Morning Roundup: Love Columbus? Sho...

Morning Roundup: Love Columbus? Shout it out loud! Plus BWC abuses, Germain expansion and an R.L. Stine tale on Twitter

In today's issue: Everyone encouraged to shout your love for Columbus, investigation into Workers' Comp fraud unit finds possible abuses tied to quotas, Germain close to deal to expand to Dayton, hunger on the rise in Ohio, Cincinnati Enquirer seeing a shakeup during its digital transformation, and R.L. Stine takes to Twitter to tell a Halloween tale. If you missed Columbus Business First's inaugural C-Suite Awards last night, you missed an informative, entertaining, occasionally moving and sometimes?
City officials looking at ways to b...

City officials looking at ways to better brand Orlando International Airport

Next time someone is boarding or exiting a plane at Orlando International Airport, they may hear a familiar voice. Taking the place of the automated voice at Orlando International that informs travelers to stand clear of doors will now be the voice of Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, reports the Orlando Sentinel. In addition to Dyer's recorded "stand clear" message, he will also explain a few of the many things to see in Orlando during a visit, and when leaving Orlando, the exit message reminds travelers?
Hawaii hotel rates increase percent...

Hawaii hotel rates increase percent 7%, occupancy rates reach 79%

The statewide average hotel room rate in Hawaii increased 6.8 percent last week compared to a year ago to $225.37 as the average hotel occupancy rate reached 79.2 percent, a 3.7 percentage-point increase from last year, according to the Hawaii hotel industry snapshot by Hospitality Advisors LLC and STR Inc. Oahu led all islands for the week of Oct. 19-25 with an average occupancy rate of 84.8 percent, a 3.4 percentage-point increase from the same week last year; followed by Maui at 75.8 percent,?
Carnival Cruise Lines CEO to retire

Carnival Cruise Lines CEO to retire

Carnival Cruise Lines CEO Gerry Cahill will retire after 20 years of service with the company. Cahill, 63, has been CEO of Carnival Corp.'s largest cruise line since 2007, growing the operation to 24 ships during his tenure. His retirement will take effect Nov. 30. Carnival has three Port Canaveral-based ships that operate 200 three- to eight-day voyages a year visiting 18 destinations. For more on this story, check out our sister paper South Florida Business Journal. Want Central Florida?
Land of opportunity

Land of opportunity

It was never Majid Aliessa's plan to leave Iraq, but when his job as a transportation helper for the U.S. Army made him fear for his life, he knew it was time to get out. Now the 47-year-old married father of two has settled in Western New York and works at Litelab Corp. in downtown Buffalo. Since being hired last year by the maker of high-end lighting, he has fixed machines, assembled parts and painted walls. "I have some skills for electric so I got this job," said Aliessa, who arrived in Buffalo?
Readers react to Cincinnati-Chicago...

Readers react to Cincinnati-Chicago high-speed rail

We asked readers: Would you take advantage of a high-speed rail option between Cincinnati and Chicago? Check out the results of our survey below (apologies to mobile users, charts are only available for desktop viewing). Here's what two of the respondents had to say: I wish there were more opportunities to travel by train within the USA! - Caroline Driscoll How about Nashville and Cincy? - Art Staehling


Mourning Sons Sue Malaysia Airlines...

Mourning Sons Sue Malaysia Airlines Over Missing Jet

Two children sued Malaysia Airlines and the government on Friday over the loss of their father on Flight MH370.
The Week in Pictures

The Week in Pictures

Lava creeps towards Hawaiian homes, internet tax lights up Hungary, space rocket goes up in flames, Beluga whale gives birth and more.
Vote for the Week in Pictures

Vote for the Week in Pictures

Vote for the best image from the Week in Pictures.
The Week in Pictures

The Week in Pictures

Lava creeps towards Hawaiian homes, internet tax lights up Hungary, space rocket goes up in flames, Beluga whale gives birth and more.
Vote for the Week in Pictures

Vote for the Week in Pictures

Vote for the best image from the Week in Pictures.
A 3-cent tooth whitener and 7 other...

A 3-cent tooth whitener and 7 other surprising uses for hydrogen peroxide

There?s a good chance you have a little brown bottle of hydrogen peroxide in your bathroom right now ? but you probably don?t use it for much other than the occasional disinfection of minor cuts and scrapes. Behold all the affordable (and ingenious) uses you've been missing out on.


T Magazine: Finding Solace in Artis...

T Magazine: Finding Solace in Artistry

The Los Angeles artist Alex Israel sees a vivid exuberance in Terrance Hayes?s reflection on the comforts and perils of taking refuge in art.
In Transit Blog: Taylor Swift Welco...

In Transit Blog: Taylor Swift Welcomes You to New York

The singer Taylor Swift has been named New York?s ?global welcome ambassador? by the city?s tourism group.
Check In: Hotel Review: Bespoke Inn...

Check In: Hotel Review: Bespoke Inn in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Free bike rentals, plenty of outdoor lounge space and a location near Main Street are all part of the package at this four-room inn that opened last year.
Q&A: Traveling on the Fly With Omar...

Q&A: Traveling on the Fly With Omar Miller

The actor?s tips for choosing restaurants and hotels may make advanced planning seem boring.
T Magazine: Murder, They Wrote

T Magazine: Murder, They Wrote

For over a century, the cloistered luxury of the Orient Express has mingled intrigue and decadence. Two mystery novelists board in search of inspiration.
Heads Up: London Develops a Peruvia...

Heads Up: London Develops a Peruvian Palate

A dozen or so high-profile Peruvian restaurants have emerged on the city?s dining scene, with more on the way.


Spotting Whooping Cranes in Kansa...

Spotting Whooping Cranes in Kansas

Whooping cranes will fly through the state in upcoming weeks, making their way to wintering grounds at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge on the Texas Gulf Coast.
Consumer Reports 2014 Annual Auto...

Consumer Reports 2014 Annual Auto Reliability Survey

Infotainment Systems are a Growing First-Year Reliability Plague
Travel Implications Because of Eb...

Travel Implications Because of Ebola in Parts of West Africa

The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to screening procedures, travel restrictions, and reduced aviation transportation options in response to the outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea.
Somalia Travel Warning

Somalia Travel Warning

The U.S. Department of State continues to warn U.S. citizens to avoid all travel to Somalia.
Russian Federation Travel Alert

Russian Federation Travel Alert

The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens in Russia to the on-going tensions along the border with Ukraine and the potential for clashes between pro-Russian groups and Ukrainian forces.
House Republicans Demand Ban on T...

House Republicans Demand Ban on Travelers from West Africa

By Wesley Juhl - House Republicans want to ban travel to the U.S. from West Africa, where the Ebola outbreak continues to rage.


Online Travel Agency Competition He...

Online Travel Agency Competition Heats up Down Under

Australia and New Zealand's (ANZ's) online travel agency (OTA) landscape has changed considerably over the last three years. Long a two-horse race between Wotif and Webjet, the status quo is now facing disruption by several domestic and global players, according to PhoCusWright's newly released Australia and New Zealand Online Travel Overview Seventh Edition (an Asia Pacific and Global Edition publication). Wotif has experienced decelerated growth since 2010 – and recorded its weakest performance in 2013. Webjet is on a roll, aggressively closing the gap with Wotif, and has gradually moved away from an air-only approach to become a full-service OTA. With broad expertise and deep pockets for marketing spend, global OTAs such as Priceline-owned, Expedia, and Orbitz subsidiary HotelClub continue to up the ante in the online hotel space. "Despite the weakening of the Australian dollar and subdued growth forecast of the ANZ travel market, competition in the...
Are Global Travel Organizations Und...

Are Global Travel Organizations Undervaluing Regional Social Media?

