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Expedia Group releases insights on travel trends for national parks

Ahead of Earth Month in April, Expedia Group released insights on travel trends** in four major national parks (Moab, Yellowstone, Yosemite and Zion National Park), highlighting the opportunities for hoteliers to capitalize on the interest in these key markets, beyond just the peak summer months. Expedia Group’s data revealed: Aside from Zion, where stays are evenly…

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Expedia Group releases insights on travel trends for national parks

Ahead of Earth Month in April, Expedia Group released insights on travel trends** in four major national parks (Moab, Yellowstone, Yosemite and Zion National Park), highlighting the opportunities for hoteliers to capitalize on the interest in these key markets, beyond just the peak summer months. Expedia Group’s data revealed:

Aside from Zion, where stays are evenly spread throughout the year, the majority of room nights spent at each of the markets occur in the spring and summer seasons (March – September), indicating a spike in demand during periods with ideal weather for outdoor activities;
Moab, Yosemite and Yellowstone have seen tremendous positive YoY growth in package demand (nearly 110 percent, 70 percent and 45 percent YoY growth, respectively); 
Packages that include lodging, air and car have a strong share of demand in each of the markets (nearly 60 percent share in Moab and Yellowstone, 50 percent share in Zion and 40 percent share in Yosemite);
Overall growth in demand to each of the markets continues to be strong (nearly 780 percent YoY growth in Moab, 660 percent YoY growth in Yellowstone, 245 percent YoY growth in Zion and 280 percent YoY growth in Yosemite), with international travelers driving nearly 80 percent of overall demand. 

With personal spending consistently growing month by month,*** consumers in general are not only looking to purchase tangible items, but also invest in memorable experiences. Furthermore, according to research conducted by Expedia Group Media Solutions, younger travelers prioritize activities and experiences above all, indicating a healthy appetite for adventure. 
How can hotels tap into the growing interest in this type of travel and capture travelers?

Don’t be late: On average, packages have a booking window of one month.**** In addition to longer booking windows, package promotions can see higher demand from international travelers and larger parties. Offer your inventory as far in advance as possible to lock in higher rates and longer lengths of stay.
Be extra: Travelers will want to get the most of their time at the parks, so offering early check-in, late checkout or complimentary breakfast can go a long way.
Put it in park: With travelers increasingly booking car rentals as part of their packages, offering discounted or free parking can help your property stand out among other hotels in the market.
Go green: It’s no secret that eco-travel is not just a fleeting trend, but has become an entire movement as sustainability becomes more top of mind for consumers. Offering sustainable features (i.e. water-saving fixtures, linen and towel reuse, green cleaning products, etc.) has been proven to draw in high participation rates among guests, as well increase guest satisfaction.
Be the local expert: Leverage the local expertise of your front desk staff to encourage travelers to take guided tours of your park or explore other nearby activities. Showcase your unique experience and differentiate your property on Expedia Group sites to give travelers confidence your property is the best choice for their trip.
Leverage insights: Data doesn’t lie and can provide you with invaluable insights into seasonal trends, customer buying habits and more. Expedia Group Partner Central’s suite of tools helps to support your goals before, during, and after your peak travel season to ensure maximum performance throughout the year.

* Source: Addition Tips**Data from last 12 months, ending in Q3 2018***Data from Bureau of Economic Analysis (November 2018)****Data from Package Bookings: Learnings from the Top Packages Markets (July 2018)

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Tenerife – epicentre for reopening of tourism and European connectivity, through Aviation Event

The President of the Island Council of Tenerife, Pedro Martín, presented the international congress, which 150 experts from the aviation and tourism sector attended in person, which was be held in the south of the island last Friday.Henrik Hololei, Director-General for Mobility and Transport of the European Commission; Juan Fernando López Aguilar, President of the Civil…

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Tenerife – epicentre for reopening of tourism and European connectivity, through Aviation Event

