UK Operators Reveal New Trends to USA
Absent any real-time data on overseas travel by Britons, operators, analysts and survey researchers are trying to get a handle on the performance of the UK, which is the number one overseas source market for inbound travel to the United States. The British trade journal, Travel Weekly UK, has given buyers and suppliers some idea with a sampling of what some industry leaders are saying about the outlook for the rest of the peak 2018 travel season. Here’s a recap of what TW recently reported:
—Tour operators claim there is “virtually no ‘lates’ (last-minute bookers)” market for the U.S. this year as families book further in advance for value. There seems to be an upturn in the forward bookings of U.S. as the pound sterling hovers at $1.32 following a sharp fall from $1.48 just before the June 23, 2016 Brexit vote.
—Guy Novik, chief executive of USAirtours, said that families were booking further in advance for 2019 to lock in better deals. He said: “There has been virtually no lates [this year],” adding that winter deals were offering savings of “at least 20 percent”.
—Sales to Florida were up 16 percent; up 5 percent to Las Vegas and up 4 percent to California versus last year, added Novik, with self-drives increasingly popular, but New York was “flat”.
—Gold Medal marketing manager Kerry Gallagher reported that 2019 Florida sales are up 49 percent. Travel agents were seeking more “added-value” for customers, he said, such as inclusive theme park dining plans. California, New York, Massachusetts and Chicago have all seen growth this year, Gallagher added, explaining that multi-destination bookings are 12 percent up.
—Gordon McCreadie, sales and marketing director for luxury tour operator If Only, said demand multi-destination itineraries make up 60 percent of the company’s U.S. bookings and account for all bookings to its top-selling new destination, California. Sales were “massively surpassing” expectations, McCreadie said, boosted by interest in themed itineraries, such as to Nashville and Memphis in Tennessee.
—Funway Holidays reported that U.S. bookings had been “flat” due to a “volatile” exchange rate but higher in value. Malcolm Davies, product destination manager, attributed a rise in advance bookings to families “not wanting surprises.” He noted a trend in Orlando towards on-site theme park hotels with early park access and a shift away from villas.
—Davies also said multi-destination itineraries had increased in popularity and that agents were adding ancillaries on “every second booking.” Funway printed 10,000 extra copies of its US brochure to meet demand, he added.
—Trek America’s managing director, Richard Hanson, said bookings for the company’s price-driven brand had seen “negative growth” with younger, less-affluent UK customers affected by the weak pound against the dollar, but that its more up-market brand, Grand American Adventures, has recorded double-digit growth as its typical demographic were less affected by currency fluctuations.
What the Numbers Are Telling Us:
—Market analyst GfK reported summer 2018 US bookings 6 percent behind 2017, but winter 2018-19 bookings 16 percent ahead of last year. Family bookings were 11 percent behind for summer but 3 percent up for winter.
—ForwardKeys, which monitors 17 million flight bookings a day, found US bookings for the first half of 2018 were 2.9 percent down on 2017 but only 0.3 percent behind for departures from July to September.
—Virgin Atlantic said July and August departures to the U.S. were 7 percent up on last year and it had seen a 21 percent increase in December departures to New York.
Meanwhile, travel markets in both the USA and the UK are hampered by a lack of data from official government sources. Last March, the U.S. National Travel and Tourism Office temporarily suspended publication of overseas arrivals data due to data anomalies in records received from U.S. Customers and Borders protection. There are no firm or final data available from either 2018 or 2017 readily available.
At the same time, the UK’s Office for National Statistics has not issued a monthly bulletin on overseas travel by UK residents since this past March. The most recent month for which data are available is December 2017.
Travel Trends: Jake Steinman on the Do’s and Don’ts for Chinese Travel Stakeholders
A veteran in the travel and tourism industry within the United States, Jake Steinman, Founder and CEO of North American Journeys, has seen many changes including the emergence of China as one of the largest overseas source markets for inbound tourism to the United States before it even took off. Jing Travel spoke to Jake about his experiences and his thoughts on the China tourism outlook over the next few years.
Q: Tell us more about yourself, how you got into the travel and tourism industry, and what you do today.
