Global Travel News

Singleton Employees in the Hotel Industry

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Singleton Employees in the Hotel Industry - TRAVELINDEX - TOP25UNIVERSITIES.comMany organisations take pride in their ability to offer a rich variety of supportive programmes for employees with families. However, the growing number of single childless people in the workforce, especially members of Generations Y and Z, rarely benefit from equivalent perks or policies. Does the hospitality industry care about single childless employees? Curious as to whether organisational support can benefit hotels and their employees, Dr Xiaolin (Crystal) Shi of the School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM) at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and her co-author quizzed hotel employees in China about their experiences. The fruits of their comprehensive analysis will help organisations to create more supportive environments for employees, whilst also boosting hotel outcomes.

Now more than ever, single employees without children dominate the labour-intensive hotel industry. Perhaps thanks to the false assumption that they have more free time and fewer responsibilities, “members of this group are often expected to shoulder heavier workloads, work longer hours, and travel more for work to support the family demands of their married colleagues”, say the researchers. They have also been found to engage in more emotional labour, to have less decision-making latitude, and to face more negative work–nonwork spillover than employees who are in a couple and/or have children. This highlights the emerging need to ascertain the workplace challenges faced by single childless employees in the hotel industry.

Common to all employees is the challenge of achieving a “work–life balance”, which is the harmony between a individual’s different roles, responsibilities and personal values. Whilst the concept of a work–family balance has been examined in great depth, it is not necessarily relevant to single childless people, whose “personal” roles are less likely to be family-related. “The commonly used terms ‘work–family conflict’ and ‘family-supportive organisational culture’ do not apply to all”, explain the researchers.

They therefore inspected the experiences of “personal-to-work conflict”, which occurs when personal activities infringe on professional ones, and “work-to-personal conflict”, which occurs when job demands require a sacrifice of personal time and energy. A potential way to minimise these kinds of conflicts and strike a healthy work–life balance is through the provision of “organisational support”.

Family-supportive work cultures can increase job satisfaction and performance—similar benefits might reasonably be expected by providing organisational support to single people without children. A singles-friendly organisational culture is one that nurtures a work-life balance equally among employees, and not just in those who are married or with children. For this, it is crucial to acknowledge that family life and personal life are not one and the same. “Previous work has suggested that the work domain, family domain, and personal domain should be treated separately”, explain the authors.

Social inclusion is a key dimension of a singles-friendly work culture, and especially relevant to single childless employees, who are known to suffer more from social isolation and loneliness. “A high level of organisational support is typically linked with positive organisational outcomes”, say the authors, “and social inclusion has been associated with both affective organisational commitment and perceived organisational support.” The researchers therefore predicted that a strong socially inclusive organisational culture would reduce personal-to-work and work-to-personal conflicts.

Dissatisfaction and apathy can ensue when there is a discrepancy between desired and actual work-life balance. In addition, employees who feel that the available support is simply not enough to overcome work-life conflicts have heightened stress levels. “For single childless employees, the incongruence between their perceptions of work–personal conflicts and relevant support from their organisations may result in negative consequences, such as lower job performance”, say the researchers. Accordingly, they predicted that an organisational-level social inclusion of a singles-friendly culture would yield better job performance.

Social inclusion of a singles-friendly culture might also have the power to boost the enjoyment got from leisure activities. Leisure activities contribute to psychological well-being and life satisfaction, and the loss of the freedom to engage in them can sour attitudes towards one’s own personal life. “Hospitality employees in particular may have less time and energy for leisure activities after work, preventing them from satisfying their need for relaxation or resulting in lower levels of leisure satisfaction”, say the researchers. An organisational culture geared towards improving employees’ work-life balance could therefore boost leisure satisfaction.

The researchers gathered rich data from total of 639 full-time employees, who were recruited from 29 full-service hotels in China. Participants completed a pre-developed questionnaires that measured personal-to-work and work-to-personal conflicts, leisure satisfaction, and their perception of the degree of social inclusion of a singles-friendly culture. Job performance was assessed using a survey completed by participants’ direct supervisors, who rated items such as “this employee performs tasks that are expected of him/her.” Hierarchical linear modelling was then applied to examine the relationships between variables, whilst controlling for potential confounding variables, such as whether participants were men or women.

The results were unambiguous. Single childless employees who worked in hotels with a socially inclusive culture had notably less conflict between their work and personal domains, a more impressive job performance, and more satisfaction from leisure activities. “These findings highlight the significance of the social inclusion of a singles-friendly culture for both employees and organisations”, say the researchers. As a second intriguing finding, the effect of an inclusive organisational culture on employees’ job performance and leisure satisfaction were shaped by their degree of work-to-personal conflict. This, clarify the authors, could be explained by the important role of personal domain variables in influencing employees’ perceptions.

