May the Worst be Behind Us
The U.S. National Travel and Tourism Office (NTTO) has turned out its quick release on key international arrivals numbers for 2021—the full year version—and these figures prompt the reader to hope that the worst is finally behind us.
About the future: One can’t really make a solid projection of what all the NTTO data this month mean, except to suggest that another pandemic—now a part of our consciousness—can make a mess out of anything. Let’s hope this doesn’t happen. Even so, with that as a caveat, there are some points that the full-year data raise that beg for answer.
● How, in the midst of a devastating year for every other source market for overseas tourism, did Colombia set a record for its output of visitors to the USA—more than a million, in fact. The short answer is that the country enjoys its status as a great place for travelers from other South American and Central American markets to connect to and from the United States. As well, according to OAG, Colombia has fewer impediments to international travel than any other major market, save Mexico. (See article on the subject here.)
● Will South America continue to have an increased share of the overseas visitation to the USA? Already, some carriers have announced plans to increase capacity to the continent and to the LATAM market in general.
● Will China and Japan (two out of the top three overseas country source markets) begin to relax requirements for international air traffic before the year 2022 becomes a non-starter?
Following are some of the latest data contained turned out by NTT0.
Non-Resident Arrivals to the U.S.
by World Region of Residence
December 2021 and Year-to-Date
|World Region of Residence||Number of Arrivals||2021 Share||% Change from 2020||Arrivals YTD 2021 (Thru December)||2021 Share||% Change from 2020|
Top 20 Overseas Arrivals
Month of December 2021*
|Country of Residence & Rank||Arrivals||% Change|
|1. United Kingdom||198,383||+3186.1%|
|8. Dominican Republic||55,953||+75.9%|
|10. Costa Rica||39,166||+103.9%|
|13. South Korea||32,783||+348.8%|
|19. El Salvador||29,541||163.2|
*Quick Release—no Canada; no Mexico land arrivals
Top 20 Overseas Arrivals
Year-to-Date (thru December) 2021*
|Country of Residence & Rank||Arrivals||% Change|
|2. United Kingdom||460,749||-36.9%|
|5. Dominican Republic||405,869||+127.1%|
|9. Costa Rica||266,772||+161.2%|
|17. El Salvador||203,053||+231.1%|
|18. South Korea||202,711||-53.9%|
|19. China, PRC||191,776||-49.3%|
*Quick Release—no Canada; no Mexico land arrivals
|Year||Number of Overseas Arrivals|
|Year||Number of International Arrivals|
Canada: Overseas Arrivals
|Year||Number of Overseas Arrivals|
Mexico: International Arrivals
|Year||Number of International Arrivals|
Special Note: INBOUND staff and the travel and tourism industry rely on the research staff at the National Travel and Tourism Office, led by David Huether, Deputy Director of Research, to provide monthly statistics and data on travel to and from the United States.
Germany: “More than a Ray of Sunlight”
It’s official. A recovery is under way. Not yet for everyone or every region of the country or every sector of our industry, but it is indeed under way. How do we know?
To borrow the heart of a series of famous TV ads from the 1970s, “When TUI talks, people listen.” TUI—it is the largest tour operator in Germany and the UK, which are the two largest overseas source markets for U.S.-bound international travel—has spoken.
And TUI says a recovery is under way. Last week, the first quarter fiscal year (2022) numbers that TUI released was splayed every which way by travel trade and business news analysts, but they all acknowledge a good performance by the company.
Some of the numbers and comments follow:
—More than four times as many guests travelled with TUI in the first quarter of 2022 as in the same period last year.
—Revenue was five times higher than in the same period last year.
The first quarter of financial year 2022 also shows the next step out of the pandemic for the TUI Group.
—”The market is intact, the demand is there … The TUI brand and TUI hotels enjoy a high level of trust even in a difficult pandemic environment.”
— “New bookings for summer above pre-pandemic levels, and … customers were spending more money on travel. Average prices for the summer season were up by 22 percent, with average prices for the winter 2021-2022 season up 15 percent, significantly higher than in the 2018-2019 winter season … “ (Marketwatch.com)
—Said TUI Chief Executive Fritz Joussen: “Despite the still ongoing trend towards very short-term bookings, we see the strong demand for the upcoming summer 2022.”
—A total of 3.5 million customers had booked a trip for summer 2022 at the end of January – around 72 percent of the level of pre-pandemic summer 2019 at the same time.
