Archive for » February 22nd, 2012«

No. 2 car-rental organisation Hertz swings to profit

By Nathalie Tadena

Hertz Global Holdings Inc.


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+5.07%



swung to a fourth-quarter distinction as a car-rental association reported aloft car-rental and apparatus revenues.

Shares of a association jumped 3.5%, to $14.08 in new trading, as formula kick researcher expectations.

The No. 2 car-rental association by swift size, behind privately-held Enterprise Rent-A-Car, has posted softened formula over a past dual years. Hertz has benefited from a pickup in business and convenience transport direct given a finish of a retrogression and has also enacted some new cost increases.

Hertz pronounced in Oct it was withdrawing a offer for Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group Inc. (DTG), partly in light of marketplace conditions during a time, though a association pronounced it would reassess that offer.

Hertz reported a distinction of $47.1 million, or 11 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier detriment of $28.1 million, or 7 cents a share. Excluding restructuring charges, debt charges and other items, per-share gain rose to 24 cents from 10 cents.

Revenue increasing 9.7%, to $2.01 billion, or 9.8% incompatible a effects of unfamiliar currency.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters approaching gain of 21 cents a share on income of $1.99 billion.

Worldwide car-rental income increasing 9.5%, while worldwide apparatus income softened 11%.

The worldwide let rate per transaction day slipped 4.2%. The normal series of cars in Hertz’s swift was adult 40%, to 599,300, increased by a company’s merger of Donlen Corp.

The batch strike a two-year low in early October, though has gained 81% given then.

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Friendly Planet Travel Doubles the Dazzle With Its Latest Tour: Dazzling Dubai and Bangkok

JENKINTOWN, Pa.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–

Magnificent architecture, world-class cuisine, incredible shopping, and
fascinating culture define Dubai
and Bangkok.
Two destinations not typically paired together, Dubai and Bangkok are
the epicenter of modern luxury in Asia. Now, thanks to Friendly
Planet Travel
, a leading tour operator that offers high-quality,
affordable vacation packages to exotic destinations worldwide, travelers
can experience the best of these two destinations on its 9-day Dazzling
Dubai and Bangkok
tour for an ultralow price starting at $1,899.

“Dubai and Bangkok are two of the most popular destinations in all of
Asia,” says Peggy
Goldman
, President of Friendly Planet Travel. “We are thrilled to be
one of the first tour operators to be offering this unique and
innovative combination of destinations at a price that simply cannot be
matched. Travelers looking to explore these destinations on their own
would pay at least $650 more per person. And that would be after
countless hours of searching the web trying to find deals and discounts.”

Dazzling Dubai and Bangkok includes round-trip airfare from LAX
(other gateways available for an additional cost) on Emirates,
one of the top-five airlines in the world; fuel surcharges; airline
taxes and fees; and all ground transportation and transfers. It also
includes deluxe hotel accommodations; a daily buffet breakfast; touring
programs, including entrance fees; professional, English-speaking tour
directors and local guides; and more. Friendly Planet’s 9-day Dazzling
Dubai and Bangkok
tour is available for $1,899 on the departure
dates of May 17 and Sept. 20.

Travelers begin their dazzling trip to Dubai by checking into the
award-winning, centrally located deluxe hotel, the Hyatt
Regency
. From there, travelers can explore the city’s picturesque Dubai
Creek
, dividing the city into Deira
on the northern side and Burj
Dubai
to the south. A stop in the Bastakiya
district
to see the charming courtyard houses and narrow alleys,
followed by a stop at the Dubai
Museum
, are all included in the tour of the city. Travelers also
have the chance to experience one of Dubai’s most reliable and
inexpensive forms of transportation, an Abra
water taxi
. The remaining time spent in Dubai is at the leisure of
the traveler who can see all that Dubai has to offer, including the Burj
Khalifa
, the world’s tallest building, and the Mall
of the Emirates
, complete with indoor ski slopes, superior dining,
and more. Optional tours of Modern Dubai or a dinner cruise on a
traditional dhow
boat
on the Dhow Creek, as well as an optional desert safari tour
are also available for those travelers looking for an adventure.

The journey continues to Bangkok,
where travelers check into the five-star, deluxe, centrally located Dusit
Thani
. Travelers begin their tour of Bangkok center by seeing some
of the most interesting of Thai Temples, such as Wat
Trimitr
, where travelers will view the 700-year-old Golden Buddha,
the “Marble Temple,” known as Wat
Benchamabophit
, and more.

