The Travel Markets Insider newsletter is attached to this post as a PDF file. To open the PDF file, please click on this link.
As this most difficult and challenging year draws to a close, we want to thank all our readers and partners for your interest and support. It appears that the year ahead will see a gradual recovery—even as a full return to 2019 levels may take several years. Nevertheless, we wish you all much better news in 2021 and beyond. Stay aware and stay well.
Our lead story today is the huge news that a Brexit trade deal has been reached and approved by the British Parliament. Many changes are ahead. Most important for the travel retail industry is the restart of duty free between the UK and EU, although tax free sales for air passengers leaving the UK was not approved.
The European Travel Retail Confederation – ETRC – has issued a memorandum detailing new allowances and urging its member retailers to prepare for a new trading regime. It is also critical to make sure to communicate the new regulations to travelers. Story on page 1.
In more international news, DFS congratulated its business partner, Shenzhen Duty Free Group, who won the license to operate an offshore downtown duty free business in Hainan. Page 1.
In Memoriam: Jorge Ramos
Following up on last week’s terrible news that Jorge Ramos had died from complications from COVID-19, TMI’s John Gallagher shares some of his best memories. Page 2.
Carnival Cruise Line has taken delivery of the Mardi Gras, the first ship in North America to be powered by liquefied natural gas. Guest operations are scheduled to begin in April 2021 from Port Canaveral. Details on page 2.
Signs of better times ahead?
HMSHost partners with the National Restaurant Association to underscore safety as the U.S. readies for a travel rebound. Page 3
Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association President Pablo Torres predicts a rapid return of Caribbean tourism. Page 3
3Sixty Duty Free is the first retail partner of PHL’s online ordering platform. Page 3
Luxury Spirits: Aston Martin partners with Bowmore to create second exclusive special edition vehicle. Page 4
Regulations: In a positive development, new spirits bottle sizes are coming to the U.S., which could open the way for many European whiskies to be sold in the U.S. for the first time. Page 4
Negatively, however, the U.S. has announced that it will be raising tariffs on certain non-sparkling vino, cognacs and other brandies from France and Germany. Page 4
YSL Beauty helps to prevent abuse with a new global program launched in November. Page 4