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pittsbHEADLINES – AVIATION – AFLOAT – DEALWATCH – FOOD & WINE – HOTELS – INTERNATIONAL – IRELAND – STRANGE WORLD – TRAVEL TRADE

Sergio Frau of Visit Benidorm with the Cross of Benidorm and sun setting over the city, September 22 2017

 

 

Things to know about travel this week

    • Storm brewing over Ryanair decision not to use other airlines
    • So farewell then, Thomson become TUI and Falcon is passed out
    • CAR extends deadline on licensing and bonding system.
    • Riviera Travel to us Dublin Airport as gateway to the US 
    • 75pc of hotels across the Caribbean are operational 
    • Irish chef responds to request for free food 
    • Half of Irish pubs and restaurants say tourism is down
    • Dublin considers ‘city tax’ to stop price gouging.

    Travel Extra TV.

The countdown is on to the rebranding of Falcon and Thomson to Tui. Watch the TV ad, above, or find out more from them here.

USA Today shows the power of yet another hurricane – this time Maria – as planes are left flipped over in Puerto Rico. Watch here.

Touchdown? Well almost. Watch here as a Eurowings A320 makes a very late go-around at Manchester Airport in England.

Singer Aled Jones checks out Belfast with Discover Ireland. Watch here.

Behind the Headlines

Striding purposefully into a somewhat chaotic press briefing, Michael O’Leary (watch here) took on his critics head on after the decision to cancel 2pc of flights and declared  Ryanair will honour EU 261 commitments without quibble or question, ending speculation that they would try to get out of the payments by clipping extraordinary circumstances. He outlined the background to the decision to cancel flights (watch here), how cancellations raised alarm about rosters (watch here), and how when punctuality fell from 90pc to 70pc Ryanair was forced to act (watch here). Ryanair expect to re-accommodate 80pc of flight cancellation (watch here) in flights on the same day (watch here). He said Ryanair will honour EU 261 commitments “without quibble or question” (watch here), flight cancellation customers will receive email (watch here), and most flight cancellations will be on trunk routes (watch here).

O’Leary delivered an apology to customers who were unnecessarily worried (watch here), and said the airline may have to increase crewing levels (watch here) and was seeking to allocate leave in blocks of two weeks instead of four weeks (watch here). “We need 150 pilots on standby, they had 30 to 40” (watch here). He said the flight cancellations are unlikely to happen ever again (watch here), and the flight cancellation crisis is not the biggest cock up in Ryanair history (watch here), He is not calling for heads to roll over flight cancellations (watch here). There would be average of 48 cancellations per day (watch here).

He said they needed to move at weekend to avoid more flights being cancelled (watch here) and answered criticism about delays in taking the flights taken off sale (watch here) and the delay in publishing a full list of cancellations (watch here). He argued that Ryanair has 4,200 pilots and does NOT have a pilot shortage (watch here), Ryanair incentives for direct entry captains includes a 10,000 signing on fee (watch here), Ryanair has recruited pilots from Norwegian as well as losing them (watch here) and Ryanair is not concerned about share price (watch here). He did not expect the mess-up to affect the progress of AGB (watch here), declaring without a hint of irony “in Ryanair we hold up our hands when we mess up” (watch here).

Richard Moriarty of England’s CAA told Ryanair that Regulation EC261 requires Ryanair to offer passengers on cancelled flights alternative travel options, including flying with a different airline. Your statement yesterday runs contrary to our view and contradicts the assurances that we were given on this point by your legal team on a call at 10am yesterday morningI am therefore concerned that it is Ryanair’s express intention to fail to meet its obligations under Regulation EC261 and that this will give rise to significant consumer harm.” The CAA says Ryanair has since confirmed it will re-route passengers using other airlines. Ryanair flight cancelations are to be probed by Italy’s antitrust watchdog, which it says the low-cost airline could have prevented. Aviator.aero said Ryanair may be fined US$5.36m by Spain over flight cancellations. New pilots at London Stansted, Dublin, Frankfurt and Berlin have now been offered an additional €10,000 a year. IALPA has a detailed discussion of the changes in implementation of the Flight Time Limitations, which Ryanair claim triggered the crisis.

