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It’s All at NTA Central | Three Product Development Trips Announced

October 26, 2010

Volume 30, Issue 43

travel for less2 

Interested in advertising in Tuesday? E-mail Kelley Burchell at

It’s All at NTA Central
Three Product Development Trips Announced for 2011
U.S. Travel’s Virtual Town Hall Details Candidates’ Views on Travel Issues
15-Minute, One-on-one Sessions With Catherine Heeg
Strikes in France Impact Travel
There Are Better Ways to Get Attention
Chinese Travel Professionals, Industry Trade and Sponsors to Attend NTA Visit USA Center Opening
Don’t Miss Next Tuesday’s Webinar on the UK Inbound Market to the U.S.
Tour Operators: Be Recognized for Paying It Forward
Variety Is the Spice of Life in the November Courier
Voting Closes Oct. 31 in Tourism Cares and Budget Travel Save Our Sites Poll
Travel News and Updates

It’s All at NTA Central  Amtrak's NTA Central

Amtrak’s NTA Central at Convention ’10 got a makeover this year — new booths and a new design. Here’s a peek at what you can find there, and how to use each booth.

  • (NEW!) eNTA: This is your social media hub. Ask any social media questions, read recent social media tips and trends, and more. And, (as if you don’t already) we’ll help you find, follow and fan NTA’s social media pages. If you haven’t set up a Facebook or Twitter account and would like to, we’ll help you do that, too.
  • Publications & Sponsorship: Being a member in NTA has its privileges, and one of those privileges is the opportunity to sponsor and advertise at members-only events and in NTA publications. Want to reach, impact and impress thousands of operators all year long? Stop by the Publications & Sponsorship booth! While you’re there, grab a copy of Courier or an NTA Trip Planner.
  • (NEW!) Business Builder Booth: NTA’s Business Builders are a series of events focused on bringing more business, new contacts and diverse product to NTA members. Visit this booth to learn more about MONTAGE, CONTACT, product development trips, and Convention ’11 and ’13. You can even register now for most upcoming events.
  • Answers: The name may be new, but you know the booth. This is where you can get all your membership questions answered. Come see Lori Rempe and Dana Deptola for NTAOnline walk-throughs, program demonstrations and more.

Come see us at NTA Central. And while you’re there, don’t forget your flair! What’s flair? Fun stickers to collect throughout the week. Look for a flair ribbon in your registration packet. Attach it to your badge, fill it with stickers and … you’ve got flair!

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Three Product Development Trips Announced for 2011  Great Wall of China

The 2011 Product Development Trip schedule includes a diverse trio of destinations for NTA tour operators to explore. First up is the Splendid China Product Development Trip, which takes place Feb. 16-24. Let China Connection Tours take you on a journey that is sure to open doors to new package ideas. The registration deadline is Jan. 14 and the cost is $800 plus your flight. Registration is open to two participants per company.

Later in the year, Tourism Saskatchewan invites NTA operators to explore the outdoor beauty and urban vibrancy that is Saskatchewan. This PDT takes place Aug. 30-Sept. 4 and is open to the first six registrants, one registrant per company, please. The deadline to register is July 1 and the cost is $100 including round-trip air.

Learn more about the Exotic Land of Morocco on a trip hosted by NTA member and Moroccan native Sam Nhairy of Hospitality Marketing Services, Morocco Destination Management. This 10-day, nine-night journey will be held Nov. 3-13. The $1,595 cost includes round-trip air from New York’s JFK Airport to Casablanca and double occupancy lodging. The single occupancy price, including round-trip air, is $1,795. Deadline to register is Aug. 3 and it is open to two registrants per company.

Visit to register for all three of these Business Builders. Or, if you’re joining us in Montreal for Convention ’10, you can stop by NTA Central to register as well. Questions? E-mail Lisa Thompson at NTA headquarters.

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U.S. Travel’s Virtual Town Hall Details Candidates’ Views on Travel Issues 

Over the last couple of months, U.S. Travel asked travel industry professionals to submit questions for candidates running for office in next Tuesday’s U.S. elections. The result was a Virtual Travel Town Hall, which includes comments from some of this year’s candidates, such as Harry Reid, Carly Fiorina and Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

Visit the Web site to view the candidates’ responses, see how travel powers every state in America, as well as look up who your candidates are and register to vote. With the elections right around the corner, now is a great time to see where the candidates campaigning for your vote stand on travel.

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15-Minute, One-on-one Sessions with Catherine Heeg 

If you’ve ever had a question about social media, here’s your chance to ask the expert — Catherine Heeg.

Heeg has three workshop sessions at Convention, and is also offering private 15-minute sessions at her booth throughout the week. Listen to this podcast for tips on how to prepare for your one-on-one. Then, sign up for a session today. Hurry, sessions are filling up!

