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March 3 2010 I No. 2096

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2010 – the perfect time to get away

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World Cup fare conditions ‘shortsighted’ Natalia thoMsoN


T’S a bitter pill to swallow for travellers who can expect to pay more than double what they would normally pay for flights over the 2010 World Cup. A flight to Cape Town from Johannesburg on June 11 was priced at R5 740 for the base fare and R1 532 for taxes. A staggering R7 272 in total. This was just one of the ‘absurd’ fares that was pointed out to TNW as we asked agents to spot outrageous fares offered by local and international airlines during the 2010 World Cup (see eTNW for more). What’s even worse, adds Grindrod Travel consultant, Jeanette Whitehead, is that first- and business-class tickets are non-refundable and no changes are allowed. Brad Muir, consultant at Burns Cunningham in Johannesburg, says fare rules for booking classes that usually carry no cancellation penalty or a 25% cancellation penalty are non-refundable during the World Cup. “The message within the fare rules simply states: the ticket is ‘non-refundable’. Changes are not permitted and upgrading to any higher


fare or cabin is not permitted for travel between June 4 and July 10.” While there are repeated calls from suppliers for travellers to continue travelling over the World Cup, agents believe the prohibitive cost of travelling will deter both corporate and leisure travellers.

“The ticket is nonrefundable. Changes and upgrading to a higher cabin are not permitted between June 4 and July 10.” Says Tourvest Travel Services ceo, Morne du Preez: “Corporate travel over the World Cup is going to be almost non-existent. The current pricing we’re seeing in the market gives corporates a fright even though it isn’t much more than what you would expect at an event of this nature.” Morne predicts the decline in travel will start two to three weeks before the event and end a few weeks after the event. “June and July are not going to be great months for the retail industry. We’re looking at a 10 to 12-week period during which

corporate travel will be down, which means 2010 itself is probably not going to be a good year.” However, airfares will not be the only determining factor, says corporate manager of Sure Travel, Jim Weighell. “Domestic hotel rooms and car-rental availability will also be major factors. Balancing availability of all three commodities on any particular trip will take more time than normal.” Jim believes it will be possible for corporates to continue organising business trips. “A wait-and-see approach can be effective for domestic travel but meetings and trips will need to be planned around availability as cost containment is a primary consideration. Early booking ensures that seats, rooms, and cars will be available when needed.” Flight Centre air and land contractor, Kosie Nagel, says the retailer has focused its leisure sales on international and regional getaways for travellers. “We’re focusing on extended holidays in Mauritius and similar destinations so that South Africans can take advantage of the extra-long school holidays.” To page 20

escape 2010! Escape the World Cup and play unlimited golf in Mauritius with Travellers’ Choice. The package includes return economy airfare ex-JNB or DUR, airport and hotel transfers, 14 nights’ accommodation in a pool villa at the five-star Four Seasons resort at Anahita, breakfast daily and a Travellers’ Choice bag. In addition, travellers will receive complimentary, unlimited golf on a course designed by Ernie Els, including green fees, golf cart with GPS, a pyramid of golf balls and an F&B €1 000 (R10 533) voucher per villa per stay. Prices are from R28 455pp, excluding taxes. Escaping the World Cup madness are Travellers’ Choice manager, Marius Venter, and pa to the director, Dorette Venter (see our Great Escapes feature on page 8) Photo: Tijana Huysamen

interlink in provisional liquidation JeaNette PhilliPs INTERLINk Airlines has been put into provisional liquidation. There has been no official announcement by the airline, but management is awaiting the appointment of a liquidator who will decide whether or not it should continue trading. In early January Interlink announced the temporary

suspension of its services to and from Pretoria’s Wonderboom Airport after one of its B737 aircraft was involved in a bird strike. Agents and passengers are advised to wait for a formal announcement from the airline or liquidator. In the interim, enquiries/refund requests can be directed to n


Three Cities to honour some Queensgate bookings Kate els


HREE Cities has announced that dealings undertaken since its management of certain Queensgate properties will still be valid after the recent announcement that Queensgate may be experiencing financial difficulty. Late last year, the Three Cities Group was appointed by Queensgate to assist it with managing a number of its four- and five-star hotels, which they believed were not performing to their fullest potential. Mike Lambert, coo of Three Cities Group, says: “In the last week we have concluded


Rubes® By Leigh Rubin

satisfactory arrangements with the majority of the hotel properties in the Queensgate portfolio. The full particulars of these arrangements will be detailed to all of our customers in the very near future. “Three Cities has never had a direct contractual relationship with the Queensgate listed company and only contracted with the operating hotel companies in their portfolio either owning or leasing the hotels.” He adds that “all reservations and deposits since we took over the management of the hotels, will be honoured and secure”. All undertakings made by Three Cities

Management, while managing this portfolio will be honoured and tour operators are being consulted on those undertakings. Unfortunately, for tour operators with bookings prior to Three Cities’ takeover of management of these properties, those bookings will fall away unless deposits are repaid to confirm bookings. In the case of Inn on the Square, Hospitality Property Fund has said deposits for bookings made prior to the management of Three Cities in November should have been repaid to Three Cities by February 28 or tour operators face the possibility of losing those bookings. n

Embattled SAA fights on all fronts Melody Brandon


Published by Lugan Investments (Pty) Ltd trading as Now Media Printed by Juka Printing (Pty) Ltd Phone: (011) 327-4062 Fax: (011) 327-4094 E-mail: Web: Address: Now Media Centre, 32 Fricker Road, Illovo Boulevard, Illovo, Johannesburg. PO Box 55251, Northlands, 2116, South Africa.

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BELEAGUERED South African Airways is fighting on all fronts this month, the final straw being Comair’s announcement that it would sue the national carrier, having recently been given the go-ahead by the Competition Tribunal. The Tribunal has found that SAA’s travel agent override incentive scheme between June 2001 and March 2005 contravened the Competition Act and induced travel agents not to deal with SAA’s rivals. It is still unclear how much Comair will be claiming in damages but, says Comair joint ceo, Gidon Novick, the wheels have already been set in motion and the damages are being quantified. “These abuses took place over a long time and the damages as a result of this are significant.” SAA acting head group corporate affairs, Vimla Maistry, says the airline is “considering the matter to determine the way forward”. This latest battle comes hot on the heels of complaints against SAA for coughing up almost R307m in sportrelated sponsorship and the finance ministry declaring

it would cut funding to the parastatal over the next three years. The state of SAA’s finances has now become a political battle.

“State-owned enterprises like SAA will have to cut waste and withstand greater scrutiny from government in coming years.” Finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, warned late last month that state-owned enterprises like SAA would have to cut waste and withstand greater scrutiny from government in coming years. “Too often, the culture in the public service and in state-owned enterprises is to ratchet up salaries, spend on frills, travel in luxury and spend more on marketing the agency than in fixing the service,” he said. And even President Jacob Zuma has called for an external audit to be done of the country’s parastatals, including SAA, citing reports of “mismanagement and

political meddling”. The bail-outs for SAA over the past five years, explains Vimla, have come either as cash injections or loans guaranteed by the state. “SAA received no actual cash from the government during 2009. The airline does not expect any further budgetary allocations in the immediate, foreseeable future,” she says. Meanwhile, opposition parties continue to bemoan the airline’s finances, contending that the R307m the airline has handed out in sports sponsorships (Cricket SA, SA Rugby, golfer Angel Cabrera and the Sunshine Golf Tour, among others) amounted to one-fifth of the amount designated to SAA in bail-out funds last year. The total value of SAA’s sponsorships amounted to R268,3 million in cash and R38,7 million in free travel spread over four years from 2008 to 2012. SAA, says Vimla, cannot comment on whether these sponsorships will be cut. The airline, she adds, “focuses its sponsorship programme on those titles which invoke pride in being South African and in the country”. n

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No roll-out yet for traffic demerit system Max Marx


ESPITE emails doing the rounds that the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (Aarto) and its points demerit system are already operational, the system will only be implemented in the 2010/2011 financial year, according to transport minister, Sibusiso Ndebele. Wayne Duvenage, Avis ce, said Aarto was supposed to be implemented in 2007 but difficulties had been experienced in the trial run. “To date the process is still plagued with administrative problems and I don’t believe it will be implemented on a nationwide basis during 2010.” Dawn Nathan-Jones, Europcar ceo, said the company did not anticipate a roll-out before mid-year but that it was prepared to institute and support the


legislation at short notice. The car-rental industry was working closely with the Road Traffic Management Corporation through Savrala to manage the system within its business, said Wayne. “Nothing changes in that we pass the details of the renter on to the authorities who, in turn, handle the fine payment and demerit points with the renter who is ultimately the transgressor.” Dawn said the Aarto system posed a risk to rental companies if customer information received was incomplete and if redirection of fines could not be done. “Reliance is heavily placed on the travel trade to provide correct customer information with reservations.” Wayne added that once Aarto was fully operational, car-rental companies would not be allowed to rent out cars unless customers produced their driver’s

licences or their licence details were preloaded into a car-rental company’s system, and the renter produced another form of ID. “The car-rental industry will welcome the strict enforcement of this requirement as it will better protect it from fraudulent rentals and car theft.” Janita Edwards, Tempest Car Hire’s sales and marketing director, said Tempest was making it mandatory that renters’ identity numbers accompanied all rental documentation. “This assists us in shortening the investigation process when trying to find a forward address for fine redirection, and when the demerit system officially launches, it will assist in establishing whether the driver does have demerit points on their licence or ID.” Tempest redirects more than 15 000 fines to clients annually. n

Travelinfo,s Shanaaz Khan selects the top specials from Travelinfo


● Airlink. Pietermaritzburg ‘We are Back’ special fare from R239 one way. Valid for travel ex-Johannesburg until March 31 (all travel to be completed by midnight). Excludes taxes. ● Thompsons Holidays.. Maldives specials from R11 759 per person sharing. Includes return flights ex-Johannesburg, return transfers and seven nights’ accommodation with breakfast and dinner daily. Valid from May 1 to July 19. Excludes taxes. High season supplements apply from June 19 to July 19. ● Cruises International is offering a Royal Caribbean sevennight western Caribbean cruise on board Liberty of the Seas from US$539 (R4 160) per person sharing. The rate includes on-board accommodation, meals and entertainment. The round trip cruise departs Miami on September 12 and 26. ● Dream Kist Tours. Greece accommodation from R519 per room per night in a three-star hotel. Includes breakfast. Valid April 2 to 29.

