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Thursday, March 5, 2015
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Jen Savedra (Editor)
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BETTER THAN AVERAGE

Canadian hotel prices increases surpass global average
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05 MAR 2015: The average price paid by Canadians for a hotel room domestically rose by five percent during 2014, compared with 2013, according to the latest Hotels.com Hotel Price Index (HPI). This increase topped the global average of a three percent rise in hotel prices paid as the global economic recovery gathered momentum and consumers became more confident in travel spending. MORE

AN ABUNDANCE OF TECHNOLOGY

Working out the pieces at iTravel2000
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05 MAR 2015: It’s a bit of a puzzle over at itravel2000. When Westminster Growth Capital acquired the business in November 2013 a key feature of the investment rationale was, according to the company, “the opportunity to leverage itravel’s proprietary distribution and travel fulfilment technology.” MORE

SEA CHANGE

Andy Stewart named president and COO at Norwegian
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05 MAR 2015: Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. announced that company veteran Andy Stuart has been named president and chief operating officer of Norwegian Cruise Line effective immediately, following the resignation of Drew Madsen, who was recruited just last October from the foodservice and hospitality sector. MORE

AIR CANADA REPORTS INCREASED TRAFFIC RESULTS

Adds service to Atlantic City
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05 MAR 015: Air Canada reported a record system load factor of 81.1 percent this February, versus 79 percent in February 2014, on a system-wide capacity increase of 8.4 percent. On this additional capacity, system wide traffic for February increased a record 11.3 percent for the month. MORE

VILLARRICA VOLCANO ERUPTION

Some tourist area closures, Flights not impacted
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05 MAR 2015: Chilean authorities are monitoring the Villarrica Volcano eruption, located 470 miles south of the capital Santiago, which appears calm following a series of volcanic activity. MORE

UK SELLS EUROSTAR

Canadian Caisse and Hermes are buyers
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05 MAR 2015: The British government has agreed to sell its stake in Eurostar, the high-speed rail service that connects London with Paris and Brussels through a tunnel under the English Channel - a move that's prompted accusations that it is selling the family silver. MORE

FIFTY SHADES OF GREY

Not a reflection on the weather
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05 MAR 2015: Much of the headline-grabbing movie “Fifty Shades of Grey,” released last month, was shot in downtown Vancouver, a fact that Tourism Vancouver is playing up. MORE

NEAR MISSES

Or near hits
By DAVID TAIT
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05 MAR 2015: In his own inimitable fashion, the late great George Carlin always maintained it was the latter. He argued that, by definition, something that is a ‘near miss’ had to be a hit. So you can have a ‘near hit’ but not a ‘near miss’. MORE
In case you missed yesterday (or last week)... here is a selection of recent stories:

CANADIAN TOURISM SNAPSHOT

It was a very good year
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04 MAR 2015: The early 2014 tourism report card for Canada has been filed: it was a good year, with 17.1 million international visitors coming to Canada, a 3 percent rise on the previous year. That positive news is tempered slightly by the knowledge that Canada has not reached its full potential: our tourism growth is below the global average of 5 percent recorded by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), says the latest Tourism Snapshot from the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC)’s Research department. MORE

PROFITS OVER SAFETY

Only some airlines ban rechargeable battery shipments
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04 MAR 2015:  Some of the world's largest airlines are banning bulk shipments of rechargeable batteries in the face of mounting evidence of their potential to cause catastrophic in-flight fires. MORE

CHANGES AT CRYSTAL

New Ship. New Owner.
By WALLACE IMMEN
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04 MAR 2015:  An announcement of a new ship for Crystal Cruises came with a stunning addition, the company that founded Crystal is selling the line. But the company was quick to reassure loyal customers of the luxury brand that all is well and in fact the deal should make Crystal even better.  Japan’s NYK shipping company will sell the cruise line it founded in 1988 to Genting Hong Kong, which is a shareholder in Asia’s Star Cruises as well as Norwegian Cruise Line, which recently took luxury lines Regent Seven Seas and Oceania Cruises into their family. MORE

WESTJET IN FEBRUARY

A record 1.6 million passengers
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04 MAR 2015:  WestJet has announced February 2015 traffic results with a load factor of 84.3 percent. Revenue passenger miles (RPMs), or traffic, increased 3.3 percent year over year, and capacity, measured in available seat miles (ASMs), grew 3.7 percent over the same period. MORE

SIEM REAP SAILS THE MEKONG RIVER

First Avalon Suite Ship in Asia
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04 MAR 2015: A journey with Avalon Waterways gets travellers closer to all the must-see sights and introduces them to the locals and their way of life.  And now, travellers have the opportunity to live the “suite life” in Asia.  For the first time, Avalon Waterways has introduced a new, 36-guest Suite Ship on the Mekong River. MORE

THE FORGOTTEN COAST

Serenity and oysters. Does it get any better.
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04 MAR 2015:  Tiny Apalachicola is often overlooked by Florida visitors lured by the state's bigger tourist draws such as Disney World, South Beach and Key West. Getting here isn't as easy as getting to the tourist hotspots, but the extra travel is worth the effort for anyone wanting to experience Florida as it was before all the highways, high-rises and high-end development. MORE

MATERNITY TOURISM ON THE RISE

Feds target industry
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04 MAR 2015: Women who come to the US from China to give birth to automatic American citizens may not be breaking the law by doing so, but it's illegal to lie about why they're coming into the country. MORE

RIVIERA NAYARIT

Pacific Bliss on the Bay of Banderas
By ANITA DRAYCOTT
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04 MAR 2015: I’ve noticed a trend. Folks take a weeklong vacation in Puerto Vallarta. They love it and spend two weeks the following year. Weeks become months and often these folks (myself included) start venturing further up the Bay of Banderas and into the state of Nayarit for the entire winter. Bucerias is so popular with Canadians, especially those from the West Coast, it’s been dubbed “BC-rias.” MORE
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