A: I sold a publishing and event company in 1993 and was too young to retire so I wanted to do something where I could write off travel, which was a passion of mine. The first event we created was Active America Travel Japan which was designed to promote Japanese travel to the United States for sports activities like golf and skiing and was sponsored every year by Northwest Airlines. This event went on for 19 years and in 2009, when Northwest merged with Delta, they wanted us to create a similar event for the Chinese market. Today, Active America China is the largest of the five boutique trade shows that we produce, along with two industry newsletters and the trade website www.touroperatorland. All of our products can be found at www.northamericanjourneys.com
Q: What’s changed in just the last five years in the China to U.S tourism market?
A: The Chinese inbound market at first followed the early days of Japanese market—tightly structured groups using standard tour itineraries in a few cities with operators making commissions on attractions and shopping venues that catered specifically to Chinese visitors. It then began to mature exponentially faster than the Japanese market. The primary changes are the growth of mobile research, and with that, the emergence of independent travelers, the trust they put in user-generated content and reviews when they select places to visit; and the Chinese diaspora spread throughout North America opening many new cities to Chinese travelers. Additionally, many Chinese send their children to the United States for English study programs that they have become a formidable category to pursue.
Q: What changed in just the last two years?
A: In order to deliver value to Chinese free independent travelers (FITs), receptive operators are offering tailor-made tours where they can rationalize higher fees. The incredible growth of direct air service to and from second and third-tier cities in both China and the United States and the growth of mobile payment systems in the United States such as Apple Pay that will eventually expand into Chinese systems such as WeChat and Alipay. Also, Chinese shopping has moved from deluxe to more mainstream brands, and standard budget tours are no longer profitable.
“I see suppliers misreading ‘signals’ given by Chinese buyers during appointments and meetings. For example, nodding their head doesn’t mean they want to buy, it means they understand or that they’re too polite to ask further questions.”
Q: What missteps do you see over and over again by suppliers in the travel and tourism industry?
A: What I see is suppliers misreading “signals” given by Chinese buyers during appointments and meetings. For example, nodding their head doesn’t mean they want to buy, it means they understand or that they’re too polite to ask further questions. Also, so much follow-up just seems to go down a rabbit hole because the Chinese buyers don’t really buy directly from suppliers (although they try to do so to see if they can get a lower price). It’s easier for them to buy through receptive tour operators who not only package everything for them but function as financial intermediaries who are willing to wait 60-120 days for payment.
The other misstep is that people jump into the Chinese market because it’s the flavor-of-the-month or their boards and managers push them into it prematurely so they can say they’re in China. They need to understand how to develop a product that the Chinese want to buy first and then craft a story around the product in a way that Chinese buyers and travelers will find it useful. Also, the shopping centers pursuing Chinese visitors that are most successful are outlet malls en route between gateway cities and national parks or those that have the budget to pursue social media marketing tactics that reach FITs.
Q: What do you think Chinese travelers want U.S. destination marketing organizations (DMO) to know?
A: I feel that the best thing a DMO can do is to produce a “Free Wifi Hotspot” map outlining the places they can connect when they are in the market. Also, though it may sound counterintuitive, it’s easier to find destination and supplier information on WeChat and other social media than on a dedicated Chinese website because these sites aren’t updated in real time by traveling peers and therefore are not indexed by Chinese search engines as well.
Secondly, they want Chinese food for breakfast and local dining options for lunch and dinners, even more so if it’s been mentioned on WeChat. Lastly, with 60 percent of the travelers from China now traveling as FITs, they will probably not trust their Chinese language websites, and DMOs now have to become familiar with influencer marketing.
Q: Who’s doing it right?
A: Among states, aside from Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Las Vegas, I would say Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming are the states doing well with FITs after having “sculpted” their products in a way that the Chinese are finding them useful and educating their industries. The Florida Keys is another DMO that has been successful. Chinese patrons to the Stone Crab, a seafood restaurant that actually brought the fisherman in to educate them about the catch of the day, posted about the restaurant on social media and since then the restaurant exploded with Chinese visitors. The Florida Keys destination marketing organization leveraged that into a full-blown Chinese outreach program at Active America China Summit last year and other shows.
Q: How do you think the expected influx of Chinese tourists will change the industry?
A: It already has as most of the marketing momentum from the industry is focused on the Chinese industry and, oddly, the number of receptive operators keeps expanding.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
A: What keeps me up at night is if our administration’s trade policies and bellicosity somehow trigger a travel ban from China and modeling how long it will take to return to normal flow of travel. Additionally, what’s missing right now with digital marketing options in China is the ability to link it directly to bookings and sales. Given that nearly 100 percent of Chinese travel with their smartphones, eventually WeChat and Alipay will probably be able to track where they visit with some high degree of accuracy.