Optional excursions are available, which include tours of The
Grand Palace
and the Temple
of the Emerald Buddha
, an evening extravaganza at the Ratchada
Grand Theatre
, a tour of the Thonburi Klongs (canals) and Wat
Arun
, the Temple of Dawn along the Chao
Phraya River
.

For travelers with more time who are looking to take advantage of the
included round-trip airfare, Friendly Planet Travel is offering an
optional extension to Phuket
Island
, Thailand’s most popular resort, for just $599. Travelers
will stay at the Kamala
Beach resort
, located on the unspoiled Kamala Bay, with beautiful,
sandy beaches and crystal clear water for swimming, snorkeling, and
scuba diving. And, it’s just a short tuk-tuk
ride
to Patong
Beach
, one of Phuket’s famous beaches.

For more information about Friendly Planet Travel’s Dazzling
Dubai and Bangkok
tour, please visit the company’s website at www.FriendlyPlanet.com;
the blog at blog.FriendlyPlanet.com;
or contact Jackie Zima-Evans at 610-228-2138 (office), 215-534-2973
(mobile), or write to Jackie@GregoryFCA.com.


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On the Road Review: Ford Edge

In that regard, buyers have generally embraced Ford’s midsized Edge crossover wagon despite some early objections to its blunt facial profile. In a shrinking segment — fewer and fewer five-passenger midsize crossovers exist each year — the Edge holds down the number two sales slot. For 2011, Jeep’s revised Grand Cherokee stormed its way to the top slot, followed by the Edge, Nissan’s Murano and Toyota’s Venza. GM’s Equinox and Terrain twins are similar in size, but are usually marketed against their smaller, compact rivals rather than the wider, taller, midsize entrants.

In this whole group, only Jeep’s Grand Cherokee touts its off-roading abilities; all of the other crossovers mentioned here are considered soft-roaders with good foul-weather traction, but rather limited off-road capabilities. In reality, most buyers of these crossovers, and data says of SUVs, too, never venture into unmaintained road territory.

Previous exposure to the Edge had been limited to brief drives under controlled circumstances, very much similar to what potential buyers experience on their initial voyage. This level of usage never reveals all of the virtues — or shortcomings — in any vehicle.

But after 1,000 miles, a driver learns nuances and vehicle behavior that can substantiate positive first impressions, or, flip negative perceptions into positive feelings. This is the case with the Edge.

Driving the Edge came right on the heels of spending two weeks with one of the industry’s new favorites, the Grand Cherokee. While the Edge demonstrated different ways to do similar activities, it did not disappoint in any fashion. The Edge just has its own character, its own personality — attributes that the manufacturers develop and why you like the brand that you like.

Jumping into the Edge is easy with great ingress and egress for all. This elevated hip point makes forward visibility excellent in traffic and provides a more chair-like view than the somewhat reclined, and lower, stance of typical cars. Over half a million drivers admired this feature with Ford last year, as its triple-team lineup of Escape, Explorer and Edge dominated this part of the industry.

Once inside, the Edge’s seat felt stuffed — like you were sitting atop this bucket rather than being coddled inside of it, as in the Jeep. By week’s end, this was no longer an issue as the Ford’s seat was supportive for several long days in the saddle and never created any annoying leg or back issues. Power adjustments provide a great range of motion, while the thin-rimmed steering wheel has good heft, good feedback and proper control that while different from the Jeep, proved to be no worse of better.

Both of these vehicles have a comprehensive trip computer package that offers a wealth of information, accessed via buttons on the left side of the steering wheel. In the Ford, a small tach rests inside this selectable scheme of screens, while the Jeep’s is always on display. Different, but not necessarily bad.

Both the Ford and the Jeep have one-touch lane change functionality, plus the Ford has one-touch windshield wiper action. The Jeep makes you twist a left-side knob that is awkward in a hurry. Both have their emergency brake pedal tucked under the dash; for some reason, a left leg kept making contact with the Ford’s arrangement while the Jeep never created this scenario.

Moving to the right of the cabin these two manufacturers are using two different schools of thought. The Jeep’s center console is more versatile — more pockets, more space for traveling junk, both visible and hidden, although both offer additional door pockets. On the sloping dashboard of each is an array of electronic controls. Ford relies on its innovative MyFord Touch control center, integrating all climate, audio and travel/navigation changes into a touch-pad layout that can also be programmed for voice activation for most functions. Tiny touch spaces are very difficult to precisely activate while you are operating a moving vehicle, so the Jeep’s larger buttons, simpler dials and much larger info-screen get the nod here. Technology fans will love the higher level of interaction with the Ford, so once again, not bad just different.

