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

1. itravel partners with Barrow & Bear


Coffee with a difference! itravel have recently welcomed their new partnership with Barrow & Bear Travel + Coffee. Based in Wavell Heights, north of Brisbane, Barrow & Bear is itravel’s newest link affiliate member.

One of a kind, Barrow & Bear harnesses the combined power of a coffee shop and travel agency.

Callum Whitehead, Director of Barrow & Bear says: “Barrow & Bear is a unique concept which mixes our love for food, coffee and travel into one big package. This concept allows for a more relaxed and personalised vibe for our clients to enjoy while browsing brochures, booking a holiday or enjoying a meal. Gone are the days of Travel Agents and clients sitting across at desks from each other, at Barrow & Bear it’s your ideas, your adventures.”


2. Agents are off to Italy

Insight Vacations Trevi Fountain Lo Res

Award-winning guided holiday specialists, Insight Vacations, is sending their top achieving travel agencies on a remarkable trip to Southern Italy this week – the ultimate reward  for the brand’s best supporting partners.

Top Travel Agents will go on a dream getaway travelling through Italian delights such as the ‘must see’ sights of Rome, Alberobello, Sorrento and Capri on what is set to be a memorable eight-day holiday.

In Rome, Travel Agents will be introduced to the grandeur of the city with Insight Vacation’s Local Experts, starting in the richest city in the world, Vatican City. They will then be taken on a voyage across to Alberobello and Puglia, a food lover’s paradise with plenty of robust red wines and local dishes using the freshest ingredients. On the Isle of Capri, travel agents will be treated to a Michelin star lunch at Ristorante Mammà, for the feast of their dreams overlooking Capri’s sights and crystal waters.


3. Ross Greenwood back by popular demand at Cruise360


Cruise Line Industry Association (CLIA) welcomes back popular radio host and business commentator Ross Greenwood as Master of Ceremonies to the 2017 Cruise360 conference.

Greenwood has covered finance and business matters both in Australia and around the world for almost 30 years. His practical finance experience will enable him to share valuable insights to help cruise agents and small-business owners grow their business.

Joel Katz, Managing Director CLIA Australasia said, “Ross’s contribution to Cruise360 2016 was very well received, with many delegates requesting to bring him back for 2017.”

CLIA’s Cruise360 Australasia will run this year on 25 August at the Hyatt Regency from 8.30am to 7.00pm. Tickets are now on sale, click here to purchase.


4. Earn Qantas Points with Insider Journeys’ Small Group Tours

Taj Mahal

Travellers who make Small Group Tour bookings through Insider Journeys can now earn Qantas Points – 1 Qantas Point per $1 spent on all Small Group Tours, on new bookings from 1 July 2017.

Agents can secure Qantas Points for their clients by quoting their Qantas Frequent Flyer membership number when booking any Insider Journeys Small Group Tour. Or clients can be directed to sign up for the Qantas Frequent Flyer program for free by clicking here if they are not already a member.


5. Explore Australia with Excite Holidays

Excite HolidaysAustralia_Image

Excite Holidays has announce the launch of their brand new Australia campaign, whereby for the next two weeks, the brand will showcase to Agents all the amazing experiences, activities and world-class eateries on offer in this diverse and unique country.

Home to some of the world’s best coffee and a burgeoning culinary scene, Australia is a foodie’s delight. Filled with hidden laneways, trendy boutiques, Instagram-worthy cafes and iconic landmarks, the land down under has something for every traveller and should be at the top of the bucket list!

From the Sydney Harbour Bridge to Parliament House, the iconic Chapel St Precinct, trendy Eat Street, the stunning Barossa Valley, Rottnest Island, and of course, MONA, the eight capital cities of Australia are as diverse and varied as they come.

The curated and downloadable destination guide features a variety of activities, experiences and restaurants across Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Hobart, Adelaide, Perth, Darwin and Brisbane that are sure to tick all the boxes.

Click here to check out the guides.


6. Batik Air appoints first-ever GDS partner


Batik Air has signed up for its first-ever global distribution system (GDS) partnership with the Sabre Corporation, in a bid to expand its reach and provide new distribution channels.

With this new partnership, Travel Agents globally now have the means to sell tickets on Batik Air’s inventory via Sabre’s GDS platform for the first time. Travellers will get to enjoy greater convenience and end-to-end services now that travel agents are equipped to book tickets on their behalf.

“Through this partnership, we can help Batik Air strengthen their competitive advantage by bringing their offerings to a global audience with our extensive network of travel agents worldwide,” said Rakesh Narayanan, Vice President of Supplier Commerce, Sabre Travel Network Asia Pacific. “We hope that our industry-leading technologies and solutions can further improve the commercial performance of the airline and fuel their expansion plans domestically and across the region.”


7. Travelport launches hotel solution for travellers


Being stranded at an airport is an airline passenger’s worst nightmare. In the first half of 2017, FlightStats indicates that 27.8 percent of major airline flights within Asia Pacific (810,389 out of 2,913,262) suffered some form of travel disruption.

But the real nightmare only begins once flights are cancelled. When flights are disrupted, passengers must scramble to find available rooms in local hotels. Passengers lucky enough to find rooms must then remain in the airport, standing in long lines, with a lack of real time communication, to wait for besieged airline employees to hand out paper vouchers that are required to be presented at a hotel to obtain a room.

