Skift Travel News Blog

Short stories and posts about the daily news happenings around the travel industry.

Ground Transport

IDEAS: London Gatwick Airport Launches Dedicated Electric Vehicle Charging Forecourt

2 months ago

A dedicated forecourt for electric vehicle (EV) charging has opened at London Gatwick Airport in the United Kingdom, the first of its kind to be introduced by an international airport. 

Credit: London Gatwick

The Electric Forecourt is powered by Gridserve and has 30 electric vehicle chargers available, with options for both high-power and low-power charging outputs. All of the charging bays are powered by 100% net zero energy.

The site also features a lounge area with high-speed Wi-Fi, a convenience store, and an interactive EV experience area where a dedicated EV guru will be on-site to support with any customer queries.

Credit: London Gatwick

“We are proud to be the first international airport to open a Gridserve Electric Forecourt. The charging station has been placed in a strategic location and will be available to millions of passengers, commuters, staff, residents and businesses that pass through the area each year,” said London Gatwick’s Development Director, Bronwen Jones in a release.

The charging station is located near to London Gatwick’s South Terminal, with chargers available all day, every day. 

Ground Transport

IDEAS: Amtrak Introduces First Electric Vehicle Into National Network

7 months ago

Amtrak and the Washington Department of Transportation (WSDOT) are set to introduce their first electric vehicle into the Amtrak Cascades route.

Credit: Amtrak

The new electric bus will be able to complete the almost 200-mile round-trip on a single charge, with the new EV set to save ‘approximately 10,000 gallons of diesel fuel per year, cutting CO2 emissions by 109 tons annually’, according to a release from Amtrak. 

The charging hub for the electric vehicle has also been built with sustainability in mind, having been installed on land that was once occupied by large fuel tanks.

Credit: Amtrak

“At Amtrak, we strive to give our passengers reliable, comfortable, and sustainable travel options. By incorporating environmental considerations into our current operations and as we work with our partners to reach more of America, we continue to make Amtrak an even ‘greener’ mode of transportation,” said Kara Oldhouser, sustainability director at Amtrak. 

Credit: Amtrak

The introduction of the electric bus bus is hoped to help Amtrak advance its pledge to become net zero by 2045, with the company examining other routes within the National Network that could operate electric vehicles.

Skift Ideas uncovers the most creative and forward-thinking innovations happening across travel. We celebrate innovation through our Skift IDEA Awards and hear from leaders on our Ideas podcast.

You can listen and subscribe to the Skift Ideas Podcast through your favorite podcast app here.


IDEAS: Radisson Hotel Group to Provide Electric Vehicle Charging Solutions at European Locations

8 months ago

Radisson Hotel Group has partnered with Charge Point Operator PowerGo to provide electric vehicle charging solutions at 300 hotels across Europe.

Forming part of the Hotel Group’s Green Mobility Mindset initiative, the new venture will see hotels offered the opportunity to work with PowerGo on the operation and management of the charging facilities at their locations.

A PowerGo charging station.
Credit: PowerGo

The first eight charging stations are currently being installed at Radisson Blu Scandinavia Hotel, Oslo and will be ready for use in mid-July.

With the European Commission’s 2022 agreement that all newly registered cars and vans in Europe must be zero-emission by 2035, the need for an enhanced electric vehicle charging infrastructure in locations such as hotels is crucial.

“Over 70% of clients indicate they want to choose sustainable travel options. E-mobility is becoming an essential part of the guest experience. At Radisson Hotel Group, we recognize this trend and want to be at the forefront of promoting a green mobility mindset by making responsible stays easier. The cooperation with PowerGo will help us go beyond the 700+ EV chargers currently installed in our hotels and reach our aim to equip all eligible hotels in Europe and beyond with EV charging facilities by 2025,” said Inge Huijbrechts, global SVP sustainability, security and corporate communications at Radisson Hotel Group.

At Skift, we are looking to unearth the most creative and forward-thinking innovations in travel through our Skift Ideas Franchise, which includes the Skift IDEA Awards, Skift Editorial Hub and the Skift Ideas Podcast.

You can listen and subscribe to the Skift Ideas Podcast through your favorite podcast app here.


The Top Cities for Recent Car Rental Reservations

1 year ago

Global car rentals rocketed during the end-of-year holiday break, with more than three times the amount of seven-day bookings compared to the 2019 winter holiday period.

According to data from global car-hire comparison site DiscoverCars, there were 12,646 seven-day reservations for the festive period, more than three times the amount in 2019-20, which saw 3,826 bookings.

The data is based on the 18 days from Dec. 20, 2022 to Jan. 7, 2023. Seven-day rentals tend to be the most common duration for vacations.

Portugal has meanwhile proved a popular tourist destination over the past two years, not least as a top digital nomad destination, but the rental figures show just how resilient the country is.

Capital city Lisbon has more than doubled the number of car rental pickups in recent weeks, compared to before the pandemic. In the space of 18 days there were 4,220 pickups, compared to 1,782 in the same period in 2019/20.

Another Portuguese city, historic Porto, was the third most popular destination with 1,985 pickups, trailing Auckland in New Zealand. The Portuguese islands of Madeira also made it into the top 10.

Late last year, European destinations had the edge slightly over other parts of the world.

The comparison site also predicts car rental companies’ fleet composition will change within the next three years, with electric vehicles likely comprising a majority of rentals by 2025.

This week Hertz announced a push into Europe, making 25,000 Tesla and Polestar cars available to Uber drivers.

DiscoverCars reviewed internal data from 143 countries.

Top cities for reservations in 2019/20 No. of reservations Top cities for reservations in 2022/23 No. of reservations
Lisbon, Portugal 1,782 Lisbon, Portugal 4,220
Porto, Portugal 1,011 Auckland, New Zealand 2,305
Auckland, New Zealand 762 Porto, Portugal 1,985
Marrakech, Morocco 601 Tenerife, Spain 1,704
Orlando, Florida 584 Milan, Italy 1,610
Dublin, Ireland 563 Queenstown, New Zealand 1,585
Malaga, Spain 532 Madeira, Portugal 1,312
Miami, Florida 481 Marrakech, Morocco 1,301
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 452 Cancun, Mexico 1,290
London, United Kingdom 434 Catania, Italy 1,271

Business Travel

Hertz, Uber Bringing 25,000 Electric Cars to European Cities

1 year ago

After renting out some 50,000 electric cars to Uber drivers across North America, Hertz is now taking its partnership with the ride hailing giant to Europe, where it will make 25,000 Tesla and Polestar vehicles available.

The European expansion begins in London this month, before it adds other European capitals including Paris and Amsterdam.

The expansion follows Hertz Global Holdings’ announcement it would order up to 175,000 General Motors electric vehicles over the next five years. It starts taking delivery of Chevrolet Bolt EVs and Bolt EUVs in the coming months.

“… We are moving in a very big way toward electric vehicles and Hertz has taken a rather aggressive strategic stance,” Hertz CEO Stephen Scherr recently told Skift.

Uber, meanwhile, wants to become a fully electric platform in Europe by 2030. “Expanding our partnership with Hertz into Europe will significantly boost our transition to zero-emissions, helping drivers reduce running costs and cleaning up urban transport,” said Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi.

Hertz’s strategy is to build one of the largest fleets of rental electric vehicles in the world, and believes they are increasingly appealing to younger drivers.