The President of the Island Council of Tenerife, Pedro Martín, presented the international congress, which 150 experts from the aviation and tourism sector attended in person, which was be held in the south of the island last Friday.Henrik Hololei, Director-General for Mobility and Transport of the European Commission; Juan Fernando López Aguilar, President of the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee of the European Parliament, and Raimonds Gruntins, Director of Regional Affairs of the IATA, are among those attending.The President of the Island Council of Tenerife, Pedro Martín, stressed that the Aviation-Event 2021, which was held on Friday, 11 June at the Gran Hotel Meliá Palacio in Isora, will place the island at the centre of the resumption of tourism activity and aviation, with the attendance in person of 150 people related to the field of air connectivity and the tourism sector from around the world. In addition, it will make the island a European reference point for communication in this field.Pedro Martín highlighted that “the fact that this convention is held in Tenerife has not happened by chance: it is the result of a year’s work, and will serve as a forum for debate on the future of air communications”; adding that this forum will discuss “what will happen after a one-year shutdown, which we have particularly felt here in Tenerife due to our dependence on tourism”.The President of the Island Council stressed that the Island Council of Tenerife “must commit to the Aviation-Event and to the future of this sector, where digitalisation and sustainability will be continuously present henceforth, both in general, and in the strategy of our destination, in particular”. Similarly, this will be the backdrop for the debate on “the new regulation of the green passport”. “I am pleased that we have had the chance to open up this debate that society needs a response to and we are convinced that this is the right forum to do so”, he stressed.The presentation of Aviation-Event, which is being held for the first time outside of the usual circuit of European capitals, took place this morning at the same hotel that will host the event, which also included the participation of the CEO of Turismo de Tenerife, David Pérez, along with the CEO of Aviation Event, Marcel Riwalsky, the owner of the German airline consultancy firm Bluearbre, Peter Baumgartner, and the CEO of SomonAir, Thomas Hallan.The CEO of Turismo de Tenerife, David Pérez, explained that this forum, which “began to take shape in Frankfurt a year ago, seeks to address the future of commercial aviation and its relationship with tourism. But it also offers a second opportunity: the business of attracting people to the island, through the local establishment of companies, as the airline Vueling has done, thanks to such tax breaks as exist in the Canary Islands Special Zone (ZEC) and those that “Why Tenerife?” advises on – a platform that the Island Council forms part of through Turismo de Tenerife and the delegated foreign action department of the Tenerife institution.The CEO of Aviation Event, Marcel Riwalsky, highlighted that “this is the first in situ congress, without videoconferences, that we can enjoy “live”, without virtual platforms, since the start of the pandemic”. Riwalsky thanked the President of the Island Council and the CEO of Turismo de Tenerife for their “commitment to this venture, which began in mid-pandemic when we did not know how we could fly and there was not even a vaccine for the coronavirus”. For that reason, and thanks to the commitment of the Island Council and of Turismo de Tenerife to host this congress, “we have decided to award them the Aviation-Event Media Award”, he added.Riwalsky added that “this will also be the first time that the aviation sector and tourism unite”. “The aviation industry has always acted on its own in the past. Now is the time to join forces and continue with this joint work which henceforth, and thanks to this event to resume tourism and aviation activity, may continue to be developed at similar meetings in the future”, he specified.For his part, Thomas Hallan, CEO of SomonAir – one of the largest airlines in the world, with headquarters in the Asian country of Tajikistan, stressed the importance and interest of such an event as that which will be held in Tenerife. “It will be very interesting to share the moment at which the revitalisation of the aviation indus ry will take place, and do so with so many people involved in the sector; more so, taking into account that sustainability will be one of the issues to be addressed at one of the Aviation-Event panels”, he announced.The CEO of the German airline consultancy firm Bluearbre, Peter Baumgartner, stressed that “the holding of Aviation-Event is a milestone for the immediate future, thanks to which the planet will begin to adapt to the current situation of the pandemic”. And he alluded to the proposal, in the panels that will take place on Friday, for “the potential scenarios that we may face: to cater for post-Covid life”. Baumgartner added that “the Aviation-Event will make it possible for Tenerife to place itself at the very epicentre of post-Covid life”.The origin of Aviation-Event Tenerife 2021The event, which began to take shape in June 2020, and which was firmed up in March this year during the visit by the Supervisory Council of Aviation-Event to Tenerife, will include the participation of senior representatives from the aviation industry and institutions from throughout the continent of Europe, along with others from America and Asia: ranging from airlines and airports to leading organisations and political leaders, who, during the different debates that will take place throughout the day, will analyse the keys that will allow the foundations to be laid for the new era beginning in the tourism and aviation industries.Agenda of the eventAt 9:30 am on Friday, 11 June, the President of the Island Council, Pedro Martín, will inaugurate the event, which will also be attended by the Chairman of the Supervisory Council of the Aviation-Event, Adrian von Dörnberg, and the CEO of this organisation, Marcel Riwalsky. The leading figures that will take part in the congress include Henrik Hololei, Director-General for Mobility and Transport of the European Commission and Juan Fernando López Aguilar, President of the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee of the European Parliament. Representatives of more than 20 airlines and cruise ship companies will also take part, along with senior figures from the International Air Transport Association (IATA).The panels for debate and speeches into which Aviation-Event Tenerife 2021 will be divided will address such aspects as the opportunities the island offers to set up businesses; the keys to the resumption of activity in the European aviation sector; the vaccination certificate that the European Union seeks to introduce to facilitate traveller mobility; the handling of the crisis caused by the pandemic and how the tourism sector should address this, and the scenario that will open up under the so-called “new normal”. The recovery of aviation on other continents, such as America, digitalisation as a driver of new business models in the sector and the opportunities for a more sustainable travel industry are among the other aspects that will also be addressed at the congress.

