In Venice: Unsustainable Tourism

In Venice: Unsustainable Tourism

November 23, 2019

Venice’s tourist population has swelled to 30 million people a year, and many arrive on the approximately 570 cruise ships that make calls in the lagoon.

Desperate to preserve the city’s image, the Italian transport minister is pulling the plug on large ship access to the Grand Canal near Piazzo San Marco square beginning in April 2020.  Reductions in the number of cruise ships entering the area were already introduced in August 2019.

In addition, beginning in July 2020, day-trippers arriving by public transport will pay a fee of three euros during the off-season and eight euros in high season to help preserve the city’s quality of life.  Those who choose to visit during peak times, such as summer weekends, will have to pay an additional 10 euro charge to visit the city center and islands of the lagoon.


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This post is based on the Express article, Tourism crackdown: Venice to ban large cruise ships in bid to save city, by Leonie Chao-Fong, November 7, 2019; the Worth article,  Facing Rising Water Continue reading

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Thailand Makes Its Move in the Trade War

Thailand Makes Its Move in the Trade War

November 22, 2019

The continuing tariff war between China and the United States has forced companies to reconsider their reliance on Chinese sourcing.  Other countries throughout Southeast Asia are taking advantage of this opportunity to promote their own attractions as a base of operations.

Thailand is long experienced with foreign (in particular, U.S.) investment, but has taken further steps to attract new entrants.  It now takes only 4-1/2 days to set up a business.  Established sectors with long experience in Thailand include automotive and electronics.

New incentives over and above tax relief target “strategic investments toward future sectors” with additional concessions based on workforce and productivity investments.  FDI is already high for Southeast Asia at $227 billion in 2018, but this expanded incentive targets mid-size projects of $32 million + for near-term implementation (plans must be submitted by 2020).

One particular sector of interest is aerospace, which particularly targets U.S. investment.  Besides incentives, Thailand is promoting its central location in the region and 13 free trade agreements.  The commitment goes deeper with active involvement of the government, right up to the Prime Minister, as part of a long term approach to economic growth.

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Y’all, It’s Back: Popeyes’ Chicken Sandwich

Y’all, It’s Back: Popeyes’ Chicken Sandwich

November 4, 2019

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen announced that its chicken sandwich would return on Sunday, November 3, 2019.  The company also released a simple ad called “Open Sunday” to announce its availability.

Sunday, November 3rd is important in two ways.  First, it is National Sandwich day.  What better day to re-introduce a very popular sandwich.  Second, it’s a reminder to customers that one of its main competitors–Chick-fil-A–is not open on Sundays. In its 20-second ad, a highway sign shows Chick-fil-A’s “Closed Sunday” tag; an “Open Sunday” tag is added for Popeyes.

The original release of the sandwich, in August 2019, went viral after a twitter war with Chick-fil-A.  The twitter war eventually grew to include many other restaurants’ chicken sandwiches.  For Popeyes, the response was overwhelming. Inventory that had been forecast to last two months ran out in two weeks, and the chain had to temporarily remove the sandwich from its menu.


Video Spotlight: Open Sunday


This post is based on the Thrillist article, Popeyes Just Revealed When Its Chicken Sandwich Is Coming Back, by Kat Thompson, October 28, 2019, and the YouTube video, Open Sunday, by Popeyes Louisiana Continue reading

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