By KARRYON @karryontravel07 Jun 2017Skill up on all you need to know with bite sized travel news designed specifically to help you, the Travel Agent, be your best. 1. INCENTIVE: WIN a $200 Visa card from Visit California Visit California has launched a new cash incentive promotion in the lead up to the end of the 2016/17 financial year, giving Agents the opportunity to win a $200 Visa card for either completing the California STAR online training program or encouraging a colleague to become a STAR by 30 June. Australian and New Zealand Agents are eligible to participate in the program which will run for four weeks, 5 June- 30 June 2017. Each week, one graduating Agent will be selected at random to win one of 28 gift cards. If the winning Agent was motivated by an existing STAR graduate, the STAR graduate will also win a $200 Visa gift card. Click here to sign up to California STAR. 2. Less than four weeks left to earn a $250 voucher from Freedom Road Destinations To celebrate their launch into the Australian market, Freedom Road Destinations is offering Travel Agents a $250 Westfield voucher until 30 June 2017. Travel Agents who make a China booking with Freedom Road Destinations over the value of $2,000 net will receive a $250 Westfield voucher to spend on anything they like. The more bookings you make, the more vouchers you get. The launch promotion is valid for bookings made before 30 June 2017 for travel to 30 June 2018. Click here for more information on this promotion and what Freedom Road Destinations can do for your business. 3. AGENTS RATES: Experience India first-hand for less Beyond Travel has released Agent rates on an escorted tour and private tours in India, including a six-day escorted Golden Triangle tour from only $299. Agents can bring a companion from only $355 and there is the choice to upgrade to five star accommodation for only $135 per person for the entire tour. The tour has weekly guaranteed departures and the offer is available for travel until September 25, 2017. Agents can increase their destination knowledge and explore the contrasts of Old Delhi and New Delhi, discover the iconic Taj Mahal in Agra, wander through the City Palace and Amber Fort in Jaipur and the ghost city of Fatehpur Sikri. Email [email protected] for more information. 4. AGENTS RATES with P&O Cruises P&O Cruises has made it even easier for the trade to enjoy a cruise holiday with the launch of a special new Flagship Fare for travel agents, offering a permanent 20 percent discount on P&O Cruises’ “Go” fares. The ‘always on’ Flagship Fare will enable Agents to book a variety of cruises across the fleet year-round, whether they are planning a break with friends or family or looking to book a last-minute deal. Guests travelling in the same room as the agent will also receive the 20 per cent discount. The special industry rate can only be booked via Live Chat by logging on to the Flagship website. 5. Oceania Cruises launches new Agent portal Oceania Cruises has launched Oceania Cruises Marketing Portal, an easy-to-navigate site designed to support its Australian Travel Agent partners and make it simpler for them to explore and promote Oceania Cruises via a raft of customisable brand-approved marketing materials, which can be personalised with their company logo and contact details. The new portal offers a single sign-on for Travel Agents, providing access to all the tools needed to learn, promote and book Oceania Cruises, including: downloadable and customisable marketing collateral, brochures and personal support from a dedicated team. Other benefits include easy to filter materials within different categories to quickly locate the flyer, email or ad needed; measure performance for email campaigns using the portal’s ‘My Projects’ section; and connection to Oceania Cruises Business Development Manager in local areas. 6. CruiseAgents focusing on Agents through new website Wholesaler CruiseAgents has just announced a new revamped website- the perfect “one-stop shop” for Travel Agents looking to increase their cruise selling skills. The new website has a clearer design for easy viewing on all PC’s, Smart phones and tablets with the real stand out improvement being the new search facility allowing Agents to narrow their search further than before with newly added filters saving Agents from wading through thousands of cruise holiday results. CruiseAgents packages and exclusive cruise tours include flights, hotels, tours and transfers. In addition, there is also the flexibility to customise packages to clients’ preferences. 7. Qantas’ additional codeshare with Jetstar Qantas and Jetstar have expanded their codeshare arrangements for travel between Australia and Vietnam, providing more travel options for customers. The Flying Kangaroo will add its code to Jetstar’s recently launched services between Melbourne/Sydney and Ho Chi Minh City from 5 June 2017, operated by Jetstar’s Boeing 787 fleet. This code will allow Qantas customers travelling between Melbourne/Sydney and Ho Chi Minh City to choose the non-stop Jetstar service to Ho Chi Minh City on one direction of travel, while travelling via Singapore on Qantas and Jetstar Asia in the other direction. Qantas customers travelling on Qantas codeshare service with Jetstar between Melbourne/Sydney to Ho Chi Minh City will arn Qantas Frequent Flyer points and status credits; receive a complimentary hot meal and a pre-landing refreshment including water, tea or coffee; receive complimentary access to the Jetstar seat-back in-flight entertainment; and more. 8. LAST DAY to save 30% on Le Boat European holidays Le Boat is offering up to 30 percent off European bookings of more seven nights or more made between the 1– 8 of June This deal is valid for select destination bookings for travel between July- October 2017, including the seven-night Savour Truffles and Vintage Bordeaux trip taking in French gastronomy. Also discounted is the seven-night Northern Shannon Cruise on a Town Star canal boat, taking in Ireland’s longest river and its surrounding culture and sights. Contact Le Boat for more information. 