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July 15 2016 | ISSUE NO 1,975 |


Larnaka campaign focuses on return visitors

We unveil the finalists for our Star Awards 2016

this week at home with eileen find out what homeworker Eileen has been up to lately


bulletin briefing news & views from Advantage’s Colin O’Neill



mexico operators & hoteliers announce new additions for 2016/17


far east Philippines announces twin-centre destination campaign

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Ibiza | Mallorca





O % 5 2

Get ready for a unique collaboration custom-built for good times. Sol House Mixed by Ibiza Rocks opens this summer: Sol House provides the venue, Ibiza Rocks brings the noise.

Book now at call 0207 391 3073 or contact your preferred tour operator

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Bonding at Bondi... TRAVEL 2'S FAM trips Down Under saw three separate fam groups take in three destinations - Victoria, Sydney and Perth. Checking in at Bondi Beach is Team Sydney - from the left: (back row) Brenda Miley, Lets Go Surfing; Tenille Jenkins, Destination New South Wales; Gemma Corridon, Vision Cruise; Alex Johnson, Newalls Travel; Nigel Goddard, Ten UK; Sophie Helen Grylls, P&P Associates; Adam Leech,; Marty Williams, Lets Go Surfing; and (front row) Karen Houghton, Escape Worldwide; Paula Dalby, Millingtons; Nadine Morris, Planet Cruise; Tina Hodge, Gold Medal, Travel 2, Pure Luxury and Simply Luxury; and Collette Byrne, CPTA.

Cover Pictures: Main - Mariusz Prusaczyk

Inset - Aleksandar Todorovic

Brexit boosts British holidays – 2.5m extra people now opting to staycation A RECENT survey from reveals that 25 million Brits (51%) are now opting to holiday in the UK rather than taking a trip abroad – 4.5 million (7%) more than those who ‘staycationed’ last year. The average staycationer is expected to splash £686 on their home-based break, an increase of 55% from last year (£442). For the fifth year running, Cornwall is the most popular spot for those planning a break in their home country, with 12% of holidaymakers planning a trip there this year. London held onto second place on this year’s list of top staycation destinations, with 9% planning a trip to the city this year, while 8% of Brits are planning to take their trip up north to the Lake District. Cost remains a big driver of the staycations movement with 18% of those surveyed revealing they simply can’t afford to travel abroad this year. A further sixth (16%) claim they’ve opted to staycation because they believe it’s better value than venturing abroad. But for a third of Brits (32%), an interest in exploring all that the UK has to offer is their main reason for opting for a staycation this year. Meanwhile, the number of Brits holidaying on UK shores has seen a further boost following the referendum result. Additional research carried out after the referendum reveals an extra 5% of Brits will choose to take a break in the British Isles this year (equivalent to an extra 2.5 million people). A further 5% stated they are actually holding off booking a holiday at all until things calm down. Brexit has also had an impact on how the nation is feeling about its holiday finances, with 15% of those taking a holiday this year planning to spend less on their summer getaway following the result. A quarter (25%) of respondents are planning an escape to the countryside this year, compared to 20% in 2015, whilst both beach holidays and city breaks across the UK came in joint second place for the most popular staycation, with 19% of Brits opting to take either.

This week

03 08

news more Brits opt for staycation following Brexit

at home with eileen find out what homeworker Eileen has been up to lately

09 13 14

agent bulletin a round-up of new booking incentives, fam trips & offers

bulletin briefing news & views from Advantage’s Colin O’Neill

star awards finalists we unveil the finalists for our Star Awards 2016

17 23 25

cyprus Larnaka campaign focuses on return visitors

mexico operators & hoteliers announce their new additions for 2016/17

far east Philippines announces twin-centre destination campaign

July 15 2016


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Survey names Ibiza as most LGBT friendly holiday destination in Europe A SURVEY of more than 1,000 members of the LGBT community has named Ibiza the most LGBT friendly beach destination in Europe, with 18% of the vote. The survey conducted by On the Beach, which has launched a dedicated area of the website with the aim to help the LGBT community plan and book the ideal beach holiday, also revealed that many members are unaware of the numerous Pride festivals held around Europe each year. Whilst 18% said they were aware of the annual Pride event in Ibiza, only 5% were aware of Accept, an annual festival and parade on the island of Cyprus, now in its third year. Only one in ten said they were aware of the Pride festival on the LGBT friendly island of Mykonos, which takes places this year from August 17-21. Less than one in ten (9%) said they were aware of the annual Pride festival on the island of Mallorca, a festival which has been held on the popular island for many years. The survey also found that LGBT travellers are not averse to travelling to destinations which are considered not LGBT friendly, with 64% saying they would travel to a non-friendly resort or destination.

First Choice teams up with 'The Hoff' in new music campaign for summer FIRST CHOICE is partnering with beach baritone and sun-soaked superstar David Hasselhoff in a quest to create the ultimate summer song as

part of its ‘Summer Hoff Music’ campaign. After discovering the formula for the ultimate summer song last year, First Choice will look to

bring this to life, working with the triple platinum megastar and summer icon to produce a sizzling summertime track. The operator believes music is a key part of the all-inclusive holiday experience and has championed summer music for the last few years, working with some of the UK’s leading artists including The Saturdays and Alesha Dixon, and will continue the theme of music over the summer period. Jeremy Ellis, marketing and customer experience director for the company, said: “Music is a key component to making holiday experiences

memorable and fundamental to the allinclusive mix – whether it’s packing, lying by the pool relaxing or running down the beach in slowmo! “We are excited to be taking our music campaign one step further this year by challenging ‘The Hoff’ to produce the ultimate summer track. David brings to mind memories of sun, sea and sand so let's see if this intriguing collaboration can become the soundtrack to the summer.” David's musical journey can be followed at

Buy one get one half price offer from Azamara Club Cruises this summer

REACHING NEW HEIGHTS....Singapore Airlines recently hosed a fam trip for agents to Bali, featuring short trips to Ubud, Kintamani, Tegallalang, the Gianyar Traditional Market and the Montigo Resort in Seminyak. Pictured are, from the left (top row): Claire Parsons, Trailfinders; Amy Bennion, Singapore Airlines; Kelly Bateman, STA Travel; Robin Griffiths, Kuoni; Amy Waters, Steppes Travel; Alain Bachmann, The Chedi Hotel; James Binhammer, Virgin Holidays; Devi Marharani, The Chedi Hotel; Macey Webber, Hayes and Jarvis; and Gabrielle Kyte, Lotus; with (bottom row) Nyoman Yudha Artha Wijaya, Destination Asia; Natasha Tree, John Proctor Travel; Andreas Grosskinsky, Destination Asia; Solly Levi, Travel Nation; and Alice Edwards Sanz, Freedom Asia.


July 15 2016

TO CELEBRATE the arrival of summer, Azamara Club Cruises is offering a buy one get one half price deal on a selection of 2017 voyages, when booked before August 18. Discerning travellers are offered savings on more than 30 different sailings throughout 2017, including voyages to the Mediterranean, Caribbean, Southeast Asia and Australia, ranging from three to 20 nights. The line's early booking benefit also applies alongside the offer, where guests can receive added value in the form of onboard credit towards Land Discoveries shore excursions, when booking at least ten months prior to departure. As an example of itineraries, an 18-night Australia & Asia Voyage on Azamara Journey, departing on March 22, leads in at £3,894 for the first passenger and £1,895 for the second for a stateroom category. For details see and

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Taber tour allows clients to explore Norway's coastline TABER HOLIDAYS has introduced a new tour travelling by Hurtigruten as far as Tromsø, and continuing by plane to Longyearbyen, the world’s most northerly town on the remote Svalbard archipelago. Prices for the ten-day itinerary lead in at £1,930 per person, and the journey begins in the city of Bergen and docks at some of Norway’s most picturesque towns and villages where guests can disembark and explore life by the coast. Highlights include the Art Nouveau city of Ålesund, medieval city of Trondheim and the famously narrow Trollfjord. After four nights on Hurtigruten, guests will spend a night in Tromsø to visit some of its popular sights, and the journey then continues north, when guests board a plane to Longyearbyen for their final three nights. Included is a sightseeing safari by boat across the Isfjord where guests can view some of Spitsbergen’s famed landscape including wildlife and glaciers. Prices for the coastal exploration start from £1,930 including flights; breakfast accommodation in Bergen, Tromsø and Longyearbyen; four nights on Hurtigruten; and the Isfjord excursion in Spitsbergen. It departs daily until September 30. For more information or to book call 01274-875199 or see

