Cost-free vacation nationwide: today Luxembourg, tomorrow the Uk?



“Mobility is one particular of the biggest gifts you can give to folks,” states Nicky Gardner, as the rain streaks down the windows of a chaotic northbound coach from Luxembourg Metropolis.

She and Susanne Kries — authors of Europe by Rail: the Definitive Guideline — are, for at the time, travelling without having tickets. Deliberately. 

They arrived in the Grand Duchy for what, in transportation terms, is an historic weekend. Luxembourg has just grow to be the 1st nation in the entire world to abolish rail, bus and tram fares nationwide.


Francois Bausch, the visionary transport minister who brought in the cost-free mobility scheme, has two vital rewards. Luxembourg is each concise (the measurement of Oxfordshire) and wealthy. Whilst lots of locals are comfortably unfamiliar with buses and trains, their taxes can, he hopes, enable deal with overloads on the roads.

Britain is much even larger and not so very well off. But the Uk suffers similarly from too much vehicle use that damages the atmosphere, regionally and globally.

Ms Gardner is confident other nations will comply with Luxembourg on the low-carbon tramway to local climate-improve heaven. “We’ve presently observed a number of countries decide [free transport] up at a metropolis degree,” she says.

“At a nationwide stage it’s heading to consider a little little bit of time. But I imagine it will come.

“We have the environmental movement to thank for that, due to the fact they’ve built all of us knowledgeable of how it’s not just great for us, but it’s great for our world if we vacation by public transportation.”

Other nations will check out intently to see how Luxembourg fares without fares. The coverage is intended to persuade a modal change from street to rail and bus — in other text, to lure motorists out of their cars. 

Yet it could result in unintended implications such as flooding Luxembourg’s border villages with haphazardly parked automobiles as crafty neighbours from Belgium, France and Germany exploit the absolutely free onward transport.

The UK’s Office for Transportation is not likely to fork out considerably focus, nevertheless. In the time it can take a Pret barista to make a cafe latte on the ground ground of the DfT HQ, a civil servant could work by way of just some of the negatives.

The now overloaded 7.57am from Woking to London Waterloo would grow to be unbearable without having the substantial fares that suppress even denser crowds.

The home sector in random towns these types of as Taunton, Oxenholme and Skipton would be distorted as future housebuyers cashed in on vanishing season tickets to Bristol, Manchester and Leeds respectively.

And, if rate is not a factor, how particularly will the Friday night time berths on the Caledonian Sleeper from London to the Scottish money through the Edinburgh Festival be allotted?

Add the tiny matter of replacing the £15bn in fares now paid every single yr by rail, bus and tram travellers, and it is crystal clear that “no-pay UK” does not correlate with recent general public transportation in Britain.

Yet fareless vacation is a truth in many United kingdom contexts. Buses and Tubes are absolutely free in the vicinity of Heathrow airport, in a bid to slice motor vehicle use in Glasgow and Manchester, rail travellers connecting amongst the two major stations can just take absolutely free buses and no just one blessed ample to get to 60 in Northern Eire, Scotland, Wales or London (but 65 in the relaxation of England) need to have ever spend a neighborhood bus fare once more.

Could, or should really, an enlightened city or county make the reasonable leap to fare-no cost travel for all within its boundaries?

Brighton and Bristol are the obvious candidates: somewhat rich cities with terrible website traffic and powerful environmentally friendly qualifications.

Nevertheless for a lot of travellers, selling price is not the challenge, says Martin Dean, the taking care of director of bus development at the Go-Forward Team.

“There’s no place supplying persons no cost transport if they then get caught in a site visitors jam,” he says. “That will make them extremely, really annoyed. 

“A fare to get into the city centre is generally considerably less than the selling price of a cup of coffee. So it is not that they’re unaffordable. Obtaining rid of congestion is the most significant difficulty.”

He also cautions about the transforming priorities of politicians.

“If all of the money for a public transport procedure comes from the federal government, which is Alright while the govt is intrigued. But if the governing administration has a further precedence, or runs out of cash, then where’s the income likely to arrive from?”

Back on the 1.15pm from Luxembourg City, as the guard walks past with no inquiring for tickets, Nicky Gardner is much more optimistic.

“To give an whole state no cost transport is revolutionary. Aside from encouraging commuters to change from their cars and trucks, it will little by little rework the attitudes of an overall populace in direction of community transport.”

But for now, British commuters should get their tickets completely ready for inspection.



