TRAVEL Extra’s Sunday Supplement: Doublin Double for Dublin AND Shannon at Routes in Chengdu

Aggy and Paul Carty of Guinness Stroehouse experience a boat trip on the Shannon prior to the Irish Boat Rental Association Event in Carrick on Shannon, September 29 2016

Aggie and Paul Carty of Guinness Storehouse experience a boat trip on the Shannon prior to the Irish Boat Rental Association Event in Carrick-on-Shannon, September 29 2016




  • Tour America turns 21 & launches luxury cruises
  • Monarch flies close to the wind but survives
  • Delta move in on Dublin-Boston with narrowbody
  • Aer Lingus say 50pc of Hartford passengers are connectors 
  • Dublin & Shannon win Routes Awards in Chengdu
  • Suppliers fly in for Sunway’s 50th celebrations
  • Virgin and Bedsonline strengthen ties
  • CSO says 5m left Ireland: but do the figures add up?
  • Will Heaneyboppers put Bellaghy on world tourism rap?
  • Shannon boat rental companies see waters rise again
  • Tourism NI fears Brexit recession and turns south
  • Michigan Lieutenant Governor leads trade mission

Travel Extra TV

  • screen-shot-2016-10-01-at-10-53-47Video of the week: Passengers on board a Qantas flight from Sydney to Singapore were treated to a classical concert at 40,000 feet performed by musicians from the Australian World Orchestra. Watch here.
  • It was orchestra week for Qatar Airways as well, who invited musicians to perform at Hamad International Airport. Watch here.
  • See Airbus’ promo for its micro-devices, which record wind data. The aircraft manufacturer teamed up with Oracle Team USA to see how the sensors are used on their racing catamarans. Watch here.
  • This adorable, young Irish dancer on holiday in Galway went viral this week. Watch here.
  • Even monkeys need a spa day. Watch here.
  • Terrifying footage from Taiwan showing a scaffolding collapse. Watch here.
  • Introducing the robot room service butler. Watch here.
  • Ryanair shows its support for Team Europe at the Ryder Cup. Watch here.

Behind the Headlines

Getting in before Norwegian, perhaps? Delta announced Dublin’s first new trans-Atlantic route for 2017, Boston with a daily B757-200 from May 26 to October 28, competing with Aer Lingus’s double daily A330. Boston is one of the most attractive transAtlantic routes as it is effectively a short-haul routes from either side. DL 155 will depart Dublin at 10.15am and arrive in Boston at 12.41pm. DL 154  will depart Boston at 9.10pm and arrive Dublin at 8.30am.

Declan Power and Shannon Group Chief Commercial Officer Andrew Murphy with the award at World Routes in Chengdu

For the second time in three years BOTH Dublin and Shannon won awards in their respective categories (20-50m and under 4m) at the World Routes awards 2016 in Chengdu. Cork airport was highly commended in the 4m passenger category. Four Irish airports and Tourism Ireland were shortlisted for awards. Belfast City was also nominated in the under 4m passenger category, alongside Aruba and Halifax in Nova Scotia. Tourism Ireland was nominated in the Destinations category alongside Algarve Tourist Board, Nassau Paradise Island, Poland’s Tourist Organisation and winner Tourism Queensland. Changi Airport won the over 50m category and the overall award and Athens the 4m-20m category. A short celebration was had at the Intercontinental Hotel but as Declan Power reports, there were appointments the following day to be attended. It is touch being a champion. Picture shows Declan Power and Shannon Group Chief Commercial Officer Andrew Murphy with the award.

monarch_a321s_gozbl_dub_290111_6893Are you going bust tonight?” Flights by Monarch, the Luton-based budget airline, continued to operate as normal Monday after weekend rumours that aircraft were returning for repatriation flight. Monarch issued a statement saying they were hoping to make an investment announcement in the coming days. The airline downsized their fleet last year after heavy losses and spejnt a torrid weekend renegotiating finance terms while England’s CAA put repositioning aircraft in place. Mike Kelly‘s picture shows two Monarch aircraft taken at Dublin airport.

aer-lingus-hartford-launch-3There are, of course, 6m reasons why Aer Lingus should to fly to Hartford Connecticut, that is the size of the bounty which airline got for elevating Hartford from, as Connecticut people say, ALMOST international airport to of an actual international airport for the first time in eight years. The Boeing 767 on Wednesday morning with a 30pc of a connecting, lower than the inaugurals to Los Angeles and Newark, but forward bookings for next week show 50pc of the passengers are connecting. While interest in Hartford among the travel trade will need a lot of stimulation over the coming months, a group of agent prize winners are due to sample the route. Hartford is home to a cluster of ivy league academic institutions and  insurance industry HQs. Both Aer Lingus and the airport are optimistic about the future of the daily flights. Picture shows Ivan Beacom, Yvonne Muldoon and Jenny Rafter with Aer Lingus flight crew Shauna Bermingham, Roberta Corbally, Gwen Reynolds, Carol O’Reilly and Danielle Black.

tourismni-dublin_0027TourismNI, currently anticipating that visitor numbers from Britain may recede  in the recession precipitated by Britain’s (England’s?) departure from the EU, launched its Ireland campaign this week with a TV ad and event for Irish travel media. Watch here the say hello to more video.. Watch here speech by Terence Brannigan chair of TourismNi, and watch here minister Simon Hamilton. Picture shows TourismNI Dublin office personnel Vivienne Gleeson, Clare McCoy and Aoife Fee. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Sunway team, Philip Airey, Mary Denton, Jeanette Taylor, Deirdre Sweeny, Jim Furlong, Tanya Airey and Brian McGovern at the Sunway Holidays 50th anniversary event in Mulberry Garden, Donnybrook, September 28 2016

Having celebrated their 50th at a memorable event on board Celebrity Solstice, it was the turn of suppliers to join the Sunway celebrations at Mulberry Garden in Donnybrook. Suppliers flew in from several parts of Spain and the Canary Islands, from Turkey, and Mikael Rissanen from Lapland. Tanya Airey thanked the suppliers in a small and short speech while Jim Furlong kept a grandfatherly eye over proceedings, reflecting what a tough business travel is, having seen the transition from supplier funding to clients supplying the revenue Sunway moved from a travel agency model the tour operator model in the early 90s. Fiona Bolger rejoined her former clients and travel writer friends for the occasion. Here’s to the next 50. Picture shows Sunway team, Philip Airey, Mary Denton, Jeanette Taylor, Deirdre Sweeny, Jim Furlong, Tanya Airey and Brian McGovern at the Sunway Holidays 50th anniversary event in Mulberry Garden. Watch here video of the event. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

heaney-homeplace-26International brand names in literature do not come any bigger than Seamus Heaney. So it was that Bellaghy was planted on the tourism map on Thursday morning at 11 AM with the opening of Seamus Heaney centre, confusingly called the Homeplace, while the real Heaney home place is a working farm a few miles outside the village. The centre cost £5m, £4m of it from the local council in £1m from Stormont, and anticipates 35,000 visitors a year. Literary centres are a hit and miss affair internationally. While every tourist board of the world proclaims the importance of cultural tourism, the sector rarely delivers the numbers are the revenue to justify the expectations of those who get excited about. But there are exceptions and maybe one of them. If you travel to the Brontë Homestead in Haworth in Yorkshire the coffee shop signs are in Japanese because of the disproportionate interest in the in literature by Japanese tourists. Heaney is already in Japan. The centre has performance spaces and Sean SOMETHING TO WRITE HOME ABOUT!Doran and Liam Browne have devised a programme of events to complement the centre. Liam says that two events are months would keep the profile of the centre up and visitors rolling in. It remains to be seen whether Bellaghy, which featured so strongly in all of Heaney’s writings, the first purpose built centre dedicated to an Irish writer, can become Ireland’s signature literary attraction.  Heaney is perfect for marketing, his writings are easily translated into soundbites like Wilde, Yeats and Shaw but unlike Joyce or contemporaries such as Derek Mahon. David Boyce of Tourism Ireland accompanied literary journalists to the opening including Tim Lott ofthe Guardian; Patrick Kelly of Arts Industry magazine; and Catherine Mack, of the Guardian. Arise Bellaghy and take your place among the nations of the earth. Watch here interview with Liam Browne. Watch here Sean Doran speaking at the event. Watch here council chair Trevor Wilson speaking at the event. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Stephen Conlon of IBRA, Colin Bullock chair of IBRA and Paul Gallagher chair of ITIC at the IBRA event in Carrick on Shannon, September 29 2016

When the Irish Boat Rental Association celebrated its 40th anniversary, three years late, it seemed befitting for an industry known for promoting leisurely and unhurried stress free journeys on our considerable body of waterways. Cruise hire operators are back in expansion mode after years of decline. Carrick Craft, who have 115 boats on the water, will be adding five Linssens 35 foot 4 + 2 berthers in 2017. Emerald Star are bringing in three new boats to their fleet of 70 and Silver Line are bringing four new boats. Stephen Conlon paid tribute to long serving secretary Derek Dann , who could not attend. Paul Gallagher of ITIC who spoke at the event, mentioned that one of the things of having five rival operators in the room is he does not know how much a boat costs. It is €250,000. Stephen Conlon paid tribute to Derek Dann, now 92, who served as the administrator for many years and who could not attend. The industry was once prominent in Ireland’s marketing efforts. An Ireland campaign from the 1960s and 1970s would always feature boat trips on the Shannon, often on the cover. Sadly, cruise hire operators have watched the sluice gates drain their particular lock and the number of operators on the Shannon as dropped from 12 to 5, at the fleet has halved in recent years. Emerald Star once had 250 boats on the Shannon. Now they are down to 70. Ireland’s boat hire price lie 20pc  below those on the European mainland so Germans can justify the cost of a Ryanair flight to come here. They mood of optimism was helped by the prospect of Failte Ireland’s fourth brand, the Lakelands, finally elevating the boggy middle of the country to the same status as the Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland’s Ancient East and Dublin’s breath of fresh air. We await the new brand. Like the 40th anniversary dinner that was held three years late, it has an unhurried semblance about it. Picture shows Stephen Conlon of IBRA, Colin Bullock chair of IBRA and Paul Gallagher chair of ITIC. Watch here Stephen Conlon speaking at the event.  See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

lt-governor-pauletteLieutenant Governor of Michigan, Brian Calley, hosted a media dinner at the Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin to promote Michigan’s 2017 tourism drive. He emphasised the state’s diversity, the music industry (“we had Motown, and The Supremes and The Temptations in the Sixties, but it’s also Bob Seger and Madonna and Kid Rock and Eminem” and also the diversity of activities. “So, there’s the music industry on top of the water sports and the outdoor recreation. Hunting and fishing and sailing and horseback riding and snowmobiles. There’s just all these things that exist there.” Picture shows Brian Calley and Paulette Moran. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

img_0017-copyIn advance of today’s sales day in the Red Cow Moran’s Hotel, Tour America celebrated their 50th in Dublin and announced they are to open a luxury cruise department, complete with its own site-themed first class lounge. Mary McKenna launched her first dedicated Aer Lingus brochure on the day of the event. She said said sales for summer 2017 were 32pc ahead of last year. Picture shows guests at the celebratory event in the Morrison Hotel. Watch here Mary McKenna speaking at the event. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Photography by Roger Kenny.Aer Lingus was among the exhibitors at Connect 16 in the RDS as were local tourist initiatives. The attendees included investors, entrepreneurs, and ground handlers. Next time it comes around Ireland could be even more connected. Picture shows Paul Keeley, Director of Business Development with Fáilte Ireland, Nicola McGrane, Connect16, and An Taoiseach Enda Kenny. Watch here Nicola McGrane speaking at Kildare Failte Connect16 event. Watch here Conor Mallaghan of Carton House. Watch here Mayor of Kildare Ivan Keatley.

park-city_0011Jennifer Plahm from Park City tourism in Utah hosted Irish travel trade and media in Dublin on Monday. The Winter sports favourite, venue for events in the 2002 Olympics, has some of the best terrain in the Rockies and in Deer Park, that treasure, a resort which is for skiers only, safe from the menacing hissing sound of the terror of an approaching snowboarder. The resort also offers the world’s first ski in, ski out distillery. Travel Extra feels a thirst coming on. Picture shows Jennifer Plahm, Graeme Spatley and Brenda Lytle of Park City. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

virgin-atlantic-and-bedsonline_30021775535_oVirgin Atlantic and Bedsonline joined forces to host 120 travel agents at the Adelphi Bar in Dublin in one of the biggest promotions of the year. Picture shows Holly Best, Liam Donaghy and Joy McLoughlin  of Virgin Atlantic with Thomas McNally and Tom Bell  of Bedsonline at the Virgin Atlantic and Bedsonline event at Adelphi Bar.  See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

travel-partners-dundalk-mg_0253Travel partners held two more roadshows in Kilkenny and Dundalk.The seven strong group consists of Amadeus Ireland, ASM, Blue Insurance Group, Classic Collection Holidays, MSC Cruises, Bookabed and Cruisescapes. Picture shows Alan Sparling, Jason Whelan and Niall McDonnell in Dundalk See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Travel Trade

gerry-ohare-sensatori-copyPicture shows Travel Extra managing director Gerry O’Hare guest of Falcon Holidays at the Sensatori Resort, Tenerife,

Cyber fraud returned to the travel agenda this week as two agents were hit. The ITAA is advising members to be aware have u system checked out and make sure their insurance policy covers it. Fraudulent emails are programmed  to bring down a system and require a ransom or to infect with a virus.

CSO statistics this week show Irish outbound travel up 4.9pc to 5,030k in the first eight months of the year, following increases of 7.7pc in 2015 and 1.1pc in 2014. Should current growth rates continue Irish people will make 7.3m international trips in 2016, still down on the 2008 peak of 7.9m. But do the figures add up? The CSO figures for Spain are running higher than Spanish tourist baord figures. Spain wil be celebrating its millionth visitor fro ireland on October 6.

yvonne-speakingCatherine Smith Commissioner Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development hosted travel trade in Dublin with Aer Lingus, Dublin airport and Tourism Ireland. Attendees included John Devereux, Mary McKenna, John Cassidy, Tony Collins and Colman Burke,  US council. Commissioner Smith was accompanied by Sharon Traficante, Director of Hartford Airport and Susan Henrique of Connecticut Convention and Sports Bureau. Picture shows Yvonne Muldoon of Aer Lingus speaking at the event.

ben-bouldin-fahy-travelMaura Fahy’s Fahy Travel is looking for qualified staff in Corrib Travel and her dedicated cruise shop which has had a successful first year.

An one evening a week course for 12 weeks, the Travel Agency Service Skills course will be hosted  by Corrib Travel in association with the Portobello Institute,  designed for people who want to be a travel agent or pursue a career in the travel industry. The course will run from 6.30-9.30 one evening a week, from November 15 to January 31, with one Saturday workshop. The cost is €795 per student. Picture shows Ben Bouldin of Royal caribbean with the Royal Caribbean staff.

photopass_visiting_studio_7804608851-jpegDoSomethingDifferent brought a group of six travel agents to Florida to experience the theme parks. The group sampled Tiffins, the new signature restaurant in Animal Kingdom to do the safari again by night. Fast Pass+ which automatically is included in all Do Something Different and ThemeParkBeds. com tickets. Picture shows some of the group listening to some quality Aerosmith on RocknRoller Coaster in Diensy Magic Kingdom:  Kathy Core of Cassidy Travel, Alana Byne of Newbridge Travel, Front Seat Stella Grant of O’Hanrahan Travel, Karl Moen of Disney.

isme-travel-centres-img_4218Travel Centres organised a workshop where 22 members attended a session on selling skills with Dave Pope.

A Women in Travel Meetup will take place at World Travel Market. Lorraine Quinn has sent a call out for an Association of Women Travel Executives exploratory meeting in Dublin on October 26.

Travel agents can earn commission with a new app from Hotelbeds Group.

paul2Visit Florida launched an e-learning programme to inform UK and Irish travel agents on Florida. The test is divided into five modules on Geography and Florida Overview, Attractions, Sports and Activities, Beaches, Multi-centre and cruise. Good to see Colin Brodie, who recently retired as Visit Florida representative in london, was back in Dublin this week.

Sad news: Paul Phillips has died. For 20 years he served as master of ceremonies and floor manager for the Holiday World Shows in Dublin, Belfast and Cork. Picture shows Paul at Holiday World in 2009.

Strange world

hotel-avalon-in-gothenburg-bearA teddy bear which was left outside  the Hotel Avalon in Gothenburg became an internet sensation before being a two-year-old Icelandic girl.

Dallas, Prague and Reykjavik were unlikely noominees for the world’s least friendly city.

It was claimed that the number of Westminster MPs applying for Irish passports since Britain’s EU referendum has reached at least double figures,


minister_7054Australia is reducing the proposed backpacker tax from 32.5pc to 19pc and allow working holiday visa holders to stay with one employer for up to 12 months rather than the previous six month period, as long as the second six months is worked in a different location. Picture shows Australia’s Trade minister Minister Steve Ciobo speaking about the backpacker pax during 2016 Australian Tourism Exchange at Gold Coast, Queensland. Watch here the minister’s reply to question on backpacker tax.

The Broad in Los Angeles wase overall winner of the 2016 Leading Culture Destinations Awards. Museum shop of the year was  Louisiana Museum, Copenhagen, restaurant of the year was in  LouLou, Musée des Arts Decoratifs, Paris, digital museum of the year was Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.

SeaWorld Entertainment Inc, the theme park and entertainment company, has announced their 2017 attractions, including the Kraken virtual reality roller coaster. The existing Kraken roller coaster is getting a virtual reality update, with integrated headsets and a plot centered around ancient or mythic sea creatures.

Tourist arrivals worldwide have seen a growth of 4pc for the first six months of the year, according to new UNWTO statistics.