Such clear-cut findings should easily persuade managers to embrace a singles-friendly culture to enable a balance between the work and personal roles of single childless employees. Hotels could establish programs and policies to eliminate negative stereotyping, and should not solely focus on the needs of married and parent employees. “Although single childless employees do not require support for family responsibilities, they do require support for personal and social matters”, reiterate the authors. Hotels could also facilitate an enhanced mutual understanding between single and married employees through team-building activities, which would inspire more harmonious and productive relationships in the workplace.

The nature of social inclusion of a singles-friendly culture varied from hotel to hotel. “As such”, explain the researchers, “hotels should take their unique organisational cultures and characteristics into consideration when developing socially inclusive programs.” Hotel chains could, for instance infuse their mission and core values into inclusive policies and programs, and make sure that the same support is provided across all of their hotels. This would mean that employees who are transferred from one hotel to another of the same chain can more rapidly assimilate into their new working environment and immediately feel a sense of belonging.

With fewer people than ever in their 30s and 40s choosing to get married or have children, the hospitality workforce is increasingly home to single childless workers. This pioneering new work shows that the time has come to address their needs. “The study can assist hotel industry managers in recognising single childless employees as an important, distinct, and growing segment of the labour force”, conclude the authors. As well as several managerial implications, this investigation also paves the way for more exciting research. For example, future work could additionally consider how a supportive culture affects other workers who also have a “non-traditional” family structure, such as those in a same-sex relationship.

Shi, Xiaolin (Crystal), and Shi, Jieyu (Jade) (2022). Who Cares about Single Childless Employees in the Hotel Industry? Creating a Workplace Culture Beyond Family-Friendly. Tourism Management, Vol. 90, 104477


First published at – Global Travel News

Bolstered Air Links Key to Helping Golf Tourism Soar in Central Vietnam

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Bolstered Air Links Key to Helping Golf Tourism Soar in Central Vietnam - TRAVELINDEXDanang, Vietnam, March 30, 2023 / TRAVELINDEX / New and reestablished air links with important markets including Japan, Korea, India, and China will allow golf tourism to take flight again in Central Vietnam.

That’s the view from the Vietnam Golf Coast (VGC) — a freshly rebooted destination marketing organization that links the region’s best signature golf courses.

Danang International Airport is currently Vietnam’s third busiest aviation hub. And it’s gearing up for a bumper period ahead as Central Vietnam reasserts its reputation as a hub for golf and rolls out the red carpet for visitors travelling from Japan, China, India, Korea, Thailand, Taiwan, Cambodia, Laos, Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau, and Malaysia: its current roster of international destinations.

In late March, national carrier Vietnam Airlines resumed its popular route between Danang and Tokyo, Japan’s capital. The coming months, meanwhile, will witness a ramping up of services between Danang and tier-one Chinese cities including Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Chengdu.

These developments come hot on the heels of other major route launches and resumptions.

New routes launched so far in 2023 include services linking Danang with Taipei in Taiwan and Macau. Other relaunched links include one between Danang and Vientiane, the capital of Laos.

Last year, meanwhile, low-cost carrier Vietjet Air launched new routes from Danang to Singapore, Busan in South Korea, and major Indian cities including New Delhi, Mumbai, and Bangalore.

“With its range of clubs and off-course attractions, central Vietnam is a truly world-class golf hub. The fact that it’s better connected than ever with the rest of the region can only be good news for the destination,” said Gary Dixon, general manager at Ba Na Hills Golf Club, one of the driving forces in the VGC and home to a championship layout masterminded by 2023 European Ryder Cup team captain Luke Donald.

With high-quality golf combined with incredible beaches and luxury accommodations like the award-winning properties at Laguna Lang Co —resorts Banyan Tree Lang Co and Angsana Lang Co, and the Laguna Park Villas private residences — Central Vietnam is arguably Vietnam’s hub for golf tourism. It offers a range of attractions, including the heritage sites in history-steeped Hoi An and the Golden Bridge at Sun World Ba Na Hill: a 150-metre-long pedestrian bridge that is one of Asia’s most photographed landmarks.

Its myriad attributes are complemented by world-class infrastructure that includes Danang International Airport, which links Danang with direct flights to 25 regional destinations and 8 destinations within Vietnam.

