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Travel News for Week of August 22

By August 22, 2021Blog

Hi Everyone,

One of the biggest non COVID  news in the travel world this week was Hyatt’s acquisition of ALG Vacations.   ALG includes Apple Vacations, Funjet Vacations, Blue Sky Tours Hawaii, Travel Impressions, Cheap Caribbean, and Beach Bound as well as Mexico and  the Caribbean’s management company, Amstar.  It’s too early to really know how this will affect the resort business but this will definitely shake up the all-inclusive market and make it more difficult to price shop from different companies as there are not many left.   Competitors include Pleasant Holidays and Delta Vacations.   There are also companies that sell their own product such as Sandals and Beaches, Couples, and Palace Resorts.

When the pandemic hit, Disney put the Fast Pass on hold.   It now appears that it will not be returning.   Instead, Disney is introducing Genie+.  While Fast Pass was complimentary, Genie+ will be available for $15 per day per ticket at DisneyWorld and $20 per day per ticket for Disneyland.  The service grants guests the ability to choose a time to arrive at a  variety of of attractions and experiences and access a “Lightning Lane” entrance. Guests will be permitted to make one Genie+ at a time.   Some of the more high demand attractions are not included with Genie+.

A few weeks ago, I noted that Venice would begin to prohibit large cruise ships from entering their lagoon so the cruise lines have stared to find alternate ports.  Right now they are docking in places like Marghera,  Ravenna,  and Trieste.  This doesn’t mean cruisers will not be able to get to Venice.  It will just mean a bus or train ride into Venice.   If you are scheduled to go on a cruise that includes Venice, your cruise lines will notify you when they have the new ports arranged.   Venice is still the gateway for the airlines in that region so the cruise lines have some work to do.  None of this affects river cruises.   Those ships are still able to dock in the heart of Venice.

Current Trips 2021-2023*

We continue to shuffle tours around as the world situation changes.   If you have questions about any of the following trips, don’t hesitate to contact me.   One thing that is important to remember is that when booking groups, I must have a minimum number of people for that group.    I cannot keep seats indefinitely.   Usually, I must turn in unused seats 5-6 months in advance, depending on the tour operator or cruise line.  That has led to some people being really disappointed if they did not book early as my inventory is limited to a specific time frame.   Please book early if you intend to travel with one of our groups.

October 30,-November 8, 2021   Sunny Portugal  This trip includes a special off season price.  Highlights of this trip include:  the Portuguese Riviera, Lisbon, Belem, Obidos, Intra, the Cork Factory (amazing), Winergy visit, Alentejo, Monaraz, Lagos, Algarve, Faro, Tavira, 4 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and Azeitao.    Check out the entire itinerary at http://gateway.gocollette.com/link/1011623     Collette Vacations

November 6-17  Spotlight on the French Riviera:  Special  off season rate.  Unpack and stay in one place!   Highlights of this tour include Nice, St. Paul de Vence, St. Trope, Vineyard Tour and Wine Tasting, Monaco, Monte Carlo Casino, Nice Flower Market, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild, and Cannes.   http://gateway.gocollette.com/link/1011478           Collette Vacations

2022

April 4-15, 2022    Lynn and Lidia’s Sicily and Southern Italy tour with Sant’ippolito!   Join us as we fly to the Sicilian Capital of  Palermo.  where we will spend 2 nights exploring the city.  There will be an opportunity to take optional tours to Cefalu, Monte Pellegrino, and the goal market.    We will then travel to Taormina by way of  Agrigento  to visit the Valley of the Temples.   Once in Taormina we will take a walking tour of the Corso Umbreto and on to the Piazza for a panoramic view of the bay.  The next day, explore Taormina at leisure or maybe take an optional trip to Mt. Etna and Savoca, home of the “Godfather”.   We will then cross  the Straits of Messina and on to Calabria.   Here you will have an opportunity to visit  your family villages  located outside Cosenza.    After a stay in Calabria we head to Matera, Alberabello, and San Giovanni Rotundo to see the shrine of Padre Pio, and then make our way to Rome for our departure.  Call for availability.  Trafalgar 

April 20-29, 2022 Tulips and Windmills during Tulip Time See everything from tulips to windmills on this journey during the season of rebirth.   From the canals of Amsterdam to the belfry of Bruges, you’ll discover the best of the Netherlands and Belgium. Stroll through colorful acres of tulips at Keukenhof Gardens to get a sense of the Netherlands’ extraordinary connection to these blooms. Then visit the 19 UNESCO-designated windmills of Kinderdijk to better understand how these mighty structures have been used to protect the Low Country from ever-rising water levels for hundreds of years. This ship is almost full.    Uniworld River Cruises