Visit Florida is launching the ‘VISIT FLORIDA Expert‘, a 60-75 minute programme designed to inform UK and Irish travel agents on Florida. There are five modules, with each followed by a test on the subject matter: geography and Florida overview, attractions, sports and activities, beaches, multi-centre and cruise.

Food & Wine

Tomorrow Monday will see the announcement of Irelands Michelin Star restaurants for 2017. Last year’s lot were more dispersed than ever, Martijn Kajuiter’s Cliff House in Ardmore, Michael Deane’s Eipic and Stephen Toma’s Oxx in Belfast, Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud in the Merrion Hotel (Ireland’s only restaurant with two Michelin stars), Ross Lewis’s Chapter One, Derry and Sally Clarke’s L’Ecrivain and new addition Mickael Viljanen’s The Greenhouse in Dublin, Ultan Cooke’s Aniar and new addition Enda McEvoy’s Loam in Galway (Enda was previously chef with Aniar) and Gareth Byrne’s Campagne and Cormac Rowe’s Lady Helen in Kilkenny. Oliver Dunne’s Bon Appétit in Malahide and Kevin Thornton’s at the Fitzwilliam Hotel lost their Michelin Star status last year, Oliver counted the loss as a blessing.

paul-flynn-tannery-groupKilkenny and Waterford hosted travel media from Germany, France, Belgium and Sweden on a gastronomic tour, supported by Fáilte Ireland. Picture shows the group with Paul Flynn in the Tannery in Waterford.

Irish Pubs Global’s event, The Gathering 2016 was held in Citywest Hotel with 600 Irish pub operators from all around the world attended the event, the theme of which was ‘creating a destination pub’.

Kenmare is hosting their first Theatre and Dining Small Roads Festival between October 6-17, to celebrate the love of theatre and the food available in Kenmare’s restaurants and cafes. Four plays will be held: Shirley Valentine by Willy Russel, Hay Fever by Noel Coward, Over the Tavern by Tom Dudzick, and Not the Life I Ordered by festival director Dezy Walls, over the course of the 12-day festival. Various participating restaurants will offer a pre-theatre dinner menu.


The Irish Tourism Industry Confederation launched their pre-budget submission. See here nine reasons why 9pc matters. Watch here interview with Eoghan O’Mara Walsh about the submission.

The Irish Hotels Federation Hotel Barometer Survey reported that 87pc of hoteliers saw an increase in business, and debt was estimated at €5.3bn.

Dalata Hotel Group are to run the former Burlington Hotel on lease from German investment fund, Deka, which purchased the hotel from Blackstone for a reported €180m.

John Malone acquired the Spencer, Morgan and Beacon hotels in Dublin for €150m from the Fitzpatrick Lifestyle Hotels Group and Patron Capital Partners.

Minister of State for Tourism Patrick O’Donovan launched a national tourism careers programme highlighting employment opportunities in Irish tourism to enable second-level students aged 15-18 to explore career paths and options. Tourism and hospitality businesses need to recruit over 6,000 entry-level employees each year. Targeting  800 post-primary schools and youth reach centres, the initiative is being run by the IHF and the Irish Hospitality Institute in partnership with Fáilte Ireland.

The Bram Stoker Hotel, formerly the Clontarf Court, was sold for €1.5m.

Dublin’s hotel bed bank is set to increase by just 16 beds this year. The Holiday Inn Express that is opening at Findlater House on O’Connell Street has 198 rooms but the 182-bedroom Clyde Court Hotel (perhaps more familiar as the Berkeley Court) in Dublin 4 was closed and demolished earlier this year.

Mount Juliet Estate was overall winner at the 2016 Keelings Gold Medal Awards

presentacion-jsf-travel-tourism-school_2Picture shows JSF representatives, a new business school created by the corporate leaders of the tourism sector, such as Hotelbeds Group, Barceló Group, Iberostar Hotels & Resorts, Deloitte, Amadeus or RIU Hotels & Resorts, among others. Its name is JSF Travel & Tourism School (website) and is a school specialising in executive education for the travel and tourism industry.

Leonardo Hotels is set to open a third hotel in Madrid. The news of the expansion comes just two months after the company announced two other newly acquired hotels in the city.

IHG is to develop 20 new hotels in Europe.


Dublin was announced as host city for the IATA World Financial Symposium 2017. The announcement was made at the 2016 symposium in Singapore.

Transavia will launch Munich-Dublin 3w for summer 2017 starting 11 April.

