Skyscanner launches guide for Yuccies

first_imgImage via SkyscannerGlobal travel search engine Skyscanner has compiled a guide to the top 20 cities for Yuccies around the world after investigating the locations that attract and interest this newly identified group of “young urban creatives”, with details on why these cities are worth a visit.To bring these cities to life, the sequel to Skyscanner’s #24hPeriscope live streaming world tour will be held on Friday 24 July 2015 via broadcasting app Periscope and will enable travellers to explore these alternative urban areas and discover why these locations are so popular with this particular group.“We are always eager to uncover and investigate new trends, and were immediately intrigued by the Yuccie universe,” said Alana Saphin-Polchleb, Head of Marketing, Oceania at Skyscanner.“We wanted to know more about the Young Urban Creative and understand their interests, the places they go to and why.“We were keen to discover how they contribute to modelling the cultural scene of the cities, to help our travellers stay up to date with trends and highlight new and hidden gems for urban explorers, even in the most popular destinations.”The Skyscanner Yuccie City Guide includes up-and-coming neighbourhoods in cities like Leipzig, Milan, Islington and Sydney’s very own Alexandria, which has seen a flourishing of galleries, cultural spaces, start-ups and designer offices.The cities will also be featured in the 24-hour live Periscope broadcast by 24 people made up of bloggers, influencers and Skyscanner team members.“Broadcasting our guide through influencers around the globe via Periscope gives us another opportunity to engage and inspire travellers”, added Alana.The success of Skyscanner’s inaugural 24-hour broadcasting world tour on Periscope in April 2015 saw over 23 thousand people tuning in, reaching 1.6 million users and generating 1,200 tweets.This Friday’s sequel, which can be followed on both Android and iOS devices, will kick off at 10:00PM AEST and will feature 24 hours of alternating broadcasts from 20 locations. View the guide hereSource = Skyscannerlast_img read more

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NTIA 2019 Nominations Open

first_img2019 National Travel Industry AwardsNTIA 2019: Nominations OpenNominations for the 2019 AFTA National Travel Industry Awards are now open.The AFTA NTIA celebrates and rewards excellence in the Australian travel industry through a process which includes nominating, voting or a written submission and judging candidates by an independent panel, culminating in the announcement of the winners at a Gala Awards Dinner.There are four (4) nomination forms used in the NTIA process;1. Travel agent form to nominate a supplier in various supplier categories;2. Supplier form to nominate travel agents and travel agencies in both the AFTA NTIA & The CATO Awards;3. Emirates Travel Consultant Scholarship for self-nominations and4. Travel Writer nomination form also for self-nominations To make a nomination CLICK HERE.Nominations will only be accepted via the online forms and each nomination will be verified to ensure both its eligibility and validity. Industry is encouraged to view the Conditions of Entry prior to nominating, available here.The nomination period will run from 9:00am (AEDT) Monday 21 January through to 5:00pm (AEDT) Friday 15 February 2019.The list of all 2019 Nominees will be announced in March 2019.2019 NTIA Key Dates; • Nominations Open – Monday 21 January 2019• Category Nomination Submissions due – Friday 15 March 2019 (Selected categories)• Nominees Announced – Monday 25 March 2019• Voting Opens – Tuesday 26 March 2019• Finalists Announced – Monday 20 May 2019• Ticket Sales – Tuesday 21 May 2019• Judging Period – Wednesday 15 June to Friday 21 June 2019 (Judged categories only)• Gala Dinner – Saturday 20 July 2019For more information on the NTIA, award sponsors, categories, category criteria or to complete a nomination form visit the AFTA website.To make a nomination, CLICK HEREAbout NTIAThe AFTA National Travel Industry Awards (AFTA NTIA) acknowledge the best of the best in the Australian travel industry – with categories covering travel agencies and individual consultants, as well as the various suppliers which support them and their businesses.These awards are essential in providing encouragement and recognition to the businesses and personnel who demonstrate outstanding service, marketing excellence and business acumen within the travel industry.The 2019 AFTA NTIA Gala Dinner will be held on Saturday 20 July at the International Convention Centre, Sydney.In 2019 AFTA, in conjunction with the Council of Australian Tour Operators, will launch the inaugural CATO Awards. The Awards will be held as a dedicated segment within the AFTA NTIA and recognises and rewards front line travel consultants across four categories.Source = AFTA National Travel Industry Awardslast_img read more

