News in brief:
British Airways to make remaining US ground staff redundant
According to reports from BA sources on Flyertalk, it was announced internally on Friday that remaining British Airways ground staff in the US are to lose their jobs. A private contractor will be taking over the handling of British Airways flights. It is likely that the current staff will be given the chance to transfer, although I don’t know if there are similar rules to the UK on protecting existing pay and conditions.
This follows the recent decision to transfer the Manchester and Newcastle call centre staff to Capita.
Even New York JFK is included in this move. You would have expected British Airways to want to keep direct control of its staff at such a key gateway, but it seems not. The airports affected are San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Miami, Washington, Philadelphia, New York Newark, New York JFK and Boston. All of the other BA US bases are already outsourced, I understand.
In case you’re wondering, this is not the normal way that long-haul airlines operate. Most of the major foreign long haul carriers at Heathrow use their own dedicated staff and it is generally seen as a better way of keeping control of the situation on the ground when things go wrong – which, in the airline business, they often do.
United Airlines drops three UK and Irish routes to New York
United has announced that it is ending services between New York and three UK and Irish destinations:
Birmingham to Newark will close on 5th October
Glasgow to Newark will move from year-round to Summer-only, with no flights between 28th October and 4th May 2018
Shannon to Newark will move from year-round to a 75% service, with no flights between 25th November and 9th March 2018
Aer Lingus will continue to fly from Shannon to New York, and Norwegian is likely to pick up the slack elsewhere over time.
Up to 40% bonus when you buy World of Hyatt points
Until 9th August, Hyatt is offering a 30% – 40% bonus when you buy World of Hyatt points.
You get a 30% bonus when you buy 5,000 to 9,000 points and 40% on any larger purchase. This is a better deal than those we have seen recently from Hyatt which have tended to cap out at 30%.
This is obviously worth a look if you need to top up your account. It may also be worthwhile if considering a stay in a top tier Park Hyatt such as the ones in Paris or Sydney, where buying the points may be cheaper than paying cash.
The new Park Hyatt resort in Mallorca is another location where buying points may make sense. Prices for cash are still a little scary – rooms from Euro 545 in August, or Euro 680 if you want a cancellable one – despite being about 25% lower than they were in 2016. A redemption at 20,000 points per night ($336 / £256) would be a good deal.
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