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Tuesday Newsletter

July 18, 2006

Tuesday Newsletter July 18, 2006
Volume 26: Issue 29

This issue of Tuesday is sponsored by VisitBritain. Find out more about developing tours to Britain by requesting an appointment with VisitBritain at this year’s NTA Convention. In the meantime visit our new Britain for Tour Operators Web site,
Interested in becoming a sponsor for Tuesday? Contact Karla DiNardo at

Today’s Headlines
  • Appointment Scheduling Launches Wednesday at Noon
  • Update from the NTA Leadership Team, Committee Meetings
  • Strategic Planning Update: Cost Savings Will Allow NTA to Invest in Member Value
  • Nominations Sought for Bob Everidge Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Benefit Basics: Tour20 Group Establishes Benchmarks for Tour Companies
  • 2006-07 NTA Membership Directory Addendum
  • Tourism Cares Distributes Gulf Coast Restoration Funds
  • TourismAfrica2006 Takes Place Sept. 10-15
  • Check Out These Newly Available Convention Sponsorships

    Appointment Scheduling Launches Wednesday at Noon

    NTA’s online appointment scheduling system will officially open at noon (ET) on Wednesday, July 19, so that delegates who are participating in the Tour & Travel Exchange at the 2006 NTA Annual Convention may begin requesting their appointments.

    The request phase will run through Sept. 19, and delegates will need their registration number, which is printed on the top right of their confirmation form.

    To get started, delegates may visit anytime before the deadline to research companies that they would like to meet with at Convention and to create their request lists. Additionally, delegates can use the online Message Center to view and print out profile forms, watch for additions and cancellations and find a wealth of information on how to make the most of their Convention experience.

    New this year is "Direct Request Scheduling." Once the requests are run and the appointment schedules are posted online, members will be able to make direct requests of one another prior to Convention through the scheduling system to fill in the open times or make appointments with latecomers. Please watch Tuesday for more information on this exciting online enhancement.

    For more information on appointment scheduling, click here or contact NTA by calling 800.682.8886 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.226.4444 or e-mailing

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    Update from the NTA Leadership Team, Committee Meetings

    NTA’s 58-member Leadership Team gathered this past weekend in Lexington, Ky. Committee meetings were a major part of the sessions, as the team met as a full group then broke into smaller groups for committee meetings to cover specific topics including appointment scheduling and NTA’s Grassroots Symposium, among other issues.

    To kick off the meeting, NTA Chairman and CEO Judith Thomas, CTP, gave the team an overview of association news since they were together in Banff in January. In her update, Thomas covered retention and recruitment of members, NTA’s upcoming Annual Convention, recent work on the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, NTA’s new Tour20 Group, the latest on NTA’s work on the tracking issue and much more. Also, Thomas updated the group on outcomes from the board’s strategic planning session held earlier this year. See related story on this below in this issue of Tuesday.

    For a complete review of Thomas’ association update and highlights of committee discussions, please click here. To learn more about serving on NTA’s 2007 Leadership Team, click here.

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    Strategic Planning Update: Cost Savings Will Allow NTA to Invest in Member Value

    During this past weekend’s Leadership meeting, NTA Chairman and CEO Judith Thomas, CTP, reported that the NTA Board of Directors had recently set plans in motion that will result in an annual savings on the association’s management fee, which will allow NTA to invest in initiatives to add value for the members and help grow the association.

    As reported in an earlier issue of Tuesday, during the NTA board’s strategic planning session in April, it conducted a thorough review of the association’s programs and services. The board evaluated member value and relevance of all programs and services, discussing which should continue, which should be modified and which should be added.

    The board concluded that it did not want to make significant changes in the programs and services the members receive however, it did have ideas for modifying some existing programs, discontinuing others that did not offer sufficient member value and exploring some new programming ideas for the future.

    Working in concert with Host Communications, NTA’s management firm since 1974, the board was able to identify programming and service changes that allowed Host to propose a streamlined management structure through a reduction of 7.5 positions. This change resulted in more than $257,000 in annual salary cost savings on its management fee that NTA can now reinvest in member programming and growth initiatives for the association. The board also approved the concept of shared services staffing, which means using groups of Host employees to provide certain internal, behind-the-scenes services to multiple associations managed by Host, including NTA.

    "This was a tough and tedious process, but very rewarding," said Thomas. "As I informed the Leadership Team, I felt that this year’s strategic planning session was one of the most productive and important meetings we have had in years."

    "In working with Host Communications and our senior staff, we were able to find significant savings in our management fee that will not result in significant programming changes or have an impact on the service our members receive. In fact, these changes will free up valuable time and resources so that we will be able to focus on bigger initiatives that will increase member value."

    For a complete look at the changes in programs, please click here.

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    Nominations Sought for Bob Everidge Lifetime Achievement Award

    NTA members are encouraged to send in nominations for the Bob Everidge Lifetime Achievement Award, which recognizes individuals who have made outstanding, ongoing contributions to NTA and its members. The award was established by the NTA Board of Directors in 2003 to honor the late Everidge, owner and president of Shenandoah Tours Inc., in Staunton, Va., and his lifetime commitment to NTA.

