Accor MGallery Debuts on Vietnam’s Exotic Cat Ba Island

Accor MGallery Debuts on Vietnam’s Exotic Cat Ba Island

Cat Ba Island, Vietnam, June 5, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / Nestled between towering limestone karsts and verdant island mountains, Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery welcomes travellers to a world of tranquil beauty, unhurried exploration and home-grown delights in the picturesque Lan Ha Bay.

Offering guests sublime views of Lan Ha Bay and the ecologically diverse Cat Ba National Park, the hotel is the first international luxury property on Cat Ba Island. Set in the alluring Gulf of Tonkin, Cat Ba is a destination that offers a rich treasure trove of nature easily accessible by car and ferry.

“We are delighted to announce our 34th Accor property in Vietnam with the opening of our seventh MGallery in the country that will join a unique collection of boutique storied hotels. The design of Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery, brings a cosmopolitan touch that celebrates the spirit of Indochine Vietnam,” said Patrick Basset, Chief Operating Officer of Accor, Upper Southeast and Northeast Asia and the Maldives.

Surrounded by spectacular cliffs and offering exclusive access to its own private beach,
Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery encourages well-heeled travellers, families and couples to explore the charm and elegance of yesteryear. The sophisticated twist of classical style is enshrined in every corner of the hotel, from the charming ambience of the guest rooms to decorative pieces handpicked to evoke the essence of a bygone era.

Featuring an open-concept layout modelled after traditional Vietnamese homes, each of the 121 guestrooms at Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery are designed with neoclassical furnishings to encapsulate the spirit of the heyday Indochine era. From high quality hardwood floors, old-style claw foot bathtubs, rattan wicker chairs, and traditional ceiling fans to intricate wall tiling patterns, each guestroom reflects a luxurious yet authentic design.

The hotel’s two restaurants and three bars offer the largest variety of cuisine on the island. Overlooking the ocean from a colonial-inspired terrace, the all-day dining restaurant Indochine Kitchen serves both local fusion and internationally-inspired dishes. Its in-door space features elegant interior touches. For an indulgent fine dining experience on the island, relish the exquisite Japanese cuisine at Akoya. Light bites and inspired cocktails can be enjoyed at the al fresco Rock’s Bar where a laid-back atmosphere encourages diners to soak up expansive views of Lan Ha Bay. Breathtaking sea views can also be enjoyed from the serene rooftop Vitality Bar. For a more casual but no less luxurious experience, the Indochine Lounge delights senses with high tea, stylish aperitivo and a selection of signature cocktails.

Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery features an array of state-of-the-art facilities including an ocean-themed Kid’s Club with engaging indoor and outdoor activities for the little ones. Fitness enthusiasts can enjoy the gym located on the ground floor. On the hotel’s rooftop, a stunning wellness centre with an outdoor pool, and spa that offers a range of facial and massage treatments using local medicinal healing herbs. At sunrise and sunset, guests can unwind with rooftop yoga classes.

For unforgettable weddings and events, the Crystal Ballroom can host up to 190 guests, while the Tonkin Room can accommodate small meetings and private functions for up to 26 guests.

Cat Ba is considered the adventure tourism capital of Vietnam, known for its sporting activities such as kayaking, rock climbing, trekking and mountain biking. The nearby Cat Ba National Park is home to a diverse cross-section of plant and animal life, with over 160 species of birds, as well as numerous reptiles, fish and sea turtles. Cat Ba National Park is well-known for eco-tourism, with many tour operators offering trek packages to explore the park.

“Hôtel Perle d’Orient aims to redefine the new concept of luxury tourism on the island. Part of the MGallery collection of boutique hotels, the hotel features a classical design with a sophisticated twist and an inviting charm in a modern atmosphere. We look forward to sharing the enchantment of timeless design and memorable experiences with our guests,” said Michael Melzer, General Manager of Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery.

Enjoy a memorable getaway at Hôtel Perle d’Orient Cat Ba – MGallery at VND 2,350,000 ++ per night. Normal rates start at VND 3,260,000++ per night.

From Hanoi, Cat Ba Island is accessible by a two-hour drive to Hai Phong and a 15-minute ferry transfer. Flights are also available to Cat Bi International Airport (located in Hai Phong) from
Ho Chi Minh City, Buon Ma Thuot, Can Tho, Da Lat, Da Nang, Nha Trang, Phu Quoc, Pleiku and Quy Nhon as well as the international hubs of Bangkok, Kunming and Seoul. Alternatively, guests can transit via Halong City to Tuan Chau Island and take a 1-hour ferry transfer to Cat Ba Island.

About MGallery
MGallery is where captivating stories are lived and shared. With more than 100 storied boutique hotels around the world, each MGallery tells a unique story inspired by the destination. From bespoke design and sensorial mixology to wellbeing dedicated to women, MGallery hotels are places where guests can discover the very best the world has to offer. MGallery guests are inspired and enriched through their delightful visits to these stylish, thoughtful and decidedly singular hotels. Well-known properties in the MGallery collection include Hotel Molitor Paris, INK Hotel Amsterdam, Queens Hotel Cheltenham in England, Santa Teresa Hotel Rio de Janeiro, Hotel Lindrum Melbourne in Australia, Muse Bangkok Langsuan in Thailand, and Hotel des Arts Saigon in Vietnam. MGallery is part of Accor, a world-leading augmented hospitality group offering unique experiences in 5000 hotels and residences across 110 countries.

WTTC Responds to the UK’s 14-day Quarantine Announcement

WTTC Responds to the UK’s 14-day Quarantine Announcement

London, Great Britain, June 5, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / Gloria Guevara, WTTC President and CEO, said: “Once again, we call on the UK government to remove the 14-day quarantine as soon as possible. Quarantines should not be necessary if appropriate and effective containment measures are in place at departure and arrival points.

“While the UK government has managed well the overall response to the COVID-19 crisis, we believe the 14-day quarantine will put the UK at a distinct competitive disadvantage. While we understand protecting public health is paramount, this measure, which affects international visitors and those arriving back into the UK from abroad, will have a significant and long-lasting negative effect on the Travel & Tourism sector.

“We’ve no doubt these measures will deter both business and leisure travellers from visiting major hubs throughout the country.

“It will worsen an already critical situation and delay the much-needed recovery of the UK economy. So, it’s vital that ‘air corridors’ to low-infection countries are opened as soon as possible.

“WTTC data shows the COVID-19 crisis has led to more than 1.2 million Travel & Tourism jobs being at risk in the UK, with substantial losses already.

“As the sixth largest economy in the world, and the third largest in Europe in terms of the Travel & Tourism, it is critical Travel & Tourism sector drives the economic recovery, as its contributes 9% of UK GDP and is responsible for 11% of total UK employment.”

UNWTO: Sustainability as the New Normal

UNWTO: Sustainability as the New Normal

Madrid, Spain, June 6, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / To mark World Environment Day, the One Planet Sustainable Tourism Programme led by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) announces its new vision for global tourism, growing better, stronger, and balancing the needs of people, planet and prosperity.

The One Planet Vision for the Responsible Recovery of the Tourism Sector builds on the UNWTO Global Guidelines to Restart Tourism, with the aim to emerge stronger and more sustainable from the COVID-19 crisis.

This combined effort comes at a time when several destinations around the world begin to ease restrictions on travel and mobility and the tourism sector is getting ready to resume its activity with the lessons learned from the pandemic.

UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili said: “Sustainability must no longer be a niche part of tourism but must be the new norm for every part of our sector. This is one of the central elements of our Global Guidelines to Restart Tourism. It is in our hands to transform tourism and that emerging from COVID-19 becomes a turning point for sustainability.

Better, more sustainable, and resilient growth

Sustainability must no longer be a niche part of tourism but must be the new norm for every part of our sector

The One Planet Vision calls for responsible recovery for the tourism sector, which is founded on sustainability, to build back better. This will underpin tourism’s resilience to be better prepared for future crises. The Vision will support the development and implementation of recovery plans, which contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and to the Paris Agreement.

At a time when governments and the private sector are embarking on the path to recovery, the time is right to keep advancing towards a more economically, social and environmentally sustainable tourism model.

Private sector committed to lead by example

Sabina Fluxà, Vice-Chairman and CEO Iberostar Group , a leading international Hotel and Resort company, stressed that ” it is imperative to keep focused on creating a more responsible and fair way to travel”, adding that “Iberostar has responded by integrating sustainability in elevated safety protocols and further committing to our circular economy policies to ensure any new waste is managed properly.”

According to Delphine King, Executive Director of The Long Run, an international community of nature-based tourism businesses, “Our members collectively conserve over 20 million acres of fragile ecosystems, and none of this work has stopped despite the pandemic and tourism’s pause, demonstrating where priorities lie.”

James Thornton, CEO, Intrepid Travel, a leading provider of adventure travel experiences, call for committed actions and underscores that, “We believe climate action is a collective commitment to the sustainability of the entire travel industry, and the world we so love to explore”.

The One Planet Vision for the Responsible Recovery of the Tourism Sector is structured around six lines of action to guide responsible tourism recovery for people, planet and prosperity, namely public health, social inclusion, biodiversity conservation, climate action, circular economy and governance and finance.

Sustainable First supports the efforts of the UN World Tourism Organization helping tourism recovery and showcasing to the international community excellence in nature-based tourism. More at www.SustainableFirst.com

About the One Planet Sustainable Tourism Programme
The One Planet Sustainable Tourism Programme aims to enhance the sustainable development impacts of the tourism sector by 2030 by developing, promoting and scaling up sustainable consumption and production practices that boost the efficient use of natural resources, while producing less waste and addressing the challenges of climate change and biodiversity. The One Planet Sustainable Tourism Programme is led by UNWTO, with the governments of France and Spain as co-leads and in collaboration with UNEP.

Tourism Will Bounce Back Says Tourism Expert During ATM Virtual

Tourism Will Bounce Back Says Tourism Expert During ATM Virtual

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, June 6, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / The final day of Arabian Travel Market’s virtual event, ATM Virtual, saw a panel of tourism experts discuss the opportunities in the region to kick-start sustainable investment in the hospitality sector.

The session, ‘Restructuring to Attract Sustainable Development and Customers in the New World Order’, moderated by BBC presenter and broadcaster, Rajan Datar, and in collaboration with the International Tourism & Investment Conference (ITIC), took place on Wednesday 3rd June, and was opened by Dr. Taleb Rifai, Chairman, ITIC, who said:
“Who would have imagined three months ago we would be holding our conference in this manner. The world is however quickly waking up. Life post containment is incredibly important and the need for economic recovery is now.”

• The ITIC session discussed sustainable investment measures for the Middle East travel and tourism sector and the strategies to restore travellers confidence
• ATM Virtual recorded 18,959 registrations, from 152 countries and included 14,385 pre-scheduled meetings and 23 live webinars, interviews, and pre-recorded roundtables

Discussing Dubai’s future investment opportunities, Issam Kazim, CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DCTCM), said: “Dubai has a lot of multinational companies who have established their regional headquarters here.

“Dubai has a lot to offer these businesses in terms of systems and the different free zones giving companies the opportunity and flexibility to be able to practice their business in a way that is comfortable for them. The lifestyle of Dubai also makes it very easy for people to relocate. It simply becomes an offer too good to refuse.”

Gerald Lawless, Ambassador for the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), said: “It is a time for opportunity and that is something investors will always look for. Investors are out there, and they will be in the future. There are investment opportunities within our industry, particularly in the hotel sector and we will see this developing and evolving over the coming weeks and months.

“Tourism will bounce back, and how we make it bounce back is so important.”

The opportunities in the tourism industry for investment as a byproduct of cheaper real estate was discussed by Nicolas Mayer, EMEA Hospitality & Tourism Center of Excellence Industry Leader, PwC, he said: “Many of the primary real estate markets in this region, in the UAE, Saudi, and Oman for example, are phenomenally dynamic. Yes, they have taken a hit, but they have demonstrated in the past the ability to ramp up again and go beyond what it used to be, before anywhere else in the world, which makes one very confident in investing.”

Foreign direct investment was also a hot topic of conversation, particularly from Saudi Arabia when looking at the opportunities afforded by their burgeoning tourism offering.

Majed AlGhanim, Managing Director of Tourism & Quality of Life, Ministry of Investment, Saudi Arabia, said: “In addition to the local and regional buying power in Saudi, we believe we have an attractive offering for investors from overseas with all the of the new sites and destinations coming up in Saudi Arabia. We are a destination that is ready, open, and looking forward to welcoming visitors to Saudi Arabia.”

The session also featured investment discussion from H.E. Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman, Sharjah Commerce & Tourism Development Authority; H.E. Marwan Bin Jassim Al Sarkal, Executive Chairman, Sharjah Investment and Development Authority – Shurooq; and H.E. Saleh Mohamed Al Geziry, Director General, Ajman Tourism.

Day three of ATM Virtual also featured responsible tourism with Harold Goodwin, Responsible Tourism Advisor for World Travel Market and Inge Huijbrechts, Global Senior Vice President Responsible Business and Safety & Security, Radisson Hotel Group, discussing the responsibility agenda in a post-coronavirus landscape.

During the session, What are the Implications of COVID-19 for Responsible Hospitality?’ Inge Huijbrechts said: “Whilst most hospitality brands have put responsible and sustainability projects on hold for a few months, we cannot and must not self-isolate from climate change. Climate change is a huge focus as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, with responsibly caring for both our employees and our guests a key objective for all hospitality companies across the globe.”

Turning to influencers, ‘Make Your Connection: Influencers as a Key Part of the Marketing Mix – COVID-19 The Road to Recovery’, led by ITP Media Group’s Head of Content, Eddie Taylor,, explored the importance of creating relevant, engaging and impactful travel and lifestyle content in the current climate of best practices.

ATM Virtual concluded on Wednesday 3rd June 2020, a total of 18,959 registrations from 152 countries were recorded, including 490 media. The event included 14,385 pre-scheduled meetings and featured 23 live webinars, interviews, and pre-recorded roundtables.

About Arabian Travel Market (ATM)
Arabian Travel Market (ATM), now on its 27th year, continues to be the focal point for the Middle East’s resilient and ever-changing travel and tourism landscape and prides itself on being the hub of all travel and tourism ideas – providing a platform to discuss insights on the ever-changing industry, share innovations and unlock endless business opportunities.

About Reed Exhibitions
Reed Exhibitions is a leading global events business. It combines face-to-face with data and digital tools to help customers learn about markets, source products and complete transactions at over 500 events in almost 30 countries across 43 industry sectors, attracting more than 7 million participants.

Our events, organized by 35 global offices, leverage industry expertise, large data sets and technology to enable our customers to generate billions of dollars of revenues for the economic development of local markets and national economies around the world. Reed Exhibitions is part of RELX, a global provider of information and analytics for professional and business customers across industries.

About Reed Travel Exhibitions
Reed Travel Exhibitions is the world’s leading travel and tourism event’s organiser with a growing portfolio of more than 20 international travel and tourism trade events in Europe, the Americas, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
Our events are market leaders in their sectors, whether it is global and regional leisure travel trade events, or specialist events for meetings, incentives, conference, events (MICE) industry, business travel, LGBTQ+ travel, luxury travel, travel technology as well as golf and spa travel. We have over 35 years’ experience in organising world-leading travel exhibitions.

