According to Icelandic Tourist Board figures, Iceland documented a 20 percent uptick in North American travelers in 2014. Many of these travelers explored the remote island for the first time, booking Golden Circle tours with popular sites such as Gullfoss waterfall, Geysir Geothermal Area and UNESCO-designated Thingvellir National Park. But others returned for off-the-beaten path experiences, from self-driving tours of the Ring Road to off-season visits to the Highlands and West Fjords. The boost in both repeat and first-time visitors from North America is due in part to an increase in airlift, and the trend is poised to continue this year.
Known as the Pearl of the North, Dalian has long been a cherished destination for tourists from Russia and Asia because of its forested coastline, excellent seafood and compelling history. Dalian is becoming increasingly popular on a global scale, thanks to prestigious events bringing in international travelers. A highlight of any trip to Dalian is a journey along Binhai Road, a 20-mile-long coastal road affording spectacular views of beaches, bays, mountains and woodland. Family friendly theme parks, a golf course, local parks and even new luxury hotels -- including a Bavarian-themed castle by Starwood -- also top the visitor experience.
Travel agents should build a profile of their ideal target market by studying the characteristics of their best clients, Richard Earls writes. "Analyze your best clients. ... The more that you know about your best clients, the better you will be able to begin to pin-point people just like them," Earls writes.
Royal Caribbean International will operate a series of short cruises in the Bahamas and the Caribbean during the 2014-2015 cruise season. The offerings include three- and four-night sailings aboard the Enchantment of the Seas and Majesty of the Seas, which will launch out of Port Canaveral, Fla., and Miami, respectively.
Agents can jump-start their creativity by building on the ideas of others, writes Stephanie Lee, owner of Host Agency Reviews. "We aggregate ideas from others, mix them together in a pot, add a dash of our own, and -- voila! -- out comes our unique contribution to the business world," Lee writes.