Armelle Tardy-Joubert, Atout France with Femke Kroese, AF/KL
Jenna Zuschlag Misener, Juno Beach Association, who is based in Burlington, Ont.
Emile Louisy, a ray of sunshine to remind us that tropical Saint-Martin is part of France
It’s a relationship that’s gone on over 400 years, so you could say Canadians are pretty comfortable with France. In fact, over a million of us visited the European country in 2013, up 15% year over year, and it looks like the numbers are set to grow even more.
Part of that will be thanks to new lift, including the introduction of AF flights from YVR to CDG this March (between 3 and 5 flights weekly). Part will be growing interest in ceremonies markong the centenary of events during World War I. And part will be the 4,000+ festivals, including this year the celebration of the 300th anniversary of Dom Pérignon, the “inventor” of champagne. And who doesn’t like an excuse to drink champagne!
These great bits of news were just part of an expansive France event held this week for agents at Toronto’s charming old-world Old Mill. A trade show hosted by some 20 partners was well attended by agents from across the GTA who enjoyed the generous bar and canapés later.
What else is new? AF is giving away 3 pairs of tickets from Canada to Paris (1 pair each in business, premium economy and economy) to lucky agents who book flights this spring in their contest called (naturellement) Chic Alors! (find out more at their dedicated agent site www.agentconnect.biz). The airline will also be introducing its Best and Beyond inflight enhancements this fall, starting with Toronto flights: more legroom, comfier seats and USB ports at each seat.
And of course France always celebrates its heritage too. The list of 100 French National Monuments include such iconic sites as the Arc de Triomphe and Mont Saint Michel, but also the 1930s stunning Villa Carrois. And of course the Juno Beach monument near Caen in Normandy, the site of the Canadian D-Day landings in June 1944. “A must-see place for Canadians – of all ages,” Juno Beach Centre Association Executive Manager Jenna Zuschlag Misener told me. Interestingly, the average stay in the area for Canadians is 2 full days. Clearly lots of history to soak up (and another reason to extend your clients’ stay in beautiful France!)
David Temple of Temple & Temple (student) Tours & Armelle Tardy-Joubert