of me filling up the car.  When I asked the representative of the car company, he told me that it actually goes to cover cost of things like lights and such.  When I pointed out that was part of the cost of business, he told me that the car rental companies are afraid to raise their rental rates for fear of driving off customers and so they have followed the airlines lead in tacking on fees that hide in the fine print.  And here again, let’s not forget the 12% to 20% in taxes that State and local governments impose on car rentals.  It isn’t unusual for taxes and fees to make up 35% of the final bill on a car rental.
Lest you think that this trend is confined to just airlines and car rentals, hotels are just as guilty for adding charges, like resort fees for amenties that you may or may not use or a fee for “free local” calls, even though you are using your cell phone or a number of other creative revenue sources that hotels believe that they can bill their customers for without it negatively impacting their bookings.  The problem with most of these fees is that the hotel doesn’t allow you to opt out of them, which would seem to make them part of the room rate.  And then you get the taxes and fees charged by State and local governments that are used to build sports arenas or are used to fund other local projects that the local voters don’t want to pay for.  This is called taxing those that can’t vote you out of office.  There is a downside, if these get to be too painful, conventions and tourists will stay away.
While I understand and truly appreciate the need to turn a profit.  I think these companies are underestimate the ill will that these practices generate among consumers.  If you visit any number of consumer travel related websites and read the comments or follow travel discussions online, you see a lot of comments alluding to the fact that customers feel like they are being taken advantage of by many businesses in the travel industry.  While the consumer may be powerless when all the airlines or all of the car companies, etc., adopt the same practices, it doesn’t mean that they like it and it certainly isn’t viewed as good customer service.
I would suggest that it makes sense to unbundle certain costs however when one unbundles fuel from the cost of a flight, I have to ask, exactly what is the customer paying for with the base fare?  Shouldn’t that be included in the airfare?  Likewise, if it is unbundled, doesn’t that imply that the fee or item is optional and the consumer should be able to opt out of it.  For example, the fee for each checked bag allows passengers who travel light to choose not to check a bag, whereas those who need to take more along on their trip, can pay for it.  With some of these fees, the consumer is not given that option, in which case, I believe that cost should be included with the base rate charged for the service.
As far as government imposed taxes and fees, I understand the motive of taxing those that don’t have a say however one needs to be careful not to kill the goose that lays the golden egg.  If the taxes and fees get to be too burdensome, people will decide to go elsewhere.  Anyone remember New York City when their room taxes and fees were hitting 20% and conventions and tourists started going elsewhere.  And when you have taxes and fees on an airline ticket that are double the base fare, that seems excessive.  While there aren’t many options to flying transatlantic, it may discourage people from traveling and that is bad for all of us.
So next time you think that the price you are paying is too much, take a look at the breakdown of what you are being charged.

Categories
Travel News Travel Technology

www.christophersontravel.com – now in “HD”

We’ve made a recent layout change to www.christophersontravel.com. We went from SD (standard definition) to HD (high definition). Ok, we really didn’t go from analog to digital, nor did we change our aspect ratio (well, that may be a little closer to the truth).
What we did is increase our layout width from being optimized for a lowest common screen resolution of 800×600 to now be optimized for screens 1024×768 and greater. We track our visitors screen resolutions and over the last year noticed that a very small (2.28% small) had screen resolutions of 800×600 or less.
The best part about the wider layout is it gets us ready for some new proprietary products we’ll be integrating into AirPortal®, our exclusive travel portal that allows you to manage all your travel needs from one simple login. Stay tuned!

