Talking Travel on

By now, I hope you’ve had a chance to visit our new Web site at

By: By Kenneth Shapiro

Kenneth ShapiroBy now, I hope you’ve had a chance to visit our new Web site at We’ve created many new site features, and to help you navigate some of them, we’ve put together an article in this issue as a guide. One of our goals for the new site was to encourage more reader interaction than before, which is why we developed the Travel Talk section.

Accessible from the main menu, Travel Talk includes the new feature Ask TravelAge West. On this page, I respond to your questions and answer them myself or refer them to industry experts. Currently, for instance, Evan Chan, CEO of Ritz Tours, talks about last-minute deals to Beijing for the Olympics, while Candy Harrington, an expert on accessible travel, gives advice for travelers bringing a wheelchair on a flight. You can submit your questions on the right side of the page or send us an e-mail.

Also under Travel Talk, you’ll find the Agent Voices page and one of my favorite features, Agent Bylines. This section is where we turn the tables and post stories written by agents, for agents. Have a way with words and plenty of travel stories to share? Go ahead and send us a submission.

Travel Talk also houses our Research, Industry Q&A and Agent Training pages. These resource pages help agents learn more about trends and products in order to stay ahead of the competition.

Finally, under Travel Talk, visitors can find our Blogs page. In our Editors’ Blog, my fellow editors and I write about our latest travels, or whatever else is on our minds. Currently, you can read about Managing Editor Janeen Christoff’s trip to England for the christening of the Carnival Splendor (which is scheduled to homeport in Los Angeles next spring, by the way). Check back soon, because I’ll be blogging from a cruise aboard the Crystal Serenity in the Eastern Mediterranean. The line’s top producers will be traveling with me as well, so I’m sure to meet some great agents and hear a few interesting stories.

Of course, if you have any questions about the site and can’t find an answer, feel free to e-mail us at and we’ll do our best to answer as soon as possible.