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Tuesday Newsletter

May 11, 2004

May 11, 2004: Volume 24; Issue 9

Articles at a Glance
Convention Registration Materials Coming Your Way NTA Enjoys Success at Pow Wow
NTA Participates in Rendez-Vous Canada NTA Election Process Change is in the Air
National Tourism Foundation Unveils New Web Site Reserve Your Ticket for the June 10 Hall of Fame Dinner
NTA and GLAMER Launch 2004 Perfect Match Program Be in the August Courier spotlight!
Ask the Expert: Ralph Weickel Answers Questions About Business, Finance NTA’s 2004 Profile Form Notebook Renewals have Exclusivity Until May 31, 2004
Vacation Behavior: Half of Americans Who Stay in Hotels Admit They Do Things on Vacation They Don’t Do at Home

Convention Registration Materials Coming Your Way

This year’s Convention offers unprecedented opportunities for NTA members to network and reconnect with their packaged travel industry peers.

In the next few weeks you should be receiving your 2004 Annual Convention registration brochure. This year’s registration brochure has everything you need to register and get prepared for "The Ultimate Package," held this year in Toronto during the week of Nov. 12-16.

A preliminary Convention schedule is conveniently sandwiched between an overview of what’s new this year, various ways you can participate and benefit from your Convention experience, special offers, details on the popular Tour & Travel Exchange and educational seminar descriptions.

It’s important that tour operators register early to take full advantage of the post-Convention rebate program. To be eligible for the full $650 rebate, tour operators must register to attend Convention and participate in the Tour & Travel Exchange prior to the early bird deadline of June 25.

Make plans now to attend the travel industry event of the year!

One Industry. One Association. One Marketplace.

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NTA Enjoys Success at Pow Wow

NTA’s strength was evident at the Travel Industry Association of America’s 36th International Pow Wow April 24-28 in Los Angeles. More than 300 NTA members attended Pow Wow, and NTA representatives were present to promote the association and its receptive operators to the international market.

TIA reported that more than 5,000 delegates attended this year. Over the course of the three-day trade show, NTA conducted more appointments than last year. The association had 37 appointments with international tour operators and met with journalists and Visit USA representatives as well. Numerous representatives of domestic and international companies also visited the NTA booth to inquire about membership.

NTA President Hank Phillips, CTP, said that the 2004 Pow Wow was NTA’s most successful to date, not only because of the recovery the travel industry is experiencing but also because of the momentum and awareness established by the association’s global initiative.

"Many of the companies came to do business with us and with our members because they had already learned about NTA," Phillips said.

During the show Phillips, along with NTA Vice President of Marketing and Communications Catherine Prather and NTA Director of Marketing Jennifer Allen, heard from delegates that they had enjoyed valuable appointments.

NTA receptive operators who are listed in the Tour Operator Receptive Services in North America directory will soon receive leads from this year’s Pow Wow.

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NTA Participates in Rendez-Vous Canada

Tour operators from around the world traveled to Montreal, Quebec to attend the 2004 Rendez-Vous Canada travel trade show May 1-5. Nearly 1,600 delegates met in Montreal to promote Canada as one of the world’s premier travel destinations to International buyers.

During the four-day marketplace, Canadian suppliers including hoteliers, attractions, destinations and receptive operators met with tour operators who bring International inbound groups into the country.

NTA was represented in the Tourism Mall, where delegates could visit relevant industry associations, transportation providers and Travel Trade Media. NTA’s participation was intended to raise awareness about the association and its members. The Tour Operator Receptive Services in North America Directory was promoted to International buyers and recruitment efforts were targeted at both Canadian suppliers and International buyers.

This is the fourth year that NTA has attended Rendez-Vous Canada and the third year that NTA has exhibited in the Tourism Mall.

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NTA Election Process Change is in the Air

With NTA’s election season about to begin, now is your chance to play a larger role in your association.

"Serving on the NTA Board of Directors was an extremely rewarding experience for me," said past NTA Chairman and current Nominating Committee Chair Charlie McIlvain, CTP. "Our committee wants to hear from members who qualify to serve and are interested in learning more about taking the next step in their volunteer leadership growth."

Want to be considered? The Nominating Committee will accept interest forms through the end of May. The committee will utilize the forms and also learn about potential candidates through written profiles, questionnaires and personal interviews. The committee will then formally nominate the individuals they feel deserve their recommendation. Those receiving a nomination will be announced to the full membership in early July via Tuesday.

What’s changing? A bylaw amendment approved by tour operator members last December means some changes have been made to this year’s election process. The most significant change is that the elections for director positions will take place prior to the Annual Convention. The Nominating Committee will be making nominations in June for three tour operator seats, one tour supplier seat, and one DMO seat to fulfill two-year terms.

Voting will be conducted by e-mail or mail ballots, and the election results will be published in Tuesday in late October.

What’s staying the same? Nominations will also be made in June for the officer positions of vice chair, treasurer and secretary, which each have one-year terms. The election of officers will conclude at its traditional time: at the Tour Operator Annual Meeting at Convention after each officer candidate has made a speech. Tour operators not attending Convention will be able to cast their ballots by e-mail or mail prior to Convention.

How to qualify There are two ways to qualify to run for the NTA board. One way is to have served two years as a member of an NTA committee, council, task force, or related board of directors.

The other way is to meet three of the following five criteria:

  • serving at least one term of subcommittee/committee service
  • being employed by an NTA member for no less than five years
  • achieving the certified tour professional (CTP) designation
  • participating in 10 NTA Annual Conventions and/or NTA Tour Operator Spring Meets/Spring Exchanges
  • serving as a Convention volunteer for three years

    Keep reading Tuesday to find out more about the nominations process, learn more about the candidates and be reminded of the voting deadline.

    All interest forms are due to NTA by May 30. If you have any questions or wish to obtain a form, contact Janna Clark at

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    National Tourism Foundation Unveils New Web Site

    The National Tourism Foundation’s Web site has been redesigned to offer more educational and networking opportunities for industry professionals and students.

    The National Tourism Foundation unveiled its new Web site this week. The renovated site is designed to meet the needs of students, educators and professionals. The site was launched on Friday and it should be visible on all servers today.

    Navigating the Foundation Web site is easy. The homepage displays links to current news and announcements, so users have immediate access to vital information. The site is divided into the following categories: About Us, Students & Educators, Professionals, Hall of Fame, Events & Programs, Tourism Research and How You Can Help. Placing your mouse over any of the main links will reveal a sample list of features located within that section.

    Students and educators will find the site valuable for planning careers in travel and tourism. The new site features searches for post-secondary schools and internships. And a database of job openings will be available in the coming weeks. The new site also includes details on the Foundation’s scholarships, grants and programs.

    Foundation supporters will appreciate the versatility of the redesign. Nomination forms for the Foundation Board of Trustees and the Hall of Fame can be submitted online, and more forms will be available electronically in the future. Travel-and-tourism-related businesses can find employees by adding job openings and internship opportunities to the searchable databases or reviewing the resumes of recent Foundation award recipients.

    Many of the site’s enhancements give industry professionals a way to reach out to travel and tourism students. The launch also marks the debut of Practitioners in the Classroom, a program aimed at connecting students with knowledgeable, experienced members of the industry. By completing an online questionnaire, practitioners can volunteer to speak to classes of post-secondary students or mentor students through e-mail exchanges.

    More information on Practitioners in the Classroom will be distributed soon. In the meantime, visit for all the details on this program and the many other features provided by the National Tourism Foundation Web site.

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    Reserve Your Ticket for the June 10 Hall of Fame Dinner

    William E. La Macchia, president, Mark Travel Corp.

    William E. La Macchia, president of the Mark Travel Corporation, will be inducted into the National Tourism Foundation Hall of Fame during a formal ceremony at the Westin Chicago River North on June 10, 2004.

    La Macchia began his career as a travel agent in 1963, and in 1974, founded Funjet Vacations. Nine years later, he established the Mark Travel Corporation to serve as parent company to Funjet Vacations and other travel-related brands.

    Today, The Mark Travel Corporation is recognized as one of the largest and most diversified leisure travel companies in the United States. Headquartered in Milwaukee, the company owns and manages 17 of the nation’s most respected leisure travel vacation companies, employs more than 1,500 people, operates 12 offices worldwide and serves more than 2.5 million passengers each year.

    The Foundation will host a silent auction in conjunction with the evening’s festivities. Proceeds will support the scholarships, internships, research grants and other programs offered by the Foundation for the benefit of today’s travel and tourism students.

    The 2004 Hall of Fame Dinner is sponsored by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., MGM MIRAGE, Sandals and Beaches Resorts and the Mexican Caribbean Friends of the Foundation: Cancun Visitors and Convention Bureau, Riviera Maya Hotel Association, Cozumel Hotel Association and Quintana Roo Hotel Association.

    For ticket and hotel information, call 800-682-8886 or click here.

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    NTA and GLAMER Launch 2004 Perfect Match Program

    Perfect Match, a lead-generating program offered exclusively to NTA tour operator members, is now officially underway. Sign up information was e-mailed to all tour operators on May 3.

    Through the Perfect Match Program, tour operators select up to 25 tours or tour types that they offer and 10 GLAMER show cities from which they would like to receive leads. During the shows, group leaders indicate which tours they are interested in taking by completing a questionnaire. The information is then electronically cross-referenced, resulting in a "perfect match" of group leaders looking for products offered by participating tour operators.

    This year, the program has gone hi-tech through an online registration system and all leads will be e-mailed to tour operators, rather than faxed. The goal of conducting the program electronically is to provide a more user-friendly distribution system of the leads so tour operators can follow up in a timely manner on all requests.

    If you have questions about the Perfect Match program, please contact GLAMER at 800-628-0993.