MOTOR SKILLS…Travelpack spent two weeks on the road as part of its Motorhome tour in conjuction with airline partners KLM & Air France. Pictured checking out the motorhome with the operator’s Gary Evans are agents from Amity Travel – from the left: Ann Kyle, Carolyn Bone, Karrie Di Mambro and Lisa Emmerson. Prices for an 11-day Utah & Canyons Motorhome self-drive holiday start from £1,299. For details see

Star Awards Sponsor 2016 ATTRACTION WORLD is once again honoured to be involved in the Travel Bulletin Star Awards as sponsors of both the Star Worldwide and Star European Theme Park/Attraction Awards. As a B2B business we are always keen to be involved in key industry events such as the Star Awards as it recognises our key partners in the USA and Europe. Our main aim as a business is to help agents sell these attractions and recognise the benefits to their customers by offering tickets and experiences pre-departure. Sponsoring these awards is our way of saying thank you to our partners for their continued commitment to Attraction World and indeed to the UK travel trade. Attraction World is 100% committed to the UK travel trade and in helping agents make the most of the sales opportunities afforded by offering tickets and attractions pre-departure. In a further bid to help our agents this year we have introduced a new icon <we love this ticket because> to help simplify the process. It simply states the reason in one simple sentence why customers should

pre-buy their tickets and attractions. We will also be launching a new online training programme later in the year and, in the meantime, we are producing destination training guides for our agents. These simple guides explain in a few pages the key resorts, distances, main attractions, everything an agent would need to know in order to sell the key attractions. For more information visit our website or email

Nick Hughes, sales & marketing director

July 15 2016


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Flights to New York from £119 one-way with WOW air from November WOW AIR has announced a new service from the UK to New York beginning in November, with fares from £119 one-way. Flights will depart Gatwick and Bristol for New York via Reykjavik from November 25, operating daily yearround using the new Airbus A321 Extended Range aircrafts. To book or for details see

Star Awards Sponsor 2016 AT PORTAVENTURA World Parks & Resort, we’re delighted to be part of the Travel Bulletin Star Awards on their 20th anniversary. We’ve made big investments in recent years and it’s always a pleasure to partner with Travel Bulletin’s first-rate team to help us share our exciting news. The Star Awards are highly prestigious and represent the pinnacle of the sector. Best wishes to all those nominated for the final! PortAventura World will be at the awards ceremony in London as a proud sponsor of the video competition. And who knows, perhaps we might even be nominated for an award too. The resort, with a privileged location near Barcelona, has grown to become one of the top family holiday destinations in Europe.

Our theme park, PortAventura Park, has six areas featuring more than 40 incredible attractions for visitors of all ages – many of them category-leaders in Europe – and up to 40 shows. Caribe Aquatic Park, the water park, includes more than 50,000m2 of Caribbeanthemed paradise. The resort’s five themed hotels, four of which are four-star and one fivestar, offer quality, comfort and a warm welcome. Guests can enter PortAventura Park during their entire stay, and three of the hotels provide direct park access. PortAventura World also has something in store for golf and beach lovers: three golf courses and a beach club with direct access to the Mediterranean Sea. The big news for 2017 is Ferrari Land; the resort’s third park will roar

into action, offering 60,000m2 of fastpaced Ferrari fun. Ferrari Land will be the only park in Europe to feature the famous carmaker and visitors will discover the technological genius of the iconic Italian brand and learn about the origins of its success. They will also, of course, enjoy world-class rides and attractions inspired by Ferrari. This new addition to PortAventura World will set pulses racing with highadrenaline thrills for all the family and brand addicts in general.

Giovanni Cavalli, general manager, PortAventura World

Lates campaign from Cosmos Tours

ANTOR held its first conference on July 4 at the Royal Garden Hotel in London's Kensington. Representatives from a total of 58 countries attended, along with more than 57 industry delegates to hear a line-up of speakers. They included ABTA's Luke Petherbridge on Brexit - What now? and Anni Hood (Wellness Consultant) and Maria Pieri (National Geographic Traveller) on Changing Consumer Behaviour.


July 15 2016

COSMOS TOURS has launched its strongest lates campaign to help agents increase sales and highlight the value of customers buying packaged cruises or touring holidays with not only flights, accommodation and transfers included, but other elements of a holiday so individuals can pre-budget their holiday spend. For bookings made before August 31, discounts are available across all brands with £50 off per couple on European tours and cruises and £100 off per couple on Worldwide or North American holidays. Up to half price offers are available with the operator’s luxury river cruise line, Avalon Waterways on European and South East Asian river cruises for 2016 departures, while savings are available on a choice of seven- to 12-night cruises on the Danube, Rhine, Dutch Waterways, Rhone, Saone, Moselle or Seine, and are ideal for first time river cruise customers. An 11-day ‘Legendary Danube’ costs from £1,169 per person (a saving of £1,166 per person for a October 28 departure) on suite ship Avalon Vista while the 11-day ‘Burgundy & Provence’ on Avalon Affinity costs from £1,385, offering a saving of £1,384 per person for a departure on August 22. Other selected cruise offers include a free drinks package worth US$79 per person per day with NCL for departures after September 1 if booked before July 31, or 25% off Croisieurope’s range of French mini cruises. For more details email or call 020-8315 4585.

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Jordan to play host to AITO overseas conference in November THE ASSOCIATION of Independent Tour Operators (AITO) has announced Jordan as the setting for its overseas conference this year. Sponsored by the Jordan Tourism Board and Royal Jordanian Airlines, the conference will take place from November 23-28, and will be targeted at business owners of AITO tour operators and AITO Specialist Travel Agents, together with affiliate partners, and will cover the complexities of running a travel business in today’s marketplace. Chairman of the association, Derek Moore, said: “We are excited about holding our 2016 conference in Jordan and look forward to working with the Jordan Tourism Board and Royal Jordanian Airlines on the event. The Kingdom has been described as ‘a quiet street in a busy area’, and has much to offer the visitor culturally, historically and scenically. “Our time in the country will allow us not only to hold our business sessions on the shores of the Dead Sea but also to visit several of Jordan’s visitor highlights, including the Roman city of Jerash, the cultural magnificence of Petra and the scenic splendour that is Wadi Rum. It will, I’m confident, prove to be a splendid conference destination to mark our 40th anniversary year.” Chairman of AITO Specialist Travel Agents, Gemma Antrobus, said: “I’m really happy that we’ll be travelling to Jordan for the conference this November. The conference will be held at several locations throughout Jordan, including The Dead Sea and Petra, allowing delegates to experience some of the joys and magical experiences of the country. “Jordan really is a ‘must visit’ destination and one that every AITO agent ought to know in greater depth, so that they can include it within their range of suggested mid-haul break holidays to clients.” There will be one day of business sessions, held at the

Mövenpick Resort & Spa, Dead Sea, which will include topics on the retail travel trade environment, business management and the entrepreneurial arena. Networking events will also be combined to afford a better exchange of ideas and views from across the travel industry spectrum. For more information see and

Gabriella Burden has joined Mark Warner's agency sales team as marketing executive. She will be working with agents on campaigns and initiatives as well as attending various events throughout the year. Crystal Cruises has named travel industry veteran Walter Littlejohn vice president and managing director of Crystal River Cruises. TruTravels has appointed Chris Garrick, store manager at STA Travel, as business development director, reflecting the Asia specialist’s ambitions to work more closely with the travel trade to raise awareness and sales of its unique take on group tours. Hilton Worldwide has appointed Michael Poux as general manager of Hilton Bournemouth. Richard Vogel has joined the board of Saga Cruises as nonexecutive director.

