STR monitors Asia Pacific hotel trends

February 24, 2017 by  
Filed under News, PACIFIC

LONDON, 24 February 2017: Hotels in the Asia Pacific region reported a moderate occupancy decline, but a strong rate growth in January 2017, according to the latest  data from STR.

Based on US dollar constant currency, year-over-year comparisons, for the Asia Pacific region, the average daily rate increased 4.6% to USD108.10.

Occupancy across the region declined 0.8% to 64.8% Read more

Low fares hurt Qantas

February 24, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, PACIFIC

SYDNEY, 24 February 2017: Australian carrier Qantas Airways posted Thursday a 7.5% hit to first-half earnings, impacted by lower fares, greater competition and empty seats.

Underlying profit before tax fell to AUD852 million (USD656 million) for the six months ending 31 December, but just beat the airline’s own guidance.

This compares to AUD921 million in the same period of 2015. Read more

Air NZ sees profit topple

February 24, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, PACIFIC

WELLINGTON, 24 February 2017: Air New Zealand reported a 24% fall in interim net profit, Thursday, amid increased competition in the domestic aviation market.

New Zealand’s flag carrier said net profit for the six months to 31 December was NZD256 million (USD184 million), compared to a record NZD338 million for the corresponding period a year previously.

“The last six months saw unprecedented levels of international carriers adding new services to New Zealand,” it said. Read more

Tourico measures cruise surge

February 23, 2017 by  
Filed under AMERICAS, News

ORLANDO, 23 February 2017: Cruise bookings through Tourico Holidays increased 37% in 2016 year-on-year with an 8% increase in average transaction size.

The major growth in the wholesaler’s cruise sector was driven primarily by outbound bookings from the US, which increased by 49% year-on-year.

Canada increased its cruise bookings by 12% followed by the UK with a 10% increase and Latin America 21%. Read more

Berlin Travel Festival preview

February 23, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, Events, News, Trade Talk

BERLIN, 23 February 2017: One year before its official launch in March 2018, the Berlin Travel Festival invites trade visitors and media to a preview at ITB Berlin.

This innovative festival format, part concept store for end-consumers and part niche trade fair for the industry, will be a new platform to connect, explore and learn, ITB Berlin officials claimed.

The preview will take place, 8 to 11 March, at the fairground’s Marshall-Haus, The highlight of the interactive exhibition will be a stage programme under the motto ’People, Places and Memories’. Read more

Terror slows Paris tourism

February 22, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, News

PARIS, 23 February 2017: Paris saw a drop of 1.5 million tourists in 2016 as fears linked to terror attacks scared off visitors, especially from China and Japan, figures showed Tuesday.

However, tourist numbers picked up towards the end of the year, suggesting the slump could be easing, regional tourism authority CRT said.

The number of international visitors to the French capital fell almost 9% in 2016, with numbers from Japan plummeting more than 40% and Chinese visitors down by more than 20%. Read more

Festival: Venice Carnival opens

February 21, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, Events, News

VENICE, 21 February 2017: Tens of thousands of revellers in masks and period costume packed St Mark’s Square on Sunday for the “flight of the angel”, the traditional opening of the Venice Carnival.

On the 12th chime of midday from St Mark’s Campanile, Claudia Marchiori descended gracefully from the famous bell tower, attached to a wire 80 metres (260 feet) above the crowd that had gathered for one of the world’s most famous carnivals.

Dressed in a leviathan purple gown with orange wings, she sprinkled glitter and confetti to the tune of “Wicked Game”, the 1989 song by American rock musician Chris Isaak. Read more

Steamy marathon in Helsinki

February 20, 2017 by  
Filed under EUROPE, Events, Travel Logs

HELSINKI, 20 February 2017: Visitors to Helsinki, the capital of Finland, can enjoy a traditional Finnish sauna any time of the year, but twice a year a special kind of sauna festival gets underway.

The 11 March event opens the doors to private saunas throughout the city for everyone to enjoy.

The sauna has traditionally been a social gathering place among Finns, yet most of the saunas in Helsinki these days are in private use only. Helsinki Sauna Day opens the doors to many private saunas for the public to enjoy. Read more

Drunk in the cockpit

February 20, 2017 by  
Filed under AMERICAS, Aviation, News

OTTAWA, 20 February 2017: Canada on Friday called on domestic airlines to ensure that pilots show up for work sober, following recent arrests for drunkenness in cockpits.

“As a commercial air carrier authorised to carry passengers in Canada, you have an obligation to ensure that flight crew members are fit to fly when requiring them to carry out such responsibilities,” Transport Minister Marc Garneau said in a letter to carriers.

The minister said he was “very concerned” about an early morning incident in Calgary,  31 December, when a Sunwing pilot was found passed out drunk in his cockpit, with a hundred passengers on-board on a flight due to leave for Mexico. Read more

New Trump travel ban in works

February 20, 2017 by  
Filed under AMERICAS, News

MUNICH, 20 February 2017: US Homeland Security chief John Kelly on Saturday said a new presidential immigrant ban will be better prepared and implemented to ensure there is no repeat of the chaos caused by the first.

President Donald Trump had earlier warned he would announce a new executive order on immigration this week after federal courts suspended his ban on the ground it targeted Muslims and was implemented without due care or preparation.

Kelly told the Munich Security Conference that the administration had been surprised by the ruling and would try to do better. Read more

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