Conference Industry Fights Wave of Cancellations
from The New York Times
The travel industry, hit hard by the public uproar over lavish company getaways, has been pushing back, and its message is essentially this: You say junket, we say jobs. In a lobbying effort spearheaded by the U.S. Travel Association, industry representatives have met with President Obama, released a flurry of statistics about the economic contribution of meetings and events ($101 billion in spending, one million jobs) and have even established a "rapid-response war room" to address "false accusations against legitimate travel activities." More
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Travel Industry Looking for Fresh Faces to Tell its Story
from The Salt Lake Tribune
Utahns in the travel industry are being asked to submit 45- to 60-second videos describing how their jobs are vital to them, their communities and the national economy. The U.S. Travel Association launched the "Faces of Travel: We Mean Business" initiative last week to find grassroots spokespeople for an industry hit hard by the economic downturn and subsequent criticism of business meetings and events. The result has been "paralysis in the marketplace" as thousands of meetings have been canceled around the country, said association president Roger Dow. More
Airlines Hope to Avoid Bailout or Bankruptcy
from The Christian Science Monitor
Despite all the grim economic news, the American airline industry remains cautiously optimistic it will make it through 2009 without a bailout or major bankruptcies. The reason: Most major airlines have been in economic-crisis mode almost nonstop since 9/11, which has forced them to become leaner, more efficient operations and thus, more resilient during this downturn. More
Why Card Check is Unconstitutional
from The Wall Street Journal
The Employee Free Choice Act of 2009 -- otherwise known as "card check" -- is organized labor's dream. As a practical matter, this legislation, pursued by both the Obama administration and the Democratic Congress, would do away with the secret ballot in the unionization process. Although card check's advocates and critics have spilled much ink arguing about the bill's fundamental fairness to labor and management, so far the debate has not focused on the other compelling interest at stake: the constitutionally protected right of employees to keep their opinions on controversial issues like unionization to themselves. More
U.S. Travel Extends Appointment Scheduling
For International Pow Wow to April 6
from the U.S. Travel Association
The U.S. Travel Association has extended powwowonline.com appointment scheduling through Monday, April 6 for International Pow Wow, May 16-20 in Miami. The extension gives both buyers and exhibitors a little more time to register and request appointments. The pre-scheduling process has also been enhanced further this year with the introduction of manual scheduling. Once the appointment schedules are distributed, exhibitors will be able to schedule time with buyers that have open appointments before arriving in Miami. More onsite networking time has also been added following lunch on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. For more information go to powwowonline.com.
More Families Set to Hit Highways This Year
from The Chicago Tribune
Millions of Americans are planning to hit the highways this year as long-range drives come back into vogue. It's a resurgence fed by cheaper gas, childhood memories and a general reluctance to splurge by people who are fearful for their jobs, travel analysts said. More
TSA: Threat Prompted Gate-Screening Program
from USA Today
The Transportation Security Administration is worried about a group of terrorists sneaking weapons components through an airport checkpoint, assembling them after going through security and bringing a weapon on an airplane, an agency official said last week. More
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Bill to Allow Travel to Cuba has a Better Shot
A group of senators and other supporters unveiled a bill Tuesday to lift the 47-year-old travel ban to Cuba. Proponents of lifting the ban have been trying for years but lacked the votes in Congress or a president who supported the measure. But with Democrats holding majorities in both houses of Congress and controlling the White House, supporters said they believe their chance is at hand. More
Save the Date: Travel Leadership Summit
September 16-17, Washington, DC
from the U.S. Travel Association
The U.S. Travel Association has announced that the Fourth Annual Travel Leadership Summit will be held September 16-17 at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill. After meeting with President Barack Obama within the first 100 days of his Administration, launching the Meetings Mean Business campaign and gaining the Administrationís support for the Travel Promotion Act, momentum is already building for the event that attracts travel professionals from all sectors and parts of the United States. An industry-wide reception on September 16 will kick off the events, followed by the Summit and visits to Capitol Hill on September 17. More details will be announced soon, but save the date now.