Transport minister Shane Ross signed a memorandum of understanding with Feng Zhenglin, the administrator of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (in Dublin under which they agree to facilitate the establishment of a direct air service between their respective countries.

gulfstream_251_dub_080505_58361Mike Kelly’s picture shows Irish Air Corps Gulfstream that that was the subject of media coverage by the Government spending watchdog the Comptroller and Auditor General. An informal recommendation from an Irish aviation consultant in 2014 advised that while repairs could be carried out and the plane kept going for a few more years, it seemed to “have had its day”.  It was subsequently sold in the USA and was in Verona taken on July 23rd 2016.

Lufthansa is to complete its takeover of Brussels Airlines by end 2016. Brussels Airlines passenger numbers grew 17pc in 2015 to 7.7m. The takeover will take the Lufthansa Group’s estimated 115m passengers past Ryanair once more as Europe’s largest airline by passenger numbers.

EI-FNH, Aer Lingus second new A330-300 due this year, arrived on Wednesday.

Ryanair added nine routes from Gerona including 2w to Belfast International, added Lisbon from Toulouse. and increased frequencies to Berlin, Fes, London, Madrid, Warsaw and Malta, and added four new routes from Charleroi to Glasgow, Sofia, Toulouse, and Timisoara, announced a day ahead of the Lufthansa Brussels Airlines announcement.

An influx of tourists for Oktoberfest has seen Munich Airport break the weekly 1m-passenger barrier.

World Routes, the air service development forum, was handed over to the city of Barcelona from China’s Chengdu.

Kuwait Airways launches new transit service at Shannon AirportKuwait Airways are to extend their Kuwait-New York JFK stopover in Shannon through to 2017. This service began in June for a planned four-month period, with flights at 3w. From October 31 this will change to 6w while Kuwait airport awaits FAA clearance. Ethiopian Airlines is reportedly using Shannon as a tech stop on cargo flights to the US. although the airport says there is nothing tentative and are not expecting them on Ocobert 8 as reported.

Qatar Airways and British Airways announced a joint business agreement that will come into effect on 30 Oct 16. The Qatar ministry of Interior, Qatar Airways and Qatar Tourism Authority have combined to expand free transit visa stays in Qatar from 48 hours to 96 hours.

Interview with Henrik Hololei, Director-General for Mobility and Transport, European Commission:  I have to be honest and say that I am not very impressed that we have not been able to make progress on those elements which were supposed to be only the first layer of the open skies agreement.

The IALPA pilots union launched an appeal against Dublin Airport plans for the Metro North link.

Wilbert Paulissen’s claim that the buk missile that shot down MH17 was brought form Russia to Ukraine has sparked a war of words between Russian and the west.

Routes Online interviewed Vincent Harrison, managing director at Dublin Airport.

mary-mckenna-jenny-rafterPicture shows Jenny Rafter of Aer Lingus presenting  presenting Mary McKenna with a pair of tickets won at the Hartford event. Mary, not down for winning in draws, had already won a pair of tickets to Hartford which she passed on but will definitely be using these ones.

The HSE is to make €1.8m available for the construction of a helipad at Cork University Hospital.

A Ryanair flight made an emergency landing at Dublin Airport last Wednesday. Flight FR-817 was flying from Edinburgh to Dublin when the crew declared an emergency over the Irish Sea.

We are still awaiting Aer Lingus’s summer 2017 transatlantic advancement, due in the next three weeks. We will announce, said one sage like Aer Lingusian, when Stephen is ready.  CEO Stephen Kavanagh said cost will determine rate of growth at Aer Lingus and there was no cross-subsidy between short and long-haul markets at the airline and for four years there had been “break-even at best” on short-haul (watch here).


ben-aran-sweatersBen Bouldin of Royal Caribbean is pictured on Inis Mór. Wilt be on a Royal Caribbean itinerary soon?

The Norwegian Cruise Line’s Star ship was in Dublin last Sunday as part of one of its European cruises, having left Scotland, and made its way across the Irish Sea overnight, for an early Sunday morning arrival in Dublin Port. NCL, which celebrated tits 50th brithday this week, hosted 14 agents on board Norwegian Star on Sunday. The line’s first brochure with euro pricing launches next week. See more pictures here or connect with the album on Facebook.

Silversea Cruises 2018 programme went on sale Wednesday. Watch here interview with Amanda Middler of Silversea.

NCL celebrated their 50th with an anniversary cruise. M/S Sunward made her first voyage from Miami to the Caribbean on December 19 1966. Norwegian Cruise Line guests, travel partners, and current and former employees are invited to upload their photos and stories to their first 50 website,

Cruise passengers arriving in Shanghai from October 1 will be allowed stay up to 15 days without a visa.

