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Jun 2, 2015

Lufthansa seeks to take more control over ticket sales

FRANKFURT, June 2 (Reuters) – Germany’s Lufthansa
will levy from September a 16-euro ($18) surcharge on tickets
not booked through its own websites and other direct sales
channels, in a bid to boost the amount it earns per ticket, it
said on Tuesday.

Airlines have been trying to regain control of their ticket
sales, especially as they try to make more money by unbundling
services and charging passengers separately for luggage, seat
requests, food and other amenities.

May 23, 2015

Sweden’s Mans Zelmerlow wins Eurovision Song Contest

VIENNA, May 24 (Reuters) – Sweden’s Mans Zelmerlow won the
final of the Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna on Sunday,
beating Russia and Italy in the world’s biggest international
music show.

The 28-year-old singer and TV presenter, who had been a
bookmakers’ favourite, performed the winning electro-pop ballad
“Heroes,” dancing in front of a black screen with animated

May 23, 2015

From Austria to Australia, Eurovision casts net wide for 60th year

VIENNA (Reuters) – A slice of Swedish electro-pop, Italian ‘popera’ and a pop star from Australia, about as far from Europe as you can get, are among the favorites for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna.

The annual kitsch-fest, watched by more than 195 million people in 40 countries — more viewers than the Superbowl — was won last year by Austria’s bearded drag queen Conchita Wurst, bringing the show to the Austrian capital better known for its classic elegance.

May 22, 2015

Vienna shakes off fusty image as Eurovision carnival hits town

VIENNA, May 22 (Reuters) – Vienna hopes the final of the
Eurovision Song Contest will show a new liberal and
light-hearted side to the opulent Austrian capital when the
jamboree of glitter, capes and power ballads hits town this

Tourists associate Vienna with classic architecture,
composers, traditional coffee houses and the Blue Danube Waltz,
composed in 1866 – conservative images which the city is now
trying to move beyond.

May 18, 2015

Flightradar24 finds not just planespotters flocking to its website

BERLIN/FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Within 40 minutes of Germanwings flight 4U9525 crashing in the Alps in March French accident investigators from the BEA authority were on the phone to plane tracking website Flightradar24.

“BEA called us and we of course passed the information over to them right away,” the website operator’s chief executive Fredrik Lindahl said.

May 13, 2015

TUI Group to retire Thomson holiday brand in post-merger shake-up

LONDON/BERLIN, May 13 (Reuters) – TUI Group, the
world’s largest leisure and tourism company, expects annual
profit growth of more than 10 percent over the next three years
and said it will retire the Thomson brand in Britain as part of
its post-merger shake-up.

In its first strategy update since last year’s merger of
London-listed TUI Travel and German owner TUI AG, the
company said it is also confident of meeting this year’s target
for profit growth of up to 15 percent.

May 12, 2015

Deutsche Post profit drops on weak freight unit

BERLIN, May 12 (Reuters) – Postal and logistics group
Deutsche Post DHL said it would review the
restructuring at its freight division, which has proved tougher
and more costly than expected, after reporting a
lower-than-expected first-quarter operating profit.

“We saw a moderate start to the year, as we expected,” Chief
Executive Frank Appel said on Tuesday after the company reported
earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) of 720 million euros
($805 million), against forecasts for 751 million euros.

May 7, 2015

Fraport says weak euro boosting shopping spend at Frankfurt airport

BERLIN (Reuters) – Fraport said the weak euro had encouraged travelers to spend more on shopping at Frankfurt airport, helping it to report slightly better than expected first-quarter results and lifting its shares.

The airport operator said on Thursday net retail revenue per passenger rose 6.5 percent to 3.93 euros, driven by an increase in the number of intercontinental passengers from places such as China, Korea, Turkey and Brazil.

May 5, 2015

Lufthansa reins in profit expectations as strikes take toll

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s Lufthansa (LHAG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), rocked by a fatal plane crash at the end of March and trying to end a long-running dispute with its pilots, struck a cautious tone on 2015 profit expectations despite reporting a smaller first quarter loss.

Like Air France-KLM (AIRF.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), which also reported a smaller first-quarter loss last week, Lufthansa is trying to lower costs to better compete with rivals from the Gulf and Turkey as well as low-cost carriers in Europe.

May 5, 2015

Lufthansa narrows operating loss helped by cheaper fuel

BERLIN, May 5 (Reuters) – Lufthansa joined
European rivals in reporting improved first-quarter earnings
helped by cheaper fuel, but said on Tuesday further action was
needed to lower costs, especially in light of a rising pension
burden and staff-related expenses.

Lufthansa is in a long-running dispute with its pilots over
retirement benefits and the expansion of low-cost services.
Talks with pilots and strike action were suspended after the
crash of one of its Germanwings planes at the end of March.

    • About Victoria

      "Based in Frankfurt, covering German companies in the retail, travel and leisure sectors. In my previous Reuters incarnation in London, I focused on green tech firms, utilities and an array of smallcaps that came my way on the Breaking News team. I started my career as a translator with the Financial Times in London before switching into journalism."
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