July 19, 2005
Tuesday Newsletter July 19, 2005
July 19, 2005: Volume 25; Issue 22
NTA is ready to rock ‘n’ roll in Detroit, and now it’s time for you to get ready to research ‘n’ request!
Appointment scheduling for the 2005 Annual Convention will open on NTA Online tomorrow (July 20) and will run through Sept. 20. You can access the scheduling system and begin preparing your "wish list" for Tour & Travel Exchange® appointments, by clicking on the link on the right-hand side of NTA Online under "What’s New" that says "Appointment Scheduling." The link won’t appear until the system is activated tomorrow at 8 a.m. ET.
Our state-of-the-art appointment scheduling system has many special features that will aid you during your research and selection processes. To assist your prospective business partners, please be sure your information in our records is current. Take a moment to update your company profile and make any necessary membership changes by clicking here. You’ll need your individual ID and password and, if you don’t have it, please call your Member Services Department at 800-682-8886 (U.S. and Canada) or 859-226-4444. We’ll be happy to pass the information along and help you make your updates.
Watch your inbox tomorrow for an e-mail that will provide you with the information you will need to make your appointment requests for Convention.
Better Business. Better Be There.
Hello to you all. I wanted to first thank every member who took the time to complete the first round of our comprehensive Member Assessment surveys – the Benefit Analysis. We had around a 20 percent response rate overall, and I will be letting you know the results of that survey very soon.
I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know that the second round of surveys will be heading your way next week. This is the updating of the Forward Together survey that was done in 2002. For the many members who have utilized this information over the years, you’ll know that it is a great way to find out how your colleagues prefer to do business, Plus, it will be very interesting to see if any major changes have occurred in how business is done between tour operators and the various suppliers and destinations that they work with since we last conducted this study.
I have been hearing a lot of discussion on my Chairman’s Conversation Club calls recently about booking times, and I have seen some questions posted on the forums about comp policies. This survey will help track that trend so we can see what has happened to the booking timelines since 2002. It also can help suppliers and DMOs answer the question "what does the tour operator prefer?" when it comes to many policies and amenities. It is a great tool for all of us.
Again, I know that time is precious and, while it will take you around 20 minutes to complete the survey, please know it is your time and efforts on projects like these that drives your association.
So keep an eye out for the next round of surveys, and I thank you in advance for taking the time to complete them. If you have any questions about any of our surveys, please contact Sandy Stansfield, CTP, NTA research analyst, at email@example.com.
Remember your first NTA Annual Convention? There was a lot to prepare and even more to learn. Wouldn’t it have been nice to have a mentor? This is your chance to fill that role for someone else and make a difference.
By signing up to be a Convention Buddy, you can lend some seasoned advice to a rookie as they prepare for their first NTA Convention. This role, unlike many of the other volunteer opportunities for Annual Convention, requires you to get in touch with the first-timer you are paired with before you head to Detroit.
You can sign up on NTA Online to be a Buddy, or to volunteer in a number of other capacities at Convention. We’ve made it easy for you to select your area of preference and time slots that best suit your schedule.
If you have questions or want to speak to someone, please contact Wendy Payne via e-mail or by calling 800-682-8886, ext. 4291 (U.S. and Canada) or 859-226-4291.
If you’ve already signed up for your ".travel" names, you should have received an e-mail notifying you if your eligibility has been approved. Once you’ve gotten approval, you can use your self-selected user ID and password to go back to the Pre-Authentication Web site and keep up with your Names List.
Early on, your approved Names List will not include any "additional names" (a trademark, usual business name, etc.) that you entered on your authentication information. However the authentication system also will automatically generate eligible variations on any legal names for your consideration. With this in mind, it is likely you will see names on your Names List, even if you did not enter some of them in your authentication information.
Your Names List will begin to fill up with approved names you did request once NTA has reviewed your supporting documents. We will validate each one of your additional names, and then those names will be placed on your Names List, too. Keep in mind, it may take a 48 hours for your complete Names List to appear.
When you review your Names List you also may notice that some names or acronyms do not appear on your list, even though you have submitted them (and the proper supporting documents). The reason is that some names are on the ".travel" Reserved List. Reserved names fall into three categories – ICANN terms; generic industry terms, such as "air", "cruise", "hotel;" and place names, such as the names of cities, states and heritage or sacred sites. You may still get these names, but it will take longer to determine cases for names on the Reserved List, as these are decided on by the ".travel" registry, Tralliance.
For more information regarding Names Lists, click here.
