Travel Markets Insider Newsletter Vol. 21 No. 22

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


BREAKING NEWS: FDFA cancels 2020 convention
Canada’s Frontier Duty Free Association (FDFA) today took the difficult decision to cancel its annual convention set to take place in Toronto in November 2020. Toronto is currently restricting gatherings in light of the health danger caused by the COVID-19 virus.
“The cancellation of this year’s [2020 Stronger Together] convention is disappointing but a necessary step to keeping our members and convention guests safe,” said Barbara Barrett, FDFA Executive Director. “We listened to public health officials, and cannot in good conscience proceed with our convention program at this time,” said Barrett.
The FDFA Convention traditionally brings together duty free store owners, suppliers, distributors, and major sponsors from across Canada. While the convention has been cancelled for this year, the association is developing a Virtual Event Series called Until We Meet Again starting this summer and spanning into the Fall.
Until We Meet Again is designed to provide opportunities for members and suppliers to stay connected, share experiences, and meet with important partners. The series will include educational webinars as well as more light-hearted social events. FDFA will announce a schedule and more information soon.
Please click on the link for a glimpse of this delightful video card from Barbara Barrett and the FDFA Board. #UntilWeMeetAgain Video Announcement
The news is up and down in today’s issue, as the COVID-19 coronavirus continues to wreak havoc, even as the travel and travel retail industries take steps to hit the ground running when travel restrictions ease again.
In our lead story, Duty Free Americas reveals that it has retained the services of a top medical doctor to help guide the company when it reopens its stores, so as to assure its employees and customers of a safe and sanitary shopping experience. Page 1.
Even as the latest COVID-19 numbers in such states as Florida, California, Arizona and Texas show worrisome spikes, the U.S. travel industry appears to be slowly bouncing back. Over the past week, TSA reports the highest numbers of passengers passing through TSA checkpoints since the pandemic began. Page 2.
As passenger traffic increases, more airport concessions are beginning to reopen. See what is happening at Tampa International on page 4.
In more news from New York’s LaGuardia Airport, which is in the midst of a massive $8 billion transformation, Marshall Airport Group unveiled two stunning new retail concepts in the new Terminal B Arrivals and Departures Hall. Page 3.
Total travel spending in the U.S. is predicted to drop 45% by the end of this year, according to a forecast prepared for the U.S. Travel Association by Tourism Economics. See full story on page 2.
Canada will now require temperature screenings for all inbound and outbound passengers departing Canadian airports for either international or domestic destinations. More details on page 4.
Major U.S. airlines step up enforcement of face coverings. Page 4.
South American Duty Free Association ASUTIL hosted the first of what are planned to be monthly webinars for the regional industry, as a way to help businesses prepare for recovery. Page 5.
In our other page 1 story this issue, Carnival Cruise Line announced that it has extended its U.S. sailing suspension through September, as it sells off ships amid billions in losses. Page 1.
In our Caribbean round-up, TMI looks at the Cayman Islands, which is unlikely to reopen as scheduled on September 1, and talks to Nick Jackson, General Manager of leading duty and tax free retailer Island Companies, Ltd. about their plans going forward. Page 5.
TMI also reports on Mexico’s Quintano Roo – home of tourist meccas Cancun and Riviera Maya– which cautiously began to welcome back visitors this month. Page 4.
Brown-Forman names Aude Bourdier new Global Travel Retail Managing Director. Page 1
Montblanc gives Gregory Dumanel an expanded role. Page 2.
3Sixty Duty Free & More brings in Stacey Kehr to head up new ship supply division. Page 2.