Categories
Travel News Travel Technology

How Christopherson Finds Additional Savings on Hotel and Car Reservations for Our Clients

In today’s economy, finding addition savings with business travel is upper most on CFO’s, travel managers, and business travelers’ minds.  One way Christopherson accomplishes added savings for our clients is through some of our proprietary technologies, in particular, Hotel Re-Check® and Car Re-Check®.  Similar to the airline industry, hotels and car rental companies are raising or lowering their prices based on excess “distressed” inventory.  Our tool automatically re-checks the rates booked in a reservation for a business traveler a few days prior to arrival.  If a lower rate is found, your reservation is changed to that lower rate thereby taking advantage of increased savings to your travel budget.  Whether you company’s policy is to book travel 14, 7, or less days from travel dates, Christopherson’s tool provides additional savings otherwise not realized.
Unlike monitoring air fares after purchase for a lower rate; when a lower rate is found, the airlines add an additional (exchange) fee.  Your savings, in this case, are diluted considerably whereas hotel and car companies do not charge an exchange fee.
Christopherson then tracks these savings through our ValueLogic® report keeping you apprised of all savings realized.  It is common for a company to save anywhere from $25-50 per night on a hotel.  For example just last week a client was sending several travelers to a convention.  Hotel Re-Check® found a few days prior to arrival the hotel room rate had decreased $40 per night—saving them $1,416 dollars!

Categories
Vacation Travel

Venice, Italy’s floating city


I just returned from Venice Italy, one of the most beautiful cities in the world.  Arriving in Venice by water taxi is amazing and scenic, the buildings are so delicately placed / suspended above water, it is a stunning city glistening on the water.  Venice’s major water way the Grand Canal runs through the entire city, lined with palaces, churches, medieval buildings and gondolas.  Venice is a walking city, with over 400 bridges, the Rialto Bridge is one of the most famous spanning the canal.  Visit Piazza San Marco, the Basilica, enjoy your favorite drink while listening to the orchestra.  Walk the bridge of sighs and the Rialto.  The best way to see and get a feel of the Grand Canal is by enjoying a Venetian Gondola ride.  Explore Burano, a charming picturesque fishing village, a great place to spend an afternoon, have lunch, shop, and take in this peaceful colorful island from Venice.  The average stay in Venice is three to four days, you will find the finest welcoming accomodations, a favorite is the Danieli, historical and luxurious.  Treat yourself to lunch or dinner at the Terrazza Danieli on the top floor offering exclusive views and delicious cuisine.  Venice is romantic and magic, sure to please and exceed your expectations, make it your city of a lifetime.

Categories
Travel Management

Airline Business Programs

Did you know that there are Airline Travel Rewards programs for Small and Medium type Businesses?  In addition to Frequent Flyer points for the individual Traveler, Companies can also earn airline travel reward points based on total company travel spend that can be redeemed for:

  • Free Tickets
  • Free Upgrades
  • Free Airline Club Memberships
  • Free Airline Movie/Drink Coupons
  • Frequent Traveler Status Elite Levels
Airlines that have these company reward type programs include:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

For more information on how your company can benefit with these airlines business programs, please contact a representative at Christopherson Business Travel!

 
Categories
Travel News Travel Technology

TSA initiates Secure Flight program

The U.S Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has initiated a new program to require the airlines to provide additional information for passengers regarding more detailed identification. The program is called Secure Flight and when fully implemented will require airlines to provide information such as passenger gender , birth date and full name. For now, travelers may not see much of a difference because the program is being rolled out in steps. The TSA is seeking this information so it can expedite security screening and clear passengers for flights.
Airline software programs need to be revised to accept the new information that wasn’t previously required. The TSA is giving the airline industry time to implement programs to hold and transmit the information. The goal is to have airlines ready to provide this additional data to the TSA by late summer on domestic flights and by fall for international flights. The timeline is flexible at this time and full implementation may not be realized until 2010.
What does this mean for travelers? The best proactive step travelers can do is check the forms of identification they use for travel and be sure that their legal name reads the same on drivers license and passport. Also be sure that membership numbers for airline , car and hotel frequent flyer programs also read with the same name information so travel credit can continue to be automatically credited to accounts.

