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September 20 2013 | ISSUE NO 1,842 |

Caribbean CTO launches Love Caribbean campaign for agents

this week agent bulletin 9 find out what's in store for Libra this month

bulletin briefing Elite Travel Group highlights the industry's hot topics




new research by reveals holiday mishaps


lapland operators unveil new tour options, resort additions plus the latest deals

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RARING TO GO...Affordable Car Hire recently sponsored a 007 driving experience at Silverstone as part of a charity auction. Pictured is the winner, Steve Galpin from CHR Travel, with partner, Janet Elnaugh (middle) and Lucy Clare (left) and Stacey Evetts from Affordable Car Hire agency sales.

This Week news 3

Cover Pictures: Main - Sandals LaSource Grenada Resort & Spa

Inset -

new trend report reveals ski industry is back in growth


notes from normanton


agent bulletin


bulletin briefing


puzzle bulletin


find out what Sandy has been up to lately what's in store for Libra this month? Elite Travel Group discusses the industry's hot topics play Su Doku for your chance to win a £50 M&S voucher

caribbean CTO launches Love Caribbean campaign for agents


central & eastern europe





operators & airlines announce new destinations & routes research by reveals holiday mishaps operators unveil new tour options, resort additions plus the latest deals

New trend report from Crystal Ski reveals ski industry is back in growth THE OVERALL ski market saw positive growth last winter after four seasons of decline according to findings from the Crystal Ski Industry Report 2013. Tour operators and the independent travel sector experienced a 1% rise, with packages including lift passes, equipment and catering proving popular with consumers seeking good value and financial certainty. However, the schools market encountered a further decline of 2% year-on-year. The 2012/13 season finally turned the corner due to ideal snow conditions across European resorts, a ‘good calendar’ for Christmas and New Year departures, plus an early Easter holiday in March. The overall number of skiers increased by 5,000 year-on-year (1%) increasing the number travelling abroad to 899,700 in 2012/13, the first increase of numbers since the peak in 2007/08. The top seven ski operators' market share remained stable at 84% of the total tour operator market. Crystal Ski strengthened its leadership last season with a 1% rise in market share to 34% helped by its value-formoney Ski Plus packages as well as inclusive and early booking offers. Thomson Ski saw an increase of about 3,000 skiers, while TUI Ski remains the market leader with just over 41% share. Hotelplan's increase to 26% (up 1%) of the total tour operator market is mainly due to Inghams rebuilding its portfolio following heavy reductions in preceding years. Esprit and Ski Total also increased their share marginally. Thomas Cook owned Neilson remains in third place with just under 12% and a 15.8% decline in sold holidays during the year.

'Tan-tastic' tourism is priority for Brits A POLL by into the holiday habits of Brits has revealed more about their priorities when on holiday, uncovering the very reasons why they want to go away in the first place. The research revealed that the top holiday priority for the majority of holidaymakers is ‘to get a tan’ during their short stint abroad, followed by: to relax/have a break from work (22%); to spend quality time with friends/loved ones (14%); holiday flings/romances (12%); and create good memories (7%). Of those who said their top priority was to get a tan, some 61% said that they would have liked to have been more tanned before going home. More than one in ten (12%) admitted to regretting the amount of time they spent on holiday trying to get a tan and a third said they didn’t actually find the process of getting a tan ‘enjoyable’.

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September 20 2013


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newsbulletin Ffestiniog Travel celebrates 40th anniversary with new brochure edition FFESTINIOG TRAVEL will be celebrating its 40th anniversary next year and, to mark the milestone, has issued a 2014 edition of its Rail Holidays of the World brochure. Featuring nine new itineraries, the brochure also features a commemorative 40-day Around the World trip. After a welcome dinner and overnight stay at London’s fivestar St Pancras Renaissance Hotel on May 3, the anniversary tour will include European city tours; an 11-day journey on the Tsar’s Gold Luxury train; escorted excursions to the Great Wall of China, Tian’anmen Square, the Forbidden City and the Terracotta Warriors; a flight to Vancouver with time to explore the city before boarding the Rocky Mountaineer for a GoldLeaf journey to Kamloops; visits to the national parks of Banff and Jasper, with an optional Ice Explorer tour to the Athabasca

Glacier; and a three-night journey on Via Rail’s ‘Canadian’ through the Prairies, Saskatoon and Winnipeg to Toronto. A Maple Leaf service will take guests to the final destination New York - for a three-night stay and farewell dinner. Prices lead in at £19,695 per person based on two sharing including First Class rail tickets (where possible), special rail journeys, Economy flights from Beijing-Vancouver and New York-London, hotel and on-board accommodation as per the itinerary, excursions, transfers, welcome and farewell dinners plus the services of a tour leader throughout. Shorter duration itineraries can also be created, with prices available on request. For more information call 01766-772030 or visit

A BARREL OF BOOZE…Agents from Co-operative Travel in Whitby were the winners of a recent Superbreak incentive for making the most bookings for the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo across the North East and Humberside region. Pictured with their prize of a barrel of booze are, from the left, the agency's Olivia Nobel; Kelly Giblin from Superbreak; and the agency's Beckie Dack.

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The combined school and student market reduced by 2% to 115,700 while the independent travel sector experienced a marginal increase in volume of 1%, predominantly as a result of more flight options to the Alps, notably Geneva as well as Jet2 and easyJet into Grenoble airport. The report also found that France continues to be the most popular country with British skiers, taking 34.8% in the 2012/13 season, an increase in market share from 34.6% due to improved self-catering accommodation and ‘added value’ offers. Simon Cross, managing director of Crystal Ski, said: “As anticipated, last year the decline in the ski market has now bottomed out and we are starting to see signs of recovery and growth. “With initiatives from Snowsport England, the indoor ski centres in the UK, our own first time ski or board promotions and the efforts of resorts in Europe and beyond, there is a real focus on attracting new or lapsed skiers to the market. This focus, combined with the additional exposure that the Winter Olympics in Sochi will bring to the sport, should ensure that the growth that we experienced last season is the start of the recovery.”


September 20 2013

Mailbox Mailings with Travel Bulletin this week include: ● Enchanting Holidays new 2014 dedicated Mauritius

brochure, OUT NOW, offers a sensational selection of 51 HOTELS IN MAURITIUS. 7 nights All Inclusive from £1349pp. HIGH AGENTS' COMMISSION 13%. Res: 020 8951 3837; ● Crusader Holidays part of the Motts Travel Group

celebrates its 40th Birthday in 2014. The new Holiday Brochure offers over 120 holidays across 17 countries. Departures are available from over 120 FREE joining points in the South East and Home Counties. Trade sales have increased by 30% in the past year. Call 01255 425453 or visit For further details and special offers please read the mail shots that accompany this issue

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newsbulletin New 2014/15 brochure from Just You offers enhanced product

PANDA PAIR....Pictured marking the launch of Wendy Wu Tour's 2014/15 China brochure is the operator's managing director, Laurence Hicks. The new launch features 40% more holidays and experiences, as well as 'Special Interest' trips. Fully-inclusive group tours start from £1,690 per person including flights, transport, accommodation, all meals, touring with guides, entrance fees and visa fees for EU passport holders. Also new for winter 2013/14 are Chinese New Year itineraries, offering the chance to spend New Year on a dragon boat, plus a range of family friendly itineraries running over the school holiday periods. For a limited period, clients can save up to £300 per couple on selected China group tours in 2014 for bookings made by October 31, for travel between March 1 and August 31, 2014. For details see or call 0844-499 3899.

Southampton Airport launches weekly ski route to Innsbruck

JUST YOU has issued its 2014/15 brochure featuring enhanced product across five distinct categories – Cities, Explore, Escape, Tour and Festive. The operator’s group sales director Colin Wilson said: “There are now more single people in the country than ever before and we felt that we really needed to take our new brochure to the next level in offering people more choice. It’s not just the look and feel behind the brochure that has changed but also the ethos and the product.” In an ambitious move, the company says that it plans to double sales over the next three years and aims to ensure that it stands out as a single travel specialist. Wilson said: "Our client research has found that enriching single travel experiences was the most important factor when it came to people deciding to book a holiday so that’s exactly what we’ve done in the new brochure. Alongside enhancing the product, the brochure is categorised into five sections to make it easier for agents to use and carries a new tag line ‘We create the possibility, you make the personal discoveries’." Prices lead in at £299 for three days stay on a bedand-breakfast (one night) and half-board (one night) basis at the Novotel in York. It includes a welcome drink and dinner on the first night, a city tour with a local guide and entrance to York Minster. For more information visit

Birthplace of Myths & Legends H O L I D AY S The home of Mediterranean holidays

SOUTHAMPTON AIRPORT is set to welcome a new Innsbruck route, chartered by Inghams, on Saturdays from December 21, taking travellers into the heart of the Tirol region, which is ideal for ski holidays for all abilities. Ski packages to Austria with flights are available to book now, with prices from £599 per person for a January 11 departure, including transfers, seven nights' catered accommodation at the Chalet Arlhof in St. Anton, plus the services of a rep. Catered board includes hot breakfast, afternoon tea and a four-course evening meal on six days. For further information see

Compagnie Du Ponant launches B2B booking system COMPAGNIE DU Ponant has launched a new online reservations portal for travel agents, designed to simplify the booking process. The new portal, at, provides agents with a simple, quick and direct method of booking port to port cruises. Agents will receive access to the company's portfolio of cruises and availability, as well as the latest fares and promotions. For more information call 0800-980 4027.

