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October 19 2012 | ISSUE NO 1,799 | www.travelbulletin.co.uk
Canada New tours, hotel launches & the latest operator deals
this week agent bulletin win a trip to Las Vegas with Funway Holidays
the convention the latest news from the 2012 ABTA Convention in Belek, Turkey
DONâ€™T MISS... All About the
weddings & honeymoons emerging honeymoon trends plus new wedding packages
Eastern an Mediterrane October 2012
guide stop lopm oneYourall the ents latest news and deve to
terranean in the Eastern Medi
with this issue
malta & gozo MTA & Air Malta reward agents with new trade offer
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This Week news 3
Cover Pictures: Main - Canadian Tourism Commission
Inset - Conrad Maldives, Ithaa Undersea Restaurant Wedding
a round-up of the latest industry developments & announcements
weddings & honeymoons
malta & gozo
find out what one agent thought of the Pinewood Apartments in Turkey win a trip to Las Vegas with Funway Holidays complete the crossword for your chance to win £50 Pizza Express vouchers news from the ABTA Convention in Belek, Turkey Oliver Broad asks what happened to the consumer campaign on ATOL certificates a round-up of the latest training courses & modules which trade sales manager says that manners cost nothing? new tours, hotel launches & the latest operator deals emerging honeymoon trends plus new wedding packages MTA & Air Malta reward agents with new trade offer
PERU PARTY...Cox & Kings recently took nine agents on a 12-day fam to Peru in partnership with PromPeru. Agents spent three nights on the Amazon river cruiser, MV Aria, before taking Machu Picchu, Cuzco and the Sacred Valley. Pictured are, from the left: Sally Faulkner, Quality Travel; Kate Hately, Norseman Travel; Andrew Reed, Bath Travel; Jackie Denham, Langley Travel; Gwen Austin, Travel Club Elite; Katie Cunningham, Somewhere 2 Travel 2; Mark Stacey, Cox & Kings Travel; Caroline Fenech, Miles Morgan Travel; Claudia Zakrzewski, PromPeru; and Jane Zollo and Jack Leaf, Travel Counsellors.
September storms boost October half-term bookings OCTOBER HALF-TERM bookings have seen a sharp increase due to the worst September storms for more than 30 years, according to car hire comparison site comparecarhire.co.uk The company says that the recent bad weather has resulted in an increase in demand for locations such as Spain, Turkey and Portugal as families look to escape the UK weather. According to the comparison site, there are some great deals available on flights and accommodation as well as car hire even though there is high demand over half-term week. Andy Hemmington, spokesperson for the company, said: “For some families the September storms have dampened spirits and driven Brits to book a break in the sun for half-term. The weather is still warm in Europe’s most popular holiday destinations in October, particularly when compared with the weather in the UK, so it still remains a busy period for the travel industry. However, this doesn’t mean prices need to be high – there are some great deals out there to be had by holidaymakers.” A week’s half-term car hire from both Malaga or Faro Airport starts from £6 per day and exploring the Spanish island of Majorca by car starts from £9 per day, picking up a vehicle from Palma de Mallorca airport. For more information visit www.comparecarhire.co.uk
Cruisers spend three times average amount on souvenirs A NEW study conducted by bonvoyage.co.uk has given an insight into Britons’ spending habits when it comes to souvenirs on holiday and compares how spending habits differ between various holidays. The poll included 2,005 Brits aged 18 and over, of which 1,002 respondents went on a ‘dry land’ holiday for their last trip abroad, while the remaining 1,003 went on a cruise. Each respondent had been away for a seven-day period. The study asked respondents if they had purchased souvenirs on their last holiday abroad, to which 89% said ‘yes’. The survey found that the average spend on souvenirs by people on dry land holidays
was £17.14, while cruise holidaymakers spent almost three times that, with an average of £58.60. When asked why they had purchased souvenirs, 64% of cruise respondents claimed to feel tempted due to the multiple cities they had visited, while 49% of dry land holidaymakers had done so as to ‘purchase items cheaper than at home’. Some 55% of the cruisers had also bought ‘one souvenir per port’ that they had visited. The most popular souvenirs bought by cruise-goers were ‘trinkets/items for the home’ while dry land holidaymakers preferred local alcohol.
October 19 2012
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newsbulletin Advantage simplifies agency agreements on members’ intranet ADVANTAGE IS hosting ATOL holders’ agency agreements from the consortium’s preferred partners on its members’ intranet, to simplify the new agency agreements process. Any members who make bookings with ATOL holders in accordance with the commercial terms that the operator has negotiated can access the appropriate agency agreement on the intranet. The system will automatically populate the agency agreement with the member's name to ensure compliance with the requirement to have an agreement in place between the ATOL holder and the agent.
Price reductions from Oman Air OMAN AIR has launched a range of special offers on flights from Heathrow via Muscat. The airline is currently offering 10% off standard ticket prices in Economy and Business Class available online at www.omanair.com, and for passengers flying on a Sunday this month, a 20% discount is also available. Special offers include Heathrow via Muscat to Bangkok from £616, Kuala Lumpur from £599, Colombo from £551, Dubai from £388 and Abu Dhabi from £388. Bookings can be made until December 10 and prices quoted are for return Economy fares and include taxes.
CHEQUE IT OUT...Jetset recently ran a Virgin Atlantic-sponsored promotion of its weekly Lotto incentive entitled "Super 6". Pictured is Jane Williams (right) of Toucan Travel in Chineham, who was one of the four jackpot winners, receiving her cheque for £600 from Jetset's southern sales executive, Nisha Tailor.
iCity Cruises offers visit to set of Skyfall THE ROYAL Naval College is featured in Skyfall, the latest installment of the Bond franchise premiering on November 9 and City Cruises' Red Rover tickets allow guests the flexibility of exploring the destination, with cruises departing every 30 minutes from Westminster Pier, London Eye Pier, Tower Pier and Greenwich Pier. The shortest trips last between 20-30 minutes, while the full experience takes guests on a three-hour round trip. Prices for single tickets cost from £8.40 per adult with special rates for senior citizens, children under 16 and students with a valid ID. For details visit www.citycruises.com or call 020-7740 0400.
Leger Holidays issues Christmas Markets brochure with prices from £129 LEGER HOLIDAYS has launched its new Christmas Markets brochure, with tours running from the last week of November to mid-December and prices starting from £129 per person for three days. Destinations include Germany, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Austria and the UK. One of the highlights is a tour which
combines a four-or five-day cruise on the river Rhine with visits to three Christmas Markets in Germany. Another tour offers the opportunity to visit the underground Christmas market in Valkenburg, set in the Gemeentegrot cave. As an example of prices, a four-day full board Cruising the Christmas Markets of the Rhine Valley leads in at
Early release of African Pride's 2013 edition AFRICAN PRIDE has launched its 2013 brochure a month early to enable agents to capitalise on demand for 2013 holidays, with October being a traditionally strong month for bookings to Africa. The brochure offers a range of tailor-made options throughout southern and east Africa, with a new 13-day tour of Ethiopia among the highlights. An Addis Ababa round-trip, which costs from £3,320 per person, takes in Gondar, the Simien Mountains and Lalibela, and features the source of the Blue Nile, 17th century castles and historic churches. Also new for next year is a range of options designed to cater for the growing number of consumers looking for authentic local experiences and to explore new or lesser-travelled areas. These include a seven-day private mobile camping safari in Tanzania, which costs from £2,341 per person and an eight-day Mount Kilimanjaro climb from £1,415.
October 19 2012
£369 (five days from £479) and visits festive attractions in Cologne, Rüdeshiem and Koblenz. The price also includes a Captain’s Dinner, travel by executive coach and free local pick up points. Departures are available during November and December. For information or to book visit www.legerbreaks.info or call 0844-504 6250.
DoSomethingDifferent offers Las Vegas nightclub tours GUESTS CAN join DoSomethingDifferent.com on a nightclub pilgrimage to Las Vegas and experience its new VIP Nightclub Tours along the strip. For £47, guests will visit one of the Ultra Lounges where a VIP host will meet the group and take them to the Limo Party Bus, which includes a complimentary open bar. The group will then be taken to three A-list nightclubs such as The Bank Nightclub in Bellagio, Pure in Caesar’s Palace, TAO Nightclub inside the Venetian and LAX Nightclub in the Luxor Hotel and Casino. Also available is the Las Vegas Nightlife VIP Experience by Limousine package, where guests can tour the strip in a personal luxury limousine stocked with limitless Champagne and cocktails before stopping at an Ultra Lounge and nightclub. Prices lead in at £104 per adult or £189 with a meal. For more information call 020-8090 3890 or visit www.dosomethingdifferent.com
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newsbulletin Tweets of the Week Who’s saying what on Twitter... @GoMallorca What to do on a sunny Oct afternoon? Take a trip to #Mallorca's winelands on the Wine Express http://myde.st/OXYWuj
GULET GROUP...Mosaic Holidays recently hosted a fam to Istanbul and Bodrum, with co-hosts Kempinski Hotels, Turkish Airlines and Tantur Turizm, to highlight to agents the luxury options in Turkey. Pictured at the Kempinski Barbaros Bay, Bodrum admiring the marina's gulets are, from the left: (back row): Alan Blinn-Haynes, Ultimate Destinations; Victoria Curnick, Travellers World; Natalie Thompson, Premier Travel; Simon Wallace, Mosaic Holidays; and Pauline Stoneman , Travelux; with (front row): Annette Ross, Travel Stop; Emma Beck, Designer Travel; Jacqueline Whyte, Travel Bureau; Linda Shotter, Ashdown Travel; Dominic Smith, Kempinski Hotels; and Steve Wilkinson, Mosaic Holidays.