Fly free promo from Royal Caribbean International ROYAL CARIBBEAN International has unveiled details of its new Fly Free promotion, which offers free flights on selected UK and European 2017 itineraries with a duration of six nights or more. The promotion offers guests the chance to fly for free on selected 2017 holidays, with other benefits including free European flights for the first and second guests in the booking on European sailings from selected gateways; free regional flights for the first and second guests in the booking on ex-UK sailings; free car parking for one space per booking for sailings departing from Southampton if booked with AB ports; and 25% cruise fare savings on selected non-European sailings of six nights or more from this October until the end of December 2017 for each guest in the booking. The promotion applies to new bookings made before September 5 on selected worldwide sailings on Brilliance of the Seas, Freedom of the Seas, Independence of the Seas, Jewel of the Seas, Rhapsody of the Seas, Navigator of the Seas, Serenade of the Seas and Vision of the Seas, departing between April 1 and November 30, 2017. For more information see

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July 15 2016

7 11:49

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e m o h t AEileen...

r Eileen eworke h? m o h s a t What h p to this mon been u


ell, it’s certainly been a memorable summer so far and I’m not just talking about the miserable and wettest June on record. The recent attack at Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport with the tragic loss of lives shocked and saddened us all and once again highlighted safety issues for travellers. Closer to home, following the shock result of the referendum, which I don’t think even the most optimistic “Brexiteers” were expecting, the last couple of weeks have given us more surprises, intrigue and plotting than a “House of Cards” box set. Meanwhile, for us resilient lot in the travel industry , it’s business as usual! People still want to go on holiday and we are here to make that happen for them. Recently we went to Cornwall for a few days to visit relatives. We broke our journey on the way down and stayed overnight at a hotel in Exeter, the Abode Hotel , formerly the Royal Clarence Hotel located in the city centre. I really liked this hotel and although our bedroom was very small, the quality of the restaurant and the excellent service we received more than made up for this. Like many cities, Exeter has a confusing oneway system and we had great trouble accessing the hotel when we arrived. The Sat-Nav took us to a narrow side street virtually opposite the hotel but there was a locked gate across the street preventing access. After calling the hotel and getting another postcode, we still ended up going round in circles and then got totally lost. The hotel’s response was brilliant; they sent someone out to find us and we followed their car back to the hotel. Exeter is a lovely city and there’s lots to do and many interesting places to visit. Unfortunately, our time was limited as we were only there overnight, but we did get to tour the beautiful Gothic Cathedral which was right opposite our hotel and well worth a visit. The city is certainly a great choice for a weekend break, but as even the locals admit to having trouble negotiating the one-way system, if you or any clients are planning a trip, I would recommend taking along an up-to-date detailed city road map or, alternatively, travelling by train.

by EILEEN SAUNDERS of Travel Counsellors To respond to any of Eileen’s comments email


July 15 2016

New rail journeys through Spain, Morocco, Bulgaria & Russia FOR TRAVELLERS who prefer a slower, more scenic means of travel, G Adventures has added a selection of new rail journeys through countries including Bulgaria, Morocco, Spain and Russia, and ranging from a three-day add-on in St. Petersburg to a 23-day journey travelling through seven countries in Europe. The new trips bring the company's rail programme to 24 trips that use trains as the primary mode of transport, visiting 21 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America, and running between nine and 54 days in length. The operator's global product manager, Rachel Wasser, said: “In the age of acceleration, slow travel is fast emerging as an antidote to the hectic lives many of us are leading in the digital age. Train travel enables travellers to relax and recharge, and to enjoy the journey in a more vintage and romantic way; taking time to take in the landscape and see a different side of a destination.” As an example of itineraries, a 14-day 'Spain and Morocco by Rail' trip traverses the Spanish countryside taking travellers to Madrid, Barcelona and Seville. Guests then cross the Strait of Gibraltar into Morocco where they visit Fès, Casablanca and Marrakech, and experience the souks, mint tea and friendly locals. Prices start from £1,699 per person. For more information or to book call 0344-272 2040 or visit

NEWS BITES ● Esprit Ski and Ski Total have frozen all prices until further notice. Guests can take advantage of stronger pre-referendum rates and, as a special thank you to returning guests, the Loyalty Bonus has now been extended until July 14. Visit or call 01483-791900. ● Robinson Club has launched a new complimentary ROBS ONLY! programme that offers teens the chance to create their own fun, entertaining summer break. ROBINSON Clubs Playa Granada, Spain and Soma Bay, Egypt will introduce the new programme this summer, giving young guests the opportunity to have more 'teen-time' by the pool or beach, where dedicated team members arrange for sports activities and games. Details at ● The Meetings Industry Association (MIA) will be putting more of the UK’s top booking agents under the spotlight at its third Agents Day in August. The latest session, on Thursday August 25 at Whittlebury Hall Conference and Training Centre, Hotel and Spa in Northampton, will provide delegates with an insight into how booking agents select their chosen venue. Attendees will also get the chance to take part in a fun group activity where teams work together to complete a challenge that offers further networking opportunities in a more relaxed environment. For details see ● has looked into the costs and necessary hours for English speakers to start from scratch learning a new language and go all the way through to fluency. It was discovered that Indonesian is the cheapest language for Brits to crack, costing around £5,175 in total to learn. At the other end of the scale, Korean is the most expensive language to study for English speakers with a staggering price of £41,155.

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Booking incentives Trafalgar has launched The 100 Club, offering agents the opportunity to earn £100 in Love2Shop vouchers for every booking made between now and August 19. To claim, agents should email with the reference, customer name and departure date within 14 days of making the booking. Travel 2 is giving agents the chance to win either one of two £500 T2 Rewards Card credits or two return tickets flying to Indonesia as part of its latest campaign, ‘Indonesia - Delight in its Diversity’. To be entered into the prize draw, agents need to make a qualifying booking to Indonesia with Garuda Indonesia flights and a minimum of five nights’ ground arrangements by August 31. The prize of two return flights to Indonesia will go to the agent who books the most Garuda Indonesia flights by that date. The company is also giving agents the chance to win one of two £100 spa vouchers when they make a qualifying booking to any destination from the Dubai & Indian Ocean brochure, including return flights and a minimum of three nights’ ground arrangements before July 19. For details see

Fancy a fam? To celebrate the forthcoming launch of its first ship, Crystal Mozart, Crystal River Cruises is introducing a new incentive giving agents the opportunity to win a place on a fam trip. For every booking made by July 31, agents will be entered into a draw to win a fam trip place on Crystal Mozart. Bookings for 2017 and 2018 departures earn one entry into the draw while bookings for this year's departures earn two entries.

Silversea is giving agents across the UK and Ireland another reason to celebrate Fridays this month with a 'Fizzy Friday' trade incentive scheme. Agents who confirm a booking on any 2016 departure by July 31 will receive a case (6 bottles) of Prosecco. The offer is limited to one case of Prosecco per agency, per week and will be automatically dispatched once a booking is confirmed. Visit

AGENT OFFER Agents can now print personalised window cards and quotes through a new online function added to SuperBreak’s agent website. Available when doing short break bookings, including rail and flight packages, the new option means agents now have access to personalised, quality point of sales material at the click of a button.

LOVE ALL...The Althams travel teams in Otley and Yeadon were some of the lucky tra vel agents to be visited by AmaWaterways very own ‘ball boy’ and ‘ball girl’ with strawberries and cream last week to boost spirits and celebrate the Wimbled on season! Pictured with the operator's Simon McDer mott are agents from the Otley branch - from the left: Kathryn Armitage, Liz Sutcliffe and Amanda Elgie.

July 15 2016


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Birmingham launch from and Jet2holidays JET2.COM AND Jet2holidays are continuing their expansion in the UK with the launch of flights and holidays from Birmingham Airport, their eighth UK airport base. A total of 15 sun destinations are now on sale for summer 2017 including Alicante, Crete (Heraklion), Faro, Fuerteventura, Girona (Costa Brava), Gran Canaria, Ibiza, Lanzarote, Mallorca, Malaga, Menorca, Paphos, Reus, Rhodes and Tenerife, with 57 weekly flights operating to these destinations and daily services to popular hotspots Alicante, Faro and Mallorca. A total of 590,000 seats are available for summer 2017 and flights will operate on four new Boeing 737-800 next generation aircraft, with the first flights from Birmingham taking off on March 30, 2017 to Faro and Malaga. Steve Heapy, CEO of the companies, said: “It’s fantastic to be bringing our friendly low

fares, great value package holidays, plus our brand new aircraft to Birmingham Airport. “This is our most significant programme launch for some time, giving local travel agents a choice of 15 of the most popular sunshine destinations, including 11 Spanish hotspots, two Greek islands, plus Paphos and the sunny Algarve. We’re thrilled that even more of our agents’ customers can now experience our award winning flights and holidays and we look forward to our first flights taking off next year!” For more information call 0800-408 5587 or visit

Pictured marking the Birmingham launch are, from the left: and Jet2Holidays’ Steve Heapy; Alistair Rowland, Midcounties Co-operative Travel; and Alan Cross, Jet2holidays

Tourism New Zealand has appointed Rachel Sprackett as PR manager UK and Europe and Arnna Conroy as regional marketing communications manager UK and Europe. Michele Norsa has been appointed non executive director to Rocco Forte Hotels‘ main board with immediate effect. One&Only Resorts has appointed Viktoria Riley as director of sales and marketing, One&Only Ocean Club. André Witchi has joined Thomas Cook's group management committee. Virgin Atlantic has appointed Emma Jones as vice president of UK sales, responsible for the airline’s UK sales and revenue performance. Clarity Travel Management has boosted its business development team with the arrival of Patrick Oniyelu as business development manager. The River Cruise Line has appointed Rebecca Brett as travel agency manager. Moira Gregson has joined Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) as business development manager – tour operator.