Greece byDesign

ABTA No.V5573

$BMM or visit


September 20 2013


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newsbulletin Tweets of the Week Who’s saying what on Twitter... @LegerHolidays When was the last time you visited Ireland? See more of Ireland in 2014, with this BRAND NEW tour -... @Travelpack Madrid attractions: what to see and do in autumn @MyRoyalUK Did you know kids can tour for free on selected cruises? Have a look at which ones here: @CosmosHolidays Looking for a cheap November sun getaway? #algarve from only £91pp with our discount code SAVE50! @traveltraining Lithuania's training course is a great way to brush up on this beautiful destination with potential @STATravel_UK Interested in volunteering? Be inspired by our Emma's story of her time working with lions in Africa:

Follow us on Twitter! TravelBulletin

BROADWAY BEATS...Off Broadway Travel, a member of The Global Travel Group, recently received a visit from the group’s Carly Charteris and Dave Kneale (left) from Premier Holidays, which has recently launched its 2014 US brochure. Pictured marking the new launch with Dave and Carly is the travel agency's Mark Beattie.

Newsbites ●

● ● ●

DIXONS TRAVEL has unveiled its new concept store at Heathrow Terminal 5, which is scheduled to open in June next year. The new store will offer the latest tech alongside holiday essentials in a future-facing layout and will feature state-of-the-art digital signage and a KNOWHOW service bar. THE NEW World Travel Market App is now live and features a full event schedule, exhibitor and visitor listings, social networking, a floorplan and speaker listings. It is available to download for free from BELLEAIR HOLIDAYS has launched its Top 50 hotels for 2014, now all bookable online at for holidays up to August 2014. The site gives agents the chance to book their clients early to secure their exact holiday requirements, on the date they wish and departing from the airport they prefer. GULLIVER'S MILTON Keynes has added a new Nerf attraction. The interactive play zone offers Nerf blaster fun in a purpose-built environment and includes a Nerf blaster target range and a combat zone. For details see PARK RESORTS has joined with Wifinity to deliver the latest in superfast WiFi to all 39 of its holiday parks.The enhanced WiFi signal will be available from early next year for free in the complex and club areas, and the company is also looking to bundle wireless access as part of its online holiday purchase process. For details see or call 0843-308 8767. ICELOLLY HAS completed a £17million management buyout backed by Palatine Private Equity. EBOOKERS.COM IS running a 'Travel Happier Sale' giving customers discounts on holiday breaks, including up to 50% off hotels, until September 30. ETHOS MARKETING has announced its appointment as the UK office for Majeka House in the historical town of Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Headwater announces launch of electric bike options HEADWATER SAYS it expects to offer the use of electric bikes on selected European cycling holidays next year. The operator introduced the use of electric bikes on a trial basis across eight of its cycling tours in Italy, Portugal, Austria and Switzerland earlier this year due to increasing demand. Clients who wish to upgrade from a normal bike to an electric bike on the cycling tours will pay an additional supplement of £50 per person. For details call 0845-322 4672 or email

Olympic adds new properties in Turkey to Summer Sun 2014 programme NEW ADDITIONS in Turkey have been made to Olympic Holidays' Summer Sun 2014 programme including the five-star Majesty Mirage Park Resort in Kemer, where a seven-night all-inclusive holiday leads in at £469. The company has also added two four-star hotels in Olu Deniz: the 16-room Nirvana Boutique Hotel, where a week's bed-and-breakfast costs from £459, and the 41room Belcehan Deluxe Hotel, which leads in at £405 for a week's breakfast stay. Three-star programme newcomers are the all-


September 20 2013

inclusive Yel Holiday Resort in Ovacik Hisaronu and two in Marmaris: the all-inclusive Blue Lagoon Hotel and self-catering Golden Orange Apart Hotel. Meanwhile, the operator is offering seven-night gulet cruises from Marmaris and Bodrum next year, with prices ranging from £540 out of Bodrum in October up to £750 out of Marmaris in August, on full-board arrangements. For more information call 0844-499 4449 or see

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How well do you the


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Win a weeks JUCY

campervan hire*

Complete your USA Outdoor Specialist badge to be entered in the draw

Win a

mini tablet*

Earn any Specialist badge before October to be entered in the draw

Learn more and test your knowledge at @USATravelTrade #USAdiscoveryprog


*Terms & Conditions apply. See for more details.

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newsbulletin Adventurous honeymoons from Kuoni

Notes from . . . n o t n a m r o N ADE A sudden decision after the cold spell that I wanted to get away for a few days for some sun. I decided on my favourite place, Gouves in Crete, but sadly the Kaissa Apts were full. The only flights I found that were suitable were with easyJet and I have to say they were brilliant – fast and friendly check-in. And I liked the fact that she mentioned it was quite a long walk to Gate 15 (for the sake of £3 fastrak was brilliant). I must have walked straight past at least 45 people! When I was on easyJet’s site I also had a look at what accommodation they had in Gouves. Villa Marie Kelly Apts was on there, which is in a great quiet spot and not too far to walk to my favourite restaurants – Ilios for lunch as it’s close to the beach and 2Friends and Paradise. I’ve said it before but the food at the Paradise is second to none! Can’t wait to go back again. Attended a good night at the Wendy Wu event in Leeds. They have some lovely brochures, especially the ones with animals on the cover, and they have a special offer in their China brochure that if you book by 31st October to travel between 1st March and 31st August 2014 you can save £150 per person. I think the brochures are some of the best looking around and they have a fantastic range of holidays. Not wishing to be controversial but I do wish tour operators that deal with countries like China who are largely responsible for the decline of the tiger due to their medicinal beliefs would try and do something to protect them. The same goes for operators who offer holidays to places where the elephants and rhinos etc., are being killed for their tusks. These operators could do so much to protect the wildlife if they put their mind to it. And I think customers would be more inclined to book with a company that showed they cared rather one that did nothing – just a thought! – I know keep them to myself! ‘The odd thing about inspiration is that it usually comes after, not before a new journey is started’ and ‘Thoughts become things, choose the right ones’.


by SANDRA MURRAY in Normanton, Yorkshire


MORE MULTI-CENTRE and adventure honeymoons have been added to Kuoni’s new weddings and honeymoons brochure for 2014. Combining two or three destinations in one trip is a growing trend for honeymooners, and the new brochure features more options including an adventure tour of Chile combining the capital, Santiago, with Patagonia and the Atacama Desert. It also includes San Francisco and Hawaii, Sydney and Fiji plus the Serengeti and Zanzibar. More luxury ‘mini-moons’ closer to home in Europe are also featured for the first time, plus new hotels in Greece, Cyprus, Italy, Spain and Portugal. Civil partnerships and blessings are also available with a variety of options in New York and Canada for the ceremony, while personal travel experts can offer advice on hotels and destinations that offer blessings and samesex honeymoons.

A&K adds Italy's Dolomites for winter ABERCROMBIE & Kent Villas is expanding its portfolio of ski chalets this winter to include a collection of properties in Italy’s Dolomites. As examples, Chalet Iergl in the village of San Cassiano, is a four-bedroomed farmhouse which offers children under the age of eight a free lift pass, while the Penthouse Alpina, located within minutes of the main ski lift, is a twobedroomed hideaway and offers guests the use of facilities at the Relais & Chateaux Rosa Alpina Hotel and Spa. To the east, San Lorenzo Mountain Lodge sleeps up to ten and is situated within a 42-acre estate which features a golf course.

For more information visit



Brochure of The Week: Enchanting Holidays presents Enchanting Mauritius 2014, featuring a selection of 51 hotels and offering an agents’ commission of 13%. Go to to view in digital format.

Carnival Cruise Lines 2014-15 brochure featuring amazing cruises to the Caribbean, Mexico, Hawaii, Alaska, Canada and Panama. Can be viewed in digital format at:

The 2014 brochure from IntoRussia (formerly IntouristUK) can be viewed in digital format at

All this and more at: To respond to any of Sandy’s comments email jill.

