Skill up on all you need to know with bite sized travel news designed specifically to help you, the Travel Agent, be your best today and tomorrow.

1. Flight Centre takes a ‘significant step’ towards becoming a global DMC


Flight Centre continues to step outside the confines of the agency to take-on the world with a new business plan which will establish the Travel Group as an in-destination service provider.

That’s right, Flight Centre Travel Group is becoming a destination management company (DMC).

Working with Vietnam’s Thien Minh Group, the company is aiming to handle all its own in-destination transfers, excursions, day-trips, arrangements for meetings, land arrangements for cruises and other tour groups.

Read on


2. Good news Travel Agents! Your base salary is on the rise

Whoopi feature

Make it rain! Travel Agents had a little extra ‘money, money, money’ on their hands last year with a 9.2 percent increase in their base salaries.

According to C&M Travel Recruitment’s salary benchmarking analysis for 2016, Junior Travel Consultants are now earning before incentives between $40,000-$45,000; while Intermediate Travel Consultants are walking away with $44,000-$52,000; and Senior Travel Consultants with $55,000-$65,000.

Assistant Managers and Team Leaders are filling their wallets with around $55,000-$70,000 and Branch Managers are bringing in some $70,000-$90,000.

Read on


3. Airbnb asks travellers to ‘put a ring on it’ & support marriage equality

Airbnb marriage equality

If you like the idea of marriage equality then Airbnb is asking you to ‘put a ring on it’ as part of a new equality campaign.

Launched this week with support from some of Australia’s biggest brands including Qantas, Google, ANZ and eBay, and in collaboration with The Equality Campaign, Until We All Belong marks the most public corporate declaration for marriage equality in Australia to date.

The initiative calls on the people of Australia to show their acceptance of marriage equality and commit to wearing a bespoke ring until same-sex marriage is recognised in Australia.

Read on


4. FIRST PICS of Agents on the TTC Great Escape are here!

TTC Great Escape feature

Some Agents are in China, others have crossed the globe to experience France, a few are enjoying Southeast Asia while others are taking in the wilderness in Africa.

It’s The TTC Great Escape and it’s officially underway.

Some 100 consultants from around Australia flocked into Sydney last week after being selected to take part in this year’s TTC Great Escape – the largest famil to date hosted by The Travel Corporation.

Read on


5. AirAsia launches new group booking system for Agents


AirAsia has launched an enhanced group booking system for Travel Agents using the AirAsia SkyAgent and Corporate Account trade portals in Australia and New Zealand.

The new, automated group booking system enables consultants to check and book fares and ancillary add-ons for up to 50 passengers, as well as manage customer details and payment options.

Agents registered for the AirAsia SkyAgent portal can also contact a dedicated support email address or their account manager for queries regarding bookings made via the SkyAgent portal.


6. JNTO Sydney welcomes new Executive Director

Portrait - Kana Wakabayashi

Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) Sydney Office has welcomed a new Executive Director to head up the team, with Kana Wakabayashi taking over from Mariko Tatsumi.

Wakabayashi, who hails from JNTO’s head office in Japan, has moved from Tokyo to Sydney to take up her second overseas posting. She said she’s excited to “build on the momentum of my predecessors to show what makes Japan such a wonderful travel destination”.

With a background of over 15 years promoting Japan as an inbound destination, Wakabayashi brings vast experience and in-depth knowledge. She intends to work closely with her team and local partners on JNTO Sydney’s marketing activities to drive more tourism to Japan, to help meet the Japanese government’s new target of 40 million overseas visitors by 2020.


7. Chimu launches Antarctica ‘fly free’ offer

Chimu Adventures

Chimu Adventures is making it more affordable than ever for Australians to see Antarctica in 2017 with the launch of its latest Fly Free offer.

On sale from now until 19 April 2017, the offer is available on Chimu’s 10-day Images of Antarctica cruise, departing 1 November 2017, with travellers booking the Premier Twin, Superior or Suite categories receiving free return economy flights to Ushuaia (ex. Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane) with Air New Zealand.

Travelling on an exclusive charter, unique to Chimu Adventures, this small ship cruise takes in the best Antarctica has to offer cruising its inspiring glacier landscapes, visiting penguin colonies and research stations while observing the most spectacular wildlife species.

The ‘Fly Free’ offer is priced from USD 7,990 in a Premier Twin cabin. Click here for more information.


8. Fiji Airways celebrates upcoming Adelaide launch

Fiji Airways Adelaide

Fiji Airways and Tourism Fiji hosted members of Adelaide’s local travel industry at Electra House, to celebrate the forthcoming launch of the new non-stop service between Adelaide and Nadi (commencing 30 June).

Jason Sacriz, Trade Partnerships Manager – Australia for Tourism Fiji said the new route will make it easier for South Australians to holiday in Fiji, which is “already a hugely popular destination” in the market.

“The improved access is just another reason for South Australians to travel to Fiji, with the flight duration of less than six hours from Adelaide to Nadi,” Mr Sacriz added.


9. Helloworld Agents see San Francisco with Qantas


Helloworld‘s Qantas incentive winners were flown business class to San Francisco for a fabulous five-day trip of the exciting city.

First up was a Bay river cruise followed by cycling over the Golden Gate Bridge to the scenic town of Sausalito. The Helloworld Agents enjoyed a fabulous day out in the vineyards of Napa and Sonoma sampling wonderful wines and foods of this majestic area of California.

Then came the food tour of the lively and vibrant neighbourhood of Mission where the Agents experienced a myriad of cultures and delicacies and then finished off with the hilarious ‘Beach Blanket Babylon, San Francisco’s hilarious pop-culture musical.

10. Agents get a taste of Peru in Sydney


Thirty five Sydney-based Travel Agents relished in an exclusive evening of sampling Peru’s unique flavours last week at The Taste of Peru event co-hosted by PROMPERU and South American Tourism Office (SATO).

Held at Sydney’s top Peruvian restaurant, Inca’s Restaurant, each Agent partook in a hands-on initiation to Peruvian culture, whereby they learned how to prepare the national dish, Ceviche, as well as the country’s revered cocktail, The Pisco Sour. Insightful presentations were given with PROMPERU Explora Sacred Valley and Ucamara Expeditions.

One lucky consultant was recognised for his trivia savviness and was awarded a Peru prize-pack, while Lori Kirk from iTalkTravel Hornsby won return flights to Peru with LATAM Airlines, a stay in the gastronomic capital of Latin America – Lima, a stay at the new Explora Sacred Valley and a comprehensive exploration of the ancient citadel of Machu Picchu (all with a Pisco Sour).

Lisa Priestly from Sylvania Travel and Cruise and Roslyn Burgess from Helloworld Lane Cove snagged second place prices, including an Ucumara Amazonian Cruise and a three-night stay at Explora Sacred Valley and Machu Picchu.

What are your thoughts on today’s travel news? Share your thoughts below.