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Things to know about travel this week

  • Akbar elected chair of IATA and starts by causing a row
  • Air Canada’s two new routes marked in Shannon and Dublin
  • Hainan’s two centre strategy was encouraged by China
  • Swissport open lounge at Cork
  • Romania hopes presidency will boost tourism beyond 2.7m

Video watch.

Airbus has launched Fly Your Ideas, which gives students worldwide the chance to work with the company to develop new aviation ideas. Find out more on watch here. Chabuddy G gives a sneak preview of the new British Airways inflight safety video which he has directed, in aid of Comic Relief watch here. With World Environment Day taking place last week, Emirates showed what’s it’s doing for the planet watch here. Etihad is all green too – watch here its focus on the world’s oceans. Aussie stars share their thoughts on travelling back to Australia with Qantas watch here. Tourism Ireland focuses on the Galway Arts Festival which every July turns the City of Tribes into a festival party with literature, drama, theatrics and pop-up surprises watch here.

Behind the Headlines

It was only a matter of time. When the IATAcongress in Sydney chose the Michael O’Leary of the Gulf, Akbar Al Baker, as the new chair of the trade group for legacy airlines, the only question how long it would take to cause a bunfight. The answer was minutes, until he told Bloomberg that a woman could not do his job because it was too stressful. His considered and interesting opinions on the role of government supported airlines were drowned in the chaos that ensued. Interestingly, IATA’s 2017 board had not a single woman member, this year there is one. See interviews with Alan JoyceCEO of Qantas who hosted the event, Pieter ElbersCEO of KLM, Christine OurmieresCEO of Flybe,Mehmet Ilker Aycichair of Turkish Airlines, Charles Mangion, Chair of Air Malta, Brian PearceIATA economist, Sebastian Mikozsof Kenyan Airways, Christopher LuxonCEO of Air New Zealand, Peter Ingram  CEO of Hawaiian Airlines, Angela Gittensof WTTC, Martin Gaussof Air Baltic, Farzaneh SharafbafiCEO of Iranian air,  Nick Careen, Didier Tappero, Alexandre de Juniac’s welcome to IATA , Alexandre de Juniacon the state of the industry and, the man of the moment, Akbar Al BakerCEO of Qatar. Picture shows Alexandre de Juniac at the congress in Sydney. See more pictures hereor connect with the album on Facebook.

Royal Caribbean’s 26-year dominance of the Irish cruise trade came to an end in 2017 when MSC sold 2,000 more packages than Royal Caribbean. MSC chair Pierfrancesco Vago said MDS was the cruise market leader in Ireland, as well as Spain, Portugal, Italy and Austria. MSC hosted eight key travel trade at their naming ceremony for MSC Seaview in Genoa. Antonio Paradiso says Irish guests appreciate the new ships and the new ships drive volumes and said Seaview is the most sold ship on  the Irish market this year.  They are also considering basing a ship in  Ireland, joining the initiative of Celebrity and Princess but “will do it in our own way.” MSC have eleven more ships on the way and have just boosted their Irish team to three. Watch here interview with Antonia Paradiso. And, yes, Travel Extrawas first in the pool. Watch here. Picture shows Antonio Paraidso and Rebecca Kelly on board Seaview. See more pictures hereor connect with the album on Facebook.

New Brunswick’s finest, the Canadian ambassador to Ireland Kevin Vickers, hosted 28 key trade and media at his residence in Ranelagh to mark the Air Canada Dublin Montreal flights which commenced last weekend. Visitor numbers from Canada to Ireland have increased from 87k to 258k in the past five years as services and frequency grew, membership the Canadian Irish business association has grown from 35 to 95, and trade links have grown from €2.3bn to €3bn. Watch herespeeches by Stephen Gerrard (not THAT one), Bláithín O’Donnell and Kevin Vickers on a sun-soaked evening to prove the adage that an outdoor event in Ireland should always be scheduled on the day that exams start. Picture shows John Spollen of Cassidy Travel President of the ITAA and Blaithin O’Donnell of Air Canada,. See more pictures hereor connect with the album on Facebook.

