5 things to know about travel this week:
- Jean-François favourite for Air France job
- Uniworld to host ITAA conference on the Danube
- Petra Hedorfer expects changes to German border control experience in 2016
- Wittenberg expects 600,000 visitors for Reformation’s 500th anniversary
- Peter O’Hanlon hosts the TIGS President’s Prize
Travel Extra TV
Extraordinary footage in our video of the week. Two stand up paddle boarders in Vancouver captured the moment a humpback whale surfaced. Watch here.
- See how volunteer Darrick summons the elephants at Elephant Nature Park in Thailand. Watch here.
- Robert Downey Jr visited the Eiffel Tower for the premiere of Captain America: Civl War and puts on a bit of a light show. Watch here.
- Guinness Storehouse and Tourism Ireland teamed up to create a video of the perfect pint. Watch here.
- See Tourism NI’s promo for the Causeway Coastal Route Road Trip. Watch here.
Behind the Headlines
In the week that the news broke that Christophe Mueller is leaving Malaysian early for personal reasons, it emerged that one of the biggest jobs in aviation has no obvious candidate. The next CEO of Air France/KLM could be an internal candidate (Frédéric Gagey (CEO Air France, or Lionel Guérin, CEO of HOP) but there are others circling, Jean-François Cirelli, former CEO of Gaz de France and GDF Suez, now president of the French branch of BlackRock, and Jean-Marc Janaillac, CEO of the public transport group Transdev. Thierry Antinori, the current number two of Emirates, and Fabrice Bregier, Airbus CEO, Olivier Piou from Gemalti and Guillaume Pepy, CEO of SNCF, have all declined. French trade unions might keep an eye on Christophe.
Uniworld hosted trade and press at separate events in The Residence on Stephen’s Green on Thursday to tell agents they have extended their for three months their offer of a free river cruise to agents who book three river cruises. John Grehan (“book six and I will travel with you,” he said—he was joking, we think) reminded the trade that Uniworld was the only fully inclusive rivercruise company, “Others say they are all inclusive, but with us all drinks and gratuities are covered” (listen here). Sharon Jordan spoke about Uniworld’s worldwide programme (including the pioneering Ganges programmes that sold out within days of their launch last year) (listen here). Eilish Wallupdated guests on the Red Carnation group and reminded agents to think Red Carnation when booking London properties (listen here). Picture shows Sharon Jordan and John Grehan at the event. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
There was some reassuring news from Germany Travel Market in Magdeburg where Tourism Body CEO Petra Hedorfer said she expected changes to the border control experience in 2016 that would make things easier for travellers. She welcomed competition among low cost airlines precipitated by Ryanair’s move to grab 20pc of the German market and noted that point to point travel by low cost airlines, rather than international traffic through the major hubs, has driven much of the recent growth enjoyed by German tourism. Hier zuhoeren Petra’s reply to Eoghan Corry’s question about the impact of Ryanair expansion on German tourism. . Hier zuhoerenPetra Hedrofen’s presentation to the conference where she stresses the role played by the 2006 World Cup in moving Germany to a top five destination in world tourism. Picture shows Petra Hedorfer and Klaus Lohmann, who heads up the London office of Germany tourism looking after the Irish and British markets. Hier zuhoeren Minister Iris Gleicke opening at GTM. Hier zuhoeren Lutz Trumper, mayor of Magdeburg. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
Watch here Ralf Niebergall conducting international travel writers on an archtectural tour of Magdeburg during Germany Travel Market.
The town of Wittnberg expects about 600,000 visitors next year to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the reformation (Martin Luther ‘s 95 theses were allegedly posted on a door there on October 31 1539). Travel Extra called by on the Martin Luther trail in advance of the anniversary. Watch here.. Germany is currently celebrating the 500th anniversary of their famous pure beer laws in 1516 (water, malt, hops and yeast are the only ingredients allowed). Could the two events be related?
Watch here Julia Wilkomm conducting international travel writers on a tour of the Friedensreich Hundertwasser designed mulit-pupose building in Magdeburg city centre during Germany Travel Market.
