Things to know about travel this week
- Arrow & Fahy triumph at Worldchoice agency awards:
- Upbeat mood at World Travel market
- State aid row re-emerges as Ryanair aircraft seized
- Bodrum next for Ryanair’s move on Turkey
- Killarney’s annual tourism conference talks Brexit
How not to market a new budget airline – don’t mention inflight alcohol or things that go bang. Watch candidates from The Apprentice shock British Airways executives with their daft ideas.
- The Airbus A330-800 takes to the skies for the first time, on a test flight from Toulouse-Blagnac Airport. Watch here.
- British Airways celebrates Diwali, India’s festival of lights, with a Bollywood-inspired performance of music, dance and light, at Heathrow. Watch here.
- Cork Airport shares the best moments from the SPAR Cork Airport Runway 5K. Watch here.
- Diwali time again – but in Dubai, celebrated by Emirates. Watch here.
- Etihad celebrates 15 years of sponsoring sports teams, including Manchester City. Watch here.
- It’s arrivals time for Heathrow’s Christmas bears ad. Expect it, like the others, to go viral. Watch here.
- Air New Zealand is heading for 2m hits with its acclaimed new safety video, featuring a 600-strong Kiwi cast.
Behind the Headlines
Another week of Brexit uncertainty was the prelude to the Let’s Talk Travel conference in Killarney. Watch here panel discussion on Brexit with Travel Extra editor Eoghan Corry where he talks about Brexitunities for the travel industry. Watch here Noel Sweeney presentation on Brexit. Watch here Margaret Cahill introduction to the conference. Watch here Paul Kelly presentation on Failte Ireland initiatives on regionality and seasonality which will be announced in full on Monday. Picture shows Noel sweeney, John McGrillen, Eoghan Corry and Olivia O’Leary. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
“The beating hearts of the travel industry,” is what Blaithin O’Donnell of Air Canada described the 150 agents who attended the 2018 Worldchoice conference at Lyrath in Kilkenny. The agents met 80 suppliers. Watch here Riona McGrath speaking at the Worldchoice conference. Watch here Michael English speaking at the Worldchoice conference. Watch here Declan Power’s hilarious speech at the Worldchoice conference. Watch here Carol Anne O’Neill speaking at the Worldchoice conference. Arrow Tours and Fahy Travel won the Worldchoice agency of the year awards. Picture shows Carol Anne O’Neill overusing preparations for the workshop. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
World Travel Market in London had its mixture of the old, the new, and even bizarre (Chernobyl tours). New exhibitors on the irish stand included the Vaults in Dublin, which has its grand opening on Wednesday. Watch here scenes from World Travel Market 2018 featuring personnel from the Irish outbound and inbound travel industry. Niall Gibbons gave the keynote address at the Irish stand reception and Minister Brendan Griffin visited the stand onTuesday morning. Picture shows Siobhan McNamany of Tourism Ireland, Julie Wakley of Tourism Ireland London, Brendan Griffin Tourism Minister, Niall Gibbons CEO of Tourism Ireland, Joan O’Shaughnessy chair of Tourism Ireland. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.
Topflight launched its group ski trips, with a series of trips for January-March, including a Patrick’s Day party on the slopes. Carmen Mazzone, Maurice Shiels, Michelle Anderson and Shauna Kelly, Topflight, are pictured at the launch. Full story here.
Andy Harmer has been lobbied by various cruise companies to organise a separate CLIA mini conference in Ireland.
Watch here as Tolene Van Der Merwe director of South African tourism in London describes her commitment to the Irish travel trade in an interview ast WTM, including more fam trips for agents.
In advance of the ITAA conference in Philadelphia, Cordoba is being tipped as the venue for the 2019 conference.
Halkidi in northern Greece is planning a fam for Irish agents on the back of the new 2w Ryanair route to Thessaloniki next spring. Halkidiki Tourism Organisation President Grigoris Tasios said at WTM: “A major interest for Halkidiki has been expressed here at the WTM expo from the Irish travel market.”
- Thailand announced a waiver on the $60 visa-on-arrival fee from December 1 to January 31, for visitors from 21 countries.
- Sad news: Frank Tully the founder of Tully’s travel died last Saturday. Watch here Martin Skelly tribute to Frank Tully at the Worldchoice cponference.
- Watch here highlights of Travel Extra’s visit to KZN on the BA inaugural London Heathrow to Durban flight.
- Watch here highlights of a Visit USA fam trip to Baltimore & Washington with key Irish travel trade. Watch here highlights of the visit to Philadelphia hosted by Tony Lane of Visit USA and Jenny Rafter of Aer Lingus.