—However, new bookings are now over 100 percent of the level of summer 2019, so Tui expects summer 2022 to be close to pre-crisis levels.
— “TUI Group on course for strong summer as demand soars” (Headline from Travel Weekly UK)
Complete report can be found here at MarketScreen.com.
More Evidence of Recovery: Retail Sector’s Numbers Faring Well
The data speak for themselves. The invoiced total turnover of the travel agencies recorded in the “ta.ts* Reisebürospiegel (travel agency mirror)” was up 302.6 percent in January 2022 compared to the same month in 2021. Compared to January 2019, the total invoiced turnover was down 69.9 percent.
—The invoiced tourism turnover shows an increase of 609.6 percent in January compared to 2021.
—Compared to January 2019, the invoiced tourism turnover was down 60.2 percent.
—Air traffic revenue in January was up 292.3 percent vs. 2021.
—Against January 2019, air traffic revenue was down 75.1 percent.
— “Other” sales were up 106.8 percent in January 2022 vs. 2021.
—They were down 61.5 percent vs. 2019.
—The number of tickets sold was up 269.1 percent compared to January 2021.
—It was down compared to January 2019 by 77.9 percent.
—Revenue from the tourism sub-division cruises in January compared to 2021 was up 511.1 percent.
—Compared to January 2019 it declined by 63.9 percent.
Order intake tourism 2022 vs. 2021 & 2019. In the overall number—order intake tourism—for 2002 vs. 2021 and 2019:
—In January 2022, the incoming orders in tourism amounted to 496.5 percent compared to a year ago.
—The tourist order-book-by-travel date up to January 2022 was up 164.9 percent compared to the previous year.
—For the cruise sector, incoming orders were up 155.2 percent month-on-month, and backlog by voyage date through January 2022 was up 83.0 percent.
—In January 2022, the incoming orders in tourism amounted to a minus 60 percent in a monthly comparison to 2019.
—The tourism order book by travel date until January 2022 is minus 51.9 percent compared to 2019.
—In the cruise sector incoming orders in a monthly comparison to 2019 were down 81.7 percent.
—The tourism order backlog by travel date up to January 2022 was down 48.6 percent compared to 2019.
* ta.ts, or Travel Agency Technologies & Services is, a Frankfurt-based company that specializes indata and technology management, as well as accounting services.
Then there is this from the latest report by Travel Data Analytics (TDA) Travel Intelligence.
“This year’s summer holiday is increasingly becoming the focus of German citizens. In December 2021, summer holidays accounted for 52 percent of the booking turnover and by mid-January 2022 had already climbed to 64 percent of the turnover. Cumulatively, summer trips booked in travel agencies and on the travel portals of tour operators and OTAs only account for half of the pre-corona sales in 2019. Overall, sales in December were too weak to improve. The summer of 2021 will be visibly exceeded, because hardly any holiday trips were booked during the lockdown at the beginning of last year.
|“The number of bookings in the first weeks of January this year is more than a ray of sunlight.”|
“The number of bookings in the first weeks of January this year is more than a ray of sunlight: the typical, marked increase in bookings in January is returning. In the first three weeks, booked holiday travel sales have not yet reached the level of January 2020 (only two thirds of them), but they are increasing from week to week. The trend is on the right direction.”
A note on TDA Travel Intelligence: In spring 2019 Nuremberg-based Travel Data + Analytics (TDA) took over the travel sales panel run by the Nuremberg market research company GfK since 2004.
Countdown to IPW in Orlando
IPW—Like a classic car model automobile, it goes on, from year to year and from generation to generation—through good times and bad. The model still works, but it has fine-tuned, automated and maximized the vehicle’s yield with more efficient ways so that, now, it is capable of living through a global pandemic.
So, now, a little more than four months ago and a leaner version of IPW last September (18-22) in Las Vegas, the travel and tourism industry in the United States is already re-tooling IPW for its 2022 version, which is just four months away (June 4-8).
Readiness. That’s the word that Malcolm Smith, US Travel’s senior vice president, business development and general manager, IPW, stressed at a recently convened day-long series of “What’s new,” “How to” and “Let-me-get-back-to-you-on-that-one” webinar sessions aimed at making the event work as smoothly and as possible—stubborn global pandemic notwithstanding.
Keeping in touch with scores of others in event planning and execution, Smith told other panelists and several hundred delegates (international travel buyers and journalists comprised the target audience for the webinar) that the contraction of the numbers of people affected by the COVID-19 virus and the way its growth seems to have been checked is giving the upcoming spring “a much more normal look, a normal feel, for IPW.”
Lest anyone thought this meant “business as normal,” Smith quickly added, “However, we do have contingency plans in case things go in a different direction.” He emphasized the point by noting that, when the calendar reaches two months out from the event, the IPW website will have a special “health and safety” link.
Joining Smith in the webinar presentation and discussion were: Michael Martin, manager, international marketing, IPW; Cathy Reynolds, lead manager, IPW press operations; Phil White, travel industry sales director, Visit Orlando; and Aaron Wodin-Schwartz, senior vice president, public affairs, Brand USA.
Following is an outline of the detail-reach presentation and discussion of the panel.
General Track/Timeline of IPW June 4-8, 2022
Saturday, June 4: Mostly, it will be for delegate registration, ad-hoc meetings, and an open night, except for events scheduled off the official calendar.
Sunday, June 5: Another wave of delegates registration, and watch for the IPW Focus, and ad-hoc meetings. Look for the Brand USA Education Sessions; Destination Experiences; Brand Activations. Then, the Opening Event will take place Sunday night.
Monday through Wednesday (June 6-8):
8:30-10:00 AM: Open appointments; operation of marketing and technology pavilion and IPW Focus.
10:00 am-4:15 PM: Business appointments, daily luncheon (single luncheon event, not staggered, as it was last September)
Luncheons will be sponsored by
Monday: Brand USA
Tuesday: NYC & Company
4:15-5:15 PM: Open Networking
Key numbers: 8 hours of additional networking time; 15-minute appointments; 42 appointments
Sunday, June 5: Sunday Press Brunch, followed by specialized press tours
Monday, June 6: Brand USA press conference leads off day, then:
—All day media market place and reception, as well as IPW travel writer awards
—For Media Marketplace, there will be 20 ten-minute appointment that will be pre-scheduled.
—Everything in convention center this year
Tuesday, June 7: U.S. Travel Press Conference, then …
—In the morning there will be 20-minute ”fast, easy fun and informative press conferences” that will provide more DMOs exposure time. These will be done by lunch.
—In the afternoon, journalists will be able to visit exhibit hall
Wednesday June 8: There will be the 20-minute press conferences in the morning followed by lunch, then journalists can visit the exhibit hall
Not New, but Improved: IPW Focus, an educational component that was launched last year but, due to health and safety protocols, it became difficult for delegates to access the program, which was held in meeting rooms off the exhibit floor. So, this year, Focus is moving on to the exhibit floor, where program elements will be held in three theatres—one main theatre and two smaller theatres.
Delegates will be able to attend sessions by Connect Travel; International Inbound Travel Association; the U.S. Travel Association Destinations Council; Brand USA; Connect THRIVE Summit; and U.S. Travel Association’s National Council of Attractions and Experiences.
The IPW Focus’s 15-minute sessions will cover an array of subjects. Your IPW schedule will tell you who is presenting, who is the intended audience is (Is it for exhibitors? is it for buyers? Is it for media or a mix of audiences?) Also, IPW is bringing back the marketing and technology part of the program
Remember: The main stages will be open networking in the morning, which will provide a great time to network on the show floor attend the Focus sessions
Opening Event Sunday: Walt Disney World Resort
Tuesday: Destination Downtown Orlando and SeaWorld Parks
Wednesday Night Closing: Universal Orlando Resort
Coming soon: Fam tour information
The final word on the host city. Said Malcolm Smith: “Orlando “looks amazing. If you haven’t been there in the past two years, it has so much more product, so much more energy that you’re all going to love it.”
To listen to/watch the complete program, visit: https://vimeo.com/673194664
Remember to check www.ipw.com daily.
& Tourism Industry Buzz
UK Soccer Star Learns not to Get Rough with Cats. It was announced last week that Experience Kissimmee has ended its sponsorship with West Ham United—a UK football (soccer) club following the club’s controversial decision to play center-back Kurt Zouma despite universal horror at the defender’s abuse of his pet cat.