The TIGS President’s Prize at Druids Glen was loquaciously hosted by Peter O’Hanlon. Martin Dempsey of Dempsey Travel in Navan was the men’s winner with an impressive 42 points playing off 11. Niamh Byrne of Ask Susan Travel won the ladies with 25 points. Picture shows Beatrice Cosgrove of sponsors Etihad, Miriam Skelly of Navan Travel and TIGS President Peter O’Hanlon at the event. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
Cancun in Mexico and Montego Bay in Jamaica are back on the Falcon holidays programme for 2017. Falcon/ Thomson/ TUI will also have additional flights to Costa Dorada in Spain, a new Splashworld resort in Tenerife and a range of luxurious hotels branded A La Carte. Falcon’s new-look incorporates the parent company TUI’s distinctive red smile, evidence of further integration within the brand. Falcon and Gran Canaria hosted the travel trade for a hilarious evening at Cook’s Academy on Thursday night. Picture shows Antoinette Young, Gonzalo Ceballos, Kathryn McDonnell and Leila McCabe at the event. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
Grenham Travel won the Family Business of the Year Award at the Athlone Business Awards organised by the Athlone Chamber of Commerce at the Sheraton Hotel last weekend. Picture shows Pauline Grenham, Edel Parker, Marie Grenham, John McGrath, President of Athlone Chamber, Amanda Sharkey Byrne, and Rachael Donnelly.
- SAS has signed up for Amadeus Fare Families.
- Pat Dawson of the ITAA delivered a well received talk to the Finnish travel agents on dynamic packaging and the how the landscape for the regulated industry in Ireland.
- Avalon Waterways personnel hosted the CLIA Travel Agent Advisory Council.
- Pamela Brownlee of Flyaway Travel is a finalist in the TTG travel agent awards on Monday in Birmingham.
- Other winners at the TIGS event in Druids Glen, Gents Cat 1: Clem Walshe (5) 38pts (back 9) Cat 2: Tom Coade (16) 38pts, Cat 3: Des Abbott (27) 29pts, Front 9: John Power (14) 29pts, Back 9: Conn Connolly (5) 20pts, Long Drive: Conn Connolly, Nearest Pin: Volker Lorenz, Ladies Cat 1: Nicholas Burns (12) 25pts, Cat 2: Marian Benton (35) 23pts, Front 9: Miriam Skelly 15pts, Back 9: Gillian Lowry 10pts count back, Long Drive: Nicholas Burns, Nearest Pin: Niamh Byrne.
- CarTrawler signed a partnership with Spain’s national train operator, Renfe. Picture shows CarTrawler’s Michael Cunningham and Aida Ordains.
- Lowcostbeds, Amadeus, Blue Insurance, Classic Collection, MSC and SAS trade training days: Sligo, May 10. Limerick, May 12. Cork, May 17. Waterford, May 24. Venues to follow. For more information, email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Picture shows Olivia Byrne of American Holidays and Phyllis Walters of Travel Counsellors at the Visit Florida and Aer Lingus event for the trade at the Morrison Hotel, Dublin. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
- Sabre added the option for airline tickets and ancillary products, rail and service fees through its virtual payments system.
- Airbnb expects 200 of its hosts for an event on May 7 to talk taxation, insurance, cleaning, and home design. Airbnb says the average host is 44 years old and 14pc of all hosts are retired and 43pc self-employed. Airbnb launched its “Live There” advertising campaign this week.
- AccorHotels which serves 150 million meals a year announced intent to reduce food waste by 30pc and a large part of making that happen will be the planting of vegetable gardens at some of their hotel sites.
- Radisson Red opened in Brussels.
The Euro 2016 championship will be played under a state of emergency after the French government extended their emergency powers imposed in November. Foreign Affairs minister Charlie Flanagan urged fans to register with the DFA in advance of the tournament as part of a first eleven travel tips for fans (some of them very odd indeed).
- Ireland’s overnight stays to Germany are up 9.5pc in February.
