CTH Connections Newsletter – December 2015

15th December 2015

Welcome to the December edition of the CTH Connections Newsletter – Christmas Edition!

coverimagetemplate-december-2015 In this publication, we are happy to share with you the latest trends in the industry, and why experts think that there are a number of people in society with the ‘explorer gene’ who will be key to economic success. 2016 will bring us the opportunity to see the Northern lights in a way we haven’t seen before, so in order to find out which will be the best places to witness this magnificent event, please keep reading. This year will also be important for tourism in Ireland as the flights from California are becoming an important source of American visitors to the island of Ireland. If you are a restaurant manager and you are wondering how to market your premises differently to reach Millennial-aged customers you are in the right place, so check out the article. We are pleased to inform you about a new University partnership which will allow CTH and Online Education Hub students to register directly with Leeds Beckett University in order to continue their studies in leadership and management in the travel industry. Our travel writer Ulpa Chauhan has attended an event organised by Visit England promoting 2016 as the Year of the English Garden and will give us her opinion about the 16 most exciting places to visit, and the top things to do in the new year.

Business growth: are you an adventurer or an explorer

article-1-dec-2015 How adventurous should firms be? Experts think the right number of people in society with the ‘explorer gene’ is key to economic success. Judging the right amount of risk to take in business is essential to success: be too cautious and it can be hard to grow, too adventurous and your company’s future could be threatened. According to data from Bibby Financial Services, one-third of UK companies consider themselves "adventurous". Is this a healthy ratio for a growing economy? Of course, adventurousness is relative: it depends on what else you know. However, James Sproule, chief economist at the Institute of Directors, notes two "hard data points", the first being that entrepreneurial activity has doubled in Britain. It now involves 15pc of the working population, up from 7pc in 2002. However, while Britain leads the EU in entrepreneurialism, the EU is the world's "least entrepreneurial" economy. Britain historically lags the US “by a factor of one third”. The second data point is about the distribution of adventurousness in society. There is an “explorer gene” that identifies those predisposed to taking risks. This gene occurs in 15 to 20pc of the population. The theory is that this range is key to economic success: if more than 20 pc of a population are explorers all you get are blue sky and hot air; less and the explorer may be ostracised. For risk-taking to be effective, “risk-takers should be sufficiently widespread not to cause alarm, but not so widespread that nothing gets done.” Mr Sproule says simply taking risks is only half the challenge of running a successful business. “It’s not all about start-ups. You find entrepreneurs in large companies. They add value by challenging the status quo. What matters is how responsive those hierarchies are.” But 15 to 20pc may not be the golden ratio. The explorer gene is uniformly distributed but economic vitality isn’t. “Some countries are far more entrepreneurial than Britain or the US. But that’s because in places like sub-Saharan Africa there are no other options: you’re either an entrepreneur or unemployed,” says Mr Sproule. We don’t know what would happen to a society long or short on the explorer gene, since no such society exists. What we do know is that there is a disparity between the alleged 15 to 20pc of explorer-gene carriers, and the one-third of respondents who think they are adventurous. Perhaps the real challenge for British business is not just to think about taking a more adventurous approach, but to act. Published on telegraph.co.uk

