Sometimes it’s hard to read the newspaper. Between wars, politics
and natural disasters there seems to be plenty of bad news to go
around. If you want to avoid bad news in our industry, I suggest
you stay away from the Business section too in particular, avoid
the international exchange rates.
With the pound going almost two-for-one against the U.S. dollar,
travelers to the U.K. this summer are in for serious quid shock.
Unfortunately, the currency news is not great in much of the rest
of Europe either. And don’t expect relief from any special pricing
or packages. One hotelier recently told me that there are plenty of
European travelers that are happy to pay for his company’s beds, so
there is no need to cut rates for Americans in the form of
packages. He also suggested that this is the summer for your
clients to use any miles or points they have saved up in exchange
for travel overseas.
“They’ll never be worth more than now,” he said.
Another option is to suggest a river cruise to your clients. As
you’ll read in our cover story, “Take Them to the River” (page 18),
a river cruise is one of the hottest products in travel. Not only
does a cruise get clients off-the-beaten path and into the charming
small towns of Europe, but value is a major selling point as well.
As one executive in the story points out, any time you can pay for
a trip in dollars, a year in advance, “it’s the bargain of a
Even though much of river cruising involves European
destinations, don’t forget that there are plenty of cruises on the
famous waterways of Asia, Africa, the Middle East, South America
and right here in the U.S. as well. A river cruise can be a great
way to see these places too.
Regardless of destination, however, the bottom line is, this
summer when a family of four comes to you saying they want to
finally see England, you might do better in the long run to suggest
some options. Otherwise, you stand to be blamed for the bad news
that is the U.S. dollar. K.S.