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.

>>The relationship between American tourists and Mexico is nearly a century old and has weathered ups and downs. Today’s drug-related violence, mounting border tension, and political rhetoric won’t stop these trips, but are clearly disrupting them: The Resilience of the American Vacation in Mexico

>>Skift is taking its first expansion steps into Asia to start doing ground-level coverage of the world’s most dynamic travel market. Lots more to come, and we hope to see you all at Skift Forum Asia next year in Singapore: Skift’s Asia Expansion: Two New Senior Hires in Singapore and Skift Forum Asia 2019

>>Brand USA will have one of its biggest stages of the year during the three-game NFL London Games series this month, and it will need every inch of that stage to capitalize on the moment as UK visitation has fallen in recent years: Brand USA Steps Up at NFL London Games to Woo Visitors Back to U.S.

>>It looks like things are starting to turn around for Merlin in its key London market. We’ll have to wait until its annual results later this year for the full picture: Parks Operator Merlin Starts to See Recovery in London Market

>>In initial public offering land, it’s a long time until 2019. The markets are turbulent at the moment and there are big regulatory headaches that stubbornly persist, but investors are salivating at the prospect of dropping some money into Uber and/or Airbnb. These IPO plans could be very impactful: Uber, Airbnb and Lyft Are Setting Up 2019 as a Landmark Year in Travel IPOs

>>Travel agents (or advisors) were supposed to go the way of the fax machine. But in the internet era, they’ve managed to find ways to fight back: Travel Trade Group Fights Back

>>When Google perfects vacation package search, this could be a very compelling product because some have tried, but few are doing it in any meaningful way. This is all part of Google’s steady and ongoing rise in the travel e-commerce ecosystem: Google Working on Solving the Pain Points in Vacation Package Shopping

>>MSC Cruises is already spending billions on big ships, so why not add a few luxury vessels to the mix? The cruise operator has a built-in customer base, but the trick will be to offer a product that gets those passengers to pay more for the high-end experience: MSC Cruises Targets Growing Luxury Market With New Ship Order


Photo Credit: Tourists using a selfie stick at the ruins site in Tulum in Mexico. Skift