# Thursday, July 24, 2008

MPs have approved a bill which will se the £16bn Crossrail scheme go ahead. The rail scheme will link Maidenhead in Berkshire to Shenfield in Essex via Heathrow. Under the scheme a number of new stations will be built. The first trains are expected to start running in 2017 and are expected to carry 78,000 passengers an hour during peak times.

posted on Thursday, July 24, 2008 8:37:57 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A North Yorkshire post office will close following a public consultation. The branch in Aspin Lane Knaresborough will close by the autumn. This is despite a petition signed by thousands of people who wanted to save it. Post Office bosses have said they will provide an outreach service in the area.

posted on Wednesday, July 23, 2008 9:28:30 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, July 22, 2008

This article suggests that an increasing number of British families are now taking their summer holiday in the UK. The main factors influencing their decision seems to be that they are trying to save money and also avoid delays and problems at the UK's airports. Whilst people still appear to be booking short haul holidays to places like France, Malta and the Canaries customers seem to be steering clear of long haul destinations.

posted on Tuesday, July 22, 2008 9:09:01 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, July 21, 2008

Qantas Airways have announced that they will cut 1,500 jobs worldwide and abandon plans to create 1,200 new jobs. The move has come as the company tries to deal with high fuel costs. The losses will include closing call centres in Tucson, Arizona and London with the loss of 99 jobs. Around 1,300 jobs will be lost in Australia with the rest overseas. The airline is also scrapping plans to increase its capacity by 8% in the 12 months to mid 2009 as they are not expecting any growth in that period.

posted on Monday, July 21, 2008 8:33:44 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, July 20, 2008
2334392-Anyone-fancy-a-jar-0

blogoftheweek_thumbThis weeks Travel Blog follows Jon and Jacky as they travel around for three months on  their honeymoon. Their journey started in May when they visited Vietnam. One of the posts from their time there shows some of the interesting items of sale, such as th2334396-Elephant-ear-fish-0ese snakes and scorpions in a jar (right). They also show some of the more unusual food on offer, such as this elephant ear fish (left) which although ugly is apparently perfectly edible.

2492582-Feeding-time-at-the-zoo-0Another post finds them in Singapore visiting the Singapore Zoo.  The title of the post "If Carlsberg made zoos" says it all. None of the animals at the zoo are in conventional enclosures giving an altogether more close up experience as you can see by this picture (right) of crocodile feeding time.

2557888-Monkeys-on-ice-0 The most recent posts find the couple in New Zealand. A few highlights include the ice bar. A2591023-Pancake-rocks-0 bar that is basically an -8 degree room where all the chairs, bar and glasses are made of ice. Another post finds them visiting a glacier and walking around the ice caves and another recent post shows these rather unusual limestone rocks (right).

posted on Sunday, July 20, 2008 5:39:18 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Saturday, July 19, 2008

This article suggests that landing slots at Heathrow are so valuable that it can take companies years and millions of pounds to get just one aircraft into the airport. Heathrow is constrained in the number of flights that it can accommodate meaning an airline wanting to set up operations there can pay up to £30 million for take off and landing times. As a result the landing rights are sometimes more valuable than the airline themselves. The companies must continue using the slots otherwise they will lose them. This means that many airlines will continue flying even if its planes are virtually empty.

posted on Saturday, July 19, 2008 11:53:52 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Friday, July 18, 2008

The cost of sending a text message back home whilst in Europe could come down by as much as 70%. Currently sending a text message from Spain would cost around 40p but under new rules it could cost as little as 9p. The cuts have been proposed by the EU Telecoms commissioner who has accused mobile operators of failing to offer customers a fair deal. From October she will introduce new legal rules that will put a cap on charges. Her proposals first need to be approved by ministers of the EU member states before they become law.

posted on Friday, July 18, 2008 8:58:45 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, July 17, 2008

Ryanair has announced cut backs of the number of winter flights from Stanstead. It plans to reduce the number of flights by 14 per cent meaning the number of weekly flights will be cut from 1,850 to just 1,600. The plan is part of an effort to try and reduce losses and comes after a similar announcement from BA.

posted on Thursday, July 17, 2008 5:20:41 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Despite the fact that prices of holidays seems to be more expensive at the moment due to fuel surcharges, there are still some good deals to be had if you look around. One option that is worth looking at is a holiday apartment rather than a hotel. This website for example has some good deals on Barcelona apartments. The advantage of booking a holiday apartment is that it can often work out cheaper choosing the self catering option. Holiday apartments in Catalonia start from as little as £350 a week based on a 1 bedroom apartment near the city centre and according to this article August is a good time to visit Barcelona as many Spaniards choose to go on vacation so the city is quieter and Spanish apartments are often cheaper at this time of year.

Barcelona like Paris has a discount card that you might want to purchase to save a bit more cash. Not surprisingly it is called the Barcelona Card. It offers free travel on public transport, free offers at museums, leisure facilities, nightclubs, shops and restaurants. You can purchase the card for 2,3,4 or 5 days depending on the length of your stay and it also comes with a handy information guide.

posted on Thursday, July 17, 2008 10:32:29 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

BA will cut capacity on winter flights by up to 5% in an effort to avoid losses. They will reduce the amount of flights on its routes and axe some service between October and March. There will be fewer services on the least cash generative routes with no more than two out of 154 routes being axed. Many airlines are currently cutting capacity due to falling demand and high fuel prices with US carriers leading the way. There are signs that the slowing economy is starting to affect travel with BA seeing a decline of 3.7% or 87,000 fewer passengers in June.

posted on Thursday, July 17, 2008 9:06:59 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback