Let’s Do This Again | A Note about Your Privacy
October 9, 2012
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Let’s Do This Again
A Note about Your Privacy
Member Gives ‘Insider’ Tips for Convention Success
Why Track? It’s Important for Everyone
Member Visits HQ to Boost China Business
Taiwan Joins U.S. Visa Waiver Program
Source for Traffic Updates in D.C. Area
Don’t Fixate on Facebook Likes—View Visitors Instead
Industry News and Updates
NTA Job Center
Your NTA family will be gathering together again in Orlando, Jan. 20-24, at Travel Exchange. And with the addition of the United Motorcoach Association expo this year, you’ll be experiencing a whole new group of buyers and sellers! This is the show for organizations looking for growth.
"I look forward to NTA each year, to renew friendships and make new contacts," said Katrina White, of the Rhode Island Tourism Division. "The 10-minute appointment format for DMOs allows me to build itineraries and book groups on the spot, and our affordable sponsorship gives us the opportunity to be on a level playing field with destinations with bigger budgets. Travel Exchange is on the ‘must-attend’ list for Rhode Island Tourism every year."
Are you registered? It’s time!
- Appointment scheduling is open now.
- Sightseeing tours are filling up fast! Hurry, there are only a limited number of seats available.
- Hotels rooms are also going fast; register here and reserve your room today!
Join your fellow NTA members at our annual get-together for business, education, fun and networking. Who knows, maybe you’ll be starring in next year’s video!
In this age of identity theft, we want to let you know that NTA is very protective of your information, especially electronic info. Your association employs a set of policies and procedures geared to safeguard your information, according to Katey Pease, NTA’s director of operations and services.
"We use VeriSign approved-payment processing, and we don’t store credit card numbers electronically," Pease said. "Also, we destroy credit card information provided on mailed or faxed forms."
In regard to email addresses, Pease said NTA’s new online search does not show email addresses unless the user is logged into the website as a member. This arrangement prevents email extractors* from mining member email addresses.
"And NTA never sells email addresses," Pease added. "Membership lists are available to non-members for purchase, but only in printed form with postal-mailing addresses. Only members have access to email contact info for other members."
If you have questions about NTA policies, or if you believe the integrity of your information has been threatened, contact us right away.
*Email extractors are commonly used to gather email addresses from websites and Internet forums, generating lists for the purpose of sending spam. A powerful email extractor can find more than 100 email addresses per minute. The resulting list can be pasted into the "sent to" box of a sophisticated email program, allowing an unsolicited e-mail message to be sent to thousands of email addresses in a short period of time with minimal human effort.
The recording of the Travel Exchange Insider Webinar is now available. The session, hosted by NTA HQ’s Lori Rempe and Katey Pease, dishes out tips and details for Travel Exchange, including business appointments, overall schedule and networking events.
A third member of the webcast team, NTA Member Tara Thomas, sales and marketing coordinator for The Old Spaghetti Factory, shares what worked at her first convention last year. Here’s what she recommends:
- Serve as a volunteer to get a feel for the culture and meet more members.
- Submit the maximum number of appointment request to increase your chances of meeting with more potential clients.
- Do your homework: Study the company profiles of your appointments and prepare specific questions.
- (For suppliers) Team up with your DMO to maximize the number of new contacts.
- Participate! Go to as many receptions and optional events as you can and get to know other members.
To catch the whole show, follow this link to the First-timer’s Program page on the Travel Exchange website. (And BTW, you don’t have to be a first-timer to benefit from the webinar.)
Tour operators: Tracking allows DMOs to track the economic impact that packaged travel has on their region. A simple step like this means so much to your DMO colleague’s ability to determine ROI and continue to provide NTA tour operators with the services you have all come to appreciate and rely upon.
It’s an easy process and can be done before or after the tour:
- Log in to the ROI/Tracking System. Select the country, state or province and city you wish to look up. (A list of DMO members who meet your selected criteria will appear.)
- Check as many DMOs from the list as you’d like and click "Itinerary Setup" at the bottom of the page. (Useful Tip: The state/provincial/country DMOs are highlighted in green. The system will automatically include that DMO in the "cc" box on any email you send. You can remove them from the "cc" box before you send the email, if you wish.)