A list of cancellations over the next six weeks was published on Monday with 10 aircraft effectively removed from the programme, mostly from major bases – 2 aircraft from Stansted and one each from Barcelona, Brussels Charleroi, Dublin, Lisbon, Madrid, Milan Bergamo, Porto, and Rome Fiumicino.  While the cuts are weighted towards busy routes where Ryanair can merge flights, some cuts are on infrequent routes.  For instance, Carcassonne loses a high proportion of flights and some Polish domestic routes are going in what is said to be a local airport row.  Ryanair said 315,000 passengers were affected.  By close of business on Wed, it expected to have re-accommodated over 175,000 customers on other Ryanair flights and processed more than 63,000 flight refunds.

Employee Representative Councils at 33 Ryanair bases are reported to have rejected the airline’s bonus of ups to €12,000 and wish to put forward a simpler, more constructive “counteroffer” to address the airline’s operational problems and create a positive future. RTÉ News has seen other documents which raise the possibility of a work-to-rule by pilots, which would significantly worsen the current disruption to flights at the airline. Michael O’Leary said that if there was a blue flu amongst the pilots, the ERC wouldn’t get a meeting for 16 months and they can kiss goodbye to any increase pay or base adjustments. Ryanair issued new rosters to pilots this Friday morning. Ryanair told cabin crew based at East Midlands they must take a six week block of unpaid leave.

Last week’s crisis came at a critical time for Ryanair as it prepares for a major German expansion and has a bid in preparation for Alitalia. While Ryanair says it was merely a rostering issue that left it without enough pilots available to operate the schedule it is claimed an unexpectedly large number have left for other airlines. Norwegian which claims to have taken 140, O’Leary says less than 100, and Jet2 have opened new B737-800 bases at Stansted and Birmingham. The situation become more complex if Ryanair has been losing training and type rating examiner pilots. Ryanair’s decision not to hire in has come under scrutiny: BA ran into a cabin crew dispute, they hired in seven Qatar Airways A320s.

On separate issues he dismissed speculation that the ECJ Mons decision would affect labour contracts (watch here), said Ryanair were no longer negotiating with Norwegian (watch here) and said he expected Ryanair to be one of 10 or 12 parties making binding offers for Alitalia, which would be made by December and take six months to assess (watch here). For full press conference (watch here). He said aircraft deliveries similar to last year (watch here). Ryanbair have already taken delivery of two aircraft have five due in October and five in November. Listen here to Travel Extra’s Eoghan Corry on the flight cancellations on the RTE Sean O’Rourke show. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Visit Benidorm hosted international travel media on an alternative Benidorm press trip. Picture show Sergio ray of Visit Benidorm and Eoghan Corry editor of Travel Extra eight metres underwater. It does not get any more alternative than that. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Travel Extra identified the key trends for the ski season ahead in our October print edition, due in travel agencies soon (read here): Val d’Isere’s huge  investment over the next five years, the Magic Pass, Valais, Switzerland, snow farming, flexible ski holidays, free trains and buses in the Tirol and snow cannons at 3,000 metres for all-year-round skiers at Les Deux Alpes. The issue catches up with all the latest form the travel, hotel, aviation and cruise and ferry industries.

Club Travel has been appointed Ireland’s official travel agent for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, one of 21 from 13 nations around the world. Club Travel owner Liam Lonergan said “packages will go on sale in early 2018 with guaranteed official match tickets”. Fans can register for details on www.clubtravel.ie. Profits at Club Travel rose by 48pc to €6.58m last year and revenues increased from €117.49m to €132.8m.

