Deborah Thomas is handing over leadership of Ardent Leisure to another executive with a media background, Simon Kelly, as the company looks to rebuild after the Dreamworld tragedy last October in which four people died. More
HotelBeds is now the undisputed leader of the “traditional” online travel wholesale space (Online Travel Agents aside), after buying its two main rivals – GTA and Tourico. The GTA deal was announced on Friday and followed HotelBeds’ Tourico acquisition in February. HotelBeds will retain all three brands with combined annual room nights sales in the region of an estimated 50m. Impressive, but to put this in context, the Priceline Group did 557m room nights in 2016.
After more than 18 long months of deliberation, which included a public inquiry into short-term accommodation, NSW politicians have copped out and today delayed a decision on setting legal parameters for the likes of Airbnb and Stayz. The reason cited is that 18 months isn’t enough, they need more time to consult. A spine more like it.
Travel experiences app Leezair, founded a year ago with $1m in seed funding, is relaunching with new personalisation and artificial intelligence technology in May. More
No two days are the same for Daniel Rosso and that’s what he likes most about his role as GM at the Best Western Plus Hotel Stellar near Hyde Park in Sydney’s CBD.
One day he could be mopping out the basement car park after a summer rain storm, the next working on a long-term business plan for the distinctive 38-room property built in 1917.
Hospitality was an obvious career choice for Daniel, who emigrated to Australia from Uruguay as a 14-year-old with his family. More
The new census reveals that the “typical” Australian is an English speaking 38-year-old mother with two kids, a husband, a three bedroom house in the suburbs and a mortgage. Meanwhile at the Mumbrella Travel Marketing Summit last week a panel agreed that mums are the major holiday decision makers.
So put two and two together and it’s obvious who travel marketers with broad-based products should be targeting. However, they need to be careful and understand not all mums are the same.
Katrina McCarter, author of Marketing to Mums, says it would be a mistake to treat mothers as an homogeneous group.
She says that “mums want to hear from influential mums”and sees “Facebook Groups as being a significant opportunity”for marketers.
In an interesting aside, McCarter warned that the fastest way to put Millennial mums offside is to denigrate their partner.
Fellow panellists Kaye Fallick, Publisher Your Life Choices, and Kirsty Bloore, Senior Director – Research, Viacom, also agreed that mothers are the main decision makers followed by the kids and then dad.
Smashed, evacuated and closed by Cyclone Debbie. It’s no surprise Daydream Island management has decided to immediately embark on a $50m refurbishment originally planned for 2018. More
Hoteliers really are a mess of contradictions, a SiteMinder survey of 2100 accommodation operators has revealed. More
The real cost of global airfares has fallen 10% over the past year and is the major reason for record airline load factors during February, says the International Air Traffic Association. More
In an unlikely alliance, Stayz.com.au and Tourism Accommodation Australia have “struck a common position” on regulation of the short-term accommodation sector in New South Wales and have called on the State Government to: More
Opera normally sings the blues due to falling attendances but that trend has been reversed by Opera Australia – it’s targeted tourists and reaped the benefits. More
TripAdvisor is in trouble and here the reason why – its site visitors go there to research, not book, More
Hamilton’s Island’s crisis management credentials and potentially its reputation risk being shredded by Cyclone Debbie, which ripped through the Whitsunday’s earlier this week. More
A year after starting, Radseason.com has re-launched with founder Oli Russell-Cowan claiming it is now the “world’s first website to combine all action sports and adventure event needs under one roof” thanks to a new partnership with the Priceline Group that offers live room, air and car bookings. More
BlablaCar founder Nicolas Brusson has joined Flight Centre’s newly-created Digital Commerce Advisory Board, which also includes well-known US online strategist and investor Hugh Crean.
The board will be chaired by Atle Skalleberg, Flight Centre’s Chief Digital Officer, and two new members will be added in the coming months.
Airbnb has got to be kidding right? The company’s just launched its much-hyped Trips product in Australia (three components: Places, Experiences, Homes) with an early focus on the Sydney market. The sales pitch is all about living like a local – and yet the first thing you see when you visit the Places page on its Australian website is an ad for men’s grooming in Los Angeles:
In terms of tourism innovations, it was absolutely huge but one we now take for granted: 2017 marks 50 years since three young Americans – the “Bali Hai Boys” – created the tourism world’s first over-water bungalows in Tahiti. More
Occupancy up, rates down. That’s the message from STR analysis of Asia Pacific hotel performance in February. Occupancy across the region increased by 8% to 68.7%, average daily rate fell 5% to US$102.95 while revenue per available room increased 2.6% to US$70.67.
There’s stock market speculation that Australian accommodation group Mantra is in the sights of international investors as a takeover target, with InterContinental Hotels Group tipped as a potential buyer. Mantra’s shares have almost halved in value since hitting a peak of $5.05 in late December, 2015, and are now at $2.70. It has 20,000+ rooms under management.
Expedia has expanded its board to 14 members, adding political princess Chelsea Clinton, 37.
She is the daughter of Bill and Hillary Clinton, one a former US President, the other a shock loser to Donald Trump in the election late last year.
Clinton will be paid in the region of US$295,000 for her efforts. See story.
Smile. Fiji has partnered with the International Day of Happiness. More
After years of chronic under-investment, eight billion bucks – count ’em – is being pumped into Australian hotel development over the next few years, according to Tourism Accommodation Australia. More
Rezdy has raised A$2.4m to accelerate growth in the United States. Investors include Bailador and the Microequities VC Fund. Rezdy is a tours/actvities reservations and distribution platform based in Sydney with a US office in Las Vegas. Moe than half its revenue is generated outside its home market.
Airbnb has gone for the “Aussie battler”approach with a new print ad campaign in NSW ahead of expected new legislation on the booming short-term letting industry. More
Airline passenger traffic demand grew almost 10% in January, the best result in six years. “2017 is off to a very strong start, with demand at levels not seen since 2011,” said Alexandre de Juniac, Director General and CEO of the International Air Transport Association. He attributed the rise to improvement in the global economy and a more “normal environment” after the terrorism and political ‘shock’ events seen in early 2016.
March 7, 2017: Exciting times ahead for two of Australia’s most respected travel industry events, No Vacancy and TRAVELtech, which have been acquired by National Media from founder Martin Kelly, who also publishes TravelTrends.biz. More
It’s a cruel irony that the biggest asset of major traditional travel companies – great staff – has rapidly emerged as possibly their biggest issue. The numbers don’t lie. More