ONE LINER...The Dominican RepublicTourist Board (DRTB) took a group of agents on a fam trip to see highlights of the destination. Activities included zip-lining in Punta Cana, a visit to the capital city of Santo Domingo for a historical tour and a trip to Bayahibe for an Isla Saona excursion. Pictured getting ready to brave the heights are, from the left: Maria Sabolova, Best at Travel; Sonja Rogers, DRTB; Sue Power, Caribbean Blue, Ireland; Lionel, AMSTAR; Helen McKenna, Tropical Sky, Ireland; Laura Grantham, Travel Up; and Joe Mccully, Destinology.


July 15 2016

Aer Lingus Express Bag Drop reduces check-in to just a few minutes AER LINGUS has revolutionised its check-in experience at Dublin Airport with the launch of a new Express Bag Drop service, designed to make travel as seamless as possible. Ideally timed to coincide with the busy summer months, the new check-in facility is set to dramatically reduce the time it takes to check-in at the airport and to make lengthy queues a thing of the past. The Express Bag Drop service, which is available year-round, enables travellers to self tag and check-in their bags once they have their boarding card printed or downloaded to their mobile device. In a matter of minutes or even seconds, the carrier's guests can complete the check-in process, deposit their bag and proceed to departures. Mike Rutter, the carrier's chief operating officer, said: “We have invested heavily over the last 24 months in improving guest experience. Our latest innovation, the new ‘Express Bag Drop’ cuts the time our guests need to spend in the check-in area by at least 66%. I would urge all our guests to check-in in advance so they can experience this time-saving, stress-busting service. “The installation project has been the largest single installation in Western Europe. It allows us to continue to grow the Aer Lingus business as we announce further exciting US and European routes because it delivers an effective 200% in check-in capacity. We began piloting Express Bag Drop kiosks some months ago and already the feedback from our guests has been very positive." In addition, the airline offers an evening before check-in service in Dublin and Cork airports, which is particularly beneficial to families. The service gives travellers the opportunity to complete their checkin transaction on the evening before their flight. For added convenience, only one immediate family member needs to check-in for a family group, once all tickets, passports and bags are provided together. For further information visit

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Su Doku

Where Am I?

Win a £50 M&S voucher in the travelbulletin Su Doku prize puzzle Number: 028


B➠ C➠

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, July 21st. Solution and new puzzle will appear next week. The winner for 1st July is Alison Fallaize, Carrick Travel in Warwickshire. July 1 Solution: A=7 B=4 C=2 D=9


No stranger to film crews this castle featured as Hogwarts in the first two ‘Harry Potter’ films, appeared in ‘Elizabeth’ and ‘Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves’ and most recently starred in Downton Abbey's 2015 Christmas special.

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

Number: 028

Across 1. European airline with a crown logo (3) 4. City where Portugal recently won the UEFA Euro Cup (5) 6. Well-known hotel brand (10) 8. Popular Rhodes resort (4) 9. Jeremy, host of a controversial talk show (4) 11. Airline alliance (4) 13. Des Moines is the State capital (4) 16. England's stadium home of 5 Down (10) 17. Major African river (5) 18. Singapore International airport code (3)

Down 1. Ab Fab model who ends up in the Thames at a cinema near you (4,4) 2. Florida city, famed for its Art Deco buildings (5) 3. Flag carrier of Spain (6) 4. Fictional bear celebrating its 90th birthday this year (4) 5. Popular field sport (5) 7. Mr Franklin, who appears on the US $100 bill (8) 10. Red Funnel criss-cross this strait (6) 12. Egyptian city and dam (5) 14. Greek Mount inhabited by monks (5) 15. Call sign (4)

For the solution to the Crossword and Where Am I? Please see page 30 July 15 2016


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Industry Insight by...

I said I wouldn’t talk about it anymore… by Colin O’Neill, business development director, Advantage


S OUR entire business and social lives have been dominated for the last few months with debate, discussion and arguments around Brexit, I did promise myself that I wouldn’t make it the focus of my monthly column. However, as I considered what other topics I would cover, I kept coming back to the Brexit issue. As with the results of the referendum itself, the matter has clearly divided the country and emotions are continuing to run high and recriminations abound. The plain facts of the matter are: ● The government allowed a referendum to take place on our future membership of the EU. ● The cases for remaining or leaving were put forward. ● The country voted. ● The majority of voters decided that we should leave and that it what is happening. My earnest wish is that everyone quickly comes to a point of acceptance and turns their collective attention to positively preparing for life outside of the EU and that this acceptance creates a sense of calmness. Certainly, in order to create a sense of calmness, we require stability, particular in parliament where the catalyst for change will be driven. It is crucial that a new government leader is appointed as quickly as possible and the main opposition party address their leadership challenges too. We are entering challenging times and it is important that we have the highest quality of leadership and across the political spectrum. As a business, we need to look to the future with confidence and optimism, as the attitude we adopt going forward will have a significant bearing on the overall outcome. Indeed, immediately after the referendum results were known, we launched our Summer Escapes – Lates

Campaign. With the campaign heading of ‘This Could be You’, we have created an extensive programme of consumer holiday offers and staff incentives, all supported with point of sale materials and emarketing tools; we want to support our members in getting the message across to consumers that life goes on after Brexit, they almost certainly need a holiday and, perhaps most importantly, there are still a great number of summer holiday bargains to be had. The UK holiday market is and will remain a crucial and significant source of income to many European countries and the quicker we get back to the realisation of that fact, the better it will be for everyone. As well as the launch of our lates campaign, July will also see the launch of Gateway 2 and Advantage Holidays, our own fully ATOL protected tour operation, which will give our members a real competitive advantage in their local trading environment. Member pilot testing is underway and is progressing well and members take expect to take delivery later in the month. And whist we are taking things very seriously and do see Advantage Holidays as real game changers for our business, don’t be surprised to see a few sandcastles and windmills along the way… So, you may be pleased to know that this is probably the last word I will have to say on the matter of Brexit and I am now concentrating my attention on making the most of the undoubted opportunities that we will make come our way in the future.

"As a business, we need to look to the future with confidence and optimism..." July 15 2016


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2016 We’re proud to annouunce the Star Aw wards finalists for 20016 - as voted for by you, our traveel agent readers. In celebrating our 20th 2 year of running the Star Awards, wards w we’ve we ve introduced new awards for thiss year plus a new venue for our prestigious stigious awards gala dinner on Monday onnday n September 5, London’s five-star Laangham Hotel. This year our proud sponsors include Attraction World, Birmingham Airport, PortAventura World, o Liverpool John Lennon Airport and Jettset. The Star Awards will kick off w with pre-dinner drinks and the chancee to network in the hotel’s Portlaand Foyer, followed by a scrumptious three-ccourse dinner in the Grand Ballroom m, where the Star Awards winners wiill also be announced. Best of luck to all the finalists!

Smooth Op perators STA AR LONG HAUL OPERATTOR Gold Medal M d l If Only... Jetset Holidays Kuoni Travel 2 Wendy Wu To ours

STA AR SHORTT HAUL OPERA ATTOR Classic Collection Holida d yss Cyplon Holidays Jet2holidays Kirker Holidays Olympic Holidays ys Prestige g Holidayss

STA AR HOLIDAY Y PA PARKS S OPERATTOR Butlins Haven Hoseasons Eurocam amp Pontins

STA AR HOLIDAY Y ADD-ONS OPERATTOR TO A2B Transfers Attraction World DoSomethingDiffe Holiday Extras Superbreak TravelCube

Sea Cap ptains



Classic Collection Holida d ys Cyplon Holidays Jet2holidays Mark Warner Thomas Cookk Thomson

Carnival Cruise Lines Disney Cruise Line P&O Cruises MSC Cruises Norwegian Cruisse Lin ne Royal Caribbean International



Beachcombe B h o b r Cyplon Holidays Kuoni Plane et Holidays San ndals Resorts Thom h son

Azamarra C Clu l b Cruises Celebrity Cruis ises Cunard Regent Seven Sea as Cruises Seabourn Silversea Cruises



Collette Cosmos Tours & Cruis ises Newmarket Holidayss Riviera Travel Titan Travel Wendy Wu To ours

Disney Cruise Line Hurtigruten Ponant Star Clippers Swan Hellenic Voya ages of Disco overy



Carrier Classic Collection Holida d yss If Only... ITC Luxury Travel Prestige Holidayss Pure Luxury Worldwide Holidays

AmaWaterways APT River Cruises Avvalon Waterwayss Emerald Waterwayss Riviera Travel Tauck River Cruises Viking River Cruisses

STA AR ADVENTURE/A ACTIVITY C HOLIDAY YS S OPERATTOR Club Med Exodus Explore! G Adventures Intrepid Travel Mark Warner

STA AR CRUISE COMPA O ANY FOR TRAINING, INCEN NTIVES & FA AM TRIPS Celebrity Cruises MSC Cruises P&O Cruises Princess Cruises Royal Caribbean International Scenic Cruises

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Land Lords STA AR WORLDW WIDE THEM ME PA ARK OR ATTTRACTION Disneyland Resort Califo ornia Ferrari World Abu Dhabi SeaWorld Parks & Entertainm ment Universal Orlando Resort Walt Disney World Resort Flo orida

STA AR EUROPEAN THEME PA ARK OR ATTTRACTION Disneyland Resort Pa aris Efteling Europa-Park Po ortAvventura World Siam Pa ark Te erra Mitica

STA AR CA AR RENTA AL COMPA A ANY Affordable Car Hire Alamo A is Av Europcar Flexible Autos Hertz

STA AR ACCOMMODATTION N-ONLY Y PROVIDER Excite Holidays Expedia TA AAP Superbreak TravelCube

STA AR LUXURY LUXU Y HOTEL BRA AND Banyan Tree Hotels & Resortss Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts Lux Resorts & Hotels One & Only Resorts Sandals Resorts Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts

STA AR TRAV VEL TECHNOLO OG GY COMPA ANY Amadeus Comttec Sabre Travelport Traveltek Ve ertical Sysstems

High H g Fliers STA AR BUSINESS AIRL IR INE British Airways Emirates E Etihad Airways La Compagnie Qatar Airways Singapore Airlines

STA AR SCHEDULED FLIGHT CONSOLIDATTOR Faremine Gold Medal Travel Jetset Flights JTA A Travel Major Travel The Holiday Te eam

STA AR UK AIRPOR IRPORTT Birmingham Airport Leeds Bradfo ord Interna ational Airport Liverpool John Lennon Airport London Gatwick Airpo ort London Heathrow w Airpo p rt Manchester Airport

2 2016

D Dream D stinations De ti ti STA AR DESTINATTION FOR FA AMILY Y HOLIDAY YS Cyprus - Cyprus Tourism Organisation Florida - Visit Florida Greece - Greek National n To ourism Organisation Mallorca - Spanish Tour u ist Office Malta - Malta Tourist Office O Spain - Spanish Tourist Office

STA AR DESTINATTION FOR LUXURY Y HOLIDAY YS Barbado B b d s-B Barbado b d s Tourism i Mar M keting i Dubai - Dubai Departm ment of Tourism and Comme m rce Marrketing Maldives - Maldives Tourism Promotion Board Mauritius - Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority Saint Lucia - Saint Lucia Tourist Board Seychelles - Seychelles Tourist Office

STA AR DESTINATTION FOR ESCORTTED TOURS Califo ornia - Visit California Canada - Destination Canada China - China Nationa al Tourist Office India - India Governme ent To ourist Office e Italy - Italian State Tourist Board South Africa - South African Tourism

STA AR DESTINATTION FOR WINTE TER SUN Barbados - Barbados Tourism Ma arketing Dubai - Dubai Departm ment of Tour u ism and Commerce Marrketing Egypt - Egyptian Tourisst Authority Mexico - Mexican Min nistry of Tourism Tenerife - Tenerife e Tourrism Corporation The Gambia - Gambia Tourissm Authority

STA AR DESTINATTION FOR R CULTTURAL & HERITA AGE HO OLIDAY YS China a - China Nationa al Tourist Office Greece - Greek National n To ourism Organisation India - India Governm nme ent To ourist Office Italy - Italian State Touris ist Boa Board South Africa - South African Tourism Thailand - Tourism Auth t ority of Thailand d

STA AR DESTINATTIO ON FOR ADVENTURE & ACTIVITY VITY HOLIDAY YS Alaska - Alaska Tourist Board Australia - Tourism m Australia Califo ornia - Visit Calif C ornia Canada - Destin nation Canada New Zealand - New Zealand Tourist Board Thailand - Tourism Auth t ority of Thailand

STA AR ALL-ROUND DESTINATTION Australilia - Tourism Australia Canada - Destinati tion Canada Cyprus - Cyprus Tourism Organis ga ation South Africa - South African Tourism Spain - Spanish Tourist Office Thailan nd - Tourism Auth t ority of Thailand

STA ST AR AIRLINE FOR TRAINING & INCENTIVES Air New Zealand land British Airways Emirates Etihad Airways South African Airways Virgin Attlantic

Book ok your seats now for tthe Star Aw wards 2016 - or email # #StarA wards

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Fuerteventura Tenerife

















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Gran Canaria




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*Terms and conditions apply.



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MONARCH IS offering a seven-night breakfast stay at the four-star Columbia Beach Hotel from £759 per person, based on a September 28 departure from Birmingham. The property offers a range of activities and facilities including sports and leisure centres, five bars and restaurants and evening entertainment. It is located on Pissouri Bay, close to sister property, Columbia Beach Resort, where guests are permitted to use the facilities. Details at

Larnaka Tourism campaign focuses on return visitors LARNAKA TOURISM is using its famous mascot, the Great Flamingo, to front its new ‘They always come back’ campaign, which highlights the various activities holidaymakers can enjoy whist visiting the region. The flamingos are being used to lead people to information on the tourist office’s newly revamped website and, throughout this month, visitors are being encouraged to take photos of themselves at nine places where cut-out flamingos have been strategically placed. The new slogan ‘They always come back’ plays on the flamingo’s enduring love affair with Larnaka, and how the region has the highest percentage of repeat visitors amongst the seaside areas of the island at 60%. The tourist office’s tourism officer, Nana Asmeni Pavlou, said: “Just like the flamingos returning year-on-year to the Larnaka region on their way to and from Europe, the campaign highlights in a fun way why the region receives so many repeat visitors. “The flamingo is very distinctive and is a unique and interesting way for us to promote our beautiful region. We have informed all our trade partners including airlines, tour operators and retailers so that they may in turn encourage travellers to participate by taking photos of themselves at the nine places where cut-out flamingos have been placed.” Visitors are encouraged to ‘follow the flamingo’ – both to the website and social media pages, but also around Larnaka – which could include locations such as diving at the Zenobia Wreck; a relaxing coffee at Foinikoudes promenade; a cycle ride through Pervolia; watersports and sunbathing on the beaches of Pyla and Voroklini; kitesurfing in Kiti, and birdwatching at Voroklini Lake and Larnaka Salt Lake (where visitors can see real life flamingos between November and March). For more information visit

New airline takes off to Larnaka NEW CYPRIOT airline COBALT has launched flights to Larnaka from Stansted and Manchester, with fares leading in at £59.99 oneway, including taxes. The carrier aims to cater for budget-travellers seeking summer sunshine as well as the large Cypriot community in the UK, and offers flights between Cyprus and Stansted eight times weekly and between Cyprus and Manchester three times weekly until October 29, with a revised schedule for winter. Other routes to and from Larnaka include Dublin, twice weekly; Athens, three times a day; Heraklion, Crete, twice weekly; and Thessaloniki twice daily. For more information or to book see or call 0330-808 0430.

