Monday, September 21, 2015

Wine tourism touted as growth area for Latin America

Montevideo, Sep 19 (IANS/EFE) Wine experts from Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Chile, and special guests from the US, Spain and Portugal gathered at the Uruguayan capital for the 5th Latin American Wine Tourism Congress.

"Together, we in Latin America are senders and receivers of enotourists," honorary conference chair Ivane Favero said during the opening session, EFE reported on Friday.

"The enotourist does not tire of seeking out and getting to know the regions that produce a wine and the entire culture surrounding its production."

The congress' agenda includes discussions about government policies to foster this type of tourism, the potential demand for enotourism, using social networks to attract wine tourists and training for people who work in the sector.
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Sunday, September 13, 2015

Florida tourism agency hopes rapper Pitbull attracts millennials

Pitbull, the Miami rapper known for his spirited dance music, will take on the role of state tourism ambassador, hoping to thrust Florida to the top of the millennial generation’s travel ticket.

Visit Florida, the state’s tourism agency, announced Pitbull as its new spokesman during the Florida Governor’s Conference on Tourism Tuesday at the Tampa Convention Center. More than 1,100 travel experts are meeting in Tampa this week to discuss all aspects of the tourism industry, including marketing strategies and successes.

Pitbull, 34, a legend in the pop music scene for more than a decade, will promote Florida with videos on a Jumbotron before his concerts, both nationally and internationally. He’ll also market the state’s nightlife and fun venues through his Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts.

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Thursday, September 10, 2015

Why Mobile Marketing And Online Travel Marketers Should Go Hand In Hand

According to eMarketer’s U.S. Digital Travel Metrics, 2013-2019, U.S. travelers will spend $168 billion in 2015 and $177 billion 2016 in online travel bookings. Add to that the fact that by the year 2017 more than 30% of worldwide online travel bookings will be made on mobile devices – as per Econsultancy and you can see the need for online travel marketers to get mobile.

This of course should come as absolutely no surprise given the fact that the entire world is on a mobile device. Not actually true of course but you get the idea.

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Monday, July 27, 2015

Why Does the $7.6T Global Travel Industry Ignore Single Parents?

As a single mom, Kayt Sukel traveled with her kid. A lot. The freelance science writer and partner at TravelSavvyMom and her son, now 10, have visited more than 25 countries — and a whole lot of resorts, hotels, airlines and tours.

Sukel is often frustrated by the lack of options for single parents.

“A lot of family destinations are great at providing childcare options now — a kid’s club or camp on site,” says Sukel, who lives in Houston and continues to travel extensively with her new husband and stepdaughter.

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Monday, July 20, 2015

The 10 Best Apps to Pack for Business Travel

Every time I travel by air -- except when the wireless is out, of course -- I feel grateful to have my phone. The reason? Absolutely everything these days is in the cloud -- just like I am!

I think about how, 20 years ago, how much time was lost in transit, when I could have been tracking expenses, saving receipts, hiring travel agents. Clearly, I’m infinitely more productive when I'm on the road these days than I used to be.

So here are the 10 best apps to pack for business travel.

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Saturday, July 11, 2015

Travel companies set their sights on Cuba

From cruise lines to ferries to airlines, businesses are getting in line to shepherd masses of Americans to the long-forbidden island of Cuba.

Many hope to benefit quickly under new U.S. rules that allow "purposeful" trips such as humanitarian or educational missions without a license. Others are preparing for what they see as the inevitable day when the U.S. allows open travel.

The latest to act was Carnival Corp., which announced Tuesday that it will begin cruises to the island next May for cultural exchanges. But so many more businesses are excited that South Florida attorney Pedro Freyre calls it "a tsunami of interest."

His team at Cuba Practice Group at law firm Akerman LLP has visited the island at least 10 times this year, mainly to accompany clients looking to develop travel-related business. He plans four more trips this summer alone — more than his three-member team made all of last year.

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Cruise giant Carnival Corp. to launch sailings to Cuba

Add cruise giant Carnival Corp. to the list of travel companies starting up trips to Cuba.

The parent company of Carnival, Princess and eight other cruise brands says it'll launch seven-night "people-to-people" tours to the island via ship beginning in May 2016, contingent on approval by Cuban authorities.

The cruises will be operated bi-weekly out of Miami by the company's new social impact-focused fathom brand, which will debut in April 2016 with volunteer vacations to the Dominican Republic.

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Peru: 43,000 Spanish tourists arrived between Jan-April

As Peru’s leaders take part in an official visit in Spain, the country’s are increasing bilateral relations and acknowledging the importance of tourism between the countries.

Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism, Magali Silva, recognized the significance of Spain’s contribution to Peru’s tourism industry particularly in the last 10 years.

“In the period from January to April 2015, 43,000 Spanish tourists visited us, representing an increase of 6.4% over the same period last year,” said Minister Silva according to Infotur news agency.

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Sunday, July 5, 2015

Latin American outlet Poco Loco to open in Dubai

Latin American restaurant Poco Loco will be opening at The Beach opposite JBR in August 2015.