A group of Irish travel agents joined Air Canada on their inaugural to sample the delights of Quebec. Picture shows Paddy Dunne of American Holidays, Michele Anderson of Sunway and Sharon Harney of Cassidy Travel ziplining at Trembant. See more pictures hereor connect with the album on Facebook.

Ryan Zhang of Hainan hosted media at an event in Dublin this week.  Watch hereinterview with Mr Zhang where he explains that 80pc of the passenger traffic will be inbound to Europe form China and the two centre Dublin and Edinburgh pattern was chosen to suit Chinese tour operators. Signs in Mandarin and hot water stations have been installed in Dublin Airportin anticipation of direct services beginning last weekend and next week. Picture shows Paul O’Kane, Jon Woolf, Ryan Zhang and Siobhan O’Donnell.

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Romania’s EU Presidency in January to Jun e 2018 will feature a summit meeting in picturesque Sibiu, 17 summit meetings (the average is 12), and 300 separate events they hope will boost tourism to all five of their historic provinces beyond the current intake of 2.7m. A group of key travel and political writers were hosted in Bucharest and the Danube Delta in advance of the presidency. At a briefing for invited journalists, European affairs minister Victor Negrescucalled for funding of Danube and other EU regions (watch here) and said Romania tis o use the EU presidency to relaunch concept of Human Dignity (watch here) involving the EU citizen in presidency (watch here), an explanation of the 300 meetings to be hosted by Romania during EU Presidency (watch here) and watch here, cohesion strategy (watch here), the case for making 2019 a year of biodiversity (watch here) and the story of the Logo for Romania 2019 (watch here). He answered questions on EU Enlargement and prospective Moldova membership of EU (watch here), on Brexit (watch here), security issues (watch here), handling of the refugee crisis (watch here) and Romania’s perspective on EU security and Immigration (watch here).Watch herethe full briefing with Victor Negrescu Watch herefull briefing by Cristina Tarteatasecretariat of tourism. Picture shows the journalists at the event. See more pictures hereor connect with the album on Facebook.

Cotton Library at St Carthage’s Cathedral is to open in Lismore for Immrama Travel Writing Festival from June 13. Dean of Lismore Paul Draperwill host tours of the library. Hong Kong based Isambard Wilkinsonwill discuss his “Travels in a Dervish Cloak” based on his time in Pakistan, Bob Jacksonwill host the literary breakfast on June 17th discussingAidan MacCarthyfrom Castletownbere (father of the geinial Adrienne, hostess at McCarthy’s Bar), the only person to have survived events marking beginning and end of World War II. John Devoytalks about his book Quondam, followed by a documentary on the Irish aid effort in 1968 Biafra Forgotten Mission. Donald Brady talks about Richard Musgrave of Tourin (1746-1818) and mountaineer Michael Whelanrecounts his journey by bicycle from Islamabad to the world’s highest border crossing on the Karakoram Highway. and +3535853803.

Travel Trade

It’s been a busy week for Alan Sparling. Caribtours has appointed his ASM Ireland as its General Sales Agent for Ireland. Meanwhile, the trade-only car hire broker Your Car Hire – which he repesents in Ireland – has launched a new website. Full story here.

Strange World

A child’s toy forced the shutdown of part of Houston Hobby Airport. The boy scout’s toy grenade was spotted in his carry-on bag at TSA screening.

A fake sickness fraudster from Manchester has been ordered to pay Jet2holidays more than £6,000. His ex-girlfriend provided video footage of him dancing to Gangnam Style by the pool when he claimed to be suffering with stomach cramps, diarrhoea and vomiting.

Food & Beverage

Seamus Coleman, Republic of Ireland football Captain, with Sophie Bracken (5) and Alex Donoghue (6) at the launch of SPAR’s Better Choices summer recipes, for creating healthy breakfasts, lunches and dinners at home, June 7, 2018


MKN Property Group and Tifco have been given planning clearance to proceed with the development of a new €40m, 178-bedroom, six-storey hotel at Portobello in Dublin,


Swissport opened Ireland’s first Aspire airport business lounge at Cork Airport. Niall MacCarthy, Managing Director, Cork Airport; Dorothy Coffey, Swissport; and Sean Weston, Global Vice-President, Aspire Lounges, are pictured at the official opening. Full story here. See more pictures here or connect to the album on Facebook. Watch the launch video here.