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    Be in the August Courier spotlight!

    Tour suppliers and DMOs, your business can play a starring role in the August issue of Courier when you choose to advertise in our special Theatre Guide feature story.

    Grab a front row seat in this dynamic special interest article, which will include cutting-edge product ideas, new twists on traditional attractions and observations from those who are doing successful theatre-oriented packages.

    And don’t forget … cover positions are also still available.

    In addition, the August issue will also offer: Travel Guides for Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin, as well as a Regional Review of New England

    Space Deadline: Friday, May 28
    Material Deadline: Friday, June 11

    Reserve your space today in the #1 magazine read by NTA tour operators! And be sure to plan your 2005 marketing strategy by looking over the 2005 Courier Editorial Calendar. To access the calendar, click here. To receive the calendar via fax or e-mail, contact Karla DiNardo at or at 800-682-8886, ext. 4232.

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    Ask the Expert: Ralph Weickel Answers Questions About Business, Finance

    Operating a small travel business in today’s economy is full of challenges. Understanding changes in tax law, developing marketing strategies, managing risk and establishing a sound financial plan are only a few of the business concepts critical to the success of small business owners.

    NTA is excited to offer the expertise of Ralph Weickel of Performance Management to answer any of your questions on small business and financial issues. For those who heard Ralph speak at the Tour Operator Spring Meet in Little Rock, you know he has a wealth of knowledge and information on a variety of small business topics. Ralph’s advice is free to NTA members so be sure to take advantage of this great opportunity!

    To contact Ralph simply click here, or go to NTA Online, click on ‘Research’ under the Main Menu and then click on ‘Ask the Expert.’ Ralph will be available for questions on an ongoing basis so be sure to use the ‘Ask the Expert’ feature as often as needed. You may also access the audio and PowerPoint presentations from Ralph’s two seminars at Spring Meet. Go to NTA Online and click on the ‘2004 Spring Meet Seminar Audio’ link under the ‘What’s New’ section. If you have questions regarding the ‘Ask the Expert’ feature or the Spring Meet seminar audio or PowerPoints please contact NTA’s Assistant Director of Education, Jason Jones at

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    NTA’s 2004 Profile Form Notebook Renewals have Exclusivity Until May 31, 2004

    It’s that time again … time to renew your advertisement and secure your prime placement in the 2004 Profile Form Notebook for this year’s Annual Convention. Advertisers will receive the first-right-of-refusal until May 31.

    Did you know…

    • NTA tour operators use the Profile Form Notebook all year long to help with tour itinerary planning.
    • All advertisements are full-page, four color and only two spots are available for each state/province-so visibility is prime!
    • The Profile Form Notebook is an extraordinary value

    As a valued advertiser, we don’t want you to miss the opportunity of being included once again in one of NTA’s most valuable resources for NTA tour operators. To renew your advertisement, contact your account executive today by calling 800-682-8886 (U.S. & Canada) or 859-226-4444.

    Kelley Burchell, Eastern Region, ext. 4241 or Wendy Payne, Central Region, ext. 4273 or Contact either Kelley or Wendy for Western Region and International renewals

    *If you did not advertise last year, but are interested in being included in this year’s Profile Form Notebook, please contact your account executive to be included on our waiting list.

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    Vacation Behavior: Half of Americans Who Stay in Hotels Admit They Do Things on Vacation They Don’t Do at Home

    This summer, nearly three out of five Americans who have ever stayed in a hotel for leisure (59%) plan to do so again. What will we be doing behind closed doors?

    According to the Orbitz "Hotel Habits" Survey, 52 percent of adult Americans who have stayed in a hotel for leisure do things in a hotel that they don’t normally do at home, like throwing towels on the floor (25%), using more towels than necessary since they don’t have to do the laundry (24%), eating in bed (19%) or leaving the television on when not in the room (13%). Other hotel-specific activities included ordering pay-per-view movies (10%), taking a bath (7%) and other miscellaneous activities they reserve for out-of-their-home behavior (10%).

    As for sneaking things out of hotel rooms, it’s no surprise that 61 percent of people nab the toiletries, but almost 20 percent of respondents have or have considered taking the toiletries off the housekeeping cart when the housekeeper isn’t looking. Seems as though males ages 18 – 35 confuse the housekeeping cart with the shopping cart, as 32 percent of this demographic (almost one in three) admitted to taking or considering taking toiletries off the housekeeping cart. Other "souvenirs" include towels (18%), ashtrays (14%), bathrobes (2%) and bathmats (2%).

    The survey also reveals what Americans have snuck into hotel rooms, including extra people (29%), cigarettes in a non-smoking room (12%) and pets (11%). How many people can you fit in one bed? Ask the 52 percent of 18 – 34 year olds who have snuck extra people into their hotel rooms. Some hotel guests are less likely to pull the sheets over the check-in desk’s eyes, such as married people; only 19 percent of whom have snuck extra people in as compared to 48 percent of singles. (Source: Travel Wire News)

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