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Tuesday Newsletter

January 11, 2005

Tuesday Newsletter January 11, 2005
January 11, 2005: Volume 25; Issue 1

Articles at a Glance
Tsunami Relief/Recovery Information Web Seminars with Ann Thomas Coming Up
United Discounts in Effect Santini, Industry Leaders Met With Department of Homeland Security
Paymentech Offers Low Rates to CrossSphere Members China Product Development Trip Deadline Extended
And Speaking of Product Development Trips… Spring Meet Discount Deadline Approaching
Convention Seminar Collection CD is on its Way Don’t Forget to Update Your Company Profile
Advertise in the CrossSphere Membership Directory

Tsunami Relief/Recovery Information

Your assistance is needed in the ongoing tsunami recovery efforts to aid Southeast Asia and Western Africa. Many travel industry groups have pitched in to help, from airlines urging frequent flyers to donate miles, to hotels offering free and/or discounted stays to recovery workers, to travel organizations providing financial assistance.

To find out more on what is being done and how you can plug in, Travel Weekly and Travel Guard International have created a clearinghouse Web site for travel industry initiatives. Click here to read about travel-related groups’ efforts to aid the tsunami disaster relief/recovery fundraising projects.

The CrossSphere Web site contains additional information. Click here to see an extensive list of relief agencies or click here to see more information on the individual countries that were affected.

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Web Seminars with Ann Thomas Coming Up

Join CrossSphere Chairman Ann Thomas as she takes you through the association’s brand platform and shares insights into the many valuable benefits CrossSphere offers its members. Come prepared with your questions, as there will be time for questions during this hour-long Web seminar.

In order to accommodate your busy schedule, the association is offering this Web seminar on two occasions. The first one will take place Wednesday, Feb. 2 and the second will be held Thursday, Feb. 3. Both of these sessions will begin at 2 p.m. EST.

To sign up for the day that works best for you, click on the link below that corresponds to the date, complete the registration information and hit submit. Then, you should receive an e-mail invitation within minutes of registration that will provide your link to the online seminar and your dial-in information for the audio portion.

To register for the Feb. 2 session, click here.

To register for the Feb. 3 session, click here.

If you have any questions regarding the Web seminar or registration, please contact Lisa Nelson at

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United Discounts in Effect

In the last issue of Tuesday, it was reported that CrossSphere representatives had met with United Airlines and an agreement was reached regarding discounted rates on group domestic deposits. Those discounts are now in effect, and the association’s tour operators can start taking advantage of them.

United is providing preferential treatment for CrossSphere members in regards to pricing of group domestic deposits. For specific information on the discounts, click here.

In addition, United has committed to increased contact with tour operators in order to improve the group-booking process.

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Santini, Industry Leaders Met With Department of Homeland Security

On Dec. 20, 2004, CrossSphere Legal Counsel Jim Santini and other industry leaders met with Alfonso Martinez-Fonts, special assistant to the secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, to discuss the new federal legislative role of the special assistant as a representative of "tourism" interests within the DHS.

"The association leaders stand willing to do what we can to help educate the DHS and then to communicate our message to the travel industry," said Santini. "On an ongoing basis, we will provide industry wide impact assessment and recommendations for enhancing existing or proposed national security initiatives."

A principle focus for industry leaders is to establish their critical role in whatever vehicle is adopted by the DHS to provide pertinent information on travel-related issues. It was agreed at the meeting that the first step in reaching the goal is for the industry to produce a "white paper," which would detail how the private tourism partners might reinforce the special assistant’s office advice to the DHS leaders.

Santini said that industry leaders will need to adapt their assistance structure to conform to the four basic regulatory missions of the DHS special assistant’s office:

  • Advocate for the private sector
  • Share "best practices" information to modify proposed or existing programs
  • Public/private grants (but not directly to a private company)
  • Economic study of the regulatory impacts

    Information on future meetings with the DHS will be covered in upcoming issues of Tuesday or on "This Just In" at

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    Paymentech Offers Low Rates to CrossSphere Members

    Looking for ways to save money on all of the credit card transactions your business makes? If you haven’t been introduced to North America’s premier processor and acquirer of credit card transactions, now is the perfect time to contact Paymentech. Paymentech, which is one of the association’s Corporate Partners, offers CrossSphere members discounted rates on its comprehensive and easy-to-use processing program.