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Melbourne CBD Hotel opens rooftop pool terrace

first_imgSource = Holiday Inn® Melbourne on Flinders Brats and BeersMelbourne CBD Hotel opens rooftop pool terraceHoliday Inn® Melbourne on Flinders is opening their city rooftop pool on Saturday April 27 for a two hour adults only party in partnership with Urban Alley Brewery. It’s a city hidden gem that is usually reserved for hotel guests.Join the hotel for an afternoon of good food, good beer and entertaining vibes. Enjoy the unofficial long weekend in style with friends or family with a cool drink and snag in hand while chilling poolside.Great tunes will set the vibe for the afternoon, guests will be able to chill in the heated undercover terrace area or dip their toes in their heated pool, while enjoying free-flowing UTONIC Kombucha, cider, wine and soft drinks and a sausage sizzle which are all included in the ticket price.Urban Alley Brewery will be providing only the best ales which go perfectly with the gourmet sausages. The ale is sustainably crafted right in the heart of the docklands by their expert team onsite.The party will kick off at 12:30pm on the hotel’s sun-drenched astroturfed terrace and adjoining pool and will play host to a party that you rarely find in the heart of the city.Best of all a ticket to the two-hour rooftop party only costs $45.For guests wanting to book or learn more information can do so at https://holidayinnmelbourne.com.au/promotions/brats-and-beers/last_img read more

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Foreign Tourist Arrivals FTAs register a growth of 45 in JanuaryAugust 2015

first_imgMinistry of Tourism compiles monthly estimates of Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) on the basis of Nationality-wise, Port-wise data received from Bureau of Immigration (BOI) and Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) from tourism on the basis of data available from Reserve Bank of India. The following are the important highlights regarding FTAs and FEEs from tourism during the month of August 2015.Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs):> FTAs during the Month of August 2015 were 5.89 lakh as compared to FTAs of 5.76 lakh during the month of August 2014 and 4.86 lakh in August 2013. There has been a growth of 2.3% in August 2015 over August 2014.> FTAs during the period January-August 2015 were 50.68 lakh as compared to the FTAs of 48.51 lakh, showing a growth of 4.5%.> The percentage share of Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) in India during August 2015 among the top 15 source countries was highest from Bangladesh (15.79%) followed by USA (12.52%), UK (9.71%), Sri Lanka (7.25%), Malaysia (3.54%), Germany (2.85%), Japan (2.84%), France (2.78%), Oman (2.46%), China (2.41%), Australia (2.37%), Canada (2.33%), Nepal (2.24%), Singapore (2.00%) and UAE (1.79%). These top 15 countries account for 72.88% of total FTAs during August 2015.> The percentage share of  Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) in India during August 2015 among the top 15 ports was highest at Delhi Airport (27.81%) followed by Mumbai Airport (17.34%), Chennai Airport (10.66%), Haridaspur Land check post (8.83%), Bengaluru Airport (6.91%), Cochin Airport (4.47%), Hyderabad Airport (3.65%), Kolkata Airport (3.40%), Trivandrum Airport (1.95%), Sonauli Airport (1.87%), Gede Rail (1.86%), Tiruchirapalli Airport (1.67%), Ahmedabad Airport (1.31%), Ghojadanga Land check post (1.09%) and Attari Wagha Land check post (0.87%). These top 15 ports account for 93.69% of total FTAs during August 2015.Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) from Tourism in India in rupee terms and in USD terms> FEEs during the month of August 2015 were Rs 10,471 crore as compared to Rs 10,385 crore in August 2014 and Rs 8,351 crore in August 2013.> The growth rate in FEEs in rupee terms during August 2015 over August 2014 was 0.8%.> FEEs from tourism in rupee terms in January-August 2015 were Rs 82,225 crore as compared to the FEE of Rs 79,803 crore during January-August 2014, showing an increase of 3%.> FEEs in USD terms during the month of August 2015 were USD 1.608 billion.> FEEs from tourism in USD terms during January-August 2015 were USD 13.017 billion.last_img read more

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Keeping BrickandMortar Banks Relevant