Aer Lingus is to restore Dublin-Edinburgh 4w in winter 2018.

Aer Lingus numbers in May are up 14pc. Ryanair passemnegr numbers were up 6pc


Ireland won Best European Destinationat the Group Travel Organiserawards for the second year running in London. Picture shows David Wood, Tourism Ireland (second left), with the award for Best European Destination; also pictured are TV presenter Matt Johnson; Ellie Fulcher, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines (sponsor); and Sarah Jeffery, organiser of The Group Travel Awards.

A survey of 1,000 people by Huawei Technologies nominated the Cliffs of Moher as the most challenging landmark to photograph in Ireland, followed by 2 Ring of Kerry, 3 Blarney Castle and Stone, 4 Giant’s Causeway, 5

Grafton Street, 6 Trinity College, 7 Killarney National Park, 8 St Stephen’s Green, 9 Rock of Cashel, 10 Powerscourt House and Gardens. It suggests 9pc of Irish 18 – 24 year olds are taking up to 400 photos during their holidays to capture the ultimate shot.

Clare hurler Peter Duggan, Allan Hamilton of Brilliant Trails, Evan and Stefan, Celtic Animator along with Katie and Darragh from Kilmurry NS pictured at the launch of Craggaunowen Education History Trail, Co Clare. Don Moloney / Press 22

Intercounty hurler Peter Duggan has launched a new visitor experience at Craggaunowen – the Living Past Experience, in Kilmurry, Co Clare. He’s pictured with Allan Hamilton of Brilliant Trails, Evan and Stefan, Celtic Animator along with Katie and Darragh from Kilmurry NS. Photo: Don Moloney/Press 22. Full story here.

Tomás Ó Criomthain’s house on Great Blasketopened to the public.

Expressway opened Route X5 new express service between Newry and Dublin Airport/Dublin City.

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Fáilte Ireland hosted 150 tourism businesses in Croke Park to win business from emerging tourism markets, with a particular emphasis on China, India and the Gulf States.

The Head Gardener at Garnish Island, Finbarr O’Sullivan, with members of a group of international media from the US, Canada, India and Europe with a combined circulation of over 13.6m who are in Ireland on a press trip, Southern Peninsulas and Islands, organised by Fáilte Ireland, in conjunction with Tourism Ireland, and promoting West Cork and Kerry. Photo:Valerie O’Sullivan

TourismNI estimated tourism income to the six counties was worth €1.056m in 2017 with 5m trips including domestic and cross border. A report claimed 40,000 jobs would be create dby the removal of APD

RTE Nationwide featured Munster Vales(watch here)

Deal Watch

Insight Vacations offer: Italian Intermezzo 8-day escorted tour, including flights, transfers,  and 7 nights’ accommodation in central locations, from €2599pps, flight cost must be paid at time of booking, depart August 12. or call 01 775 3803.

ITAA solo travel offers: Dublin via Gatwick to Albania for 8-night tour, including a 1 night stay in Durres, 2 nights in Saranda, 1 night in Gjirokastra, 1 night in Berat and 2 nights in Tirana. Accommodation in 3* and 4* hotels with breakfast daily, one lunch and three dinners, guided tours, hand luggage. An additional night’s accommodation is booked in Gatwick Airport Hotel for the return journey, from €1539pps with Travel Escapes on  Dublin to Austria, 7 nights with free times and excursions in the St Johann, Salzburgh, Hidden Lakes and Berchtesgarden areas, staying half board in the 4* Sporthotel in St Johann, from €1147pps, depart July 8 or 15 with Grogan Travel on

Dublin to Italy for 10-day escorted tour of Rome, Florence and Venice. Price, excluding flights, features single supplement saving of 40pc, Epicurean Dining of 9 buffet breakfasts and 3 dinners with wine, expert Insight Tour Director, business-class comfort coach, personal radio headset for tours, baggage handling, hotel and restaurant tips included, taxes and porterage at hotels, coach wifi, airport transfers. Also includes VIP entrance to the Vatican Museums, visit to Il Poggio in Tuscany, to learn about organic olive and grape farming before enjoying a tasting of fabulous Tuscan specialities. The package also grants access to the Renaissance Bramante Staircase, off-limits to most visitors, depart July 22 or August 12, from €3095pps with Insight Vacations on