July 15 2016


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cyprus Protaras property addition from Jet2holidays from £689 for seven nights JET2HOLIDAYS HAS introduced St Elias Resort in Protaras to its portfolio. The four-star property, which is located on the edge of Protaras, offers a range of family-friendly facilities as well as two outdoor swimming pools with waterslides and a children’s section plus a spa. In the evening, guests can choose from either à la carte or buffet dining option offering traditional and international cuisine, while a selection of evening entertainment is also offered. A seven-night all-inclusive stay at the hotel, with departures from East Midlands Airport on October 12, costs from £689 per person based on two sharing. It includes 22kg baggage allowance and transfers. For details visit

LARNAKA’S PALM Beach Hotel & Bungalows is highlighting stays from CCC this month, as the region plays host to three sporting events – the ‘Cyprus Kitesufing Championships – King of Kite 2016’ from July 16-17; ‘Kite Camp 2016’ from July 26-29 and the ‘FIVB Beach Volleyball U19 World Championship’ from July 27-31. The four-star hotel has recently been renovated and refurbished and offers tennis courts, a spa, wellness centre and free Wi-Fi. Room rates start from £105 per room, per night for a garden view room for two including breakfast this month. Flights with easyJet are from £250 return, while operator packages start from £799 with Monarch on a bed-andbreakfast basis with Monarch. Details at and

Olympic Holidays’ 2017 programme sees addition of new properties OLYMPIC HOLIDAYS has introduced a selection of new properties to its 2017 programme. As examples, the Crystallo Apartments in Paphos is located in a quiet corner of the city, yet just a stone’s throw from Kato Paphos. Visitors can choose between studios and one-bedroom apartments – ideal for couples and families – and seven-night stays lead in at £475 per person, based on two travelling. The package includes a self-catering stay in a studio and flights from Gatwick, with departures available on July18. The Okeanos Beach Hotel in Agia Napa is Crystal Springs Beach Hotel another new addition and offers a boutique hotel setting. The property overlooks the fishing port and is ideally located near the seafront, restaurants, shopping and clubs. A seven-night breakfast stay costs from £549 based on two travelling, with flights from Gatwick departing on June 10 or £699 from Manchester on the same date. Alternatively, clients can stay at the Crystal Springs Beach Hotel in Protaras, which features an on-site diving centre. Other local attractions include visiting the nearby fishing harbours, Cape Greco National Park and the resort of Agia Napa. Prices start from £739 for seven nights; all-inclusive accommodation with flights from Gatwick on May 27 and £639 with flights from Manchester on May 31. For further information or to book call 020-8492 6868 or visit


July 15 2016

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cyprus Thanos Hotels encourages guests to explore European Capital of Culture 2017 CYPRUS’S SEASIDE city of Paphos is gearing up to host 300 cultural events over 365 days, as part of a year-long program celebrating the city as Europe’s official Capital of Culture 2017. Situated on Cyprus’ south-west coast, the popular summer holiday hotspot of Paphos is also a UNESCO World Heritage City with several historical treasures within its harbour walls. Here, visitors can see the ruins of ancient Hellenistic and Roman tombs, fortresses, theatres, and mosaics. The city has planned a diverse series of artistic, musical, dramatic and gastronomic events to be held around the city’s most picturesque locations throughout the year – from open air concerts in the medieval Castle Square, to cinema screenings along the city’s sandy beaches, there will be dance recitals on street corners and an outdoor exhibition along the Akamas Peninsula by contemporary artists invited to display new commissions. Thanos Hotels and Resorts’ Almyra and Annabelle hotels are both located on the Paphos sea-front and in prime location for seeing the city transformed into a ‘living museum of vibrant art’. Almyra hotel is a Gold Sponsor of Paphos 2017 and is celebrating with a year-long series of pop-up contemporary art exhibitions in and around the hotel. Welcoming two Cypriot Artists in Residence, Yannis Sakellis and Marina Zach this September, the hotel will be running workshops and contemporary exhibitions. From October, archaeologist Sharen Walker will be visiting the hotel from the British Museum and will be running a series of workshops on Paphos’ treasured mosaics. Rates at the Almyra start from 104 euros per person, per

night including breakfast. The Annabelle was the first five-star hotel to open in Paphos and rates start from 86 euros per person, per night during the low season and 130 euros during the high season. In other news from the hotel group, following the completion of a multi-million euro refurbishment, Anassa has recently re-opened. Three years in the making, the resort now boasts new look rooms and suites, new villas, and a refurbished spa. Designed like a traditional Cypriot village, with 166 low-rise rooms, suites and residences, the hotel lines the edge of west Cyprus’ Akamas peninsula and aims to attract elite travelers with its boutique feel along with a secluded beach and gardens of olive groves. Visit for more information. Anassa

Philosophy of 'Cyprus Breakfast' reaches rural regions of Troodos HOLIDA AY S THE HOME OF MEDITERRANEAN HOLIDAY S








- MARCH 2017



0800 074 4 8888 orr visit www.cyp 20

July 15 2016

ABTA No.V55 573

AFTER ITS successful implementation at major seaside hotels, ‘Cyprus Breakfast’ is now climbing up to reach the hotels at the rural regions of Troodos. The project which is supported by the Cyprus Tourism Organisation, the Travel Foundation of the UK and the Cyprus Sustainable Tourism Initiative, focuses on the island’s local gastronomic culture and heritage and aims to improve the local character of the breakfast offered by the participating hotels with a view to create an added value in the hotel service industry. This is to be achieved through the addition of dishes and products which are characterised as authentic, traditional and identical with the Mediterranean diet. For the Troodos Geopark region, the concept of the Cyprus Breakfast has the potential to become part of a wider plan of creating a destination brand based on the authentic character of the area and the local cuisine of the various villages that make up the unique Cypriot rural setting. Hotels of the Troodos region need to combine local gastronomy with a presentation that resembles the traditional character but not necessarily follow a folkloric setup. This is an aspect that the program is taking care of, training hoteliers to create a brand new identity for their breakfast. The first hotel to have been awarded the Cyprus Breakfast certification was, since 2015, New Helvetia Hotel at Platres. It is expected that the project is to award the Cyprus Breakfast certificate to another three hotels that have successfully managed to adopt the concept at their breakfast buffets. Troodos Hotel is due to receive its certification whilst preparatory actions are under way for tourist accommodations in Kalopanayiotis and Kyperounta.

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Planet adds new Larnaka & Kalopanayiotis accommodation to portfolio PLANET HOLIDAYS has introduced LokĂ l in Larnaka and Casale Panayiotis in Kalopanayiotis to its collection of boutique properties in Cyprus. In Larnaka, the 17-bedroom LokĂ l is a few steps away from St Lazarous Church in Larnakaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s historic centre and an eight-minute walk from Larnakaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s main beach, while Casale Panayiotis is located in spa village of Kalopanayiotis in the Troodos mountains and offers 43 guest rooms. The operatorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s commercial director, Harry Kyrillou, said: â&#x20AC;&#x153;We introduced LokĂ l in the heart of Larnaka and have now added Casale Payiotislocated with 43 rooms and an amazing spa in the village of Kalopanayiotis in the Troodos mountains. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Both properties reflect the care and attention that

their individual owners have embraced to restore these properties. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They provide travellers with a completely different experience when considering a holiday to Cyprus and can be used for short or long stay, as well as twincentre holiday that combine a city stay in Larnaka by the sea with a stay in a mountain village. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The added bonus of both properties is that they have regenerated what may have been left to crumble. Sustainable tourism is also about regenerating areas in coastal towns as well as in rural Cyprus, where retaining village life is key for the locals. â&#x20AC;? Prices for a seven-night stay at Casale Panayiotis, including car hire, in November start from ÂŁ799 per person.


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! E E R F





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FUNWAY HOLIDAYS’ new campaign, ‘Destination of the Month’ features Mexico this month, with the operator offering seven nights at the four-and-a-half-star Gran Caribe Resort & Spa in Cancun from £1,235 per person. The deal includes flights with Thomas Cook Airlines from Gatwick and is based on a September 19 departure and two adults sharing. To support the campaign there will be window posters for agencies to download. See

Club Med highlights Cancun Yucatan for health escapes FOR CLIENTS seeking a spot of pampering while holidaying in Mexico, Club Med is highlighting the Cancun Yucatan. Activities outside of the resort include discovering the mysteries of the Mayans and hiking around the Chichen Itza. With its traditional central square, its

bungalow-haciendas and speciality restaurants, the resort is ideal for those looking for a retreat away from the stress of city life. Guests can also enjoy the natural surroundings by booking into Jade, which features a dedicated lounge, overflow pool and private yoga terrace.

13-day culturally-rich option from Ada Tours ADA TOURS is promoting its 13-day ‘CentralHIghlights and The Mayan Rote’ itinerary which visits the highlights of Mexico and departs weekly on Fridays. While following the Maya route, clients will have the chance to visit Mexico City, the Pyramids of Teotihuacan, San Miguel, Guajuanto, Palenque, Campeche, the famous Maya city of Uxmal, Chichen Itza (recently declared as one of the new seven world wonders) and Cancun. Guests interested in visiting more countries can opt for a 14-day trip through Guatemala, Salvador, Honduras and Belize. Accommodation is in four-star hotels and prices start from US$2,237 per person, based on two sharing including breakfast, four lunches and taxes. For further information see

Family highlights from Abercrombie & Kent ABERCROMBIE & KENT is highlighting a twin-centre stay to appeal to families. It includes three nights in Merdia, a night at Chichen Itza and three nights on the Riviera Maya, with prices from £3,985 per person based on a family of four and including flights. Highlights of the itinerary include a zip-line through the jungle, a meal with a Mayan family, riding horses along the beach, a swim with whale sharks (May-September) or snorkelling with sea turtles, quad biking through the jungle and visits to markets and cooking Mayan cuisine.

