Adieu, French Riviera! Provence & Cote d’Azur rebrand Wednesday, May 10, 2017 Travelweek Group TORONTO — France is red hot these days, with Emmanuel Macron’s historic win earlier this week to become the country’s new president, and the upcoming Cannes Film Festival kicking off in just a few days. With so much ‘joie de vivre’ on full display, there was no better time for Atout France – the country’s official Tourism Development Agency – to embark on a North American roadshow, which included a stop in Toronto on May 8.The agency brought along a delegation of over 40 tourism partners from the Provence and Côte d’Azur tourist boards to showcase the region’s top tourism offerings this year and beyond. Provence, which includes the Côte d’Azur, is experiencing a resurgence in recent months, thanks in large part to a government grant awarded last year to the Côte d’Azur region to promote tourism on an international scale.As a result, Provence and Côte d’Azur rank as the second destination in France among international tourists, and the first for golf, yachting, cruises, festivals and UNESCO heritage. According to Loïc Chovelon, CEO of Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Tourism, there’s been a 50% increase in stays in the spring and fall months, with shoulder season gaining in popularity.And even more heartening is the fact that 50% of bookings to the region come from travel agencies, with the other 50% booking direct.More news: CIE Tours launches first-ever River Cruise CollectionInterest has never been greater, particularly among Canadians, who comprise the region’s second international market outside of Europe (behind the United States). Canadians contributed 1.2 million overnights in 2016, an increase of 17% over the last five years, with numbers expected to grow in light of increased airlift.On June 9, Air Canada will launch direct service from Montreal to Marseille, while Air Transat will also increase frequency to the French city. In total, Canadians will have access to 14 weekly flights from Montreal to Marseille Provence and Nice Côte d’Azur airports with the two airlines.Both Provence and Côte d’Azur are also benefitting from recent rebrands: Provence launched its new brand – Brand Provence – in April 2017 with a focus on lifestyle, gastronomy and living culture, while Côte d’Azur, which will no longer be known as the ‘French Riviera’, unveiled its new campaign in late 2016. It has now been linked to the main Atout France brand, the first French destination to do so.Despite dropping its ‘French Riviera’ moniker, which Eric Doré, Managing Director of the Côte d’Azur France Tourism Board told Travelweek will take a few years to stick, the destination will continue to be known for its glitz, glamour and holiday splendour. But in an effort to expand its appeal to a wider audience, the tourist board is promoting alternative offerings, like gastronomy (cooking classes are available with famous chefs), nature (Côte d’Azur is home to 80 gardens and launched its first garden festival last month), and MICE (it offers 18 convention centres and 60 hotels that can accommodate events).More news: Sunwing to further boost Mazatlán service with new flights from OttawaThe region is also heavily pushing sports tourism; Côte d’Azur is home to Europe’s biggest tennis facility – Mouratoglou Tennis Academy – as well as the new Vesubia Mountain Park, Europe’s biggest indoor canyoning centre. And let’s not forget about Provence’s biggest sporting attraction – the Grand Prix. After a 10-year hiatus, the Grand Prix de France Formula 1 will return to Le Castellet for five sessions between 2018-2022.The forecast for France is definitely bright, especially in light of Macron’s presidential win. According Doré, the mood in France has never been more hopeful.“Macron is very good for tourism,” he said. “We were faced with the choice between an open country versus a closed one, and luckily open won. With Macron as president, hopefully France will remain open.” << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by Tags: Atout France
TORONTO — Transat has launched its latest contest with Travelweek, featuring a stay at the newly refurbished TRS Yucatan.The resort offers 454 rooms including Royal Junior Suites, five unique restaurants, new infinity and exclusive saltwater pools, 24-hour room service and access to all facilities at the neighbouring Grand Palladium Colonial Resort & Spa, Grand Palladium Kantenah Resort & Spa and Grand Palladium White Sand Resort & Spa.TRS YucatanTRS YucatanJunior Suite’s Private PoolTransat offers 43 flights a week to Cancun from 17 gateways, making it easy for clients to get to the adults-only hotel.Click here to enter! Posted by Friday, February 2, 2018 Travelweek Group Tags: Contests, Transat << Previous PostNext Post >> Agents can win a stay at the newly refurbished TRS Yucatan
$4.9 billion ‘people mover’ approved to help passengers get between LAX terminals << Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: Airports, Los Angeles Source: The Associated Press LOS ANGELES — A $4.9 billion contract to design, build and operate an automated people mover at Los Angeles International Airport has been approved by the City Council. It is expected to be operational in 2023 and have a capacity of 10,000 people an hour.The elevated 2 1/4-mile system will have driverless electric trains that carry airline passengers between terminals, a transportation centre and the Metro light-rail system, reducing the number of vehicles that use the airport’s central loop roads.The contract voted on Wednesday goes to a consortium called LAX Integrated Express Solutions, known as LINXS.Bombardier Transportation will provide the operating system, including all vehicles. Thursday, April 12, 2018 Share
