UK party chair didnt properly declare income

first_img More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Comments   Share   Top Stories New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Warsi bought the apartment in Wembley in 2007 and moved in in March 2008 when the Conservative party was still in opposition. After she became a government minister in 2010, she moved to a more central property and began renting out the Wembley apartment.Under rules governing lawmaker expenses, Warsi should have declared the rental income and the full value of the first property to the upper house _ the House of Lords. Warsi said she had correctly listed the details of the property on a separate register for ministers but admitted that she should also have told the House of Lords.“Due to an oversight, for which I take full responsibility, the flat was not included on the Register of Lords’ Interests” she said in her statement.Warsi flatly denied the Sunday Times report that she had stayed for free at a friend’s. She said she claimed 165.50 pounds ($259) a night for staying at a house in Acton, west London, when she did not have a property of her own in London. Conservative party official Naweed Khan was staying at the house at the time and Warsi said she paid Khan for the nights she stayed there and then claimed the money back.Khan confirmed to the Sunday Times that Warsi had paid him, but the owner of the house, one-time Conservative party donor Wafik Moustafa, told the paper Warsi had not paid for her stay. LONDON (AP) – The chairman of Britain’s Conservative Party apologized Sunday for not properly declaring rental income on a London property, but rejected allegations that she had otherwise cheated on her expenses, in the latest revelation in Britain’s long-running scandal over lawmakers’ misuse of taxpayer funds.Sayeeda Warsi, Britain’s highest-ranking Muslim politician, acknowledged she had made a mistake in how she informed Britain’s upper house about a west London apartment she rented out, but rejected a report by The Sunday Times newspaper that she had claimed expenses for accommodation in London when she had stayed for free at a friend’s house. Several British politicians from all parties were caught up in an expenses scandal in 2009 when a leak of previously secret expense files revealed that politicians had billed the public for living expenses and not been honest about how much they paid for accommodation. Several lawmakers were jailed for falsely claiming expenses.Warsi was not implicated in earlier waves of the scandal, but Labour lawmaker John Mann said parliamentary officers should investigate the claims.“If you are paying no rent where you are staying, you can’t possibly be claiming subsistence for staying there,” he said. “It all seems very murky. We need a full investigation into the matter.”(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Sponsored Stories Men’s health affects baby’s health too Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family How do cataracts affect your vision?last_img read more

Clinton hails Libyan election pledges US support

first_img Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates She says it’s the “will of the people, not the whim of the dictator.”Clinton acknowledges there is hard work ahead for Libyans to unify their country and ensure it becomes a peaceful, democratic state. The U.S. and its NATO allies helped Libyans oust dictator Moammar Gadhafi last year, and Clinton pledged continued American support to the country.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Top holiday drink recipes Associated PressTOKYO (AP) – U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is congratulating Libya for holding is first nationwide vote in decades. She says the U.S. stands ready to help the North African nation become a free and peaceful democracy.Speaking Sunday in Japan, Clinton called the Libyan vote a “historic milestone.”She says that “after more than four decades of authoritarian rule, men and women from every corner of Libya are determining their own future” How men can have a healthy 2019 New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Comments   Share   center_img Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family Top Stories Natural spring cleaning tips and tricks for your home Sponsored Stories More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvementslast_img read more

Jordan says Iraq will boost oil exports to kingdom

first_imgAMMAN, Jordan (AP) – Jordan has signed a deal with Iraq to increase oil exports and other derivatives to the kingdom.The state-run Petra New Agency says Jordanian Energy Minister Alaa Batayneh and Iraq’s Oil Minister Abdul-Karim Elaib agreed during a meeting Thursday that Iraq will initially increase daily exports of crude to its neighbor by 5,000 barrels. Jordan currently imports 10,000 oil barrels a day from Iraq. Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Men’s health affects baby’s health too Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Top Stories center_img The vital role family plays in society Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Jordanian energy ministry did not disclose financial terms of the deal that was signed in Amman.Iraq will also supply Jordan with natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas and heavy fuel oil, according to the agreement.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Comments   Share   How men can have a healthy 2019last_img read more

Color red takes on new meanings in modern China

first_img(AP) – The color red has long had special significance in China, symbolizing health, wealth and good wishes.Newlyweds and children are presented with gift money tucked inside red packets, brides traditionally wear red gowns at their weddings, and celebratory fireworks always come wrapped in red paper.That made the color a perfect fit for the Communist movement. Its red army and a sea of red flags and banners came to characterize both cities and countryside following the success of the 1949 revolution. Comments   Share   Top Stories Men’s health affects baby’s health too Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementcenter_img However, in the more than three decades since the death of revolutionary leader Mao Zedong and the jettisoning of orthodox Marxism, red has taken on different meanings and contexts, some ancient, some very modern, finding its way into home furnishings, luxury items, clothing, and leisure goods, as well as the restored vestiges of Beijing’s imperial heritage.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day The vital role family plays in society Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion projectlast_img read more

Uruguay Mujica improvised with exGuantanamo detainees

first_img“It was a decision that in all sincerity was not properly foreseen and not properly carried out,” Foreign Minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa told local radio Sarandi.The men have not thrived in Uruguay, and four of them began a protest on April 23 in front of the U.S. Embassy in Montevideo. They are unhappy about their circumstances and the amount of aid Uruguay’s government has extended, and they argue that the United States should help them as well.The four Syrians, one Tunisian and one Palestinian were put in a four-bedroom house in Uruguay’s capital when the government took them in. But a few of the men, such as Adel bin Muhammad El Ouerghi from Tunisia, began staying at a budget hotel a few months ago to have more privacy.The foreign minister said he is close to reaching a deal with the men to end their protest. “I’m confident that there will be a solution,” he said.Nin Novoa said Mujica also didn’t fully plan for welcoming 42 Syrian refugees seeking shelter from the civil war last October.Under Mujica, Uruguay initially agreed to receive a total of 120 Syrian refugees, but the arrival of a second group was later postponed.“There was a lack of foresight. That’s why we decided to postpone the arrival of the second group of Syrians, because it’s a commitment that Uruguay has with the United Nations,” Nin Novoa said. MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay (AP) — Uruguay’s foreign minister said Wednesday that then President Jose Mujica acted without planning when he welcomed six freed Guantanamo detainees and 42 Syrians to the South American country.The men were released from the U.S. military prison in December after nearly 13 years in detention for alleged ties to al-Qaida. Mujica, who has since left office, invited them to resettle in Uruguay. Top Stories Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day How do cataracts affect your vision? Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona FILE – In this Friday, Dec. 12, 2014 photo, former Guantanamo prisoners, from left, Adel bin Muhammad El Ouerghi from Tunisia, Ali Husain Shaaban from Syria, Abedlhadi Omar Faraj from Syria, Ahmed Adnan Ajuri from Syria, and Palestinian Mohammed Abdullah Taha Mattan interact with journalists standing under the balcony of the home where they’re living in Montevideo, Uruguay. Uruguay’s foreign minister said Wednesday, May 13, 2015, that former President Jose Mujica acted without foresight when he welcomed six ex-Guantanamo detainees and 42 Syrians to the South American country. (AP Photo/Matilde Campodonico, File)n Sponsored Stories He said additional Syrian families are expected to arrive before the end of the year.“We’re not going to embarrass ourselves saying ‘no’ now,” he said. “We decided to postpone it so we can adequately prepare the arrival of the approximately seven families.”Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Comments   Share   Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving soberlast_img read more

Unusual wake held for Puerto Rican taxi driver

first_img Top Stories The body of Victor Perez Cardona is propped up inside his taxi during his wake in Aguas Buenas, Puerto Rico, Sunday, May 24, 2015. Perez Cardona, 73, a cancer patient and a veteran taxi driver known in the town of Aguas Buenas as ‘Vit SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rican taxi driver Victor Perez Cardona’s final fare was highly unusual: a wreath of flowers for his own funeral.Honoring his final request, the body of the 73-year-old, who died of cancer, was propped in the seat of his taxi cab, hands locked on the wheel, as if to drive himself to his funeral. A wreath of flowers was in the back seat of the vehicle parked at the funeral home. The vital role family plays in society Sponsored Stories Friends and colleagues mourned the man who had driven a taxi for the last 15 years of his life.“This is a funeral of the people. People have come from all over the island. Some climbed in the taxi with him,” said his daughter Generosa Perez Torres.His body was displayed Sunday and he was buried on Monday.Since 2008, Puerto Rico has developed a tradition of odd wakes, including a young man mourned seated on his motorcycle, a boxer standing in the ring and an 80-year-old woman sitting in her favorite rocking chair and wearing her old wedding gown.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Comments   Share   New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Check your body, save your life Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement 5 ways to recognize low testosteronelast_img read more

2022 World Cup host Qatar stays silent on FIFA probes

first_img Sponsored Stories DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Qatar is keeping quiet about the American and Swiss raids that have rocked FIFA and thrown another unwelcome spotlight on the tiny Gulf nation’s hosting of the 2022 World Cup.The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, which is leading Qatar’s development of World Cup venues and other projects, has so far declined repeated requests to comment since the investigations became public on Wednesday. So has Qatar’s government. FILE – In this Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, file photo, FIFA President Sepp Blatter, right, shakes hands with Sheik Mohammed bin Hamad al-Thani, chairman of Qatar 2022 bid committee, at a press conference in Doha, Qatar. Qatar is keeping quiet about the American and Swiss raids that have rocked football’s world governing body FIFA and thrown a new unwelcome spotlight on the tiny Gulf nation’s hosting of the 2022 World Cup. (AP Photo/Osama Faisal, File) ___Follow Adam Schreck on Twitter at © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The silence stands in sharp contrast to comments by Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose country will host the World Cup four years before Qatar. He accused the U.S. of meddling in FIFA’s affairs.Swiss investigators are pursuing an investigation into the decisions to award the World Cups to Russia and Qatar.Qatar’s leadership sees the hosting of international sporting events, including the 2006 Asian Games and 2011 Asian Cup in soccer, as a way to boost the country’s standing on the global stage.The energy-rich country earlier this month played host to a Diamond League track meet, and will host the world athletics championships in 2019. Qatar hasn’t ruled out making another Olympic bid after failing to secure the 2020 Games.Although FIFA spokesman Walter de Gregorio said there will be no re-vote for hosting of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, the investigations nonetheless increase the pressure on Qatar. Its winning bid has been assailed by critics over a host of issues ranging from allegations of corruption to questions over migrant workers.Organizers have denied wrongdoing, but World Cup sponsors Adidas, Coca-Cola and Visa last week publicly pressured FIFA to push Qatar harder on improving working conditions, with Visa saying it has expressed “grave concern” about labor conditions. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Natural spring cleaning tips and tricks for your home Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facilitycenter_img Top Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Comments   Share   The vital role family plays in societylast_img read more

US Iran hold intense nuclear talks month before deadline

first_img Parents, stop beating yourself up Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Comments   Share   FILE In this April 27, 2015 file-pool photo, Secretary of State John Kerry meets with Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in New York. A month out from a nuclear deal deadline, the top U.S. and Iranian diplomats are gathering in Geneva this weekend, hoping to bridge differences over how quickly to ease economic sanctions on Tehran and how significantly the Iranians must open up military facilities to international inspections. Kerry and Zarif will meet Saturday. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow, File-Pool) Sponsored Stories Top Stories 5 treatments for adult scoliosis Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The U.S. says such access must be guaranteed or there will be no final deal. A report Friday by the U.N. nuclear agency declared work essentially stalled on its multiyear probe of Iran’s past activities.The Iranians are not fully satisfied, either.The unresolved issues include the pace at which the United States and other countries will provide Iran relief from international sanctions — Tehran’s biggest demand — and how to “snap back” punitive measures into place if the Iranians are caught cheating.President Barack Obama has used the “snapback” mechanism as a main defense of the proposed pact from sharp criticism from Congress and some American allies.Exactly how rapidly the sanctions on Iran’s financial, oil and commercial sectors would come off in the first place lingers as a sore point between Washington and Tehran.Speaking ahead of Kerry’s talks with Zarif, senior State Department officials described Iranian transparency and access, and questions about sanctions, as the toughest matters remaining, and cited “difficult weeks” since the April 2 framework reached in Lausanne, Switzerland.Iran insists it is solely interested in peaceful energy, medical and research purposes, though many governments around the world suspect it of harboring nuclear weapons ambitions. The U.S. estimates the Iranians are currently less than three months away from assembling enough nuclear material for a bomb if they chose to covertly develop one. GENEVA (AP) — A month away from a nuclear deal deadline, U.S. and Iranian diplomats tried to narrow differences over how quickly to ease economic penalties against Tehran and how significantly the Iranians must open up military facilities to international inspections. American officials described the session as “at times intense.”The talks between U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif lasted six hours, in what officials described as the most substantive negotiating round since world powers and Iran clinched a framework pact in April. New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Last month’s agreement left big questions unanswered, which weeks of subsequent technical discussions have done little to resolve. It was unclear how much progress Kerry and Zarif made before the Iranian delegation began leaving for Tehran, or if they fully rediscovered their momentum.Asked about completing the full accord by June 30, Zarif said, “We will try.”His deputy, Abbas Aragchi, said lower-level officials would meet again in Vienna next week.U.S. officials provided hints of what must have been a difficult dialogue, but said the encounter ultimately proved fruitful. American members of the negotiating team were not authorized to discuss publicly the private talks and spoke only on condition of anonymity.World powers believe they have secured Iran’s acquiescence to a combination of nuclear restrictions that would fulfill their biggest goal: keeping Iran at least a year away from bomb-making capability for at least a decade. But they are less clear about how they will ensure Iran fully adheres to any agreement.Various Iranian officials, including Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader, have pledged to limit access to or even block monitors from sensitive military sites and nuclear scientists suspected of previous involvement in covert nuclear weapons efforts. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t likelast_img read more

