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March 21, 2013News for travel agents

  Business and Industry Watch 
  • Country Inns & Suites debuts new branding
    Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group announced that its Country Inns & Suites brand will undergo an overhaul in a bid to attract Generation Y travelers and the male corporate traveler segment. The hotel firm unveiled a prototype for the Generation 4 Country Inns & Suites property, which features enhanced visual designs on the exterior and functional public spaces that are ideal for work or social gatherings. Hotel Interactive (3/18), (3/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
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  Trends and Technology 
  • Kid-friendly cruise programs thrive amid boom in family travel
    Luxury cruise lines are expanding their child-friendly offerings as more travelers go cruising as a family. The children's programs are also helping to draw demand from foreign travelers. "South American, Mexican and Asian travelers tend to travel in big family groups, so the kids' program has grown," said Mimi Weisband, a vice president at Crystal Cruises. Travel Weekly (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Destination of the Week 
  • Visiting the remote Andaman Islands
    Located at the juncture of the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea is an archipelago known as the Andaman Islands. While off the beaten path, lovers of exotic beaches and fans of Sherlock Holmes may be driven to visit these historic isles. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  Home-Based Agent Update 
  • Column: Cross-industry networking could generate fresh ideas
    Travel agents who network outside the travel industry have the opportunity to gain new perspectives they can use to enhance their business, writes Stephanie Lee, owner of Host Agency Reviews. Engaging with people from other fields also offers the opportunity to raise awareness of the value of travel agents, she writes. "It's difficult for people to appreciate the knowledge of a travel agent until they've either worked with one or spoken in-depth with one. It just so happens that when you are networking outside the travel industry, you'll be speaking in-depth with your contacts," Lee writes. (3/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Consumer Travel News 
  • Manchester, England, is a top destination for soccer fans
    Soccer enthusiasts the world over flock to Manchester, England, home to two soccer teams in the English Premier League -- Manchester United and Manchester City. The Old Trafford stadium has an expansive museum that serves as a shrine to all things soccer, with displays recognizing historic events in Manchester United's history as well as celebrated past players and managers. TravelPulse (3/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Regulatory and Legislative 
  • Travel agents successfully oppose tax proposals in 3 states
    Proposed tax measures in the states of Tennessee, Virginia and Minnesota that would have imposed further burdens on travel agents were discarded partly due to grassroots actions by local travel-agent communities. "In all of these cases, the campaigns by travel agents were crucial. Our local agents really stepped up to the plate," said Eben Peck, ASTA's vice president of government affairs. (3/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Best Practices 
  • Column: Shaping public perception is more vital than picking a name
    Whatever they call themselves -- travel agents, travel consultants, trip coaches or travel planners -- people in the travel profession should make it their duty to educate the public about the true role and function of people in their occupation, Richard Earls writes. "[I]t is incumbent on individual travel professionals, travel companies and our leadership to ensure the word gets out to the public you act on behalf of the traveler and that the skill set necessary is one of discipline and dedication," Earls writes. Travel Research Online (3/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Small-Business Strategies 
  • Tapping the power of customers' stories
    Companies can make great use of the stories of satisfied customers by tapping the power of social media, writes Daniel Kushner, co-founder of Oktopost. Ask clients to share their feedback and create customer testimonial videos to share online, he suggests. Another tip: Use "share" buttons on the company site. "Arm your website and email communications with share buttons and empower your prospects and customers to do some of the talking and promoting for you," Kushner writes. B2C Marketing Insider (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Key characteristics of an effective strategy
    One prerequisite for creating a successful strategy for your business is to set specific goals, Geoffrey James writes. "You can't manage what you can't measure. If your goals are vague, you have no idea whether your tactics are achieving them," he writes. In addition, your goals must be attainable and you must develop a plan for achieving them, he writes. Inc. online (free registration)/Sales Source blog (3/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  ASTA Spotlight 
  • 500 qualified agent buyers are coming to Dubai
    Don't miss out on the opportunity to network with valuable industry contacts at ASTA's International Destination Expo (IDE). ASTA's IDE is the only event that offers exhibitors cost-effective ways to build profitable relationships with decision makers. The relationships you will build with this diverse group of buyers from more than 30 different countries will provide a return on investment. Educate travel agents about the special features of your business during numerous networking events. Capture a piece of the growing travel business with a stand at IDE. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Discover the benefits of ASTA's new U.S. Travel Agency Membership Model
    Do you need industry resources for your agency staff? As of Jan. 1, ASTA's U.S. Travel Agent membership transitioned to a company membership in which ASTA membership benefits can now be extended to all employees of ASTA member agencies. Company's annual dues are based on the agency's annual sales volume and will offer extended payment options, such as split payments and discounts for renewing their membership automatically. Take advantage of these exciting new benefits. Join ASTA today. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Learn more about ASTA ->Resources  |  Conferences  |  Consumer Travel Information  |  Join ASTA

A community is like a ship; everyone ought to be prepared to take the helm."
--Henrik Ibsen,
Norwegian playwright

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