Garuda Indonesia announced it will increase flights on the Sydney to Jakarta route to keep up with growing demand. The airline said it would add four extra flights per week, increasing it from three to seven per week, Spice News reported. According to the source, its decision to add extra trips on the route came after passenger capacity from Sydney to Jakarta surpassed capacity to Bali by up to ten percent in November and December last year. Garuda Indonesia senior Australia general manager Bagus Y Siregar said the airline’s decision to add flights on the route demonstrates its support in tourism to Jakarta. “We foresee that… with daily services from Sydney to Jakarta we will provide our customers with endless opportunity for travel and encourage the continued growth of Jakarta not only as popular Indonesian destination but as Asia’s newest gateway to the globe,” he said.The carrier also recently said it would increase its trips between Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta this month, using the Boeing 737-800NG to service the route. Garuda Indonesia increases flights to Sydney from three to seven per week Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J
page from the book of Kells Source = e-Travel Blackboard: S.P Ireland’s Minister for tourism Leo Varadkar has announced four major tourism projects across the state will receive a total of €6 million to boost the state’s tourism sector.The book of Kells at Trinity College is set to receive the largest single amount of €2.7 million to develop the state’s most famous visitor attraction, “the book of Kells experience’.The other three projects to receive funding include Garnish Island in Cork which will receive €2.4 million, funding of €430,353 will be used for a mountain bike trail in Killarney and €212,250 will go toward developing camping facilities at Lough Rynn in Co Leitrim.Tourism Minister Leo Varadkar said some 180,000 jobs in the republic are in the tourism sector and the industry is showing steady improvement with tourism numbers up almost ten per cent this year.“The book of Kells with 500,000 visitors a year is one of the top five visitor attractions in the State where people actually pay to come into it, it made sense that the attraction is updated and the visitor experience is improved,” The Minister said.The Minister also warned that there will be less money in the future as in the past few years Fáilte Ireland has invested 60 million on 39 projects.“I’m delighted that these projects are definitely going ahead even though the money will be drawn over a number of years, but it’s going to be a lot tighter from here,” The Minister said.Minister of the State Michael Ring said tourists are spoilt for choice with international destinations and we need to make Ireland stand out. “We must do all we can to ensure that Ireland is firmly on the international tourist map and a very desirable location to visit and investing in high quality projects like these is part of the effort,” Mr Ring said.
Alex Mead, Editor of Food and Travel says ‘More than 20,000 votes were cast by our readers to nominate the best of the best across the food and travel industries and so we have thoroughly deserved winners. It really was a celebration of some incredible people, places and companies’. As well as ‘Hotel of the Year’, where Gidleigh Park was up against international hotels such as Shangri La, Paris and La Mamounia, Marrakech and iconic UK country and city hotels such as The Goring, London and The Grove, Pembrokeshire, Gidleigh Park also won the accolade of ‘Rural Hotel of the Year’. Michael Caines MBE, Executive Chef at Gidleigh Park and Operational Partner and Director of Brownsword Hotels says ‘We are thrilled to have been awarded both ‘Rural Hotel of the Year’ and ‘Hotel of the Year’ at the very first Food and Travel Reader Awards. Gidleigh Park has been my pride and joy since I was appointed chef in 1994 and the team at the hotel work extremely hard to deliver an exceptional and memorable experience for each and every guest. We are delighted to receive such wonderful recognition.’ Gidleigh Park is delighted to announce it has been awarded ‘Hotel of the Year’ at the inaugural Food and Travel Reader Awards held at The Royal Automobile Club on London’s Pall Mall on 3 September 2012. Gidleigh Park Hotel is accredited by Relais and Châteaux – The ultimate in country house escapes, set within 107 acres of mature woodland and grounds within the Dartmoor National Park on the banks of the North Teign River, Gidleigh Park is a beautiful house created in the Arts and Crafts style country with 24 luxurious rooms. Home to Michael Caines (MBE) Two-Michelin star restaurant and an award winning cellar, the hotel also offers an 18 hole putting course designed by Peter Alliss, croquet lawn, bowling green and tennis court. The grounds provide stunning walks and fishing is permitted in the river. Source = Gidleigh Park All around the world, unique in the world ‘Special mentions must go to the owners, Andrew and Christina Brownsword and General Manager Andrew Foulkes who work hard at keeping the standards high whilst creating a relaxed environment.’