Specials Spot


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First ‘dry’ hotel opens in Cape Town Hilka Birns


T may be Cape Town’s first alcohol-free hotel, but the newly opened five-star Coral International Cape Town is not for Muslims only. “We’re Muslim-friendly, offering prayer rooms and halaal food but we also cater for all nationalities, be they from Europe, the Middle East or Asia,” says sales and marketing director, Cindy Valentine. It is managed by Coral Hotels and Resorts and is the first Gulf hotel brand to enter South Africa. The Dubai-based holding company HMH (Hospitality Management Holdings) is one of the fastest growing hotel management and development companies in the Middle East. HMH is looking to expand its network of 33 hotels by opening another 15 establishments in this country (Durban and Johannesburg) and in the rest of Africa. They may not all be five-star, says

Cindy, but could be part of the other brands in the stable, including EWA hotel apartments, ECOS budget hotels and Corp Executive Hotels (corporate). The R280m hotel is centrally located on the corner of Buitengracht and Wale Street, adjacent to the colourful Cape Malay Bokaap and in close proximity to mosques. The property has 137 rooms averaging 42 sqm in size and eight suites of 120 sqm, all with en-suite bathrooms and free-standing oval baths. The overall look is traditional with Arabic undertones. All rooms are decorated in muted colours of browns and beige with white Egyptian cotton on beds, wooden floors and an eclectic combination of old and new furnishings. There are eight conference rooms with a maximum capacity of 110 people and one executive boardroom, all equipped with the latest audio-visual equipment

and interactive plasma televisions. Other facilities include a business centre with Internet stations and secretarial services, WiFi, an outdoor pool, a gym with sauna and steam rooms, a hair salon and nail bar, valet parking and all the usual comforts associated with a five-star establishment. There are two restaurants, one serving international and the other Indian cuisine, with an outdoor entertainment area near the pool offering traditional Arabic water pipes, or shishas. Cindy says bookings are picking up, the target market being predominantly corporate but also leisure because of the impending Soccer World Cup. So far, the hotel has taken three group bookings for the World Cup and hopes to fill up for the event. With nine other five-star hotels in the immediate environment, the hotel is positioning itself mid-range in terms of published rack rates. ■

Family fun! Sun International Dreams has launched a Swaziland Family Package. From March to April, families of four can enjoy a breakaway at the Royal Swazi Spa Valley from R5 920 or the Lugogo Sun from R4 150. Children will be entertained for one whole day while mom books a treatment at Camelot Spa or goes shopping at the candle factory, glass factory or the Swazi market and dad plays golf, goes quad biking or river rafting. The package includes dinner bed and breakfast for two nights, an exclusive dinner for the kids on the second night, entertainment for children under 12 years old at Kamp Kwena, mountain biking and fun and games at the Magic Company for older children, and more. Joining in on the fun are sales executives, Nosipho Thusini (front) and Zoe McKinley (right), and sales manager, Stacey Barnett Photo: Tijana Huysamen

Development Promotions appointed agent for international luxury train operator Natasha Tippel GW TRAVEL, the world’s leading operator of exclusive, long-distance rail tours, has appointed Development

Promotions as its agent in SA. The GW Travel ‘Voyages of a Lifetime by Private Train’ operates worldwide through Russia and the CIS, Mongolia, China, Tibet, Canada, India

and Africa. “These voyages provide private rail tours for the adventure traveller who is drawn to the excitement of visiting these fabulous and

often remote destinations but wants to appreciate them in style, comfort and safety,” says Jane Davidson, md of Development Promotions. The flagship tour is the

world-famous Trans-Siberian Express on the fully en-suite Golden Eagle, crossing eight time zones on its 15-day 10 000km journey between Moscow and Vladivostok. ■


QUICK READ FOR busiest people

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Watch your email etiquette! Melody Brandon


TRAVEL agent’s innocent attempt to advise clients about travel restrictions over the Soccer World Cup led to a national media frenzy after the email developed into a chain mail. In late January Grant Thornton issued a statement to mainstream newspapers warning that an email from a travel agent doing the rounds “overstated” the issue of “overbooked hotels, unavailable car hire and impossible airports”. “The email is causing unnecessary panic. Visitors won’t all be in South Africa in the same town all at once and, although there will be certain crunch peak periods, overall it shouldn’t impact South Africans’ daily schedules too dramatically,” said Grant Thornton director of strategic solutions, Gillian Saunders. The firm, which specialises in tax and audit advisory and performs an advisory function in the tourism, hospitality and leisure industries, became aware of the email after the company’s director received it from four or five different sources, most of which were travel agencies.


“The email had been posted on a number of websites, nationally and internationally and had done the rounds worldwide. While some of the information was relevant, a lot was overexaggerated,” said Nico Olwagen, senior marketing and PR executive. An agent, who did not want

to be named, contacted TNW at the beginning of February asking for information from a survey conducted on eTNW about the impact of the 2010 Soccer World Cup. She said she had sent out an email to her clients “about the Soccer World Cup” and was now being hounded by the media. She would not confirm if the email Grant Thornton was referring to had originated from her or not. “I sent a mail out to my clients with information about the World Cup and the whole thing got out of hand,” she said.

Protect yourself

Regardless of how the email originated, it has highlighted the need for travel agencies to ensure they have procedures in place to monitor the communications they send out. In the same vein, a social media policy should be drawn up too. “A social media policy can help agencies establish a set of guidelines or a framework for agents when they use social media and ensure that social media is used appropriately given the organisation’s priorities,” says Paul Jacobson, a web and digital media lawyer. Paul warns that one of the biggest pitfalls when sending out emails to clients is to make assumptions not based on facts or reasonable opinions. “People who send out emails like this should bear in mind how easily emails can be distributed, especially how quickly sensationalist emails are frequently distributed, and

should write as if the email will reach a much broader audience than the initial mailing list.” While there may not be anything one can do preemptively to make sure the mail they send out does not become a viral monster, Paul says posting the content on to a blog or website could limit its distribution. You can also remove the information at a later stage if the need arises. “The best is to moderate what goes into the email upfront and write it as if it could be distributed widely. Check facts, qualify opinions and do not make outrageous and unfounded statements. Also be aware of sensitive topics,” he says. Do you need a social media policy? Visit http:// for more information.

Before you click send... ● Check your facts and qualify opinions; ● Take the time to learn about social media tools and choose appropriate tools based on objectives and goals; ● Learn about the target market and what they are using – this knowledge will inform choice of social media tool; ● Find out about the legal issues that arise out of social media initiatives, the common challenges companies face and how to minimise exposure to liability; ● Avoid spamming people and make sure you have an ‘opt-out’ mechanism should the recipient not want to receive the emails any more.

Check before you send! An innocent email can turn into a viral monster if it develops into a chain mail Photo: iStock photo

Agent comments “I once sent a quotation on car hire to a client; one spelling error caused a big laugh. Instead of saying ‘herewith a quotation on car HIRE services’ I incorrectly typed ‘herewith a quotation on car HORE services’! Luckily the client had a sense of humour!” Aisha Kera, junior consultant Michelle’s XL Travel, Johannesburg. “One of my clients wrote an email to an international airline with some constructive criticism and the airline recipient forwarded the email to a supervisor who commented and forwarded to others who commented and forwarded some more, all the while unknowingly copying my client in on every single email. The comments were none too favourable to my client and there were many red faces and “sincerest apologies” when she made it known that she’d read all their sarcastic and nasty comments. Too little too late!” Tracy Teichmann, manager, Sure Adcocks Travel, Pietermaritzburg. “The biggest problem is forwarding or replying to an existing email that may contain pertinent information. I once forwarded an email to a client asking for the umpteenth time for payment of air tickets that had been rebooked repeatedly because she couldn’t type the credit card number correctly. She received the mail with a chunk on the bottom venting about how incompetent she was! She then got it right, though, and the tickets were issued.” Rachael Penaluna, sales executive, Sure Bleeker Travel, Johannesburg. ■

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A380 wows plane spotters Hundreds of people lined roads and runways to welcome Air France’s inaugural A380 flight to Johannesburg, reports Natalia Thomson…


T took just 40 minutes for all the passengers on board AF990, Air France’s inaugural A380 flight to Johannesburg on February 18, to disembark. An unbelievable feat considering the aircraft is the size of one B777-200 and an A340-300, each of which would have taken the same time to disembark. The A380 has 50% more floor space than the B747. But with two decks and each deck separated into smaller cabins, passengers will arguably not get a true sense of the massive size of the aircraft. Arriving to an enthusiastic welcome at OR Tambo International Airport, the first A380 service to the African continent illustrated the importance Air France attached to its services to South Africa, where it has been present since 1953, said Air France ceo, Pierre-Henri Gourgeon. From March 28, Air France will operate seven weekly frequencies between Paris and JNB, including three by A380 until the third A380 is put into service, scheduled for the end of April. The route will then be entirely operated by the A380. Pierre-Henri told TNW the fact that the 11 weekly flights would be replaced with one daily flight would not “inconvenience” passengers hoping for good onward connections from Paris-Charles de Gaulle. “Given a choice, most passengers prefer a night flight anyway.” The use of the A380, he TNW5090

added, was suitable for Air France’s hub-and-spoke strategy as it is estimated that Paris-Charles de Gaulle offers some 20 000 onward connections every week. Air France plans to use the A380 on long-haul routes to feed passengers through its CDG hub to short or mediumhaul destinations on smaller aircraft. On average, between 54% and 60% of passengers arriving at the airport actually connect to domestic, regional and international destinations through the CDG hub. For traffic originating from South Africa, 70% use CDG to connect through to such destinations as Nice, Dublin, London and Amsterdam. The A380’s arrival in the Air France fleet, says Pierre-Henri, couldn’t have come at a better time. “We’ve been able to rationalise our operating costs per seat and reduced this cost by 20%. It’s also the most environmentally friendly aircraft of its generation. The A380 will help us withstand the aviation crisis.” Air France ordered 12 A380s, two of which have already been delivered. Following New York in November 2009 and Johannesburg last month, Air France will also start operating the A380 to Tokyo in 2010. Pierre-Henri said the aircraft would be deployed to longhaul destinations where Air France operated two flights per day, for example Beijing, Los Angeles and Montreal. n

130 minutes after touchdown – surprise and delight! When John and Leona Marsh launched TNW 40 years ago they knew that the fastchanging travel trade needed a trusted source to break news quickly and that timepressured consultants wanted it in a quick-read format. Last week’s coverage of the historic first scheduled Air France A380 flight to Johannesburg was an example of just that. Air France’s A380 flight AF990 landed at 10h55 on Thursday, February 18, and within 130 minutes of the flight landing, copies with TNW editor Natalia Thomson’s assessment of the flight and aircraft (she sent the story 19 minutes after landing) were handed over to Air France executives (pictured above from left are Clea Spann, regional sales manager; Etienne Rachou, deputy executive vp International and The Netherlands; and Ralf Karsenbarg Karsenbarg, commercial manager Southern Africa) who were still at OR Tambo International Airport. TNW’s founders would have been pleased Photos: Kate Nathan

Airports get ready for the A380 WHILE the length of the A380 (73m) does not exceed that of other jumbo jets, its wingspan (80m, ie. 15m more than that of the current generation of jumbo jets) requires more space for the movement and parking of the aircraft.

will take more baggage and reduce waiting time. The upgrade of the runway led to its width being increased from 60m to 75m and the taxiway widths from 30m to 60m.

OR Tambo Intl Airport

As early as 2003, Air France, Airbus and airport authority, Aéroports de Paris at ParisCDG, worked to adapt the terminal facilities to the size of the A380 and its passenger capacity. In particular, the new boarding lounge for terminal 2E was designed to accommodate this aircraft. Changes made to the airport’s infrastructure include: ● Reinforced runways and taxiways to accommodate the increased weight of the aircraft. ● Widened taxiways and runways and extended verges

As part of upgrading the airport, Acsa invested more than R200m to make the airport compliant with new, large-aircraft requirements by doing shoulder and taxiway upgrades, developing new aprons, longer baggage belts, and larger passenger holding and boarding gates. To manage the A380’s additional passengers, the airport has four contact stands with dual air bridges to board and disembark passengers, two remote stands and two 90m baggage carousels that

Paris-Charles de Gaulle

of runways to prevent blast damage on the grass. ● The establishment of a satellite terminal, Satellite 3, designed to be compatible with the 380 and allow for optimum turnaround of the aircraft. S3 can handle up to six A380s simultaneously. Security checkpoints and baggage carousels at this terminal have also been specially adapted to the A380. Included in measures to assist transiting passengers is the introduction of green, yellow and orange lanes for economy-class passengers connecting to a third destination. Green is for passengers with a long connection time, yellow for those with an hour and a half connecting time and orange with a connecting time of less than 20 minutes. n

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For more information please visit QUICK READ FOR bUSIESt pEOplE email: 0861 flynow / 011 661 0112 Wednesday March 3 2010 n 7

Escapes Thoughts of traffic, fighting through overcrowded shopping centres and being in virtual lockdown over the Soccer World Cup have many South Africans opting to escape the country over the period. Dorine Reinstein highlights some attractive options...

‘It’s the perfect time to get away’

Where to go…

FTER years of anticipation and preparation, 2010 is finally here – the year of the first African Soccer World Cup. Whether your clients are dreading the crowded cities and roads or are excited about the buzz the event is sure to create, everyone is organising their lives around the event with even schools extending holidays to fit in with it. Many South Africans are choosing to escape the country during this hectic time, taking their annual holiday in June and July. Lack of availability and exorbitant prices at hotels, restaurants and for flights are pushing people to literally expand their horizons. Kelly Jackson, gm of Contiki South Africa, says it is a good idea to travel abroad during the World Cup as overseas holidays during this time turn out to be cheaper. “We are offering our normal packages throughout this period and they are cheaper than a local holiday over the same period.” Colleen Broadley, marketing manager of Beachcomber, says Beachcomber predicts that travel within South Africa will be very expensive and availability will be limited. Mandy Watson, marketing manager of Naïade Holidays, agrees: “It is likely that there will be a shortage of accommodation locally, so travellers should definitely take the opportunity to get away to an island paradise for at least a week.” Mandy adds that it’s the first time in SA that both private and

EVEN though it might prove a bit more challenging, travel agents can still offer their clients some great specials to destinations outside South Africa during the World Cup as not all airlines are raising their outbound fares to extreme levels.


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“It is likely that there will be a shortage of accommodation locally, so travellers should definitely take the opportunity to get away to an island paradise for at least a week.” – Mandy Watson public schools will be on holiday at the same time so it’s the perfect opportunity for families get away to the sun. Travel overseas might also prove to be more expensive than usual, with airlines releasing only full economy fares. Omaia Atrache, product manager for Holiday Tours, says availability and fares are still a problem and that only very few seats can be found, and at unusually high fares. Lucia Tarasconi, product manager for Sun International Dreams, however, notes that availability is not the problem – rather it’s the outrageous fares. She says with airlines such as SAA only releasing full economy fares, add-on fares for travel from Cape Town and Durban are pushing

up the prices of packages considerably, with return flights between Johannesburg and Cape Town costing up to R5 800. She maintains, however, that it will be impossible for airlines to sustain fares such as these and that closer to the time they will probably see themselves forced to release IT fares. Some tour operators have anticipated the rush and have pre-booked flights. Mandy says: “We have not experienced any problems with flights because we have bought seat allocations ahead of time. Our seat allocations cover direct departures out of Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban, so we are able to assist passengers from all around the country.” She warns, however, that passengers who may need add-ons should book sooner rather than later as there is likely to be a huge shortage of local seats. Others, however, maintain the panic is overrated. Reports from both Fedhasa and Grant Thornton warn that expectations of the World Cup are too high and that the event is unlikely to impact greatly on South African everyday life. Gill Speechly, travel consultant for GS Corporate Travel, says: “I believe we will be quiet during the actual event but will probably be hectic in the run-up with last-minute passengers trying to escape the madness and traffic that comes with a tournament of this size.”


“Namibia will definitely be more in the spotlight during the World Cup. It is around the corner for South Africans and very affordable and accessible,” says Michell Fourie, Air Namibia sales and marketing manager for South Africa. She says the airline is offering some of the best airfares in the market and is working in conjunction with several tour operators to compile special packages during the World Cup.


➔ Sun International Dreams is offering the Kalahari Sands World Cup Escape from R6 285pps, excluding airport taxes. It is valid from May 25 to July 17 and includes flights, transfers, two nights’ midweek accommodation in a standard twin room, breakfast daily, three days’ travel insurance and a Dreams travel bag. ➔ Wild Frontiers has compiled packages to Namibia in conjunction with Air Namibia: ● Five-day Sossusvlei Safari from R5 625pps, excluding airport taxes. The package includes flights on Air Namibia, two nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation in Windhoek, a two-night Sossusvlei camping safari starting and ending in Windhoek, all transport, two breakfasts, three lunches, two dinners, tea and coffee in camp, all camping equipment, park entrance fees, camping fees, professional guide, and camp assistant. ● Four-day Swakopmund breakaway from R5 650pps, excluding airport taxes. The package includes flights on Air Namibia, return airport transfers and three nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation in the five-star Hansa Hotel. ➔ Holiday Tours has also compiled packages in conjunction with Air Namibia. Its lead-in Namibia package is a six-night fly-drive package, starting from R6 650pps, excluding airport taxes. The package includes flights, seven days’ car hire, two nights at Taleni Village in Etosha on a dinner, bed and breakfast basis, two nights at Brigadoon Cottages on a bed and breakfast basis and two nights at Sossusvlei Desert Camp on a dinner, bed and breakfast basis. QUICK READ FOR DECISION-MAKERS

Discover moments that will capture your soul. THE ROYAL LIVINGSTONE ZAMBIA

R7 735 From

excl. approx airport tax of R1540 p/p

p/p sharing

Pay for 3 nights, stay for 4

With Dreams your journey into the adventure and romance of The Royal Livingstone will be uninterrupted, allowing you to savour every moment of this palatial Zambian getaway. A place where you are waited on hand and foot, where your only pressing engagement is sundowners, overlooking a natural world wonder: Victoria Falls.

• 4 Nights, breakfast incl. • Includes flights, transfers & insurance • Unlimited access to Vic Falls & park fees • Complementary Dreams travel bag

• Nature walks through the falls resort and star gazing on the Royal Livingstone lawns (Friday nights only) • Lounge high tea


R5 205 From

excl. approx airport tax of R1540 p/p

p/p sharing

Pay for 3 nights, stay for 4

Let our Dream Makers take you on an adventure into the heart of Africa. Resting on the banks of the mystical Zambezi River, a mere stone’s throw away from the thunder of the Victoria Falls, the Zambezi Sun embraces the warmth and generosity of the African continent. Here, time is meaningless and life enchanted.

• 4 Nights, dinner & breakfast incl. • Includes flights, transfers & insurance • Unlimited access to Vic Falls & park fees • Complementary Dreams travel bag

• Nature walks through the falls resort • Star gazing on the Royal Livingstone lawns (Friday nights only)


Call one of our dream makers on 011 217 5555 or visit

Valid until 31 May 2010. Sunday to Thursday nights, excluding peak periods. Valid for South African residents only. Includes return economy class airfare ex JNB, return airport transfers, 4 nights accommodation in a standard twin room, breakfast & dinner daily (dinner only included in Zambezi Sun package), Dreams travel bag, 5 days travel insurance including hazardous pursuits, nature walk around the resort, star gazing on Friday nights at The Royal Livingstone, Lounge high tea (Royal Livingstone package only) & FREE unlimited access to the falls. Excludes airport tax as stated above and items of a personal nature. Rates quoted per person sharing. Only valid for individual reservations. Subject to availability and definite terms and conditions. Subject to currency fluctuation. E&OE.


Mauritius is likely to be one of the hottest destinations for locals during the World Cup Photo: Stock Xchange

The Indian Ocean Islands have always been a firm favourite with South Africans, offering an exotic holiday close to home with ample flight access and reasonably priced packages. Mandy Watson, marketing manager of Naïade Holidays, says Mauritius is going to be possibly the hottest destination for locals travelling during the World Cup. “We are already seeing an earlybooking trend from locals travelling to Mauritius over the World Cup period. Overall, we believe 2010, as a whole, is going to be a phenomenal year for travel to the Indian Ocean.” John Ridler, media and pr manager for Thompsons Holidays, says even the greatest soccer fans will enjoy Mauritius. “Many soccer fans prefer to view the matches on TV. What then could be simpler than to escape to a warm destination, enjoy a relaxing vacation far from the crowds and still enjoy watching your favourite team on TV?” Beachcomber has also seen an increased demand from South Africans for travel during the World Cup and has picked up on this trend by compiling some special packages. Marketing manager, Colleen Broadley, says: “Package prices for holidays in Mauritius are very well priced and, considering the inclusions in the price such as accommodation, airport transfers, breakfast and dinner and free land and water-sports, the value for money is exceptional. It is a long school holiday and families will really need to get away, so there are excellent rates for children.” She says Beachcomber holds allocations for extra seats and accommodation throughout the World Cup period. Many travel agents have also seen a clear trend for travel to Mauritius. Gill Speechly, travel consultant for GS Corporate Travel, says although corporate travel seems quiet during the World Cup, a number of clients are trying to escape the madness. “I have a number of clients who just want to get out of Cape Town and I have had lots of requests for quotes and a couple of bookings



10 n Wednesday March 3 2010

to Mauritius.” Doris Vlachakis, gm for Harvey World Rivonia, says she has had a lot of requests for Mauritius, as it is affordable and close by.


➔ Beachcomber Tours has a number of World Cup packages. The tour operator is offering special seven-, nine- and 12-night holidays and offering one or two nights’ free accommodation with breakfast and dinner. Clients will receive a 10% discount for early bookings and allinclusive options also apply to most resorts. ➔ Thompsons has a wide range of packages to suit all tastes and budgets: ● Self-catering at R8 199 ● Three-star hotel from R10 099 for an all-Inclusive package ● Four-star hotel for R9 389 for a half-board package (breakfast and dinner) ● Five-star hotel for R11 099 for a half-board package The above packages are per person sharing and include return flights, transfers and seven nights’ accommodation. Taxes are an additional R1 800. ➔ Naïade Holidays has launched the Mauritius Deal of the Year: ● Four-star, all-Inclusive Tamassa from R10 499pps (valid until April 30) or from R10 600pps (valid from May 1 to September 30). This special includes flights, transfers, seven nights’ accommodation, all meals, local drinks, mini-bar, snacks, and access to Kids’ and Teens’ Clubs, an underground disco, most land and water sports, a travel bag and a full-day excursion to the private island of Ile des Deux Cocos. Excludes airport taxes. ● Families wanting to travel to Tamassa can book a family standard room at R10 499 per adult and R5 899 per child (two adults and two children can be booked into the family standard room). Valid until April 30. For the period May 1 to September 30, adults pay R10 600 and kids pay R6 450. Excludes airport taxes. ● The operator is offering special seven-night Mauritius World Cup rates (five-star de-luxe Beau Rivage from R15 450, five-star Les Pavillons from R14 700, five-star Legends from R12 550) with a 35% early-booking discount. QUICK READ FOR DECISION-MAKERS


Zambia is close to home and offers some great specials. The country has quickly tapped into the rush of the World Cup and is offering great specials to the Victoria Falls. Nosipho Thusini, sales executive for Sun International Dreams, says Vic Falls is an ideal getaway for South Africans looking for a relaxing escape. “Apart from the great specials and the proximity of the Falls, June is actually one of the best times to go and admire the Victoria Falls,” says Nosipho.



➔ Sun International Dreams is offering World Cup Escape Packages to the Falls. ● The Royal Livingstone package starts from R10 655pps, excluding taxes, and is valid from May 25 to July 17. ● The Zambezi Sun World Cup Escape starts from R8 160pps, excluding taxes, and is valid from May 25 to July 17. Packages include flights, transfers, two nights’ midweek accommodation in a standard twin room, breakfast daily, three days’ travel insurance, unlimited access to the Falls, park fees, and a Dreams travel bag.

The Royal Livingstone, Zambia Photo: Stock Xchange

Zanzibar is still the best-kept secret in the Indian Ocean with its fascinating historic Stone Town and magnificent beaches. The destination offers South African tourists a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the World Cup.


➔ Thompsons Holidays is offering a seven-night half-board package to a five-star hotel in Zanzibar from R15 500pps, including flights from Johannesburg and return hotel transfers.

Libya could just be the next up-and-coming destination, according to Michell Fourie. “Libya is a new popular destination with great possibilities. The country has no crime and is very safe to travel to. The people are wonderful and very hospitable. Libya is a must for any traveller who wants something different.” The country is an archaeologist’s dream with its Roman ruins. Leptis Magna is just one and a half hours east of Tripoli and offers a spectacular sight next to the Mediterranean Sea." The country is easily accessible from South Africa since Afriqiyah Airways started operating direct flights between Tripoli and Johannesburg in September 2009.


: Stock Xchange

s in Libya Photo

Roman ruin Leptis Magna

experience an unforgettable family holiday.

Escape to Europe . . . for less than a local holiday FROM ONLY R735* PER DAY We include: 4 Hotel accommodation carefully chosen for great quality and location. 4 Porterage, baggage handling fees and gratuities. 4 Transportation by luxury coach. 4 Sightseeing with expert local guides and many express entrances. 4 Professional Tour Directors throughout your tour. 4 Breakfast daily and most dinners. 4 Restaurant reservations and all tips. 4 Stylish wallet with tour documents.

Trafalgar family experience tours

are the perfect way for families - parents, children, grandparents - to enjoy travelling together during the holidays or anytime! You can experience a myriad of memorable destinations, magical countries and enchanting cities on 10 first class family experiences across Europe and United States. Each itinerary has the right amount of inclusions appealing to all ages.

Discounts & Savings 4 Early payment discount: Book 6 months and sAvE up to 5% 4 Young Traveller discount: Age 5-17 sAvE up to 10% 4 Frequent Traveller: sAvE 5% if you have travelled with us before.

Contact us on 011 280 8400 or book online at and earn an additional 1% commission. *Terms and conditions apply. Savings and discounts vary please see our brochures for full conditions. Daily rate based on First Class London Week tour. E&OE.

part of the one stop touring shop



Wednesday March 3 2010 n 11

Far East

Travel consultant and owner of Chambers Travel, Maree Chambers, says Far East destinations, such as Thailand and Hong Kong, remain definite favourites for South African travellers, mainly because they are visa-friendly and affordable destinations. Thailand also features high in the Lonely Planet top-ten best-value destinations. Acting marketing manager of Southern Africa for Kenya Airways, Melisia Lacock, says Bangkok is a hit because it is a value-for-money destination.


➔ Kenya Airways is offering fares to Bangkok from R6 420, excluding taxes. from May 1 to June 15.

Holly Baker, a consultant at Club Travel Fourways, says: “I think clients want to get away from the traffic jams but also want to experience the fantastic opportunity that SA has, so they are looking to go away for about two weeks during the World Cup and the US seems to be the biggest enquiry at the moment.” For those wanting to visit the US in June and July, Las Vegas might be the answer. The Lonely Planet names it as a value-for-money destination in 2010. Having been hit hard by the credit crunch, it is now bending over backwards to

United States


attract travellers. Trafalgar Tours has definitely picked up on the trend for travel to the US. The tour operator has compiled a new selection of tours and is bringing out a dedicated brochure offering five European and five North American itineraries. Nicolas le Roux, gm Trafalgar Tours, says: “The family tours are ideal for travellers wanting to make the most of travelling during the World Cup period as all school holidays coincide with our regular scheduled departures.” Maree Chambers says the US is especially popular with younger travellers. “The youth I have dealt with all want to go to the US on working visas as opposed to past years when they headed for the UK.”


for w o n Book D JULY N A E N U J 2010

More Seats! More Rooms! More Mauritius!

7 nights from

R11 538 p.p.s. Add airport tax R1 853 p.p.s.

Wat Hua in Lumpung, Bangkok Photo: Stock Xchange

Turkey and Morocco

Escape to Mauritius….

Sharon Marx, gm of Insight Vacations, says there have been numerous bookings for Turkey and Morocco for this year. “Turkey has proved very popular with Insight, as the destination is very cost effective and at the same time exposes a unique experience that encompasses natural wonders, ancient ruins and the Grand Bazaar, which is in itself an experience not to be missed.” Turkey and Morocco are also predicted globally to be strong destinations for 2010 as investment in luxury hotels and infrastructure, such as more efficient airports, attract travellers looking for high standards at lower costs. Added to that, Istanbul has been named European City of Culture for 2010.

� 30 set departures to choose from � Eight top resorts � Free night specials � Early Bird discount � Food & Beverage vouchers � Child(ren) stay free when sharing with parents

Rates available for all Beachcomber Hotels All rates are per person sharing inclusive of: � Return Air Mauritius set departures ex Johannesburg � Return airport transfers � Breakfast and dinner for all hotels except for Shandrani where guests are accommodated on the Serenity Plus all inclusive package (see brochure for inclusions) � Land & water sports as per 2010 brochure


Strict terms and conditions apply to all packages and specials.

