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NZ Pokies Punters Experience Added Excitement

  • Written by News Feature

For anyone playing pokies the idea that money might come raining down from above is the stuff that dreams are made of. The idea that the excitement levels of their play might be ramped up and that their exploits might be hailed by their fellow citizens and celebrated in the press is, likewise, something that most pokies players can only fantasise about.

But for a band of brave punters in a New Zealand pokies room who were on hand to foil an attempted armed robbery in June that is precisely what has happened.

When two knife-wielding men stormed into the sleepy Selwyn Tavern in the North Island town of Rotorua just after midday on July 9th they had expected a straightforward pay out. But their plan fell foul of the quick reflexes and public spirit of the bar’s regular pokies punters, who reacted heroically to the robbery as it took place and wrestled one of the would-be thieves to the ground.

Bar owner Miriam Chapman, who was working alone at the time of the heist, described how her regulars leapt to her defence, sending money flying into the air as they grappled with one of the crooks as his cowardly accomplice fled. The day’s biggest loser was subsequently arrested by the police and charged with theft and aggravated assault, whilst his partner in crime was being tracked down.

Ms Chapman told local reporters that it seemed as though it was ‘raining cash’ at the height of the struggle, before her loyal punters collected it all in, and ensuring that she was not so much as a penny out of pocket.

The Selwyn Tavern regulars were the toast of Rotorua. They were lauded in the New Zealand Herald and widely praised for their courage and civic responsibility. Ms Chapman, admitted to being shaken up but was otherwise unharmed.

Anyone hoping to avoid such energetic interruptions to their play is advised to play the mobile casino or one of its competitors, even if it does mean that they will miss out on the enviable experience of seeing money rain down from above.

The online pokies industry is growing rapidly and whilst the popularity of traditional pokies rooms remains undimmed, more and more players are turning to digital pokies via their smartphones or laptops. The games themselves may be every bit as exciting as the machines that are such a feature of bars throughout Australasia, but they are yet to match the excitement experienced by the punters of the Selwyn Tavern.

Weekend Swap: a new tailor-made service for travellers

  • Written by Clara Costa

With the sunny days and balmy weather finally making a comeback, the same old question keeps coming up each Friday at lunch break: 'Do you have any plans for the weekend?'

Sure we would love to be like John from accounting, with his weekends abroad planned months in advance.

Sadly though we are not John and we do not have anything planned for the weekend... yet. NightSwapping knows this situation well and is now here to help the less organized travellers with a new service called WEEKEND SWAP.

A new way to book a weekend at local's place when you're all out of ideas


Australian Museum Announces Three Year Partnership with Adventure World

  • Written by Michelle Van Doninck Publicist Australian Museum

Sydney 28 July 2014. The Australian Museum today announced a new three year major partnership with specialist travel provider, Adventure World.

Under the agreement, Adventure World will become the Presenting Partner for Aztecs – the Australian Museum’s forthcoming exhibition opening on 13 September and featuring more than 200 priceless treasures from Mexico’s major museums.

The partnership also includes the development of an exclusive range of travel programs designed to provide extraordinary cultural, historical and wildlife experiences.

“Adventure World is one of Australia’s most experienced and trusted travel brands and we look forward to having them on board as our first exhibition presenting partner and our long-term travel partner,” Kim McKay AO, Australian Museum Director and CEO said.

“Together we will be sharing our expertise to create themed travel programs that allow the traveller to visit unique destinations around the globe, accompanied by Australian Museum experts.”

These special travel journeys will be customised for all ages with special discounts for Australian Museum Members.

“Our partnership with the Australian Museum allows us to interact in an engaging, informative and exciting medium providing individuals with rich travel trips aligned to the ethos of authentic cultural experiences,” Fiona Hunt, Managing Director Adventure World said.

“We are very excited to also be joining with the Australian Museum as the presenting partner of the Aztecs exhibition that will provide a cultural experience for local audiences by showcasing one of the world’s greatest civilisations.”

About the Australian Museum:

Established in 1827, the Australian Museum is one of the nation’s premier scientific research, educational and cultural institutions. Aztecs is on show from 13 September 2014 – 1 February 2015. For more information, visit 

About Adventure World:

Adventure World provides in-depth travel knowledge and experience to some of the world’s most exotic, beautiful and unique places to visit. Destination experts craft tailor-made holiday itineraries to match client’s exact requirements. Over 43,000 tailored trips are booked annually with Adventure World to over 91 different countries. For more information, visit 


Michelle Van Doninck
Australian Museum 6 College Street Sydney NSW 2010 Australia

Over 100 tour operators sign up to world’s first B2B Halal travel aggregator

  • Written by Anas Kasak

U.K. 11 May 2015. The world’s first ever B2B global aggregator of comprehensive Halal tourism products has seen a flying start following its official launch.

Over 100 travel agents and tour operators from across the world have signed up as distribution partners for the Muslim Travel Warehouse which made its debut at ATM 2015 in Dubai.

