In this week’s episode, we talk with Michael Collins, who owns and operate the Dublin-bases travel marketing firm, TravelMedia.ie. Michael’s been traveling around Europe and to/from the Caribbean during the pandemic and shares his findings and points of view with us.
TravelMedia.ie is a Dublin-based specialist travel public relations, marketing, representation, events, communications and social media company. Established in 2006, TravelMedia.ie works primarily in the outbound travel industry, assisting clients in Ireland, the UK, the U.S. and Europe.
You may have used his clients and not know it as Bradley Airport (BDL) in Hartford, CT in the U.S. and Aer Lingus based in Dublin are also his clients.
I met Michael a few years back in my travels as a travel content creator. As he travels a lot, we became good friends and often talk about earning mile sand points. Here’s some ore about Michael.
Michael Collins is the founder and MD of TravelMedia.ie and TTR, a travel specialist PR agency and a travel trade representation company.
Michael has worked in the travel and media industries for 20 years. During this time, he has worked as a travel journalist, editor, and publisher with Backpacker, Abroad and Irish Business Traveller magazines. He has also worked in television and radio as a presenter and travel expert.
In 2006 Michael founded TravelMedia.ie (TM), a specialist travel digital PR agency. TM works with Irish and international airlines, tourist boards, hotels, travel tech start-ups and tour operators, assisting them with all things PR, digital, including SEO, SEM, UX, content marketing, PPC, social advertising, remarketing, video production, social media and channel management, blogging, blogger outreach programs and media buying.
In 2016, Travel Trade Representation (TTR) was launched. TTR are specialists in offering representation services to international clients servicing the Irish, UK and EU travel and tourism markets.
Michael speaks at many international travel and tourism conferences, as well as travel blogger and influencer events.
Today, we get a chance to hear Michael talks about how he and his business are surviving during the pandemic.
Table of Contents
- 0.00 – Introduction
- 4:24 – Michael talks about British Airways’ first flight back to Barbados during the pandemic; first time in 13 years that the flight is now out of Heathrow (LHR) as opposed to Gatwick (LGW).
- 8:17 – What sort of medical preparation did you have to make to board this flight? Are there mandatory testing in barbados on arrival for admittance?
- 10:44 – What if you don’t stay for 4 days? Do you still have to restrict your movements?
- 12:00 – Is the test after arrival into Barbados at your expense and at a location you have to set up?
- 13:20 – Michael talks about the Barbados Welcome Stamp Visa
- 14:37 – What is the meal service like onboard the British Airways flight? Is it still boxed food?
- 15:24 – Is the crew wearing full PPE during the flight?
- 16:06 – What were the checks like at Heathrow before the flight?
- 17:44 – How are meals and meal services done on the resorts in Barbados?
- 19:33 – What are the airport procedures like when leaving Barbados?
- 20:27 – What happens when you get back to Heathrow?
- 22:36 – Were the flights you’ve been taking full? Michael talks about local restrictions as he travels
- 26:45 – What are the conferences like that you’ve been attending?
- 31:20 – Given that you’ve worked with Bradley Airport (BDL) in Connecticut, what possible estimate do you have of travel returning to normal? Do you have any feel for this?
- 37:45 – Interesting routings due to flight availability and route cancellations
- 39:29 – Have airlines been issuing statements about the boarding process as well as the disembarkation process?
- 40:00 – Airline onboard service is being reduced; everything is wrapped
- 42:53 – Having mentioned that Premium cabins are full, surprised that due to business travel being greatly reduced, one would think that Premium cabins would be emptier. Let’s talk about that.
- 44:00 – Lots of new idiosyncrasies of flying these days
- 49:02 – Do you notice anything different in your hotel stays as opposed to before? Upgrades are easier 😉
- 52:23 – Where are you off to after this adventure?