@cruiseguides Cruise lines reveal ship facelifts: A number of cruise lines are planning million-dollar refurbs for their ships... http://bit.ly/VYzLJT @AffordableCH A recent survey showed 85% of UK drivers always remember to pack one thing when driving abroad - their lunch! @HaslemereTravel Buy 1 get 1 free to Bermuda - book before 17th Nov 2013 for travel up to 31st Mar 2013 - 2nd travellers BA flight is complimentary WOW! @Butlins You could win a Wave Hotel break! Follow @Butlins & RT this. When we reach 20k followers someone wins a break for 4 http://ow.ly/enL9A
Follow us on Twitter! http://twitter.com/ TravelBulletin
Compagnie du Ponant unveils new itineraries for summer 2013 COMPAGNIE DU Ponant has introduced its summer 2013 collection on a selection of its yachts - Le Boréal, L’Austral, Le Soléal and Le Ponant. From April to November they will be sailing across the Arctic, Northern Europe, Asia and the Mediterranean with new itineraries. As an example, a 12-day Great North and the Arctic tour on Le Soléal explores the volcanic Kamtchatka Peninsula and its nature reserves, which are UNESCO World Heritage sites. Home to brown bears, sea lions and bird colonies, the region is renowned for its scenery, including its fjords and the Geyser Valley. Departing on September 24, 2013, the tour costs from £5,252 per person including flights from Paris. The line has also invited passengers to discover new themed cruises in partnership with various media outlets and partners. Guests will be able to participate in workshops, conferences and courses including photography, economy and wealth management, Celtic culture, southern flavours, lifestyle and beauty. Pre- and post-cruise programmes are also available. For more information or to book visit www.ponant.com or call 0800-980 4027.
Caribbean Airlines adds third weekly flight to Trinidad FROM NOVEMBER 21, Caribbean Airlines will commence a third weekly non-stop service between Gatwick and Port of Spain, Trinidad. Flights will operate on Tuesdays, with a return flight to Trinidad on Wednesday, in addition to flights already in operation ex Trinidad on Thursdays and Saturdays and ex London on Fridays and Sundays. The new service will also offer onward connections to Tobago, Barbados, and Georgetown, Guyana.
Insight Vacations adds new activities & upgrades to 2013 Europe and Britain programme INSIGHT VACATIONS has launched its 2013 Europe and Britain programme with a host of new activities and upgrades including seven new tours and extensions. To mark the occasion, the company has launched an early payment discount across its European programme, where clients booking a premium or luxury escorted journey will save 10% per person on the itinerary (land-only) when paid for before December 27. New to the premium range is a nine-day Highlights of Portugal tour which leads in at £1,525 per person. Guests will visit the Roman temple in Evora along with the Templar
Castle and the remains of Henry the Navigator’s fortress in Sagres. Alternatively, a new 14-day Treasures of Greece and the Islands costs from £2,750 per person. Guests will learn about the origins of the Olympic Games and Greek myths and legends, as well as visiting a submerged volcano in Santorini and experiencing a lively celebration dinner in Kalambaka. Both tour prices are based on two people sharing a twinroom and include flights. For more information visit www.insightvacations.com
October 19 2012
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newsbulletin Flybe extends dates of popular winter ski routes FLYBE HAS extended the dates of six of its most popular ski routes beyond Easter next year, and this includes a new Saturday service to Chambery from East Midlands Airport. Flights to Chambery from Birmingham have also been extended to April 6 and flights from East Midlands and Southampton to Chambery have been extended to April 13. Meanwhile, flights to Geneva from the Isle of Man and Jersey are now running until April 6. The airline is also offering two new additional return flights from Southampton to Geneva every Saturday, effective from December 15. For more information see www.flybe.com
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October 19 2012
DOSOMETHINGDIFFERENT.COM HAS expanded its marketing team with two new appointments, Tom Scott and Summa Barton, who will manage all aspects of trade marketing. ● THE FOUR-STAR Royal York Hotel in North Yorkshire has appointed Gary Jenkins as executive head chef. ● MACDONALD HOTELS & Resorts has appointed Elaine McCormack as director of sales. ● NICK TALBOT has joined Funway Holidays as marketing manager. ● JURGEN AMMERSTORFER has been appointed general manager at The Trafalgar Hotel in London. ● EDWIN BLYTHE has joined Zegrahm Expeditions as president. ●
VALUE INDIVIDUAL Parking has launched a new Website where customers can book Heathrow parking in five steps. The site also now features an extended range of services, including a Chauffeur Park service. See www.valueindividualparking.co.uk THE CROATIAN National Tourist Office reports that so far this year, 241,443 British visitors have arrived in Croatia, a boost of 23% compared to the same period last year. SAUDI ARABIAN low-cost carrier, nasair, has partnered with GDS provider, Travelport, to enable the carrier to distribute its fares through the GDS channel. THE GRENADA Board of Tourism has announced that it will not be exhibiting at this year's World Travel Market, but instead will focus on boosting conversion rates with operators and agents currently holding contracts with the island’s accommodation. TRAVELPORT HAS announced a new long-term agreement with Qantas Airways, which will ensure Galileo, Worldspan and Apollo-connected travel agents worldwide have access to the airline’s full published inventory including ancillary content such as paid seating, consistent with the airline’s Website. SYDNEY BASED cruise agent consortium Cruiseco, have announced the opening of a UK office and the purchase of the domain address www.cruising.co.uk AIR CANADA and Aer Lingus have signed an interline agreement to make flying between Ireland and Canada more convenient. The agreement is a preliminary step towards a full code sharing relationship expected to be finalised next year between the two carriers.
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newsbulletin Travelsphere launches Europe River Cruise Collection TRAVELSPHERE HAS launched its River Cruise Collection brochure, featuring river cruise itineraries on its exclusively chartered MS Serenade 1. Prices lead-in at £1,119 per person for a seven-day Rhine Explorer cruise, which visits Cologne, Bonn and Koblenz, with the chance to explore Amsterdam. The price includes fullboard accommodation, a Captain’s Gala Dinner, morning coffee, afternoon tea, evening entertainment, Eurostar travel from St Pancras, transfers and the services of two cruise representatives. For more information call 01858-588406 or visit www.travelsphere.co.uk
PLAIN SAILING…. agents from Thomas Cook in Crosby, Liverpool, celebrated last month's National Cruise Week with special guest Wayne Beard from Cruise and Maritime Voyages, who helped introduce customers to the line’s 2013 programme sailing from Liverpool. Pictured with the CMV 2013 brochure is Connor Renshaw from Thomas Cook, Crosby.
Superbreak offers theatre packages to ‘A Chorus Line’ SUPERBREAK HAS launched packages to see ‘A Chorus Line’, which is returning to London’s West End for the first time since 1976. Agents can now book theatre break packages that include overnight accommodation and tickets to the show, which will run at The London Palladium from February 2–July 13, 2013. The show takes a behind-the-scenes look at 17 hopefuls auditioning for eight places in a new Broadway musical. Packages start from £142 per person including one night’s breakfast accommodation at the three-star Days Inn Waterloo hotel and a ticket to the show. For more information call 0871-221 4444 or visit www.superbreak.com/agents
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Christopher Evans from Cruise.co.uk in South Wales stayed at the Pinewood Apartments in Icmeler, Turkey with Thomson for seven nights with his girlfriend. Here's what he thought of the hotel...
First impressions ....................................9/10 On arrival we were met by a very friendly member of staff and taken to our room promptly. The first thing that we noticed arriving at the hotel were the beautiful gardens & the pine trees from which I assume the hotel gets its name.
The apartment was very clean and spacious, with maid service every day. It also had a very clean kitchen area with all essentials provided. During the day the pool area was fantastic and had a very laidback feel.
Quality ....................................................10/10 For a three-star hotel everything was absolutely faultless. I have stayed in many four-star-plus properties that have not had the same relaxed comfortable feeling. Everything in the apartment worked perfectly and the balcony had a lovely view over the pool and garden area.
MELIÁ HOTELS International and Microsoft Ibérica have signed a partnership agreement aimed at promoting innovative technology for the 350 hotels the company has in 35 countries. As part of the agreement, the hotel group will migrate its systems to a model based on Microsoft cloud computing technology to strengthen its services and respond to the increasingly sophisticated needs of a global customer base. SIXT CAR Hire has opened a new branch in Edinburgh, the company's second outlet to open in the city. For details see www.sixt.co.uk A NEW terminal is to be built at Tocumen Airport in Panama, increasing the airport capacity to up to 18 million passengers (double its current capacity) by 2014. THE REGIONAL tourist board of Champagne-Ardenne, in partnership with online travel agency Via-Voyages, has launched a new Champagne Pass (l’OenoPass Champagne). The product offers visitors opportunities to discover and explore the world of Champagne, from cellar visits and tastings to cultural and heritage sites at discounted prices. The pass is available in two versions: five visits for €25 (instead of €50) or ten visits for €50 (instead of €100). The pass is valid for one year and can be purchased from www.oenopass.net
Affordability ..........................................10/10 We paid just £360pp which for me was tremendous value. Turkey is fantastic value for money. Bottled water at the hotel was just 1 Turkish lira (approximately 30p) you can get a full English Breakfast for 5 Turkish lira (£1.80) Around resort, prices were just as cheap with various restaurants offering a three-course set menu starting at 20 Turkish lira (£7).