first_img Banks mortgage loan officers TD Bank 2016-08-03 Seth Welborn in Daily Dose, Headlines, News August 3, 2016 547 Views Keeping Brick-and-Mortar Banks Relevantcenter_img The mortgage industry is changing. With constant regulatory upheaval, ever-advancing technology, and constantly changing buyer demographics and trends, it’s hard for even the most dedicated mortgage lender to keep up. So how does a brick-and-mortar bank stay relevant and competitive in this always in flux industry? Kevin Gillen, SVP, Mortgage at TD Bank, fills us in. Editor’s note: This select print feature originally appeared in the August 2016 issue of MReport magazine.MReport: As a brick-and-mortar bank that offers mortgage products and servicing, what would you say consumers expect from their lender in this era of banking disruption? Gillen: In this whole ecosystem of advancing technology, the primary relationship between the consumer—the homebuyer—is really tied around the real estate agent, and the agent’s go-to person is the mortgage loan officer. So while there are all kinds of models out there, the mortgage loan officer really plays the most mission-critical role. Our Mortgage Service Index revealed that in 2016, twice as many consumers said their loan officer was their most valuable resource in the homebuying process as did in 2015. So even with the advancement of everything that’s going on with technology—the ability to start and stop and get engaged and do research on your own—ultimately, the consumer wants that validation and that trust in their mortgage loan officer.MReport: You mention technological advancements. Are there ways for a lender to empower its loan officers in this increasingly digital world? Gillen: As much as that real person—a trusted loan officer and adviser—is there, the originator, the institution, the bank, has got to provide mobile enablement for them to allow the trusted mortgage adviser to work hand-in-hand with the consumer when they’re going through the shopping experience, when they’re doing their research on rates and fees and product options, and when they’re ready to apply. Let’s face it though, if you have lots of products, that could be very, very complex. So using technology to give the consumer full transparency—to give the consumer a choice and help them to make the right decision—is key.Kevin GillenMReport: What else does a lender need to provide to generate customer satisfaction and loyalty?Gillen: The No. 1 is an on-time closing. That is so incredibly important, especially when you think about the domino impact. Trust and a good circle of referrals is crucial, too. Mortgage loan officers—their whole business, their whole livelihood—is not only based upon the strength of the institution—who they’re working for—but it’s also their rolodex, their centers of influence with financial advisers, with realtors, with developers, with builders, real estate attorneys and CPAs. So the most important thing is if you have a client—if you’ve entrusted your client to another person in this whole ecosystem—you and the person have to fulfill that expectation of trust. You have to be responsive, you have to be accessible, you have to be well-skilled, you have to be transparent, and you have to have unwavering integrity.MReport: In your opinion, how has technological advancement affected mortgage banking as a whole?Gillen: There are so many tools and resources and applications that are out there today, that are being developed to help the consumer—really help them make the right decisions. For instance, there are applications out there that help that first-time homebuyer determine the benefits of renting versus buying. Another game changer is the ability to automate and aggregate incoming asset documentation. In this day and age of technology, why should an originator be spending time and money with a processor—especially with the hassle it places on the consumer? As far as business development, it’s becoming a fiercely competitive industry. We all know margins are low, so there’s all types of analytics models, data mining, utilization of GPS and data to better understand you as the consumer.MReport: Financial technology companies are on the rise in the mortgage space. What can brick-and-mortar banks like yours do to stay competitive?Gillen: I think the most important thing to do is to take a step back and realize at the end of this is a consumer, a customer. If you keep reminding yourself it’s a home, not a loan, that’s what the customer cares about. So we break it down into really small subsets. Everything we do—every investment—is done so in the spirit of speed. It has to be simple, and it has to be transparent. By transparent, I mean the originator, the processor, the consumer, the customer, the applicant, and if the customer wants, his CPA or his or her real estate agent, all need to know exactly where every single solitary component is, counting down to when they get the keys to the house. There is nothing more frustrating than for a consumer to get a surprise condition or a new requirement 24-48 hours before closing. Sharelast_img read more

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Ocwen Responds to Regulatory Action Resolutions

first_imgOcwen Responds to Regulatory Action Resolutions Share After Illinois and Montana announced resolution agreements on Thursday, early Friday morning Ocwen Financial Corp announced it has entered into 10 agreements to resolve its pending regulatory actions made up of Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Wisconsin.In April 2017, more than 20 state business regulators issued regulatory enforcement orders to subsidiaries of Ocwen to address “mishandling of consumer escrow accounts and a deficient financial condition,” according to an April news release from the North Carolina Office of the Commissioner of Banks. The cease and desist orders were made after several years of examinations and monitoring.Prior to September 28, the September Ocwen release stated that state regulatory agencies in Indiana and Nevada either withdrew or allowed their respective cease and desist orders to expire.Under the agreements, terms include details such as Ocwen not acquiring any new residential mortgage servicing rights until April 30, 2018, developing plans to transition to a new servicing system, and not engaging an auditor to perform an escrow review of between 8,000 and 10,000 loans. However, the release also notes that Ocwen did not admit or deny liability in these settlements and none of the agreements contain any monetary fines or penalties.“Ocwen is pleased to have reached mutually-agreeable resolutions with 12 states to resolve regulatory actions brought against the Company in April 2017,” John Lovallo, Spokesperson for Ocwen, said. “We continue to work cooperatively with the remaining 19 state regulatory agencies and two state attorneys general, and are committed to seeking timely and acceptable resolutions with these states.”Montana Department of Administration, Division of Banking and Financial Institutions Commissioner Melanie Hall also voiced that she was pleased to reach an agreement with Ocwen. It now allows both the Division and the company to move forward with a focus on what concrete steps need to be taken to provide for customers accurately and with improved service.“We look forward to productive relationships with all regulatory bodies, and to continue our mission of helping homeowners, especially those struggling to remain in their homes,” Lovallo said.To see the full SEC 8K filing, click here.UPDATE: Ocwen announced it has now made agreements with New Mexico, Virginia, and West Virginia on various state regulatory actions.“Ocwen is pleased to have reached resolutions with three additional states to resolve regulatory actions brought against the Company, bringing the total number of states where we have reached a resolution to 15,” said Lovallo. “We continue to work cooperatively with the remaining 16 state regulatory agencies and two state attorneys general to reach acceptable resolutions. In addition, we are pleased that the SEC has concluded both of the investigations we have previously disclosed.” in Daily Dose, Featured, Government, Headlines, Newscenter_img September 29, 2017 590 Views Owen Financial 2017-09-29 Brianna Gilpinlast_img read more

