TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

Skytours and Militaryfares Selects RocketFuel’s Disruptive Blockchain-Based Payment Technology for its One-Click Check-Out Payment Solution

Skytours | December 10, 2020

Skytours and Militaryfares Selects RocketFuel’s Disruptive Blockchain-Based Payment Technology for its One-Click Check-Out Payment Solution
RocketFuel Blockchain, Inc., a developer of blockchain-based payment registration technologies, today declared that Skytours and Militaryfares, two significant travel organizations, have picked RocketFuel's troublesome blockchain-based payment technology for usage of its one-click check-out payment solution.

The first segment of the usage will empower Skytours and Militaryfares to acknowledge digital currencies from its clients, consistently and frictionless. Their customers will profit by an advantageous registration in a 100% secure environment.

The second part of the implementation will, other than the blockchain based payment infrastructure, include everything from booking passes to preparing bank payments. The implementation of RocketFuel's services will help abbreviate exchange time and reduce the measure of paperwork, all while guaranteeing transaction security.

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INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

TRAVEL LEADERS CORPORATE ANTICIPATES STRONGER BUSINESS MARKET IN 2022

Travel Leaders Corporate | December 21, 2021

While the demand for business travel is growing, and should continue to recover in 2022, changes brought on by the pandemic will affect many aspects of trip planning, according to Travel Leaders Corporate's leadership team. Travel Leaders Corporate is an innovative business travel solutions firm with a focus on customized Travel Fulfillment, Meetings Management and Data & Analytics. Business travelers will face reduced airline schedules, fewer options for hotel rooms and higher prices. Border closures and lockdowns around the world will slow international travel. And there is still much uncertainty regarding the impact of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. "Traveling amid a constantly changing environment will continue to challenge even the most experienced road warriors,Travelers will place a premium on the expertise of seasoned travel consultants to help them plan, execute and navigate through each business trip. This is especially true for international travel, where regulations evolve on an almost dynamic basis." -Michael Boult, president of Travel Leaders Corporate. Despite those challenges, Boult said, "Getting business travelers back on the road is critical for both company health and economic prosperity." Here are some of the Travel Leaders Corporate insights for 2022: Consolidation is coming for travel management companies and travel suppliers. Many of the vulnerable players will fall prey to stronger players or potentially exit the marketplace entirely. Inflation caused by ongoing labor shortages will result in higher prices for airline tickets and hotel rooms. All suppliers will seek to recapture lost market share, revenue and profit as they look to a full recovery in 2023. With leisure travel returning at a faster pace, airlines are focusing on "fun and sun" markets, leading to fewer flights between predominantly business routes. And with real estate prices at record levels, some hotel owners may be tempted to convert their properties to condominiums. Senior-level travelers will make increasing use of VIP services. Corporations will move toward implementing employee vaccine mandates, speeding the process of returning workers to physical offices. This is a critical step for business travelers, whose success depends on being willing and able to visit colleagues, clients and potential clients. Stricter vaccine requirements are anticipated for non-remote workers, business travelers and office/facility visitors, as well as safety protocols for employees attending physical meetings and events. Travel requests and policy compliance will face increased scrutiny as companies continue to closely manage costs. To ensure maximum spend visibility and heightened employee duty of care, employees will no longer have the flexibility to book travel outside of their organization's preferred vendors. Sustainability and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion will be key drivers in travel policy and the selection of suppliers. Organizations must be prepared to measure their impact on society and the environment. Corporations are eager to return to live or hybrid events in 2022. More than three-quarters of event planners say that they will hold their next face-to-face event late in the first quarter of the year. Planners still strongly consider face-to-face meetings as vital. Many event sponsors say that their companies value in-person meetings more than before the pandemic. Many companies are moving to smaller regional events with less than 200 attendees. Planners have found a lack of availability of large meeting venues in the first two quarters of 2022, as many first-tier cities are already booked. Uneven rates of COVID cases, border closures, changes in the airline market and potential lockdowns will combine to limit the recovery of international travel in 2022. As we enter a third year of pandemic disruption, companies have begun to adapt and normalize their activities through virtual meetings and the use of local staff and partners. While international business travel will return, it is possible that some activity will be permanently eliminated. For more information or to take advantage of Travel Leaders Corporate's personalized service and cutting-edge corporate business travel solutions that provide a complete travel enrichment experience, email sales@tlcorporate.com or call 844.485.2677. About Travel Leaders Corporate Travel Leaders Corporate is an innovative business travel solutions firm with a focus on customized Travel Fulfillment, Meetings Management and Data & Analytics. Travel Leaders Corporate, founded in 2008, is born out of the digital age and shaped around the three technology trends impacting every industry: mobile, data, and the cloud. This enables Travel Leaders Corporate to offer a flexible suite of services customized to a client's needs. Travel Leaders Corporate is part of Internova Travel Group, which is the highest-ranking American corporate travel management company, according to Business Travel News. About Internova Travel Group Internova Travel Group is one of the largest travel services companies in the world with a collection of leading brands delivering high-touch, personal travel expertise to leisure and corporate clients. Internova manages leisure, business and franchise firms through a portfolio of distinctive divisions. Internova represents more than 62,000 travel advisors in over 6,000 company-owned and affiliated locations predominantly in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, with a presence in more than 80 countries.