July 15 2016


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DREAMS PLAYA Mujeres Golf & Spa Resort is set to open on November 30. Located in the exclusive gated community of Playa Mujeres, within a world-famous golf course, the all-suite resort will offer 502 suites, three swimming pools, four Jacuzzis, two children’s pools, a water park and a lazy river. Located just 10 minutes from downtown Cancun and 35 minutes from the airport, the luxury resort is being highlighted as an ideal setting for both couples and families. A stay on ‘Unlimited Luxury’ will be available, where everything is included and no wristband or gratuities are required.

Debut adult-only Breathless Resorts & Spas' Cancun property from AMResorts AMRESORTS HAS announced the opening of the first Breathless Resorts & Spas in Cancun. The adult-only Breathless Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa is located between the Caribbean Sea and the Lagoon of Bahia Petempich and offers 526 all-suite guestrooms, divided among three unique areas, each with distinct character and appeal. The ‘xhale club’ section is available for those seeking an elevated level of personal service and luxury; the ‘energy center’ for those looking to mix & mingle; and the ‘xcelerate Party Zone’ is for those who live and breathe for the party. The hotel group’s president, Gonzalo del Peòn, said: “Introducing the Breathless Resorts & Spas brand to Cancun diversifies the options available for guests, complementing the existing family-friendly resorts in the area.


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“With the addition of Breathless Riviera Cancun, singles, friends and couples can now experience the ultimate party atmosphere of Breathless in this highly sought after destination.” The resort offers a weekly party calendar with themed parties and events including the Breathless Rocks, Neon Night Lights and Insomnia Pool parties, plus special guest DJ performances. Themed months are also offered including July's All American Pie month. Onsite facilities include gourmet à la carte dining with ten dining venues, unlimited top-shelf spirits served at ten bars and lounges, 24-hour room and concierge services, daily refreshed mini-bar, a selection of daytime activities and live nightly entertainment, free Wi-Fi, a party calendar and a fitness centre and classes. For further information visit

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THAILAND'S FIVE-STAR boutique resort The Sarojin is offering 10% off the price of all stays until September 30 for bookings made at least 30 days’ prior to arrival. Perched on the coastline of an 11km white sand beach in Khao Lak, and set amongst ten-acres of tropical gardens, the resort’s 56 boutique residences are all available to book in conjunction with the early bird offer, with prices starting from approximately £125 in a Garden Residence based on two sharing, including breakfast with sparkling wine and all taxes. Similarly, a stay in a Pool Residence starts from £170 and a stay in a Spa Suite starts from £190, which also includes one complimentary 60-minute spa treatment per night.

Kyoto encourages UK travellers to experience autumnal charm WITH THE lure of Japan’s rich culture helping to drive UK visitors to the country up by 18.6%, from January – April 2016 year-on-year, the Kyoto Convention and Visitors Bureau is encouraging travellers to experience why this year is an opportune time for a value for money trip to Japan’s cultural capital. In autumn 2016, the ancient city is set to unveil the new Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto. Set in an 800-year-old traditional garden at the foot of Higashiyama Mountain in the city’s temple district, the hotel is due to open its doors on October 15. To celebrate the opening, the hotel is running an introductory offer which includes approximately £75 hotel credit per room, per stay, for dining in its new Brasserie. As the months progress from September through to December, koyo (meaning

'colourful leaves') transform the region's autumnal vistas, just as the cherry blossoms light up the area in spring. For centuries, large numbers of travellers have visited Kyoto to take in this spectacular array of russet tones scattered across the mountains, parks and streets. Commencing approximately in midSeptember every year, the Kyoto front takes its southbound route from Japan's northern island, Hokkaido. The process is very gradual and changeable, with the leaves in Kyoto typically adopting orange and red tones by October, November or sometimes even as late as the first weeks in December. With numerous ‘Autumn Foliage’ packages offered through operators, the Visitors Bureau is encouraging UK travellers to experience this striking season in 2016. For more information visit

Bangkok Airways signs United for Wildlife Transport Industry Declaration to raise awareness of wildlife trade BANGKOK AIRWAYS has singed the United for Wildlife Transport Industry Declaration supported by the International Air Transport Association. The declaration aims to raise awareness to stop wildlife trade and educate passengers, stakeholders and staff about the consequences of its illegal practice, spotting smugglers in the act and focusing on illegal wildlife such as African elephants, rhinos, some big cats and pangolins. Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth, president of the airline, said: “We are pleased to be part of this initiative that recognises the need to protect endangered species from illegal trade and transportation. Numerous carriers in the aviation industry are aware of this serious issue and commit a wide range of measures designed to prevent the movement of illegal wildlife and wildlife products. As a leading regional airline, serving customers around the world, we acknowledge our responsibility to the society, to the community and to the environment; therefore we have a strict policy to trafficking of illegal wildlife and wildlife products.” The airline also plans to integrate projects to lessen the impact on the climate and the environment such as the ‘Carbon Footprint for Organization’ campaign to promote the importance of Greenhouse gas control on a daily basis for the organisation and a ‘Love Earth, Save Earth’ campaign to encourage students and local people to preserve the natural resources and environment.

Amari Koh Samui introduces wanderlust package AMARI KOH Samui is encouraging guests to turn their next Thailand getaway into a self-drive mini adventure with a new wanderlust package. Especially created for those with the travel bug, the package gets guests behind the wheel to discover the treasures of the island. A guide in the form of an interactive ‘Treasure Island Map’ is available which highlights must-see spots - from the Golden Pagoda to numerous waterfalls. After tracking down all the sights, guests can head back to the hotel to experience a private beach dinner. The package starts from approximately £90 per night for a three-night minimum stay and includes a self-drive car all set up to help explore the island with a treasure island map, roundtrip transfers, welcome treats on arrival and dinner on the beach with a menu of Thai dishes. For more information visit

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t s a e r a f in t e ll u b t n e ev

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TRAVELLANDA TREAT…Melanie Derakhshan (left) from Travellanda presents Rebecca Valentine, Wallace Arnold with a luxury five-star getaway for two in London.

INNSTANT WIN…Gary Gillespie from Innstant Travel presents Karen Briggs from Wallace Arnold Travel with her £50 One4all Gift card prize. YOU’VE BEEN FRAMED…Cassy Cullen (left) from CC-Travel and Rebecca Smith (right) from Constant Travel collect their ornate frame prizes from the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s Emma Arnott.

Agents got to soak in the ambience of the Far East during Travel Bulletin’s Far East Showcase at the Crowne Plaza in Leeds last week. Exploring more about this fantastic part of the world, attendees were treated to a fabulous evening of networking and presentations with fine wine, delicious food and some superb prizes…

VISIT PHILIPPINES…From the left, Richard De Villa and Lito Mendoza from the Philippines Department Of Tourism meet with Sophia Titorenko and Rachel McAven from Spear Travels Skipton.

CATHAY CHAT…Keith Harrison (back centre) delivers the latest from Cathay Pacific to a table of attentive agents.


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LUCKY LUKE… Luke Preston (left) from STA Travel collects his Movenpick Hotels & Resorts’ five-night package prize from the company’s Anthony Vale. The prize includes two nights at the Mövenpick Hotel Sukhumvit 15 Bangkok and three at the Siam Hotel Pattaya.

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ADVENTURE BOUND…winning £500 off the cost of a G Adventures trip of her choice is Vanessa Sears (left) from Sears Travel with the operator’s Chris Bach.

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FULL HOUSE…Agents settle in to begin the evenings set of speedy networking sessions.

CLUB CONGRATS…on behalf of Club Med, Travel Bulletin’s Simon Eddolls presents lucky winner Karen Booth from Thomas Cook with a seven-night stay for two at a Club Med resort of her choice. LUX* LEARNING…agents learn more about the latest product offerings from Lux* Resorts & Hotels from the group’s Caroline Tjia (standing).

IN THE BAG…Karen Ainley from Althams Travel collects her Khiri Travel goody bag from Adrian Croft.

SAKE SUCCESS…Winner Michael Langford from Langford Travel collects his prize of a bottle of Sake from Rebecca Whitter from JTB Europe.


