TORONTO — Strong sales from Black Friday and Cyber Monday promotions fuelled an already booming business for December holiday travel for two of the top resort brands from this market.
Maureen Barnes-Smith, Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Canada for Unique Vacations Canada, affiliate of Unique Travel Corp, worldwide representatives of Sandals Resorts & Beaches Resorts, says this year’s Christmas – New Year’s period “is looking solid once again”, buoyed by the promotions, especially the Canadian exclusive instant savings.
And Rose Cosentino, Vice President, Sales – Canada & Eurasia for Playa Hotel & Resorts, says she’s thrilled with how Playa’s Black Friday / Cyber Monday sale performed for Canada, noting that the Canadian tour operators are all outperforming not just 2021, but also 2019, “which is a clear sign that Canadians are excited to head south for the winter.”
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Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Canada
Unique Vacations Canada
Affiliate of Unique Travel Corp, worldwide representatives of Sandals Resorts & Beaches Resorts
“We’ve enjoyed steady robust bookings and for that, we’re extremely grateful. Black Friday was very good to us here in Canada. I know that our Canadian exclusive instant savings played a key role.
“This year’s Christmas – New Year’s period is looking solid once again, right through January and February actually which is one of our busiest times of the year, but yes, there are some limited windows of availability scattered across our resorts. My best advice is to call our Reservations team in Toronto who have access to real-time inventory.
“We all know how important direct flights are for Canadian travellers so we’re thrilled to have excellent air lift from major cities across Canada to our Caribbean destinations.
“Obviously, Toronto and Montreal have quite a few options but my sales team and I are working really hard to remind Canadian advisors of some other gateways with seasonal direct service. Calgary is a great hub for Western Canada with direct flights to Montego Bay and Nassau. Guests can board a plane in Winnipeg and be on the beach in Jamaica in just over five hours. Travellers in Atlantic Canada can take advantage of Halifax-Montego Bay direct flights. And of course, there’s an exclusive weekly direct flight Toronto-Georgetown, Great Exuma – and paired with the instant savings currently on for Sandals Emerald Bay – it’s a win-win!”
Playa Hotels & Resorts
Vice President, Sales – Canada & Eurasia
“I am so happy (super ecstatic actually) with how our Black Friday / Cyber Monday sale performed for Canada. The Canadian tour operators are all outperforming versus 2021 AND versus 2019, which is a clear sign that Canadians are excited to head south for the winter.
“December specifically is very positive with all our resorts nearly sold out. Earlier this month we officially opened our newest resort in Cancun, the Hyatt Zilara Riviera Maya. It’s been open for sale for a few months now and have already seen very positive pick up numbers already.
“As for trends, we’re definitely seeing a mix of last-minute but also seeing bookings coming in further out and it’s been like this for the past four to five months now. Travellers are either planning in advance to take advantage of lower airfares and hotel promotions or some just want to get away and decide what’s left and then book.
“As always, my recommendation is to book early to take advantage of our incredible offers / promotions that we pass through to our tour operator partners to maximize savings.”