Featured Partner of the Week—Berkeley, California
The ratio of artists-per-capita in Berkeley is off the charts, making the city’s vibrant creatively engaging at every turn. Wander through an artists’ collective gallery, see an open studio, experience cutting-edge theater or tap your feet to folk rock – there are many ways to connect with Berkeley’s creative side.”
The Top 20 companies that Dominate the World of Travel Agencies?
Long Haul Business Keeps Receptives an Active Part of List: In the just-released 2018 edition of the Travel Weekly Power List, one finds a confirmation of what has been happening to the tour and travel industry globally and, at the same time, some evidence that the conflation of wholesale and retail sales is keeping some receptive tour operators busy.
Some of the revelations that come with a review of review of the numbers in the list include the following:
—Online travel agencies Expedia and Booking Holdings (formerly the Priceline Group) saw their domination of the travel agency business grow. Expedia’s sales were up 21.5 percent over 2017 to $88 billion, while Booking’s brands increased sales by 20.7 percent to $81.6 billion. Together, the two OTAs generated as much turnover as did the rest of the companies in the Power List’s Top 20. (The Travel Weekly annual listing includes travel companies with at least $100 million in annual sales,)
—Overall, nearly every company on the list increased sales, although there were 10 fewer on the list than there were in 2017 (49 vs. 59), a reflection, in part, of continued consolidation in the industry—the most significant being last July’s merger of Travel Leaders Group and Altours.
—The unique positioning of some companies—doing both international outbound and inbound—keeps some receptive tour operators busy. Three U.S.-based operations of Japanese companies illustrate the point: JTB Americas (No. 17 on the list); H.I.S. USA Holdings (No. 28) and Kintetsu USA (No. 45). H.I.S. underscored the importance of the receptive sector during the past year with its acquisition of the largest receptive tour operator in Canada, Jonview Canada.
TW’s Notes on Methodology: To qualify for the Power List, a company had to have a minimum of $100 million in sales in 2017. For purposes of this survey, sales are defined as gross sales of travel products worldwide, whether to consumers or to corporate travelers; the company must be the merchant of record on the transaction from a supplier’s perspective.
At least 15 percent of the sales volume must have been generated in the U.S.
Early this year, the questionnaire was sent to companies that had appeared on the list in previous years; had been in the news because of acquisitions or had grown for other reasons; or had contacted Travel Weekly believing they qualified.
As has been the case for years, Travel Weekly requested that gross sales volume be certified by a company’s owner, CEO or CFO. In a small number of cases, certification was made by an executive at the vice president level but with financial oversight.
While all cooperating listees did certify sales (or made them public), it must be kept in mind that even those numbers are difficult to verify because the great majority of travel sellers are privately held and under no obligation to disclose financial data.
Also, there is no commonly accepted standard for calculating sales volume, and there is no clearinghouse in the U.S. that tracks nonairline sales, as the Airlines Reporting Corp. (ARC) does for airline sales.
Where possible, Travel Weekly sought to confirm accuracy in the figures by referring to other data and to articles published in the past year. We also reviewed responses for consistency and used whatever resources we had at our disposal to ensure accuracy.
The survey on which these rankings were based also included questions involving sales figures, ARC sales, travel-related subsidiaries, percentage of sales from business and leisure, corporate structure and others.
Interested in More? To review the entire Travel Weekly Power List feature material, visit:
To compare this year’s Power List with that of last year, visit:
Herschend Expands Reach in U.S. by Acquiring Pink Adventure Tours
Best known for its presence in Branson, Missouri, as well as in Tennessee and Georgia, Herschend Enterprises™ has expanded its product portfolio by acquiring Pink® Adventure Tours, a well-known adventure tour company with operations in Sedona, Las Vegas and Grand Canyon National Park.
Pink Adventure Tours provides guided tours, custom trips and a selection of routed tours on the Pink Fleet, which includes custom Jeep® Wranglers and Tour Trekker SUVs as well as Mercedes Benz Sprinters.
Herschend, which says it is “considered the nation’s largest family-owned themed attractions corporation,” develops and operates entertainment, tourism and hospitality properties that currently span 23 locations in six states—including the 1880s themed park Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, and Dollywood in Tennessee’s Great Smoky Mountains of which Dolly Parton is their partner.