Stepping to the rear, the Ford’s rear access is good; however, the doors don’t open as wide as the fronts. Rear seat space is at the top of the class, though, and there is good forward visibility. The center floor hump is minimal in its impact, so three passengers should fit here comfortably.

The Edge’s cargo hold doesn’t offer the separate glass liftgate that the Jeep presents, but packing space is very similar. Access heights are also the same.

Dynamically — where the rubber meets the road — the Edge distinguishes itself nicely. Riding atop a fully independent suspension that stretches the wheelbase out to 111.2 inches, plus 65.0 inches of track width, the Edge is very stable. The chassis soaks up road imperfections with aplomb and delivers a composed, balanced ride that pleases all occupants. There is minimal body roll, better than average steering feel and directional control, plus the added traction of AWD. Lacking the specific 4WD selections of the Jeep’s four-wheel-drive system, the Ford still managed to feel reasonably sure-footed in the white stuff despite its compromise all-season tires.

Prod the right pedal and the Edge responds crisply. Packing an enhanced 3.5-liter V-6 — now making 285 hp — the Edge is quick when necessary and smooth at all times. The six-speed automatic never intruded on the driving style, working as it should with no hard shifts or ‘hunting’ up and down. The Edge felt livelier on the road than the similarly powered Jeep, passing other cars with greater ease. Weighing several hundred pounds less than the Jeep certainly helps in the power delivery arena.

It was expected that the weight variance alone would have created an advantage in net fuel economy too, yet the Ford didn’t better the Jeep at all. While certainly consistent — 22 mpg was the average at every fill-up — the Edge doesn’t break any new ground in the fuel mileage category.

The Edge was also very quiet moving down the road, ensuring additional comfort that is all too often overlooked. In popular SEL trim, the Edge rides on 18-inch tires that created little road noise, while the cabin is sound-protected by thick door seals and proper insulation. Honda might take a lesson here.

The Edge comes in four trim levels. Base front-wheel drive SE models start at $28,465 with a good amount of standard gear: tilt/telescoping steering wheel, 4.2-inch MyFord display screen, rear cargo tie-downs, 17-inch wheels, Hill Start assist and the usual power amenities. An all-wheel-drive SEL, as shown here, starts at $33,620 with automatic climate controls, 18-inch wheels, leather seating, Sirius satellite radio and reverse sensing system. The Limited is up next while the revised Sport trim, with 22-inch wheels, HD radio, body-color accent panels and black trim and 10-way powered seats, tops the line with a base price of $39,650.

For 2012, the Edge will come with three powertrain selections. The base engine remains the 3.5-liter V-6, with EPA mileage estimates of 18/26 for front drive versions and 17/25 for AWD models, while the upgraded 3.7-liter 305-hp V-6 is optional for the Sport. Front drive buyers can choose a new 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine with 240 horsepower and EPA ratings of 21/30-mpg. Properly equipped models can tow up to 3,500 pounds.

Overall, the Edge was a very pleasing package. Comfort levels are high, over-the-road performance is commendable, and the size of this crossover fits the needs of many drivers. The Edge struck a chord, doing several tasks very well, and really generating few complaints. Greater fuel economy would be welcome (perhaps the EcoBoost will deliver) plus revisions to My Ford Touch promise enhanced user-efficiency going forward.

And now with new LED accent lights, the Edge’s face is starting to look a little softer too. Impression revised.

For more arts entertainment news, pick up a copy of The Ellsworth American.


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Car trips expostulate Canadian transport to 18-year high

 

An boost in a series of same-day automobile trips during a finish of final year helped pull Canadian outbound transport in Dec to a top turn given Mar 1994, Statistics Canada has found.

According to a supervision agency, Canadians done 5.1 million trips outward of a republic in December, a 5.4 per cent boost on Dec 2010.

Accounting for scarcely half of all transport were same-day automobile trips, that totaled 2.5 million, a year-on-year 7.8 per cent increase.

Association of Canadian Travel Agencies chair Ellen Tucker told a Toronto Star that rising direct for brief train tours had turn a approach for Canadian tourists to mix sightseeing with trips to American malls, that as a outcome of a diseased US economy had turn a captivate for Canadian shoppers.

“The sales there have been amazing,” she said.  

“People know that’s happening; how can they resist?”

The same can’t be pronounced of transport to Europe however, that is in a midst of a possess debt crisis.