The venue will serve Latin American-inspired dishes and drinks, from its founder and head chef Neil Witney's travels across South America.

Witney has worked on various London concepts including E&O, Eight Over Eight and Bodega Negra.

The two-storey 8000ft2 space, including a terraced area looking across The Beach, has vibrant coloured interiors and bold prints exclusively designed for Poco Loco, taking inspiration from Aztec and Incan art works.

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Thursday, July 2, 2015

Tech and tourism: 11 people changing the way we travel

(CNN)There's never been a better time to be a tourist.

Whether it's a cool new app helping find the best flight deal or a website to help book an authentic meal in a stranger's home in a foreign city, travel tech has made it easier than ever to make the most of your time away from home.

And it's all thanks to the people behind today's great industry innovations -- including these 11 individuals who make us more excited than ever to hit the road.

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Friday, June 26, 2015

First Latin America Meeting and Incentive Travel Exchange Kicks Off in Costa Rica

NEW YORK -- San Jose, Costa Rica is the backdrop for Questex Travel Group's first Latin America Meeting and Incentive Travel Exchange (LAMITE) event, which launched today at the luxurious Real InterContinental San Jose.

LAMITE, held in partnership with SITE, the Society for Incentive Travel Excellence, brings together top-producing, Latin America-based meeting and incentive buyers with leading global suppliers for two and a half days of exclusive networking opportunities and prescheduled one-to-one meetings in luxury suites.

The event kicked off with a familiarization trip for buyers through Costa Rica's lush rain forest via an aerial tram, presented by ACTUA Vesatours.

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Monday, June 22, 2015

Top 5 Reasons That Make Chile The Top Study Abroad Destination in Latin America

American students are increasingly looking for stimulating study abroad destinations. Chile, aside from placing students on the fast-track for language immersion, offers a variety of options that complement the student’s experience through, a platform that informs students about the country’s higher education offer. 

Chile provides students with endless possibilities in and out of the classroom. From innovating with local students, to catching waves in Pichilemu, your time in Chile will be nothing short of extraordinary. Here are five reasons why Chile is the top study abroad destination in Latin America.

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Friday, June 19, 2015

Hotel chains that get the most hate on social media

When it comes to getting beat up on social media, the Hilton chain is a standout, a new survey by Crimson Hexagon finds.

The research analyzed Twitter posts over an almost six-month period. Hilton had a 17% negative rating; customers complained about charging for Wi-Fi, connection speeds, poor customer service, getting spammy phone calls and billing problems, according to the survey.

“Shame that @HiltonHotels still continue their rip off wi fi charges,” quipped Twitter user Paul Clayton.

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Ecuador Launches New Global Marketing Campaign at the Tate Modern, London

The Ministry of Tourism of Ecuador last night hosted the global launch of the second stage of its All You Need Is Ecuador campaign. The event took place at London's emblematic Tate Modern, with the presence of Minister of Tourism Sandra Naranjo and other government representatives from the country, as well as guests from the UK tourism industry, media, and Ecuadorian private sector.

Minister Sandra Naranjo and Vice Minister Dominic Hamilton were in London to participate in the Experience Latin America travel fair. In the days leading up to the event, they met with key tour operators, airlines, hotel groups and media, in order to promote development opportunities in the country's tourism sector.

"The first stage of the campaign was primarily about raising awareness. The second stage invites travellers to experience our country on a more personal level, as a place where they can reconnect with nature and themselves," the Minister explained.

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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Proactive CRM Strategy Will Guide The Future Of Travel For Millennials

As more brands begin to tap into the millennial market by interacting with customers on an increasingly personalized and customized level, isn’t it time our go-to airlines and hotel chains do the same? Brand promotion and one-way interactions on social media are no longer sufficient for travel companies to earn next-level customer loyalty. 

According to eMarketer, personalized customer experiences ranked as the leading marketing priority for 46 percent of worldwide marketing execs in November 2014. When this materializes, the future of travel will lie in enhanced customer relationships through customized experiences.

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Saturday, June 13, 2015

LGBT Confex signs event marketing partnership with IGLTA

NEW YORK – LGBT Confex, Latin America’s leading LGBT business organization has partnered with the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association as an event marketing partner for 2015. The partnership will promote LGBT CONFEX’s International Business Forum taking place in Yucatan Siglo XXI Convention Center, in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico on September 18 & 19, across IGLTA’s platforms. 

“Our partnership with IGLTA is a sign of the great interest the 5th edition of the LGBT International Business Forum is gaining at an international level,” said Ruben Sandoval, CEO of LGBT Confex. “We are expecting this edition to be our biggest and most comprehensive yet.”

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Friday, June 12, 2015

Abercrombie & Kent Unveils Cuba-South America Private Jet Tour

Abercrombie & Kent’s product development team had worked since February to create a new South America by Private Jet program, and then Geoffrey Kent, the founder of A&K returned from a trip to Cuba last month and he was so charged with his experience that he insisted Cuba be added to the private jet tour.

The result is a 23-day jet-set whirl through South America beginning with a trip to Havana from Miami, exploring South America and concluding with a final farewell bash in Rio de Janeiro. The tour will take place Sept. 6-28, 2016.

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

"We Will Travel Anywhere:" A Ride to Columbus With Chicago Fire Supporters

Much is made of the sense of community, the brotherhood, the sisterhood, the overwhelming sense of family that is engendered by fandom, whatever the sport may be. Supporting your team, through thick and thin, both near and far, being part of a like-minded collective is something that most of us cherish, and for those of us that are fortunate to be a part of such a tribe, there is very little to compete with it in terms of the pride it inspires, the passion it stirs and the enjoyment it gives us.

On Friday, May 22, I was lucky enough to gatecrash such a gathering, as a busload of hardy Chicago Fire fans assembled in the early hours of the morning for the not-so-local derby against Midwest rivals Columbus Crew SC. Just a simple matter of a 12-hour round trip to support their idols, their heroes, their team.

A motley crew of all ages, backgrounds and dispositions came together to show their love for their team in the best way they knew how, bedecked in red, white and blue and with optimistic thoughts of putting one over their closest foes. There were bartenders and students on board. Paramedics, a professor of Religious Studies and even the President of NASL club Indy Eleven, Peter Wilt, of course better known to Fire fans as the club’s first President and GM, joined us in Indianapolis. 

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Monday, June 1, 2015

The world’s 10 most tourism friendly countries

For the first time, Spain ranks as the world’s most tourism-friendly country in the World Economic Forum’s Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index, according to rankings recently released in a biennial report. Spain’s leading status is “thanks to its cultural resources, infrastructure and adaptation to digital consumption habits,” a press release accompanying the report said.

Traditionally strong contenders including France, Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Italy were also ranked in the index’s top 10.

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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Americans Find Ways to Visit Cuba Despite Tourism Ban

"Is travel to Cuba for tourist activities permitted? No." That's what the U.S. Treasury Department website says. And yet Havana is loaded with Americans, from the Floridita bar, where they pose for photos with a bust of Ernest Hemingway, to the Rum Museum, where they swig rum samples after trudging through dim displays of old casks.

Sure, some Americans follow the rules on sanctioned travel — bringing supplies to Cuban churches or synagogues, for example, on a religious activities license. Others come on approved group tours known as "people-to-people" trips with themed itineraries like the arts.

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Monday, May 25, 2015

US Latinas put selfies and sacrifice first in travel experiences

NEW YORK - When it comes to family, U.S. Latinas put their children's needs before their own, even when traveling, according to the annual Women in Travel survey by Best Western International.  In fact, approximately 68 percent of U.S. Latinas with children said their children's needs come first when traveling, in comparison to only 61 percent of their non-Hispanic counterparts. As the busy summer vacation season approaches, Best Western looked at U.S. women to find out more about their travel preferences in a survey of 500 females living within the U.S. The findings were unveiled at the Leisure Travel Summit in New York City. 

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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Study: Downtown Santa Ana Not Cashing in On Its 'Latino Identity

Central Santa Ana residents remain a largely untapped economic resource and could bring an addition $137 million in spending to the city, according to a new study by urban development researcher Jeb Brugmann.

Brugmann found that central Santa Ana residents make only 32 percent of their so-called "wellness" purchases -- groceries, meals, health and personal care products -- in the downtown core, despite living so close and lacking cars to drive to more distant retailers.

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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Mexico poised to become Latin America's largest travel market

With relatively low online travel penetration and a population of more than 120 million, Mexico is a market of great untapped promise, according to a new Phocuswright report, the country had the world's 13th largest travel market in 2013.

Mexican airports transported over 55 million passengers in 20131, and despite concerns about personal safety related to inter-gang violence, international arrivals jumped 10% between 1H13 and 1H14.

On the heels of an economic upswing, Mexico's middle class will drive domestic demand for both leisure and business travel in the coming years.

Totaling US$24.3 billion in gross bookings, the Mexican travel market was Latin America's second largest in 2013.

According to Phocuswright's Latin America Online Travel Overview Second Edition, growth projections suggest that it could overtake Brazil for first place within the next decade, particularly if economic conditions improve and online travel agencies (OTAs) continue to make headway with Mexican consumers.

Because traditional channels hold sway, online penetration is low – more than 80% of leisure travel is booked offline. But some OTAs are now partnering with local travel agencies in hopes of tapping into Mexico's huge offline market.

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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Mexico City Named No. 3 Most Inspiring City in the World

MEXICO CITY, Nov. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Mexico City is ranked No. 3 on the GOOD City Index (GCI), which ranks the most inspiring cities in the world. The annual list compiled by GOOD, media company that also publishes the quarterly GOOD Magazine, features cities that deliver on eight key attributes that "best capture the elusive quality of possibility,": progress, civic engagement, street life, defining moments, connectivity, green life, diversity and work/life balance.

