The third edition of Global Tourism Economy Forum (GTEF) kicked off in Macau on 27 October. The Global Tourism Forum was established to drive a new chapter in the tourism industries with a focus on China. Why the focus on China, and why Macau? Over the last decade, Macau alone as generated MOP$200 billion from its tourism industry that is 81 percent of total GDP.
A report on Asian Tourism trends collaborated on by the United Nations World Tourism Organization and the Global Tourism Economy Research Centre is one of the focal points of the forum. The report reiterates the point of China and Asia Pacific as whole’s growing tourism economy. About 23% of the world’s international tourists went to that region. The idea is figure out to properly capitalize on this trend.”This can extend the influence of the tourism economy to various regions and aspects for achieving reciprocal benefits,” siad Edumud Ho Hau Wah, Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
TUI AG, Europe’s leading travel group and TUI Travel Plc, Europe’s largest tour operator have agreed to proposed terms to merge the two companies. The companies have been in talks for nearly a year now, but needed at least 75 percent of minority shareholders to vote in favor of the merger. Nearly 80 percent of the shareholders voted in favor of the merger. Both companies already work close with one another, and the merger mainly solves organizationational issues. Commerzbank analyst Johannes Braun commented that, “It solves the company’s holding dilemma and gives full control over TUI Travel’s sizable cash flows while reducing the conglomerate’s discount”. Also both companies shares rose due to the announcement TUI shares rose as much as 7 percent to 12.44 euros in Frankfurt, the biggest interday jump since January 2013. TUI Travel shares advanced as much as 4.5 percent to 399.90 pence in London.
The World Islamic Economic Forum was held in Dubai this week, where a partnership was announced between MasterCard and Crescent Rating. Crescent Rating is a Singapore-based Muslim travel company. The partnership aspires to create a Global Muslim Travel Index. slated to be released in January and updated quarterly.
The index will rate destinations welcoming to Muslim travelers, and the growth potential of these locations. Crescent Rating had a similar solo venture this year, and the product next year is expected to be greater with the partnership of MasterCard. The Muslim travel market is currently at $140 billion and expected to grow exponentially as Muslims are planning to travel to destinations outside of the Middle East. MasterCard and Crescent Rating want to influence where they go.
TripAdvisor launches a “Just for You” feature. The feature will use TripAdvisor members’ reviews on hotels, past TripAdvisor searches for hotels and destinations and tagged preferences to provide personal hotel recommendations. TripAdvisor has been running a beta for a while and feel like they are ready to fully roll it out. “We saw users engaging with ‘Just for You’ recommendations at a higher rate than the control Popularity Index rank order, amongst other key metrics we track around engagement,” says Kevin Carter, a TripAdvisor spokesperson. When users search for a hotel, a series of tags will pop up and they get to select their preference.
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Written by Nelson Oduro
Nelson was part of TrekkSoft's marketing team in our New York Office for three years, paying particular attention to the growth of our digital marketing strategy.