TRAVEL Extra’s Sunday Supplement: Simmonscourt swingers & FITUR is bright

ITAA President Martin Skelly addresses the Irish Travel Industry Awards in the Mansion House, Dublin.

ITAA President Martin Skelly addresses the Irish Travel Industry Awards in the Mansion House, Dublin.


7 things you need to know about travel this week:

  • A4E airline association ‘strike’ up a conversation
  • Happy faces at FITUR, Madrid
  • Dublin Airport re-announces end-of-year figures
  • How long is a Jamaican minute?
  • Thirty-seven ambassadors attend HWS reception
  • Chuffed: Eoghan Corry accepts lifetime achievement award from travel industry
  • Last chance to see Dublin Holiday World Show 2016

Travel Extra TV

video of week january 24 2016Video of the week: Teerawong was motorcycling through Khao Yai National Park when he came across a surprise traveller… Watch here.

  • A Spanish filmmaker videos himself climbing on top of a moving train. Watch here.
  • See Tourism Ireland’s promo for Ireland’s Ancient East. Watch here.
  • Golfer Martin Kaymer takes the Etihad Airways simulator challenge. Watch here.
  • Qatar Airways’ cabin crew on the first flight from Doha to Durban. Watch here. Mr Potato Head, who features in the Hasbro kids pack, flies with Qatar. Watch here.
  • Introducing New York’s cuddliest grizzly bear. Watch here.
  • Airbus’s year in review: Highlights from 2015. Watch here

Today, Sunday, is the final day of Holiday World at the RDS Simmonscourt. Family admission with any number of children is €7.

shannon show

Behind the Headlines
schiphol A4E

Strikes. No prizes for guessing what is first on the agenda of A4E: the new European airline association founded by Michael O’Leary, Willie Walsh, Alexandre de Juniac, Carolyn McCall, and Carsten Spohr was a call for an action plan to avoid disruptions during ATC strikes.

At a launch event in Brussels with the EU Commissioner and EU Presidency the group called for a lowering of airport charges and removing unreasonable taxes. Will it be any more effective in lobbying than the existing three European Airline Associations? Time will tell. Picture shows Michael O’Leary, Alexandre de Juniac, Carolyn McCall, Violeta Bulc, EU Commissioner for Transport, Thomas Reynaert, Willie Walsh and Carsten Spohr.

eoghan stage_4314 copyChuffed and humbled. That was the reaction of Eoghan Corry, Travel Extra’s editor, as he accepted the lifetime achievement award from the travel industry on Thursday night at the Mansion House. Listen here to Eoghan Corry’s acceptance speech Listen here to Martin Skelly’s award citation. Awards attendees joined him in a rendition of Fionnghuala while the parting glass was also sung when Eoghan Corry was called back on stage. Minister Michael Ring conveyed his congratulations at a speech during Holiday World “on behalf of the government.” See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

ambassadors_1257 copyThere were a record 37 ambassadors at the ambassadors reception at Holiday World in Simmonscourt. The first two days at the show were crammed with agents reporting the strongest series of show bookings in recent years.  See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Time was when Airbus and Boeing came to aviation conferences to flaunt the fuel efficiency of their aircraft. With the price of a barrel of oil costing less than a cocktail at one of the trendier clubs, there was not a peep about fuel efficiency at either of the air finance conferences hosted by Dublin this week. Instead they talked about noise and comfort, while Willie Walsh was at the Airline Economics conference Shelbourne talking about his new found love for second hand aircraft. His remarks on infrastructure at Dublin Airport to John Mulligan were widely reported. The 18th Annual Global Airfinance Conference at the Conference Centre (having outgrown the Four Seasons) featured Bjorn Kjos of Norwegian. Listen here to Willie Walsh speaking at the Air Finance conference.
debbie egerton nat pieper copyDelta Vice President Nat Pieper stopped by to talk to travel Extra to say how second hand wide bodies was the way to go, with prices that can be s quarter of s new aircraft cost. It costs €12-€15m to fit an aircraft and the 787s are arriving on the market. The price of new wide bodied aircraft is not coming down anytime soon and he said the IAG/Aer Lingus aircraft supply conundrum was best solved by second hand rather than leasing. Delta have added 60 seats to each of their trans-Atlantic Services this summer. Nat is pictured with Debbie Egerton.