…… Ms Austin still has a hold on lovers 200 years later, with selected Toga Hotels offering a very special Valentine’s Day opportunity: free accommodation on the 14th of February!Before you start packing your bags and dragging your partner to the nearest Toga Hotel, the Jane Austin part of the deal kicks in – to claim the offer the couple must be named Elizabeth Bennet and Mr Darcy and yes proof of identification is required.If your love isn’t straight out of a storybook then Toga still has something to offer you with selected Adina Apartment, Travelodge and Vibe Hotels selling special Valentine’s Day packages that include boxes of chocolates, wines and late-check outs. Ms Austin would be proud. Image: flickr.com Source = e-Travel Blackboard: A.N
Travellers want to use their smartphonesat 35,000 feet. Image: pixabay.com Attention airlines: the people have spoken and they want their phones back!According to a recent study conducted by One Poll on behalf of AeroMobile, over 70 percent of the surveyed British travellers said that they would use their mobile phones in the air, if they could.Surprisingly, travellers were not actually interested in making or receiving calls, with only 19 percent saying they wanted to talk on the phone, while the rest said they would want to use their mobiles for texting and social media (almost half of the people surveyed) as well as online gaming ( a third of those surveyed).Under 35s were leading the technological demand with over 80 percent stating that they would use their phones during a flight, compared to just over half of over 55s.Women were found be more likely to use their phones for social media, whilst men needed their phones for making and receiving in-flight calls.How much would you pay to use your mobile phone at 35,000 feet? Source = e-Travel Blackboard: A.N.
Road, rail travel and river cruising has been ‘severely disrupted’ in parts of Germany, according to the German National Tourism Board (GNTO), after major flooding in the country.Although rainfall has now stopped, a destination update from GNTO said the flooding situation remains critical, particularly along major rivers, and has caused limitations in tourism movement.Currently, town centres in Lower Bavaria remain closed, in East Germany water levels of the river Elbe in Saxony continues to rise and the peak flood wave is still to come in the state of Saxony-Anhalt.Towns and cities on the river Elbe in Brandenburg and Lower Saxony are also preparing themselves for rising water levels and potential flooding over the coming days.Meanwhile, the situation in Upper Bavaria has mostly returned to normal and clean-up operations are under way in Passau.Click here for more information on disruptions to river cruising in Germany.Source = e-Travel Blackboard: NJ Travel restrictions are still to be expected.Image: Sturm Demotix
Review Express Dashboard free for businesses. Businesses that utilise TripAdvisor’s Review Express platform can now access a new dashboard containing performance data, for free.TripAdvisor launched the Review Express Dashboard as an enhancement to the already popular Review Express product, following overwhelming and extensive user feedback.Through the Dashboard, TripAdvisor businesses gain access to a summary of the effectiveness of their review collection campaigns, coupled with ratings, which are continuously updated.Businesses will have the ability to see the total number of campaigns processed, the number of emails sent and statistics including the number of clicks and the rate of email openings.“Having greater insights into the impact of their campaigns gives business owners the chance to maximize the value of Review Express to their business,” TripAdvisor vice president of global partnerships Severine Philardeau said.“The dashboard enables them to track their Review Express campaigns and analyse how their efforts are helping their business. It’s easy to comprehend and displays valuable insights in a clear format.”Source = ETB News: P.T.
