25 NOVEMBER 2016 ISSUE 50
10 SHORT BREAK
PORTUGAL TO WELCOME ANANTARA’S EUROPEAN DEBUT
11 AIR FRANCE SERVING SAN JOSÉ
09 Airports 16 Travel Channels 17 Rendezvous
AUSTRIAN AIRLINES EARNINGS SOAR
TRAVEL TRADE PUBLICATIONS MANAGING EDITOR Mary Kammitsi firstname.lastname@example.org ASSISTANT EDITOR Rita Kasziba JOURNALIST Ellen Petty CONTRIBUTORS Ana Mladenovic Dominique Christou Natalie James SALES & SALES SUPPORT Maria Demetriadou Magda Christou Raluca Apostolescu DESIGN & LAYOUT Elena Stylianou WEB & BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER Savvas Kammitsis DIRECTORS Andreas Constantinides Mary Kammitsi
In the first nine months of the current financial year, Austrian Airlines generated earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of EUR84 million, marking a year-on-year increase of 38 percent from EUR61 million in 2015.
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he improvements in the Austrian carrier’s performance can be attributed to lower jet fuel costs, a positive one-off effect related to the conclusion of a long-term lease agreement with Vienna International Airport, and the enchancement of bilateral flight traffic between Germany and Austria. Referencing the expansion of the fleet, Heinz Lachinger, chief financial officer, Austrian Airlines, elaborated, “For the planned investments in our fleet and product offering we have to continue to work on our cost- and earnings structure.”
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Hospitality intelligence firm, HotStats, has identified in a new study that since 2000, the value of bookings via best available rate (BAR) has increased by more than 235 percent in UK hotels.
he shift towards BAR is significant as it implies that booking patterns are evolving from traditional channels, like locally-negotiated corporate rates. Evidence also suggests a clear migration to reservations via BAR in line with downward shifts in the economy. Explaining the results, Pablo Alonso, CEO, HotStats, said, “This is not to say that the volume of commercial demand at hotels in the regions has definitively fallen, but that it is highly likely that alternative methods are being used for business bookings.”
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Chinese Guests Wowed by Northern Ireland
ollowing an itinerary devised by Tourism Northern Ireland, the invited professionals spent time in Belfast, where they toured Titanic Belfast and Belfast Castle and also travelled along the Causeway Coastal Route. James Kenny, manager, China, Tourism Ireland, said, “Working with Chinese tour operators and travel agents is an important part of [our] annual promotional programme. The aim of this fact-finding visit was to inform and enthuse them about what Northern Ireland has to offer – so they are better equipped to advise their clients when making future travel plans.”
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Greek Deputy Minister Meets Dubai Delegates
lena Kountoura, deputy economy and tourism minister, Greece, met with key political and institutional figures of economy and tourism in Dubai. The dialogues focussed on the positive results of efforts aimed at further developing tourism relations and direct air links, thus, contributing to an anticipated increase in traffic between the destinations. In a meeting with H.E. Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri, economy minister, UAE, Kountoura reaffirmed the Mediterranean country’s commitment to foster bilateral relations in the area of tourism and confirmed Greece’s participation in Expo 2020 in Dubai.
rganised by Greece’s Ministry of Economy, Development and Tourism and the Greek National Tourism Organisation in cooperation with representatives of tour operator TUI, nine YouTube and Twitter bloggers participated in a familiarisation trip in the Mediterranean country. The tour, which was designed to extend the tourist season in Greece by promoting Greek destinations and forms of tourism through social media, hosted visitors from Finland, Germany, Sweden, Ireland and the Netherlands. The guests travelled to Rhodes, Symi, Athens and Arcadia, and participated in activities such as yachting and culinary outings in promotion of the alternative theme.
ad weather, natural disasters and strike actions cost the travel industry up to an estimated USD60 billion (EUR54 billion) annually, equating to some eight percent of global industry revenues, according to a new report on flight disruption. Written by airline IT consultancy T2RL and commissioned by Amadeus, the study entitled Shaping the Future of Airline Disruption Management found that disruption spreads virally throughout the travel ecosystem; the knock-on impact of planes and crews not arriving as intended means highly optimised networks see further cancellations and delays often from a relatively minor initial problem. Julia Sattel, global head, airline IT, Amadeus, said, “Disruption management is one of the most significant operational challenges our airline customers face. Any inroad made into this USD60 billion (EUR54 billion) a year problem will yield substantial return on investment, not to mention addressing a frustration that tops passenger satisfaction surveys year after year.”
TUI Fam Trip Proves a Success
Natural Causes Cost EUR54 Billion
A group of tour operators from southern China visited Northern Ireland as guests of Tourism Ireland, China Southern Airlines and Virgin Atlantic.
Elena Kountoura (third from left) and H.E. Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri
Multi-Million Euro Renovations for Black Watch Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ Black Watch is undergoing extensive refurbishments during a 26-day dry docking at the Blohm + Voss shipyard.