May 11-20, 2022   Shades of Ireland   This is one of my favorite trips: Enjoy Dublin,Kilkenny, Waterford, Killarney, Ring of Kerry,  the Cliffs of Moher, Limerick, and Galway. Ride a jaunting car, kiss the Blarney Stone,  and visit a family farm. Our last night’s stay is in a castle.  I have a few spaces left if you are interested.    Collette Vacations    http://gateway.gocollette.com/link/101529 

May 15-26, 2022  Alpine Lakes and the Glacier Express with Oberammergau Passion Play    This tour is being rescheduled from 2020.   I can only hold the few tickets I have for 30 days.   Your journey will begin at the beautiful Lake Maggiore.  You will then head to Zermatt, Switzerland.    The Glacier Express will take you into the Alps.  You’ll visit the beautiful towns of St. Moritz, Innsbrook and Salzburg. Enjoy a special Mozart Concert and its the Neuschwanstein Castle before heading to the famed Oberammergau Passion Play.   You will return home from Munich.    The passion play will not be repeated until 2030.  Check out the itinerary at https://gateway.gocollette.com/link/817395     Collette Vacations

June 18-26, 2022  Spectacular Canadian Rockies   We will begin this awesome tour in Vancouver, and travel to Victoria Island, Kamloops, Jasper National Park, the Athabasca Glacier, Lake Louise, and Banff National park.  Trafalgar

July 19-30 Alaska Cruisetour   Take an 11 day southbound cruise tour aboard Princess Cruises. Fly into Fairbanks, visit Denali Wilderness Lodge, Denali McKinley Lodge and then take the train to our cruise ship for a 7 night southbound cruise.   Experience the Hubbard Glacier, cruise through Glacier Bay National Park, and visit Skagway, Juneau, and Ketchikan before disembarking in Vancouver. This is an amazing cruise tour.  Sounds like the lodges may be full on this one.     Call for availability for other dates.    Princess Cruises

August 7-15   7 day round trip Venice, Croatia, andGreek Isles with Santorini, and  Mykonos. Call for pricing and availability. Norwegian Cruise Line

New!   September 7-15,  2022   Israel: Pilgrimage to the Holy Land    Join us as we embark on an extraordinary journey.   We will begin our journey in Tel Aviv  and then travel to the port city of Jaffa on our way to Caesarea. We next visit Nazareth, Cana, and our day in Tiberias for 2 nights.  We will take a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. We’ll make a stop at the Mount of Beatitudes, Capernaum.  We will visit Bethlehem, Jerusalem, the Western Wall, and much more.  Optional extension to Petra.    Ready for booking!     Collette Vacations

September 18-30, 2022 Rhine, Moselle, and Blissful Baden-Baden    Spend 2 nights in the beautiful spa town of Baden-Baden and then board your ship for a cruise up the Rhine and Moselle rivers.  We will visit Strasbourg, Speyer, Frankfurt, Rudesheim, Boppard, Cochem Bernkastel and Trier before returning home from  Frankfurt. Uniworld Cruises

October 23-29, 2022   Southern Charm    Join us on this short 6 night tour as  we visit the beautiful cities of Charleston, Savannah. Visit St. Simon’s Island and spend a night on Jekyll Island.  End our tour in Jacksonville, Florida before heading home.  Collette Vacations

2023

April 29- May 10, 2023     Discovering Poland     We’ll visit Warsaw, Gdansk, Torun, Wroclaw, and Krakow.   Check out the itinerary at https://gateway.gocollette.com/link/902378      Collette Vacations

June 17-23, 2023New!! Viking  Cruise down the Mississippi   Join us as we cruise from Memphis to New Orleans on a cruise called Heart of the Delta.  I was only able to get 10 cabins as Viking usually does not do groups on this cruise as it is too popular.   I have very few cabins remaining.  Believe it or not, I could not get cabins for 2022.   We will begin our journey in Memphis,  and sail to Vicksburg, Natchez, St. Francisville, Baton Rouge, and Darrow, Louisiana before arriving in New Orleans. The cabins that I have are balcony cabins. Right now air is being offered for $399 per person out of Detroit.   Let me know if you are interested.  1 cabin remaining.

*Please note that Skip and I usually escort all our tours.  Because of the number of rescheduled tours in 2021-22 it will be impossible for us to be on every tour.  We will escort as many as we can,  but whether we are on the tour or not, we will make sure that you have everything you need for your tour and will work hard to insure you are well taken care of by your tour operator or cruise line.

Have a great week!

Lynn