South Pacific Tourism Organisation


ISSUE NO. 13 - 15TH MAY 2002 


Business passengers will stay away The airline industry has received more bad news with a recent survey indicating business class passengers will not be back for a long time. Business travelers are finding cheaper and faster alternatives to the larger airlines, a Business Travel Coalition survey has revealed. Airlines have been warned they face tough times for at least another year because of corporate cutbacks faced by many of their business passengers. The survey of more than 180 corporations found that many believed business fare prices are too high and are turning to low-cost budget carriers or using their cars. Increased airport security has also made air travel less attractive. Many of those surveyed would like to see a Trusted Traveler program for regular flyers. This would allow them to avoid security delays at airports. (Source: Travelpress, 24/04/02)

P&O reports rise in passenger numbers  P&O has reported a 12% increase in tourist vehicle carryings on cross-channel routes during the first three months of this year. On board sales have also shown strong growth, with average sales per passenger 15% higher than in the first quarter of 2001, while forward bookings for the summer are currently above last year. However, the group says the strong value of sterling is holding back bookings from the continent. P&O Ferries has seen a 13% jump in tourist vehicle volumes; and an 11% improvement in passenger volumes during the first quarter. (Source: TravelMole Insider, 26/04/02)

New Zealand prioritises mid east as 'emerging tourism' market Tourism New Zealand has designated the Middle East as an emerging tourism market and is looking to increase its share of the regional outbound travel market. "We recognise that this market has extremely good potential for New Zealand in the medium to long term," said Sarah Meikle, Manager Emerging Markets, Tourism New Zealand. New Zealand is to mount its third official participation at Arabian Travel Market 2002, the Middle East's premier travel and tourism trade show, which runs at the Airport Expo Dubai from May 7-10. Australian and New Zealand stand was side-by-side within the international pavilion, a great opportunity to educate people about dual-destination holiday options between the two countries. (Source: Travel Daily News, 24/04/02)


Tonga goes to its first Asian travel mart Tonga has participated in the Pacific Asia Travel Association's travel mart for the first time, with two representatives going to Singapore for it. They were deputy director of tourism and head of marketing Sione Moala-Mafi and the operations manager of the Janful International Dateline Hotel, Lucy Niu. Mr Moala-Mafi said this does not imply that Tonga is ready for the mainstream markets of Asia, but was to expose the competitive advantage of its products. The prime reason for participation was to explore specific target segments interested in soft adventures, such as such as diving, sailing, and whale watching, and cultural aspects of Tonga. Tonga has been concentrating its tourism marketing on English- speaking countries such as New Zealand, Australia and the United States of America. Visitors from these countries make up 60 percent of incoming tourists while about 20 percent come from the United Kingdom and Germany. (Source: PINA Nius Online, 28/04/02) 

Air Tahiti Nui going up to 3 flights a week to Paris Air Tahiti Nui will increase its Papeete-Paris-Papeete flights to three a week from June 28th to October 26th. To enable it to operate its increasing number of services a leased Airbus aircraft which was to be returned early this year is being kept until October. Air Tahiti Nui has recently acquired two new Airbus A340-300 aircraft to develop its international flights as part of the efforts to protect and develop French Polynesia's important tourism industry. The airline is now flying to Japan, New Zealand, the United States and France. Meanwhile, French Polynesia's government agreed to boost funding for Air Tahiti Nui with an additional one billion French Pacific Francs (close to $US8 million). This is to help the launch of the increased services. (Source: Tahitipresse, 27/04/02)

A Fiji Holiday with paddles Adventure Water Sports at Safari Lodge Fiji is operating a program of one, three and seven day kayaking tours on the north coast of Fiji's main island, Viti Levu, about two hours by road from Nadi International Airport. The company, based at Rakiraki, has a background of operating windsurfing courses and has had a dive operation and game fishing since1997. This is the second year of sea kayaking trips, which include the three day version to Malake Island with two village stays and the seven day Viti Levu Bay with four village stays, with retail prices at $F895.00 and $F1995.00, respectively, including all meals, equipment and instruction. There is a one day trip to the nearby Nananu Islands costing F$149. Additional information is available at (Source: Fiji Visitors Bureau Australia, 06/05/02)