In a statement, Experience Kissimmee, which has had garnered some recognition through its West Ham affiliation, a fact not lost on the scores of thousands of Brits who visit Central Florida and Kissimmee annually, said it had made the decision to “part ways” with WHU. Said President and CEO DT Minich: “As an organization and community, we welcome visitors and locals alike to join us in celebrating wildlife and nature, now and always,” adding, “We are proud to work with partners who are accredited, certified and regulated to the highest standards of animal care.” Experience Kissimmee had sponsored West Ham United since 2016, initially on a three-year deal which was extended for a further three years.
A widely distributed video which apparently originated on social media platform Snapchat shows Zouma picking up the cat from another room and bringing it into the kitchen before drop-kicking the cat across the floor. He then throws shoes at the animal before later slapping it in the face. Zouma has since apologized for the incident.
● Volaris Airlines, which has service from Mexico to nearly 30 U.S. destinations, has teamed up with the Caped Crusader—Batman—as the latest movie featuring the latter hits theatres on March 4. Together with Warner Bros. Pictures, Batman now adorns an A320neo aircraft that will cross the Mexican skies from February to August 1, 2022. For more information, click here.
● Prescribing Park Visits for Your Health—From the National Parks Traveler: “Health care professionals in four Canadian provinces can now prescribe time in the national park system to boost people’s mental and physical health. Parks Canada is collaborating with a program called ParkPrescriptions (PaRx). Doctors, nurses and other licensed health care professionals who register with the program can prescribe nature — and even a Parks Canada Discovery Pass — to their patients.” You can read the entire article, by Jennifer Bain, here.
● In the UK, Disabled-friendly tour travel specialist Limitless Travel has expanded to the U.S. and Canada markets and has begun operating European trips for North American travelers. As reported in the Travel Weekly UK, the Birmingham-based specialist has also unveiled a range of new holidays for 2022, including three cruises to Norway, Iberia and the Mediterranean. “With our new US offering, we’re excited to take our expertise and levels of care and service to this market,” said Angus Drummond, founder and chief executive of Limitless Travel. “We’re looking forward to what 2022 will bring.” Limitless Travel said 2021 passenger numbers in 2021 were double the amount it took in 2019 and it saw record sales, despite the pandemic. Click here for the complete article.
● Return to normalcy—but COVID Will be with us: The U.S. Travel Association’s most recent “industry insider” weekly update tells us “There is a growing movement among business leaders to consider the COVID-19 pandemic a permanent fixture in our lives and move to an ‘endemic’ state of mind.” This matters, says US Travel, because “The call to loosen pandemic restrictions comes amid the ongoing omicron variant. As health experts determined that the strain is less deadly, many are calling for a return to normalcy.”
● One consequence of the recently announced Frontier Airlines acquisition of Sprit Airlines is that the two will become the fifth largest U.S. carrier. The move is certain to have an impact on inbound travel to the USA. The combined group intends to operate more than 1,000 daily flights to over 145 destinations in 19 countries, across complementary networks. As well, more than 350 aircraft are on order to add new routes to communities across the U.S., Latin America and the Caribbean. Frontier is based in Denver, while Spirit is located in the Miami area. The acquisition is due to be completed in the second half of the year.
Chinese company Space Transportation is developing a “rocket with wings” for space tourism and ● point-to-point travel. “We are developing a winged rocket for high-speed, point-to-point transportation, which is lower in cost than rockets that carry satellites and faster than traditional aircraft,” the company said in a recent interview with Yicheng Times. The so-called space plane would aim to provide rapid transport between two locations on Earth through suborbital travel and be fully reusable. For the complete Space.com article on the matter, click here.
● Australia is reopening its borders now that as Prime Minister Scott Morrison issued the notice, indicating that the country will welcome fully-vaccinated tourists and business travelers starting next week (February 21). Scott made the announcement today hours after the government’s national security committee was briefed on the latest health advice. Morrison said that the move would boost the tourism industry that has been flattened by the pandemic. Although the international borders have been reopened in late 2021, entry has only been allowed for citizens, permanent residents and their families. It was later expanded to international students, backpackers and migrant workers. In recent years, Australia has been a top ten source market for overseas tourism to the USA.
● The Brazilian government announced last week that it has closed an agreement for the country’s entry into the Global Entry program, which facilitates access to the United States. The process allows people already with a U.S. visa to have immigration control in the United States faster, without having to wait long to be authorized to the country. To participate, interested travelers must be approved by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Authority after paying an application fee — $100 — and completing the registration and evaluation process, which includes a background check and personal interview. The entire process must be done through the official US government website. Once approved, they can proceed with the entry process at selected airports in an unbureaucratic way, through automatic kiosks.
