The Adrian Loveridge Column – Today’s Savy Tourist

All indications are that many of our visitors are becoming even more savvy or perhaps better described as creative in how they actually book and pay for holidays, tourism services and the various type of accommodation offerings.

One such area of usage and growth are websites like TopCashback currently with separate operational entities in both the United Kingdom and United States.

Together, they already boast 4.5 million members worldwide with a very proactive ‘invite your friend and earn’ feature, which financially rewards existing and new people, who sign up.

They claim that they are ‘the cashback rebate website that passes back higher rates to its members than anyone else at over 4,400 merchant stores’.

The range of goods and services offered specifically from a tourism perspective is extensive and includes: accommodation, car rental, flights and tickets, cruises, holidays, transfers and airport parking, travel insurance, days out (attractions/activities), Forex and travel money exchange.

As well as offering substantial rebates on these ‘products’ simply by booking through the portal, the more canny bookers could increase their ‘rewards’ by using one of the many cash-back credit cards available as their preferred method of payment.

Included in the almost endless list of British travel partners with TopCashback, are companies like: hotels.com, booking.com, Expedia, Last Minute, ebookers, First Choice, late rooms, agoda, Thomas Cook (airline and operator), Hilton, Opodo, TripAdvisor Hotel Booking, Marriott Bonvoy, HomeAway, Airbnb, Priceline, Radisson, Trivago, Virgin Atlantic, Travel Supermarket, Hotwire, Sandals, My Caribbean Holidays, TUI (the world’s largest travel group), P & O Cruises, Hertz, Sixt and On the Beach.

Frankly, I was very surprised not to see our largest privately owned lodging group, Elegant Hotels among them.

There also appears to be a opportunity for many of our other tourism partners. Currently, perhaps it is unknown what percentage of the growing 4.5 million TopCashback membership actually travel to Barbados, but if it is only one percent, that represents a staggering 45,000 possible market, that we currently may not benefit from.

Maybe, it would be best to test the concept and introduce a specific destination offering? The fact that it has not been attempted before should not deter consideration or participation.

Another very appealing attribute about TopCashback is that it allows you to ‘build’ savings and redeem them either directly into a bank or PayPal account or transfer the value into various merchant gift card options which also give additional bonuses. You can even choose a redemption anniversary date that could coincide with a holiday balance payment or actual day of travel departure.

As well as gaining enhanced value through tourism related goods and services, bonuses are also paid on a myriad of utility and everyday spending including basics like groceries.

As a practical example, within two months of signing-up, I had already earned GB Pounds 75 (about BDS$200) and that’s before any secondary benefit through cash-back credit card payment.

For the vast majority, it is a win-win scenario which could very well take many closer to affording a holiday of their dreams.

36 comments

  • Good news that Lufthansa will start a service to Barbados from Frankfurt in October.

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  • My understanding is that it will be Eurowings operating the service, Lufthansa’s LCC.

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  • Adrian: Is the cost booking through 3rd parties such as the one you mention the same as booking directly with the supplier? Someone is paying for the cash that you receive.

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  • Adrian Loveridge

    Robert, cost is usually the same but added benefit with cashback. Just like using a credit card that gives cash back.

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  • Savy customers are always on the hunt for value addeds.

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  • Are Boeing 737 Max aircrafts flying into Barbados, and the wider CARICOM region? If so what are we going to do about it?

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  • Adrian Loveridge

    Cayman Airlines suspended operation of their two Max 8’s yesterday. I am not aware of any of this aircraft type that operates to Barbados.

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  • They are now banned from European air space. What is CARICOM doing?

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  • (Quote):
    They are now banned from European air space. What is CARICOM doing?
    (Unquote)

    What can Caricom do when the USA has not issued such instructions to them?

    Which Caricom country, so heavily dependent of the Yankee dollar, would boldly go where none has been (Shiprider Agreement and all) and refuse an AA 737 Max landing even at GAIA?

    This is high stakes warfare in the making over the skies of 5th generation technology with Huawei being a very ‘big’ pawn in the game.

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  • @Adrian Loveridge March 12, 2019 2:16 PM

    AA operates Boeing Max 8 into and out of Barbados

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  • Adrian Loveridge

    Bajan in NY,

    Yes I stand corrected on the BGI/Miami route. Perhaps its time for our Minister of Tourism and International Transport to comment?

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  • Why is the FAA insisting that The plane should not be grounded?

    Why does president Trump see the need to tweet about it?

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  • HaHaHaHa

    Loveridge waiting for a comment from the Minister, how much time do you have? What is he going to tell the airline? Is he going to ban the planes from Bajan airspace like some other countries or is he going to express “concern”? The airline will continue to fly its planes into Barbados until such time as the USA decides what to do in the meanwhile the Minister will sit down and shut up

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  • Should it be the minister or the technocrat leading on this matter.

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  • @ David,

    It could be the Minister in the Ministry of…after consulting with the Minister of the Ministry of and the Minister of the Ministry of Tourism and International Transport.

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  • Pilots in the U.S. complained at least 5 times in recent months about problems controlling their Boeing 737 MAX 8 jets during critical moments of flight, federal records show, adding to questions raised by deadly crashes involving that model of jetliner in Ethiopia and Indonesia.

    https://www.politico.com/story/2019/03/12/pilots-boeing-737-1266090

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  • From TT social media.

    The Government of T&T, specifically the PM and Minister of Works & Transport, with their appointed Boards and senior Management, will be held responsible for any mishap of any 737 MAX 8 planes in all of T&T’s airspace.

    The EXPRESS is not responsible for monitoring the nation’s airspace and issuing directives with regard to air transport in T&T. It is not the media’s role and function to tell American Airline to stop using the 737 MAX 8 planes in T&T’s airspace and airport. The Govt cannot complain to the people that the EXPRESS is not talking or stopping AA from flying these planes in T&T’s airspace – IT IS THE GOVT’s responsibility to stop DO THAT! Do your blasted job… see NY Times below ! Where the hell is the Minister of Works? CAL’s Board? the line Minister? Airport’s Authority? IT IS YOUR DAMN JOB to do these things and provide the info!

    It is not the media’s role and function to point out CAL has ordered – lease or purchase, they have not give specifics – this particular aircraft.

    It is the GOVT, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Transport, the relevant Boards and management, who MUST ensure none of those planes use our airspace; who must tell us about the lease/purchase agreement; who must assure us CAL can back out of that deal and must start doing that now; who must assure us it will not be too late to get out of that deal months from now when the investigations are completed and it will then be TOO late to get out of that deal; and who must assure the people our BILLIONS to lease/purchase will not go up in smoke!!!

    Shouting fake news and attacking the media and the citizenry will not deter the people from going after any government and Board that do not do their job, hides info, and tries to evade the truth. Right now, there is a REUTER’s news article about the BILLIONS in HERITAGE loans — actually about $US400 millions was already received and maybe already used …yet neither Heritage nor the Govt told the people anything.

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  • Talking Loud Saying Nothing

    Here is another story that should worry us concerning our sovereignty.

    http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/238856/barbados-backlisted

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  • Canada has grounded the 737 Max 8, the US stands alone

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  • Any action yet on Boeing 737 in Barbados/Caricom?

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  • The Americans have now banned the Boeing 737 Max. How about CARICOM/Barbados?

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  • SirFuzzy (Former Sheep)

    The real question is how many seats or bed-nights will the grounding of this aircraft affect the hoteliers in Barbados.

    Aircraft are not like cars or buses. The airlines dont usually have an excess or the aircraft loitering about so that they can get a different model of aircraft to fly the route.

    Tourism number will be down for march 2019. But the length of the grounding will be key to the impact felt caribbean-wide in the respective tourist destinations.

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  • Talking Loud Saying Nothing

    Hal,

    Those 737 Max aircrafts will all probably end up in the Caribbean. We have become a destination for other peoples’ junk.

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  • How pilots secretly warned FAA about Boeing defect

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  • NorthernObserver

    @Fuzzy
    would seem BGI is relatively unscathed in the 737 ban, where it will get hurt is the feeder routes to the major Int’l airports which have flights to Bim (non 737 aircraft) Mexico will be in a mess.
    I cannot find an exact number, but 80 airlines have 737 8’s & 9’s, and the ballpark being tossed around is 365 aircraft.

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  • Now the rest of the world has banned Boeing 737 Max, what s the policy of CARICOM/Barbados? Or are they being neutral? Is this high strategy or incompetence?

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  • If the rest of the world has banned the Max where flights originate why is a ban necessary?

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  • Oh David. Think about what you have said.

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  • How about you do the same.

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  • I have, that is why I made my post. Think before posting regulatory illiteracy. Apply your idea to other areas of regulation.

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  • What other areas of regulation? Do not recall you pointing to anything specific.

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  • Stupid, we were talking about air safety and regulation. Remember, Boeing 737 Max. Is that specific enough? Oh David. Plse tell me you are a one-off.

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  • Remember a year ago after boarding one of the Max saw the pilot checking the airplane computer panel diligently meanwhile travellers already seated for more than an hour voiced their concern
    While needless to say the flight was abandon
    The recent reports about those Air planes indeed are troubling
    But most of frightening are the attempts by American airlines after two tragedys connected to the Max to want to kerp those Airplanes airbound
    Cant imagine if govt had stay closed mouth on the issue how many more tragedies would have to occur before these Capitalist giants find the moral gumption to say enough is enough.

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  • @ Mariposa

    Despite the global issue of air safety, CARICOM/Barbados have not said a single word. They remain sitting on the fence, through fear of a decision affecting tourism, or being too weak to stand up to global capitalism. Or, on the notion that if a ban has been imposed at the origin of the flight there is no need for CARICOM/Barbados to act. Welcome to BU political and policy logic.

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  • Adrian Loveridge

    According to FlightWare.com all three flights today (Thursday) have been replaced with B737-800’s on the Miami/Barbados route.

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  • The AA flights were grounded yesterday as well Adrian based on US pull back.

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