Clubs in the area are reporting brisk business as golf travel returns with a vengeance. Banner events such as the Danang International Fireworks Festival—a two-month-long jamboree encompassing firework performances and cultural celebrations that returns in June after a two-year hiatus— are also helping to elevate the destination and tempt back international visitors.

“Central Vietnam is ready to welcome back the world,” said Adam Calver, Director of Golf & Destination Marketing at Laguna Lang Co, home to an award-winning Sir Nick Faldo Signature Design. “Markets such as Korea and Japan have traditionally been huge for us and we are delighted to see travel ramping up from these countries and other destinations including giants like China and India, the two most populous countries on the planet. These air links will contribute to opening more opportunities, boosting the economy, and promoting trade and tourism.”


First published at – Global Travel News

Flow Yacht Club Provides The Ultimate Platform for Hassle-Free Luxury Yachting Experience

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Flow Yacht Club Provides The Ultimate Platform for Hassle-Free Luxury Yachting Experience - TRAVELINDEX - TOP25YACHTS.comBangkok, Thailand, March 30, 2023 / TRAVELINDEX / Flow Yacht Club, the premier provider of luxury fractional yacht ownership, recently launched its unique service platform that offers the ultimate luxury and adventure allowing clients to experience the thrill of yacht ownership without the full financial commitment as well as mitigating worries about maintenance costs and other expenses that go hand in hand with yacht ownership.

According to Khun Narumon Yongsakul, CEO of Flow Yacht Club “Throughout my wide-ranging experience in the luxury yachting industry and based on my discussions with clients who are yacht owners as well as potential yacht owners, I discovered three major ‘paint points’:

1) Many yacht owners are concerned about their yacht being left idle and unattended for extended periods due to time constraints
2) Worries about the hassle of constant maintenance of the yacht
3) Challenges in moving the yacht from one place to another.”

“In order to help solve these three main problems faced by many in the yachting circles, we are proud to present the Flow Yacht Platform that would provide a unique and unparalleled sailing experience with focus on quality, convenience and lifestyle thus further elevating luxury yachting in Thailand in general,” said Khun Narumon.

Flow Yacht Club’s fractional ownership model allows up to four co-owners per yacht which in turn expedites the transaction process. Such owners who automatically become members of the Club can also take advantage of privileges including regular maintenance services by Flow Yacht Club for a period of four years to ensure the client’s yacht is in excellent condition at all times.

Flow Yacht Club members also have the flexibility to book their yacht for a specific time frame or duration, giving them the freedom to sail whenever it suits their schedule. A team of experienced and certified captains are also on hand to assist with any sailing needs.

“With decades of experience in the yacht ownership business and a proven track record of providing exceptional service to our owners and clients, we are highly confident Flow Yacht Club and will elevate yachting services to the next level affording a hassle-free and seamless sailing experiences to our members. Our extensive network globally also grants us access to the most sought after yachts as well as giving opportunities for our fractional owners or members to explore new destinations,” said Khun Narumon in conclusion.


First published at – Global Travel News

Jim Thompson A Thai Restaurant Prepares for Exciting New Chapter

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Jim Thompson Prepares for Another Exciting New Chapter - TRAVELINDEX - VISITTHAILAND.netBangkok, After 15 successful years, the legendary “Jim Thompson, A Thai Restaurant” is closing for renovations, only to return with a fresh concept inspired by Jim Thompson’s life and legacy. This culinary journey, steeped in respect for the past, present, and future, is set to launch by mid 2023. The new concept will showcase an extensive selection of traditional Thai dishes, Progressive Thai creations and special Chef’s Degustation menus aiming to transport diners back to the magical atmosphere of Thompson’s own dining table.

Revamped Concept: Launching mid 2023, the renovated “Jim Thompson, A Thai Restaurant” will blend tradition and innovation, inspired by Thompson’s life and legacy.
Captivating Design: Featuring contemporary furnishings, rich materials, and open kitchen, the stunning design creates a theatrical and timeless dining atmosphere.
Unique Environment: The location by the pond with a view of the klong and the Jim Thompson House provides a one-of-a-kind setting, creating an urban oasis.
Varied F&B offerings: From a casual lunch or a vibrant dining experience, to exquisite afternoon tea and an exciting bar, on offer is a range of options to suit any preference.
Multi Purposes Function Rooms: Featuring cutting-edge technology, our venue can host a variety of private functions, including weddings, seminars, board meetings, and more.

Renowned for his exceptional hospitality, Jim Thompson welcomed writers, diplomats, and Hollywood stars to sample delectable Thai delicacies at his table. The new concept and restaurant design will honour Thompson’s hosting skills and generous spirit, featuring discreet Jim Thompson imagery, contemporary furnishings, and Split into different levels it will offer everything from a casual dining room and an al fresco terrace to formal dining areas and private rooms.