Taleb Rifai speaksThere were happy faces at FITUR in Madrid, which is seeing a tourism boom. There were 10,000 exhibitors and just over 120,000 trade buyers at the event, which is the staging point for the Hispanic world as well as Spain, as well as what FITUR CEO Luis Gellego called 47 “full ministers.” FITUR has some of the best hospitality on offer at the circuit, and the scene was set with a star-studded Malage event in Cine Callao on the evening before the opening. Gonzalo gonzalo antonio copyCeballos conducted a series of meetings with the Spanish regions to help scale up activity in the Irish market in what will be his last year in Dublin. The fact that it was 40 years since the UNWTO moved to Madrid from Geneva was commemorated at the event. Gonzalo Ceballos is pictured with Antonio Martin from Andalusia at the event. For Luis Gallego CEO of FITUR listen here, Luis Eduardo Cotes President of IFEMA listen here, Francisco Fernandez Counsellor for Tourism in Andalucia listen here, Taleb Rifai Secretary general of UNWTO listen here, Jose Manuel Soria Spanish tourism minister listen here. Picture shows Taleb Rifai Secretary general of UNWTO speaking at FITUR in Madrid with Luis Gallego CEO of FITUR Luis Eduardo Cotes President of IFEMA, Francisco Fernandez Consellor for Tourism in Andalucia and Jose Manuel Soria Spanish tourism minister. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Kevin Toland and Paschal Donohoe, January 17 2016Dublin airport re-announced their end of year figures (up 14pc to 25m) with minister Paschal Donohoe (listen here) present. Kevin Toland (listen here) said Dublin Airport (listen here). In the question and answer session afterwards (listen here) passenger charges were due to rise 60pc to pay for the parallel runway under existing agreements, but hinted the planning permission would have to be revisited. He suggested the Cork-Boston Norwegian route was running out of time, as tickets could not be sold until clearances were achieved on the American side. Both Dublin Airport’s CEO Kevin Toland and Paschal Donohoe said everything that could be done on the Irish side. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

blue mountain cycleHow long is a Jamaican minute? As long as it takes, according to Woney the bus driver. Travel Extra’s Conor McMahon and Ellie McMahon took three-and-a-quarter Jamaican minutes to freewheel down Blue Mountain, stopping on the way to roast some coffee beans, sing with the pupils in a local primary school, and cool off in a waterfall. The bus journey to Blue Mountain brought the couple past James Bond Beach — Ian Fleming, who lived on the island, featured Jamaica in three novels and Dr No was filmed there —and through Portland Parish, where the first tourists came to Jamaica.

bob marleyConor and Ellie, guests of Thomson/Falcon Holidays, went to the hometown of the “real Rasta man” on the Zion Bus Tour. Nine Mile village is one of Jamaica’s most popular tourist attractions because it is both where Bob Marley was born and buried, and it is partially legal to consume marijuana. Marley liked to meditate with a joint in each hand: “Have you ever seen a bird fly with only one wing?” Crazy the Rastafarian tour guide reasoned. “We don’t drink and drive in Jamaica,” he said, “we smoke and fly.” See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

There was drama at Sangster International Airport, Montego Bay: Thomson’s flight from Jamaica to Birmingham was delayed for two hours on Wednesday after illegal substances were discovered onboard the aircraft.rebecca kelly award_1112 copy

Cassidy’s Travel and Fahy’s Travel won the travel agency of the year awards at the Irish Travel Industry Awards. Rebecca Kelly won the covetted supplier representative of the year award. The full list of winers: ITAA MEMBER AWARDS, Contribution to the Travel Industry Award: , Eoghan Corry, ITAA Corporate Travel Professional – Sponsored By American Airlines:, Karen Gleeson – FCm Travel Solutions, ITAA Leisure Travel Professional – Sponsored By American Airlines:, Liz Wright of Tour America, Most Innovative ITAA Member Marketing Campaign – Sponsored By American Airlines:,, ITAA Corporate Travel Agency – Sponsored By British Airways:, Atlas Travel Group, ITAA Travel Agency of the Year (under 10 employees) – Sponsored By British Airways:, Fahy Travel Worldchoice, ITAA Travel Agency of the Year (over 10 employees) – Sponsored By British Airways:, Cassidy Travel, SUPPLIERS AWARDS , Air Travel Category – Sponsored By Dublin Airport, Airline to Europe: Aer Lingus, Business Class Airline to Europe: British Airways, Airline to North America: Aer Lingus, Long Haul Airline: Emirates, Tour Operator Category – Sponsored By Hertz, European Sun Tour Operator: Sunway, Escorted Tour Operator: Insight Vacations, Specialist Tour Operator: The Travel Corporation, Ski Tour Operator: Crystal Holidays, Long Haul Operator: Classic Resorts, Cruise & Ferry Category – Sponsored By: Holiday World Show, General Cruise Company: Royal Caribbean International, Ultra Luxury Cruise Company: Silversea Cruises, Specialist Cruise Company (including River): Uniworld, Ferry Company: Irish Ferries, Agency Services Provider Category – Sponsored by Riviera Travel, Technology Provider: Amadeus, Car Hire Company: Hertz, Travel Insurance Provider: Blue Insurance, Tourist Board: Spanish Tourist Board, Supplier Support Team: MSC Cruises, Accommodation-Only Provider: Bookabed, Supplier Representative: Rebecca Kelly – MSC Cruises, Destinations Category – Sponsored By Turkish Airlines – Sponsored By Turkish Airlines – Sponsored By Turkish Airlines, Worldwide City Destination: New York, European City Destination: Barcelona, Ski Destination: Austria, Summer Sun Destination: Spain, Winter Sun Destination: Lanzarote, Worldwide Theme Park: Universal Orlando Resort, Worldwide Hotel Chain: Hilton,

