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Travel Slump Has an Upside: Deals on Hotels

WSJ.com: "Some resort companies are targeting airfare increases directly. Sandals, a chain of 12 all-inclusive resorts for couples in the Caribbean, just announced a 'fly-free' offer with an airfare credit of up to $550 per person for trips booked by Oct. 23. So far this year, Sandals has seen record occupancy, says Kevin Froemming, president of Unique Vacations, the company's sales and marketing arm. But because Sandals caters largely to honeymooners, most bookings are locked in many months in advance, he says, and starting around June and July, he says he saw 'a definite shift in people holding on to their money more,' with advanced bookings falling about 10% from last year. Elite Island Resorts, which also has properties across the Caribbean, announced this week a promotion that guarantees round-trip airfare of $299 on AMR Corp.'s American Airlines flights to Elite's properties in Antigua."

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Sandals to re-open

Lonely Planet  The Jamaican operator intends to re-open most of its resorts on June 4, followed by its two Bahamas properties on July 1. It has introduced new protocols that range from enhanced cleaning routines to required temperature checks for team members before starting a shift and is introducing a new online check-in procedure that allows guests to go straight to their rooms upon arrival.