A new cruise terminal was approved for Newcastle in New South Wales.


Picture shows Edel Mitchell , Failte Ireland Event Ireland Officer, Chris Marsh, World Archery events Director, Kevin MacDermott, Vice President of Archery Ireland and Martin Cunningham from Balbriggan who is a Competitor at the World Archery Field Championships .


No white smoke on the new Fáilte Ireland CEO after what should have been the final round of interviews a fortnight ago. Two strong contenders are in play, one internal and an external from the world of aviation.

Irish Water Safety have put out warnings about the potentially debilitated Portuguese man-of-war of which 500 have been reported on west coast beaches. Watch here interview with  John Leech of Irish Water Safety.

CSO statistics this week report overseas visitor numbers are up 12.3pc for the first eight months of the year, with Britain up 13.4pc, North America up 15.4pc, Europe up 11.2pc and Australia and developing markets up 3pc. If current trends continue Ireland will attract 10.5m visitors to the island in 2016. Ireland now hosts 10pc of all American visitors to Europe.

Co-operation Key to Success as Tourism Industry Attend Sligo ConPicture shows Brendan McCormack, incoming President, IT Sligo; Eva Dearie, Failte Ireland; Finbarr Filan, Sligo BID and Eddie O’Gorman, Grange and Armada Development Association at the Radisson Hotel Blu Hotel in Sligo where 60 stakeholders attended a Tourism Co-Opetition for Success conference.

Fáilte Ireland is supporting the World Archery Field Championships which brings 300 participants from 32 countries to Kilruddery House in Wicklow this weekend. Competitors gathered on Bray seafront last evening for the official opening ceremony.

MINISTER DARA MURPHY LENDS A HAND TO PROMOTE TOURISM FROM SCANDIPicture shows Minister Dara Murphy in Denmark where he met the Tourism Ireland team in Copenhagen, Aeden Hall, Cliona Manahan, Ambassador of Ireland to Denmark; Minister Dara Murphy; Aileen Hickey who heads up Tourism Ireland in Scandinavia and David Lea, private secretary to Minister Murphy.

Travel Extra took a trip to Epic Ireland. The high-tech visitor attraction celebrating the Irish diaspora is partaking in trade missions to USA and will be exhibiting at WTM. Watch here.

Deal Watch

falcon-deal-watchFalcon offers: 7 nights self catering 2* Green Park, Playa Del Ingles, Gran Canaria from €399pp, depart October 20. 7 nights self catering 3* Cinco Plazas, Puerto Del Carmen, Lanzarote from €419pp, depart January 15 2017. 7 nights all inclusive 3* Catalonia Punta Del Rey, Las Caletillas, Tenerife from €539pp, depart October 14. 7 nights all inclusive 3* IFA Interclub Atlantic, San Agustin, Gran Canaria from €939pp, depart December 24. 7 nights self catering 3* Globales Tamaimo Tropical, Puerto De Santiago, Tenerife from €449pp, depart January 6 2017. 7 nights self catering 3* Cinco Plazas, Puerto Del Carmen, Lanzarote from €419pp, depart January 15. 7 nights self catering 3* Monte Feliz, Bahia Feliz, Gran Canaria from €499pp, depart January 28 2017. 7 nights self catering 3* Bali Hotel, Benalmadena, Costa Del Sol from €379pp, depart November 17. 7 nights self catering 3* Castillo Apartments, Costa Caleta, Fuerteventura from €459pp, depart November 19. Lapland day trip from €619 per adults and €539 per child, depart December 10, 16 or 17. 14 nights all inclusive 3* Holiday Inn, Montego Bay, Jamaica from €1,499pp, depart June 8 2017. Visit or call 1850 45 35 45.

thomson-deal-watchThomson offers: 7 nights all inclusive 4* Club Hotel Riu Vistamar, Amadores, Gran Canaria from €799pps, depart October 13. 7 nights half board Hotel Barcelo Santiago, Puerto de Santiago, Tenerife from €699pps, depart October 14. 7 nights self catering Cay Beach Princess, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria from €699pps, depart October 14. 7 nights self catering Cay Beach Princess, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria from €539pps, depart October 20. 7 nights half board Sensimar Natura Palace, Playa Blanca, Lanzarote from €1,069pps, depart January 1 2017. 7 nights self catering Cay Beach Princess, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria from €469pps, depart January 7 2017. 7 nights self catering Villa Mandi, Playa De Las Americas, Tenerife from €489pps, depart January 13 2017. 7 nights half board H10 Timanfaya Palace, Playa Blanca, Lanzarote from €619pps, depart January 8 2017. 7 nights full board Colourful Coasts cruise on board Thomson Majesty from €909pps, depart January 27 2017. Visit or call 1850 45 35 45.