September 20 2013 The home of the web savvy travel agent

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agentbulletin Booking incentives ●

CARRIER IS offering one agent and their guest the chance to see Rihanna live in Barbados as part of an incentive launched alongside the Barbados Tourism Authority. The prize includes flights from London, three nights’ accommodation at the Colony Club and tickets to the concert on November 1. To be entered into the draw, agents must make a booking to the destination with the operator before September 28. The operator will offer two entries for any 2013 booking, which can also be combined with a current incentive where agents can earn up to £300 on bookings. For details call 01614-921354 or visit UNTIL SEPTEMBER 29, agents who book transfers, airport lounges, attraction tickets and tours with TravelCube will be entered into a weekly prize draw. Prizes include two Tumi – Just in Case Travel/Duffel Bags, four Molten Brown Jetsetter Toiletry Sets and two Kindle Fires. Winners will be announced weekly and notified by email. For details see A2BTRANSFERS HAS launched a September incentive where it is giving agents who enter its online competition while making bookings the chance to win Amazon vouchers. The winners in the daily draw will be able to instantly claim their prize with no limit to how many prizes an agent can win. Alongside Resort Hoppa, the company has also launched an end of summer sale where agents can

find savings on a range of shuttle and private transfers. For details email or ●

AGENTS CAN hit the High Street again this month as Travel 2 has brought back its 'Every Day’s a Pay Day' incentive, with guests also able to receive an additional bonus voucher for bookings that include BA or American Airlines flights. From car hire to package cruise bookings, agents can earn between £5 and £50 per booking. Details of qualifying bookings made until September 30 should be emailed to within seven days of booking and should include name, address, booking reference, lead name and travel dates. For details visit

BALES WORLDWIDE has added a 'Rhythms of Cuba' tour to its 2014/15 programme, and other new additions include itineraries to Morocco, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, South Africa, Kenya, China and Egypt, as well as Responsible Tourism holidays. To mark the launch, the operator is giving agents the chance to win an iPad Mini when they make a booking by September 30 and register it at To entice clients to book, the company is offering £200 off all new tours from the programme and £100 off any existing tours on all bookings made until September 30. For details call 0845-057 0600 or visit

It’s in the stars… What’s in store for Libra? ANY FINANCIAL issues with family members or friends of the family need to be sorted out once and for all, particularly next month. Draw up a plan and stick with it to see you through the rough. Expect to meet new people in the next few weeks - but be warned about getting too close too quickly. Know who you are dealing with before jumping in with both feet.

Lucky day: Friday Lucky number: 33

SUPER FRIENDS...Fans of Jessie J and are being offered the chance to win tickets to see them live at London’s O2 Arena as part of Superbreak's overseas booking incentive. Four pairs of tickets for each gig are up for grabs, with Jessie J performing on October 30 and performing on December 5. To enter the prize draw, agents need to book any overseas package between now and October 18 and email their booking reference to sales@superbreak .com, stating which act they would prefer to see. Pictured is the operator’s Graham Balmforth with his famous friends. For details call 0871-221 4444 or see September 20 2013


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Industry Insight by... Neil W Basnett, chief executive at Elite Travel Group, says that the recent warm weather hasn't necessarily had a positive impact on business... UTUMN IS officially here! According to the Met Office, autumn starts on September 1 and they have confirmed that we have had one of the warmest summers on record. Temperatures in the summer months of June, July and August have made it one of the top ten warmest summers since records began back in 1910! We often hear talk of us having an Indian Summer but in order for this to happen, the Met Office states that we need to have warm temperatures in October and November: and there was I always thinking that November was winter-time! All that I do know is that as soon as we get decent warm weather in this country, it plays havoc with booking patterns for overseas holidays. For those of us struggling to make a living out of outbound tourism therefore, nice weather here is not necessarily a blessing in disguise!

“As soon as we get decent warm

I think that the whole of the UK travel industry, whether involved in outbound or inbound tourism, owes a huge debt of gratitude to the 285 MPs who voted against the UK having any involvement for the time-being in taking military action against Syria. I never thought that I would say a 'thank you' to MPs! The two biggest lies around are ‘Trust me – I’m a politician’ and of course ‘The cheque is in the post!’. What is it with our recent batch of Prime Ministers who seem never happier unless they are war-mongering! All of us employed in travel know the havoc caused whenever there is any military conflict, especially one in which the Middle East is involved. It causes huge uncertainty amongst the travelling public as it raises massive concerns about the safety of air travel, possible bombing campaigns or likely retaliation against holders of British passports. People often ask me: what is the point of a travel agent? Having been selling holidays for far too long (one could walk across to France when I started in this industry!), there is still nothing more satisfying than seeing long-standing clients who want to arrange a special holiday but starting with a blank piece of paper as they have no idea where to go! Yes: they could look on t’internet and fill themselves with lots of ideas that would just cause total confusion. As Maureen Lipman said for years in the BT adverts: “It’s good to talk!”. I have just seen some lovely clients who want something special for their Golden Wedding anniversary. By the time we had chatted over coffee and had travelled all

over the world, they were really excited about one of my suggested destinations that they had never even considered – Sri Lanka. I will now put together a very nice tailor-made holiday for them and I am confident that I will come up with something that will really appeal to them. If this does not work out, I will fall back on my other two suggestions for them which they equally liked: Costa Rica or Namibia combined with South Africa. Their parting words to me were: “That is why we come to you: not knowing where to start, you have come up with three holiday ideas – all of which have got us excited!”. THAT is the point of a travel agent for the doubters! I am full of anticipation about our Travel Conference for Independents, run by the Elite Travel Group in Edinburgh over the weekend of 4th to 6th October. Interestingly, when I asked our members whether there were any specific topics that they wanted to be included on the agenda, the main items still were: changes to the Package Travel Directive and continuing evolvement of the current ATOL scheme. These have been discussed for years at conferences but still travel agents want to be constantly updated. We have listened to our members: Noel Josephides from ABTA and Andy Cohen from the CAA will be there speaking and taking loads of questions from the floor. And to spice things along a bit we have Simon Calder from The Independent – never one to shy away from controversy! Any independent travel agent is welcome to join us. A good time will be had by all and as they say in Great Expectations: ‘What larks, Pip!’.



September 20 2013

weather in this country, it plays havoc with booking patterns for overseas holidays. For those of us struggling to make a living out of outbound tourism therefore, nice weather here is not necessarily a blessing in disguise!”

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puzzlebulletin Travagrams

Su Doku Win a £50 M&S voucher in the travelbulletin Su Doku prize puzzle Number: 128

Can you solve the following anagrams to decipher the destination & tour operator?

A Faraway Citron Sushi


B➠ This airline is the national flag carrier and largest airline of the country.


Absurd Lions

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: Closing date for entries is Thursday, September 26th. Solution and new puzzle will appear next week. The winner for 6th September is Melanie Wells, Fred Olsen Travel in Bury St. Edmonds. September 6 Solution: A=3 B=2 C=5 D=8


A stay with at one of this group’s hotels will stop you feeling ‘Blu’

Where Am I?

Region shared by Argentina and Chile.

Fill in the crossword to reveal the mystery location highlighted by the green squares.

Number: 128

Across 1. Worldwide hotel chain (6) 4. Capital of Latvia (4) 8. Safari specialists ___ Holidays (5) 9. Scenic Costa Blanca resort (5) 10. State capital of California (10) 14. Capital of Aruba (10) 18. Highest mountain in the British Isles, Ben ___ (5) 20. Major resort city on Biscayne Bay (5) 21. Sexagenarian out of retirement with her new album, Closer to the Truth (4) 22. Island group, sounds like a bird (6)

Down 1. Hurry to see this fast-moving film at a cinema near you (4) 2. Popular Kenyan holiday destination (7) 3. Capital of Senegal (5) 5. Type of accommodation (3) 6. Rainforest and river (6) 7. First name of Countryfile farmer / presenter (4) 11. This card can be high or low (3) 12. Falls between America and Canada (7) 13. Alcoholic drink, named for a French town (6) 15. English singer / songwriter, ___ Stone (4) 16. Apia is the capital (5) 17. Word following the name of six of this season's Premiership football teams (4) 19. Cinema chain (3)

For the solution to the Crossword, Where Am I? and Travagrams, please see page 30 September 20 2013


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newsbulletin Win VIP tickets by completing Brand USA’s new Culture & Heritage module BRAND USA has launched a new Music, Culture & Heritage module on the USA Discovery Program – the recently launched online training site for agents in the UK and Ireland. Housed at, the tool enables agents to learn about destinations and experiences available in the US and take interactive quizzes. Once users have completed the Regional Expert badge, which ensures basic knowledge of the US states and territories, agents can then take specialist modules which focus on various experiences and holiday themes. The USA Culture & Heritage Specialist badge focuses on the music, arts and historical experiences across the US and joins three existing modules – Big City Buzz, Great Outdoors and Winter Sports. To celebrate the launch of the new module, Brand USA is giving one agent the chance to win two VIP tickets to see in concert at The O2. To be in with a chance of winning, agents need to complete the new module before the end of this month.

SKIERS AND snowboarders travelling with Balkan Holidays can now take advantage of a new winter charter flight from Glasgow which commences on December 22 through to March 30, 2014. Winter sports fans will also be able to take advantage of special offers and booking incentives including a free night skiing in Pamporovo, Bulgaria, staying at the Hotel Perelik; free lift passes in Bansko and Borovets; free ski/board storage in Bansko, 50% off full ski and board packs in Bansko, staying at the Strazhite, Pirin, Bansko and Mura Hotels; 50% off full ski and snowboard packs in Borovets, staying at the Hotel Rila; early booking discounts of up to £147 per couple; a 5% loyalty discount for previous customers; free child places; and free luggage allowance of 20kg on Bulgaria charter flights. See or call 0845-130 1114.

airberlin boosts services to St. Petersburg and Moscow

LOVING LONDON…The Original Tour recently held a ‘We love London’ party at DSTRKT in the West End to celebrate beating its own passenger forecasts for the summer. According to Mayor of London Boris Johnson, 3.4million visitors came to the city in the first three months of this year, a 4.2% boost on the same period last year. In the last 12 months, the company has also been named Sightseeing Provider of the Year 2012 by UKInbound and has invested more than £6million in more than 30 new sightseeing buses, all of which have low-floor wheelchair access and a new commentary system. Pictured toasting the company’s success are, from left to right, Colin Atkins, The Original Tour; Elaine Lumley, Evan Evans Tours; and Ash Kennedy and Marc Brasó from Axis and Globe Travel.