● In recent action in New York City, tour travel company operators Urban Oyster, North America Tour Hub (NATH), and Adventure United States announced a new tour operating company: WeVenture. Owners David Naczycz, Andy Maunder, Jason Fried, Bill Gehrman, and Michiel Stavast bring a combined 75 years of tourism experience to WeVenture, making it the premier U.S. tour company operating in 11 cities with over 100 employees. This year, the New York City-based company expects to host 12,000 tours serving over 75,000 tourists in WeVenture destinations Boston, Chicago, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.
● More new travel job vacancies were created in January 2022 in the UK than at any point in the last two pandemic-hit years, based to the latest data from London-based C&M Travel Recruitment and C&M Executive Recruitment. Last month’s total was almost three times higher than December 2021’s figure, and stands more than ten times higher than the number recorded in January 2021. Click here for the complete article.
TourOperatorLand.com Partner of The Month
Visit Fort Worth
Urban Cowboy—The Best of Both Worlds in Fort Worth and Dallas. Dallas and Fort Worth are two distinct cities, only 45 minutes apart and completely different from each other. Here, the beauty of the geography provides many advantages to Fort Worth’s visitors. Instead of spending hours driving to far destinations, spend that time learning how to be a cowboy or shopping-for example! Fort Worth has it all: Western Heritage, Ranches, Sophistication, Arts and even Tax-Free Shopping! Fort Worth is different and authentic and they look forward to seeing you soon!
Looking for Itineraries for a first-time visitor? Try these: Bass Performance Hall; Fort Worth Cattle Herd; Kimbell Art Museum; a Texas steak at Del Frisco’s; Steakhouse; Amon Carter Museum of American Art; Fort Worth Botanic Garden; the Stockyards Rodeo; and the Log Cabin Village.
And for Ideas for Repeat Visitors, try these: Cowboys Stadium; Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth; Dead Sea Scrolls & the Bible: Ancient Artifacts, Timeless Treasures; Bureau of Engraving and Printing; Fort Worth Water Gardens; Texas Civil War Museum; and the Fort Worth Zoo.
Verified Destination Contact
Following is a sampler from the many royalty-free images of the shopping, attractions and experiences that you will find here in Visit Fort Worth’s TourOperatorLand pages.
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[email protected] and/or 415.728.1085
HODGE PODGE: Appointments, Openings & Changes
Long-time travel and tourism industry advocate Isabel Hill has retired from her post as director of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Travel and Tourism Office (NTTO). Another long-time travel and tourism industry figure, julie heizer (right), has been named as NTTO’s acting director. Hill was a part of the U.S. government’s national tourism office since 2003. She became director of NTTO in February 2013. Heizer’s career of more than three decades in the industry included tenures as deputy director for tourism development at the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development; executive director of the Virginia Peninsula Tourism & Conference Bureau and vice president of tourism for the Washington DC Convention and Tourism Corporation before joining NTTO in 2003.
Cassady Bailey, who has been with Brand USA for nearly a decade, was recently promoted to the post of vice president, partner engagement and marketing for the organization. She had been senior director of partner engagement and planning for four years. Bailey has been with Brand USA since the fall of 2012, when she started out as a business development assistant. She joined the organization from the U.S. Travel Association.
Travel Alberta has appointed Jon Mamela as senior vice president and chief commercial officer, leading tourism and destination development for the organization. effective March 14, 2022. He joins Travel Alberta from Destination Toronto, where he was executive vice president & chief marketing officer. Mamela’s resumé also includes a tenure as chief marketing officer and senior vice president, marketing & sales at Destination Canada. Mamela knows Alberta well. He served as Travel Alberta’s vice president, marketing and sales from 2010-2011.
Kai Duve has taken up the role of commercial director at Eurowings, a German low-cost carrier headquartered in Düsseldorf and a wholly owned subsidiary of the Lufthansa Group. Previously head of cabin crews in Frankfurt at Lufthansa, he will be responsible for human resources, finance, IT, strategy and procurement at the carrier. As a member of a three-person management team headed by chief executive, Jens Bischof, Duve succeeds Frank Bauer, who, after three years on the Eurowings executive board, is moving to the Lufthansa finance division.