Tourism Australia don’t do things by halves – with a massive Garda motorcade to hand to bring in distinguished guests from Down Under – namely Governor General Peter Cosgrove and Ambassador to Ireland Richard Andrews. The big event, held in Epic, the Irish Emigrant Museum, was to mark a milestone in Australia’s Working Holiday Maker (WHM) visa programme, launched in 1975. Rachel Gavin from Mullingar was named the 275,00th applicant and she’s heading to Oz with complimentary flights from Etihad Airways and groundwork organised by Usit. Peter Cosgrove has traced his roots back to Co Tyrone, and the affable leader caught up with old Irish Army peacekeeping buddies from the East Timor days while here. The affable Cosgrove said that the young Irish working are everywhere – and recounted the story of being recently served a camel curry in a town with just 100 inhabitants by a young Irish waiter. He’s looking forward to welcoming Irish President Michael D Higgins to Australia soon, and joked that Higgins has 234 relatives Down Under – which is probably 240 more than before he was elected. Beatrice Cosgrove may or may not be a distant relation, as Ambassador Andrews joked, but she was on hand with Shannon O’Dowd whose father’s own dad emigrated from Dublin to Sydney over 100 years ago. Picture shows Beatrice Cosgrove and Shannon O’Dowd of Etihad Airways at the event. Australia’s Denise von Wald, Regional Manager for Britain and Northern Europe (based in London), and Phillipa Harrison, Executive General Manager of International (based in Sydney), spoke to Travel Extra at the event (watch here) as did Ambassador Richard Andrews (watch here).

The residence of the US Chargé d’Affaires in Dublin was the upmarket setting as a delegation from Rhode Island visited the capital, in between visits to Cork and Belfast. Bouoyed by the new Norwegian routes to the capital, Providence, the tiny state packs in a lot of attractions. Pictured are Diane Patefielf, Marketing Director, South County Tourism Council, Rhode Island; and Louise D Bishop, President, South County Tourism Council, two of the friends made by Travel Extra last week on a fam to Rhode Island organised by Norwegian and Brand USA. Picture shows Diane Patefielf and Louise Bishop of South County Tourism Council, Rhode Island. Watch here as head of Tourism  Mark Brodeur outlines just some of the attractions available. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Travel Trade

The Commission of Aviation Regulation has extended the deadline for submissions on the future of the licensing and bonding system until October 20. They have published a consultation paper and alongside this a detailed report. They also extended the deadline for the Travel Trade Licensing section of the Commission for Aviation Regulation (available here)

The Falcon Holidays brand, like its English equivalent Thomson, is to come to an end and be rebranded under mother brand TUI, bringing a conclusion to a process that began ten years ago in June 2007 when TUI was cleared to purchase the old Falcon/JWT group. Crystal Holidays Lakes and Mountains programme is also  to be subsumed into TUI but the Crystal ski brand will remain separate as Crystal following a change of plan in Germany. The cruise ships which were to be named Thomson Discovery I and II were renamed TUI Discovery, the first hint that the Thomson plan would be disappearing was given by Helen Caron at a cruise conference in Dublin two years ago. Watch here. It will be the same team and the same faces, offering the same product, Charlotte Brenner says of the operation. The brand was born in conflict 29 years ago. Freddie O’Neill left Joe Walsh Tours with senior staff including Gabrielle Malone, Paul Randall, Bill Smith, Christine Donnelly and Louise McGovern to launch Falcon on October 24 1988 as a subsidiary of English group Owners Abroad and faced strong opposition from market leader Joe Walsh. The parent rebranded as First Choice in 1994, and following the death of of Joe Walsh on New Year’s Day 1995, Falcon bought the JWT brand. First Choice was then taken over by Thomson and Thomson by TUI.

John Cassidy of Cassidy Travel and Eileen Penrose of APG Airline Business were the winners at Amadeus annual golf and spa event at Knightsbrook, Co Meath, one of the highlights of the travel trade social calendar. Greg Evans led the growing English delegation who attend the event and the shebeen provided on course entertainment for thirsty golfers. Picture shows winner John Cassidy of Cassidy Travel, David O’Hagan of Donabate Travel, John Spollen of Cassidy Travel, Tony Collins of Topflight, Rebecca Kelly of MSC Cruises, Olwen McKinney of Amadeus and Carol Anne O’Neill of Worldchoice Ireland. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Clare Dunne of The Travel Broker

Clare Dunne‘s Travel Broker in Clontarf in Dublin is looking to hire a Customer Service/Sales Consultant to join the team. Previous industry experience is desirable but not essential.

