Industry News

Building trust with the trade and taking away stress points for clients (and therefore agents) through personalised itineraries and service are key factors in the success of Weka Travel, says the company’s founder and director Josh Loughnan.

Tuesday, 07 May 2024 02:52

Envoyage premieres in Santiago

Flight Centre Travel Group’s independent division’s newly launched global brand, Envoyage, premiered its global event, Worldwide 2024, in Santiago last week. A turnout of 300 attendees hailed from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa and the USA.

Monday, 15 April 2024 23:51

Off beaten track for luxury

A Botswana safari in style, a chartered flight around Greece and Turkey, or a stay at an iconic royal residence in India - these are some of the once-in-a-lifetime adventures Kiwis are doing as part of what luxury travel agency Travel Associates is reporting as a growth in ‘bucket-list’ style travel.

Redefining the Club Med brand, changing perceptions and raising awareness across all trade channels in New Zealand were key objectives of a visit to Auckland last week.

Friday, 05 April 2024 02:29

HOT honours colleagues

House of Travel paid special tribute to two beloved team members who passed away last year by announcing two new learning and development scholarships in Fiji recently.

Tuesday, 02 April 2024 00:50

ETC relaunches to NZ agents

Evolution Travel Collective is relaunching in New Zealand and looking for a part-time business development manager to service the market.

Friday, 15 March 2024 23:26

TIME's biggest cohort yet

The Travel Industry Mentor Experience NZ welcomed eight new graduates at a function in Crown Institute of Studies on Wednesday night – the largest graduation since TIME’s commencement here.

Tuesday, 12 March 2024 22:51

25 years for HOT Invercargill

House of Travel Invercargill, a multi award-winning company with a strong community history in Southland, is commemorating 25 years of business.

Rail Europe will be offering non-European product on its platform in the second half of this year, a move that general manager Asia and Pacific, Richard Leonard says strengthens the company’s value proposition for agents.

Friday, 02 February 2024 05:29

Calloway applauded by Skål

Skål Christchurch kicked off the year with Scott Callaway, general manager of trade and tourism for Christchurch Airport presented with the Club Skålleague of the Year Award.

An increasing number of intakes per year, a focus on ‘today’s entrepreneurs’ and an extended committee are all signs of a solid year ahead for the Travel Industry Mentor Experience (TIME) in New Zealand, says its chairman Andrew Gay.

Tuesday, 30 January 2024 22:13

New office, strong 2024 outlook for FTM

Francis Travel Marketing (FTM) has marked a significant milestone in its recovery and rebuild from the Covid years with a move into a North Shore Auckland office last week.

Monday, 22 January 2024 23:12

All Blacks Tours 2024

Travel agents are being encouraged to take advantage of a busy 2024 All Blacks Tours schedule that was kicked of at an event at The Churchill, Auckland last Tuesday night.

Travelwise Holidays, a New Zealand-based tour operator dedicated to the 60-plus demographic will be increasing its profile among travel agents this year.

‘We’re preparing our systems now to engage the trade in a meaningful way and we will be releasing more details soon,’ says general manager Andrew Harrison.

Friday, 19 January 2024 00:30

TTC's top achievers famil

TTC New Zealand has officially launched the Inner Circle Top Achievers Famil 2024 with a sales incentive to award top sellers with a spot and even get to take a plus one with them.

Tuesday, 09 January 2024 20:09

Club Med’s mountain boom

Club Med has reported record-breaking activity and business volume for its mountain resorts this northern winter season.

During the first half of 2023, Club Med witnessed a 45% year-on-year increase in its mountain business volume globally, with a 30% growth in customers compared to the previous year. The positive trend is attributed to Club Med’s recent strategic investments, including upgrading its resorts, the opening of new resorts in Hokkaido, Japan and the French Alps, and its focus on internationalising its customer base.

Friday, 15 December 2023 22:02

NZTB reconnects

The supportive family atmosphere at the recent NZ Travel Brokers annual Conference in Christchurch, particularly considering the significance of the occasion on many levels, has been highlighted by managing director Guy Flynn.

