November 29, 2005
Tuesday Newsletter November 29, 2005
November 29, 2005: Volume 25; Issue 40
While there are many tried-and-true parts of the NTA Annual Convention, there are always a few fresh features just to keep delegates on their toes. This year’s gathering in Detroit was no exception, and many of the new things for 2005 – the daily appointment scheduling session, the Wine & Cheese Reception and speed dating – were instant hits, according to your fellow members:
Click here to go to the special page of NTA Online which includes more 2005 Convention buzz.
International arrivals to the United States have risen this year, according to the latest data from the U.S. Department of Commerce. Arrivals are eight percent higher through the first eight months of 2005 than during the same period in 2004.
Some other significant numbers for the first eight months of 2005 compared to 2004 include:
The Tourism Cares for Tomorrow Gulf Coast Restoration Fund is still growing, thanks to the generosity of NTA members and their colleagues. In addition to the $22,000 raised at the NTA Convention, the Ontario Motor Coach Association donated $5,000 of the proceeds from the silent auction held at its event in Toronto in October.
Sales of wristbands at industry events also are helping the donations add up quickly, especially since all sales are being matched both by Tourism Cares and by Trip Mate Insurance. Wristbands were available when the Ensemble Travel Group, an international network of more than 1,300 travel agencies, held its international conference in October, and at the Maryland Governors Conference on Tourism. They will be sold at the USTOA Conference in Orlando later this week or can be purchased online for $10 each at http://www.tourismcares.org/.
If you have an event coming up and would like to sell wristbands to benefit the Tourism Cares Gulf Coast Restoration Fund, please contact Tourism Cares for Tomorrow’s Executive Director Bruce Beckham, CTP, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Every day, more than $1.9 trillion U.S. dollars are traded in the global foreign exchange market where volatility has become the norm. With many NTA members conducting business internationally, having a good understanding of foreign currency is essential for maximizing revenue.
Managing foreign currency exchange for your tours and international programs deserves the same attention you would give to managing the risk surrounding every other part of your business. Marie Hollein, CTP, director of financial risk management with KPMG, has written an article to educate NTA members in this area. The article talks about ways you can develop a foreign-exchange risk management plan and contains a glossary to assist you in defining terms related to managing foreign currency.
Please click here to read the article and find out how to reduce your risk when conducting business internationally.
Sixteen tour operators recently participated in NTA’s fifth-annual Product Development Trip to Bavaria, Germany. The trip highlighted some of the region’s most beautiful sights and cities and was a big hit with attendees.
Through a post-trip survey, participants rated the overall usefulness of the trip a 9.2 on a 10-point scale. While only 50 percent of those surveyed currently offer Germany as a destination, 75 percent plan to do so in 2006 and 83 percent anticipate packaging product there in 2007.
On the trip, members met with Bavarian suppliers through a workshop intended to introduce tour operators to potential business partners. Participants rated appointments during the workshop, as they related to developing future travel products to Germany, an 8.3.
"This was the best trip of its kind I have taken in a while," said Brigitte Armand of EuroBound Tours, who has been part of several NTA Product Development Trips. "These trips are extremely beneficial to my company."
NTA extends a special thanks to Bavaria Tourism, Beer Travel & Tours and Munich Airport International for hosting the trip.
NTA has learned that a private burial was held last week for Dave Herren of The Mark Travel Corporation at the Mount Hebron Cemetery in Winchester, Va. However, this Saturday, Dec. 3, a memorial service will be held at the Hopewell Quaker Friends Meeting House in Clearbook, Va., (just a few miles north of Winchester) at 1 p.m.
Dave’s wife, Ann, said, "It will be a music service with taped music that Dave loved. There will be opportunities between each piece for friends to speak for one minute, as in the Quaker way." Following the memorial service will be an informal reception at the Meeting House.
In lieu of flowers, please send any memorial contributions to the Potomac Conservancy, 8601 Georgia Ave., Suite 612, Silver Spring, MD, 20910. Cards may be sent to Dave’s family at 1599 Pack Horse Rd., Winchester, VA, 22603.
The December edition of Courier is an issue of firsts. It gives you the first glimpse of what’s in store at the Tour Operator Spring Meet in Louisville, Ky., in March. You’ll also read the first leadership columns by Judith Thomas, CTP, 2006 Chairman and CEO and Scott Hartcorn, tour supplier director for 2006. It’s also an issue of lasts, as it brings our last in a series of updates on the work being done to speed recovery for those in our industry affected by Hurricane Katrina. If you like adventure travel, you’ll love the Take AIM article, which offers an in-depth discussion of the Active Adventure Travel AIM (Area of Interest and Marketing) about how best to market both hard and soft adventure travel. Once you get a load of our great shopping feature, you’ll have all the incentive you need to finish up those last-minute holiday purchases, too!
March Issue – Ad Space: Jan. 1; Editorial: Past
2006 Tour Operator Spring Meet; Hotels & Resorts; Toronto & Niagara Region (New York & Canada); Gateway to Branson (Kansas City, St. Louis & Branson); Arizona; Colorado; New Mexico; Utah.
April Issue – Ad Space: Jan. 27; Editorial: Dec. 1
Historic Homes & Gardens; Student & Youth Travel; New York City; Great Lakes Loop (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Ontario & Wisconsin); Arkansas; Mexico; Oklahoma; Texas.
May Issue – Ad Space: Feb. 24; Editorial: Jan. 1
Annual Preview to Convention Issue; Beaches; Las Vegas; Asia; Iowa; Kansas; Missouri; Nebraska; Northwest Territories; Nunavut, Yukon.
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
Autry Museum of Western Heritage – Barnhill’s Buffet – Beverly Garland’s Holiday Inn – Boyds Bear Country – Collier County CVB – Explore Chinatown New York City – John G. Shedd Aquarium – L’Auberge du Lac Casino Resort – Greater Louisville CVB – Marshall Field’s – Montgomery Chamber CVB – MotorCity Casino – Norfolk CVB – Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism – Prime Retail L.P. – Shreveport-Bossier Convention & Tourist Bureau – Top of the Rock
Please click here to view the 2006 editorial calendar online.
The Web site for THETRADESHOW – ASTA’s new three-day event which will bring together thousands of consumers, travel agents and travel suppliers – is now up and running. To learn more about this exciting show, of which NTA is one of the sponsors, click here.
While most travel shows focus on one particular facet of tourism, THETRADESHOW encompasses every aspect of travel and provides the most suppliers and destinations for agents to meet and conduct business. Key opportunities are included throughout the conference program. THETRADESHOW makes its debut in Orlando, Sept. 11-13, 2006, then will alternate between Orlando and Las Vegas in the coming years.
Nominations for the World Travel & Tourism Council’s prestigious Tourism for Tomorrow Awards are open through Dec. 12. These awards, despite the similar name, are not related to the organization Tourism Cares for Tomorrow. They are handed out in the four categories listed below to companies that display the highest quality in their tourism practices.
The awards will be presented at the 6th Global Travel and Tourism Summit, cosponsored by TIA, in Washington, D.C., next spring (April 11-12, 2006). This is the first time the summit will be held in the United States, and it is expected to attract more than 800 participants from around the world.
To learn more about the four categories or to make a nomination, click here.
There was one additional giveaway winner from Annual Convention that got left out of last week’s Tuesday article. Congratulations to Judy Steeneck of Centennial Travelers who won two domestic roundtrip tickets courtesy of United Airlines.