Costa Rica Receives Global Certification for Sustainable Tourism

Global Sustainable Tourism Council | July 23, 2020

Costa Rica’s reputation as an eco-friendly travel destination has been further cemented with its Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST) standard for lodging and tour operators achieving the Global Sustainable Tourism Council’s GSTC-Recognized Standard status.
“As global leaders in sustainability, we are honored to receive the Global Sustainable Tourism Council’s recognition for the Certification of Sustainable Tourism Standard,” said Gustavo Segura, Costa Rica’s minister of tourism. “Established more than 20 years ago by the Costa Rican Tourism Institute, the program is a result of the public and private sector’s collaborative efforts to recognize tourism companies for their sustainable tourism practices. Today, more than 400 tourism companies retain the certification.”

Spotlight

At the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) 2016 global conference, dynamic hotel pricing versus preferred hotel rates versus open booking was a popular topic among panelists.

Spotlight

At the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) 2016 global conference, dynamic hotel pricing versus preferred hotel rates versus open booking was a popular topic among panelists.

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COMMERCIAL TRAVEL,AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS

JetBlue Introduces New TrueBlue® Loyalty Program, Bringing Added Value and New Perks to Customers

JetBlue | December 08, 2022

JetBlue (NASDAQ: JBLU) announced a new TrueBlue® loyalty program that offers new perks and more choices as an increasing number of customers look to JetBlue as a trusted source for travel beyond just flights. The new program maintains most of TrueBlue’s signature perks that customers have come to love while also allowing TrueBlue members new opportunities to earn perks and status along the way. The more ways customers interact with JetBlue, the more perks they can earn. From JetBlue Vacations hotel and cruise packages, to cars, stays and activities from Paisly, to many JetBlue flight extras and add-ons, and purchases on all JetBlue credit cards, everyone from infrequent travelers to road warriors can find ways to earn and redeem in JetBlue’s loyalty program.Our loyalty program must serve the needs of the JetBlue customer today, many of whom look to us as more than just a way to get from point A to point B, said Robin Hayes, chief executive officer, JetBlue. Customers have come to love our unique combination of low fares and high-quality service, and now turn to us for more than just a flight. We are evolving our loyalty strategy to deliver even more value for customers across our entire suite of travel products and partnerships, including those who take advantage of our strategic partnership with American Airlines. We’re rolling out a bigger, better, bluer TrueBlue program this spring that’s designed to meet the needs – and exceed the expectations – of more customers, whether they travel once a week, or just once in a while,said Jayne O’Brien, head of marketing and loyalty, JetBlue. No two travelers are alike, which is why we’ve redesigned TrueBlue to let customers customize their perks as they soar toward Mosaic status, choosing the ones that are most valuable to them along the way. “We know our customers are booking more than just flights with JetBlue, so we are excited to have a program where travelers are rewarded throughout all aspects of their travel journey, There are so many opportunities for our customers to enjoy the signature JetBlue experience through flights, hotels, cruises, vacation packages, car rentals and more,” -Andres Barry, president, JetBlue Travel Products. TrueBlue will offer more value, new choices and unique personalization through a variety of all-new program aspects, including: Tiles become the new way to track and measure progress toward Mosaic status JetBlue’s most loyal group of travelers. Customizable Perks You Pick, available to more TrueBlue members without Mosaic status, will reward more travelers sooner. Multiple levels of Mosaic, each with Mosaic Signature Perks and Perks You Pick, bring expanded perks to JetBlue’s most loyal