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National Travel Industry Awards

TAANZ is about to open voting for all 21 categories of the National Travel Industry Awards.

Voting, which opens Monday April 28, is open to all agents, suppliers and their employees.

TAANZ insures all votes will be validated and the identity of all voters will remain confidential.

A judging panel for agency finalists will be held mid July, with supplier finalists and the winner being announced at a special event at the Pullman Hotel Auckland on August 30.

Tickets and tables for the finalist presentation go on sale April 28.

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Etihad Airways' new social media campaign

#EtihadSuggests – a new online initiative from Etihad Airways offering personalised travel tips to social media users.

The global campaign invites members of the public to ask holiday-related questions on Facebook or Twitter using the #EtihadSuggests hashtag.

Etihad Airways’ online community team says they will aim to respond within 10 minutes, offering insider information on must-visit destinations including suggestions on the best hotels, restaurants and tourist attractions.

The campaign will operate on a 24/7 basis with personalised travel tips being offered in both Arabic and English.

Peter Baumgartner, chief commercial officer at Etihad Airways, says the company’s social media channels have attracted a fast-growing community of followers across the world.

‘Unlike our other posts, which were aimed at a wider audience, #EtihadSuggests is focused on personalised and tailored information that relates to the travel needs of individual users.’

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Denarau Convention Center open

Fiji’s new Denarau Island Convention Center opened today in time for the Fijian Tourism Expo (FTE), May 5 – 8.

FTE will be the first event held in the new facility, located within the Sheraton Fiji Resort property, and is the ideal opportunity to introduce the center to both the Fijian and international travel trade.

Tourism Fiji CEO, Rick Hamilton, says the center, designed to accommodate up to 1500 delegates, will be a great asset to both Denarau Island and Fiji in attracting large conferences and events to the destination.

‘Being the first event to be held at the new Denarau Island Convention Center, FTE will showcase this fantastic new facility and demonstrate to international buyers that Fiji can host large-scale events.’

The 2014 Fijian Tourism Expo has sold out, with over 260 properties and 150 international buyers attending the show.

For more information about FTE click here.

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New Caledonia roadshow 2014

Tourism operators from New Caledonia will be travelling the country on a four centre roadshow next month, updating the industry with the latest developments. Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism says there will have plenty of goodies plus French Champagne to give away and trips to be won to New Caledonia including the Loyalty Islands and the scenic North.
Download the PDF invite here. Dates to diarise

May 5, Hamilton, Novotel  7 – 9am

May 5, Christchurch, Novotel 5.30 – 8.30pm

May 6, Wellington, Rydges 5.30 – 8.30pm

May 7, Auckland, Floating Pavilion 5.30 – 8.30pm

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Awesome Adventures Fiji launch

A brand new logo and brochure format for Awesome Adventures Fiji, and new logo and packages for the Whitsundays were launched in Auckland last night (April 15). The Rydges rooftop terrace was transformed into a Fijian paradise, with welcome cocktails, a dress-up selfie station and a Fijian band taking out the entertainment.

Selina McGowan, sales executive at Marine Tourism Management Ltd who represents Awesome Adventures, says the rebranding means the packages will now appeal to a broader range of people. ‘We’re no longer talking to clients about ‘tropical orgasms’ or ‘awesome leis. Rather than a sole focus on students and backpackers, we now offer packages to suit every budget.’

Ben Hurley provided a ‘little bit of eye candy for the ladies’ as the MC, dishing out various prizes with a Kava-bowl business card draw.

Tracey Townsend, GO Holidays, took out one of the top prizes of the night – a five night Island Times Fiji package for two including return Auckland to Nadi flights with Fiji Airways.

Awesome Adventures Fiji online is also offering a six-night Bula Fiji combo pass for two to all wholesale consultants who reach 20 Awesome Adventures Fiji bookings.

<<< Infinitiy Holidays Selfie: (from left) Joseph Chang; Natasha Henry; Sholeen Pizasad; Kerry Watson; Melissa Plumb

 

>>>Student Flights Selfie: Chris Bissett (left) and Melesh Patel getting in the Fiji spirit

<<<From left: Joanne, Vanessa, Talita and Elise from House Of Travel New Lynn

 

>>>Winning the big prize: Selina McGowan, Marine Tourism Management Ltd; Tracey Townsend, GO Holidays; Ben Hurley, NZ comedian

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Port Douglas 'open'

Port Douglas is open for business as operators in the region resume full services in the wake of Cyclone Ita.  
Tourism Port Douglas and Daintree executive officer Doug Ryan said the seaside town, which was hit by the Category One system on Saturday, was up and running with most restaurants, cafes and boutiques now open in the main street.

