News and notes from around the interweb:
- I literally need to be at the Houston Bush Intercontinental airport soon, or else I wouldn’t be flying from Austin to Houston. United has the non-stop flight, so bought a ticket on United. I didn’t pay the $59 they wanted to upgrade to first on a regional jet.
While I declined that buy up, two days after purchase United sent me an email suggesting I use miles to upgrade instead.
Since I wouldn’t spend $59, do you think I’d take them up on this?
- Starting June 13, T-Mobile customers will get an hour of gogo inflight internet on every flight free.
- Cathay Pacific has launched a year-long collaboration with Hyatt chefs for their long haul flights departing Hong Kong in all classes of service.
The trick of course is always in the level of investment and in the execution.
- Per Airline Weekly, “Of all the miles [MileagePlus] customers redeemed last year, 83% were for United flights and upgrades”
- Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson wants regulation to smother small competitors.
“I personally think (Airbnb) is moving from a first phase, which is classic shared economy, where hosts find a way to monetize an extra room in their house or their house when they’re gone,” said Sorenson. “Phase two, which is underway now, is really in many ways like a micro-hotel thing, where small business people are saying I’m going to take a gamble and see if I can make enough spread between the cost to acquire those units and what I can get from customers.”
In that case, Sorenson asserted, those commercial operators need to be regulated just like hotels.
“I think when you’re in that place, it’s crystal clear that the rules be fair,” he continued. “So if you’re running a micro-hotel, you oughta make sure you’re paying your lodging taxes, you got to make sure you’ve got permits that permit you to do the business, and you’ve got to make sure the product quality is such that it meets the safety standards that apply.”
A company like Marriott has the infrastructure to manage regulatory complaince, and spread fixed costs across thousands of hotel properties. So it will always favor regulations, which serve as barriers to entry for small competitors.
- Meanwhile even though the Marriott acquisition of Starwood won’t mean a combined loyalty program before 2018, that doesn’t mean we won’t see changes you’re gonna like before then.
[Marriott CEO Arne] Sorenson: What we’ve said so far is we don’t think we’ll have one program before 2018, but that doesn’t mean we’ll take interim steps between now and until then. Stay tuned for that.