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INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Aggressor Adventures Dives into the New Year with Optimism Following a Successful 2021

Aggressor Adventures | December 23, 2021

Aggressor Adventures® is celebrating the end of a successful 2021 and looking back on the past 12 months with pride while looking forward with optimism and excitement. In 2021, the company launched its Consumer Travel Index, won numerous awards, reopened its Sri Lanka Safari Lodge and announced plans to offer new adventures to customers in 2022. Return to Travel Aggressor saw an increase in bookings for operating destinations of 123% in 2021 over 2020. “I am incredibly proud of how our staff has persevered through the many changes in requirements from governments worldwide, updating protocols, destination reopenings, and more. The quality of our service never wavered; in fact, I’d say the past few years have made us even better than we were before Even through it all, we still saw tremendous growth this year compared to last. I believe that people were ready to make up for lost time and rebook the trips they had to cancel in 2020.” -Wayne Brown, CEO of Aggressor Adventures. Aggressor provided an adventure of a lifetime to more than 12,000 guests in 2021. The company’s top three most popular destinations were Socorro, which saw 240% growth in bookings, Red Sea RE, which saw 230% growth in bookings and Belize, which saw 182% growth in bookings. Exciting for Aggressor, the future looks just as bright: “We are confident we can plan double digit growth in 2022,” Brown added. Consumer Travel Index Aggressor’s Consumer Travel Index provided insightful findings from a series of national surveys to track consumer sentiments. Topics from 2021 included interest and comfortability in traveling, motivations for traveling, how long consumers are planning trips for, what their budgets are, how remote working has impacted travel plans, and much more. Award Wins In 2021 Aggressor earned many awards, including Top Liveaboard Company in the World with 69 Readers Choice Awards from Scuba Diving Magazine, a Gold Travel Weekly Magellan Award for Cruise Safety for the company’s industry-leading Clean, Refresh, Sanitize program, and a Silver Travel Weekly Magellan Award for Cruise Podcast for the company’s Inspired by Adventure podcast. New Adventures 2021 saw the reopening of the Aggressor Safari Lodge in Sri Lanka® and the announcement of a new liveaboard, the Red Sea Royal Evolution (RE) Aggressor, which will set sail in February 2022. In addition to these new destinations and reopenings, the brand also has major plans for several exciting new destinations for customers in 2022. Brown and his team have visited numerous adventure sites and are actively exploring new trips in Belize, the British Virgin Islands and several other exciting destinations. About Aggressor Adventures Since 1984, Aggressor Adventures® has offered travelers liveaboard scuba and snorkeling charters, luxury river cruises and exotic wildlife safaris. Worldwide locations the company explores include Bahamas, Belize, Cayman Islands, Cocos Island, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Galapagos, Hawaii, Indonesia, Maldives, Mexico, Philippines, Palau, Red Sea, Roatan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, and Turks and Caicos. The company’s Clean, Refresh, Sanitize safety standards are industry leading. For more information, visit www.aggressor.com