That’s why Travelport has launched an industry-first mobile-based technology, which allows airlines to put the traveller first, automating the sourcing and distribution of hotel rooms; air re-booking; and meal and transport needs into a single, seamless and paperless experience when flights are cancelled or delayed.

Travelport Resolve enables airlines to react to disruptions with speed and accuracy, immediately communicating with passengers after an itinerary change so passengers can use their mobile device to quickly select and book their preferred hotel room from available local accommodation options.


8. Sky Express appoints AVIAREPS in Australia

Sky Express

AVIAREPS has been appointed by Sky Express, to represent the Greek domestic airline as General Sales Agent (GSA) in 8 markets around the world including: Australia, Canada, France, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom.

The appointment, made with immediate effect, is the result of the airline’s initiative to expand its sales and marketing outreach internationally to travellers and travel industry leaders in key strategic markets.

Says Commercial Manager, Mr. Ioannis Lidakis, Sky Express: “Sky Express will operate more than 14,000 flights throughout the Greek archipelago in 2017, and our network and services provide international tourists and travel agents with the unique opportunity to organise ‘island hopper’ itineraries throughout Greece’s many islands. It is an exciting time for Sky Express as we continue to expand our presence internationally, and we believe AVIAREPS to be the best partner for us to achieve these goals in each of the designated markets.”


9. Viking votes #1 Ocean Cruise Line by cruisers

Viking Cruises 3

Viking Cruises has once again been named a #1 Ocean Cruise Line by Travel + Leisure readers in the 2017 World’s Best Awards.

Viking was in its first year of service when it won the same award in 2016, unseating luxury cruise line Crystal Cruises, which had held the title for 20 years in a row. With the launch of its third ocean ship, Viking Sky – and just before the launch of its fourth ship, Viking Sun – this year’s win reinforces Viking’s position as the category leader.

“We did not set out to be the world’s best luxury cruise line; we set out to be the world’s best travel experience, with the best value for guests on rivers and oceans. In doing so, we have become as much known for what we are as what we are not. We offer a travel experience with no casino, no children, no umbrella drinks and no nickel-and-diming,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking Cruises.


10. Chimu Adventures unveils a new-look Ocean Atlantic

Ocean Atlantic - Cabin 501 - Category A

Australian Agents have more reasons than ever to get their clients excited about the upcoming Antarctic cruising season with one of Antarctica’s most iconic expedition cruise ships, the Ocean Atlantic, revealing a brand new look after recently undergoing a full-scale refurbishment.

On top of featuring a range of brand new cabins, the overhaul included the transformation of all cabins, designed to provide guests with comfortable and stylish surroundings when cruising Antarctic waters. Also renovated were the ship’s common areas such as the restaurant, Veranda bar, and the lecture hall.

A relatively small ship with a capacity of 195 passengers, the Ocean Atlantic allows travellers to sail close to the shore and access narrow inlets enabling travellers to see the most untouched corners of the White Continent. As an ice-class vessel, the ship is one of the strongest ships operating in Antarctica.

Super Early Bird Discounts of up to 35 percent can currently be enjoyed by Agents when booking their clients on Chimu’s 10-day Discover Antarctica (now from AU$ 8,075 twin) on board the Ocean Atlantic.


11. Emirates opens a new lounge in Boston

Emirates Boston Lounge

Emirates has opened its 41st dedicated lounge located at Boston Logan International Airport for Emirates First Class and Business Class customers as well as Platinum and Gold members of Skywards.

Located on the upper level of Terminal E, the lounge overlooks gate E – 11 and offers seating for up to 123 customers covering an area of 7,481 square feet (695m2). The lounge will provide premium passengers with a relaxing ambiance, luxurious facilities and amenities that include an exciting view of airport activity, LED TVs, comfortable leather armchairs, a choice of formal and relaxed seating, bespoke artwork, and a prayer room.

To complete the relaxing travel experience, a new range of luxury spa products will also be available in the lounge from award-winning Irish brand VOYA. This skincare line includes hair & body wash, conditioner, hand cream and hand wash.

What’s more, the lounge will feature a dedicated dining area with a choice of bar seating, an extensive menu of complimentary hot and cold gourmet buffet, including local and international dishes, and an extensive beverage service including wines from reputable American vineyards.


12. A different side of Africa is on sale with Travel Directors

Travel Directors Africa

Travel Directors has released a rare offer of $500 off one of its most interesting tours ‘African Dawn’ to experience trekking with the Gorillas in Rwanda’s rainforests, attending the spectacular Timkat ‘Baptism of Christ’ festival in Ethiopia and a picnic at the source of the Nile in Uganda.

This exclusive 27-day journey departs Australia on 4 January 2018 and begins on the shores of Lake Victoria before boarding a boat to view the source of the Nile, then visiting chimps in the wild at Rwenzori and to Queen Elizabeth National Park for game viewing experiences.

Now priced from $19,950 per person twin, the trip is fully inclusive and includes return economy airfares with Emirates, accommodation and most meals. The offer is valid until 30 August 2017.

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