Our heads in the sand?

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Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 24 total)

  • TominScotland
    Participant

    I am sure that I am not alone in following a political and humanitarian tragedy unfold in Europe with a sense of horror and helplessness. Something that (in what is a trivial way in the scheme of things) effects many of us as business travellers. Yet bizarrely, when I opened the Forum this morning, the top topics were about hotel executive lounges closing, using the iPlayer abroad, repairing broken luggage and using T5. Nothing on the conflict in Europe and its impact on business travel. At the very least, I would have expected discussion on the re-routing of long-haul flights, the cost of air travel and the closure of airspace to certain airlines. None of these topics are particularly controversial.

    Is this because we (collectively) aren’t interested/ don’t care/ are having controversial discussion managed? Incidentally, finding a Forum ‘handle’ for this post was challenging – i placed it under @Sustainable Travel’ for want of any other options!!

    8 users thanked author for this post.

    esselle
    Participant

    Tom

    I think it’s an interesting point that you raise. However, unless and until the impact of this dreadful conflict on business travel becomes evident through fact and experience, I for one think we should be avoiding writing about it on this Forum.

    Why? Because I fear it will attract comments which move swiftly off the subject of such impact(s), and on to the rights and wrongs of the conflict itself. That would for me be dangerous ground, and not something which should be debated on this site.

    I have my own strong views about this terrible situation, which I have and will continue to share with family and close friends, but which I would not make public here.


    Tom Otley
    Keymaster

    You are both right. Not an hour has gone by without my thinking about the situation and reading and watching the news, but while we have a broad range of content on here, we do try and keep it relevant to the title of the magazine (and website).

    So we are writing news stories about the re-routing, but not getting into the general news. We don’t have reporters there (though we do have friends) and while we all have political opinions about the rulers of many countries we travel to, I’m don’t think this is the place to share our opinions of the leaders of Russia, China, Egypt, Turkey, Hungary… or their policies…


    TominScotland
    Participant

    So we are writing news stories about the re-routing, but not getting into the general news. We don’t have reporters there (though we do have friends) and while we all have political opinions about the rulers of many countries we travel to, I’m don’t think this is the place to share our opinions of the leaders of Russia, China, Egypt, Turkey, Hungary… or their policies…

    Tom, I fully respect that and would not expect otherwise. At the same time, practical advice on routings, travel costs, insurance and the like which readers may be able to share would be useful. I was just surprised that such discussion has not started.

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    cwoodward
    Participant

    Hi, ‘Tom in Scotland’

    However I well understand and symphysis with your view and it would be odd in the extreme if this horrible conflict did not occupy of our minds much of the time.
    Esselle I believe makes good points to which I totally agree and in my view it is not good or desirable for our mental health to dwell on this conflict to the extent that it excludes totally normal forum subjects and more frivolous items. We do need I feel some normality and light relief from the wall to wall media coverage in order to maintain a metal balance avoid becoming overly depressed by it all.

    8 users thanked author for this post.

    dutchyankee
    Participant

    Hi Tom, as I live in Poland, and am dealing with trying to provide as much assistance as possible to the evacuees, your words ring very true to me. We all need diversions to the constant negative news, but likewise, those of us closer to the situation have our minds elsewhere from the usual Forum topics. As all of you I’m sure, just hoping for better days to come and peace in the region.

    5 users thanked author for this post.

    DavidSmith2
    Participant

    It’s always a tricky issue. I have visited Ukraine many times and have a lot of business contacts and friends there. I also lived in Moldova for a year. So things like my Facebook page are full of Ukraine-related issues, as you might expect. Of course we cannot and should not completely ignore the Ukraine issue here but I do think we have to accept that the world goes on in other contexts and, as international air travel appears to be re-starting, people have a range of questions which may very much be ‘first world’ issues but it does no harm to engage on them.