The Muslim Travel Warehouse is the first time ever that travel agents have access to comprehensive tailored holiday packages directly for Muslim consumers – a market set to swell to $200 billion in the next five years.

During the ATM, it also made agreements with over 30 destinations who will partner to develop Halal-friendly packages. Currently, Muslim Travel Warehouse has launched packages for 16 destinations including UAE, Malaysia, UK, US and Maldives.

Anas Kasak, CMO of Muslim Travel Warehouse, said the business was created as a direct response to the demand from the industry who wanted to capitalise on the booming trend for Halal tourism.

He said: “We have had a phenomenal and overwhelming reception to the launch from almost every section of the industry

“Halal tourism is now increasingly becoming a priority for operators across the world and there was a huge demand from the tourism sector for a solution like Muslim Travel Warehouse.

“Over the course of the ATM we have hosted representatives from destinations across the world including Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia and USA who have signed up as partners.

“In addition, over 30 destinations and many hotels want to partner to develop further Halal packages which means we could have products for nearly 50 destinations in the next six months.”

According to the latest figures in the “MasterCard-CrescentRating Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI) 2015, the halal tourism sector was worth $145 billion in 2014. This figure is predicted to grow to $200 billion by 2020.

Muslim Travel Warehouse, part of CrescentRating which is the world’s leading authority in Halal travel, will provide a suite of services for its partners alongside bespoke packages.

This will include live travel trade helpdesk via the live chat service, detailed Halal tourism information including fact sheets, digital brochures, restaurant and spa menus.

TripAdvisor Enters Into Agreement To Acquire Viator

  • Written by Media Release

, July 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- TripAdvisor®, the world's largest travel site*, today announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Viator, a leading resource for researching and booking destination activities around the world.  Viator features more than 20,000 bookable tours and attractions and more than 600,000 reviews, photos, and videos submitted by travelers.

TripAdvisor Logo.

"Viator will be a great addition to the TripAdvisor family, as online and mobile bookings for attractions and activities represents a huge opportunity for our business," said Stephen Kaufer, president and CEO of TripAdvisor, Inc. "Travelers want to explore local attractions while on their trip, and Viator's depth and breadth in global attractions combined with their seamless booking experience will provide immediate benefit to our community, whether in the planning phase or on the trip." 

"Our selection of tours and activities spanning 1,500 destinations are a strong complement to TripAdvisor's wealth of in-destination planning resources," said Ms. Barrie Seidenberg, CEO and president of Viator. "We share a vision for providing the resources travelers need to plan and have the perfect trip, and this deal would enable Viator to help more travelers experience the best activities their destination has to offer."

Viator works with the best local operators to provide travelers with access to tours and activities in popular destinations worldwide. Bookable in 10 languages and in 10 currencies, travelers can book online in advance, and in destination via the Viator Tours & Activities App. In addition to its consumer-direct business, Viator also provides local experiences to more than 3,000 affiliate partners, including some of the world's top airlines, hotels and travel agencies.

Viator has more than 250 employees who will continue to work at the company's headquarters in San Francisco and offices in Las Vegas, London and Sydney. 

Subject to the completion of customary conditions, the acquisition is expected to close during the third quarter of 2014.  Upon closing, Viator will be the fourth acquisition in 2014, following lafourchette, Tripbod, and Vacation Home Rentals.  The purchase price for the transaction is approximately $200 million, subject to adjustment, and will be payable substantially in the form of cash. 

About TripAdvisor
TripAdvisor® is the world's largest travel site*, enabling travelers to plan and have the perfect trip. TripAdvisor offers trusted advice from real travelers and a wide variety of travel choices and planning features with seamless links to booking tools. TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, reaching nearly 280 million unique monthly visitors**, and more than 170 million reviews and opinions covering more than 4 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions. The sites operate in 43 countries worldwide, including China under TripAdvisor also includes TripAdvisor for Business, a dedicated division that provides the tourism industry access to millions of monthly TripAdvisor visitors.

TripAdvisor, Inc. (NASDAQ: TRIP) manages and operates websites under 23 other travel media brands:,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, and

*Source: comScore Media Metrix for TripAdvisor Sites, worldwide, Q1 201

**Source: Google Analytics, average monthly unique users, Q2 2014; does not include traffic to

About Viator
Viator is the leading global tours and activities provider for travelers, delivering online and mobile access to thousands of curated trip activities including tours, attractions, shore excursions and private guides, in more than 1,500 destinations worldwide. In-house travel experts work with trusted local operators to ensure the quality and value of every experience, all backed by Viator's 24/7 customer service and global low-price guarantee. With more than 600,000 verified reviews and photos plus exclusive videos and insider travel tips, Viator has everything a traveler needs to find and book the best things to do worldwide. In addition to the flagship site - - travelers can book in advance or in-destination via the Viator Tours and Activities App, as well as local-language sites for European, Latin American and Asian travelers. Viator also provides tours and activities to more than 3,000 affiliate partners including some of the world's top airlines, hotels and online travel agencies. Founded in 1995, Viator is headquartered in San Francisco with regional offices in Sydney, London and Las Vegas.