Global Travel and Lifestyle News Network

ROUND-UP: Dec. 6-10, 2022

Airfares are forecast to rise 2023 according to Amex – find out how much. Also last week, Japan is WestJet’s star destination for summer 2023, Air Canada touted JFK flights as part of its 2023 sked, Porter unveiled new perks in economy, and Boeing marked the end of an era.….


Domestic airfares in North America are forecast to rise in 2023, though not as much as in other regions of the globe, according to American Express Global Business Travel’s annual Air Monitor 2023. Domestic fares are expected to see moderate rises (3.4% business, 2.9% economy) as more capacity comes online in 2023. Meanwhile, Europe-North America routes are expected to see modest rises of 3.7%, and Asia-North America flights slated to see significant rises (5.6% business, 9.8% economy).

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has officially reopened two NEXUS and FAST enrollment centres in Canada enabling applicants to now schedule interviews at the Lansdowne, Ont. (Thousand Islands Bridge) and Fort Erie, Ont. (Peace Bridge) enrolment centres. The agency says more Canadian enrolment centres will open at additional select land border crossings in the future. Notably, however, applicants will still have to cross the border for an interview with US agents.

After more than half a century, Boeing rolled out its last 747 out of a Washington state factory on Tuesday. The jumbo jet, which debuted in 1969, was the largest commercial aircraft in the world and the first with two aisles, and it still towers over most other planes.


The Advance CBSA Declaration feature in ArriveCAN is now available to all travellers arriving on international flights at the Québec City Jean-Lesage International Airport. The Advance CBSA Declaration feature provides travellers with the option to submit their customs and immigration declaration to the CBSA up to 72 hours in advance of their arrival in Canada.


Canada Jetlines commenced direct roundtrip Airbus A320 service between Toronto and Vancouver on Friday (Dec. 9).

New service between Montreal and Fort McMurray, Alta., next June, plus increased frequencies between Toronto-Kelowna, Winnipeg-Toronto, and Montreal-Vancouver highlight Air Canada’s summer domestic schedule, which will see also see the carrier restore suspended services and increase frequencies as well. Meanwhile three new transborder routes, including service from Toronto and Montreal to JFK, and Toronto-Sacramento will start in 2023, along with the restoration of 11 suspended services and increased frequencies on 12 other routes.

Free WiFi, fresh meals, and enhanced legroom are all part of the new economy class being rolled out by Porter Airlines. The carrier is also introducing a new, all-inclusive economy experience called PorterReserve, which includes dedicated airport check-in, early boarding, enhanced legroom, fresh meals on longer flights, Porter’s signature beer, wine and premium snacks, cocktails, two checked bags, and the ability to change flights without a fee.

WestJet will offer flights three times weekly flights to Tokyo Narita starting April 30, marking the airline’s first non-stop flights to Asia from Calgary. The airline also announced new routes from Calgary to Barcelona and Edinburgh and increased frequency to Dublin, London, Paris, and Rome, also starting in the spring. The new flights are part of the airline’s plan to expand capacity from Calgary by more than 25% by next year, beginning with intercontinental routes.

Sun service from Windsor, Ont. kicked off last week for Sunwing, with first flights of the season to Cancun and Cayo Coco, with Varadero starting Dec. 17 and Santa Clara, Cuba on the 21st. Similarly, London, Ont. flights go this week: Punta Cana (Dec. 14), Cancun (Dec. 15), and Varadero (Dec. 16).


Early 2023 sales for Italy, Scotland and Ireland are at 93% of total 2022 numbers, says Globus family of brands in Canada, “indicating that our Canadian office is on target to break some travel records next year.” Other hot destinations include Portugal, and France. Popular tour styles include off-season Escapes by Globus and Active & Discovery itineraries on Avalon Waterways.

Tauck has again eliminated the single supplement on its Category 1 European riverboat cabins, waiving the supplement entirely for those cabins on each departure of every 2023 Tauck river cruise itinerary. Tauck has also reduced the single supplement by CDN$1,300 on other selected cabin categories on 63 departures of 20 different river itineraries. On its land journeys, single supplements have also been reduced by up to $1,300 on 113 departures of 43 tours visiting five continents.


Saint Lucia’s all-inclusive Coconut Bay Beach Resort – a long-time favourite amongst Canadian sun-seekers – has a new look and feel after completing a US$6-million property-wide refreshment during its annual September closing. Enhancements touched on guest rooms, the CocoLand Kidz Klub, the Wedding Centre, tennis and basketball courts, the main bar area, resort lobby, hallways, and more.

Now open, Hyatt Zilara Riviera Maya is the latest addition to Hyatt’s all-inclusive adult experience nestled in the secluded region of Riviera Maya with easy access to the Cancún International Airport and only 10 km. from Playa del Carmen. The sophisticated resort offers 291-suites with modern hacienda charm, sitting alongside a long stretch of pure white sand beach.


BC-based Accent Inns Inc. reports that all nine of its affiliated properties are now officially Rainbow Registered with Canada’s LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce. First launched in June 2021, the Rainbow Registered Accreditation Program was created to better identify 2SLGBTQI+ friendly businesses across Canada and help move the needle on social rights. The nationally recognized Canadian accreditation symbol indicates to consumers that the business meets a stringent set of standards to ensure 2SLGBTQI+ visitors feel safe, welcomed, and accepted.