Categories
Travel Management Travel News

Christopherson Leaders plan to attend NBTA

Christopherson is once again planning to a send a contingency of their owners, management, and CCTE’s to the 2009 NBTA Annual Convention, August 23-26, 2009. We invite all corporate travel managers to join us for this great event in San Diego, CA.
NBTA President & CEO, Kevin Maguire, CCTE, GLP, said, “In today’s down economy, travel and meetings budgets are being slashed and some companies have even restricted travel all together. However, despite these economic challenges, corporate travel professionals remain dedicated to their roles in helping to recover from this recession and look to the NBTA Convention for the necessary resources and networking opportunities that will allow them to do so.”
Maguire added, “We know that on average corporate travel buyers who attend the NBTA Convention take away the knowledge, resources and contacts that have helped them to save about 11 percent on their total T&E budgets, which can mean a savings of millions. Now, more than ever, is the time to fine tune corporate travel strategies to successfully navigate a volatile economy and shifting industry.”
For more information about the 2009 NBTA Convention, please visit www.nbtaconvention.org.

Categories
Business Travel Vacation Travel

Why Buy Travel Insurance?

When making your travel plans does purchasing travel insurance come to mind?  Most likely not.  However it may be the most important component of your travel plans.  All too often the unexpected happens from the inconvenient to a serious emergency.  Travel protection plans offer comprehensive benefits to meet the challenges of travel and help you enjoy a worry-free trip.
Top 10 reasons to buy travel insurance:

  • Too sick to travel
  • Travel supplier just declared bankruptcy
  • 24 hour worldwide assistance
  • Airline goes on strike
  • Lost luggage
  • The illness or injury of family members
  • Missed connection due to a flight delay
  • Medical emergency away from home
  • Terrorist act
  • Theft of wallet, cards, and passport

Protect your travel investment and include travel insurance when making your travel plans.  Always expect the unexpected and be prepared.

Categories
Company News and Announcements

2009 Business Travel Survey: Agencies Face Transaction Drops

BUSINESS TRAVEL NEWS | JUN 1, 2009 

2009 Business Travel Survey: Agencies Face Transaction Drops

Categories
Travel Management

The Truth and Consequences of an Unmanaged Travel Progam

As I was talking to a valued client last week the question came up as to why did their company need to have a managed travel program.  What are the advantages?  Are there cost saving benefits?  Will their travelers really follow a managed travel program where they acutally had to adhere to guidelines and rules?  They expressed their doubts and concerns that anyone would follow their travel recomendations without “mandating” they do so.  They are the type of company that does not mandate.  I returned to my office and pulled up a grid that we use when comparing distinctions between Managed vs Unmanaged travel with regards to travel policy compliance and enforcement.  The grid compares the two travel programs and the  possible outcomes or should I say… consequences.  I would like to share this grid as it could help you  as it did them when putting together your companies managed travel program.

Travel Issues
Managed Travel
Consequence of Unmanaged Travel
Finding the lowest fare Christopherson Business Travel will search for the lowest corporate policy fare and notify designated approvers when a travel is out of policy. “Lowest fare” may be defined by the traveler, and not by corporate policy. 
Securing corporate discounts Consolidated data provides spend detail & improves negotiating leverage with suppliers Suppliers unlikely to grant meaningful discounts based on non-detailed general ledger data.
Risk Management Christopherson Business Travel’s AirPortal® can find travelers when a crisis develops. Corporations are at legal risk when employees traveling on corporate business cannot be accounted for.
Non-Refundable Tickets Christopherson Business Travel’s AirBank® automated unused ticket program ensures that all dollars spent are re-used and not lost. Unmanaged travelers will forget to rebook non-refundable tickets prior to travel date, and lose the full value of the tickets costing the company thousands of dollars.
Ticket cancelation flexibility Christopherson Business Travel can reserve fares on major carriers via Worldspan, Sabre, and Apollo allowing your company to void tickets by the end of the next business day avoiding the full ticket price loss and the exchange fee cost. Voiding tickets via airline websites or online booking engines is most often not possible. Once issued and the trip is canceled, the ticket funds are “tied up” and not eligible for use until you travel again. A change fee is then charged ranging anywhere from $50 to $200.
24 Hour Emergency Support Christopherson Business Travel is available 24/7 for support of GDS and tickets booked online Unmanaged travelers are on their own. Many suppliers are no longer open 24 hours.
Online Booking Products Christopherson Business Travel’s ResX, Cliqbook, and Get There are booked via AirPortal® and are travel policy based and promotes compliance through high tech high touch filtering Online supplier sites are consumer based and not travel policy compliant.
Hotel Reservations and No-Shows Christopherson Business Travel can find space in sold-out situations and often arrange waiver of no-show bills Stand alone travelers have no leverage in sold out situations and rarely can negotiate a no-show waiver – adding more costs for the company’s bottom line.
Groups & Meetings Christopherson Business Travel will insure that groups travel on group fare discounts and that meetings are budgeted at lowest possible costs. Unmanaged travelers will fly independently at higher fares and pay “rack” rate for meetings when purchased on one-off basis.
Categories
Press Release

Christopherson Andavo Travel Ranks #14 Nationally In The BTN Annual Business Travel Survey

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH—Business Travel News has ranked Christopherson Andavo Travel #14 among all participating travel management companies. The data used to rank the agencies was independently verified by ARC (Airlines Reporting Corporation), which is the airline ticketing clearinghouse for all travel agencies and airlines.
The ranking was the first to reflect the combined operations of Christopherson Business Travel of Salt Lake City, Utah and Andavo Travel of Denver, Colorado. The two companies merged on January 28, 2008. The merger agreement between the two travel management firms combined operations to form one of the largest travel management firms in the United States and the largest national BCD Travel affiliate.
“We are pleased to see how the merger has placed us in a Super Regional status and has set the stage for us to continue to grow in this highly competitive market”, said Mike Cameron Co-CEO. “The merger was done for strategic reasons and has put us in a position where we are acquiring larger national travel management bids. We are currently implementing 6-8 new clients in states from coast-to-coast.”
About Christopherson Andavo Travel
Christopherson Andavo Travel, headquartered in Salt Lake City, is the independently owned leader in business travel management in the rocky mountain region. With over 220 team members, and 35 offices, the company supports more than $250 million in annual travel bookings. Christopherson Andavo Travel provides intelligent travel management to more than 800 successful companies.
Christopherson Andavo is an affiliate of BCD Travel – the leading provider of global travel logistics. BCD operates in 96 countries with $12 billion in annual travel management bookings and a combined worldwide workforce in excess of 12,000. To learn more about Christopherson Business Travel, visit www.christophersontravel.com.
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Categories
Vacation Travel

Looking for great value? Try Iceland!

Follow the money: major tourist currencies such as the euro, British pound and U.S. dollar have gained value of around 40 to 70% against the krona over the last 12 months. This means that many products and services, and thus Reykjavík and Iceland as a destination, represents better value than ever before. Statistics are already showing this positive effect. A record 500,000 tourists visited Iceland in 2008 and numbers for 2009 look promising. The number of tourists visiting the official Reykjavík Tourist Information Office and tax refund sales have also increased dramatically in the last six months compared to the same period in 2007-08. Tourists are clearly taking advantage of the exchange rate, and with deals like these, it’s no wonder why.

Categories
Travel News Travel Technology

1,000,000 Airtineraries®

We just sent our millionth Airtinerary®.  What’s an Airtinerary®?  It’s Christopherson Andavo’s approach to itinerary layout and delivery.  It was developed from scratch, right here, by us. There are a lot of reasons why we think it is the best itinerary delivery system around. Here are our favorite three:

  • We translate everything – we went to great lengths to take the mystery out of all those countless travel acronyms. That means no more guessing on class of service, airport codes, aircraft types, etc.
  • We’ve got links – online check-in links, hotel map links, off airport car rental location map links, and where it makes sense, links that give you automatically calculated directions between segments.
  • Calendar attachment – we include all your relevant itinerary data and then make sure it works with the most email clients around by using the iCalendar standard.