The restaurant will offer a variety of dining experiences, ranging from a casual lunch for museum-goers to a high-energy vibe dining scene in the evenings. Guests can also enjoy a unique afternoon tea with a stunning view of the Jim Thompson house and garden or unwind with pre- or post-prandial cocktails at the bar overlooking the serene klong.

Additionally, the function rooms are equipped with state-of-the-art technology and can host events of different sizes and styles, ensuring that there is something for everyone.

Casual Lunch Spot: Perfect for museum visitors looking for a break during a hectic day of sightseeing and shopping. It will offer authentic Thai cuisine in an al fresco setting overlooking the pond filled with beautiful koi fishes.

Vibe Dining: In the evenings, the menu is upgraded and enhanced with a great wine list, beats, catering to the beautiful people in the mood for a gastronomic journey. This menu will focus on progressive Thai cuisine and degustation menus.

Afternoon Tea: The delightful Afternoon Tea will embody the essence of the Jim Thompson lifestyle, complete with unparalleled views of the Jim Thompson house and garden – a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of the city and a great alternative from the typical afternoon tea in 5 star hotels. This experience is perfect for those looking to pass the afternoon in a relaxing yet elegant setting while indulging in a selection of sweet and savoury treats.

The OSS Bar: The OSS Bar, inspired by the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the intelligence agency of the United States during World War II, will be the ideal spot for pre-dinner and post-dinner drinks. Our team of professional mixologists is dedicated to crafting some of the finest cocktails in town while providing exceptional hospitality. The OSS story will be woven into our beverage offerings, enriching the overall experience through captivating storytelling. To further enhance the atmosphere, we will feature live music, creating the perfect ambiance for our guests. Additionally, our stunning terrace will invite patrons to savour their drinks, enjoy a cigar, or simply unwind while taking in the picturesque views of the klong.

Function Rooms: Designed to cater to a range of events and occasions they are equipped with a 4mx2m high-definition LED screen and VC conference facilities. The Function Rooms can accommodate up to 50 persons for seminars, 100 for private dinners, and 150 for cocktail events, with direct and private access to the terrace overlooking the klong. Whether you’re hosting a corporate conference, a special celebration, or a social gathering, the versatile function rooms provide the perfect setting for a successful and memorable event.

Leading the F&B experience is a world-class chef with extensive expertise and a passion for showcasing the best of local cuisine. The revamped Jim Thompson Hospitality quarter is set to open by mid 2023.

About Jim Thompson
No brand spells heritage like Jim Thompson, the Thai Silk Company founded in 1951 by James H.W. Thompson, an architect, an art collector, a socialite, and an entrepreneur who has been famously recognized as the driving force behind the revival of the Thailand’s silk industry. Jim Thompson’s disappearance in 1967 remains the largest mystery in South East Asia until today. Today, Jim Thompson is the iconic global lifestyle brand from Thailand with a reputation for beautiful silks and “Beyond Silk”.


First published at – Global Travel News

UNWTO Partners With Aviareps to Launch Destination Marketing Grants

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UNWTO Partners With Aviareps to Launch Destination Marketing Grants - TRAVELINDEX - AIRLINEHUB.comMunich, Germany, March 30, 2023 / TRAVELINDEX / UNWTO will work with its Affiliate Member AVIAREPS to offer grants for destination marketing and research services to five countries in Europe.

The UNWTO + AVIAREPS Destination Marketing Grant will allow selected Member States to benefit from a range of digital marketing services, to be supplied on a pro bono basis. Services include as assistance with campaign websites, landing pages, webinars, online press conferences, e-learning programmes and virtual events provided via the AVIAREPS Ecosystem. The grants will also cover destination research and analysis, PR services and will allow the recipient to participate in various AVIAREPS Roadshows, held throughout the year to connect travel industry buyers with destinations.

With our Affiliate Member AVIAREPS, we are proud to support tourism professionals across Europe to build skills and knowledge to promote their destinations and accelerate recovery

UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili says: “Tourism is one of the most dynamic sectors in the world, and UNWTO is committed to driving innovation forward and supporting education and training at every level. With our Affiliate Member AVIAREPS, we are proud to support tourism professionals across Europe to build skills and knowledge to promote their destinations and accelerate recovery”.

Thomas Drechsler, COO Tourism at AVIAREPS adds: “We are delighted to partner with UNWTO to support selected countries free of charge to quickly get back on their feet after the pandemic and to boost the sustainable expansion of their tourism industry. We are excited to provide our latest digital solutions, international networks, and expertise, to the countries selected by UNWTO, and hope to expand this collaboration with UNWTO to all regions around the world.”

