August 28, 2007
Tuesday Newsletter Aug. 28, 2007
Volume 27: Issue 35
|This issue of Tuesday is sponsored by National City Bank. National City’s Travel Funds Protection Plan is no ordinary protection plan – it’s a "true" escrow program that promotes your company’s professionalism and dependability to the travel agents and consumers you service.|
|Interested in becoming a Tuesday sponsor? E-mail Karla DiNardo at karla.dinardo@NTA.travel.|
Convention Web Seminar is This Friday
NTA Central is Your Information Source at Convention
NTA Convention VIP Pass for Your Company Executives
Volunteer at NTA and Go "Behind the Scenes"
Make Your Housing Reservation in the Official Convention Block
Nevada Rocks Event Helps Tourism Cares
Katrina: Two Years Later – Moving Forward
Members looking for information to help them prepare for the 2007 NTA Annual Convention are encouraged to take part in a Web seminar Friday, Aug. 31, at 1 p.m. (ET). NTA Convention Chairman Bob Hofmann will provide an overview of the event and give specifics on appointment scheduling and the Direct Request System. In addition, there will be plenty of time for questions. The seminar is geared toward Convention first-timers, but it’s a valuable refresher for veterans, too.
If you would like to register for the session, e-mail NTA Manager of Member Relations Lori Rempe or call her at 800.682.8886, ext. 3579 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.219.3579. If you are unable to take part in the Web seminar, NTA will have a recorded version available on NTA.travel, which you can access at your leisure.
You can access all your NTA information in one place at this year’s Convention by visiting NTA Central. NTA Central, sponsored by Amtrak, is replacing the NTA Welcome and Information Center.
This revitalized area will be utilized differently than in previous years, as all NTA programs will be available in a central location. In addition to getting a new name this year, NTA Central will be welcoming a couple of new partners, as the Courier and Government Relations booths will be part of this area.
NTA Central also is the place to go for first-timer and volunteer check-in, Convention 101 sessions, mock appointments, convention center tours, advertising information for all NTA publications, government relations, information on the new CTP program and demonstrations on how to navigate the NTA Web site, http://www.nta.travel/.
Please visit the Convention Web site for further information regarding NTA Central and the Annual Convention.
NTA would like to extend a special invitation to your company executives and CEOs to participate in the Executive Program at the 2007 Annual Convention in Kansas City, Missouri. As part of this program, participants can experience firsthand the benefits of NTA membership and receive an introduction to what is perhaps the most important business resource in the packaged travel industry – NTA.
The Executive Program is a one-day VIP pass to see the Convention in full action. This year’s program will be held Monday, Nov. 5, beginning with a morning session that will introduce executives and CEOs to the association. Following the presentation, there will be time for questions. Then, participants are invited to attend the SuperSession, featuring keynote speaker and funny man Joel Zeff at 9:45 a.m. After lunch, your executive can take advantage of our seminar programs or shadow you during the Tour & Travel Exchange and meet company clients and business partners.
Go to the Convention Web site to see a detailed agenda or to register someone from your company. Questions about the Executive Program should be directed to NTA Manager of Member Relations Lori Rempe at 800.682.8886, ext. 3579 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.219.3579.
NTA’s volunteers make all the difference. Without you, Convention just wouldn’t be the great experience that it is. So, to show its gratitude to the hundreds of members who give their time working at the registration counter, helping in the Research Center, handing out pencils at the seminars, and all the other enormously helpful jobs you do, NTA has a special offer this year.
NTA would like to take all of its Convention volunteers "Behind the Scenes" to see the magic that happens to make the annual event come to life. Carpet laying, booth construction, NTA staff in sweat pants … it is quite the experience. And, all you have to do is watch.
Volunteers can go on a tour of the convention center, skip the lines and pick up your registration materials early and get a sneak peek at the Convention Mall floor. There also will be a few snacks available.
More details on this will be sent to volunteers as time draws closer. So, if you’re a Convention volunteer and you’re making your travel plans, arrive at the convention center by Thursday at 3:30 p.m. to take part in this special opportunity.
