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Corrs Corner

Editor Frank Corr gives his views on the hospitality and tourism industries, shares anecdotes and gossip and welcomes your contributions.

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Transport V Tourism

So the Department of Transport and the Department of Tourism now have the same Minister.

Must be good for tourism.

So why does a Transport,  body the National Roads Authority uproot a harmless directional sign in Ballyvaughan which has been featured on postcards, calendars and tourism advertisiing and has been 'snapped' by thousands of visitors?.  As one hotlelier said in an e-mail: 'Will they want us to wear special glasses watching the sun go down on Galway Bay?'.

The same Transport Department scrapped the Golden Trekker scheme which offered free rail travel to visiting senior citiizens. This was again a hasty decision as the scheme was never properly formulated, was far too bureaucratic and did not include bus routes.

It is Transport too which has withdrawn support for Galway and Sligo Airports and is pushing other regional airports towards bankruptcy. Not to mention its indiifference to the plight of Shannon.

There is not much point in one section of the Department of Tourism Transport and Sport supporting tourism growth if the other is intent on driving tourists away.

 

 

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United for Safety


They may not have been able to protect their goal against Barcelona, but Manchester United players have been hired to promopte safety on Turkish Auirlines.

From next month the Airline's passengers  will be shown an inflight safety video with a difference featuring Manchester United players Wayne Rooney, Darren Fletcher, Chris Smalling, Nani, Rafael and Fabio da Silva recreating scenes a little different from the standard safety video, in a bid to make safety and inflight comfort information more engaging for their passengers.

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Brits Impress Harry

Harry Crosvbie says that he was ‘very impressed’ with the British team which planned the visit of Queen Elizabeth. ‘They are concentrated on selling the idea that British is Good’, he said. ‘Every photo opportunity was planned in advance. They had a detailed script showing exactly where the Queen would stand and at what angle. Onlookers were gently moved aside and the cameras could not click until Her Majesty looked perfect- her hat, her hair, her handbag. It was a lesson that in marketing you should keep the message simple- and repeat it again and again’

Speaking at the IHI Hospitality Managers Conference he said that the people  at NAMA were ‘very straightforward’. ‘They know that it was not people like me that caused the problems. But they need to put property on the market and the banks need to release the funding to get the market going. The banks simply are not working- they do not even answer the phone.’

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'Sack the Gobshites'

‘Sack the gobshites- or they will sack you’, said entrepreneur Jerry Kennelly at the IHI Conference. The Kerryman who built up an image business and sold it for €120m, said that modern businesses cannot afford to carry underperforming employees. ‘We don’t have a jobs crisis- we have a talent crisis’, he said. He told IHI members that to build a business 'you should use partners to achieve rapid growth, ‘network like crazy’, meet customers face to face, know the competition and recognise the point where the business is moving towards a downturn. ‘Then sell out’, he advised.

Jerry now runs Tweak.com, a graphic design and printing company, which he says, is ‘faster, better and cheaper’ than its competitors.

 

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Lost in Translation

While most Irish hotels now have websites, their content is not always accessible to Europeans who do not speak English or who have only a modest grasp of the language, Failte Ireland has been encouraging client hotels to include some foreign language content on their sites and to train staff to reply to e-mail requests in the language of the sender.

Many hotels who take this advice have turned to the Google Translator service as a means of converting English text into French, Italian, Spanish or German. They do not realise however that 'Translator' is primarily a dictionary and frequently produces linguiistic horrors when used to translate text.

A colleague who provides a translation service has sent me extracts from Italian hotel websites which have used Googl Translator. Here are some examples:

'Welcome in our HOTEL, where you will have a pleasent stayng , in confortable rooms and aboveall, where you could appreciate the beauty of the city, its beautiful attractions and its marveoussites, which are a throw of stone from the HOTEL CAIROLI.'

'Our hotel is close to the foothill that degrades in the sea. We treat you between the colours and Mediterranean perfumes of an elegant and comfortable ambient
The Hotel Residence’s Tramonto wellness centre is a marvel place, you will immerse in releasing warm of the Roman
Bisazza’s Opus.'

'The 4 stars hotel Borgo Marina in Rodi Garganico distinguish it selves since two years for his capacity to make the stay of his proper guests a moment of serene and joyful experience for living in our earth, the Gargano, hospitality earth of tradition.'

The message is clear. If you decide to include non-English translations on your website- get it done professionally and don't rely on Google.

 

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Editor: Frank Corr
fcorr100@gmail.com


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