HEADLINE NEWS.

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According to a new report from PricewaterhouseCoopers, record gasoline prices will not stop Americans from hitting the road this summer. The report predicts that the increase in domestic summer travel will create an increase of 5.3 percent in revenue per available room for hotels.

Australian airlines outperformed operators in the US and Europe in ontime performance in Jan., according to the first official figures on domestic flight punctuality released by the government. The Bureau of Transport and Regional Services statistics showed that 87.1% of departures and 86.7% of arrivals operated by the major carriers were achieved within 15 min. of scheduled times. Western Australia Regional airline Skywest was the leading performer with 95% of its flights for the month landing and taking off ontime. It finished ahead of Qantas with 87.3% of departures and 89.5% of arrivals conducted ontime, compared to Virgin Blue with 84.4% and 83.8% of departures and arrivals ontime.

Access America, a travel insurance company, has partnered with Continental to offer trip protection to passengers whom book from Continental.com. The insurance will be available starting next month. It will offer Airline Ticket Protector, which provides trip cancellation and interruption coverage, and 24-hour global emergency assistance. A site www.etravelprotection.com/continental has been developed exclusively for Continental's customers.

American is doubling its AAdvantage miles on flights from New York Kennedy to San Francisco and San Juan, Puerto Rico. The offer is good for San Juan from now through May 31, and for San Francisco between April 16 and May 31 2004. Travelers must register prior to travel at www.aa.com/offers and enter the promotion code for San Juan (NYSJU) or San Francisco (NYSFO), or by calling the AAdvantage dial-in system at 800-882-8880.

Cathay Pacific Airways completed installation of its new business class cabin on all of its long-haul aircraft, which include 747-400s, A340s and three-class A330s.

Continental Airlines raised its fuel surcharge from $10 to $15 each way for travel in the US and between the US and Canada to help offset higher jet fuel prices.

Continental will eliminate paper tickets entirely by the end of this year, including interline tickets. Those airlines that have not implemented electronic interline capabilities, 50 in all, have had their interline ticketing and baggage agreements eliminated, the airline said. David Grizzle, senior VP of corporate development, says the airline is "quite serious about our paperless objective" and it will eliminate issuance and acceptance of paper tickets for all of its flights. It currently has 20 e-ticket partners and has more than 180 interline ticketing and baggage agreements with airlines. It said it looks forward to bringing e-ticket technology to each of those interline agreements.

Hawaiian Airlines...

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