Editor's Notes: June 2009

written by | Posted on June 1st, 2009

We told you last month you’d love this issue and so you will. We’ve covered just about everywhere you can think of for a destination wedding, honeymoon or a romantic getaway—from Asia-Pacific to the Mediterranean and even Disney World. Indeed, 1,600 couples per year tie the knot at Walt Disney World Resort and since 1991, 30,000 happy couples have made their vows there. Here’s another interesting factoid—an average wedding at Disney runs $20,000 with 50 people in attendance. Which means, destination weddings can be a very lucrative sales generator for travel agents. But it also begs the question, what about weddings outside of the country as opposed to domestic? Certainly, most of your destination wedding clients already know where they want to tie the knot and common sense would dictate domestic weddings—even if they’re not held in the clients’ hometown—would probably draw a bigger wedding party and more guests (i.e. the destination wedding numbers at Disney). But that may not necessarily be the case in terms of developing healthy commissions for you. Destination weddings in the Caribbean have never been more favorable price-wise, with lower airfares, good group rates and with resorts all over the Caribbean offering value add-ons like never before. Even better, resort chains like Sandals, Breezes and more specialize in destination weddings and offer attractive commissions. Better yet, all you have to do is handle the air and room bookings since their on-staff wedding specialists take care of all the other details. Mexico, too—despite the recent flu debacle—will be coming back. The resorts that specialize in destination weddings there took a horrible hit with a flurry of cancellations, but now that things are getting back to normal, you can bank on the fact they’re going to be back in the thick of things doing everything they can to get back the business they lost to Hawaii and the Caribbean during the flu scare. And then there are honeymoons. If there’s one time in a couple’s relationship where they’re not going to skimp on travel, it’s the honeymoon. And again, with those lower airfares and resort/hotel value add-ons, there’s never been a better time to up-sell an unforgettable honeymoon package to Europe, Asia-Pacific or South America. What about a honeymoon cruise? We’ve offered up a few suggestions that will have your newlywed couple sailing off happily into the sunset. So it’s all here for you folks—a whole issue full of potential and very lucrative sales that will most assuredly help give your bottom line a major boost.

we’ve got winners For those who completed the Recommend Reader Survey, thank you very much. We garnered some interesting information from that survey that we’ll be implementing in Recommend and recommend.com. Additionally, those who completed the survey had a chance to win a pair of airline tickets to anywhere in the continental United States, Mexico or the Caribbean. The two winners were Roma Cynajko of AAA East in Pennsylvania in Allentown, PA, and Diane Dober of Mansour Travel Company in Beverly Hills, CA.

correction In the Continental Airlines Guide to the Caribbean, The Bahamas and Bermuda—which was sent out with the May issue—specifically in the Trinidad & Tobago article (page C28), the Travel Log had a few inaccuracies: there is no longer a departure tax; the visittnt.com site is best accessed via gotrinidadandtobago.com; the toll-free number for Trinidad & Tobago Tourism is (800) 816-7541 (the one listed is a local number) and although gambling is available, the facilities vary.

next month Okay, get out the safari hats, the trekking boots and the mountain bikes, it’s time for our annual adventure issue. We’re going to be bringing you breathtaking product—from extreme skiing in Utah and “Mancations” in the Everglades and the Florida Keys, to extreme adventures in New Zealand, ballooning over Cappadocia, and adventures in South Africa. So don’t miss it. In the meantime, have a great read.