Posted by Tags: Carnival Corporation, Seabourn, Seabourn Ovation << Previous PostNext Post >> Share Travelweek Group Record second quarter revenues for Carnival Corporation PLC Monday, June 25, 2018 MIAMI — Carnival Corp. says cumulative forward bookings for the next three quarters are in line with the prior year, at higher prices, continuing the cruise company’s record booking streak.Strong operational results coupled with sustained strength in booking trends have mitigated the impact from unfavorable fuel costs and currency fluctuations, says President and CEO Arnold Donald.Based on current booking trends, the company now expects full year 2018 net revenue yields in constant currency to be up approximately 3% compared to the prior year, better than March guidance of up approximately 2.5%.Changes in fuel prices and currency exchange rates are expected to decrease earnings by $0.19 per share compared to March guidance and $0.13 per share compared to the prior year.The company expects full year 2018 adjusted earnings per share to be in the range of $4.15 to $4.25 compared to 2017 adjusted earnings per share of $3.82.More news: Windstar celebrates record-breaking bookings in July“We delivered another strong quarter, again achieving record adjusted earnings on record revenues and exceeding the high end of our guidance range,” said Donald. “Strong operational execution drove a 30% increase in adjusted earnings affirming the strength of our core strategy to create demand that outpaces measured capacity growth through outstanding guest experience efforts coupled with innovative actions to increase consideration for cruising across all global markets.”Carnival Corp.’s Q2 adjusted net income was US$489 million, up from $378 million in Q2 2017. Revenues for the quarter were $4.4 billion, higher than the $3.9 billion in the prior year.Highlights from the second quarter included the delivery of Carnival Cruise Line’s 26th ship, Carnival Horizon, in March 2018. In April 2018 Seabourn took delivery of its fifth all-suite ship, Seabourn Ovation. Carnival is also doing big business in Cuba. As a result of the strong guest response to sailings to Cuba, Carnival received approval for more than 20 additional calls, bringing the total to 40 calls to Cuba in 2019, departing from home ports in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and Charleston.
No related posts. Representatives of private-sector employers on Monday will present the National Salary Council with a proposal for salary hikes at a hearing set to begin at 4 p.m.During a meeting last week, unions asked for a salary hike of 4 percent for private-sector workers.On Tuesday at 2 p.m., government officials led by the Labor Minister Sandra Piszk also will present a proposal. Two hours later, employer chamber leaders, union representatives and government officials will sit down to discuss each proposal and attempt to reach an agreement.Public-sector salary hikes are scheduled to go into effect on Jan. 1. Facebook Comments
No related posts. By Paul Handley | AFPWASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Federal Reserve kept its easy monetary policies in place Wednesday, saying high unemployment and the government’s sharp spending cuts remain barriers to full recovery from the 2008 crash.The Federal Open Market Committee, the Fed’s policy board, said after a two-day meeting that U.S. economic growth had rebounded from the flat 2012 fourth quarter to a moderate pace in recent months.But with Europe in fresh turmoil and the U.S. government slashing spending to close the fiscal deficit, the FOMC trimmed its 2013 and 2014 economic growth forecasts.The FOMC acknowledged an improvement in the jobs market, and cut its projected unemployment rate to 6.7-7.0 percent by the end of 2014.But Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said that the FOMC still saw risks for the economy.The committee “remains concerned that restrictive fiscal policies may slow economic growth and job creation in coming months,” he said at a news conference after the meeting, referring to the U.S. government’s “sequester” budget cuts that began on March 1.In addition, he said, “at 7.7 percent, the unemployment rate remains elevated.”He noted that higher taxes from the beginning of the year and various measures to cut spending will reduce some 1.5 percentage points from growth this year, “which, of course, is very significant. … So that is an issue for us.”As expected, the FOMC left in place its ultra-low benchmark interest rate of 0-0.25 percent and its quantitative easing (QE) program of $85 billion a month in bond purchases, which aims at holding down longer-term interest rates.Bernanke has repeatedly said in recent months that as long as inflation remains low and unemployment is high, the Fed needs to continue to support growth.Despite some discussion in the FOMC’s January meeting that the QE program is increasingly risky for monetary management, Bernanke said most FOMC members had agreed that the bond purchases “continue to provide meaningful support to economic growth and job creation.”“I think it’s very, very important that we act to address unemployment,” he told reporters.Concerns over whether the prolonged low-rate policy was generating risky behavior again in financial markets “remain manageable,” he said.But he stressed that the FOMC could reel in the asset purchases in the future if conditions changed.“At this meeting, the committee judged that no adjustment was warranted,” he said.Asked about the soaring U.S. stock markets, he said, “We don’t see at this point anything that’s out of line with historical patterns.”The FOMC marginally cut its December growth forecast to 2.3-2.8 percent for this year and 2.9-3.4 percent in 2014.With the outlook for inflation also still low – 1.7 percent at most this year and 2.0 percent at most in 2014 – most FOMC members expected to keep the benchmark interest rate unchanged until 2015.Bernanke meanwhile said the U.S. economy and financial sector were not currently at danger from the crisis in Cyprus, which has sent shivers through the European economy.“At this point we are not seeing a major risk to the U.S. financial system or the U.S. economy,” he said.“There are a lot of uncertainties and difficulties” for Cyprus, he said, after the 10 billion euro ($13 billion) EU-IMF bailout of the island country was left hanging due to the parliament’s rejection of a heavy tax on bank deposits that was a key part of the deal.However, “I don’t think the impact has been enormous” on markets overall, he said, pointing to the rebound Wednesday in U.S. and European markets. Facebook Comments