About World Travel Market
World Travel Market (WTM) Portfolio comprises nine leading travel events across four continents, generating more than $7.5 billion of industry deals. The events are:

WTM London, the leading global event for the travel industry, is the must-attend three-day exhibition for the worldwide travel and tourism industry. Around 50,000 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international media visit ExCeL London every November, generating over £3.71 billion in travel industry contracts. london.wtm.com

WTM Latin America attracts about 9,000 senior executives and generates about US$374 million of new business deals. Taking place in São Paulo, Brazil, this show attracts a global audience to meet and shape the direction of the travel industry. More than 8,000 unique visitors, including buyers and travel agents, attend the event to network, negotiate and discover the latest industry news.

WTM Africa launched in 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. Around 5,000 travel industry professionals attend Africa’s leading inbound and outbound travel and tourism market. WTM Africa delivers a proven mix of hosted buyers, media, pre-scheduled appointments, on-site networking, evening functions and invited travel trade visitors.

WTTC Supports ICAO Takeoff Guidelines for Safe Flying

WTTC Supports ICAO Takeoff Guidelines for Safe Flying

London, Great Britain, June 6, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has welcomed the approved guidelines to safely restore global air connectivity, devised by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

ICAO’s COVID-19 Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART) has worked with governments, health experts and industry stakeholders to agree and publish comprehensive recommendations for a layered approach of measures to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission while traveling by air.

The measures are contained in ICAO’s ‘Takeoff: Guidance for Air Travel through the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis’.

They complement WTTC’s recently announced Safe Travels protocols, which were designed to drive the return of safe travel and enable industries such as tour operators, hotels, hospitality, travel companies, car rentals, MICE, retail and others, to thrive once again.

WTTC, which represents the global Travel & Tourism private sector, recognises ICAO  guidelines due to the strictly regulated nature of the aviation sector generally and airlines in particular, and strongly supports the ‘Takeoff’ guidelines.

The WTTC Safe Travels stamp will recognise and could be used by countries and destinations that adopt the Safe Travels protocols and the ICAO Takeoff guidelines for aviation.

CART’s work was developed through broad-based consultations by ICAO with countries and regional organisations, and with important advice from the World Health Organization and key aviation industry groups including the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Airports Council International (ACI World), the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation (CANSO), and the International Coordinating Council of Aerospace Industries Associations (ICCAIA).

Gloria Guevara, WTTC President & CEO, said:

“The safety and hygiene measures taken across the travel experience will be key to rebuild the confidence of travellers and restarting the Travel & Tourism sector.

“The leadership shown by ICAO’s Secretary General, Dr Fang Lui and the President of the ICAO Council, Salvatore Sciacchitano, in the CART process gives the aviation sector the global approach it needs to align its many participants with measures which reassure travellers by reducing the risks of COVID-19 transmission.

“We congratulate ICAO on developing this critical guidance for aviation in cooperation with key industry associations, including IATA and ACI. We now urge governments to adopt them and best practices as quickly as possible, so we can save a sector that is already in a fight for survival.”

Evidence from WTTC’s recently released Crisis Readiness report, which looked at 90 different types of crises in the last 20 years, highlights the importance of public-private cooperation and the implementation of standardised protocols to reduce the time to recover.

According to WTTC’s 2020 Economic Impact Report, during 2019, Travel & Tourism was responsible for one in 10 jobs (330 million total), making a 10.3% contribution to global GDP and generating one in four of all new jobs.

SUNx Malta Launches “Bend Our Trend” Campaign on World Environment Day

SUNx Malta Launches “Bend Our Trend” Campaign on World Environment Day

Valetta, Malta, June 5, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / SUNx Malta, in collaboration with the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) today launched a Climate Resilience campaign called BEND OUR TREND.

Led by a 90-second animated video, the campaign is designed to encourage Travel & Tourism companies and communities to:

  1. Adopt Climate Friendly Travel – Low carbon, linked to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and consistent with the Paris 1.5 trajectory.
  2. Create Climate Neutral Ambition Plans and file these on the SUNx Malta UNFCCC-linked

With the support of Malta’s Minister for Tourism and Consumer Protection, Hon. Julia Farrugia Portelli, who has declared her country to be a global centre of Climate Friendly Travel, we are deploying tools to help the entire Travel & Tourism sector in its essential transformation to a 2050 Paris 1.5 trajectory.

Minister Farrugia Portelli said:

“Our commitment to Climate Friendly Travel is even more important in a world where we need to plan our post-COVID19 future to also respond to the existential Climate Crisis – the effects of which are already upon us. Malta is a strong supporter of the Paris Climate Agreement and the EU Green Deal: through our work with SUNx Malta we will help bring Travel & Tourism to the table.”

Gloria Guevarra, President & CEO, WTTC said:

“This is another important step, working with SUNx Malta to encourage the Travel & Tourism sector to support the Paris Climate Agreement, in line with our long-standing engagement with UNFCCC to achieve Climate Neutrality by 2050. The present COVID-19 crisis has highlighted more than ever, the importance of ensuring sustainable Travel & Tourism as a key enabler to future recovery and growth. WTTC members are committed to play a leadership role.”

