The recovery of the travel industry is lopsided, with domestic travel rebounding more quickly than international. Labor shortages, ongoing surges of the coronavirus and changing public health restrictions will create ongoing challenges for the industry, according to an analysis by Publicis Sapient and SkiftX.
Air Canada is "seeing steadily increasing bookings for the domestic, trans-border and Atlantic markets and to sun destinations for the coming winter," with bookings for some weeks in June "ahead of the same period in 2019," said CEO Michael Rousseau.
Agritourism is on the rise as consumers seek safer, less-crowded vacation options where they can also learn more about where their food comes from and how it's produced. Options like "you-pick" dinners and winemaking are popping up at farms and the agriculture-based trend is helping to fuel the hospitality industry's revival and spur the debut of new businesses.
Demand for travel services is on the rise, but there's a lag in hiring, complicated by the fact that some travel professionals left the business during the pandemic, Need to Know research found. Some 35% of agencies surveyed say they have less staffers, but only 28% say they are actively hiring.
"Revenge travel" packages are being offered to fully vaccinated travelers who are ready for luxury travel. The packages, developed by Private Jetaway, feature private jet and yachts, luxury villas and private islands in Mexico.
Starting next year, Context Journeys tours will educate travelers on cultural sites across Europe. Context Travel, an educational travel company, will offer the private group tours using scholars with an expertise in several fields, including architecture, history, cuisine and archaeology.
Hawaii native Kat Pullis is the first woman to serve as a base chief pilot for Alaska Airlines, leading its San Francisco pilots. "I'm so honored to take on this role because I really just want to support our pilots and be a good role model," Pullis said, adding that flying is "such a fun job" and her colleagues are her "second family."
American Airlines plans to open up three additional gates at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport by the end of the year, expanding operations at its North Carolina hub. Additionally, American introduced its "Five Star Essentials" premium concierge service in Charlotte, Dallas-Fort Worth and Miami earlier this year.
Alaska Airlines is prioritizing continued growth at its Seattle hub as the cornerstone of its recovery plan, said Andrew Harrison, executive vice president and chief commercial officer. The airline's Seattle capacity was up 2% in the second quarter of 2021 compared with 2019, he said, as Alaska has "restructured the Seattle hub to gain access to greater flow traffic, which has helped fuel this growth."
United Airlines has added Roanoke Blacksburg Regional Airport to its "Touchdown in College Town" program and scheduled special nonstop flights between Roanoke and South Bend, Ind., for football fans attending the Oct. 9 game between Notre Dame and Virginia Tech. United established the program in 2017 to connect college towns.
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