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ROUND-UP:July 27-31, 2020

In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick look at some of last week’s need-to-know travel news, including: Transat cancelling winter flights from Western Canada; ACTA and Israel have a new partnership, and Emirates has launched a new trade portal.


IATA has revised its forecast for a return to pre-COVID-19 travel levels until 2024 – a year later than previously predicted.

A new partnership with the Israel Ministry of Tourism will see ACTA promote education, specialist accreditation and other public relations and sponsorship avenues designed for Canadian companies to learn about the middle eastern country. Through the agreement, ACTA and Israel Ministry of Tourism says they will support each other in growth through their mutual commitment to work together in the best interest of the travel agency community.

Canada is not on a list of 16 countries whose travellers require a COVID test to enter France. Additionally, since July 20 wearing masks has been made compulsory in enclosed public spaces in the country for anyone over 11 years old. This includes airports and train stations, accommodation, museums and restaurants/cafés.

The Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) has introduced a professional membership option designed to help entrepreneurs, tour guides and travel agents advance their careers within the adventure travel industry. Professional Members will become part of the community, learning from industry leaders, and accessing tools, training, resources, and savings specific to the adventure travel trade. Originally US$150 for a year, Professional Membership is now available at a discounted COVID-19 price of $99 for a year. INFO.


Luxury river cruise line AmaWaterways has resumed operations in Europe with a series of charter sailings onboard AmaKristina with local guests.


Halloween Horror Nights has been cancelled this year at Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood so that the theme parks can focus on daytime guests during the pandemic restrictions. The popular event takes place annually starting in September. Universal says the event will return in 2021.

Air Transat is cancelling all flights from Western Canada to sunshine destinations and the US this winter. Routes that were slated to take off from Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and Victoria have been scrubbed leaving YVR to Toronto and Montreal as the only routes operating from the West between Nov. 1 and April 30. Passengers will receive full refunds.


North American carriers had a 97.2% traffic decline in June, barely improved from a 98.3% decline in May, says IATA. Capacity fell 92.8%, and load factors dropped 53.8 percentage points to 34.1%.

The June global load factor set an all-time low for the month at 57.6%. For 2020, global passenger numbers are expected to decline by 55%.


Emirates has launched a bespoke portal for travel trade partners. Personalized for each partner and market, the Emirates Partners Portal is a one-stop shop to quickly and securely access information on Emirates’ latest products, services and policies, and obtain technical support. The portal also offers a range of functions including self-service tools and support, and in-built automation of business processes, all aimed at delivering efficiency for travel partners, as well as providing transparency and clarity on the status of transactions. For more information, contact your sales rep or click

Montreal-based Chef Jérôme Ferrer has been engaged by Air Canada to design meals for the airline’s Premium Economy and Economy Class customers on all flights departing Canada for Europe and Asia, as well as Australia and South America once these flights resume. Ferrer joins David Hawksworth, Antonio Park and Vikram Vij, whose meals are again being offered on flights.

JFK service to Frankfurt has resumed for Lufthansa with five weekly flights, ramping up to daily flights for remainder of summer schedule starting Aug. 31.


To celebrate being named the top hotel in Canada in the 2020 TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice Awards Victoria BC’s Magnolia Hotel & Spa has launched a Celebrate Package that includes a bottle of local Unsworth Vineyards Charme De L’Ile sparkling wine and a $75 per night dining credit for The Courtney Room restaurant or in-room dining. This offer is available for stays until Dec. 20 and must be booked by Aug. 16.


With an average of just 20 guests per departure, for the first time all 2021 Globus and Cosmos Africa vacations are classified Small Group Discovery tours, promising travellers room to roam with up-close access to fascinating sights. There are 12 tours to choose from among the brands (including Monograms).


A new family and eco-friendly hotel, has opened in Clearwater Beach, Fla. Named after the area’s most famous resident – the dolphin with a prosthetic tail at Clearwater Marine Aquarium – Winter the Dolphin’s Beach Club is part of the Ascend Hotel Collection portfolio by Choice Hotels, and features a dolphin and marine life theme. It is located on the beach at 655 S. Gulfview Blvd.


RIU Hotels & Resorts have re-opened two hotels in Morocco: Riu Palace Tikida Taghazout and Riu Tikida Dunas, marking Morocco’s return to RIU’s catalogue of destinations


Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. is now known by a new moniker: Royal Caribbean Group. “The name is simpler, fresher and more modern. It’s also more descriptive—Royal Caribbean Group sounds like a parent company name, reflective of our growth and evolution since we last updated our identity more than 20 years ago,” said Royal Caribbean Group chairman and CEO Richard Fain. Group members include Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Silversea, Azamara, TUI Cruises and Hapag-Lloyd Cruises.

Holland America is changing the name of its new-build from Ryndam to Rotterdam and designating it the new flagship of the fleet. The seventh ship to bear this historic name, Rotterdam will be delivered on July 30, 2021, pushed back slightly from its original delivery of May 2021 due to the global health situation. Holland America Line’s first ship was Rotterdam, which sailed its maiden voyage from the Netherlands to New York on Oct. 15, 1872 and led to the founding of the company on April 18, 1873.


The Myrtle Beach CVB recently recorded a 20-minute education webinar, hosted by Canadian representative Kimberly Hartley. Check it out HERE. More info and return-to-travel videos can be found on the South Carolina destination’s web site.


Air Canada Vacations will host its first ever virtual product launch on Aug. 28 focussed on the 2020/21 Sun Collection brochure. Travel professionals from across the country are invited to join in from noon to 5 p.m. ET and gather information from over 70 industry supplier partners in both French and English. Throughout the day agents can chat directly with suppliers, watch videos, learn about the latest destinations and products, as well as download the most recent collateral and brochures in their own virtual briefcase. Their will also be a presentation by ACV execs and prizes. A second virtual show will be held on Aug. 29 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in which agents can invite clients, who will have the opportunity to book with their agent on the spot. Register HERE.


Oh, shucks: Ireland is proud of its oysters and considers the bivalve mollusks both tasty and reflective of the country’s pure unspoiled coastline. To that end, Tourism Ireland is encouraging those interested in the maritime morsels to check out Breakfast Television on Wednesday, which happens to be International Oyster Day, to see champion oyster shucker Patrick McMurray demonstrate his skills. McMurray won the World Championships of Oyster Opening in Galway, Ireland in 2002, the only Canadian to win the illustrious shucking contest in over 60 years.

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* Future dates and events listed here are up to date at time of printing, although obviously subject to changes due to ever-involving pandemic information. Travel Industry Today accepts no responsibility for sudden or unreported inaccuracies.

First published at Travel Industry Today

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