What to Know Now

The last time we checked in with American Express on the progress of their disruptive Centurion Lounges, four properties were open in airports across the country. That was six months ago. Since then, the lounges have been riding a wave of favor. Glowing reviews continue to pour in. And as of last month, two more properties in Miami and Seattle are now open.

For its part, AmEx is giving the traditional airline lounge a run for its money. If you haven’t had the chance, pop your head into one of their locations near you.

Social Quote of the Day

respect the nyt, but not buying peas in guac. onions, garlic, hot peppers. classic.

@POTUS | President Obama

 

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Airlines

Interview: JetBlue on Its New Bag Fee and the Passenger Experience: JetBlue unveiled its much-anticipated new fare types that include a $20 to $25 fee for a first-checked bag in the lowest fare category and reduced change and cancellation fees. Read more at Skift

You Will Have to Wait a Little Longer to Fly the World’s Most Crowded A380: While some airlines are trying to offload their A380s, and others can’t pay for them, those airlines which love the aircraft are trying to fit more people onboard. Read more at Skift

American Airlines Is Finally Investing in Better Catering: At a small event in Dallas, Texas last week, American Airlines unveiled the next generation of its inflight meal service. Read more at Skift

Vietnam Airlines Opens More Doors to Tourism in Europe With New Aircraft: In a ceremony today in Toulouse, Vietnam Airlines has become the world’s second airline to fly the A350XWB aircraft — it is the first airline SkyTeam alliance member, and the first Asian carrier to fly Airbus’ latest NextGen aircraft. Read more at Skift

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Airports

5 Airline Updates That Are Improving the Passenger Experience: Packed planes Less legroom. Fewer frequent flier miles. Is that all summer travelers can look forward to? Read more at Skift

JetBlue Opens Outdoor Space at JFK for the Non-Elite: A day after launching new fare options, including a first-checked bag fee of up to $25, JetBlue opened an outdoor rooftop space at its T5 terminal at JFK Airport in New York that is open to all JetBlue ticket-holders once they clear security. Read more at Skift

Turkish To Offer Economy Transit Passengers Free Lounge Access: Turkish Airlines flies to more countries than any other airline in the world. And while their business class hard product and service leaves something to be desired, their growth has been incredible. Read more at One Mile at a Time

Heathrow Needs Third Runway Says Airports Commission: Britain’s Airports Commission unanimously recommended the construction of a third runway at London’s Heathrow Airport on Wednesday in a long-awaited report on how best to expand the country’s aviation capacity. Read more at Skift

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Tech

KLM’s In-House Expert on the Benefits of Social Media Customer Service: For KLM, social media is about more than retweets and viral content.

Slack Is the Emerging Platform for Early Adopter Group Travel Services: Slack, the super buzzy messaging app for businesses, is all the rage everywhere that people talk about tech, startups, valuations, and of course killing emails. Read more at Skift

United Airlines Investing $30 Million in Biofuels Maker: United Airlines is investing $30 million in a company that makes biofuels for airplanes. Read more at Skift

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Hotels

Behind Marriott’s Long Legacy of Support for LGBT Travel: On June 13, Marriott International hosted the first same-sex marriage ever officiated at the D.C. Capital Pride Parade, which capped off the 10-day Capital Pride festival celebrating LGBT culture and accomplishments. Read more at Skift

Onefinestay to Embark on ‘Very Deliberate’ Expansion With $40 Million Funding Round: Onefinestay, the UK-based home-sharing site, finally confirmed the $40 million funding round, with participation from Hyatt Hotels, that it picked up late last year and CEO Greg Marsh vowed to maintain its “very deliberate” expansion pace. Read more at Skift

Updated: San Francisco Hotels are Now the Most Expensive in the World: San Francisco already is one of the priciest U.S. cities for apartment renters and companies seeking office space. Now the area has a new distinction: it’s the world’s most expensive place for visitors to spend the night. Read more at Skift

Your Turn

Lauren Kilberg has a nice argument for why Chicago is a decent beach destination over on Paste Magazine. Just stay out of the river.

Tips and Comments

Can be sent to gm[at]skift[dot]com or to @grantkmartin

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Photo Credit: Promotional image from American Express for its Centurion Lounges. American Express