Yeoh Siew Hoon
IN OTHER NEWS
Airbnb inks a deal with 3 major TMCs 6
1st Call: Celebrity’s Mozart river ship is all luxe 8
Sharia law gives Qatar edge in hotel deals 14
[ REAL-WORLD SITES, VIRTUAL MONSTERS, CROWDS OF PLAYERS ]
Pokemon Go offers opportunity,
challenges to tourist attractions
By Sarah Feldberg
The explosion in popularity of
the mobile video game Pokemon
Go since it was released on July 6
presented both opportunities and
challenges for travel destinations
The game, which sends phone-clutch-ing players into the streets to catch virtual
monsters in the real world, has exploded in
popularity. According to the app-focused research firm Sensor Tower, Pokemon Go had
surpassed 15 million installs as of late last
week, at a time when it was only available to
smartphone users in the U.S., Australia and
One measure of its popularity is that users
are spending more time playing it ( 33 min-
utes daily on average) than they are spending
reading statuses on Facebook ( 22 minutes)
or posting photos on Snapchat ( 18 minutes).
But the very fact that Pokemon Go forces
players to actually get off the couch and leave
their homes also posed challenges and op-
portunities for attractions and destinations.
“It came out last Wednesday, and come
Monday it was a big conversation at our
marketing meeting,” said Legoland rep Brittany Williams. Inside the park, she said, “We
are definitely seeing a lot more phones out.
You can tell what they’re doing. They’re definitely following their phones around.”
In Manhattan last week, some stores and
attractions had started enthusiastically seeding their properties with Pokemon characters and “lure modules” as a means of
OAG: 19 of the 50 most underserved
routes involve destinations in the U.S.
By Robert Silk
A recent analysis of the world’s 50 most underserved international airline routes by the
air travel intelligence company OAG revealed
that 19, or 38%, involved a U.S. destination.
The study, “Underserved Uncovered,”
which OAG released early this month, also
underscored the complex set of financial and
logistical criteria that airlines use in deciding
which routes to serve and at what frequency.
In compiling the list, OAG ranked underserved routes by which had the greatest
number of bookings that included stopovers
last year. Some city pairs made the list even
though they were served by nonstop service.
The city pair that topped the list was Ja-
karta, Indonesia, to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia,
with 280,000 one-stop bookings in 2015.
The most underserved city pair involving
the U.S. market ranked No. 2 on OAG’s list:
Some 239,000 one-stop ticket segments were
purchased for flights between New York JFK
and Tel Aviv. By comparison, 432,000 people
flew nonstop between those airports.
The next four most underserved international routes involving the U.S. were Los
Angeles-Ho Chi Minh City, Los Angeles-Manila, Los Angeles-Bangkok and San Francisco-Delhi, all of which made the top 12.
In a Travel Weekly interview, OAG analyst
John Grant said there are many reasons that
routes can appear to be underserved. For
example, airlines sometimes struggle with a
shortage of aircraft.
See ROUTES on Page 42
See POKEMON on Page 44
WWW.TRAVELWEEKLY.COM JULY 18, 2016
NCLH CEO Frank Del Rio talks about launching ‘the most luxurious cruise ship ever.’ 4
Our study of travel intent across the U.S. and
in 4 cities revealed major differences. 40
The island nation proves to be surprisingly
progressive on gay and lesbian issues. 32
The DOT employs a double standard in the
way it enforces the ‘full-price rule.’ 28
THE TRAVEL INDUSTRY’S TRUSTED VOICE