Good to know .................................................. One restaurant I would certainly recommend was the Waterfall - fantastic food with an amazing setting next to a natural waterfall. Prices were a little higher than at some of the other restaurants but it was certainly worth every penny.
Christopher receives a £10 Love2Shop voucher for his review. If you'd like to take part and receive a free Love2Shop voucher please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020-7834 6661 with your name and contact details.
Make sure you enter our weekly crossword, sponsored by The Holiday Team. Full details can be found on Puzzle Bulletin, page 11 of this issue. You could be the lucky winner of £50 of Pizza Express vouchers. Send your entries to www.travelbulletin.co.uk/crossword
Our All About The Eastern Mediterranean Supplement – inserted with this magazine – can also be viewed in digital format on www.travelbulletin.co.uk
Destination Asia: Up to 50% hotel discounts and great incentives to be won on properties in China, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore with Travelcube. Go to www.travelcube.com
All this and more at:
www.travelbulletin.co.uk The home of the web savvy travel agent
October 19 2012
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agentbulletin Booking incentives ●
CLUB PARADISO Adventure is offering agents 12% commission on two packages to the South Pacific. The first is a 12-day/nine-night deal to Bora Bora, costing £2,244 plus airport taxes at £499 per person. It includes flights, transfers, an overnight stopover in Los Angeles, an overnight stay in Tahiti, seven nights’ full-board accommodation at Le Maitai Polynesia Hotel, Bora Bora, and excursions. The second trip is a land-only eight-night package to Bora Bora and includes the above apart from flights and the Los Angeles stopover. Prices start from £1,400 per person. For details email email@example.com or visit www.clubparadiso.it TO CELEBRATE 20 years of US travel and with the recent launch of its new USA 2013 brochure, Funway Holidays is offering an agent and their partner the chance to win a trip to Las Vegas. The prize includes four nights’ accommodation with two nights at The Venetian Resort in a Venetian Suite and two nights at The Palazzo in a Palazzo
Suite; flights with Virgin Atlantic from Gatwick or Manchester; and all airport taxes and fuel surcharges. For a chance to win email firstname.lastname@example.org online booking references made from October 1-31. All entries will be put into a prize draw and a winner will be selected at random. For details see www.funway4agents.co.uk ●
AGENTS CAN win an Apple Macbook Air with Travel 2’s new incentive in partnership with Tourism Victoria, Tourism NT, Qantas and Tourism Australia. The operator is promoting holidays to the Northern Territory and agents have the chance to win one of four Apple Macbook Airs by making a booking to Melbourne, Victoria and the Northern Territory with the company, including flights with Qantas before October 31. For each booking made, agents will receive one entry into the prize draw. See www.travel2.com for full terms and conditions.
Fancy a fam? CROISIEUROPE HAS joined the Association of Cruise Experts (ACE) and to mark the occasion, is offering agents the chance to experience a river cruise on its next fam from November 26-29, sailing on the Garonne & Dordogne rivers. To be in with a chance of winning a double cabin for two people on the Bordeaux cruise on a full board basis, agents should book a minimum of two cruises by November 15. For details visit www.croisieurope.travel, call 020-8328 1281 or email email@example.com
WATERWAY WINNER...Claire Roberts (right) from Althams Travel in Bury won a four-night break for four people on Sapphire, a luxury boutique style narrowboat launched earlier this year, after winning the top prize in Hoseasons' 'Fit For A Queen' promotion. Pictured presenting Claire with her prize certificate is the operator's Sarah Smith. October 19 2012
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newsbulletin MADE UP IN THE MED...Voyages of Discovery recently took ten agents on a ‘Voyage to the Mediterranean’ cruise, giving them the chance to learn more about the line's experience. Pictured taking in the sights are, from the left: Neil Holmes, Cruise co.uk; Ruth Lincoln and Lyndsey Prestleton, Mid Counties Co-op; Victoria Rabbitts, Bath Travel; and Faz Sidat, Cruise.co.uk
Family-friendly range from Sovereign SOVEREIGN LUXURY Travel has launched its first brochure dedicated to families. The Family Collection features 40 hotels across 22 familyfriendly destinations. The brochure features reviews of the latest family holiday apps, games, gadgets and travel products, along with offers for October half-term, Christmas and summer 2013. Offers include one free child place, an online discount and a 10% early booking discount for seven nights’ breakfast accommodation at the Porto Sani Village & Spa in Halkidiki, Greece. Prices lead in at £3,045 per family of three, departing on May 27, 2013, including flights from Gatwick and private transfers. The price offers saving of up to £621 per family of three. For more information visit www.sovereign.com or call 0844-415 1936.
lowcostbeds sees increase in long-haul bookings since launch of portfolio LOWCOSTBEDS REPORTS a year-on-year increase in long-haul bookings of more than 150% since the recent launch of its new long-haul portfolio. The largest increase has been in areas such as Mexico, the Caribbean, Thailand and the US, with more than 200% growth in these areas. The operator’s new version of its XML gateway is now being launched to the trade, which gives agents faster access to its full range of hotels online.
The company has responded to demand for more long-haul destinations by expanding its offering, with particular focus on the Caribbean, Far East and Australia, as well as increasing capacity in the US and Middle East. Other new destinations include Kenya, Gambia, The Maldives, Mauritius and South America, with hotels sourced from international chains such as Centara, Hilton and the Barceló group.
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Su Doku Win a £50 Hotel Chocolat voucher in the travelbulletin Su Doku prize puzzle
Can you solve the following anagrams to decipher the destination & tour operator?
B➠ This capital city is also possibly the most hated vegetable
D➠ Fill in all the squares in the grid so that each row, column and each of the 3 x 3 squares contains the digits 1-9. Once you have completed the puzzle, simply identify the numbers that relate to the letters, A, B, C and D then e-mail the solution, with your name, company name, and full postal address plus phone and ABTA number if applicable to: firstname.lastname@example.org Closing date for entries is Thursday, October 25th. Solution and new puzzle will appear next week. The winner for 5th October is Lisa Gilham, The Co-operative Travel in Lincolnshire. October 5 Solution: A=4 B=6 C=3 D=5
Iran’s secret wine loving city
Where Am I?
Irish bottle stopper!
Fill in the crossword to reveal the mystery location highlighted by the blue squares and visit www.travelbulletin.co.uk/crossword to submit your entry. All correct entries will be placed in a free prize draw and one lucky winner will win £50 Pizza Express vouchers. Closing date for entries is Thursday October 25th. Across 1. Mauritius and Seychelles specialist, ___ Vacations (5) 4. Capital of Fiji (4) 7. Miami International airport code (3) 8. Famous canal in Venice (5) 9. Cheyenne is the state capital (7) 11. She has replaced Claudia on It Takes Two (3) 12. Australian state, in short (3) 14. Welsh seaside town and castle (7) 16. Country featured in the BBC documentary, Welcome to ___ (5) 18. Salzburg airport code (3) 19. Villas operator, part of TUI (4) 20. Sana'a is the capital (5)
Down 1. Actress starring in The Perks of Being a Wallflower at a cinema near you (4,6) 2. State bordering 9 Across (5) 3. DFDS Seaways cross this Channel (7) 4. South African Airways, initially (3) 5. Capital of Liechtenstein (5) 6. The Little Mermaid is a popular tourist attraction in this city (10) 10. DERTOUR specialises in holidays to this country (7) 13. Flows through Paris (5) 15. Surrey town and racecourse (5) 17. River in South Yorkshire or Spanish title (3)
Congratulations to Andrea Murphy, Miss Ellies Travel who won the 5th October crossword prize of £50 Pizza Express vouchers
THE HOLIDAY TEAM IS A CONSOLIDATOR PROVIDING BEST VALUE FLIGHTS & PACKAGE HOLIDAYS TO BOOK CALL 020-8843 4300; www.theholidayteam.co.uk
The Where Am I and Travagrams solutions can be found on page 30 October 19 2012
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n io t n e v n o lc e v a r t ABTA Consumers get savvier about when to book
LAURETTA WRIGHT reports from the ABTA Travel Convention in Belek, Turkey
RESEARCH FROM ABTA suggests that consumers are becoming savvier when it comes to choosing when to book their holidays. Six in ten people (60%) said they had changed when they booked their holiday in the past 12 months, when compared to the same period in 2011, to take advantage of deals and greater availability. A third (34%) of consumers booked their holiday further in advance this year, four in ten (40%) booked at the same time and a quarter (26%) booked closer to the departure date. The top reasons cited for booking in advance were: better deals/cheaper prices (68%); to get better availability (56%); better choice (38%); to get time off work (28%) and the weather in the UK (16%). Those leaving it to the last minute also did so primarily because they believed they could get a bargain. Better deals and cheaper prices was the number one reason for leaving it late with six in ten (61%) people saying this was the reason for their delay. Other reasons included: better choice (22%), the weather in the UK (22%) and worry about money and job security (21%).
