• Afterpay launches PLAY

    ASX-LISTED payment platform Afterpay has teamed up with ATAS-accredited LayAway Travel to create a new system dubbed “PLAY” allowing travellers to pay for their trip in interest-free instalments before departure.The platform allows customers to make all their travel, accommodation and activity payments, reversing the retail-focused Afterpay model, which allows shoppers to buy-now and pay-later, with PLAY aiming to empower more Aussies to travel without blowing their budget.Announcing
  • Qantas Sapporo flights

    QANTAS has announced it will launch new direct seasonal flights between Sydney and Sapporo (TD breaking news).The new service will fly three times per week to Sapporo’s New Chitose Airport between 16 Dec 2019 and 28 Mar 2020, offering more than 10,000 seats over the peak ski season.“The number of Australians travelling to Japan has more than doubled over the past five years, with almost 500,000 Australians visiting Japan in the last 12 months alone,” said Qantas Int’l Act
  • Oceania Tropics

    OCEANIA Cruises has revealed its 2020/21 Tropics & Exotics Collection, featuring 85 trips, including 69 entirely new itineraries.New additions include 13 voyages to Asia and Africa, eight to South America, eight sailings to the South Pacific, Australia and NZ, seven transoceanic journeys and 31 new voyages to the Caribbean, Panama Canal, and Mexico – CLICK HERE for info.
  • LA Tourism update

    LOS Angeles Tourism has released the latest edition of its “LA Insider” guide, detailing new attractions, tours and activities.It features the LA Insta Tour, which takes guests on “insta-friendly” sightseeing tours & a guide on the best pools – see pg 6.
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  • Jet Airways suspends

    AFTER over 25 years in operation, Indian carrier Jet Airways has temporarily suspended all domestic and international flights following lenders not extending emergency funds and the State Bank of India unable to provide critical interim funding (TD 15 Apr).The decision has been made after a “painstaking evaluation” of all alternatives that were made available to the company.The airline will inform all guests about the temporary suspension via text message or email.
  • It’s a long weekend!

    THERE will be no Travel Daily editions published on Fri & Mon due to the Easter public holidays.
    The team will be taking a break over the long weekend and willreturn with the much anticipated next Travel Daily issue on 23 Apr.
    The team wishes all our readers a happy Easter!
  • Emirates is hiring

    EMIRATES is expanding its commercial team, with a number of positions available.The new roles include Senior Sales Executive, Senior Secretary/Sales Admin Support, Sales Support Agent and Sales Executive – Special Markets.The jobs advertised are based in Sydney and Melbourne, with applications open until 28 Apr.
    For more information on how to apply, the necessary requirements, and further details, head to page eight.
  • Domestic pax slide

    AUSTRALIAN domestic commercial aviation passenger numbers declined 0.4% in Feb, according to the latest figures from the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE).Revenue passenger kilometres for the period slid by 1.2% compared with Feb 2018 and capacity was down 0.3%.The Melbourne-Sydney route remained Australia’s busiest, with 744,548 passengers, followed by Brisbane-Sydney with 353,301 pax and Brisbane-Melbourne with 255,981 pax.
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  • Digital services key for Star Alliance

    STAR Alliance CEO Jeffrey Goh says the organisation is continuing to invest heavily in the digital space, with the aim of putting “control in the hands of customers” by making transactions and journeys increasingly seamless.Examples include Advance Seat Selection across members of the Alliance, with early adopters including United Airlines and Singapore Airlines, with UA customers now able to select seats on SQ flights booked via United’s online channels.Another key benefit is
  • 4WD Hire in court

    LEGAL proceedings have been instigated by the ACCC against four-wheel drive rental company, Australian 4WD Hire, following allegations it used unfair contract terms, engaged in unconscionable conduct, and made false or misleading representations in relation to insurance cover, in breach of the Australian Consumer Law (ACL).The ACCC reports the company used contracts that allowed it to charge customers for a range of driving behaviours which it claimed would cause excessive wear and tear or damag
  • TD breaking news – Qantas to fly Sydney-Sapporo non-stop

    Seasonal flights to tap into strong demand for snow holidays. 
    Qantas has announced its fifth route between Australia and Japan, with plans for thrice weekly services between Sydney and Sapporo, on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido.
    The A330 services will operate between 16 December 2019 and 28 March 2020, with QF saying it will offer more than 10,000 seats on the route over the period.
    Qantas International Acting CEO, Naren Kumar, said Sapporo was a highly sought-after destination f
  • Seabourn updates training

    LUXURY cruise operator Seabourn has made a series of updates to its Seabourn Academy training program, including the addition of new material, videos, the latest company news and information plus a range of updated incentive offers.The program, launched in 2012, is designed to help travel agents broaden their skills and knowledge by providing the tools required to sell the cruise line’s range of products.“Seabourn Academy covers every angle in the luxury travel genre and challenges p
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  • HLO trading on target