For SUNx Malta Professor Geoffrey Lipman, its President, and Leslie Vella, Chairman:

“We will provide support tools, underpinning the Registry and train young smart graduates, together with the Institute of Tourism Studies, Malta (ITS), to assist in strategic low carbon transformation. We are proud to work with a growing number of SDG-17 Partners to share innovation, strategic planning, visibility, education and training.

In addition to WTTC, other partners included in the launch include the Ministry for Tourism and Consumer Protection, Malta Tourism Authority, Institute of Tourism Studies, Sustainable First, Green Travel Maps, Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office, and LUX* Hotels & Resorts.

For more details please see

The Strong Universal Network SUNx is a program of the EU-based, not for profit Green Growth and Travelism Institute, and a legacy to the late Maurice Strong – Sustainable Development Pioneer.  Its goal is to promote Climate Friendly Travel with good & bad effects measured and managed coherently: with Green Growth at the core and, 2050-proof in line with the Paris Accords, and the W.E.F. 4th Industrial Revolution.

For more information, please contact:
Olly Wheatcroft, SUNx Program Manager,
olly@thesunprogram.com +44 (0) 7765 132408

UNWTO: Restarting Tourism

UNWTO: Restarting Tourism

Madrid, Spain, June 4, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / At both the local and the global level, the crisis we have faced up to together has shown the importance of making the right decisions at the right time.

The time has come to restart tourism!

We do so on the back of many weeks of hard work and commitment. This crisis has affected us all. Many, at every level of the sector, have made sacrifices, personally or professionally. But in the spirit of solidarity that defines tourism, we united under UNWTO’s leadership to share our expertise and abilities. Together, we are stronger, and this cooperation will be essential as we move onto the next stage.

Our research shows that several countries around the world are starting to ease restrictions on travel. At the same time, governments and the private sector are working together to restore confidence build and trust – essential foundations for recovery.

In the first stage of this crisis, UNWTO united tourism to assess the likely impact of COVID-19, mitigate the damage to economies, and safeguard jobs and businesses.

Now, as we change gears together, UNWTO is taking the lead again.

Last week, we convened the fifth meeting of the Global Tourism Crisis Committee. Here, we launched the UNWTO Global Guidelines to Restart Tourism. This important document outlines our roadmap and priorities for the sector in the challenging months ahead, from providing liquidity for vulnerable businesses to opening borders and coordinating new health protocols and procedures.

At the same time, we continue to promote innovation and sustainability. These must no longer be small parts of our sector, but instead must be at the heart of everything we do. This way, as we restart tourism, we can build a sector that works for people and planet.

Governments and businesses are increasingly on our side as we work to build this new tourism.

UNWTO is also working to make sure that tourists too share in this vision.
Our partnership with CNN International will take our positive message to millions of people around the world. The #TravelTomorrow message, embraced by so many, is one of responsibility, hope and determination.

And now, as we do get ready to travel again, we remind tourists of the positive difference their choices can make.

Our actions can be meaningful and highlight the road ahead, travelling again to restart tourism.

Zurab Pololikashvili
UNWTO Secretary-General

UNWTO and IFC Partner to Facilitate Green Investments for Tourism’s Sustainable Future

UNWTO and IFC Partner to Facilitate Green Investments for Tourism’s Sustainable Future

Madrid, Spain, June 5, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) continues to steer global tourism towards a more sustainable future, partnering with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to green the sector and promote recovery and responsible growth.

Under the new Investment Readiness for Green Finance Mechanisms initiative, the United Nations specialized agency for tourism will work alongside IFC, a member of the World Bank Group and the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector in developing countries, on a series of training programmes. These will focus on both stimulating tourism’s recovery from the current crisis, while at the same time promoting green financing to enhance sustainability across the whole of the tourism value chain.

UNWTO Secretary-General, Zurab Pololikashvili said: “Sustainable tourism should no longer be considered a special niche. Instead, this pause in global travel offers us a chance to rethink tourism and make the whole sector more sustainable as we grow back better and stronger. This new initiative with IFC will provide valuable guidelines on Sustainable Tourism Investments that enhance tourism’s contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals.”

Facilitating Investments in Sustainability

At present, there are 200,000 hotels providing 18 million beds worldwide, with a further 2.4 million rooms in the pipeline. These alone account for 1% of global greenhouses gas (GHG) emissions and so increasing the sustainability of this part of the global tourism sector can make a significant contribution to climate-related Sustainable Development Goals. This new initiative is aimed at furthering this.

One of the main focuses will be working with private sector partners to promote green finance and share experience in resourcing sustainable buildings. The initial cooperation will consist in a series of trainings to promote green investments for a long term recovery of the tourism sector. The first training is planned to start on June 4th, 2020 in a webinar format, and it will culminate with an accreditation training for EDGE Experts. Government officials, hospitality investors, aggregators and tourism investment consultants are all invited to register their interest at

About IFC
IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities where they are needed most. In fiscal year 2019, we delivered more than $19 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.

