Mag Bag: 'USA Today' Delivers 'Sherman's Travel' To Hotels

Sherman's Travel



USA Today Delivers Sherman's Travel To Hotels

Gannett Co.'s national flagship newspaper USA Today has struck a deal with Sherman's Travel Media to deliver issues of the magazine along with copies of USA Today distributed free to guests in various hotels in the U.S. This is just the latest in a series of moves by newspaper publishers to build up travel-related content and expand their relationship with consumers who travel frequently.

In the second half of 2010, USA Today will distribute 75,000 copies of the fall and winter editions of Sherman's Travel bundled with its free newspapers, increasing the magazine's total circulation 38% to almost 450,000. USA Today owns a stake in Sherman's Travel Media, which focuses on "smart luxury" travel. Sherman's Travel founder and CEO James H. Sherman stated: "This partnership will benefit our magazine advertisers by our adding qualified reach..."

In 2009, USA Today launched a travel-related service, AutoPilot, available at the Apple App Store. Sponsored by Hampton Hotels, the free app allows users to stay abreast of flight itineraries and weather, orient themselves with a GPS-enabled location tracker, find and contact travel service providers like rental cars and hotels through a digital directory, and read USA Today's travel-related blogs.

Other newspapers are also looking to boost travel-related content and even branching out into travel services. The Wall Street Journal launched its own branded travel agency, WSJTravel, which debuts with a portfolio of 50 planned trips to destinations such as Vietnam, Tuscany and California's wine country. According to the WSJ announcement, the travel agency will offer destinations, itineraries and customized travel packages based on the newspaper's travel-related content.

Consumer Reports Debuts Spanish-Language Buying Guide

Consumer Reports has launched a new Spanish-language edition of its annual buying guide. Titled Guía de Compras 2010 de Consumer Reports, the Spanish-language version includes a foreword by Julie Stav, the host of Univision's "Tu Dinero con Julie Stav." Priced at $10.99, it went on sale Jan. 26 at bookstores nationwide and on John Sateja, executive vice president of the Consumers Union, noted that Hispanic buying power in the United States is projected to hit $1.3 trillion by 2013, while Elena Chávez, manager for Spanish Language Outreach, stated: "Guía de Compras 2010 will help Spanish-speaking consumers navigate through advertisements, faulty claims and thousands of product options."

Afar Cuts Back

Afar, a new experiential travel magazine launched last year, is undergoing a restructuring as it seeks to trim costs. The changes include the departure of Publisher John Sheehy and Editor in Chief Susan West. In addition, founder and CEO Greg Sullivan will fill West's role, and the post of publisher is being eliminated. Dan Orum, previously executive vice president and digital operations managing director, has been promoted to president of Afar Media; co-founder Joe Diaz has been promoted to vice president of sales and brand development. The magazine is also raising its rate base by 50% to 75,000, effective this March.

Parent & Child Boots Moms for Celebs

Hoping to produce more attention-grabbing covers, Scholastic Parent & Child is giving its "regular mom" covers the ax and replacing them with covers featuring celebrities, beginning with Julianne Moore in its upcoming February issue. In it, she details her work with Save the Children and literacy causes. The magazine will also feature more celebrity-driven content, including advice columns by celebrity experts Suze Orman and Dr. Oz.

Cooking Light, Southern Living Get New Associate Publishers

Time Inc.'s Cooking Light and Southern Living are both getting new associate publishers. Karla Partilla was named associate publisher at Cooking Light, moving to this new role from her previous position as associate publisher of Southern Living. Debbie O'Brien was promoted to associate publisher Southern Living from her previous position as New York manager. Both magazines are published by the Southern Progress Corp., a division of Time Inc.'s Lifestyle Group.

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