Its got a million names. The Big Apple. Gotham. Metropolis. The City that Never Sleeps. To this list we can add The city that remembers.

How appropriate for New York -- New York! -- to get out in front of an effort to help New Orleans deal with the pain of rebuilding by organizing some tourism, sending some New Yorkers down for a visit.

Jonathan Tisch, NYC & Co. chairman, said it best last week when he cited patriotic tourism as a key contributor to New Yorks recovery after 9/11. It helped us emotionally as well as economically, and thats why it is important for New York to be first with such a trip to the Big Easy.

Folks from all over came to New York when the city was hurting after 9/11. And several delegations from the U.S. and elsewhere traveled to the Asian communities that were devastated by the Christmas tsunami of 2004. We can think of few better examples of the positive power of tourism than these kinds of trips, sensibly timed and properly promoted and organized.

Heres hoping our industry leaders plan more of them in future times of trouble.

To learn more about what New York is doing for New Orleans, log on to

Donald dot-com

Even if you dont have a high opinion of Donald Trump as a business executive or TV personality, you have to give him credit for understanding the peculiar brand attributes of the name Donald Trump, the middlebrow millionaire, the rich guy who drives a hard bargain, the wheeler dealer who loves a deal and the art of the deal.

The Web site puts it all together, adroitly combining several hot trends in travel: an appreciation of high style, a promise of low prices, the thrill of a great deal and a taste for the best. Its all Donald.

Cruising into history

It may be that the historic Cunard Line cruised into another maritime first last week when its flagship Queen Mary 2 apparently earned the distinction of being the first cruise ship to give rise to a class-action suit by disgruntled passengers while still en route.

The ship, as we report today, was forced to reduce speed and skip some port calls because of a damaged propulsion unit. The line offered a 50% refund and continued on to the next stop, Rio de Janeiro, but for some number of passengers, that just wasnt good enough.

According to the usually reliable BBC, the suit was filed in a British court, so perhaps the event cannot be blamed on the legendary litigiousness of American society. Apparently, weve infected the old country with that particular disease.

In any event, this sets an ugly precedent for suppliers.

If disgruntled passengers on a cruise ship can sue a travel supplier a continent away while theyre still onboard, nothing can stop a hotel guest from doing the same thing to try to hasten a settlement over a noisy ice machine or a clumsy waiter.

Perhaps the next generation of contracts of carriage will have to add this clause: You cant sue us until you get home.

JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI