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Responsible Tourism Is Top Issue for Travel Advisors: Ensemble CEO

Tony Silveira / Flickr

Shown here are the endless crowds in Barcelona. At the Ensemble Travel Group’s 2019 International Conference Oct. 22–27 in Seattle, CEO David Harris called upon travel advisors to assume responsibility for directing clients to less heavily touristed destinations. Tony Silveira / Flickr

Skift Take: Ensemble Travel Group demonstrated a clear commitment at its 2019 International Conference by driving home the message that sustainability and climate change are the biggest issues facing the travel industry today. That the consortium took steps to offset the conference’s own carbon footprint shows it’s talking the talk.

— Maria Lenhart

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Travel Advisors Need Knowledge to Assist Transgender Clients

Alessia Cross / Flickr

Travel advisors need to research how they can best look out for transgender clients. Pictured is a couple in Salò, Lombardia, Italy, on May 15, 2010. Alessia Cross / Flickr

Skift Take: From airport screening to hostile destinations, travel poses particular difficulties and humiliations for transgender people. Travel advisors need to be aware of the potential pitfalls when serving transgender clients.

— Maria Lenhart

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Greta Effect Felt on Climate Talk at Ensemble Travel Group Conference

Ekaterina Vladinakova / Flickr.com

Tourists in an overcrowded Venice on June 17, 2017. Ensemble Travel Group CEO David Harris said it is the responsibility of travel advisors to send people to some of the less-touristed destinations. Ekaterina Vladinakova / Flickr.com

Skift Take: Sustainable travel was the overriding theme at Ensemble Travel Group’s 2019 International Conference, which CEO David Harris called the most important issue facing travel advisors and their clients. The importance of capturing sales data and strong alliances with travel industry organizations also emerged as top priorities.

— Maria Lenhart

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Travel Advisors Need to Educate Themselves About Risks for Transgender Clients

Alessia Cross / Flickr.com

A transgender woman in Milan in 2010. Some travel agencies have a specialty in travel for transgender clients. Alessia Cross / Flickr.com

Skift Take: Traveling is tough when you’re transgender, but it can also be very risky for travel advisors who could unwittingly send their clients into some hostile environments if they don’t know what they’re doing.

— Allan Leibowitz

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The Historic Ritz London Could Sell for $1 Billion

The Ritz London

Afternoon tea at the Palm Court, pictured here, is legendary. Owners of The Ritz London have started the process of selling the landmark hotel. The deal could fetch as much as $1 billion. The Ritz London

Skift Take: London’s super-prime hotels don’t go on the market very often. The Ritz London could be the next one as its owners hire a team to pursue a deal. Only a small group of wealthy investors will get a chance to bid on it, but luxury hotel groups could swoop in to nab the storied hotel.

— Nancy Trejos

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Wyndham Is Expanding Overseas With Biggest Gains in Southeast Asia

Jun Acullador Follow / Flickr.com

Hotels like this Wyndham Microtel Hotel in Tarlac, Philippines, are part of the chain’s overseas expansion plans. Jun Acullador Follow / Flickr.com

Skift Take: Wyndham Hotels and Resorts took drastic measures last year, buying La Quinta Holdings and splitting from its parent company. It had a mixed third quarter, but the company promises to keep pushing into new territory, especially outside the U.S.

— Nancy Trejos

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Airlines Put on a Green Front and 7 Other Top Aviation Stories This Week

KLM Airline

KLM Airline unveiled its environmentally friendly Fly Responsibly campaign this summer. More airlines are trying to project a greener image to travelers. KLM Airline

Skift Take: This week in aviation, airline executives spin their businesses as environmentally sustainable in an age when travelers are becoming more conscious of pollution. Meanwhile, we take a look at airlines’ struggle to sell travel-related products.

— Jasmine Ganaishlal

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