Skift Podcast: How European Tourism Came Back From the Brink

Skift Europe Editor Patrick Whyte speaks to the European Travel Commission’s Jennifer Eduh (center) and Visit Iceland’s Inga Palsdottir at Skift Forum Europe in Berlin.

Skift Take: Tune in to hear experts on European tourism discuss the recent growth in visitors — and how to best manage it.

— Hannah Sampson

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Ryan Wolkov

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Rizort Raises $2.9 Million for VR-Infused Travel Advice: Travel Startup Funding This Week

The Ritz Carlton in Bali is one of the properties recommended by Rizort, an online travel agency that has received startup funding.

Skift Take: Can virtual reality content play a role in helping to persuade travelers to book luxury destinations in Southeast Asia? That’s the bet made by Rizort, an online travel agency startup that received funding this week.

— Sean O’Neill

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Ryan Wolkov

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Americans Won’t Ditch Phones on Vacation Despite Travel Industry’s Digital Detox Push

Steve Newman

Many travelers dont want to unplug on vacation despite travel brands telling them that they should. Pictured are tourists taking photos with their phones in Times Square in New York City. Steve Newman

Skift Take: Travel is more accessible today than ever before because of mobile devices and the travel industry knows this. We don’t see anything wrong with nudging travelers to look up from their devices every now and then, but promoting a device-free vacation reads a little tone-deaf in 2018.

— Dan Peltier

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Business Travel Booms as Hotel Chains Reap the Rewards

Marriott International executives at a press conference. Business travel’s growth is a big win for hospitality.

Skift Take: Hotel companies are reporting strong earnings from corporate business. This is as good a sign as any that the latest business travel boom has continued into 2018, and it will be interesting to see how this tees up corporate hotel rate increases that make business travel even more expensive for companies.

— Andrew Sheivachman

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Hyatt’s New Corporate Travel Program Aims for Small Businesses

A promotional photo of a Hyatt Hotels front desk. The hotel chain’s new program aimed at small businesses is an interesting, but narrow, foray into business travel.

Skift Take: Hyatt seems to realize not only that small businesses are the most untapped portion of corporate travel, but that a solid business travel experience can lead to dividends on the leisure side as well. Whether this program catches on is another story, though.

— Andrew Sheivachman

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Group Building Istanbul New Airport to Get an Extra $1.2 Billion Loan

Istanbul New Airport is an international airport under construction in Turkey. Shown here is an artist’s rendering of what the main hall of the first terminal to open will look like.

Skift Take: Istanbul’s new airport will feature the world’s largest terminal and is due to have its delayed opening later this year. But we increasingly worry that, rather than make Turkey a key international hub between Europe and Asia, it is too big for its own good.

— Sean O’Neill

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Private Islands Are Oasis For Luxury Travelers in an Over-Connected World

Lars Plougmann

Private islands like this one in Belize are growing in popularity among affluent travelers. Lars Plougmann

Skift Take: Renting out private islands isn’t something that just started happening but in a world where its harder to unplug, having an island to yourself at least gives the illusion of seclusion.

— Dan Peltier

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Delta Air Lines Will Return to Mumbai Despite Competition from Gulf Carriers

Delta Air Lines will return to Mumbai but it hasn’t said from where it will fly. Delta will face stiff competition from the top three Gulf carriers.

Skift Take: By most accounts, there’s not much heft in the new agreements the U.S. government reached with Qatar and the United Arab Emirates over airline subsidies. Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways will still carry a significant number of travelers between the United States and India. Perhaps the updated diplomatic agreement isn’t the reason Delta is returning to India. Maybe it’s just a good market.

— Brian Sumers

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