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Tuesday, February 4, 2014
NTA Offers Program for Travel Agents at Annual Conference (Travel Pulse)
NTA, the travel association formerly known as the National Tour Association, is inviting travel agents to attend its annual convention in Los Angeles in February and has lined up two days’ worth of events especially for them.
The NTA Convention, now held in tandem with the UMA Expo of the United Motorcoach Association in a combined event called the Travel Exchange, will take place at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles Feb. 16-20. The program for travel agents will take place Feb. 19-20.
The event will bring together most of its 700-plus tour operator members and thousands of hotels, museums, restaurants, attractions and destinations that are associate members of NTA.
It is the first time a program has been arranged at the NTA convention specifically for travel agents. “Travel agents have been invited to attend for networking before, but this is the first time we have a program for them,” said Suzanne Slavitter, co- owner Sports Empire and chair of the NTA Travel Agent. “This year we have set it up for one-on-one meetings between travel agents and tour operators, and we are offering seminars geared towards agents as well as tour operators.”
ARTA, the Association of Retail Travel Agents, and OSSN, the Outside Sales Support Network, are both on board in partnership with NTA in support of the new travel agent component of NTA’s annual convention.
The centerpiece of the travel agent program is a roundtable networking session between tour operators and travel agents in which travel agents will have their own table stations and tour operators will move from table to table to meet agents and talk. Travel agents will also be able to have one-on-one meetings with representatives of destinations and suppliers.
Educational seminars held on Wednesday, Feb. 19, will also be open to travel agents in attendance. Some are particularly relevant to travel agents, according to Slavitter, such as the seminars on the Hispanic travel market and on faith-based travel.
There will also be a travel agent town hall meeting with tour operators, a travel agent and a supplier on a panel for discussion of relevant topics.
NTA is giving a $50 Amex gift card to one agent in a drawing this week. All agents who are registered by Friday, Feb. 7, are eligible to win. At the conference, NTA will be giving away $500 Delta vouchers to two agents.
The cost to attend is $49. Agents can sign up at theNTA website.