The purchase of Pink Adventure Tours is the company’s first its entry into the adventure travel industry segment marks its first foray westward and, in the case of the Las Vegas product, its first locale in the Pacific Time Zone. Pink Adventure Tours will remain headquartered in Sedona, Arizona—it was established there in 1960—and will operate under the direction of Tim Miller as president.
The Herschend Enterprises portfolio now includes the following.
—Amusement parks: Dollywood, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee; Silver Dollar City, Branson, Missouri; and Wild Adventures, Valdosta, Georgia.
—Water Parks: Dollywood’s Splash Country, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee; Splash Island, Valdosta, Georgia; and White Water Branson, Branson, Missouri.
—Aquariums: Adventure Aquarium, Camden, New Jersey; and Newport Aquarium, Newport, Kentucky.
—Attractions: Ride the Ducks, in five locations in the U.S.; Stone Mountain, Stone Mountain, Georgia; and Talking Rocks Cavern, Stone County, Missouri.
—Dinner Shows: Dolly Parton’s Stampede, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and Branson, Missouri; Pirates Voyage, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountain Adventures, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee; and Showboat Branson Belle, Table Rock Lake, Branson, Missouri.
Herschend also owns six lodging properties in three states (Missouri, Georgia and Tennessee).
In addition, the company owns the Harlem Globetrotters basketball team, which is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.
Survey Finds Brits Spending like Drunken Sailors while Traveling
A pair of reports on surveys recently conducted among UK travelers seems to bode well for travel suppliers in the United States, and for other long-haul destinations for the UK, which is the number one overseas source market for the USA. While the tour and travel industry in the United States might be pleased with the findings, the survey results suggest that British travelers are also a bit reckless with their travel spending.
In the first report, research concluded by CYBG’s digital banking service, B, it was revealed that 33 percent of Brits experience financial challenges when they return home due to unhealthy holiday spending habits. (A Note: CYBG is the holding company that owns Clydesdale Bank, Yorkshire Bank and the app-based bank B.)
The survey– which polled 2,000 adults – predicts that they will spend an average of £GBP 1,175 ($530) per person on their vacations, plus an additional £118 ($155) on pre-trip purchases. Most of the pre-holiday spending will go for wardrobe, followed by toiletries such as the widely used sun cream.
British consumers have a ‘spend now, worry later’ mindset.
“Holidays are something people find very hard to give up and that’s understandable. The benefit of time away from the office or home is well documented, so getting away should be encouraged,” said Louise Hedges, head of consumer communications at B, adding, “What should be kept in mind, however, is the importance of sticking to a budget and not ignoring the reality of how to pay for that break. If, as our research shows some people are relying on credit to afford household bills due to blowing the budget, there is a risk that all that unwinding on holiday could soon be undone when normal life resumes.”
In sum, budgeting seems not on priority, as only 13 percent of holidaymakers said they set a daily budget and don’t exceed it.
Travel Far and Spend More: In the second report, conducted by payments technology firm Worldpay, it was found that UK travelers are spending nearly 11 percent. more on their holidays this year, according to new research. Worldpay believes the trend means that holidaymakers will continue to look for holidays further abroad.
Other highlights from the survey results:
—Brits are choosing fewer, larger trips as data showed Brits they spent an average of 10 percent more year-on-year per booking while the number of bookings overall was down 2.2 percent.
—Worldpay also predicted a flurry of last-minute bookings, which its research found were typically 7.5 percent cheaper.
—The final week of June saw sales down 2.2 percent compared to the previous year. A heat wave in the UK heatwave was credited for contributing to that decrease.
—July got off to a “busy start” helped by bookings to Russia to follow England in the World Cup. Flight bookings from the UK to Moscow surged by 330 percent following the team’s victory against Sweden in the quarter final.
—“Looking at our data we predict a surge in last-minute bookings in August,” said Thomas Helldorff, vice president, travel and airlines at Worldpay, “with holidaymakers taking advantage of cheaper prices on flights and accommodation, especially if we see a turn in the weather.”
Bad news for Wholesalers: U.S. Hotels Enjoying Record Growth in Rates
The hotel industry is as strong as it’s ever been and its near-term outlook is stable and strong. It was reported last week that the U.S. hotel industry recorded its 100th consecutive month of growth in revenue per available room (RevPAR) in June, the longest unbroken run of growth in the sector’s history.