Alana Byrne, from Newbridge Travel in Co Clare, is this week’s winner of the Classic Collection Holidays €100 voucher from M&s. The competition features on their agents’ Facebook page here and also on the TPG Travel Partners Group page.

Riviera Travel in Britain is now using Dublin Airport as a gateway to the US for its English and Scottish clients. The agency is offering flights from Manchester, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Bristol, Isle of Man and Leeds Bradford for its major tours. On some tours, there are also flights from Newcastle, Bristol, Gatwick and Heathrow.

The luxury long-haul travel agents were out in force to catch up with Sri Lankan Airlines’ Jeremy Soertsz and Sai Mahendran, plus Aviareps’ boss Paul Spencer and Ireland reps Eamon Flanagan and Jens Bachmann at Matt the Thresher, Dublin. Jens spoke of the all-Airbus carrier’s  connections from Ireland via Heathrow to Colombo or codeshare with Etihad Airways via Abu Dhabi. Its A330 long-haul aircraft offer 27 seats in business and 269 in economy, with wifi and GSM calling connectivity. Brendan Barry from East Cork Travel won the night’s prize of two return tickets from Ireland to Sri Lanka. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Judy Coughlan, from Travel Cheaper

Turkish Airlines and the Tourism Authority of Thailand were on the road, visiting Belfast, Dublin and Cork, with places on their mega fam to Thailand and Vietnam up for grabs.

On the first night, Elaine Truesdale from Clubworld Travel (Lurgan office) was the first to win to join Turkish Airlines & Thailand Tourism‘s office joint fam trip to Bangkok, Phuket and Ho Chi Min City in November. Belfast’s other prize-winner was Linda Millar (Brayn Somers Travel) who won two return economy tickets to Phuket and 7 nights at Best Western Premier Bangtoa Beach Resort.

The Dublin roadshow saw Club Travel’ Aoife Devine pick up the mega fam prize. Jay Farrell – Flight Centre won the two return tickets to Phuket and seven nights at Best Western Premier Bangtao Beach Resort, while Kathleen Kinane from Club Travel walked away with a giant model aircraft, and a last-minute additional prize of return trip to Thailand was won by Travelmood’s Olivia Byrne.

In Cork, Judy Coughlan, from Travel Cheaper, won the mega spot while Meadbh Byrne, Trailfinders, won the return tickets and seven-night hotel prize. Pictures from the Dublin event here.

When the sun’s beaming down here at home, you could forgive travel agents for praying for rain. But you can have too much of a good thing, and many in the industry have been worked hard looking after clients during the turbulent hurricane season. And there’s a lot to be said for  that personal touch, with David O’Grady of Donabate Travel taking a call from the Dominican Republic to make sure two of his clients got their taxi transfer back to the airport while he was at the SriLankan Airlines event. Picture shows Emma Arnott, Tourism Authority of Thailand, and Turkish Airlines’ Onur Gul and Hasan Mutlu. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Strange world

Glasgow airport is introducing a ‘Take Care of my Bear’ tag to be given out to any child travelling from the airport with a soft toy. And the airport is asking the travelling public to help reunite any found toys with their owners.

A Wexford pilot landed his small wooden-frame plane one-handed after his cockpit canopy opened during a flight. Operating the controls with one hand and holding the canopy closed with the other, he safely landed the craft- which he had built himself.

International

The Metropolitan Museum in new York was named best in the world in the Tripadvisor best in travel awards, followed by 2 WW2 museum New Orleans, 3 Musee D’Orsay Paris, 4 Art Institute Chicago, 5 Hemritage St Petersburg, 6 9/11 museum New York, 7 Anthropology museum Mexico, 8 Acropollis Athens, 9 Prado Madrid, 10 Victoria & Albert London.

Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association says 75pc of hotels across the Caribbean are operational and the vast majority of the region remains unaffected by the  hurricanes Irma and Maria. For the first time the CHTA has produced a detailed information website, caribbeantourismupdate.com, for consumers and the travel trade alike to see which destinations and properties have been affected by an unprecedented season of hurricane activity.

Mount Agung is threatening to erupt in Bali, the volcano’s alert status was raised to the highest level following an increase in seismic activity. The last eruption took place in 1963 and killed over a thousand people.

Young Pioneer Tours are offering ‘interesting labour tours’ to North Korea for visitors from China, who can work in rice paddies. It is thought that famines may be occurring in the region given the summer drought. The Young Pioneer Tours slogan: “destinations your mother would rather you stay away from. “

Plans are underway to discourage the more frugal backpacker from visiting Amsterdam, with a suggestion of a ‘flat fee’ of perhaps 5-10 euro per person per night. Other measures have already been introduced- restrictions on new hotels in the city center, a 5pc tax on overnight stays, and limitations on Airbnb.

Four American tourists were attacked by a woman who threw acid at them in Marseilles, in the Saint Charles train station.

Fod & Beverage

Garrett Byrne of Campagne restaurant in Kilkenny was not impressed when a blogger emailed to request a free meal for two in exchange for significant online exposure and retweeted the request. In case you’re wondering, ‘significant’ means ‘live tweeting, Facebook, Instagram’ and inclusion in posts “with permanent embedded links and photographs.” The demand was a little more modest than those of some other bloggers.

Thirty chefs from across Dublin have learned how they can support aspiring chefs as they took part in a two-day “Commis Chef Mentoring Programme” run by Fáilte Ireland at the Cooks Academy and in Brooks Hotel, Dublin on September 19 and 20. The programme is part of Fáilte Ireland’s plan to address the skills shortage that currently exists within the Irish culinary industry. It has been developed by SOLAS with the support of Fáilte Ireland, the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) and the Restaurants Association of Ireland (RAI), and will prepare current practitioners to provide aspiring chefs with a rich experience within the workplace.

A decline in tourist business over the past 12 months was reported by nearly half of Irish pubs and restaurants who participated in a survey by the Drinks Industry Group of Ireland, published on Friday. According to the survey, tourists spent on average 34pc of their holiday budget on food and drink, or 40pcv for British tourists specifically. It also claimed that 75pc of participating business owners reported concern about Brexit and its possible effects on consumer spending in Ireland- while critics have questioned its conclusions.

French chef Sébastien Bras has announced his wish to be left out of the 2018 Michelin guide. Announcing his request via a video on Facebook, Bras said he could no longer cope with the pressure of meeting the standards now expected of him.

The Black Dog Saloon & Mezcalaria is to remove its sign following complaints from locals to Cork City Council. Publican Benny McCabe requested permission for the sign, consisting of the initials of the bar, to be kept, but was refused.

Hotels

The Department of Tourism  is considering a ‘city tax’  for Dublin hotels who charge more for big events, as reported by the Irish Independent.

Pre-tax profits at the company that operates the five star Conrad hotel in Dublin last year declined by 22pc to €1.78m.

New accounts show that Earlsfort Centre Hotel Proprietors Ltd recorded the drop in pre-tax profit in spite of its gross profit increasing from €8.7m to €8.8m. The drop in pre-tax profit coincided with the hotel continuing to invest in the business and the directors’ report stated that during the year, the company continued its capital expenditure programme to reposition the hotel.

Pre-tax profits at the hotel group that operates the five-star Hayfield Manor in Cork city and the four-star Killarney Royal hotel rose by over 50pc to €5.43m last year. Tripoint Investments Ltd is owned by the Scally family.