Costa Ricans living abroad no longer have to go to a consulate or embassy to register to vote or to update an address for the upcoming presidential elections of 2014.The Supreme Elections Tribunal (TSE) launched a digital registration system on their website this week (www.tse.go.cr), where Ticos interested in voting from abroad can complete a registration form with personal information. TSE officials said the online system is completely safe.Besides basic information, voters must provide a digital photograph, a picture of a personal signature and another of a fingerprint on paper. The online form also will ask for the expiration date of personal IDs, or cédulas.Prior to filling out the form, registrants should read and accept a list of conditions and requirements, including descriptions and dimensions of the pictures (personal, signature and fingerprint). An online chat is available Monday-Friday, from 8 a.m.-4 p.m., for assistance in filling out the form, explained Paola Alvarado, TSE coordinator of the vote abroad program.The website also displays information related to the 2014 elections, such as lists of legislative candidates in each province and detailed information on all presidential candidates. Maps and directions to voting centers can also be found on the website.Records from the Immigration Administration indicate that more than 300,000 Costa Ricans live abroad, but the TSE’s latest report says that only 8,700 of them are currently registered to vote.The deadline to register or to change a voting location is Oct. 2. Facebook Comments No related posts.
MEXICO CITY, Mexico — A Coca-Cola advertisement has caused a furor in Mexico as an indigenous group said Wednesday the images of young white people building a Christmas tree in its community had racist connotations. But the U.S. company said the spot’s message was misinterpreted.Coca-Cola pulled the ad from social media websites late Tuesday after complaints emerged over the images. Related posts:Foreign firms compete in historic Mexico oil auction Mexico’s Peña Nieto wants expert debate on marijuana legalization Budget woes threaten Mexico’s reputation as a conservation leader Donald Trump’s hated $23 billion in migrant cash unlocks Mexican credit Human rights organizations and members of the Mixe indigenous group called on the government’s National Council to Prevent Discrimination to sanction the U.S. soft drink company over the ad.The ad shows the youths driving to the village of Totontepec, in southern Oaxaca state, bringing a cooler of Coca-Cola and building a Christmas tree made of the red-top bottles under the theme “Let’s stay united.”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MqjiJOxeljo“This type of ad promotes acts of discrimination and racism,” said Elvira Pablo, who is Mixe and a member of Aser Litigio, a group that defends the rights of indigenous communities.The ad, Pablo added, “promotes a rupture of the social fabric by trying to impose a consumer culture which is foreign to the communities.”Aser Litigio and other non-governmental organizations, including Consumer Power and the Friar Francisco de Vitoria Center, a human rights group, urged the authorities to take action because the ad reinforces “stereotypes that consider indigenous people as culturally and racially inferior.”Coca-Cola said in a statement to AFP that the Christmas campaign in the Mixe town sought to “give a message of union and happiness between communities.”“We never sought to offend or belittle this or any other indigenous group,” the statement said, adding that Coca-Cola has worked on promoting messages of unity and friendship in its nearly 90-year presence in Mexico.“We deeply regret that the message was misinterpreted, when our intention was exactly the opposite of the criticism we received,” it said. Facebook Comments
Related posts:Costa Rica hopes to clinch World Cup berth against a carefree Mexico Keylor: Costa Rica is ready to classify Mexico defeats Costa Rica 3-2 in international friendly The 5 greatest moments in Costa Rican soccer history Costa Rica lost 0-1 to Tunisia on Tuesday in a sluggish performance for the Men’s National Team, otherwise known asLa Sele.Tunisian captain Wahbi Khazri scored the winning goal in the 35th minute, defeating Costa Rican defender Kendall Waston and star goalie Keylor Navas. The deft and high-energy throughout the game by the Tunisian squad didn’t allow La Sele room to think or set up plays.However the most colorful moments of the game were generated not among the players, but among the fans: joyful Tunisian supporters lit fires in the stands and flooded the field after the game. Take a look at the faceoff, which took place in Nice, France. Keylor Navas defends the Costa Rican goal early in the game. AFP Photo / Valery Hache Tunisian forward Wahbi Khazri (center) scores a goal despite the best efforts of Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas in the 35th minute. AFP Photo / Valery Hache They should call this resting goalie face. AFP Photo / Valery Hache Wahbi Khazri celebrates his goal. AFP Photo / Valery Hache Smoke fills the field after fans light flares to celebrate Tunisia’s success. AFP Photo / Valery Hache Tunisian supporters celebrate on the pitch after their team’s win. AFP Photo / Valery Hache Teams rush the field after the game. AFP Photo / Valery Hache Facebook Comments
Related posts:Fighting for women’s issues with art Jaguars: a symbol of Costa Rica Saving tropical forests together Things you can learn from a soccer game In 2016, The Tico Times listed Playa Punta Uva as one of our favorite spots in Costa Rica. Playa Punta Uva, one of Costa Rica’s most beautiful beaches. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico TimesHere’s how Karl Kahler, our former travel writer, explained the choice:In the year 2000 I visited Costa Rica with my 10-year-old son for a whirlwind tour of the country arranged by my brother, who had just moved here. We rafted the Pacuare, drove to the Caribbean town of Puerto Viejo, and the next day went to Playa Punta Uva.So far I had only seen the “beaches” of Puerto Jiménez in the Osa — dark sand, rocks, sticks, mangroves and mud, and I was not much impressed. But here I stood staring as if at a miracle.The sand was sugary white, the sea a shimmering turquoise, the sky solid blue. Yet on the horizon, there was a perfect semicircle of vast thunderclouds, evidence of storms much too far away to ruin our day.Behind me was a picturesque line of green palm trees with white trunks and orange coconuts, all of them leaning toward the ocean, toward me. For a while I turned in circles, taking it in from every angle.It was the most beautiful place I’d ever seen.I’ve seen a lot of nice beaches in Costa Rica since then, but none has ever made the same impression on me. It’s not the kind of favorite place that I return to often, more like one I carry in my heart — my forever vision of the quintessential Costa Rica.What’s your favorite spot in Costa Rica? Send us your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org.This story was made possible thanks to The Tico Times 5 % Club. If only 5 percent our readers donated at least $2 a month, we’d have our operating costs covered and could focus on bringing you more original reporting from around Costa Rica. We work hard to keep our reporting independent and groundbreaking, but we can only do it with your help. Join The Tico Times 5% Club and help make stories like this one possible.Support the Tico Times Facebook Comments
Top holiday drink recipes BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) – The United States and Argentina are accusing each other of unfair trade barriers before the World Trade Organization.U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk announced Tuesday that the Obama administration is taking action against Argentina’s habit of denying automatic licenses for imports of all goods flowing into the country.Kirk says Argentina’s arbitrary measures are keeping out more than 600 kinds of U.S. goods, everything from auto parts to laptops to paper products. Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Top Stories Japan and the European Union have filed similar cases with the WTO, saying Argentina is violating the rules as it tries to protect its economy.Argentina says the U.S. has a double standard because it blocks beef and lemons from the South American country, which is now preparing its own case for the WTO.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Patients with chronic pain give advice Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Parents, stop beating yourself up Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Comments Share
Top Stories The vital role family plays in society Four benefits of having a wireless security system Comments Share Earlier Saturday, police in Sicily detained a suspected migrant smuggler who they said had tried a new tactic of putting only a few passengers aboard a small boat in a bid to land undetected on Italian shores. Ragusa police said a Tunisian man was detained for investigation of smuggling after 12 fellow Tunisians aboard a wooden boat told authorities he promised to sail them to an isolated beach near Trapani, western Sicily, at night so they could slip away undetected. Instead, police say the suspect bungled the route and was spotted by an Italian naval vessel.Separately, a Gambian skipper suspected of smuggling 116 African migrants was detained by Italian police.___Associated Press Writer Jill Lawless contributed to this report from London.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Also aboard the Bulwark, part of a multi-nation patrol and rescue force, was British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon. “We could see hundreds of thousands trying to cross this summer,” Fallon told reporters who asked about the captain’s half-million figure.During Saturday, a total of 3,480 migrants had been safely rescued in 15 separate operations, the Italian coast guard said. Calls for help went out via satellite phone earlier in the day from the smugglers boats, which included six rubber dinghies and nine fishing boats, all some 45 miles (72 kilometers) off the Libyan shoreline, the coast guard statement said.Pitching in to save the migrants were Italian coast guard, navy and border police boats and aircraft, a tug boat, two German military ships, the Hessen and the Berlin, and an Irish naval ship LE Eithne.One Italian navy ship, the Vega, rescued hundreds of migrants from five boats alone on Saturday. Another Italian naval vessel, the Driade, rescued 560 migrants, while the LE Eithne, rescued 310 people, a day after it saved 113 migrants.Fallon said Europe needed to “pool intelligence, get after the gangs themselves” which are based in Libya and organize the smuggling. Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies 5 greatest Kentucky Derby finishes Sponsored Stories “We can try to cut off their financing. People are making money out of misery, and we can do more there track down the money.”About 170,000 migrants were rescued at sea last year by Italy. If the British estimates prove true, this year’s arrivals could far outstrip last year’s.Italian authorities investigating the Libya-based smuggling operations say reliable intelligence is hard to come by, given that Western diplomats have long left Libya, wracked by violence following the 2011 demise of the Moammar Gadhafi regime. Rival governments command different parts of the country, and tribal and militia clashes aggravate the chaos.Italy has pressed European partners to do more to help it rescue and shelter masses of migrants fleeing poverty, persecution and conflicts in Africa, the Middle East and Asia.So far this year, tens of thousands of migrants have arrived in Italy, with many rescued by vessels from Ireland, Malta, Britain and elsewhere. Italy’s coast guard frequently dispatches nearby cargo ships to go to the rescue. Humanitarian organizations also help with rescues at sea, which often occur when smugglers set sail in a dozen or more boats when seas are calm. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober ROME (AP) — Naval vessels from Italy, Britain, Ireland and other countries steamed toward the waters off Libya on Saturday to rescue the latest wave of migrants from smugglers’ boats. British authorities warned that up to 500,000 people could attempt the perilous crossing this summer.Capt. Nick Cooke-Priest, on the British warship HMS Bulwark, told reporters aboard: “Indications are there that there are 450,000 to 500,000 migrants in Libya who are waiting at the border” for voyage from the North African country’s Mediterranean coast in hopes of reaching Italian shores.