customers. Combined spend counts with all JetBlue credit cards. Add up JetBlue travel spend and any JetBlue credit card spend to unlock perks. New JetBlue credit card enhancements on select cards bring new perks to cardholders. The new TrueBlue will still carry over many of the perks customers know and love: All TrueBlue members will continue to earn TrueBlue points on JetBlue and eligible American Airlines flights, and can redeem those points for award travel on JetBlue, including any seat at any time, with no blackout dates or expiration dates. TrueBlue points will never expire. Use Cash + Points to pay for JetBlue flights and JetBlue Vacations packages. Pool points with family and friends. Earn 2X points on jetblue.com or the JetBlue app. Select reciprocal loyalty benefits for Mosaic members traveling on American Airlines. The new program is set to go live in spring 2023 and will make TrueBlue more rewarding than ever before in its 20-year history. Perks You Pick for TrueBlue Members The new TrueBlue program is designed to ensure that all TrueBlue members have the opportunity to get rewarded, even before achieving Mosaic status. For the first time ever, travelers can start earning and enjoying perks before earning Mosaic status. TrueBlue members can customize their experience with Perks You Pick, choosing their first perk with just 10 tiles, then add more perks when they reach 20, 30 and 40 tiles. For every 10 tiles TrueBlue members earn, until they reach 50, they will get to choose a new perk from the following: Early boarding. Get settled sooner with Group B boarding (excluding Blue Basic fares). Priority security. Access an expedited lane to security at dozens of airports where available. Alcoholic drink. First beer, wine or liquor is free each flight (21+). JetBlue Vacations® bonus. 2X points bonus on a JetBlue Vacations package (one-time use).(a) 5,000-point bonus. Boost your TrueBlue balance with 5,000 bonus points. These perks will allow even occasional travelers to enjoy an elevated travel experience when flying on JetBlue. Once a customer earns 50 tiles, they reach Mosaic 1 status, receive all TrueBlue Perks You Pick and are set up to qualify for even more perks within new Mosaic levels.(b) New Mosaic Levels As part of the reimagined TrueBlue program, JetBlue is also meaningfully enhancing the Mosaic program to include four distinct Mosaic levels, each featuring a Mosaic Signature Perk. Each Mosaic level has a set of distinct benefits plus, customers are entitled to pick a Mosaic Signature Perk. Mosaic Signature Perks: Mosaic 1 – 50 tiles: Mosaic Boarding. First two Checked Bags Free. Beer, Wine & Liquor. Even More® Space at Check-In. Same-Day Switches. Priority Security. Dedicated Check-In. Dedicated Support Line and Priority Chat Assistance. Complimentary Upgrades on Heathrow Express. Mosaic 2 – 100 tiles: Even More Space Up to 7” more legroom at no extra charge during booking (pending availability). Mosaic 3 – 150 tiles: Move to Mint® Four Move to Mint certificates that enable complimentary upgrades from core to any Mint seat. Number of certificates required to upgrade varies. Mosaic 4 – 250 tiles: Move to Mint Again + BLADE Airport helicopter transfers Two additional Move to Mint certificates. Credits that can be redeemed for four complimentary seats on BLADE Airport helicopter transfers between Manhattan and JFK or EWR. Additionally, each time a member qualifies for a new level of Mosaic, they’ll also be able to select one new perk from the Mosaic Perks You Pick menu. Mosiac Perks You Pick: FoundersCard Blue Membership Enjoy 150+ premium travel, business, and lifestyle benefits—created exclusively for Mosaic members. Pet Fee Waiver Jet with your pet (cat or small dog) at no extra charge ($125 value per flight). $99 Statement Credit on Select JetBlue Cards $99 one-time statement credit for JetBlue Plus or Business Card.(c) 20-Tile Bonus Get or gift a 20-tile boost to get to the next level faster. 