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Fri 26 Sep: 10 things you need to know today

We’ve done all the hard work, so you don’t have to! Read on for our top ten travel industry news stories of the day we think you need to know.

We’ve done all the hard work, so you don’t have to! Read on for our top ten travel industry news stories of the day we think you need to know.

1. Emirates appoints former Qantas/helloworld Exec.

Emirates has today announced the appointment of Rob Gurney as its Divisional Vice President, Commercial Operations, Australasia. And the Twittersphere has gone mad.

Emirates said Mr Gurney would now assume local responsibility for its wide-ranging alliance with Qantas, as well as heading one of the Dubai-based airline’s top three global regions for traffic. He will join the organisation 1 October, 2014 and be based in Sydney. Mr Gurney has held a number of senior aviation and industry positions including Qantas and joins Emirates from his most recent role as CEO of the helloworld group. Read on for more.

2. Travelzoo’s new e-book heralds in period of travel savings

ebook-travelzoo-KarryOn A new e-book titled How to Save a Fortune on Travel divulges all the tricks of the trade to save a fair share on your next flight. The book is published by travel deal website Travelzoo, whose primary purpose is to investigate and evaluate hundreds of holiday deals on flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises and more. “The travel industry is unregulated and highly fragmented, which means it’s hard to know which deals offer true value,” said Travelzoo CEO Brad Gurrie. “However on the plus side, if you have the time and, more importantly, the knowledge you can save a fortune.” The site aims to release a new chapter of the book each month which will focus on how to nab a travel bargain, common travel myths and ways to score an upgrade. Read on for more.

3. Aerion to zoom from UK to NY

areon-supersonic-karryon Airbus is teaming up with US-based Aerospace firm, Aerion to create a supersonic jet that can fly from London to New York in three hours and from Los Angeles to Tokyo in six. The Aerion AS2 business jet will fly at 1,217 mph, using proprietary supersonic laminar flow technology.

It will almost as fast as Concorde, which flew at 1,350 mph. The two companies announced this week that they will be joining forces on the project, sharing ‘capabilities in design, manufacturing and certification’. Design features include wings which reduce overall drag by 20 per cent, allowing for lower fuel consumption and longer range and a luxurious 30-foot-long cabin will seat up to 12 passengers.

4. Final chance to join the footy fever


As footy fever over this weekend’s clash between the Sydney Swans and Hawthorn Hawks, Virgin has decided to lend an extra hand by adding extra flights on Sunday from Sydney to Melbourne to cater for the AFL match at the MCG.

The extra flights will give more Sydney Swans fans the opportunity to travel to the match to see their team play in this year’s Grand Final. Tigerair Australia is putting on additional services between Sydney and Melbourne this weekend to cater for the anticipated extra demand from Sydney based fans eager to see the Swans take on the Hawks at this year’s Grand Final in Melbourne on Saturday.

For those who don’t feel like battling the 33 000-strong crowd, Twitter and the tele are always your best bet for minute-to-minute coverage.

5. A&K expands brochure

Abercrombie & Kent’s new India, Orient & Europe brochure is out, with over 70 itineraries and extensions entirely for the private independent traveller with ideas for solo travellers, families, honeymooners, cruise enthusiasts and lovers of adventure, food, wine and culture.

New to the portfolio is an expanded range of Sri Lanka itineraries include Yala National Park and the East Coast beaches, cruises from Vietnam to Cambodia on Aqua Mekong, multi-country combinations in Indochina and Europe, the Golden Eagle Danube Express through Eastern Europe and more.

Founded as a luxury safari company in Africa in 1962, A&K has grown into a respected international travel company employing over 3000 staff in more than 100 countries. A&K organises private, tailored and escorted travel to every corner of the globe and has a wholly owned portfolio of cruise boats,luxury lodges, tented camps, hotels, and all-terrain vehicles.

6. Marvellous deals at Travelmarvel

Premium tour and cruise operator, Travelmarvel, is offering a saving of $500 per person across its portfolio of immersive European land journeys in 2015. The offer is valid on all bookings made until 31 October 2014.

A highlight is their 13-day Portugal and Colourful Spain, travelling from Lisbon to Barcelona. Clients will pay just $5,195 per person, twin share. Price includes two nights in Lisbon, Madrid, Seville, Valencia and Barcelona; and one night in Porto and Granada.

