Know before you travel by air

Web Check-in for Gulf Air Passengers from London Heathrow T4

Seeking to offer passengers’ better use of the time they spend at the airport, Gulf Air, the national carrier of Bahrain, has today launched Web Check-in and advanced seat selection from London Heathrow as part of its ongoing efforts to enhance the travel experience of its passengers. The idea is to offer passengers fast, efficient and hassle free travel experience.

Gulf Air passengers flying from London Heathrow can now check in online at gulfair.com by selecting the "Check-in" tab on the homepage between 24 hours and 90 minutes before the scheduled departure of their Gulf Air flight. They can also choose the seat of their choice using the new online interactive seat map. The Gulf Air Web Check-in service also allows customers to check in additional passengers travelling with them on the same flight, making those hectic and, often stressful, family or group airport check-in processes a thing of the past.
Web Check-in is currently available on Gulf Air departures from Bahrain, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bangkok, Doha, Kuwait, Muscat, Athens, Larnaca and Frakfurt. It will be rolled out across the entire Gulf Air network over the coming weeks.

Is there really anything like budget travel?
The real cost of “budget” flying

Checking a bag into the hold and using a credit card could add almost thirty per cent* onto the advertised price of some “budget” airline tickets, shows new research from Which? Holiday.
For the research they compared the prices of four of the UK’s largest no-frills airlines on flights to four different destinations. The research also looked at the charges incurred on these flights for checking a piece of luggage into the hold and for paying with a credit card. Prices were for a three-night break between 11 and 16 February 2010 – here are the findings:
• The price of a flight to Paris with bmiBaby increased by around 25 per cent when one piece of hold luggage was checked in and the ticket was booked using a credit card, and the price of a flight to Malaga increased by 23 per cent.
• Ryanair charges £50 extra across all its routes for checking in a hold bag and paying with a credit card; an increase of between 8 per cent and 29 per cent on the advertised cost of the fare.
• Although Jet2 were found to add the most to the cost of a flight for the charges - £92.16 – this was an increase of just 10 per cent on the advertised ticket price.
• Easyjet consistently had the lowest luggage and card charges of the four airlines looked at, ranging from £26 - £38 extra. However, in one case this still amounted to a 17 per cent increase on the advertised price**.
Rochelle Turner, Head of Research for Which? Holiday, says:
“It’s hard to believe that any airline could justify increasing the ticket price by almost a third just for checking a bag into the hold and paying on a credit card – two services that not too long ago were included in the headline price.
“Airlines argue that they are being fairer to customers who don’t use these services. But, in reality, how many people don’t use a credit or debit card to pay for their flights, or travel without luggage? These aren’t extra services. They are part and parcel of taking a flight.”

* The cost of a ticket on a Ryanair flight between East Midlands airport and Malaga increased by 29.1 per cent when a bag was checked into the hold and the ticket was paid for using a credit card. (£121.98 to £171.98)
** On a flight between East Midlands airport and Faro, the cost of an Easyjet ticket increased by 17.6 per cent when a bag was checked into the hold and the ticket was paid for using a credit card. (£121.96 to £147.96).

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Executive Traveller 2003