GOOD praised Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera for his progressive approach to city government and reports reasons why Mexico City is continuing to emerge as a top global destination.  In addition to Mexico City's rich cultural history and deep traditions, the capital city is gaining acclaim as one of the world's most influential culinary destinations citing attractions such as Michelin-starred restaurant Pujol and gastro-hall Mercado Roma.  Mexico City also gained recognition for its sustainability innovations such as its bike share program and key initiatives overseen by Mayor Mancera including mobile health clinics, free uniform distribution, arts discount program for teens, expanded bike lanes and technological advances.

"It's a huge honor for Mexico City to be recognized as one of the most inspiring cities in the world on the GOOD City Index," said Armando Lopez Cardenas, director of the Mexico City Tourism Promotion Fund. "We welcome visitors from around the globe to experience our great city again or for the first time, whether for business or leisure.  Now is an exciting time to visit Mexico City."

North American cities include Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles, New Orleans and Santa Fe in the U.S. and Montreal and Vancouver in Canada. The GOOD City Index is available online now at    

Mexico City is the country's premier tourism destination, welcoming more than 12.5 million visitors a year.  The ancient capital offers a vibrant, contemporary culture that combines pre-Hispanic, colonial and modern influences that span nearly seven centuries.  With more than 160 museums, 30 distinct archaeological and historic sites, and 100 art galleries, the city is a mecca of fine art and treasures that speak to its vast history. The Mexico City Tourism Promotion Fund (Fondo Mixto de Promocion Turistica del Distrito Federal) supports and enhances city tourism.  For more information and daily updates please visit/follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter (@MexicoCityLive).

SOURCE Mexico City Tourism Promotion Fund

Monday, November 10, 2014

Top 10 Travel Media Brands on Social Media for October 2014

The list below contains publications that are part of mass media companies, online based media, and platforms that rely on expert and user reviews. They’re grouped together based on how travel readers and enthusiasts experience and interact with them on social media rather than traditional categories that could see them listed separately.

The top ten are calculated using our Skift Score, which takes into account social media performance on an absolute basis, as well as relative to within a company’s specific industry. It compares metrics across platforms and provides an intelligent measure of competitive edge

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Monday, November 3, 2014

Latino millennials want to end Cuba embargo

NEW YORK (CNN) —Cuban-Americans have had an outsized influence in keeping the U.S. embargo since Fidel Castro seized power. Now a younger generation, with strong familial ties there but far removed from the memories of Castro's revolution, want the embargo to end.

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Friday, October 10, 2014

Looking Ahead at Diversity in Hospitality

"The underlying attitude of management reveals itself in the manner with which they conduct business. The team players discern the difference between what is said and what is done, and as a child follows the example of a parent's actions, so does the team function in accordance with the example set by senior management." - Kathleen Hogan, MBA CHO in MIND YOUR MANNERS

We are delighted to share this Hospitality Conversations™ with Greg DeShields, CHE CHO, who became the Executive Director of PHLDiversity Multicultural Affairs Congress in Philadelphia, Pa. in the spring of 2014.

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Friday, October 3, 2014

Thinking Of A Volunteering Trip? Check These 3 In Latin America

It might be time for you to plan your next vacation, but you want to do more than lie around on a beach sipping drinks. If you have wondered about volunteering abroad, it's a great way to to give back to communities who could use a helping hand.

In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, we spoke to Americans who have volunteered in Latin America, and they shared with us their life-changing experiences. You don't need much time, or money. In as little as a day or two, and $50, you can make a difference in someone's life.

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Monday, September 29, 2014

O.C. eateries headed to LAX international terminal

Los Angeles International Airport is embarking on another food revolution.

LAX operators announced Wednesday the lineup of hipster eateries entering a key international terminal – marking the next phase of a dramatic food and beverage overhaul at the world’s sixth bus-iest airport.

Terminal 2 is doubling its food offerings with the addition of two Orange County restaurants, a Los Angeles roadhouse icon and a celebrity chef cantina.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Summer Like No Other: Mexico Tourism Hits Record Levels

MEXICO CITY — Sunbathers stretch out along white beach after white beach on the sweltering Caribbean coast. Tequila-swigging revelers pack the glittering nightclubs wall to wall. Surfers carve up the Pacific waves.

Yup, that sounds like Mexico all right — but it’s actually been a summer like no other.

As the season draws to an end, officials here are boasting a bumper season in the country’s top resorts, including Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos and Cancun, where hotels have been packed to the highest levels ever.

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Friday, September 19, 2014

WTTC warning to several Latin American countries: Invest to improve weak travel and tourism infrastructure

LIMA (eTN) – The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has released a report revealing that “Latin America is set to miss out on economic and social benefits from travel and tourism unless it invests sufficiently in its lagging infrastructure.”

WTTC President and CEO David Scowsill unveiled the new report on Latina America this morning at the ongoing WTTC Americas Regional Summit, which is being here in the capital city of Peru. According to the new WTTC report, “weaknesses in the current state of travel and tourism infrastructure in Latin America pose a threat to realizing the growth potential of the sector within the region.”

