Nearly one in four couples are now saying ‘I do’ to destination weddings, a new survey has found.According to the study, conducted by TheKnot.com and WeddingChannel.com, 350,000 destination weddings took place in 2011, reflecting 24 per cent of all marriage ceremonies and an increase of four per cent since 2009. With 70 per cent of destination weddings occurring in the continental US, up from the 60 per cent who opted for Stateside nuptials in 2009, Florida (18% of all weddings) California (13%) and Nevada (9%) were found to be the most popular places to exchange vowels.Outside of the continental US, the Caribbean (39%), Mexico (24%) and Hawaii (20%) were revealed as the top destination wedding spots.Surveying 3,000 US couples who had a destination wedding in 2011 or 2012, The Knot Market Intelligence Destination Weddings Study found that destination weddings had an average 86 guests, which was up from 77 guests in 2009. Unsurprisingly, destination-wedding couples were shown to spend considerably more on their guests, with bride and groom coughing up an average US$404 per guest internationally and $225 per guest domestically – compared with the national wedding average of just $137 per guest. Less predictably, 86 per cent of those tying the knot still planned to take a honeymoon after their union, with 70 per cent choosing to honeymoon in their wedding locale. “The idea of having a destination wedding is growing among our brides, and it goes hand in hand with the fact that most people no longer live where they grew up,” said Carley Roney, co-founder of XO Group Inc, the parent company of TheKnot.com and WeddingChannel.com. “When family is spread all over the country, a destination wedding is the perfect way to bring everyone together.”When asked why they chose a destination wedding, 66 per cent of international brides and 45 per cent of domestic brides said they wanted a ‘special, fun or exotic locale’ for their ceremony, while 65 per cent of globetrotting brides admitted to wanting ‘a more intimate affair with fewer guests’. Image restaurantsinpr.com Source = e-Travel Blackboard: M.H
Skiing at Vail Vail Village Vail Resorts in the United States has revealed their 2012/2013 Epic Season Pass, valid for unlimited use throughout all six mountain resorts. Unveiled at an event in Sydney last week, Breckenridge local and Australian freestlye ski champion, Anna Segal, was present to help promote Vail Resorts and the new season pass.“It’s great to see everyone excited about the upcoming winter season and I’m proud to represent and show my support for all of Vail’s fantastic resorts,” Ms Segal said.Ms Segal, a regular at Breckenridge for almost half of the year, won gold at the 2011 FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships in Utah.Vail Resorts Epic Pass for the 2012/2013 season provides guests with unlimited access to Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Heavenly, Northstar, Kirkwood and Arapahoe Basin, including summer entrance and lodging deals.When purchasing a season pass you also receive access to Vail Resorts Season Club; including email newsletters, exclusive discounts, regular updates, events and more.Vail Resorts also offers an auto-renewal process to make obtaining your annual season pass simpler.When buying a season pass, Vail Resorts will also automatically subscribe you to the PEAKS rewards program; allowing guests to earn and redeem points with resorts purchases and receive discounts.Australian actor and ski enthusiast Justin Melvey was also on-hand to offer his support for Vail Resorts.“I’m fortunate enough to be a part of the group that has been taking the Australian media and ski enthusiasts over each year on famil’s to show them a little of what’s on offer at Vail and it’s always a wonderful and enlightening experience,” Mr Melvey said.Vail Resorts winter season kicks off in December 2012. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.T
Kayak’s top 5 tips for reducing the stress factor whilst on holidays.Image: Kayak.co.uk Whilst many go on holidays to relieve their stress, the process of planning the getaway can be a source of stress in itself.27 percent of Brits found planning, booking and the preparation for a trip to be a great source of stress in a recent survey commissioned by travel comparison site Kayak.co.uk, with 36 percent stressing about finding accommodation within their budget and 17 percent of women sweating over packing enough underwear for the trip.Young Brits (18-25 years old) were found to be the most stressed about holiday planning with 47 percent saying that the entire process was stressful, 29 percent confessed to having difficulty agreeing on a place to go with their friends, 51 percent worrying about their resort living up to expectations and 22 percent being concerned about getting to the airport on time.On the other hand, 82 percent of older travellers found holiday planning to be a breeze.With the planning stage complete, British travellers moved onto the packing stage of stress with 13 percent stating that making sure that all essentials were packed was a top concern. Other concerns included forgetting travel documents, packing the right sorts of clothes and medications, whilst 23 percent of women were worried about bringing enough pairs of shoes.Savvy respondents who forget to pack an essential item said that they would get right to the task and purchase the forgotten item at the airport (19 percent), whilst 53 percent would wait to get to their destination and go shopping there. The youngsters however were not as relaxed with 11 percent of those surveyed admitting that panicking would be their first response to a stressful situation.Once the plane has set off into the skies, the worrying continues as 26 percent of the British holiday makers were concerned about falling ill and six percent stressed about having to deal with misbehaving children. 10 percent also worried about arguing with their friends or family on the trip.On the bright side, once the actual holiday began, 81 percent of the survey respondents relaxed and found this period of their holiday to be much calmer.What do you worry about when planning a trip?Source = e-Travel Blackboard: A.N. …..
