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- In the first half of the year, 340,000 people visited Tibet. That's down 69 percent from the same period last year. Tourism almost came to a standstill after a riot broke out on March 14.
- Penny conscious tourists are now refusing to tip waiters, taxi drivers and hotel staff when dissatisfied and 13 per cent say they'll definitely be tipping less and less often, no matter what the service, to make their travel money stretch further this holiday.
- Under the new rules for fall 2009 cruises, customers will be able to cancel without penalty up to 45 days from sailing date instead of 75 days. They'll also be able to reserve a cabin with a 5% deposit instead of 10%. They'll have seven days to pay instead of three. ... the policy adjustments a "smart move" that can calm clients' nerves about committing to a cruise that can cost up to $8,000 a couple.
- While cheaper crude breathes new hope into airlines, it carries other penalties. Oil is down because demand is grinding lower. OPEC just slashed 100,000 barrels a day from its 2009 demand growth forecast, citing shaky financial markets and mounting evidence that the global economy is in recession. Included in the downturn is a drop in travel.
- It's the commercial sector — privately funded hotels, condos and new-business development — that would be waylaid by a contraction of credit. Compounding the quandary: No one knows how badly the $5 billion-a-year, bread-and-butter tourism industry — the metro area's largest employer and generator of an average of more than $250 million a year in tax revenue — will be hit by belt-tightening consumers.
- The US domestic market will account for 21.4 million of the cutback in available seats, or 46% of the global decline and a staggering 59% of the global drop in frequencies with 265,000 fewer flights.