travel writer awards_1282 copyIsabel Conway was awarded Travel Extra Travel Writer of the year at a ceremony in Thomas Prior House on Friday. Award winners were: Young journalist sponsored by Falcon Holidays: Jamie Blake Knox, Sunday Independent, Home holiday sponsored by Failte Ireland: Yvonne Gordon Sunday Times , Northern Ireland sponsored by NITB: Mal Rogers, Irish Times, ,, Spain sponsored by the Spanish Tourist Board: Pol O Conghaile Nat Geo Traveller, , Broadcast sponsored by Cassidy Travel: Mary Fanning RTE Nationwide, , Ski sponsored by Topflight: Catherine Murphy Sunday Business Post, , New Media sponsored by Clliackandgo: Deirdre Mullins RTE Ten, , Sun Breaks sponsored by Sunway: Conor Power Irish Examiner , Short breaks sponsored by Malta Tourist Authority: Conor Pope, Irish Times, , Long haul sponsored by Turkish Airlines: Isabel Conway Sunday Business Post, Overall sponosred by The Travel Corporation: lsabel Conway, Irish Examiner. Listen here to Ambassador Jose Marie Rodriguez speaking at the event. Listen here to Gonzalo Ceballos reflection on his time in Ireland. Listen here to Martin Skelly.speaking at the Travel Writer awards.

Travel Trade

Niall McDonnellNiall McDonnell returned to the industry to head up the new Irish operation of Classic Collection Holidays, who have already been voted best luxury operator at the north’s Travel and Tourism Awards. Nick Munday who first chartered flights to Tunisia, Ibiza and Andorra for Panorama in the 1990s, is joining forces once again with Niall McDonnell offering luxury tailor-made holidays to traditionally popular resorts in Europe and North Africa.

John Grehan is joining The Travel Corporation in a supporting role to promote Insight Vacations and Uniworld River Cruise products.

martin skelly h&s 1400The ITAA reported that Irish travel agents experienced a 40pc increase in holiday enquires.

Travel Department, who are celebrating 20 years in business, reported strong sales figures in January with increased advance bookings for late summer and early autumn with Italy, Spain, Iceland, and Portugal the to performing destinations.

Irish Travel Trade News launched a new Online Travel Directory for Ireland.

TIGS outings for 2016 are: Thursday March 10: Portmarnock Links: Sponsor: Amadeus. Thursday April 21: Druid’s Glen (President’s Prize): Sponsor: Etihad Thursday May 26: Mount Juliet and overnight: Sponsor: Turkish Airlines Wednesday June 15: Luttrelstown: Sponsor: Travel Corporation. Tuesday September 6: Killeen Castle (Captain’s Prize): Sponsor: Travelport Thursday October 20: The Castle (AGM): Sponsor: Travel Extra.

Newstalk Mary Mckenna Eoghan Corry Jan 16 2016 copyPicture shows Mary McKenna and Eoghan Corry talking travel with Pat Kenny on Newstalk.

On The Go Tours a tour operator specialising in locally led group tours and tailor-made holidays to worldwide destinations unveiled a selection of new tours across Eastern Europe, following a surge in demand from customers.