- Watch here as Rashmi Verma, secretary (head of department) of India’s Ministry of Tourism talks about her intention to double visitor numbers to India.
- Watch here report for Travel Extra from Anne Cadwallader in Kenya.
- Dave Conlon of Travelport is to join WTC in January.
- A cabin crew member breast-fed a crying baby when her mother ran out of formula milk during a flight.
- Delta has apologised after a passenger who had to sit on dog dirt was given paper towels and a small bottle of gin to clean himself up.
- Lebanon’s caretaker minister of tourism argued that Egypt is one of the dirtiest places in the world and that its population live in graves.
California is battling two massive wildfires – one near Paradise, in the north of the state, and one in the Malibu area near Los Angeles which has devastated movie sets.
Spain is to examine its railway security after security in Barcelona x-rayed a bag containing what looked like a grenade – but somehow the woman travelled on to Madrid. The object was later found to be a belt buckle.
More than 300 people were arrested in New Delhi and 200 in Kolkata for flouting a court order only allowing “green firecrackers” during the Diwali festival, as the cities battle smog pollution.
SeaWorld has refused to comment on reports that Six Flags Entertainment is in talks to buy all or some of its entertainment’s parks.
If you want to avoid fellow tourists, head to Bangladesh, which has the world’s lowest ratio of visitors to locals, according to World Bank data mined by Priceonomics. Other non-touristy countries includes Guinea, Moldova, India and Ethiopia.
Magaluf has been transformed from a lager lout resort to one where now 80pc of travellers are families, couples or adults, said Gabriel Escarrer, Chief Executive of Melia Hotels which has spent €250m to upgrade its hotels in the locality.
Food & Beverage
The Irish drinks industry, which carries out over 23,000 truck movements across the border every year, fears post-Brexit checks could add an hour to journey times. The delegation from the Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland are pictured at the European Commission to meet its Brexit team.
- Ballsbridge’s The Bridge 1859 pub – acquired by rugby players Jamie Heaslip, Rob Kearney, Dave Kearney and Sean O’Brien and publican Noel Anderson in 2014, made a profit of €313,000 during its last financial year.
- An Bord Pleanála has rejected plans to turn the Merchant’s Arch Bar in Temple Bar into a “superpub”.
- The North was named ‘Best Food Destination’ at the International Travel and Tourism Awards in London.
Pre-tax profits at the firm operating the Powerscourt Hotel in Co Wicklow rose 77pc to €1.98m last year.
Ownership of Kenmare’s landmark Sheen Falls Lodge is to be passed to a group of Thai investors.
The Kildare House Hotel is on the market for €1.1m.
Earlsfort Centre Hotel Proprietors, which operates the Conrad Hotel in Dublin, has revealed that pre-tax profits rose 25pc to €2.23m last year.
Ireland’s largest hotel group, Dalata, has successfully agreed a new €525m debt facility, completing the refinance of its existing debt facilities. Dermot Crowley, Deputy CEO, pictured right with Deputy CEO Dermot Crowley and CEO Pat McCann, said: “Our banking group have been very supportive of our growth ambitions since we first drew down facilities in February 2015.”
Dalata said its newest hotel, Clayton Hotel Charlemont, is set to open its doors on the banks of Dublin’s Grand Canal this November.
London’s Grosvenor House Hotel – the setting for the annual Irish Post awards – has been bought by the Qatar’s Katara Hospitality, which already owns New York’s historic The Plaza hotel.
O’Callaghan Collection staff pictured after their day-long stint on stationary bikes and treadmills outside two of their Dublin city centre hotels, The Mont Clare Hotel on Merrion Square and The Green on St Stephen’s Green, to raise funds for Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind, Irish Cancer Society and Irish Hospice.
Irish hospitality group Press Up Entertainment, headed by Paddy McKillen Jr and Matt Ryan, is searching for locations to establish its Dean Hotel brand across Europe.
Dublin Airport are on course for 31.38m passengers in 2018, up 6pc in the year to date after a record October, up 9pc to 2.8m, with trans Atlantic up 17pc, Europe up 9pc, Britain up 4pc, Africa/Asia up 19pc.
The French department of Charente ordered bailiffs (huissiers) to seize at London-bound Ryanair plane on Thursday evening on the tarmac at Bordeaux airport in a legacy duispute over the repyayment of state aid that the local government says is owed by Ryanair. over unpaid debt.