Want to get in on the action? Travel Bulletin will be hosting its next ‘Airline Showcase’ event in Leeds on Monday 25 January. All agents who wish to attend can secure their spot by emailing

July 15 2016


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fareast EVA Air upgrades inflight & on-ground services for Business Class travel EVA AIR has enhanced its inflight and on-ground amenities for Business Class travel. Upgraded services include improved check-in and boarding experiences, a customised approach to staff-passenger interactions plus a new range of services on all flights for Royal Laurel, Premium Laurel and Business Class passengers. Prior to travel, the airline’s airport ground services provide easy navigation through airports, directing travellers towards both VIP lounges and relevant departure gates and, during the busiest times, staff will be positioned at key points to assist passengers if required. Upon boarding, passengers will be greeted with a glass of cold-pressed pineapple juice, accompanied by Godiva chocolates for all long-haul flights, before being shown to their ergonomically-designed seat. Flight attendants now offer a sommelier-style service, presenting a wine’s label and vintage, describing its features and presenting a sample for tasting, before pouring. Alongside its wine menu, the airline also serves premium alcoholic spirits and liquors, beers, soft drinks and canapés. Those travelling on long-haul Boeing 777-300ER flights can now request a full turn-down service which will see a member of the team transform a Royal Laurel Class lie-flat seat into a bed complete with a 100% cotton mattress pad. For more information visit

New digitial maps from InsideAsia Tours offer interactive experience INSIDEASIA TOURS has developed a set of animated ‘Step Inside’ digital maps, enabling travellers to explore Japan, Burma, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos and serving as a source of inspiration sales tool for agents too. Together with a Bristol-based digital design agency, Green Chameleon, the operator has developed three interactive maps using 360 photospheres that allow travellers to explore a selection of InsideJapan,

InsideVietnam and InsideBurma’s favourite spots. Each spot is represented on the map by animated landmarks and icons and, when clicked on, will immerse the would-be traveller into the destination photosphere. Matt Spiller, agents manager for the company, said: “These maps are great fun for anyone planning to travel to any of these destinations, looking for inspiration or building up the excitement for a planned trip. I think our agents will love them, but be warned, they are highly addictive. If the appetite for virtual exploration is not satisfied by our favourite sights or the random spots, as destination specialists, we can turn virtual discovery into a real cultural adventure.” To try out the maps head to, or

Macao Government Tourism Office

TTM+ 2016 reports positive feedback following move to Chiang Mai

HELD ON the 15th day of the eighth month in the lunar calendar (September 15 with the full moon), the Mid-Autumn Festival in Macao celebrates abundance and togetherness. Also known as ‘Mooncake Festival’ or ‘Lantern Festival’, it is one of the mostcelebrated festivities in Chinese culture and offers the chance for families to come together and enjoy eating mooncakes – pastries filled with sweet lotus paste – under hundreds of colourful lanterns hanging from trees and buildings.


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THE DECISION to move Thailand Travel Mart 2016 to the northern capital of Chiang Mai appears to have paid off, with the majority of buyers hailing the opportunity to experience the up-and-coming destination. It is reported that feedback forms received from both buyers and sellers who attended the event last month indicated high levels of satisfaction with both the quality and diversity of the entire programme, as well as the potential business expected to be generated and pre- and post-event tours. This year, the event was held for the first time outside Bangkok with the choice of Chiang Mai designed to showcase Thailand’s northern region as a gateway and bridgehead to the Northern ASEAN nations of Cambodia, Lao PDR., Myanmar and Vietnam. Chris Lee, head of marketing UK and Ireland from the Tourism Authority of Thailand, said: “Thailand Travel Mart in 2016 attracted 24 UK and Ireland tour operators and was hosted for the first time in Chiang Mai, in the north of the country. The move to Thailand’s second biggest city was very well received by both buyers and sellers. A post TTM trip to the south of Thailand showcasing Trang, Ko Lanta and Krabi was attended by 15 tour operators and was equally successful in challenging perceptions of Thailand and the potential of developing a number of emerging islands and resorts.”

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Gold Medal highlights how to get the best bang for your buck in Bangkok GOLD MEDAL has reported that Bangkok in Thailand is one of the biggest sellers for those agents selling Far East destinations through the operator. Rebecca Turner, the company’s product manager for Asia, said: “Now is a brilliant time to travel to Thailand as April to October is classed as low season. The cost is very reasonable though the weather may not be great. “Bangkok is great for shopping. Not only do you have the high end shopping centres but there is also the MBK centre which is an eight floor shopping mall with more than 2,000 shops, restaurants and service outlets. It is also a great place to buy handbags and watches - just remember to barter! “As well as the shopping malls, the floating market is a must visit and no trip would be complete without a visit to the Grand Palace. The best way to get around is the Skytrain and you can get an all-day pass for around 300thb or approximately £6.”

fareast PDOT launches twin-centre destination campaign with Singapore Airlines THE PHILIPPINE Department of Tourism (PDOT) London has launched its twin-centre destination programme with Singapore Airlines offering a tourism product that combines a city break with a beach holiday. The First Stop Singapore platform - – has been developed to promote the numerous attractions of Singapore before travellers go on to their next stop or final destination, continuing their holiday after a short city break in Singapore. Until August 17, the Philippines will be the featured destination on the platform, with the destination’s ‘best of’ series highlighted to offer advice on covering the best dives, the best islands and beaches, plus the best food and lifestyle, as well as holiday packages. This taps into the target markets of promotions for the Philippines in tandem with the four destinations in the country that Singapore Airlines currently flies to - Manila, Kalibo (Boracay), Cebu and Davao. The page will remain indefinitely as a resource for interested travellers, and will also feature a competition during the campaign period with Singapore Airlines and Shangri-la sponsoring full international flights and accommodation in Boracay and Cebu during the Philippines’ month. Visitor numbers to the Philippines have been growing through 2016; figures from the UK in March grew by 24.68%, with the total January to March arrivals growing at 23%, amounting to 49,097 tourists.

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fareast Santiburi celebrates £20million renovation with new family package CELEBRATING ITS 25th anniversary and relaunch after a £20million renovation, Koh Samui's Santiburi Beach Resort & Spa has launched a new family package. Running until October 31 and starting from £1,000, families of two adults and two children can enjoy four days and three nights in a Spa Pool Villa which features a private pool. The package includes transfers and a family sports camp, with options including tennis, golf, sailing, surfing and family Muay Thai lessons. Other hands-on activities include family cooking classes with the chef plus the option for kids to cook for mum and dad, supervised by the culinary team, whilst the parents enjoy Travel Bulletin is published by a couples' Alain Charles Publishing (Travel) Ltd

massage in the privacy of their own sala. For families with babies, the resort will supply new parents with a baby welcome kit. Recent renovations include a new state-of-the-art spa, re-invented restaurants with new menus and villas and suites transformed into modern and stylish homes.


University House, 11-13 Lower Grosvenor Place, London, SW1W 0EX Tel: 020-7834 6661 Printed by: Buxton Press Subscriptions are £125 p.a. £195 overseas ISSN: 0956-2419

Crossword: Across: 1. KLM, 4. PARIS, 6. TRAVELODGE, 8. IXIA, 9. KYLE, 11. STAR, 13. IOWA, 16. TWICKENHAM, 17. CONGO, 18. SIN.


Down: 1. KATE MOSS, 2. MIAMI, 3. IBERIA, 4. POOH, 5. RUGBY, 7. BENJAMIN, 10. SOLENT, 12. ASWAN, 14. ATHOS, 15. ECHO.


Highlighted Word: Mexico Where Am I?: Alnwick Castle, Northhumberland, UK

We asked our staff the following question this week:

What do you wish you'd invented? Jeanette Ratcliffe Publisher

Matthew Weinreb Sales Executive



Lauretta Wright Editor

Kathryn Frost Sales Executive


Adam Potter Editorial Assistant

Gemma Reeve Events & Sales Administrator

YouTube gaming.


Paul Scudamore Contributing Editor

Nicky Valsamakis Design Team Leader

Guinness - and television for the royalties!

Chewing gum.

Simon Eddolls Sales Director

Miriam Brtkova Designer

Tim Podger Account Manager - Far East

Liam Jackson Design Apprentice

A mute button for my wife.


Bill Coad Account Manager

Nelly Mendes Production

Jet engine.


Matt Gill Senior Account Manager


July 15 2016

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Profile for Alain Charles Publishing

Travel Bulletin July 15th 2016  

Travel Bulletin July 15th 2016