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FEATURES AND ADVICE

Creating a Contactless Travel Experience: Ottonomy Launches First Fully Autonomous Delivery Robots at CVG Airport

Ottonomy Inc. | December 17, 2021

Ottonomy announces that Ottobots, a fleet of fully autonomous delivery robots for food and retail, are now available at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG). This is the first autonomous robotic delivery of food, beverage and lifestyle products in an airport environment.Officially launched for the holiday travel season, passengers are now able to order contactless delivery directly to their location in Concourse B of the airport, delivered by an autonomous robot. Customers can select grab and go, beverage and travel items sold at select retail stores operated by Paradies Lagardere via orderatcvg.com on mobile devices. Customers receive status updates on their phone and a unique QR code, which can be scanned by the robot's top camera to open the secure compartment and retrieve their items. The entire delivery experience is contactless and fully autonomous, a first in the industry. "At CVG, we are redefining the travel experience by combining talent and tech to deliver innovative solutions,We've built a culture of innovation at the airport and are excited to partner with Ottonomy to test and advance this technology in a live, airport environment." -Candace McGraw, chief executive officer, CVG Airport The original pilot of Ottobots at CVG started running in late 2020. The partners gathered feedback from participating passengers including details on the experience, cost and desire to have autonomous delivery in airports. These live robot deliveries will gather additional research to further develop the program and user experience. Ritukar Vijay, Co-Founder and CEO of Ottonomy Inc, said, This launch is a testament to CVG's commitment to innovation and customer experience. We are able to provide a safe and secure experience through our Ottobots, executing automated contactless deliveries of food and beverage and retail products. COVID-19 has changed the way we all interact and relate to travel, making contactless delivery even more relevant and essential. Ottobots navigate autonomously through crowds and unpredictable environments using Ottonomy's proprietary Contextual Mobility navigation tech. The overall system is highly scalable and flexible utilizing a comprehensive suite of cloud tools that manages a fleet of robots deployed throughout different areas of an airport. To learn more about Ottonomy's Ottobots you can visit the website: https://ottonomy.io/ or download assets from the Ottonomy Press Kit. About Ottonomy Inc: Ottonomy is a deep tech startup, providing contactless deliveries using fully autonomous robots. Its primary focus is on helping retailers and restaurants automate indoor and outdoor contactless deliveries. Ottonomy was recognized as among the top 50 robotics companies worldwide in 2021 by Robotics Business Review and has won the Mobility Startup Award given by Plug & Play Accelerator and the Sustainability Product of the Year Award given by the Business Intelligence Group. The company is backed by Connetic Ventures and angel investors. For more information on Ottonomy, please visit ottonomy.io. About CVG Airport: CVG Airport welcomed more than 9.1 million passengers in 2019, serving a record number of local passengers. As the airport recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, it still offers the most nonstop destinations and the lowest average airfares in the Cincinnati region. CVG is diversified in both passenger and cargo operations with an annual economic impact of $6.8 billion. It is the 7th largest cargo airport in North America – home to Amazon Air's primary U.S. Hub and DHL Express Global Superhub. Learn more at CVGairport.com.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Trinity Investments Acquires Fifty Percent Interest in Omni San Diego Hotel