Flight Centre Travel Group has appointed Tom Walley to the newly created role of global managing director of Corporate Traveller, which specializes in business travel for small to medium-size enterprises. Walley became a part of Flight Centre more than 20 years ago and has worked for the company’s corporate and leisure divisions in the UK and Australia. He will retain his current position of general manager for Corporate Traveller in Australia.
Decolar has announced the appointment of Daniela Araujo as its new director of sourcing, air. Araujo, former head of international sales of Gol Linhas Aéras for trade. Before joining Decolar, Araujo worked for more than five years with Gol airlines.
A familiar presence, Marion Wolf is now the new face at Visit Florida for German-speaking Florida visitors. She will be in charge of sales and marketing at the German agency Lieb Management for the state’s tourism office and will be responsible for the German, Austrian and Swiss markets. Wolf has been working in tourism for more than 30 years. For the past few years, she and her agency MS Wolf Marketing had looked after Visit St. Petersburg for some time. For Wolf, the move is a return to Visit Florida: She had already worked for Visit Florida from 1994 to 2003 as director of marketing Germany/Austria/Switzerland, at that time from their Frankfurt office.
Classic Vacations, a global luxury travel wholesaler, has named Melissa Krueger as chief executive officer. Krueger succeeds David Hu, who served as president and CEO of Classic Vacations for the past 13 years. Krueger has been with Classic Vacations for nine years, most recently leading its groups division as vice president and general manager.
Visit Lake Charles has announced the addition of Timothy P. Bush as its chief marketing officer. Most recently, Bush was the chief tourism development officer for OneSpartanburg, Inc., with the mission of building a vibrant Spartanburg through business, economic and tourism development. Previously, Bush was the president/CEO of Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism for nearly six years where he directed the strategic vision along with developing tourism products to drive more economic impact to the community. He was also was the marketing manager for Visit Macon with for nearly two years
Jim Vozzella has been appointed as a senior sales manager at 360 CHICAGO Observation Deck. He came to the attraction from Getting Local, in which he helped spread the word about a new contactless tourism solution. And for more than nine years, Vozzella was a performer at the Laugh Out Loud Theater in Chicago.
Portsmouth, Virginia has named Dr. Alexander Benitez as the city’s new director of museums and tourism. Benitez has 30 years of experience under his belt working for various state and university museums, and the Smithsonian Institution. Between 2016 and 2022, Benitez served as the Director of Moundville Archaeological Park at the University of Alabama, where he oversaw the preservation and cultural interpretation of one of the most important Native American heritage sites in the United States. Benitez also held the position of assistant professor of anthropology at George Mason University.
The DMC Network announced the promotion of Aoife Delaney to the role of vice president, business development. The company said his promotion signals the DMC Network’s commitment to growing bigger and better than ever before at the outset of 2022, and ensures its HQ leadership team will be in a solid position to work with all DMC Network partners during a promising year of recovery and growth. Based in Dublin, Ireland, Aoife has over 15 years of industry experience, including five years as the DMC Network’s director of global sales & marketing for Europe & Asia.
Thomas Osswald has taken over as managing director of Derpart. Osswald, who Derpart this month, began his job with De began his career in 1994 in the travel agency franchise sector in various managerial positions at Lufthansa City Center Reisebüropartner and became its managing director in 1999. Beginning in 2009, Osswald held various managerial positions at the Amadeus subsidiary i: FAO Group and at the parent company Amadeus, including being commercial director for key customer relations, commercial and key account services. Osswald succeeds Andreas Neumann and Aquilin Schömig, who left the company at the end of 2021.
Cherie Richards has stepped down from her post as chief of staff for Not Just Travel, which she joined in June 2020. Previously, she served for almost 12 years as director of commercial at Global Travel Group.
Marking its recent entry into the space tourism industry, World View, a leader in stratospheric exploration, has announced the appointment of Dale Hipsh as president of tourism and exploration. He joins the company from Hard Rock International, where he served for nearly a dozen years, lastly as senior vice president. Earlier in his career, he spent more than six years with Hard Rock as vice president of operations at the Seminole Hard Rock & Casino.