You can always read more about Airtinerary® here.

Categories
Travel News

Christopherson Andavo Travel Ranks #14 in the BTN Annual Business Travel Survey

Business Travel News has ranked Christopherson Andavo Travel #14 among all participating travel management companies. The data used to rank the agencies was independently verified by ARC (Airlines Reporting Corporation), which is the airline ticketing clearinghouse for all travel agencies and airlines. Air transaction counts excluded refunds, exchanges and voids.
The ranking was the first to reflect the combined operations of Christopherson Business Travel of Salt Lake City, Utah and Andavo Travel of Denver, Colorado. The two companies merged on January 28, 2008. The merger agreement between the two travel management firms combined operations to form one of the largest travel management firms in the United States and the largest national BCD Travel affiliate.
The merged company has over 220 team members, 35 offices and supports more than $250 million in annual travel bookings. Christopherson Andavo Travel provides intelligent travel management to more than 600 successful companies.
“We are pleased to see how the merger has placed us in a Super Regional status and has set the stage for us to continue to grow in this highly competitive market”, said Mike Cameron Co-CEO. “The merger was done for strategic reasons and has put us in a position where we are now qualified for larger travel management bids. We are currently implementing 6-8 new clients in states from coast-to-coast.”

Categories
Vacation Travel

Non-stop flights Salt Lake to Tokyo!

Beginning June 3,2009 you can fly Delta non-stop from Salt Lake City to Tokyo, Japan.
Call us today for pricing 801-327-7600 Christopherson Vacation Department
CLASSIC INDEPENDENT TRAVEL IDEA

CLASSIC JAPAN
8 days
TOKYO HAKONE KYOTO HIROSHIMA KURASHIKI OKAYAMA
 
 
In order to fully appreciate this land of contrasts, it is necessary to consider this itinerary which combines contemporary Japan with its traditional and historical attractions. From Imperial castles to snow-capped mountains and from Shinto shrines to modern boulevards, this is Japan.

Day 1. Arrive Tokyo. Upon arrival into Tokyo, you will be met and given the appropriate bus tickets for the transfer to your hotel. The representative will show you the departure point for the bus. Check-in to your hotel and spend the remainder of the day at leisure.

Day 2. Tokyo sightseeing. Morning tour, including the Tokyo Tower Observatory, the Imperial Palace Plaza, Asakusa Kannon Temple & Nakamise Shopping Arcade as well as a drive through Akihabara (Electric Town), Ueno and Ginza. The last stop will be at the famous Tasaki Pearl Gallery. The afternoon is free to explore this amazing city B
Day 3. Tokyo to Hakone. Leave Tokyo by bus for Hakone National Park. En route, drive half way up Mount Fuji to the 5th Station for a view of the surrounding countryside.(When the drive to the 5th Station is closed in winter due to snow, visit the Fujiyama Museum instead.) Later enjoy a cruise on Lake Ashi followed by a cable car ride to the top of Mount Komagatake where you will have a spectacular view of Mount Fuji. Overnight in Hakone BL
Day 4. Hakone to Kyoto. Depart from Odawara Station for Kyoto aboard the Shinkansen – The JR Express Bullet Train. Then, drive to the city of Nara. Enjoy a Japanese lunch at a traditional local restaurant followed by sight seeing at the Togaiji Temple, Nara Park and Kasuga Taisha Shrine. Return and overnight in Kyoto. BL
Day 5. Kyoto. Today is a full day of sightseeing around Kyoto. This will include the Golden Pavillion – Kinkakuji Temple, Nijo Castle, Kyoto Imperial Palace, Sanjusangendo Temple’s Hall, Heian Jingu Shrine and Kiyomizu Temple. BL
Day 6. Kyoto to Hiroshima. Transfer to the railway station for the bullet train to Hiroshima. On arrival, continue by bus to Miyajima Island with its UNESCO protected Itsukushina Shrine. Later return to Hiroshima and visit the Peace Memorial Park and the Atomic Bomb Dome. Overnight in Hiroshima. B
Day 7. Hiroshima/Kurashiki/Okayama/Kyoto. Depart this morning for the railway station and travel to Kurashiki where you will have a sightseeing tour which includes the Folkcraft Museum and the Ohara Museum of Art. Afterwards, continue by train to Okayama for a short sightseeing tour including Korakuen Garden, one of the three great gardens of Japan. Later continue to Kyoto by train for overnight. BL
Day 8. Kyoto to Osaka Airport. Your last morning is at leisure until ready to depart by bus to Osaka Airport. B

