Starwood has been at the forefront in innovating in the Hotel rewards space. Be it running creative partnerships with Emirates and Delta or the Make a Green Choice campaign to the setup of Starlabs to spur new ideas. Starwood has now gone a step further and setup an exciting collaboration to earn point while riding Uber. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, Uber is an innovative technology start-up that is disrupting the way the taxi industry works. It has offerings for all ends of the taxi segments ranging from normal cabs to the super luxurious cars. This tie-up is now all the more reason for me to ride with Uber more often. I am in love with Uber for the way they have solved the age-old taxi problems by making it an effortless and a seamless activity and not a hassle. You request a cab through the app and the ride charges are automatically deducted from your credit card at the end of the ride.
The tie up will enable you to earn 1 SPG point for every US 1$ spent with Uber. The offer has been made sweeter with bonus points being earned for every ride taken during stay at eligible Starwood properties worldwide. The offer is valid wherever Uber is now operating which involves many of the big cities around the world including USA, India, China to name a few. The complete list of cities where Uber operates can be seen here.
In order to be eligible to start earning points for this offer, head over to link your SPG and Uber accounts at spg.com/uber and complete one qualifying stay in the calendar year at any Starwood hotel worldwide. The earning table would be as follows:
The full details on the partnership can be found here.
In order to celebrate this partnership, Starwood is running a special #SuiteRide promo on the 28th February 2015 at Dubai, London, Mexico City, New York, and San Francisco from 2 pm – 7 pm local time whereby Uber riders who link their Starwood and Uber accounts can select the “SPG” vehicle option within the Uber app for a customized Starwood experience as part of their ride and stand to earn 15,000 Starpoints.
Dubai Airport recently launched the DXB Connect package product for travelers coming to Dubai or in transit, the package which consist of a prepaid travel card, a SIM card and discount coupons.
The event which saw 55 dancers break into a well choreographed dance routine at the Sheikh Rashid Terminal has become an internet sensation and also seemed to have caught the passengers during its filming quite startled. Check out the video yourself at the link given below.
Malaysia Airlines is planning to start its A380 service from KL-London Heathrow from 2nd July 2012, As per the information provided at Airlineroute.net The 503 seater aircraft will be operating 3 times a week service initially and switch to daily service from 15th August 2012. The reservation for the same is open and the schedule will be as follows:
Kuala Lumpur – London Heathrow
MH002 KUL 2340 – 0550+1 LHR
MH003 LHR 1200 – 0725+1 KUL
The airline has opted for a 3 cabin configuration with 8 First Class seats on the Lower deck, 52 Business Class seats on the Upper deck and 96 Economy seats on the Upper Deck and 347 Economy seats on the Lower deck. For more details check out the link here.
Given that Malaysia Airlines and KLM have quite close links, people had been placing best on Amsterdam to be first city to be served by the A380 but now given that Malaysia airlines is set to join the OneWorld alliance Kuala Lumpur-London Heathrow route makes perfect sense and also with the Olympic games approaching British Airways would relish the idea of the superjumbo from the alliance bringing in traffic to the city. Now here is the catch, Malaysia Airlines will get the delivery of the aircraft in the Q1 2012 so you never know if they have any other plans in mind to fly the aircraft in the meantime. Till then folks who want to fly on the MH A380, let the bookings begin.
The second update is that Air France will replace the Boeing B777-200ER/-300ER on its daily Paris-Dubai flight with an Airbus A380, the change will be in effect from 5th December 2011 until the end of the Winter schedule i.e. 25th March 2012. This seems to be a great strategic move for luring customers from the Middle East markets to the Air France hub at Paris Charles DeGaulle Airport and undercut competition posed by the Middle East carriers specially Emirates. The schedule for the same would be as follows:
Paris Charles DeGaulle – Dubai
AF3830 CDG 1330 – 2300 DXB
AF3831 DXB 0145 – 0610 CDG
Emirates, the world’s biggest international airlines plans to start serving the US cities of Dallas and Seattle from 2012 onwards.
As per the Bloomberg report, Emirates will begin daily services from Dubai to Dallas starting Feb. 2 and to Seattle from March 1 and may add cities including Atlanta,Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia and Washington very soon. The airline plans to serve these routes using an A380 of which it has placed an order of nearly 90 and intends to add more in the Dubai Airshow to be held in November this year.
The airline seems to be betting bigtime on the A380’s which will add nearly 45,000 seats to its network, it recently started the first scheduled flight to Africas with a regular flight to Johannesburg.
Even in the slowing economy the airline is considering a ramp up as it is expecting demand to stay consistent or increase in the near future. The airline had scaled down its initial US expansion after the September 11 attacks but now seems to be back in action to target major cities in the US and also look for code-share partners after Continental scrapped the earlier agreement between the two in 2009.
The only factor limiting their current growth is current capacity limitation at their current hub at the Dubai airport which is currently undergoing a massive expansion to meet the growing demand. What remains to be seen is that what strategy it will employ to handle such a rapid growth trajectory in terms of employee base, capital requirements and other external factors. All in all from a passenger point of view it seems to be a very good news as Emirates is known to offer one of the best products in the market along with the most competitive fares on its routes. Its high time now that the Airline companies in the US fastened their seatbelt and improved their product offerings else risk their market share being eaten up by carriers of the like of Emirates which have raised the bar in terms of quality offering and better price value for its consumers.
Singapore Airlines just announced today that they will be operating B777-300 on the SIN-DEL and SIN-DXB route starting this September. This is great news for travelers as these aircraft sport the latest and one of the best cabin product on offer in all the classes. The aircrafts are configured with 18 First, 49 Business and 265 Economy seats. The seat map can be found here.
This was a long pending move given the amount of traffic that is on these routes and with competing airlines giving tough competition, Singapore Air has raised the bar for others to follow. I’m planning to check out one these birds soon. Hope to get a report on the same.