If you haven’t reviewed the list of volunteer opportunities yet, there are still plenty of spots available. If you have questions about volunteering or the "Behind the Scenes" tour, contact NTA Vice President of Marketing Lisa Thompson.
Have you made your hotel reservation for the 2007 NTA Annual Convention yet? If not, there is still availability within the official NTA block.
While most hotels tend to raise prices during major events, NTA has negotiated discounted rates so Convention delegates can enjoy significant savings. This special pricing is for hotels close to the convention center in downtown Kansas City, with excellent transportation connections. By choosing to stay at an official NTA Convention hotel, you will get:
To make your reservation, go to the 2007 Convention Web site.
Get your dancing shoes ready because Nevada Rocks is back. Enjoy the company of your fellow NTA delegates as you enjoy good music, dancing, cocktails and conversation Sunday, Nov. 4, at The Legends in Kansas City, Kansas.
Tourism Cares’ sponsors for the event, the Nevada delegation, will be hosting all tour operators as guests. Tour suppliers and DMOs are urged to purchase tickets when registering for Convention. Tickets are $40 in advance and $50 on site, so be sure to contact your NTA Member Services Team by calling 800.682.8886 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.226.4444 to purchase your tickets in advance.
On Aug. 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina came ashore along America’s Gulf Coast area with devastating effect. In the two years since, the rebuilding effort has been steadily moving along.
One of the constants throughout that time has been the three quarters of a million volunteers that have headed to the Mississippi Gulf Coast, New Orleans and other areas of Louisiana to help individuals put their lives back together and aid businesses as they get back on their feet. NTA members have played a major role in the clean up effort, by bringing voluntourists to the area and by taking part in projects like the 2006 Tourism Cares for America event, which drew more than 300 people to Biloxi/Gulfport.
The July issue of Courier included an article on voluntourism and the Gulf Coast. It talked about the ways in which tour operators were offering packages to affected areas that included both sightseeing and a day or two of volunteering, and an NTA company that held a day-long clean up project as part of a sales meeting in New Orleans. It also included the perspective of Mississippi and Louisiana DMOs who have worked with volunteer groups. To read the article, click here.
There is still much to be done and both Mississippi and New Orleans still need help. For more information on how you can get involved or options for bringing groups to the areas for work projects, contact Lisa Holland of the New Orleans Metropolitan CVB at 504.566.5053 or Janet Harrington of the Mississippi Gulf Coast CVB at 228.896.6699.
Whenever NTA learns of a status change of one of its members that may affect your company’s ongoing business arrangements with them, we post an update on http://www.nta.travel/index.php?s=&url_channel_id=18&url_subchannel_id=&url_article_id=1854&change_well_id=2. NTA will make updates to this section to keep members informed as NTA is notified of member closures and bankruptcies and non-compliance with the NTA Code of Ethics and membership requirements and standards.
You are encouraged to bookmark this page and check back periodically to review important updates.
Last week, Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne and National Park Service Director Mary Bomar announced the projects included in the National Park Centennial Challenge, a public-private partnership that will fund $2 billion of President Bush’s National Park Centennial Initiative. The Scenic Byways project, created as a partnership effort between NTA and the American Recreation Coalition, has been recognized as one of the 201 centennial proposals.
In January, NTA and ARC announced a pilot project to make multi-lingual digital commentary about features along the George Washington Memorial Parkway and the C&O Canal National Historical Park available for free on the Internet in Mp3 format. This project is now eligible for funding as part of the National Park Centennial Initiative, designed to increase NPS visitor services and satisfaction by 2016, the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.
"The National Tour Association is delighted that our partnership effort with the George Washington Memorial Parkway and C&O Canal units is one of the 201 certified Centennial Challenge projects," said NTA Chairman and CEO Randy Julian. "NTA is pleased to be a supporting partner of the National Park Service in this first-ever effort by the tour and recreation industry to provide an educational tool for visitors to these two special places along the Potomac River and key features of the Nation’s Capital Region. The Centennial Initiative will enhance the experiences of all visitors to our nation’s national treasures."
