North Dakota national park tourism has $65.5m impact on state economy

Travel And Tour World | July 09, 2019

Visitors to the national parks of North Dakota spent $49.6 million dollars in nearby communities in 2018 as per the study of National Park Service (NPS). About 733,000 people visited Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site, Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site and Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota supporting 695 jobs in the surrounding areas and having a cumulative benefit to the state economy of U.S. dollars 65.5 million.

Spotlight

There has been a lot of talk recently about Marriott’s proposed acquisition of Starwood and what it would mean for guests, competitors, intermediaries, and the companies’ loyalty members if the transaction ultimately happens. Would SPG members see the value of their points diminish over time? Would SPG members’ loyalty wane if and when they’re integrated into the Marriott system? To inform the answers to these questions, it’s helpful to understand what’s happening with loyalty more broadly in the travel industry right now.

Spotlight

There has been a lot of talk recently about Marriott’s proposed acquisition of Starwood and what it would mean for guests, competitors, intermediaries, and the companies’ loyalty members if the transaction ultimately happens. Would SPG members see the value of their points diminish over time? Would SPG members’ loyalty wane if and when they’re integrated into the Marriott system? To inform the answers to these questions, it’s helpful to understand what’s happening with loyalty more broadly in the travel industry right now.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

Road Trip Ready: Wyndham New Mobile App Lets Travelers Plan and Book the Ultimate Summer Road Trip

Wyndham | May 24, 2022

Wyndham announced the launch of Road Trip Planner, the latest digital innovation to its award-winning mobile app. The interactive booking tool, a first-of-its-kind service from a major hospitality brand, streamlines the road trip discovery, planning, and booking process, allowing passengers to arrange their next vacation in minutes. It is The Most Convenient Way to Book & TravelSM. "With Road Trip Planner, travelers enter a few details about the trip and instantly get an itinerary with all their hotel stops, bookable in one single transaction. It not only eases the stresses of travel planning but ensures the journey is as exciting as the destination." -Jessica Davidson, senior vice president, digital, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts A Seamless Solution for Road Trippers The latest addition to Wyndham Hotels & Resorts' digital platform, Road Trip Planner, demonstrates the company's dedication to providing value to its property owners and visitors. Road Trip Planner's key features: Customer Itineraries Recommended Routes Details at Your Fingertips Pay Your Way Jessica Davidson further added, "Built upon the success and strong adoption of our mobile app, Road Trip Planner is the perfect complement to Lightning Book®, which is our Fastest Way to Book DirectSM and enables guests to reserve a hotel in just a few taps. Now, whatever your travel preferences—be it booking last minute or planning far ahead—Wyndham has you covered. Summer, here we come!" Understanding the Road Tripper Mindset Earlier this month, Wyndham partnered with Wakefield Research to commission its first-ever American Road Trip Index, which uncovered vital information concerning visitors' future road trips while tapping into pop-culture interests. Wyndham's Road Trip Planner is now accessible as part of Wyndham Hotels & Resorts' award-winning mobile app. The app is available for download on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Mobile check-in and checkout, innovative in-stay features, best-in-class design, personalized experiences, Wyndham Rewards® account management, gamification, and more are available through Wyndham's mobile app.

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COMMERCIAL TRAVEL

Benchmark Pyramid Is Now Pyramid Global Hospitality

Pyramid Global Hospitality | June 03, 2022

On June 2, Benchmark Pyramid announced that it was rebranding to Pyramid Global Hospitality. The company’s parent entity will include multiple divisions responsible for specific industry segments. Pyramid Global Hospitality will look over all the branded properties in the Americas, while Benchmark, Pyramid Luxury Lifestyle will focus on the company’s portfolio of other independent properties. Pyramid Europe and Hamilton will continue to manage the company’s growing portfolio of European hotels. “Prior to the merger, each entity had its own identity that resonated with different audiences, Benchmark has strong equity with consumers, and Hamilton has a great reputation as an operator in Europe, while Pyramid has a demonstrated track record with branded hotels. To maintain each entity’s strong brand equity, we formed divisions that speak best to their respective verticals. By having these three distinct branded and independent verticals in the United States and Europe, we can best serve the different needs of our owners and their assets by providing a hands-on approach each company always maintained. From an associate standpoint, our ability to leverage scale is a net positive, allowing us to share best-in-class practices, provide limitless opportunities and be the industry’s employer of choice.” -Warren Fields, CEO & principal, Pyramid Global Hospitality. As a part of the rebranding, the company debuted a set of three new logos. They feature three interconnected pyramids in shades of purple. It also launched a new combined company website. “We are excited about our new identity and believe it amplifies the shared strength of our brand values and perception of our combined company, Continuing to build upon our respective foundations, Pyramid Global Hospitality will invest in people, properties and proprietary solutions to deliver power on the ground and strategic intelligence for exceptional performance and profitability in the hospitality industry. We strive to maintain a best-in-industry standing as the employer of choice in the full-service, select-service and independent categories. Our deep network of capital partners and portfolio assets gives us the agility to tackle opportunities as we create value and empower our team members to ‘Be the Difference.’” -Alex Cabañas, president, Pyramid Global Hospitality.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

CardFree Launches CardFree Concierge Designed to Create Seamless Digital Hotel Experience

CardFree | May 18, 2022

CardFree launches CardFree Concierge, a full suite of solutions from geo-location for poolside ordering to enhanced in-room ordering. The solution is specifically tailored to deliver a superior guest experience while taking the strain off of employees through digital connectivity. CardFree is an all-in-one platform empowering businesses to create customized order, pay, and loyalty solutions. CardFree has been working with various creative hotels to encourage this new customer experience, both in-room and onsite, with products like charge-to-room, loyalty integration, remote ordering anywhere on-premise with geo-location capabilities, and order and pay at the table solutions. The Concierge has resulted in an ordering increase of over 60 percent for the hotels implemented to date. CardFree Concierge is more than just an application; it's a customized suite of digital solutions to ensure a consistently high-quality client experience. For example, geo-location ordering enables consumers to place orders from the pool, the lobby, or any other designated area, guaranteeing that a hotel employee can locate the client for delivery. Guests, who like to get room service? CardFree Concierge allows in-room ordering by mobile phone without an app. CardFree Concierge also provides: Multi-unit menu management. Loyalty connections. Catering and event management. Self-directed kiosks for hotel restaurants and bars. Pankaj Khanna, VP of Digital Product and Tech at Great Wolf Lodge, said, Through CardFree Concierge, we've been able to address critical food ordering scenarios and introduce innovative guest-friendly options like order-to-room, order ahead, and QR code ordering where guests have the option to either pay through their phone or charge it to their room. We've also seen improvements in our customer and employee satisfaction levels with the integration of self-serve kiosks designed for intuitive ordering

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