Trinity Investments | December 22, 2021

An investment fund managed by Trinity Fund Advisors LLC, an affiliate of Trinity Real Estate Investments LLC (“Trinity”), announced the acquisition of a 50 percent interest in Omni San Diego Hotel from JMI Realty, who originally developed the hotel in conjunction with Petco Park in 2004. Omni Hotels & Resorts (“Omni”) owns the remaining fifty percent interest in the hotel and will continue to manage it. The acquisition also includes more than 13,000 square feet of fully leased, street-level retail space, located across the street from the hotel.Situated in the heart of the historic Gaslamp Quarter, adjacent to Petco Park and across from the San Diego Convention Center, the 511-key, AAA 4-Diamond, award-winning Omni San Diego Hotel is located in a highly trafficked area and benefits from numerous demand generators. Trinity and Omni plan to take advantage of strategic opportunities, including a multimillion-dollar capital improvement plan involving a comprehensive renovation of guestrooms, a reimagination of the food and beverage offerings, and the enhancement of the hotel’s rooftop pool deck, fitness center and other amenities. “We are pleased to acquire, what we believe to be, one of the best-located hotels in San Diego, and to partner with Omni to unlock the hotel’s full potential,In partnership with Omni, our teams have identified numerous opportunities to drive higher revenues and position the hotel as the premier destination in the market for business and leisure travel.” -Sean Hehir, Managing Partner, President and CEO of Trinity Over the last 10 years, the San Diego lodging market has demonstrated robust growth as a top drive-to, leisure destination, and highly desirable locale for business gatherings. The downtown area is experiencing significant redevelopment, with several large office and life science development projects underway, as well as the anticipated future expansion of the San Diego Convention Center, all of which projected to drive increased demand for well-appointed hotels. In conjunction with their capital improvement plan, and factoring in the area’s redevelopment activity, Trinity and Omni plan to shift current demand segmentation to higher-rated transient and group business. “This is a mutually important and strategic business alignment between Omni Hotels & Resorts and Trinity,We are especially excited to partner with Trinity, given their current portfolio of premier assets, and their dedication to elevating the hotel’s presence and impact in the San Diego market.” -Omni Hotels & Resorts’ President Peter Strebel. The Omni San Diego Hotel represents Trinity’s third acquisition on behalf of Trinity GP Fund I L.P., Trinity’s inaugural U.S. commingled hospitality fund, following its acquisitions of the 352-key EAST Miami and the 305-key W Hollywood, earlier this year. About Trinity Real Estate Investments LLC Trinity is a private real estate investment firm with a 26-year history of specializing in value-add opportunities. Based in Honolulu, Hawaii, with an office in Beverly Hills, California, Trinity focuses on unique real estate investments in world-class markets and has invested more than $8 billion in the United States, Mexico, Europe, and Japan by leveraging its deep institutional knowledge and longstanding local relationships. Trinity is based in Honolulu, Hawaii, with an office in Beverly Hills, California. For additional information, please visit Trinity’s website at www.trinityinvestments.com. About Omni Hotels & Resorts Omni Hotels & Resorts creates genuine, authentic guest experiences at over 50 distinct luxury hotels and resorts in leading business and leisure destinations across North America. With more than 21 iconic golf courses and multiple short courses, 24 award-winning spas featured in dynamic locales nationwide, every Omni proudly opens its doors to share the true spirit of its destination. Reflected through local color, personalized service, unique wellness options, signature restaurants and creative culinary offerings, Omni leaves a lasting impression with every guest and a heightened level of recognition and rewards delivered through its Select Guest® loyalty program. Omni is committed to reducing hunger and is on a mission through its Say Goodnight to Hunger initiative to provide millions of meals each year for food banks to feed children, families, and seniors in communities in which it operates. Through its partnership with Shared Hope International, Omni is dedicated to the education and training of its associates to help combat human trafficking. Omni Hotels & Resorts is the official hotel of the PGA TOUR® and PGA TOUR Champions. For information or to book accommodations, visit www.omnihotels.com or call 1-800-The-Omni.

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One year, infinite possibilities. Our in-the-know travel pros have done their annual picks of the top 10 countries, cities, regions and best value destinations to go to in the year ahead.

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