Evolution of travel means a lot of extra fees
You could count on a general degree of stability at the destinations travellers wanted to visit most. Then, airlines — particularly in the U.S. — discovered a paved road to prosperity with ancillary fees and oil prices. Places such as Egypt, Tunisia, and to some extent Russia, which count on tourism for their economies, suddenly became countries fearful and fairminded tourists no longer wished to visit.
With each change within a travel company comes a large measure of publicity that affects consumer attitudes toward the company, the style of travel or individual actions within travel patterns. Extra fees here to stay on cruise lines
Some time ago, most of the world’s cruise brands instituted specialty restaurants aboard their vessels as a way of gathering extra revenue.
Is the food not good enough at the many restaurant options already available on most ships? Of course it is! But add the word “culinary” to a new restaurant with the name of the chef tied to it, and a significant percentage of people will willingly pay the extra fare for the experience.
Nothing is more enjoyable than a nice breakfast brought to your cabin by a friendly attendant. That used to be free, but now cruise lines are testing reaction to a small room-service charge on some of their ships.
Even some not-so-specialty foods like chicken wings and shrimp by the pool will cost you extra on some ships.
Now they’ve got rolling, there will be no end to extra fees in the coming years. Passenger shaming ever popular
Whether they’re aboard an aircraft, on a ship or at a resort, many passengers who carry on boorish and unacceptable behaviour are under the false impression no one back home will ever find out.
With the advent of smartphone video cameras, this behaviour can be silently captured without the perpetrators knowing their families, and thousands of others, are about to bear witness. The run of shame begins as soon as the video is posted to YouTube, and the people who first see the disturbing actions make sure they forward it to all their friends via social media — there is now even a passenger-shaming page on Instagram. The documentary that changed an industry
Visits to SeaWorld were standard family-vacation fare — a thrill for children and adults alike to see the giant whales jump and dive.
But on Feb. 24, 2010, everything began to change when 40-year-old trainer Dawn Brancheau, was killed by an orca whale in front of hundreds during a show in Orlando.
My own grandchildren were in the audience the day before, and to this day their parents have not told them of that incident, knowing how upsetting it would be to them.
Critics have always argued conditions at SeaWorld were not acceptable for creatures of this size.
What really sent shockwaves through the industry was a well-produced documentary called Blackfish.
It was played over and over again on CNN and became available on Netflix and other channels.
SeaWorld did what it could to minimize the publicity and argue its point of view, but it is generally acknowledged attendance dropped at many of the parks after the film’s release.
SeaWorld has now launched a sort of comeback campaign that focuses on the theme park’s dedication to care for their animals and mammals in their parks.
The parks have always provided excellent entertainment and opinions are extreme on both sides of the debate about whether these kinds of shows should be allowed. But it is noteworthy how one medium is being used to successfully shame people, while another does the same to organizations. Welcome to the space age
“There’s no room for my carry-on in this overhead bin!”
These are words you will hear on just about every full flight since airlines instituted charges for the first checked bag.
More and more people are trying to avoid the charge by trying to pack as much as they can in their carry-on allowances. At times the frustration is palpable, as customers try to push and squeeze their bags into spaces that just can’t fit. A solution may be around the corner.
Boeing has introduced a new design that can be retrofitted into aircraft, starting with the 737s.
Branded as Space Bins, the new design claims to free up 50 per cent more space that can be dedicated to carryon baggage. The new design steals a few inches of headroom and changes some of the closing door and hinge mechanisms on planes.
Delta airlines has already started installing them in its 737 aircraft, and similar designs for other aircraft are likely to follow.
Forward your travel questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ron Pradinuk is president of Journeys Travel & Leisure SuperCentre and can be heard
Sundays at noon on CJOB. Previous columns and tips can be found at www. journeystravelgear.com or read Ron’s travel blog at www.thattravelguy.ca.