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    BugAdvisor
    Participant

    It’s a difficult balance. On one hand, I’m sure most want to post that they support Ukraine, on the other, most of us aren’t qualified to write on the subject – could easily just make things worse.

    On my own travel site, I created a post that said ‘we support Ukraine’ and then explained why there wouldn’t be further stories or comment – ending with ‘it doesn’t mean we don’t care’. I did the same thing on my YouTube channel, adding pictures of Ukrainian soldiers with cats.

    I would encourage Tom to consider doing something similar.


    esselle
    Participant

    It’s a difficult balance. On one hand, I’m sure most want to post that they support Ukraine, on the other, most of us aren’t qualified to write on the subject – could easily just make things worse.

    On my own travel site, I created a post that said ‘we support Ukraine’ and then explained why there wouldn’t be further stories or comment – ending with ‘it doesn’t mean we don’t care’. I did the same thing on my YouTube channel, adding pictures of Ukrainian soldiers with cats.

    I would encourage Tom to consider doing something similar.

    Guys I really don’t think we should be expressing our political views here, however well intentioned.

    4 users thanked author for this post.

    FormerBA
    Participant

    For me Tom, as I approach my 7th decade, the Ukrainian conflict fills my entire waking day. I haven’t been this concerned about any conflict since I was a teenager, living close to Holy Loch and Faslane nuclear bases, and knowing it was likely to be a first target. One of my biggest concerns is that we have such an incompetent, unscrupulous and photo-opportunity obsessed government of our own, which I simply don’t trust and which is not helping!

    Appeasement is not an option, and so we need skilled and clever people to build the golden bridge that Putin can retreat over. I look to the EU and the US for that option as the alternative is too ghastly to contemplate.

    So with all that is going on, worrying about lounge closures, how to use i player and repairing broken bags, is a welcome relief from the apocalyptic headlines and scenes that fill my new feeds and TV screens. It helps with my mental health and reminds me that with the right people, we can get through this and get back to the first world problems of before. But no one should mistake that for not caring.

    10 users thanked author for this post.

    AMcWhirter
    Participant

    We are making every effort to advise on alternative flight routings to NE Asia.

    Initially we reported on Finnair’s plight (which is being solved from next week with a longer routing), then came news of Air France and then today it was KLM and JAL.

    KLM joins Air France in serving Northeast Asia via Kazakhstan

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    Inquisitive
    Participant

    This is a political issue and even western governments are not doing what they can do. Did they completely isolated Russia? No. Why? Because they did exactly similar thing in Iraq and some other places. And they need the oil from Russia.

    Do our heart bleed when similar aggression happens in Middle East or in Africa? No.

    So unless it is a business travel issue, it has no place in this forum. We can only discuss how painful it is that it is taking one extra hour to travel from south east Asia to Europe!

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    AMcWhirter
    Participant

    In truth I posted details of the above routings in response to the previous posting from ‘TominScotland’

    One issue we face here at Business Traveller is that airlines are not informing media of their plans.

    I have asked BA and Lufthansa for comment several hours ago but neither responded.

    It’s a fluid situation.

    Just 25 mins ago Finnair tweeted to say its plans to serve Seoul from March 9 had been shelved at the last minute.

    But we never even knew Finnair was poised to serve Seoul !

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    nevereconomy
    Participant

    Reading all these cop-out comments I can quite see how something like the current Ukraine situation has come about as governments around the world have similarly ducked something they found unpleasant. Sorry y’all, but as Aaron Tippin said – You’ve got to stand for something or you’ll fall for anything………

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    Bath_VIP
    Participant

    In my case, Ukraine is causing a travel related issue for me.

    My wife and I have a booked a cruise in the Baltic this summer. So far, the cruise line has put out a holding email saying they are keeping an eye on things but I think it’s unlikely to go ahead.

    What’s happening in Ukraine is terrible but what worries me is that it could spread even wider. One only has to look at a map and see the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad to realise there are many potential triggers in the Baltic for this to happen.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
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