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Southwest Airlines Proudly Celebrates Hispanic Heritage In The Community

DALLAS, Sept. 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) recognizes Hispanic heritage and culture this month as a part of Hispanic Heritage Month.  Southwest partners with the Latino community to show its passion for diversity and inclusion; to highlight those efforts, the Company proudly sponsors events throughout the year geared toward the Hispanic community.

"Southwest is proud to support the Hispanic community and to celebrate its heritage," said Ellen Torbert, Southwest Airlines' Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion.  "At Southwest Airlines, we've always believed in putting People first and as a part of that belief, we proudly recognize the unique backgrounds and cultures of our Customers and Employees."

To learn more about Southwest Airlines' commitment to the Hispanic community, please visit:

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The World's Best (And Worst) Regions For Well-Being

We tend to quantify a nation's success with measures like GDP, life expectancy and employment rates. Well-being, though it may be the most accurate measure of the quality of life experienced by a country's citizens, rarely enters into the picture.

That's beginning to change. The idea of measuring happiness and well-being is starting to catch on, and not just in Bhutan, land of "Gross National Happiness." Leaders in business and politics are waking up to the importance of well-being in families, workplaces and communities, and in 2015, the United Nations will even discuss whether well-being improvement should become a global development goal.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Interview: World Cup Turnout Is Guiding Brazil’s Tourism Marketing in the U.S.

No one, least of all the Brazilians, expected such a high level of interest from the Americans, both in terms of inbound visitation and television viewership at home. In the United States, 26.5 million Americans watched the final championship game between Argentina and Germany.

Overall, 1.035 million foreigners visited Brazil during the World Cup, arriving from 203 countries between May 23 to July 13. The average stay for international visitors was 13 days; the average for Americans was 15 days.

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Friday, September 5, 2014

Peru hailed as top foodie destination in South America

Peru has won the award for Best Culinary Destination in South America at the World Travel Awards (WTA) for the third consecutive year.

In addition, Peru’s vibrant and fascinating region was recognised as Best Cultural Destination and Leading Heritage Destination, while Lima won Leading City Break Destination in South America.

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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Puerto Rico Announces Plan To Promote Itself As Medical Tourism Destination

SAN JUAN, P.R. (EFE) –  Puerto Rico on Tuesday presented its strategy for promoting itself as a medical tourism destination, especially among the Hispanic population of the Caribbean and the East Coast of the United States, offering medical care ranging from dental treatment to liposuction and weight-loss surgery at prices as much as 60 percent lower than in the continental U.S.

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Friday, August 29, 2014

Hilton Panama comes to Latin America

Hilton Worldwide has announced the opening of the newly-built Hilton Panama, a 347-room Hilton Hotels & Resorts property in Panama City, Panama. 

With a privileged location in the heart of this booming city that offers panoramic ocean views, this newest hotel in Panama City opens its doors just in time to celebrate the Panama Canal’s Centennial. 

“We are thrilled to welcome Hilton Panama as the first Hilton Hotels & Resorts property in the country to the brand’s gro

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New Grand Circle ship to sail to South America, Europe

Grand Circle Cruise Line will be branching out in 2015 with nine new itineraries on a recently acquired vessel.

The small ship and river cruise specialist says its new 98-passenger, all-suite Corinthian will add trips to South America, North Africa and Europe to a schedule that already includes Antarctica voyages.

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Trip Tips - Latin Americans infuse New York with Hispanic culture

(Reuters) - Newcomers from Mexico and Central and South America are streaming into New York City in greater numbers, joining the long-standing communities of Puerto Ricans and Dominicans and enriching the chorus of Latin voices in the Big Apple.

Spanish is now spoken in nearly a quarter of New York homes and the variety of accents is growing, along with the variety of regional cultures.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Top 20 things to do in South America

With all eyes on Brazil, host of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games, avoid the crowds and overinflated prices and head to its neighbours, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia.

I spent four months travelling through these countries, and here's my pick of the top 20 things to do.

Indulge in food and wine

While the food throughout the continent is top-notch, you won't want to weigh yourself after leaving Argentina. The steak in Buenos Aires lives up to the hype and, with a parilla (steakhouse) on almost every corner, you won't have trouble finding somewhere to unleash your inner carnivore.

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Friday, August 22, 2014

See which cities Visit Orlando is targeting to boost tourism numbers

So how does Visit Orlando plan to attract more visitors than other destinations? By attracting the people who visit those other destinations to Central Florida.

That was the strategy the region's visitors bureau unveiled at a members meeting on Aug. 21. Visit Orlando will look at markets such as New York, Chicago, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Atlanta as target markets for increased marketing efforts.

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Travel Habits of U.S. Hispanics Unveiled at National Association of Hispanic Journalists Convention; Best Western Survey Reveals Travel Trends

PHOENIX, Ariz., Aug. 8, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- via PRWEB - A new survey on the travel habits of U.S. Hispanics conducted by Best Western International revealed mobile is a critical tool for Hispanic travelers on the go, with more than a quarter of respondents reporting they have booked travel reservations via mobile phones in the past year.

