Today’s edition of Skift’s daily podcast looks at Berlin’s use of local consultation, ITA Airlines’ likely new owner, and what Google says about cheap flights.
Skift Daily Briefing Podcast
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Good morning from Skift. It’s Thursday, September 1. Here’s what you need to know about the business of travel today.
Berlin is giving its residents a formal voice in the development of tourism in the city in another show of how destinations are embracing locals. The German capital has unveiled a new initiative called the Citizens’ Advisory Council that gives locals a significant say in the city’s tourism marketing, writes Global Tourism Reporter Dawit Habtemariam.
The independent council, which is expected to meet four times a year, will include two selected representatives from each of Berlin’s 12 districts. Those representatives will provide input on matters such as on what groups to target for marketing and how to present the city’s neighborhoods. Habtemariam writes the creation of the council underscores a Skift Megatrend about greater community involvement in tourism management.
The citizen’s council was expected to launch in 2020 but was delayed due to the pandemic.
We turn next to big news in the world of European airline consolidation. An Air France-KLM and Delta Air Lines consortium is in prime position to buy Italy’s state-run ITA Airlines, reports Edward Russell, editor of Airline Weekly, a Skift brand.
Italian officials announced on Wednesday that it entered exclusive negotiations with Air France-KLM and Delta Air Lines as well as U.S. private equity firm Certares, the consortium’s leader. Certares would provide the initial equity while Air France-KLM and Delta would serve as commercial partners. The Italian government had also been considering a competing bid from the Lufthansa Group and shipping giant MSC.
Air France-KLM and Delta are aiming to make further inroads in Italy, the fourth largest airline market in the European Union. Although ITA is no longer the largest airline in Italy, it does control key slots at airports in Milan and Rome.
Finally, five years of Google airfare data have found that flights departing on weekdays are significantly less expensive than those on weekends, reports Executive Editor Dennis Schaal.
Google published on Wednesday findings from its research on airfares, which revealed getaway flights are 12 percent cheaper on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday than over a weekend. That figure jumps to 20 percent when just considering U.S. domestic flights. Google also found that Sunday on average is the most expensive day to fly.
Schaal adds Google’s research revealed there’s really no one cheapest day to book flights. But booking flights on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursday have been on average 2 percent cheaper than doing so on the weekend.
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