Royal Princess Makes Debut
Three Biggest Royal Caribbean Liners Cross Paths Harmony of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas
rincess Cruises has unveiled its new livery as Royal Princess made her US debut on arrival into Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at the end of October. The ship is the first to sail with the new hull design, featuring the iconic brand mark, which was added during a recent dry dock in Civitavecchia, Italy. The 3,600-passenger ship is currently cruising the Caribbean.
n preparation for the forthcoming 2017/18 season, the makeover will include 423 redesigned cabins, the installation of an interactive in-cabin TV system and renovated bathrooms. The liner’s cinema is being upgraded with the latest 3D technology and the guest service area is being enhanced to become more user-friendly. Furthermore, a number of dining outlets on Lounge Deck 6 are being converted, with the redesign of the vessel’s main restaurant, the Glentanar, as well as the rebranding of three other venues, and the bars are also being overhauled.
hat is considered to be the world’s three largest cruises liners met at sea to celebrate the arrival of Harmony of the Seas at its permanent homeport, Port Everglades in Florida. The vessel was joined by its sister ships Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, both shorter and 1,542 tonnes lighter than Harmony of the Seas, which holds the title of the world’s largest cruise ship. Each of Royal Caribbean International’s Oasisclass liners boast seven themed neighbourhoods, including a Central Park with 12,000 plants as well as thrilling offerings such as a 25m zipline, outdoor AquaTheatre and FlowRider surfing simulators.
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Portugal to Welcome Anantara’s European Debut
Anatara Vilamoura Algarve Resort
Anticipated to open in April 2017, Anatara Vilamoura Algarve Resort is set to become the luxury brand’s first address in Europe.
he 280-key property, which overlooks a golf course, will undergo a soft refurbishment as part of its rebrand. Previously operated as Tivoli Victoria, the Portuguese offering will boast a new luxury family suite category as well as a two-bedroom suite with private Jacuzzi and sundeck. As well as a wealth of new children’s facilities and services, guests will be able to enjoy a spa, swimming pools and the service of personal trainers. A number of dining options will be available offering Mediteranean, Asian and Portuguese delights in addition to a dedicated conference centre.
Radisson Blu to Enter Rostov
A Radisson Blu Hotel, Rostov-on-Don
arlson Rezidor Hotel Group and AGROCOM GROUP have announced the signing of Radisson Blu Hotel, Rostov-on-Don, strengthening the hotelier’s footprint in Russia. Scheduled to open in early 2017, the new address will have 81 rooms showcasing the new dynamic BluPrint interior design. Commenting on the upcoming property, Sergey Sapotnitsky, CEO, AGROCOM GROUP, said, “We are very proud and confident to partner with Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group as they have a broad network throughout Russia and experience in successfully operating international hotel brands in all segments. In anticipation of the World Cup [in 2018], which will come to Rostov as well, we will be ready to unveil world-class hospitality to our guests in proximity of key commercial, business, tourist and cultural sites.”
ccorHotels is acquiring a 30 percent stake in 25hours Hotels’ capital, with the objective of accelerating the global expansion of the brand. 25hours Hotels currently operates seven individual properties in Hamburg, Frankfurt, Berlin, Vienna and Zurich and a further five projects are expected to open in Zurich, Munich, Cologne, Düsseldorf and Paris in the next two years. The company has been looking to expand into other European countries for some time, and is now also targeting long-haul destinations. Sébastien Bazin, CEO, AccorHotels explained, “Through this partnership, AccorHotels is investing further in one of the fastest growing segments in the industry and enriching its offer to achieve scale in this segment.”
25hours Hotels room
AccorHotels Teams Up with 25hours Hotels
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Four Seasons at Ten Trinity Square to Open in January
ome to 100 rooms as well as 41 private residences, Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square is now accepting reservations for stays after January 26, 2017. The property will offer guests three dining options, a luxurious spa experience, state-of-the-art fitness centre and indoor pool, and event spaces that will accommodate up to 200 visitors.
Charlie Parker, general manager, Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square, said, “In this landmark of power and prestige, we plan to introduce a more intimate, personalised experience for international travellers as well as local guests.” The hotel is set to become one of London’s most prestigious venues for business meetings and conferences, product launches, social galas and weddings.
Carlson Rezidor Signs Third Romanian Project
n partnership with investors Tresor Com, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group has announced Radisson Blu Hotel, Brașov, expected to open in 2018. The new-built property will feature 105 keys, four food and beverage outlets as well as a gym, spa and meeting space. Commenting on the group’s third offering in the country, Elie Younes, chief development officer, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, noted, “The new [hotel] is another strategic addition in Eastern Europe, where we plan to add Radisson Blu in key capital cities and popular tourist destinations.” As the first international hotel brand in the city, the addition could pave the way for the future development of the local hotel market and services.