Some 140 brokers and supplier partners were in attendance.

Tuesday, 31 October 2023 21:47

TIME scholarships open for 2024

Scholarships are open for those working in the New Zealand travel industry who want to start 2024 by accelerating their career through the Travel Industry Mentor Experience (TIME) mentoring programme.

Saturday, 21 October 2023 22:24

Maher adds options and keen to work with trade

A move toward more adventurous destinations and a desire for more active options are among the trends being catered for by Maher Escorted Tours, says director Andy Richards.

Clients who are still hoping to book a ski holiday in the northern hemisphere’s 2023-24 season should be encouraged to look at late season opportunities, says Rob Macready, director of travel&co.

Wednesday, 11 October 2023 01:56

Hoteliers urged to turn TAAP on

Hoteliers should think of Expedia as a full distribution platform through which to access various channels, Stu Udy, director retail distribution at Expedia TAAP told attendees at the group’s partner event in Park Hyatt Auckland.

Friday, 06 October 2023 03:16

New ownership for Tour Time

Inspiresport Group has acquired the Tour Time Group. This includes Tour Time New Zealand Ltd, Tour Time Australia Pty Ltd, Tour Time USA LLC, and Rugby Tours International Ltd (NZ, AUS, USA and Argentina).

Tuesday, 03 October 2023 00:57

Leckey takes Australasia role

The House of Travel Group has launched a new group-wide cruise strategy to ensure it is well-resourced to capitalise on the sector’s immense potential for expansion.

Tuesday, 05 September 2023 03:18

New talent, survivors honoured

The introduction of new talent into the industry is one of the bright spots for the future identified by Chris Hunter, general manager New Zealand with Helloworld Travel.

Friday, 01 September 2023 05:31

NCL: Walk for Wellness 2023

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) is inviting the entire New Zealand and Australia travel industry to step up for NCL’s fourth annual Walk for Wellness.

This year, the cruise line is bringing the industry together as a show of strength and support, and to be part of NCL’s official world record attempt for the longest distance achieved by a team of travel professionals in one month.

A number of current consumer and lifestyle trends are working to the advantage of the travel trade, leading Australian keynote speaker Amanda Stevens told the recent Flight Centre Travel Group NZ Independent Agents Conference recently.

Confirmation of definite departures, enhancements to its digital brochure and a new itinerary combining popular sights with a focus in Aboriginal culture were among developments emphasised by AAT Kings CEO Ben Hall this week.

Agents can embrace ChatGTB and other AI developments to their advantage while still providing the personal touch and human interaction that clients value, delegates at the FCTG New Zealand Independent Conference heard late last week.

James Kavanagh, Flight Centre’s CEO leisure, says agents should not be afraid of the technology and should take heed of former predictions of doom.

Friday, 04 August 2023 00:36

Earn a spot on Canada famil

travel&co. and Air New Zealand have launched an incentive that will see eight Kiwi travel agents jetting off to Canada in March 2024. No ski or board experience is needed as there will be plenty of time for lessons and après ski and exploring Vancouver.

Wednesday, 19 July 2023 23:34

Hangar 96 and more on QF famil

Qantas recently took nine agents from New Zealand to its headquarters in Sydney to the Best of North America Day.

The airline hosted a total of around 200 agents from across Australia and New Zealand on a day where they were fully immersed in all things Qantas and North America.

Friday, 07 July 2023 20:17

TAAP trade website progressing

Expedia TAAP is continuing to develop its new trade-focused website and agents can expect to see the gradual migration to the new platform over the next quarter.

SeaLink introduced its new ‘go-to’ person to New Zealand trade last week at a time when Kiwi visitor numbers are increasing again for the Australian company.

Tina Chaisuwan-Baker is now global sales coordinator and sales manager NZ, based in Sydney. She was one of the hosts, along with GM global sales and distribution Richard Doyle, at  an intimate function for agents, media and other industry partners at the Adina Hotel in Auckland on Wednesday.

Tuesday, 27 June 2023 05:13

Intrepid adds hundreds of departures

Intrepid Travel has launched more than 300 new trip departures in its top-demand travel destinations around the world.