Hotel revenue has risen consistently in the United States since the last decline in the key industry metric in February 2010 when RevPAR fell 3.8 percent, according to data released by hotel analyst STR.
The 100-month growth streak remains 12 months short of the industry’s longest overall cycle of expansion from December 1991 to March 2001. However, this period included a brief fall in RevPAR in August 1998.
In an observation that came as no surprise whatsoever to tour operators trying to find room allotments at bearable rates, Amanda Hite, president and CEO of STR, said “The lack of significant supply growth coupled with consistently high demand has enabled hoteliers to continue to push occupancy and room rates beyond peak levels.”
STR reported that each of the key performance metrics averaged over 12 months “at all-time highs,” with occupancy at 66.2 percent, an average daily rate of $128.27, and RevPAR of $84.98. For its measurement, STR recorded 55,689 hotels and 5,250,635 hotel rooms in the U.S. in June 2018.
More of the Same: The strength of the hotel industry and the manner in which demand is keeping pace with, or pacing just ahead of supply, is expected to continue through 2018 and through next year.
In its forecast for 2018-19 earlier this year, STR, along with Tourism released the following table.
Receptive Tour Operator of the Month
The Florida Travel Network is your Florida specialist receptive tour operator! FTN was created in 2009 as one arm of an already existing company which still today continues to trade, called Travel House of America. Although we specialize in self-catering homes with pools, condos, townhouses and apart-hotels, we also offer a wide variety of traditional hotels throughout Florida. This site is only the beginning of what we can do for you: please feel free to contact us for assistance with product not available on the site, such as attraction tickets, car hire, assistance with itinerary planning, groups, even destination weddings! We have it all. Best of all: we’re small, and you’ll always have someone to speak to at the other end of the phone. FTN is your one-stop shop for travel to Florida: we look forward to hearing from you.—Josée Desrochers, President.
The TourOperatorLand.com website by the NAJ Group (it also publishes the INBOUND Report) has introduced both receptive tour operators, U.S. tour operators and international tour operators to travel product and services of U.S. travel suppliers and DMOs. Visitors to the website can use its exclusive Receptive Finder™ to find the right RTO. It is designed to help both the travel trade and travel suppliers find the right U.S. based receptive tour operator to sell their products on the international travel market place.
The receptive operators, who are vetted and qualified by the NAJ Group also take part in at least one of NAJ’s RTO Summits series. The Summits take place annually in Los Angeles, New York City and Orlando. The next Summit takes place October 24-25, 2018 in Orlando. For more information, visit: www.TourOperatorLand.com.
Want meet with someone from the Florida Travel Network? You’ll find them at the RTO Summit Orlando in October.
At a Glance:South Dakota
For more information Click Here
HODGE PODGE: Shifts, Shakeups and Occasional Shaftings in the Tour and Travel Industry
Who Says You Can’t Go Home Again? Gerrit De Vos has joined AmericanTours International as vice president of business development. He left his position as vice president of business development for Bonotel Exclusive Travel, where he had served for 10 years. A veteran of nearly 20 years in the tour and travel industry, De Vos had previously served for companies such as Fexco Al Travel and AlliedTPro. Originally from Belgium, he began his career at ATI many years ago. He will report directly to Nick Hentschel, who has been promoted to chief operating officer.
Lauren Volcheff Atlass has been appointed the HotelBeds Group’s regional director of wholesale sales for the whole of the Americas, reporting directly to Sam Turner, the wholesale sales & sourcing director with global responsibility. In this role, she will be responsible for managing relationships and driving growth with wholesale clients, including tour operators, airlines, points redemption schemes, online travel agents, and re-sellers. Previously, Atlass had served for 10 years with Tourico Holidays, which was acquired by Hotelbeds last year.
HotelBeds has additionally confirmed the regional management positions that will report into Atlass: Deborah Kenton will be the regional manager for North America – East; Sevil Arnavutoglu Le will cover North America–West; Emmanuel Labstida has been appointed to Central Latin America; and Alexandre Vanzella for Latin America – South, all as regional managers.
Jane Chang has taken on the position of vice president West Coast, for Amerilink. She is responsible for the company’s Pasadena office. A well-known tour and travel industry veteran, “Mama Jane,” as she is known by her colleagues, previously served as global account director-Asian Market, for Millennium Hotels and Resorts. Chang’s resume also includes tenures as general manager of the Hartford Hotel in Rosemead, California and as a senior sales executive Best Western Hotels and Resorts.