About EDGE
An innovation of IFC, EDGE helps property developers to build and brand green in a fast, easy and affordable way. EDGE is supported by free software that encourages solutions to reduce energy, water and the energy used to make building materials by at least 20 percent, which is the standard for EDGE certification. The program has been generously supported by the following donors: Austria, Canada, Denmark, ESMAP, EU, Finland, GEF, Hungary, Japan, Switzerland and the UK.

WTTC Launches Safe Protocols for Aviation, Airports, MICE, Tour Operators

WTTC Launches Safe Protocols for Aviation, Airports, MICE, Tour Operators

London, United Kingdom, June 4, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has unveiled the second phase of measures to rebuild global consumer confidence to encourage the return of travelling.

The latest protocols are designed to drive the return of safe travel and enable industries, namely tour operators and convention centres, meetings and events to thrive once again.

Detailed discussions took place with key stakeholders and organisations to ensure maximum buy-in, alignment and practical implementation, to set clear expectations of what travellers may experience in the ‘new normal’.

Those relating to airports and airlines have been devised following close consultation with WTTC Members such as Iberia, Emirates Group, Etihad and Oman Aviation Group among others, as well as the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and Airports Council International (ACI), to rebuild trust and provide reassurance that airports and airlines will offer safe environments in which to fly once travel restrictions are relaxed.

The welfare of travellers and the millions of people employed throughout the Travel & Tourism sector at the heart of this new comprehensive package of Safe Travels protocols.

They also provide consistency to destinations and countries as well as guidance to travel providers, airlines, airports, operators, and travellers, about the new approach to health and hygiene in the post COVID-19 world.

Gloria Guevara, WTTC President & CEO, said: “For the first time ever, the global private sector has rallied around our Safe Travels protocols which will create the consistency needed to allow a re-invigorated Travel & Tourism sector re-open for business.

“Among the most important of these measures are those which will enable the aviation sector to take-off. Aviation’s return is critical to help repower the global economic recovery.

“WTTC aviation protocols were created in close collaboration with ACI and IATA. We thank them and their leaders Angela Gittens and Alexandre de Juniac for their guidance, as it is vital we restore consumer confidence to get people travelling and flying safely.

“The expertise from large and small tour operators, contributed to define the new experience via tour operators and visiting event venues again, and were defined in coordination of experts from this segment, through these robust global measures which have been embraced by businesses around the world.”

Angela Gittens, ACI World Director General said: “Our industry has been brought to a standstill. A balanced and effective restart and recovery of the global travel and tourism sector depends on collaboration among the key participants in this ecosystem and we welcome the ambitious approach taken by the WTTC.

“Collaboration will help to establishing a globally-consistent approach to recovery which will be the most effective way of balancing risk mitigation with the need to enable travel and foster economic recovery while also reassuring the travelling public that health and safety remain the overall priorities.”

Alexandre de Juniac, Director General and CEO at IATA said: “COVID-19 is a gamechanger for the travel and tourism sector, requiring us to enhance our approach to health and safety to protect our travellers and workforce. Aviation is the business of freedom and it is vital to enable its restart on a safe basis. IATA is delighted to lend its framework and collaborate

with WTTC on the Aviation Protocols as part of its Safe Travels initiative. This is an excellent example of the industry solidarity and cooperation that will be so vital to ensuring a strong recovery for travel and tourism.”

Yuji Akasaka, Japan Airlines President, said: “We would like to thank WTTC for their deep understanding of the aviation industry and for their worldwide support.

“At this moment I think the most important issue is that all members involved in tourism join forces and cooperate to overcome this crisis. Through WTTC’s widespread initiatives,

we would like to work not only with the aviation sector but also with the tourism industry as a whole.”

Deborah Flint, Greater Toronto Airports Authority President and CEO, said: “Airports are one part of many organisations that form the travel and tourism ecosystem, to serve business and humanity’s need to connect.

“Together, we must work towards recovery from this crisis. That is why collaborating with partners like the WTTC on protocols for the new travel experience is important to us. A standardised approach, led by governments with input from industry, will allow us to ensure all safety measure are in place and is a critical step in building confidence in travellers, governments and ensuring resiliency for our industry.”

Greg Webb, Travelport Chief Executive Officer, said: The global travel industry is united in its desire to support a safe, healthy and responsible return to travel. However, for this to be achieved, the industry and governments across the world must now unite around a consistent set of clear practical and meaningful protocols, which are backed up by medical evidence and give travellers the confidence they need to once again take to the skies.

Gordon Wilson, WorldReach President, said: “The new Global Protocols provide an important framework to facilitate government and industry collaboration via a consistent set of guidelines to restore traveller confidence.

“The WTTC’s Seamless Traveller Journey initiative has greater urgency and an expanded role due to COVID-19. Health safety becomes a critical factor and combines the previous seamless travel goals with touchless processes, thereby helping the recovery of global travel.”

Miguel Leitmann, Vision-Box Chief Executive Officer, said: “As a leading forum of the travel and tourism industry, we are fortunate to have WTTC taking an important role in the formulation of trusted and clear travel standards in a post COVID-19 environment.

“Travel has become such an essential component of our daily lives, whether on business, vacation, or for personal reasons, that I am certain that we will soon be growing and thriving again. In the meantime, Vision-Box works closely with our clients and industry stakeholders to implement touchless identification and contactless clearance solutions that will enhance the safety and security of all travellers and staff members throughout the travel and tourism sector.