Ryanair is to fly a seasonal Dublin-Bodrum, 2w from May 4 2019 under the Turkey Ireland bi-lateral as it extends into the traditional charter territory. Ryanair fly Dalaman 1w and Aer Lingus fly Izmir 3w. At peak 114,000 Irish visited Turkey. Ryanair carried 13.1m passengers in October up 11pc, of which 0.5m were on Laudamotion, 12.6m on its own network up 7pc. Moscow and St Petersburg were added to Ryanair’s network, apparently as part of their Air Malta codeshare. Feach anseo Eoghan Corry ag caint ar figuiri Ryanair.
The Stobart-operated Aer Lingus Regional celebrated carrying its 10 millionth passenger. Pictured is passenger Aoife Twomey from Dingle, Co Kerry, with Ciarán Smith, Network Development Manager, Stobart Air, and Aer Lingus ground crew Jeanelle Tobin and Jo O’Riordan.
CityJet and Brussels Airlines signed an agreement for early replacement of four Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft, on wet lease from CityJet until March 19, with four Bombardier CRJ900/1000 aircraft.
Norwegian said it has carried more than 100,000 passengers to and from Shannon Airport to the US since July 2017.
Shannon-based GainJet is to add threer more executive jet aircraft by year-end.
A Flybe flight from Belfast City Airport to Glasgow fell 500ft in 18 seconds after an incorrect autopilot setting caused it to aim for the ground, an Air Accidents Investigation Branch probe found.
Ryanair launched two of its new winter routes from Dublin – to Frankfurt and Luxembourg – at a gate ceremony at the airport. Dublin Airport Aviation Business Development Manager Brian Gallagher; Ryanair Marketing Executive Eimear Ryan; and Dublin Airport B2B Marketing Executive Edel Redmond are pictured at the airport.
The City of Derry Airport’s service to Edinburgh Airport operated 5w by Ryanair launched.
With oil prices rising, and transatlantic competition stiffening, Icelandair entered into a share purchase agreement to purchase all shares in the airline WOW air, subject to approval by Icelandair Group‘s shareholders and the Icelandic competition authorities. Planned two-way transatlantic seats for the week commencing July 31 2018 were: Aer Lingus 61,500, Icelandair 60,900, WOW 48,000 Norwegian 125,000. Departing transatlantic flights and seats (all carriers): Dublin 238 flights 60,991 seats; Keflavik 298 flights 65,879 seats.
Honey produced in hives on Dublin Airport lands is now available for passengers to buy at the Marquette store in Terminal 1. Síle O’Kane (6) and beekeeper Colm Fogarty are pictured with the first batch of Nect-Air.
Culturally, a merger between Emirates and Etihad is a non-starter, the Arab Air Carriers Organisation AGM was told. Adel Redha, COO of Emirate, said: “This is a part of the world where each country likes to have an airline, even if they have one aircraft.”
Unions at United Airlines say they will fight plans to cut one flight attendant from the Polaris business class cabin on international Dreamliner flights and one in the economy cabin on international 757 flights.
Ten people were hospitalised after a Fly Jamaica flight bound for Toronto crash-landed in Guyana following a technical problem. (Photo: Cheddi Jang International Airport/Facebook)
CAR Dublin Airport Q3 capital expenditure delivery update 2018 was released.
Dubai is to open two cruise terminals in 2020 to accommodate up to three ships at a time as it expects to attract 1m passengers a year.
The Port of Cork is looking for interested parties to construct and/or operate a new cruise facility after a record year of ship visits. Full story here.
Viking Ocean Cruises is returning to Turkey in 2021, with a stop in the Irish favourite of Kusadasi.
Norwegian Jewel has emerged from dry dock with new and redesigned cabins, venues and entertainment.
Marella Cruises‘ summer 2020 programme will feature six cruises from England, to a mix of Iceland, Norwegian Fjords and Baltic itineraries. Two new fly cruises include the seven-night Aegean Explorer and the seven-night Mediterranean Secrets.
Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Flora, designed specifically for Galapagos Islands expeditions is to feature glamping under the stars at sea on the top deck of the small-scale ship when it launches in 2019.
Virgin Voyages’ Scarlet Lady ship will feature over 20 food venues, all opening late, and without surcharges, the company said.
MSC Cruises’ private Ocean Cay island in the Bahamas is now slated to open in November 2019.
US tourist Cassie Clemans, who travelled with her husband Andy from Bend, Oregon, to celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary in Ireland, was named the millionth visitor to the Book of Kells in a record year.
A no-deal Brexit crisis could cost Irish tourism as much as €390m – with thousands losing their jobs, Failte Ireland CEO Paul Kelly warned politicians. Watch the full video from the Oireachtas committe meeting on Brexit’s impact on tourism.