Man sues Chinese actress over her intense stare in TV show

first_imgBEIJING (AP) — Rules making it easier to file lawsuits in China have led to a new concern over frivolous claims, such as one in which a man says actress Zhao Wei stared at him too intensely through his TV set.The regulations making it more difficult for courts to reject lawsuits took effect May 1, leading to an increase in cases nationwide last month of 29 percent compared with same period last year, to just over 1 million cases, according to the Supreme People’s Court. Patients with chronic pain give advice Men’s health affects baby’s health too Top Stories The registration system requires courts to accept legitimate lawsuits when they are filed or clearly state the reasons for rejecting them, and citizens have the right to appeal the decisions.“Previously, it was difficult for administrative cases, such as people suing governments, to be accepted,” said Li Heping, a Beijing lawyer.In announcing the registration system, the official Xinhua News Agency said: “Authorities are determined to put an end to obstructive behavior by courts and officials meddling in cases.”The change has led to Shanghai Pudong New District Court receiving a case against Zhao, the court’s litigation service hotline confirmed. The court official, who declined to identify himself, refused to say whether the court had accepted the case.Zhao is one of China’s biggest and richest movie stars, and starred in director John Woo’s “Red Cliff.”Reports say the lawsuit filed by a Shanghai man involves the prime-time TV show “Tiger Mom” which debuted in May and centers on a couple’s differing approach to raising their daughter. Zhao plays the big-eyed mother who relentlessly pushes her daughter’s development, while the father wants his child to have more freedom. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Sponsored Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center 0 Comments   Share   The Legal Daily said the plaintiff was alleging Zhao’s stare caused him “spiritual damage.”Gan Wen, deputy head of a case-filing chamber under the Supreme Court, said at a news conference Tuesday that the Zhao case was an example of citizens abusing their right to file lawsuits.“It’s not necessary to waste our judicial resources on cases like these,” Gan said.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facilitylast_img read more

Rebel rocket fire kills 18 civilians in Yemens Aden

first_img The vital role family plays in society Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Mesa family survives lightning strike to home How men can have a healthy 2019 SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Rockets fired by Shiite rebels have killed at least 18 civilians and 13 anti-rebel fighters in the southern Yemeni city of Aden, where fierce fighting has been raging for months, the director of Aden’s health services said Wednesday.The United Nations meanwhile declared its highest level of humanitarian emergency in Yemen, where 80 percent of the population needs assistance. U.N. officials have said the country is one step away from famine. The Houthis frequently fire missiles from inside Yemen at Saudi border posts. More than two dozen Saudi soldiers have been killed in such attacks.___Associated Press writer Edith M. Lederer at the United Nations contributed to this report.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Top Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facilitycenter_img New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day The fighting in Yemen pits the Shiite rebels, known as Houthis, and allied troops loyal to a former president against southern separatists, local and tribal militias, Sunni Islamic militants and loyalists of the exiled current president. The rebels seized the capital in September, and a Saudi-led and U.S.-backed coalition began launching airstrikes against them in March.Saudi Arabia views the Houthis as an armed proxy of its regional rival, Shiite Iran. Tehran supports the rebels but denies arming them.Health officials and eyewitnesses said at least 7 civilians were killed and 18 wounded in the Mansoura area of Aden when the Houthis fired Katyusha rockets into a street overnight.Ahmed Munir, a local resident, said a rocket fell on the street, and that when people rushed to help the injured, another rocket hit the same spot. Yasser Mubarak, another eyewitness, said he saw body parts scattered across the street.Another 24 people were killed in separate incidents in Aden in which rebels fired at least 20 Katyushas and mortar rounds on homes and neighborhoods, according to security officials and eyewitnesses. At least 100 people were wounded, they said.Medical officials say hospitals in Aden are overwhelmed, as operating rooms work around the clock to treat patients injured in the ongoing conflict. U.N. deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said U.N. agencies agreed to declare a “Level 3” humanitarian emergency in Yemen on Wednesday. The United Nations is already scrambling to respond to top-level humanitarian emergencies in Iraq, Syria and South Sudan.In Yemen, the Arab world’s poorest country, Haq says over 21.1 million people need aid, 13 million face “a food security crisis” and 9.4 million have little or no access to water. He says 11.7 million have been targeted for assistance under a U.N. humanitarian response plan.Airstrikes and ground fighting have killed more than 1,400 civilians since March and displaced more than a million amid shortages of fuel and medical supplies, according to U.N. agencies.According to the World Health Organization, 3,083 people have died as a result of the conflict and another 14,324 have been wounded, Haq said Tuesday.Saudi-led coalition airstrikes continued Wednesday in Shabwa and Taiz provinces. Twelve Houthis were killed when an airstrike hit an encampment in Shabwa, medical and security officials said. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to reporters.The Saudi military said Wednesday that a soldier posted along the country’s southern border died of wounds sustained from a missile strike launched by Shiite rebels from inside Yemen. It did not specify when the attack took place. Comments   Share   Sponsored Stories last_img read more

