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Jen Savedra, Editor
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Michael Baginski

Editor at Large, Mike Baginski is well known and well respected within the industry across Canada, the US, in the Caribbean, Mexico and numerous other destinations outside North America.

Mike is a veteran journalist and editor, and his incisive reports, interviews and his individual and distinct take on our industry, as often evinced in his ‘At Large’ columns make him a valued voice at Travel IndustryToday and an invaluable member of the team.

RECENT ARTICLES


FALLING BEHIND
Reauthorized Brand USA critical to halt US travel slide
13 JUN 2019: US travel officials are hopeful that Brand USA, the industry’s destination marketing organization, will be reauthorized by the American government in 2019 – a year early – for another five-year term. Its current mandate expires in September 2020.   MORE

TRAVEL TURMOIL
Growing entry delays to U.S. unacceptable
12 JUN 2019: The US Travel Association feels your pain, with the organization acknowledging that long wait times for visitors entering the US is annoying and disruptive and that a recent redeployment of customs and security officials to the Mexico border (including 731 from the northern Canadian border alone) further threatens to “result in turmoil for business and leisure travel” during the busy summer travel season. MORE

DESPAIR OVER DISREPAIR
US national parks at risk
11 JUN 2019: From Old Faithful and Yellowstone to the Grand Canyon, America’s “treasured” national parks require long-term funding to reverse a chronic state of “disrepair” and to ensure their future viability, says the new chair of the US Travel Association. MORE

ROUND UP – June 3-7, 2019
10 JUN 2019: In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick look at some of last week’s need-to-know travel news: MORE

ROUND UP
May 27-31, 2019
03 JUN 2019: In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick look at some of last week’s need-to-know travel news: MORE

FLAVOUR OF THE MONTH
Faint of fork no longer fear British cuisine
03 JUN 2019: VisitBritain is in the mood for food. The tourist board is eager to tout its edible delicacies and drink, and at the same time, offer the travel trade tangible opportunities to help clients match their culinary interests with a visit to Britain. MORE

SCATTERLINGS OF AFRICA
31 MAY 2019:Recently my daughter Meghan took part in a student volunteer trip to South Africa with the terrific VESA program. She helped build houses, taught English, looked after kids at an orphanage, and got to see some of the amazing country as well, including experiencing some of the colourful Zula culture. MORE

ITS TIME TO SEA SCOTLAND
2020 tunes in on coast and waters
30 MAY 2019: With over 800 islands, it’s only natural that Scottish tourism would eventually cast a line to its coastal heritage. As such, VisitScotland has declared that 2020 will be the Year of Coast and Waters. “If you look a map, you can see how close you are to the sea at pretty much all times,” observes the tourist board’s Michael McCuish. MORE

PLYMOUTH ROCKS
U.K. city set to make most of Mayflower milestone
29 MAY 2019: It seems odd that a historic city like Plymouth is considered an “up and comer” on the UK tourism scene, but with the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower to North America on the horizon next year, the southwestern city is readying for a moment in the spotlight that will give the world a chance to see a city that is clearly on the rise. MORE

ROUND UP
May 21-24, 2019
27 MAY 2019: In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick look at some of last week’s need-to-know travel news: MORE

SKY HIGH APPEAL
Houston is certain to surprise
24 MAY 2019: Whatever you choose to call it – Space City, Bayou City, Magnolia City, Energy Capital of the World – Houston is sure to surprise and certain to defy any singular nickname. Beyond the iconic Space Center Houston, the city may not boast an array of attractions that jump off the pages of a guidebook, but America’s fourth largest metropolis is steadily forging an identity as a cultural melting pot with world-class culinary, arts and sports scenes. MORE

BREXIT, WHAT BREXIT
British tourism keeps calm and carries on
21 MAY 2019: Tourism to Britain continues to be unaffected by Brexit, at least when it comes to long-haul visitations – including Canada – says the country’s tourist board. MORE