Indian Ocean Island Lifestyle For Reservations call Beachcomber on 0800 500 800


12 n Wednesday March 3 2010

➔ Insight Vacations is offering a 15-day tour of Turkey, Treasures of Turkey, from R12 550. The tour takes visitors to Istanbul, Bursa, Ankara, Cappadocia, Konya, Antalya, Pamukkale, Kusadasi, Izmir and Canakkale. ● Insight is also offering a nine-day tour of Morocco from R11 425 taking visitors to Casablanca, Fez, Erfoud, Ouarzazate and Marrakesh. QUICK READ FOR DECISION-MAKERS

Many people are looking to escape to Europe and June and July are ideal months as it is the high summer period. Kelly Jackson says she saw a huge rush for bookings at the end of 2009 for travel in June and July 2010. “We have also noticed that, due to the extended holidays, people are opting to take slightly longer tours than they would have done in the past.” Flights don’t seem to be a major problem for travel to Europe. Kelly says although flights seem to be more expensive than last year, people are clearly willing to pay. Nicolas le Roux also claims higher airfares are not deterring travellers going to Europe: “From our experience, clients are still finding availability and reasonable airfares considering SA is hosting a world event.” To make travel during the World Cup affordable, Trafalgar Tours has themed a campaign, ‘Europe… for less than a local holiday’. It is based around costing a local holiday per day (especially during World Cup months) versus Trafalgar’s daily rate in Europe. For under R1 000 Trafalgar includes accommodation, breakfast, selected dinners, sightseeing, transportation, all tips and the services of a tour director. Popular destinations for 2010 are Eastern Europe, Greece and Italy. Kelly says: “Greece seems to be a hot favourite this year. We have also seen an increase in demand for Eastern Europe – people wishing to veer off the less-travelled path.” The fascination of less-explored destinations is one of the main reasons Sharon gives to explain the popularity of Eastern Europe. Nicolas says the multi-destination tours are very popular. In the same trend of seeing numerous destinations in one holiday, cruising is starting to gain even more popularity. Maree Chambers says: “For the first time in two years, I am beginning to sell cruising again.”


A summer sunset in Prague, Czech Republic Photo: istock photo


➔ Insight Vacations is offering several European tours at reduced prices: ● The Bohemian, a nine-day Eastern Europe tour starts from R14 950. The tour takes travellers to Vienna, Budapest, Bratislavia and Prague. ● Best of Italy, a 10-day tour, starts from R19 550 and takes visitors to Rome, Assisi, Venice, Tuscany and Sorrento. Insight Vacations is also offering an early payment discount (six months in advance) of 5% for all European itineraries. ➔ Uniworld is offering a twofor-one special on selected European cruises for travel from May to the end of July. ➔ Contiki is offering various deals to Europe that, it says,

are cheaper than a local holiday: ● A 21-day camping trip departing on June 16 at R695 per day. ● A 10-day European Horizon tour departing June 15 for R925 per day. ● A nine-day European Magic departing June 20 from R1 248 per day offers travellers a bit more comfort with hotel stays. ● Corfu Village Hotel starts at a rate of R895pps bed and breakfast for three nights. All the Contiki tours include accommodation, breakfast, 60% of dinners, transport and sightseeing. ➔ Trafalgar Tours is offering Spanish Family Experience tours. ● The nine-day Spanish Salsa starts from R13 500pps with

young travellers between five and 17 years receiving a discount of up to R1 300. Some of the highlights of this family experience include Toledo, Madrid, Puerto Lapice, Cordoba, Seville, Granada, Valencia, Pensacola and Barcelona. The tour includes accommodation with quad or triple rooms available on request, transport, a multilingual tour director who is experienced in travelling with children, sightseeing, breakfast daily, some other meals and airport transfers. Departures are between July 3 and August 14. ● Trafalgar is also offering a 12-day European Experience where travellers will visit six European countries from R15 575.

Great Savings & Discounts with Insight Vacations plus NO surcharges for high season travel! See PAGE 18

aS alwayS we haVe faNTaSTIc SaVINGS aND DIScOuNTS aVaIlable: • Early Payment Discount – SaVe up to 10%* • Frequent Traveller Discount – SaVe 5%* • Young Traveller Discount – SaVe up to 10%* • Friends & Family Discount – SaVe 5%*

Take TwO TOurS & SaVe 5% we’ve assembled 20 tour combinations that fit perfectly together to create an ideal extended holiday. with our second tour discount your passengers can SaVe 5%*. See page 20 for suggested tour combinations

cOMe OVer TO uS... If your client has travelled with one of our sister companies and would like to experience and Insight Vacations tour, we welcome them and offer a 5% SaVING on the land portion of their tour.

for more information call us on (011) 280 8400 TNW3837SD


*Conditions apply Wednesday March 3 2010 n 13

Quirky travel trends for 2010 Budget travel


t may not be very appealing, but travelling on a budget is a reality for 2010. According to Scene Advisor, travellers will look more for benefits such as free nights on a multiple-night stay, gift cards, spa credits, and complimentary dining. In Malaysia, a new hotel chain, Tune Hotel, is offering rooms for $0,20 a night as part of a travel package. The rooms come with a basic bed, ceiling fan and a shower. For luxuries such as towels, guests pay a supplement. Tony Fernandes, ceo of Tune Hotels, says there are plans for 150 hotels worldwide by 2012, with Australia and the UK already in their sights. South Africans are also travelling on a budget. Maree Chambers says often price is the deciding factor for South Africans when choosing a holiday destination. “It’s the love of travel that motivates South Africans rather than the star rating. As long as accommodation is clean and in a fairly good location and the price is good, we will go for it.” Michell Fourie confirms this trend saying people are choosing more carefully and more price consciously. “People were holding out in 2009 to see what would happen with the recession but fortunately things have changed positively already in


14 n Wednesday March 3 2010

January 2010 so we can see people planning trips more cleverly, going for the best price options.”

Golf tourism in Asia

According to the World Travel Trends Report released in January, there will be a rise of golf tourism in Asia. The report states that the rising standard of living across Asia combined with the desire of emerging Asian destinations to develop tourism infrastructure is fuelling the golf tourism trend. These countries have even compiled the Southeast Asian Golf Trail that combines top-class courses across Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia.

Eco travel, voluntourism

Eco travel has been a longstanding trend but it’s not ready to disappear just yet. People will soon be able to arrange a trip that will have them flying on a fuel-efficient aircraft to a self-sustaining villa running on solar power. Linked to eco-travel is a new trend dubbed ‘voluntourism’ that is likely to rev up Africa’s tourism industry. According to Rhino Africa, voluntourism is a concept where travellers pay for the chance to work on animal or nature conservation projects or schemes, such as building houses or teaching children in impoverished communities. The new travelling class

of 2009 seems to be demanding unique value propositions that are geared towards meaningful activities. Picking up on this trend, Trafalgar has recently launched the ‘Be My Guest’ authentic dining experiences. Nicolas le Roux, says: “There has been a shift of interest. Travellers want to experience the culture in more detail and depth. This is the reason why we have introduced the Be My Guest concept.” Because some of the most authentic experiences centre around food and family, Trafalgar has decided to include an invitation into either a local family’s home or a genuine local dining location into their tours.

Women only

The Middle East is high on the list of top destinations for 2010 with even Iraq trying hard to attract tourists. To make these destinations more appealing to westerners, Saudi Arabia has introduced the first womenonly hotel, Luthan Hotel and Spa. In destinations such as these, women-only concepts are likely to appeal to Middle-Eastern women and westerners who want the additional reassurance, the World Travel Market Global Trends Report, in association with Euromonitor International, reveals.

Travel on a budget in 2010! Photo: Stock Xchange

What to do with the kids? DO your clients feel the June/ July school holidays are going to be too long and are not sure what to do with their children during the World Cup? An option to consider is sending them on a local camp... ● Sugar Bay Resort is located on a private resort on the KZN North Coast. It is a luxury holiday resort for children and teens from seven to 17 years and is based on the Americanstyle summer camp concept. Transport from Sandton can be arranged. Camps during the World Cup are on the following dates: June 13-20; June 20-27; June27-July 4; July 4-11 and July 11-18. Prices start from R4 275 per child. ● BBK Trails is offering Adventure Pony Camps. Camps run from June 13-20; June 20-27; and July4-11. The camp is just outside Waterval Boven, Mpumalanga. Transportation

from Johannesburg or Pretoria is included. BBK Trails takes kids from nine to 12 years and prices start from R1 400. ● Inkwenkwezi Camps run adventure holiday camps for children and teens as well as teens’ expeditions. Each holiday the camp is run at a different venue so that children get the opportunity to travel around South Africa. Camps take place in the Magaliesberg, Mpumulanga, Limpopo and the Drakensberg. ● Happy Acres in Magaliesberg is offering holiday camps for children between seven and 14 years from R990 per week. Counsellors provide stimulating activities for different age groups and ensure that campers of all ages are well cared for and entertained. Camps during the World Cup are held from June 19-26 and from June 26 to July 3.



What’s happening in the rest of the world in June and July? Greece – Epidaurus Festival

musical events. Now in its 16th year, it brings together performers from every corner of the planet for 10 days of musical and artistic excellence. It honours all the world’s spiritual traditions and crosses musical boundaries. The festival runs from June 4-12.

Thailand – Tourism Festival

Germany – The Oberammergau Passion Play

The ancient theatre of Epidaurus welcomes a festival of classical and some modern drama performances every summer during the months of July and August. This is one of Greece’s top events, which attracts thousands of visitors every year. The Thailand Tourism Festival is billed as the country’s largest travel and tourism showcase event that includes a vast range of activities to promote the preservation of Thai culture, traditions and local way of life. Spectacular stage performances and live demonstrations of local arts and crafts add a colourful festive feel to the events.