If you missed the Web seminars NTA held regarding the specifics of obtaining a ".travel" domain name, you can now access a recording of those sessions on NTA Online. Both the session targeted to the DMOs, and the one for the tour operators and tour suppliers are available if you click here and go to the bottom of the page.
The recordings allow you to view the session and hear the Q&A portion, which may answer your questions about this important initiative. The authentication process for ".travel" names remains open and is available online at that same link.
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 during their careers. The NTA Board of Directors established the award in 2003 to honor the late Everidge, owner and president of Shenandoah Tours Inc., and his lifetime commitment to NTA. Everidge, who died in 2001, served as president of the association in 1996.
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.
All nominees should have:
Nominations for the award, which will be presented in Detroit at the Annual Convention, are due by Sept. 1 and should be submitted to Ashley Lowe via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions, call her at 800-682-8886, ext. 4252 (U.S. and Canada) or 859-226-4252.
Pack your kilt and join your NTA and USTOA colleagues in breathtaking Scotland, Oct. 19-23, 2005, for Tourism Cares’ 5th Annual Leadership Summit. The Summit, this year hosted by VisitScotland, gives buyers and sellers of travel the opportunity to meet one-on-one in an informal networking environment.
All participants will have a choice of many activities including sightseeing in Edinburgh and the famous Scottish highlands, falconry, golfing at St. Andrews and Gleneagles and more. In addition to staying at the fabulous Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh and at the Gleneagles Hotel, participants will enjoy fabulous dining venues and take part in a gala at the famous Stirling Castle. There’s even a post-Summit extension to Turnberry for those who can’t get enough of Scotland’s beauty.
Travel buyers may qualify to be invited guests and sponsorship is very reasonable. To learn more about buyer participation and about opportunities to be a sponsor, visit http://www.tourismcaresfortomorrow.org/, e-mail email@example.com, or call 305-234-1077.
Have a group that wants to do some hiking and do some good at the same time? Then you’ll want to check out the American Hiking Society’s Volunteer Vacations offerings. For more than 25 years, the American Hiking Society has sent hundreds of volunteers into America’s National Parks, forests and rangelands to revitalize many hiking trails through its Volunteer Vacations program.
Volunteer Vacations are geared for groups of 10-14 and the one- to two-week projects take place at destinations across the United States. Participants help restore deteriorating trails and build new ones, while getting to hike some of America’s most scenic paths. More than a program that rehabilitates trails, Volunteer Vacations fosters public land stewardship and provides volunteers the opportunity to give back to the trails they love and have a great time doing it.
This and other useful information pertaining to adventure travel can be accessed through NTA’s Areas of Marketing and Interest program’s Web pages on NTA Online. You can find additional helpful resources and learn about the Active & Adventure travel AIM by clicking here.
Last week the tourism industry lost a very dear friend when Hilda B. Ray passed away. Ray worked many years at Michaud Tours in Salem, Mass., before purchasing Salem-based Hawthorne Tours in the 1980s.
During her years at Hawthorne Tours, she was very involved in the North of Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Salem Chamber of Commerce the International Federation of Women & Travel. She was a regular at NTA Annual Convention and worked diligently to help further her region’s goals of being competitive in the hospitality industry. She also developed an international guide to tipping, which became a valuable industry tool detailing tipping customs for most countries around the world.
To celebrate Ray’s life, Hawthorne Tours is inviting you to gather at Finz’s Restaurant in Salem, Mass., Aug. 2 at 6 p.m. ET. Refreshments will be served and, if you plan to attend, please RSVP to Anne Turcotte at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hawthorne Tours also is setting up a one-time scholarship for a Marblehead Middle School’s trip to Quebec City next spring and making a donation to the Cancer Society. If you would like help in this way, you can mail memorial checks to Hawthorne Tours, 57 Wharf Street, Suite 2F, Pickering Wharf, Salem, MA 01970.
Why spend the time and effort shipping or carrying your company profile sheets to NTA’s Annual Convention when you can easily have them pre-inserted into the notebook and waiting on the Tour & Travel Exchange® tables when you arrive? The Profile Form Notebook is your best bet on getting your company profile in the hands of every attending delegate. Just fit all you want onto a double-sided profile sheet and send your material to us to put behind your province, state or international tab.
Valuable tab advertisement positions also are still available but, with only two advertisements per tab, space is limited. Many are already reserved, so give your account executive a call today at 800-682-8886, ext. 4238 (U.S. and Canada) or 859-226-4238 to learn how you can reserve a prime advertisement space on your state, province or international tab.
Annual Convention also offers other publications to help get your message out. Click here to learn more about the Convention Daily newsletter, the October issue of Courier and sponsorship opportunities.