FROM WINTER 2013/14, airberlin is increasing the number of flights it operates to Russia. The airline will fly twice daily from Berlin to St. Petersburg in the winter, and on its popular BerlinMoscow route, the carrier will increase the number of services on offer by one additional flight weekly to a total of 14. The airline's chief commercial officer Paul Gregorowitsch said: "Russia is a key strategic market for airberlin. “By introducing this expanded service we are reacting to the increased demand for flights to and from Russia and strengthening our position. We now offer our guests a consistent year-round service and provide excellent connections via Berlin. With this expansion we are particularly strengthening our service between Berlin and St. Petersburg." For more information or to book visit

Enchanting Holidays issues dedicated Mauritius brochure featuring 51 properties ENCHANTING HOLIDAYS has issued its new 2014 dedicated Enchanting Mauritius brochure. The operator's head of product, contracting and marketing, Shafique Cockar, said: “The brochure features the largest selection of hotels to Mauritius from the UK and is purely focused on Mauritius only. We now feature a choice of 51 hotels on the island which ranges from some of the most exclusive resorts to some of the most popular five-star luxury and medium standard hotels.”


New hotels include Dinarobin, Paradis, Trou aux Biches, Shandrani, Outrigger, Centara Poste Lafayette, Centara Grand Azuri and Zilwa Attitude. The brochure also features special offers -from early booking and wedding and honeymoon discounts, to free nights and child deals. Flights are offered with Air Mauritius, British Airways and Emirates. Cockar said: “We are dedicated to working with our trade partners and provide travel agents with a high basic commission of 13% with opportunities

September 20 2013

to earn higher levels. Throughout the year we also offer numerous other financial incentives. Our programme to Mauritius is essentially a luxury product with an average booking value of around £5,000 per couple. Therefore, with our base rate being 13%, agents can earn some extremely rewarding commission levels. “Next year we will again be hosting some luxury fam trips to Mauritius. Agents should watch out for these and also for our regular and special agency staff booking incentives.”

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The Carenage in St George's Grenada

caribbean SANDALS LASOURCE Grenada Resort & Spa is set to welcome its first visitors in December. With 225 rooms and suites, the oceanfront property will offer all-inclusive guests the choice of nine restaurants - including the company's first steakhouse, three pools, two river pools and full spa facilities. For more information visit

Cultural package from Grenada's Mount Cinnamon MOUNT CINNAMON in Grenada has launched Camp Cinnamon, a cultural experience which aims to benefit the local community. For each Camp Cinnamon Family Escape package booked for stays up to October 15, a local child will attend Camp Cinnamon free of charge. The packages lead in at $2,500 (approximately £1,646) and include a seven-night stay for the price of five in a onebedroom villa, for a family of four with two children under 16 on room-only. Alternatively, guests can stay 14 nights and pay for ten nights. It also includes two hours of complimentary babysitting daily and transfers. Camp Cinnamon is $50 (£33) per child, per day and includes a range of activities such as costume making, cooking classes, pottery, yoga, nature trails and beach time. For further information visit www.mountcinnamongren or email: reservations@mountcinna

CTO launches Love Caribbean campaign for agents THE CARIBBEAN Tourism Organisation is kicking off this year’s Caribbean Month with the launch of a new campaign, Love Caribbean, designed to help agents sell the destination by providing them with a range of special offers in themed leaflets, which can also be used as promotional display materials. The tourist office’s director of marketing UK & Europe, Carol Hay, said: “As a region, the Caribbean really values and understands the importance of travel agents. We want to encourage them to love the Caribbean as much as we do by providing inspiring offers and materials to help sell the destination.” The tourist office is distributing the special offers and e-leaflets to agents to display and email to their clients and can be downloaded from and viewed online at To mark the campaign launch, the CTO is giving away shopping voucher prizes for participating agents. Prizes up for grabs include £300 worth of shopping vouchers to the first two agents to log 20 or more bookings this month; £150 worth of shopping vouchers to the first two agents to log ten or more bookings this month; and £75 worth of shopping vouchers to the first two agents to log five or more bookings. To be eligible to receive the above prizes, only offers from the Love Caribbean special offers campaign will be accepted as eligible bookings. Agents must also be a member of the Caribbean Training Programme (CTP). To enter, agents need to download the registration and booking form at and email it to Ann-Marie Brooks at with the subject ‘Love Caribbean Campaign Incentive’. To request materials email or call 020-8948 0057.

Anse Chastanet & Jade Mountain announce 'Made for Romance' fam trip deal for agents & wedding specialists TO COINCIDE with St Lucia’s first Love Elevated Wedding Symposium, taking place from September 26-29, sister resorts Anse Chastanet and Jade Mountain are offering travel agents and wedding planners attending the event the opportunity to experience the properties first hand. On September 29 and 30 respectively, Anse Chastanet and Jade Mountain will be offering a Made for Romance day excursion with pick up from the host hotels in the North of the Island. The day trip includes complimentary land taxi/boat transport to Anse Chastanet and Jade Mountain, a tour of wedding locations on the resorts' 600-acre estate with two beaches, including a tour of the two resorts and

complimentary lunch at Jade Mountain. The resorts' destination wedding concierge will also be available for in-depth discussion and consultation. Alternatively, a small number of hotel rooms have been set aside at Anse Chastanet in conjunction with the Love Elevated Symposium to allow agents to extend their stay on St Lucia and spend time at this exotic hideaway resort. Agent rates are US$99 per person per day (approximately £63) in double occupancy inclusive of accommodation, all meals and tax/service. For more information see and

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caribbean St Vincent and the Grenadines’ new airport set to open early 2014 THE CONSTRUCTION of the Argyle International Airport (AIA) is due to open for operation early next year. The new development will allow direct flights from the UK, thereby increasing accessibility and encouraging tourism to the destination. The airport will accommodate

Virgin Atlantic resumes flights from Gatwick to Trinidad and Tobago VIRGIN ATLANTIC is set to resume its direct flights to Tobago from October 29 until the end of March 2014 from Gatwick to Trinidad and Tobago. Return fares for the weekly flights start from £680 per person. For more information see

Jake's Hotel adds yoga programme JAKES HOTEL, Villas and Spa in Jamaica is hosting a new yoga programme which runs until November 3, where guests can take part in twice daily yoga classes with instructors. Rates start from approximately £700 per person per week, including accommodation, classes, meals and transfers. For more information visit

jets as large as the Boeing 747-400s and will allow for direct flights to St Vincent and the Grenadines from a range of destinations including the US, Canada, Europe and Central and South America. For details see

2014/15 launch of Sandals by Funway brochure FUNWAY HOLIDAYS has launched its Sandals by Funway 2014/15 brochure featuring new resorts including Sandals LaSource Grenada Resort & Spa and Key West Village at Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages & Spa. The company's marketing manager Nick Talbot said: “The Sandals by Funway brochure features Sandals and Beaches Luxury Included Resorts, as well as Grand Pineapple Beach Resorts across Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Antigua, The Bahamas, Grenada and Turks & Caicos. As well as the resorts, there are fantastic offers including savings of up to 40% plus free nights to be had. Plus, the all-new Sandals LaSource Grenada Resorts & Spa has a pre-opening offer with savings of up to 45% plus free nights.” As an example, a Sandals Luxury Included holiday leads in at £1,655 per person for seven nights at Sandals Carlyle, Jamaica, including flights with Virgin Atlantic, taxes and fuel surcharges.

CARIBTOURS IS offering a seven-night stay at Half Moon in Jamaica from £1,469 per person. The price offers a 25% saving and is based on two sharing a superior room on a room-only basis for stays by December 19. Scheduled flights, private transfers, use of a lounge at Gatwick and a $150 resort credit are included in the price. For details call 020-7751 0660 or see


September 20 2013

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NISBET PLANTATION Beach Club, a boutique resort in Nevis, is offering seven nights for the price of five plus a free upgrade to full board which includes breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner. The offer is available for bookings made by September 30 for stays up to December 19. Guests booking a stay of 14 nights or more will receive a free upgrade from a Superior room to a Garden Deluxe or Lower Deluxe Premier Suite. For more information visit

Saint Lucia welcomes Capella Hotels & Resorts THE SAINT Lucia Tourist Board has welcomed Capella Hotels and Resorts, the second large-scale luxury travel brand for the island’s portfolio in the last 12 months, following Six Senses and its project at Freedom Bay. Capella will take over the management of Discovery at Marigot Bay following its acquisition by an international development group. Re-branded Capella Marigot Bay from the middle of 2014, the resort will feature 124 rooms, including 57 suites, most with their own private plunge pools, spacious balconies and extensive views of Marigot Bay and Marina. The tourist board's director of marketing UK and Europe, Jean-Marc Flambert, said: ‘We are delighted to welcome such a popular brand to the island of Saint Lucia. Synonymous with luxury, the Marigot Bay property will provide the perfect basis from which Capella can build their brand in the Caribbean, bringing in their famous philosophy and a consummate service that is second to none.’

