Iceland Tops Latest Virtuoso Poll, Three Countries Issue Zika Travel Warnings for Singapore

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From a new adventure travel poll by Virtuoso to the latest air travel, hotel and cruise updates, here are the five headlines to watch this morning. 

Virtuoso Names Iceland Top Adventure Travel Destination

Iceland remains a red-hot (and weirdly relaxing to watch) travel destination according to a new poll by Virtuoso. A survey of advisors and preferred partners taking part in the Virtuoso Active and Specialty Travel (VAST) program shows 95 percent of respondents forecasting increased demand for adventure travel over the next two to three years, with Iceland leading the way in terms of destinations gaining in popularity. Rounding out the list: 

1. Iceland                                                           
2. Galapagos/Ecuador                                       
3. Costa Rica and Chile/Patagonia (tie)             
4. New Zealand                                                  
5. Peru                                                                
6. Cuba
7. Antarctica
8. Arctic/North Pole
9. South Africa
10. Australia

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More relevant stats: the biggest age group for adventure travel is between 50 and 65 (41 percent), with 24 percent between 35 and 50, 21 percent 65 and over and 14 percent under 35. The most common type of adventure traveler is couples, including honeymooners, followed by immediate families, friends traveling together, solo travelers and multigenerational family members.

Why go with adventure travel? Survey respondents pointed to communing with nature, checking experiences off a bucket list, spending quality time together on family and multigenerational trips, and the ability of today's older travelers to be more active due to improved longevity and health as factors driving the category’s popularity. 

The survey, conducted between February and April 2016, canvassed 125 advisors in the VAST program.  

Australia, Taiwan and South Korea Issue Zika Travel Warnings

A new development this morning regarding the emergence of locally transmitted Zika virus in Singapore: Australia, Taiwan, and South Korea have all issued travel warnings advising pregnant women and people attempting to become pregnant to avoid travel to the destination, where an outbreak of the virus has infected more than 50 people, Fortune reports. As of press time the U.S. has not issued any Singapore travel advisories of its own. 

Singapore’s Tourism Board told Fortune that it is monitoring the situation, that the city remains “a safe travel destination” and that it is premature to say how this will impact travel to the area. 

New Leadership at United Airlines

There’s a new face on United Airlines’ executive team: the airline has just named Scott Kirby as its president, reporting directly to United CEO Oscar Munoz

Kirby, who had been president of American Airlines since it merged with U.S. Airways in 2013, will assume responsibility for United's operations, marketing, sales, alliances, network planning and revenue management — a newly created role for the company. 

four seasons vietnam

Four Seasons to Manage Vietnam Resort

Luxury travelers take note: Four Seasons has announced plans to manage The Nam Hai Hoi An in Vietnam as of December 20, marking the first entry for the company into the country. 

Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai, Hoi An, Vietnam is located on the Hoi An coast, near to Hoi An, a UNESCO-protected trading port from the 15th century and, according to a statement from the company, a booming foodie destination. The resort is also 30 minutes from Da Nang and that city’s International Airport

Plans call for 40 private residence villas and 60 newly-renovated resort villas, all with outdoor showers, terraces, and indoor and outdoor living spaces, plus three pools, three dining venues and a new Vietnamese cooking school. A renovation project leading up to the official reflagging will add a new beach bar, kids club and water sports to the resort’s existing tennis, badminton and basketball courts, and fitness center. There is also, of course, a spa, with eight private pavilions surrounding a lotus pond. 

Stormy Weather Continues for Cruise Lines

In case you missed it, stormy weather in the Atlantic is continuing to impact cruise itineraries. In addition to the changes Royal Caribbean made to an Empress of the Seas sailing over the weekend, Carnival Cruise Line has also modified itineraries for Carnival Freedom and Carnival Dream. The Carnival Freedom, which sailed from Galveston on Saturday, will sail to Montego Bay, Grand Cayman and Cozumel instead of Key West, Freeport and Nassau. Carnival Dream, which sailed from New Orleans on Sunday, will call at Cozumel, Costa Maya and Mahogany Bay (Roatan) instead of Key West, Freeport and Nassau.

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