Trips by Canadians to countries other than a United States totaled 761,000 in December, somewhat adult from a year prior, though 2.3 per cent down from November.

Meanwhile, inbound transport to Canada has remained flat, with only over dual million non-residents visiting a republic in December, adult 0.6 per cent.  

Of sold note were a series of trips to Canada by non-US residents, that rose to their top turn given Sep 2008, to 389,000.

US tourists accounted for 1.65 million of all visits to a republic during a month.


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Odyssey Safaris Announces Special Kenya Safari Offer Including International Airfare

All inclusive safari visits Mt Kenya, Samburu, Lake Nakuru, Masai Mara and includes roundtrip international airfare from JFK.

NEW YORK, NY (PRWEB) February 22, 2012

Odyssey Safaris is offering an all-inclusive safari with international airfare from JFK to Kenya on June 13-21. For travelers making safari plans for summer 2012 this tour presents an opportunity to avoid rising park fees and gas prices.

“This affordable group safari will allow travelers to stretch their travel dollar in a way they haven’t been able to for some time,” Managing Director Mark Cahill said.

Odyssey Safaris is offering and 8 day 7 night safari with the following safari itinerary:

Day 1: Depart US

Day 2: Arrive and overnight Nairobi

Day 3: Mt. Kenya National Park

Day 4-5: Samburu National Reserve

Day 6: Lake Nakuru National Park

Day 7-8: Masai Mara National Reserve

Day 9: Depart Nairobi

Day 10: Arrive US

These tours use some of the best lodges in Kenya!

Accommodations

Nairobi: Fairview Hotel

Mt. Kenya: Serena Mountain Lodge

Samburu: Ashnil Samburu Camp

Lake Nakuru: Sarova Lionhill

Masai Mara: Ashnil Mara Camp

Price: $3,999 per person sharing.

Odyssey Safaris group safaris include:

International Airfare from JFK (we can arrange airfare from other cities worldwide)

Private transport in a luxury 4×4 safari vehicle

All accommodation

All meals

All national park, reserve, and conservation fees

Unlimited game drives

All transportation including airport transfers

Complimentary bottled water daily

Complimentary enrollment in http://www.amref.org emergency air evacuation service

Services of an English speaking driver/guide

“Many clients forget to ask about game drives before booking a safari and don’t realize they will only game drive for 1 or 2 hours in the morning and the same in the evening,” Safari Operations Director Eliud Karimi said. “If a safari company doesn’t tell you they offer unlimited game drives they probably don’t and that means a lot of time at the lodge or paying extra for more game drives.”

For more information call 855-2SAFARI

About Odyssey Safaris

Founded in 2004 Odyssey Safaris immediately sought to address the need for outstanding customer service and the extra value that customized safaris offer. Working with the local knowledge of partner and Safari Operations Director Eliud Karimi and staff, Managing Director Mark Cahill provides information and insight to travelers to assist them in creating the perfect Kenya or Tanzania safari. The companies extra-net on their website and offices in the US and Kenya provide 24 our support to travelers and travel agents to manage their travel details.

“The destinations in east Africa are incredible and clients are obviously thrilled with that part of the trip, but what really makes a safari special is the people who execute it for you, the guide, the planner and support staff, said Managing Director Mark Cahill. “Once you’re on the plane to east Africa professionalism is extremely important and our clients are exceedingly impressed with our staff and some have remained friends; it’s a priceless value add.”

Odyssey Safaris is a member of the Association for the Promotion of Tourism (APTA) to Africa and the Africa Travel Association (ATA).

View all of Odyssey Safaris Kenya Safaris, Tanzania Safari, and Kenya and Tanzania safaris products.

Read about all of the steps Odyssey Safaris takes to make your trip as enjoyable as possible: Safe Safari Travel

Contact

Mark Cahill

Odyssey Safaris

1-855-2SAFARI

Mark Cahill

Odyssey Safaris, LLC.

855-272-3274

# # #

Mark Cahill
Odyssey Safaris, LLC.
855-272-3274
Email Information


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Semi crashes into Jeep on icy I-35

Semi crashes into Jeep on icy I-35

Published 11:06am Tuesday, February 21, 2012

ALBERT LEA — A semi driver lost control in icy conditions Monday night on Interstate 35 at the interchange with Interstate 90 and struck a Jeep.

Both drivers walked away with no apparent injuries. According to the Minnesota State Patrol, the men were wearing seat belts.

