European Update Marketing Committee Meeting June 2009
European Stats • Jan-Apr Europe down by around 2% to Caribbean • Cancun and USVI keeping these figures higher with 45.9% and 49.2% growth respectively (USVI Jan-Feb figs only) • Cancun will show massive decline in May, main beneficiaries out of UK being Dom Rep and Jamaica • Biggest declines in % terms – SVG, AXA GND, ANU and UVF – being between 12 and 20% down. Source: CTO
European Economic Indicators • UK • Exchange Rates: Currently around • UK£1 to US$1.62 (up from US$1.47 Jan 09) • UK£1 to €1.15 (up from €1.10 Jan 09) • Sterling recovering its strength which will stimulate overseas travel • Markets have been buoyant in the last two weeks, property values are reported to have risen by 2.6% in May, confidence is showing signs of returning • Fuel prices rising again – hit £1 per litre at the petrol pumps – a significant barrier • Political turmoil remains a threat to confidence
European Economic Indicators • Europe – more stability • Exchange Rates: Currently around • €1 : US$1.41 (up from US$1.36 Jan 09) • Predictions of the Euro ‘collapsing’ by Q2 or 3 do not appear to be coming true, but Euro is definitely returning to a more realistic value against other currencies • Recession is slower to bite in Europe, and media is not as obsessed, so consumer confidence is not as badly affected as in the UK
Market News UK • bookings continue EXTREMELY late • Virgin Holidays reporting average 8 days pre-book period • Virgin Atlantic capacity restrictions putting stress on sales to main islands (demand is sometimes outstripping seat availability • Tactical discounting continues – tour ops still urging us to give deals with a longer life, but many have refined systems and upgraded websites to cope better with constant tactical changes • TUI offering Free Redundancy Protection Insurance (money back guarantee if you lose your job)
Market News UK • Domestic tourism booming – up as much as 20% in UK holiday parks • Caribbean holding up against other destinations – political unrest in the Far East and Sri Lanka deter travellers. • See ba.com for new dynamic packaging system • Virginholidays.co.uk new-look site • The Mileage Company (formerly Air Miles) a worthwhile partner to pursue in these downtimes, picking up BA distress stock
Market News UK • British Airways is launching two new services from London's Gatwick Airport, to Montego Bay, Jamaica, and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. • Both of the new twice weekly services will be launched on 25 October 2009. • Gatwick to St Lucia increasing from three flights per week to five • Gatwick to Barbados increasing from nine to ten • Gatwick to Port of Spain from three to five. • APD also remains a threat. More organisations including pilots’ union taking up the cause to have it abolished. Dutch and French have dropped theirs and now UK passengers are flying via other European cities.
Market News • Germany – more stability • More stability than in UK. • Big ops like Meiers and Dertour now refining tactical promotion methods but still pleading with us to give them deals with some longevity • New Condor service announced to NAS from Nov • France • looking for bargains – NAS / FPO flight withdrawn in favour of Dom Rep
Market News • Ireland • Caribbean has come into vogue with the Irish. • Thanks to a new Aer Lingus service that connects in Gatwick with the main Caribbean departures.