- Las Vegas’s new adrenaline attraction Speedvegas celebrated a ceremonial track opening
- Algarve Tourism Association launched new golden tees to celebrate the region’s 50th year of golf.
- Texas based TourConnect’s integration with Tourplan is ready to go live.
- Trip Advisor named the Travellers’ Choice Awards list in the best islands of the world category.
- Some interesting discussion at Queen’s University in Belfast this week where Travel Extraeditor Eoghan Corry gave a talk on the Zika Virus. One academic posed the question how many universities listen to their own experts rather than the more panic-prone government advisories in their travel advice for staff and students. You guessed the answer. So did we.
Food and Wine
Fáilte Ireland requested nominations for food companies to join its Food Tourism Development Network.
Brussels Zaventem airport will take longer than expected to get back to normal. Brussels Airlines the only operators using the airport until end June at least. Ryanair is diverting passengers through Charleroi and Aer Lingus through Amsterdam, using an A321 in place of an A320.
Routes Europe takes place in Kraków until April 26 with all the main Irish airports (but neither of the airlines) in attendance.
- Google maps technology has been extended to allow passengers view Aer Lingus business class. Business Class fully lie flat seats have been added to Aer Lingus’ Boeing 757 aircraft to match “the levels of comfort, storage and space” on the A330 fleet (except with more throne seats). The inaugural flight of the newly-fitted 757 was made in February from Shannon to Boston and four additional aircraft will be fitted with the new business class cabins by mid-May.
- China Southern signed up for Travelport Rich Content and Branding
- Air Transat announced a new premium economy Club Class.
- Donegal Airport was voted one of the world’s most scenic airport landings in a poll conducted by PrivateFly.
- Flybe selected CTC Aviation for Pilot Recruitment Roadshow in Dublin.
- Ryanair took delivery of a B737-800, serial 44732.
- There were reports this week of a near collision between and Aer Lingus aircraft and a drone at Charles de Gaulle airport.
Design features on MSC’s Seaside Class design will give more outdoor space and three walkways with glass balustrades and a glass floor will give guests the feeling that they are walking on water. The first of three ships will come into service in December 2017 and will sail year-round from Miami.
- Irish Ferries is supporting An Garda Siochana’s Chris Crossing charity boat row across the Irish Sea in air of the National Neurosurgical Centre at Beaumont Hospital.
- CLIA will host the 2016 Technical & Regulatory Forum in London.
- Silversea celebrated one year-to-go until the christening of its new flagship Silver Muse with commemorative on board all eight of Silversea’s ships around the world.
Paul Gallagher of the Irish Tourism Industry Confederation says the government tourism targets are too modest and should be revised upwards to €6.2bn by 2025 instead of €5bn. “Tourism’s strong recent growth has meant that overseas earnings from tourism have risen already to €4.2 billion per annum. As tourism leaders we can’t be satisfied with 2pc annual growth for our industry. Imagine the food or pharmaceutical or IT industry accepting a 2pc annual growth target? Why should we in tourism be any less ambitious? A figure of 4pc annual growth should be eminently achievable for tourism. This would create an additional 50,000 jobs.”
Fanad Lighthouse opens Friday next in time for the great lighthouses of Ireland festival over the May bank holiday weekend. Elsewhere guests can listen to the Singing Sistas at Clare IslandLighthouse and listen to the tales and stories of lighthouse keeping on Ballycotton island. See greatlighthouses.com.
Picture shows representatives from de Jong Intra Vakanties, together with 16 travel agents who toured Ireland as guests of Tourism Ireland.
Cavan for Walking Festival takes place over ten days, April 29 to May 8.
Enterprise Rent-A-Car opened its new city centre branch, located on Russell Street, Dublin 1 beside Croke Park.
Tourism Ireland and 14 partners will visit Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Shenzhen as part of a sales mission to grow tourism from China.
Fetch me the finest wines known to humanity. Tourism Ireland has teamed up with actor Richard E Grant and Smooth Radio in a promotion to showcase Ireland to English holidaymakers.