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ANIXE Insights: Travel bookings are booming with incredible momentum

Along with the third wave of the COVID pandemic and its deadly toll on the global population at an unprecedented rate, even the greatest optimists started rethinking their plans. After such a positive summer and autumn of 2020, it was a shock to be confronted with those drastic images from India, which hit us in…

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ANIXE Insights: Travel bookings are booming with incredible momentum

Along with the third wave of the COVID pandemic and its deadly toll on the global population at an unprecedented rate, even the greatest optimists started rethinking their plans. After such a positive summer and autumn of 2020, it was a shock to be confronted with those drastic images from India, which hit us in early 2021. The world was in the middle of vaccination program rollouts, but the virus was not going away and would not let up. It mutated and often re-attacked people who had once won the battle. No one knew if the world we knew before had a chance of coming back.We had so many positive indicators. Photos and videos of open restaurants in Israel with people packed tightly together showed us that it could be the same in our own countries when the steep curves of infection and death level out and finally flatten.Vaccine manufacturers struggled to meet the enormous demand and distribution problems began to arise, bringing some programs to a halt. Some vaccines brought about severely undesirable effects and were banned by some countries. It was a bumpy road for a while, until the culmination of the current state of affairs where vaccination programs are in full swing, and global herd immunity just around the corner.ANIXE Insights have been observing the growth in bookings coming through our Resfinity Platform, growing every week. Last week of May, ANIXE received and passed forward to its supplier partners over 12,000 bookings, a level of production we haven’t seen since January of 2020.More destinations open up for tourists by the day, and believe it or not some destinations are operating at over 75% capacity, however with COVID measures in place. For as long as these regulations are in place, our best-case scenario is around 50% of 2019 figures. Specifically, hotels are not allowed to operate at 100% occupancy, only 50%.New, attractive offers appear in travel agencies and almost immediately sell out. Popular hotels and destinations are becoming more and more challenging to book. Many of us are putting everything aside and planning our vacations on short notice. Right now. We fear that if we don’t book now, it’ll only get more expensive later. As we make that booking, whether on or offline, we take a deep breath…this time without the mask. It’s like old times again. The same adrenaline. The same excitement. The same anticipation. Here we go!Within our client base, bookings grew in May we think as the infection and death rate were slightly weaker than in April and February. June shows a very healthy growth trend with bigger increases week on week to date. Bookings sold in May this year have already reached 52% of those sold in May 2019. In Germany, May 2020 bookings represent 60% of the bookings produced in May 2019.What is worth emphasizing – the scale of booking growth between May and April is 220%! Impressively significant. And decisively a touristic breakthrough! Houston, we’ve just landed on Mars.As lockdowns are removed and restrictions begin to loosen, international travel begins to resume. We’ve started to travel shorter distances, often with our own mode of transport. In May, the Germans decided on Spain, Greece, Turkey, and Egypt. Slightly more interest grew for local destinations. However, their share in relation to the scale of overall reservations remained still at a much lower level (a decline of more than 37%) than before the pandemic.Compared to April, Greece in particular attracted significantly more interest, and its share of bookings exceeded the numbers from 2 years ago by 2,5 multiples. Although there is a sizable 40% drop in the overall share of Egypt, May numbers exceeded April by more than 120%. The drop in Egypt’s bookings is due to the increased popularity of Greece and Italy.On the other hand, Italy and the USA, destinations that were among the most popular in May 2019 seem to be still the most affected by the government regulations and bans against travel. Nevertheless, May’s result shows