Tuesday Newsletter – Aug. 12, 2008
August 12, 2008
Tuesday Newsletter Aug. 12, 2008
|Register today to attend the 2008 NTA Annual Convention in Pittsburgh, Nov. 15-19. Whether your business needs are domestic, inbound, outbound or all of the above, you’ll find the partners you need and the business you want at NTA. Click here to learn more and to register.|
|Interested in becoming a Tuesday sponsor? E-mail Karla DiNardo at karla.dinardo@NTAstaff.com.|
Volume 28, Issue 32
Kevin Pollak to Headline Tour Operator Dinner at Convention
Great Discounts Available for Travel to Pittsburgh
Be a Volunteer at Convention
Sponsorships Available for Convention Luncheons
Convention Promo Videos Available at YouTube
NTA Communicates with Obama Campaign on Tourism Promotion
Versatile entertainer Kevin Pollak will be the featured performer at this year’s Tour Operator Dinner during Annual Convention.
Pollak is best known for his work in major motion pictures, and he has more than 50 movie roles to his credit. He kicked off a successful big screen run in the 1990s with breakout performances in "Avalon" and "A Few Good Men." He then appeared in Academy Award-winner "The Usual Suspects," box-office smash "Grumpy Old Men" and its sequel, "Grumpier Old Men," Martin Scorsese’s "Casino" and the critically acclaimed "End of Days."
Pollak began his career in the late 1970s as a standup comedian and worked the club scene before transitioning to the big screen when he landed a role in the 1988 George Lucas movie, "Willow." While he still appears in movies and on television, Pollak has spent the past few years returning to his comedy roots. He will bring his standup act to the Tour Operator Dinner, which is sponsored again this year by Best Western International Inc., on Saturday, Nov. 15.
In addition to NTA’s Space Share program, which encourages members to seek out car pools and other ride-share options for travel to the Annual Convention in Pittsburgh, NTA has recently announced two new discount programs for Convention attendees.
The first is an update to a previous announcement with Amtrak. Instead of 10 percent fare discounts, Amtrak is now offering 50 percent discounts on rail fares and 25 percent discounts on business class and sleeping car options. Space for this offer is limited so act now.
Additionally, NTA just added its newest transportation discount through American Airlines. American is offering 5 percent off fares for air travel to and from Pittsburgh for Convention, and these special rates will apply to discountable fares booked through American Airlines, American Airlines codeshare partners or One World Alliance partners.
It’s that time again – time to check out all of the ways that you can leave your own personal stamp on the NTA Convention by volunteering in Pittsburgh.
There are many of the usual opportunities – being a registration assistant, a first-timer buddy or a seminar monitor – but there are some new options for 2008, such as serving as a Tour & Travel Exchange Concierge or assisting with pre-luncheon setup in the dining room. And, while giving of your time to make a difference at Convention is probably the top reason you volunteer, it also opens doors to help you meet new people and allows you to go behind-the-scenes to really see what makes the event happen.
While you won’t be outfitted with a cool tan jacket or radio headset, NTA hopes you’ll enjoy your experience and want to sign up to volunteer year after year. If you have questions about volunteering or would like to be a buddy for a first-time delegate, contact NTA Manager of Member Relations Lori Rempe for more information.
As NTA’s Annual Convention quickly approaches, don’t miss out on your chance to sponsor. The Saturday, Wednesday and Issues Luncheon sponsorships are available and present a great opportunity to reach all Convention delegates with stage time. Teaming up with others to co-sponsor these events is a great way to minimize the cost and make a lasting impression. Plus, you’ll have the chance to enjoy great sponsor benefits:
To sponsor or co-sponsor one of these events, please contact NTA Vice President of Sales and Sponsorship Karla DiNardo at 800.682.8886, ext. 4232 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.226.4232. Also, don’t forget to check out the 2008 Sponsorship Guide for additional sponsorship options and information.
Some of NTA’s volunteer leaders took time out during the NTA Leadership Team and Board of Directors meetings last month in Louisville, Kentucky, to shoot some Annual Convention promotional videos. These four short videos, which include different reasons to attend the event, have been posted at www.YouTube.com:
- "Road Trip: Carpool to the 2008 NTA Convention in Pittsburgh"
"Why you must attend the 2008 NTA Convention"
"You better be there"
"Even more reasons why you have to be in Pittsburgh"
YouTube gives you the option of commenting on the videos you view, so you can post a note for your NTA friends about why you are looking forward to Pittsburgh.