Sunway offers: 7 nights B&B 4* Golden Day Wings Hotel, Kusadasi, Turkey from €359pp, depart October 22. 7 nights 5* AmaWaterways river cruise of the Netherlands and Belgium from €1,799pp, depart March 30 2017. 3 nights 3* Yotel Manhattan, New York from €785pp incl. flights, depart November 10 to see Conor McGregor in UFC205. Visit or call 01 231 1800.

Flycruisestay have an early bird 2 night taster cruise from Southampton to Hamburg on Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 from €212 based on two pax sharing an inside cabin. Ocean view €311 Balcony €311 & Princess Suite €711 departing August 10th, 2018.

Tour America offers: 7 nights International Palms Resort, Orlando from €395pp, depart December 1. 5 nights Excalibur Hotel, Las Vegas from €589pp, depart February 9 2017. 4 nights Days Hotel Broadway, New York from €575pp, depart February 16 2017. Visit

Tourism NI offers: 1 night B&B Europa Hotel, Belfast from £95 per room incl. drink on arrival, available until October 31, call 028 90 266 009. 2 nights B&B Beech Hill Country House Hotel, Derry from £109pps incl. Beech Hill cream tea and a three course dinner on an evening of your choice, call 028 71 349279. 2 nights B&B Holiday Inn Express, Co Antrim from £140 per room incl. dinner for two with two glasses of wine and 10pc discount vouchers for Junction One Shopping Centre, call 028 94 425500.

westin-deal-watchThe Westin hotel, Dublin is offering family glamping in the city for a €60 supplement incl. 2 man pop-up tent, single airbed, LED torch and the Westin book butler bag with an Eason’s top 10 children’s book list. Bank holiday weekend rates from €270 incl. breakfast. Available October 28 to November 2. Visit

Click and Go offers: 7 nights B&B 5* Grande Real Santa Eulalia Hotel, the Algarve from €299pp incl. return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel November. 7 nights full board 4* Roc Lago Rojo Hotel, Costa del Sol for over 50s from €399pp incl. wine with evening meals, return flights, airport transfers, taxes and charges, travel December. 3 nights B&B 3* Mariano Hotel, Rome from €149pp incl. return flights, airport taxes and charges, travel December. 3 nights Agape Apartments, Budapest from €159pp incl. return flights, airport taxes and charges, travel December. Visit or call 01 539 7777.

ITAA offers: 2 nights 3* Hotel Regente, Madrid from €229pp, depart November 19. 7 nights self catering Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife from €420pp incl. transfers, depart November 14. 7 nights self catering Cote d’Azur art holiday in France from €1,099pp incl. return airport transfers and five morning art tuitions with Maura O’Rourke and three half-day excursions, depart October 22.

Topflight offers: 7 nights self catering 2* Haus Angerer, Westendorf, Austria from €619pps, depart Cork or Dublin December 31. 7 nights half board 3* Hotel Austria, Soll, Austria from €949pps, depart Cork or Dublin December 31. 7 nights self catering 3* London Pub Apartments, Kirchberg, Austria from €670pps, depart Cork or Dublin December 31. 7 nights  self catering 3* Residence Maeva Chamois Blanc, Chamonix, France from €649pps, depart December 31. 7 nights self catering 3* Residence L’Altineige, Val Thorens, France from €669pps, depart December 31. 7 nights full catering 3* Chalte Marguerite, Plagne, France from €1,269pps, depart December 31. 7 nights self catering 3* Livigno Ski Apartments, Livigno, Italy from €645pps, depart December 31. 7 nights B&B 3* Hotel Carvasc, Livigno, Italy from €769pps, depart December 31. 7 nights self catering 2* Frontera Blanca, Andorra from €619pps, depart December 27. 7 nights B&B 2* Hotel Arinsal, Arinsal, Andorra from €749pps, depart December 27. All prices include transfers, taxes and rep service. Visit or call 01 240 1700.

Insight Vacations is offering 10 days Budapest, Vienna and Prague from €2,259pps incl. flights, transfers and accommodation, depart October 7. Visit or call 01 775 3803.

Uniworld Boutique River Cruises is offering 8 days Bordeaux, Vineyards and Chateaux cruise on board the River Royale from €1,839pps incl. flights, airport transfers, all meals and beverages, all shore excursions, depart April 2 2017. Visit or call 01 775 3803.

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