Agents' Choice 2020

Red, White & Gnome All Over

Everybody loves the Gnome and now, Canadians from coast to coast, will have another reason to feel the love as Travelocity’s Roaming Gnome adds a Canadian touch to its otherwise readily identifiable presence. And it was the Gnome that was part of the reason that Travelocity.ca invited a select group of industry types to join some of its top executives for a “quiet” and “intimate” get together on the rooftop patio of Toronto’s Spoke Club in the city’s trendy King St. West neighbourhood. Brian Simpson, operations manager and resident travel expert at Travelocity.ca, welcomed a group of about 35 travel trade types for the OTA’s “Red, White & Gnome All Over” Canada Day party that featured the unveiling of the Canadianized look of the Travelocity Roaming Gnome, but also included a panel discussion of some of the top travel trends percolating in the marketplace right now. The quartet of experts on hand for the event, included session moderator, Loren Christie of Canada AM; Lorrie King of Deloitte; author and physician, Dr. Mel Borins; and Simpson himself. As for a few highlights of the discussion, well, Deloitte’s winter 2012 survey of Canadian travellers revealed a cautious outlook for both leisure and business travel with 62% of Canadians indicating that they’re as likely to take a personal vacation in the coming 12 months compared to 46% a year ago. And Travelocity.ca reported that it has noticed an increased interest in short vacations, with many travellers looking for weekend trips that are more affordable — both in terms of finances and vacation days. The OTA’s booking data also shows that people buying an air-only ticket are spending, on average, eight days away, while customers booking a flight and hotel package are spending on average, five days away. Watch for more from the Travelocity.ca panel session in upcoming issues of Canadian Travel Press and Travel Courier. Oh, and watch for the Roaming Gnome too …

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