    HELLOWORLD’S share price surged more than 10% this morning after the company issued a trading update detailing ongoing increases in revenue and profit (TD breaking news).As TD went to press today HLO was trading at $4.56, after opening the day at around $4.13.Helloworld’s Total Transaction Value for the nine months to 31 Mar was $4.71 billion, up almost 9% on the previous corresponding period, while the company’s revenue was 8% higher at $260.5 million, with a 5.5% gross margin
  • Aust key for Star Alliance

    THE dozen or so Star Alliance members operating here collectively make Australia one of the global group’s largest markets without a home carrier, according to Star Alliance CEO Jeffrey Goh.Speaking exclusively to TD this morning during a flying visit down under, Goh highlighted the huge array of destinations offered by Star members from the 10 Australian ports where they currently collectively operate.And although membership growth isn’t off the table, Goh noted that the scale of th
  • Albatross Tool Kit

    ALBATROSS Tours has launched its 2019 European Festive Touring Agent Tool Kit.The new resource offers agents information on Europe’s festive season with social media tiles, flyers, promotional videos, brochures, featured agent poster display and much more.
    To find out how to order the tool kit, see page seven.
  • WebBeds plans

    WEBJET Managing Director John Guscic has outlined “significant growth opportunities” for its B2B hotels division WebBeds in a presentation uploaded to the Australian Securities Exchange today.WebBeds is currently the number two global B2B player, but claims less than 4% of the market share.The B2B market is worth US$50b+ TTV, with the majority of participants having specialised, local offerings and relatively small market share.He said WebBeds was “one of very few genuine globa
  • Tempo to Puglia

    TEMPO Holidays is today highlighting Italy’s Puglia region.The tour company is offering a range of tours to Puglia including a seven-day Best of Puglia, the five-day Cooking in Puglia and the four-day Highlights of Puglia and Matera.
    Destination highlights include the historic town of Otranto and Lecce, known as the “Florence of the South”.For more details and to view the tours available, see page 11.
  • RoomIt appoints

    ROOMIT by CWTO, the hotel distribution division of CWT, has appointed James Colquhoun to the role of Vice President of Finance and CFO.He will be based at the company’s Chicago HQ and brings with him more than 10 years of experience with Hyatt Hotels.His expertise is in improving profitability for both large corporations and start-ups, and executing disruptive strategies.
  • Rep precedes Air NZ

    AIR New Zealand has topped a list of companies rated on the basis of reputation for the third consecutive year, according to a report compiled by RepTrak.Australians chose the New Zealand carrier ahead of Aussie carrier Qantas which came in second, and Virgin Australia, which slipped from fourth spot last year to outside the top 10 altogether in 2019.“Customer focus underpins reputation leadership…by continuing to invest in our aircraft, products and services and by bringing genuine
  • NTIA Agency voting

    VOTING is now open for the National Travel Industry Awards (NTIA) People’s Choice Travel Agency of the Year.Voting closes Fri 31 May.
    APT is offering clients who vote the chance to win an 11-day Kimberley Coast Cruise for two.For details on how to vote and for further details see page nine.
  • Malindo ADL arrival

    MALINDO Air’s inaugural flight from Kuala Lumpur to Adelaide touched down at Adelaide Airport this morning, with the Boeing 737-800 greeted by a traditional water cannon salute upon its 6.40am arrival.The new service, offering both Business class and Economy cabins, is expected to open up new connections through to other Indonesian destinations, and will depart four times per week on Mon, Wed, Fri and Sun at 7.40am (TD 21 Mar).
  • Caravan park holidays allow kids to just be kids and parents to relax

    Families are increasingly taking caravan and camping holidays, enjoying a sense of community and a temporary return to a more carefree parenting style and a childhood freedom reminiscent of decades gone by.
  • New Walshe solo product

    THE Walshe Group today announced the launch of “Unmapped Travel,” a new agent-friendly brand targeting solo travellers in their 30s and 40s.The business, which is operating as a joint venture with Walshe staffer Jennifer Gaskin, has been created after identifying a gap in the market for this demographic, “looking to take unique and adventurous trips without the hassle of spending weeks on research”.Key aspects include authenticity, the use of local guides and incorporatio
  • Windstar 2020

    WINDSTAR Cruises is today showcasing its range of 2020 voyages on board the recently renovated Star Legend vessel.More than US$250 million has been injected into the brand’s “Star Plus” transformation project, more on the back page.
  • VA, Cook Is IASC

    THE International Air Services Commission (IASC) has received an application from Virgin Australia seeking to renew a determination which allocates 360 seats per week on the Cook Islands route.VA is also seeking the inclusion of all existing conditions.
  • Qantas Channel