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PrevuTrade website launch

PrevuTrade, a new website for New Zealand travel agents, was launched last night and company spokesman Roger Hawkins updated industry members with the key elements and 'how to use' functionality of the new website. 'It's an online travel library with rich media content for each country. The site features video, imagery, blogs and sales related detail on available accommodation, sightseeing, activities, restaurants and things to see and do.'

Prevu is intent on adding value to the travel industry through enhanced knowledge, ease of availability and the very best use of technology – directly into the travel consultant’s hands.

The site will be available to industry, with log in access and Hawkins promises it will be easy to use. 'For suppliers, they can upload content direct and the images text can be copied and placed into itineraries. We are not a booking engine, we leave that to the experts. The site aims to help the consultants sell more travel, longer stays and enhanced experiences and it is a great tool for consultants not familiar with a particular destination.'

PrevuTrade currently has 10 South Pacific countries live, but will increase to include other regions over the coming months. A cruising site is expected to be launched shortly.

at the launch were Mark Hutchinson, Air Tahiti Nui and Angela Hallett, Aircalin Maria Apii, Tourism Fiji and Carla Sutton, International Travel College Ross McLauchlan, PrevuTrade and Hylda Bloomfield, Air New Zealand


<<Jo Kennedy, Niue Tourism; Wayne Deed, Tourism Fiji and Sandi Reily-Simmons, Vibe Pacific

>>The PrevuTrade team - Brett Robinson, Azym Abdulin, designer, Ross McLauchlan and Roger Hawkins,

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House of Travel annual awards

The annual House of Travel Awards, hosted by local celebrities Jono & Ben and Guy Williams, were held in Wellington at the new Shed 6 conference venue on April 5.

House of Travel Newmarket received numerous accolades including Overall Best Performing House of Travel Outlet, Top House of Travel Product Outlet North Island, Top House of Travel Air outlet North Island and Top Performing Large-Sized Outlet of the year.

Newmarket owner Clare Jackson says the Gold Coast and Pacific Islands continue to be the most popular for weekend getaways and winter breaks, but there are more clients spending larger amounts to take luxury holidays to Asia and America. 'Long haul trips continue to do well as the strong NZ dollar equates to value for money, which is excellent when buying at the destination,' says Jackson.

Mark O'Donnell, CEO for House of Travel, says he is proud of the Newmarket store’s success.

'It’s fantastic that this store was able to scoop so many awards and shows that in the age of internet how relevant and appreciated experienced advice from well-travelled staff is.'

Other HOT award recipients included House of Travel Devonport who took out Best Performing Small Outlet and House of Travel Ashburton which won Best Performing Medium Outlet.

HOT Newmarket on stage: Mark O’Donnell, HOT head office, Karene Richardson, Tony Jackson, Anthony Myers, Amber King, Clare Jackson, Fleur Virtue, Sarah Gaffney, Erica Banks, , Julie Bohnenn, HOT head office and Paul Herbert

 

<<Mark O’Donnell HOT CEO; Maxine Whiting, HOT Ashburton and Julie Bohnenn HOT business partnership director

 

>>Mark O’Donnell, centre, with Andy Thompson, HOT Devonport and Julie Bohnenn

 

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The Great Samoan Roadtrip

A group of travel wholesalers are road tripping around Samoa ahead of the Samoan Tourism Exchange this week. Buffet dinner at Aggie Greys Resort and Spa kickstarted the trip, with hotel inspections and a tour of Robert Louis Stevenson Museum taking up most of the first day. Still to come are the official opening party for the Samoan Tourism Exchange, two exhibition days and a trip from the east to south coast of Samoa.

 

 

 

Being welcomed into the Orator Hotel: Michael Geary; Wendy Graham, Lifestyle Holidays; Shelly Gutry, Our Pacific; Rowena McCarron, Flight Centre; Mandy Veale, Mondo

The Samoan Tourism Exchange came alight at the official opening party, held in the Samoan Tourism Authority garden.

Acting Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism, Fonoto Pierre Lauofo, welcomed over 50 buyers into Samoa for the annual event.

Guests sipped ‘happy coconuts’ and ate freshly caught sashimi while watching a fire knife dance by Samoan tribal performers.

Mandy Veale, (pictured) campaign manager at Mondo Travel, says she was impressed by the location and entertainment at the opening.

‘It was really cool walking in and getting flowers and leis and coconuts, and the entertainment was different. It was great.’