Tourism Ireland is showcasing the island to New York commuters and visitors to the city at Penn Station, which handles over 350,000 passengers a day. The initiative is part of a two-month campaign being rolled out with United Airlines. Photo: James Higgins
Luas operator Transdev said drivers have had to use emergency brakes 223 times so far this year to avoid hitting pedestrians, and issued a warning to the public to get their heads out of their phones.
Wexford’s Hook Lighthouse was ‘highly commended’ in the ‘Best Tourism Project’ category by the British Guild of Travel Writers at their annual World Tourism Awards ceremony in London.
TV presenter Stephen Byrne is pictured with students from Coláiste Cois Life, Lucan, Co Dublin, at the launch of Go Places 2018-2019. Bus Éireann is inviting TY students to get creative in making memories about their journey to school. Entries can be submitted in video, photo or written format and students are being asked to capture highlights of their journey in a creative and personal way. See www.goplaceswithbe.ie. Picture Jason Clarke
Video footage from the SeaRover has shown the largest shark nursery to have been found in Irish waters, discovered among cold-water coral reefs 200 miles west of the country.
Insight Vacations offers: Highlights of Spain escorted tour, including flights, transfers, and 8 nights’ accommodation in central locations, was €2,519pps, now from €2,309 per person sharing, including flights, transfers, and 8 nights’ accommodation in central locations. Flight cost must be paid at the time of booking. Book and pay in full by 28 February 2019, departs April 27, 2019. www.insightvacations.com or call 01 775 3803.
ITAA offers: Dublin to Sri Lanka, Return flights from Dublin via Istanbul with Turkish Airlines, 8-Day Guided Itinerary, all transport included, from €1725pp, depart March 7 with Travalue.ie on http://itaa.ie/2018/10/31/sri-lanka-express/
Dublin to Mexico, flights, 14 nights all inclusive in 4* Grand Bahia Principe Copa, pictured, from €1639pp, depart June 2019 with The Travel Broker on http://itaa.ie/2018/10/26/mexicos-caribbean-coast
Dublin to Kyrgyzstan, return flights from Dublin to Bishket via Istanbul, 30kg baggage per person and hand luggage, all transfers on an air-conditioned bus, 7 nights accommodation in Kyrgyzstan, breakfast daily, daily tours with entrance fees included, services of guide and local representatives, taxes and charges, 1 litre mineral water per person per day, from €2119pp, depart May 2 with Travel Escapes and Cruisescapes, on http://itaa.ie/2018/11/01/highlights-of-kyrgyzstan/
Sunway offers: Dublin to Europe for ‘Prague, Vienna and Budapest’ escorted tour, includes flights ex Dublin, 20kg baggage per person, taxes, 9 nights twin share in 4 & 5* Hotels, complimentary schedule airport transfer, some meals and tours as per itinerary. Price includes early payment discount of €177pp. Subject to availability and change, from €1979pp. depart April 12, 2019. Dublin to Europe for ‘Melodies of the Danube’ river cruise, includes flight ex Dublin, return port transfers, 7 nights twin sharing outside stateroom with fixed window, unlimited wine/beers at meals, sip and sail daily cocktail hour & daily complimentary excursions. Not included gratuities and port charges of €150pp. Subject to availability and change, from €2299pp, depart April 7, 2019. Dublin to Moroco, 7 nights all inclusive Club Med Agadir, from €1279pp, depart December 18. Dublin to Vietnam for Vietnam and Cambodia Adventure Tour from Hanoi to Bangkok, includes flight ex Dublin, 1 x 20kg baggage per person, 16 night’s accommodation on twin share basis, some meals and tours as per itinerary. Reduction of €150pp is included in the price, tour must be booked by 30th November. Subject to availability and change, from €2339pp, depart May 6, 2019. Dublin to Fuerteventura, 7 nights self catering 2*+ Villa Florida Apartments from €379pp, depart November 24. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 7 nights self catering 2* Monte Verde Apartments from €429pp, depart November 24. Knock to Lapland 1 night half board 3* Scandic Hotel, 2 adults + 1 Child from €2814, 1 Adult + 1 Child from €1923, depart December 21. Kerry to Lapland, 1 night half board 3* Scandic Hotel, 2 adults + 1 Child from €2814, 1 Adult + 1 Child from €1923, depart December 13. Dublin to USA, 3 Nights New York and 4 Nights Miami from €965pp, depart February 2019. Dublin to Norway for 12 Day Classic Round Voyage on MS Finnmarken – with free Northern Lights promise – from €1690pp, depart January 16. Dublin to Norway 8-night cruise on Celebrity Reflection from €1209pp, depart May 26, 2019. Dublin to Asia for Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand & Dubai Fly Cruise on Voyager Of the Seas, includes 1 night Singapore, 4 night Cruise, 3 nights Singapore and 3 nights Dubai from €1699pp, depart May 4, 2019. Dublin to Greece for Italy for Montenegro & Sicily Fly Cruise, 7 nights on Emerald Princess with flights and transfers included from €976pp, depart August 3. Dublin to Barcelona, 7 nights onboard MSC Meraviglia from €885pp, depart December 13. www.sunway.ie
Topflight offers: New group ski trips for 2019. Dublin to Andorra, for Party in the Principality, Arinsal and Pas de la Casa, from €699pps in Pasa de la Casa, depart January 13. From €599 for Arinsal, depart January 20, February 3 and March 17. Dublin to Austria, for Paddy’s on the Piste, Söll, from €699pps, depart March 16. Dublin to Italy, for Mountain Adventure Week, Livigno, from €653pp, depart January 26, February 2 and March 9. All prices include return flights, accommodation for 7 nights, return transfers, taxes, services of the Topflight in resort team and an activities programme including a selection of events such as quiz and games nights, mountain feasts, live music events, tobogganing, skidooing, ski races and apres ski parties. All participants will receive a jam-packed ski essentials goodie bag. www.topflight.ie, call 01 240 1700 or 028 9752 1168, or visit your local travel agent.