that vacations in Italy are becoming popular again.The coming summer has encouraged German travelers to make reservations in the popular Spanish resorts; Palma de Mallorca, Las Palmas, Puerto del Rosario. The Turkish resorts of Antalya and Gazipasa were also highly-rated, but the most significant increase of interest was on the Greek beaches of Heraklion, Rhodes, Kos, and Chania.Drilling down to city level, In April 2021 Hurghada, Puerto del Rosario, and Las Palmas also enjoyed tremendous popularity, although their share decreased significantly later. We see similar trends with the hotspots of May 2019. Demand for bookings to London, Las Vegas, Rome, domestic areas of Berlin, and Frankfurt fell significantly, and their booking share in ANIXE’s Resfinity dwindled. The top destinations were stable: Palma de Mallorca and Antalya. Their share in Mays’s bookings was even higher, although on disproportionately lower volumes.The four most popular destinations in May 2021 for German travelers are Hurghada, Side, Dubai, and Istanbul.The most significant percentage slump was in Dubai, whose share in bookings dropped fourfold in May. Noteworthy, Dubai, Istanbul, and Hurghada’s share of all bookings were lower than in April, their quantitative volume did not weaken – in fact, it was at a similar level or even increased by 120% as for the latter place!In contrast to the situation in April 2021, where trips of up to two days were very popular, May 2021 has proven to be a harbinger of change. The state of the receding pandemic contributed to this. Last month, 7-8 day bookings were the most popular, while the share of 1-2 day bookings decreased slightly – although quantitatively, it remains high.Online meetings have replaced business travel – this is a fact. The new reality is visible in numbers compared to the same period in 2019, before the pandemic. The percentage of bookings of up to 4 days stay, which reigned supreme in then, is now 50% lower on average than half that value, and has given way to slightly longer leisure trips.Nevertheless, data from ANIXE’s Resfinity Platform shows that we feel safer. We are finally starting to formalize and execute holiday plans. We are most willing to buy offers more than two months in advance. Spontaneous reservations are less popular, although recently there has also been a growing interest in trips made 8-14 days in advance.While people can do business online, the hunger for leisure travel is reaching a breaking point. This is evident if we compare the latest figures with those of 2 years ago. We have a more than 20 percent decline in the share of single-person reservations (30% just in the last month). Still, there clearly is a growing demand for last-minute trips. Learning from last year, we prefer not to wait. Might be disasters down the road. Let’s travel while we can.ANIXE’s data shows that Covid-19 has also influenced certain changes in eating habits compared to the situation in 2019/2021 the proportion of reservations with a more inclusive meal plan – AIP (All Inclusive Plus), AIU (All Inclusive Ultra), AI (All Inclusive) – has increased significantly. At the same time, the share of bookings with BB (Bed and Breakfast), SC (Self-Catering), and RO (Room Only) decreased by 40% on average. Tour operators, agencies, and OTAs aren’t accountable for the health and safety of restaurants outside the hotels.As for pricing, after long stagnation due to lockdowns and a decline in demand for hotels, prices have begun to rise again. In May 2021 the surge began. Nevertheless, they are still slightly lower than just two years ago. Interestingly, we are now spending significantly more, by an average of 50% more than at that time, for a single booking, primarily related to the recent decline in business and incentive travel.Last year’s data and this year’s direction, which has been consistently confirmed month after month, has clearly shown that the travel market has the potential to regenerate quickly. Demand for backlogged travel is vast. People no longer want to wait. They want to enjoy adventures, experiences and exploration.What awaits us soon? It promises to be a pleasant summer and an uncertain fall.People willing to travel are growing by the number every day. More and more countries are opening up to tourists again. Nothing left but to get vaccinated with a second dose and fly.How fast will the tourism sector continue to grow? Which countries and resorts will offer the best deals for tourists? We look forward to bring you more data and more insights.