International Istanbul Music Festival

One of the most prominent events on the city’s cultural calendar and one of the foremost musical events in Europe, the International Istanbul Music Festival is a summer extravaganza of opera and ballet, as well as classical and traditional music. Concerts are held during June in various locations, including some of the historic buildings in Istanbul.

Morocco – Fez Sacred Music Festival

The World Sacred Music Festival of Fez is widely acclaimed as one of the world’s greatest

The Oberammergau Passion Play is performed on an open-air stage from May 15 to October 3. Nicolas le Roux says Trafalgar has seen a good demand for special-interest groups, such as those travelling to the Oberammergau Passion Play, which is only performed every 10 years. “We have a great selection of tours visiting the Bavarian village and have first-class seating available.”

USA – 4th of July and Gay Pride

Washington DC is one of the most exciting places to be to celebrate the nation’s birthday. The parade showcases more then 100 units stepping out at noon along Constitution Avenue. When that’s over, popular music groups entertain from mid-afternoon until the fireworks. The Gay Pride Parade will be held on June 27 in New York. Originating in New York City, the Gay Pride Parade is just one of many events that go on in New York during Gay Pride Week.

TERMS: All rates are per adult sharing and include return flights ex-JNB, return airport/hotel transfers, 7 nights accommodation, dinner and breakfast daily unless specified otherwise, travel bag or wallet PLUS FREE full day excursion to the private island of Ile des Deux Cocos (incl transfers, Mauritian barbeque lunch and local drinks). Rates exclude airport departure taxes of about R1 800. 21-day advance purchase may apply.


The Fez Sacred Music Festival in Morocco runs from June 4 to 12 Photo: Stock Xchange


Wednesday March 3 2010 n 15

NEWS No new marketing body for W Cape Hilka Birns


FFORTS to develop a sustainable marketing solution for Cape Town and the Western Cape will not result in the establishment of another new organisation, nor may they be concluded before the advent of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, says finance, economic development and tourism MEC, Alan Winde. Alan told TNW that ongoing talks between representatives of Cape Town Routes Unlimited and Cape Town Tourism, were focusing on understanding where duplication was happening at national, provincial and local level and how to market the city better. “The next phase is to talk

to the regions about how we can operate better between national, provincial and local government levels. It’s important that we do have the regions on board. After that, we need to look at what changes need to be made, for example legislation. But there is not going to be a new organisation,” says Alan Tourism marketing in the W Cape has been in a state of flux since the late 90s when Captour was disbanded and the Western Cape Tourism Act ushered in a W Cape Tourism Board, a Cape Metropolitan Tourism organisation and several local tourism bureaus, one of them being Cape Town Tourism. This turned out to be too fragmented and resulted in

Cape Town Routes Unlimited, funded jointly by the province and the city. CTT, meanwhile, was restructured as a voluntary industry association in 2004. Political squabbling between what was then an ANC-led province and an opposition DA-led city in 2008 resulted in the city withdrawing its 50% funding from CTRU and instead mandating industry association, CTT, to do its marketing. When the DA won the province in the last general election, Alan declared it his top priority to unify tourism marketing and spending in the province and to find a sustainable solution that would withstand future changes in political leadership. ■


A brief look at this week's hotel news

Boutique guesthouse opens in Paternoster

A new five-star boutique guesthouse, Abalone House, opened in Paternoster on the Cape west coast last month. The property features 10 suites designed around a central courtyard. Eight of the rooms have sea views and many have outdoor relaxation areas. The suites have underfloor heating in the bedroom and bathroom, heated towel rails and wall heaters for winter. All suites are air-conditioned, have flat-screen televisions, cappuccino/ espresso machines, mini-bars, Ipod docking stations, CD and DVD players and a digital weather forecast station. The extensive book and DVD libraries are also available for the enjoyment of guests, and all suites also have built-in laptop safes. Other amenities include a rooftop Jacuzzi with a sea view, a swimming pool, bar, boardroom, restaurant, wireless Internet connectivity and business centre.

Three Cities launches 2010 website

THREE Cities has announced the launch of a new website, highlighting the ‘in hot spots – close to the action’ – establishments with a variety of specialised packages and entertainment on offer. The website features luxurious and well-appointed hotels, resorts and game lodges, situated close to each regional stadium. The site also offers quick links to 2010 accommodation in Durban, Mpumalanga and Cape Town; restaurant and dining venues, bars and pubs; experiencing Africa with golf and spa venues, wildlife safaris at Victoria Falls and Chobe; things to do and local attractions. Visitors can also sign up to receive e-newsletters, make a quick booking, take advantage of specials, check out where to go, what to do and where all the action will be.

Major global expansion for Starwood


STARWOOD Hotels and Resorts has announced that its Sheraton Hotels and Resorts brand will increase its worldwide footprint through a strategic expansion that will add approximately 50 new hotels and over 20 000 rooms to the brand over the next three years. Starwood and its partners are investing more than US$4bn (R31bn) in new hotel openings across four continents. Beginning this year, the brand will open around 50 hotels over three years in 15 countries including the US, Colombia, India, Russia, Slovakia, Taiwan and Vietnam. The group will nearly double its footprint in China with the addition of 28 new properties, including the Sheraton Shanghai Hong Kou Hotel, Sheraton Qingdao and Sheraton Huadu Resort. The brand will also add 10 new resorts to its portfolio, expand its footprint in New York with new properties in Brooklyn and Tribeca and open several new convention hotels.

Compassionate Emergency Visit

Be astonished... The only daily non-stop flights to Cairo with easy connection to many Middle Eastern and European cities. For more information visit: or contact our Johannesburg Office on (011) 327-0258/9 or our Cape Town Office (021) 421-7503/13


16 n Wednesday March 3 2010

If your client travels abroad and becomes sick or is injured, it can be very distressing to be stranded in a foreign hospital far from home, especially if they are travelling alone. TIC has a unique benefit whereby we will pay for a family member to come to your client to provide them with the support they need until they recover. Here is a real life example of this benefit:

and broke her pelvis in three places. "My daughter wanted me to come over to Australia, as someone had to look after her," Cheryl's mother says. "TIC booked a flight for me and we flew back together in business class. I was kept fully informed throughout the entire process. TIC even phoned to follow up regarding the booking of my flight. They were concerned about everything, the smallest detail.

Cheryl travelled to Australia for six months on a TIC Youth policy. On a visit to Hamilton Island, she fell out of a golf cart TNW3838SD


Fairytale Prague The Czech city of Prague has an air of enchantment about it with its turrets, ancient clocks and cobblestone alleyways. Natalia Thomson reports…

Discover Prague’s four distinctive districts


RGUABLY even more beautiful than Paris, Prague is an attractive stopover for culture and history buffs. Walking down the city’s narrow cobblestone roads, culture buffs will revel in the abundant sights of baroque and renaissance architecture. Visitors will stumble into tiny alleyways and find brightly painted gilded townhouses with an array of interesting little shops selling handmade toys, Bohemian crystal, souvenirs and fast food kiosks selling roasted pork sausages and all manner of stodgy fare. The best way to see the city is to walk through Prague’s four distinct districts: Hradcany, Malá Strana (Little Quarter) Stare Mesto (Old Town) and Josefov (Jewish Quarter).

Malá Strana

Malá Strana was founded in 1257 on the slopes below Prague Castle, built in the 9th century. Although it could take as much as half a day to explore the complex properly, the main highlights include the magnificent St Vitus Cathedral, whose foundation stone was laid in 1344 by emperor Charles IV; the Old Royal Palace, one of the oldest parts of the castle dating back to 1135; and the Basilica of St George, founded in the 10th century and regarded as the best preserved Romanesque church in Prague. Just a short walk from Prague Castle is Petrín Hill, the highest of the city’s hills at 318m and arguably where visitors will enjoy the best views of Prague. Although visitors can walk up the hill (the walk is not too strenuous and local families and couples do it often), suggest a trip up the funicular railway (a metro ticket will give access to the funicular) to the summit where they will find Petri Tower offering sweeping views of Prague. Other highlights on the hill include the Štefánik Observatory, a 60m-high observation tower built in the style of the eiffel Tower, the Mirror Maze and the Hunger Wall, which was built by the city’s poor in return for food in the 14th century.

Prague Jewish Quarter (Josefov)

The Jewish Quarter, or Josefov as it is called locally, is located on the same side of the Vltava River as Old Town (Staré Mesto) and contains the remains of the city’s former Jewish ghetto. This district is the site of europe’s oldest surviving Jewish cemetery (Starý židovský hrbitov) established in 1478. Some 100 000 people are thought to be buried here, the last one in 1787. Founded in 1479, Pinkas Synagogue now serves as a memorial to the 77 297 Jewish Czechoslovak victims of the Nazis. There is also a collection of paintings and drawings by children held in the Terezín concentration camp during WWII. europe’s oldest working synagogue, Staronová synagóga, was built around 1270 and is hence one of Prague’s earliest Gothic buildings. The Jewish Town Hall (Židovská radnice) was built in 1586 and is the site of a clock tower with Hebrew figures and whose hands run backwards because Hebrew reads from right to left. except for the Kosher eatery, the Town Hall is closed to the public.

Staré Mesto

Old Town Square (Staromestské námestí) has been at the centre of Prague since the 10th century, acting as the city’s main market place until the beginning of the 20th century. A medieval astronomical clock (built in 1410) is located on the southern wall of the City Hall in Old Town Square and it is so popular that, on the hour, hundreds of tourists gather around it to watch the 12 apostles passing by the window above the astronomical dial. Leading off the Old Town Square towards Powder Gate is Celetná Street, a nowpedestrianised lane named after the plaited bread rolls that were first baked there in the Middle Ages. The street is the site of several architecturally and historically important houses. The 65m-high Powder Gate (Prašná brána) was started in 1475 as one of the 13 entrances to Old Town, and not finished. In 1886 it was rebuilt and today it offers great views of the city.