IHG Hotels & Resorts has opened its first avid hotel in Canada in Vaughan, Ont. The avid hotel Toronto – Vaughan Southwest is the first of four planned properties across Canada for IHG’s newest Essentials brand. With 119 rooms, it is located 15 minutes (traffic notwithstanding) from Toronto Pearson International Airport and adheres to the brand’s “basics done exceptionally well – at a fair price” promise to regional business and leisure travellers.


Silversea’s newest expedition ship, Silver Endeavour, is set to broaden ultra-luxury travel’s most diverse polar offering by accessing more than 125 of the world’s most remote, extreme destinations through summer 2024 and winter 2024/25 with 27 new voyages that incorporate additional calls to Antarctica and the Arctic, as well as the British Isles and Iceland.

Luxury cruise line Cunard has announced a new partnership with the Royal Canadian Geographical Society that will see experts from RCGS featured on select 2023 voyages as part of the cruise line’s Insights onboard enrichment program. The RCGS headliners will be on every Cunard voyage in the 2023 Alaska season on Queen Elizabeth, from June through August, and on the Canada/New England voyage in September, from New York to Quebec, on flagship liner Queen Mary 2.


Black Friday was Royal Caribbean International’s single largest booking day in its 53-year history, which marked the third time the record was broken in 2022 and the peak of what is now the brand’s highest volume booking week. The strong demand and performance demonstrated by the two latest records come on the heels of the first look at the new Icon of the Seas, and the record-breaking day reported when the highly anticipated ship opened for bookings 15 months ahead of its January 2024 debut. Meanwhile, Carnival Cruise Line got a jumpstart on what it hopes will be a busy 2023 cruise season as it posted a record Cyber Monday booking day that was 50% above volume for Cyber Monday 2019.


Holland America Line has expanded its “Canada Super Sale” with additional cruise dates in 2023. Featuring up to 20% off fares on select sailings, the offer runs through Dec. 31, and features a diverse selection of Alaska, Panama Canal, Caribbean, and European cruises.


SeaWorld Orlando’s newest roller coaster will debut next spring, a first-of-a-kind attraction in which riders will experience “wave jumping” motions to make them feel like they are actually surfing. “Pipeline: The Surf Coaster” will feature a unique surfboard-shaped ride vehicle secured on the roller coaster in a surfing position, which is launched at speeds of up to 100 kph to give riders the feeling that they are catching a wave. Riders will then feel like they are hanging loose when their seats rise and fall to mimic the sensation of riding on a wave while sending them through several gnarly twists and turns.


Sunwing’s ‘12 Days of Giveaways’ continues this week with every client booking made by Dec. 16 automatically giving agents a chance to win one of 10 $250 Sunwing gift cards to put towards their future Sunwing travel and one of two free vacations, including flights and accommodation, to Royalton Cayo Santa Maria or the brand-new Royalton Splash Riviera Cancun. Bookings on applicable packages must apply to travel by April 30. Clients can save 40% off their bookings.


Over 150 agents attended a Visit Orlando event last week (photo) in Toronto with partners including Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort, and other hotels and attractions. Agents took part in interactive in-person training events highlighting selling tips and the latest offerings in the Florida city, as well have a chance to win prizes. Agents who could not attend are recommended to sign up for the Orlando Travel Academy to become a certified “Orlando Travel Expert.”


TL Network Canada has appointed travel industry veteran Cheryl Babulal as Sales Manager, effective Dec. 12. In this position, Babulal will help identify and develop new business opportunities for TL Network Canada, with the goal of increasing volume and market share through recruiting new travel agencies into the company. Babulal will report to Lindsay Pearlman, Sr VP, Travel Leaders Network.

 David Green, managing director of G Adventures in Canada, has been named vice chair of the Canadian Association of Tour Operators (CATO), succeeding Stéphanie Bishop (Globus). As an MBA graduate he has almost 30 years experience in business strategy across travel retail and travel wholesale backgrounds. An industry advocate who has built a career focused on growth through a customer centric approach working in the UK, Australia, and Canada, Green is a passionate supporter of driving positive change within the industry, including helping businesses, agents and customers to do more to support community tourism and sustainability.


After a two-year hiatus, Junkanoo, the national cultural festival of the Bahamas, returns for its largest celebration in downtown Nassau on Boxing Day (Dec. 26, 2022) and Jan. 2, 2023. The cultural festival represents the rich heritage of the African diaspora and is a colourful tradition that speaks to the strength and resilience of the Bahamian people. Festivities will take place in Grand Bahama Island, Bimini, Eleuthera, Abaco, Long Island, Cat Island, Inagua and Andros.

Arkansas has joined the US Bicycle Route System with the designation of its first US Bicycle Route, while Tennessee has designated a second route. The new routes, along with the realignment of routes in Minnesota, New York, and Ohio, add more than 685 km. to the US Bicycle Route System, bringing total mileage to nearly 31,000 km, and improving connectivity and the cycling experience.


In 1840, Scottish missionary explorer David Livingstone set sail on his first journey to Africa. He had been accepted to serve under the London Missionary Society two years earlier.

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First published at Travel Industry Today

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