    REGISTRATION for the Qantas Channel is now open for agencies that have one IATA or TIDS number as part of their GDS agreement.Agencies who have more than one, and up to 25 IATA or TIDS numbers, can sign up from May, while agencies that have more than 25 as part of their GDS agreement are being invited to contact their Qantas Account Manager for more info.Agencies must register their business for the channel before 30 Jun to avoid a Channel Fee.For more information on the portal, CLICK HERE.
  • Notre Dame up in flames

    ONE of France’s most recognisable and iconic tourist attractions, the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, has been gutted by a major fire.
    The centuries-old Catholic church has sustained major damage to its spire and roof, with the cause of the massive blaze “potentially linked” to a multimillion Euro renovation project on the church’s spire, according to a spokesperson for the Paris Fire Brigade.Situated on the Ile de la Cite, an island in the Seine river, the cathedral is fa
  • NCL Legends prize

    NORWEGIAN Cruise Line (NCL) and Hawai’i Tourism are reminding agents about the NCL Legends incentive, where 15 of the cruise line’s top-selling travel agencies will win a seven-day cruise on board Pride of America, departing 07 Dec.To be in the draw, agents must book and deposit a minimum of $10,000 in worldwide NCL products before 30 Jun.Bookings are to be made directly with NCL or through a supporting wholesale partner, for more information on the incentive, see the cover page.
  • IAG CFO to leave

    INTERNATIONAL Airlines Group (IAG) has announced that its CFO and Board Executive Director Enrique Dupuy de Lome will step down from the role after its AGM in Jun.He will be replaced by Steve Gunning, CFO at British Airways.
  • Hotel handshake

    HOTELBEDS and OYO Hotels & Homes have announced a strategic global distribution partnership which will see both companies reciprocate access to their respective portfolios in both the wholesale and retail space.
  • Explorer christened

    DREAM Cruises has welcomed its third ship with the christening and inaugural homeport deployment of Explorer Dream at Shanghai Wusongkou International Cruise Terminal.Over 500 guests were in attendance at the event which featured godmother and fashion icon Grace Chen breaking a champagne bottle against the bow of the ship.After the ceremony, Chen presented a fashion show aboard the ship on the Palace Pool Deck which showcased her Voyage collection.Explorer Dream measures 268 metres in length and
  • Amex tops up technology

    AMERICAN Express Global Business Travel (GBT) has announced technology enhancements and new products for corporate travel clients which are being rolled out across 2019.Major investments include a better recommendation engine, next-gen mobile experiences, and new proprietary hotel and air re-shopping functionality.GBT has started to apply artificial intelligence to its big data and analytics infrastructure in a bid to improve its recommendation engine for online bookings.
    The company is also wor
  • TD breaking news – TTC’s TreadRight Foundation announces first Australian project

    New partnership with Aboriginal service provider KARI Foundation. 
    The Travel Corporation has just announced the first “artisan grant” in Australia under its TreadRight Foundation, with funding for the Sydney-based KARI Foundation to showcase authentic cultural experiences to the company’s customers.
    The KARI Foundation aims to provide quality Aboriginal community support services, with a vision to help families, youth and communities flourish. The initiative wil
  • QF expands SME savings

    QANTAS has enhanced its “Qantas Business Rewards” (QBR) offering for small and medium enterprises, with flight savings now available on international services for more than 30 partner and interline carriers.The change expands the base fare discount of up to 8% available through QBR to additional carriers, with savings based on the membership level of an individual business.More than 200 destinations are on offer through the program which now offers the discounts when flying Qantas in
  • Trip.com open to talks

    ONLINE Travel Agent (OTA) Trip.com officially launched in the Australian market last week after a soft launch in mid-2018, with ambitions to grow its local market share.
    Fresh off the stage at the Mumbrella Travel Marketing Summit on Thu, Lynn Qu, VP of Product & Marketing spoke with Travel Daily about the OTA’s local plans, saying “the intentions are quite simple, we want to grow.
    “We want to learn more about the market and bring more product offerings, increase our brand
  • Senior travel research

    BABY boomers hold 53% of the nation’s wealth, despite making up just 25% of the Australian population and are “more willing to travel than ever”, according to a new The Future of Seniors Travel 2019 Report.Conducted by travel industry researcher and CEO of New Young Consulting Bronwyn White, the study found 40% of over 65s are spending between $11k and $50k per person per annum on travel.White said travellers aged 55 plus were an important market for travel companies to target.
  • ‘MTA – 2019 and Beyond’ series

    MTA — Mobile Travel Agents’ recent ‘MTA – 2019 and Beyond’ forums were a great opportunity for MTA Advisors to get together and be updated on the latest company developments, training opportunities and innovations now being rolled out.
    More than 350 advisors and suppliers joined with MTA management at the forums in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth.Each event included an opportunity for the advisors to be updated by suppliers at supplier trade events held at eac
  • Jet Airways cancels international routes