Comments Share Sponsored Stories 4 sleep positions for men and what they mean Patients with chronic pain give advice The vital role family plays in society MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) — A second person in Liberia has died from Ebola in the latest resurgence of the deadly disease in the West African nation, an official said Wednesday.The woman in her early 20s who died on July 12 was linked to the 17-year-old boy who died last month, Deputy Health Minister Tolbert Nyenswah told The Associated Press. Three other confirmed cases are being treated in Monrovia, he said.Some of the more than 120 people under observation in Nedowein, southeast of Monrovia, could be discharged once they complete 21 days of quarantine and show no signs of infection, he said. “By the weekend we should be having a big ceremony to discharge and reintegrate them into the community,” he said.Liberia lost more than 4,800 lives to Ebola before it contained transmission in May. These are the first known cases since then.Samples taken from the 17-year-old boy who died from Ebola in Liberia on June 28 shows the virus is genetically similar to viruses that infected many people in the same area more than six months ago, the World Health Organization has said.That finding by genetic sequencing suggests it is unlikely the virus was caught from travel to infected areas of Guinea or Sierra Leone, where the virus is hanging on, or from an animal, the organization said. The Ebola outbreak has killed more than 11,200 people, mostly in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.Nyenswah said early action to monitor contacts and isolate those that are sick means that Liberia is “in control of the outbreak.”The virus spreads through direct contact with an Ebola patient’s blood or other body fluids. Once patients recover, health officials say they aren’t contagious, except it could still be in semen. The bodies of people killed by Ebola are also highly infectious. Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies FILE – In this Tuesday, June 30, 2015, file photo health workers wash their hands after taking a blood specimen from a child to test for the Ebola virus in a area were a 17-year old boy died from the virus on the outskirts of Monrovia, Liberia. Deputy Health Minister and head of the Ebola response, Tolbert Nyenswah, told The Associated Press the woman in her early 20s who died on July 12 was linked to the 17-year-old boy who died last month. (AP Photo/ Abbas Dulleh,File) Top Stories Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Mesa family survives lightning strike to home
Indonesia’s national carrier, Garuda Indonesia, was named the ‘World’s Most Improved Airline’ at the Skytrax 2010 World Airline Awards in Hamburg, Germany. The Skytrax World Airline Awards is the airline industry’s most comprehensive and prestigious measure of service quality and is based on survey results from nearly 18 million international passengers. The survey measures passenger satisfaction with some 35 different aspects of product and service delivery, involving more than 200 airlines worldwide.According to a statement published by the organisation, Edward Plaisted, Chairman of Skytrax said “This was a very competitive category in the 2010 Awards, and our sincere congratulations go to Garuda Indonesia on their success. It is clear that a real process of transformation has become well progressed at Garuda Indonesia, and aside from new aircraft and new onboard products, it was improvements in onboard service that were most frequently commented upon by survey respondents.” The Skytrax award recognises the success of Garuda Indonesia’s ongoing transformation programme, and its progress towards becoming one of Asia’s most successful and profitable airlines. Recent landmarks include the introduction of a new aircraft fleet, new in-flight product, new on-board service concept and a fresh corporate identity. Garuda Indonesia was recently awarded the Skytrax 4-star rating and aims to achieve the coveted 5-star standard.“This prestigious award endorses our efforts to transform the airline and to deliver the highest standards of service to our passengers on the ground and in the air. Garuda’s financial turnaround over the last three years has played an integral part and was very much the foundation for its improvements in service, training and overall quality”, said Agus Priyanto, Executive Vice President Commercial, Garuda Indonesia. He added: “With the re-launch of long-haul flights to Europe on 1st June, we are truly entering a new era of success for Garuda Indonesia”.As part of its ‘Quantum Leap’ transformation programme, Garuda Indonesia has invested heavily in developing a service concept known as the ‘Garuda Indonesia Experience’. This combines warm Indonesian hospitality with elements of the country’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, reflected in the on-board decor, staff uniforms, food and beverages. Its new aircraft fleet features seatback video-on-demand systems throughout Executive and Economy classes, while the long-haul Airbus A330-200s are equipped with lie-flat beds in Executive Class. Agus Priyanto, Executive Vice President Commercial of Garuda Indonesia receiving the ‘World’s Most Improved Airline’ award from Edward Plaisted, Chairman of Skytrax at the World Airline Awards ceremony which took place in Hamburg on 20th May 2010. Source = Garuda Indonesia
IATA estimates Asia Pacific airlines will generate a USD $3.2 billion net profit, representing a USD $2.98 net profit per passenger. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is expecting that airlines will record USD $18 billion in combined net profits for 2014, down 3.74 percent from USD $18.7 billion last year, with revenues forecast to reach USD $746 billion in total. Air travel grew in April but air freight demand continues to moderate, in line with this year’s weakening world trade growth. Source = ETB News: Lana Bogunovich Worldwide airline share prices grew five percent in May compared to April, mainly due to the US airlines’ strong financial performance for the first quarter of 2014, while airlines in the Asia Pacific showed weakness, mainly linked to Chinese carriers and the weakening Yuan. Meanwhile, the number of passengers is expected to grow to 3.3 billion, an increase of 5.9 percent, meaning airlines would earn just USD $5.42 per passenger. European airlines are expected to generate USD $2.8 billion net profit, while Middle East airlines are forecast to report net profits of USD $1.6 billion. Jet fuel prices are stable and continue to remain high due to a variety of factors keeping crude oil prices tight.