Travelmarvel’s sightseeing program features special Insider Experiences which for this trip include culinary highlights such as chance to enjoy a traditional Portuguese afternoon tea; sample some of Portugal’s finest Port wines at a special tasting; a cooking demonstration, followed by a Spanish Paella lunch; and a visit to Madrid’s La Lattina district for a special tapas dinner with live music. You’ll also enjoy a special stay at Granada’s Hotel Alhambra Palace.

All Travelmarvel European Land Journeys can be combined with one of several European River Cruise itineraries.

7. End-of-year deals at Citadines

The Event Centre at Citadines on Bourke Melbourne apart’hotel is currently offering the following two special deals:

Celebrate the end of the year at Citadines with events inclusive of festive theming and bon bons available from $85pp. During the month of November and December the Event Centre is also offering ½ hour canapé and beverage service for $25pp. Packages are tailored to suit the needs of each organisation.

Citadines is offering a special conference deal for the month of September. Events held during September will have complimentary use of the new data projector and electronic screen.  Day delegate packages are available from $69pp.

8. Entries open for 2014 Tourism Industry Awards


Entries are now open for the 2014 Tourism Industry Awards, organised by the Tourism Industry Association New Zealand to celebrate excellence in New Zealand’s $24 billion tourism industry.

Organised by TIA and supported by Westpac, Maori Tourism, SmartPay and ServiceIQ, the 2014 TIA Summitwill focus on what leaders across the private and public sectors of New Zealand’s tourism industry are doing to put the Tourism 2025 growth framework into action.

The PATA New Zealand Trust Young Tourism Leader Award will be presented to a young person (35 years or under as at 31 March 2014) who is successfully contributing to their workplace and also engaging in improving the wider industry.

The three Tourism Industry Awards, including the Sir Jack Newman Award, will be presented at the Wellington Airport Summit Dinner which will follow the 2014 TIA Summit, taking place in Wellington on 4 November.

9. Burj Al Arab triumphs in the skifties


Pictured: the award-winning marketing team at Burj Al Arab.

Burj Al Arab Jumeirah has been awarded the global title ‘Best Social Media Presence by an Individual Hotel, Property or Resort’ by Skift.

During the seven month judging period, from 1 January 2014 to 31 July 2014, Burj Al Arab achieved record engagement figures with more than six million likes, comments, shares and views across Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter.

Initiatives highlighted by Skift included hosting the #WorldsUltimateInstameet, with the world’s largest Instagram travel account @BeautifulDestinations, along with the year-long partnership with #MyDubai, a campaign initiated by the Crown Prince of Dubai, HH Sheikh Hamdan.

“We are delighted that Burj Al Arab Jumeirah has received the Best Social Media Presence for Hotels award from Skift,” Jumeirah Group Spokesperson, Piers Schreiber said.
“This award is a fitting testament to the creative passion of our marketing team at Burj Al Arab Jumeirah.”

Other Skifties award winners included TripAdvisor for Best Branded Facebook Account and Lonely Planet for Best Branded Instagram Account.

10. Hawaii a hit with Intrepid travellers

Intrepid Travel’s first venture into Hawaii this year has been a hit with adventure travellers, with the small group travel company adding two new departures in 2015.

Intrepid Travel’s ten day Hawaiian Highlights trip is the only small group multi-day tour that takes travellers beyond the most popular beaches, shopping meccas and tourist sites to explore the less touristy side of the islands.

While Hawaii is often thought of as a romantic destination, Intrepid’s first Hawaiian trip has been particularly popular with solo female travellers. More than 60 per cent of bookings on the Hawaiian Highlights tour in 2014 were solo travellers, with women outnumbering men by two-to-one.

“Hawaii is a fascinating place for adventurous travellers who want to see more than a deck chair or shopping mall in Honolulu” says James Thornton, Intrepid Travel’s Managing Director.
Intrepid expects to see further growth in numbers from Australia in 2015 as a result of the Qantas and WestJet alliance. Travellers can now fly to Vancouver via Honolulu, and explore the sun-filled islands before heading to the cooler climates of Canada.

The Hawaiian Highlights trip is from $3,440 per person and has 11 departures in 2015.

What’s your reaction to todays news? Share your comments below and start the conversation.