    BELEAGUERED Indian carrier Jet Airways has been forced to suspend all of its long-haul services, after lessors moved in to repossess about 70% of the airline’s fleet.Reports in India also suggest operations could cease as early as today, with pilots warning of a walkout over unpaid salaries.It’s understood Jet Airways has surrendered its London Heathrow landing slots, while services to Amsterdam, Singapore and Paris have also ceased operating as bidders are sought to help restructure
  • Crystalbrook eyes NZ

    AN expansion to New Zealand is “high on the agenda” for Crystalbrook Collection, on the back of rapid growth in Australia since the brand launched in 2017.The company currently has two hotels open in Australia, Little Albion in Sydney and Riley in Cairns, with a combined total of 350 room keys and is planning to grow to 2,000 room keys by 2022.New Cairns properties, Bailey and Flynn, are set to open in Sep and Apr respectively, followed by Kingsley in Newcastle in Oct 2020.Another de
  • Bunnik slams “wild claims”

    BUNNIK Tours has proudly called out its membership of ATAS, CATO and AFTA as part of advertising in last weekend’s newspapers, emphasising its genuine offers differ from “a lot of wild claims made in travel advertising these days”.In a large banner above a Bunnik promotion as “Australia’s leading small group tour company”, the operator promised it would never list “unsubstantiated and over-inflated ‘typical’ or ‘normally’ comparis
  • Master the slopes

    TOURISM NZ and Air NZ are inviting agents to “master New Zealand’s iconic ski fields”, along with a chance to win $100 to “kick-start your winter wardrobe”.The Kiwi Peak Pro prizes are up for grabs for those who complete the How to Sell Ski NZ module on the 100% Pure NZ Specialist Program – see the cover page.
  • Exodus celebrates

    EXODUS Travels is offering discounts of 15% on 45 of its classic trips – one for each year the company has been in operation.The offer is valid for bookings made 12-18 Apr for travel before 30 Apr 2020 – see page eight.
  • Bentours appoints

    BRAD Crawford has taken a role with Bentours & Tempo Holidays as BDM Victoria (West) and Tasmania, moving to the wholesaler from his former role as AirAsia Sales Mgr Vic/SA/Tas.
  • Cruise ship ride closed after injured guest files $14m lawsuit

    Royal Caribbean temporarily closes the Sky Pad attraction on two of its ships after being sued by a guest who fell 6 metres when bungee cords snapped off his harness.
  • Is the rise of free camping killing the traditional caravan park?

    Clayton McCuddon has been in the caravan park industry for just three years, but he's already considering giving it away, saying he can't compete with free and low-cost camping sites — both official and unofficial — springing up around Tasmania.
  • Australia's travel warnings unfair to developing nations, experts say

    Diplomatic and academic experts say Australia's travel warnings can be biased against developing nations and its advice varies "depending on the country involved, not necessarily the risk".
  • Vietnam visitation slides

    THE number of Australians travelling to Vietnam declined 8.5% year-on-year in Feb to 26,700, according to figures released yesterday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.The monthly Overseas Arrivals and Departures statistics also showed declines in outbound travel to Thailand (down 5.4%), Singapore (down 2.2%) and the USA (down 1.2%).Overall short term resident returns for the month were 3.5% higher than in Feb 2018, with a 13% increase in travel to China, while other strong outbound markets
  • Perth’s transformation

    WESTERN Australia has “never been more ready” for travellers, with Perth undergoing a massive transformation over the past five years, Tourism WA Managing Director Brodie Carr told TD.The state’s tourism board is putting an emphasis on road trips and working to attract high-value, FIT travellers, who spend more and want to experience more.“We don’t get the groups like the East Coast and we’re really happy about that,” Carr said.
    “We really like the
  • Dave says thanks

    AIR New Zealand’s avian mascot Dave the Goose is today thanking the Australian travel industry for its support, with a whopping seven of the NZ team nominated in the Best Sales Executive – Air category at this year’s National Travel Industry Awards.Air NZ is also nominated in the Best International Airline – On-line category – see voting details on page eight of today’s TD.
  • U Cruises rebrand

    UNIWORLD Boutique River Cruise Collection CEO Ellen Bettridge has confirmed the rebrand of its youth-focused offshoot as “U River Cruises”.Speaking aboard the inaugural UniworldSS Bon Voyage cruise out of Bordeaux this week, Bettridge told TD the change aimed to reflect the unique difference of the U offering, with the aim of reducing confusion.“U River Cruises is not Uniworld… it’s truly a unique experience that is definitely more active, staying overnight in port

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