UNWTO will announce which of the five of its European Member States will be eligible for the grants in due course.


First published at – Global Travel News

InterContinental Bangkok Set to Reopen After Multimillion-Dollar Renovation

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InterContinental Bangkok Set to Reopen After Multimillion-Dollar Renovation - TRAVELINDEX - TOP25HOTELS.comBangkok, Thailand, March 30, 2023 / TRAVELINDEX / InterContinental Bangkok set to reopen doors after multimillion-dollar renovation. InterContinental Bangkok, part of IHG Hotels & Resorts, will reopen after a multimillion-dollar renovation in June 2023. The city’s most iconic five-star luxury hotel is soon to return as the centrepiece of Thailand’s travel and hospitality sector after a multimillion-dollar renovation and spectacular makeover that delivers a new level of sophistication, style and luxury to travellers and city goers alike.

Precisely located in the heart of the city and conveniently adjacent to the BTS Chit Lom Skytrain station, InterContinental Bangkok delivers unparalleled walkability to abundant lifestyle shopping locations and major business addresses just steps from the door of guests’ rooms.

Visitors will be awestruck by the new interior of the hotel with its lavish design across public spaces as well as the fully renovated 381 luxury rooms and newly added two-bedroom suites. The fresh aesthetic is designed to introduce travellers to Thailand’s rich culture through a blend of handmade artwork crafted by local artisans and modern abstract art inspired by Thai welcoming ceremonies.

Discover More
Unique dining experiences will transport guests to distant destinations, such as Southern California, with the debut of the city’s first Southern Californian restaurant SoCal, which features an extensive wine selection of 47 Californian Vintages. Families will experience nostalgia and novelty as they dine in the newly renovated Fireplace Grill and Bar, Bangkok’s original luxury steakhouse, and taste authentic Cantonese cuisine at the soon-to-open Summer Palace by the hotel’s talented Cantonese chef, Chef Yau, a two-time Michelin star winner.

Amenities and services where guests at the InterContinental Bangkok can ‘discover more’ include:
• A new luxury jacuzzi in the rooftop pool with unrestricted panoramic views of the city
• A full-service spa offering HARNN body treatments and Elemis facial treatments
• A state-of-the-art fitness centre with an extensive team of private trainers
• A variety of meeting and event spaces, including the Grand Ballroom, to accommodate up to 1,000 guests

InterContinental Bangkok has long specialised in regional and overseas MICE, group bookings and FITs. Flexible conference and event space featuring 19 venues is fully integrated, making the hotel a premier venue for multi-purpose and themed events.

The new InterContinental Bangkok will additionally offer guests an opportunity to ‘discover more’ with enhanced offerings such as a dedicated wedding studio for couples seeking to tie the knot. The full-service space can hold meetings with any, and all, service providers of a couple’s choosing – from photographers, videographers, wedding planners, officiants, florists, and musicians – to make their special day most memorable.

Guests will have access to a best-in-class loyalty programme, IHG One Rewards, which is centered around its guests – giving them richer benefits and more ways to earn than ever before, all powered by leading technology on its new mobile app. Dine, save and earn at InterContinental Bangkok as it joins the IHG One Rewards Dining Privileges programme where members can save up to 20% off their bill and earn 100 IHG Rewards points with every US$10 spent when they present their membership card or virtual card on the IHG App. Non-members can visit IHG One Rewards to learn more or register to become a member

Room rates start from 7500THB ++ for a Classic Room and is available for stays from June 1. For reservations call +66 2 6560444.

About InterContinental Hotels & Resorts
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts makes travel alluring, with insights from over 75 years of experience. Each of our properties provides a gateway to the glamour of The InterContinental Life. As a brand, we aim to embody global sophistication through our superior, understated service and exceptional amenities. What makes us truly different is the genuine interest we show our guests through personalised and attentive services. We offer our most valued guests signature VIP services through a dedicated InterContinental® Ambassador programme and an exclusive Club InterContinental experience. We connect our well-travelled guests to what’s special about a destination, so they enjoy authentic local experiences that will enrich their lives.


First published at – Global Travel News


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Germany is “bullish” on its prospects for travel from Canada this year – after all, the European nation saw 253% year-over-year increase in overnight stays in 2022. And while any statistics these days are inherently inflated due to diminished travel during the pandemic, the German National Tourist Board expects travellers to continue to rediscover, or continue to, travel again with gusto this year.

