Regional News - Latin America / Caribbean.

 
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New York, Delray Beach (AirGuide - Regional News Latin America / Caribbean) Jan 15, 2012

Demand for wide-body MRO services jumps, analysts say The demand for maintenance, repair and overhaul work on wide-body aircraft has grown 2% since last year, outpacing demand for MRO services for narrow-body aircraft. However, analysts at TeamSAI found that wide-body fleets have not grown as much as predicted. The analysts said wide-body fleets "lagged behind what we might have expected" with a 1.5% growth rate in the first 11 months of 2011. Jan 12, 2012

Solar panels are helping Haitians become business owners Two years after Haiti's devastating earthquake, aid groups are using sustainable techniques to help residents. Portable solar panels allow people to power lights, radios and cellphones, and the program provider says they've proven to be a stepping stone for people to become entrepreneurs. "Using innovative solutions, like solar energy, to facilitate vital transitional [programs] is proving to be hugely successful," writes Duncan Lewis. Jan 12, 2012

U.N.'s secretary-general pushes for renewable energy U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon outlines in this editorial the challenges facing governments, businesses and civil institutions at the World Future Energy Summit, which opens next week in Abu Dhabi. "My vision is for a world with universal energy access coupled with significantly improved rates of energy efficiency and a doubling of renewable energy in our mix of fuel sources. ... We need to raise sustainable energy to the top of the global agenda and focus our attention, ingenuity, resources, and investments to make it a reality," he writes. Jan 12, 2012

Murphy's Travel Laws Murphy Laws For Frequent Flyers: - No flight ever leaves on time unless you are running late and need the delay to make the flight. - If you are running late for a flight, it will depart from the farthest gate within the terminal. - If you arrive very early for a flight, it inevitably will be delayed. - Flights never leave from Gate #1 at any terminal in the world. - If you must work on your flight, you will experience turbulence as soon as you touch pen to paper. - If you are assigned a middle seat, you can determine who has the seats on the aisle and the window while you are still in the boarding area. Just look for the two largest passengers. - Only passengers seated in window seats ever have to get up to go to the lavatory. - The crying baby on board your flight is always seated next to you. - The best-looking woman or man on your flight is never seated next to you. - The less carry-on luggage space available on an aircraft, the more carry-on luggage passengers will bring aboard. Jan 11, 2012

Winners of the "Oscars of the travel industry" announced by WTA. World Travel Awards (WTA) capped its year-long search for the worldOs most successful travel and tourism brands with its glittering Grand Final Gala Ceremony in Doha, Qatar, on January 11, 2012. Organizations including American Express, Starwood Hotels, Lufthansa, Abercrombie & Kent, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Europcar,and Incredible India walked off with top honors for their respective roles spearheading the global travel and tourism recovery. The most important decision-makers in global travel and tourism attended the show, which was held in partnership with the Qatar Tourism Authority at the Katara Cultural Village, DohaOs ground-breaking new arts and exhibitions complex. The evening marked the culmination of a year-long search for the very best travel and tourism brands in the world, and featured the winners from WTAOs five 2011 regional heats competing head to head. India saw off the likes of London, New York, Cape Town, Rio de Janeiro, and Sydney to win the blue riband OWorldOs Leading DestinationO award in a year in which international arrivals edged closer to the target of one billion travelers by 2016. Etihad Airways continued its meteoric rise by being voted OWorldOs Leading AirlineO for the third year in succession, following a milestone year that saw the UAE flag carrier continue its journey as the fastest-growing airline in history. Meanwhile Abu DhabiOs sparkling new Jumeirah at Etihad Towers won the nod against the likes of Mandarin Oriental Paris, The Ritz Carlton Hong Kong, The Park Hyderabad, Hotel Missoni Edinburgh, and W Hotel London to pick up the coveted OWorldOs Leading New HotelO title. It was also an evening of celebration for Qatar, with Doha being voted OWorldOs Leading Business Travel Destination,O Qatar Airways named OWorldOs Leading Airline Business Class,O and Regency Travel & Tours winning OWorldOs Leading Travel Agency.O In another win for Qatar, Aspire Zone was named the OWorldOs Leading Sports Tourism Development ProjectO in recognition of the countryOs superlative sporting credentials. Qatar Tourism Authority Chairman, Mr. Ahmed Al Nuaimi, said: OWe are delighted to be honored as the 'WorldOs Leading Business Destination' by our peers in the global hospitality industry. This is a great achievement and solidifies QatarOs premier position as a great place to do business, as well as one with first-class leisure, sporting and cultural attractions.O Hailed as OThe Oscars of the Travel IndustryO by the Wall Street Journal, WTA is recognized worldwide as the ultimate travel accolade. Its 2011 Grand Tour featured regional heats in Dubai (UAE), Antalya (Turkey), Sharm el Sheikh (Egypt), Bangkok (Thailand), and Montego Bay (Jamaica). Graham Cooke, President and Founder, World Travel Awards, said: OThe past year has continued to challenge every strata of travel and tourism. However, our Grand Final winners have all demonstrated their world-class pedigree over this period, and are currently spearheading the global recovery of travel and tourism. In doing so, they are also reinforcing our industryOs role as one of the mainstays of the global economy.O OQatar, in particular, is playing a decisive role in generating new opportunities in travel and tourism, hence our decision to host our Grand Final in Doha. More than USD100 billion worth of infrastructure is due to be completed before the 2022 FIFA World Cup,O he added. Established 19 years ago, World Travel Awards is committed to raising the standards of customer service and overall business performance throughout the international tourism industry. The 2011 WTA nominations featured more than 5,000 companies in 1,000 categories across 162 countries. The winners were selected by more than 210,000 industry professionals and consumers worldwide. WTA partnered with tourism marketing firm Phenomena to bring the ceremony to Qatar. Jan 11, 2012