By integrating Intrepid’s 26 on-the-ground Destination Management Companies (DMCs) the tour operator has further developed its scope of operations in booming locations including Japan, Italy and Morocco.

Wednesday, 21 June 2023 23:48

Agents more confident selling groups

Exotic Holidays is seeing increased demand for group tours, both from school and leisure markets, says managing director Rahul Sharma.

‘These are all coming through the trade,’ he says. ‘Agents are becoming more confident in organising and selling group tours.’

Tuesday, 18 April 2023 00:37

Ransomware a ‘major threat’

The travel and tourism sector internationally has become a prime focus for cyberattacks in recent times, resulting in ransomware incidents arising from data breaches, according to analytics company GlobalData.

Cybersecurity concerns within the industry saw a 4% year-on-year (YoY) rise in 2022.

Tuesday, 21 March 2023 00:35

HLO launches academy

Helloworld New Zealand has launched the Helloworld Travel Academy,  designed to provide training and development opportunities to Helloworld member networks. The aim is to attract, train and retain employees in the travel industry.

Sunday, 05 March 2023 19:48

TIME scholarships x3

New TIME NZ sponsors Silversea Cruises and Mint Payments, along with loyal sponsor Expedia TAAP have announced the recipients of their mentee scholarships, starting 8 March.

Angela Webber from House of Travel will be sponsored by Silversea Cruises, Danielle Mueth from First Light Travel by Mint, and Zaheda Davies, NZ Travel Brokers by Expedia TAAP.

Wednesday, 01 February 2023 04:16

Reg open for Ireland events

Registrations are open now for Tourism Ireland’s B2B roadshow visiting Auckland on Monday 20 February at SkyCity Grand Hotel. This will include an evening event for travel agents with presentations and networking opportunities.

Suppliers attending from Ireland include EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum; Griffin Hotel Group; Hastings Hotels; Killeavy Castle Estate; MCT Irish Tours; Original Irish Hotels; Park Hotel Kenmare; Powerscourt Distillery; Titanic Belfast and Visit Derry.  Register HERE.

Wednesday, 01 February 2023 03:46

WA roadshow in March '23

The Dream Western Australia Roadshow will visit Auckland on Thursday 30 March at the Tote on Ascot, Ellerslie Event Centre with free parking.

The trade event will include an evening function for travel agents with key WA tourism operators presenting their holiday ideas, itinerary suggestions and cruise options for Western Australia.

Tuesday, 24 January 2023 21:00

Tuscany supplier headed to NZ

Massimo Lenzi and Jon Hunter from Trovare Tuscany will be in New Zealand from 28 February until 10 March, travelling from Wellington to Auckland meeting with travel agents. 

An evening promotion is planned in Cambridge for Thursday 9 March, for agents and their clients.

Travel agents will be able to update themselves on high end leisure and events possibilities with a range of suppliers from around the world at a morning / early afternoon event in Auckland on Monday, 27 February.

DMS Destination Marketing Services is bringing DMS Connect back to this market after a forced break during the Covid lockdowns.

Wednesday, 12 October 2022 00:31

Huge demand for 2023 events

A niche wholesaler dealing in the events sector is expecting ‘phenomenal demand’ for sporting and cultural occasions next year – both far afield and close to home.

Just as pent up demand has seen Kiwis booking ‘once-in a-lifetime’ destinations such as Galapagos, the Poles and Alaska, they are also registering interest for high profile motorsports, tennis, golf and US sporting events such as basketball, baseball, NFL (American Football), and ice hockey, says Jay Soysa, AIM Holidays’ product/reservations manager.

Tuesday, 11 October 2022 23:34

More features for Expedia-TAAP

Expedia Group has a number of new features available to members of the Expedia Travel Agent Affiliate Program (TAAP) including an improved accommodation quote process and the recently revealed extension of Expedia’s Live Agent Chat to agents.