Survey results also found 62 percent of respondents use their mobile phone to research their travel options, and 28 percent of travelers rely on their mobile phone to discover nearby attractions around their hotel.
Best Western announced its survey findings at the 30th annual National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ) convention in San Antonio, Texas today.

"We learned that Hispanics are increasingly digitally savvy and comfortable researching and booking travel online and via mobile," said Felipe Carreras, director of eCommerce for Best Western International. "Our survey found eight out of ten Hispanics complete their travel bookings online."

With the convenience of search engines, Meta travel search sites, social media, online travel agencies and brand websites, more than 90 percent of travelers research their options online before booking. Other survey findings indicated that 85 percent of Latino travelers are typically traveling primarily for leisure – either for vacation or to visit friends and family.

Carreras presented the survey results at the NAHJ convention as a participant of its "La Plaza Talks" speaker series.

The survey underscores that travel as a family affair is increasingly common with Hispanics. In fact, 70 percent of travelers said in the past year they have traveled with a family member from a younger generation, and 60 percent have traveled with a family member from an older generation. Of those who primarily travel for business, more than half (52 percent) are somewhat to very likely to bring family members along with them on a business trip.
"U.S. Hispanics are a crucial segment in today's travel landscape, and these survey results reiterate the importance of brands catering to their specific needs and habits," said Dorothy Dowling, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Best Western International. "For many Hispanics, those needs start with family travel. Best Western is proud to offer family friendly accommodations and a robust online presence for researching and booking travel."

Additional Survey Highlights:
  • Almost 60 percent of U.S. Hispanic travelers are somewhat to very likely to extend a business trip by one or more days to add leisure time to the trip.
  • Forty-nine percent of travelers, who indicated the primary reason for the majority of their travel was business, stayed in hotels five or more times in the past year, compared to 18 percent of respondents who indicated the primary reason for the majority of their travel was vacation.
  • When traveling for both business and leisure, access to free Wi-Fi is most important, followed by complimentary breakfast and/or happy hour specials.
  • Of those who travel with a family member who is part of an older generation, 71 percent do the travel research. Additionally, 44 percent primarily pay for the trip when traveling with a family member of an older generation.
The NAHJ Convention is a three day event offering 60 panels to more than 1500 journalists from around the country. Best Western is one of several sponsors of the 30th annual convention, taking place in San Antonio, August 7-9. For additional survey findings, please email bwlatino(at)allisonpr(dot)com.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Delta presents its 2013 Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America Travel Guide

ATLANTA and SAO PAULO, Brazil — Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) presents the 2013 Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America Travel Guide. This is the second edition of Delta´s annual guide which is included as an insert in Recommend Magazine, a travel publication distributed to over 50,000 travel agents in the United States and Canada.

“We are excited to bring to travel agencies our information-packed guide about Carribean, Mexico and Latin America destinations. It also shows Delta´s growing commitment to this vibrant region,” said David Bishko, Delta´s Managing Director market development and analysis — Latin America and the Caribbean. “As part of our efforts to become known as the best U.S. airline serving Latin America, we have systematically reinforced our investments throughout the region.

Delta´s 2013 Guide reflects a unique blend of natural beauty, exotic cultures and cosmopolitan cities in Latin America. Travel agents will find useful information and pictures about the spectacular beaches of the Caribbean islands, bustling cities, historic colonial towns and beautiful sights, including the natural beauty that can be found along Central America’s Barrier Reef, and in South America’s Amazonia and Patagonia.

The 2013 Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America Travel Guide is also available for reading in Delta Sky Clubs in the major airports of U.S. and Canada. Additionally, a digital version is uploaded on website or for downloading at

Delta is working to become the best U.S. carrier in Latin America and the Caribbean. As part of that goal Delta has established a long-term exclusive alliance with GOL Línhas Aereas Inteligentes investing more than US $100 million in GOL. Likewise, Delta has invested more than US $65 million in Aeroméxico as part of a long-term exclusive commercial alliance and entered a code sharing agreement with Aerolíneas Argentinas solidifying its footprint in Latin America. Executive Travel magazine recognized Delta with the Gold Leading Edge Award for the Best Flight Experience to Mexico. Delta provides service to 32 countries and 49 destinations in the region offering more than 1,000 weekly flights between Latin America and the U.S. Spanish speaking Delta customers can receive real-time, on-the-go travel assistance in Spanish and Portuguese through its Twitter channels @DeltaAssist_ES and @DeltaAjuda 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST. Brazilian customers can also access Delta´s dedicated Brazil Facebook page visiting

Delta Air Lines serves more than 160 million customers each year. Delta was named by Fortune magazine as the most admired airline worldwide in its 2013 World’s Most Admired Companies airline industry list, topping the list for the second time in three years. With an industry-leading global network, Delta and the Delta Connection carriers offer service to 319 destinations in 59 countries on six continents. Headquartered in Atlanta, Delta employs nearly 80,000 employees worldwide and operates a mainline fleet of more than 700 aircraft. The airline is a founding member of the SkyTeam global alliance and participates in the industry’s leading trans-Atlantic joint venture with Air France-KLM and Alitalia. Including its worldwide alliance partners, Delta offers customers more than 15,000 daily flights, with hubs in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-LaGuardia, New York-JFK, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Salt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita. Delta is investing more than $3 billion in airport facilities and global products, services and technology to enhance the customer experience in the air and on the ground. Additional information is available on, Twitter @Delta, and

SOURCE: Delta Air Lines

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Guatemala Counting on Tourism to Boost Economy

GUATEMALA CITY – The Guatemalan Tourism Institute (Inguat) will increase advertising the country as a destination for foreign visitors with the aim of boosting the economy.