Greek Tourism Industry Could SufferThroughout the summer months Greece is one of Europe’s highest-ranking tourist destinations, with travellers from across the continent visiting the popular holiday location. With tourism as Greece’s number one source of income travel search engine GoEuro (www.GoEuro.com) recognise the importance of understanding European perceptions of the current economic and political situation, and whether it would affect potential tourist’s plans to visit. We polled 22,500* Europeans to better understand the effect this may have on visitor numbers.Countries less affected by economic crisis in recent years are more deterred by Greece’s current situation The perception of Greece in countries such as the UK, France, Germany or the Netherlands seemed to be more negative due to the current situation, whilst countries which were more disturbed by the Europe-wide economic crisis – which began in 2008 – appeared to have less of a negative view of Greece as a tourist destination. 72% of Germans who travelled to Greece in the last five years revealed that the financial/political situation affected their perception of the country in a negative way. Spaniards on the other hand were less likely to view the situation so negatively, with up to 93% stating that it did not affect their perception of Greece. Main Tourist markets less likely to visit Greece The negative perception has also affected the willingness of several important tourist markets to visit Greece. Holiday-makers from Germany, France and the UK who have already visited in the past five years are now less likely to revisit due to the current situation. Nevertheless other European nationalities revealed the situation wouldn’t affect plans to visit and in the case of visitors from Spain it could even motivate revisiting.Furthermore a similar pattern of negative perception is seen in those travelers who haven’t visited Greece recently, with more emphasis from Spaniards, Italians and Portuguese who seemed more attracted to the country due to the current situation.*2500 in each country polled, all Internet users who had travelled in the past 24 months outside their country of residence.Source = GoEuro
Expedia.com®, one of the world’s largest full-service online travel sites, has released the Australian results of the Expedia® 2015 Insiders’ Select® rankings, an annual crowd-sourced list of the world’s best-reviewed hotels.This list represents a ranking of the world’s best-reviewed hotels, reflecting direct customer feedback on Expedia, Inc. websites worldwide.The 2015 list names four Australian properties among 650 exclusive properties as Insiders’ Select winning hotels from among bookable properties available on Expedia, Inc. websites worldwide. Insiders’ Select is now in its eighth year.The 2015 class of Insiders’ Select hotels reflects more than two million customer Verified Reviews. Verified Reviews have been confirmed by Expedia as linked to a traveller who booked a stay at that hotel on Expedia websites around the world.The winning hotels were called out as those that consistently deliver value, in the form of competitive pricing, pristine amenities and superior customer service, and by maintaining a minimum guest review score of 4.7 out of 5.The top-ranked Australian property to make the list was the 4.5-star Xanadu Main Beach Resort on the Gold Coast. The Quay West Suites and Hotel Lindrum in Melbourne also made the list. The final Australian property to be recognised was the Mantra Boathouse Apartments at Airlie Beach in The Whitsundays.Kelly Cull, Expedia.com.au Travel Expert, said: “It’s encouraging to see four Australian hotels recognised by the global Expedia community as world-class, delivering an outstanding guest experience time and time again.”“By aggregating feedback from millions of customers, we are able to give our customers information they need to make planning and booking their holidays easier.”This year’s list of top 10 hotels features an array of global destinations, from Bermuda to Italy to Japan. The picturesque Royal Palm Hotel, a 4-star property in Bermuda, tops the list, followed by Calenga Apartments in gorgeous Dubrovnik, Croatia. US hotels account for 50% of the top list of 650 properties, up from 37% in 2014.The top 10 hotels in the 2015 Insiders’ Select list are:1. Royal Palms Hotel, Bermuda2. Calenga Apartments, Dubrovnik, Croatia3. Pumilio Mountain & Ocean Hotel, Costa Rica4. Woolleys Classic Suites, Denver, United States5. Dormy Inn Sapporo Annex, Sapporo, Japan6. B+B Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom7. Hotel Panorama, Olbia, Italy8. Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa, Koh Phangan, Thailand9. Hotel Orion Motobu Resort & Spa, Motobu, Japan10. Best Western Premier Weinebrugge, Bruges, Belgium Find more Insiders’ Select properties on ExpediaSource = Expedia
