tourists. You can no longer count the number of hotel beds to calculate how many tourists there are because there is so much hidden accommodation. “We’re constantly talking

to destination partners and working with local authorities. “Cruise lines are investing significant chunks of money in developing port infrastructure and changing how ships operate. The biggest part of what we do is developing port infrastructure. We have 12 port development projects in Europe, including in Lisbon, Malaga, Barcelona and Kotor. “We’re also investing in

our own destinations in the Caribbean – at Coco Cay in the Bahamas and on Haiti – and we have plans to continue.” Leven accepts that taxes on

tourists may be unavoidable in some destinations, saying: “There is taxation [on visitors] in the Balearics and Barcelona, and that is fine if it is going into investment. It has not had an impact on volumes going to the destinations.” But he adds: “We’ve been in

a buoyant holiday environment [when] small increases in price have not been felt. In a more difficult economic environment, small moves in price might be felt [by consumers].” Leven says: “What is important is working with local governments for the benefit of the destination.” He adds: “The feedback we get is that destinations want cruise ships.” Leven will join a Travel

Convention panel which includes World Travel & Tourism Council president and chief executive Gloria Guevara and Abta director of destinations and sustainability

Nikki White. ■ The Travel Convention 2018, October 8-10, Barceló Convention Centre, Seville:

Irish pilots could approve Ryanair’s first labour deal

Ian Taylor

Ryanair reached a deal with Irish pilots’ union Forsa to end a series of one-day strikes by flight crew last week. But the airline remains in dispute with pilot and cabin crew unions elsewhere in Europe.

Both Forsa and Ryanair declined to reveal details of their agreement pending a ballot on the deal by Irish pilots. However, union officials said they would recommend acceptance. The agreement came after Irish

pilots staged five one-day strikes, the most recent on August 10 when pilots in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Sweden also walked out forcing Ryanair to cancel 400 flights. However, pilots’ union repre-

sentatives from outside Ireland met in Frankfurt last week and agreed a date for a fresh one-day strike in pursuit of improved pay and conditions and employment under national, not Irish law.

German operators pull ‘package’ plan for room-only sales

German operators including Thomas Cook have backtracked on treating accommodation-only bookings as ‘packages’ under new package travel rules due to legal uncertainty about the practice. Leading groups in Germany, including Tui, Thomas Cook and Der Touristik, which owns Kuoni in the UK, decided to offer package protection for room-only bookings from July 1 when the new EU Package Travel Directive came in.

78 30 August 2018 RYANAIR: A Dutch union official believes carrier will face ‘new strikes’ 400

Flights cancelled by Ryanair due to pilot strikes on August 10

Joost van Doesburg of the Dutch

VNV union said: “We believe there has been no culture change yet at Ryanair. They are not open for good discussions over our demands. We believe there will be new strikes.” The Irish union described

The bookings were categorised

as “voluntary package holidays”, with travel agents asked to supply insolvency-insurance certificates to customers to comply with the directive’s consumer information requirements – similar to the Atol Certificates issued in the UK to customers booking packages. However, travel agents

queried the practice since the directive defines a package as “a combination of at least two different types of travel services”. Thomas Cook announced

last week that it would halt the practice from September 1. The group’s managing director in Germany, Stefanie Berk said: “This

BERK: ‘This will give agents and customers more transparency’

will give our agency partners and customers more transparency with bookings of single products.” Tui said it would continue the


the deal to settle its dispute as “tentative”, saying it referred to issues of “seniority” and promotion among pilots, and negotiations on annual-leave entitlement continue. Ryanair employs about 350 pilots in Ireland, of whom about one in three are members of the union. The airline employs 4,000 pilots across Europe. The carrier agreed in December

to recognise trade unions for the first time. An agreement with Forsa would represent the first labour deal Ryanair has negotiated.

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