News in brief

Tour operators expand cruise, skiing and golf holidays

New combined cruise/beach holiday packages, more skiing and golf holidays, a German-British cruise portal merger and DER Touristik’s reorganisation in Germany are in the news.

August 03, 2017

Thomas Cook Germany and MSC are stepping up their cooperation by expanding combined cruise and beach holiday packages. The two companies already offered such packages for Cuba. Cook has now extended its ‘Cruise & Beach’ programme to the Caribbean and the Orient. Customers can book one-week cruises on the MSC Opera, MSC Fantasia, MSC Seaside and MSC Splendida, followed by a beach holiday in any hotel from its Caribbean and Africa/Orient/Indian Ocean brochures.

In contrast, Cook’s German late sales specialist Bucher Last Minute is now offering winter skiing holidays in Russia. The brand has teamed up with the Rosa Khutor resort in Sochi, the largest ski resort in Russia, to offer packages between January 19 and March 2, 2018. German customers will fly with Condor to the Black Sea destination.

Separately, Thomas Cook Germany is now taking bookings for summer 2018 for 21 destinations, including on the Balearic and Canary Islands and the Spanish mainland, and in Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Bulgaria, Tunisia and Cyprus.

FTI is driving golf holidays sales for winter 2017/18 with a new service centre for travel agents offering expert advice to support golf bookings. The tour operator, which is offering 150 packages in 16 destinations, already has a double-digit rise in golf holiday sales compared to last year.

DER Touristik Group has completed the integration of its diverse German businesses into one single company. The new ‘DER Touristik Deutschland’ incorporates the former separate tour operator companies in Frankfurt and Cologne as well as other businesses. The new German company is the core of the Central Europe region which also includes DER Touristik Suisse, which has been re-named from Kuoni Switzerland. However, the existing Swiss brands remain unchanged, including Kuoni and Helvetic Tours.

German cruise holidays portal Kreuzfahrtberater.de has been sold to British investors and will merge with the Cruise.co.uk portal. The merger will create a business with more than 100,000 customers and revenues of €250 million. The German company has some 40,000 customers and annual turnover of about €50 million. Former owner Andreas Köster-Clobes stressed the portal’s founders would remain on board as the Germany management team, and the €25 million sale proceeds would be reinvested into expanding the German business.

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