A look at the worlds billiondollar sports stadiums

first_img Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall TOKYO (AP) — The first sports stadium to break the $1 billion barrier was London’s Wembley Stadium. Now, Tokyo’s planned National Stadium for the 2020 Olympics will be the first to reach $2 billion, according to the latest cost estimate. The world’s billion-dollar stadiums:$2 billion: National Stadium (construction to begin in October), 2019, Tokyo, Olympics$1.6 billion: MetLife Stadium, 2010, East Rutherford, N.J., New York Giants and Jets, football 3 international destinations to visit in 2019 Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Comments   Share   $1.4 billion: New Atlanta Stadium (under construction), 2017, Atlanta, Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United FC, football and soccer$1.3 billion: Yankee Stadium 2009, Bronx, N.Y., New York Yankees, baseball$1.2 billion: Wembley Stadium, 2007, London, soccer$1.2 billion: Levi’s Stadium, 2014, Santa Clara, Calif., San Francisco 49ers, football$1.15 billion: AT&T Stadium, 2009, Arlington, Texas, Dallas Cowboys, football$1.0 billion: U.S. Bank Stadium (under construction), 2016, Minneapolis, Minn., Minnesota Vikings, football___Sources: Victor Matheson, Levi’s Stadium, U.S. Bank StadiumCopyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Sponsored Stories Top Stories The vital role family plays in society New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies FILE – In this Nov. 9, 2014 file photo, spectators gather outside Wembley Stadium for the NFL football game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Jacksonville Jaguars in London. The first sports stadium to break the $1 billion barrier was London’s Wembley Stadium. Now, Tokyo’s planned National Stadium for the 2020 Olympics will be the first to reach $2 billion, according to the latest cost estimate. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, File) 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breacheslast_img read more

Parents choose cheaper holidays over education

first_imgAre you willing to take your childrenout of school for a cheaper holiday? Although the Asia region continues to rise, traditional searches such as Europe and the UK continue to dominate travel during the July school holiday, in particular Germany and Ireland making the top two emerging destinations for Australians. “Children all over Australia are cheering as parents are beginning to realise that travel outside the school break means cheaper holidays, less crowds and happier kids,” Skyscanner Australia market development manager Dave Boyte said. Source = ETB News: NJ As school holidays approach, the study found long-haul flight searches up this week, with Asian destinations such as Hong Kong, China, Philippines and Singapore making the top ten emerging destinations for family travel in July this year. A Skyscanner survey found that 64 percent of parents would choose a cheaper holiday over their children’s education, almost 33 percent admitted to doing so in the past and 31 percent said they haven’t yet but they would consider it. More than half of Australian parents say they would pull their children out of school early if it meant getting a cheaper holiday deal, according to a new study.last_img read more

IATA pauses Cabin OK initiative

first_imgThe International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced it is pausing the rollout of its Cabin OK initiative and beginning a comprehensive reassessment in light of concerns expressed, primarily in North America. This will include further engagement with program participants, the IATA membership, and key stakeholders.The Cabin OK initiative was launched on 9 June 2015 with the aim of providing passengers with greater assurance that their carry-on bags will travel with them in the aircraft cabin, even when the flight is full. The initiative provides consumers with a voluntary option to use a Cabin OK labelled bag (with optimally sized dimensions of 55 x 35 x 20 cm or 21.5” x 13.5” x 7.5″ inches) that would (1) be immediately recognisable as complying with the vast majority of airline maximum size requirements for cabin baggage and (2) be given a priority (determined by airlines individually) to remain in the cabin on full flights when cabin storage capacity is exceeded.Interest in the Cabin OK program has been intense. While the value of this initiative has been welcomed by many, including a growing list of airlines expressing interest in the program, there has also been much confusion. In North America particularly, there have been significant concerns raised in the media and by key stakeholders.“Our focus is on providing travellers with an option that would lead to a simplified and better experience. While many welcomed the Cabin OK initiative, significant concerns were expressed in North America. Cabin OK is a voluntary program for airlines and for consumers. This is clearly an issue that is close to the heart of travelers. We need to get it right. Today we are pausing the rollout and launching a comprehensive reassessment of the Cabin OK program with plans to further engage program participants, the rest of our members, and other key stakeholders,” said Tom Windmuller, Senior Vice President, Airport, Passenger, Cargo and Security.IATA reiterated some key principles of the Cabin OK initiative which will continue to guide the reassessment: Cabin OK is a guideline for an optimally sized cabin bag, not an industry standard. Cabin OK does not seek to define a maximum size for carry-on bags, which is something each airline does individually. And no consumer will be forced into buying a new bag as a result of this voluntary initiativeSource = International Air Transport Associationlast_img read more