 

<<Miss Samoa perform a traditional dance at the official opening party

 

>>Don't try this at home - the knife fire dancing

Hot Off The Press

Bonjour to PCOs in Noumea

Wanting to showcase a taste of France in the Pacific, New Caledonia Tourism, in conjunction with Aircalin invited six PCOs to experience some of the delights of New Caledonia. Escorted by Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism and Angela Hallett, Aircalin, the group's itinerary promises three days of 'getting to know' Noumea, with French food and wine, luxury accommodation, a Segway adventure combined with sun and snorkeling.

Local performers welcomed the group of PCOs as they arrived at Tontouta International Airport, New Caledonia. Next stop Escapade Island Resort for a night in the luxurious overwater bungalows for Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism; Milynne Garcia, Orbit AKL; Hayley McIntyre, Orbi, Wellington; Angela Hallett, Aircalin; Jo Boyd, Williment Travel; Rachael Hawkey, APX Groups; Winnie Fong, GO Conference and Mark Ferguson cievents

Seat belt - check; Champagne – check. Rachael Hawkey, APX Groups and Jo Boyd, Williment Travel prepare for the Aircalin flight with to Noumea as they embark on a four day PCO famil to New Caledonia

Seated in business class on Aircalin SB411 is Hayley McIntyre, Orbit Travel, Wellington and Milynne Garcia, Orbit AKL

On the boat transfer to Escapade Island Resort, Noumea, Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism and Mark Ferguson cievents felt the time was right to wear matching shirts. The style police will be watching for more matching outfits over the coming days

Angela Hallett, Aircalin does the Jailhouse Rock with Elvis, the entertainer at Escapade Island Resort,

...while the rest of the PCOs put on their 'Blue Suede Shoes

and 'Hound Dog', Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism rocked it

Setting off on a site inspection of Escapade Island Resort, Milynne Garcia, Orbit AKL; Winnie Fong, GO Conference; Hayley McIntyre, Orbit Travel WLG; Jo Boyd, Williment Travel; Angela Hallett, Aircalin; Mark Ferguson cievents; Rachael Hawkey, APX Groups; Julie Cassin, GLP Hotels and Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism

Escapade Island Resort overwater bungalows, where the PCOs spent one night of the famil while in New Caledonia

It was a hard thing to do, but we all had to leave and press on to the rest of the famil

Angela Hallett, Aircalin and Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism take charge of the towels for the day’s activities around Noumea. First stop is the local market, then the zoological and botanical garden for a Segway encounter

Destination management company, Arc en Ciel provided the transport during the famil and guide Armstrong Garo was happy to share his local knowledge with Jo Boyd, Williment Travel and Hayley McIntyre, Orbit Travel WLG

Purchases were made at the local market by Mark Ferguson civets - merci beaucoup

Hayley McIntyre, Orbit Travel WLG; Mark Ferguson cievents; Rachael Hawkey, APX Groups and Jo Boyd, Williment Travel sample the coffee at the Noumea market

Winnie and friends – ‘this looks like a tasty dinner’, says Winnie Fong, GO Conference of the rather large crabs at the Noumea fish market

Milynne Garcia, Orbit AKL takes in the view of the Tjibaou Cultural Centre... Then she meet up with the rest of the team in one of the traditional buildings within the grounds of the cultural centre

This is funny - yes sorry guys but it is. What can we say - Hayley McIntyre, Orbit Travel WLG; Milynne Garcia, Orbit AKL and Angela Hallett, Aircalin - the picture says it all. (Taken at the Noumea Maritime Museum) It's Segway time at the zoo. Milynne Garcia, Orbit AKL, getting instruction While Rachael Hawkey, APX Groups works on her stopping
Jo Boyd, Williment Travel has got it as does Mark Ferguson cievents Training track for the team before they are let loose into the zoo grounds
Le Meridien Noumea surprised the PCOs with a transfer to Amedee Lighthouse by private launch.

Hayley McIntyre, Orbit Wellington; Milynne Garcia, Orbit AKL; Rachael Hawkey, APX Groups and Jo Boyd, Williment Travel onboard the launch and do agree it is a very comfortable way to travel

As do Suzanne Kenyon, New Cal Events; Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism Angela Hallett, Aircalin

Once on the island, the PCOs were treated to a massage and Mark Ferguson civets is feeling really relaxed after the hard work he has been doing But then it was back to work for Mark who decided to audition as one of the polynesian dancers Not too sure if he will make the cut to be perfectly honest

After lunch and the entertainment, a surprise was in store for the PCOs in the shape of a big yellow bird...

TRAVELinc's Ruth Scott went alone for the helicopter ride..