Travel industry engagement in the major global social platforms – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube – is nearly universal. Social networks now play a considerable – and growing – role in travel companies' marketing, customer engagement and service, according to The State of Social Media in Travel, a new Global Edition study from PhoCusWright. However, despite widespread prominence of social networking use across the travel industry, less than 10% of respondents to a new study cited any engagement with key regional social networks. In China, home to the world's largest social networking population and where nearly all Chinese travelers are active on local social platforms, only 6% of travel companies are currently active on some of the most popular social networks, such as Sina Weibo. "Given the scope of our study, it was quite surprising to see that so few travel companies are engaged in regional social networks," says Douglas Quinby, PhoCusWright's vice...
PhoCusWright Announces Partnership ...

PhoCusWright Announces Partnership With Brazilian Consultancy, Mapie

Travel industry research authority PhoCusWright today announced a partnership with Mapie, a Brazil-based hospitality consultancy company specializing in the Latin American market. Mapie's services include business development, management modeling and consumer and market research. This partnership with Mapie is evidence of PhoCusWright's expanding presence throughout the globe. Mapie will assist PhoCusWright with fielding surveys, sourcing clients and distributing their travel, tourism and hospitality research across Latin America. "Latin America is a complex region with varying characteristics from country to country. Partnering with a respected and established entity like Mapie will help us expand our presence in what we think is an underserved market," said Tony D'Astolfo, managing director of PhoCusWright. "Mapie will help with market sizing and consumer trends, and we will also leverage their significant portfolio of travel industry clients to assist with quantitative and...
Is Airbnb a Distribution or Hospita...

Is Airbnb a Distribution or Hospitality Company?

Is Airbnb a Distribution or Hospitality Company?(And Why It Wants to Be a Hospitality Company) In the latter half of 2013, Airbnb began making more direct comparisons between itself and the hotel industry. Nathan Blecharczyk, co-founder and CTO, told the Telegraph in November that he expected Airbnb to surpass InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) and Hilton in total number of rooms. He was right. Intended or not, the direct comparison with two of the world's largest hotel companies proved to be perfect PR for the fast-growing startup. Within six months, the company had closed a monster US$475 million funding round. The extensive media coverage in the run-up to the funding couldn't have hurt. It widely – and almost always superficially – compared the reported $10 billion valuation to the lesser market caps of several hotel companies, including IHG. The comparisons – both in the number of rooms and in valuation – may have made for great PR, but...
Mobile Holiday Shopping: Travel Rev...

Mobile Holiday Shopping: Travel Review Websites Win in France and U.K., Online Travel Agents Lead in Germany

Across Europe, consumer travel behavior is about as diverse as the culture. Nearly a quarter of French, German and U.K. leisure travelers used a mobile device to plan holidays in the past year. But according to a recent PhoCusWright report (part of the European, Global and Innovation Edition subscriptions), the types of travel websites and mobile apps mobile travel planners visit varies considerably across markets. According to PhoCusWright's European Traveler Technology Survey 2014, travel review websites and apps dominate in France and the U.K. Fifty-two percent of mobile travel planners in the U.K., and 45% in France, used a mobile website or app like TripAdvisor in the past year. In Germany, however, mobile travel review activity drops to 29%. Instead, German travelers typically prefer visiting online travel agents (OTAs) on their smartphones and tablets. In fact, they are significantly more likely to use an OTA website or app than their French and U.K. counterparts. ...
China?s Exploding Online Penetratio...

China?s Exploding Online Penetration Leads to Expanded OTA Offerings And Platforms

As Alibaba sits perched on the edge of what could be the largest IPO in history, all eyes are on China's e-commerce marketplaces. And as the country's consumers flock to online and mobile shopping channels, travel is one of the industries driving the shift. China's online leaders have the experience, talent and determination to innovate; its tech-savvy traveler base is poised for considerable growth; and its quickly evolving online environment revamps business models and offerings at a rapid pace. China's online travel gross bookings reached US$18.2 billion in 2013, second in Asia Pacific (APAC) only to Japan's, according to PhoCusWright's newly released Asia Pacific and Global Edition publication, China Online Travel Overview Seventh Edition. With annual growth of 26 – 27%, online bookings will account for more than a quarter of all travel bookings by 2016, when China's online travel market will surpass Japan's to reach $37.1 billion. With China's overall and online...


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