The markets of the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as El Salvador and Honduras, are the primary areas for promoting Guatemala as a vacation destination, Inguat director Pedro Duchez told reporters.

The tourism plan for 2013 includes strengthening different tourist sites and positioning the Central American country “online” since 95 percent of the travel decisions made – or booked – by prospective tourists are done via the Internet.

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Friday, April 5, 2013

Latin Trails presents travel adventure tours of the amazing Amazon

March 12, 2013 - The Amazon rainforest was named as one of the New7Wonders of Nature. This amazing area represents over half of the planet's remaining rainforests, and it comprises the largest and most species-rich tract of tropical rainforest in the world. The Amazon River is the largest river in the world by volume, with a total flow greater than the top ten rivers worldwide combined. It accounts for approximately one-fifth of the total world river flow and has the biggest drainage basin on the planet. You can grasp an understanding of its immensity when you discover that not a single bridge crosses the Amazon.

The Amazon rainforest, also known as Amazonia or the Amazon jungle, is a moist broadleaf forest that covers most of the Amazon Basin of South America. This basin encompasses seven million square kilometers (1.7 billion acres), of which five and a half million square kilometers (1.4 billion acres) are covered by the rainforest. This region includes the territory belonging to nine nations.

The majority of the forest is contained within Brazil with 60% of the rainforest, followed by Peru with 13%, and with minor amounts in Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana.

It is no wonder then that the Amazon is high on travelers’ bucket list of places to go, and Latin Trails offers a wide variety of tours to take visitors through this wonderous region. From river boat tours to jungle tree-top hotels, from exploring jungle trails to bird watching, and from canoe rides to fishing, Latin Trails has the adventure and accommodation to satisfy every adult dream and childhood fantasy of exploring this great wonder of the world.

SOURCE: LatinTrails

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

RedMas “De Vacaciones: US Hispanic Vacations Trends 2012″ Research featured in eMarketer

US Hispanic Travelers Embrace Digital Channels for Booking AUGUST 20, 2012
Demographic shows penchant for online and mobile purchases
The US Hispanic demographic is on the leading edge of adopting mobile technology, and their preferences for travel booking channels have important implications for travel marketers.

“De Vacaciones: US Hispanics Vacation Trends 2012,” conducted through RedMas’ network of mobile sites, found that Hispanics prefer to spend their vacations with family and at personally significant locations. According to the poll of 2,171 bilingual respondents, 57% go on vacation at least once a year, 14% travel about twice a year, and 5% take off more than three times a year.

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MGM Resorts International Named a Best Company for Diversity by Leading Hispanic Business Publication

LAS VEGAS, Sept. 10, 2012 — /PRNewswire/ -- MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) is one of the nation's "2012 Best Companies for Diversity", says HispanicBusiness Media, a leading publishing and information services company for Hispanic professionals and entrepreneurs.

Selected for its commitment to Hispanic hiring, promotion, marketing, philanthropy, and supplier diversity, the Company ranked 26th on a list of 55 companies and secured a spot as the only gaming corporation to rank in this year's competition.

"Top companies on this year's list went well beyond workforce diversity initiatives and implemented strategies to reach more Hispanic consumers and increase their procurements with minority- and Hispanic-owned suppliers," says Bill Krutzen, Director of Operations for HispanicBusiness Media.

MGM Resorts' placement on "2012 Best Companies" complements other 2012 awards the Company has received, including recognitions among DiversityInc Magazine's "Top 10 Companies for Latinos" and LATINA Style Magazine's recently announced "50 Best Companies for Latinas."

"On behalf of our 62,000 employees, it is an honor to be recognized by HispanicBusiness Media as a national leader in Diversity," said Jim Murren, Chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts International. "We consider the inclusion of Hispanic employees in our workforce and Hispanic-owned businesses in our company commerce a priority as a leading company, but also important from a diversity standpoint as it brings substantial benefits by helping us better serve the needs of customers of various backgrounds."

Among the other well-known companies named to the "2012 Best Companies" list are: Aflac Inc., American Express Co., The Coca-Cola Co., General Mills, and Southwest Airlines.

In 2000, MGM Resorts International became the gaming industry's first company to implement a voluntary diversity initiative. The Company has since increased its number of Hispanic employees and business partners. Highlights of the initiative relative to the Hispanic community include:

In 2011, the Company expended more than $27 million in business with certified Hispanic-owned businesses.

