Travel Industry News 14th August 2023

China relaxes entry rules for business travellers

China has released a series of new measures intended to ease travel into the country, including greater flexibility for business travellers. The Ministry of Public Security on 3 August issued 26 new ‘convenience’ measures, which include relaxed rules for movement across the country and the ability for business travellers to upgrade single-entry arrival visas to multiple-entry visas valid for as many as three years.

Travellers who enter China for reasons such as business negotiations, meetings, investment and entrepreneurship or to attend conference and exhibitions can also apply for landing visas with an invitation letter and supporting materials.   The measures, which will likely take effect from the end of August, also state that business travellers can convert a visa-on-arrival to a multiple-entry visa after entering the country.


Two more strikes at Gatwick to affect around 45,000 passengers

Unite has announced fresh strikes which will affect Gatwick airport later this month as workers dispute pay over a total of eight days of industrial action. The strikes will involve more than 230 workers, who are members of Unite union, employed at Red Handling, a ground handling company, and Wilson James, which operates the passenger assistance contract at the airport.

Red Handling is responsible for ground handling for Norse Atlantic, Norwegian, Delta, TAP Air Portugal and Saudi.   The strikes will take place between 18-21 Aug and 25-28 Aug. The strikes at Wilson James will take place between 18-20 Aug and 22-24 Aug.


United extends Bag Drop Shortcut service to Heathrow

United Airlines customers departing London Heathrow can now use the carrier’s Bag Drop Shortcut.  The service works in conjunction with the United app to allow customers to check in their bag “in a minute or less on average”.  It was initially trialled at Newark on 2021, and has since been rolled out at airports across the US, with Heathrow being the first international location to offer the service.

Customers complete check-in on the United app or website, and select the number of bags they are checking in.  They then locate the bag drop shortcut location within zone D at Heathrow R2, place their bags on the scale, and tap their phone using the United app.  Staff will check the customer’s ID, and apply the bag tag, with United stating that the service takes “a minute or less on average”.


Travel news as a glance:

  • Emirates unveils new Bulgari business and first-class amenity kits
  • Ethiopian Airlines to restart Gatwick services this November
  • London City airport to open Hithes restaurant
  • Air India unveils new livery and brand identity
  • Dublin airport reports busiest ever day on 30 July 2023