Telecommunication companies offering global roaming services will soon be required to provide more information to consumers on how much such services will cost, with rates for data up to 150 times more than those at home. From 27 September, providers will be required to offer SMS alerts, opt-out arrangements and tools for limiting and managing the service once preset spend limits are reached.
Elite members of the new InterContinental Hotels Group Rewards Club will enjoy benefits including free wi-fi internet. Other changes will see members reach Elite status faster by staying at three or more IHG properties. Reward nights are also eligible for points and unused free nights will roll over to subsequent years.
British Airways plans to trial a new paperless bag tag system. Passengers will be required to hold their smartphone over an electronic tag at bag drop, which will add flight details via a unique barcode, before heading through security to their flight as normal. If bags go missing, information about the bags can be extracted from the phone.
Qantas will soon codeshare on five Brindabella Airlines regional services. The QF code will feature on Brindabella’s Sydney-Moree, Sydney-Newcastle, Brisbane-Tamworth, and Brisbane-Coffs Harbour routes from 1 August, with Sydney-Orange services added from 1 September. Qantas frequent flyers can also earn and redeem points on Brindabella Airlines Maxi Saver and Fully Flexible fares on all routes.
Garuda Indonesia have launched daily nonstop flights between Perth and Jakarta. The flights add 2184 seats to the route each week, which previously offered limited direct services. The airline’s codeshare deal with Etihad also opens up new travel options to Abu Dhabi and Europe. Flights will operate on two-class B737-800 aircraft.
Hertz plans to roll its Hertz 24/7 car hire scheme out globally. Already available in Australia, the scheme works by customers signing up to the service, receiving a key fob that is activated with each car hire reservation. The key fob gives access to the car, which has the keys inside. Thirty-five thousand cars, mini-vans, vans and 4WDs are already equipped with the new system.
China Southern is temporarily dropping its Tuesday night service from Guangzhou to Brisbane, as well as its Wednesday return service between the two cities. The change is effective from 22 July to 23 October after which the fifth weekly service will be reinstated.