Dublin’s oldest and largest family owned hotel, Sandymount Hotel, celebrated being awarded its fourth star by Failté Ireland and the launch of its €6 million refurbishment with an End of Summer BBQ last night. Guests were treated to an evening of music and BBQ bites in the newly refurbished surroundings.

For one hotel in Taiwan, catering for the geeky guest is not an issue. The i hotel, located in the Taoyuan District near the international airport, offers its customers more than just a bed to lie in. The hotel boasts an incredible selection of gaming stations with two in each room rigged with i5-7400 processors, 16GB of RAM, GTX 1080 Ti GPU and DXRacer gaming chairs.

Aviation

Ryanair’s AGM proceeded calmly on Thursday, despite the flight cancellations storm.  Votes withheld for motions were not reported as they were last year. Ryanair said crew problems will not affect its full-year profit.

The Department of Transport is proposing (again) to merge the regulatory and safety functions of the IAA with the regulatory and consumer protection functions of the Commissioner for Aviation Regulation to form a new aviation regulatory authority.

Aer Lingus ‘did a Ryanair’ with holiday rescue fares. Aer Lingus newest A330 pictured at Chateauroux. Aer Lingus will announce their new trans-Atlantic route for summer 2018, likely to be Philadelphia, on October 4.

Ryanair will open a new base in Burgas, Bulgaria, (No. 87), its second Bulgarian base, by the end of March with one aircraft and 10 new routes

Commission for Aviation Regulation proposals on summer 2018 slot coordination parameters at Dublin Airport allow for one additional departure in both of the peak morning hours and increasing the limits on the number of departing passengers in T1 and T2 from 3,375 and 3,450 respectively to 3,700 in each and increasing the limit on the number of arriving passengers in Terminal 1 from 3,390 to 3,550. Average taxi-out time is 24 minutes at 0600 to 0700 peak  hour for departures.

Ryanair announced a sale on 1m seats covering for example Dublin to Cologne, Eindhoven, Hamburg, Ibiza, and Paris; Shannon to London, Warsaw, and Manchester; Cork to London or Liverpool. The sale will end midnight September 25th.

Air Canada Rouge opened bookings for its expanded seasonal service Vancouver-Dublin route, confirming the operation will be by Rouge using B767-300ER.

Bjorn Kjos said Dublin has proved the most popular of the new routes to Stewart International and Norwegian is rethinking its original plan to reduce the Stewart schedule for the winter months because of how well the flights have sold.

During Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s visit to New York to join the United Nations General Assembly, Boeing and Turkish Airlines announced a commitment to order 40 787-9 Dreamliners.”

Qantas’s first B787-9 Dreamliner has just rolled out of the paint shop ahead of its delivery to the airline and debut on domestic routes before flying its first international route from Melbourne to Los Angeles this December.

The Air Accidents Investigations Branch reported on an incident in Belfast Airport in July found that in “slightly different circumstances, this event could have resulted in the loss of the aircraft with multiple fatalities”. Outside air temperature data was incorrectly entered into the flight management systems, affecting the rate of acceleration on the runway, and the Boeing 737 hit and damaged a light 30 meters off the end of the runway.

Berlin is debating whether to close or keep open the historic Tegel airport once the Willy Brandt international airport opens, belatedly. Notable quote from local politician Sebastian Czaja: “Let’s keep the one thing that’s working in this city.”

Bombardier announced another 95 redundancies at its Northern Ireland operations.

British Airways plans to resume Heathrow-Seychelles in summer 2018 with B787-9 twice a week.

A group of eighty Irish people on a mission to Lourdes were delayed in France after their Ryanair flight home was cancelled. Ryanair said the Biarritz-Dublin flight was “regrettably cancelled after the inbound aircraft was unable to land at Biarritz Airport due to the closure of the runway… Customers were provided with refreshment vouchers and overnight accommodation and will board a replacement flight in the morning. Ryanair sincerely apologised to all customers affected by this cancellation, which was entirely beyond our control.”