Sabre Pacific has announced its new automation solutions including Ticketing Express, which automates the ticketing process for Australian agents.Consultants spend 14 per cent of their time manually processing tickets; this touchless technology will reduce the risk of error and free up more time for consultants to focus on sales.Sabre Pacific managing director Jeremy van de Klundert said Ticketing Express will save agencies the 4.15 minutes generally spent on manually fulfilling bookings.“This can translate into thousands of dollars for large agencies,” Mr van de Klundert said.“Ticketing Express removes this cost from their business and frees up consultants to concentrate on what they were hired to do – sell travel!”Sabre Pacific has also announced its partnership with Travel Automation to launch a suite of tools, including QBotic, QBotic PRO and KLeer, made available through the Sabre Red App Centre.Mr van der Klundert said consultants spend up to two hours per day processing queues.“Travel Automation, in partnership with Sabre is focused on automating this process, therefore reducing an agency’s operational costs,” he said.“This suite of automation solutions, help our partners concentrate on ways to differentiate themselves, by freeing consultants from non-revenue driving activities and focus on customer service.”QBotic and QBotic PRO automate the process of managing schedule changes, by monitoring schedule change queues, updating PNRs and notifying consultants and customers of the change.KLeer is designed to automate the process involved with managing waitlists; continuously checking availability for specified flights and notifying consultants when a seat becomes available.Source = ETB Travel News: Brittney Levinson
Winter tourists strain accommodation supplyOne of New Zealand’s most popular winter tourist destinations has mobilised more than 300 campervans, creating 1200 new tourist beds to help meet accommodation shortfalls as it heads into its peak season.Ohakune which has a population of just over 1,000, swells tenfold to in excess of 10,000 during winter events such as Mardi Gras with many tourists unable to find beds inside the township or surrounding areas.While the event has grown in recent years to become one of New Zealand’s most popular street parties, tourists struggle to find accommodation, leaving Ohakune, National Park, Ratehi and Rangatua, bursting at the seams.Event organisers desperate to accommodate the local and international tourists who flock to the area have now looked for innovative ways to increase bed numbers and tourist infrastructure outside of permanent hotels, backpackers and hostels.With the Mardi Gras just weeks away local rental firm JUCY has been called in to supply over 300 campervans as required at discounted rates for tourists to ensure the ongoing success of the event, says JUCY CEO Tim Alpe.“The vehicle mobilisation is the largest of its kind in New Zealand and represents a shift in the accommodation model away from the provision of permanent facilities which aren’t fully utilised during the off season.“It’s wonderful to see how successful the Ohakune Mardi Gras has become and the huge number of tourists it attracts to the area. We want to make sure that those tourists have the best experience possible to reflect positively on New Zealand’s winter destination brand,” he says.Alpe says as part of the temporary infrastructure upgrade there will be a campground for JUCY customers to use free of charge.JUCY Rentals Source = JUCY Rentals
British Airways celebrates 15 years of premium economy in Hong KongThis year, British Airways marks the 15th anniversary of the introduction of its World Traveller Plus premium economy cabin. In the year 2000, British Airways was the first global airline to introduce a fourth cabin, premium economy, on its aircraft.Earlier this month, British Airways was named the Best Premium Economy Class at the Business Traveller Asia-Pacific Awards. Travellers from Hong Kong can now take advantage of these special fares to experience the award-winning premium economy cabin from just HK$13,180 to a city in one of 41 countries in Europe with no stopover in London, or from HK$14,180 to include London and one other destination in the UK or Europe. Tickets must be booked by 23 October 2015 and are valid for departures from Hong Kong between 5 October 2015 and 31 March 2016.Travelling in World Traveller Plus premium economy, customers can enjoy 30 per cent more legroom than in World Traveller economy class. The seat features a footrest, increased recline position, hammock headrest and a cocktail table whilst the extra legroom allows travellers to stretch out and relax. Customers can also choose from the Club World business class entrée menu and enjoy a premium dining experience in the air. A full bar service is also available with a wide selection of beverages. Travellers in premium economy can also enjoy a double baggage allowance of two pieces of checked baggage weighing 23kg each.Noella Ferns, British Airways’ regional general manager for Greater China and the Philippines said, “Each year, over 1.2 million customers travel in our World Traveller Plus premium economy. It’s a great option for cost-conscious business travellers and discerning leisure passengers looking for greater comfort, space and privacy at an affordable price.We are very pleased to be awarded the Best Premium Economy Class at the Business Traveller Asia-Pacific Awards, this is a great recognition from our customers and we invite travellers from Hong Kong to try out our award-winning premium economy cabin the next time when they travel to the UK or Europe.”British Airways operates two daily non-stop flights between Hong Kong and London. It is the only airline to operate the popular Airbus A380 superjumbo on the route. The A380, dubbed “the quietest cabin in the sky”, offers customers the very latest in aircraft technology as well as more spacious and comfortable cabins. British AirwaysSource = British Airways