Sunway offers: Dublin to Canada for 8-day Essence of Eastern Canada and Montreal escorted tour, includes flight ex Dublin, taxes,  return airport transfer, 7 nights on twin share basis 3 & 4* Hotels, meals and tours as per itinerary. Subject to availability and change, from €1299pps, depart September 8. Dublin to Europe for 5*  River Cruise ‘Rhine and Moselle river cruise, Includes flight ex Dublin, return port  transfers, 7 night River Cruise twin sharing an outside stateroom category D with fixed window, full board basis  with unlimited wine/beers at meals, sip and sail daily complimentary hour & daily complimentary excursions. Not included gratuities and port charges of €135pp. Subject to availability and change, from €2549pps, depart August 16. Dublin to France 7 nights all-inclusive 3* Club Med La Palmyre Atlantique, 2 adults and 2 children under 6 years from €2789, depart September 3. Dublin to Asia for Classic Vietnam’, from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, Includes flight ex Dublin, 1 x 30kg baggage pp, 9 night’s accommodation twin sharing, some meals and tours as per itinerary.  Price subject to availability and change, from €1679pp, depart September 22. Dublin to Kusadasi, 7 nights B&B 3* Esat Hotel, from €349pp, depart June 16. Dublin to Algarve, 7 nights self-catering 2*+ Bayside Apartments, from €399pp, depart June 16. Dublin to Lanzarote, 7 nights self-catering 2*+ Puertocarmen Apartments, from €429pp, depart June 16. Dublin to Menorca, 7 nights self-catering 3*  Roc Lago Apartments, from €1799 (2 Adults + 2 Children), depart June 16. Dublin to Thailand, Phuket and Elephant Hills holiday, 6 Nights B&B The Old Phuket Hotel and one night – Elephant Hills Jungle Safari – Full Board Basis, from €1239pp, depart September. Dublin to Europe for Croatia & Greece Fly Cruise, 7 nights premium all inclusive onboard Norwegian Star, from €1435pps, depart September 23. Western Mediterranean Fly Cruise, 7 nights onboard Norwegian Epic premium all inclusive, depart October 14. St Patrick’s Day Mediterranean Fly Cruise, 7 nights onboard MSC Meraviglia, from €599pp, depart March 14, 2019. Greece & Montenegro Fly Cruise, 8 nights onboard Rhapsody of the Seas and one night pre-cruise in Venice, from €925pp, depart November 16.

Topflight offers: Dublin to Bardoino, 7 nights self-catering 4* Camping Cisano & San Vito, from €469pps was €671 (2 Adults & 2 Children), depart June 16. Dublin to Riva del Garda, 7 nights B&B 3* Ambassador Suite Hotel, from €569pps was €929, depart June 16. Dublin to Malcesine, Lake Garda, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Majestic Palace, Half Board, from €799pps was €1114, depart June 16. Dublin to Lido di Jesolo, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Cambridge, from €999pps was €1210, depart July 7. Dublin to Sicily, 7 nights half board 4* ATAHotel Naxos Beach,  from €819pps was €1259, depart June 16. Dublin to Sicily, 7 nights B&B 5* Hotel Diamond, from €799pps was €1129, depart June 23. Dublin to Sorrento, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Majestic Palace, from €769pps was €1029, depart June 24.. Dublin to Sorrento, 7 nights B&B 4* Hotel Astoria, from €649pps was €979, depart June 24. Dublin to Sorrento, 7 nights B&B 4* Hotel Conca Park, from €799pps was €1249, depart June 17. Dublin to Sorrento, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Bristol, from €999pps was €1429, depart June 17. Dublin to Cattolica, Adriatic Riviera, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Madison, from €599pps was €859, depart June 15. Dublin to Cesenatico, Adriatic Riviera, 7 nights self-catering 3* Camping Cesenatico, from €369pps was €651 (2 Adults & 2 Children), depart June 15. Dublin to Tuscany countryside, 7 nights self-catering 4* Fattoria Castiglionchio, from €419pps was €699 (2 Adults & 2 Children), depart June 15. Dublin to Montecatini, Tuscany, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Manzoni,  from €799pps was €899, depart July 6., call 01 240 1700 or visit your local travel agent.