Where to see the Northern Lights in 2016

Article-2-dec-2015-2 If you haven’t heard, the northern lights, or aurora borealis, are experiencing a period of heightened activity known as the solar maximum. This means that the lights are viewable from locations south of the main auroral occurrence zone. Although the lights reached their peak period of activity in 2012/2013, according to the University of Fairbanks Geophysical Institute, which forecasts the aurora borealis, the maximum will stay at a heightened level for four or five years. So, those heading toward the arctic through 2016 or 2017 will have a greater chance of seeing the lights. To see the northern lights during the “solar max,” you should keep the following in mind, according to the university: The best time of year to visit is during the early springtime when the probability for clear skies is twice as likely as in the fall. The ideal time is the two weeks around the new moon in March, but viewing is good from early January to late April. The best time of day for viewing the northern lights is between the evening and morning civil twilights (when the sun is 6 degrees below the horizon) on a clear or partly cloudy night. The lights are at their most intense between the hours of 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. Viewing is also best with little or no moonlight. The Geophysical Institute operates the Aurora Forecast, where visitors can check to see solar activity for the time period when they will be traveling to one of the arctic regions. Where should you go to see the northern lights? Here are some of the best and easiest-to-reach destinations for travelers. Churchill, Manitoba Experts have long said that the edge of the Hudson Bay is one of the best spots to catch the phenomenon. Watch the multicolor display dance across the arctic skies in Churchill, Manitoba, which is reachable by Via Rail train from Winnipeg. The Winnipeg-Churchill train travels more than 1,000 miles roundtrip on a two-day journey through the vast subarctic region. In addition to the Northern Lights, you can get up close to polar bears, which are a well-known attraction in the destination. Reykjavik, Iceland The season for the aurora borealis in Iceland is approximately from October to March. The best viewing is when solar activity is at its peak, but the lights can be viewed from Reykjavik by just finding a place that provides an abundance of darkness, so it’s as easy as going for a walk or jumping in the car for a ride during the hours that they are viewable. That being said, there are many tour operators that offer tours to view the northern lights and cruise ships also leave from Reykjavik. Fairbanks, Alaska Visitors to Fairbanks have a good chance of seeing the northern lights, especially if they dedicate a week in pursuit of the phenomenon. The Geophysical Institute advises visitors to travel to a place up on a hill to have the best view of the horizon. The institute also noted that, during solar activity maximum years, most auroral storms start south of Fairbanks. During the solar activity minimum years, the auroral storms start north of Fairbanks and occur in the midnight hours. Recommended sites around Fairbanks include Chena Lakes Recreation Area; Ester, Wickersham, and Murphy Domes; Haystack Mountain; turnouts along the Elliot, Steese, and Parks Highways; and Cleary Summit. While Fairbanks is a good location and probably the most convenient from a lodging perspective, other places that have a high frequency of auroral occurrences are Bettles, Coldfoot, Wiseman, Fort Yukon, Prudhoe and Point Barrow. Northern Lights Cruise Another easy way to see the northern lights and to experience the Arctic is to travel with Hurtigruten on its Arctic Climate Voyage, a unique journey on climate change that travels from Reykjavik to Spitsbergen, Norway. Not only do you have the opportunity to see the northern lights, but the voyage travels to some of the most isolated spots on earth, including Jan Mayen, home to the northernmost active volcano, Beerenberg. Guests also visit the northernmost permanently populated communities in the world, Ny-Alesund. Published on travelpulse.com

New study sheds light on millennial mindset

Article-3-dec-2015 If you’re wondering whether it’s important to market your restaurant differently to reach Millennial-aged (18-34) customers than to connect with older (ages 35+) ones, results of a new survey suggest it is. But be aware that even the most Millennial-friendly marketing tools aren’t as universally popular within this key demographic as you’d think. The yet-to-be-released study, “What Millennials Really Think: How Do Their Views Compare With Older Consumers?” was commissioned by the Marketing Executives Networking Group and conducted by Pace University marketing professor Larry Chiagouris. Opinions were solicited from an online panel consisting of 394 Millennial-aged consumers and 630 older ones. Respondents were asked to rate statements on a five-point scale (the options: agree strongly, agree, neither agree or disagree, disagree, strongly disagree). On some issues, the findings were similar for both groups. Respondents of all ages believed strongly that social media is too intrusive and that companies do not do enough to protect consumer privacy. But the differences were significant on a number of other issues. Among the questions the survey helps restaurants answer: Is it worth it for restaurants to pay extra to build a “green” restaurant, source and serve more costly but ethically raised ingredients or pursue other sustainability initiatives? It looks like the answer is yes, at least for Millennial customers. Survey respondents were asked whether they would pay more for fair trade or environmentally friendly products. Sixty percent of Millennials said they would, compared to 44 percent of 35+ consumers. One-quarter of the older group said they wouldn’t; only 14 percent of Millennials said they would balk at paying extra. Are potential customers more likely to use mobile technology to search for information about your restaurant than other platforms and methods? The answers suggest that mobile marketing is a must. Sixty-two percent of Millennials said they usually gather information via their phone or tablet; just 16 percent don’t. Among older consumers, slightly more do not look for information via mobile (41 percent) than do (39 percent). Are potential customers receptive to receiving restaurant coupons via text messages? The responses suggest marketers should be judicious in their use of coupons sent via text. When asked whether they agreed with this statement - ”I am willing to receive unsolicited text messages with coupons and offers on my mobile phone when I enter a retail store,” 41 percent of Millennials agreed or strongly agreed, as did 31 percent of older consumers. But many respondents disagreed or strongly disagreed—36 percent of Millennials and 51 percent of older consumers don’t favor this approach When the scope of the question was expanded slightly - “I am willing to receive unsolicited text messages with coupons and offers on my mobile phone or tablet from stores nearby when walking down the street,” agreement numbers fell about 4-5 percent for both groups. Only about 20 percent of respondents of either age group were neutral about this marketing tactic. Does direct mail work for restaurant marketers in the digital age? It still packs plenty of punch. This survey found that nearly half of Millennials agree that they “often find value in many of the materials I receive in the mail from companies I have not done business with before.” Thirty-seven percent of older consumers said they do, too. Should you pay close attention to your restaurant’s online reviews? Ignore them at your peril. When asked whether they agree or disagree with the statement, “My main resource for evaluating a product or service are the reviews by other people online,” 68 percent of Millennials and 50 percent of older consumers agreed or strongly agreed. Only nine percent of Millennials disagreed with this statement, while 23 percent of older consumers did. Millennials are also more likely to post an online review after having a bad customer experience. Fifty percent say they do so. Only 34 percent of older consumers will write a review in those circumstances. Millennials are also more likely to write or share a review after a positive customer experience (56 percent, vs. 41 percent of consumers aged 35 plus). One thing both older and younger consumers agree on is that companies too often use social media in a manner that is intrusive to consumers. Fifty percent of Millennials and 52 percent of 35+ consumers feel this way. The takeaway message for restaurant marketers: be careful how you employ social media in your marketing mix. And think twice before texting unsolicited offers to some, perhaps most, of your restaurant’s customer base. Published on restaurant-hospitality.com

Asia Pacific outbound travel maintains strong growth

itbk_logo_homeAsia Pacific remains a leading growth market for world travel with a 5 percent rise in outbound trips so far this year despite the slowdown in the Chinese economy. Even stronger growth of 6.1 percent can be expected next year, according to the ITB World Travel Trends Report, which is produced by tourism consultancy IPK International on behalf of ITB Berlin, the world’s leading travel trade show. This means that the region will once again outpace world travel growth in 2016 and continue to gain market share. The number of outbound trips made by travellers from Asia Pacific increased by about 5 percent between January and August this year, according to preliminary World Travel Monitor figures. This followed growth of 6.5 percent in 2014. In comparison, the number of outbound trips worldwide increased by 4.5 percent in the first eight months of 2015, the World Travel Monitor® found. Rolf Freitag, IPK International president, commented: “These are very robust figures and show that Asia Pacific has grown slightly faster than the overall worldwide outbound travel market this year, although somewhat more slowly than in 2014.” Inbound travel to and within Asia Pacific has also remained on the growth path this year. International tourist arrivals to the region rose 4.3% over the first eight months of this year, according to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). At a sub-regional level, Oceania (+6.6%) led growth, followed by South-East Asia (+5.6%), where Thailand showed a strong rebound after weaker results last year. Arrivals grew by 4.2% in South Asia and by 3.2% in North-East Asia, where Japan continues to show extraordinary growth. The latest figures confirm Asia Pacific’s importance as a growth driver for world travel. Since 2007, the total number of outbound trips by travellers from the region (excluding Chinese travel to Hong Kong and Macau) increased by 65 percent to a total of 170 million trips, according to World Travel Monitor® figures. This growth was more than twice as much as overall world growth between 2007 and 2014. Key trends in the Asia Pacific outbound market over this period include rises in short trips, beach holidays and city trips, along with a move to up-market hotels and higher average spending. Looking ahead to next year, IPK predicts a 6.1 percent rise in Asia Pacific outbound travel, based on its Travel Confidence Index which measures travel intentions in the region for the next year. According to the index, 70 percent of travellers in Asia Pacific want to travel at least as much in 2016 as this year, including a high 27 percent who want to travel more. Significantly, confidence remains high in China and double-digit growth is expected in 2016. Dr. Martin Buck, Messe Berlin’s Senior Vice President/Director Travel & Logistics ITB Berlin, commented: “These very positive figures show that Asia Pacific remains the top growth market for world tourism. It is especially encouraging to see the high levels of confidence for outbound travel from China next year. We can look forward to another strong year for Asia Pacific outbound travel.” The results and findings in the ITB World Travel Trends Report are based on presentations and discussions at the annual World Travel Monitor® Forum in Pisa, which is supported by ITB Berlin. Initiated at the invitation of consultancy IPK International, more than 50 tourism experts and academics from around the world present the latest figures and current trends in international tourism. Additional results of IPK International’s trend surveys from January to August 2015 together with the estimates of 50 tourism experts from more than 20 countries and the key data from the World Travel Monitor® are published exclusively by ITB Berlin. The detailed results will appear at the beginning of December in the ITB World Travel Trends Report under www.itb-berlin.com. The World Travel Monitor® final results for the year, including the latest outlook for 2016, will be presented at the ITB Convention by Rolf Freitag, President of IPK International. The World Travel Monitor® is based on representative interviews with more than 500,000 people a year in more than 60 travel markets worldwide, and has been regularly conducted for more than 20 years. It is recognised as the largest continuous study into global travel patterns. Published on travelandtourworld.com