Rachael Hawkey, APX Groups and Simon Duffy, New Caledonia Tourism look slightly shell shocked, but reckon it was an an amazing experience to be flown across the reefs around Amedee Island

and this was the view...
Back on dry land, Le Meridien Noumea set the place alive with a Can Can performance. Everyone tried to kick up their heels and get their legs above their heads, but alas not even Simon Duffy and Jo Boyd could match the skill of the supple can can dancers But they all gave it a go Stephane Brun, Hotel Tieti and Nellye Kamouda, Northern Province, attended the farewell dinner at Le Meridien Noumea

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New partnership - Executive Travel and Travel Managers

Executive Travel Limited and Travel Managers Group Limited are to join forces in a new partnership.

Executive Travel under the directorship of Kevin Weston and Nicola Jamieson has acquired a 40% shareholding with Travel Managers Group effective from April 1, 2014. Mike Southcombe, a founding partner with TMG has sold his share holding to Executive Travel. After almost 12 years with TMG, Southcombe says it is time to step back and spend more time with his family.

The new partnership provides a complete service offering to the market with many synergies and scalability, enabling a new direct trade agreement with Air New Zealand. The new trade agreement will significantly accelerate the growth in priority markets.

The two companies moving forward are placed to work collaboratively as their boutique business models and approaches in the corporate, SME, leisure and broker markets are strongly aligned.

Executive Travel has been providing corporate travel management services since 1975 and is a privately owned Travel Management Company based in New Zealand.

Travel Managers Group is an independent, 100% New Zealand owned and operated travel broker and leisure group formed in 2002.

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Checking out Moorea

It was a six stop dash around Moorea, but a small group of Kiwi travel trade managed to zip around a diverse selection of hotels and resorts on the island of Moorea before attending Tahiti Travel Mart on Papeete last week. With an early morning start, the wholesalers and media caught a ferry to Moorea, and were driven by Tahiti Tourisme representative Jessica Lea to Hotel Hibiscus,  Hotel Les Tipaniers, InterContinental Resort Moorea (the lunch stop), Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort and Spa, Moorea Pearl Resort & Spa, and Sofitel Ia Ora Beach Resort.

<< Anyone for watermelon juice? Thiery Brovelli, general manager InterContinental Resort & Spa Moorea;  Hylda Bloomfield, Air New Zealand, and Jessica Lea, Tahiti Tourism; enjoy a refreshing drink before looking around the resort.

A man moment at Moorea Pearl Resort & Spa… Gareth Waddington, GO Holidays; Stu Freeman, TRAVELinc; Serge Pont, Moorea Pearl Resort & Spa Heading out to the overwater bungalows at Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort  and Spa…Hylda Bloomfield, Air New Zealand; Shelley Gutry, Our Pacific; Gareth Waddington, GO Holidays; Jessica Lea, Tahiti Tourism; Gaélle Larme, Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort and Spa Shelley Gutry, Our Pacific; Gareth Waddington, GO Holidays at Hotel Hibiscus Moorea

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Jetstar suspends AKL- SIN

Jetstar will suspend services on the Auckland to Singapore route from Monday July 21, 2014. The airline is citing falling passenger numbers  and Jetstar spokesman, Phil Boeyen says the capacity could be put to better use on other routes.

'In the next few months Jetstar Airways will commence long haul services between Melbourne and Tokyo Narita and between Brisbane and Bali.

'The airline is always keen to bring competition to monopoly routes and for the past three years has provided a low fares choice on the Singapore-Auckland route,' has adds.

All passengers booked beyond this date will be offered the option of a full refund, bringing their flights forward to travel before direct services end, or transferring to a connecting service via Australia.

Jetstar began daily Singapore-Auckland services in March 2011. This was reduced to the current schedule of three times per week to better meet demand.

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Trade release - MH 370 Incident

The following is a press release sent out from Malaysian Airlines Auckland on March 19 2014.
Dear Industry Partners,

Over the past week we have received a lot of comforting messages from you.
Thank you for your kind words, prayers and continued support since the unfortunate incident of MH370.
As you all know, our primary focus is to assist authorities with the search for the missing aircraft and provide support to the immediate families of all passengers and crew on board MH370.
We do realise that you may have also been affected by this incident and that you need to manage enquiries and feedback from your staff and clients.

Please be assured that all flight operations to/from Auckland and worldwide are still operating as normal and we have heightened security measures at all ports.

Now more than ever we need your support to ensure calm and ask you to reassure new and existing customers that seek advice or may have questions about their bookings.

If anyone has questions, please be assured the Malaysia Airlines team is here to help.
Please feel free to contact us by
Phone: Auckland 09 379 3743 option 4 (Marketing) or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text35599 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Phone: Auckland 09 379 3743 option 3(Ticketing) or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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