Consumer trend survey: Package holidays on the rise while DIY holidays drop in popularity THE LATEST consumer trends survey by ABTA, the results of which were released at the Convention, reveals that more holidaymakers are booking package holidays, with nearly half (48%) of people booking an overseas package holiday this year, compared to 42% in 2011 and 37% in 2010. The trend is particularly marked among 35-44 year olds, where 51% said they had booked an overseas package holiday in 2012, compared with just over a third (36%) in 2011. The survey also revealed that there has been a slight decrease in the number of people booking and paying for their travel and accommodation separately – or “DIY” bookings, with 39%
of people saying they booked an overseas DIY holiday in 2012 compared to 43% in 2011. Packages have also proven popular for domestic holidays this year, with nearly a quarter (23%) booking a UK package holiday compared with one in ten (12%) in 2011 and 14% in 2010. DIY holidays at home have also seen a slight decrease in popularity with 36% booking one last year compared to 34% this year. ABTA’s head of communication Victoria Bacon said: “In recent years consumers have come to value the security and cost effectiveness that package holidays provide. At the same time the market has also
evolved to offer greater choice to holidaymakers. Research shows safe and secure accommodation, financial protection, ATOL protection and ABTA membership are at the top of people’s booking essentials and packages can offer all of these, plus an easy booking process and great value for money. Many people are also realising that there are a huge variety of package holidays now available. “The market has evolved massively and is now very sophisticated, with packages to cater for every taste and budget – whether you want two weeks all-inclusive in the sun, a cruise around Asia or an adventure holiday in South America.”
Other findings in the survey included the number of people booking an overseas holiday through a High Street travel agent has increased slightly this year to 27% compared to 25% in 2011 and that people feel more positively towards travel agents than they did a year ago, with 40% saying that they value the services that a travel agent offers compared to 30% last year. A third (36%) of respondents also said they preferred the reassurance of dealing with a person, up from 28% in 2011. Women and travellers aged 15-34 were more likely than average to value the services of a travel agent.
McEwan highlights positive consumer perception of ABTA ABTA CHAIRMAN John McEwan presented an overview of the year since the last Convention to delegates. He began by saying that consumer trends showed that a wet summer helped pick up the lates market and that value for money remained a key factor in consumers’ decision to take a holiday. He also announced that positive associations with the brand continue to improve and that ABTA continues to be the most recognised travel industry trade body among UK consumers, with a 78% public recognition factor. Consumers also continue to have a clear understanding of ABTA’s role according to recent research, with 84% of those surveyed seeing the
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association as representing its members and 58% being aware of ABTA’s role in setting industry standards. Other findings revealed that six in ten see ABTA as representing consumer interest, an increase of 5% from 2011 and that seven out of ten people regard ABTA membership as essential or important when booking their travel arrangements. McEwan said: “We realise we need to do more to attract consumers to our members and that ABTA stays relevant for the future. In the last year we have launched a number of initiatives aimed at raising awareness of ABTA, particularly to younger consumers. They are our customers of tomorrow, if not today.”
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TURKISH DELIGHTS...pictured enjoying a networking reception at the Convention are, from the left: Paul Hardwick, Hardwick Thorpe Travel; Carol Wootton and Caroline North, Thornton’s Travel Service; Angela Flynn, Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines and David Hearn, Ocean World Travel.
Next Big Thing boss predicts return to travel agents as consumers drown in data IN A session that looked at how to spot future trends and capitalise on them, the managing director and founder of The Next Big Thing, William Higham, predicted that consumers will increasingly return to travel agents for help and advice as they become more overwhelmed with technology and start to “drown in data”. He said: "I believe that in the future you are going to get people coming back to travel agents for help and advice. But it’s not just about offering cheapness, it’s also about value. Consumers are very savvy so think about ways you can offer value to the public. “By 2016 there will be more mobile devices on the planet than people. But technology is exhausting, so a big trend
that I predict will increase over the next couple of years will be the digital detox, where people want to travel to places where they can’t be contacted.” In the meantime travel companies should be making the most of their clients researching on their smartphones and tablets he told delegates. He said: “Smartphones and tablets are acting as electronic guidebooks and consumers have only just scratched the surface of this. It could be a real moneymaking scheme and you as businesses can own this. If you can work to develop your own app or electronic guidebook – do it. “In terms of changes in the economy, think how you can entice potential
customers with vouchers, discounts and incentives. As increasing numbers of people are more concerned with job security, a holiday that allows them to gain a new skill or take part in voluntourism is something that people respond well to. “There are now more single parents as there are married or co-habiting couples, so many consumers will appreciate discounts for single travellers or smaller families. Equally, we’re seeing a growth in larger three generation families. By 2020 we will have the most three generation families this country has ever seen, so businesses should bear in mind how they can create holidays for these people.”
InBrief ● SPEAKING ABOUT his experience and learning lessons
from his appearance on TV show, The Undercover Boss, Kevin Sheehan, CEO & president of Norwegian Cruise Line, said: “We live in a world where nothing is consistent so you have to be proactive. There are always things that you can improve upon. Make sure you never overpromise and under deliver because you’ll lose your credibility.” ● VISITENGLAND PLANS to run a £2million TV campaign
promoting holidays at home and will work with UK tour operators to support the campaign with offers/exclusive products. Chair of VisitEngland Lady Cobham said: “We’re asking retailers to support the campaign with ‘in kind’ marketing activity and engage with us and our partners through our online training, EnglandExpert, and events.” ● GRAHAM COOKE, MD and founder of QuBit, urged
delegates at this year’s Convention to get an online strategy. He said: “More people are using tablets to buy holidays so as businesses you need to create a connection with your customers. You can do this in many ways including having a mobile site and using Big Data to capture information on customers visiting your site. This is the single greatest opportunity to sell more effectively.”
Cooke also highlighted how ‘tag management’ is a new revolution and how businesses can use ‘personalised persuasion’ to drive big results. He said: “Personalisation allows you to connect with the visitor and it targets visitors like Adwords do. Technology has the potential to make us move faster and helps you get closer to your clients. A personalised Website can be your best salesperson and the most important thing you can be developing right now is a data strategy. If you’re not fast enough you could potentially miss out.” ● NEXT YEAR’S Convention will be held in Dubrovnik,
Croatia from October 21-23. ● SCOTT BAUER, partner at PwC Digital Technology Group,
spoke about digital’s affect on travel and highlighted how 38% of all revenue in travel is done through online sales compared to 6% retail. He said: “Social media is very close to travel. Google statistics show that immediate activity that follows any online travel booking is to visit social media sites. Travel is the number 1 category in digital commerce across the Web and mobile. As sites are optimised and increasing numbers of companies release apps, these figures will grow.”
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W-AITO-Go! by OLIVER BROAD
ATOL certificates – whatever happened to the much-discussed consumer campaign?! ’M WRITING this article two weeks into the new ATOL certificate era - and what a fortnight it has been! Initially I thought that the idea of issuing certificates to clients would be a great benefit to agents; in effect, we’d be handing over a seal-of-approval to the customer. In what continues to be a difficult trading period for independent agents, I assumed that providing our clients with a certificate of authentication would add value to booking with us. I was open-minded about the whole project, even when many people were up in arms. Of course, I was sceptical about the administration, the extra work, possible investment, and the daunting thought that we would have to get used to our 150+ suppliers dealing with this new administrative duty in different ways. Whilst I still believe that issuing the certificates adds value and encourages consumers to book through a trusted company - as opposed to booking the various components of their holiday themselves - there are clearly a lot of improvements that need to be made. What worries me the most is the lack of consumer knowledge - where on earth is the much-discussed CAA consumer campaign that I, amongst others, stressed strongly to the CAA via the travel trade pages should be launched at the same time as the certificate? Very few of our clients are aware of the changes and this doesn’t make our lives any easier. HM Revenue and Customs start promoting the deadline for tax returns over six months before you could be fined and the CAA should have done the same in the lead-up to the new ATOL regulations. Consumers are not taking it seriously and I will be intrigued to see how many actually take the certificate on holiday with them. I hope I am proved wrong but, with such a total lack of consumer awareness, the project is at serious risk of being a big flop. Whilst it is beneficial to us as a travel agent to have the opportunity to explain the certificate and the fact that it adds value to our service, consumer awareness to back this up is imperative. At present, due to the lack of consumer awareness, we are struggling to make the public fully understand and appreciate what it all means. In our agency, we are actually quite lucky as our database guru has integrated the issuing of the certificate into our system so there is not really any additional time needed by our team to print one off when required – I feel for those having to type them out. What is time-consuming for us, is working out if we need to generate the certificate ourselves or to get one from the tour operator. Thankfully our AITO partners have been very prompt at sending them through, but this isn’t the case with others, which is very disappointing. A perfect example is the client
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that called in at 5.15pm to book a holiday and pay a deposit and yet the tour operator cannot send me an ATOL certificate until the next morning. Another tour operator said I had to issue it myself - that’s fine - but they wouldn’t tell me the airline they were chartering as they didn’t know yet and so, according to the rules I’ve seen, when they do know, I have to issue the certificate again – causing more confusion for the consumer. Other key people in the industry advise that it’s not necessary to issue the certificate again in this instance – so how do any of us know what is actually required of us, with such conflicting information? Customers also need educating about who exactly is protecting them – it states in the middle of the certificate that the operator is covering them, but at the end it says it is ‘issued by the travel agent’. More worryingly, many clients think that the certificate is a replacement for travel insurance. I am dreading the day when something goes wrong with someone’s holiday and a client comes to me waving their ATOL certificate and I have to explain to them what ‘issued by’ really means. Part of my role as chairman of AITO Specialist Travel Agents is to encourage more operators to work through our agents – for example, through our Closer Ties agreement. But yet more paperwork and issues caused by the ATOL reform can threaten such development. However, let’s be positive for a moment. One advantage is that the more confused the consumer is, the more likely they are to want to speak to a tried and trusted, independent, reputable company, such as an AITO Specialist Travel Agent. Hopefully it will also remind consumers to seek out reassurance of who they are placing their booking with and encourage them to look for the AITO and ABTA logos, avoiding booking with those bending the rules and operating without bonds. I am determined to try to keep an open mind - watch this space! But a final plea to the CAA – please get your consumer campaign on the go, because it will help us all!