Sales blitz in California to boost American tourist numbers to Ireland in 2016

TOURISM-IRELANDTourism Ireland, together with a delegation of 23 tourism enterprises, is undertaking a three-city trade and media blitz in California this week. The last of the 2015 ‘Jump into Ireland’ (JITI) events is taking in the key cities of San Francisco, Los Angeles and Santa Barbara. This week, 14 Irish tourism companies and nine American tour operators are meeting with California-based travel professionals. The busy schedule involves a 60-minute TV show format highlighting the island of Ireland, as well as networking sessions with travel and lifestyle journalists. Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s head of North America, said: “The United States is one of the most important markets for tourism to the island of Ireland and 2015 is set to be another record year for tourism from North America. According to the latest CSO figures, visitor numbers from the US and Canada have grown by almost +14% for January to September. Our ‘Jump into Ireland’ sales blitz in California this week provides an excellent platform to kickstart our promotional effort for 2016 and to spread the word about the many great things to see and do right around the island of Ireland.” California is now an important source of American visitors for the island of Ireland – with a new Aer Lingus flight between Los Angeles and Dublin set to commence in 2016, in addition to the existing Aer Lingus San Francisco to Dublin flight and Ethiopian Airlines’ service from Los Angeles. So this week’s ‘Jump into Ireland’ events were also an ideal opportunity to highlight the ease of access from the west coast of the US. Alison Metcalfe continued: “The new Aer Lingus flight from Los Angeles to Dublin, launching in May 2016, is wonderful news for tourism to the island of Ireland and we will be working closely with Aer Lingus to maximise the promotion of this new route. As an island, the importance of convenient, direct flights cannot be overstated – they are absolutely critical to achieving growth in inbound tourism.” In all, Tourism Ireland’s ‘Jump into Ireland’ programme has visited 12 different cities across the US this year, targeting hundreds of influential travel agents and travel writers – in Washington DC, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia (Pennsylvania) in February; Atlanta (Georgia), Charlotte and Tampa (Florida), in March; and Minneapolis (Minnesota), Denver and Dallas (Colorado), in September. Published on travelandtourworld.com