“Moving forward in this unprecedented time, the strength of our ongoing partnership with WTTC is key to recovery and success. Integrity, values and expertise drives our shared commitment to make our world a better place and we look forward to our mutual support, both personally and professionally.”

Aileen Clemente, Rajah Travel Corporation Chairman and CEO, said: “Restoring travel confidence is a major pillar to the recovery of our industry. Rajah Travel Corporation fully supports the WTTC in its leadership in engaging the private sector for the development of Safe Travel protocols across the value chain.

“We all benefit from WTTC’s strong advocacy with global and national institutions to prioritise travel and tourism in the recovery plans. The WTTC initiatives during this crisis are instrumental in how we re-shape our product offerings, business solutions and service to ensure and promote safe, secure, and seamless experience among our global customers and stakeholders.”

Darrell Wade, Intrepid Group Chairman said: “Safety and collaboration have never been more important, so its outstanding to see the travel industry work together as one, to ensure the health and wellbeing of travellers, workers and community members.“

Last week, WTTC unveiled Safe Travels protocols for hospitality and outdoor retail, which were widely endorsed and supported by top CEOs and business leaders globally.

However, earlier this week, WTTC’s unveiled its landmark new global safety stamp to encourage safe travels and the reopening of the Travel & Tourism sector.

Backed by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the new protocols will recognise businesses and governments worldwide which have adopted them to rebuild confidence among consumers, encourage the return of ‘Safe Travels’ and enable the Travel & Tourism sector to reopen for business.

Drawn up by WTTC Members and based on the best available medical evidence and following guidelines from the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the new Safe Travels protocols and avoid the emergence of multiple standards, which would only confuse the consumer and delay the sector’s recovery.

Detailed discussions took place with key stakeholders and organisations to ensure maximum buy-in, alignment and practical implementation, to set clear expectations of what travellers may expect during their next flights in the ‘new normal’.

Evidence from WTTC’s Crisis Readiness report, which looked at 90 different types of crises, highlights the importance of public-private cooperation to ensure that smart policies and effective communities are in place to enable a more resilient Travel & Tourism sector.

WTTC divided the new guidance into four pillars including operational and staff preparedness; ensuring a safe experience; rebuilding trust and confidence; innovation; and implementing enabling policies.

Measures announced today include:

Airports

  • Enhanced cleaning including to self-service equipment, baggage trolleys, counters, buggies, security checkpoints, washrooms, elevators, handrails, boarding areas, and common areas with a specific focus on high-frequency touch points
  • Provide personal protection equipment (PPE) to staff, such as masks
  • New signage and announcements to limit interaction and queuing at touchpoints
  • Possible pre-arrival health risk assessment to prevent delays upon arrival
  • Reduce passenger touchpoints through online check-in before departure, use of self- check in kiosks and bag drop, home-printed bag tags, greater use of biometric e- gates and boarding card reading at gates
  • If entry-exit screening is mandated, it should be carried out in a non-intrusive, walk through manner, through full body infrared scanners using handheld infrared thermometers, and ear gun thermometers
  • Enhanced food safety and hygiene at restaurants, with prepacked foods to avoid handling of food at buffets
  • Possible redesign of immigration halls together with governments and airlines to speed up procedures
  • Where declarations are required upon arrival, electronic options should be used to minimise contact; ideally using contactless processes.

Airlines

  • Provide personal protection equipment (PPE) to staff such as masks
  • Reduce passengers’ touchpoints through online check-in before departure, use of self-check in kiosks and bag drop, home-printed bag tags, greater use of biometric e- gates and boarding card reading at gates
  • Provide approved hand sanitizers as appropriate based on high-traffic areas, such as check-in and boarding areas
  • Revisited guidance for cleaning teams for all areas of the plane including washrooms, as well as check in and boarding areas, with a specific focus on high-frequency touch points
  • Consider boarding from back of the plane to the front, window to aisle
  • Limit movement in the cabin as much as possible
  • Retrain crew and frontline staff regarding infection control and hygiene measures

Tour operators

  • Enhanced sanitation, disinfection, and deep cleaning practices for coaches and other vehicles
  • Focused cleaning on high-frequency touch points, including handrails, door handles, tables, onboard toilets, air conditioning filters, overhead lockers and headsets
  • Pre-allocated seating plans with no rotation
  • Limit physical contact and queuing where possible
  • Explore staggered timing for access to venues, hotels and restaurants among others
  • Health, sanitation, disinfection and hygiene and food safety protocols at partner restaurants
  • Establish with partners and suppliers including shops, showrooms, tasting venues/shops, museums, shows theatres, concert halls, factories and farms, that they follow likely protocols

Convention Centres, Meetings & Events

  • Implement physical distancing for seating distribution and aisles, utilizing government guidance if available. Create visual support to show intent as appropriate.
  • Reduce venue capacity limits for participants as appropriate and required by local legislation
  • Distinguish between different areas of risk in the venue
  • Consider pre-arrival risk assessment questionnaire for participants
  • Limit physical interaction and possible queuing at reception and registration using advance registration to enhance participant flow
  • Create isolation units outside the venue where possible for those showing COVID-19 symptoms

Additional and separate measures for the Cruise sector and insurance businesses, among others, are currently in development and will be announced in due course.