15,000-Point Bonus Boost your TrueBlue balance with 15,000 bonus points. Mint Suite Priority (arriving later in 2023) Priority access to Mint Suite selection on select aircraft (pending availability). Excludes Mint Studio™. Introducing Tiles Tiles are the new and easy way to track progress toward status, while earning perks at key milestones along the way. Intrepid travelers and casual fliers alike will be eligible for perks sooner than ever before and even if they haven’t yet achieved Mosaic status. While still earning valuable points that can be redeemed for award travel, TrueBlue members will also earn tiles based on their combination of travel spend and credit card spend, not just one or the other. One tile is awarded for every $100 in qualifying spend on more of the ways a customer can JetBlue.(d) Hotel rooms and resorts. Cars and cruises. Activities and extras. Travelers will be able to rack up rewards with JetBlue Vacations, Paisly by JetBlue, JetBlue fees, JetBlue add-ons and American Airlines-operated flights. Additionally, one tile is awarded for every $1,000 in qualifying spend on all JetBlue credit cards. JetBlue and Barclays Credit Card Enhancements This spring, JetBlue is also introducing enhancements to select Barclays JetBlue credit cards. JetBlue Plus Card members can enjoy Points Payback, allowing them to redeem points to pay themselves back from purchases of $25 or greater, up to a maximum of $1,000 annually. Points redeemed for purchases will appear as a statement credit toward their account balance. In addition, JetBlue Business Card members can enjoy early Group A boarding on JetBlue-operated flights. The Transition to the New TrueBlue In spring 2023, Mosaic-Qualifying points and segments will be retired and TrueBlue members will see how many tiles they have based on how much they’ve already spent in 2023. Any member eligible for Perks You Pick will have the opportunity to select them based on their in-progress 2023 tile count. Mosaic members will be assigned a Mosaic level based on how much they spent in 2022 or how much they spent in 2023, whichever is greater. They’ll immediately begin enjoying the Mosaic Signature Perks of each level and will have the opportunity to select Mosaic Perks You Pick associated with that level. For more information about JetBlue’s new TrueBlue program, visit: jetblue.com/newtrueblue. About JetBlue JetBlue is New York's Hometown Airline®, and a leading carrier in Boston, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood, Los Angeles, Orlando and San Juan. JetBlue carries customers to more than 100 destinations throughout the United States, Latin America, Caribbean, Canada and United Kingdom. For more information and the best fares, visit jetblue.com. Qualifying travel spend excludes government taxes and fees and travel insurance. All net purchases are qualifying credit card spend. See TrueBlue Terms & Conditions and applicable cardmember agreement. Members selecting the JetBlue Vacations Bonus perk will earn this benefit on the 6 TrueBlue points per eligible dollar spent on airfare and 1 TrueBlue point per eligible dollar spent on hotels, car rentals, cruises, and transfers calculated based on the member’s individual proportionate share, as determined by JetBlue, of a JetBlue Vacations package booking; members selecting this perk will not earn the bonus on any other individual travelers’ portions of the booking. Points bonus does not apply to the Mosaic bonus, any credit card bonus, or any additional bundled points or promotional points. See terms and conditions. Any TrueBlue Perks You Pick that are not selected by the member as they accumulate tiles will automatically be granted upon reaching any level of Mosaic status, but the 5,000 bonus points and the JetBlue Vacations Bonus will not be available to Mosaics who earned status in 2022 for 2023. If a Mosaic qualifies for 2024 and beyond, they are eligible to receive these perks. The $99 Statement Credit on Select JetBlue Cards is available to Barclays JetBlue Plus World Elite Mastercard® and JetBlue Business Mastercard® cardmembers only. You will be eligible to select this benefit after reaching Mosaic 1 status. The benefit can only be redeemed once per Mosaic qualifying year. If you product trade from Barclays JetBlue Plus Card to the Barclays JetBlue Card, you will no longer be eligible for this benefit. The statement credit will appear 2-4 weeks after you select the benefit. Your Card Account will not be eligible to receive the statement credit if it is closed or in default under your Cardmember Agreement at the time of fulfillment.