First private jet company in Middle East to receive EASA safety certificate

Article-6-dec-2015Qatar Executive, Qatar Airways’ corporate jet division, is the first ‘Business Aviation Operator’ in the Middle East and one of first worldwide to be awarded the European Aviation Safety Agency’s (EASA) third-country operator (TCO) safety certificate. By 2016, all non-EU commercial operators wishing to fly to the EU will be required to hold the authorisation certifying their compliance with international ICAO safety standards. As of now, operators are required to apply for operating permits from each European country, whereas, under the new rule, the “EASA TCO” approval is a single safety authorisation valid in all EASA member states and outlying territories. EASA aims to reduce bureaucratic obstacles with the new unified approach and seeks to replace today’s maze of national authorisations with a single document while maintaining the highest level of aviation safety in Europe. Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, who also heads up the airline’s private jet division, said: “Being the first business aviation operator in the Middle East to be awarded the EASA TCO certificate demonstrates that Qatar Executive is at the forefront of international aviation standards and that we are setting a benchmark for operational excellence across our industry. “The new safety authorisation is a testament to our group’s high standards of safety, security, and attention to detail in all operational aspects, and is a proud moment for the company. “The safety and security of all our passengers and staff is our top priority, and we applaud EASA for its continuous efforts in enhancing international safety standards, and raising the bar for airlines and business aviation operators worldwide.” The achievement enables Qatar Executive to further grow its worldwide aircraft charter business while continuing to leverage on the rapidly developing network and support of the award-winning Qatar Airways group. Qatar Airways also obtained the EASA TCO approval in July this year. Qatar Airways is one of a few airlines in the world to provide a private jet service as part of its premium product portfolio and, since its inception just over six years ago, Qatar Executive has evolved into a leader in exclusive air charter services worldwide. Today, the company operates eight wholly-owned Bombardier private jets, comprising three Challenger 605s, four Global 5000s and a Global Express XRS – all featuring spacious cabins, the latter in a two-cabin configuration accommodating up to 13 passengers. To ensure Qatar Executive continues to offer one of the best products in the market, and to keep the private jet fleet young and modern, Qatar Executive has made significant investments in new aircraft and placed an order in May 2015 for up to 30 aircraft from Gulfstream Aerospace Corp, including firm orders and options for a combination of Gulfstream’s all-new, wide-cabin aircraft, the G500 and G600, and the flagship G650ER. The first Gulfstream G650ER will join the fleet before the end of 2015 and will offer customers the opportunity to fly non-stop from the Middle East to North America or from destinations in Asia to Africa – further, faster than any other jet of its kind. Published on travelandtourworld.com

Exponential Growth in Foreign Visitors after Expansion of e-Tourist Visa Facility

Article-7-dec-2015NEW DELHI: The e-Tourist Visa scheme notched a phenomenal growth of 1987.9 per cent in terms of tourist arrivals in October 2015 when 56,477 tourists landed in India compared to just 2,705 in the same month last year, an official said here on Wednesday. Similarly, between January-October 2015 a total of 258,182 tourists arrived on e-Tourist Visa compared to 21,995 in the same period in 2014, registering a growth of 1073.8 per cent, virtually spelling a goldmine for the country's tourism industry. This robust growth is attributed mainly to introduction of e-Tourist Visas to 113 countries as compared to earlier when only 12 countries were covered under it. In terms of arrivals in October 2015, the maximum share was grabbed by New Delhi airport with 50.93 per cent of all tourists landing there, followed by Mumbai airport (20.54 per cent). Bengaluru stood next (5.90 per cent), Chennai (5.61 per cent), Goa (4.39 per cent), Kochi (3.71 per cent), Hyderabad (2.29 per cent), Kolkata (2.23 per cent), Amritsar (1.54 per cent) and Trivandrum (1.26 per cent), according to the official. Lesser arrivals were registered at Ahmedabad (0.99 per cent), Jaipur (0.28), Tiruchinapalli (0.21), Gaya (0.08), Lucknow (0.02) and Varanasi (0.02). The top 10 originating countries for the tourist arrivals were the United Kingdom (22.80 per cent), the US (16.70), France (7.09), Germany (7.02), Australia (5.53), Canada (4.39), Russia (3.99), China (2.93), Ukraine (2.14) and Spain (2.11). Last year on November 27, the government launched the Tourist Visa on Arrival (TVoA) enabled by Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA), known as e-Tourist Visa for tourists from 113 countires at 16 big and small airports around the country. Later, this month, on November 3 (2015), the e-Tourist Visa fee structure was revised by clubbing the 113 countries into four groups for charging differential rates up to $60 for different categories and bank charges slashed from $2 to just 2.5 per cent of the e-Tourist Visa fees. Published on ndtv.com