DEPARTURES 2009:

May: 11, 14, 18, 21, 25, 28
June: 1, 4, 8, 11, 15, 18, 22, 25, 29
July: 2, 6, 9, 13, 20, 23, 27, 30
August: 3, 14, 17, 20, 24, 27, 31
September: 3, 7, 10, 14, 21, 24, 28
October: 1, 3, 5, 8, 10, 12, 15, 17, 19, 22, 24, 26, 29
November: 2, 5, 9, 12, 16, 19, 23, 26, 30
December: 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 13, 14, 16, 17, 20, 21, 23, 24

PRICES:

Please request prices for the time you wish to travel & advise your preferred hotel category – Moderate, First Class or Deluxe.

PRICE INCLUDES:

Train rates within Japan, 7 nights hotel accommodation with private facilities and air conditioning; sightseeing as indicated; meals as indicated by BLD, transfers where indicated.

NOT INCLUDED:

International air fare, optional excursions, items of a personal nature such as laundry, dry cleaning, phone calls, drinks, cancellation and medical insurance, excess baggage charges and Government departure taxes.

HOTELS:

Please click the hotel below for details on accommodation

CITY MODERATE FIRST CLASS DELUXE
Tokyo Shinagawa Prince Hotel Keio Plaza Hotel New Otani Hotel
Hakone Hakone Hotel Kowakien Hakone Hotel Kowakien Hakone Hotel Kowakien
Kyoto Karasuma Hotel Rihga Royal Hotel Kyoto Kyoto Hotel Okura
Hiroshima Granvia Hiroshima Hotel Granvia Hiroshima Hotel Granvia Hiroshima Hotel
Categories
Travel News

Changes and New Ideas

I thought I would discuss some changes that are happening in the industry that you may or not may be aware of.
For example, Qantas has announced that starting in June, 2009, qualified individuals may be assured of getting an exit row seat by paying a fee.  On their long haul flights, such as Los Angeles to Sydney, the fee will be $150.00 in each direction.  That works out to be a little more than $10.00 an hour for a little extra space.  One does have to meet all the usual requirements of being between 15 and 65, able and willing to follow directions and be able to assist in case of an emergency.  The interesting aspect of this to me, pricing aside, is that according most reviews, the exit row seats on the 747-400s and Airbus 330-200 are actually undesirable  seats that lack storage space and are frequently uncomfortable due to the fact that there are fixtures that reduce the amount of room in the seat.  The only aircraft that it seems to make any sense to spend money for an extra row seat is the Airbus 380 and then only if you are getting the rear most exit row.  And even then you are seated next to the self serve bar so you will have people standing in the area that you paid extra for.
As you can see, I’m not sure that’s a great deal.
Then there is the Air New Zealand Promotion, it’s a Matchmaking Flight. The idea is to help Americans and Kiwis to meet and mingle and to find that special someone. One can opt for a pre-flight party in Los Angeles, the flight and then the Great Matchmaking Ball a day after arriving in New Zealand.  So if you are interested in meeting that special Kiwi, this might be the deal for you.
Then came the news that Delta will start charging a $50.00 fee to check a second bag on international flights between the USA and Europe.  This will apply to all passengers who aren’t at least Silver Medallion or higher or members of the US Military traveling on orders.
The one constant in the travel industry is change so I’m sure that we will be seeing more change every day.
JM