Co-op vineyards in Argentina offer the thrill of winemaking Wine enthusiasts can experience the wonders of the winemaking process for themselves by investing in one of the parcels of land in the Vines of Mendoza, a co-op vineyard in western Argentina. The possibly meager profits from such a venture pale in comparison to the joy of the process, from planting to bottling the finished wines, as well as the breathtaking views of the rolling Argentine plains, this feature says. Jan 10, 2012

Air Canada Sports executive welcomes Toronto-St.Thomas flights. A leading tennis coach and sports administrator in Canada sees the launch of nonstop Air Canada service to St. Thomas in the United States Virgin Islands (USVI) this winter as a boost for sports-related tourism. Lionel Eli, one of Canada's highly rated and respected tennis coaches and personal trainers, said the Virgin Islands "is not only an incredible vacation spot, but it also is perfect for sports tourism encounters." The long-serving Director of Tennis and Operations at Banbury Tennis Club in northern Toronto and Director of Tennis at Tam Heather Curling and Tennis Club in Scarborough, said as his members hunker down for the another cold winter, "there's nothing like nonstop service from Pearson International Airport into the Caribbean." The non-stop St. Thomas flights, he added, were "long overdue and right on time for athletic and leisure oriented Canadians seeking warmer climes." The former Barbados Davis Cup tennis player and national coach who also works as a rehabilitation/athletics therapist (specializing in brain and spinal injuries), was recently in St. Thomas for the Caribbean Media Exchange on Sustainable Tourism (CMEx) conference where he led a daily morning workout program. Assisting him was yoga enthusiast, Clayton Sizemore, operations manager of CNN in New York. Eli highlighted sports tourism as a huge opportunity for the Caribbean, and posited with the number of professional athletes the USVI has produced, the territory is a natural choice for sports travelers in Canada. "People are curious why Caribbean athletes do so well on the international scene ... and to visit the Caribbean, train in the Caribbean and enjoy Caribbean food, warmth and hospitality is a dream come true for many," said Eli. Using Airbus 319-100 aircraft, Air Canada operates weekly Saturday service from Toronto to St. Thomas with 14 executive seats and 106 in economy. USVI Commissioner of Tourism Beverly Nicholson-Doty expects a 20 percent annual increase in Canadian visitors with the new flight. "We are very keen on forming alliances with professional, collegiate and club member athletes and sports organizations to boost our profile in our key markets." Commissioner Nicholson-Doty added that the Department of Tourism was also keen on exploring alliances with members of the Caribbean-Canadian community to promote travel to the territory. Jan 9, 2012

Aircastle, Orbis Aircastle Announces Joint Effort with ORBIS International to Provide Additional Eye Care Services to Post-Earthquake Haiti. Aircastle Limited announced today that it is partnering with ORBIS International to provide eye care services to Haiti to further the country's reconstruction following the 2010 earthquake. ORBIS prevents and treats blindness by providing quality...

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