Monday Briefing: Celebrity’s Debate Night Spot, Trump Hotel Collection Fined

Start your work week off right with a look at the four travel industry headlines you should be following this morning. 

Celebrity Cruises to Air Ad Spot During Presidential Debate

Tonight is the first presidential debate, and Celebrity Cruises is taking advantage of the moment with a 30-second ad spot that will air during the event. 

The video, named “Far Away,” showcases destinations around the world, blending both the places and people of each locale. With no ship in the spot (except for a wake), Celebrity said the ad is meant to focus “less on what Celebrity does and more on what the brand believes,” according to a statement from the line. 

The ad is part of the cruise line’s “Sail Beyond Borders” global brand campaign, and will be followed by “Far Away”-themed print ads and landing page takeovers on the Celebrity Cruises website. 

Trump Hotel Collection Agrees to Penalty on Data Breach

With the debates, Donald Trump is certainly in the news, and so is his hotel collection. That company has agreed to pay a $50,000 penalty and beef up its data security after a series of breaches exposed 70,000 credit card numbers and other customer personal information, The New York Times reports.

The settlement, which was announced Friday by Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman of New York, came after banks tracing fraudulent card use in 2015 found that the cards had last been legally used at Trump Collection hotels. Additionally, malware was found at several Trump hotels, and an attacker in 2014 had been able to steal sensitive information. 

As part of the settlement the hotel collection will add new employee training, risk assessments and security testing in order to improve safety. 

Cruise Ship Protests in Venice

Demonstrators in gondolas and small boats prevented cruise ships, including one from Thomson, from passing through the lagoon in Venice on Sunday, The Daily Telegraph reports. The protestors said that cruise tourism, which brings nearly 30,000 passengers per day during peak season to the destination, is harming the environment and culture of Venice. Cruise lines cited by the Telegraph argue that the ships do little to damage the local environment and that cruise tourism supports approximately 5,000 local families. 

Google Launches Travel App

In technology news, Google has launched a big new Google Trips travel app, according to The Motley Fool. Shares in TripAdvisor, Priceline and Expedia all declined after the launch of the app next week. 

The app, which Google bills as “a personalized tour guide in your pocket,” helps travelers with day plans, reservations, things to do, and food and drink recommendations based on visits by other travelers. It can suggest things to do and see near a particular destination, and integrates information from Gmail and Google Maps to help travelers keep track of their trip. One big thing the app doesn’t do, though: online hotel reservations, which The Motley Fool suggests could limit its impact on companies that do offer bookings. Still, it’s always important to keep an eye on the competition. 

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