• Hornblower Group Rebrands: A global leader in world-class experiences and transportation, Hornblower Group has announced the launch of City Experiences, the new brand name for the company’s water- and land-based portfolio of offerings. City Experiences represents a diverse portfolio of experiences in major travel destinations worldwide and aligns more than 25 existing brands into a single brand identity, offering locals and tourists alike a broad range of global experiences.
City Experiences represents Hornblower Group’s portfolio of water and land-based experiences and includes two sub-brands: City Cruises and City Ferry. City Cruises operates dining, sightseeing and private events across 22 destinations in the U.S., Canada and the UK. City Cruises also operates cruises on behalf of the National Park Service and the Niagara Parks Commission and currently holds service contracts to provide ferry service to the Statue of Liberty National Monument and the Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration, Alcatraz Island and Niagara Falls. City Ferry offers specialized knowledge and expertise required to transport passengers, vehicles and other cargo safely across inland and coastal waterways with operations including NYC Ferry and Puerto Rico ferry system, among others. City Experiences’ portfolio also offers a range of land-based experiences including shore excursions, partner-offered experiences, multi-port packages, and Cruising Excursions, ShoreTrips and Walks products.
• Preliminary findings from a Cornell University Hospitality Research are in and (last week) Professors Sheryl Kimes and David Roberts reported that they had more than 300 respondents from 53 countries (at the beginning of April) so far. Some items that stood out were: about two-thirds have had a price war in their market; about half thought that, even with the vaccine, it is going to take over a year before their market returns to pre-COVID levels; and 75 percent reported that there had been increase coordination among various departments at their hotel.
• Best National Parks in Spring: The FamilyVacationist tells us: “After a long winter’s hibernation, a national park adventure is one of the best family vacation ideas for spring. In March, April, and May, national parks tend to not be as hot and crowded as they are during peak summer travel, which means plenty of outdoor space to stretch out, burn off energy, and social distance.” As an added bonus, the group said, April brings National Park Week (usually the third week of April), an annual celebration that brings free admission for all plus special junior ranger programs for kids.
Here from FamilyVacationist are 20 of the best national parks in spring throughout the United States.
For the complete article on the subject, click here.
• Confidence in Las Vegas is High: According to a recent survey commissioned by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, a strong majority of business travelers (74 percent) are confident that Las Vegas will be prepared to safely host in-person conferences, conventions and trade shows, when considering the second half of 2021. More than half (58 percent) of business travelers stated that they’re “burned out” on virtual meetings and events. Almost all (91 percent) indicate that they miss the face-to-face interaction of in-person business meetings and events. Further, only 43 percent have been satisfied with attending online events. While it is expected that many trade shows and conventions will continue to be offered in a virtual or hybrid format in 2021, the majority (77 percent) of the respondents would prefer attending in person in the future. (The numbers above come from a nationally representative sample of more than 500 business travelers was conducted Jan. 8–12, 2021, and included people over 21 who traveled for business in either 2019 or 2020.)
• Airline Capacity Grows for 8th Week in a Row: Airline authority OAG reported last week than an eighth consecutive week of capacity growth takes the global total to 63.2 million seats a week, the highest point for over a year and further hope of a slow but steady recovery in capacity in many markets around the world. As the industry has seen throughout the last year no two markets are at the same stage in their COVID-19 event and for all the positivity in this week’s numbers a few markets continue to show reductions in capacity. All of which highlights the “stop, start” nature of the market; perhaps some traffic lights might help in the recovery.
• Vegetarian Cities Index: Operators looking out for clients who are vegetarian might be interested in the annual listing from Nestpick, which is based on its study that explores the best cities for vegetarians, looking at the deviation at the cost of vegetables as well as the availability and rating of its restaurants.
It starts by shortlisting the top 75 cities out of a list of 200 that are both popular destinations for relocation, and which had a good reputation with vegetarians. Next, we considered which factors are most important for vegetarians to live a happy and healthy life. Affordable basics such as fruit and vegetables are essential, while plant-based protein is fundamental for maintaining a balanced diet, so we first looked into the cost of these three food groups, including purchase parity and relative affordability for local residents.
The final index ranks each city out of 100, where the higher the score, the better the city is for vegetarians. The default ranking is the Total Score. Each column is filterable from highest to lowest.
After making it through the rigors of the above index, the following comprise the Top 20 cities worldwide for vegetarians.
1. London (2.) Berlin (3.) Munich (4.) Vienna (5.) Glasgow (6.) Zurich (7.) Palma de Mallorca (8.) Los Angeles (9.) Bristol (10. San Francisco (11.) Rome (12.) New York (13.) Auckland (14.) Wellington (15.) Prague (15.) Prague (16.) Melbourne (17.) Tel Aviv (18.) Gothenburg (19.) Sydney (20.) Manchester.
For the complete list and narrative from Nestpick, click here.
• Moody Report Says Global Business Travel is Unlikely to Recover before 2024: Just in time, it seems, to dampen the enthusiasm that has been emerging in the global airline industry, Moody’s told us last week that;
—High risk that virtual meetings could replace some business travel; and
—Full-service airlines in advanced countries are likely to come under most pressure from slow recovery.
Also, airlines will suffer as the COVID-19 pandemic fuels global business travel uncertainty, with recovery unlikely before 2024 as virtual meetings may replace travel,
“Global business travel is unlikely to make a full recovery before 2024, especially with the use of virtual meetings as an ongoing substitute. Around 20-25 percent of business travel involves meeting people from within a company’s own organization – these trips are most at risk of being replaced,” said Martin Hallmark, senior vice president at Moody’s Investors Service. “To offset the possible negative impact, we expect airlines to manage their capacity and to benefit from efficiency savings and cost cuts.”
The report added, that full-service carriers such as Delta Airlines, United Airlines, American Airlines, Lufthansa, and British Airways will be most affected by the slow pick up in business travel.
Subscribers can access the report here.
• Nine out of Ten Would Feel OK with Health Passport: According to a new study commissioned by Amadeus, an overwhelming number of travelers could feel comfortable using a digital health passport for future travel. The study found that just over 91 percent of travelers surveyed said they would be comfortable with a “vaccine passport” style app. The survey was conducted among more than 9,000 travelers in Europe, the UK, US, India, UAE, Russia and Singapore. (In Singapore, the acceptance rate for vaccine passports was up to 96 percent).
However, a similar number of travelers globally (93 percent) do have some concerns around how health data for travel would be stored. Seventy-four percent said they would be willing to store their travel health data electronically if it enabled them to pass through the airport faster. More than 7 out of 10 (72 percent) travelers surveyed would be willing to store their travel health data electronically if it enabled them to travel to more destinations
Apps that provide alerts and in-trip notifications, contactless mobile payments and mobile boarding are all enhancements through tech that would increase confidence in travel, the survey found.
“There is no doubt that COVID-19 will continue to shape the way we travel for the months ahead, just as it influences so many other areas of our lives,” said Decius Valmorbida, president, Travel Amadeus, who added, “Collaboration across governments and our industry is the key to restarting travel, as we deliver on traveler expectations outlined in this Rebuild Travel digital health survey.”