Skift Take

This week in tourism, the U.S. National Travel and Tourism Office cleaned up its data: Nearly 77 million international travelers visited the United States in 2017, up 2 percent year-over-year. Meanwhile, TUI Group buys Musement, stepping further into tours and activities.

Tourism News Weekly Roundup

Throughout the week we post dozens of original stories, connecting the dots across the travel industry, and every weekend we sum it all up. This weekend roundup examines tourism trends.

For all of our weekend roundups, go here.

>>It appears that the gloomy picture that U.S. tourism officials had painted of international arrivals in recent years wasn’t actually as bleak as they thought. But a computer error isn’t the only thing to blame for slower growth: U.S. Had Record Number of International Visitors in 2017 as Kiosk Data Glitch Is Fixed

>>The global heat map for tours and activities continues to burn bright this year as big players like TUI scoop up small players like Musement for back-end technology that will help them get more personalized products to travelers: TUI Group Buys Musement as Tours and Activities Sector Stays Hot for Deals

>>The market for off-the-beaten-path tours and experiences has been heating up this year with the emergence of Airbnb’s Experiences. TripAdvisor, which emphasizes on-the-beaten-path offerings, is putting a huge effort into trying to stay on top. Its new travel agent program is part of that effort: Viator’s Travel Agent Program Gets Mixed Reviews

>>It was mostly business as usual for Myanmar tourism at the Pacific Asia Travel Association’s 2018 travel mart. With visitation to Myanmar declining from Europe, the Americas, and Africa, Myanmar is going after Chinese, Japanese, and Korean tourists. But so is almost everyone else: Myanmar Tourism Is No Pariah at Asia-Pacific Travel Mart

>>Words as a means to define problems and trigger solutions are important. The label overtourism crystalizes a problem and serves as a call to action. We’d agree that a lack of capacity management is a big part of the problem, but the latter characterization hardly spurs the urgency the issue requires: Asia-Pacific Tourism CEO Points to Bad Management — Not Overtourism — as Key Problem

>>Hanoi’s economy is improving considerably, and tourism is growing, but for Vietnam’s capital city to best position itself to develop as a responsible tourism destination, a change in mindset must occur. And that change needs to come from the young Vietnamese of today: A New Generation Must Bridge Hanoi’s Past to Its Tourism Future

>>I wrote out all the things that inspire me and the team at Skift about the daily and larger promise of travel and the global industry that drives it: 25 Things That Inspire Me About the Travel Industry

>>Longevity doesn’t automatically mean success. Cox & Kings has had to adapt to the needs of 21st-century tourists and the ever-changing travel market. That it’s still around after 260 years is testament to its ability to reinvent itself: Storied Tour Operator Cox & Kings Still Smoothing Out Travel’s Rough Edges

>>Cox & Kings remains at the forefront of luxury tourism — not bad for a company that began life in 1758: How 260-Year-Old Cox & Kings Stayed Relevant

>>Events have taken on an increased importance to corporate marketing efforts, even as costs have risen. It will be interesting to see if organizations are forced to reduce events in order to save on costs sometime in the next few years: Companies Continue to Invest in Events

>>While many headlines continue to depict Puerto Rico in tragic terms, and there certainly are plenty of areas that are still struggling, many hotels and restaurants are back on their feet and better than before Maria. The island’s tourism industry is on its way to real change as it tries to put the hurricane behind it: Skift Global Forum Preview: How Puerto Rico Made Tragedy an Opportunity for Its Tourism

>>The travel agent still exists for a reason. Despite having the option, plenty of people don’t want to do it on their own, and are happy to get someone else to make plans — even if it costs more: Skift Global Forum Preview: Why the Internet Didn’t Kill Off Travel Agents

>>Skift Global Forum has seen incredible growth since its inception in 2014, and I’m blown away by the level of participation and genuine support each year. With our fifth conference just about 2 weeks away, I’m taking a look back on how far we’ve come: A Look Back at Skift Global Forum Through the Years


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Tags: tourism, Travel Trends, trends roundups

Photo credit: San Francisco on March 22, 2014. The U.S. National Travel and Tourism Office cleaned up its data to announce that nearly 77 million international travelers visited the United States in 2017. Thomas Hawk / Flickr

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