Cork International Choral Festival anticipates 100 events and 5,000 international singers.
John Neilly of Nephin Whiskey the only remaining master cooper in Ireland demonstrated his traditional barrel making skills at the launch of Féile na Tuaithe 2016 at the National Museum of Ireland Castlebar. Féile na Tuaithe takes place on 21-22 May 2016.
Picture shows Milwaukee festival personnel in County Clare with local tourism interests, Mary Gleeson of Old Ground Hotel, Maurice Walsh of Durty Nelly’s, Ger Dollard CEO and Patrick Boyle Executive Director Milwaukee Irish Festival, Maureen Cleary of Clare Tourism, Paul Madden Chair Clare Tourism & MD Temple Gate Hotel, Marie Slattery of Shannon Group & Míchéal Ó’Riabhaigh, Chair of Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann.
John Ducie conducts a guided walking tour of Powerscourt Gardens and the wider landscape beyond in County Wicklow on 4th of May at 11am.
Bus Éireann will provide coach travel for Irish golf clubs wishing to travel to this year’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open on May 19-22 as organisers target an attendance record for a European tour event.
Picture shows Tony Lenehan, Chairman of Kildare Failte with Derek McGrath, the CEO of the Curragh Racecourse at the Kildare foodscape forum in the Curragh.
Fáilte Ireland chief executive Shaun Quinnconfirmed that he will move on after his term of office expires later this year.
The Youth and Men’s Laser Radial world championships will take place in Dun Laoghaire this July, with 400 boats representing 40 nations participating.
A group of international media are touring the Wild Atlantic Way on a food-focussed press trip. Picture shows the group with Eithna O’Sullivan at Eithna’s By The Sea in Mullaghmore, Sligo and Antoinette Reilly of Fáilte Ireland.
Fáilte Ireland attended the IMEX Frankfurt Trade Exhibition to promote the island’s MICE products.
Eight British tour operators visited Ireland’s Ancient East this week.
US shopping channel Evine Live TV was filming in Waterford this week, their first time filming outside the States.
Journalists from Germany and Beligium visited Ireland’s EDEN award-winning sites this week, on a press trip organised by Fáilte Ireland in conjunction with Tourism Ireland. Picture shows the group with Jane Stokes of Fáilte Ireland at Sheep’s Head.
The historic town of Celbridge launched an audio guide.
Lowcostbeds offers, based on 7 nights, 2 sharing, depart June 8: 3* Parasol Gardens, Torremolinos, Costa del Sol from €26pppn B&B. 3* Bajondilla, Torremolinos, Costa del Sol from €33pppn self catering. 2* Mar a Vista, Albuferia, Algarve from €14pppn self catering. 3* Algarve Gardens, Albuferia from €19pppn. 2* Salou Pacific from €16pppn self catering. 3* Best Club Cap Salou from €25pppn B&B. Visit lowcostbeds.com.
Tourism NI offers: 2 nights &B The Cookehouse, Belfast from £70pps incl. welcome bottle of Prosecco, available until May 31, call (028) 9514 4648. 2 nights B&B Bishop’s Gate Hotel, Derry from £119pps incl. cocktail on arrival and 4-course meal on evening of choice, available until May 31, call (028) 7114 0300. 2 nights B&B Manor House Country Hotel, Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh from £129pps incl. dinner at Belleek restaurant on evening of choice and access to leisure facilities, available until May 31, call (028) 6862 2200.
Click and Go offers: 7 nights B&B 5* Real Marina Hotel and Spa, Olhao, the Algarve from €299pp incl. return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel in November.
3 nights 4* Ilunion Pio XII Hotel, Madrid from €239pp incl. return flights, airport taxes and charges, travel in June. 7 nights 4* Sands Beach Resort Apartments, Costa Teguise, Lanzarotefrom €449pp incl. return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel in September. 7 nights B&B 4* Playaluna Hotel, Roquetas de Mar, Costa de Algeria from €299pp incl. return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel in May.
