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World Travel Awards recognises Radisson Royal Hotel Moscow


The prestigious World Travel Awards has recognised the achievements of the Radisson Royal Hotel Moscow at a Gala Ceremony hosted by Conrad Algarve in Portugal. Each and every World Travel Awards pays tribute to the most prominent international travel brands from around the world.

On 6th October, the crème-de-la-crème of the European tourism industry joined the World Travel Awards for a stunning outdoor cocktail reception, a programme of entertainment and an exquisite banquet at the newly opened Conrad hotel.Compare Car Hire Moscow

Travel experts from across the region heaped praise on the winners for their commitment and high level of professionalism.

Journalists from leading media outlets caught on camera thankful speeches from the owners, directors, and managers of the very best international ski resorts, new fine leisure and business destinations, outstanding wild nature retreats and tour operators.

The strict jury revealed the winners to loud applause and the unhidden excitement of guests, underlining their continuous efforts to strive for perfection.

The Radisson Royal Hotel Moscow claimed three ‘travel Oscars’, marking a real breakthrough for the Moscow hospitality industry. The property claimed the prizes for Russia’s Leading Luxury Hotel, Europe’s Leading Luxury Business Hotel and Europe’s Leading Landmark Hotel.

The hotel will celebrate its 55th anniversary in November.

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Posted by on 09/10/2012 in Hotels

 

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Fly from Cardiff to Malaga


Spanish low-cost airline, Vueling, will launch flights between Cardiff and Malaga in Spring 2013, with flights priced from around £32 one way.

Vueling began operations from Cardiff earlier this year with direct flights to Barcelona, Palma and Alicante, operated by Airbus A320 aircraft for the summer season.

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Air Asia introduce child free zones on flights


Malaysia based low-cost carrier Air Asia has outlined plans to introduce a quiet zone on its aircraft, effectively banning children from the first seven rows of economy class seats.

The airline hopes to get the scheme up and running by February next year, with passengers able to reserve a seat in the zone at no extra cost – for now.

On an airbus A330, the seats will make up seven rows of seating behind the Premium FlatBed class.

AirAsia argues passengers will experience minimal noise in the seats and soft lighting.

Any group containing a passenger younger than 12 will not be able to book these seats.

 
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Posted by on 27/09/2012 in Airlines

 

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European travel habits highlighted through research


Turkey has been recognised as the favoured holiday destination for Russian holidaymakers following research by IPK International ahead of ITB Berlin. On the other hand, when it comes to how often they visit the country this source market still has huge development potential.

In 2011, only 14 per cent of the 3.4 million holiday journeys undertaken by Russians to Turkey showed a 4th return visit or more, whilst the number of first-time visitors was 48 per cent. Some 37 per cent of Russians have previously visited Turkey on two or three occasions.

These are the latest conclusions of the World Travel Monitor, a special survey carried out by IPK International and commissioned by ITB Berlin. One of its objectives was to find out how often Russians, Germans and Britons selected a particular country for their holidays (excluding trips to relatives and friends).

Depending on how often they visited a destination travellers were divided into three categories: newcomers, explorers (first or second-time visitors) and regular guests (four or more visits).

Turkey is also a favourite with German holidaymakers.

In 2011, 1.5 million (41 per cent) of the 3.8 million holiday trips undertaken by Germans to Turkey represented a 4th visit or more.

Out of the 2.2 million trips taken by Britons to Turkey 31 per cent were trips by newcomers and 32 per cent trips by frequent guests respectively. Visits by “explorers” represented 38 per cent.

Commenting on the survey’s conclusions, Martin Buck, director of the Competence Center Travel & Logistics, Messe Berlin, said: “The number of times a country is visited is a very important sign of how popular a destination is.

“Holidaymakers who repeatedly travel to the same country are a measure of overall satisfaction with tourism services.

“In order to maintain that situation those destinations must constantly adapt to travellers’ needs.”

