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Category: Holiday News

Tour Operators, Hotels and Cruise Lines Feeling Impacts of Coronavirus

by

Cheryl Rosen
Feb 13, 2020 10:15am

Hilton CEO Chris Nassetta said the outbreak could continue to be a factor for another six to 12 months.

The repercussions of the coronavirus are beginning to show in the travel industry, as Asia-based tour operators, hotels and cruise lines feel the first impacts, and travel advisors begin to field calls from anxious customers. But U.S.-based tour operators remain relatively calm.

That’s not to say there has been no fallout. Last week, Pacific Delight Tours announced it is closing its doors; this week it was HotelnAir.com, a $25 million joint venture of Korea’s two largest agencies, Mode Tour and Hana Tour.

In an earnings call on Tuesday, Hilton CEO Chris Nassetta offered up a time frame for the virus. He said 150 of the brand’s hotels have been closed in China, and based on the industry’s experience with the SARS outbreak in 2003, he expects “escalation and impact from the outbreak” to continue for three to six months. Then, since “these ..

ASTA: Suppliers Retroactively Changing Policies “Egregious,” “Unethical”

by

Matt Turner
Apr 16, 2020 11:34am

The American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) recently addressed the need for airlines to make changes to their existing rules governing refunds and cancellations as a result of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. It reports that progress is being made on that front, albeit slowly. One sign of this progress was the notice issued earlier this month by the U.S. Department of Transportation clarifying that airlines remain obligated to refund passengers whose flights are cancelled by the airline, even when the flight disruption is outside of the carrier’s control. Many carriers are now easing other policies where ASTA says it has pushed for change.

In addition to airlines, many travelers and travel advisors are suffering financially as a result of tours, cruises and other ground- and sea-based travel that are cancelled by the supplier for myriad reasons associated with the global pandemic but completely outside of the travelers’ control.

“Whil..

Tui holiday cancellations: Tui’s refund system explained

Tui holidays cancelled
In March, the German travel company Tui cancelled thousands of holidays amid the COCID-19 pandemic.

Many of their popular holiday destinations such as France, Italy, Spain, and the UK are all on lockdown, and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advised against all but essential international travel, the travel industry has been hit hard by coronavirus.

So far there is no clear date when operations may restart though they anticipate it could be May 14th 2020. Cruises, hotel stays, package holidays and almost all of TUI’s flights are cancelled and the company is offering the opportunity to rearrange their holiday plans.

According to the Package Travel Regulations, all travel companies are required to pay a full cash refund with two weeks of cancelling a trip. This deadline has been a huge challenge for travel companies across the board and even though Tui is a company of Herculean proportions, the financial strains caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has ..

A virtual tour of Venice in all her romantic glory – “La Serenissima”

Grand Canal, Venice
It’s been a turbulent time for Venice in recent times. This charming holiday hotspot much loved for its romantic gondolas, compelling culture and historical architecture attracted tourists in droves for years.

Overtourism took its toll stealing some of the local allure and the city was looking for ways to trim the tourist numbers. This included banning the opening of new “kebab” shops, making it harder for cruise ships to dock and even implemented a tourist tax. To no avail.

Then nature made it happen. In mid-November 2019, the city saw its highest water levels since 1966, causing devastation. On December 23, Venice was struck by another water surge that damaged landmarks and shops in the heart of the city. Water levels reached 74.4” nearly as much as the epic 76.4″ reached in 1966. The town was in a state of emergency with a bill for $1.1 billion for restoration.

Just as Venice began to recover her charm and beauty COVID-19.nade sure there was no one to enjoy t..

Virgin Australia in administration, but say “it’s not the end”

Virgin Atlantic
Virgin Australia, Australia’s second-largest airline, has become the latest casualty of the havoc-wreaking Coronavirus pandemic.

Following the grounding of half its fleet due to global travel bans today (Tuesday 21s April) the airline, already struggling with a long-term £2.55bn/ $3.17bn debt, has entered voluntary administration.

Richard Branson tweet
Richard Branson who has already pumped $250 million into Virgin Group companies in response to the pandemic, made a last-ditch attempt to get a loan from Australia’s government.

Despite offering his beloved Necker Island estate in the Caribbean as collateral the bid failed.

Staying upbeat the airline is now seeking new buyers and investors and in the meantime, they say that during the period of administration, said there would be no redundancies and all Virgin employees would keep their jobs.

Virgin Australia Chief Executive Paul Scurrah said:

“Our decision today is about securing the future of the Virgin Australi..

Why getting a refund for your holiday is so hard amid the coronavirus pandemic

Beach
On March 17, the government advised against all non-essential travel overseas for the time being, hundreds of thousands of holidays had to be cancelled.

Some holidaymakers are naturally looking for refunds but are finding that their hopes for getting a timely refund from companies are as dashed as their cancelled holiday plans.

Holidaymakers are entitled to a refund for their cancelled holiday – no question – including because of travel restrictions. Any advice to the contrary is false and you can insist on a refund. Any holiday company that refuses to give a refund for a cancelled holiday is breaking the law.

A holiday company that refuses to give you a refund for a holiday cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak is breaking the law.

Typically a refund for a cancelled holiday has to be given, by law, within a fortnight. But these are not typical times.

The sheer weight of pressure this has placed on travel companies is sometimes more than burdensome and finding the finan..

Easyjet: Easter 2021 flights now available – bags only 99p

Flights now available with Easyjet up to 18 April 2021
PLUS bags still only 99p

Flowers in bloom, long bank holidays and new beginnings. Hop ahead and make some memorable moments with friends and family in 2021.

Take a peek at Easyjet’s tempting tr​avel treats across Europe and beyond, and you can still pop a bag in your basket for only 99p*.

CHECK OUT EASYJET.COM

Air Mauritius goes into voluntary administration

Air Mauritius has today gone into voluntary administration. The board says that the decision for the action was made due to travel restrictions and border closures arising from the coronavirus pandemic.

Air Mauritius, which has been serving the island nation of Mauritius for more than 50 years, has been struggling for some time. In January, the airline had set up a ‘transformation steering committee’ to address the financial implications of the outbreak of the virus and reviewing its business model and an action plan was formed.

Today, the board released a statement citing a “complete erosion” of the airline’s revenue base, with little certainty when international air traffic operations will resume.

“In these circumstances, it is expected the company will not be able to meet its financial obligations in the foreseeable future,” said the airline. “The board, therefore, took the decision to place the company under voluntary administration in order to safeguard the interest of the comp..

Holidaymakers told “Don’t book summer holiday yet”

Don't book holidays
Plans for a summer holiday in Europe may well be dashed for the foreseeable future as the president of the European Commission warns holidaymakers to wait before making summer holiday plans.

European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, said people should not make any travel plans to the continent for the foreseeable future as it is not clear yet how long the coronavirus pandemic will affect European countries.

She told German newspaper Bild:

“I’d advise everyone to wait before making holiday plans. At the moment, no one can make reliable forecasts for July and August. We will need to learn to live with this virus for many months, probably until next year.”

This comes after France asserted that it would maintain strict border controls until October and asked other EU countries to keep their borders closed until at least September.

President Macron has called for external borders with the passport-free Schengen zone, of which Britain is not a part, ..

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