ROUND UP
May 13-17, 2019
21 MAY 2019: In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick look at some of last week’s need-to-know travel news: MORE

RENAISSANCE MAN
Da Vinci anniversary celebrated in France
16 MAY 2019: With many eyes focussed on the 75th anniversary of D-Day in France this summer, tourism types in the country’s Loire Valley are pointing out that another milestone is at hand: the 500th anniversary of the start of the French Renaissance. And to celebrate, the region is invoking the star power of an Italian, Leonardo Da Vinci, to help draw attention. MORE

ROYAL TREATMENT
VisitBritain welcomes the world at Explore GB
16 MAY 2019: It was a good week to be in Britain for ExploreGB, VisitBritain’s flagship travel trade event (May 8-10). Harry and Meghan conveniently had a baby, Brexit was on a relatively low boil, Liverpool and Tottenham both staged comebacks for the ages to qualify for the Champions League soccer final (against each other), and it didn’t snow. The locals were most excited. MORE

ROUND UP
May 06-10, 2019
12 MAY 2019: In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick round up of some of last week’s need-to-know travel news: MORE

JUST SAY POOF
When travel takes a toll on family life
09 MAY 2019: A life in travel is certainly nice work if you can get it, I always say, but the rigour of being a road warrior isn’t without its drawbacks and sacrifices. Foremost among them, of course, is family. There is, for example, many a marriage (or relationship) in the business that has failed to stand up to the hardship of the constant absences, whether or not what might be happening on the road stays there. MORE

OFF TO THE RACES
Can camels lead Saudi women down new trail
08 MAY 2019: Following last summer’s long overdue social advancement to allow women to drive, Saudi Arabia has taken another step by allowing a woman to take part in the sacred sport of camel racing. The kingdom’s first female camel owner “entered the history books” by having one of her camels compete in the recent finals of the prestigious King Abdulaziz Camel Festival. This follows another “first” – when a woman won a blue ribbon in the festival’s camel beauty pageant (for the camel!). MORE

ROUND UP
April 29-May 03, 2019
06 MAY 2019: In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick look at some of last week’s need-to-know travel news: MORE

CANADIAN CONTENT
MSC Cruises puts down roots in Canada
02 MAY 2019: At 9 a.m. on May 1, MSC Cruises launched a new chapter in Canada with the official opening of an office in Mississauga. It’s just one of 19 global offices for the Swiss-based cruise line, but the significance should not be lost on the Canadian public and travel trade, says the company’s president. MORE

THE VIKINGS ARE COMING
Invaders enhance epic UK outdoor theatre event Kynren
30 APR 2019: Vikings are preparing to crash the UK’s biggest outdoor live theatre spectacular, Kynren – an epic tale of England, this summer. Featuring a 1,000-strong cast and crew, Kynren – an epic tale of England, takes place annually in the northeastern English county of Durham. MORE

THE NATURAL
JTB director Bennett at home in Canada
30 APR 2019: Chat with Angella Bennett for more than about 10 seconds and it appears clear that the new regional director of tourism for Canada for the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) is meant to be here. Funny and engaging, Bennett is a natural, despite having only replaced former director Philip Rose a few weeks ago (on April 8) and having been engaged in a “whirlwind” introduction since then.  MORE

ROUND UP
April 22-26, 2019
29 APR 2019: In case you missed it, and even if you didn’t, here’s a quick look at some of last week’s need-to-know travel news: MORE

PALACE INTRIGUE
Spring happenings at Britains royal palaces
29 APR 2019: From a transformed castle to explore and brand-new Queen Victoria exhibitions to live performances uncovering the “Terrible Tudors” in all their gory glory, there’s a whole range of activities visitors can join in at Britain’s Historic Royal Palaces (HRP) this Spring. MORE

SHOW ME THE WAY
Great West Way touring route a first in England
26 APR 2019: England’s The Great West Way may have been officially unveiled last November, but with the summer tourism season at hand, Canadian visitors are just now starting to roll out along the unique new touring route. MORE
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