Afloat

In the wake of Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Maria has also caused damage, and disruption to cruise itineraries. Carnival‘s Carnival Fascination delivered supplies of food and water to St Kitt’s port, to be delivered on to St Marten which was hit by the storm. Further deliveries are planned to be made during upcoming cruises including to the four ports which were closed on September 14: St Maarten, St Thomas, Grand Turk, and Key West.

Royal Caribbean‘s Majesty of the Seas was rerouted to pick up evacuees in the US Virgin Islands and St Maarten, picking up 3014 people and 16 animals. They also brought 180 pallets of aid including food, medicine, and 150 bales of hay. Michele Haggiag: “I just can’t believe how we’re being treated. It’s as if we were travelers and guests, not evacuees.” Passengers and crew alike volunteered to help.

Independence of the Seas is being refitted to include laser tag, a puzzle room, and a trampoline park (presumably for those who think modern ships are just too stable and offer too little in the way of seasickness and the exercise of ‘sea legs’.)

Amsterdam’s tourist tax is to be applied to passengers travelling on cruise ships docking in the city overnight, from 2019.

The Marine Casualty Investigation Board found that the Master of a boat which capsized in Lough Leane last September did not call for help or attempt to do so. It also found that he did not hold the correct commercial endorsement to act as a master of a passenger boat. All 12 tourists escaped uninjured.

Ireland

Spike Island is nominated for the tourist attraction award at the European leg of the World Travel Awards in St Petersburg next weekend, hoping to make it a three in a row for Ireland. Guinness Storehouse, winners tow years ago, pulled out of this year’s awards.

The Little Museum of Dublin was named best in Ireland in the Tripadvisor best in travel awards, followed by 2 Glasnevin, 3 Irish whiskey museum, 4 National Museum Kildare St, 5 EPIC Ireland, 6 GPO Witness History, 7 Croke Park stadium tour, 8 Michael Davitt Museum Foxford, 9 Irish military museum, Starinagh 10 Derryglad folk museum, Athlone.

Picture shows  luxury buyers hosted by Fáilte Ireland with John Molloy, owner of  Rockhill House & Gardens, Donegal, Gareth Austin, garden designer and horticulturalist, Amanda Horan and Joan Crawford, Fáilte Ireland on an itinerary that included Rockhill House & Gardens, outside Letterkenny, Solis Lough Eske Castle, Harvey’s Point Country Hotel, The K Club, Hook Head Lighthouse, Dunbrody House Hotel, Waterford Treasures, Mount Juliet Estate, Adare Manor, and Tullamore Distillery,

Tourism Ireland appointed Neil Aulton as Head of Strategy & Insights.

Fáilte Ireland launched and Ireland’s Ancient East –Guide for Food and Drink Visitor Experiences for food businesses

A Wild Atlantic Food from the Hedgerows’ foraging walk with Oonagh O’Dwyer of Wild Kitchen will kick off the sixth annual Burren Food Fayre takes place on October 28th and 29th, at the Pavilion, Lisdoonvarna, Co. Clare.

You can stay in a shepherd’s hut in Ballydehob, a treehouse in Dublin, or a converted horse trailer in Kilfenora. Does it get any more exotic? Er, don’t answer that. Details here.

Deal Watch

Falcon to Lanzarote

Falcon offers: Dublin to Tenerife, 7 nights self-catering 3* Oasis Mango, Los Cristianos,  from €489, depart October 20. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 7 nights half board 4* Suitehotel Playa del Ingles, Playa Del Ingles, from €789, depart October 19. Dublin to Lanzarote, 14 nights self-catering 3* Morromar Apartments, Matagorda, from  €699. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Riu Don Miguel, Playa Del Ingles, from €979. Dublin to Tenerife, 14 nights all inclusive 3* Catalonia Punta del Rey, Las Caletillas, from €809, depart January 12. Dublin to Lanzarote, 14 nights self-catering 3* Lanzarote Paradise Club, Costa Teguise, from €529, depart January 7. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 14 nights self-catering 3* Monte Feliz, Bahia Feliz, from €779, depart January 11. www.falconholidays.ie /phone 1850 453545