- An email message will automatically open. Include your own email address in the "cc" box to receive a copy. Include your name, company, address and phone so the receiving DMO knows who to thank! (And don’t forget to include the total number of room nights.) In the text message box, you can either type a message to the DMO or browse for a file of your complete itinerary document and attach it. When finished, click "Send Itinerary" and you’re done!
"We track because we know we’re helping our partners, our DMOs and our suppliers!"
—Cathy Greteman, Star Destinations
NTA Member Steve Uelner, president of Country Travel DISCOVERIES in Wisconsin, visited NTA Headquarters recently to meet with Haybina Hao, director of international development. Uelner’s company provides unique "off-the-beaten-path experiences," and he hopes to increase his company’s involvement with the growing China inbound market.
"Haybina provided a number of valuable suggestions for bringing in Chinese groups to experience our tours, and with her input we will be developing a marketing plan in the near future," Uelner said. "With NTA’s assistance, we would like to initiate promotions to the China market in 2013."
With in-house expertise, NTA assists members in exploring or expanding into the China inbound market. Please contact Haybina directly if you have questions.
Taiwan became the newest addition to the U.S. Visa Waiver Program on Tuesday, making travel to the United States simpler for thousands of Taiwan passport holders. The program permits visa-free travel for eligible travelers visiting the U.S. for 90 days or fewer for business or tourism.
Like travelers from the other 36 visa-waiver countries, eligible Taiwan passport holders will be required to apply for advanced authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization. Those with an approved ESTA will be able to visit the United States without visas as of Nov. 1, 2012.
Adding a country to the Visa Waiver Program can elevate tourism rapidly. At the 2012 Grassroots Congressional Travel Summit in Washington, U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawai‘i, described the program’s immediate impact on inbound tourism in her state. "When South Korea became a visa-waiver country, we saw a 59 percent increase in the number of South Korean visitors to Hawaii."
For more information, visit the Q&A webpage maintained by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Washington, D.C., offers myriad options for visitors, whether they’re there to learn, lobby, sightsee or witness the inauguration of a president. The city also offers options for motorcoach drivers and group leaders who must occasionally change course and navigate around traffic accidents, construction sites, large crowds and interrupted Metrorail service.
Capital Region Updates provides information, updated twice daily, about planned and accidental disruptions to traffic and mass transit systems in Washington, D.C., and the surrounding region. The site has information from federal and local branches of government in the National Capital Region. To receive regular updates by email, contact Eric Hauser of the Homeland Security Emergency Management Agency.
Facebook "Likes" are among the most popular indicators of a destination or attraction’s social media marketing efforts. There are better ways, though, to measure success.
According to an article on Tnooz.com, there are several steps you can take to find out how many of your fans have actually visited your place, rather than "liking" you solely to enter a contest or get information. The steps include maximizing the data that Facebook tracks, such as the new "Were Here" data, which reveals check-ins and photo locations tagged around your destination or attraction.
We’re only scratching the surface of the ideas discussed in the article. Go here for the full story.
- After Visit Florida’s CEO, Chris Thompson, was named president and CEO of Brand USA, the search for a new leader in Florida began.
- With higher occupancy rates and daily fares, U.S. hotels are projected to spend $5 billion on improvements during 2012-up 33 percent from last year-mostly on renovated lobbies, upgraded exercise rooms and other amenities such as new beds, flat-screen TVs and high-speed Internet access.
- An Australian product-distribution strategy, which promotes small businesses and utilizes DMOs, could serve as a template for other tourism boards, including Brand USA.
Sun Tours is seeking a director of operations.
Sun Tours is a traditional tour operator based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, that sends mostly senior citizens on bus and intermodal tours throughout the United States and Canada. We have been under the same management for 35 years and a member of NTA since 1988. For more information about Sun Tours, please visit our website: www.suntoursus.com .
Our director of operations oversees two other people in our operations department while also handling tours him/herself.
Applicants should be very experienced in tour operations in the U.S. (and/or Canada), fearless negotiators, relentless advocates on behalf of our clients, meticulous with details, and excited to live in Albuquerque.
To apply for this position, please email your resume to Karl Storch, president of Sun Tours, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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