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Strikes in France Impact Travel 

The countrywide strikes in France are continuing to have an impact on the tourism sector. has posted a Q&A that includes a thorough explanation of the strikes and their full impact.

According to the Web site, "The strikes are being led by public sector unions, which remain very powerful in France. Among those striking are airport staff, train drivers, teachers, postal workers, rubbish collectors and armored truck drivers. As well as reduced public transport services, the French have also found motorways blocked by lorry drivers on go-slows. Strikers have also prevented oil deliveries to refineries, cutting the supply to petrol stations, thousands of which ran dry last week, though some of the refineries are now operational again, and many petrol stations are reopening. The Eiffel Tower has also been closed to tourists by striking staff. On Oct. 12 certain unions decided to move to continuous strikes, renewable on a daily basis."

To see the full list of questions and answers regarding the strike from the BBC story, click here.

Are the strikes impacting your tours or business? If so, please contact NTA’s public relations manager, Bob Rouse, with this information.

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There Are Better Ways to Get Attention  Get Noticed with NTA

NTA would love to show you how! Hot off the press is NTA’s new 2011 Media Kit. It’s full of valuable new avenues for all members to get attention, not only within NTA but within the industry as well. Let NTA help you effectively reach those you want to impress in ways that will guarantee results.

"Our tourism department came of age when we began advertising in NTA publications." — Gene Peimann, Missouri Botanical Garden

Reach, Impact, Impress — access the 2011 Media Kit now. Advertise and sponsor with NTA!

For more information on promoting yourself within NTA and the industry, contact or call 800.682.8886, ext. 3533 (U.S. and Canada), or +1.859.219.3533.

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Chinese Travel Professionals, Industry Trade and Sponsors to Attend NTA Visit USA Center Opening NTA Visit USA Center

The latest component of NTA’s work with the China inbound market is the NTA Visit USA Center, which will open Nov. 20 In Shanghai. The opening celebration will be held in conjunction with the China International Travel Mart, where NTA and U.S. destinations, operators and suppliers are promoting travel to America.

Through the NTA Visit USA Center, which is supported in part through an International Trade Administration grant, NTA will educate the Chinese trade about the diversity of travel opportunities in the United States, provide marketing programs and services to the U.S. trade, and offer venues to connect the U.S. and Chinese trade for business development.

Special guests at the Nov. 20 event, which is being co-hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce, will include key representatives from Chinese travel agencies/operators and media, U.S. and Chinese government officials, as well as partners supporting the NTA Visit USA Center. Many sponsors, including United Airlines, Marriott Hotels, Best Western InnSuites Hotel & Suites, Guam Visitors Bureau, Hilton Hotel and Travel Portland, are also taking part in the ceremonies.

The grand opening will showcase the diversity of product available throughout the United States. Contact NTA’s Haybina Hao for information on highlighting your destination or company at this upcoming event.

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Don’t Miss Next Tuesday’s Webinar on the UK Inbound Market to the U.S. 

Due to the success of the Webinar on inbound travel to the U.S. from the United Kingdom last month, U.S. Commercial Service will offer a repeat session that focuses on the largest overseas market for U.S. inbound travel and tourism services. This additional session takes place Nov. 2 at 11 a.m. (ET) and is only $50.

Presenters will cover international arrivals from the UK, destinations most visited, spending patterns and emerging trends that highlight research conducted by the U.S. Office of Travel & Tourism Industries and market intelligence from the U.S. Commercial Service offices in London. Participants will get a better understanding of the current status of the market and some expected trends for the future. The Webinar also can help prepare you for one of NTA’s 2011 Business Builders, MONTAGE, which will be held in Aberdeen, Scotland, April 12-14.

To register for the Webinar, please click here. The Webinar is hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce, OTTI with the Commercial Service Travel & Tourism Team. For more information contact,, or

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Tour Operators: Be Recognized for Paying It Forward  

Tour operators: Show your appreciation by joining with NTA Chaiman and CEO Cathy Greteman in contributing to a tour supplier/DMO appreciation reception to be held at Convention ’10 in Montréal. The commitment to and investment in NTA that our DMOs and tour suppliers demonstrate throughout the year is truly amazing.

And, if you make your donation promise by close of business today (Oct. 26), your company will be recognized and listed in the Convention Catalog.