To respond to any of Oliver’s views email email@example.com
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BRIGHTENING UP LANCASHIRE….Preston was the venue for Bright’s (Bringing Real Information & Guaranteed High Quality Training) latest workshop and dinner for 41 independent agents from 23 local agencies. Pictured are, from the left: Lyndy Holmes; Jonathan Whiteley; Julie Taylor and Emma Hart, all from Gullivers Travels. The workshops offered travel agent partners the latest information on destinations, unique selling points and updates on new programmes and services. For details of other workshops see www.brightconsortia.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn with Lufthansa to win Business Class tickets to Europe AGENTS COMPLETING five online training modules devised by The Lufthansa Group will be entered into a draw to win one of four pairs of Business Class tickets to a variety of European destinations, along with other prizes.
ACE increases e-learning opportunities ACE HAS launched ten new e-learning modules specifically designed to help agents increase their cruise sales. The modules include switch-selling, up-selling and adding value. The modules also contain guidelines and real examples to ensure that key messages are clearly understood. A further ten courses will be introduced soon and will focus on niche sectors and products within cruising. Also, newly launched is a cruise search platform for the association's Website, which will assist members with general cruise enquiries as well as give them an understanding of the deployment of cruise ships. For details call 020-7436 2449, email email@example.com or see discovercruises.co.uk
The carrier has designed the new course to help agents learn about its four carriers: Lufthansa; Austrian Airlines; Brussels Airlines and Swiss International Air Lines. For more information visit www.lufthansagrouptraining.com
Tourism Ireland issues new module TOURISM IRELAND’S eLearning course has now been revised to contain a new module focusing solely on Northern Ireland. Agents completing the module by October 31 will be entered in to a draw to win one of 50 luxury travel bags. For details see www.shamrockagents.com
Win a trip to Bruges with Riviera Travel RIVIERA TRAVEL has launched a new eLearning course via Onlinetraveltraining (OTT). Agents who complete the course before the end of the year will be entered into a competition to win a mini-tour to Bruges on Eurostar. For more information see www.onlinetraveltraining.co .uk/riviera.aspx
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Rebecca Burgess The trade sales manager from Caribtours and The Private Travel Company enjoys horse riding but dislikes price matching...
Who is your ideal travelling companion? My friend Rachel.
“I dislike price matching and online companies who undercut reputable tour operators”
What's your earliest childhood memory? Learning to ride my pony, Merlin, when I was around three years old. Where was your last work-related trip? I hosted a fam to Dubai in July. If you were a celebrity who would you choose to be and why? Angelina Jolie because she is absolutely stunning and is married to Brad Pitt. What is the best advice you recall? Manners cost nothing and treat people the way in which you would like to be treated. If you could have a room full of any one thing, what would it be? My friends. What's your favourite city and why? New York so I can embrace my inner Carrie Bradshaw.
Career path ● ● ● ● ●
1998 – Customer service agent, British Airways 2001 – 2003 Reservations manager Tropical Places 2003 – Travel advisor - Caribtours 2004 – Reservations supervisor Caribtours 2008 – Agency sales executive Caribtours and The Private Travel Company 2011 – Trade sales manager Caribtours and The Private Travel Company
What item do you always take with you when travelling? Hair straightners (it’s the humidity!) What's your favourite airline and why? BA. How do you deal with stress? I’ll go running or horse riding if I’m being healthy. Failing that a large glass of wine. Is there anything that you dislike about the travel industry? I dislike price matching and online companies who undercut reputable tour operators. What’s your favourite movie of all time? The Shawshank Redemption or Dirty Dancing. What do you love about your job? I love the team I work with. Developing relationships with our travel agent partners and of course getting to travel and experience some of the most exotic destinations on the planet.
If you were not doing this job, what would you be doing? I would be a vet if I could suss the physics aspect out. What is your favourite mode of travel? Cruising round in my Mini singing along to the radio or BA First class isn’t bad either. If you had a super power what would it be and why? I would be invisible for a day so I could spy on my friends and family.
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COLLETTE WORLDWIDE Holidays has added a new tour to its 2013/14 brochure, bringing the total number of its Canada tours to five. The nine-day Rockies Rail Highlights features an overnight journey from Jasper to Vancouver on VIA Rail’s The Canadian and gives guests the opportunity to stand on glacial ice more than 1,000ft thick at the Columbia Icefields, spend three nights at The Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel, take a day trip to Yoho National Park and view Emerald Lake and Peyto Lake. Prices lead in at £2,699 per person, including 11 meals and an early booking offer of £150 per couple.
Canadian Tourism Commission celebrates 50 years at World Travel Market THE CANADIAN Tourism Commission (CTC) will be celebrating at this year's World Travel Market (WTM), as this year marks 50 years since the opening of a Canadian tourist office in the UK. It will also be celebrating 21 years of its Canada Specialist Training programme. Canadian tourism partners exhibiting alongside the CTC can be found at stand NA300, with new exhibitors including Guananoque Boat Line; One Ocean expeditions; Butchart Gardens; and the Sandman Hotel Group/The Sutton Place Hotel Company. The organisation will be promoting its Signature
Hallowe'en fun in Ontario ONTARIO IS highlighting a selection of attractions for Hallowe'en, including a stay in a former prison cell at the Hi-Ottawa Hostel in downtown Ottawa. The property is on the site of the former Carleton County jail and was Canada’s last public hanging location. It has 110 beds in total and offers shared and private cells, along with a ghost walking tour of Ottawa. Elsewhere in the province, the Fairmont Chateau Laurier is reportedly haunted by its financier, who was on the illfated Titanic, while the Old Angel Inn in Niagara-on-theLake is Ontario’s oldest operating inn and is supposedly haunted by a soldier from the War of 1812. For more information visit www.ontariotravel.net/uk
Experiences Collection (SEC), which helps qualified tourism businesses promote their products internationally. Canadian tourism brands such as Rocky Mountaineer, Via Rail and Fairmont Hotels & Resorts will also be represented at the event, along with a total of approximately 30 partners. Qualified Canada Specialist Agents who introduce themselves at the CTC counter will receive a 21st birthday gift. To register and complete the training module in advance of WTM see www.canadaspecialist.co.uk
New Canada options from Virgin Holidays VIRGIN HOLIDAYS is introducing new tours in Canada for 2013. As an example, a 15-day tour to Toronto, which includes Air Canada flights, accommodation and sightseeing encompassing Kochi Toronto, a river cruise in the Thousand Islands region, Quebec City, Battlefields Park and Ottawa, leads in at £2,145 based on two adults sharing on a mixed board basis. The price also includes transfers and all applicable taxes and fuel surcharges. For more information call 0844-225 1235 or visit www.virginholidaysjourneys.co.uk
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HALLOWE'EN HOWLERS...catching up on all the latest news in Travel Bulletin are, from the left: Linda Reed, Baldwins Travel; Richard Sturgeon, Jimmy Martin Travel; and Amanda Glass, CAS Travel. The agents were part of a Prestige Holidays' fam trip, which took in Bermuda and Toronto, and are pictured enjoying Hallowe’en at Niagara on the Lake.