4* Roquetas de Mar, Spain in May from €299pp Visit clickandgo.com or call 01 539 7777.
Sunway offers: 11 days escorted tour of Myanmar from €3,225pp (add flights for €999pp), depart September 28. 14 days decorated tour of Myanmar with Bangkok from €4,166pp (add flights fro €910pp), depart September 28. 7 nights self catering 3* Luna Miramar Apartments from €349pp, depart May 7. 7 nights self catering 4* Vila Petra Aparthotel, Albufeira from €349pp, depart May 14. 7 night self catering 4* Paraiso de Albufeira Aparthotel, Albufeira from €469pp, depart May 7. 7 nights self catering 2* Bayside Apartments, Albufeira from €499pp, depart June 17. 7 nights self catering 3* Luna Miramar Apartments, Albufeira from €649pp, depart June 17. 7 nights B&B 4* Algarve Casino Hotel, Praia da Rocha from €719pp, depart June 17. 7 nights self catering 3* Estrela do Vau Apartments, Portico from €2,016 2+2, depart July 1. 7 nights self catering 3* Dorisol Florasol Apartments, Funchal from €1,296 2+2, depart July 1. 7 nights self catering 4* Aqualuz Apartments, Lagos from €2,559 2+2, depart July 1. Visit sunway.ie or call 01 231 1800
Sunway fly/cruise offers: 13 nights Baltics cruise on board MS Zuiderdam from €1,299pp, depart May 28. 11 nights Eastern Med on board Celebrity Reflection from €1,299pp incl. classic drinks package, depart May 16. 7 nights Eastern Med cruise on board Norwegian Jade from €849pp incl. premium drinks package, depart October 16. 9 nights Med Cruise on board Royal Caribbean’s Jewel of the Seas from €959pp, depart October 18. Visit sunway.ie or call 01 231 1800.
Falcon offers: 7 nights self catering 2* Gran Amadores, Gran Canaria from €399pp, depart May 12. 7 nights all inclusive 4* Paradise Valle Taurito, Playa Taurito, Gran Canaria from €1,769 2+1, depart May 12. 7 nights B&B 2* Sinem Hotel, Marmaris, Turkey from €349pp, depart May 30. 7 nights self catering 3* Stefania Studios, Stalis, Crete from €369pp, depart May 29. 7 nights self catering 2* Rosamar, Puerto Del Carmen, Lanzarote from €449pp, depart Shannon May 30. 7 nights half board 3* More Hotel, Alcudia, Majorca from €379pp, depart Cork May 14. 14 nights all inclusive 3* Holiday Inn, Montego Bay, Jamaica from €1,189pp, depart June 12. 14 nights all inclusive 5* Grand Sirenis Resort & Spa, Riviera Maya, Mexico from €1,239pp, depart June 13. 7 nights all inclusive 4* Holiday Village Marmaris, Turkey from €1,869 2+1, from €2,549 2+2, depart May 30. 7 nights self catering 2* Deya Apartments, Santa Ponsa, Majorca form €189pp, depart Cork May 14. Visit falconholidays.ie or call 1850 45 35 45.
Thomson offers: 14 nights all inclusive 5* Sensatori Resort Mexico, Riviera Maya from €1,949pp, depart June 20. 14 nights all inclusive 4* Riu Yacatan, Playacar, Mexico from €1,459pp, depart June 13. 7 nights half board 3* Hotel Belvedere, Salou, Costa Dorada from €689pp, depart Knock May 21. 7 nights half board 3* Son Baulo Hotel, Ca’n Picafort, Majorca from €549pp, depart Cork May 17. 14 nights all inclusive 4* ClubHotel Riu Negril, Jamaica from €1,439pp, depart June 12. 7 nights full board Adriatic Explorer cruise on board Thomson Dream from €1,159pp, depart May 27. Visit thomsonholidays.ie or call 1850 45 35 45.