    Benefits offered to CrossSphere members include:

  • Low Visa/MasterCard discount rates
  • Authorization for Discover, American Express, JCB, Diners Club and major debit brands
  • Ability to utilize your existing equipment and interface with major POS systems
  • No monthly minimum or authorization fee
  • 24-hour comprehensive terminal support

    "When you partner with Paymentech, you’ll get much more than payment processing," President and CEO Michael P. Duffy said. "You’ll receive state-of-the-art products and services customized to help your business take full advantage of daily opportunities from our changing world. From innovative reporting tools to our extensive fraud prevention programs, to our partnerships with leading e-commerce technologies, you’ll be in good company with Paymentech."

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    China Product Development Trip Deadline Extended

    The Forbidden City in Beijing

    The registration deadline for CrossSphere’s Product Development Trip to China, to be held Feb. 15-25, has been extended to Jan. 13.

    Sponsored by TUI China, Air China, and Chang An Grand Hotel, the trip will feature visits to many exciting locales. Cost of the all-inclusive, 11-day trip is $799 + tax ($902 total) and includes airfare from San Francisco, nine nights in luxury hotels, three meals daily with different cuisines and banquets, evening entertainment, all transportation within China and admission tickets to attractions.

    Space is reserved for full-time employees of CrossSphere tour operators, one participant per company. To see a detailed itinerary, or to get registered by Jan. 13, 2005, click here.

    Questions should be directed to TUI China’s sales director Mark Kang at 415.990.3603 or

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    And Speaking of Product Development Trips…

    Don’t forget that you can suggest a future Product Development Trip destination, whether you can coordinate the trip or not.

    The focus of the Product Development Trip program has changed for 2005, as the association hopes to significantly increase the number of trips offered. In order to tie in with CrossSphere’s Areas of Marketing and Interest (AIM) initiative, trips should take into consideration five of the AIM categories – Active & Adventure Travel; Affinity & Custom Group Travel; Cultural & Life Enrichment Travel; Self-Guided & Independent Travel; and Student & Youth Travel. It is hoped that there will be at least one Product Development Trip for each of those AIMs.

    To see a list of guidelines, click here. To send in a proposal, or if you have further questions, contact Dawn Pettus, CTP, via e-mail at

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    Spring Meet Discount Deadline Approaching

    Networking opportunities are an integral part of Spring Meet.

    The early bird deadline to get the registration discount for the 2005 Tour Operator Spring Meet is this Friday, Jan. 14. To get the rate of $180, members can fill out the registration form, which is available by clicking here. The signup forms for the pre- and post-Meet Fam Tours also are available online.

    The Spring Meet, to be held March 30-April 2 in Sacramento, Calif., will feature more partnering opportunities, breakout sessions for each of the Areas of Interest and Marketing (AIM) categories and another dose of quality educational programs.

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    Convention Seminar Collection CD is on its Way

    The 2004 Convention Seminar Collection CD was mailed out recently to everyone who attended for the CrossSphere Convention. Be on the look out for this information-packed disk, which gives you a full recap of all the seminars that were held in Toronto. The CD includes PowerPoint presentations, handouts and links to audio recordings from every seminar, in addition to a downloadable delegate registry.

    If you need an additional copy, or if you were unable to go to Toronto but still want the Convention Seminar Collection CD, you can purchase it by contacting CrossSphere Vice President of Sales and Publishing Karla DiNardo via e-mail.

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    Don’t Forget to Update Your Company Profile

    The start of the new year is a good time for everyone to update their company’s information on the CrossSphere Web site. The upcoming deadline to do this is Jan. 31, in order for information to be current in the CrossSphere Membership Directory.

    There are three ways you can change your profile:

  • Log on to (requires your ID and password)
  • E-mail updated information to
  • Fill out the form that was in your dues invoice and fax it to 859-226-4414.

    It is a good idea to check your information a few times a year to make sure it stays current.

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    Advertise in the CrossSphere Membership Directory

    For the first time, suppliers, destinations and tour operators will be included in the CrossSphere Membership Directory. Several advertising options are available for this all-inclusive publication, including bold and enhanced listings to draw the attention of 1,100 CrossSphere tour operators. This upgrade will highlight your complimentary company logo and maximize your exposure.

    If you book your ad by Jan. 31, you can receive great early discounts. To find out more, e-mail Taryn Lendrum or call her at 800-682-8886, ext. 3549, or 859.219.3549.

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