The State Patrol report says 54-year-old Bradley Adams of Pleasant Hill, Iowa, was driving a 2012 Kenworth northbound when he lost control and hit the rear bumper of a 1995 Jeep driven by 38-year-old Erick Abrego of Albert Lea.

The report says the Kenworth skidded across an on-ramp and rolled into the ditch, landing on its side and facing southbound. The crash happened at 9:17 p.m.

Both the semi and the Jeep were towed to Allen’s Tow-N-Travel in Albert Lea. The semi was totaled, while the Jeep sustained moderate damage, according to the State Patrol.

Assisting the State Patrol were the Albert Lea Police Department, Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office, Albert Lea Fire Department and Gold Cross Ambulance.


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Police: Car crashes during NYC airfield hustle



The Associated Press

— Police contend a hustler cabbie who preys on nearing passengers during New York’s Kennedy Airport has been arrested — though not before his Lincoln city automobile crashed.

Port Authority Police orator Al Della Fave says dual officers speckled a family of 4 removing into a hobo cab. They famous a motorist as a hustler who charges sky-high rates for a float into Manhattan.

Della Fave says a officers attempted to advise a passengers, and a family’s teenage son put his palm on a steering wheel.

He says a automobile crashed into a guardrail and a motorist ran.

Driver Bhupinder Singh was arrested on charges including forward endangerment and facing arrest. No information on a counsel was available.

The mom and father of a family were treated for bumps and bruises.

___

February 21, 2012 06:11 PM EST

Copyright 2012, The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This element might not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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Investigation continues of Greene County Ind. 445 fatal crash


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//–

Investigation continues of Greene County Ind. 445 fatal crash

By Laura Lane
331-4362 | llane@heraldt.com
February 21, 2012

Police continue investigating a fatal head-on traffic accident that happened in Greene County last week.
On Wednesday, 2 …

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Dollar Thrifty sees clever 1st-quarter on upbeat travel


Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:16pm EST

(Reuters) – Car let association Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group (DTG.N) posted a clever quarterly distinction on improving U.S. transport marketplace and foresee first-quarter benefit above analysts’ expectations.

Dollar Thrifty, that was a intent of a enlarged takeover conflict between incomparable rivals Hertz Global Holdings Inc (HTZ.N) and Avis Budget Group Inc (CAR.O) until final October, expects let rates to urge in a initial quarter.

Top U.S. carriers contend transport direct has hold adult good in new months notwithstanding concerns that mercantile debility could be a drag.

Dollar Thrifty competes essentially in a U.S. automobile let industry, that has dual principal markets: airfield and local.

For a stream quarter, a association expects to acquire $1.15 to $1.40 per share. Analysts were awaiting benefit of 79 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Last week, opposition Avis reported a warn fourth-quarter detriment due to pricing vigour in a North American market.

However, Dollar Thrifty financial arch Cliff Buster pronounced in a post-earnings discussion call that aloft swift function helped a association lessen pricing pressures.

The Tulsa, Oklahoma-based company, that expects a used-vehicle marketplace to stay strong in 2012, sole about 8,600 vehicles in a fourth entertain during an normal benefit of $436 per vehicle.

It had sole 7,900 vehicles in a year-ago entertain during an normal detriment of $17 per vehicle.

The fourth entertain saw costs tumble 9 percent as swift costs decreased by scarcely a third to $218 per car per month.

The company, that rents cars underneath a Dollar Rent A Car and Thrifty Car Rental brands, sees swift costs during $150 to $170 per car per month in a initial quarter.

MKM Partners researcher Christopher Agnew pronounced a array of constructional initiatives over a final several years, including finale a firm supply agreement with Chrysler, helped Dollar Thrifty cut costs.

The company, shaped in 1990 by Chrysler and spun off in 1997, was compartment 2009 contractually firm to buy 75 percent of a swift cars from Chrysler.

Dollar Thrifty, with a marketplace value of about $2 billion, posted a fourth-quarter distinction of $33.9 million, or $1.08 per share, compared with $12.5 million, or 41 cents a share, final year.

Excluding items, a association warranted $1.09 per share, above analysts’ guess of 76 cents a share.

Revenue rose marginally to $353.7 million, though came in next a $355.6 million analysts had expected.

Dollar Thrifty shares, that have gained 20 percent in value given Oct 27 when Hertz deserted a bid, were adult 2 percent during $74.63 on Tuesday afternoon on a New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Sagarika Jaisinghani in Bangalore; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty, Unnikrishnan Nair)


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