Bangladesh: Discover a unique experience

Article-8-dec-2015During the yearly south Asian monsoon, almost all the water collected by the Himalayas in Nepal, north/northeast India and Bhutan transits through Bangladesh on its journey to the Bay of Bengal, depositing life-giving minerals to the soil all along the Ganges Delta, the largest river delta in the world. It is here that the mountains literally crumble to the sea. This has resulted in Bangladesh's flatland alluvial topography, which is the defining characteristic of the country except in the hilly regions of the southeast and northeast. The mighty Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers are called the Padma and the Jamuna in Bangladesh, and both of these massive rivers join several other smaller tributaries to eventually become the Lower Meghna, forming the great Gangetic Delta. At its widest point near Bhola Island, the river stretches to a yawning 12km-vide breadth on its final leg towards the sea. The distinctions between land, river, ocean and sky become decidedly uncertain. As the rivers have gradually shaped and reshaped this land, they have shaped the destinies of its people. It would be a mistake to picture the historic locations of Bangladesh's rivers according to current maps. For instance, the Brahmaputra used to flow east of Dhaka's present location before a major flood caused it to change course over a 30-year span during the mid-18th century. Simultaneously, the Ganges has also undergone similar changes, as it used to flow through West Bengal via the Hooghly River (today much smaller than it used to be). Nowhere is this destiny more uncertain than in the country's two disaster-prone areas. Firstly, the coast bordering the Bay of Bengal is vulnerable to tidal surges from cyclones. Secondly, the country's char areas, or river islands, are also extremely prone to seasonal flooding. These islands lie mostly in the northern reaches of the Jamuna River of Rajshahi Division; many inhabited islands are destroyed and reformed each year by flooding. Despite the fact most of the islands are little more than infertile sandbars, poverty forces millions of people to live on them under the risk that their houses could be swept away each year. In the Lower Meghna region, another area of exposure lies directly adjacent to the Bay of Bengal. Here, two processes of land loss and land accretion happen simultaneously. While the Meghna tears away strips of land beneath the villages each year, its decreasing speed causes it to deposit massive amounts of Himalayan silt into the bay, forming new land that becomes populated almost immediately despite the fact that the precious land doesn't become fully fertile for years. Some geologists even claim that Bangladesh is 'gaining landmass', putting the supposed doomsday scenario of climate change into question. Where the land ends, the Bay of Bengal begins. Most of the sea adjacent to Bangladesh is quite shallow, a result of sedimentation from the region's mighty rivers. About 50km of the coast from the Sundarbans Forest is a deep undersea canyon known as the 'Swatch-of-No-Ground', where the sea floor drops to a depth of over 1,200m at some points. The swatch transports nutrient-rich sediments from the continental shelf to the deep-sea alluvial fan making up the bay. The abundance of these nutrients results in a relatively abundant population of cetaceans at the swatch. In terms of forest cover, Bangladesh's natural places are sadly few and far between. While the world's largest mangrove forest at Sundarban remains protected, many of Bangladesh's other national parks have not fared so well. Thankfully, with increasing stability and economic development, conservation programmes are finally starting to get off the ground. As you start travelling eastward, Bangladesh's geographic portrait takes on a new perspective. While most of the country lies at or just above sea level, the flat landscape gives way to low undulating hills in the Chittagong Hill Tracts and the hilly regions of Sylhet, some of which climb to 1,000m above sea level. This landscape is the result of the Indian tectonic plate pushing up against the Asian landmass, the same phenomenon that has resulted in the creation of the Himalayas. Visits to this area offer an experience of the true diversity that Bangladesh possesses, both geographically and culturally. Finally, the region's last major significant geographical feature is a massive 120krn-long strip of beach lining tile internal eastern coastline of Bangladesh, said to be the longest natural beach in the world (at 254km, Brazil's Cassino Beach is longer, but according to the Guinness Book of World Records, it is partly manmade). Starting at Cox's Bazaar, the white sand stretches all the way down to the Teknaf Peninsula, poking up again briefly at the coral reef island of St Martin's. Most of this beach lies undeveloped except at Cox's Bazaar, where native mangrove forests have long been replaced by jungles of hotels. Published on traveldailynews.com

Online Education Hub partners with Leeds Beckett University.