The results of ITB Berlin and IPK International also indicate that Germans are regular visitors to the Netherlands. Some 63 per cent of Germans’ trips to their neighbours represented a 4th visit or more.

Austria and Italy were ranked 2nd and 3rd amongst the nations that were regularly visited. Conversely, Germany is the preferred holiday location of Scandinavians, mainly of Norwegians. A total of 64 per cent of Norwegians are devotees of repeated visits to Germany. Amongst Danes this proportion is 55 per cent and among the Dutch it is 54 per cent.

France is highly ranked amongst Britons, 48 per cent of whom take their vacations just across the Channel. Russians also prefer to visit their neighbours. Some 50 per cent of Russians were identified as having taken their vacations 4 times or more in Ukraine, a former Soviet republic.

 
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Posted by on 26/09/2012 in Tourism News

 

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Emirates to introduce CBeebies on flights


BBC Worldwide has secured a deal with Emirates to launch CBeebies as the airline’s first-ever branded channel targeting children aged six and under.

Loved by children and their carers the world over, CBeebies offers a range of high quality programmes which encourage the BBC’s youngest audiences to learn through play in a consistently safe environment.

From November 1st 2012, Emirates will feature a bespoke CBeebies branded channel showing a selection of long-time kids’ favourites like the award-winning Charlie and Lola and Nina and the Neurons.

The CBeebies channel on Emirates will also be home to several titles developed by the BBC and BBC Worldwide for the international CBeebies television network, including Andy’s Wild Adventures, Baby Jake and Mr Bloom’s Nursery.

The dedicated CBeebies branded channel on Emirates compliments additional programming from the BBC, such as Sherlock (BAFTA, Royal Television Society), starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, the landmark documentary series Frozen Planet, narrated by world-renowned naturalist Sir David Attenborough, and classic comedy series Absolutely Fabulous and Fawlty Towers.

Also available on Emirates is the BBC’s Live Text News and Sport service, which has kept passengers up to date for almost a decade.

Ian McDonough, senior vice president, BBC Worldwide Channels said: “As a company, we are committed to serving our international audiences – both young and old – with the best British content across a range of media platforms.

“This CBeebies branded channel on Emirates will keep young fans entertained and bring yet more children on a journey of learning and discovery.”

“Emirates believes that providing the best in in-flight entertainment is one of the key factors in a successful flight and we continuously invest in expanding our offering to our passengers,” said Patrick Brannelly, Emirates’ vice president corporate communications product, publishing, digital & events.

“Building upon the large selection of children’s TV channels already onboard, adding the dedicated CBeebies channel is just another example of how Emirates meets the needs of our passengers – be they young in age or young at heart.”

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Posted by on 24/09/2012 in Airlines

 

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Emirates adds two weekly flights to Seychelles


In a move to support the tourism sector of the Seychelles, Emirates, one of the fastest-growing airlines in the world, will introduce two additional flights to the archipelago in December and February, thus increasing the service to thirteen weekly flights.

The airline, known to have contributed to the development of new tourism markets for the Seychelles, will enhance its promotional efforts across its network to sustain the awareness around the idyllic destination.

“As a partner of the Seychelles, we actively support the tourism industry of the archipelago. The increase in frequencies will provide even more travel options and flexibility to visitors from across our network,” said Ahmed Hashim Khoory, Emirates’ Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, West Asia and Indian Ocean.

“Working with the Seychelles Ministry of Tourism and the Seychelles Tourism Board has been very fruitful. We thank the government of the Republic of Seychelles for their trust in Emirates,” he added.

On his part, Alain St. Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, said: “We welcome the confirmation by Emirates for its 13th weekly flight linking Seychelles to the world. This is an added boost for our tourism industry, because it helps to reconfirm that we are, more than ever before, but one stop from anywhere in the world traveling in First Class, in Business Class, or in Economy from start to finish. The continued support by Emirates to our tourism marketing drive, we hope, will be reinforced with these extra flights for the benefit of Seychelles and the airline itself.”

