Year: 2014

It’s the time of year when everyone churns out their annual predictions, quoting the same experts on 2015’s travel trends. Or, if they’ve been doing this long enough, they just cite themselves.

Not this consumer advocate. No one really knows what will happen next year, even someone who’s been trend-watching as long as I have.

All we can do is guess. And according to the best guesses, here’s what to expect: Air fares, car rental rates and hotel prices will rise by at most a few percentage points. That doesn’t automatically mean you’ll pay a reasonable price for your trip. Leisure travel will remain safe, as long as you take reasonable precautions. And watch for those junk fees, because more are on the way.

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Article Source: | The Washington Post

Expedia, Inc., one of the world’s largest online travel companies, and Best Western International, Inc., the world’s largest hotel chain®, have signed a global partnership agreement to distribute Best Western branded hotels on Expedia, Inc. sites.

This partnership is truly global in nature. Expedia features more than 150 travel sites in more than 70 countries, while Best Western boasts more than 4,000 hotels in over 100 countries and territories worldwide.

Melissa Maher, senior vice president of the Global Partner Group at Expedia, Inc. said “Best Western is one of the most recognizable and popular hotel brands in the world. We are thrilled at the opportunity to drive demand to their owners, and offer Expedia shoppers a swath of new Best Western hotel options to book.”

“Expedia is an incredibly valuable distribution and marketing channel, and we see this new strategic partnership as a great investment to ensure hoteliers can easily and efficiently sell their hotel rooms on their sites. Expedia excels at driving demand from around the world, and their marketing power is something that our hotels will benefit from leveraging,” said Dorothy Dowling, senior vice president of marketing and sales at Best Western International, Inc.

The agreement includes participation in the Expedia Traveler Preference program, which provides Expedia shoppers with an option to pay at the time of the booking, or pay the hotel at the time of stay. Further, technology enhancements between the two companies will also ensure that rates and availability of rooms will be reflected in real-time on Expedia sites, providing the best possible customer experience with seamless booking integration.

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Legacy Hotels & Resorts and Nedbank have announced plans for a new property, the Leonardo, within walking distance of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, the Sandton Convention Centre, Nelson Mandela Square and the Gautrain Station.

Located in Maude Street, The Leonardo forms the first phase of a much larger ensemble of building encompassing a new public square, inclusive of offices, residential and retail functions. The property will offer luxury apartments, penthouse suites and premium-grade offices available for rental.

“The demand for safe and secure apartment accommodation is great, especially in Sandton,” explains Chairman and CEO of Legacy Hotels & Resorts International, Bart Dorrestein.

The Leonardo will offer eight luxury penthouse suites and a three-level, 360-degree-view ‘Leonardo Suite’. A common area will have a crèche, spa, gym and heated swimming pool and a restaurant. There will also be full concierge service, a coffee shop, business and conference centre in the lobby, 24-hour security, housekeeping services on call, an in-house maintenance team and secure parking.

Construction is set to commence early in 2015.