It’s no secret LGBT travelers spend a lot on travel. According to the 19th annual LGBT Tourism Survey conducted by Community Marketing, Inc., LGBT travel grew by 9 percent in 2014, with similar growth predicted for 2015. And according to a study by Out Now Business Class, a travel networking association, the market is now valued at more than $200 billion in annual spending.
A quick look at the sponsors and speakers at any LGBT travel event proves the industry is paying attention to these big numbers. At the 2015 edition of the LGBT Confex, Mexico’s biggest LGBT tourism and business event, Marriott International and tourism officials from both Mexico and the United States were on hand. The annual convention of the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association recently attracted sponsors ranging from Delta Air Lines and South African Airways to Hyatt and Hilton, as well as destinations including the tourism offices of Las Vegas, Atlanta and South Africa, the host nation for the 2016 annual convention.
Various organizations continue to study the evolving LGBT market in an effort to better serve. ONBC’s report, LGBT2020, shows New York City, Sydney and Amsterdam at the top of the list of preferred cities for travelers in the segment in 2015, with the United States, France and Australia the most popular countries overall.
To grow market share, some organizations and destinations are paying more attention to diversity within the LGBT segment. The initials “LGBT,” after all, stand for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people — representing a wide variety of backgrounds, ages, incomes and travel preferences. At the LGBT Confex in Merida, Mexico, Richard Gray, LGBT managing director, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau, revealed the results of a survey of 700 transgender travelers as part of a campaign to attract more transgender visitors. “It is our goal to make Fort Lauderdale the No. 1 destination of choice for transgender travelers,” Gray said, noting Fort Lauderdale served as host city for Southern Comfort, the nation’s largest transgender conference, in 2015.
The world’s first and highest 360-degree infinity pool will open in Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah. One of the region’s most anticipated attractions, AURA SKYPOOL will begin welcoming guests in mid-November.
History and culture are etched into every corner of Greece. Beginning with its language, the oldest written language still in existence, and moving from the traces of passing civilizations and religions to pre-historic findings and works from many movements, there’s a wealth of culture to discover on your next trip to Greece.
Airplane travel evokes a lot of emotions these days: excitement, anticipation, uncertainty and nervousness, just to name a few. But when you do take to the skies again, the giddiness of getting pampered at 35,000 feet can most certainly wash away the surrealness of the past year and a half — at least for the duration of a long- haul flight — as you sip Champagne and slip your feet into plush slippers. While some global airlines have paused or pushed back plans for upgrades and refreshes to their premium cabins, others have introduced exciting changes that await in your pod or lie-flat bed in first and business classes. What’s more, amenities like privacy screens, sliding suite doors and space to spread out all serve a dual purpose as methods to luxuriate in the air while keeping social distance. Here are some nice- ties to expect now and in the near future, from retrofitted seat configurations to updated décor to Michelin-starred meals:
United Airlines is making international travel more accessible. United announced the largest trans-Atlantic expansion in its history, including 10 new flights and five new destinations including Amman (AMM), Jordan; Bergen (BGO), Norway; Azores (PDL), Portugal; Palma de Mallorca (PMI), Spain; and Tenerife (TFS) in the Spanish Canary Islands. All new routes, set to begin in spring 2022, are not served by any other North American carrier.
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
Galataport Istanbul, a new cruise and lifestyle destination on the Bosphorus in Istanbul, welcomed its first ship, SeaDream II, on Oct. 1. Approximately 150 passengers and crew from Bulgaria Varna arrived at 10 a.m. for a two-day homeport operation before continuing to Bulgaria Burgaz.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Walker Hotel Tribeca is blushing pink with an exclusive offer benefitting the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Throughout the month, guests can book an all-pink guestroom, among additional amenities.
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
Insight Vacations, Tourism Ireland and Tourism Northern Ireland are offering the chance to win a free trip to Ireland for two, valued at $6,000. Oct. 18–22, The Road to Ireland contest page will be updated daily with a new clue and question that contestants will need to answer for a chance to win a trip for two on Insight’s Country Roads of Ireland tour in 2022. Contestants have until 11:59 p.m. PST Oct. 29 to submit answers.