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Meliá Lebreros Returns
Wyndham Acquires Blue Chip Holidays
W Meliá Lebreros
yndham Vacation Rentals (WVR) UK has further expanded its portfolio with the addition of 1,100 cottage and luxury lodge rentals following the takeover of Blue Chip
Holidays. Commenting on the transfer, Allan Lambert, managing director, Blue Chip Holidays, noted, “Becoming part of Wyndham Worldwide will enable us to go on innovating our award-winning holiday product with all stakeholders, including our team, our guests and our home or resort owners. The acquisition brings the total number of properties managed by WVR UK to 42,000 under a range of brands such as English Country Cottages, Salcombe & Dartmouth Holiday Homes, Cumbrian Cottages, Welcome Cottages, among others.
Tribute Portfolio Debuts in Amsterdam
Marriott Encourages Start Ups
arriott International announced further expansion in Europe with the signing of The Apollo Hotel Amsterdam, A Tribute Portfolio Hotel. The 223-room property is scheduled to join Tribute Portfolio in 2017 following a major renovation, and will boast five multi-functional meeting rooms, a business centre, fitness zone and spa, and several independent culinary options. Brian Povinelli, senior vice president, Tribute Portfolio, Marriott International, said, “[It] is a significant milestone in the international roll-out of Tribute Portfolio and reflects the growing global demand for independent, high-end travel experiences. […] Amsterdam’s characteristic freespirit and open-mindedness make it a perfect fit for this indie-inspired brand.”
Southern Halt lodge
eliá Lebreros has relaunched following extensive remodelling and the addition of 47 The Level rooms, an exclusive service for discerning visitors seeking luxury. The Level boasts an open bar, pillow and aromas menu as well as an exclusive lounge, among other facilities. Each of the property’s units has been renovated, with the addition of double showers in superior rooms. The lobby has also been transformed and guests can enjoy large outdoor spaces, a swimming pool and three dining venues. Meliá Lebreros also features 2,100m2 of meeting facilities, including 14 dedicated rooms and a business centre.
arriott International is launching a unique accelerator programme in Europe to find and support tech start-ups that enhance the travel and hospitality experience. The scheme will give budding companies the chance to grow through expert guidance and the opportunity to pilot their product within the company’s portfolio of hotels.. Two start-ups will benefit from a sixweek pilot of their innovations or service in two European properties, following a pitch process. The companies will be able to use an individual hotel as a test bed while receiving publicity and support from the hotelier, as well as exposure at relevant events and introduction to industry leaders, including training and workshops.
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Decreasing Congestion at Bristol Airport Following a major overhaul of the security search area for departing passengers, Bristol Airport has unveiled plans to address congestion in arrivals.
he GBP2.3 million (EUR2.6 million) project will take the number of passport control points from the current 10 to 17 when it opens in spring 2017. These will include 10 of the latest ePassport gates which provide a safe, secure and speedy alternative to the conventional border control process. The development will also enlarge the immigration hall, allowing for the faster flow of travellers. In addition, a further GBP2.3 million (EUR2.6 million) will be invested in a new reception centre and other improvements to the parking zone.
Reducing Emissions in Scotland
dinburgh Airport has welcomed a report by the Climate Change Committee which shows that the Scottish government’s 50 percent cut to air passenger duty (ADP) can be achieved without any increase in carbon emissions. The document titled Reducing Emissions in Scotland Progress Report 2016 states that the proposed reduction in ADP would lead to a boost in flights and that any potential growth in carbon would amount to only 0.1 percent of total Scottish emissions. Gordon Dewar, CEO, Edinburgh Airport, commented, “Cutting APD gives a clear signal to Europe and to the world that Scotland is very much open for business – and this is a message that must surely be backed by everyone. New technology is helping to reduce emissions as well bring noise reductions and improve safety.”
25 NOVEMBER APRIL 2016 2016
Glasgow Joins Life Saving Campaign
emonstrating its commitment to passenger health, Glasgow Airport has joined British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) Nation of Lifesavers campaign, investing in 10 BHF Scotland Call Push Rescue CPR kits. The training apparatus, which will be distributed to various departments, will teach airport staff how to recognise signs of cardiac arrest and the correct CPR techniques which can be practiced on a portable manikin. Additionally, in order to educate as many people as possible, the equipment will be shared with the hub’s airline partners, retail outlets and suppliers as well as employees who may want to organise external sessions with friends or family.
SHORT BREAK BARCELONA
Barcelona BETWEEN 1990 AND 2013, BARCELONA’S ANNUAL VISITOR FIGURES SKYROCKETED FROM JUST 1.7 MILLION TO 7.6 MILLION, AND TODAY, TOURISM ACCOUNTS FOR SOME 14 PERCENT OF THE CITY’S ECONOMY, FUELLED BY HIGH DEMAND FROM THE MICE SECTOR.