The 12th flight starts on December 3. EK707 will depart Dubai at 0845 hours, arriving in Seychelles at 1325 hours. The return journey from Seychelles, EK708, will depart at 2350 hours, arriving in Dubai at 0420 hours, the following day. The 13th flight will be operational from February 5, 2013.

From the start of its operations to Seychelles in January 2005, Emirates has promoted the island destination throughout its network. Every year, Emirates Holidays’ brochure – A World of Choice – dedicates a prominent part to the destination.

 
 

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Two tier immigration checks at UK airports on the cards


In a move certain to anger equality campaigners, the UK Border Agency has told parliament it is working on plans to allow “high-value” travellers preferential treatment at airports.

Passengers viewed as valuable to either airlines or the UK economy could be offered the service, which is already available to business class travellers.

Brian Moore, the departing head of the UK Border Force, said the distinction could be made at immigration control under the plans. It would be an extension of a priority queueing system tried out this year at London Heathrow Airport, under.

Under that system passengers from Australia, Canada, the US, New Zealand and other mainly old Commonwealth countries who do not need a visa to enter Britain were fast-tracked.

Moore told the Commons home affairs select committee earlier: “It is an idea that officials are discussing with port operators.

“It will then go back to ministers for them to consider whether and how it is going to be progressed. It is an idea that is being pursued.”

However, the idea has already been criticised in some quarters for perceived damage to UK equality, with poorer passengers suffering at the expense of those willing to pay.Compare Car Hire UK Airports

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Disney Co bails out Disneyland Paris


Disneyland Paris has been forced to secure a refinancing deal with the Walt Disney Company as debts continue to mount.

Burbank, California-based Walt Disney Co is the majority shareholder in Euro Disney, with a 39.8 per cent stake.

Philippe Gas, chief executive of Euro Disney, said in a statement: “This refinancing will enable us to reduce our financing costs and give us greater investment and operational flexibility.

“This is a key step in the development of our resort that we pursue for the benefit for all of our stakeholders. I strongly believe this will be highly beneficial to the company, its cast members and shareholders.”

Disneyland Paris has debts totally €1.7 billion. The new financing will be composed of term loans totalling €1.2 billion and a €100 million standby revolving credit facility which will run until 2017.

Gas added: “The Walt Disney Company, with this transaction, reaffirms its continued confidence in Disneyland Paris which has successfully become, over the past 20 years, the number one tourist destination in Europe.”

Disneyland Paris will repay €217 million of debt principal over the next five years, according to a more gradual repayment schedule that will provide for €225 million of additional cash flow.

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World Travel Awards winners revealed in Turks & Caicos


Leading travel brands from across the region have shared top honours at the World Travel Awards (WTA) Caribbean & The Americas Gala Ceremony 2012 hosted at Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages & Spa this evening.

A packed delegation of VIPs, senior tourism figures and international media travelled from more than 30 nations to attend the event, which was supported by Turks & Caicos Tourist Board and Scotiabank.

It was an evening of travel triumph for nations across the region.

St Lucia won the coveted title of “Caribbean’s Leading Honeymoon Destination”, Coco Reef Resort (Tobago) picked up “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel”, while Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island (British Virgin Islands) was voted “Caribbean Leading Private Island”.

Buccament Bay Spa & Resort (St Vincent) nudged ahead of The Hotel Chocolat (St Lucia), Hotel Riu Palace Bavaro (Dominican Republic), The Magdalena Grand Beach Resort (Tobago) and Cofresi Palm Beach & Spa Resort (Dominican Republic) to win “Caribbean’s Leading New Hotel”.

Jamaica’s continuing rise up the global tourism order was acknowledged after it was named “Caribbean’s Leading Destination”.

In North America, Las Vegas saw off competition from New York, Miami, San Francisco, Montreal and Vancouver to win the coveted title of “North America’s Leading Destination”.

New York won the “North America’s Leading City Break Destination” title, while American Airlines was voted “North America’s Leading Airline”.

Meanwhile, Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) was voted “South America’s Leading Destination”, beating off stiff competition from the likes of Easter Island (Chile), Galapagos Islands (Ecuador) and Machu Picchu (Peru).

The WTA awards programme, hailed as the ‘Oscars of the travel industry’ by the global media, highlights and rewards those travel brands that have made the greatest contribution to the industry over the past year.

WTA president Graham Cooke underlined the depth and quality of the travel and tourism sector across the region.

He said: “Our winners are also drawn from the breadth of the Caribbean & The Americans and , reflecting the strength and depth of the region’s travel and tourism sector.

“I am sure these organisations will fare strongly in our Grand Final, which takes place in New Delhi, India on December 12th 2012.

“The ceremony has also served as a glittering spotlight for Turks & Caicos – a paradise nation that has welcomed a record number of tourist visitors over the past year.

“This is testament to its overwhelming natural attractions, its luxury hospitality facilities and its rich local heritage.”

Rising Caribbean star and the reigning Miss Bahamas, Anastagia Pierre hosted the show with American actor and comedian Walt Willey.

Some of the Caribbean’s finest vocalists, including Shawn Campbell and Elroy Simmons, performed to the packed audience.

Gordon “Butch” Stewart, chairman of Sandals Resorts International, added: “We are honoured to receive the highest number of awards in Sandals Resorts’ history.

“We always strive for excellence, and continue to invest in our product so that each year we can be proud to say we are the Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand.”

Other WTA Grand Tour 2012 regional heats include Dubai (UAE), Algarve (Portugal), and Singapore.

The winners of these legs will go head-to-head in WTA’s Grand Final, which takes place at The Oberoi, Gurgaon on December 12th 2012.

Ralph Higgs, director of tourism, Turks & Caicos Tourist Board, concluded: “The Turks & Caicos Islands Tourist Board congratulates the winners and the nominees for this year’s World Travel Awards.

“With another 30 nations represented at these awards, we hope that each of you will take a piece of our islands home with you, etched in your memory forever.

“Congratulations again and we do hope to see you here in the future as we celebrate and acknowledge the brightest and best in the global hospitality industry.”

World Travel Awards

WTA was launched in 1993 to acknowledge and recognise excellence in the global travel and tourism industry.

Now celebrating its 19th anniversary, it is regarded as the very highest achievement that a travel product could hope to receive.

WTA’s global media partner network includes International Herald Tribune, CNBC Arabiya, Newsweek, ASTA Network, National Geographic Traveller, Access New York, Travel & Leisure China, Khaleej Times, Trade Arabia, TTN, Trav Talk India, Publituris, ABTA Magazine, Outlook Traveller, Breaking Travel News, eTurboNews and Travel Daily News International.

 

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easyJet woos the business and corporate market


easyJet has inked a new travel deal with parliamentarians which promises to provide affordable travel for MPs and peers.

The year-long preferred partnership deal between easyJet and Travel Management Company Hillgate Travel will deliver low cost, flexible fares to MPs as well as providing support for MPs’ constituency and Commons Select Committee’s travel arrangements and will be open for all MPs, Peers and Houses of Parliament staff.

Carolyn McCall, Chief Executive of easyJet, commented: “We believe this new deal will not only help give MPs and Peers easy and affordable travel but will also safeguard the taxpayers’ purse.

“We know that many MPs, Peers and Government ministers already fly with easyJet. This deal will make it easier and more cost effective than ever before. We are sure they will vote with their feet and travel with easyJet across Europe.

“This deal is a good example of easyJet’s strategy of increasing the number of business travellers flying with the airline. Over 9.5 million business travellers fly with easyJet each year. They are attracted by our combination of low fares and friendly service, carrying our passengers to primary airports at convenient times.”

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