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The Week Ahead Focus on Home Prices

first_imgThe Week Ahead: Focus on Home Prices On Tuesday, June 26, the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Index (HPI) will release giving a snapshot of the movement of home prices in April. The index gauges U.S. residential real estate prices, tracking changes in the value of residential real estate both nationally as well as in 20 metropolitan regions.Last month, the HPI for March indicated that home prices showed no signs of slowing down. Nationally, the index reported a 6.5 percent annual gain in March, while the 10-City Composite annual increase came in at 6.5 percent, slightly rising from 6.4 percent in the previous month. The 20-City Composite on the index remained unchanged from the previous month posting a 6.8 percent year-over-year gain in home prices. Cities like Seattle, Las Vegas, and San Francisco reported the highest year-over-year gains among the 20 cities on the HPI. In March, Seattle led the way with a 13 percent year-over-year price increase; followed by Las Vegas with a 12.4 percent increase; and San Francisco with an 11.3 percent increase. Twelve of the 20 cities on the HPI reported greater price increases in March 2018 compared with February.Here’s what else is in store in The Week Ahead:New Home Sales, Monday, 10 a.m. ETConsumer Confidence Index, Tuesday, 10 a.m. ETMBA Mortgage Apps, Wednesday, 7 a.m. ETNAR Pending Home Sales Index, Wednesday, 10 a.m. ETGDP Data, Thursday, 8:30 a.m. ETFed Balance Sheet, Thursday, 4:30 p.m. ET in Daily Dose, Featured, News Sharecenter_img June 24, 2018 494 Views Home Prices Home Sales homes HOUSING S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller HPI 2018-06-24 Radhika Ojhalast_img read more

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The Top 20 Cities to Buy a Retirement Home

first_img For homebuyers looking at that ideal retirement property, a survey by 55places.com revealed that 77 percent of adults were looking at these homes to be affordable.When asked about the anticipated costs of a future home compared to the value of their current one, 26 percent respondents said, “about the same” while 27 percent would prefer “slightly less” and 24 percent “much less,” the survey indicated.”A home within a certain price point is only half of the equation,” said Danny Goodman, COO and Co-founder of 55places.com. “The surrounding area—whether or not an active adult community is of interest—plays an integral role in the quality of life, and nearby attractions and available establishments can greatly enhance that. These destinations provide budget-friendly options without demanding sacrifice for comfort.”Apart from affordability, the survey noted that these homebuyers were also looking for a fun and active retirement in or outside a 55-plus community. The survey then looked at cities and towns that provided a balance of affordability and an active retirement lifestyle. For the survey, 55places.com looked at factors such as the overall cost of living, local home prices, state tax laws, well-being scores, availability of 55-plus communities, local health, local health care options, and public transit.Sioux Falls in South Dakota secured the first rank in this list scoring top marks in terms of affordable home prices and low cost of living (7 percent lower than the national average). At No. 2 Ocala, Florida not only got top marks for home affordability, but also for the wide variety of options available for active adult living and favorable tax laws. Four more Florida cities, Lakeland, Jacksonville, Daytona Beach, and Gainesville took the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth spot respectively. Tampa-St. Petersburg, again in Florida, was ranked ninth, beaten by New Castle County, Delaware and South Bend, Indiana which took the seventh and eighth spot respectively. Waco, Texas rounded off the top 10 cities for retirement.Other cities that made the Top 2o rankings included, Birmingham, Alabama; Memphis, Tennessee; San Antonio, Texas; Fort Myers/Cape Coral, Florida; Phoenix, Arizona; Melbourne, Florida; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Orlando-Kissimmee, Florida; Wichita Falls, Texas; and Indianapolis, Indiana. The Top 20 Cities to Buy a Retirement Home 55places.com Affordable Housing homes property Retirement 2019-01-28 Radhika Ojha January 28, 2019 1,315 Views center_img in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, News Sharelast_img read more