NTA was an early proponent of the National Scenic Byways program and successfully lobbied for its creation. The program is a grassroots collaborative effort established to help recognize, preserve and enhance selected roads throughout the United States. Since 1992, the program has provided funding for more than 2,100 state and nationally designated projects in 50 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia.
NTA Corporate Partner, Capital One Merchant Services Corporation is a premium provider of payment card processing services, enabling businesses in the travel and tourism industry to accept credit/debit card payment, offer gift/loyalty cards and provide Point-of-Sale (POS) check conversion services.
Travelers today rely on cards to make nearly all their purchases. "We make it easy for your customers to do business with you by enabling you to accept credit and debit card payments," said Kimberly Bonzelaar, Texas and national sales manager for Capital One Merchant Services. "In addition, we provide competitive rates and fast authorizations, allowing your tour business to capture and settle credit card transactions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week."
Capital One’s flexible, efficient and cost-effective payment card program helps NTA members gain more profit with less risk. You receive valuable information fast: reports to help prevent fraud, duplicate receipts, transaction details, credit alerts, 13 months of historical data and much more. You spend less time worrying about payment risks and more time concentrating on your travel/tour business. In addition, you receive excellent customer service plus cutting-edge card payment solutions such as contactless payments.
For more information, go to www.capitalonebank.com/merchantservices or contact Kimberly Bonzelaar at 817.236.5178 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about the NTA-Capital One partnership go to http://www.nta.travel/index.php?s=&url_channel_id=18&url_subchannel_id=&url_article_id=3193&change_well_id=2.
The November issue of Courier offers plenty of ways to get your company’s marketing message in front of tour operators. Not only will it be sent to all NTA members, but it also will receive bonus distribution during the 2007 Convention in Kansas City, Missouri.
Feature stories in the November issue cover dining and shopping. The Trip Planners showcase Chicago and America’s Historic East (Colonial Virginia, D.C., Maryland and Pennsylvania) and the Travel Guides highlight Delaware; New Brunswick, Newfoundland & Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island; Quebec; New Jersey; New York.
There are still a few spots left in the magazine ranked No. 1 in the industry by tour operators, so contact your account executive today via e-mail or by calling 800.682.8886, ext. 4232 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.226.4232.
Click here to view full 2007 Editorial Calendar.
"People want increased context, and digital technology provides that," said Brian Porter of the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. "Gone are the days of simply labeling an object in a glass case." His comment is part of a story on the changing landscape at museums which appears in the September issue of Courier. In addition to that article, rail travel is featured along with the South Pacific and the American Southwest. Business section articles provide an in-depth look at NTA’s Tour20 Group and the Destination Pavilion, which will make its debut at the 2007 Convention. The September Travel Guides cover Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina.
December Issue – Ad Space: Sept. 26; Editorial: Past
2007 Convention Coverage; Artisan and Factory Tours; The Rockies (Alberta, British Columbia, Colorado, Idaho, Montana and Utah); Smoky Mountains (Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge); Alabama; Florida; Louisiana; Mississippi.
January Issue – Ad Space: Oct. 29; Editorial: Sept. 4
Tour Operator Spring Meet Preview; Sightseeing Cruises; Cruise Ships; Antebellum South (Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee); British Isles and Ireland; Alaska; British Columbia; California; Hawaii; Nevada; Oregon; Washington.
February Issue – Ad Space: Nov. 26; Editorial: Oct. 1
Casinos/Gaming; Culinary Tourism; Atlantic Coast (Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia); Continental Europe; Alberta, Manitoba & Saskatchewan; Idaho; Montana; North Dakota; South Dakota; Wyoming.
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
Autry National Center – The Berkely Group (TPP) – Beverly Garland’s Holiday Inn/Universal City – Capital One Merchant Services – Coach America – El Paso Convention & Visitors Bureau – FamilySearch Center/Library and Mormon Historic Sites – Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino – Laredo CVB – Mashantucket Pequot Museum – Mesa CVB – Pennsylvania Tourism & Marketing Office – Rapid City CVB – Staples