Sunshine Coast Destination in partnership with Tourism and Events Queensland, has launched a new campaign with Air New Zealand to support the launch of direct services between Auckland and Sunshine Coast Airport over the summer holiday season.Air New Zealand’s General Manager Market Development and Retail Sales, Annabelle Fowler says True Treasures is an innovative digital marketing campaign that encourages Kiwis to dig below the surface to discover the Sunshine Coast’s wide range of attractions.“The True Treasures promotional campaign will run from today through to 15 November, and will involve extensive banner advertising on high traffic websites to attract consumers to the ‘True Treasures’ interactive game on truetreasures.co.nz.”Some 30 Sunshine Coast activities, attractions and experiences can be uncovered through the interactive game, which aims to highlight that there is even more to the Sunshine Coast than just its spectacular beaches.Consumers who ‘dig for treasure’ and uncover three Sunshine Coast experiences will then go into a draw to win a trip to the Sunshine Coast.CEO of Sunshine Coast Destination, Simon Ambrose, said that the campaign would build on the success of direct flights during the winter months, with Sunshine Coast now an established favourite with the Kiwi market.“New Zealand has been consistently the Sunshine Coast’s most popular inbound market in recent years with double-digit growth in the past two years,” said Mr Ambrose.“The region’s reputation as being laid-back, chilled out and with a diverse range of attractions makes it a perfect fit for the New Zealand market.“The campaign will build on these strengths and introduce Kiwis to a range of experiences on the Sunshine Coast that they might not be so familiar with.“In addition we have a host of music, food and sporting events scheduled over the summer which will provide even more incentive for New Zealanders to come and enjoy our hospitality.” View the campaign hereSource = Sunshine Coast Destination Ltd
Explore a new side of Washington DC with Excite HolidaysExcite Holidays, in collaboration with Destination DC and Brand USA, are thrilled to announce the launch of their Washington DC: Capital of Cool campaign!For two weeks, they will showcase to agents all the amazing experiences, incredible architecture, quirky street art and world-class eateries on offer in this exciting destination.So much more than Capitol Hill, The National Mall and The White House, DC is home to a variety of unique and diverse neighbourhoods, that are all just ready and waiting to be explored.From the cobbled streets of trendy Georgetown, to Adams Morgan – the place to be seen, the eclectic corridor of U Street, the buzzing Dupont Circle, the reinvented Columbia Heights and the uber trendy NoMa, DC is bursting with culture and atmosphere. It truly is America’s hidden gem!The curated and downloadable destination guide features a variety of hotels, activities, eateries and unique experiences on offer in these six unique neighbourhoods. The guide has been created especially for agents and has something to suit every type of traveller, no matter when then choose to visit or how long they choose to stay.The destination guide can be found at www.exciteholidays.com/engage/washington-dc and Excite Holidays are also thrilled to offer agents 500 rewards points for every night booked in Washington DC between Monday 31 July and Sunday 13 August 2017.DC is definitely one for the bucket list!Source = Excite Holidays
Source = Santiburi Koh Samui Family matters at Santiburi Samui with complimentary staysFamily matters at Santiburi Samui with complimentary staysKoh Samui’s leading luxury Thai beach resort, Santiburi, is offering families the opportunity to spend quality holiday time together while taking advantage of an attractive “Family Matters” offer that means children can stay at the resort and eat for free.For all new bookings made before 31 December 2017 – for stays until 31 January 2018 – one child under 15 years of age stays free when families book a One-Bedroom Duplex Suite, Deluxe Villa or Grand Deluxe Villa. Meanwhile, two children can stay without additional room charges when families book a 2-bedroom Duplex Suite, or 2-bedroom Grand Deluxe Beachfront Villa with private pool.Adding to the family appeal, the offer is inclusive of breakfast and also includes complimentary meals for either one or two children based on room type when they dine with paying parents at any of the resort’s restaurants. Young guests can select items from the children’s menu, buffet, or themed dinner menus.Set amid 36 rai (over 14 acres) of tropical beachside gardens, Santiburi Koh Samui is an ideal choice for a luxury family holiday, especially for parents looking to spend some fun, active time with their children while enjoying the pristine tropical island surroundings.World-class facilities at Santiburi include a 50m freeform swimming pool, a fully equipped sports centre, a kid’s activity centre, and a choice of eco-friendly watersports, such as kayaking, sailing, and paddle boarding. A dedicated program of activities known as Santiburi Beach Campus offers fun, family holiday activities combined with opportunities to learn something new with everything from Thai cooking to Muay Thai boxing on the schedule.To fuel the family adventures, a wide choice of onsite dining venues includes The Vimarnmek breakfast room with an extensive daily buffet spread, the Poolside Bar with a varied menu of light meals, salads and pizza, The Beach House serving lunch and dinner right by the ocean, including the island’s premier gourmet surf & turf dishes, and Sala Thai Restaurant for lovers of the best authentic Thai cuisine.“Thanks to our spacious, private accommodation and superb beachfront location, Santiburi has always been popular with families looking for an inspiring vacation. With this latest offer we want to give parents and their kids the chance to make the most of our splendid resort without having to double their winter holiday budget,” explains Cedric Bonvin, General Manager.To make a reservation call +66 077 425 031 – 8, or email: email@example.com
