Youth travel company opens operation in New York

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NEW YORK -- CTS Viaggi, the leading student and youth travel company in Italy, opened an office in New York as part of a plan to expand into the North American market.

Called CTS Travel USA, the New York office plans to appoint a network of retail agents around the country to distribute its packages and products, according to Cezary Cwintal, director of the North American operation.

"If they're already selling to the student and youth travel community, we'd love to hear from them," Cwintal said.

If not, "this might be a way for agents to increase their revenue, if they want to get into something new and different."

CTS Travel USA will sell only through appointed agents, he said, adding that details of the program are being finalized.

The new CTS office also will handle arrangements for incoming business from the firm's operations in Europe, which include offices in London and Paris as well as 148 retail locations in Italy.

Cwintal has been in the industry here for 18 years, having held executive-level jobs with a number of operators specializing in central and eastern Europe.

CTS Viaggi's basic products include discounted air tickets, rail passes, student and youth cards, language courses and working-abroad programs.

The New York office also will market adventure travel and ecotours and will handle land arrangements tailored to young travelers and students, including packages for spring break. Cwintal said the New York office expects to reach a first-year volume of about $10 million.

CTS will mark the facility's opening with a series of special package offers in the coming weeks.

"Student, youth and teacher travel is a very thriving niche in our industry, and we're very pleased with 25 years of success in our home market of Italy," said Roberto Corbella, managing director of CTS Viaggi.

"We felt the time was right to build on our success by taking advantage of the current long-term economic and demographic trends in America," Corbella said.

"The booming growth and spending of the so-called Generation Y offer an unprecedented opportunity with plenty of upside potential."

CTS Viaggi is a member of the International Student Travel Confederation, the Student Air Travel Association and the Federation of International Youth Travel Organizations.

The company's home office has a Web site at www.cts.it, but Cwintal said the new U.S. operation plans to build its own Web site for this market. The address will be www.ctstravelusa.com.

CTS Travel USA is located at 350 Fifth Ave., Suite 7813, New York.
Phone: (877) 287-6665 or (212) 760-1287
Fax: (212) 760-0022
E-mail: [email protected]

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