MARY KAMMITSI WRITES
he seaside city is Spain’s industrial hub and a leading business centre in which international trade fairs and conferences are held every year. According to the International Congress & Convention Association (ICCA), in 2013, Barcelona proved to be the world’s top destination in terms of number of delegates and the fourth for international congresses. Building on this, over the past years, the city has further strengthened its credentials and climbed to the third spot in ICCA’s ranking with regards to volume of meetings. Consequently, Barcelona Convention Bureau (BCB)’s main aim is to promote the destination as an ideal choice for conferences, conventions and incentive travel as well as offering free and neutral advisory services for professionals interested in staging a function in Barcelona. The popular hotspot is positioned as one of the top cities in Europe and globally in terms of hosting international conferences, thus, every year BCB prepares a fact sheet on events held in Barcelona. According to this document – which is produced from proprietary data and research – in 2015, the city welcomed 311 congresses; 121 workshops, symposiums and courses; and 1,836 conventions and incentives. BCB maintains the view that one of the most important aspects of this niche segment is its contribution to mitigating seasonality, thereby consolidating Barcelona’s tourism model outside the peak summer months. Based on a 2015 report by Euromonitor International, in 2014 alone, the city welcomed close to 580,000 delegates, translating into over 2.17 million overnight stays. As the organisation pinpoints, Barcelona is home to a wide variety of high-quality alternatives for hosting functions, including Fira De Barcelona, hailed as the second-largest fair venue in Europe, with 3.5 million yearly visitors and 405,000m2 of floor space. The second most prominent venue is Barcelona International Convention Centre. Built in 2004, the establishment boasts a capacity to host congresses for up to 15,000 delegates with an area of 100,000m2, and likewise, located in the Upper Diagonal, Catalonia Congress Palace also offers an ideal alternative for up to 8,000 participants. The city hosts some of the most important world exhibitions and congresses in the field of food and beverage (Alimentaria), mobile technologies (Mobile World Congress), MICE industry (IBTM World), and construction (Construmat), to name a few. Part of Dolce Hotels and Resorts, since its opening in 2004, Dolce Sitges has held over 1,800 conferences and functions, with more than 128,000 complete meeting packages contracted. The property offers an innovative concept specialising in providing companies and organisations with the perfect work setting for business. Commenting on the product, Francisco José Jiménez, managing director, Dolce Sitges, indicated, “Dolce Sitges has placed itself as a destination of great interest for important associations, conferences planners or companies that look for a resort where to meet, with a comprehensive and integral service that provides a working environment to foster successful meetings.”
BARCELONA IN BRIEF Country: Spain Currency: Euro (EUR) Population: 1.6 million Calling Code: +3493 Time Zone: GMT +1:00
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Air France Serving San José
urther consolidating its presence in Central America, the airline is also strengthening its partnership with Panama’s Copa Airlines. Upon obtaining government approval, Air France customers will be able to fly to San José with two daily flights operated on a codeshare basis with Copa Airlines, as a continuation of the Paris-Charles de Gaulle – Panama City route offered by the European carrier. In this way, passengers will benefit from a single ticket for their entire trip, a wider choice of flights to Costa Rica and baggage transfer to their final destination; whilst earning miles on all codeshare itineraries.
asyJet has started two new services from Newcastle International Airport to Berlin Schoenefeld Airport and Las Palmas Airport in Gran Canaria. The airline’s newly-launched route to Berlin Schoenefeld is the only direct scheduled flight between the UK destination and the German city, significantly enhancing connections and two-way traffic between the regions. Discussing the itineraries, Ali Gayward, commercial manager, UK, easyJet, said, “Not only will they enable our northeast passengers to explore these great destinations and connect loved ones […] but they will also help to further enhance inbound tourism for Newcastle.” The two new routes are expected to carry more than 36,000 passengers in their first year alone.
25 NOVEMBER 2016
High Demand for airberlin Business Class
easyJet Links Newcastle and Berlin
Air France has launched scheduled services between Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport and San José. The carrier will operate two weekly flights from its base to Costa Rica’s capital.
ince its launch in October, airberlin guests on short- and medium-haul routes have been able to enjoy business class, which has been very well received. Around 15,000 seats in this category have already been reserved with the number growing apace. “Current booking figures show that the decision to introduce business class on our European flights as well was the correct one. In doing this, we have taken another important step towards becoming a network carrier,” said Stefan Pichler, CEO, airberlin. As a result, the company is considering expanding the service into additional rows of seats in the near future, revealed Pichler.
Wizz Air Enhances Warsaw Operations
Helsinki Airport to Welcome Aqaba Itinerary
s of June 2017, Wizz Air will connect the Polish capital with four Central and Eastern European locations; Bratislava, Bucharest, Kiev and Vilnius, as well as three popular leisure destinations, including Lyon and Nice in France and Lamezia Terme in Italy. The new offerings will bring the total number of itineraries offered by the carrier from Warsaw to 48 in 25 different countries. With the addition of new aircraft, Wizz Air’s Polish fleet will contain four Airbus A320ceos and three Airbus A321ceos. The number of base employees will increase from 220 to 256 people.
fter a break of a few years, it will be once again possible to fly directly from Helsinki Airport to Jordan’s popular Red Sea destination. Starting February 2017, Royal Wings will commence services between the locations, offering travellers the chance to explore Aqaba’s attractions, the desert of Wadi Rum as well as the historical Petra. The new route between the Finnish capital and the Middle Eastern destination will be operated once a week on Mondays.
