Quotable: Pimentel puts cruise executive shake-up in perspective

“There is more pain in the entire hospitality sector — globally and domestically — then I care to think about.  This includes retail travel distribution. It is a challenging, sad time. It is impossible to predict the full impact. However, in my view, the distribution channel will survive but will also change. One of the biggest changes might be consolidation. Consolidation could be a consequence  clearly it is a buyer’s market.”

— Larry Pimentel, ex-CEO of Azamara Cruises, in Travel Weekly

Quotable: ASTA chief defends cruises

“We’re conditioning American travelers to believe that cruising is ‘bad’ and then looking the other way when industry leaders point to real solutions that could mitigate the risks for travelers. We can no longer avoid the conversation surrounding the fact that our own government is not helping where it can and should. Rather–our own government is shirking responsibility and playing an active role in bringing the travel industry to its knees.”

— Zane Kerby, American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) president and CEO, in Travel Pulse

Quotable: Four post-pandemic imperatives for businesses

“So, there we have it: four imperatives (learning, protection, resilience and experience). These are not stand-alone issues but are all interconnected and inform each other. But, I believe, that organizations need to pay attention to and embrace all of them if they are to survive this pandemic, navigate their way through it, maintain competitiveness and customer service and experience standards and start to plan for what lies beyond.”

— Adrian Swinscoe, an independent advisor, speaker and best-selling author on customer service, experience and engagement, in Forbes

Quotable: Every decision is a risk. Every risk is a decision.

“We can’t live like we did before coronavirus. We won’t live like we did immediately after it appeared, either. Instead, we’re in the muddy middle, faced with choices that seem at once crucial and impossible, simple and massively complicated. These choices are an everyday occurrence, but they also carry a moral weight that makes them feel different than picking a pasta sauce or a pair of shoes. In a pandemic that’s been filled with unanswerable questions and unwinnable wars, this is our daily Kobayashi Maru. And no one can tell us exactly what we ought to do.”

— Maggie Koerth, Five Thirty Eight

Quotable: Refection and resolve

“The UNWTO Sustainable Development Goals Startup Competition, which was launched this week, will identify new ideas with the power and potential to reimagine tourism and enhance the sector’s positive impact on people and planet. I urge all entrepreneurs and innovators to step up and take part. Only through embracing the new can we emerge from this crisis stronger, more resilient and better prepared for the challenges that lie ahead, including addressing inequality and climate action.”

Zurab Pololikashvili, secretary-general, World Tourism Organization

Quotable: The CDC needs the same independence as the Federal Reserve

“Like the Fed, the CDC is run by technical experts who are often among the best minds in their fields. Like the Fed, the CDC is responsible for both analysis and crisis response. Like the Fed, the domain of the CDC is prone to politicization that may interfere with rational response. And like the Fed, the CDC is responsible for decisions that affect fundamental aspects of the quality of life in the United States. Were the CDC independent right now, we would likely see a centralized crisis management effort that relies on the best science, as opposed to the current patchwork approach that has failed to contain the outbreak nationally. We would also likely see stronger and consistent recommendations on masks, social distancing and the safest way to reopen the economy and schools.”

Mitchel Y. Abolafia, professor, University at Albany, State University of New York

Quotable: Getting people moving again — in a mask

“From an economic recovery standpoint we need to get people moving gain, and the best placed way to do that in a healthy and safe way is for folks to wear mask. We think travel businesses should encourage the wearing of masks. Many are and we’ve been very clear that we should follow cdc guidance with regards to wearing masks. All we can do is continue to throughout our industry, focus on the best way to bring jobs back, and the best way to get people moving again.”

Tori Barnes, U.S. Travel Association executive vice president of public affairs and policy

Quotable: Behavioral science can help curb coronavirus spread

“Despite surging Covid-19 cases around the country, groups continue to flout public health guidance about safe practices. Some instances are particularly flagrant, such as Alabama college students reportedly organizing “Covid parties” to intentionally infect attendees. But individual examples reflect a broader trend: since late May, a growing proportion of Americans have socialized with people outside of their own households, with up to a third doing so without maintaining social distancing. It is easy to write off this behavior as a result of poor awareness and the spread of misinformation. But decision science suggests that it may be dictated by group behavior as much as faulty information. Humans are social beings that seek out surrounding norms to inform what is deemed to be appropriate choices. The tendency to follow the “wisdom of the crowd” or make choices based on what others do (e.g., friends, public figures) is known as social proof. To change Covid-related behaviors, we must implement policies and programs that also harness the power of social influence to fundamentally change social norms.”

Dr. Joshua Liao, internal medicine physician at the University of Washington and contributor to Forbes

Quotable: Can cruising go from Covid scapegoat to pandemic hero?

“Crises of the magnitude of Covid-19 spur a binary result for enterprises: innovation or collapse. And the high degree of risk posed to cruise lines is measurable, reflected in the cost of the loans and investments they arranged to ensure midterm liquidity.  But signs have emerged that cruising will not only survive but even offer a case study of exemplary crisis management.”

Arnie Weissmann, Editor-in-Chief of Travel Weekly

Quotable: Looking for positives

“Is it just me, or does there seem to be more and more negativity happening with each new week? Can we all just take a moment to pause and instead focus on finding the positives? The year 2020 isn’t what we expected or hoped for, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a lost year. Times are hard, but good things are happening all around us – even in the travel industry. Popular tourist destinations are reopening and while the experience is a bit different, travelers are still having a good time.”

Eric Bowman, managing editor of TravelPulse