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Britons seek out bucket-list breaks – Record-breaking bookings for Blue Bay Travel

UK tour operator Blue Bay Travel, has recognised a significant 619% year on year (January to May ’21 vs January to May ‘20) uplift in bookings for the Maldives, with a YoY increase of 1,130% for luxurious beach / water villas, as members of the British public aspire for bucket-list breaks after lockdown.The company reports…

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Britons seek out bucket-list breaks – Record-breaking bookings for Blue Bay Travel

UK tour operator Blue Bay Travel, has recognised a significant 619% year on year (January to May ’21 vs January to May ‘20) uplift in bookings for the Maldives, with a YoY increase of 1,130% for luxurious beach / water villas, as members of the British public aspire for bucket-list breaks after lockdown.The company reports that in addition to an influx of bookings to the Maldives, quotes obtained for the sought-after destination were up by 309% between January and May 2021 versus the previous year, and searches increased by 252% YoY (based on impressions).Blue Bay Travel also noted that other popular long-haul destinations illustrated a large growth in bookings for the period of June 2020 to May 2021 versus comparable dates the previous year, with a highly-impressive increase of 497% for Thailand, 142% for Mauritius and 61% for Barbados.Significantly, Blue Bay Travel has recognised a major hike in longer-lead bookings across a range of destinations, with customers seeking to benefit from the breadth of availability and plan their holidays far in advance. Throughout January to May 2021, 50% of bookings made are for travel in Winter 2021/22, 19% for Summer 2022 and 10% for Winter 2022/23 and Summer 2023. In May alone, bookings for Winter 2021/22 breaks accounted for 38%, 22% for Summer 2022 and 15% for Winter 2022/23.Alistair Rowland, Group Chief Executive Officer at Blue Bay Travel, comments: “We have seen a significant surge in traffic to our website and subsequently bookings as people are looking for a more exclusive, luxurious long-haul holiday following an unprecedented period of time and series of lockdowns as a result of the pandemic. Looking at the booking data, it is evident that the British public is still mindful of the imposing restrictions, keeping abreast of the current legislations and planning far in advance, emphasising the importance and need for long-term availability.“At Blue Bay Travel, we specialise in finding our subscribers the most exclusive deals in luxurious locations worldwide. Towards the end of May, we launched an unbeatable offer for the Furaveri Island Resort & Spa in the Maldives including a host of additional, complimentary benefits, prompting a surge in interest and bookings for this desirable destination for which we have seen a real appetite.”Blue Bay Travel is a leading UK tour operator, with 100 awards under their belt and 4.6 rating on TrustPilot. They provide unbeatable holiday deals across their three brands: Caribbean Warehouse, Tropical Warehouse and Xclusivity – all of which provide financial protection, flexible holidays and a UK-based call centre open 7 days a week.

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