Club Barbados Resort & Spa launches all-inclusive spa stay THE CLUB Barbados Resort & Spa, the newest resort to join the Elite Island Resorts Group, has launched a spa-inclusive stay option. Guests can choose five treatments from a specially designed spa menu, featuring a variety of wraps, scrubs, facials and massages. Rates start from $185 per person per night, based on double occupancy, or $269 per night, based on single occupancy. For details see

320-room Ritz Carlton set to open in Aruba ARUBA WILL gain another luxury hotel later this year with the opening of a 320-room Ritz Carlton. Provisionally scheduled to open in December, the hotel is on a Palm Beachfront site and will include four restaurants, a 15-treatment room spa, two swimming pools, a 24hour casino and state-of-the-art meeting facilities. The seventh of the hotel group's properties in the Caribbean/Mexico region, will offer guestrooms with a choice of king-size or two queen beds. A total of 55 suites, including deluxe, executive and parlor will also be available, two of which offer seafront views with a master bedroom, living room and private balcony with outdoor showers. The property’s signature Ritz-Carlton Club Level also overlooks the property’s coastline and offers 35 exclusive rooms, with additional personalised services, including a private club concierge and all-day food and drink choices. For more information visit

New kids’ club launches this autumn at Antigua's Curtain Bluff CURTAIN BLUFF in Antigua is introducing a new kids' club this autumn which will involve two sessions daily, five days a week. The club is aimed at children aged three-ten and activities, which are mainly land based and in resort, will include arts & crafts, baking & cookie decorating, making mock cocktails at the bar, fishing off the dock, hermit crab hunting, guided nature walks and shelling on the beach. There will also be special festive/themed activities around Christmas/Easter and the kids’ club counts as all-inclusive. The resort is also introducing a new tennis escape, The Perfect Match: Tennis &

Wellbeing, with tennis and TV stars Annabel Croft and Andrew Castle, along with tennis legend Owen Davidson. The break takes place from November 16-23. A seven nights for the price of five deal is available and leads in at £2,569 per person through Western & Oriental, offering a saving of £1,700 per couple. The deal is valid for travel from October 27 to December 4 and is based on two sharing a Junior Suite on an allinclusive basis, including flights and transfers. For details call 020-7666 1234 or see For more information on the resort visit

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caribbean Rihanna brings World Tour to Punta Cana RIHANNA IS bringing her Diamonds World Tour beachside to Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Punta Cana on Saturday October 26. Music fans staying at the first all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel will have the exclusive opportunity to see the Barbados-born star perform some of her chart-topping hits. For ticket purchases see or email

Biras Creek savings with Tropic Breeze TROPIC BREEZE is offering a seven-night half-board stay in a garden suite at Biras Creek Resort in the British Virgin Islands for £1,699 per person, based on two sharing. The offer includes seven nights for the price of five, Virgin Atlantic flights from Gatwick, inter-island flights to Tortola and transfers, and represents a saving of more than £865 per person. The deal is valid for bookings made by November 30 for stays up to December 20. For more information call 01752-880880.

British Airways to boost flights to the Caribbean FROM NEXT year British Airways will offer daily flights to and from St Lucia; three weekly flights to and from Punta Cana; six weekly flights to and from Antigua, and four weekly services to and from Kingston, Jamaica. Return flights from the UK start from £597 including all taxes, fees and charges. For further information see

GUESTS AT True Blue Bay in Grenada will be able to get more active from next month with the opening of a new gym and yoga studio. The new venue will offer pilates, Zumba and dance classes as well as yoga and meditation workshops. For details visit

Bookings for Fred Olsen’s 2015 fly/cruise now available to book TICKET SALES for Fred Olsen’s 2015 Caribbean fly/cruise are now available. Guests will have the opportunity to join the 929-guest cruise ship, Braemar, which explores a number of islands including Barbados, Cuba, Curaçao, Aruba and the British Virgin Islands. The cruise departs from Barbados on January 12, 2015, with prices from £999 per person (cruise-only), based on two adults sharing, including all meals and entertainment. Return flights from the UK start from £780 per person. For more information visit

Holland America Line announces new ‘On Location’ initiative from winter 2013/14 HOLLAND AMERICA Line has launched a new On Location initiative, which aims to give guests an immersive destination experience on board and ashore. The winter 2013/14 season will be the first time guests can experience the new programme on the line’s numerous Caribbean cruises. At each new port of call a Location Team from the region visits the ship to share unique, personal insights with guests through lectures, demonstrations and performances. They will provide information about local customs, the way of life, off-the-beaten-track port highlights and local secrets. Guests can also experience the flavour of


each destination through the programme. The line's chefs use local ingredients and recipes to create regionally focused menus, whilst guest chefs will come onboard to give demonstrations and cookery classes. Guests will also receive a range of Caribbean cocktails and themed mixology classes. On shore, guests can experience a range of excursions - from horseback riding on the beach, watersports lessons, swimming with stingrays and turtles and 4x4 rainforest safaris, to food experiences, folklore and historical tours. As an example of prices, savings of up to £250 are available on a nine-night Eastern Caribbean fly/cruise, with prices leading in at £1,239 per

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Half Moon Cay

person or seven nights from £452. The cruise departs on November 2 on MS Westerdam from Fort Lauderdale and calls in Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and St. Maarten, before visiting Half Moon

Cay for a full day, then back to Florida. The price includes scheduled flights, a one-night shore stay either side of the cruise, transfers and full-board accommodation. The cruise-only offer is valid for the seven-night, full-board cruise.

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caribbean Peter Island Resort & Spa announces new wedding packages COUPLES PLANNING a wedding can now take advantage of four new wedding options at Peter Island Resort & Spa in the British Virgin Islands. A personal wedding planner is on hand to oversee all the details from legal requirements and paperwork to photography, catering, flowers and some well-earned pampering for the bride to be. As examples, packages range from a You & Yours Package, priced at US$1,500 (£1,004), which includes all paperwork and a simple ceremony to The Orchid, the resort's most exclusive wedding package, priced at $9,500 (£6,356) which includes a ceremony in the couples’ choice of location, two hours of

photography, a Champagne toast for up to 40 guests, steel band or saxophonist, three-tier wedding cake and a 75-minute couples massage. The resort also offers a Vow Renewal Ceremony from approximately £803, to allow couples to celebrate their years of marriage alone or with friends and family. It includes a dedicated resort coordinator, minister’s fees, bridal bouquet and groom’s button hole, a bottle of house Champagne and two keepsake, logo engraved Champagne flutes. Accommodation prices start from £249 plus 18% tax/service per night. For further information see

AMResorts unveils new five-star property in Punta Cana OPENING IN November is AMResorts’ new five-star property, Breathless Punta Cana Resort & Spa. Located in the Uvero Alto region of Punta Cana, the all-suite resort features 750 contemporary suites with private terraces overlooking the Caribbean sea, the pools or gardens. Funway Holidays is offering seven nights' all-inclusive stay at the property from £1,179 per person, based on travel between October 18 and December 4 and two sharing. Flights with British Airways are also included. For details or to book visit or call 0844-557 0626. SOVEREIGN LUXURY Travel is offering a saving of up to £875 on a five-star Barbados holiday departing on October 7. The holiday costs from £1,525 per person and includes two free nights, flights from Gatwick with BA, airport lounge access, private transfers and seven nights' breakfast stay in an oceanfront deluxe room at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion (pictured). For details call 0843-770 4526 or see

ITC Classics announces new cricket trip cruise ITC CLASSICS and sister company ITC Sports have announced an exclusive luxury Platinum Caribbean Cricket Cruise taking place in March 2014. Billed as a 'must-do' trip for cricket fans of all age groups, the Caribbean Cricket Cruise will take place from March 6-19 and will encompass eight islands, three matches and 13 days of sailing. Guests will spend their nights on the SeaDream, a small, sociable yet spacious luxury ship which will sail guests from island to island including Barbados, the Grenadines and Tobago Cays. During the day cricket fans


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will have the opportunity to visit eight islands of the Caribbean, plus three matches during the trip. Prices lead in at £10,385 per person based on two sharing a Yacht Club Statesroom. It includes Economy flights, transfers, 13 nights’ accommodation on SeaDream, all meals and drinks on board, cricket tickets for each T20 match, transfers to the cricket, a celebrity cricket host, port taxes and an ITC sports manager on hand to answer any questions. To book call 01244-355370 or email and for further information see

