Travel Markets Insider Newsletter Vol. 20 No. 20

The Travel Markets Insider newsletter is attached to this post as a PDF file. To open the PDF file, please click on this link.




Calling all women attending the Duty Free and Travel Retail Summit of the Americas.


Please make plans to attend the annual WiTR Networking cocktail hour at the Hyatt Regency Orlando on Sunday, March 24, at 5:30-7:00 pm just prior to the official Opening Cocktail.


We will be meeting in the Orchid Room, adjacent to the pool area where the Opening Cocktail will take place.


Cocktails are generously being provided by Edrington Americas Travel Retail and a selection of “women-themed” wines have been donated by WEBB Banks. And a special thank you to Aer Rianta North America and Jackie McDonagh for co-sponsoring this year’s event with TMI.


As in the past, we will be holding a charity raffle and Silent Auction, and we already have some fantastic gift items that have been promised. We welcome your donations for the raffle, and please bring plenty of business cards and $$ to play!


This year, we will would like to invite those of you interested in speaking briefly about your company or something special that you are doing, to drop me a line so we can schedule you into the agenda.




Please RSVP to me at so we can plan accordingly. See you there!



Now to the News:


It’s official! ACI World‘s latest airport traffic rankings position Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson squarely in the #1 position, handling more than 107 million passengers in 2018. See which other airports filled out the top 20 on page 1.


In more airport rankings, Routesonline reports the busiest air routes in the Americas, and the winner once again is the connection between Mexico City and Cancun, with about 4.87 million passengers. Trailing by nearly one million, the route between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo takes the #2 spot with 3.9 million passengers. See the rest of the top traveled air routes in the region on page 2.




Agency Spotlight:


International Brand Builders Inc (IBBI) is focusing on innovation this year, and IBBI President Katherine Sleipnes says she is bringing new collections and new brands to her “affordable luxury” portfolio. The highlights this year cover jewelry with a message (Infinity & Co.) , premium hi-tech wallets (Tru Virtu), protective eyewear (B+D), scarves and sarongs (Morgan & Oates), and fashion watches (Lambretta and Tick & Ogle)- all geared to appeal to an Americas market. Page 3.


Product Spotlight:


What is the best-selling Sake in the US? It’s the award-winning Sho Chiku Bai from Takara Sake USA, represented in travel retail in the region by Al Bashian’s AAMCO Duty Free. See why Takara is looking to expand its reach in the Caribbean and Latin America, with a special emphasis on the cruise channel. Page 4




Starboard Cruise Services has revealed another stunning retail showcase, this time inspired by Italian flair onboard Costa Cruises brand new Costa Venezia, the first ship custom-built for Chinese travelers. Among a lists of firsts, Costa Venezia is home to the largest beauty space ever offered at sea, says Starboard. Page 5.


Disney Cruise Line has signed a preliminary agreement with the government of The Bahamas to develop a cruise port and entertainment facility in Eleuthera. The terms of the partnership stipulate land, employment, business opportunities and access for Bahamians. More details on page 5.


Edrington Americas Travel Retail teamed up with MSC Cruises to execute a high-visibility tasting bar activation on the new MSC Seaside to promote its travel-retail exclusive The Macallan Quest Collection. Page 4.


Carnival Cruise Line bartender, Sanja Cvijetic, was the winner of the Bacardi Legacy Cruise Bartender of the Year 2019 last month, and will now go on to compete against 38 domestic market winners for the overall global title in May. Read more on page 2.


The Seatrade Global Cruise event is coming in April and returns to Miami Beach after three years in Ft. Lauderdale. The PPI Group, publisher of Porthole Cruise magazine, is hosting the official after-party of the event, which attracts many of the top names in the industry. Page 1.