According to WTTC’s 2020 Economic Impact Report, during 2019, Travel & Tourism was responsible for one in 10 jobs (330 million total), making a 10.3% contribution to global GDP and generating one in four of all new jobs.

WTTC has created nine overarching principles & objectives for the Travel & Tourism Sector in the post-lockdown and recovery stage.

  1. 1. Have the sector lead the definition of industry regulation as Travel & Tourism moves from crisis management to recovery
  2. 2. Put the safety, health and security of travellers and the Travel & Tourism workforce at the core of the development of global standards
  3. 3. Ensure coherence in the approach and development of new global standards through a coordinated, collaborative, and transparent approach within the Travel & Tourism sector
  4. 4. Share harmonised and consistent standards and guidelines across destinations and countrie
  5. 5. Collaborate with key actors across the Travel & Tourism supply and value chain to ensure readiness to restart operations
  6. 6. Ensure standards and guidelines implemented are aligned with governmental and public health requirements and supported by medical evidence
  7. 7. Rebuild trust and confidence with travellers through effective communication & marketing; letting them know the protocols and guidelines implemented and assurances available to keep them safe
  8. 8. Relax and lift travel restrictions once the public health threat has been contained
  9. 9. Advocate for the implementation of enabling policies from financial relief to visa facilitation and incentives to destination promotion to support the recovery and demand re-generation for the secto

Accor Reignites The Love Of Travel as Hotels Worldwide Begin to Reopen

Accor Reignites The Love Of Travel as Hotels Worldwide Begin to Reopen

Paris, France, June 3, 2020 / TRAVELINDEX / Accor, a global hospitality leader, has begun the exciting process of reopening some of its hotels that temporarily closed in response to the global pandemic. With restrictions now easing across many destinations, and the number of reopened hotels in the Accor network projected to climb steadily over the coming months, Accor is investing in the resurgence of the travel and service industries and economic recovery in the communities where it operates. ALL – Accor Live Limitless, the daily lifestyle companion that integrates rewards, services and experiences throughout the Accor portfolio of brands, has introduced a new global campaign: Reignite the Love of Travel. The campaign is launching with a short film designed to reassure and to create desire while uplifting its audience.

Steven Taylor, Chief Marketing Officer, Accor said: “During the lockdown periods everywhere, we have been surprised to see so many people on social media sharing their craving for travel with such uplifting humour and creativity: it was heart-warming for us to see that they were missing us as much as we were missing them. The message of our campaign then came naturally as we invested to prepare for the immediate holiday season as well as for longer term bookings. Seeing the quick business recovery in China, we wanted to do our part to reassure our guests and to reignite the travel desire.”

Accor’s ‘Reignite the Love of Travel’ campaign will launch with an engaging social media campaign. Travelers will be invited to share their travel dreams and inspiration, which will be combined to create a second ALL montage-style inspirational travel film.

Offering reassurance to travelers as they head back into the world, Accor’s ALLSAFE cleanliness program protects guests and staff, while assuring travelers they can feel safe while staying at Accor’s hotels. These measures have been developed with the support of Bureau Veritas, a recognized world leader in testing, inspections and certification services.

Added Taylor, “We have reacted to the crisis with a fully-fledged marketing strategy which firstly reassures our guests through the launch of ALLSAFE and that has established world-class cleanliness standards and protocols to ensure our guests are welcomed back in full safety. Secondly, in these challenging times we believe it is part of our mission to inspire people with positivity, humour and encourage them to reignite their love of travel.”

Accor’s ‘Reignite the Love of Travel’ campaign will launch in key markets worldwide throughout the summer.

About Accor
Accor is a world-leading augmented hospitality group offering unique experiences in 5,000 hotels and residences across 110 destinations. The Group has been acquiring hospitality expertise for more than 50 years, resulting in an unrivaled portfolio of brands, from luxury to economy, supported by one of the most attractive loyalty programs in the world.

Beyond accommodation, Accor enables new ways to live, work, and play, by blending food and beverage with nightlife, wellbeing, and co-working. It also offers digital solutions that maximize distribution, optimize hotel operations and enhance the customer experience.

Accor is deeply committed to sustainable value creation and plays an active role in giving back to planet and community via its Planet 21 – Acting Here program and the Accor Solidarity endowment fund, which gives disadvantaged groups access to employment through professional training.

Accor SA is publicly listed on the Euronext Paris Stock Exchange (ISIN code: FR0000120404) and on the OTC Market (Ticker: ACRFY) in the United States. For more information visit accor.com, or become a fan and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

About ALL
ALL- Accor Live Limitless is a daily lifestyle companion. ALL harnesses and enhances the brands, services and partnerships offered by the Accor’s ecosystem. ALL delivers meaningful experiences and rewards to its most engaged customers while enabling them to work live, and play, far beyond their stay, at home and around the world. Thanks to this rich value proposition, Accor is bringing its Augmented Hospitality strategy to life with new digital platforms, iconic partnerships (Credit Cards, Mobility, Airlines, Entertainment with AEG, IMG, Paris Saint-Germain) and global roll-out plan for all its guests and 64million loyalty members.