Korean Air continues to support local communities around the worldKorean Air continues to support local communities around the worldKorean Air employees worked alongside 50 local residents of Bicol Region, Philippines, for seven days from 21 to 27 August, to provide aid to the local community. Bicol, a remote peninsula in the northern part of the island of Luzon, was severely struck by Typhoon Rammasun in July 2014. The typhoon caused widespread devastation, with many people still living in unsafe conditions to this day.A team of Korean Air employees volunteered to help build shelters and provide free meals for the students of elementary schools and residents of slum suburbs in Bicol. The Korean Air volunteers also installed solar-powered street lamps to improve public safety. As part of its annual corporate ‘Happiness’ campaign, staff from Seoul Head Quarters surprised the volunteers by arriving to cheer them on and to supply refreshments and snacks.In the same week, Korean Air held a ‘donation ceremony’ on 25 August at the 125th National School in Baganuur, Mongolia, to present the school with thirty computers and accompanying desks and chairs. Korean Air’s yearly computer donation program started in 2013 when it provided thirty computers for the Bolovsrol School in Mongolia. The aim of Korean Air’s donation program is to enable Mongolian students to keep up with technology and learn the skills to enable them to become computer literate.Korean Air has also continued to roll out its ‘Global Planting Project’, which has seen the planting of trees in Baganuur since 2004. The schools selected for Korean Air’s computer donation have also participated in this project in the past. The Korean Air Forest in the Baganuur area, now extends to 440,000 square meters consisting of some 90,000 trees.Korean Air has continually assisted communities in need through an array of programs spread out across the different markets where it flies. In September last year, Korean Air provided relief goods to those affected by floods in Myanmar. Goods delivered to the country include 1,800 liters of water and 500 blankets. Last April, Korean Air delivered relief goods to earthquake victims in Kathmandu, Nepal. Aid included 24,000 bottles of mineral water, 2,000 blankets, dried rice and other foods. Korean Air will continue to roll out corporate social responsibility programs at home and abroad, in support of protecting the environment, maintaining sustainable development and supporting local communities.About Korean AirKorean Air, established in 1969, is one of the world’s top 20 airlines and carried more than 24 million passengers in 2015. Korean Air operates in excess of 462 flights per day to 131 cities in 46 countries on six continents with a fleet of 159 aircraft including ten A380s.With its modern aircraft and over 20,000 professional employees, Korean Air offers customers safety, convenience and comfort. Korean Air’s award-winning offerings of Korean and Western meals and state-of-the-art inflight entertainment system provide passengers with a memorable inflight experience.The airline is a founding member of the Sky Team airline alliance which together with its 20 members, offers its 612 million annual passengers a worldwide system of more than 16,320 daily flights covering 1,052 destinations in 177 countries.Korean Air introduced the double-decker A380 aircraft to its fleet in 2011 and made the interior more spacious than any other airline, with just 407 seats spread across three classes, with the top deck dedicated to ‘Prestige’ business class. The design also features the world’s first onboard ‘Duty Free Showcase’ and three bar lounges.Source = Korean Air
British Airways unveils plans for JFK Terminal 7British Airways unveils plans for JFK Terminal 7New CGI images give customers a first glimpse of what the terminal will look like following a more than £52 million ($65 million) investment, which will transform the airport experience for the thousands of customers that use it each week.The New York airport modernisation project follows a series of recent investment announcements by the airline, including a £400 million upgrade to Club World, the introduction of Club Europe cabins on domestic flights, new world-class lounge refurbishments, a new First Wing at Heathrow Terminal 5 in London, as well as latest generation WiFi on long-haul and short-haul fleets, self-service check-in and biometric boarding gates to speed up the airport journey.The redesign at JFK will be complete at the end of 2018, revealing a spacious, modern new check-in concourse with a separate Club World and First area, designed with customer privacy in mind. The intimate space will draw inspiration from The First Wing which recently opened at Heathrow Terminal 5 and the new premium check-in area at Gatwick’s South Terminal.Business class, First customers and Gold and Silver Executive Club card holders will benefit from completely regenerated lounges with more space and restaurant-style pre-flight dining. The Concorde Room, which is available for First customers, will also undergo a refresh.Abigail Comber, British Airways’ head of customer, said: “We are currently working behind-the-scenes with top architects and designers to create a beautiful new space for our customers to relax, dine and work in before they take off. The new environment at Terminal 7 is designed for our customers to enjoy a smoother, faster and more relaxed airport experience. This will involve significantly increasing the number of people we can seat for in-flight dining, re-styling the space and adding new lighting, bars and furniture.