More information on the 2008 Convention, which takes place Nov. 15-19, is available on the Convention Web site.
As part of a continuing effort to reach out to both presumed U.S. presidential nominees, NTA Chairman Bob Hoelscher, CTP, and NTA President Lisa Simon, CTP, sent a letter to the Obama campaign concerning comments the candidate made to the Orlando Sentinel. Obama said he’s willing to consider federal tourism promotional funding if "we can quantify the benefits in some meaningful way."
NTA’s response letter cited several studies touting the economic value of travel and tourism promotion, including a Longwoods International study on state tourism promotion that concluded: "Unlike virtually all other government programs, tourism is a revenue generator, not a cost to the state treasury. Our findings demonstrate clearly that enhanced funding … is the wiser course from a public policy perspective."
Presumptive presidential nominee John McCain, when asked about tourism promotional funding during a January appearance in Florida, said, "I, frankly, think that we have ways of promoting the greatness and beauty of the United States without as much federal government [funding] as maybe you would like to see."
NTA will continue efforts to promote packaged travel interests to both candidates as the campaign season winds down. For information on how you can be involved in NTA’s efforts through its industry wide Grassroots Action Network, contact Matt Grayson at 800.682.8886, ext. 4250 (U.S. and Canada) or 859.226.4250.
A fantastic, late-breaking opportunity for NTA tour operators to attend the Pacific Asia Travel Association’s PTM2008, and stay to experience India on the eight-day Magical India Product Development Trip is available.
Akorn Destination Management, with airline partner Jet Airways, is offering a Product Development Trip Sept. 20-28, that will allow NTA tour operators to explore India. PATA also has extended an invitation for NTA members to attend its PTM2008 show being held in Hyderabad, India, Sept. 16-19. You can attend the full conference or the open day on Sept. 19, free of charge.
The Product Development Trip, which takes operators to Agra, the world famous Taj Mahal, Jaipur and Udaipur, starts and ends in Delhi. The trip is open to two registrations per company the registration deadline is Sept. 5. The price is $1,102 for land and in-country air only and a single supplement will add $510 to the cost of the trip.
Additionally, Jet Airways is offering 50 percent off its lowest fares for your flights. Whether your plans include flights in and out of Delhi for the Product Development Trip only, or you wish to fly into Hyderabad for PTM2008 and then out of Delhi after the NTA trip, you can make your arrangements through Jet Airways for any combination of flights.
By 2011, it’s projected that nearly 600,000 Chinese travelers will visit the United States annually. A new publication, NTA’s U.S. Travel Directory, provides a cost-effective way to get your product in front of this audience at the China International Travel Mart in Shanghai.
NTA will distribute the directory at the trade/consumer show to the more than 450 Chinese travel agents who are authorized to bring leisure groups to the United States and to the more than 90,000 Chinese travelers expected to attend CITM in November. Additionally, a copy will be sent to the 160 tour operators approved to work with the Chinese agents through the NTA China Inbound Program.
Existing advertisers receive discounted rates for the following directory options:
Also, all tour operators who are on the approved operator list will receive a free listing containing contact information only. Listings can be upgraded to include a color logo and 75-word description for USD$750 ($1,000 for new advertisers). The space deadline is Sept. 2, and all prices include translation into Mandarin. Additionally, no price advertising is permitted when marketing to Chinese travelers.
As a valued NTA member, you know firsthand how belonging to NTA has helped your business grow and how it has aided in your personal successes. This perfectly positions you to promote NTA to your colleagues and help your association strengthen its membership base. Thanks in part to your member referral efforts, NTA has added more than 120 new tour operators this year.
Members who have helped get the word out receive a complimentary $25 coffee merchant gift card for each tour operator, tour supplier and DMO that joins as a result of that referral. To submit potential new members, e-mail NTA Director of Membership Development Chris Horsley, CTP, and a packet of information will be mailed to the prospect.
The following members have taken an active role in NTA’s recruitment efforts by referring a new company that joined the association the past quarter:
For more information on NTA’s Recruitment Rewards Club, click here.
|To ensure that you’re doing business with an NTA member, go to the NTA Web site home page and click on either "Tour Operator Search" or "DMO/Tour Supplier Search" at the top of the page.|