Connecting Old Town Square and the spectacular Charles Bridge is Charles Street (Karlova ulice), a narrow cobblestone street housing many tourist shops and lined with colourful Gothic and Renaissance houses.

Nové Mesto

New Town (Nové Mesto) was established by Charles IV in 1348. In addition to shopping boulevards and modern buildings, the area also houses Wenceslas Square (Václavské námestí), a 750m-long, 60m-wide square where several historic Czech events have taken place, most notably so the 1989 protest meetings against police brutality that led to the Velvet Revolution and the end of communism in Czechoslovakia. The National Museum stands proudly at the top of Wenceslas Square. Founded in 1818, it houses changing exhibitions as well as permanent collections devoted to archaeology, anthropology, mineralogy and natural history.

e experience age-old easter traditions at the two easter Markets in the centre of Prague with Austria Connection. ! k it Visit the colourful stalls displaying handcrafted products, Czech crystal, toys and much more and enjoy Czech food Boo specialities and Czech beer. Austria Connection is offering three nights with buffet breakfast in a three-star hotel, halfday city sightseeing tour and return airport transfer from €210pp (R2 210) valid between April 3 and 6.

Eating out… ● Beer lovers will delight in Prague’s pilsener beers, the most famous of which is Pilsener Urquell. ● Pork and dumplings are served with sweet sauce and cabbage. ● The city has numerous cellar restaurants worth a visit. Flambee, in an 11th century gothic cellar, is one of the most impressive. ● Restaurace u Rotta is famous for its traditional Czech cuisine. Klub Architektu is located on namesti Betlemske and is located underground in a series of vaulted cellars. ● Suggest novometsky Pivovar close to w wenceslas Square. It’s a traditional Czech restaurant, pub and micro-brewery. ● Kolkovna is just outside the centre of town but is worth a visit for its hearty Czech food such as duck, sausage, dumplings and beers. ● A visit to one of the city’s cafés (kavarmy) for tea and cake is a must! Café Slavia with its Art Deco interior is located across from the national Theatre and is a great spot for views of Prague Castle.

Fast facts Currency: Czech crown CZK1 = R0,40 Time zone: GMT + 1 (winter)/GMT + 2 (summer) Language: From my experience, most Czech people (including tourist representatives) don’t speak english very well. Getting there: Ruzyni (the airport) is located about 20km north-west of the city centre. Travellers can take a taxi to the centre of town although this will cost upwards of R700, or they can take the bus (no 119 or 254) from the airport to Dejvická (metro station) where they can catch the metro to anywhere in the city. The trip takes about 45 minutes. See Getting around: Tickets for the city’s public transport system cover all trams, buses and the metro and can be bought at metro stations or newsagents. A 24-hour ticket costs CZK100 (R40) but don’t make the mistake of buying the wrong ticket (one with minimum stops) as the spot-checking ticket officers are very unforgiving and will fine transgressors on the spot. Visa: South Africans require a visa to visit the Czech Republic. QUICK READ FOR bUSIESt pEOplE

Destination Experts for Austria Central Europe Croatia Tel: 011 476 3967 TNW5091

Wednesday March 3 2010 n 17

AirHeads US increases security measures again

THE random swabbing of passengers’ hands will now be introduced at US airports as an added security measure. This will allow security officials to detect whether or not the passengers have handled explosive substances. It is not clear what substances can be detected but passengers are warned that the process could add time to their journey and they should make allowances.

TK’s new commission policy effective April 1

EFFECTIVE April 1, Turkish Airlines will offer 1,01% commission for every ticket issued by an agent. Until March 31, the airline will offer 9% commission. If a ticket is purchased at any Turkish Airlines ticketing office within South Africa, a ticket service charge of R250 will be implemented for economy and business class. The once-off ticket service charge is non-refundable and will not apply to rebooking, reissues or cancellations.

EY ups capacity to Manchester

ETIHAD Airways has announced that it will increase capacity by close to 60% on its Manchester services from June, using a two-class B777-300 instead of the two-class A330-200 aircraft it uses currently. The airline operates seven return services per week between Manchester and Abu Dhabi, with onward connections to Cape Town, Sydney, Melbourne, Bangkok and Islamabad. The capacity increase will result in an additional 2 100 seats per week on the route.

Airlink advises on ‘wet’ conditions in George

THE South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) has issued a formal notice in terms of large aircraft operated by commercial airlines and their ability to land at George airport when the runway is wet. As a result, when the runway is wet due to rain, commercial airlines will not be allowed to land at George and the airport will be closed until the runway dries out. Therefore, airlines en-route to George will have no other option but to divert to an alternate or return to their point of original departure. Airlink advises all travel agents and passengers of this limitation, which could impact passenger itineraries. The SACAA has advised that this is a temporary restriction that will remain in effect until such time that, after further testing or remedial work, the airport is again declared safe for wet operations. Should passengers on Airlink flights to George experience a diversion because of a wet runway, Airlink will provide assistance in re-accommodating the passenger on the next available flight. Airlink will not assume responsibility for land arrangements.

Award-winning team!


18 n Wednesday March 3 2010

CruiseMasters, which was awarded Costa’s annual Champion of the Sea Award for Best Incentive Sales from 2004 to 2007, is offering great discounts for early bookings on the new Costa Deliziosa from €529pps (R5 514). The ship sets sail on its Jewels of Emirates itinerary (seven nights, ex-Dubai) on March 14. After the UAE itineraries, the Costa Deliziosa will journey to northern Europe for June/July/August and then to the Mediterranean from September-November. Children under 18, sharing with parents, cruise free. Pictured here is the team (from left): Abel Nonyane, sales and marketing; Charlene Coetzee, senior cruise consultant; Peter Rhode, ceo; and cruise consultants, Aida Chen and Nhlanhla Motau. Absent is Emma Momberg, marketing and senior cruise consultant. Find CruiseMasters’ details on Travelinfo Photo: Tijana Huysamen QUICK READ FOR DECISION-MAKERS

SpecialiZed Travel perSonnel


Births, deaths, marriages, promotions – we want to know! Please fax or e-mail TNW's Jeanette Phillips, at or (011) 327 4094.

our website is updated daily! visit

Community news

n Makalali Private Game Lodge in Limpopo is making a difference to the lives of the children from Dakatari Bush School and Wildlife Orphanage. Makalali teaches the children about the

Executive Secretary

importance of conservation and looking after the environment. One of the main objectives of the programme Qatar Airways is seeking an Executive Secretary for the Country Manager South Africa. is to teach the children about the many employment The successful candidate will provide pro-active administrative and opportunities in South secretarial support, facilitate day-to-day activities of the Country Africa’s game reserves. The Manager efficiently and effectively, while promoting a high standard co-founder of the school, of corporate values through correspondence, telephone and personal contact. Michele Merrifield, says: “Opening their doors to Applicants must have a minimum of 3 years work experience as explain to the children what Executive Secretary, preferably in the airline industry, with proficiency a game lodge is makes a in spoken and written English and e-business communication. tremendous difference. Every Applicants must possess good skills in business application software week the children come back (MS Office), file management and independent routine office administration. with new hopes to one day become a ranger, a chef, a Application closing deadline: 12 March, 2010 secretary and even a Submit applications via e-mail to: 1686 manager.” TNW rec ad:1686 2/3/10 9:38 AM Page 1 lodge TNW5111

Exciting Career Opportunities

To advertise on this page contact Natalie on 011 214 7330 or email

Wings® Corporate Travel, a rapidly expanding international corporate travel management company, has the following exciting positions available:

• Contact Centre Consultants • Marketing & Communications Consultant Career, challenge, personal growth, a unique corporate culture, lucrative company benefits and exceptional people are some of the reasons why a career at Wings® is a stunning opportunity.

Personnel with the personal touch

For more information, or to submit your CV please visit our careers page at

FINANCIAL MANAGER/ISANDO NEW BUSINESS ExECUTIVE/ Highly negotiable pacakage offered by Market Leader JOHANNESBURG for your B.Comm/equivalent and ability to lead department of 45 people! Highly competitive package, plus benefits, offered for your proven sales expertise in NATIONAL SALES MANAGER/ corporate travel!! NORTHERN SUBURBS Hands on position with total responsibility for ExECUTIVE CHEF/JOHANNESBURG Key Account Managers and Business Super opportunity with Corporate Upmarket Development Managers! Staff Restaurant!!

© 2010 Wings® Corporate Travel. All Rights Reserved. (WMC - 1686)

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Empowering Global Business™

TNW2048 TNW2048

Tel: Tracey (011) 803 6606



Promote this hotel with pride and reap phenomenal rewards! Your proven sales track record in new business dev & servicing of existing travel agents will be your ticket to success! Position to cover Pretoria / Tshwane region. To R17 000 ctc.


Tel: Wayne (021) 418 1084

Tel: Jill (031) 201 8330 See our website for a further selection of exciting vacancies!



Indian Ocean Specialist! Basic of +/- R10000 plus commission. Utilise your expertise within this progressive and dynamic agency. Only candidates with exceptionally strong knowledge of this destination should apply. Tina Intermediate Leisure Cons – Inhouse CBD Based at large prestigious inhouse operation handling all the leisure bookings. Superb facilities and excellent earning potential, working off a basic salary around R10000 plus commission. Tina

Top Intermediate Cons – Edenvale A predominantly corporate consulting opportunity with lots of bookings into East and West Africa. Candidates must have experience with these destinations and be proficient on Galileo. Very pleasant working environment! Tina

SENIOR CONSULTANT/BOKSBURG SENIOR INBOUND INCENTIVES Join well established, friendly company and work CONSUlTANT/SANDTON closer to home! Utilise your Incentive and Southern Africa experience to join Market Leader!! Please Take Note of Our New Telephone

lee botti & associates

Key Account Managers !!!! Numerous opportunities for experienced KAMs in various locations: Jhb, Pta, Cpt, Dbn and Eastern Cape. Ideally candidates should have worked with government accounts. Emphasis on the acquisition & maintenance of new, existing & targeted accounts. R16800 plus full company car & commission. Kati

Online Leisure Bookings – Fourways area Utilise your leisure consulting skills dealing with online bookings. Basic in the region of R10000 plus commission. Excellent earning potential. Tina

BRAND MANAGER/ PRODUCT DEVElOPER/SANDTON NORTHERN SUBURBS Your Tourplan experience and knowledge Person strong in Marketing invited to join of rates and commission structures will be Wholesaler! rewardedleading by upmarket Operator!!