    Any person employed by an NTA member company is eligible to make a nomination which, at minimum, should include a brief narrative (approximately 250 words) about the nominee. Additional material may be included with the narrative. The nomination criteria are as follows:

  • Display active dedication to the mission of NTA and the best interests of its members
  • Extensive volunteer contributions to NTA and its members
  • Consistently conducted himself/herself in a manner in keeping with the ethics, quality and sense of community espoused by NTA
  • A minimum of 20 years involvement in the travel industry that has served to further the interests of NTA and its members

    Nominations for the award, which will be presented in Salt Lake City at the 2006 Annual Convention, are due by Aug. 25 and should be submitted to Celeste Moore at

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    Benefit Basics: Tour20 Group Establishes Benchmarks for Tour Companies

    Have you made the commitment to join a Tour20 Group? The program was developed to help tour operators identify benchmarks that can assist in the creation a more profitable business. The groups provide a way to benchmark various elements of an operator’s tour business, including finances and industry trends.

    There is a $250 fee to participate, which covers the cost of the professional facilitator, printed materials and miscellaneous program costs. Click here to learn more specifics and requirements to join the Tour20 Group.

    There is still time to enroll, but please act by Aug. 4 to secure your spot in a group. To sign up, please complete the registration form and fax it to Lisa Nelson at 859.226.4404. If you have further questions about a Tour20 Group, please e-mail her at

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    2006-07 NTA Membership Directory Addendum

    NTA apologizes to the following members for their incorrect listing in or omission from the 2006-07 Membership Directory. All members are encouraged to note the following corrections in their directories:

    Blue & Gold Fleet
    Cathy Tolentino
    Pier 41 Marine Terminal
    Fisherman’s Wharf
    San Francisco, CA 94587
    Fax: 415.705.5429

    Coach Canada/Trentway-Wagar Inc.
    Michael Webster
    6020 Indian Line
    Mississauga, ON L4V 1G6
    Fax: 905.677.7961

    Contactours & Charter Services
    Daryl Cross
    1726 Wilson Avenue
    San Diego, CA
    Fax: 619.477.0705

    Destination St. John’s
    Jeannette Yetman
    Suite 302
    291 Water Street
    St. John’s, NL A1C 1B9
    Fax: 709.739.8897

    Hospitality Tours
    Ted Nelson
    2 Academy Place
    Orleans, MA 02653
    Fax: 508.240.7900

    International Biblical Tours Inc.
    Doug Muraki
    11251 Coloma Road
    Suite H
    Gold River, CA 95670
    Fax: 916.858.1144

    Rio Rancho Convention & Visitors Bureau
    Greg Pena
    P.O. Box 15550
    Rio Rancho, NM 87174
    Fax: 505.892.8328

    Victories Casino & Hotel
    Sandy Williams
    911 Spring Street
    Petoskey, MI 49770
    Fax: 231.439.5607

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    Tourism Cares Distributes Gulf Coast Restoration Funds

    NTA members may remember the sale of wristbands, to benefit the Gulf Coast, at the 2005 NTA Convention in Detroit. Tourism Cares is proud to announce that, through that effort and others, $100,000 was raised and will be distributed via grants to seven tourism sites in five states along the Gulf Coast. In addition to wristband sales, matching donations from the Trip Mate, Ensemble Travel, Mohegan Sun, Tauck World Discovery, ITMI and Tourism Cares, made this possible.

    "Those who attended the NTA Annual Convention will always remember the disturbing images of the destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina," said Bruce Beckham, executive director of Tourism Cares. "But we are not finished. Green wristbands are still being sold and matched, and NTA has an additional grant that will be announced in the coming weeks."

    The seven recipients include:


  • Beauvoir, Jefferson Davis Home and Presidential Library (Biloxi, Miss.)
  • Lynn Meadows Discovery Center (Gulfport, Miss.)
  • Save our Cemeteries-St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 (New Orleans, La.)
  • The Beaumont Heritage Society-John Jay French House Museum (Beaumont, Texas)
  • The Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum (Biloxi, Miss.)
  • USS ALABAMA Battleship Foundation Inc. (Mobile, Ala.)
  • West Florida Historic Preservation, Inc.-Museum of Commerce (Pensacola, Fla.) top of page

    TourismAfrica2006 Takes Place Sept. 10-15

    NTA has been asked to pass along an invitation for TourismAfrica2006, which will be held Sept 10-15 in Geneva, Switzerland. The show brings together the majority of African countries for a Congress, an exhibition and a Business Development Center.

    The event includes African and international decision-makers concerned with the promotion and development of tourism in Africa. As a veritable promotion platform, TourismAfrica2006 will host delegates from more than 40 countries – by their respective investors, project holders, suppliers of the tourism industry, tour operators, public institutions, airlines – and allow representatives to develop new partnerships and seize the great tourism opportunities offered by the African continent.

    To get registered, please fill out an invitation. For more information, go to or contact Maud Legagneur, tourist promotion coordinator for TourismAfrica2006, at

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    Check Out These Newly Available Convention Sponsorships

    Sponsorship at NTA’s Annual Convention is one of the best ways of increasing your exposure to tour operators. Whether you’re a supplier, DMO or associate member, you can increase your presence through NTA’s sponsorship opportunities, inclusive of a full benefit package.

    Many sponsors renew year after year due to the success of their sponsorship, and you can join that group. The following sponsorships are now available on a first-come, first-served basis:


  • Exchange Scoreboard: Sponsor’s logo, appointment number and time
  • Shoeshine Booth
  • Saturday Luncheon
  • Convention Daily newsletter (back cover)
  • Wine & Cheese Reception (featuring wine from your destination)
  • Hotel Keycards

    Click here for more information or call Karla DiNardo at 800.682.8886, ext. 4232 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.226.4232 or e-mail her at

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