Shandon Travel are seeking a website content manager for a new website across our main brands, Shandon Travel; Sayit Travel; familyholidaycentre and Michael Doorley says they require an experienced travel person, in consultation with our management team, to maintain and distribute on a regular basis up-to-date and relevant website content. Familiarity with all aspects of travel including dynamic packaging; cruises; tour operator packages; scheduled and online airline bookings; destination knowledge is a basic requirement. a three day week will suffice preferably in our office in cork but home working will be considered depending on communications facility and skills. remuneration will depend on experience and computer skills. immediate employment. Contact or call 087 2228533.

Ireland - Save €150pp copyNI Travel Awards will take place on October 21.

Travel Department reported that sales for last week were up 50pc YOY. Bookings show the three most popular months for travel are March, May and April. Spain and Portugal are performing very strong, as are Iceland and Italy.

Wendy Wu Tours is celebrating its first year in Ireland by offering €150pp off full price tours booked by close of business January 31. Call 0818 776 380. New products on the Irish market for 2016 include the launch of Discovery Tours packages and the Exclusive Collection, and new tours in South America and South Africa.

Lowcostholidays said its booking app has been downloaded 40,000 times.


hotel doolinHotel Doolin was runner up in the IBEC Environment Awards 2016.

Sad news. We are sorry to report the death of Des O’Connell, who was manager in Jury’s hotel in Ballsbridge for many years and then director of accommodation and catering in Trinity College. He initiated the use of accommodation for conferences with third level colleges around the country and set up a charity called Outreach Moldova where he spend a lot of time working on in recent years. Ar dheis De go raibh a anam.

A fire broke out at the Ritz hotel in Paris, which was due to reopen in the next few weeks following a €200m renovation.

  • TripAdvisor’s top 10 Irish hotels for 2016: 1 Harvey’s Point, Co Donegal. 2 Ashford Castle, Cong, Co Mayo. 3 The Merrion Hotel, Dublin. 4 Castle Durrow, Co Laois. 5 The River Lee Hotel, Cork. 6 Adare Manor, Co Limerick. 7 Hayfield Manor, Cork. 8 Dromoland Castle, Co Clare. 9 The Brehon, Killarney. 10 Ballygarry House Hotel, Tralee.
  • TripAdvisor’s top 10 small Irish hotels for 2016: 1 Castlewood House, Dingle. 2 Lough Lein Country House, Killarney. 3 Bellingham Castle, Castlebellingham, Co Louth. 4 Heaton’s Guesthouse, Dingle. 5 Ballyfin Demesne, Co Laois. 6 MacNean House & Restaurant, Co Cavan. 7 The Ross, Killarney. 8 Brook Lane Hotel, Kenmare. 9 Rosleague Manor, Letterfrack, Co Galway. 10 Strandhill Lodge & Suites, Co Sligo.
  • Belfast City Council agreed to back plans for two hotel projects in the city centre, a new 179-room hotel on Hope Street and an extension to the Ten Square Hotel.
  • Dalata Hotel Group bought the Clarion Hotel in Sligo for €13.1m.
  • Hostelworld grew by 21pc in the second half of 2015, up 17pc on a full year basis.
  • The Luxury Collection Hotels & Resorts will open a Starwood Hotels & Resorts brand hotel in Tokyo in July.


  • Europa-Park is to open a new Irish-themed area which will open later this year.
    europa park
  • Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas completed its convention centre expansion
  • The UN World Tourism Organisation reported that the number of international tourists was up 4.4pc YOY to a record 1.18bn.
  • A tourist ferry caught fire in New Zealand. All 53 passengers and seven crew were safely rescued.
  • A survey by Expedia found that travellers consider their smartphones the most indispensable item to carry, ahead of their toothbrush, deodorant and driver’s license.
  • Some light flurries of snow kept pistes fresh in the northern Alps.
  • New York City mayor Bill de Blasio and NYC & Company reported 58.3m visitors last year, up by 1.8m visitors YOY. This includes 12.3m international visitors.
  • Designers Collective-LOK installed a 10ft Heart of Hearts installation and kissing booths in Times Square in anticipation of Valentine’s Day.
  • ittle change has taken place across Europe over the past few days, with only a few light flurries of snow keeping pistes fresh in the northern Alps.

Food and Wine

NI Year of Food & Drink- Breakfast Month 2 copyAs part of Northern Ireland’s Year of Food & Drink 2016, January is Breakfast Month and next Friday January 29 (Fry-Day) commuters at Dublin’s Connolly Station will be given breakfast courtesy of TNI and Co Down’s Krazi Baker Mark Douglas.