AFTA Insolvency Chargeback Scheme (AICS) coverage notificationAFTA Insolvency Chargeback Scheme (AICS) coverage notificationAICS is advising that the following supplier is excluded from the Supplier Failure Benefit by reason of insolvency:Darwin Airline SA flying under the brand name Adria Airways Switzerland.Any bookings accepted after 12 December 2017 12:01am will not be protected by AICS and members should not accept credit or debit card payments for this supplier.AICS Members are requested to notify AICS of any bookings they have made with Darwin Airline SA flying under the brand name Adria Airways Switzerland for which travel has not been availed immediately via email to AICS@afta.com.auSource = AFTA Insolvency Chargeback Scheme (AICS)
Queenslanders keep coming to the WhitsundaysThe latest statistics for the Whitsundays show that domestic visitors have continued to come to the Whitsundays in their thousands during 2017.In the 12 months to December 31, 2017, domestic visitation was up by 19.8 per cent year-on-year, with a total of 545,000 people visiting the Whitsundays.Of these 545,000 people, 296,000 were on holiday, an increase of 1.3 per cent on 2016. The average length of stay was also up, by 0.2 of a night, and currently stands at 4.6 nights.It should be noted that a high proportion of the increase came from business visitors – a segment that increased by 33 per cent year-on-year – with the majority coming to region for reasons other than to experience a tourism product.Tourism Whitsundays CEO Craig Turner said that, given the 12-month figures included the period post-Tropical Cyclone Debbie, they were encouraging,“Both holiday visitation and length of stay were up, which is great, and the increased length of stay has meant that the total number of holiday nights spent in the Whitsundays by domestic visitors has increased by five per cent, to 1.5 million nights,” Mr Turner said.“Interestingly, the number of visitors to the Whitsundays from within Queensland itself has risen by 32.2 per cent year-on-year, to 169,000 visitors in 2017, and this is a sure sign that Queenslanders have been supporting the Whitsundays in its recovery.“While numbers are encouraging, we all need to understand that the hard work is still ahead of us, and ensure we continue to deliver a world class destination.”Source = Tourism Whitsundays
Flight EK450 was greeted with a traditional water cannon salute on arrival in AucklandEmirates touches down in Auckland via Bali· New service is only year-round non-stop flight between popular destinations Bali and Auckland· Flight will meet increased demand between Emirates global network and Bali, and provide a new connectivity option for visitors to New Zealand· First Emirates service to Bali featuring First ClassEmirates has launched a new daily service from Dubai to Auckland via Bali, reflecting increased interest in the attractive Indonesian island destination and improving connectivity to New Zealand.The new service offers global travellers a total of three daily services to New Zealand, complementing Emirates’ existing non-stop daily A380 service between Dubai and Auckland and its current daily A380 service between Dubai and Christchurch via Sydney. Travellers will now also enjoy a choice of three daily services between Dubai to Bali in the summer (northern hemisphere)*, as the new flight adds to Emirates’ two existing daily services which are currently operated by a Boeing 777-300ER in a two-class configuration.On board the inaugural flight, which was welcomed at both Denpasar and Auckland airports with a water cannon salute, was a group of special guests and media.Emirates’ new Dubai-Bali-Auckland flight provides the only year-round non-stop daily service between Auckland and Bali, giving passengers an opportunity to visit and/or stop over in one of the most popular islands in Indonesia. The airline is operating a 777-300ER on the route, offering eight seats in First, 42 seats in Business and 304 seats in Economy class, as well as 20 tonnes of belly-hold cargo capacity. The new service will also be the first Emirates Bali flight to offer passengers the airline’s award-winning First Class product.Sir Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline, said: “We are very pleased to see the interest this new route has created since it was announced in mid-February, reflected in strong bookings from Auckland to Bali and beyond, as well as southbound from our global network. Markets such as the UK, Europe and the Middle East have all responded keenly to the new option provided by us opening up this route. Bali and Auckland are both desirable destinations in the eyes of our customers.”From New Zealand, most interest in the new route is from leisure travellers of all ages, among them visitors seeking to explore the cultural side of the destination and surfers keen to try Bali’s waves. Tourism is also expected to drive strong interest from Indonesia to New Zealand, as well as travel by students attending learning institutions such as AUT University – which last year opened an Indonesia Centre – and the University of Auckland which enjoys a high international ranking. The number of Indonesian students attending courses in New Zealand grew 20% last year.With its spectacular