New American Samoa Quality Inn tipped to boost tourism American Samoa's new three-story Tradewinds West Hotel, now under construction, will be a Quality Inn, a franchise of Choice Hotels International. The 104-room "plantation style" hotel is owned and being developed by Ottoville Investment One, a local company. Company president Avamua Dave Haleck announced that when it opens in December the hotel will be known as "Quality Inn Tradewinds". The territory's only other major hotel, the Rainmaker, has been struggling in recent years, needing a major injection of funding to restore it to its past standards. The Quality Inn Tradewinds features a combination of rooms and suites, including six Luxury King Suites, 48 King Suites, 31 King Rooms, and 19 Double Rooms. Hotel features include a fitness (exercise) room, business center, ATM, ANZ-Amerika Samoa Bank Office, rental car office, travel and tour agency, gift shop, several conference rooms, outdoor swimming pool and a restaurant. (Source: PINA Nius Online, 07/05/02)

Air Pacific Fiji Open & Veterans Tennis Championship The Air Pacific Fiji Open and Veterans Tennis Championships will be held again at the Denarau Golf & Racquet Club from 23 to 27 May 2002. This five-day event is the largest and most prestigious of its kind in the South Pacific and last year, attracted an international field of 200 players. A similar number, is expected again this year. Prizes in both Open and Veterans grades are valued at over $40,000 including Air Pacific flights. The Open event last year, attracted ATP tour players including Rob Krause from South Africa and highly ranked world player Jay Gooding from Queensland, Australia. (Source: Sheraton Resorts Fiji, 08/05/02)

Visitors from American Samoa pour dollars into Apia Visitors from American Samoa continue to be the largest group heading for Samoa, according to the latest Samoa Government Statistics Department report. Of the 6209 tourist arrivals in Apia for March, 2165 came from American Samoa, 1460 originated from New Zealand and 744 arrived from Australia. The two airlines that operate between the territory and the independent state expect another jump in travel to Apia towards the end of this month. This is as people head for Samoa's 40th Independence Day celebrations set for the beginning of June. Foreign investors have recently shown interest in setting up two major hotel developments in Samoa, one is in the Faleolo International Airport area and the other on a man-made island close to Apia. (Source: PINA Nius Online, 12/05/02)


Samoa Air resumes service to Vava‘u, Tonga American Samoa's Samoa Air has resumed flights to Vava‘u, Tonga after suspending it for more than three months. Resumption of Vava‘u flights is possible with the availability of a second Twin Otter plane. The aircraft also allows Samoa Air to add extra flights to neighboring Samoa and to Manu‘a in American Samoa. While Samoa Air's Tonga flights were suspended Vava‘u passengers had to go to Apia, then fly down to Nuku‘alofa on Polynesian Airlines before flying back Vava‘u on Royal Tongan Airlines. (Source: Samoa News, 22/04/02)

Now it's Moresby to Narita direct Papua New Guinea now has a direct flight into Japan, with an Air Niugini Airbus flying directly from Port Moresby to Tokyo's Narita Airport. The new direct scheduled service, which takes six hours and 40 minutes, is expected to enhance trade and tourism between the countries. (Source: PINA Nius Online, 22/04/02)

Travel Arrangements plans global expansion Auckland based Pacific wholesaler Travel Arrangements Ltd (TAL) has announced plans for international expansion. In line with TAL's vision of being "globally successful as an expert partner in facilitating travel throughout the South Pacific region", TAL has appointed Rick Felderhof as General Manager - International Business Development. Rick will relocate to the UK and identify new partnership opportunities. A presence In the UK would reinforce TAL's global ambitions and compliment existing offices in Auckland, Brisbane and the USA. TAL are members of the Australian listed group Pacific International Ltd, whose cornerstone shareholder is the UK company i-spire plc. Rick will initially base himself in the London office of i-spire. (Source: Travel Arrangements Ltd, 18/04/02) 

Any Comments? News to Share? If you have any comments about this newsletter or articles and information relevant to tourism both within the region and internationally, please send to Please also include the source of the item.

The SOUTH PACIFIC TOURISM WEEKLY UPDATE is produced and distributed by the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) as a complimentary service to its members and friends of the South Pacific. The Weekly Update provides timely information on tourism happenings within the South Pacific region, its key markets and internationally. 
Jaspreet Sharma 
South Pacific Tourism Organisation
Level 3, FNPF Place, 
343 - 359 Victoria Parade
Ph: (679) 330 4177 
Fax: (679) 330 1995
Visit South Pacific Islands at 

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment