Good morning from Skift. It's Monday, June 27 in New York City. Here's what you need to know about the business of travel today.
Skift Daily Briefing Podcast
Listen to the day’s top travel stories in under four minutes every weekday.
Today’s edition of Skift’s daily podcast looks at Barcelona’s attempt to manage tourism growth, Qantas’ efforts to manage a spike in traffic, and Kenya’s push for more cashless tourism transactions.
Barcelona is looking to accelerate the recovery of its tourism industry, but the city faces a delicate balancing act of working to attract more visitors while avoiding becoming the poster child for overtourism again, reports Contributor Paula Krizanovic.
As Barcelona has launched a tourism campaign aimed at American travelers, Krizanovic writes that local residents who had retaken Barcelona’s public spaces during pandemic-era border closures are concerned about return of problems related to large-scale tourism. But the city is also considering steps to limit the number of tourist arrivals.
Meanwhile, Barcelona-based professor Esteve Dot Jutglà believes the city can manage tourism if it implements a sustainable long-term strategy. Dot Jutglà has recommended the city decentralize tourism by developing locations outside of the city as attractions for prospective visitors.
Next, Australian flag carrier Qantas is boosting its staffing numbers in preparation of a busy July. But like its peers in the U.S. and Europe, the company is cutting flights to ease airport crowds that are causing bedlam at airports in recent weeks, writes Airlines Reporter Edward Russell.
Qantas announced on Friday it will increase ground staff numbers by 15 percent in July compared to levels during Easter this year. The airline is also offering non-management staff a one-time bonus of roughly $3,500. However, as Australia’s three busiest airports have warned flyers about likely huge crowds and possible delays, Qantas is reducing flights on domestic routes through March 2023. The company also said the cuts will help it recoup high oil prices.
Finally, Kenya is ahead of its peers in Africa regarding the acceptance of digital payments, which have grown worldwide throughout the pandemic. But Kenyan tourism executives believe that consumers have been slow to embrace cashless transactions, writes Contributor Harriet Akinyi.
John Musau, the general manager of Nairobi-based Tamarind Tree Hotel, acknowledges that the fear of identity theft has steered guests away from using a cashless system. While the cashless system the hotel adopted has made it attractive to visitors who no longer carry cash, Musau admits that he’s missing out on prospective guests who prefer to use cash. Roughly 15 percent of Kenyans use digital payment as a means of transaction, according to Visa Kenya.
Meanwhile, major players in Kenya’s travel industry — such as national carrier, Kenya Airways, and its national parks — have also announced the shift to cashless systems.
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