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Pigeons filmed flying inside plane before take-off



Two pigeons were filmed flying around in a GoAir airplane before take off.

The plane, which was situated at Ahmedabad International Airport in India, was due to depart for Jaipur at 5pm on Friday.

However, before the aircraft left the ground, the passengers and crew were shocked to discover a couple of pigeons in the cabin.

The incident was captured on video and shared on Twitter by India TV journalist Nirnay Kapoor.

In the 43-second clip, the pigeons can be seen flying up and down the plane, as members of the public and staff attempt to catch them with their bare hands.


On Twitter, the official account for GoAir offered an apology in response to the video shared by Kapoor.

“We understand this was not the travel experience you were hoping for and we’re sorry,” the tweet read.

In another tweet, the airline clarified that the crew on board the plane “immediately got the birds removed from the aircraft”, adding that the flight took off on time at 5pm.

“GoAir regrets any inconvenience caused to its passengers and requests the airport authorities to get rid of this menace,” said a GoAir spokesperson, according to NDTV.

While the flight may have departed on time, it reportedly arrived at its destination 30 minutes later than scheduled at 6.45pm.


Several people responded to the pigeon-on-plane incident with incredulity.

“Wonder why a pigeon would need to board a flight when it can fly for free! Absolutely crazy scenes in the @goairlines as 2 pigeons were found inside the plane,” one person tweeted.

“Seems they were tired of flying by their own,” another remarked.​





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ITB Berlin 2020 cancelled, but A Luxury Vacation Website appointments nevertheless go on!


Each individual calendar year, for the past 54 yrs, ITB Berlin (Internationale Tourismus-Börse Berlin) – a main occasion in the travel field calendar – can take spot at exhibition grounds in the Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf district of Berlin, at a location called Messe Berlin. The event has developed to be the biggest journey reasonable in the entire world, with all around 10,000 exhibitors and around 100,000 trade website visitors every single yr, as very well as lots of visitors from the public.

This 12 months, it was on the lookout like the occasion would continue on as normal but, at the eleventh hour, the choice was produced to cancel the present for the initial time in its heritage due to the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

This has produced pretty a combined response. Many people don’t concur with the decision, sensation that it is thanks to hysteria stirred up by the media and that it sends out the incorrect information. In truth, you can see how it is tricky to market holidays if it is perceived that folks in the marketplace are seemingly not organized to travel themselves (even if they are). Many others experience that it is the suitable determination and that bringing in excess of 100,000 folks collectively from all around the environment, all inter-mingling for a 7 days, and them then travelling again to their respective nations, is a possibility that is much too massive to just take.

Though I was thanks to attend – and was preparing to go – a element of me feels it was most likely the liable issue to do. If there was an outbreak connected to the occasion, the implications globally could be pretty major and the organisers would no question be hung, drawn and quartered for having proceed so recklessly.

The regrettable issue was the timing of the decision. All 7 days, the organisers had been insistent that the function was nevertheless going forward. Yesterday early morning, they changed their tune a bit, stating “Messe Berlin GmbH is at the moment coordinating with the community authorities at federal and point out amount on how to proceed with regard to ITB Berlin 2020 and COVID-19. It is envisioned that a lot more specific information and facts will be accessible in the night of 28 February 2020 at the earliest. We will tell you as shortly as we have new info.”

Even at this issue, it continue to wasn’t very clear that they were being going to cancel (even though I had suspected it) and this did not occur to light until properly into Friday evening, effectively immediately after regular near of organization in Europe. By then, lots of folks had previously begun their travels, exhibition stand builders (some with groups that are tens of men and women robust) had by now been hard at perform for some time, and so on.

With the profit of hindsight, if the function was to be cancelled, I feel it wanted to happen substantially earlier. As a substitute, the information that had absent out was a person of ‘business as usual’. Rather regrettable, I suppose, however, was the timing and uncertainly of the COVID-19 outbreak in Europe. At initially, it appeared confined to just northern Italy but the photo was modifying on a every day basis. Activities this sort of as he SIHH Geneva check out fair, on the other hand – which does not choose place until finally the finish of April – was cancelled previously in the week.

I have personally been very fortunate for the reason that the owners of the lodging I booked have agreed to defer my booking to following year’s celebration (which will be held 10-14 March 2021) which they were being by no signifies obliged to do. I experienced booked my outgoing flight with a price range airline and experienced still to e book my return flight as I would be traveling again to a different airport and some of my journey logistics ended up yet to be finalised, so my personal loss is negligible. For some others, although, it will be a extremely unique photo.