In a massive boost to South Australia’s visitor economy, “the world’s five-star airline” Qatar Airways has announced it will fly direct into Adelaide from May next year.Tourism Minister Leon Bignell said the announcement by the 2015 Best Airline in the World was a global vote of confidence in Adelaide and South Australia.The daily flights are estimated to generate an additional AU$41 million into visitor economy and create 228 jobs across the state.“In this year’s State Budget our government injected a record AU$35 million into the tourism portfolio to attract additional major events and conventions and to market SA,” Mr Bignell said.“Qatar Airways will be flying the most modern plane in the world to Adelaide – the Airbus A350-900.“Qatar Airways flies to more than 140 destinations around the world and will provide Adelaide with flights from the Middle East, Europe, India and the east coast of the United States.“Qatar is the richest country in the world per capita and this relationship will help boost our trade opportunities.“Adelaide is famous for its premium food and wine and the daily Qatar flight will mean more people from right around the world will be able to fly here to experience our magnificent wildlife and natural beauty.“The state’s seafood industry will also be a big winner with departing flights carrying the world’s finest lobster and other seafood as fresh cargo to Qatar and beyond.”Mr Bignell thanked Adelaide Airport and the South Australian Tourism Commission for their hard work on securing the new flights.Adelaide Airport Managing Director Mark Young said the decision was excellent news for both our tourism industry and South Australians travelling abroad.“The Qatar Airways Doha-Adelaide service opens up a brand new link with the Middle East, and provides excellent connections further afield such as with Europe and the UK.“Qatar Airways will be flying the new-generation Airbus A350-900 aircraft which made its inaugural commercial flight just this year, so we’re getting one of the most technologically advanced twin-engine aircraft in the world.” Qatar AirwaysSource = South Australia Government
Source = TravelManagers Chairman – Barry Mayo Personal Travel Managers are the Future of TravelPersonal Travel Managers are the Future of TravelSince the arrival of the Internet there has long been talk of many, so-called experts sounding the death knell of the traditional bricks and mortar travel agents. As recently as last week following Airbnb expanding its ‘Trips’ service beyond accommodation commencing with Sydney experiences, Webjets’ Managing Director John Guscic commented in The Australian Financial Review that “… the underlying role of the traditional travel agent is arguably in decline…”TravelManagers’ Chairman Barry Mayo is quick to point out that his company has the Internet to thank for its existence.“It was the internet, the great enabler of modern connectivity that created the opportunity for Online Travel Agents to evolve and ironically, it was also the Internet and related technology enhancements that also created the opening for TravelManagers and the personal travel manager concept to be born. Travel is one sector that is very much moving forward. TravelManagers choose to embrace rather than fight the digital revolution and by using the Internet as an effective business tool the company has grown and prospered exponentially.”Mayo is confident personal service is still extremely important in a growing technological world.“With more than 510 personal travel managers throughout the country TravelManagers the only truly national home-based host agency, attributes its key to success being the personal and consistent service delivery and the enthusiasm for the tailoring of travel arrangements to individual client’s tastes and demands.”Mayo further adds, “service is the key in this internet age with the personal travel manager genuinely looking out for what is in their clients’ best interests. Providing individual tailor made experiences, and having your own personal travel manager is what sets a personal travel manager apart from many traditional travel agents and sole online providers,” says Mayo.TravelManagers is in the enviable position of being the market leader and at the forefront, not only of home-based consulting but of providing essential support services to clients as well.“TravelManagers is a 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year business. Our state of the art technology allowing the ability to access and process every aspect of a client’s booking at any time is critical to deliver on our promise of exceptional client service. With our continued advanced technology focus and personal travel manager knowledge and experience, our clients receive the best travel experiences and value for money holidays that is unrivalled in the industry,” says Mayo.Mayo is proud that TravelManagers’ personal travel managers go the extra mile for clients.“Our personal travel managers do more than just book flights and accommodation, our commitment is to ensuring clients have the best travel support and experiences. We have examples of personal travel managers who personally drive their elderly or long standing clients to the airport, create pop-up shops at travel clubs and one instance where a client forgot their passport and their personal travel manager collected it from their house and delivered it to them at the airport, and they managed to get on their flight. It’s going above and beyond and delivering exceptional personal service that truly delivers to clients’ needs and ensures clients for life.”TravelManagers clearly demonstrates the home-based personal travel manager model, with its blend of online presence and personal service, is the future of the travel industry.“We have just experienced our best every sales month in February to date, and our first quarter sales are also shaping up to be nothing short of exceptional. The results speak for themselves. Personal travel managers are the way of the future, and you can’t argue with that,” says Mayo.For more information or to speak to someone confidentially about TravelManagers please contact Suzanne Laister on 1800 019 599.About TravelManagersTravelManagers operates in all Australian States and is a wholly owned subsidiary of House of Travel, Australasia’s largest independent travel company which has a forecast turnover of $1.5 billion for 2015. TravelManagers is a sister company to Hoot Holidays, also owned by House of Travel, and has more than 500 personal travel managers throughout Australia with a dedicated support team at the company’s national partnership office in Sydney. TravelManagers places all customer money in a dedicated and audited Client Trust Account which is separate from the general business accounts, ensuring client funds are only used for client purchases.