OEH banner 1 We are pleased to announce that students who have achieved the Level 5 in Hospitality/ Tourism Management or the Level 7 Postgraduate Diploma in Hospitality and Tourism Management can now go directly to Leeds Beckett University to continue their studies. Once you have achieved one of the above mentioned qualifications, students from CTH and Online Education Hub can register directly with Leeds Beckett University in order to continue their studies. Depending on the CTH qualifications students complete, they will be able to study the BSc in Travel Business Management Top up, or study the MSc Travel Business Leadership. Both courses will give you the opportunity to move into leadership and management in the travel industry. Leeds Beckett University will help students to realise their career ambitions, they place employability at the centre of learning and you will be well prepared for the world of work. Online Education Hub is an online provider who believes that education is no longer a one-time event but a lifelong experience. Education should be less passive (no long lectures) and more active and interactive, while being convenient to the busy lifestyles in today’s world. If you are interested in one of these courses, please have a look at Leeds Beckett University’s website and learn more about it: http://www.onlineeducationhub.org/leeds-beckett-university

InterContinental Hotel Group (IHG) and the Confederation of Tourism & Hospitality (CTH) are engaged in providing gold-standard Hotel Leadership Qualifications to IHG employees worldwide.

article-10-dec-2015For the last year, CTH’s Leadership qualifications have offered students the opportunity to integrate the key essence on their work and leadership traits into their day to day jobs. Through these joint qualifications, IHG professionals can work with their colleagues to develop their understanding of the principle leadership theories and concepts whilst applying knowledge to their work at IHG. The CTH Level 3 and 4 Diplomas in Hospitality Leadership are accredited by the relevant qualification frameworks, have government approval and have been certified as being fit for purpose and high standard. Both organisations are very satisfied with the structure, content, level and assessment requirements ascribed to these qualifications which will enhance the professionalism and career prospects of IHG’s staff and will enhance their professionalism in the industry. Each CTH Diploma in Hospitality Leadership is a 120 Credit programme with a recommended 180 Guided Learning Hours. Learners must achieve all six 20-Credit units in order to achieve the qualification. The learning outcomes of each programme include setting goals, planning and prioritising work, driving change, driving continuous improvement, effective performance assessment, supporting others, understanding motivation, coaching and teamwork. In an increasingly demanding and sophisticated industry, these programmes give a real competitive advantage to IHG associates who will develop high-quality talent in order to progress in their hotel careers. Download the Brochure

2016 - the Year of the English Garden

By Ulpa Chauhan Article-11-dec-2015 Article-11-2-dec-2015Domestic tourism is crucial for any country and not long ago I wrote a post about the importance of this. I recently attended an event organised by Visit England promoting 2016 as the Year of the English Garden. Visit England is the National Tourist Board for England and work in partnership with the industry. There are plenty of activities and events going on around the country with lots for the children to get involved in whilst everyone (including you) learning something new along the way. I most certainly did! Below is my list of the top things to do in England in 2016 so that you can start planning for next year well in advance:


The 100th anniversary of Roald Dahl’s birth (13 September) Lots of activities planned to celebrate, but most notably a film of the book BFG directed by Steven Spielberg due out in July. The 90th anniversary of the first volume of Winnie the Pooh (October) Set in the Ashdown Forest in Sussex, there will also be an official anthology sequel to coincide. The 300th anniversary of Lancelot ‘Capability Brown’, Countrywide (30 August) Arguably England’s greatest landscape gardener, known for stripping back overly-manicured lawns to naturally desirable, green and pleasant lands, Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown will be celebrated throughout 2016, which marks the 300th anniversary of his birth. More than 200 sites across England are associated with Capability Brown, and green-fingered travellers can take their pick from a whole range of celebrations at various locations. The 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, Warwickshire (23 April) William Shakespeare - arguably England’s most renowned playwright – will be commemorated in his home county in 2016, to mark 400 years since his death, and to honour his timeless legacy. His family home in Stratford upon Avon, New Place, will be transformed and reimagined for a 21st century audience in April, telling the missing story of Shakespeare’s mature years as a successful writer and citizen of his home town. The 150th anniversary of Beatrix Potter’s birth, Cumbria (28 July) Born in London in 1866, Helen Beatrix Potter is famed for her imaginative children’s books, most notably The Tale of Peter Rabbit, and spent the majority of her adult life on her farm, Hill Top in the Lake District. Special events will take place at various National Trust venues in 2016, including a children’s literary festival at Wray Castle, the first place Beatrix visited in the Lake District, with a brand new guide to tell the story of her life, story-telling events and of course a special birthday party on the 28th July. Willows Activity Farm, near St Albans, will unveil a brand new ‘Peter Rabbit™ Adventure Playground’ on 2 April, featuring a Peter Rabbit Secret Treehouse, Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle Kitchen and Lily Bobtail Nature Discovery. 50th anniversary of England winning the World Cup A series of events will take place across the country to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the English football team winning the World Cup. It has been half a century since the tournament, hosted in England, which resulted in Bobby Moore lifting the trophy on 30 July 1966. The commemorations will celebrate the cultural aspects of the Football World Cup, with a major event being planned. The 950th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings The towns of Hastings and Battle will be celebrating the 950th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings with a programme of cultural events and Norman-based activities throughout the year, including a special edition of its annual re-enactment of the battle, which takes place every October on the battlefield lying behind Battle Abbey (English Heritage).

Attraction Openings

March 2016: Magic Garden, London Set to be an innovative and sensory experience, Hampton Court Palace has teamed up with a Chelsea Flower Show winning gardener to help plan the new Magic Garden, due to open on the 24th March. The garden will be an adventure playground with history at its heart and will feature a jousting arena, five tiltyard towers and a fire breathing dragon. ArcelorMittal Orbit slide, London The world’s longest and tallest tunnel slide is set to open at the ArcelorMittal Orbit in London’s Olympic Park next spring. Starting at 80 metres high, it will spiral around the tower five times before a final 50 metre stretch down to the ground. The ride will cost £5 and the descent will take about 40 seconds, with transparent sections on the ride for visitors to enjoy the view. Re-opening of Hastings Pier Following repeated fire devastation, Hastings Pier was finally closed in 2008 due to structural concerns. Now, after an £11.4 million donation from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Hastings Pier is set to be completely transformed into “one of the coolest-looking piers in the world”. A Gala opening will take place in summer, following its early opening in March, and the pier will host circuses, plays, concerts, film festivals, farmers’ markets, urban sports, a restaurant and more. Etches Collection, Dorset A brand new multi-million pound museum is under construction in Kimmeridge, housing a collection of Jurassic Coast fossils. Set to showcase the life’s work of local collector Steve Etches, it will tell the story of life and death under the seas of Kimmeridge over 150 million years ago. The state-of-the-art space will include an exhibition gallery, with CGI projections, transforming it into an aquarium in the blink of an eye. It is due to open in early summer 2016. Brighton i360 At 162 metres high and with an observation pod rising to 138 metres, the i360 will be Britain's highest observation tower outside London – taller even than the London Eye. Built on the axis of the Grade II* Regency Square, the site will also have a large beachside cafe/brasserie and an exhibition space focused on displaying work by local artists. It is due to open in summer 2016. Ulpa Chauhan Yummy Love Journey www.yummylovejourney.com @yumluvjourney www.facebook.com/yummylovejourney Profile: Ulpa Chauhan writes a travel blog called Yummy Love Journey that focuses on families, good food and sharing inspiring articles to get us all to think different. She has been working in the travel industry for 20 years and previously worked for British Airways Travel Shops, United Airlines and currently as a Business Development Executive for CTH.