9. 20% off all Intrepid Travel adventures this month Australians can escape winter with 20 percent off all Intrepid Travel adventures departing this month, including safaris in Kenya, taco crawls in Mexico and cycling around Italy. Closer to home, travellers can experience a nine-day tour from Ho Chi Minh City through Cambodia to Bangkok. From the chaotic streets of Ho Chi Minh City, travellers can journey through Cambodia and arrive in Thailand’s vivacious capital. In Cambodia, visit the spectacular temples of Angkor Wat and Siem Reap and reflect on Cambodia’s history at the sobering sites of Phnom Penh. Prices start from just $851 per person twin share. Or, holidaymakers can spend their soon-to-arrive tax return on a nine-day Galapagos wildlife adventure from just $2,216 per person twin share. Click here for more information. 10. GTI wins Visit Seattle & Globus If you’re wondering who to turn for any Seattle or Globus enquiries, it’s GTI Tourism, which won the two accounts this month. The announcements were made this week and will see the business drive awareness of Visit Seattle and Washington State for leisure tourism across Australia and New Zealand, through trade engagement, consumer marketing and public relations. Additionally, GTI Tourism will organise familiarisations and profiling opportunities for the Globus Family. 11. Rocky Mountaineer expands team with two new sales managers Rocky Mountaineer has announced the appointment of Millie Browne and Ryan O’Connell as Sales Managers, Asia Pacific. Newcastle-based Browne joins Rocky Mountaineer after spending two years as Sales Development Manager with Scenic Tours. Prior to joining Scenic she was employed as a reservations consultant with Flight Centre in the United Kingdom. O’Connell is based in Sydney, having worked with Wendy Wu Tours since 2010 in a variety of roles. Mostly recently, he was the National Sales Manager where he managed a team of eight business development executives across Australia, and the company’s relationships with several key accounts. With the appointment of Browne and O’Connell, Rocky Mountaineer’s in-market sales manager team grows to six under Watson’s leadership. The team includes: Melbourne-based Greg McCallum, Regional Director, Sales – Australia and New Zealand, and Paula Phillips, Sales Manager, Asia Pacific; and Brisbane-based Helen Hersom, Sales Manager, Asia Pacific. 12. Wendy Wu Tours appoints Mark Bloxham as Managing Director, UK Wendy Wu Tours has announced the appointment of Mark Bloxham as the new Managing Director for the business in the United Kingdom. Based in London, Mark will lead the British operation of the award-winning tour operator, driving the company’s progressive digital transformation strategy, reporting to Global CEO Joe Karbo and company Founder & Chairwoman, Wendy Wu. Mr Bloxham joins Wendy Wu Tours with over 17 years of extensive experiences in digital marketing and online transformation, most recently consulting as UK Marketing Officer with venture capital backed, tech mobility startup Gett in a purely online model, and previously as Managing Director for the fast growing and highly successful James Villa Holidays. In this role, Bloxham had overall responsibility for leading the established and successful management team in the UK, to move the traditional upmarket villa holiday business into the digital arena, at the same time giving focus to customer service and operational excellence online. He is credited with delivering three years of strong growth, including the trade business. SPOTTED Excite Holidays honoured for contribution to US travel industry The U.S. Travel Association and Brand USA honoured representatives from the world’s highest-volume tour operators and buyers of U.S. travel and hospitality services, at its annual Chairman’s Circle Honors (CCH) event in Washington. Held at the breathtaking Washington National Cathedral during the annual IPW conference, this elite awards event was co-hosted by Brand USA, and honoured international travel buyers for their outstanding efforts and passion in bringing the world to America. International honourees were nominated by the U.S. Travel Association’s Chairman’s Circle-level members, including top U.S. travel businesses and destinations. Representing Excite Holidays was Matt Owers, Product Contracting Manager and Vanessa Richards, Head of Marketing, who were thrilled to accept the award as a 2017 Chairman’s Circle honouree for outstanding contribution to the U.S. travel industry. Click here for pics of Agents on recent famil and at events. Helloworld Travel recognised by the US Travel Association and awarded in Washington Helloworld Travel is delighted to confirm that it has been recognised as one of America’s top travel buyers at the recent Chairman’s Circle Honors Event. Held at the Washington National Cathedral during the association’s annual IPW conference, this elite awards event, co-hosted by Brand USA, honored international travel buyers including Helloworld Travel for outstanding efforts to bring the world to America. The evening featured entertainment from the Washington National Opera, and was emceed by travel expert and TV host Samantha Brown. “The winners of this year’s Chairman’s Circle Honors awards have amplified Brand USA’s efforts to welcome the world to America,” said Chris Thompson, President and CEO of Brand USA. What are your thoughts on today’s travel news? Share your thoughts below. 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