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group expands in VietnamCarlson Rezidor Hotel Group expands in VietnamCarlson Rezidor Hotel Group, one of the world’s largest and most dynamic hotel groups, announced today the signing of a management contract with Phu Quoc Tourist Investment & Development JS Company to develop Radisson Blu Resort Phu Quoc. Scheduled to open in the last quarter of 2017, the new build hotel, with 522 rooms and suites, is set to be a focal point of Phu Quoc. The signing marks the second resort in Vietnam for the Group, following Radisson Blu Resort Cam Ranh Bay, slated to open in 2018.Situated in Southern Vietnam, Phu Quoc is also known as Pearl Island, a stunning tourist destination famous for its pristine beaches, rich coral reefs and dense tropical jungles. Popular attractions comprise of Phu Quoc National Park, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Din Cau Rock Temple and the spectacular Tranh Waterfall.Strategically located along Bai Dai beach, the resort is a 27-km drive away from Phu Quoc International Airport, catering to a series of domestic and international flights.Radisson Blu Resort Phu Quoc features an all-day dining and bar option that will serve international cuisine. Guests can also access the fully-equipped fitness center, outdoor swimming pool, spa and a VIP Lounge, as well as Casino Phu Quoc, the first in Vietnam to permit domestic entry.The hotel is part of an integrated resort that caters to a host of recreational and corporate activities including a convention center, safari park, theater, water theme park, retail, multiple restaurants and a 27-hole golf course.“We are honored to partner with Phu Quoc Tourist Investment & Development JS Company to deliver the benefits of Radisson Blu, an upper upscale global brand. The growth opportunities in Vietnam are immense and we are proud to be a part of the country’s economic growth story,” said Andreas Flaig, executive vice president, Development, Asia Pacific, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group. “This latest Radisson Blu addition will provide travelers a full range of innovative design-led products and services, delivering genuine and relevant guest experiences with Radisson Blu’s distinctive Yes I Can!SM service philosophy.”The Group continues to pursue development opportunities in leading Vietnamese destinations including Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Danang, while also exploring upcoming destinations such as Dalat, Hue, Quy Nhon, Mui Ne, Sapa, and Hai Phong.Vietnam’s hospitality outlook remains buoyant with optimism as the country continues to accelerate with infrastructure projects in the country. According to the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, the number of international visitors to Vietnam as at July 2017 was 7,243,216, representing a 28.8 percent increase over the previous year.Radisson Blu® is one of the world’s leading hotel brands, with more than 280 hotels in operation in 62 countries. Radisson Blu offers vibrant, contemporary and engaging hospitality characterized by a unique Yes I Can!SM service philosophy. Known the world over as Hotels Designed to Say YES!SMRadisson Blu hotels are first class hotels that celebrate leading-edge style and offer signature features that are empathetic to the challenges of modern travel, including a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. Radisson Blu hotels are located in prime locations in major cities, airport gateways and leisure destinations around the world.Carlson Rezidor’s Asia Pacific portfolio has 118 hotels in operation across the region, including 51 Radisson Blu hotels. Carlson Rezidor has 76 more hotels in the pipeline for Asia Pacific. For more information and development opportunities, please visit www.carlsonrezidor.comSource = Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group