Royal Caribbean offers: 10 nights all inclusive Eastern Caribbean cruise on board Anthem of the Seas from €2,209pp incl. $100 on board credit and return flights, depart November 10. 7 nights For Lauderdale round-trip on board Oasis of the Seas from €1,449pp incl. return flights, depart September 17. 7 nights Mediterranean family cruise on board Harmony of the Seas from €1,069pp incl. return flights, depart May 29. Visit royalcaribbean.ie or call 1800 555 604.
Tour America is offering complimentary Disney Dining when you book a Moderate or Deluxe resort hotel by November 3, or complimentary breakfast for value resort bookings made by July 7. Offers: 7 nights B&B Disney All Star Music Resort from €1,099pp incl. transfers, 7-day ultimate ticket, depart January 6 2017. 7 nights Disney’s Caribbean Resort from €1,269pp incl. dining plan, transfers and 7-day ultimate ticket, depart January 6 2017. 7 nights Disney’s Animal Kingdom from €1,539pp incl. transfers, dining plan and ultimate ticket, depart January 6 2017.
Lowcostholidays offers: 7 nights self catering 3* Rio Apartments, Vilamoura, Algarve from €295pp, depart June 9. 7 nights self catering 3* Carlota Apartments, Puerto Rico, Gran Canaria from €359pp, depart June 7. 7 nights self catering 3* Ramada Gateway Hotel, Orlando from €650pp, depart June 9. 7 nights self catering 3* Blue Sea Cancun Plaza, Mexico from €970pp, depart June 9. 7 nights all inclusive 5* Gran Bali Hotel, Costa Blanca from €1,020 2+1, depart June 8. 7 nights all inclusive 4* Club Bellevue Apartments, Alcudia, Majorca from €1,265 2+1, depart June 8. Visit lowcostholidays.ie or call 01 485 3835.
Topflight offers: 7 nights B&B 3* Dorisol Florasol from €399pps, depart May 12. 7 nights B&B 4* Jardins d’Ajuda Suite Hotel, Funchal from €539pp, depart May 12. 7 nights B&B 4* Hotel Baia Azul, Funchal from €599pps, depart May 19. 7 nights B&B 3* Dorisol Mimosa, Funchal from €599pps, depart May 19. 7 nights B&B 3* Dorisol Mimosa, Funchal from €499pps, depart May 26. 7 nights B&B 4* Jardins d’Ajuda Suite Hotel, Funchal from €569pps, depart May 26. 7 nights B&B 5* Melia Madeira Mare, Funchal from €799pps, depart June 2. Visit topflight.ie or call 01 240 1700.
Contiki is offering 8 days Italy tour from €1,127pps incl. flights, transfers and accommodation. Book by April 26, depart May 23. Visit contiki.com or call 01 775 3803.
Insight Vacations is offering 10 days Highlights of Poland tour from €2,250pps incl. flights, transfers and accommodation. Book by May 13, depart June 10. Visit insightvacations.com or call 01 775 3803.
Uniworld Boutique River Cruises is offering an 8-day river cruise on the Rhine on board SS Antoinette from €2,491pps incl. flights, transfers, meals, beverages and shore excursions. Book by May 31, depart July 17. Visit uniworld.com or call 01 775 3803.
Cassidy Travel offers: 7 nights 3* Cafiris, Corfu from €1,739 2+1, depart June 3. 7 nights 4* Paradise Valle Taurito, Gran Canaria from €2,179 2+1, depart June 4. 7 nights 3* Revoli Playa, Gran Canaria from €1,489 2+1, depart June 9. 7 nights 3* Sunclub Apartments, Costa del Sol from €1,749 2+1, depart June 10. 7 nights 4* Club Aida, Dalaman from €1,259 2+1, depart June 13. 7 nights 3* Loulas Village, Corfu from €1,659 2+1, depart June 17. 7 nights 4* Family Life Marmari Beach, Kos from €2,179 2+1, depart June 18. 7 nights 5* Club Turban, Dalaman from €2,049 2+1, depart June 27. Visit cassidytravel.ie or call 0818 332500.
See travelextra.tv for more video.
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