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November 7, 2012News for travel agents

  Business and Industry Watch 
  • Carnival's chairman says commission cuts may not be needed in U.S.
    Rebating policies that Carnival Corp. implemented in the U.S. several years ago seem effective enough not to warrant a reduction in commissions similar to what the company did in the U.K., Carnival Chairman Micky Arison said during a panel at the World Travel Market in London this week. "While I wouldn't say it's 100% under control, it's been an issue that has been relatively under control in U.S.," Arison said. TravelPulse (11/6) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • IHG's new extended-stay programs focus on comforts of home
    Extended-stay properties under InterContinental Hotels Group are set to undergo a series of upgrades aimed at providing a more comfortable environment for guests, company executives say. The new initiatives include the "lending locker" program at Candlewood Suites hotels, which promotes a community atmosphere among guests by providing typical home items for borrowing. Staybridge Suites is revamping "evening social" events at its properties to cater to its more casual-social guest demographic. (11/6) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide is the travel professional's #1 supporter, now it's your turn to be Starwood's #1 supporter. Voting for the 2012 Travel Weekly Awards closes on Friday, November 9. If you believe Starwood Hotels & Resorts, our nine world-class brands and our commitment to the travel professional and retail travel agency segment needs recognition VOTE for us and ask fellow colleagues and friends to too.

  Trends and Technology 
  • Olympics, taxation are key travel-industry influences, report shows
    The World Travel Market in London this week highlights several major issues that are expected to affect global travel. Among them is the Olympics, which is expected to continue demand for past and future host countries. Taxation remains a serious concern for the global travel industry, with increasing air-duty and hotel taxes in certain countries predicted to have a negative effect on tourism demand, the report says. (11/6) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Airline cuts pose challenge for business travelers
    Business travelers continue to struggle with packed planes, delays and long waiting lines -- all of which can be a result of airlines trimming costs. "Unless you're sitting up front, air travel is a miserable experience these days," said Ed Perkins, contributing editor to USA Today (11/6) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Hotel packages help guests kick their smoking habit
    Hotels including the Champneys in the U.K., the Regency Health Resort in Florida and the Vilalara Thalassa Resort in Portugal are among those that have introduced special packages in recognition of Lung Cancer Awareness Month this month. The programs aim to help guests quit smoking through processes such as hypnotherapy, juice detoxification and acupuncture. HotelChatter (11/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Consumer Travel News 
  Regulatory and Legislative 
  • Effect on tourism is a contentious issue in pro-marijuana measures
    Measures that will loosen restrictions for the recreational use of marijuana in Washington state and Colorado have raised questions about its potential effect on local tourism, this feature says. Opponents in Colorado say the measure could have a negative effect on the state's image. "If Colorado receives international media attention as the first state in the U.S. to legalize marijuana in their constitution, Colorado's brand will be damaged and we may attract fewer conventions and see a decline in leisure travel," said Visit Denver CEO Richard Scharf. USA Today/Dispatches blog (11/5), CNNMoney (11/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Best Practices 
  Small-Business Strategies 
  • Growth is optional
    As a leader, your responsibilities will be different depending on the size of your small business, Josh Patrick of Stage 2 Planning Partners writes. "[T]he point is that a business owner has a choice: You don't have to get swept up in growth," he writes. Running a microbusiness can feel similar to having a job, while running a larger business will require you to develop your management skills. The New York Times (tiered subscription model)/You're The Boss blog (11/1) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • The right way to use social media
    When using social media to build your brand, it's important to engage with your followers and be careful about what you post to avoid offending your customers, writes Hollis Thomases, founder of Web Ad.vantage. You should also vary your messaging on different social media platforms. "[I]f all you do is post the same exact content at the same exact time to all platforms with a push of the button, you will diminish its value on all of them," Thomases writes. Inc. online/Digital Entrepreneur blog (free registration) (11/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  ASTA Spotlight 
  • New ASTAPAC resources for chapters and members
    When it comes to fighting for travel agents at all levels of government, ASTA cannot just rely on the strength of our policy arguments and the good work we do for the traveling public to keep us protected. We have to participate in the political process through the American Society of Travel Agents Political Action Committee (ASTAPAC). A number of new resources are available on to allow members to learn about the PAC including a downloadable authorization solicitation form. Register for our upcoming webinar on ASTAPAC at 2 p.m. EST Dec. 12. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Becoming a travel agent
    Does travel to places like Hong Kong, Machu Picchu, London, Rome and Morocco sound good to you? If so, becoming a travel agent is a great career choice for you. Becoming a Travel Agent is a comprehensive, 25-page booklet that will open up your eyes to the exciting and fast-paced world of a professional travel agent. This educational and entertaining guide will teach you about the travel industry in general and the specifics on beginning your satisfying career as a professional travel agent, all while saving you hours and hours of searching online for information that may or may not be reliable. Find out more on LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Learn more about ASTA ->Resources  |  Conferences  |  Consumer Travel Information  |  Join ASTA

Success is often just an idea away."
--Frank Tyger,
American cartoonist, columnist and humorist

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