Friday Briefing: Royal Caribbean to Sponsor ASTA Memberships for NACTA Agents, Mike Pence’s Plane Skids Off Runway

royal caribbean's harmony of the seas

Royal Caribbean’s plan to sponsor ASTA memberships for NACTA travel agents, vice presidential candidate Mike Pence’s plane skidding off a La Guardia runway and Royal Caribbean’s strong Q3 are the top travel industry headlines to follow today. 

Royal Caribbean to Sponsor ASTA Memberships for NACTA Agents

Royal Caribbean is offering a new benefit for members of the National Career Association of Travel Agents (NACTA) with a new plan to sponsor $10,000 worth of American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) membership dues for NACTA agents to become ASTA members. 

In a statement announcing the plan ASTA said it would continue to work with industry suppliers to create membership programs to enhance the supplier-agent relationship. 

Earnings Up for Royal Caribbean’s Third Quarter 2016

In other news from Royal Caribbean, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. has reported its results for the third quarter of 2016, and the results are strong: GAAP and adjusted third quarter earnings are up 13 percent from last year and better than expectations. Net yields were up 2.9 percent on a constant currency basis, which was also better than the company’s previously issued guidance. 

For the full year 2016, right now the company is forecasting net yields to be up 4 percent or better on a constant currency basis, with strong close-in demand for North American itineraries in the third quarter offsetting the impact of the delayed opening of Empress of the Seas sailings during the fourth quarter. 

Looking ahead to 2017, the company said that its booked position is better than the same time last year on both volume and rate. The line’s new ships, including Harmony of the Seas and Ovation of the Seas, are also seeing solid trends, according to the line. 

Mike Pence’s Plane Skids Off Runway at LaGuardia

In air travel news, Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence’s plane skidded off the runway at New York’s LaGuardia airport Thursday night, prompting a temporary closure of the entire airport, ABC News reports. No injuries among the 37 people onboard the charter plane were reported. 

The rough landing came as Pence was arriving from a campaign stop in Fort Dodge, Iowa. "We just immediately felt heavy braking on the runway and the plane fishtailed a little bit," Pence told ABC News. "Just for a few seconds you could feel us bouncing off and with mud splattered up on the windows we figured we were off the runway."

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