Dream Cruises Celebrates Christening and LaunchDream Cruises Celebrates Christening and Launch of Explorer Dream, the Newest Member of the Fleet Explorer Dream debuts in ShanghaiDream Cruises has welcomed the third member of its fleet with the christening and inaugural homeport deployment of Explorer Dream at Shanghai Wusongkou International Cruise Terminal.Honorable guests Mr Su Ping, Vice Magistrate of Shanghai Baoshan District Government and Mr Hui Lim, Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director of Genting Hong Kong were joined by management executives and over 500 guests at the ceremonial launch event. The christening ceremony featured Ms. Grace Chen, the godmother of Explorer Dream and one of the most influential fashion innovators in China. The innovative christening was activated by her magic wand of dreams and aspirations and the spirit of exploration was symbolised by a majestic unicorn that led the iconic Dream Cruises’ mermaid out of the ocean and into a new realm, where she will embark on the quest to discover new horizons across the seas. With the traditional breaking of the champagne bottle against the bow of the ship, Explorer Dream officially began her journey with Dream Cruises.After the inaugural ceremony, Grace Chen presented a spectacular fashion show at sea aboard the ship. Eighteen models showcased her Voyage collection and walked the runway on the Palace Pool Deck, where guests enjoyed a visual feast inspired by the spirit of exploration and discovery, both of which are the brand essence of Dream Cruises.Since its launch two years ago, Dream Cruises has garnered numerous accolades for its two cruise ships, Genting Dream which debuted in 2016 and World Dream in 2017, including Star Performer Top Ten Ratings in the Large Resort Category, Top 5 Cruise Lines in the Large/Medium sized cruise ship category by Conde Nast Traveler’s Gold List and more.Built with German craftsmanship, Explorer Dream measures 268 metres in length and 32 metres in width. She has a total gross tonnage of 75,338 tons, 928 cabins and lower berth capacity of 1,856 passengers. The signature, luxury “ship within a ship” enclave of Dream Cruises – The Palace, provides a next-level luxury experience for discerning travellers, boasting an industry leading staff to guest ratio, a majority of suites over 40 square metres, as well as bespoke 24-hour butler service and exclusive guest privileges.A generous variety of culinary options will also be available to cater for every taste – from inspired Asian flavours to exquisite Western delicacies. Acclaimed Australian Chef Mark Best will extend his influence on to Explorer Dream with his Seafood Grill by Mark Best serving up the ocean’s bounty in a spectacular al fresco setting. Signature Dream dining favourites will also take pride of place on the new ship including Umi Uma for Japanese delights, Silk Road for traditional Chinese fare, Blue Lagoon for Southeast Asian comfort food and Palm Court for informal refreshments and breath-taking views. For adventurous foodies, the all new Mozzarella Ristorante e Pizzeria will tantalise with a modern fusion of classic Italian dishes and pizzas with a Japanese twist.Guests of Explorer Dream can also enjoy thematic programs on their journeys at sea including “The Connoisseurs Circle” bespoke enrichment program, featuring inspirational talks and events that are especially curated for guests of The Palace, such as a fashion talk by Grace Chen, the godmother of Explorer Dream.Explorer Dream will initially homeport in Shanghai and Tianjin, where she will embark on a series of itineraries to popular destinations throughout Japan, including Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, Nagasaki, Fukuoka and Okinawa.From October 2019, Explorer Dream will homeport in Sydney and Auckland, offering guests a variety of seven-night weekly itineraries visiting the region’s coastal highlights.Source = Dream Cruises