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Six personal travel managers PTMs were invited t

first_imgSix personal travel managers (PTMs) were invited to represent TravelManagers on a Crooked Compass seven-day hiking famil – to Palestine and Israel – the first time each of the PTMs had experienced those destinations.The seven-day itinerary, which started and ended in Tel Aviv, took the group through remote but beautiful terrain in the Nablus region, hiking on remote trails shared by shepherds and their flocks, and saw them visit iconic sites in and around Bethlehem. They also visited the ancient city of Jericho, and swam in the Dead Sea.Personal travel manager Kerstin Rheinlander, representative for Sinnamon Park in Queensland, describes herself as a huge fan of the Middle Eastern countries in general and says the itinerary her group followed would best suit history buffs, but also those with religious interests, too. “Participants need to have a reasonable level of fitness so I wouldn’t recommend this particular tour to families with younger children, but older teenagers would be able to handle it.“If they were simply travelling through Palestine independently, then the region itself would be of great interest for families of all ages.” Rheinlander was surprised by the welcoming kindness of the Palestinian people and their generous hospitality.“They shared everything they possibly could, even though they had so little for themselves. “Strangers walking in the street called out, ‘Welcome to Palestine’ … shopkeepers beckoned us to hear their stories. A family with young children even stopped harvesting their olives to chat with us and invited us to join them for tea, but unfortunately we had to continue on our path!”TravelManagers’ Bev Fitzsimons with a local shepherd, encountered during a day hiking in PalestineThe opportunity to visit historic sites, that are of great significance to millions of people, was too good to pass up and, for Karen Doyle, representative for South Yarra in Victoria, the warmth of the Palestinian people, in particular, was an added bonus.“[The people] were very warm, friendly and welcoming, wanting to know where we were from and offering us sweet tea and food. They were a generous people, who often had very little in terms of material possessions, but were always very generous to us as their guests.” Doyle said there was no moment during her visit to Palestine that she felt unsafe.“It was interesting to hear the stories from the locals and our guides of life living under Israeli domination. You can only admire and sympathise with these people, who demonstrate amazing resilience and perseverance under difficult conditions.”She was also delighted by the local cuisine.“I enjoyed Palestinian tea, which is sweet and strong, and also the cardamom-spiced coffee, which is by far the best option for coffee in Palestine.”The fresh, locally-produced ingredients included “… spiced flat bread with hummus, baba ganoush, tabbouleh, fried chicken, yoghurt, and soft cheese with olive oil and zaatar spice – yum.”Doyle, who also chose to add a side trip to neighbouring Jordan, says it was relatively easy to reach Palestine, flying via Dubai and Amman to Tel Aviv. However, she warns that patience is required when crossing borders. “Be prepared for lengthy questioning from Israeli officials about your intended visit on entering and leaving Israel after visiting Palestine,” she advises. “It can take a long time to get through immigration on arrival and departure, with multiple checkpoints and a lot of questions asked.”For Theresa Kwong, representative for Hughesdale in Victoria, the wonderful hospitality was matched by some of the trip’s key highlights which included taking a drink from Jacob’s Well, floating in the Dead Sea, hiking across mountains, and discovering and exploring hidden valleys and ancient secrets.“This was my first time visiting Israel and Palestine, and there was so much to learn about both countries’ political and religious history.“But the feeling when we reached the end of our walk, to view the cliffside Mar Saba Monastery in Palestine, and visiting Nativity Church in Bethlehem to touch the spot where Jesus was believed to be born, were truly awe-inspiring. For me these were two remarkable experiences in a trip packed with highlights.” PTM Di Yates visiting an olive oil soap factory in the ancient city of NablusTravelManagers’ Executive General Manager Michael Gazal, says although client enquiry for travel to Palestine is not particularly high, it is valuable for PTMs to have first-hand experience of more niche destinations.TOP IMAGE: On the road to Tell Balata, the site of the Bronze Age city of Shechem, where Abraham arrived in the Land of Canaan. L-R: Bev Fitzsimons, Cath Graham Theresa Kwong, Di Yates, Kirsten Rheinlander and Karen Doyle. familPalestineTravelManagerslast_img read more

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