Solo travellers are not who you think

first_imgSolo travellers are not who you thinkSolo travellers don’t go alone because they have to, they do it because they want to, a new QUT study has found.Professor Constanza (Connie) Bianchi, from QUT Business School, said there were a growing number of people who preferred to travel alone, despite having family and friends.She said solo travellers were choosing freedom, uncompromised fun and meeting new people over the desire to have a companion to share their experiences.In a study published in the International Journal of Tourism Research, Professor Bianchi looked at the drivers of satisfaction and dissatisfaction for solo travellers, given the growing numbers of holiday-makers travelling alone.“Research shows solo travel is the fastest-growing tourism segment and Australian figures support this with solo traveller numbers increasing by almost 20 per cent between 2007 and 2011,” she said.“Despite this increased demand, travel offerings are generally targeted at couples or families.“Understanding tourist satisfaction and dissatisfaction, especially in this growing but not very well researched group, will help tourism operators ensure solo travellers are not being ignored.”Professor Bianchi said although most study participants had family and friends, they chose to travel alone because they enjoyed it.“According to them, it was a chance to indulge themselves fully,” Professor Bianchi said.“For example, one solo traveller said: ‘I thought that going by myself would be the best way to make sure that I got what I wanted out of the holiday without having to … gosh this sounds awful … without having to consider anybody else and what they might want to do’.”Professor Bianchi said other motivations of travelling solo were feeling free, the possibility of meeting new people and the opportunity for self-discovery.“One participant said: ‘You discover a lot about yourself and you learn to be at peace with your inner monologue due to time spent alone and the challenges you must overcome alone’,” Professor Bianchi said.But she said with the good comes the bad, and unfortunately for many solo travellers the extra costs and single supplements along with safety concerns were perceived as the main disadvantages.“For example one participant said: ‘Having to pay for stuff that really you’re not benefitting from, that’s a real bugger for me’.”“Other constraints when travelling solo included the lack of convenience of having someone to take care of or help with luggage and the perceived annoyance of restaurants having to serve solo eaters,” she said.“However, while the findings highlight some constraints for travelling alone, it also found for solo travellers, the positives outweighed the negatives.”Professor Bianchi said the findings highlight the need for destination managers and tourism operators to offer special packages for solo travellers.“Proper design of solo traveller experiences and recognising the different motivations of solo travellers will not only lead to greater satisfaction, but the potential of tapping into this high-growth market,” she said.Source = QUTlast_img read more

Destination Queesntown launches bold spring campaign

first_imgDestination Queesntown launches bold spring campaignDestination Queenstown launched its spring campaign in Australia, with a focus on driving awareness of the region’s world- class snow offering. Developed by One Green Bean, the content-led activity, ‘Sick Day Stow Away’, is a first for the Tourism Office as it encourages Aussies to venture to its ski fields in spring.Playing on the insight that a trip to the snow and ‘pulling a sick day’ go hand in hand, and that ‘how to call in sick’ content is widely searched for online, the unique campaign revolves around a tongue-in-cheek instructional video showing Aussies how to pull a sick day, with the intention of them stowing away to Queenstown.Fronted by Australian comedian Dan Ilic, the content focuses on his tips for preparing for a sick day from work – from laying the groundwork with your boss, to the all important sick day call and follow-up text. Filmed on location in Queenstown, it showcases a range of the alpine region’s multiple attractions – from skiing on one of the four ski areas to teeing off at a scenic mountain top golf hole or enjoying the vistas of the resort from a helicopter, followed by a sip or two of locally produced Central Otago Pinot Noir in front of a roaring fire.Graham Budd, CEO at Destination Queenstown comments; “The Sick Day Stow Away video takes a fun look at taking a sick day, in order to capture the attention of our Australian audience in a crowded media space. Whilst it’s produced to create some laughs we think the campaign also does a great job of showcasing the breadth of activity Queenstown has to offer.”Budd continues; “With direct flights from Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney and Melbourne in just three hours, vibrant nightlife and après-ski culture with over 150 bars, cafes and restaurants, Queenstown is a fantastic destination for a long weekend, whatever the excuse is for getting here”. Source = Destination Queesntownlast_img read more

Qatar Duty Free wins Best Employer at 2017 VeryEast Summit

first_imgQatar Duty Free wins ‘Best Employer” at 2017 VeryEast SummitQatar Duty Free (QDF) is pleased to announce that it has won the ‘Best Employer in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry’ award at the 2017 VeryEast Summit held in Hangzhou, China on 3 November 2017.With more than 300 multinational companies participating, QDF was acknowledged for its employment diversity, career growth opportunities, competitive employee benefits and professional development of its staff through its Learning Academy.The award mechanism involved several parameters, including scoring from public voting on WeChat as well as Human Resources practices including number of employees, turnover rate, management to non-management ratio, diversity, gender distribution, career growth opportunities and more.QDF received 7,558 votes via public voting on WeChat spanning seven days, and was chosen from among 320 multinational organisations that participated from the Tourism and Hospitality sector.Qatar Duty Free Senior Vice President, Mr. Luis Gasset, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be awarded the ‘Best Employer in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry’ from amongst some of the finest organisations from all over the world. This award is testament to our commitment not only to our valued customers, but to our employees as well. This prestigious award is a great achievement and we are thrilled to have won it this year.”This year’s summit in Hangzhou brought together more than 300 participating organisations from all across the world in the Tourism and Hospitality industry, including hotels, food and beverage outlets, cruise operators and airlines. Also present at the forum were 40 top media partners.At the event, QDF interacted with more than 30 universities and academies specialising in the hospitality and tourism industry to promote future partnership opportunities in attracting, recruiting, and developing talent within the QDF Business units.QDF offers 40,000 square meters of combined retail, food and beverage facilities at Hamad International Airport (HIA), establishing the retailer as a premier shopping and dining destination. With more than 90 retail outlets offering an unprecedented selection of designer labels, fashion, electronics, gourmet foods and much more, QDF at HIA caters to all tastes and needs. In addition, more than 30 cafes and restaurants offer a sumptuous selection of global and local cuisine.HIA, the home of QDF, has met a number of significant milestones in 2017, including being classified as a five-star airport by Skytrax, making it one of only five other airports in the world to achieve this status. Earlier this year, it was ranked ‘Sixth Best Airport in the World’ by the 2017 Skytrax World Airport Awards, moving up four places from 2016. HIA has also won the ‘Best Airport in the Middle East’ title for three consecutive years and ‘Best Staff Service in the Middle East’ for the past two years.About Qatar AirwaysQatar Airways, the national carrier of the State of Qatar, is celebrating 20 years of Going Places Together with travellers across its more than 150 business and leisure destinations. The world’s fastest-growing airline will add a number of exciting new destinations to its growing network in 2017/18, including St. Petersburg, Russia; Chiang Mai, Thailand; Canberra, Australia and many more, flying passengers on board its modern fleet of more than 200 aircraft.A multiple award-winning airline, Qatar Airways was recently named ‘Airline of the Year’ by the 2017 World Airline Awards, managed by international air transport rating organisation Skytrax. It was also named ‘World’s Best Business Class,’ ‘Best Airline in the Middle East,’ and ‘World’s Best First Class Airline Lounge.’Qatar Airways is a member of the oneworld global alliance. The award-winning alliance was named the World’s Best Airline Alliance 2015 by Skytrax for the third year running. Qatar Airways was the first Gulf carrier to join global airline alliance, oneworld, enabling its passengers to benefit from more than 1,000 airports in more than 150 countries, with 14,250 daily departures.Oryx One, Qatar Airways’ in-flight entertainment system offers passengers up to 4,000 entertainment options from the latest blockbuster movies, TV box sets, music, games and much more. Passengers flying on Qatar Airways flights served by its B787, A350, A380, A319 and select A320 and A330 aircraft can also stay in touch with their friends and family around the world by using the award-winning airline’s on-board Wi-Fi and GSM service.Qatar Airways proudly supports a range of exciting international and local initiatives dedicated to enriching the global community that it serves. Qatar Airways, the official FIFA partner, is the official sponsor of many top-level sporting events, including the FIFA 2018 and 2022 World Cups, reflecting the values of sports as a means of bringing people together, something at the core of the airline’s own brand message – Going Places Together.Qatar Airways Cargo, the world’s third largest international cargo carrier, serves more than 60 exclusive freighter destinations worldwide via its world-class Doha hub and also delivers freight to more than 150 key business and leisure destinations globally with more than 200 aircraft. The Qatar Airways Cargo fleet includes eight Airbus A330 freighters, 12 Boeing 777 freighters and one Boeing 747-8 freighter.For further information, please contact:Qatar Airways Group, Corporate Communications DepartmentTel: +974 4022 2200Source = Qatar Duty Free (QDF)last_img read more

SAA substantially strengthens its presence in West Africa

first_imgSouth African Airways (SAA) the leading carrier on the African continent, has strengthened its position in West Africa, with the upcoming introduction of a second West African country linking air travel to North America. The new nonstop service between Washington, DC – Dulles International Airport and Accra’s Kotoka International Airport will be launched on August 3, 2015.Nico Bezuidenhout, South African Airways Acting CEO stated, “This is a major development and achievement for the airline as part of our Long-Term Turnaround Strategy where we have set growth on the African continent as one of our key objectives. With a strong presence in West Africa, in the form of nonstop services between Accra and Washington DC and through our airline partnerships our customers will soon have access to further destinations in West Africa.”“The granting of traffic rights by the Ghana government enables SAA to transport customers between Accra and Washington. As current supply is limited, forcing the majority of customers in Ghana to travel via Europe to reach North America, the SAA’s introduction of non-stop services from Ghana will considerably reduce travel times,” said Kendy Phohleli, SAA Executive Africa Hub Projects.South African Airways’ flights to Accra will be available four days a week with continuing service to Johannesburg, South Africa, operating on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. SAA will reduce its current flights from Washington DC – Dulles to Dakar, Senegal and onwards to Johannesburg, to three days a week, operating on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.last_img read more

