Today's News

Helloworld 2016 financial results announced – “the outlook … is very good”

Screen Shot 2016-08-25 at 8.10.08 pm

For the year ended 30 June 2016, Helloworld Limited achieved an EBITDA of $25.3 million, an increase of 5% from FY2015. TTV increased 8.3% to $5.1 billion and revenue from operating activities was $297.9 million, a 7% increase on the previous year.

“These results reflect a time of evolution for Helloworld Limited, following the merger with The AOT Group in February 2016. They represent the positive steps we have taken so far, and the opportunity to build on this momentum for success in the future,” said chief executive officer and MD Andrew Burnes.

The Helloworld Limited profit before tax was $3.5 million for the year ending June 2016, a significant improvement on the prior year loss of $198.4 million.

RCL finalises leadership team

RCL logosRCL Cruises’ new leadership team is now complete, with the cruise line announcing it has appointed Kathryn Valk as director of sales & marketing, Neil Linwood as director of operations and Melinda Ryan as head of revenue & planning.

These senior appointments follow the appointment of Adam Armstrong to managing director earlier this year and Gavin Smith’s promotion to senior vice president international.

Myanmar quake causes deaths and destruction of ancient temples


As the death toll continues to climb past 250 people, following Wednesday’s earthquake in central Italy, Myanmar has reported the deaths of at least four people, including young children, after a 6.8 magnitude quake struck west of Chauk, just south of Bagan, also on Wednesday [local time].

All work and no play for agents on Fiji famil! (and if you believe that, check out the photos!)

Spare a thought for the bunch of unlucky Travel Counsellors agents who were part of a recent Fiji famil, spending eight days immersed in action and adventure, on an island cruise and indulging in luxury rest and recreation!

Sigatoka River Safari

But, they say the camera never lies and it looks to us like Julie Moore, Richard Stewart, David Jackson, Tina Millington, Kim Rudd, Lynda Reid, Donna Jones, Kirsty Love and Sam Puccio from the Melbourne head office, were having a ball!!

The caption says 'A busy schedule' ... half their luck! :)

The caption says ‘A busy schedule’ … half their luck! :)

Fakeout Friday – seeing double!

clubhotel-riu-bachata_marketingThere are lots of great things about hotels, but one of the best has to be the luxury of stretching out on a king-size bed – and a super king like this one is even better.

Air China to fly direct from Chengdu to Sydney

Air China logoAir China will operate a direct service from Chengdu to Sydney from November, with the new route enabling direct travel for tourists from Western China.

Air China general manager Oceania Mr Rui Jie said the airline was pleased to expand its Sydney service, with the new route being the airline’s first non-stop service between Western China and Oceania.

Cirque du Soleil gives trade a taste of Las Vegas

LVCVA - trade photo - Cirque KoozaA group of travel trade partners ran away to the circus this week, thanks to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA). The group enjoyed an exclusive pre-opening performance of Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza in Sydney.

LVCVA Australian representative Bart Druitt said he was thrilled to a slice of what Vegas offers to local travel partners.

Changes in credit card surcharges from DriveAway

DriveAway logoIn line with new regulations coming into effect on 1 September, DriveAway Holidays will reduce credit and debit card surcharges from 2 per cent to 1.2 per cent for all MasterCard and Visa transactions.

Surcharges on American Express transactions will increase from 2 per cent to 2.9 per cent on the same day.

For more information call 1300 363 500.

DFAT travel advisories

Mali: Do not travel

Guatemala, Honduras, Papua New Guinea, Sierra Leone, Tanzania: High degree of caution

Scenic HUB-Travel Agent Resource Centre launches


Providing a range of tools to assist travel agents in Australia and New Zealand, Scenic has launched Scenic HUB – Travel Agent Resource Centre.

The online portal has been designed to increase speed to market of information, allowing agents to access information and marketing materials immediately, and drive the use of online resources such as Express Book. The secure site gives agents 24/7 access to a wealth of useful information and documents.

Central Italy 6.2 quake – death toll rising amid devastation

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 9.14.14 pm

At least 160 people are confirmed dead following a devastating earthquake that struck in central Italy in the early hours of Wednesday morning [local time], with many more injured and others still trapped under rubble and debris.

No longer in the red – Qantas posts best result ever

Qantas copyThe ‘in the red’ Roo no more, Qantas is back in the black as it makes a triumphant return to profit after years of pain, posting an underlying profit of $1.53 billion for the 12 months ending 30 June 2016 – the best result in its 95 year history and 57% up on last year’s results.

While the transformation program has been tough for the airline and its employees, CEO Alan Joyce said the benefits were clear.

Police investigate motive after tragic stabbing death of young British tourist in QLD

Queensland police are investigating the background of a 29-year-old Frenchman, held in custody in connection with the stabbing death of a 21-year-old British woman at a backpackers hostel south of Townsville on Tuesday evening. Witnesses say the man, who lived at Shelley’s Backpackers in Home Hill where the young woman was staying, called out “Allahu akbar” during the attack and during his arrest, and he is reported to have bashed two police guards.

Azamara president to host agent webinar

13032013_LarryPimentelOfficialPicAgents can get the inside scoop on Azamara Club Cruises from the man at the top – president and CEO Larry Pimentel will be in Australia next week and travel agents have the opportunity to join a thirty minute ‘Insider Access’ webinar he will host on Tuesday 30 August at 8.30am AEST.

The webinar is aimed at agents who want to equip themselves with the knowledge to start selling Azamara Club Cruises, and will cover the basics of the brand and its points of difference.

World2Cover awarded for value

World2CoverWorld2Cover travel insurance has been announced as the winner of CANSTAR Outstanding Value Travel Insurance Awards for both its international and domestic products.

Claudio Saita, deputy CEO and executive director for Tokio Marine, underwriters for travel insurance, said the company was thrilled to receive the awards.