Hispanics comprise 31.7 percent of MGM Resorts' total workforce—14.36 percent hold managerial or higher ranking positions.

The Company offers several training and management development programs, including ESL (English as a Second Language) classes in order to recruit and develop employees.

MGM Resorts has established partnerships with numerous Hispanic national and local organizations, such as: the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility, National Council of La Raza, Las Vegas Latin Chamber of Commerce and the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting.

For more information regarding HispanicBusiness Media's "2012 Best Companies for Diversity", visit

To learn more about MGM Resorts' Diversity Initiative and its engagement of the Hispanic community, please visit:

About HispanicBusiness Media
Now celebrating more than 30 years as an award-winning publishing and information services company, HispanicBusiness Media is the nation's leading source of information for and about Hispanic professionals and entrepreneurs. HispanicBusiness Media includes,, HispanTelligence®, the Diversity Partnership, and HispanicBusiness Events, including the Entrepreneur Awards Gala (EOY) and the Woman of the Year Awards Gala (WOY).

About MGM Resorts International
MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) is one of the world's leading global hospitality companies, operating a peerless portfolio of destination resort brands, including Bellagio, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay and The Mirage. For more information about MGM Resorts International, visit the Company's website at

SOURCE: MGM Resorts International

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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

New York to showcase billion-dollar opportunities in Pacific, South American growth center

Companies from various sectors and countries will be coming together September 18th in New York to hear about exciting new investment opportunities in Guayaquil, many of them linked to the growing focus on trade between West Coast of the United States, Latin America and Asia.

As a leading port and industrial center in the northwestern seaboard of South America, the Ecuadorean city is now emerging as a logistics hub for Pacific region trade. Hundreds of millions of dollars, much of it from multinational companies, has already been invested for significant infrastructure upgrading.

Some 15 projects including public-private partnerships (PPP) will be unveiled at the “Guayaquil Roadshow: Investment & Tourism Forum” – subtitle “Logistic Platform of the Pacific” – which takes place in the Grand Hyatt in midtown Manhattan.

Business and investment opportunities could potentially total several billion dollars in transport and logistics, renewable energy, construction and urban management, tourism, fishing and aquaculture, agribusiness, education and financial services, organizers said. The event is aimed at companies in these target sectors plus law firms, specialists in project financing and consultants. While the prime focus is American companies looking for niches in dynamic emerging markets, organizers are also working with foreign chambers of commerce to involve Asian and European companies.

Event sponsors include the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF), Guayaquil city authorities, various logistics companies and America’s Dole Food Company, which has huge operations in Ecuador producing organic bananas.

Guayaquil stands out in Ecuador and indeed much of South American as a go-ahead, pro-business city. It pioneered PPPs to bring private investment into critical infrastructure and urban development, and by the end of this year it will be the only city in the country with 100% sewerage, piped drinking water and paved roads.

Peter Gilmore, general manager of Dole in Ecuador, said that perhaps excluding a few places in Brazil, he didn’t think “any city in Latin America has changed this much in 10 years. It’s a tremendous turn around.”

Jaime Nebot, the latest in a succession of pro-business mayors and one of 11 scheduled speakers, said the secret lay in honest and transparent administration that puts service to the people in first place: “What we have done is conceptually simple, although the execution is more complex.” Nebot said that no less than 85% of city revenues go to investment and public services, with just 15% spent on “nonproductive expenses.”

City fathers have promoted major urban renewal and renovation of the city’s historic old neighborhoods, seeking to boost tourism – Guayaquil is the gateway to the Galapagos Islands, with almost half a million visitors passing through each year. Privatization has won the city’s upgraded airport recognition from the Montreal-based Airports Council International as best in the world in its class, while international operators have poured over US$200 million into modernizing existing seaports. Now there are plans – to be discussed at the September 18th event – for major new deep-water facilities with a free-port and potentially a second airport.

Additional information about the “Guayaquil Roadshow: Investment & Tourism Forum” can be found on the event site:

SOURCE: Peninsula Press

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Google maps ancient Mexican ruins

Google is expanding its Street View offerings to include dozens of 360-degree photo tours of ancient Mexican monuments such as Teotihuacan, Chichen Itza and Palenque.

The additions are aimed at helping Mexico "open a window to the world, to encourage physical visits to the pre-Hispanic sites and thus in turn benefit cultural tourism," Miguel Angel Alva, director of marketing for Google Mexico, said this week in an announcement from Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History, or INAH.

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Monday, August 13, 2012

With London done, Brazil gears up for '16 carnival

August 12, 2012 | by Janie McCauley

LONDON — For all those beach volleyball players who thought Horse Guards Parade transformed itself into the sport's best Olympic venue yet, wait until they hit the sand in Brazil in four years.

It's Rio's turn – and if anybody knows how to throw a carnival, the Brazilians sure do.

"Rio! Rio! Rio!" Brazilian beach volleyball star Emanuel said after winning a silver medal last week. Emanuel plans to be there as a fan by then, his international playing days over.

Yes, the Brazilians have long begun envisioning their Olympics.

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