mountains, picturesque beaches and cultural appeal, Bali is considered to be a world leading tourist destination, welcoming more than 4.5 million foreign tourist arrivals in 2016, including over 40,500 New Zealanders. Emirates’ new service will add to Bali’s global connectivity, further stimulating the island’s economic and tourism growth.Auckland is a vibrant, cosmopolitan community of more than 1.6 million people – New Zealand’s biggest city, containing a third of the country’s population. Located on an isthmus between two harbours, the city has a wide range of attractive beaches, including popular surfing spots; has a global reputation as a city of sails with an extensive variety of yacht and motor vessel marinas; and a selection of bush walks within easy reach; as well as numerous award-winning vineyards. Emirates has been operating to Auckland since mid-2003.Cargo carriage supports trade opportunitiesThe new route also supports increased demand for trade between Indonesia and New Zealand, and will enable Emirates SkyCargo to offer up to 20 tonnes of cargo capacity on the aircraft per flight. According to recent statistics, it is estimated that the total two-way trade between New Zealand and Indonesia exceeds NZ$1.5 billion. The flight will provide opportunity for Indonesian exports, imports and transhipments through Denpasar as well as exports from New Zealand including cut flowers, fresh produce and chilled foods including fish.Flight details and connections to Emirates’ global network and beyondApart from the opportunity for a stopover in Bali, the new service will provide excellent connections to/from London and other major European cities. The southbound flight, EK 450, will depart Dubai at 07:05, arriving at Denpasar (Bali) at 20:20 local time, before flying on to Auckland at 22:00, arriving in New Zealand’s biggest city at 10:00, the following day.Northbound, the new service will depart Auckland as flight EK 451 at the convenient time of 12:50, arriving in Denpasar at 17:55 local time. It will depart Denpasar at 19:50, arriving in Dubai just after midnight at 00:45, connecting to flights to many of the points beyond on the extensive Emirates and flydubai partnership network.World-class servicePassengers in all classes of travel can enjoy Wi-Fi to stay in touch with family and friends or Emirates’ multi award-winning ‘ice’ with up to 3,500 channels of movies, TV programmes, music and podcasts. Emirates provides its customers with a host of culinary offerings prepared by gourmet chefs and fine wines that suit the tastes of everyone. Passengers can also experience Emirates’ renowned in-flight service from the airline’s multi-national cabin crew from over 130 countries, including New Zealand and Indonesia.Emirates SkywardsEmirates Skywards members can earn up to 17,700 Miles in Economy class, 33,630 Miles in Business Class and 44,250 Miles in First Class with return flights on the new Dubai-Bali-Auckland service. Members can also upgrade from Economy to Business on Dubai to Auckland route from 63,000 Miles. See mile calculator here.Emirates Skywards, the award-winning loyalty programme of Emirates, offers four tiers of membership – Blue, Silver, Gold and Platinum – with each membership tier providing exclusive privileges. Emirates Skywards members earn Skywards Miles when they fly on Emirates or partner airlines, or when they use the programme’s designated hotels, car rentals, financial, leisure and lifestyle partners. Skywards Miles can be redeemed for an extensive range of rewards, including tickets on Emirates and other Emirates Skywards partner airlines, flight upgrades, hotel accommodation, excursions and exclusive shopping. For more information visit: https://www.emirates.com/skywards * Emirates will operate double daily services to Denpasar from 28 October 2018, in accordance with winter schedules.Source = Emirates
Game changer for privacy or a sign privacy is gone?In case you missed the news, Starwood and Marriot suffered, well, a massive data breach. If you want to read the whole long story of what and how and why, GO HERE.The short of itFor 4 years hackers have had access to 500 million hotel records. 327 million of them have a lot of data . Put that in context of 7 billion people in the world. Assume 20% of people have 80% of the cash. They are the ones likely to stay at the Marriot. 327,000,000 as a function of 7,000,000,000 is approximately 4%. 327,000,000 as a function of that top 20% of the population.More like 24%.Who did it?The main suggestions being Chinese Hackers sponsored by the government or the same Russian crews who engineered in Trump and Brexit. But people tend not to own up to this stuffWhy target a hotel chain?Lets consider the data as the answer. If you know I am Barry, you cant do much with that. If you know I am Barry Smith from Salisbury, that’s a bit better, especially if you want to rob my place when I am away.But if you have my name, address, drivers license, bank card details, a copy of my passport, you can steal my identity.The only time that information is digitised and in one secure place?When you check into a hotel. 327 million is a lot of peopleWhose going to use itMost likely to be sold on the dark web, to steal all of our identities and we come home to find out that someone somewhere is now us.What should you doRealistically? Stop worrying about privacy. It’s probably over.www.stuba.com learn more about stuba.com here Source = STUBA.com
Club Med Travel Agent Survey Winners AnnouncedClub Med Travel Agent Survey Winners AnnouncedClub Med would like to congratulate the five lucky Travel Agents, each winning a $100 voucher for completing Club Med’s annual ‘Tell us what you really think’ Travel Agent Survey. A total of 1190 Australian and New Zealand Travel Agents completed the survey within the month long survey period, a whopping increase of 253% increase in respondents versus the same time last year.The 2018 Club Med Travel Agent Survey winners are:Joanne Haseler from Flight Centre Warringah Mall (NSW)Cherie Horley from Phil Hoffmann Travel (SA)Belle Grono from italktravel & cruise Rutherford (NSW)Christine Balch from Hawthorntravel (VIC)Paul O’Neill from Helloworld Travel Geelong West (VIC)From the survey, Club Med are proud to say that 95% think that all-inclusive is the best feature of Club Med Resorts, 72% that activities is the best feature and 70% the Kids club.Bali, Maldives & Bintan Island are the first resorts that travel agents think of when they think of when they think of Club Med and Interest in ski holidays is up +20% versus last year and more agents are aware that Club Med offer ski holidays.Also interestingly, 76% of Travel Agent respondents consider sustainability has a strong importance in their clients holiday decision making process and 82% agree that Club Med’s involvement in sustainable initiatives is very good.Club Med value the contribution of Travel Agents to their overall business and continue to work hard to deliver travel agents with the tools they need to sell Club Med holidays.Travel Agents can access Club Med sales tools and marketing resources from the Club Med Travel Agent Portal www.clubmedta.com.au (AU) www.clubmedta.co.nz (NZ)For those interested in ski or sun resort holidays in 2020 with Club Med, Travel Agents can pre-register their clients interest at http://bookearly-clubmed.com/, to ensure that their clients get the best offer guaranteed when sales open on the 30th January 2019. Source = Club Med
In 2017, PATA will be holding its Annual Summit in Negombo, Sri Lanka, in recognition of the importance of the country in Asian tourism. The winning bid was submitted by the Sri Lanka Convention Bureau. The announcement was made formally at the PATA Travel Mart in Bangalore, where Sri Lanka was also present to promote its latest tourism and MICE destinations.Negombo is located about 20 miles north of Colombo, the island’s commercial capital, and only three miles from Bandaranaike International Airport. Negombo was chosen out of the four options given – Negombo, the Cultural Triangle, Kandy and Bentota / Beruwala. Due to the destination’s rich and colourful history, the proximity to the airport, the event will be held at Jetwing Hotels; the single largest accommodation provider in Negombo.The Annual Summit is a 3-4 day programme consisting of the association’s executive and advisory board meetings; annual general meeting; PATA Foundation charity and gala dinner. The one-day conference agenda addresses major relevant issues impacting travel and tourism business environment and preludes with the PATA chapter meetings. The Annual Summit, previously held in exotic locations and to be held in Guam in 2016, sees travel and hospitality professionals from all over the globe gather together.Former PATA Chairman and current Jetwing Chairman, Hiran Cooray welcomed the announcement stating, “Sri Lanka and Jetwing will welcome the delegates of the PATA Annual Summit with open arms in keeping with our reputation of being the heart and home of Sri Lankan hospitality. Our contribution to South Asian tourism is growing steadily, as our destination is truly unique with plenty to offer everyone. We look forward to a successful summit, with the participation and support of all stakeholders to further expose Negombo and Sri Lanka as unique destinations.”
Odisha Tourism recently organised an ‘Odisha Tourism Conclave’ in association with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Hotel & Restaurant Association of Orissa (HRAO), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), Utkal Chamber of Commerce & Industries (UCCI) and Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO) at Hotel Swosti Premium, Bhubaneswar.While addressing the gathering, Naveen Patnaik, Chief Minister of Odisha, said, “Our state has created a significant improvement pertaining to law and order and general infrastructure. Odisha is a true source of Incredible India due to the diverse range of flora and fauna, culture, tradition, tribal diversity and many more.”The CM pointed out that in recent years, the tourist arrivals to the state have shown a prominent rise. With the declaration of Bhubaneswar Airport as an international airport, the state tourism board is assertive to receive a significant number of international tourists.The tourism department of Odisha has signed an MoU with Air Asia that offers daily flights from Bhubaneswar to Kuala Lumpur. It will open the Southeast Asia window for Odisha resulting in larger tourist footfalls.Ashok Chandra Panda, Minister for Tourism & Culture, Government of Odisha, said, “Odisha’s 2016 Tourism Policy has been a progressive policy that has precise plans to encourage tourism and infrastructure in Odisha. Air Asia flying to Kuala Lumpur from Bhubaneswar is a milestone that we have achieved and we aim to advance the investments in the tourism sector by developing more visibility to the tourism offerings of our state. We are also very honoured to be the host state for IATO Annual Convention in September along with Odisha Travel Bazaar by FICCI.”Panda also informed that the department of tourism is trying to boost the average stay of a traveller to the state-owned hotels by organising several cultural theme based events and heritage walks.Dr Nitin B Jawale, Director Tourism and MD, Odisha Tourism Development Corporation Ltd, briefed about the existing and ongoing projects of the state’s tourism department. “We have recently entered into an MoU with the forest department to promote Eco Tourism since more than one-third area of the state is covered with forests. We have also undertaken the