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

Read on for this week’s travel news that Travel Agents need to know:


1. A next level VIP Vatican after-hours experience

Trafalgar Vatican

Trafalgar has revealed four new exceptional after-hours experiences within the Vatican will be available to its guests during the 2018 operating season.

Having offered exclusive access to private dining within the Ethnological Museum for the past two years, the global guided holiday brand has now announced further unrivalled VIP dining opportunities within the hallowed city.

Guests travelling on Contrasts of Italy, Grand European, Best of Italy & Sicily and Rome Explorer will enjoy al fresco dining under Italian summer skies at the Cortile del Giardino Quadrato (square garden).

Situated outside of the Ethnological Museum and boasting spectacular views of the cupola of St Peter’s, feasting here is a true treat for all the senses. Adverse weather contingency is provided in the Bistrot della Pigna, the newly-created dining space within the Cortile della Pigna, also nestled deep inside the historic city walls. Prior to dining, Trafalgar travellers on these four trips also have the opportunity to view the array of incredible artefacts at the Museo Gregoriano Profano.


2. New focuses for A&K in India & the Orient


Abercrombie & Kent (A&K) has released its new brochure India and the Orient, taking full advantage of sixteen countries with a range of new focuses and travel styles. In India, A&K highlights the spice-laden markets, opulent palaces, beach temples, desert forts, and flavoursome cuisine.

Guests embarking on A&K’s new two-week private journey that covers India from north to south, will stroll through the lively alleyways of Old Delhi, watch the sun set on the timeless Taj Mahal and admire the beautiful lakes in the romantic city of Udaipur.

The enchanting Sri Lanka has a greater presence this year with a new private journey that covers the country’s most important scenic and cultural attractions. On this journey, travellers will visit five World Heritage listed sites, explore Buddhist philosophy and experience lush tea estates. New boutique accommodation choices have been included with stays at Water Garden Sigiriya, Stone House Kandy, Camellia Hills and Taru Villas Rampart Street.

Check out the brochure for more.


3. Regent Seven Seas Cruises adds more calls in Cuba


Regent Seven Seas Cruises announced the addition of Cuba calls to six itineraries in the line’s 2018-19 Caribbean season. Travellers can visit Havana on select itineraries aboard Seven Seas Mariner, Seven Seas Voyager and Seven Seas Navigator, which depart Miami from October 2018 through March 2019.

Guests on these voyages can choose among a variety of free and unlimited shore excursions to learn firsthand about the lives, history and culture of the Cuban people during their visit.

Among the itineraries is a 22-night voyage, sailing on Oct. 10, 2018 from Miami to Honolulu aboard Seven Seas Mariner. On this itinerary, guests also will transit the Panama Canal and call at some of the most beautiful, ecological destinations of Central America and the Mexican Riviera along the way. The Nov. 11, 2018 sailing of Seven Seas Navigator, the line’s most intimate and beloved ship, also will immerse guests in Cuban culture on the 14-night Eastern and Southern Caribbean itinerary.


4. Collette’s Africa and South & Central America brochure is here

Collette Tours

Collette has released its 2018-2019 brochure featuring Asia, Africa, Antarctica and South and Central America tours containing a mix of new tours and returning favourites, with plenty of small group Explorations – which average 18 guests.

Aouth and Central America are the special focus of the brochure, with a new tour called the Cultures of Peru & Bolivia taking a small group to see the natural and archaeological wonders of these two countries.

There’s also a new Africa tour called Spectacular South Africa Featuring Swaziland with highlights from this tour including a full day safari in Mkuze Game Reserve, a cable car ride 3,000 feet above sea level in Cape Town, and a guided tour through the historically significant informal settlements and luxurious mansions of Soweto – South West Township in Sandton.


5. Phil Hoffmann Business Travel teams up with Helloworld Business Travel

Phil Hoffman

Helloworld Business Travel supported Phil Hoffmann Business Travel for their recent strategy day, held in Sydney.

Using collective experience and expertise, Helloworld Business Travel was able to come together to work on exploring insights and strategies with the entire corporate business leadership team at Phil Hoffmann Business Travel.

Featuring a range of topics, Helloworld Business Travel presented to the group an update on the market and industry forecasts, benchmarking and analyzing current trends in the corporate space, strategies to better deliver responses to Request For Proposals (RFPs) as well as how best to manage existing clients in order to remain competitive in the market and how to work together to assist each other in the future by using the strength of both businesses.

Putting the focus on Phil Hoffmann Business Travels’ overall business needs and the successful partnership with Helloworld Business Travel was also a key area of discussion, reaffirming the long standing relationship which will span 22 years into 2020 and rounding out a positive and productive day of discovery and learning.


6. TravelManagers’ Mosaics bring smiles to sick children in Adelaide


As the saying goes ‘all good things take time’ and something new and bright has caught the children’s attention at the foyer of the Centre for Robotics and Innovation at the Adelaide Women and Children’s Hospital (AWCH), two years after it was created.

The collage of bright art mosaics, which were completed as part of the 2015 TravelManagers conference community event supporting the South Australia-based charity, Little Heroes has brought smiles to the sick children who visit the centre.

In addition to creating the artwork of mosaics, TravelManagers through a charity auction and dinner raised $16,000 in funds which were donated to Little Heroes during the company’s 2015 conference in Adelaide.


7. PONANT announces prestigious yacht race sponsorship

Ponant Noumea Race

French luxury expedition small ship company PONANT has, fittingly, announced its commitment to sponsor the 2018 PONANT Sydney to Noumea yacht race organised by the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia – reinstating a Category 1 race that covers 1064 nautical miles, more than 400nm longer than the iconic Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

Useful information about the PONANT Sydney Noumea race including listing of current entrants and online registration is available on a dedicated CYCA website  During the race itself the website will have regularly updated news including special yacht trackers for positioning and video highlights.

Monique Ponfoort, Vice President PONANT Asia Pacific announced: “We have signed up as sponsors because we feel a positive synergy between the CYCA and PONANT, the French owned and operated luxury cruise line and world leader in expedition cruising. This is the perfect link between sponsor and event. Of course the race ending in French Caledonia adds a certain je ne sais quoi to the occasion.”


8. Rezdy wins at the 2017 Wine Industry IMPACT Awards


Rezdy has been declared as the winner for this year’s Wine Industry IMPACT Awards within the Tourism Category.

The annual awards, presented at the prestigious Adelaide Town Hall on the 19th October by Wine Industry Suppliers Australia (WISA) and proudly supported by AV Plus Events, showcase excellence in the competitiveness and capability of the nation’s grape and wine industry while developing new unique customer experiences.

“We at Rezdy are absolutely honored to receive this award as we have worked really hard with the wineries and tour operators to help push tours and experiences not only within Australia but globally. I am completely overwhelmed and can not thank the industry enough along with the amazing team at Rezdy for their support, faith and dedication focusing on this growing and exciting segment of our industry,” says Anthony Valeriano (Rezdy’s Director of Supplier Partnerships).

With over 80 Australian winery suppliers and over 500 available products in the Wine Tour Category within Rezdy, more wine operators are able to increase their product quality, value, and offering, while saving money on marketing, allowing them more time to grow their experiences within the wine community and Tourism Industry.

What are your thoughts on this week’s news? Share your thoughts below.