GNTO director Canada Anja Brokjans this week revealed new tourist board data stating that Canadians spent a total of 485,348 nights in Germany last year (2021: 141,505).

Though still short of the record level of 733,951 in 2019, the 66% deficit compared to 2019 allows for plenty of room for growth as Canadians return to travelling, she said, adding, “Our goal in the medium term is to reach the number of overnight stays we had before the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“We know that Germany appeals strongly to Canadians that are interested in culture and history, city breaks and culinary experiences,” Brokjans continued, and she believes German tourism is ripe with attractive offers to entice travellers, including room rates that are typically lower than elsewhere in Europe.

Germany is also serious about sustainable travel – “it’s not a buzzword, it’s a way of life,” she says – which is a shift in travel that is accelerating in Germany and is well received by Canadians.

Indeed, according to the Sustainable Travel Report 2022 from, 65% of Canadians are more likely to choose sustainable accommodations. And according to the Global Web Index 2022, environmental protection is top of mind for Canadians with nearly half of travellers (47.8%) willing to pay more for eco-friendly products.

GNTO campaign 2023

Cognizant of the shift in values and behaviour of international travellers since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the GNTO has three different campaign themes for 2023.

The “51 UNESCO World Heritage Sites – Historic.Modern.Germany” campaign is aimed at the contrast between historic world heritage and the diversity of products in urban and rural areas. Germany offers guests not only unique and authentic experiences in combination with a city and nature stay, but also sustainable travel experiences – such as highlight how many of the sites can be accessed in a in a climate-friendly way by public transport.

The campaign is also designed to ensure that guests find the offerings so attractive that they plan a longer stay – which also supports a lower CO2 footprint.

Going green

In addition to the UNESCO campaign, the GNTO is promoting two campaigns with a strong “green focus” that proved successful impact in 2022. In 2023, the campaigns will be played out with new travel ideas and inspirations.

The FEEL.GOOD sustainability campaign promotes climate and environmentally friendly offers in a focused fashion, appealing to potential international travellers to discover Germany’s national landscapes and sustainable holiday experiences in rural regions. One third of Germany consists of protected natural landscapes, while 16 national parks, 16 biosphere reserves and more than 100 nature parks vividly demonstrate how to protect the beauty of nature and preserve biodiversity for the future.

And ‘Embrace German Nature’ is a campaign that shows how diverse and unique natural landscapes in Germany are and how they too can be reached in resource-friendly ways.


In addition, the GNTO is touting Germany as a destination that is highly sensitive to barrier-free travel, due to the ongoing commitment of the government and accommodation providers in recent years to provide necessary information and infrastructure that allows people with disabilities to plan and have a carefree trip.

“We are proud of the efforts we have made to make Germany an accessible destination for all,” says Brokjans. “From wheelchair ramps and audio guides to sign language interpretation and accessible accommodations, we are committed to ensuring that everyone can experience the beauty of our country.”


Preferred travel destination

Meanwhile, according to an IPK International survey commissioned by the GNTB exclusively for the recent ITB travel show in Berlin, Germany ranked in third place as a desired travel destination worldwide, after Italy and Spain and ahead of France and the US.

For Canadians travellers to Germany, 39% report being primarily interested in city trips, 19% want to visit multiple destinations, 22% are VFR/other, and 19% are business; and 33% booked through a travel agent.

Brokjans noted that Canadian will have ample opportunity to get to Germany this year, with lift having recovered 88% of pre-pandemic levels, including 96 flights from Air Canada and Lufthansa, the most recent being the launch of service from Montreal to Frankfurt on March 26, and 18 flights from Condor, including new Edmonton summer service launching in May.

And those who want to check out Germany before they go can now do so via virtual reality with the GNTO offering its own app that can be downloaded for the purpose.

First published at Travel Industry Today


First published at – Global Travel News


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Visitors to the west of England can discover a host of dramatic ways to up the action and see the region in a new light – leaving museums and galleries behind for a day for adventures ranging from simple walking to weaselling, and axe-throwing to hot air ballooning. There’s even shark diving for the more intrepid traveller.

Here are some savvy suggestions guaranteed to boost the adrenaline in the West Midlands, the region of western England that includes the counties of Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, and Worcestershire, centred on the country’s second city, Birmingham:

Birmingham’s canals: Birmingham has 56 km of canals – more, famously, than Venice – and travelling around or on them makes for a great day out. Whether walking or cycling alongside the city’s waterways to explore its industrial past, or taking a boat trip along the canals, it’s the best way of seeing the many sides of the city from its heart.

Dudley Canal Tunnel: For something truly unforgettable, take an underground boat trip through the 2,900-m. Dudley Canal Tunnel and caverns, with the Dudley Canal Trust.

West Midlands waterways: If a day on Birmingham’s canals inspires you, then speed off, albeit at 6 km per hour into the sunset, on the wide network of waterways, taking the Grand Union Canal to Warwick, or the Oxford Canal, which goes all the way to the City of Dreaming Spires. There are many narrow boat hire companies in the region such as Grand Union Narrow Boats.

Go Ape outdoor adventure: Swing through the tree-tops with the popular Go Ape franchise, which has forest sites all over the Midlands, including Buxton in the Peak District, Cannock Chase, Coventry and Wyre Forest. It makes a great day out for children and adults – not least thanks to the mega-zipline at the end.

The Bear Grylls Adventure: We’re not going to lie, shark-diving in Birmingham isn’t something we’d expect either, but The Bear Grylls Adventure offers just that in its awesome indoor/outdoor activity centre. Other extreme pursuits include a high-rope challenge, free-flying and, axe-throwing.

Ackers Adventure: For more unexpected high-adrenaline activities, head to Ackers Adventure in Sparkbrook to hit the dry ski slope or try activities ranging from abseiling to archery, climbing to canoeing.

The Peak District, photo – VisitBritain/Jon Attenborough

Peak District National Park: The Peak District was Britain’s first National Park and is still one of its most popular. There are loads of ways of enjoying it, from a leisurely walk and afternoon tea to something more energetic, with one of its many adventure tours. How about a spot of weaselling (squeezing yourself between rocks), climbing, abseiling, caving, or mountain-biking?

Cannock Chase: Forest-bathing is good for the health, so take a tree prescription and walk or cycle around the lovely forest Cannock Chase, or go horse-riding on one of its bridleways.

The Malverns: There’s no better way (apart from maybe a Morgan Driving Tour, which sounds pretty good) to see the Malverns than on foot. As one of the UK’s most beautiful landscapes, this protected Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) has many walks, from easy to strenuous.

Warwick Castle: For a spot of medieval adventure, one can go all dungeons and dragons at Warwick Castle. The almost 1,000-year-old castle has loads of immersive experiences, Bird of Prey events and live shows, as well as a Horrible Histories maze. Castles have never been so energetic.

Chatsworth House

Chatsworth House: The estate of the grand Chatsworth House in Bakewell is so vast it covers 400 hectares and visitors can roam through the rolling landscape all day – before even tackling the 42-hectare formal garden and maze.

Kenilworth Castle: Walk in the footsteps of Elizabeth I in the restored Elizabethan Garden of the vast Kenilworth Castle, near Coventry. This medieval fortress is one of the country’s biggest historical sites. A great was to see it is from on high, via hot air balloon.


First published at Travel Industry Today


First published at – Global Travel News

CUNARD 100-YEAR RETROSPECTIVE: A picture is worth a thousand memories

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Luxury cruise line Cunard is celebrating a century’s worth of history and memories by launching its new “Sea Views Exhibition,” curated by British photographer and filmmaker Mary McCartney. Boasting images from Cunard’s photography archive together with photos submitted by past and present guests of its iconic cruise liners, the Sea Views Exhibition is a culmination of the century’s rich history.

The digital exhibition, which can be viewed online at, celebrates two milestones in Cunard’s history: the first being that over 100 years ago, Cunard introduced onboard photography to capture the signature moments of their voyages; the second is the centenary of the first-ever round the world voyage on Cunard’s ship, Laconia, which departed on a 130-day voyage on Nov. 21, 1922 and arrived back in New York on March 30, 1923 after calling at 22 ports.

Showcasing a selection of never-before-seen imagery featuring everything from Hollywood’s most famed to the treasured moments of guests, the snapshots cover the dynamic changes in styles across fashion, food and interior design since the 1920s.

The exhibition features a snapshot of some of Cunard’s most glamorous guests, from Elizabeth Taylor and Rita Hayworth to Bing Crosby and Nelson Mandela, illustrating some of Cunard’s archival gems across the century.

Hundreds of Cunard passengers from all over the world, including Australia, Canada, Germany, the US, and UK, submitted over a thousand of their personal highlights aboard Cunard ships. The images depict a series of fascinating moments from families immigrating to new continents, and milestone anniversaries to unexpected guest encounters, telling intriguing stories from the 1920s to present day.

Mary McCartney said: “It was a joy to dig deep into the archives and discover never-before-seen photographs that capture the essence of Cunard’s signature moments, showcasing the glamour, elegance, and adventures families and friends shared together.

“It was not just about showcasing the history, but also celebrating the millions of travellers who have embarked on unforgettable voyages across the globe. As I went through the archives and read the stories submitted by passengers from all corners of the world, I was struck by the strong sense of community and connection that Cunard has fostered over the years.”

The main staircase with passengers and a bell boy, on board Cunard’s Aquitania

Other images McCartney selected to be part of this unique photography exhibition include:

• Troops walking onboard in Sydney, Cunard’s Queen Mary (1940). The Queen Mary was deployed during the Second World War to carry troops to Europe

• Nelson Mandela sailing on the Queen Elizabeth 2’s 1998 passage between Durban and Cape Town. In the ship’s visitor book, he wrote “Travelling on QE2 was an unforgettable honour and a pleasure”

• Elizabeth Taylor, who regularly travelled with Cunard and her producer husband Mike Todd

• Harry Lillis Crosby, known to the world as Bing, was a regular on board the Queen Mary. He was often found in the dark room on board the ship chatting to photographers.

• Sir Winston Churchill operating the controls with cigar in hand, with Commodore J.G.P. Bisset on Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth (1940s)

• Prominent Passengers Phyllis Calvert and husband Peter Murray-Hill, actors, with their daughter, Auriol, facing press photographers on the Queen Mary’s boat deck

Meeting Captain Lawrence Portet at the Captain’s Cocktail Party en route to New York on Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth 2 (1979), photo – Justin Crowe

British cruise line Cunard has operated passenger ships on the North Atlantic, since 1840. There are currently three Cunard ships: Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth, and Queen Victoria and a fourth ship, Queen Anne, will be entering service in early 2024.

First published at Travel Industry Today


First published at – Global Travel News

NOTRE DAME EMERGING FROM THE ASHES: On track to re-open in 2024

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The reconstruction of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris is going fast enough to allow its reopening to visitors at the end of 2024, less than six years after a fire ravaged its roof. The cathedral’s iconic spire, which collapsed in the blaze, will gradually start reappearing above the monument this year in a powerful signal of its revival, said the army general in charge of the colossal project, Gen. Jean-Louis Georgelin.

“The return of the spire in Paris’ sky will in my opinion be the symbol that we are winning the battle of Notre Dame,” he added.

The reconstruction itself started last year, after more than two years of work to make the monument stable and secure enough for artisans to start rebuilding it.

Authorities have made the choice to rebuild the 12th century monument, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture, the way it was before. That includes recreating the 93-m.-high spire added in the 19th century by architect Eugene Viollet-le-Duc.

Meanwhile, an exhibition called “Notre-Dame de Paris: at the heart of the construction site” has opened to visitors in an underground facility in front of the cathedral. Accessible for free, it highlights ongoing operations on the site and the expertise and skills of workers. It also features some remains from the fire and works of art from the cathedral.

Georgelin said the cathedral will reopen in December 2024, in line with the goal set by President Emmanuel Macron just after the fire – yet it will be too late for the Paris Olympic Games scheduled in summer next year.

“My job is to be ready to open this cathedral in 2024. And we will do it,” Georgelin said. “We are fighting every day for that and we are on a good path.”

This “means that the archbishop of the capital will be in a capacity again to celebrate the Catholic liturgy in his cathedral” and the monument will also “be open for tourists to visit,” he said.

Culture Minister Rima Abdul-Malak said that this doesn’t mean all the renovation will be finished then. “There will still be some renovation work going on in 2025,” she stressed.

Meanwhile, the new exhibition near the cathedral will allow visitors, including those coming for the Olympics, “to live what could be this experience of visiting Notre-Dame in a brand new way,” she said. In addition to the free visit, a virtual reality show will allow paying visitors to dive into the history of the cathedral. “That will help also tourism in Paris,” she added.

Everyday in the capital and across the country, about 1,000 people work to rebuild Notre Dame, Georgelin said.

“The biggest challenge is to comply precisely every day to the planning we have done,” he stressed. “We have a lot of different works to achieve: the framework, the painting, the stones, the vault, the organ, the stained glass and so on.”

Philippe Jost, managing director of the government agency overseeing the reconstruction, noted that the result “will be faithful to the original architecture” both because “we are sticking to the vanished shapes of the cathedral” and because “we are also sticking to the materials and construction methods” of medieval times.

“We don’t do concrete vaults that look like stone, we do stone vaults that we rebuild as they were built in the Middle Ages,” Jost said, adding that the roof framework will also be made from oak like it initially was.

The cathedral in flames in April, 2019

First published at Travel Industry Today


First published at – Global Travel News