To make arrivals easier British Airways announced new e-passport gates at Terminal 5.

There are 15 e-passport gates currently opened at London Heathrow Terminal 5, which allows quicker process for customers to get through the UK border control. Travellers can simply scan their e-passport at the barrier, during which the system will run face recognition check. Once the system finds them eligible to enter, gates will automatically open, letting travellers in. The only requirements are for travellers to be over 18 and carrying an e-passport that shows the ‘chip’ logo on the front, which was issued by European Economic Area or Switzerland.

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Lufthansa adds non-stop flights to Nairobi

From 27 October 2015, Lufthansa will fly to Nairobi, Kenya on A340-300. The flights will be via Frankfurt four times a week leaving Frankfurt every morning on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. From 11 Dec 2015 to the end of January 2016 there will also be a Friday morning flight. The return flights will take off from Nairobi as a night flight in the late evening and land the morning of the following day at Frankfurt Airport.

Emirates returns to Erbil

Erbil_International_AirportStarting 15 August 2015, Emirates will operate A330-200 service on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays to Iraqi city Erbil. Currently Emirates operates services to Basra, and flights to Erbil were disrupted by conflict. However, after comprehensive analysis and risk assessments, Emirates will recommence services to Erbil.

Etihad to offer No 1 Traveller for Edinburgh Lounge Access

No.1 Edinburgh - Hero ImageEarlier this year, No.1 Traveller opened its first lounge at Edinburgh airport. Its features include the new “Touchdown” service that’s designed to offer rapid access to a desk with internet to those in a hurry, also fully-tended bar, concierge service, and “Drive to Runway”, a chauffeur-driven airport transfers. Starting from July 2015, all Etihad business class passengers and Etihad Guest cardholders can enter the new No.1 Edinburgh lounge for free. Both Etihad and No.1 Traveller are delighted to have partnered up to offer high-quality facilities and best possible experience to their guests.

First Hotel Indigo opens in Bangkok

As IHG increases its global property portfolio, guests travelling to Bangkok can now enjoy a stay at the first Hotel Indigo in South East Asia. The new boutique hotel offers guests an opportunity to benefit from such facilities as a cocktail bar, a Thai and Western cuisine restaurant and an open-air infinity swimming pool and deck with views of the city. The new Hotel Indigo Bangkok Wireless Road features 192 guestrooms and also offers complimentary wi-fi.

Etihad to launch new A380 on New York route

Starting from 01 December 2015 passengers travelling to New York will be able to enjoy the facilities of Etihad’s new A380, as the airline is to launch the aircraft on its route between Abu Dhabi and JFK.

The new superjumbo will operate one of Etihad’s two daily flights between the cities. Passengers will be able to choose from 417 Economy, 70 Business and nine First Class seats as well as experience travelling in the luxurious on-board apartment, “The Residence”.

Hampton by Hilton Newcastle now open

Business and leisure travellers visiting Newcastle can now enjoy a stay at the newly-opened Hampton by Hilton hotel. Set on Neville Street close to the Newcastle Central Station, the new hotel allows guests to benefit from high quality accommodation in a convenient location. Hampton by Hilton Newcastle offers a selection of 160 rooms to choose from as well as such features as complimentary breakfast and wifi, 24-hour business and fitness centres, a snack area and a bar.

Qatar announces opening of First Class lounge at Hamad International

Qatar Airways passengers will soon be able to take advantage of a truly luxurious pre-flight experience and an exceptional range of facilities, as the airline opens its First Class lounge at Hamad International Airport. With the opening previously postponed, the lounge is set to welcome First Class passengers this April.

Lufthansa launches B747-8 with premium economy on daily service to Newark

With Lufthansa introducing a B747-8 on its daily service to Newark on 23 February 2015, customers travelling between Frankfurt and New York can now take advantage of the airline’s new Premium Economy Class.

Benefits of travelling with Premium Economy include two-times more baggage allowance in comparison to Economy Class, new seats as well as such thoughtful touches as welcome drinks, amenity kits and more.

The launch of the B747-8 on the New York route was initially scheduled for 29 March 2015. Between 28 March 2015 and 08 April 2015 the aircraft will not serve the New York route due to operating flights between Frankfurt and Houston.

Melia to launch ME brand in Barcelona

Melia Hotels International is to increase its global ME brand property portfolio with the launch of ME Barcelona scheduled for 2017. Set on the site of the former Hotel Barcelona, the new property will feature 173 rooms located in a 15-storey building, designed and constructed by OUA. Once open ME Barcelona will be joining ME properties in Madrid, Miami, Milan and Dubai due to launch in 2015 and 2016.