Intrepid introduces group value sailing in the Caribbean INTREPID TRAVEL has introduced two new small group sailing adventures which lead in at £920 per person for a week. The British Virgin Islands Sailing Trip offers travellers the chance to snorkel in warm Caribbean waters around Norman Island, swim with sea turtles at Dead Man’s Bay, discover a sunken shipwreck near Salt Island, hike around the island of Jost Van Dyke and soak up the laid-back Caribbean vibe at lively beach bars and authentic local restaurants. A St. Vincent and the Grenadines Sailing Trip includes snorkelling among the world’s third largest coral reef at the Tobago Cays Marine Park, visits to artisan workshops and a turtle sanctuary on the island of Bequia, hiking or biking to the peak of Mount Taboi and the chance to visit Mustique. Both sailing adventures take place on modern, skippered yachts with eight berths, and guests are given the opportunity to help sail the boat if they wish. Trips depart from November and include six nights in a twin berth cabin, snorkelling equipment, excursions, breakfasts and lunches (subject to a trip kitty of 60, payable locally). Flights are excluded. The company is offering a 5% discount on both new itineraries for bookings made by September 30 by quoting the promotional code 10320. The discount applies for travel between November 1 and December 31, 2014. For more information or to book visit rine/sailing

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FRED.\ IS offering a Christmas Time Cruise which visits Budapest, Vienna, Linz, Regensburg and Nuremberg on the five-star deluxe AmaCerto. Prices lead in at £1,999 per person, based on a November 25 departure, and include seven nights' cruise accommodation in an outside stateroom; daily tours and excursions; gourmet dining including complimentary wine, beer and soft drinks at lunch and dinner; internet access; free WiFi on board; special highlights including lectures, themed dinners and cooking demonstrations; flights; taxes and rail transfers. For details call 0808-250 7052 or see

Danube Express unveils rail journeys for 2014 NEXT YEAR the 50-passenger Danube Express will offer three journeys of discovery, exploring some of Europe’s best-kept secrets. They include The Central European, travelling between Budapest and Prague; The Transylvanian between Budapest and Istanbul; and Istanbul to Prague for a ten-day adventure. The Central European itinerary takes in five countries, six cities and some of Europe’s finest palaces over a long weekend, while The Transylvanian takes guests from the banks of the Danube to the shores of the Bosphorus, and covers four countries in four days. On The Transylvania passengers will enjoy sightseeing stops in the ancient capital of Veliko Turnovo and the centre of rose oil production, Kazanlak, ahead of arrival in Istanbul. Prices lead in at £2,990 per person including three nights on the Danube Express with various departures next year. Prices are based on two sharing a deluxe twin en suite compartment on the Danube Express with all meals, complimentary wine, beer and soft drinks, all scheduled sightseeing, and the services of a train manager. Deluxe single accommodation is available at a supplement and addon services for air or rail travel from the UK as well as hotel accommodation are also available. For more information call 01462-441400 or see

Wizz Air announces three new routes from Luton Airport WIZZ AIR has added three new routes to its current portfolio at Luton Airport. From this autumn passengers will have direct access to the 2013 European Capital of Culture, the “City of a Million Roses” and the university town of Craiova. Founded in 1869 by Welsh businessman, John Hughes, Donetsk, Ukraine is known as the “City of a Million Roses” and is home to the famous FC Donetsk Shaktar football

team. Donetsk offers many parks and open public spaces, museums and a planetarium. Košice is Slovakia’s second largest city and is the 2013 European Capital of Culture. The city houses the oldest recorded coat of arms in Europe and is home to St. Elizabeth’s Cathedral, the largest church in Slovakia. Meanwhile, university town Craiova is Romania’s sixth largest city, housing museums, art galleries and

religious buildings, some of which date back to medieval times. Simon Harley, business development manager at Luton Airport, said: “We are delighted to add Wizz Air’s new routes to our ever increasing portfolio of destinations. Low cost flying has made business and leisure travel an affordable option and the arrival of these new services reinforces our partnership with Wizz Air."

15-day ‘Transylvania Tale' tour from Tucan Travel TUCAN TRAVEL has added a 15-day Transylvania Tale to its portfolio which travels from Budapest to Istanbul through Romania and Bulgaria. Highlights of the tour include visits to Sighisoara Citadel, Bran castle, Plovdiv Roman Amphitheatre and Selimiye Mosque, and prices start from £1,379 including accommodation, transport and a tour leader. Tours commence in April next year and exclude flights.

Prague additions from Superbreak AGENTS BOOKING short break packages to Prague can now take advantage of a range of new add-on excursions that Superbreak has introduced. Bookable when staying in popular short break cities, the tours show off more of the local area and will ensure customers get to see more whilst away. All tours are fully commissionable and bookable in conjunction with an overnight hotel stay. New tours that can be added to a hotel booking include 'Prague Castle In Detail' which leads in at £32 per person and offers a walking tour of Europe’s largest medieval castle and its grounds; a 'Prague Grand Tour' for £26, which combines a coach tour and a guided walk of the main monuments; a 'Prague By Night, River Cruise' from £48, where a bus will take guests from the Powder Tower to the Vltava River where an air-conditioned pleasure boat awaits for a three-hour cruise; and a 'Prague Castle After Dark' from £19. For more information or to book visit or call 0871-221 4444.

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e p o r u e n r e t s a e l& a centr DoubleTree by Hilton makes Polish debut with latest opening in Lodz HILTON WORLDWIDE is offering visitors to the city of Lodz a unique voyage through Poland’s cinematic history following the opening of the country’s first DoubleTree by Hilton, part of Hilton Worldwide’s upscale brand which features more than 350 hotels globally. Opening at the site of the Lodz Film Studio, the newly built DoubleTree by Hilton Lodz pays homage to the golden age of Polish cinema. Its towering 8,000sq.m glass façade depicts a scene from one of the many Polish film masterpieces to have

emanated from Lodz’s famous ‘Dream Factory’ studios. Once inside, guests continue their journey through cinematic history with guest rooms featuring film motifs, whilst its swimming pool forms a visual tribute to the works of Oscar winning director, Roman Polanski. Simon Vincent, president, EMEA, Hilton Worldwide, said: “Hilton Worldwide has a long history of association with the film industry and DoubleTree by Hilton Lodz builds on this heritage in an important European market. Over the last six years, we have

expanded our Polish portfolio with openings in some of the country’s most visited cities including Gdansk, Krakow and Warsaw and our new hotel in Lodz marks a superb debut.” The property features 200 guestrooms, a presidential suite, concert and congress hall plus a total of six meeting rooms. An indoor swimming pool and spa with four treatment rooms is also offered, along with a cinema room. For more information visit

New group departure options from Regent Holidays REGENT HOLIDAYS has added two new group departures for next year, a Kosovo In Depth Group Tour plus a Bosnia In Depth Group Tour, which coincides with the anniversary of the shooting of Franz Ferdinand (an incident which started WW1). Prices for the ten-day Bosnia In Depth Group Tour, which departs on June 26, 2014 lead in at £1,485 per person, based on two sharing. It includes Economy Class flights from Gatwick with BA, airport taxes and security charges, breakfast accommodation in three- and four-star hotels, various other meals, transfers and transport, sightseeing with an English-speaking guide plus a tour leader. The eight-day Kosovo In-Depth Group Tour departs on May 24 next year and costs from £1,295 based on two sharing. It includes Economy Class flights with BA from Gatwick, all air taxes and security charges, accommodation in rooms with private bathroom and breakfast as specified, transfers and transport, an English speaking guide, entrance to museums, various lunches and dinners plus a tour leader. For more information visit or call 020-7666 1244.

LUXURY TRAIN Club, which offers 5% commission to agents or from 11.5% for groups of more than ten, is promoting a new tour for next year, Jewels of Persia, on the Golden Eagle Danube Express. Destinations include Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey and Iran and the trip can also be taken in reverse. Eastbound itineraries commence on October 14 and Westbound from October 27, with prices leading in at £13,995 per person, based on two sharing. Prices include one night in Budapest, Istanbul and Tehran; 11 nights on the Danube Express in a deluxe twin compartment; all meals; welcome and farewell dinners plus wine and soft drinks with meals; a guest speaker, tour managers; excursions; transfers and all gratuities.

Estonian Air opens seasonal route between Tallinn and Munich FROM DECEMBER 21, Estonian Air will launch a seasonal air link between Tallinn and Munich. The weekly flight, on Saturdays, departs Tallinn at 08:00 and from Munich at 10:20 local time. The route will be operated until March 29, 2014, with fares leading in at €99.90 one-way including all fees and taxes. Meanwhile, the carrier reports that between January and August it carried 378,040 passengers, out of which 51,976 were carried in August. The airline has also introduced a new automatic check-in system for passengers. For automated check-in passengers have to enter their mobile phone number during the booking process. Passengers will receive check-in confirmation and a link to their boarding pass on their mobile phone at 19:00 the previous evening if their flight departs the next day between 02:00 and 11:00, or about four hours before the flight’s scheduled departure if their flight departs after 11:00. Automated check-in is available on the carrier's direct flights departing from Amsterdam, Brussels, Copenhagen, Tallinn, Vilnius, Oslo, Paris, Trondheim, Stockholm and Nice.


