Talking Travel: How to Communicate to Consumers and Employees Right Now

Talking Travel: How to Communicate to Consumers and Employees Right Now

As I write this, the travel industry is beginning to see some light at the end of the tunnel. The recovery will be likely tentative at first, and focus on staycations, drives, and short-haul trips. But there are so many dependencies—transmission rates, social-distancing regulations, border closures—that it’s impossible to make meaningful predictions. I’m curious to hear when you anticipate business returning, where your forward bookings are concentrated, and when you may start to bring employees back. Meanwhile, in the here and now, things remain confusing. For every story about reopening there is another about the virus resurfacing. That makes it particularly challenging to communicate, both externally to consumers and internally to nurture company culture. These topics were on the agenda of a series of roundtable discussion with industry leaders that…
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My Take on Coronavirus: Why Now Is the Time to Keep Talking

My Take on Coronavirus: Why Now Is the Time to Keep Talking

What a difference a month makes. Just a few weeks ago, I sent you the results of our annual Pulse of the Industry Survey, reflecting a mostly sunny outlook for 2020. Most respondents forecasted continued growth in revenue and bookings, their optimism quashing any concerns about terrorism, natural disasters, or economic uncertainty. But then Wuhan sneezed, and the rest of the world started catching cold. I don’t have to tell you about the major disruptions that coronavirus has already caused in our business. The real questions are: How bad will things get? And what do we do to get through? I’m afraid none of us can answer the first question, which depends largely on the speed and lethality of the virus as it spreads around the world. The initial analyses…
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Luxury Travel Will Continue to Surge in 2020, Say Top Industry Executives

Luxury Travel Will Continue to Surge in 2020, Say Top Industry Executives

A strong economy prevails over concerns about global instability, according to Strategic Vision’s 2020 Pulse of the Industry Survey. At the same time, travelers have become more conscious of their impact on the places they visit. Political and economic instability are no match for the insatiable drive to travel, according to a recent survey of top luxury travel executives, who predict yet another banner year for the segment. In its annual Pulse of the Industry Survey, travel consultancy Strategic Vision reports that 70% of respondents forecast an increase in revenues in 2020, while 50% described their clients’ attitudes as “optimistic” about both domestic and international travel. That positive sentiment largely overrides concerns about potential disruptors such as natural disasters, political unrest, and economic hiccups from Brexit or trade disputes. Luxury…
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FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD – Will we ever get over overtourism?

FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD – Will we ever get over overtourism?

  Overtourism: Everyone is talking about it. Everyone wants to do something about it. And nobody is going to stop traveling. So, what to do? One thing is for sure: In this hyper-connected, over-polarized, blame-happy era, the issue is not going away. Overtourism is more than the controversy du jour—in fact, I think it may become the defining issue of our time, along with the overlapping issue of sustainability. And while many of us deal mostly with the higher end of the market, we can’t kid ourselves that it’s a mass travel issue that doesn’t affect us. Travelers are impacted by the crowds on the Spanish Steps whether they’re staying at the Hassler or the hostel. Nor is the problem limited to large cities. Overtourism is to blame when Barcelona…
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A Collection of Thoughts on Hotel Collections

A Collection of Thoughts on Hotel Collections

You may have seen the news in January that Ted Teng will soon be stepping down as President and CEO of Leading Hotels of the World. Most of you share my high regard for Ted, who ran LHW for 10 years. Interestingly, his departure was announced around six months after Filip Boyen left rival Small Luxury Hotels of the World; Boyen, in turn, was replaced by Jean-François Ferret, who came from Relais & Châteaux, yet another independent hotel collection. All this executive shuffling got me thinking about the role these collections—which also include Preferred Hotels & Resorts—play in the luxury travel industry today. All of them were established in the pre-Internet era to provide…
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A Snapshot of the Australian Luxury Traveller in 2019

A Snapshot of the Australian Luxury Traveller in 2019

Today in Sydney, we launched the Australian Luxury Traveller 2019 study by Goldman Group – the biggest Virtuoso agency in Australia. The study was completed over the past three months by Strategic Vision in association with AccorHotels. We are pleased to provide the press release and survey results here. New destinations, heritage sites, gourmet food…and value for money - discover what the luxury traveller wants in 2019 A new survey has revealed intriguing insights into the globetrotting habits of Australia’s luxury travellers, including their passion for discovering unique experiences, their willingness to travel to far-flung locations and their spending habits in pursuit of the perfect getaway. The survey, conducted by the Goldman Group - Australia’s premier luxury travel advisory group, in partnership with AccorHotels, also underlined the close partnership between…
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Top Luxury Travel Advisors Expect a Boom Year in 2019

Top Luxury Travel Advisors Expect a Boom Year in 2019

Increased wealth, interest in new experiences, and inspiration from social media outweigh concerns about economic headwinds and world events in Strategic Vision’s 2019 Pulse of the Industry Survey A survey of the top luxury travel management firms in the United States reveals surging optimism about the state of the industry heading into 2019. In its annual Pulse of the Industry Survey, global marketing communications firm Strategic Vision reports that 44% of companies surveyed say their clients are optimistic about international travel, with 54% optimistic about domestic travel. That’s a big leap from last year’s numbers of 19% for international travel and 29% for domestic travel. Only 16% of advisors said their clients were feeling cautious about international travel in this year’s survey. For most of the surveyed firms—which plan and…
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What Lies Ahead: Travel’s Biggest Challenges In 2019

What Lies Ahead: Travel’s Biggest Challenges In 2019

It’s the most wonderful time of the year—the season when travel publications and experts tout their predictions for the next 12 months, like the hottest destinations and the big new trends. (Am I the only one who feels like the “new” trends always sound a lot like the “old” trends?) I’ve decided to do something a bit different: I’ve compiled a few issues that I’d like to see the industry tackle next year. Some of these are new problems, some have been bubbling up for a while, but they need our collective attention. As an industry observer, I know what incredible things we can accomplish together—innovation, technology, creating experiences‚ all in the name of bringing people together so they can do business, learn something, or bring value to their lives.…
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Brand Mission: Finding Your Why

Brand Mission: Finding Your Why

If you’re anything like me, it’s way too easy to get caught up in the daily grind of work—meetings, presentations, trips, repeat—and forget the underlying forces that motivate us to keep at it. Of course, we all work to grow our business and make some money, but is that really what gets us out of bed in the morning? What’s the deeper meaning that motivates us to do what we do—and not just work for work’s sake? I started asking myself this question recently after hearing a terrific speaker: Simon Sinek. He called this deeper meaning your “WHY,” and he makes a convincing case that each of us needs to define our mission and values—as individuals, as teams, and as companies—in order to succeed. Here’s Sinek’s argument, in sum: You…
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Uncover Why Many Travel Companies Are Becoming Content Marketers

Uncover Why Many Travel Companies Are Becoming Content Marketers

If you’re an American of a certain age, you probably remember The Love Boat. It was a corny sitcom that ran from 1977 to 1986 and was set on a cruise ship. But beyond the campy fun, the show was notable for something else: It was the first successful example of content marketing in the travel business: The action took place aboard the Pacific Princess, providing invaluable exposure for Princess and the entire cruise industry. I was reminded of the show when reading recently about Carnival’s recent success as a producer of television shows. The corporation, which oversees 10 cruise brands, now creates six different series on major U.S. networks through its Ocean Originals arm—including “The Voyager with Josh Garcia” on NBC; “Ocean Treks with Jeff Corwin” and “Vacation Creation,”…
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