charge to develop infrastructure in these areas and promote it equally and aggressively through digital and print mediums. The forest areas also house 62 different tribes in these regions having diversity in language, skill and culture. We want to develop more skill based activities for the local communities working here and promote it amongst foreign and domestic tourists,” he said.The tourism department had also been working on its major project for Shamuka Beach. It is approximately 1000 acres project for which the department is working on the relevant clearances from multiple departments. It will comprise of Golf Course, villas, museums, followed by much more which will also turn to be the largest and most lucrative tourism areas in the entire country.Under department of tourism’s land banking exercise, they have identified 3,700 acres of land primarily near the untapped tourist spots. These banking displays are specifically for investors in order to establish tourist friendly projects on these areas. This project is on for five years through which different locations in Odisha can build tourism.The conclave had 45 speakers from the public and private sector taking sessions on Branding Odisha from Smart City to Smart State through digital marketing, TV, social and print media mediums; the Need to Build tourism infrastructure and connect Odisha globally; tourism to be the driving force of future economy of Odisha; promoting niche tourism- eco and wildlife tourism, Buddhist tourism, tribal tourism, textile and handicraft tourism and adventure tourism; Skill development in hospitality-safety and security for growth of tourism and advantage destination: Odisha- Investments, Policies and Opportunities.
Plans to ease processing the visa to attract tourists from BRICS nationShruti Dugar | KolkataIndia has emerged as the eighth largest source market for South Africa. For the period of January 2017 to September 2017, MICE contributed 32.8% of total Indian arrivals into the land, leisure holidays made up 26.8% while business travellers made up 16.4% and Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR) was at 16%.Another significant observation was the rise in millennial Indian travellers to South Africa. In the first quarter of 2017, nearly 35% of the Indian visitor base comprised of 35-year-old while, for the second quarter of the year, it grew to 46%. In 2017, Delhi contributed 22% to the overall Indian arrivals to South Africa while Mumbai was at 37%, Gujarat at 11%, Bangalore at 8% and West Bengal at 7 percent.Since 2005, when the South African Tourism first started positioning itself in the Indian market, the demand from the land has been on a constant high. Terming it as a special year, South Africa plans to achieve more than 1 lakh holiday arrival by the end of 2018, informed Hanneli Slabber, Regional Manager: Asia, Australia and the Middle East.Mogobo David Magabe, Consul General, South Africa Tourism, who was present at ATM 2018 in Dubai, cited that UAE is one the largest and important source market to South Africa. One of the key focus plan this year is to raise awareness about new destinations like Oudtshoorn, Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, Port Elizabeth and the Drakensberg region. The immensely popular Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg and Kruger National Park will be further developed to lure the travellers.The Departments of Home Affairs and Tourism of South Africa are also setting up a dedicated team of officials to fast-track progress in easing visa requirements for visitors in order to boost the number of tourists to South Africa. This is done in order to simplify travel by minors and also ease the visa requirements for residents of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) and the introduction of electronic visas for incoming tourists.
February 21, 2014 476 Views In preparation for the launch of its first-ever national marketing campaign, Trulia announced the appointment of Kira Wampler as chief marketing officer (CMO).Wampler comes to Trulia from Lytro, where she served as VP of product and marketing. There, she adopted a strategic and data-driven go-to-market strategy, launching the company and the light field camera category to critical acclaim.For Trulia, her job will be to lead marketing initiatives for and increase the growth of the company’s award-winning products.“After thorough research and testing, we feel confident that we can extend our brand, drive even higher levels of engagement and deliver a more compelling ROI to our subscribers through a national marketing campaign,” said Pete Flint, CEO and co-founder of Trulia. “With the addition of Kira as Trulia’s first CMO and Steve Hafner of Kayak joining our board, we have the experienced team in place to extend our brand through a national advertising campaign.”“I’m thrilled to join Trulia and excited to create and launch high impact programs to reach and activate Trulia’s uniquely engaged consumer audience,” Wampler added. “We have defined a consumer-driven and authentic approach to our marketing efforts, allowing us to break through in the category.” Share Movers & Shakers Trulia 2014-02-21 Tory Barringer in Headlines, News, Technology Trulia Appoints CMO Ahead of Marketing Campaign
