INTERNATIONAL, a Florida agency with a large network of
independent agents, and eTravCo, a consortium with 6,400 members,
said they are developing online booking engines for home-based
retailers using Galileo Web Services, which enables Web connections
between travel agent applications and the Galileo GDS. According to
Galileo, it facilitates the creation of custom applications to
support business operations and integrate back office systems.
GROSS, president and CEO of Global Travel (which claims an
independent agent sales force of 35,000) and Bill Alcorn, senior
vice president of technology at eTravCo, said the development of
their booking engines would result in increased sales for their
respective members. In a statement announcing the agreements,
Galileo said Credit Suisse First Boston recently predicted that the
percentage of qualified home-based agents in the U.S. is expected
to grow by up to 15% by the end of the decade.
WITH: Geoff Millar. Summer bookings for this home-based
agent are running about 30% ahead of last year. People booking for
this summer are tending to stress value over price, with more
[clients] booking into more upscale resorts. We have noticed an
increase in family reunion vacations with most coming in at $30,000
to $40,000, he said. Millar, who owns Ultimate All-Inclusive Travel
in Patagonia, Ariz., is a member of the Network of Entrepreneurs
Selling Travel (NEST). His agency focuses on inclusive resorts in
Mexico and the Caribbean, and is seeing heightened interest lately
in Central America, particularly Costa Rica.
DESK: Apple Vacations expanded its product line to include
city-stay packages to four European capitals. The company is
featuring land-only and air-inclusive deals to London, Madrid,
Paris and Rome. Airline partners are Delta, US Airways and
American. Services at the destinations, such as transfers, city
tours and excursions, are offered. Apple is online at www.applevacations.com. The phone number for its
Europe desk is (888) 288-1433.
FAM OF THE
Departures: Aug. 11 and
Nov. 3 from any American Eagle gateway to Anguilla.
Sponsor: Anguilla Tourist
Board, White Plains, N.Y.
Cost: Program expenses --
including roundtrip air, hotel, meals and hosted functions -- are
paid for by the program sponsors. Participants are responsible for
taxes, incidental expenses and some beverages.
Trip: Visits to various
hotels, restaurants and meetings venues; also includes some
sightseeing on the island.
must be involved in the planning, budgeting or approval of meetings
or incentive travel.
Contact: (914) 287-2400
or e-mail [email protected].