Air Seychelles to Expand in Europe
airBaltic to Launch Riga – Odessa Route
ffective from March 26, 2017, airBaltic will operate four weekly services between the Latvian capital and Odessa. The flight from Riga to the Ukrainian destination will offer a new summer holiday alternative for travellers from the Baltics while further enhancing travel choices to the Latvian city and beyond. Commenting on the connection, Wolfgang Reuss, senior vice president, network management, airBaltic, said, “The new route will offer holiday-makers a popular city on the Black Sea cost, while the residents of Odessa will have convenient new travel options across Europe, Scandinavia and Russia.” airBaltic serves over 60 destinations from its home base in Riga. In addition to the new route, the airline also offers direct flights from Tallinn and Vilnius.
he national airline of Seychelles has announced a major fleet and network expansion. Air Seychelles will soon introduce a second Airbus A330 aircraft, and commence nonstop services to Düsseldorf as well as Durban, while its Paris service will expand from three to four flights per week. In addition to flying to Europe, the Airbus A330 will be used to increase capacity on the airline’s five-per-week regional services to Johannesburg, Mauritius and Mumbai. Roy Kinnear, CEO, Air Seychelles, said: “Air Seychelles [...] is now ready to embark on the next exciting chapter of its evolution, further enhancing air access to our archipelago and bringing more holidaymakers and business people to our shores.”
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Norwegian Connects UK with Iceland
bmi regional Partners with Sixt and Booking.com
orwegian now offers flights from Gatwick Airport to Reykjavik. The three weekly services between the UK destination and the Icelandic capital are operated by the airline’s new 186-seat aircraft which provides free in-flight Wi-Fi. Commenting on the route, Thomas Ramdahl, chief commercial officer, Norwegian, said, “Our growth in the UK continues and we are excited to offer a new direct service from London Gatwick to Iceland. A firm favourite with Brits due to its landscape and outdoor activities makes it a fantastic choice for a winter break.”
hanks to the airline’s new exclusive partnerships with car hire company, Sixt, and Booking.com, time-pressed travellers are now able to book flights, car hire and accommodation via bmiregional.com. Direct links from the website enable passengers to enjoy great value rates and special offers on a variety of vehicles with Sixt, including top of the range makes from BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz, while the range of other ground transport solutions are also available to the carrier’s passengers. From the same website, travellers can also use links to browse and book accommodation.
New Austrian Airbus Lands in Copenhagen
n additional modern Airbus A320 aircraft has been added to Austrian Airlines’ fleet. The A320 departed from Vienna and headed to Copenhagen on its inaugural flight for the national carrier. With this new inclusion, the Austrian carrier has expanded its A320 fleet from 29 to 30 aircraft. Another A320 will be put into service by the end of this year, bringing the figure to 31. Amongst others, the two new A320s will be deployed for the purpose of bilateral flight traffic between Austria and Germany. Both additional Airbus A320 were built in 2012, and are the youngest aircraft in the airline’s fleet.
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Finnair Introduces New Summer Flights
Positive Earnings for Austrian Airlines
innair has announced two new seasonal destinations, San Francisco and Alicante, for summer 2017. Flights to the US destination will be operated three times a week on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays between June 01 – September 30, 2017, while services to the Spanish city will be available four times a week from March 26, 2017 up until October 27, 2017. In addition to San Francisco and Alicante, new seasonal hotspots will also include Menorca and Ibiza, and the airline is also boosting capacity to Málaga with two extra flights per week, offering a total of 11 weekly frequencies in June and July, 2017.
WOW air Launches Service to Cork
ustrian Airlines generated earnings before interest and taxes of EUR84 million in the first nine months of the year, a year-on-year increase of 38 percent. In particular, the improvements in the airline’s performance can be attributed to lower jet fuel costs as well as a positive one-off effect related to the conclusion of a long-term lease agreement with Vienna International Airport. Furthermore, the expansion of bilateral flight traffic between Germany and Austria also had a positive impact on business. “It has been a while since Austrian Airlines was able to present comparably good result. However, this should not obscure the fact that there is still work on the cost- and earnings side ahead of us,” said Heinz Lachinger, chief financial officer, Austrian Airlines.
ue to take off in May 2017, WOW air has announced its new year-round schedule between Keflavik International Airport and Cork Airport. The route will increase the number of leisure tourist arrivals to both Iceland and southern Ireland, while providing further connectivity options through Reykjavik to eight North American destinations. Commenting on the itinerary, Niall Gibbons, CEO, Tourism Ireland noted that the organisation will work cooperatively with the airline and other travel partners to maximise the promotion of the route. Cork will be the low-cost carrier’s second Irish city, following a well-established service to Dublin.