Of program, like most persons attending, I also experienced numerous conferences lined up so following week I am preparing to meet up with as quite a few of these folks as possible through online appointments. If you are a person who was likely to meet up with with me (or even if you are not, but would like to understand a lot more about how A Luxury Travel Web site can enable your business enterprise), please truly feel free of charge to ebook an on the net appointment through https://calendly.com/paulhjohnson/altb

In the meantime, we welcome your remarks on regardless of whether you agree or disagree with the decision to terminate the celebration, or if you merely want to share your personal own tale on how it has influenced you. Whatever your involvement, we would enjoy to listen to from you!





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Luxembourg makes history with free public transport



Luxembourg may be a country only the size of Oxfordshire, but the government is making big claims for its abolition of fares on public transport – comparing the move with “the invention of the wheel, the arrival of the internet”.

The mobility ministry says 29 February 2020, the day nationwide ticketless travel began, “will become a date anchored in history, just like the first step on the moon”.

The last opportunity to pay the nationwide £1.70 (€2) flat fare was on bus number 6 in a suburb of the capital at 11.59pm on Friday 28 February.


Citizens, expatriates and visitors can now enjoy permanent free travel throughout the Grand Duchy.

“It’s fantastic,” said one of the first beneficiaries: Rosalind Brown, a marketing and communications specialist who has lived in the capital for 22 years. 

Collector’s item: one of the last bus tickets ever issued in Luxembourg (Simon Calder)

“It does encourage you to hop on the tram. I’m really glad that Luxembourg is the first country to do it. I hope others follow.”

The policy has been launched by Luxembourg’s deputy prime minister – and mobility minister – François Bausch.

“The system that we developed in the last century cannot function any more,” he told The Independent

“Everywhere we have congestion problems, the quality of life in urban areas is going down.

“If we organise the big urban areas, this will help with climate change.”

Luxembourg’s transport system costs £430m (€500m) annually, with fare revenue of £35m (€41m) meeting barely 8 per cent of the total.

The Grand Duchy is thriving economically but has severe problems with traffic. Luxembourg has more cars per capita than any other country in the European Union.

In Luxembourg City, where many expatriates from across Europe and the world live and work, there is strong backing for the new policy.

Marija from Croatia, who works in a bar, said: “We pay high taxes, so it’s good to get something back.”

Among many Luxembourgers, though, the move will make little difference to their travel plans: only one in five commuters currently uses public transport.

Each working day, the country’s population is augmented by 220,000 employees who commute from Belgium, France and Germany. There are fears that some of them may drive just across the border and park in a small town or villages, then jump on a free bus or train to reach their workplace.

But the deputy prime minister said that Luxembourg’s government has spent £103m (€120m) across the border in France to improve rail links and lure commuters from car to train. 

“Mobility is one of the most important challenges of humanity in the 21st century,” said Mr Bausch.

Not every aspect of public transport is free: commuters who want to “work in serenity” can pay an extra €3 to travel first class on trains.



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Prime 5 rainforest vacations – A Luxurious Travel Blog site : A Luxurious Travel Blog site


Rainforests are the oldest dwelling ecosystems on Earth, and the most assorted. They go over only 2% of the Earth’s floor but up to 50% of the world’s plants and animals stay in them. A quarter of elements for modern-day medications are discovered in rainforest plants and rainforests engage in an critical purpose in keeping the Earth’s confined source of freshwater and controlling the climate.

The sights and seems of the rainforest are genuinely distinctive. From the cacophony of insects, birds and frogs in the evenings, to vibrant birds and agile monkeys leaping from tree to tree, to the unlimited green levels of dense vegetation, you will not be stuck for points to listen to, see and scent.

The rainforest local climate can be powerful (scorching, humid and a good deal of bugs!), but the working experience is perfectly worth any discomforts.

We’ve set with each other a listing of our top rated five rainforest vacations from all around the entire world. These are:

  • Terrific Bear Rainforest, Canada
  • Bwindi Impenetrable Nationwide Park, Uganda
  • Sinharaja Forest Reserve, Sri Lanka
  • Rainforests of the Atsinanana, Madagascar
  • Amazon Rainforest, Brazil, Peru & Colombia

The Wonderful Bear Rainforest

As you could have guessed from the title, this rainforest is household to bears – and tons of them! The rainforest will make up 25% of the world’s remaining coastal temperate rainforests and is the only position in the world where by you will come across Kermode “Spirit” bears, viewed as sacred by the nearby T’simshian individuals.