EU Aviation SummitThe Dutch Presidency hosted the EU Aviation Summit, where topics included Smarter Regulation and Connectivity and the EU Aviation Strategy.

Marian Pilgrimages are to run direct charter services from Dublin to Tel Aviv. Two flights a week will include difrect departyures from Dublin, Cork, Shannon and Belfast. The first flight wil depart from Dublin at 10am on October w2nd and 1pm on October 3rds. Marian Pilgrimages as 20 staff and ofices in Dublin Boston and London, servicing 20,000 pilgrims a year from Irerland, England and USA. See

Air France/KLM was voted MRO of the year at the Aviation 100 Awards gala in Dublin as part of the Growth Frontiers conference, hosted by Airline Economics, voted by 10,000 industry peers spread across the airline, banking, leasing, and engine-brokerage sectors.

Saad Hammad, CEO of Flybe, and Gheorghe Racaru, DG of Blue Air, were elected to the board of the European Regions Airline Association at its board meeting in Dublin.

Air France-KLM completed the installation of 765 next generation self-service kiosks across 50 European airports.

Ryanair increased its business fast-track service to 25 airports: Birmingham, Budapest, Brussels-Z, Edinburgh, Eindhoven, Glasgow, Hamburg, Malaga, Rome F, Stockholm S, and Stuttgart. The service is available in Dublin but not yet in Shannon or Knock.

Ryanair’s 76 cabin crew bases agreed a five year pay deal.

Delta allows turkeys on bvoard flights and other strangel tales from the therapy animal kingdom (read here).

aer lingus tailAer Lingus announced an extra 6,000 seats available over the summer period from Shannon to Boston. Shannon Airport reported 5pc growth in 2015 to 1,714,872 with its third successive years of passenger increases.

Heathrow Express launched weekend advance tickets for £5.50.

Cork Airport is set to change both of its runway designation numbers for its main runway in April due to alternations in the earth’s magnetic poles. From April 2016 the runways will be numbered as 16/34.

Etihad Airways renewed its commitment to Abu Dhabi HSBC golf championship

Singapore Airlines announced a new capital express’ service to connect Singapore, Canberra and Wellington.

Emirates pushed back the launch of its 17 hours and 35 minutes flight from Dubai to Panama City to March 31.

droneThe Department of Transport confirmed that there are 1,200 registered drones in Ireland.

Shannon Airport carried 1.7m passengers in 2015, up 5pc YOY.

Dublin-bound flight casualties of the New York snowstorm included EI104, UA023, AA722, DL404. JFK returned to full capacity after a two hour runway closure.

Turkish Airlines cancelled over 400 flights scheduled on January 18 and 19 due to heavy snowfall in Istanbul.

Avolon is set to receive $1.25bn funding from its parent company HNA Group for expansion.

Lufthansa added two online pre-flight services. Passengers can browse and reserve in-flight shopping purchases and download ejournals for their personal devices.

Cityjet-SukhoCityjet’s Sukhoi Superjet 100 made its first flight.

Mumbai Airport’s runway was forced to close for 35 minutes after a stray dog was spotted on the runway.

Qatar Airways’ safety demo video featuring Barcelona FC was viewed 40m times on social media.

Ryanair said it will add 30 extra flights between Dublin and Birmingham for Cheltenham festival from March 15 to 18.

Concorde celebrated the 40th anniversary of its first commercial flight.

A lecture by Joe Maxwell on Fouga Magister jet trainer this week in Wynn’s Hotel was well-attended by former practitioners on the ground and in the air. The Fouga Magister jet trainer was operated by the Irish Air Corps 1974-1999 and the talk covered the history of the aircraft from the first encounter by Air Corps personnel of the type in the Congo in 1961 to the winning aerobatic display flown by the Silver Swallows in 1997 at the Royal International Air Tattoo.


stenarosslareStena Europe, Stena Horizon and Stena Flavia took over three berths of Rosslare Europort in advance of Stena’s £4.4m refit of their Irish Sea fleet.

Celebrity Cruises Travel Agent Achievement Awards.Picture shows Dominic Burke accepting the consortium award at the Celebrity Cruises Travel Agent Achievement Awards: Dondra Ritzenthaler, Sarah Harraghy, Dominic Burke of Travel Centres) Jo Rzymowska and Lisa Lutoff-Perlo. Trailfinders won the top agency Celebrity Cruises Travel Agent Achievement Awards.award, picture shows: Dondra Ritzenthaler, Sarah Harraghy, Sean Atton of Trailfinders, Jo Rzymowska, and Lisa Lutoff-Perlo.