Monarch Withdraws Sharm El Sheikh Flights
Ryanair: Double-digit Traffic Growth
onarch has indefinitely cancelled all services and holiday bookings to Sharm El Sheikh from the UK. In light of the government’s travel ban to the Egyptian airport, the carrier has terminated its winter schedules and will not include the destination in its summer 2017 programme. As Andrew Swaffield, group CEO, Monarch, explained, if the airfield reopens to UK flights in the future, the airline will assess whether to initiate new routes to the destination. In previous years, some 700,000 Britons visited the resort town annually.
ome 10.9 million passengers travelled with Ryanair in October, marking a year-on-year increase of 13 percent. The robust growth in demand pushed average load factor up by one percentage point to 95 percent while rolling annual traffic reached 114.4 million customers, a notable surge of 16 percent compared to the corresponding 12 months. Commenting on the growth, Kenny Jacobs, chief marketing officer, Ryanair, attributed the success to the carrier’s lower fares and the results of the company’s Always Getting Better customer experience programme.
25 NOVEMBER 2016
easyJet Summer Sale Begins
Liverpool Linked to North Africa
asyJet has put its spring 2017 schedule on sale with a record number of flights and routes available for passengers to book. Over 138,780 additional services are set to take off across easyJet’s network between March 26 and June 25, 2017, providing seats for more than 23.5 million passengers. Sophie Dekkers, director, UK, easyJet, said, “We are always looking to make travel as easy as possible for our passengers and our mobile app is designed to do just that. Passengers can search and book flights in a matter of seconds, and when it comes to payment, using Apple Pay is the fastest way to checkout.”
LOT Partners with Nordica
EU To Develop Space Projects
25 NOVEMBER 2016
Copernicus Sentinel-1 satellite
OT Polish Airlines has entered into a strategic partnership agreement with Estonian national airline, Nordica. The carrier intends to take up 49 percent of shares in its subsidiary, Regional Jet, which operates a fleet of modern regional planes from the Bombardier CRJ family. LOT Polish Airlines will use its designator for all connections from Tallinn, while one of the Embraer planes will be temporarily based in the capital of Estonia. At the same time, two Bombardier CRJ-900 aircraft will start performing direct flights from Warsaw for Poland’s carrier. The innovative model of cooperation is set to enable LOT Polish Airlines to strengthen its position in Central and Eastern Europe, and allow both carriers to develop further, while preserving their national identities.
yanair has launched scheduled services from Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) to the Moroccan city of Marrakech, establishing the first connection between the airfield and North Africa in recent times. Commenting on the twice-weekly flights, Mark Povell, director, air service development, LJLA, said, “[The] departure to Marrakech is the first flight from Liverpool to North Africa for some time and another new route by Ryanair from here.” Marrakech becomes the latest city to be served from Liverpool with flights now on sale to over 60 destinations across the UK and Europe.
he European Union (EU) has unveiled a new space policy, focussed on improving daily life and boosting competitiveness through the further development of three ventures, including Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS), which delivers precise navigation services to aviation, maritime and land users across Europe. EGNOS is already operational and so far 195 European airports have implemented it in landing procedures which not only reduces cost of infrastructure but ensures landing in severe weather conditions is safe, consequently avoiding delays and rerouting. The second project, Copernicus, which provides Earth observation data, can benefit a variety of industries, including aviation and maritime. Upon launch, Galileo, Europe’s global satellite navigation system will offer accurate and reliable positioning and timing data for autonomous and connected vehicles.
SAS UNVEILS PLAY MAGNUS CHESS GAME
BA HOSTS SKY HIGH BALLET
n collaboration with world chess champion, Magnus Carlsen and Play Magnus, SAS now offers passengers the chance to play the game against one of the highest-rated players through the airline’s in-flight entertainment system. Customers are able to challenge themselves at various stages, split into age groups from five to 25, representing the level that Carlsen was at that age. Players can also compete against travellers onboard all SAS flights and enjoy a biographical documentary about the Norwegian grandmaster. Furthermore, the current champion has created an introduction video for long-haul flights and six tutorials featuring tips to help users develop their skills.
Olga Marchenkova, ballet dancer, Bolshoi Theatre
n celebration of British Airways’ (BA) inaugural Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner service to Moscow, dancers from Bolshoi Ballet treated passengers to what has been hailed as the first-ever ballet in the sky. The two performers were accompanied by Welsh mezzo soprano, Katherine Jenkins who sang her version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow. Following the event, Artemy Belyakov, leading soloist, Bolshoi Theatre enthused, “We loved the creative challenge of using the new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner as our stage, and the experience was as memorable for us as it was for the audience.”