Grizzly bears also populate the area, as nicely as gray wolves, Sitka deer, cougars, eagles, sea lions, sea otters and humpback whales. Go to concerning late August and mid-October, when returning salmon attract wildlife in the direction of the rivers, to see the bears hunt the abundant fish.

Bountiful plant life exists inside of the rainforest, together with 1000-year-aged Western Crimson cedar trees and underwater kelp forests in the rivers and encompassing waters. Functions for travellers consider complete benefit of this abundance of wild- and plant-lifestyle with kayaking and fishing excursions, wildlife and marine life spotting, boat rides, mountaineering and heli-climbing.

Bwindi Impenetrable Nationwide Park

Fifty percent of the world’s populace of mountain gorillas, all-around 400, roam the rainforest in Bwindi Impenetrable Nationwide Park and the primary action on any travellers list is a trek into the dense vegetation in search of these wonderful creatures. It can consider nearly anything from a several hours to a comprehensive working day to come across a group of gorillas, but after you do, you can look at them interact in their all-natural atmosphere for up to an hour.

Climbing, birding, cycling, mountain biking and cultural local community tours are also well known functions within just the park and people are usually treated to sightings of baboons, chimpanzees, elephants, antelope, golden monkeys and 350 species of bird including African goshawks, Augur buzzards and Equatorial akalats.

With 400 species of crops, the park characteristics an abundance of flora, which include the unusual brown mahogany.

Sinharaja Forest Reserve

The reserve is the final remnant of Sri Lanka’s tropical lowland rainforest and is the home of quite a few unusual endemic flora and fauna including the purple-confronted langur, dusky-striped jungle squirrel, loxococcus rupicola (a variety of palm tree) and atalantia rotundifolia (a flowering plant from the citrus household).

Other wildlife uncovered in the reserve incorporate jaguars, Indian elephants, torque macaques, giant squirrels, reptiles and butterflies.

Website visitors can go trekking and on boat tours and from November to March and in April and August, birdwatching excursions are out there. The rainforest has several indigenous birds and 19 of Sri Lanka’s 20 endemic chicken species can be located right here. Appear out for Ceylon Hanging Parrots, Ceylon Wood Pigeons, Ceylon Gray Hornbills, Layard’s parakeet and the Pink-confronted Malkoha.

Rainforests of the Atsinanana

Comprised of six nationwide parks, the rainforest stretches alongside practically the entirety of the east coastline of Madagascar. More than 50 % of the islands endemic wildlife simply call these rainforests dwelling and a staggering 70-90% of the life in the rainforest exists in the tree cover.

There are around 100 species of lemur inside of the rainforest, together with bamboo lemurs, black lemurs, purple-ruffed lemurs, Indri and the nocturnal aye-ayes. Other wildlife this sort of as leaf-tailed geckos, tenrecs and leaf chameleons can also be located. About 1000 species of orchid and more than 1000 species of jasmine grow in the region.

Leading functions in these rainforests are mountaineering and trekking deep into the vegetation to spot the ample wildlife and plant everyday living.

Amazon Rainforest

The Amazon is the world’s largest tropical rainforest, inhabited by 1 in ten of the known species on earth such as jaguars, amazon river dolphins, emperor tamarins, black spider monkeys, black caiman, poison dart frogs, anacondas, howler monkeys and quite a few a lot more.

Flora incorporate the heliconia flower, orchids, giant h2o lilies, enthusiasm fruit bouquets and monkey brush vines. With above 16,000 species of tree, the health and fitness of the Amazon rainforest has a immediate influence on the health and fitness of the complete earth and the handle of regional and world climates, as properly as the defense of lots of species of plants and animals.

A rainforest of this scale has a great deal of accessible pursuits. Guests can get river cruises, go on cover excursions, hike by the tropical woods and go to area tribes.

I hope this list of rainforests have whetted your urge for food and you are completely ready to take a look at everything that a rainforest has to offer you.

Matt Rushbrooke is Director of Touring & Tailormade at Rainbow Excursions.

If you would like to be a guest blogger on A Luxurious Journey Site in purchase to raise your profile, please get in touch with us.





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TTG – Journey sector information


ITB Berlin posted on its website very last evening that Germany’s Federal Ministry of Well being and Federal Ministry of Economics experienced agreed the celebration, because of to acquire place from 4-8 March, really should not go ahead.