MSC and NCL became the latest cruise lines to suspend port calls in Turkey. Cruise ships will call to Greek islands, including Santorini, instead.

Experts from different research fields selected by the Palace Museum will be invited to give lectures of Chinese history and culture to guests on Ovation of the Seas.

Watch here Ovation of the Seas construction at Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany.

irish travel industry trade show banner

Deal Watch

Falcon deal watchFalcon offers: 7 nights all inclusive 4* Holiday Village, Kos from €2,579 2+1, from €3,669 2+2, depart June 25. 7 nights all inclusive 3* Lanzasur Splashworld, Playa Blanca, Lanzarote from €499pps, depart January 31. 7 nights all inclusive 3* IFA Interclub Atlantic, San Agustin, Gran Canaria from €529pps, depart February 20. 7 nights self catering 3* Globales Tamaimo Tropical, Puerto De Santiago, Tenerife from €289pps, depart February 26. 14 nights all inclusive 4* Grand Bahia Principe, Jamaica from €1,859pps travel June, from €1,989pps travel July. Visit or call 1850 45 35 45.

thomson deal watchThomson offers: 7 nights all inclusive 4* Suntopia Tropical, Sarigerme, Turkey from €2,129 2+1, from €2,869 2+2, depart June 27. 7 nights all inclusive 5* Atlantica Aegean Blue, Kolymbia, Rhodes from €2,479 2+1, from €3,489 2+2, depart June 15. 7 nights half board 5* Melia Salinas, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote from €699pp, depart January 30. 7 nights self catering 3* Cay Beach Princess, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria from €359pp, depart February 20. 7 nights half board 3* Sol Princesa Dacil, Los Cristianos, Tenerife from €659pp, depart February 5. 14 nights all inclusive 5* Riu Palace Mexico, Cancun from €2,279pp, depart July 14. 7 nights half board 4* Florida Hotel, Fuengirola, Costa Del Sol from €499pp, depart June 19. 7 nights full board Moorish Delights cruise on board Thomson Majesty from €959pp, depart June 14. Visit or call 1850 45 35 45.

Brittany Ferries is offering 15pc off accommodation and return ferry sailings to France on bookings made by February 9. Click here for more. Visit or call 021 427 7801.

Sunway cruise offers: 9 nights Caribbean cruise on MSC Divinia from €1,150pp incl. 2 nights pre stay in Miami, depart June 3. 7 nights Italy, France and Spain cruise on Celebrity Equinox from €1,369pp, depart June 25. 10 nights Baltic cruise on Norwegian Star from €1,479pp incl. 1 night pre stay in Copenhagen and ultimate drinks package, depart May 23. 8 nights Orlando and Caribbean cruise on Royal Caribbean Freedom of the Seas from €1,729pp incl. 1 night pre stay in Orlando and select drinks package. Visit or call 01 231 1800.

Aer Lingus is offering direct flights to North American destinations from €245 each way. Book by February 15 for travel from April 1 to September 30. Visit

Celebrity Cruise/Tour America offers: 7 night 5* Mediterranean cruise on Celebrity Equinox from €1,469pp incl. drinks and return flights, depart June 25. 11 night 5* Greek Islands cruise on Celebrity Reflection from €1,639pp incl. drinks and return flights, depart April 25.

Royal Caribbean’s All In offers: 7 night Western Mediterranean family cruise on Harmony of the Seas from €1,739pp incl. return flights, depart July 31. 7 nights England to Barcelona cruise on Ovation of the Seas from €1,255pp incl. return flights, depart May 3. 7 nights Arabian Gulf cruise from €1,229pp incl. return flights, depart February 15. Visit or call 1800 555 604.

