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3/30/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

With China set to be the world’s largest air market in the next decade, U.S. carriers ink partnerships. 

3/30/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

A new kind of ‘pairing’ matches wellness-themed excursions and spa services.

3/30/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

It seems to be the season for stepping up food service. Now JetBlue has partnered with iconic New York City-based Milk Bar Bakery to add a selection of sweets to its Mint premium class service.

Starting in April, travelers in Mint will get a pre-arrival Milk Bar cookie, a HardBody green juice on redeye flights and a to-go bag with Milk Bar’s famous Bagel Rounds—a bagel filled with bacon-scallion cream cheese and topped with “bagel spice.”

The cookie selections are Milk Bar’s vanilla-flavored Confetti Cookie with birthday sprinkles and cake crumbs; a Cornflake Chocolate Chip Marshmallow cookie with marshmallows and chocolate chips; or a Compost Cookie filled with pretzels, potato chips, oats, butterscotch and chocolate chips.

By the end of next year, JetBlue will offer Mint, its premium product available on transcontinental and some Caribbean routes, in 13 cities with up to 70-plus daily flights. At the moment, the service is currently offered on flights to Aruba, Barbados, Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Grenada, Los Angeles, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, St. Lucia, and St. Maarten. It will begin new service to Las Vegas later this year.

3/30/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

After a three week dry dock, Norwegian Jade has returned to its Tampa homeport with new restaurants, lounges and décor, as well as an update to all of its staterooms.

The ship, which was renovated as part of Norwegian’s Edge program, will now have two new restaurants—O’Sheehans Bar & Girll and The Pit Stop, a new poolside grill.

As part of the renovation, Moderno Churrascaria, a specialty Brazilian steakhouse, was moved to deck 13 and outfitted with a glass door entrance and floor-to-ceiling windows. The ship also got the new Bliss Ultra Lounge on deck seven, as well as updates to other eateries including La Cucina and Cagney’s Steakhouses.

Other updates include new carpet, furniture, flat screen TVs, USB charging outlet stations and new artwork in all of the ship’s staterooms and refreshed décor in the Atrium.

3/30/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

Crystal River Cruises is pushing back the launch of its new ships, Crystal Bach and Crystal Mahler, because “more time is needed to prepare the vessels for our guests,” Crystal announced.

Bach, which was originally scheduled to debut on June 18, will now sail on August 13 while Mahler, which was originally scheduled to enter service on August 29, will debut on September 30.

The delay forced Crystal to cancel six scheduled sailings, four on Bach and two on Mahler. All passengers booking on canceled sailing will get a full refund including airfare, a free future cruise and $1,500 in credit if they rebook on another Crystal river cruise.

“While we are eager to welcome guests aboard these unique vessels, the focus must remain on ensuring seamless delivery in the celebrated six-star level of luxury service for which Crystal is known,” CEO and president Edie Rodriguez said in a statement.

3/30/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

American Cruise Lines announced this week that the second of its three new ships to come will be named American Constitution.

The name was inspired by the U.S. Navy’s oldest vessel in service, USS Constitution, which was originally commissioned by George Washington during his tenure as president.

Set to be delivered in 2018, American Constitution will carry 175 guests in balcony staterooms and will enter the American Cruise Line fleet as a sister ship to American Constellation, which will debut in May 2017.

Details on both ship’s itineraries will be announced soon.


3/29/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

The Croatia-based river cruise line will offer two distinctly different cycle itineraries this year.

3/29/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

Etihad Airways is reaching out to its first- and business-class customers affected by the recent laptop bans by offering free onboard iPads and WiFi on certain flights.

Etihad normally offers 24-hour WiFi passes for $24.95 and 1-hour passes for $13.95, but it will provide it free on flights from its Abu Dhabi hub to New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, San Francisco and Washington, DC. WiFi service is also free for Diamond First Class passengers.

The United States and the United Kingdom banned laptops, tablets and other large electronic devices on inbound flights from certain Middle East and African countries last week, citing security concerns.

While the U.S. ban is on devices larger than a smartphone, the U.K. barred devices larger than 6.3 inches by 3.7 inches from cabins on inbound flights from Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.

3/28/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

Three members of Carnival Cruise Lines' new Travel Partner Advisory Committee took some time to share advice for travel agents who are new to cruise or want to improve their sales.

3/28/2017  |  by Daniel McCarthy

A new senior vice president of sales comes to the surging cruise line as Exclusive Group Travel is acquired by Mark Travel.