 

ITB, which attracts 10,000 exhibitors and 160,000 people in full, posted on its web-site that dependable health authority, the district of Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf in Berlin, experienced imposed substantially tighter constraints on keeping the occasion, together with that every participant would need to have to show to the location, Messe Berlin, that they were being not from a designated possibility spot or had not been in call with people today from a danger space.

 

“It is not doable for Messe Berlin to fulfill these requirements overall,” ITB explained.

 

“Messe Berlin had for months produced it identified that a conclusion on keeping or cancelling large-scale gatherings would only be taken based on the suggestions or recommendations of the suitable professional authorities. Only they have the essential information and professional know-how in get to attract the correct conclusions.”

 

Dr Christian Goke, main executive of Messe Berlin, additional: “With a lot more than 10,000 exhibitors from over 180 international locations ITB Berlin is very crucial for the world’s tourism sector. We get our obligation for the well being and protection of our site visitors, exhibitors and workers quite severely. It is with a hefty heart that we ought to now appear to phrases with the cancellation of ITB Berlin 2020.”

 

Chairman of the supervisory board of Messe Berlin, Wolf-Dieter Wolf, included: “Not when in the 54-year history of the party have ITB Berlin and Messe Berlin expert a related condition.

 

“We would like to thank all exhibitors and partners from all about the globe who about the past several days and months have stood by ITB Berlin. We look ahead to continuing the dependable romantic relationship with our partners in the current market.”

 

Replying to feedback on Twitter enquiring whether or not any exhibitor costs would be lined, ITB reported because of to the limited recognize of cancellation and the large amount of exhibitors “we question for your understanding that we will test these queries internally”. It added this could get from ten times to two months.

 

ITB additional on Twitter that it wished to thank website visitors, exhibitors and companions about the planet who have supported it in the earlier days and weeks and that it seemed forward to welcoming delegates to 2021’s celebration from 10-14 March.



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How to do Paris with the kids



The Independent’s hotel recommendations are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and book, but we never allow this to affect our coverage.

Strolling down elegant boulevards, dining in atmospheric brasseries and admiring world-class art in Paris can be heaven when you’re keeping the company of adults. Add children to the mix and those joys quickly become a “why do we have to walk?” whinge, an “I’m not eating that!” whine and a “Why are we looking at boring pictures?” moan.

How, then, do you “do” Paris, its art, architecture and food without breaking the bank and in a way that makes every member of the family happy? The answer lies in the lesser known attractions.


When it comes to art, the Musee d’Orsay, the Orangerie and the Louvre are all free to under-18s, and their timed-entry tickets will help you beat the queues.

But my nine-year-old daughter and six-year-old son were unlikely to appreciate the Mona Lisa from behind a crowd of iPhone-wielding tourists, or gaze enchantedly at Monet’s water lilies for more than three seconds.

Thankfully, a different kind of arty experience awaited us in the 11th arrondissement, at the Atelier des Lumières.

This vast warehouse, a former iron foundry, first opened in April 2018, and showcases art with an impressive son-et-lumière (sound and light) show across its 10-metre walls.

You can interact with the artwork at Atelier des Lumières (Culturespaces )

When we visited this dark and magical space, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers towered above us, projected in full technicolour on to the walls. Over the next 45 minutes, we sat on the floor, mesmerised by giant versions of Van Gogh’s legendary works while elements of the paintings moved in time with the jazz music soundtrack. It was followed by another film celebrating Van Gogh’s admiration of Japanese art, which had us gazing, wide-eyed, at an animated version of Hokusai’s Great Wave as it rolled to the soundtrack of Claude Debussy’s La Mer; giant, beady-eyed fish jumping in the waves. What made it even more special was the fact that the children could touch the artwork – the lights danced on their hands as they reached out to the walls to touch them.

In summer, the Jardin des Plantes is a haven for children: fountains, parquet gardens and paths to run around, and a small zoo with orangutans, snakes, birds and insects. The garden is a different story in the winter drizzle though.

The animals inside the Grande Galerie de L’Evolution (JC Domenech)

Thankfully, there’s as much to explore inside the Galeries d’Evolution, where exhibits tell the story of earth’s animal kingdom. The ground floor is all about life in the oceans and there we learn how the narwhal (with the help of an impressive life-size model) inspired legends of unicorns; we giggle at films of penguins’ hilarious antics; and learn how coral is formed. Up a level, and we get close to the parade of taxidermied animals from the African plains in the centre of the floor. Elsewhere, we see how different the animals living in South America are.

