DESTINATION AND TOURISM, INDUSTRY OUTLOOK
Trip.com Group | October 17, 2022
Trip.com Group has officially joined the Global Sustainable Tourism Council's (GSTC) global network as a member. Trip.com Group is a leading global travel service provider comprising of Trip.com, Ctrip, Skyscanner, and Qunar. Across its platforms, Trip.com Group helps travellers around the world make informed and cost-effective bookings for travel products and services.Trip.com Group's mission to 'pursue the perfect trip for a better world' focuses the Group's efforts on improving the communities and lives of the people they serve, and drives their commitment to being a more responsible industry leader.
To fulfill this mission, earlier this year Trip.com Group announced its green tourism goals, covering three key areas: to launch over 10,000 low-carbon travel products; to promote sustainable travel and engage 100 million travellers in low-carbon practices; and aim to further reduce carbon emissions across its own operations.
In order to delve into consumer sentiment on sustainable travel and share findings with the industry, Trip.com Group conducted a survey that gathered responses from over 7,700 travellers from 11 markets. Trip.com Group's Sustainable Travel Consumer Report 2022 revealed that almost eight in 10 (78.7%) travellers recognise the importance of sustainable travel. The Report also found that the COVID-19 pandemic has been a major driver behind increased consumer awareness of their travels' impact on the planet, with 67.7% of travellers now open to paying more for sustainable options.
To meet increased demand for sustainable travel options, the Group's consumer brand Trip.com launched its CHOOOSE carbon offsetting option for travellers to offset their flights' Co2 emissions. This program allows customers to address their flight emissions by supporting a portfolio of trusted high-impact climate projects in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
As a member of the GSTC, Trip.com Group will support the GSTC mission to promote sustainable tourism standards in the travel & tourism sector. Being a GSTC member allows Trip.com Group to participate in GSTC's global network, contributing to the important work of the GSTC in promoting the widespread adoption of universal sustainable tourism principles.
At Trip.com Group, we believe we can only solve big issues by working with our peers from across the industry. This is why we are very excited to become a member of the GSTC, joining their global community to collaborate on sustainable travel initiatives that contribute towards a more sustainable future," said Jane Sun, Chief Executive Officer of Trip.com Group.
"We at GSTC are delighted to welcome Trip.com Group and all its powerful brands as a member of our growing community of members. Their power in the marketplace can deliver much in the way of more sustainable forms of tourism being made available to more travelers throughout the world, and we look forward to partnering in those efforts,"
-Randy Durband, Chief Executive Officer of GSTC.
About Trip.com Group
Trip.com Group is a leading global travel service provider comprising of Trip.com, Ctrip, Skyscanner, and Qunar with the mission to pursue the perfect trip for a better world. Across its platforms, Trip.com Group helps travellers around the world make informed and cost-effective bookings for travel products and services. Trip.com Group technology enables partners to connect their offerings with users through the aggregation of comprehensive travel-related content and resources, and an advanced transaction platform consisting of apps, websites and 24/7 customer service centers. Founded in 1999 and listed on NASDAQ in 2003 and HKEX in 2021, Trip.com Group has become one of the best-known travel groups in the world, with the vision "to be the world's leading and most trusted family of online travel brands that aspires to deliver the perfect trip at the best price for every traveler".
About the GSTC
The Global Sustainable Tourism Council® (GSTC®) establishes and manages global sustainable standards, known as the GSTC Criteria. There are two sets: Destination Criteria for public policy-makers and destination managers, and Industry Criteria for hotels and tour operators. They are arranged in four pillars: (A) Sustainable management; (B) Socioeconomic impacts; (C) Cultural impacts; and (D) Environmental impacts (including consumption of resources, reducing pollution, and conserving biodiversity and landscapes). Since tourism destinations each have their own culture, environment, customs, and laws, the Criteria are designed to be adapted to local conditions and supplemented by additional criteria for the specific location and activity. The GSTC Criteria form the foundation for GSTC's assurance role for Certification Bodies that certify hotels/accommodations, tour operators, and destinations as having sustainable policies and practices in place. GSTC does not directly certify any products or services, but provides accreditation to those that do. The GSTC is an independent and neutral USA-registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization that represents a diverse and global membership, including national and provincial governments, leading travel companies, hotels, tour operators, NGOs, individuals and communities – all striving to achieve best practices in sustainable tourism.
TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY, AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS
Allegiant | September 23, 2022
Uplift, the only enterprise Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) solution serving the world's top travel and retail brands, has grown its long standing partnership with Allegiant by introducing Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift on all flights, hotel and car rental bookings making it even easier for customers to pay over time.The new brand Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift aligns with Allegiant's company mission to offer value and affordability to customers, creating memories that last forever. This enhanced way to pay also now offers customers one easy click to estimate how much they can spend and pay over time, making the booking of their next getaway even easier and more budget friendly.
Since 1999, Allegiant has been connecting customers to the people, places and experiences that matter most. Focused on taking travelers from small to mid-sized cities and jet setting to popular leisure destinations, Allegiant now offers service into more than 30 airports across the country. Allegiant is also a travel company at heart offering easy bookings for all the necessities of a memorable family trip or group getaway.
"From inception, Allegiant has remained committed to affordable and accessible travel. That's why we're introducing Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift, allowing our customers to go now and rest easy knowing they can pay it with low monthly installments. Our extended partnership with Uplift means Allegiant customers will have a flexible payment option for flights, hotels and car rentals as we continue to grow,"
-Scott DeAngelo, Allegiant Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer.
From the beginning of our partnership, Allegiant believed in the power of Uplift's pay over time solution to create yet another way for consumers to associate Allegiant with accessibility and value," said Tom Botts, Uplift Chief Commercial Officer. "One of the many reasons we enjoy our growing relationship with Allegiant is their commitment to consumer value, for not only flights but complete vacation packages as well.
Uplift partners with over 200 of the world's leading airlines, cruise lines, resorts and other major travel providers to offer BNPL payment options to help more consumers make meaningful purchases and experience the travel that they deserve.
Allegiant Pay, Powered by Uplift - is now available for purchases beginning as low as $49 and for 3 to 11 month terms, with no late fees or prepayment penalties. Customers can book today and fly as soon as tomorrow – even before they are finished making their payments. For more information, visit Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift.
Down payment may be required. Actual terms are based on your credit score and other factors and may vary. Not everyone is eligible, and some states are not served, including IA and WV. Loans made through Uplift are offered by these lending partners: www.uplift.com/lenders.
Allegiant – Together We Fly™
Las Vegas-based Allegiant (NASDAQ: ALGT) is an integrated travel company with an airline at its heart, focused on connecting customers with the people, places and experiences that matter most. Since 1999, Allegiant Air has linked travelers in small-to-medium cities to world-class vacation destinations with all-nonstop flights and industry-low average fares. Today, Allegiant's fleet serves communities across the nation, with base airfares less than half the cost of the average domestic round trip ticket. For more information, visit us at Allegiant.com. Media information, including photos, is available at http://gofly.us/iiFa303wrtF
Uplift is the leading Buy Now Pay Later solution empowering people to get more out of life, one thoughtful purchase at a time. Serving the world's top enterprise level travel and retail brands, Uplift's complete range of flexible payment options drive higher conversion and loyalty for partners, while giving customers a simple, surprise-free way to pay over time with no late fees or prepayment penalties. Uplift is currently available throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit Uplift.com.