September 20 2013

The airline's ground handling manager Vilma Oras said: “The self-service check-in is becoming a norm and is increasingly available across a variety of channels including online, at airport kiosks and via mobile devices, giving the luxury of choosing where to sit and to print or scan the boarding pass. "Taking the concept of self-service check-in one step further we have made checking in for our customers even easier.” Transfer passengers who commence their journey on other airlines' operated flights and connect on the same day on to Estonian Air’s flights may check-in free of charge at the check-in desk in the transfer hall, transfer service centre or at the gate. For automated check-in passengers need mobile phones enabling internet access to present a readable bar code of their boarding pass. In case the boarding pass cannot be presented via mobile phone, it can, irrespective of ticket type, be printed out free of charge at the check-in kiosk or picked up from the baggage drop-off or check-in counter. For more information visit

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Survey reveals majority of Brits driving abroad have inadequate insurance CAR HIRE supplier,, is warning of the dangers of not purchasing Collision Damage Waiver Insurance (CDW), following a recent survey that found 63% of holidaymakers fail to do so when hiring a car abroad. The survey, conducted by the Post Office and summarised in their car rental report, also found that the cost of paying the excess of a car hire policy abroad could reach nearly £1,200 to those without adequate insurance. This excess could occur through an accident, the theft of the car or

vandalism to the vehicle, regardless of who may be at fault. Briony Fairbairn of said: “There is a worryingly high percentage of people who fail to purchase adequate insurance when driving abroad; collision damage waiver is something everybody should have when renting a car. Purchasing excess insurance at the rental desk can be costly but, if holidaymakers purchase CDW prior to their trip it can cost as little as £4.99 a day. However, neither of these costs are close to what you

would pay if you had to pay the excess on your policy, which usually starts at around £400.” The company says that many excess insurance policies will cover the excess on the rental agreement for up to £50,000 worldwide, plus the tyres, windscreen and under carriage of the hired vehicle, which are often not covered by the basic insurance you receive within the rental cost. Overall excess charges researched in 19 European holidays revealed Turkey and Bulgaria had the lowest excess charges while

Switzerland and Ireland carried the highest, with £1,064 and £1,186 respectively. Some 79% of holidaymakers also failed to take out excess insurance for tyres, undercarriage and window damage if not already included in their insurance, according to the report. Briony said: "Not purchasing CDW insurance is a risk travellers should not be taking. We should view this as a compulsory cost when hiring a car, not an ‘additional extra’.” For more information visit

New research by reveals holiday mishaps GOCOMPARE.COM HAS compiled a list of the biggest holiday mishaps following its research that found one in ten go abroad uninsured. The findings revealed that in terms of booking, £1,982.90 is the average amount British families spend on their main holiday of the year. Some 93% of British families who holiday abroad believe travel companies and airlines unfairly ramp up prices during the school holidays and 25% don't always remember to arrange travel insurance before going on holiday. In terms of holiday mishaps, 9% of Brits have been ripped off by a local taxi driver, 18% have been disappointed with their accommodation, 8% have got food poisoning on holiday and 6% have needed medical attention. Other negatives have included ending up in hospital (2%), had something stolen while away (5%) and

have had to stay indoors for at least one day with serious sunburn (7%). On a more positive note, 14% tried something new on holiday like scuba diving, parasailing or bungee jumping; 3% got married and 7% have had a holiday romance. The company's travel insurance expert Caroline Lloyd said: "There are some things you just can't insure against, like bad romances, sunburn and hangovers but a surprising number of British holidaymakers have found themselves in situations where a good travel insurance policy could be a big help. "Unfortunately, 11% of Brits will head abroad without any travel insurance whatsoever. Which when you consider that travel cover for a family of four starts from as little as £10 for a week in Europe it's the first thing you should be packing."

September 20 2013


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insurance Allianz Global Assistance teams up with Holiday Extras HOLIDAY EXTRAS has strengthened its holiday insurance offering with a new underwriter, Allianz Global Assistance. The new partnership means that customers can benefit from the same service that they are used to receiving from the holiday add-ons company. Lee Taylor, chief sales officer for Allianz Global Assistance UK, said: “This partnership with Holiday Extras is an exciting and significant one for us, as the company is such a well known brand in the UK and is represented across multiple distribution channels. We look forward to working closely with them to continually develop and update the products we offer to their customers whether through the website, aggregators or travel agents.” Holiday Extras’ bespoke holiday insurance services include: Latitude, specifically designed for customers with pre-existing medical conditions; and Cruise Travel insurance, with flexible levels of cover, designed for all types of cruise and coach travel insurance cover. The company's head of insurance Andrea Clayton said: "We're delighted to be working with Allianz Global Assistance and to be making our insurance service even more robust. "It's free to become one of the appointed agents who sell our insurance – and it’s easy to provide our awardwinning insurance services for your customers. Even with this new, improved level of cover, our rates and prices are staying the same until April 2014. “You can transfer your customers to us directly for quotes. Then, when it comes to renewing the policy, we

invite customers to renew – and the agent continues to get commission when they do." For more information call 0871-360 2590 or email

Cover-More launches quick-to-quote management system for travel agents COVER-MORE TRAVEL Insurance has launched a new quick-to-quote management system to enable its agency partners to provide customers with fast, easy and comprehensive quotes for travel insurance, either inbranch or from their call centres. The new system offers a suite of upgraded products and online medical assessment, so agents can, in real time, provide customised quotes and policies that take into account pre-existing medical conditions and individual requirements. Agents will also be provided with online product training and sales support. The new product includes four levels of cover: Diamond, Gold, Silver and Economy. Diamond provides policyholders with up to £7,500 cover for cancellation, up to £15million for medical expenses, £2,500 for luggage, and incorporates cruise and golf cover as standard benefits. The company's CEO Adam Finch said: “Our new quoting system and suite of customer-oriented travel insurance products will support our travel agency partners to ensure


their customers are comprehensively insured when they travel abroad. “We believe our new seamless system and products will help our agent partners to sell more travel insurance, through a quicker timeto-issue and simplicity-of-sale model.

September 20 2013

"The new products also offer travellers optional extras such as car rental excess and valuable item cover, so that agents can create bespoke policies for each customer, and policies are available for travellers aged up to 84 years of age." Adam Finch

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TABER HOLIDAYS has added a new excursion to its four-night ‘Luleå and the Treehotel’ break. Ideal for agents whose customers are keen to see the Northern Lights, they can now opt to do a Northern Lights tour by snowshoe from Luleå, which includes dinner around an open fire in the snow. Following a walk through the Brando forest where they will learn about life in the wilderness, guests will stop to light the fire and cook their evening meal. Away from artificial light pollution, there is a good chance of spotting the aurora if the weather conditions are favourable. With one night spent among the branches of the famous Treehotel and three nights in Luleå, prices start from £1,186 and include flights, transfers and accommodation based on two sharing. The optional Northern Lights tour by snowshoe costs from £195 per person and departs daily from January 6 to April 7, 2014. For details call 01274-875199 or see

Inghams adds new resort of Pyhä to Winter Wonderland programme for winter 2013/14 INGHAMS' LAPLAND Winter Wonderland programme runs from December to April and features four Lapland resorts: Levi, Ylläs, Saariselkä and, new for this winter, Pyhä. The company offers a choice of high-quality accommodation in hotels, apartments, log cabins and catered chalets and operates three direct nonstop charter flights every week to Kittilä from Gatwick, Manchester and Birmingham. A range of excursions and winter activities can be arranged including reindeer farm visits and sleigh rides, dog-sledding, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, Icelandic horse-riding, Northern Lights viewing, ice-fishing and ice-floating in special suits. The operator also

offers excursions to Sami villages and the Siida Museum in Inari and can arrange weekly Lappish nights. As examples of prices, a seven-night package staying at the four-star Villa Armas Cabins in Ylläs costs from £460 per person on a selfcatering basis. Free child places are also available and the company offers free ski insurance for children. Meanwhile, new for winter 2013/14, the operator has introduced the resort of Pyhä to its programme. Set in Finland’s oldest national park, the traditional resort offers some of the best skiing and has seen heavy investment in recent years with the new Polar Express six-seater chairlift to whisk skiers and snowboarders to

tree lined slopes. For a unique experience guests can ride on a Snow-cat to visit an Arctic Amethyst Mine, taking home their very own lucky amethyst. And for the more adventurous, Ice Climbing on the Tajukangas ice fall is also available. A range of accommodation is offered from a half-board stay at the recently renovated threestar Pyhätunturi Hotel with its ski in, ski out location from £670 per person, to the four-star Pyhä Log Cabins set in a wooded location from £474 per person on a self-catering basis. The company's three- and four-night Santa breaks operate from November 28 to December 18 from Gatwick, Manchester and Birmingham where families can have a private meeting

with Santa and his elves and take part in an afternoon of games and activities at one of Santa’s workshops. There is also the chance to experience husky rides and reindeer safaris plus a Christmas feast with turkey and all the trimmings. Guests can stay in a halfboard or self-catering hotel, apartments or log cabins and complimentary thermal suits and boots are included in the stay. Prices lead in at £624 for a three-night half-board break at the three-star Crazy Reindeer in Levi or three nights at the Ylläs Log Cabins on a self-catering basis from £619 per person, including flights and transfers. For more information visit or call 01483-791114.

