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Travel Digital Digest: June 2019

Welcome to June’s monthly round-up of everything travel. With the travel world constantly changing, it is important that your content marketing strategy is effective and up to date. We take a look at some exciting developments in the travel industry and discuss the things you need to know.


Ryanair to acquire Malta Air



Ryanair has recently agreed to purchase Malta Air, and has outlined its plans to grow its presence in Malta. This includes an increase of planes to 10 over the next three years, creating more than 350 jobs. By summer 2020, it plans to brand the Malta-based fleet to Malta Air colours.


Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary said: ‘Malta Air will proudly fly the Maltese name and flag to more than 60 destinations across Europe and north Africa as we look to grow our Maltese-based fleet, routes, traffic and jobs over the next three years.’


Tunisia bookings on the rise

After a number of terrorist attacks in Tunisia, the FCO updated its travel advice in 2017. Tunisia had suffered from a huge decrease in bookings as a result, but it’s predicted that the number of UK visitors will increase to at least 200,000 by the end of 2019, an increase of 124,000 visitors compared with 2018. Preparing for the increase in bookings, Tui has added 37,000 seats on flights across the UK for summer 2019.


Wahida Jaiet, director of the Tunisian Tourist Office UK and Ireland, told Travel Weekly that she predicts Tunisia will see 440,000 UK visitors in the next three to four years, marking a huge growth on 2018.


However, with the news on 27 June of a further terrorist attack – this time in the capital Tunis – this is likely to have a negative impact on visitor numbers.


Hangout on Holiday – the new travel app

Message on a phone

Paul Stanyer, founder of Holiday Taxis, has designed the travel app Hangout on Holiday to ease the communication process with holiday reps. The app enables holidaymakers to contact their reps before and during their holiday through live chat. Holidaymakers are offered information on what to do in resorts, and they can book excursions in advance. It is also useful for the reps, as they can contact holidaymakers with useful info.


Stanyer says: ‘Hangout on Holiday presents an exciting opportunity for operators looking to optimise their customer experience and gain a share of in-resort spend.’


With operators such as Olympic Holidays and Infinity Weekends using the new app and Stanyer currently in talks with more operators, the app appears to have a bright future.


Hard Rock hotel comes to London

London saw the opening of the first-ever Hard Rock Cafe, in 1971. And now, the capital now has a Hard Rock Hotel, following successful openings across the globe.


The new hotel will feature live music performances and memorabilia. It includes a Kirkwood piano which Freddie Mercury used to practise as a teenager.


Hard Rock Hotels’ senior vice president Dale Hipsh said: ‘Every Hard Rock Hotel property is one of a kind, but this one represents something special for the brand.’


ABTA welcomes new chairman

Small globe in a hand

Alistair Rowland has been appointed the new chairman of ABTA. He replaces Noel Josephides, who had held the position for six years. Rowland, who has been on the ABTA board of directors for the past seven years, said: ’I look forward immensely to taking on my new role as chairman of the UK’s leading travel association.’


June was a packed month for the industry, and one that shows how quickly the sector evolves. We’ll be back next month with another round-up of the hottest stories.