Planet DMC

News and tidbits from the travel industry

Can Taiwan become Asia’s next great hiking destination?

Taipei City started promoting hiking trails within its city limits, budgeting approximately US$2m per year to maintaining trails and linking existing trails into loops – one of which would come to be known as the Taipei Grand Trail, a 92km route stretching from Yangmingshan in the north of the city to the district of Muzha in the south.Joe Henley (BBC)

UK tourism lost an average of £200m per day during 2020-21

Tourism was hit first, hit hardest and will take the longest of all sectors to recover, especially those businesses and attractions which are heavily dependent on inbound visitors who will not come back to the UK in meaningful numbers until 2024.Bernard Donoghue (Association of Leading Visitor Attractions)

European Union Struggles to Reach Consensus on Covid Travel Rules

I have only seen that closing borders is in any case not the solution.Xavier Bettel (Luxembourg’s Prime Minister)

The Rise of Psychedelic Retreats

Psychedelic retreats — in countries like Costa Rica and Jamaica, where many psychedelic substances are allowed, as well as among a shadow network of shamans in the United States who share drugs and details over social networks — are experiencing widespread growth. Their rise overlaps with an increasing popularity of cannabis tourism during the pandemic.Debra Kamin (New York Times)

These are the world’s most expensive cities in 2021

Although most economies across the world are now recovering as Covid-19 vaccines are rolled out, many major cities are still seeing spikes in cases, leading to social restrictions. These have disrupted the supply of goods, leading to shortages and higher prices. We can clearly see the impact in this year’s index, with the rise in petrol prices particularly stark. But not all cities saw price increases. Many of the cities towards the bottom of our rankings saw prices stagnate or even fall, partly because their currencies weakened against the US dollar. Over the coming year, we expect to see the cost of living rise further in many cities as wages increase in many sectors. However, we are also expecting central banks to raise interest rates, cautiously, to stem inflation. So the price increases should start to moderate from this year’s level.Upasana Dutt (Economist Intelligence Unit)

The marvel of China’s multi-generational rice terraces

Though the terraces shimmer a vibrant emerald in the summer growing season (the local micro-climate supports just one rice crop a year, if an abundant one), the landscape is at its most photogenic from November to late April, when the waterlogged terraces become natural mirrors that glow in shades of indigo and tangerine, in gold, turquoise and magenta, with every sunrise and sunset. Farmers and water buffalo occasionally lumber by in pleasing silhouette.Gary Jones (BBC)

Travel predicted to be 30% down in 2022, says Economist Intelligence Unit

Increased focus on sustainability will see some major tourist destinations cap daily visitor numbers (notably in the Italian city of Venice) or impose a tourist tax. Thailand will impose a US$15 tax in 2022; New Zealand is likely to adopt a similar approach.Economist Intelligence Unit

Iceland’s Genius Parody of Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse to Woo Tourists

Through humor and sarcasm against the backdrop of Iceland’s wide open green landscapes and northern lights, the scenes remind viewers what they crave the most and should reconnect with: real humans, real nature, real experiences — and not the world of social media.Lebawit Lily Girma (Skift)

The Stunning Grandeur of Soviet-Era Metros

At Elektrozavodskaya, a stop in Moscow, a policeman offered tips on how to capture the station’s most stunning facets. He also gave me the contact information for metro staff who could help adjust the lighting.Frank Herfort

Comeback der A380: Totgesagte leben länger

Die A380 ist bei Reisenden und Flugzeugfans ungebrochen populär – und sie erlebt weltweit gerade ein ungeahntes Comeback, von dem noch vor Monaten niemand geträumt hätte.Andreas Spaeth (FAZ)

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