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DESTINATION AND TOURISM, HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Bluegreen Vacations Embarks on New Expansion

Bluegreen Vacations | October 13, 2022

Bluegreen Vacations Holding Corporation (NYSE: BVH) (OTCQX: BVHBB) (“Bluegreen Vacations,” “Bluegreen,” or the “Company”), a leading vacation ownership company, announced its recent acquisition of a 320-room resort and spa in Panama City Beach, Florida and two buildings in the Streamside at Vail Resort enclave in Vail, Colorado.Bluegreen currently plans to convert the 320-guestroom resort and spa, formally branded and managed as a Sheraton®, to 200 rooms, consisting of studios, one bedroom, two-bedroom and presidential suites and add a new sales preview center. The property, which includes a full-service spa, four restaurants, a private marina and beach as well as pools, tennis courts and fitness center, will receive additional enhancements to building exteriors, public areas and other improvements. The Panama City Beach Resort and Spa is Bluegreen’s second acquisition in 2022 having acquired property at Streamside at Vail in July. The company’s purchase of the Vail property will add 46 units of one-bedroom and one-bedroom loft to Bluegreen’s growing inventory and provide access to a range of amenities including clubhouse, spa, fitness center and shuttle service to local attractions. Plans are underway to renovate guest rooms, building exterior, and infrastructure in early 2023. Bluegreen Vacations is committed to identifying iconic destinations across the country from which to fly our flag, said Ray Lopez, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Bluegreen Vacations. Panama City Beach, ranked among the top beach destinations in the US and the Colorado Rockies, has long been of interest to our owners. Both properties have well-established, desirable amenities which provide Bluegreen with an exciting product to offer our owners,” Mr. Lopez added. In addition to acquiring two resorts in Panama City Beach, Florida and Vail, Colorado, Bluegreen Vacations announced it has broken ground on a new resort in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. Slated to open in 2024, the new resort will feature 67 guest accommodations including three-bedroom presidential suites with upgraded in-room amenities designed for comfort and relaxation. The project will also include an expansive sales preview center. “The majestic Smokey Mountains have been a popular destination among Bluegreen’s owners, Adding a new resort in this region allows us to not only address our owner demand but gives us an opportunity to provide our owners with new experiences and introduce new owners to this inspiring destination,” -Dusty Tonkin, Executive Vice President and Chief Sales & Marketing Officer of Bluegreen Vacations. About Bluegreen Vacations: Bluegreen Vacations Holding Corporation (NYSE: BVH; OTCQX: BVHBB) is a leading vacation ownership company that markets and sells vacation ownership interests and manages resorts in popular leisure and urban destinations. The Bluegreen Vacation Club is a flexible, points-based, deeded vacation ownership plan with 69 Club and Club Associate Resorts and access to nearly 11,200 other hotels and resorts through partnerships and exchange networks. The Company also offers a portfolio of comprehensive, fee-based resort management, financial, and sales and marketing services to, or on behalf of, third parties

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY, HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Optii Solutions Launches New Learning Center Experience

Optii Solutions | October 27, 2022

Optii Solutions, the leading cloud-based hotel operations software, announced that it has launched a learning center with enhanced usability, improved search, and content designed for on-the-job learning. Almost every department and member of the operations team comes in contact with some aspect of Optii’s hotel operations platform. It was therefore important to ensure that educational content and accessibility works for a range of roles, cultures, and working environments. Optii’s Learning Center puts search at the forefront to allow users to access information quickly and on any device. Browsable content is organized to be user-centric and mirror common tasks and functions of any given role within a hotel operations team. Optii prioritizes recruitment from hospitality, and specifically housekeeping and operations. This ensures that the company maintains a close connection and understanding of all levels of hotel operations. While this knowledge is critical to creating a user-centric technology experience, it also serves to ensure that educational information is developed and presented in a quick and effective manner. “In developing learning content for our customers, I always start from a point of putting myself in their shoes. Many of the questions or challenges that operations and housekeeping professionals have, I have experienced at some point during my time in housekeeping. This knowledge helps me develop and structure training material in a way that will help team members get their answers, get back to their task, and be successful.” -Shelley Snyman, Director of Operations, Optii Solutions, Katherine Grass, CEO, Optii Solutions, said: Customer success has always been a top priority for Optii. While critical, the impact of our solution goes beyond productivity gains, guest experience, and cost savings. Optii has become an indispensable tool for housekeeping and maintenance staff in their daily operation, and we are focused on ensuring their success. A lot of the value of Optii is downstream to that. About Optii Solutions Optii Solutions is a hotel operations solution that leverages smarter technologies such as artificial intelligence, analytics, messaging and mobility to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of housekeeping and service delivery departments. For further information, please visit: www.optiisolutions.com.

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