‘As part of our commitment to help travel agents deliver for the travellers they serve, Expedia Group is further innovating our TAAP solutions to put the most useful tools at their disposal,’ saysTAAP retail distribution director ANZ Stuart Udy.

Sunday, 02 October 2022 22:44

Still a need to charge more

Though travel businesses are moving more towards a fee-based model, in most cases they should still be charging more, says an accountant who specialises in the sector.

Paul Davies, partner with OneTeam Chartered Accountants, says that many agencies are currently earning significant profits – as much in five or six months as they would have in a year pre-Covid. However that is on the back of the principals and their reduced teams working extremely hard and putting in longer hours than are sustainable.

The Globus family of brands has just wrapped up a two week multi-city programme of Europe launch events around New Zealand, emphasising new products in its range as well as reminding agents of more familiar options.

Alka Thapar, national sales manager NZ, says the turnout and interest from agents and brokers around the country has been appreciated at a time when everyone is extremely busy.

Workforce issues across a number of areas, including in the travel agency community, are the biggest challenges facing the cruise sector right now, according to panellists at the Cruise 360 conference in Sydney.

Steve Odell, senior vice-president and managing director, Asia Pacific of Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises, says some of his biggest concerns are around the distribution channel.

Travel advisors should not be afraid to throw crazy ideas at their past clients and give them a nudge to travel again of they are hesitant, delegates at the Cruise Lines International Association’s (CLIA’s) Cruise 360 conference in Sydney recently were told.

Tuesday, 23 August 2022 21:04

Disruption stress relieved

Flight Centre NZ is releasing a Captain’s Package to help Kiwis avoid travel chaos and have a trouble-free holiday.

Managing director, David Coombes says the travel rebound since borders reopened has been overwhelming. 

Monday, 22 August 2022 23:36

Be firm with Ts and Cs

Inbound operators at the Tourism Export Council (TECNZ) Conference have been advised to make sure their terms and conditions are ‘rock solid’ and then be prepared to be firm when clients request a refund they are not entitled to.

Wendy van Lieshout, of Active Adventures and Austin Adventures, says the biggest challenge right now is fickle customers. ‘They are all over the place, there’s no pattern.’

A New Zealand adventure operator says a key part of his company’s evolution over the past two years was gaining new relationships with agents here – something he is intent on retaining and nurturing despite the borders opening to international visitors.

Monday, 15 August 2022 21:54

Kiwis look to hit the road

Travel agents have been quick to embrace an international touring option newly available in the New Zealand market, says Tui Davenport, reservations and sales manager for Worldwide Caravan & Motorhome Holidays.

‘Agents are contacting us and saying they have had enquiries for motorhome holidays in Europe or other destinations in the past but they didn’t know where to go to access this so they have steered them towards a self-drive (car) holiday instead,’ says Davenport.

Monday, 15 August 2022 20:33

Investment in rental car supply

A multi-million dollar investment in New Zealand’s international tourism infrastructure is expected to ease a critical shortage of rental vehicles.

Jucy, one of the country’s largest vehicle rental operators, will invest $40 million dollars to expand its fleet of campervans and cars.

Tuesday, 02 August 2022 22:10

Club Med’s 2023 Sun Sale

Club Med has this week launched its Early Bird 2023 Sun Sale, offering up to 30% on its sun resorts for travel dates between 1 May and 16 December 2023.

Agents can log into the new Club Med Travel Agent Portal to secure the brand’s best price guarantee on its sun resorts across the Mediterranean, Caribbean, Indian Ocean and Asia.

Worldwide Caravan & Motorhome Holidays has released a new 84-page brochure featuring a comprehensive range of motorhome holidays throughout the United Kingdom, Europe, Canada, USA, South Africa, New Zealand and Australia.

A subsidiary of UK-based Alan Rogers Travel Group and the Caravan & Motorhome Club, the specialist operator offers small group, locally guided motorhome tours in addition to independent and tailor-made itineraries for FIT travellers. It provides expert local knowledge and advice, as well as packages that can include everything from motorhome hire, pre-booked campsites and sightseeing to ferry crossings, Eurotunnel, transfers and pre and post accommodation.

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