The Travel Corporation and Destination America has announced that Richard Launder, who has served as president of TTC USA for the past 14 years, will pursue a new opportunity within The Travel Corporation as president and CEO of Destination America beginning this month. Destination America is a DMC in North, Central and South America that provides ground services for TTC brands Trafalgar, Insight Vacations, Luxury Gold and CostSaver. A 35-year veteran of the tour and travel industry Launder started his career travel in 1983 as a bartender at Contiki’s Chateau near Lyon, France. He eventually was promoted to head up Contiki USA for many years. In the late 1990s, he became president of Discover America for four years, and then was promoted again to become president of The Travel Corporation USA in 2005.
Jolanda Nazario has been named vice president of sales at Bonotel Exclusive Travel. She joins the company from the Mark Travel Corporation, where she had been director of business development. Previously, she held several senior management positions at GTA/Travel Bound.
Denise Trupe has been named vice-president of marketing at APEX Touring, a Lancaster, Pa.-based national tour company providing both Broadway productions and tour management across the U.S. and Canada. She joins APEX following a 31-year run with the Prather Entertainment Group, whose brands include the Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre in Lancaster, Pa. and the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre in Fort Myers, Fla.
G Touring has announced two appointments for its Travelsphere and Just You brands—both sell North America product in the UK: Julius Mills has been named aviation director while Sharon McBride has taken on the role of people and culture partner. The company said in a statement that the appointments would support trade partners and travelers. Mills’ travel career started as resort rep before moving into UK flight operation with Crystal Holidays, Jetsave and Tui. He has since held aviation and commercial roles with the Cosmos Group, becoming head of commercial while retaining his aviation role. McBride joins from the John Lewis department store business.
Veteran travel and tourism pro Afra Davis has joined the Travel Brands team as business development Manager for British Columbia, taking over for Tracy Poole. Davis’s extensive career has included working directly with both the wholesale and retail travel sectors in Canada. She has worked for airlines and tour operators, including nine years with WestJet Vacations and more recently the Las Vegas Convention and Visitor Authority.
Avianca Brasil has announced that Thais Skitnevsky Grinberg has taken over as marketing director for the company. Grinberg, who will continue to lead the company’s business and marketing directorate of the Amigo Program, the company’s loyalty program, will be responsible for strengthening the synergy between the two brands, ensuring the strategic alignment and efficiency of operations. A veteran of 20 years in the tour and travel industry, Grinberg has held leadership positions in companies such as Credicard, Orbitall, Amcham, Citibank, Stelo and Banco Safra. Her areas of expertise include, mainly, commercial and sales, trade marketing, digital marketing and relationship with stakeholders.
In the UK, Yvonne Hobden (left) has been hired as the new Head of Marketing for Flight Centre, while Liz Cairns (right) has been promoted to the role of head of partnerships, where she will be responsible for the company’s relationships with partners and the primary point of contact for tourist boards, airlines and land suppliers. Hobden is an award-winning marketing leader with extensive experience across retail, tech and telco sectors—having previously worked for HP Inc. UK and EE. Cairns has been with Flight Centre for eight years and has 14 years’ experience in the tour and travel industry. Flight Centre has 80 stores in the UK and Ireland and 2,500 globally.
Simon Garrido has left Attraction World as head of sales, along with another two members of the attractions and entertainment ticket sales operation. The other two are national account manager Tracey Bartlam and key account manager Amanda Schofield. Schofield has become a key account manager role with Bedsonline. Attraction World embarked on a staffing review last month before entering into consultation (the stage before someone is formally laid off) with a number of employees.
Ben Briggs has been named senior marketing manager–distribution, for Abercrombie and Kent. Briggs, who joins the company from Wendy Wu, will manage a team of five, and have a variety of specialisms including PR, brand partnerships, social media and digital. Abercrombie and Kent has realigned various aspects of the business in 2018 to work more strategically, with the creation of specialist programs for each of its key divisions: tailor-made, escorted tours, villas, ski, beach and private clients.
Lucy Steffens for 35 years at the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau
Shane Lauler for 22 years at Starr Tours
Laurel Bennett for 17 years at the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau
Yesenia Jimenez for 12 years at GTA
Gisel Vidals for 4 years at Big Bus Tours
Amir Eylon for 3 years at Longwoods International