August 2016 
Delta Begins 2Ku Rollout 

Delta is celebrating a new tech milestone with the airline's first aircraft equipped with high-speed Wi-Fi, powered by Gogo's 2Ku technology, entering service.   
Ship 3741, a Boeing 737-800, entered service on June 28 on a flight from Detroit to San Diego. The aircraft is the first of more than 600 aircraft to have its current air-to-ground system upgraded to Gogo's 2Ku high-speed satellite-based service.

2Ku is next-generation technology that provides consistent, uninterrupted coverage nearly anywhere in the world, including over oceans. It offers faster speeds, increased bandwidth and expanded Wi-Fi access beyond the shores of North America for customers traveling on flights between the U.S. and Latin America or the Caribbean. It also offers reduced drag and fuel burn compared to other Wi-Fi systems.

With summer operations requiring heavy aircraft utilization, 2Ku installations will resume in the fall. The high-speed service will eventually roll out to around 80 percent of Delta's domestic mainline fleet.

Delta has completed installation of Ku-band satellite Wi-Fi on nearly all of its wide-body international fleet - including Boeing 747, 767, 777 and Airbus A330 aircraft as well as Boeing 757 aircraft operating on long-haul routes - and will be 100 percent complete by September 2016.
Delta Asia-Pacific Network Update

Delta will cancel service this fall from New York-JFK to Tokyo-Narita, and from Tokyo-Narita to Osaka and Bangkok, while remaining committed to supporting a strong Asia-Pacific network. The announcement comes a few weeks after the U.S. Department of Transportation tentatively awarded Delta daytime service from Los Angeles and Minneapolis to Tokyo-Haneda. Delta is tentatively slated to receive two of the five available daytime trans-Pacific HND frequencies available for U.S. airlines as part of the new aviation agreement between the U.S. and Japan that limits such access to Tokyo's Haneda airport.  Tickets for the new route will not be sold until Delta is granted final DOT approval.

Virgin America's Merger with Alaska Airlines

Virgin America announced plans to be acquired by Alaska Airlines. We believe that by joining two West-Coast based airlines known for their focus on customer loyalty and operational excellence, we will create a stronger and more competitive airline - and one that offers even more destinations and flights for travelers.
Now subject to approval by regulators and other conditions (Virgin America shareholders approved the merger on July 26), this transaction typically takes upwards of six months or more. Beyond that, the process to merge the two airlines into a single carrier typically takes an additional 1-2 years.
There will be no immediate changes to our flight schedules, the Virgin America product and guest experience, Elevate Status levels or Elevate members' ability to earn and redeem points. We will continue to operate as entirely separate airlines - with separate frequent flyer programs.
When the programs are combined, Elevate members will be able to use their Status levels and earned Points across a significantly expanded network with the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan™ - including 114 destinations in North America and 900 global destinations through Alaska Airlines robust network of international partners. We will keep you updated on the integration of the programs in the months ahead. 
Blue Ribbon Business Travel has partnered with automated online expense reporting tools!

Simplify expense reporting for your business travelers.
It's never been easier for business travelers to complete and submit an expense report and quickly 
get reimbursed - all online. 

These expense tools create expense reports automatically, pulling travel and expenses from airline, car and hotel itineraries, personal and corporate credit card transactions, checking accounts, and scanned receipts.  Streamline the expense reporting process and improve the review and approval flow between departments.

They turn lengthy, tedious paper-based approval processes into one-click, online approvals. Managers can easily review and approve expense reports from anywhere, at any time - no paperwork involved. 

In fact, most expenses are pre-approved based on policy rules set in the system, and scanned receipts are included online making review and approvals faster and easier. Expense policy violations are clearly highlighted so managers can request corrections or simply remove questionable line-items and submit the expense report for reimbursement.  

The expense systems convert transactions for international travelers into the appropriate currency based on the date of travel.

To learn more, email us at
Blue Ribbon Business Travel International Inc. is committed to providing you with useful information on the latest developments in the travel industry. The following information has been compiled from a variety of sources and is updated monthly.
National Car Rental Wins Second Annual BTN Car Rental Survey 

Travel buyers rated National Car Rental as the most cooperative, responsive and value-providing car rental supplier for the second year in a row in the Business Travel News second annual Car Rental Survey.
National outscored its competitors in all seven criteria on which buyers rated their car rental suppliers:
* Negotiating price * Negotiating services & amenities * Clean, well-serviced cars * Quick & effective complaint resolution * Communication with buyers about changes * Relationship with Account Managers and Sales Reps * Worth of service vs. rates, fees & charges.

Enterprise Rent-A-Car came in second in the survey. 
Chinese Regulators Put 
Marriott-Starwood Merger on Hold

China has put the brakes on Marriott International's acquisition of Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide.  Marriott announced Monday that it has agreed to the Chinese Ministry of Commerce's (MOFCOM) request to extend its transaction review period for up to 60 days. The move is significant in that the MOFCOM's approval is the only remaining hurdle for Marriott in completing the regulatory clearance process required to finalize the $13.6 billion merger. Prior to Monday's announcement, Marriott expected to have all of its necessary reviews completed by Tuesday, according to last month's second quarter earnings call. However the Bethesda, Maryland-based company may have to wait for an additional two months now.
"Marriott and Starwood continue to believe that their planned merger transaction poses no anti-competitive issues in China," the companies said in a statement Monday. Despite the setback, Marriott and Starwood have received unconditional pre-merger clearances from regulatory authorities in more than 40 countries, including the U.S. and the European Union, among others.  Currently, Marriott has 99 hotels in China, with an additional 150 in its pipeline. Meanwhile, Starwood boasts a whopping 283 properties in China.
Travel Tip - 
Always Make Copies 
Of Your Travel Documents
Before departure, travelers should make copies of their passport and visas in case of an emergency. Leave one copy with a friend or relative and take one with you. It is highly recommended that you have at least one color photocopy of your passport ID page safely stored and separate from your actual passport. This will save you valuable time in case your passport is lost or stolen.

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