September 20 2013


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lapland THE SANTA Claus Village in Rovaniemi is currently being refurbished and will open ten new cottages for Christmas this year, with the addition of an Igloo-hotel which will have the capacity for 20 to 30 tourists. Another 18 rooms will be finished by spring 2014, and Santa’s reindeer village will be completed in three years. For more information visit

Santa's Lapland announces first child goes free this December CLIENTS VISITING Santa in Finland this December can take their child for free with Santa's Lapland. The operator is highlighting a three-day stay for £649 per adult, with the first child travelling for free and the second child for £469. The offer is based on four sharing a family room at the Hotel Kieppi in the Lapland town of Saariselkä, and includes flights from Bristol (Gatwick also available) on December 2, free car parking,

transfers, loan of thermal outer clothing, a full day in a woodland activity centre with a visit to the Elves and Igloo Fantasia, reindeer sleigh ride, husky-dog sled adventure, sledging, snow-hockey, ice-fishing, a miniskidoo ride, lunch and warm drinks, plus a private family meeting with Santa. For more information or to book see or call 01483-791945.

Cosmos Holidays offers range of prizes as agent booking incentives COSMOS HOLIDAYS has launched an agents’ booking incentive to win a range of presents on a Christmas list to Santa including an Amazon Kindle Fire, a digital camera, a Samsung tablet and £100 worth of High Street vouchers. Agents booking a Lapland holiday for this winter with the operator, by October 15, will be entered into a prize draw to win the list of presents for their agency. To be in with a chance of winning, email the booking reference to with 'Santa' in the subject line. The winning agency will be notified on October 31. Meanwhile, early booking offers on Lapland holidays include single parent family offers at selected hotels for departures on December 5, 8 and 11; low deposits of £99 per person on bookings made before September 30; and a further saving of £100 per child (aged two to four) on the Ready, Steady, Snow itinerary or children (aged two-six) on Santa’s Tinsel Trail. Prices lead in at £599 per child and £699 per adult for a three-night stay at the Apartments Levistar on a bedand breakfast-basis, including flights and a range of activities based on a December 8 departure from Gatwick or Manchester. Activities on all Lapland holidays include a private meeting with Santa, reindeer sleigh and husky dog sled rides, snowmobile and toboggan rides, as well as an Arctic Circle ceremony. All guests receive a present from Santa, a visit to Santa’s Post Office and a Christmas gala feast.


September 20 2013

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lapland Scandinavian Travel offers tailored suggestions to help sell Lapland SCANDINAVIAN TRAVEL is highlighting tailored itineraries to agents whose clients want more than an 'off the shelf' package. Suggestions include a stay in a luxury glass igloo with electric rotating bed to follow the night sky;

Glass igloos

experience the rainbow of colours in an ice-carved suite at the ice hotel; explore National Parks with a guide and team of huskies; experience private dining where a personal chef demonstrates the best tastes of the Arctic; and opt for a multi-centre

holiday that combines a stay in Finlandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Baltic capital with the tranquillity and natural beauty of Lapland. For more information email or call on 020-7199 6010.

S07 TB2009 Lapland_Layout 1 18/09/2013 11:01 Page 30

lapland We asked our staff the following question this week: If you had to go on holiday on your own where would you choose? Publisher: Jeanette Ratcliffe Beautiful spiritual home!

Editor: Lauretta Wright Istanbul

Assistant Editor: Jill Sayles

FOLLOWING AN increase in early bookings for Northern Lights breaks, Arctic adventures and small group family Father Christmas and New Year adventures, Nordic Experience has added a number of new tailor-made tours including Northern Lights & Snow Fun for All The Family based near Kiruna in Swedish Lapland. Here guests can ride on a sleigh, mush with huskies, meet real reindeer herders and visit the iconic IceHotel for lunch. Prices start from £1,295 per adult and £895 per child including flights, transfers, four nights’ breakfast accommodation and excursions. The company is also promoting a New Year’s Eve option at the Nellim Wilderness Lodge (pictured) situated by Lake Inari in Finnish Lapland. Activities include husky safaris, snowmobile drives, reindeer visits and Sami culture. Prices are from £1,299 per adult and £1,099 per child including flights, transfers, four nights’ full board accommodation, a New Year’s Eve festive dinner and activities. The tour departs on December 28.

France where I can meet up with French friends

Contributing Editor: Paul Scudamore Dublin

Sales Director: Simon Eddolls Rome

Advertisement Manager: Tim Podger Scotland with my golf clubs. Can I please?!

Online Sales Manager: Nick Boocock A Winter Ashes Tour or British Lions Rugby Tour. Make plenty of friends once there!

Account Manager: Bill Coad Ashes Tour later this year in Australia

Sales Executive: Chris Gascoine Moscow

Sales Executive: Matt Gill Anchorage, Alaska

Senior Designer: Genaro Santos

Transun launches new adult-only Arctic daybreak package from £499 TRANSUN HAS launched a new exclusive, adult-only daybreak package allowing agents to sell the best of Finnish Lapland in a one day break. The Arctic Explorer package is exclusive to the operator and includes a snowmobile pick-up from the airport, traditional lunch in a frozenlakeside forest setting, lessons in the ancient art of ‘snow-shoeing’ and a husky sled safari, before a final snowmobile ride back to the airport to catch the flight home. The company's director of trading Nico Kostich said: “The new Arctic Explorer daybreak package is ideal for agents with customers who have an adventurous streak and are looking for a really memorable, adrenaline-fuelled experience. The nature of being all in one day makes it great to sell for special occasions and the winter timing also means it is a perfect Christmas treat.” The package costs from £499 per person and includes flights from Gatwick, Birmingham, East Midlands or Bristol airport; in-flight meals; lunch; a full itinerary of activities; and thermal suit and boot hire. Specially chartered flights depart on December 1 from Gatwick; December 8 from Birmingham; December 17 from East Midlands; December 18 from Gatwick; and December 19 from Bristol. For further information or to book visit or call 01865-265200.


Assistant Designer: Nicky Valsamakis

Lapland adventure and IceHotel from Exodus


EXODUS IS promoting a Lapland adventure in Lappeasuando combined with a visit to the IceHotel. Guests will spend two days learning to drive the dogsleds, build an igloo, and break trails through fresh powder on snowshoes, before ending the week with a night at the IceHotel. The next departure is on December 29 and prices lead in at £2,399 for seven days including flights, accommodation and meals. To book or for more information visit or call 0845-863 9601.

Production: Nick Salt Portugal to take my adopted cat back to its homeland

Circulation Manager: Jim Merchant Travel Bulletin is published by Alain Charles Publishing (Travel) Ltd University House, 11-13 Lower Grosvenor Place, London, SW1W 0EX, Tel: 020-7834 6661 Printed by: Wyndeham Grange Limited Subscriptions are £105 p.a. £155 overseas ISSN: 0956-2419

Follow us on Twitter! @TravelBulletin

puzzlesolutions Crossword: Across: 1. RAMADA, 4. RIGA, 8. SOMAK, 9. DENIA, 10. SACRAMENTO, 14. ORANJESTAD, 18. NEVIS, 20. MIAMI, 21. CHER, 22. CANARY. Down: 1. RUSH, 2. MOMBASA, 3. DAKAR, 5. INN, 6. AMAZON, 7. ADAM, 11. ACE, 12. NIAGARA, 13. COGNAC, 15. JOSS, 16. SAMOA, 17. CITY, 19. VUE.

Highlighted Word: ROMANIA Travagrams: (top) South African Airways

(bottom) Radisson Blu

Where Am I?: Patagonia


September 20 2013

S07 TB2009 Lapland_Layout 1 18/09/2013 10:26 Page 31

CHRISTMAS comes early with COSMOS! WIN ALL THE PRESENTS on Santa’s letter for you and your colleagues....

Dear Santa All of us at our travel agency have been very good this year and have made lots of bookings for Cosmos Holidays! Please can we have for Christmas….

 An Amazon Kindle Fire  A digital camera  A Samsung Tablet  £100 worth of high street shopping vouchers

All Cosmos Lapland Holidays include: Visit to Santa’s Post Office Thermal suit & boots A present for every adult & child Gala feast with Santa li ho

ABTA No.V0531


Make a Cosmos Lapland booking for winter ‘13 and email the booking reference to with ‘Santa’ in the subject line before 5pm 15/10/13 and you will be entered into a prize draw to win all the presents for your agency listed on the letter to Santa. The winning agency will be notified on 31/10/13.

ected ot

Fully pr

A private meeting with Santa Reindeer sleigh & husky dog sled rides Snowmobile and toboggan rides Arctic Circle ceremony

Cosmos holds an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence (ATOL) which is granted by the Civil Aviation Authority.

S07 TB2009 Lapland_Layout 1 18/09/2013 10:27 Page 32


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Travel Bulletin 20th September 2013  

Travel Bulletin 20th September 2013

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