ITAA offers: Dublin to Rome on Aer Lingus, 3 nights in San Remo Hotel or Alexis Hotel, from €189 with Kanes Travel, depart November 28. www.itaa.ie/2017/09/20/rome-christmas-markets Dublin to New York, 3 nights hotel and Aer Lingus flights, from €599 with Tour America, depart November 9. *Includes Macy’s 20pc off voucher and second bag for free if booked by September 30. www.itaa.ie/2017/09/14/new-york-city Dublin to Madrid, 3 nights hotel, plus half-day tour to Toledo, from €279 with travalue.ie, depart November 25. www.itaa.ie/2017/09/20/madrid-and-toledo

Sunway offers: Dublin to Turkey, 7 nights B&B 4* Golden Day Wings  Hotel, from €499, depart October 28. Dublin to Turkey, 7 nights B&B 4* Golden Day Wings Hotel, from €1716 (2 adults + 2 children), depart Bank Holiday weekend, October 28. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 7 nights all inclusive 3*  Marina Elite Hotel, from €969, depart October 28.  Dublin to Orlando, 7 nights 3* CoCo Key Hotel & Water Park, from €495, depart Halloween. Dublin to Orlando, 7 nights 3* Rosen Inn at Pointe, from €485, depart Halloween. Dublin to Japan, ‘Splendours of Japan’  travel  Tokyo to Kyoto, 8 nights twin share 4* and 5* hotels, meals and tours, from €3,559, depart February 11. Dublin to Europe, 7 nights full board on 5* Europe’s Rivers and Castles river cruise, from €1299, depart October 26. Dublin to France, 7 nights all inclusive 3* Club Med Aime La Plagne, from €1476 (family of 2+2 from €5024), depart January 28. www.sunway.ie

Thomson offers: Dublin to Tenerife, 7 nights half board 4* TUI SENSIMAR Los Gigantes, Los Gigantes, from €709, depart October 20. Dublin to Gran Canaria,  7 nights self-catering 3* Cay Beach Princess Bungalows, from €489, depart October 19. Shannon to Lanzarote, 7 nights all inclusive 4* Flamingo Beach Resort, Playa Blanca,from €829, depart October 2. Dublin to Lanzarote, 7 nights all inclusive 4* ClubHotel Riu Paraiso Lanzarote Resort, Playa De Los Pocillos, from €959, depart October 16. Dublin to Costa Blanca, 3 nights self-catering 3* Levante Lux Apartments, Benidorm, from  €439, depart October 17. Dublin to Costa Del Sol, 4 nights half board 3* Hotel Nerja Club, Nerja, from €419, depart November 5. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 7 nights self-catering 3* Rocamar, Puerto Rico, from €469, depart January 4. Dublin to Tenerife, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Barceló Santiago, Puerto de Santiago, from €669, depart January 26. Dublin to Lanzarote, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel H10 Timanfaya Palace, Playa Blanca, from €649, depart January 7. www.thomsonholidays.ie /call 1850 453545

Topflight offers: Dublin to Sicily, 7 nights 3* Hotel Albatross B&B, from €569, depart October 7. Dublin to Sicily, 7 nights B&B 5* Hotel Diamond, from €729, depart October 7. Dublin to Sicily  , 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Villa Diodoro, from €1099, depart October 7. Dublin to Sicily, 7 nights half board, 4* Hotel Naxos, from €799, depart October 7. Dublin to Sorrento, 7 nights B&B 3* Hotel Londra, from €519, depart October 15. Dublin to Sorrento, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Majestic, from €669, depart October 15. Dublin to Sorrento, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Conca Park, from €799, depart September 30. www.topflight.ie /call 01-2401700.

What we learned.

You can have baker’s asthma, pigeon fancier’s lung, housemaid’s knee, black lung, radium jaw,  and now pilots, cabin crew, and presumably travel journalists can get Aerotoxic syndrome. New occupations mean new occupational disease (download here).

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