U.S. Travel Restrictions with Canada and Mexico Extended
Announcement from US Homeland Security: “To protect our citizens and prevent the further spread of COVID-19, the United States, Canada, and Mexico are extending the restrictions on non-essential travel at our land borders through Mar. 21. We are also working to ensure essential trade and travel remain open.”
Airlines and Hotels Added to Mexican Caribbean
The Mexican Caribbean has come out as one of the most popular destinations for Americans to visit this year. In turn, the region is increasing its air connectivity and new hotel openings.
Cozumel has three new flights from different airlines: American Airlines’ route from Philadelphia, once a week on Saturdays. After six years of absence, Frontier Airlines returned with a new flight from Denver, also on Saturdays. Southwest, meanwhile, will resume daily flights from Houston starting Mar. 11.
In addition, Frontier announced new routes to Cancun from Orlando with four flights per week: from Miami starting with five weekly departures and from Cincinnati arriving on Saturdays. Southwest will launch a daily route from Phoenix to Cancun.
The region is also seeing new property openings in Riviera Maya and Cancun this year.
The destination has already seen the debut of the highly anticipated Planet Hollywood Beach Resort Cancun on the shores of Costa Mujeres. The 898-room new-build resort boasts Hollywood memorabilia and curated entertainment-themed experiences, along with 11 restaurants and nine bars.
Riviera Cancun recently saw the opening of the Secrets Riviera Cancun Resort and Spa which is adjacent to Breathless Riviera Cancun. Later this summer it will welcome Hotel Xcaret Arte with 900 suites and a design paying tribute to Mexican art and culture.
Grupo Posadas will unveil the 343-room Live Aqua Beach Resort Tulkal Riviera Maya in the summer followed by the 734-room Fiesta Americana Tulkal Riviera Maya in the fall.
In 2021, the 714-room Hilton Cancun, an all-inclusive resort cradled in a mangrove preserve on 100 acres of beachfront, will make its debut.
Airlines Suspend Flights between U.S. and French Polynesia
Tahiti Nui officials announced that the airline suspended its nonstop service between Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Papeete through Mar. 31. United Airlines officials said the carrier will also suspend its three-times-weekly flight between San Francisco International Airport and Papeete through Mar. 31.
Travelers booked on now suspended flights to Papeete on either Air Tahiti Nui or United Airlines flights can rebook for later this year without additional charge according to airline officials.
The service suspension announcements came one week after French Polynesia closed its borders to leisure travelers on Feb. 3, a decision made by government officials in France which didn’t offer much warning and surprised many in Tahiti tourism.
No official date has yet been announced by the French government for tourism to resume to its overseas territories, but some hope appears to be building among those in the Tahiti visitor industry about an April restart for leisure travel to the destination.
The government of French Polynesia will ask that this closure last a maximum of two months.
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Cancels Cruises through May
As the cruise industry in the United States continues to await guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) another company has pushed back its potential restart.
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) which includes NCL, Oceania, and Regent Seven Seas announced that it was canceling all sailings through May 31, 2021. The cancellations include all operations from the three brands, even outside of North America.
The news comes as the North American cruise industry continues to deal with the potential death blow of the entire 2021 Alaska cruise season, which remains very much in jeopardy after Transport Canada announced that it has extended the country’s cruise ship ban more than a year to Feb. 28, 2022.
Deal of the Week
Italy: Self-drive Tour through South Tyrol and Veneto
This amazing journey is based on a self-drive tour through the regions of South Tyrol and Veneto that is full of surprises. Included is a mountain connoisseur, a private design chalet with private chef, wine and cheese tastings, a night in a castle, a visit to a local farm, private boat lake tour, breathtaking scenery, incredible accommodations and gourmet food experiences, plus many more local surprises waiting to be discovered.
Five-day package offered at US$3,995 per person.
Package pricing includes:
- Five-day rental car, pick-up and drop-off in Venice Airport, SUV or similar automatic, unlimited mileage
- Oyster and wine tasting with light lunch in Prosecco region vineyards in a local winery
- One night in a private design chalet in La Villa, Alta Badia (Dolomites), breakfast, and VAT
- Dinner in the chalet cooked by private chef
- Private visit with cheese and beer tasting in a WWI bunker in South Tyrol
- Visit to a local sheep farm in Val di Funes
- Two nights in Bolzano at Castel Hortenberg, deluxe room, breakfast, and VAT
- Visit to a local winery including tasting of six wines with sommelier
- Exclusive wine tasting in the vineyards with the winemaker of Lieselehof winery
- Private walking tour of Verona
- Private boat tour of Lake Garda
- One night in Verona at Villa Cordevigo, traditional room, breakfast, and VAT
Judy Newell, an international travel consultant since 1971, heads Perfect Journeys and specializes in unique travel experiences to destinations around the world. She custom designs journeys that are tailored to suit your interests, physical abilities and budget. Please contact Judy for further information on Travel News topics and around-the-world travel. Cell phone 415 111 8765; Vonage 949 300 3682; email email@example.com.
Sources: Homeland Security, Travelmarket Report, Travel Age West, Eurobound