BRUSSELS AIRPORT UNVEILS CHARITY ISLANDS
n an effort to easily attract travellers’ attention, Brussels Airport Company has installed newly-designed charity collection points which have been positioned in prominent locations, including the piers and baggage reclaim hall. Tourists have the option of donating to four organisations, namely Red Cross, Unicef, World Wide Fund for Nature and SOS Kinderdorpen. Collectively the charities recieve around EUR60,000 each year from the hub’s passengers, which the airfield hopes to increase with the eye-catching islands. The airport also supports a number of local projects such as financing playground equipment or sponsoring sports shits.
e EASYJET DRIVES EMPLOYMENT
asyJet has created 37 new jobs at global customer experience and business process outsourcing company, Webhelp. There were 23 people working for Webhelp on the airline’s account on a temporary basis and the signing of a permanent contract not only secures those employees on a permanent basis but also allows the company to recruit a further 14 professionals. The Webhelp team in Rothesay will be responsible for handling email enquiries covering a full spectrum of queries one would expect an airline to deal with.
25 NOVEMBER 2016
RENDEZVOUS TRAVEL TRADE EUROPE: How do this year’s arrivals statistics for Denmark compare to previous years?
Q & A with
LIVERINO AND VESTERGAARD: For several years, tourism has experienced growth in Denmark, especially in the capital region of Copenhagen, where the number of bednights has grown 53 percent since 2009. Most of our bednights are international, with a particular growth from the UK, US and the Southern European markets, such as Italy and Spain, where new direct flight connections to Copenhagen have been launched lately. We have also noticed a remarkable growth from the Asian markets, especially China, as the number of Chinese bednights in Copenhagen has grown 240 percent since 2009. Right after China, India and Japan are the largest Asian markets for Copenhagen, and especially India has grown in the past few years.
GIUSEPPE LIVERINO & NANNA VESTERGAARD PROJECT MANAGERS, WONDERFUL COPENHAGEN
AS SCANDINAVIAN DESTINATIONS CONTINUE TO MAKE STRIDES TO DISTINGUISH THEMSELVES, GIUSEPPE LIVERINO AND NANNA VESTERGAARD, PROJECT MANAGERS, WONDERFUL COPENHAGEN, TALK ABOUT THE DANISH CAPITAL’S UNIQUE SELLING POINTS AND POSITIONING.
TRAVEL TRADE EUROPE: What are Copenhagen’s competitive advantages over other Scandinavian destinations? LIVERINO AND VESTERGAARD: Nowadays, Copenhagen is one of the leading gastronomic destinations in the world, and the capital of the new Nordic kitchen. Copenhagen is home to restaurant Noma which was ranked best restaurant in the world in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014, and the city boasts 16 Michelin star restaurants and a total of 20 Michelin stars. [...] 25 NOVEMBER 2016
Copenhagen is [also] known for the most vibrant nightlife in Scandinavia; colourful discos, cool clubs, trendy cocktail bars, charming wine bars, laid back beer bars and hip microbreweries. Denmark is very safe and has a relaxed licensing law which allows most bars to stay open until 4am each night, making Copenhagen a perfect place for going out. For decades, we have focussed on an urban planning that favours the bike as a first choice of transport. The city is constantly expanding the network of bicycle lanes and [...] tourists can rent bikes from most hotels, bike shops and electric bikes by Bycklen from docking stations all around the city. [...] Danish design, fashion and furniture are world famous and can be experienced everywhere in the city. Danish design is known for its clean, simple lines, great materials and classic creations that never go out of style [and] blend in beautifully with the old historic buildings and palaces. [...] Copenhageners are open-minded, relaxed and tolerant people, and the capital city has long been a playground for both gay Danes and tourists. [...] Copenhagen Airport is the largest airport in Scandinavia and the best gateway of Northern Europe. No airport in the region is better located, serves more destinations, welcomes more passengers or provides such a well-supported infrastructure. [...]
TRAVEL TRADE EUROPE: How important is the city’s culinary scene to Copenhagen’s overall image and positioning on the global tourism map? LIVERINO AND VESTERGAARD: Nordic gastronomy [is] one of our focus areas when we promote our destination, and in the last decade we are becoming more and more known for our food scene. We have seen a rise in culinary tourism lead by Michelin star restaurants such as Noma and Geranium but also because of events such as Copenhagen Cooking & Food Festival. Culinary tourists are still primarily coming from the European markets, but we have been noticing an increasing interest for new Nordic cuisine from all over the world. TRAVEL TRADE EUROPE: How successful is the Copenhagen Cooking & Food Festival? LIVERINO AND VESTERGAARD: Copenhagen Cooking & Food Festival gathers 80,000 locals and tourists as well as industry insiders every year. It is a festival which includes a large number of the top restaurants and food producers in Greater Copenhagen and the interest from domestic as well as foreign chefs and food producers is increasing. Although Copenhagen Cooking & Food Festival is the largest food festival in Greater Copenhagen, small festivals are popping up all the time and every week Copenhagen has a new food festival, especially during the summer.