Tour America offers: St Patrick’s Day: Dublin to Washington DC, flights, 3 nights hotel accommodation, from €599pp based on 4 sharing, depart March 15. Dublin to Chicago, flights, 3 nights hotel accommodation, from €629pp, based on 4 sharing, depart March 16. Dublin to Boston, flights, 3 nights hotel accommodation, from €669pp, based on 4 sharing, depart March 16. Dublin to New York, flights, 3 nights hotel accommodation, from €699pp, based on 4 sharing, depart March 15. Cruise offers: Dublin to Amsterdam for 7-night Rhine river cruise onboard U by Uniworld’s The A, includes half board and free wifi, from €1299pp, depart April 20, 2019. Dublin to Hamburg for 3-night mini cruise on MSC Preziosa, from €319pp based on 2 sharing interior cabin, depart April 27, 2019. Dublin to Barcelona for 7-night Med cruise on Emerald Princess, from €699pp, based on 2 adults + 2 children sharing an interior stateroom, depart July 20, 2019. Dublin to Rome for 10-night Riviera and Med cruise onboard Celebrity Constellation, from €1449pp, based on 2 sharing interior stateroom, depart June 9, 2019. Dublin to Seattle, 2 nights Seattle and 7 night Alaskan cruise onboard Norwegian Joy, from €2099pp, based on 2 adults sharing interior cabin, includes premium all inclusive drinks package, wifi and gratuities, depart April 26, 2019. www.touramerica.ie
TUI offers: Dublin to Algarve, 7 nights all inclusive 4* Be Live Family Palmeiras Village in Porches, from 2+1 €1,959, 2+2 €2,849, depart June 3. Dublin to Lapland day trips adult price from €549, child price from €449, depart December 8. Dublin to Costa Del Sol, 7 nights half board 3* Hotel Nerja Club, Nerja, from €509pps, depart November 18. Dublin to Costa Blanca, 7 nights half board 3* Port Fiesta park, Benidorm, from €549pps, depart November 15. Cork to Costa del sol, 7 nights half board 3* Bali Hotel and Studio, Benalmadena, from €559pps, depart November 25. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 7 nights self catering 3* IFA InterClub Atlantic, San Agustin, from €759pps depart December 20. Dublin to Lanzarote , 7 nights all inclusive 3* Suneoclub El Trebol, Costa Tequise, from €999pps depart December 23. Dublin to Tenerife, 7 nights half board 3* Hotel Catalonia Las Vegas, from €819pps, depart December 21. Dublin to Gran Canaria, 7 nights half board 4* Hotel Riu Don Miguel, Playa del Ingles, from €479pps, depart January 24. Dublin to Lanzarote, 7 nights half board 3* Gloria Izaro Club Hotel, Puerto Del Carmen, from €489pps, depart January 27. www.tuiholidays.ie, call 1850 45 35 45 or visit a TUI Store/travel agent.
U by Uniworld offers: Germany’s Finest river cruise, including flights, 14 meals, included excursions, local celebrity DJ party and 7 nights in a studio stateroom on board the stylish The A, was €1,559pps, now €1,169 per person sharing. Flight cost must be paid at the time of booking. Port charges excluded. Price includes 30pc Our Best Offer Discount. Book and pay in full by 31 December 2018, depart May 11, 2019. www.uniworld.com or call 01 775 3803
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