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 New York Times Misfires With 52 Places to Go List: Nobody wins from The New York Times making a spectacle out of people’s dreams and then recommending a trite list of places to visit. The prominence of destination lists also speaks to the bigger problems in travel media.

Black-Owned Agencies in the U.S. Carve a Successful Niche in African Tourism: Henderson Travel, a black-owned agency founded back in the Civil Rights era, pioneered roots travel to Africa. Its continued success is a testament not just to the popularity of genealogical tourism, but a booming African-American travel market.

Kingdom’s Retail Queen Lays Out Thai Tourism Truths That Others Only Whisper: It takes a retail personality to air the dirty laundry of Thai tourism. No one will be offended; it’s all an open secret. Supaluck Umpujh, at least, is doing something about it, partnering with AEG to make Thailand a regional entertainment hub.

Universal Theme Park Growth Is Still in High Gear: Universal theme parks are expanding in the U.S. and around the world even as larger rival Disney continues to pour money into growing its parks and resorts. As long as returns are healthy, expect the theme park wars to rage on.

Global Tourism Growth Slowed in 2018 But Arrivals Still Hit 1.4 Billion Travelers are still exploring the world, but growth has cooled slightly. Will 2019 bring a further slowdown, or will the appetite for international travel keep surprising experts?

Disney Is Expanding Its New Shanghai Theme Park — Again: Disney has been talking about expanding its Shanghai theme park complex since before the doors officially opened. Despite a rough patch last year, the company is clearly optimistic about the market’s future.

Asia Is Ready for Business Travel Disruption: Will new travel management platforms emerge in Asia as they have elsewhere in recent years? Fragmentation and the digital habits of Asian travelers will make it an interesting challenge.

The Must-Have Items Battle-Hardened Travel Advisors Always Take on the Road: Take a page from the books of some experienced travel advisors from around the U.S. before you head out on your next adventure or business trip. We love the suggestion to swap out the hotel room’s bar of soap with your favorite from home to start your day at ease.

Travel Advisor Innovation Report: U.S. Black-Owned Agencies Specialize in Africa Tourism. Several black-owned travel agencies in the U.S. will be sending clients on tours of Ghana this year to mark the Year of Return. African travel has been a pillar of their businesses for years, even before genealogical travel became a thing.

 

 

Photo Credit: A boat anchored on a beach in Thailand February 25, 2009. Christian Haugen / Flickr