Over 113 million tourists visited Peru in first 4 months of 2015

first_imgThe Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism, Magali Silva, informed that international tourist arrivals grew 8.4% to 1.13 million visitors in first fourth-month period of the year, compared to the same period last year.She highlighted the rise in the number of Chilean arrivals to the country, which has reached 50,821 so far this year, up 16.4% against the previous year. This way, Chile has positioned as the main source market for tourists, accounting for 31.9% of total arrivals.“We are seeing the fruits of the promotion campaign undertaken in main cities of Chile and the border region, which has reversed the negative trend from last year,” she said.The growth of Latin American tourist arrivals stood out in the first quarter with Ecuador (10.9%), Argentina (8.4%), Mexico (8.2%), Colombia (7.4%) and Brazil (3.7%) as the most prominent examples.Germany and Spain results also excelled, since the number of international tourist arrivals to Peru from those countries increased by 6.9% and 6.4%, respectively.Our main markets in Latin America, which accounted for 54.6% of total arrivals in the first four months of the year, maintained a significant growth led by Chile (16.4%).As for Asia, South Korea posted a sustained growth of 59%, higher than the first quarter’s accumulated average. This market’s presence is maintained in major international events.In Europe, Italy and the United Kingdom stood out as Peru’s main tourist markets with growth rates of 9.3% and 6.3%, respectively, followed by France, Germany and Spain, where the advertising campaign Peru Land of Hidden Treasures is being developed.The U.S. market accounted for 14% of total arrivals between January and April, and it is the second largest source market for tourists to Peru.last_img read more

Exploring the Pak Ou Caves in Laos

first_imgPak Ou (mouth of the Ou river), the Tham Ting (lower cave) and the Tham Theung (upper cave) are caves overlooking the Mekong River, 25 km to the north of Luang Prabang, Laos. The caves are famous for their miniature Buddha sculptures, which take many different positions, including meditation, teaching, peace, rain, and reclining (nirvana).Source: BBClast_img

Enable Travel and EzyMov partner with Red WAVE Cabs to make Jharkhand

first_imgEnable Travel, accessible holiday specialist along with EzyMov, India’s first wheelchair taxi service has tied up with Red WAVE (Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle/Eco-friendly) cab services in Jamshedpur to address travel related concerns of people with disabilities. The tie-up aims to provide safe and reliable transport options to them.Through this tie-up, all three travel partners will work towards making travel around Jharkhand hassle free and offer customised comfort vehicles for travellers as well as fully accessible taxis to accommodate passengers with wheelchairs and other mobility issues including the elderly. Enable Travel will also offer tourists customised sight-seeing options in and around Jharkhand.Speaking about the partnership, Debolin Sen, Head, Enable Travel said, “An accessible Jharkhand will serve as a gateway to East India and further our cause towards accessibility and inclusivity. To ensure barrier-free travel and enhance transportation within a destination, we have partnered with EzyMov who are experienced to address this need along with Red WAVE Cabs for their expertise on local challenges. We are very proud to be continuing our commitment to make travel easy and hassle-free in India and working with like-minded partners to create an inclusive and accessible travel environment.”Bennet D’cunha, CEO, EzyMov said, “Our mission is to position India as the leading country with regards to accessible tourism. We have successfully implemented end-to-end accessible assistance in Goa and aim to replicate our success in Jharkhand and other parts of the country. With our joint efforts, we want to reach out to a larger audience, address the concerns of people with disabilities and senior citizens and provide the right travel solutions to them.”Sunil Kumar Dutta, Co-Founder, Red WAVE said, “Accessibility is a right of every human and to establish it in every aspect is our duty, which starts from our hometown.”Since its launch in March 2017, Enable Travel, powered by Cox & Kings has hosted attractive curated holiday experiences for the disabled (wheelchair-bound, blind, deaf and speech impaired) as well as for senior citizens. Today the brand is present across 220+ destinations covering domestic and international territories. Enable Travel’s award-winning campaign #CanDo has successfully inspired many disabled and able-bodied to change their mindsets and bring about a positive impact around disability. It has been carrying out various activation processes across cities with ‘Travel Tales’ and ‘Enable Experiences’, events which have been organised to encourage disabled people to come out of their homes and bring to life the community that doesn’t get the chance to converge and share their travel stories and life experiences with the world.last_img read more