Prestige offers new range of Canadian ski holidays PRESTIGE HOLIDAYS has expanded its choice of Canadian ski holidays for winter 2012/13. Now included are the ski resorts of SunPeaks, Big White and Fernie as well as new hotels in Whistler, British Columbia. A new two-centre break that features Montreal and Quebec is now available, including a one-night stay in Montreal’s ice hotel, Hotel de Glace; a two-night stay in Le Nouvel Hotel; and a three-hour tour of Montreal. There is also a scenic rail journey to Quebec taking in the northern shore of the St Lawrence River, with an overnight stay at Hotel Pur. The tour features room-only accommodation in hotels except Hotel de Glace, where breakfast is included, along with flights from Heathrow. Other escapes in the winter programme include a threeor four-night Aurora Borealis viewing break in the Yukon; three- and five-night polar bear viewing trips in Manitoba; and a passage to the Maritimes tour featuring a rail journey from Montreal to Halifax with sightseeing excursions. There is also a choice of winter adventure breaks and a selection of rail journeys on Canada’s famous Via Rail service, plus a journey on the Snow train through Jasper and Banff’s National Parks. For more information call 01502-567222 or visit www.prestigeholidays.co.uk
InBrief ● AIR CANADA has been named the ‘Best International
Airline in North America’ in a worldwide survey of air travellers for the Skytrax World Airline Awards. It is the third consecutive year the carrier has ranked among the top global carriers in the awards, which surveyed more than 18million passengers worldwide. FOUR SEASONS has opened its flagship property in Toronto. The hotel has been designed with business visitors in mind and features a building connected to the hotel dedicated entirely to event space, including 17 function spaces across 14,300 sq ft, including two large event rooms. The hotel offers 259 personalised rooms and 42 individual suites, each featuring luxury amenities, climate control, interactive tablets and contemporary bathrooms.
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● AUBERGE SAINT-Antoine, located in the Old City of
Quebec is offering a Grape Harvest package for guests who enjoy fine wine and gourmet meals. After harvesting grapes at Vignoble Sainte-Pétronille, guests can sample some of the vineyard’s wines with a gourmet meal. The package is available from October 24-26.
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Five-star resort to open on Newfoundland and Labrador’s Fogo Island ATLANTIC CANADA has announced that Newfoundland and Labrador’s first five-star luxury resort will open on Fogo Island in spring next year. The eco-chic hotel has been built on stilts to avoid damage to the rocks and lichen that make up the island. With rooms tipped to be prebooking at $1,000 (£618) per night, it will feature 29 guestrooms, a rooftop sauna and spa, art gallery and cinema.
Also new to the operator's programme is the Train Station Inn in Tatamagouche, Nova Scotia, which consists of seven train carriages that have been transformed into guest rooms. The inn includes a dining car offering dishes such as fresh lobster tails and poached Atlantic salmon, with a night’s breakfast accommodation costing approximately £63 per person. For more information visit www.atlanticcanadaholiday.co.uk
Fresh Tracks Canada offers up to £928 per couple on free nights and tours FRESH TRACKS Canada is offering incentives of up to US$1,500 (£928) per couple on free hotel nights and tours. Offers are valid for guests booking a holiday of six nights or more by November 30 for qualifying 2013 itineraries. Incentives include a combination of free nights and gourmet dining, guided tours, wildlife excursions or helitours in the guests’ chosen destination. The 2013 Early Bird Booking offer is valid for lodge trips, wildlife viewing tours and train tours of six nights or more (or self-drive trips across Canada of 12 nights or more) in spring, summer or autumn next year. Deals are based on double occupancy and cannot be combined with other offers. For more information or to receive a brochure call 0800917 5924 or visit www.freshtrackscanada.com
Canada named top country to visit according to new study
SHANGRI-LA HOTEL in Toronto has opened on University Avenue. The hotel occupies the first 17 floors of a new 66-storey landmark tower and features 202 guest rooms. Each room is equipped with an entertainment centre featuring a 47-inch flat-screen LED TV, iPad and ICE technology that puts the hotel in the guest’s hands to access inroom dining, housekeeping, bell service and 24-hour concierge. Nine guest rooms feature private, appointed outdoor terraces and one quarter of the guest accommodation is devoted to suites. For details visit www.shangri-la.com/toronto/shangrila
October 19 2012
CANADA IS this year’s most recommended destination to visit, according to a study by The Reputation Institute. The survey measured public opinion towards 50 countries, as well as perceptions of peoples’ quality of life, safety and attention to the environment. The results for Canada included it being the top recommended country to visit (up from number 3 last year); the most recommended country in which to invest (up from number 3); the most recommended country in which to live, the second most recommended country in which to buy; and the top recommended country in which to work.
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canada Calgary Stampede boosts bookings for Ranch Rider ACCORDING TO Ranch Rider, this year’s Calgary Stampede and the event’s centennial celebrations gave bookings a significant boost. The company’s managing director, Tony Daly, said: “Obviously there was a great deal of promotion surrounding ‘The Greatest Outdoor Show On Earth’, but outside of the success of the Calgary Stampede, the province of Saskatchewan has performed particularly well.” Known as the Land of Living Skies, the operator claims that the rise in interest is specific to the type of stays it offers. Daly said: “Our Saskatchewan portfolio is working ranch centric, and in the last 12 months we’ve seen a growth in bookings for authentic stays across the whole of North America. Admittedly, budgets have had a huge part to play in where people book, but in an ongoing recession escapism is perhaps simply more desirable. “Of course, luxury resorts will give clients all the additional pampering, however, stepping into the boots of a real cowboy can be a life changing experience.” The company offers riding holidays in Saskatchewan from £925 per person, based on two sharing at the La Reata Ranch. It includes accommodation, meals, most ranch activities and taxes. Transfers are excluded but start from £110 and flights cost from £949. For more information call 01509-618811, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.ranchrider.com
New travel options with Rocky Mountaineer for 2013 ROCKY MOUNTAINEER has added new travel options to its 2013 line-up. The introduction of Lake Louise, Alberta, as a destination on the First Passage to the West route will provide guests staying at The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise with a fast, direct transfer to their hotel. Motor coach transfers will be available to and from the hotel and are included on all packages except two-day rail-only. The Coastal Passage route will connect the cities of Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia, en-route to the Canadian Rockies. The new route marks the company’s fifth rail journey and its first from the US. Guests on the Coastal Passage route will traverse the Pacific Northwest, British Columbia and the Canadian Rockies on the company's GoldLeaf Service, and will be transported on a bi-level custom-designed dome coach with panoramic views, gourmet cuisine in a private dining room and personalised service by the company’s hosts. From next year, the SilverLeaf Service will be available on the Journey through the Clouds route between Vancouver, British Columbia and Jasper, Alberta. Guests will experience the highest peak in the Canadian Rockies, Mount Robson and Pyramid Falls. The single-level glass domed coach offers a 167% larger viewing area than the RedLeaf Service and there will be on-board commentary and a hot meal service. For more information visit agent.rockymountaineer.com Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise
Operators add new options in Alberta for this season NEW FOR this season, Inghams has introduced a two-day add-on excursion to Skoki Lodge by snowshoe. Accessed by an 11km trail up the Skoki Valley, the lodge was the chosen spot of William and Kate when they visited Canada last year, and offers guests the opportunity to explore five different adjoining valleys and experience country skiing at the centre of Banff National Park. The main lodge has three surrounding cabins providing accommodation for 22 guests. The ‘Skoki Lodge two-day Explorer’ leads in at £149 per person on a halfboard basis and includes a guide for a seven-mile hike and snowshoe hire. The operator is also highlighting a new all-inclusive stay at the Great Divide Lodge, Lake Louise, where one-week prices lead in at £1,324 per person including flights, transfers, Lake Louise lift-pass, six days’ ski or board & boothire, breakfast, afternoon tea/coffee &
snacks, three-course dinners with wine or beer, plus after-dinner coffee. For details see www.inghams.co.uk/agents or call 01483-791114. Meanwhile, Newmarket Holidays has launched a new package to showcase the Aurora Borealis opportunities in Alberta. The nine-day itinerary allows guests to experience the Canadian Rockies including Banff, Lake Louise, Jasper and the city of Edmonton before venturing up to Fort McMurray for the Northern Lights experience. Prices lead in at £1,299 per person for a November 14 departure and include flights from Gatwick, accommodation and activities, based on two sharing. Alternatively, a new Canadian Sky Rockies and Aurora Borealis package also tours Jasper and Alberta North in search of the Northern Lights, with prices starting from £1,899 per person, including flights, accommodation and transfers.
October 19 2012
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BRIDES CAN now arrive at their wedding on horseback courtesy of Half Moon Resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The bride can opt to ride to the ceremony along the resort’s two-mile white sand beach on a horse provided by the on-site equestrian centre. For details visit www.halfmoon.rockresorts.com
The Flamboyant Hotel offers first underwater wedding package in Grenada THE FLAMBOYANT Hotel, located on Grand Anse beach near St George’s, has launched Grenada’s first underwater wedding package. It includes all licences and fees, a priest, an event co-ordinator, transport to and from the registry, chairs and signing table with table cloth, decorated location for ceremony
on land and underwater, safety divers/witnesses and boat transfers to the dive site. The package costs from £500 per couple and can be booked direct with the hotel or in addition to accommodation and flights. Golden Holidays offers seven nights’ room-only accommodation in an
Ocean View room from £662 per person, including flights and transfers. For more information or to book call 0800-097 3504 or visit www.flamboyant.com Alternatively, call Golden Holidays on 0845-085 8080 or see www.goldenholidays.co.uk
Superbreak adds cocktail masterclass for hen market
NISBET PLANTATION Beach Club in Nevis is presenting honeymooners with the gift of a jar of 100% pure Nevisian honey produced on the Caribbean island. Tradition has it that the word ‘honeymoon’ has its origins in mead, made from honey, which was given to newlyweds to drink during the first month of their marriage to bring good luck. For details visit www.nisbetplantation.com
SUPERBREAK HAS added a ‘Girls’ Cocktail Masterclass’ at Vodka Revolution to its programme. Available at venues across the UK, the activity can be added on to a hotel package, and bookings are fully commissionable to agents. Prices start from £30 per person. For more information call 0871-221 4444 or visit www.superbreak.com/ agents
October 19 2012
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s n o o m y e n o h & s g in d wed Agent bookings soar following Sandals WeddingMoons brochure launch
Bespoke wedding ceremonies from Zambian Horizons
FOLLOWING THE launch of the Sandals WeddingMoons brochure by Funway bookings at www.sandals4agents.co.uk, sales have soared, according to Funway Holidays. The operator reports a sales increase of 45% in August compared to when the programme was first introduced. The most popular resorts in terms of bookings post-launch include the Love Nest Suites, the La Toc Golf Resort & Spa in Saint Lucia and the Grande St Lucian Resort & Spa in Antigua.
'Flight of Angels' package at Sun International’s Royal Livingstone SUN INTERNATIONAL’S five-star Royal Livingstone hotel, located near Victoria Falls on the banks of the Zambezi River, is offering a ‘Flight of Angels’ package, which incorporates a helicopter ride above the falls and a ‘Zambezi Sundowners’ package, which offers a rendezvous along the river with the option of having a table specially laid out and the services of a butler. For the wedding itself, the hotel recommends a riverside ceremony, with its basic package including all license fees, a pastor, cake and wedding coordinator. Alternatively, a Deluxe Wedding Package includes the preparation of documents, 36 wedding photographs, bouquets, Champagne breakfast in bed the morning after the wedding and a private dinner for two prior to the wedding night. Guests can also embark on
an African Queen sunset cruise to view some of the region's wildlife. On arrival at the Royal Landing, couples are greeted with a cocktail and a Marimba Band. Alternatively, the Royal Livingstone Express, which consists of restored Pullman carriages, offers a rail journey through the National Park and the Zambezi Valley, along with a six-course gourmet dinner. Couples can also take a picnic in the resort’s Herb Garden, with a tailored menu put together by the chef at guests’ request. Prices start from approximately £789 per person including flights between Johannesburg and Livingstone, transfers, a sunset cruise for two, body massages, complimentary travel bags, insurance and free, unlimited access to the Falls Park. For more information visit www.suninternational.com
ZAMBIAN HORIZONS, a collection of luxury safari camps and lodges, is offering bespoke wedding ceremonies in a range of safari locations across the Zambian plains. Options include getting married on the banks of the Luangwa River; on an intimate private island in the middle of the Lower Zambezi National Park; or in the village church. An 11-night safari in Zambia costs from £5,134 per person including BA flights from London. It includes a stay on the Islands of Siankaba and Sindabezi during a visit to Livingstone and Victoria Falls, then a trip to Lower Zambezi National Park for the safari. All transfers, meals, safari activities and some activities in the Islands of Siankaba and Sindabezi are also included. For more information call 020-8232 9777 or visit www.expertafrica.com
Londolozi offers wilderness honeymoon experience LONDOLOZI, A game reserve located on the western border of Kruger National Park in South Africa, is offering a new honeymoon experience in the wilderness. The reserve’s safari honeymoon package includes a dedicated Land Rover for the couple to explore in, complete with a private guide. Couples will stay in a
October 19 2012
private granite suite, which features an outdoor river-view bath, and will receive private dinners and a wilderness massage overlooking the Sand River. The newlyweds are also invited to be co-creators of their safari experience and will have the opportunity to experience bush yoga, meditative walks, animal
tracking, Champagne sunsets and full moon bush dinners. The company recommends a minimum stay of three nights. For details visit www.londolozi.com
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Conrad Hotels highlights selection of wedding and honeymoon destinations CONRAD HOTELS & Resorts is promoting a range of wedding and honeymoon packages in a variety of destinations. As examples, the company's Koh Samui resort offers guests the chance to choose the location of their ceremony, such as on the beach or on top of the resort overlooking the Gulf of Thailand. The package includes the services of a priest, bride’s bouquet, wedding cake, welcome drinks for 20 guests, hair and make-up for the bride and hair and facial for the groom. Also included are two nights in an Oceanview one-bedroom pool villa and a music trio performing at the ceremony. Prices lead in at approximately £2,456. Meanwhile, the St Regis Mauritius resort offers a selection of indoor or outdoor venues, each overlooking the UNESCO World Heritage site
of Le Morne. Deals available include the Exotic Island Package, which leads in at €1,000 and includes a clothing press service for the bridal party, wedding set up in the location of choice, cake, bridal bouquet and a dedicated wedding photographer with 70 professional photos. On return to the villa, the couple will be welcomed with a special room decoration and will wake to an in-villa breakfast. To meet the growing demand for the renewal of wedding vows, the Maldives Rangali Island Resort offers three Renewal of Love ceremonies, two set on the beach and one underwater, with prices starting from US$2,200. The bride and groom can write their own vows or follow the ceremony created by the resort which is conducted in English. For more information see www.conradhotels3.hilton.com
Conrad Koh Samui
Tailor-made honeymoon ski breaks from VIP SKI VIP SKI has launched a new range of tailor-made honeymoon breaks in the Alps. Examples of accommodation on offer include a chalet in Zermatt, a penthouse Lugano Suite in La Plagne, the Taiga Lodge in Meribel – featuring a private sauna and hot tub – and the Chalet Davos in Val d’Isere, located on Le Cret. Each chalet is stocked with complimentary cold beers, wines, snacks and mixers as well as fruit. Prices for a seven-night stay at Chalet Davos lead in at £999 per person based on two sharing and include flights from Gatwick, transfers, breakfast accommodation, afternoon tea and three-course evening meals on six nights, with drinks and canapés on the first and last evening. A complimentary ski and snowboard hosting service is available on three days as well as daily newspapers. For more information call 0844-557 3119 or visit www.vip-chalets.com
Free night's stay from Rani Resorts RANI RESORTS is extending an offer to honeymooners staying on Medjumbe, a small private island located on the Quirimbas Archipelago, Mozambique. The company is offering a free night’s stay when guests stay on the island for five nights, meaning they will pay for four, while those staying for ten nights pay for eight. The property is also offering 50% off the bride’s accommodation until December 22 next year. For more information visit www.raniresorts.com
Honeymoon offer at Fundu Lagoon includes 50% bride discount FUNDU LAGOON, located on Pemba Island in Tanzania, is offering a special ten-night deluxe honeymoon offer from June 15 next year until April 8, 2014. The package includes a 50% discount for the bride, a bottle of sparkling wine on arrival, couples' massage, private beach dinner and Champagne breakfast the morning after the arrival. The offer is based on a minimum ten-night stay in either a Suite or Superior Suite. For more information or to book visit www.fundulagoon.com
October 19 2012
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s n o o m y e n o h & s g in d wed Planet Weddings adds new ceremony venues to its latest brochure
Planet Weddings, Malta
PLANET WEDDINGS has added new locations for marriage ceremonies in locations such as Antigua, Croatia, Malta and the lesser-known Greek Islands Amorgos and Thassos to its latest 120-page brochure. For couples who want to get married on the beach, destinations now include Hola Beach, Malta, and the four-star Columbia Beach Hotel in Pissouri Bay, Cyprus, along with the islands of Corfu and Skiathos. The company offers a ‘go-see’ option, giving couples the chance to visit their
chosen wedding destination and meet with the wedding co-ordinator. An example of new resorts is Caldera the Petit Palace in Santorini, on the Greek island of Thira, which offers sea view suite accommodation two miles away from the capital of Fira and is situated adjacent to the Agia Irini chapel. Also, following the introduction of civil ceremonies in Portugal, same-sex couples can now get married at venues in the Algarve, including the cliff top location, ‘The Lady of the Rock’.
The operator's managing director, Mathilde Robert, said: “It’s been a good year for Greece as far as weddings are concerned. Greek hoteliers have maintained prices and we have had some very flamboyant and expensive weddings with plenty of wow factors, as well as simpler ceremonies on the beach and sometimes just the couple and our wedding co-ordinator." For more information call 0871-871 0405 or visit www.planetweddings.co.uk
THE NAM Hai Resort, located on Hoi An Beach, Vietnam, is offering a honeymoon package. The ‘Romance in Style’ package includes breakfast accommodation in a onebedroom villa, beachfront villa or pool villa; a private barbecue dinner for two with wine and cake; a Vietnamese massage for two; a ‘love bath’ ceremony; personal shopper to accompany guests to Hoi An; complimentary non-alcoholic beverages from the minibar; flights to Danang; and a daily complimentary shuttle to Hoi An. Prices lead in at approximately £418 per person per villa per night, excluding taxes. Until December 20, guests can stay at the resort for four nights and pay for three, or stay for seven nights and pay for five.
October 19 2012
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malta&gozo BELLEAIR HOLIDAYS, which reports an increase in long stays in winter, is offering three, four and five weeks for the price of two for stays between November 1 and April 9, 2013. As an example, a bedand-breakfast stay at the threestar Imperial Hotel leads in at £379 per person for a January 12 departure for 14 nights. It includes a mini guide, transfers and entrance to selected Malta attractions. For details visit www.belleair.co.uk or call 0845-365 3412.
Winter travel trade offer from Malta Tourism Authority & Air Malta TO REWARD agents and operators for their continued support, the Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) and Air Malta have launched a Travel Trade Winter offer to allow them the chance to experience the winter sun of Malta first hand. The offer is valid from November 5 until March 24, 2013 and includes flights for one agent plus one accompanying guest from €50 per person. All breaks are subject to availability and exclude peak times, and bookings must be made within 21 days of departure. To book call 0906-103 0012. The MTA has also announced the launch of iValletta.com, an online portal that establishes a direct link between the city’s businesses and cultural organisations and its visitors. The site showcases current
commercial and cultural activities taking place within the city and lists information related to businesses, shops, cafés, restaurants and entertainment venues, as well as allowing establishments to introduce daily deals specifically for iValletta.com users. The portal also provides visitors with gift ideas and includes updates on infrastructural and restoration projects in progress. For details see www.iValletta.com Meanwhile, the tourist office is promoting MICE at EIBTM, the Global Meetings & Events Exhibition running from November 27-29, as a platform on which to demonstrate to European delegates what Malta has to offer as a stand out MICE destination. For more information visit www.visitmalta.com
Coastal view, Gozo
Prestige offers week's stay in Malta for £463 next year PRESTIGE IS featuring five hotels in Malta for next year, as well as two on the neighbouring island of Gozo. Prices lead in at £463 for a week's stay at the Corinthia Palace Hotel & Spa including flights with Air Malta from Gatwick, private transfers and breakfast accommodation, plus one free night, offering a saving of £60 per couple. The operator is also featuring a number of special offers for next year including free nights, free child stays when
children share with their parents, early booking offers and free car hire. Nicky Shafe, the operator's marketing manager, said: "Malta is up by 19% for summer 2012. Our top selling hotel for families is the Westin Dragonara and the most popular choice for couples is the Hotel Phoenicia." For more information see www.prestigehoildays.co.uk/malta or call 01425-480400.
October 19 2012
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malta&gozo Olympic features Malta as top destination for winter and summer sun Qawra Palace Hotel
OLYMPIC HOLIDAYS is featuring Malta in its Winter Sun 2012/13 and Summer Sun 2013 programmes, offering a combination of mainly four- and five-star hotels in the resorts of Sliema, St Julian’s and Qawra. As an example, the five-star Fortina Spa Resort, close to the centre of Sliema, leads in at £555 per person for seven nights’ breakfast accommodation in May and October next
& Gozo Wonderful winter sun! • • • • •
Prices from £229pp 3/4/5 weeks for the price of 2 Early savers discounts Long stay discounts …and much more!
year, with 14 nights’ costing from £795. All-inclusive options are also available. Photis Lambrianides, the operator's commercial director, said: “Malta has strong historical ties with Britain and the island has long been a popular destination with the UK market. Over the last four summers, Malta has developed to become a key part of our Mediterranean programme – and it's easy to see why it has been a popular holiday choice with the Brits for half a century or more. “The Maltese speak English, they drive on the left and they're very welcoming to British visitors. This combination has made Malta one of the strongest repeat destinations. “Whether people are searching for a cultural fix, some spa pampering, top watersports, buzzing nightlife or a wide variety of cuisine, Malta has a holiday to suit everyone.” Also featured is the five-star InterContinental at St George’s Bay, while the four-star hotels include the Qawra Palace, the Preluna and the Seashells Resort. A sevennight half-board stay at the Seashells Resort in Suncrest, Qawra, leads in at £475 per person in June, based on a twin share, including flights and transfers. Meanwhile, a seven-night breakfast stay at the threestar Alexandra Hotel at St Julian’s leads in at £405 per person in May, September or October. For more information call 0844-499 4449 or visit www.olympicholidays.com
All-inclusive Sliema break from £569 from Shearings
Summer 2013 on sale NOW! Book early for the best prices!! Prices from only £214pp www.facebook.com/ belleairagents
0208 785 53 3266 266 or g go oo online nline
www.belleair.co.uk/agents /agents ABTA No.V5323
Order brochures at www.trade-gate.co.uk e-gate e.co.uk
October 19 2012
SHEARINGS HAS introduced an eight-day all-inclusive Sliema break, which leads in at £569. The holiday includes flights and transfers and offers optional excursions to Gozo and Valetta, a harbour cruise and a visit to the local, traditional market. Guests stay at the three-star Hotel Plevna in the heart of the town on a full-board basis. The hotel features a rooftop terrace, live music and a selection of complimentary drinks. Departures are available from January to October next year. For more information call 0844-824 6351 or visit www.shearingsagent.com
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malta&gozo Classic adds Relais & Chateaux property to Malta programme LOCATED WITHIN the walls of a 17th century palace, and surrounded by Baroque architecture, The Xara Palace Relais & Chateaux boutique hotel in the medieval walled city of Mdina, is the newest addition to Classic Collection Holidaysâ€™ programme to Malta. As the only Relais & Chateaux accredited hotel on Malta the property offers 17 rooms and suites, each featuring a king-sized bed, modern comforts, antique furniture and artworks. There are three room types including standard duplex rooms over two floors with a separate lounge, standard panoramic view rooms with sitting area and patio, and deluxe suites featuring an outdoor Jacuzzi terrace. Gary Boyer, the operatorâ€™s head of purchasing, said: â€œThe Xara Palace is ideal for the most discerning of travellers and a perfect secluded setting for anniversary celebrations or romancing honeymooners. Weâ€™re delighted to be able to feature the property for the first time in 2012 as
Xara Palace Relais & Chateaux
we feel that it adds something unique to our existing Malta programme.â€? The company offers three nights from ÂŁ725 per person in October, based on bed-and-breakfast accommodation
in standard duplex room including flights and private transfers. For more information see www.classic-collection.co.uk or call 0800-008 7288.
Prestige Holidays offer a range of 4 and 5 star hotels in Malta and Gozo, from traditional elegant hotels to the more modern beachfront hotels, something to suit every client. Ask about all our latest offers to Malta including free nights and free room upgrades. Prices from only ÂŁ445 at a 5 star hotel for a week in January. We offer flexibility using scheduled flights, so can offer long stays or short breaks for your clients. Donâ€™t forget you will receive Love to Shop vouchers for each booking made.
Prestige Holidays on 01425 480400 or www.prestigeholidays.co.uk/malta
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malta&gozo New honeymoon package from Phoenicia Hotel
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THE FIVE-STAR Phoenicia Hotel in Valletta has added a week's package for honeymooners looking for something different, offering a mix of cultural experiences and relaxation for less than £570 per person. The package includes seven nights’ breakfast accommodation in a deluxe harbour view room including transfers, a glass of Champagne on arrival, petit fours, flowers and a bottle of sparkling wine, plus dinner in the restaurant with a bottle of wine, for £1,135 for two people. The price is based on travel in February next year. Sales and marketing director of the property Rob Bruno said: “Valletta is a great city for couples as it's easy to explore on foot but there is plenty to see and do to suit a variety of tastes. "For a special night out, honeymooners could choose the Manoel Theatre which is amongst the oldest in Europe, the Casino di Venezia, housed in a grand palazzo on the waterfront or take in one of the many concerts at the historic Granaries venue in Floriana, near to the Grand Harbour. “By staying here, guests are also well-positioned to visit other parts of the island. For newlyweds, a favourite is always a carriage-ride in the ancient city of Mdina with its cobbled streets and narrow walkways. I'd also recommend a boat trip in a traditional Maltese fishing boat, known as a dghajsa, which you can take from the Upper Barakka Gardens over to the Three Cities - Cospicua, Senglea and Vittoriosa. Another must is the Blue Lagoon in Comino - one of the best beaches in the entire Mediterranean and an ideal romantic day trip by ferry.” For more information or to book call 0800-862 0025 or visit www.phoeniciamalta.com
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Cosmos increases flexibility on Malta programme
A claustrophobic cannibal
COSMOS HOLIDAYS has increased flexibility on its choice of Malta holidays by featuring daily flying from Gatwick and three flights a week from Manchester for winter 2012/13. As well as traditional seven- and 14-night stays, short breaks and longer stays are now available. The operator’s product manager Jody Clapham said: “We are making our Malta programme even more flexible and introducing daily flights from key airports to meet demand from our customers for different duration holidays. “All the hotels we offer throughout the winter are available on a flexi-stay basis from three to 42 nights which caters for all markets. In particular, long stay holidays are increasing in popularity providing great value for money. “Demand for higher graded hotels is strong for winter 2012/13. Our fourdiamond rated properties such as Hotel Dolmen Resort and the ‘elite’ branded Palace Hotel in Sliema are performing well.”
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Treasured Time. Our promise to you.
At Rotana, we have chosen to acknowledge how precious time is to you by making all time spent with us, Treasured Time. This means that we pledge to understand and meet the individual needs of all our guests. In so doing, we have evolved our product brands to include, Rotana Hotels & Resorts, Arjaan Hotel Apartments by Rotana, Centro Hotels by Rotana and Rayhaan Hotels & Resorts by Rotana.
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