CONTACT WENDY/KIM TEl: 011Contact 704 4909 FAx: 086 538 5889 Wendy/Kim E-MAIl: (011) 704 4909 or e-mail:

Management Accountant – Sandton R20000/R30000 depending on exp. Take responsibility for wide variety of functions including preparation of month end packs, journals, BSP, refunds plus handling daily staff queries. Candidates must have a strong bookkeeping background & people management skills. Quicktrav is essential. Kati

Airline District Sales Manager - Durban Responsible for KZN & neighboring areas. Minimum 5 years airline sales experience. New business industry development & proven track record essential. Email

• Travel Consultants

Senior Sales Manager – Sandton R600K. Candidates must have extensive sales management experience and have demonstrated success in high level negotiations with the ability to close deals. Must have a proven track record in achieving and exceeding sales results and maximizing revenue and profitability. The ability to motivate and develop people is essential. Kati

Have you got South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe covered? Bring your minimum 2 years inbound consulting to this estab French specialist in Groups, FIT’s & Incentives markets. Marvellous working environ with close knit team. R8 000 + benefits. Fluency in French highly adv.


Calling all inbound enthusiasts! Various opportunities available in FIT and Groups with prominent tour operators. If you are passionate about Southern Africa, enjoy designing enticing tailormade tours and have at least 3 years inbound experience, call us now! Competitive offers.


Pop rivet yourself to this highly effective Incentives Specialist where employees are proud to work! You’ll have travelled with Groups, have solid understanding of budgets along with being able to run the show from A-Z. Well travelled with convincing sales ability secures you a spot to travel int’l on a regular basis. R13 500 Neg





Rare opportunity to market & promote international airline! Assume responsibility for all sales activities for the KZN region, with defined sales objectives. Will suit driven, motivated person with min 5 years on-the-road sales exp in the travel industry. R15 000 – R25 000 CTC

Strong presentation skills & project planning experience required! As well as bringing on new business, person will be expected to analyse existing business & ensure increasing revenue growth. In depth knowl of Excel + prior sales exp in retail travel ess. Package highly neg.

Corporate Consultant – Randburg Intermediate to Senior consultant required by established agency. Focus is on corporate travel. Tina Outbound Incentives – Gauteng R20000 to R25000 negotiable. Deal with Blue Chip companies handling the full Account Manager portfolio. An experienced senior outbound incentives specialist is required. Kati Opportunity to get into Incentive Travel! Work closely with an Incentives Account Manager playing a supportive role and learn the ropes of this exciting specialisation. Candidates must have Amadeus and approximately 3 years travel industry experience. Based in Gauteng. Kati Assistant Accountant – Sandton Responsibilities include full cashbook, journals, ageing and debtors. Will be 2IC to the Financial Manager. R15000. Kati Creditors Clerk – Sandton Handle the full creditors function with lots of bill backs. Will also be involved with BSP refunds. Kati

Office Hrs (011) 884-9113 Website: e-mail:


n Industry stalwart, Arthur Oppenheimer, has retired after spending 13 years with Galileo Southern Africa, the final four as ceo. Arthur started his career in the travel industry in 1978 at Thomas Cook Travel, working at World Wide Travel, American Express Travel and Travel Vision before joining the technology provider.

Airline Customer & Ground Services Manager Executive position reporting directly to CEO. Must be willing to relocate within Southern Africa. MUST have Degree and minimum 10 years experience, five at executive level in Customer Sales, Passenger & Cargo Services - non negotiable. Highly negotiable executive package per experience. Email

Wednesday March 3 2010 n 19

TNW NEWS World Cup fare conditions ‘shortsighted’

Don’t train us, motivate us!

From page 1 Michelle De Wet, a consultant from Glenwood Travel in Pretoria, says agents had hoped flights would open up following the December draw but this has not happened. “If you do a fare request it gives you the cheapest fares but when you try for availability, only full economy and the very high fare classes are available.” Says Michelle: “It is very clear that the airlines are holding back their seats from the South African market. We’re telling our clients to either book and pay the high fares now and, if the price does soften, not to even look at the specials that come out, or to take the risk and wait to see if price softens and then book.” Jim believes that both international and domestic fares will soften but not across the board. “Selective ‘dog’ flights will have availability released as we get closer to the event. Late booking on specific routes and dates will increase as the teams heading toward the final stages become known.” Jonathan Gerber, md Travel Assignment Group, says it is unlikely fares will get anywhere near the usual levels, even if a big allocation is released. “A lot of corporates have already put out travel policies telling staff they will not be travelling on business over the World Cup.

Would you like to do more training to:

Excessive prices

Travel in Yolo style GAP Adventures, represented by Development Promotions, has introduced Yolo, a new trip ‘style’. Yolo, or You Only Live Once, is an affordable tour where travellers can control their costs by choosing most of their own activities and meals. Yolo tours are aimed at 18 to 39-year-olds with a 24-hour appetite for adventure. Passengers over 40 who have already confirmed their bookings prior to November 1 and with travel from April 1 onwards will be shifted to an alternative tour. Getting down and dirty are GAP sales and business development manager, Carolina de Figueiredo (left); Development Promotions reservations, Veronica Lechki; and Development Promotions marketing, Jane Rezac Photo: Tijana Huysamen

brought to you by


n Avoid ADMs 38% n Better understand the industry 22% n Offer my clients better service 32% n I do not want to do training 8% I would like to go to motivational talks! We can do training in our own offices! Maryke Ciorovich, Sure Penzance Travel

eTravel is the ITC market leader in South Africa and assists senior Travel Consultants and Travel business owners to realise their dreams. If you have ever dreamt of owning your own travel business or would like to cut costs by doing away with your IATA license and improve your current business efficiencies then you should call eTravel. We run the back office for over 190 Independent Travel Companies and specialise in making your travel business a success by offering the best commissions, overrides & a comprehensive support structure. If you have a client base, 5 years retail travel experience or already own your own business but want to make more, then contact us! You’ll be amazed at how easy it is! /

20 n Wednesday March 3 2010

“For the man in the street and for the fans, prices are excessive. A lot of people will still travel due to hosting clients, etc. but the run of the mill corporate travel will die between June 11 and July 11. The die has been cast and if you want to travel,

expect to pay an arm and a leg.” Some airlines are now starting to release lower fare classes into the market. Etihad Airways recently released all but its three lowest fare classes for sale, while Qantas has opened availability from V class upwards for departures during June and July. Other airlines deny outright that they have blocked any seats off for the World Cup. Cathay Pacific country manager, David Ryan, says the airline’s flights are “not blocked off”. “With the possible exception of a few peak days, we do not expect there to be huge problems with seat availability.”

“A fare request gives you the cheapest fares but when you try for availability, only full economy and the very high fare classes are available.” Airlink’s policy, says marketing manager, Karin Murray, is rather to book or waitlist requests it receives and revert with deposit or guarantee requirements. “Many of our flights are already full for the period so may appear to be blocked but are not. “We have received many requests for additional flights over this period and we will insert additional capacity as soon as we have ascertained aircraft availability.” Singapore Airlines marketing manager, Sally George, says lower classes will be released progressively with any change in demand. Meanwhile, area manager of South and Central Africa for Malaysia Airlines, Yusno Said, confirms that the airline

is not planning to increase fares in the next few months and no additional surcharges will apply for flights over the World Cup period. “To secure lower-class airfares we would suggest that travel agents focus on booking seats on the new flights, MH203 and MH204, departing on Tuesdays and Fridays in both directions. We are also able to assist with competitive group airfares over that period if secured well in advance.” Md southern and eastern Africa for Lufthansa German Airlines and Swiss International Air Lines, Gabriel Leupold, says the airline has introduced special fares on selected days to stimulate the market on flights with low seat loads. “Current advance booking data does not support the theory that South Africans plan to ‘escape’ during the World Cup. “We believe that travellers will adapt their schedules to depart either pre or post World Cup.” Gabriel says there could be outbound specials over the World Cup. “There are already indications that the hype is larger than the actual demand.” Jonathan says there was an initial wait-and-see approach by airlines. “I think a few airlines are now concerned they may not get the expected numbers and are now dipping their toes in to get a feel of the market.” The restrictive fare conditions and high fares, he adds, are shortsighted, overzealous and will go a long way to “damaging the reputation of South Africa as a tourist-friendly destination”. “I agree with the theory of supply and demand but this looks like the old Wild West days and the stagecoach is about to be robbed!” n

Arabella up for sale Max Marx THE Westin Grand Cape Town Arabella Quays Hotel and Arabella Western Cape Hotel and Spa are up for sale following a decision by the Arabella Hospitality Group to sell its subsidiary Arabella South Africa Holdings (ASAH). The tourism arm of the German company Schoerghuber Corporate Group, the Arabella Hospitality Group has embarked on a restructuring

process and has advised that it will focus on its core markets in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Mallorca. Riaan Gous, executive director of ASAH, told TNW the sale process of the South African interests will entail a managed bidding process administered by Deutsche Bank and is expected to be concluded within 12 months. “The disposal of ASAH will not have any material impact on the normal daily operations of the South

African businesses nor will it influence any existing contracts between the Arabella South Africa group and its clients, employees, suppliers and other stakeholders.” He said he expected both hotels would retain their Starwood affiliations under the Westin and luxury Collection brands. The Blaauwklippen winery is not affected by this decision and will remain part of the Schoerghuber family business. n


Travel News Weekly - 3 March 2010  
Travel News Weekly - 3 March 2010  

Travel news for the South African travel industry