At the beginning of the late August christening cruise of AmaSiena, cruise manager Martina Valachova and hotel manager Romeo Luchian exuded warmth and humor to set the tone for its COVID-era maiden voyage by explaining how AmaWaterways’ new health and sanitation practices would enhance the experience. Their PA announcements throughout the cruise positioned the necessities of masking up, pre-meal temperature checks and pre-departure COVID tests as extensions of the safety protocols that existed in the “before-times.”
Global business travel is making its way back, even as the pandemic and other world events continue to challenge its return. In a recent poll from the Global Business Travel Association, more than four in five respondents (86 percent) from across the industry said they feel more optimistic than they did at the beginning of the year. Business travel bookings, the need to travel to do business and employee willingness to travel are all on the rise.
The Korean Wave reached the English-speaking world belatedly. K-pop band BTS broke through in America in 2018, the movie Parasite won the Best Picture Oscar in 2020, and in 2021 the TV show Squid Game became the most-watched series ever on Netflix. Asia has been under the grip of Korean Culture since the 1990s. Now the rest of us are falling under its spell.