The “galerie” itself is impressive, too: dating from 1889, it still has its original glass roof, which spans 1,000 square metres and casts gentle light into the enormous space. Additional effects add to the drama and, as we stand at the top of the three floors of balconies, the sound of a simulated storm fills the hall with the boom of thunder and patter of rain.

The cocktail bar is one to come back to without the kids (Jérôme Galland)

A 20-minute walk away (we risked the whinging) is La Felicitá. It’s tagged as the biggest restaurant in Europe, but the immense glass-roofed warehouse (it covers 4,500 square metres) is more a food hall than restaurant. With a variety of freshly prepared foods from different counters, it offers families the holy grail of serving something for everyone. So while the kids each munched on a burger, my husband and I tucked into crunchy poke bowls served in the train carriage parked in the centre of the hall. I resisted a drink from the oh-so-Instagrammable bar – where five decks of bottle shelves tower above the mixologists below – but I vowed to return sans enfants for that.

Over the weekend, the kids murmured the “D” word a few times, testament to the fact that for the under-10s, Paris is synonymous with Disney. In a bid to distract from it, we went over to Bois de Boulogne, the huge wood and parkland on the western edge of the city where the Jardin d’Acclimatation offers fairground rides with a good old-fashioned vibe. The attraction dates from 1860, when it was a zoo for animals to acclimatise to the chilly Parisian weather after being kidnapped from the colonies. These days, the animal magic comes in the form of donkey rides and the exotic bird aviary – but it’s the fairground rides that proved most popular.

Jardin d’Acclimatation will be a hit with the kids (AFP via Getty Images)

The park costs €5 (€2.50 for kids) to get into, with a book of ride vouchers at an additional cost.

Given it was a chilly winter day, queues were either short or non-existent. We whirled around on the flying chairs, zipped up and down on the rollercoasters, and the kids bumped each other on the dodgems. Elsewhere, we tried our luck at the shooting galleries and duck-fishing, and won vouchers for surprisingly decent prizes. The park was immaculate, the rides smart – beautifully designed with a hint of steampunk having been refurbished in summer 2018 – and the staff were friendly. Not a princess was to be seen but, after that afternoon, Disney wasn’t mentioned again, while the whinges and moans were pleasantly absent too.

Travel essentials

Getting there

Eurostar has tickets to Paris from London from £29 each way.

Staying there

Mama Shelter East, in the 10th arrondissement, has 170 rooms with B&B doubles from €95. A B&B family room costs from €219. Mama Shelter West opened in December 2019 in the 15th arrondissement. It has its own bar-restaurant and is close to two Metro stations.

Hotel Gavarni in the 16th arrondissement is another great family option and is a short walk to Trocadero and Passy Metro stations. The Eiffel Suite has a great view of the rooftops and the Eiffel Tower. Room-only doubles from €160 with Sawdays, family rooms from €400.



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Coronavirus: British Airways owner hit by uncertainty amid global outbreak



British Airways’ parent company, IAG, has said it is impossible to give accurate profit guidance for 2020 “given the ongoing uncertainty on the potential impact and duration of Covid-19”.

BA has suspended all its flights to Beijing and Shanghai, and scaled back its operations to Hong Kong, Seoul and Singapore due to a slump in demand.

The aircraft and crew intended for these services are being redeployed to other parts of the world where demand is regarded as healthy, notably the US and India.


Many flights to northern Italy are also being cut, but British Airways says aircraft and crew are not being redeployed.

The Anglo-Spanish conglomerate also includes Aer Lingus and two Spanish airlines, Iberia and Vueling.

IAG reported solid underlying full-year profits for 2019, with revenue up 5 per cent in what the chief executive, Willie Walsh, called “a year affected by disruption and higher fuel prices”.

Operating profit before exceptional items was €3.285bn (£2.8bn) – down about 5 per cent on the previous year. 

A strike by British Airways pilots in September 2019 cost the company more than €200m.

Mr Walsh said: “These are good results. We demonstrated our robust and flexible model once again through additional cost control and by reducing capacity growth to reflect market conditions.”

IAG’s announcement said its was taking “mitigating actions to better match supply to demand in line with the evolving situation”.

The firm said: “Cost and revenue initiatives are being implemented across the business. 

“IAG is resilient with a strong balance sheet and substantial cash liquidity to withstand the current weakness.”

The group is planning a 2 per cent capacity reduction in 2020.

Mr Walsh is standing down as chief executive at IAG. On 26 March he will be replaced by Luis Gallego, who is currently running Iberia.



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