Travel Weekly's Home-based Agent E-letter: July 23, 2007

NEST, the Network of Entrepreneurs Selling Travel, said 65 home-based agents have signed on with the marketing group since January. NEST now has a total of 410 home-based agencies. NEST was founded in 2004 by American Marketing Group and recruited home-based agencies, with or without ARC or IATAN accreditation, that place their business directly with suppliers rather than through host agencies. In other NEST news, the organization recently reached preferred-supplier agreements with DuVine Adventures, Uniworld Grand River Cruising, Mayflower Tours, Homeric Tours, AirparkUSA, STAR Service Online and Office Depot.

NEW JERSEY HOME-BASED AGENT SEMINARS, an informal organization run by a home-based retailer, has events coming up that might interest agents in the Garden State. Frank Hryszkanich, who operates his home-based agency, Travel, Ports & Voyages, in Old Bridge, N.J., said he started the seminars because theres "very little training going on" in the area. Theres no membership fee to join Hryszkanichs group, and he said all home-based and brick-and-mortar agents can attend." Hryszkanich holds seminars throughout the year, and in November is planning a home-based agent trade show in East Brunswick, N.J. Exhibiting vendors include Tourlite International, CIE Tours, Homeric Tours, Mark Travel, Tauck Tours, Celebrity, Carnival and Royal Caribbean. There will be a $10 admission fee. For more information on the show and future seminars, call 732-251-1775.

OSSN, the Outside Sales Support Network, will hold its 2007 Fall International Conference in Greece from Oct. 16 to 26. The event, dubbed the Garden of the Gods II conference (the group held its first fall confab in Athens 10 years ago), features five days in Athens and a three-night cruise in the Aegean Sea aboard Louis Cruises Opera. A pre-conference stay on Mykonos is being offered. Educational sessions and seminars are planned, including several sponsored by the Greek National Tourist Office designed to show retailers how to package the destination. Homeric Tours and Lufthansa are OSSNs partners for the conference. Costs and sign-up details are at www.ossn.com.

THROUGH THE PORT HOLE

Carnival Cruise Lines is sending its newest ship, the Carnival Splendor, to South America in 2009. The move will mark the lines entry into the destination. The ship will sail three 14- to 18-day trips to Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Ecuador, Chile and Peru beginning in January 2009.

FAM OF THE WEEK

Egypt

Trip: Visits Aswan, Cairo, Edfu, Esna and Luxor.

Departure: Sept. 12 from New York to Cairo via Egypt Air.

Length: Eight nights, including a five-day Nile River cruise on the Oberoi Philae.

Sponsor: Big Five Tours & Expeditions, Stuart, Fla.

Cost: $1,950 per person, double. Includes international air, hotel, the cruise, all meals, flights within Egypt, sightseeing and entrance fees. Also includes a site inspection of the Oberoi Zahra.

Noteworthy: The rate is valid for IATAN agents only. No single supplements are available. The companion rate is $2,250.

Contact: (800) 244-3483, Ext. 2209; fax: (772) 287-5990; e-mail: [email protected].

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