Wel­come

Selling Travel - - Contents - Steve Har­tridge ED­I­TOR

The week­end of March 24/25 felt like a sig­nif­i­cant one in UK avi­a­tion, as it saw the first ever non-stop com­mer­i­cal flight from Aus­tralia to the UK – a near 17-hour odyssey from Perth in WA to Heathrow.

Just when you thought the air­line in­dus­try had used up all its sur­prises, Qan­tas proved the busi­ness can still gen­er­ate head­lines. Pas­sen­gers re­ported an en­joy­able jour­ney aboard the Dream­liner, one of the most ad­vanced and eco-ef­fi­cient planes fly­ing today.

On that same week­end, Nor­we­gian took off from Gatwick on a first flight to Chicago and United Air­lines kick-started a new ser­vice from Heathrow to Den­ver – a route it last served in 2010.

Oh, and then there is South African Air­ways, a fi­nan­cially trou­bled air­line that is shuf­fling air­craft around its net­work to max­imise de­mand. At 7pm on Sun­day March 25, its new A330-300 left Heathrow on its in­au­gu­ral flight out of the UK en route to Jo­han­nes­burg. For the past cou­ple of months, the air­craft has been ser­vic­ing the same Jo­han­nes­burg route, but from Mu­nich.

In fact, I am typ­ing these words from 38,000 feet, in seat 7K, three hours into the flight. We were seen off at Heathrow by Zulu songs and drums and, even to this well-trav­elled hack, it felt like I was part of an ‘oc­ca­sion’. On­board, the ser­vice is ex­cel­lent, the busi­ness-class seat seems as ex­pan­sive, pri­vate and en­joy­able as any I can re­call and I am pretty sure the next few hours will pass as com­fort­ably as they can (while sat on a plane).

You can read about my trip – three nights and four days, de­signed to show that South Africa can be a vi­able short break des­ti­na­tion – in a fu­ture Sell­ing Travel.

But for now en­joy this is­sue which in­cludes up­dates on Maldives, Hong Kong and Macao, Florida and theme parks around the world.

Also look out for the spring/sum­mer is­sue of Sell­ing Canada. It is packed with hol­i­day ideas and sell­ing tips from one of the globe’s hottest des­ti­na­tions.

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