Tour firms told to fill up daily reports

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under News, Thailand

BANGKOK, 22 December 2015: Thailand’s tour companies will need to issue daily job orders for every tourist they handle according to a Department of Tourism directive.

The job-order requirement is undergoing a trial run despite travel agency criticism that it is time consuming, repetitive and requires additional staff to fill out forms manually that the ministry could source automatically from a database link.

But the Department of Tourism’s Bureau of Tourism Business and Guide Registration is convinced that job orders will prevent scams and give tourists additional security. Read more

Halong bay shipping shift ports

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under News, Vietnam

QUANG NINH, 22 December 2015: Quang Ninh’s administration has decided to stop ships from berthing at its main wharf starting New Year’s Day, due to serious deterioration of the structure.

Tuoi Tre News reported that ships bringing tourists to the world-famed Halong Bay in Quang Ninh province will no longer be allowed to dock at the old Bai Chay tourist wharf effective 1 January 2016 onwards.

The Bai Chay wharf serves hundreds of ships visiting Halong Bay each year, but it has seriously deteriorated due to over use and poor maintenance, prompting local authorities to speed up efforts to move cruise ships to a new facility. Read more

Bagan switches fees to Kyat

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under Myanmar, News

BAGAN, 22 December 2015: Myanmar Tourism Federation will begin collecting entrance fees in local currency at heritage sites in Bagan, effective 1 January 2016.

Global New Light of Myanmar reported that despite a Ministry of Culture order that authorised collection in local currency as of 1 November 2015, the launch date was changed to 1 January next year.

A notice stating that visitors will pay K25, 000 instead of USD20 has now been issued by the ministry. Read more

AirAsia cuts fares in 2016

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

BANGKOK, 22 December 2015: Thai AirAsia launched promotional fares, this week, for travel on selected routes until the end of June next year.

The promotion sets a one-way fare, inclusive of airport taxes, fees and surcharges, ex-Bangkok, starting at THB590 to Nakhon Si Thammarat, Ubon Ratchathani, and Surat Thani.

A THB690 fare sells to Buriram, Nakhon Phanom, Loei, Udon Thani, Phuket, Krabi, and Phitsanulok. Read more

ITB 2016: Speed dating accelerates

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under EUROPE, Events, News, Trade Talk

BERLIN, 22 December 2015: ITB Berlin 2016 is organising two Speed Dating events that will give participants an opportunity to exchange information and quickly establish numerous new leads.

ITB Speed Networking extends options from traditional buyer and exhibitor exchanges to include bloggers mainly from Europe to network with the global travel industry.

Both events are free of charge, but to take part prior registration is required. Read more

TALC theory wins UNWTO award

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under News, Trade Talk

MADRID, 22 December 2015: The 12th UNWTO Ulysses Prize for Excellence in the Creation and Dissemination of Knowledge in Tourism has been awarded to Dr Richard Butler, Emeritus Scholar of the Strathclyde Business School, in Glasgow, United Kingdom.

The Prize recognises the invaluable work of Dr Butler in areas of capacity building and sustainability in the tourism sector.

His understanding of tourism, his insights as a geographer and his work in Canada led him to produce one of the most influential theories about tourism – the Tourism Area Life Cycle (TALC). Read more

SAA U-turns on aircraft deal

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under Aviation, News

JOHANNESBURG, 22 December 2015: South Africa’s newly re-appointed finance minister on Monday ordered state-owned airline SAA to conclude a deal with Airbus to lease five A330 wide-body planes, after weeks of turbulence at the troubled carrier.

“The Minister of Finance, Pravin Gordhan, directed the board of South African Airways (SAA) to conclude the swap transaction with Airbus in line with approval granted in July 2015,” said a Treasury statement released late night on Monday.

The minister’s directive thwarts attempts by the SAA chairwoman, Dudu Myeni, to renegotiate the deal – a move that would have hit the loss-making airline’s finances hard. Read more

Airbus A320neo deliver on track

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under Aviation, EUROPE, News

PARIS, 22 December 2015: Airbus still aims to deliver by year-end the first of its updated medium-range airliners, the A320neo, a source said Monday following reports of a possible delay.

“Our objective is to deliver the first A320neo before the end of the year, and that is still within the realm of the possible,” said a source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

But if the plane, which has lifted Airbus’s orders in recent years as it offers airlines fuel savings of up to 15%, is not delivered by the end of this month it will be handed over in the first days of January, added the source. Read more

Family holiday turns to tragedy

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under Malaysia, News, Thailand

KUALA LUMPUR, 22 December 2015: A horrific bus crash in Thailand which killed 13 Malaysian tourists and severely injured several others left four members of the same family dead, while two survived, a report said Monday.

The four dead spanned three generations, including an 85-year-old grandmother and her 39-year-old granddaughter, according to the Star newspaper.

“We are all in shock,” a relative of the family in Malaysia told the paper. Read more

Barcelona hits Airbnb with fine

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under EUROPE, Hospitality, News

BARCELONA, 22 December 2015: Barcelona’s left-wing city hall said, Monday, it had slapped home rental websites Airbnb and HomeAway with a fine of 60,000 euros (USD65,000) each for marketing lodgings in the Spanish city that lacked permits to host tourists.

With the aid of a software programme, the town hall detected listings for 1,891 lodgings that did not have proper permits on Airbnb, and another 3,929 on HomeAway, it said in a statement.

Since taking office in June, Barcelona mayor Ada Colau, a former anti-eviction activist, has kept her pledge to try to curb a boom in visitor numbers that she fears could drive out poor residents and spoil the charm of Spain’s second largest city. Read more

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