“We recently opened our new lounge at Boston and next year we’ll be turning our attention to Aberdeen and Rome. Geneva will also be expanded and further investment is planned in San Francisco, Chicago, Johannesburg and Manchester.”Customers in all cabins will be able to enjoy a range of cuisines and refreshments at Terminal 7, inspired by New York’s eclectic street food scene. Classic American comfort food including burgers and gourmet sandwiches using premium ingredients will be served along with Japanese dishes made to order.The investment will include:An enhanced, spacious check-in area for a fast, efficient customer journey.An exclusive new premium check-in zone with fast-track security lane.Redesigned and updated lounges with more space to relax, dine, and work.The introduction of an authentic New York culinary experience with local food and beverage concepts to satisfy a variety of tastes.An immersive retail environment for duty free shopping and concessions.New gate seating areas with additional power outlets, designed for customer comfort and convenience.About British Airways’ 2017 Investment PlanBritish Airways has launched its multi-million pound investment plan to benefit its customers with a focus on excellence in the premium cabins and more choice and quality for all.Four hundred million pounds will be spent on Club World with an emphasis on improved catering and sleep, and a new seat in the future. At Heathrow a First Wing check-in area with direct security and lounge access has launched, and lounges around the airline’s network are to be revamped and improved. The Club Europe cabin has also been introduced on UK domestic services and all customers can look forward to the latest generation Wi-Fi across British Airways’ long-haul and short-haul fleets over the next two years. British Airwaysbook flights hereSource = British Airways
(Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Fincantieri executives together triggered the steel-cutting torch to commence the construction of Seven Seas Splendor at Fincantieri’s Ancona shipyard in Italy. Pictured from left to right are: Giovanni Stecconi, shipyard director for Fincantieri; Franco Semeraro, senior vice president of hotel operations for Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises; Jason Montague, president and chief executive officer of Regent Seven Seas Cruises; and Robin Lindsay, executive vice president of Vessel Operations, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.Regent Seven Seas Cruises cuts steel at Ancona for Seven Seas SplendorConstruction of the ship that will elevate the standard for all-inclusive luxury has begun. Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ President and Chief Executive Officer Jason Montague, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings’ Executive Vice President of Vessel Operations Robin Lindsay, Regent’s Senior Vice President of Hotel Operations Franco Semeraro and Fincantieri’s Shipyard Director Giovanni Stecconi today pressed the button to ignite the cutting torch at Fincantieri Ancona to shape the first plate of steel for Seven Seas Splendor. The new 750-guest ship will join the Regent fleet in early 2020, in pursuit of the ultimate achievement – perfection.“This is truly an exciting moment for us and we are delighted to work with the skillful engineers of Fincantieri Shipyard to build our new ship that will again raise the standards of luxury for the industry,” said Mr. Montague. “Regent has been committed to delivering the most beautiful destinations with impeccable personalized service aboard elegant and intimately spacious ships for more than 25 years. With the first steel cut for Seven Seas Splendor in Ancona, we are now underway to realizing our plans for the new ship that will perfect luxury.”The inaugural season for the all-suite, all-balcony ship will go on sale in April. Seven Seas Splendor will join Regent’s most luxurious fleet in the world comprising Seven Seas Explorer, Seven Seas Voyager, Seven Seas Mariner, and Seven Seas Navigator.About Regent Seven Seas CruisesRegent Seven Seas Cruises is the world’s most inclusive luxury experience with a four-ship fleet that visits more than 450 destinations around the world. Seven Seas Mariner’s upcoming 2018 drydock refurbishment will conclude Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ USD$125 million refurbishment program to elevate the elegance of the whole fleet to the standard set by Seven Seas Explorer. In early 2020, Regent will perfect luxury with the launch of Seven Seas Splendor. The cruise line’s fares include all-suite accommodation, the largest collection of free, unlimited shore excursions, unlimited internet access, highly personalised service, exquisite cuisine, fine wines and spirits, prepaid gratuities, ground transfers and one-night, pre-cruise hotel package for guests staying in Concierge-level suites and higher.To book your next cruise with Regent Seven Seas Cruises, please call 1300 455 200 (AU) or 0800 625 692 (NZ), visit www.rssc.com or contact your preferred Travel Agent.For the latest news, please visit www.RSSC.com/news; like the line’s Facebook page; and follow @RegentCruises on Twitter. Regent Seven Seas Cruises is a brand of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE: NCLH)About FincantieriFincantieri is one of the world’s largest shipbuilding groups and number one by diversification and innovation. It is leader in cruise ship design and construction and a reference player in all high-tech shipbuilding industry’s sectors, from naval to offshore vessels, from high-complexity special vessels and ferries to mega-yachts, ship repairs and conversions, systems and components production and after-sales services.Headquartered in Trieste (Italy), the Group has built more than 7,000 vessels in over 230 years of maritime history. With more than 19,400 employees, of whom more than 8,200 in Italy, 20 shipyards in 4 continents, today Fincantieri is the leading Western shipbuilder. It has among its clients the major cruise operators, the Italian and the U.S. Navy, in addition to several foreign navies, and it is partner of some of the main European defense companies within supranational programmes.Source = Regent Seven Seas Cruises