After experiencing a $191 million loss from continuing operations for the 2014 year, PHH Corporation was able to make a complete turnaround for the first quarter. The company managed to wrap up Q1, ending March 31, 2015, with a net income of $21 million.PHH Corporation offers home financing to consumers and provides mortgage solutions for the real estate market and financial institutions through its subsidiary, PHH Mortgage.The company reported that the amount of net income that can be credited to PHH Corporation is $21 million or $0.40 per share, a huge difference from Q1 2014, where the company reported a net loss of $58 million or $1.01 per share. The net income also includes a $65 million pre-tax favorable market-related fair value adjustment to the mortgage servicing rights (MSRs).“During the first quarter, we continued to execute on the strategies that were established upon completion of the sale of the Fleet business in 2014,” said Glen A. Messina, president and CEO of PHH Corporation. “We reduced our outstanding common shares by an additional 1.6 million through the successful completion of our accelerated share repurchase programs, achieved $44 million of annualized operating benefits as a result of our re-engineering actions, and signed revised agreements with clients representing approximately 50 percent of our total private label closing volume.”By adjusting their re-engineering activities, the company was able to realize $11 million of operating benefits in Q1 2015 compared to Q1- 014, according to the financial report. This represented 20 percent of their target annualized operating benefits. The mortgage production segment loss in Q1 was $19 million, a $7 million improvement from Q4-2014. PHH closed $9.4 billion in mortgages for Q1-2015, as mentioned in the results.The company reported that they received $15.2 in mortgage applications in Q1-2015 compared to the $10.4 billion in Q1-2014. The company also expects interest rate lock commitments (IRLCs) to close of $2.1 billion from $1.8 billion in Q1 2014. Total closings experienced a 27 percent increase, purchase closings a 6 percent increase, and total loan margins a 24 bps increase.Mortgage servicing segment profit was $57 million for Q1 2015, in comparison with the $13 million the company reportedly lost in Q4 2014. As of the end of Q1-2015, the company’s unpaid principal balance (UPB) of the capitalized servicing portfolio was 108.8 billion.“I am pleased with our progress to date, but we have more work to do since the achievement of meaningful and sustained profitability at our targeted return levels will require the continued successful execution of both our re-engineering and growth initiatives,” Messina said. “We are confident that the investments in our business will continue to pay off and we look forward to responding to the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in our mortgage production and servicing businesses.”To view the full report visit: Corporate.PHH.com. May 7, 2015 536 Views Share First Quarter Financial Results First Quarter Net Income First Quarter Net Loss PHH Corporation 2015-05-07 Staff Writer in Daily Dose, Headlines, News, Servicing PHH Corporation Releases Q1 Financial Results
Share in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, News, Servicing In an effort to empower consumers by providing additional information on how their credit profile affects their loan prospects, LendingTree.com recently released its November Mortgage Offers Report with their Chief Economist Tendayi Kapfidze’s analysis of November’s mortgage offers.Utilizing data from actual loan terms offered to borrowers by lenders, Kapfidze finds that consumers with the highest credit scores (760+) experienced offered annual percentage rates (APRs) of 4.16 percent in November, compared to 4.43 percent for consumers with scores of 680-719.According to Kapfidze, the APR spread of 27 basis points (bps) between these score ranges was 5 bps wider than in October—and the widest since July 2016—representing almost $13,400 in additional costs for borrowers with lower credit scores over 30-years for the average purchase loan amount of $233,127.“The spread between the highest and lowest score buckets is widening,” Kapfidze exclusively told MReport. “This means although rates have been in a downward trend this year after last December’s spike, lower credit score borrowers have not benefitted. This may signal that lenders are tightening standards on lower quality borrowers by increasing risk-based pricing add-ons.”In terms of refinancing APRs for conforming 30-yr fixed loans—they were down 2 bps to 4.24 percent. The credit score bracket also expanded to 19 from 16 bps, amounting to $9,500 in extra costs over the life of the loan for lower credit score borrowers given an average refinance loan of $235,973.While the additional costs are due to higher interest rates, larger fees, or a combination of the two, Kapfidze explains that “A better credit profile increases borrowers’ loan options and lowers their price. This gives a borrower more buying power, which ultimately means more opportunity in the housing market to obtain a property that meets the borrower’s requirements.”The best offers for borrowers with the best profiles in November had an average APR of 3.75 percent for conforming 30-year fixed purchase loans. Meanwhile, refinance loan offers were down 1 basis point (bps) to 3.69 percent.The report notes that purchase APRs for conforming 30-yr fixed loans offered on LendingTree’s platform were down 1 bps to 4.30 percent for the average borrower, the lowest since the same time last year. Conversely, the loan note rate of 4.18 percent was unchanged from October when it reached the highest since July.In addition, the average proposed purchase down payments have been rising for 8 months and reached $62,409. In the end, Kapfidze offered additional insight for borrowers.“The savings from a higher credit score can be combined with savings from shopping for a loan to create even greater benefits for a borrower,” Kapfidze added. “In today’s competitive market, prospective buyers should reach for every advantage available.”View the full report, here. Borrowers: Increase Your Buying Power buying power HOUSING LendingTree mortgage tendayi kapfidze 2017-12-06 Nicole Casperson December 6, 2017 623 Views