Join these contributing members: 
>> Academic Travel Abroad Inc.
>> Beyond Times Square Inc.
>> Cazenave Argentina
>> Cruises and Tours Worldwide
>> Destinations Unlimited Inc.
>> Earth Bound Tours
>> Educational Tours Inc.
>> Hawthorne Tours
>> Image Tours Inc.
>> Lisa Simon, CTP, NTA President
>> Main Street Tours Inc.
>> Mayflower Tours Inc.
>> National Events Inc.
>> New Horizons Tour and Travel
>> Nomad Adventures LLC
>> RMP Travel Inc.
>> Setness Tours
>> Sports Leisure Vacations
>> Star Destinations Inc.
>> Sugar Tours Inc.
>> Terres Indiennes Inc.
>> Travel Adventures Inc.
>> Wells Gray Tours
>> Wolfe Adventures & Tours

To contribute, click here or contact Karla DiNardo at 1.800.682.8886, ext. 4232 (U.S. and Canada), or +1.859.226.4232.

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Variety Is the Spice of Life in the November Courier  November Courier

A diverse group of destinations take center stage in the November Courier. If you are drawn to history-based product, check out the dining feature on page 22, the America’s Historic East story on page 37, the Delaware article on page 54 and the New York story on 62. These articles all cover product that interprets history ranging from America’s Civil War to daily life in New Brunswick’s St. John River Valley in the 1800s.

If you’re looking for detailed information on exotic, international destinations, don’t miss the article on page 78 by Performance Tours’ Wendy Andberg about her experiences on the NTA Discover Egypt Product Development Trip, which was hosted by Big Five Tours & Expeditions in September. Additionally, members Rajeev Kohli, Vikram Madhok and Uday Marwah, each representing a receptive service company in India, provided amazing information for our India article, which begins on page 48.

And, the province of Québec is our starring destination for November (see story on page 70), because we’ll be heading to Montréal in just a few short weeks for Convention ’10.

NOTE: Courier listed Jill Lusty’s name incorrectly on p. 88 in the November issue. Lusty serves as travel trade manager for Tourism Winnipeg and can be reached at

Advertisers in this issue:

Angstrom Graphics | The Berkely Group (TPP) | Buca di Beppo | Capital One Merchant Services  | Calvert County, MD Tourism | Fredericksburg Department of Economic Development and Tourism | Maid of the Mist | Myrtle Beach Area CVB | NASCAR Hall of Fame | National Aquarium in Baltimore | New York City Ballet | Tulalip Resort Casino & Spa | Yankee Candle Company Inc.

Upcoming Deadlines: 

February Issue (NTA’s 60th Anniversary Issue) — Ad Space: Nov. 24; Editorial: Nov. 1
Casinos and Gaming; Alberta, Manitoba & Saskatchewan; British Columbia; Idaho; Montana; North Dakota; Wyoming; U.S. Atlantic Coast (Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia); U.S. Territories.

March Issue — Ad Space: Jan. 5; Editorial: Dec. 6
Accommodations; Arizona; Colorado; New Mexico; Utah; Branson; Africa; Mediterranean; Toronto & Niagara Region (New York and Canada). 

Please click here to view the 2011 Editorial Calendar.

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Voting Closes Oct. 31 in Tourism Cares and Budget Travel Save Our Sites Poll 

Tourism Cares and Budget Travel have joined together to preserve the travel experience for future generations. You can get involved this week by voting for one of the two important sites below that you feel is most deserving of receiving a grant that will be used for preservation, conservation, education or restoration of their site. 

Itsukushima Jinja on Miyajima in Hiroshima-ken, Japan. This UNESCO World Heritage site, on an island near Hiroshima, dates from the sixth century A.D. The "floating" torii, or shrine gate, is one of the most familiar sites in Japan. A grant to the shrine would help preserve the wooden temple complex, which is also designated as a National Treasure of Japan.

Transporting Kids to Glacier, a program of the Glacier National Park Fund, pays the cost for buses so schools can bring children to Glacier National Park in Montana. Glacier is marking its centennial celebration in 2010. While teachers see the value in bringing youth to the park, many schools can’t afford field trips due to the cost of transportation.

The poll will close Oct. 31, so cast your vote today!

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Travel News and Updates

  • Have your brochure displayed at the Philoxenia 2010 International Tourism Exhibition, Nov. 18-21 in Thessaloniki, Greece, through U.S. Commercial Service’s Discover America Literature Program.
  • In the first eight months of this year, 7.1 million foreign visitors arrived by air to Mexico, an increase of almost 20 percent over the same period last year.
  • According to an NBTA Foundation survey, corporate travel budgets grew on average 5.5 percent this year and are poised to grow an additional 4.45 percent in 2011.
  • Ticket prices for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London have been announced. 
  • The latest numbers of Switzerland’s arrivals and overnights show that Swiss hotels reported double-digit growth during the summer 2010 season.

The links in this article are not monitored by NTA staff. Any bad links, expired pages, etc. are due to the constantly changing nature of Web sites.

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