Long-time veterans of the U.S. inbound tourism industry, brothers Eric and Andrew Thomas have gotten together and rolled out Esploru℠—a new receptive tour operator which offers tailor-made luxury product in North America. Originally launched in 2019, the Thomas brothers, sons of the late Albert Thomas, who established City Tours USA in 1978, had to put their product “on the shelf” during the global pandemic that devastated the international inbound tourism industry in 2019 and 2021. They re-introduced the brand at last month’s Fitur in Madrid. Headquartered in Miami Beach, you can find Esploru online at www.esploru.com.
Susan Klein has been named chief marketing officer at VisitPITTSBURGH. Klein joins the organization following a four-year stint as the head of content marketing for Doublespace, Inc., a marketing and branding agency with clients in finance, technology, arts and nonprofit. Prior to that, Klein spent eight years in San Francisco, most recently serving as head of marketing communications and visitor services for the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
Anna Karnowski has joined the sales team at peek, a booking software and marketplace for virtual and in-person experiences for travelers and locals. She joins the company from the One World Observatory in Manhattan, where she was senior director of sales. Previously, she served in sales positions at SPYSCAPE and New York Water Taxi.
The Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau has appointed Alissa Steele as marketing manager, responsible for developing and executing marketing activities in support of sales and branding initiatives for the bureau and its partners. Previously, Steele she served as an advertising specialist for the Philadelphia Phillies Major League Baseball team, and as an advertising coordinator at Rivers Casino Philadelphia.
Aerospace and space travel company Virgin Galactic Holdings has named Blair Rich its president and chief business officer as the company prepares for the launch of commercial service later this year. Rich will lead all aspects of the company’s commercial strategy including sales, marketing, business and product development, communications, operations, and customer experience. Prior to joining Virgin Galactic, Rich spent 23 years at Warner Bros. Entertainment, starting as an intern and rising to lead worldwide marketing for the company.
From SearchWide Global:
—Visit Seattle is searching for a new president and CEO. More details here.
—Conference Direct, a provider of global meeting planning solutions, is searching for vice president of global sales. More details here.
—Meet Minneapolis has an opening for a vice president of equity, diversity and inclusion. More details here.
—The Tennessee Hospitality Association is looking for an executive director. More details here.
—The South Padre Island Convention and Visitors Bureau is seeking a new CVB director. More details here.
—The Cincinnati USA Convention and Visitors Bureau is seeking a new chief financial officer. More details here.
—Visit El Paso is searching for a director of marketing and communications. More details here.
—The Abilene Convention and Visitors Bureau has an opening for the position of vice president. More details here.
—A world-wide hospitality group is looking for an executive director of hotel sales & marketing a position that would be based in San Francisco, Toronto or remotely. More details here.
—Visit Greater Palm Springs has an opening for a vice president of sales. More details here.
—Visit Dana Point is looking for an executive director. More details here.
—In the Charlotte/Concord area of North Carolina, Great Wolf Resorts has an opening for a director of sales and catering. For details, click here
From LinkedIn Jobs: Known to many across the board in the travel and tourism industry, the LinkedIn list (click here) has numerous job opportunities posted. Following is a brief sample of some of those jobs currently listed.
—Snowmass Village in Colorado is looking for a tourism manager. It’s a new position, focused on operations and management of the Snowmass Tourism office. More details here.
—The Space Coast Office of Tourism in Florida is seeking a deputy director. More details here.
—Visit Denver, The Convention & Visitors Bureau for Denver, is looking for a director of government and community affairs. More details here.
—The Museum of Science in Boston is searching for a group and tourism coordinator. More details here.
—The Colorado Tourism Office Communications is looking for a senior manager. More details here.
From Indeed.com: We’ve taken a look at this site (click here) which says that it has hundreds of new jobs listed, including a fair number in the travel, tourism and related industries. A sampler of what to expect is below.
—The Happy Valley Adventure Bureau (think Penn State University area) has an opening in Sports Tourism Sales. More details here.
—AEG Worldwide is searching for a director touring – operations in Los Angeles. More details here.
—David Tours & Travel in Philadelphia is looking for a group travel coordinator. More details here.
—Yakima Valley Tourism has an opening for a communications & travel trade manager. More details here.
—In Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, there is an opening for a guest experience associate at the Hollywood Wax Museum. More details here.
—The City of Virginia Beach has an opening for a convention and tourism representative. More details here.
Have a job to offer in the travel and tourism industry? Let us know and we’ll post your notice—no cost to you. Email [email protected]