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Tour America offers: Dublin to California for 7 night California Fly/Drive, with return flights to San Francisco, home from Los Angeles, all taxes and charges, 5 days Car Hire, 3 nights in San Francisco, 1 night in Monterrey, 1 night in Santa Barbara and 2 nights in Los Angeles, from €959pp, based on 2 adults and 2 children sharing, depart November. Dublin to Florida for 8 night Florida Fly/Drive, with  return flights to Orlando, home from Miami, all taxes and charges, 5 Days Car Hire, 3 nights in Orlando, 2 nights in St. Pete/Clearwater Beach, 1 night in Fort Myers and 2 nights in Miami, from €999pps, based on 2 adults sharing, depart November. Dublin to New York, with flights and 4 nights hotel, from €499pp based on 4 sharing, depart November 22. Dublin to Orlando, flights, 7 nights at the Rosen Inn International, from €509pp based on 2 adults and 2 children sharing, depart September 13. Dublin to Las Vegas, flights, 4 nights at the Excalibur hotel, from €569pp, based on 4 sharing, depart October 12. Havana and 7 night Caribbean cruise from €1175pp, includes return flights to Havana, 1 night in Havana and 7 nights Caribbean Cruise onboard MSC Armonia, from €1175pp based on 2 adults sharing an interior cabin, depart September 14. 10 night Orlando & Caribbean cruise from €1149pp, includes return flights to Orlando, 3 nights in Orlando, 7 nights Caribbean cruise onboard Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Sea’s, car hire to transfer to/from port, from €1149pp, based on 2 adults and 2 children sharing a central park view interior cabin, depart January 31, 2019.

TUI offers: Dublin to Majorca, 7 nights B&B 3* Seasun Siurell, Sa Coma, from €619pps, depart July 31. Dublin to Majorca, 7 nights B&B 3* Casablanca Hotel, Santa Ponsa, from €659pps, depart August 3. Ireland West Airport to Majorca, 7 nights room only 4* Club Del Sol, Puerto Pollensa, from €549pps, depart July 13. Dublin to Majorca, 7 nights half board 3* Casablanca Hotel, Santa Ponsa, from €659pps, depart August 7. Cork to Majorca, 7 nights B&B 3*-plus Hotel Lagotel, Playa De Muro, from €549pps, depart August 25. Ireland West Airport to Majorca, 7 nights room only 4* Club Del Sol, Puerto Pollensa, from €549pps, depart July 13. Dublin to Tenerife, 7 nights half board 4*-plus Hotel Riu Garoe, Puerto De La Cruz, from €779pps, depart June 29. Dublin to Costa Dorada, 7 nights half board 3* Hotel Cala Font, Cap De Salou, from €589pps, depart September 7. Shannon to Lanzarote, 7 nights self-catering 2* Costa Volcan, Puerto Del Carmen, from €599pps, depart July 16. Dublin to Costa Dorada, 7 nights half board 3* Hotel Cala Font, Cap De Salou, from €519pps, depart August 31. Dublin to Costa Del Sol, 10 nights all-inclusive 3* Globales, Cortijo Blanco, San Pedro De Alcantara, from €939pps, depart September 9. Cork to Costa Del Sol, 4 nights half board 4* Hotel Angela, Fuengirola, from €769pps, depart June 27. Dublin to Corfu for 7 nights all-inclusive cruise on Marella Discovery 2 | Iconic Islands, Deck 2/3 Inside Cabin, from €1,449pps, depart August 24. Visit, Call 1850 45 35 45 or visit a TUI Store/travel agent.

Uniworld Boutique River Cruises offer: Venice and the Gems of Northern Italy solo traveller offer, including flights, airport transfers, all meals and beverages, all shore excursions and 7 nights in a Category 5 stateroom on board the River Countess, was €5274pp, now from €3375pp, flights cost must be paid at time of booking; book by June 30, depart August 19. or call 01 775 3803.

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