CROSTO JOINS WITH UNWTO SUPPORTING WORLD DIABETES DAY
o mark the world diabetes day, celebrated on November 14, Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts rolled out a range of initiatives to raise awareness about the importance of healthier eating habits, better lifestyle choices and early
screening. Today, an estimated 415 million people live with diabetes and according to the International Diabetes Federation, one in 10 adults could be affected by 2040. To throw the spotlight on the condition, several properties flying the brand’s flag hosted cooking classes.
he Croatian Sustainable Tourism Observatory (CROSTO) has become a member of the World Tourism Organization’s (UNWTO) International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories (INSTO). Hosted by the Institute for Tourism in Zagreb, the observatory will be responsible for monitoring sustainable tourism in the Adriatic Croatia. “Sustainable tourism development requires adequate measurement and evidencebased decision-making. We are very pleased to welcome CROSTO to the UNWTO INSTO network. We trust it can make a key contribution to support the vision set by Croatia for the future of its tourism sector; a sector that contributes to the three pillars of sustainability: economic, social and environmental,” said Taleb Rifai, secretary general, UNWTO.
BELARUS SUPPORTS EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS
Belarusian choir performed a charity concert in Sardinia in support of the earthquake victims in central Italy. The vocal group of the Saint Nicholas of Japan Church in Minsk graced the stage at a festive service at the parish of Saint Sabbas the Sanctified in Cagliari and gave a number of concerts in different parts of the region. The main show took place at the 18th century hall of the library of the University of Cagliari at the beginning of November, where the Belarusian choir presented pieces of religious music written by Russian classical composers and contemporary Belarusian religious musicians.
S SMURFS FLY WITH BRUSSELS AIRLINES
murfs can now be found aboard Brussels Airlines flights, to surprise the growing number of children travelling with the airline, especially on routes to the US, Canada and Africa. Youngsters onboard receive a Smurf lunchbox with colouring books, memory games and finger puppets. “The Smurf is an excellent ambassador who carries the values of universality, respect and helpfulness. The Smurfs are without a doubt one of the best known Belgian brands worldwide, with hardly anyone knowing it is Belgian,” commented Anne Tricot, vice president, customer experience, Brussels Airlines.
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British Airways is gearing up for the launch of its New Orleans route
Cruise & Maritime Voyage took part in the Opportunity Thurrock Recruitment Fair at Londonâ€™s port
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German singer and TV presenter, Giovanni Zarella (left) visited Steigenberger Graf Zeppelin, Stuttgart
Halloween celebrations at The Ritz London
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Amsterdam Airport Schiphol congratulated Heathrow Airport on the British government's expansion announcement
Cruising with the Whales will grace the hull of Norwegian Cruise Lineâ€™s upcoming new build ship, which will seasonally homeport in Seattle
NEWS & EVENTS EVENTS
Glasgow Hosts Music Tourist Summit
Barcelona, Spain November 29 – December 01 www.ibtmworld.com Global incentive, business travel and meetings exhibition and conferences, organised by Reed Travel Exhibitions.
ailed as a first of its kind, The Music Tourist Summit was held in Glasgow, providing collaborative opportunities for local and international professionals from both industries. The event came after research showing that in 2015, attendance at concerts and festivals in the country reached 928,000, generating some GBP295 million (EUR332 million). The conference served as a platform for music acts, businesses and attractions. Delegates also had the chance to develop relations, hear the views of leading industry figures and partake in a Glasgow Music City Tour.
BUY TOURISM ONLINE Florence, Italy November 30 – December 01 www.buytourismonline.com Tourism and online technologies will be in the spotlight at the ninth edition of the event.
Madrid, Spain January 18 – 22, 2017 www.ifema.es Spain’s must-attend event showcasing top and up-andcoming destinations from all around the world.
EM, a buyer-meet-seller event organised by the European Tourism Association (ETOA), broke the 700-participant mark. According to Tom Jenkins, CEO, ETOA, the workshop, which was held at the new InterContinental London The O2, is unique insofar as it gathers professional buyers from all over the world who purchase accommodation, attractions and tourism services in Europe. This year, those on the selling side had prescheduled appointments with nearly 300 buyers from companies that sell Europe to every continent bar Antarctica.
InterContinental London The O2
INTERNATIONAL TOURISM TRADE FAIR (FITUR)
High Participant Numbers for GEM
Oyster Festival in Premier Hotel Aurora
ADRIA HOTEL FORUM Zagreb, Croatia February 08 – 09, 2017 www.adria-forum.eu A meeting place for leading hotel chains, owners and managers as well as other professionals working in the sector.
n honour of the beginning of a new season, Premier Hotel Aurora in Kharkiv hosted an oyster festival. The celebration, which spanned a total of two weeks at the Eastern European address, offered guests the opportunity to enjoy some of the hotel’s finest picks. The elegant and comfy Premier Hotel Aurora, erected in the historic and commercial centre of the second largest city in Ukraine, a quiet area just a few steps from the central square, welcomed visitors to partake in the event. Two unique selections were available for guests’ pleasure: the Fines de Claires Marenn-Oleron, and the Speciale Versailles.
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