Road & Rail

Road & rail wrap: Europcar fined over credit card fees, Railway Adventures’ Sri Lanka initiative + MORE!

Toot toot, chugga chugga! It’s the road and rail wrap! Get amongst all the latest overland news and deals while we desperately try to avoid being sued by The Wiggles for using their trademark toots and chuggas.

Europcar fined for excessive credit card fees 

Europcar has been fined $350,000 after the Federal Court of Australia found it charged its customers excessive fees for using credit and debit cards to rent a car.

The rental car company admitted it shared Visa and Mastercard customers fees that were higher than the cost of processing payments in 2017 after the ACCC took the company to court in July last year, the The Australian Financial Report reported.

Railway Adventures encourages Aussies to come back to Sri Lanka

Viceroy Special on bridge_HERO

Railway Adventures is encouraging Australians to contribute to rebuilding the tourism industry in Sri Lanka, after recent incidents caused a major downturn in numbers, by joining the company’s owner as host on the 15-day ‘Sri Lanka on the Viceroy Special’ tour.

Departing on November 5, this roundtrip from Colombo includes travelling on the highly acclaimed steam train, the Viceroy Special, and includes a selection of art workshops and creative experiences by Sri Lankan-born Australian artist and art tutor, Chan Dissanayake who will accompany the group on this adventure.

This tour is priced from $10, 475 per person twin share and includes accommodation, mostly five star, with daily breakfast and many local meals,  luxury charter coach with luggage transport on rail travel days, entry fees on a vast variety of guided sightseeing excursions and even includes all tips and gratuities plus visa fees (if applicable) Airport transfers may be included on select flights from Australia.

Rail Europe releases two-for-one France-Spain connections 

Carcassonne

For a limited time only, Rail Europe is offering two-for-one deals on selected France-Spain High Speed connections between the two countries.

The connections are between Paris, Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Carcassonne, Valence, Aix en Provence, Avignon, Nimes, Montpellier and Madrid, and Barcelona.

Bookings must be made by 10 September 2019 and travel completed between 5 September and 14 December 2019. There are no black-out dates, but terms and conditions apply.

15 per cent discount off overland journeys that actively avoid overtourism hotspots

Whilst overtourism is a relatively new term, Dragoman has been fighting against the very essence of it for the past 38 years.

Avoiding the typical tourist trail is part of its DNA, and they have been taking curious travellers off the beaten track since starting way back in 1981.

With the spotlight firmly on sustainable and responsible travel and a strong push to discourage travellers from places heavily affected by overtourism, overland travel has once again come to the forefront.

Dragoman is taking this opportunity to further encourage travellers to step away from the norm and support the fight against overtourism by offering a 15 per cent discount on 15 of their more remote Overland journeys.

New Budapest-to-Prague private train Tour unveiled

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On this new private train journey being offered by MIR Corporation, guests will enjoy the pleasures of Old World rail travel aboard the luxurious Golden Eagle Danube Express from Budapest to Prague.

On the way, they’ll stop in Slovakia’s capital, Bratislava, to admire the imposing Bratislava Castle, explore Vienna’s historic centre, visit Krakow, tour four UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and end the tour at a five-star hotel in Prague. This Budapest to Prague private train tour is scheduled for 5 to 12 July 2020. Prices range from $6,895 to $21,995 per person.

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Aviation

ACCC gives Virgin Australia’s cooperation plans with Virgin Atlantic a boost

This news couldn’t have come at a better time for Virgin Australia, given its current financial predicament.

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Travel Agents

Agent wrap: Beyond Travel’s Sri Lanka commission deal, Magellan award winners revealed + MORE!

This week’s agent wrap is somewhat of a whopper, a “Big Bertha”, a “Goliath”. Meaning there’s lots of news.

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Cruise

Nearly half of all new cruise builds to rely on LNG fuel: CLIA

The cruise industry is making “unprecedented” progress in going green, according to CLIA. Find out exactly how it’s making cruising more sustainable here.

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Aviation

Young man snagged at Indian airport after impersonating 81-year-old to enter US

In all honesty, Travel Weekly thinks this man’s disguise was pretty convincing.

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Wholesalers

A&K reveals its 2020 ‘hot list’

Abercrombie & Kent has announced its ‘hot list’ for 2020. However, that’s not to suggest it’s made up of attractive people in the travel industry.

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Aviation

Maori groups threaten to boycott Air New Zealand over ‘kia ora’ trademark

The airline is seeking to trademark the masthead of its inflight magazine, Kia Ora, just in time for Maori language week.

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Destinations

Aussie travel bloggers detained in Iran over alleged drone activity

The pair were documenting an overland voyage from Australia to London when they were arrested for allegedly launching a drone near a military area.

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Aviation

Pilot’s coffee spillage causes plane carrying hundreds to divert

by Christian Fleetwood

According to the incident report, the pilot was using a single-use cup. Shame, shame, shame!

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Road & Rail

Flight Centre drives away with Uber

Look, we were going to go with the headline “Flight Centre shifts up a gear with Uber”, but thought it was too lame.

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Tourism

Flavour of the Week: LATAM’s new CEO, RCL gets new agency, Uber Air appoints boss + MORE!

There has been an awful lot of movement in the travel industry recently, so we’ve prepared a mammoth wrap-up of all the latest appointments to give you some to toast to down at the pub later today.

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Tourism

Tourism Australia names new boss

Tourism Australia has appointed its new managing director, who also happens to be the organisation’s first-ever female head.

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Travel Agents

“It’s a complete abrogation of responsibility”: Flight Centre urged to stop selling elephant riding

by Christian Fleetwood

Flight Centre has ruffled a few feathers over its stance on elephant riding. Get the lowdown here.

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