DESTINATION AND TOURISM
Taconic Capital Advisors LP and HEI Hotels & Resorts | December 05, 2022
Taconic Capital Advisors LP (“Taconic”) and HEI Hotels & Resorts (“HEI”), announced that they have jointly acquired Hyatt Regency Jersey City from affiliates of Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE: H) and Veris Residential Inc. (NYSE: VRE). The property is a full-service, 351-key hotel located adjacent to Exchange Place situated on a pier extending over the Hudson River in Jersey City, NJ.In conjunction with the purchase, Taconic and HEI were successful in assuming a $100 million fixed-rate CMBS mortgage with ample remaining term. The hotel was completed in 2002 and more than $15 million in subsequent upgrades have been performed since 2010. Major enhancements to the guestrooms, food and beverage outlets and event spaces are expected to commence under the new ownership.
Hyatt Regency Jersey City occupies fee simple real estate with unmatched and undisturbed views of the Manhattan Skyline. The property features well-appointed guestrooms, a state-of-the-art gym and indoor heated pool, a restaurant and lounge and 20,000 square feet of meeting space that has long served as a popular venue for corporate retreats, weddings, and social gatherings. The hotel is centrally positioned amongst 28 million SF of office space within a one-mile radius and is conveniently located near world-famous attractions, including the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, One World Trade and the 9/11 Memorial.
“We are pleased to further our partnership with HEI and begin an exciting relationship with Hyatt. Hyatt Regency Jersey City was a compelling opportunity to acquire a world-class hotel with a strong segmentation mix and a diverse set of revenue contributors, The highly accretive assumable financing allowed us to continue our thesis for well-located urban, upscale hotels in an otherwise prohibitive financing environment.”
-Andrew Lam, a Director in Taconic Capital Advisors’ Commercial Real Estate Group
Hyatt Regency Jersey City is a wonderful property with a rich legacy that has greatly benefitted from Jersey City’s rapidly expanding corporate base as well as the revitalization of Hudson Yards and Lower Manhattan, said Clark Hanrattie, Partner at HEI. We are proud to team with Taconic on this important transaction and we are looking forward to making the hotel the very best it can be.
The joint acquisition of Hyatt Regency Jersey City follows Taconic and HEI’s March 2022 purchase of the Westchester Marriott in Tarrytown, NY, a 15-acre property that offers 444 guestrooms and 21 event rooms for a total of 26,700 SF of conference and meeting space, including a 9,000 SF ballroom. Over the past two years, Taconic has been involved in hotel transactions throughout the capital structure, spanning over 20 properties totaling more than 5,000 keys.
About Taconic Capital Advisors
Taconic Capital Advisors (“Taconic”) is a global institutional investment firm that pursues an event-driven, multi-strategy investment approach designed to generate strong, risk-adjusted returns over multiple market cycles. Taconic was founded in 1999 by former Goldman Sachs partners Frank Brosens and Ken Brody. The firm has approximately $8 billion of total assets under management with offices in New York, London and Hong Kong and more than 100 employees worldwide.
Taconic’s full-service commercial real estate platform invests in all asset classes and across the capital structure in both public and private markets. The strategy’s brand mandate offers flexibility to capitalize on shifting market opportunities, creating uncorrelated risk-adjusted return profiles for investors. Rooted in distressed and opportunistic investing, the team applies high-touch asset management capabilities to drive strong asset-level performance and capital market executions. Well-established relationships drive Taconic’s unique and diverse transaction sourcing channels which include local operating partners, investor partners, and a broad network of lenders, CMBC special servicers, trading desks, and brokerage houses.
Taconic’s series of closed-ended real estate funds are fully discretionary and have received over $1 billion in capital commitments. Investments to date across all Taconic funds total over $3 billion of gross asset value across approximately 175 distinct transactions.
About HEI Hotels & Resorts
Founded in 1985, HEI is an established expert on Luxury, Upper-Upscale, and Upscale hotels in Urban, Super-Suburban, and destination Resort locations across branded, soft-branded and independent lifestyle categories. The company’s portfolio currently includes 90-plus assets, representing more than 28,000 keys across approximately 30 different capital partners. HEI continues to be one of the most active investors in, and managers of, institutional-quality hotel assets across the US.