Wendy Wu Tours is offering a 15-day China Explorer tour from €3,690pp incl. a Yangtze cruise, visit to Pingle town, a hike on the Great Wall, meet a panda at Bifengxia and a Shanghai cuisint tour. 20-day China Trailblazer tour from €4,390pp incl. visit to the Terracotta Warriors, hike through Bifeng Gorge, cruise down Li River, Tai Chi session in Yangshuo and explore the Jinshanling Section of the Great Wall. Prices fully inclusive, covering flights, domestic transport, tour guide, meals, accommodation, entrance fees and visa fees. Visit

Click and Go offers: 7 nights self catering 4* Estrela do Vau Aparthotel, Praia do Vau, the Algarve from €239pp incl. return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel in April. 7 nights B&B 5* Hotel Croatia, Cavtat, Dubrovnik Riviera, Croatia from €479pp incl. return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel in April. 7 nights self catering 4* Sunset Beach Club Apartments, Benalmadena, Costa del Sol from €389pp incl. return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel in April. 3 nights 4* Zenit Lisbon Hotel, Lisbon from €199pp incl. return flights, airport taxes and charges, depart February. UFC195 packages to see Conor McGregor fight in Vegas in March: 4 nights 4* Westgate Resort from €645pp, 5 nights from €695 incl. flights. 4 nights 4* MGM Grand from €895pp, 5 nights from €965pp incl. flights. Visit or call 01 539 7777.

Topflight January sale offers, ends midnight January 31: 7 nights self catering 3* Daina Apartments, Arinsal, Andorra from €319pps, depart January 31. 7 nights B&B 3* Pension Hochwimmer, Zell am See, Austria from €419pps, depart January 30. 7 nights self catering 3* Résidence La Riviere, Chamonix, France from €399pps, depart February 6. 7 nights B&B 3* Hotel Zodiac, Livigno, Italy from €589pps, depart February 6. Prices include return flights, return transfers, taxes and Topflight resort rep service. Visit or call 01 240 1700.

Lowcostholidays offers: 7 nights self catering 4* Balaia Golf Village, the Algarve from €285pp, depart May 11. 7 nights B&B 4* Hotel Beatriz Playa & Spa, Lanzarote from €450pp, depart May 10. 7 nights all inclusive 4* Hotel Royal Al Andalus, Costa Del Sol from €1,595 2+1, depart June 15. 7 nights all inclusive 3* HTOP Molinos Park from €1,250 2+1, depart June 15. 7 nights 3* Rosen Inn International, Orlando from €1,935 2+1, depart June 17. 7 nights all inclusive 4* Flamingo Cancun Resort, Mexico from €1,250pp, depart June 17. Visit or call 01 485 3835.

Lowcostbeds family offers, based on 7 nights 2+1 sharing, depart June 24: 3* Albuferia, Portugal from €13pppn. 3* HTOP Molinos Park Hotel, Salou from €17pppn. 3* Santa Ponsa, Majorca from €17pppn self catering. 3* Fuengirola Myramar, Costa del Sol from €19pppn self catering. Visit

tourism ni deal watchTourism NI offers: 2 nights Dunadry Hotel, Antrim from £89.95pps incl. meal on evening of choice, available until April 17, call (028) 9443 4343. 2 nights B&B Corr’s Corner Hotel, Newtownabbey from £99pps incl. one evening meal, available midweek until April 17, call (028) 9084 9221. 1 night B&B Roe Park Resort, Limavady from £59pps incl. one evening meal, available until April 17, call (028) 7772 2222.

The Lodge at Ashford Castle is offering 1 night B&B from €159 per room, 2 nights B&B from €225 per room incl. dinner, available until March 31. Visit or call 094 954 5400.


clare dot ieClare Tourism hosted its annual networking event featuring presentations from the Fleadh Cheoil committee, Failte Ireland and Clare Tourism, the launch of its new brand and redesign of its new website

Tony Lenehan, formerly of Fáilte Ireland and the man behind the Optimus Awards, is the new Chair of Kildare Fáilte.

In what describes as the Star Wars affect, global searches for Co. Kerry up more than 30pc year-on-year, searches for Co Kerry from the US up more than 60pc compared to the same period last year and there is a 160pc increase in searches for Co. Kerry from England

See for more video.

Email to have your say or it is @TravelExtraIre on Twitter if that’s your bag.

Upcoming events of interest to the trade


  • Jan 22-29 ASEAN Tourism Forum, Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar
  • Jan 28-Feb 1 FITUR, Madrid
  • Jan 29-31 SATTE New Delhi
  • Jan 29-Feb 1 Destinations, Olympia, London
  • Feb 10-13
    Go West Summit, Colorado Springs
  • Feb 10-11
    Mediterranean Tourism Market, Tel Aviv
  • Feb 12-14 BIT, Milan
  • Feb Utazas, Budapest
  • Feb 23-24 IHF Conference, Ballyconnell
  • Feb 25-Mar 1 BTL, LIsbon
  • Mar 4-6 ITB, Berlin
  • Mar 6-8 Guangzhou International Travel Fair
  • Mar 9-12 Cruise shipping Miami
  • Mar 16-18 GIBTM, Abu Dhabi
  • Mar 18-21 MITT, Moscow
  • Mar 19-22 Tur, Gothenburg
  • Mar 24-27 Tianguis Turistico, Acapulco
  • Mar 27-28 Skål National Convention Ireland, Cork
  • Mar 31-Apr 1 Rendez Vous France, Paris
  • Apr Meitheal, Dublin
  • Apr 12-18 Mountain Travel Symposium, Whistler
  • Apr 14-16 COTTM Beijing
  • Apr 15-16 WTTC Global Summit, Madrid
  • Apr 15-17 WTM Africa, Capetown
  • Apr 21-22 Social Travel Summit, Hamburg
  • Apr 22-23 Visit Scotland Expo, Aberdeen
  • Apr 22-24 WTM South America, Sao Paolo
  • Apr 24-25 ITAA AGM & Exhibition, Citywest
  • Apr 26-28 Germany Travel Market, Erfurt and Weimar 
  • Apr 27-30 ATM, Dubai
  • May 5-7 Fitcuba, Jardines del Rey.
  • May 7 Bookabed cork –
  • May 6 andalucia golf powers court –
  • May 9-12 World Travel Fair Shanghai
  • May 9-11 Indaba, Durban
  • May 19-21 IMEX, Frankfurt
  • May 20-27 Trenz New Zealand, Wellington
  • May 26-29 Rendez-vous Canada, Niagara Falls
  • May 30-June 3 2015 IPW 2015 Orlando
  • June 3-5 TTM Plus, Bangkok
  • June 15-21 Paris Air show
  • June 21-24 ATE, Melbourne
  • Sept Travelmart S America, TBA
  • Sept PATA Travel Mart, TBA
  • Sept Top Resa 2015, Paris
  • Sept FITA Mexico City
  • Oct 6-9 Adventure Travel World Summit, Namibia
  • Oct 18-23 Skål World Congress, Kenya coast
  • Nov 2-5 WTM 2015, London
  • Nov 17-19 EIBTM 2015, Barcelona
  • Nov 30-Dec 3 Travel South, Charlotte
  • Nov 30 Launch of Tourism Ireland’s 2016 Marketing Plans, Dublin
  • Nov 30-Dec 3 Travel South, Charlotte
  • Nov 30-Dec 3 International Luxury Travel Market Cannes
  • Dec 4-5 Travel Centres Conference, Lyrath Hotel
  • Dec 10 World Tourism Forum Mediterranean meeting Belek
  • Dec 11 The Travel Corporation’s 5th birthday Trade Christmas Lunch, The Residence, Dublin
  • 2017
  • Jan 20-22 2017 Holiday World. Titanic Exhibition Centre, Belfast
  • Jan 27-29 2017 Holiday World, RDS Simmonscourt, Dublin
  • June 3-7 2017 IPW (Pow Wow), Washington DC
  • 2018
  • Jan 19-21 2018 Holiday World. Titanic Exhibition Centre, Belfast
  • Jan 26-28 2018 Holiday World, RDS Simmonscourt, Dublin
  • May 19-23 2018 IPW (Pow Wow), Denver
  • 2019 – 2024
  • Jan 18-20 2019 Holiday World. Titanic Exhibition Centre, Belfast
  • Jan 25-27 2019 Holiday World, RDS Simmonscourt, Dublin
  • June 1-5 2019 IPW (Pow Wow), Anaheim
  • May 30 –June 3 2020 IPW (Pow Wow), Las Vegas
  • April 24-28 2021 IPW (Pow Wow), Chicago
  • June 4-8 2022 IPW (Pow Wow), Orlando
  • May 20-23, 2023 IPW (Pow Wow), San Antonio
  • May 4-8, 2024 IPW (Pow Wow), Los Angeles

Previous editions of Travel Extra’s Sunday Supplement: 
Nov 29Nov 22Nov 15Nov 8Nov 1

Oct 25Oct 18Oct 11Oct 4

Sept 27Sept 20Sept 13Sept 6

Aug 30Aug 23Aug 16Aug 9Aug 2

July 26July 19July 12July 5

June 28June 21June 14June 7

May 31May 24May 17May 10May 3

Apr 25Apr 18Apr 11Apr 4

Mar 29Mar 22Mar 15Mar 8Mar 1

Feb 22Feb 15Feb 8Feb 1

Jan 25Jan 18Jan 11Jan 4


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