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New York Times Travel Show to kick off

The New York Times Travel Show has announced its roundup of travel discounts and unique travel packages, cultural performances, travel seminars and entertainment. The show will be held in New York City on February 24-26 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Presented by American Express, The 2006 New York Times Travel Show is the largest travel trade event in the U.S. offering nearly 500 exhibitors and opportunities for special travel discounts from leading airlines, cruise lines, resorts and tourism boards from around the world.

Learn from the experts at workshops hosted by Stephanie Abrams, Valarie D’Elia, Arthur Frommer and Peter Greenberg.

These savvy travelers will offer advice and tips on everything from how to film a travel video or roll a kayak, to finding unique souvenirs from around the world, to discovering cool, new things to do while traveling.

Avid adventure seekers, armchair travelers and occasional vacationers wanting to escape the winter blues will find scuba diving lessons, exclusive airline deals, advice on what to pack and where to shop, and much more.

The show will feature discounts and entertainment for families, singles, couples and seniors, including:


—Exclusive Travel Discounts. More than 50 vacation discounts and travel packages from sponsors and exhibitors including American Express, Access China Tours, Beaches Resorts, Canjet Airlines, Czech Vacations, Deeper Africa, FLO USA - Visit Turkey, 4Star South America, H2O Outfitters, Intimate Caribbean Resorts, Kon-Tiki Tours & Travel, The Norman Rockwell Museum, South American Journeys, USA3000 Airlines, Your Travel Biz (YTB) and many more.

—Beaches Resorts brings The Caribbean Adventure with Sesame Street to New York. Join us for a fun-filled morning with your favorite furry friends from Sesame Street. Exclusive activities include: Picture-taking with Elmo, Baking Cookies with Cookie Monster, Dancing with Zoe, Making Music with Bert & Ernie and more.

—Wild Survivors. A red kangaroo, penguins, alligators, a bearded dragon, a python, a bald eagle and other exotic animals from around the globe take center stage as the SeaWorld and Busch Gardens parks present “Wild Survivors.” Animal Ambassador Julie Scardina introduces a variety of furry, feathered and fanged creatures, and shares important and entertaining conservation information.

—Learn to Scuba. Who cares if it is February? Stop by the Scuba Tour dive pool and try on a wet suit. “Big Wave Dave” will be on hand offering scuba instruction and demonstrations for the whole family.

—International Dance and Live Music on the Hudson. On the WNBC/WNJU-TV stage, be entertained by special live performances from around the world including Japanese geishas and Hawaiian hula dancers; drummers and dancers from Belize; Carnival dancers from Aruba; a Taiwanese drum troupe; a colonial American fife and drum corps; the Sean Fleming Irish Band and Old World Music and Dance from Puglia. Even the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus will be on hand to clown around with the kids.

—Travel Seminars with the Experts. Want to learn about the hottest vacation spots? Where are the best international vacation spots for family travel? What makes for the most exciting and affordable weekend getaways? These are just some of the topics that will be covered in more than 30 consumer seminars held throughout the weekend. Speakers will include Arthur Frommer, the founder of Frommer Travel Guides; Dennis Sarlo, travel editor of; local travel expert Valarie D’Elia; and Peter Greenberg, the travel editor of the “Today” show.

—Jet Set Pets. One of the most influential voices in travel, radio travel show host Stephanie Abrams, heard nationally on the Business Talk Radio Network, will host this seminar with tips on traveling with your furry family members and finding pet-friendly accommodations around the world.

—Book Signings With Today’s Leading Travel Authors. Longitude Books will host an on-site bookstore where you can purchase some of the latest travel guides, meet the authors, ask for travel advice and get an autograph. Authors and editors will include Don George, Margot Morrell, Patricia Schultz and Simon Winchester.

—“Jeopardy!” Brain Bus. The public is cordially invited to experience the “Jeopardy!” Brain Bus Event hosted by the “Jeopardy!” Clue Crew, on February 25 from 10 a.m. until noon. Expo patrons can participate in simulated games of “Jeopardy!” and even take the test for consideration to be a contestant on the show. It’s a behind-the-scenes look at the coveted audition process and what it takes to appear on the nation’s No. 1 quiz show. Study Hard! A category “All the News That’s Fit to Print,” about news articles and features of The New York Times, will be included in the mock games as well.

Among the hundreds of exhibitors at the show are Africa Travel Association, Alaska Land & Cruise Packages, American Express Vacations, Aruba Tourism, Atlantic Canada Cruise Association, Atlantis Adventures, Carnival Cruise Lines, China National Tourist Office, Club Med, Croatian National Tourist Office, Dublin Tourism, FLO USA - Visit Turkey, Grand Expeditions, the Greek National Tourism Organization, India Tourism, Japan National Tourist Office, Liberty Travel, Mexico Tourism Board, NYC & Company, Polynesian Cultural Center, Princess Cruises, Rocky Mountaineer Vacations, Sandals and Beaches Resorts, Wilderness Travel and more than 400 others. A complete listing of exhibitors can be found at www.onlineloorplan.comtravelshow06/exhibitlist.asp .

The New York Times Travel Show will launch with a trade day on Friday, February 24. Expanded from previous years, it will be the largest travel trade day of its kind, consisting of three simultaneous conferences featuring education and product seminars as well as access to the exhibitors. The three concurrent conferences will cater to senior travel executives, tourism board executives, travel writers and travel agents. This trade day will focus on the evolving marketplace and new approaches to doing business. Speakers will include Steve Rudnitsky, Chairman and CEO of Cendant Hotel Group; Carol Hallett, Counselor, U.S. Chamber of Commerce and former President/CEO of Air Transport Association; Dimitris L. Avramopoulos, Minister of Tourism of the Hellenic Republic of Greece; Jonathan Tisch, Chairman and CEO of Loews Hotels; David Neeleman, Chairman and CEO of JetBlue Airways; and Jim May, President/CEO of Air Transport Association.

The New York Times Travel Show is presented by American Express. Supporting sponsors include Amtrak, Carnival Cruise Lines and the Greek National Tourism Organization, while contributing sponsors include Aruba Tourism, Sandals and Beaches Resorts, and Washington, DC Convention & Tourism Corporation.

Exhibitor show packages include booth space and a listing in the show guide. Sponsorship packages include print and online advertising and radio promotion, on-site exposure, extensive press efforts and custom programs. For more information about the show, or to become a sponsor or an exhibitor, please visit .

Admission to the show is $15, with a $5 discount if tickets are purchased with an American Express card. Children under 18 are admitted free. Show hours are Saturday, February 25, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, February 26, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For advance purchase of tickets to the show, a list of exhibitors and locations for discounted restaurants and parking, please visit . Also, complete details will appear in a special Travel Show guide in the newspaper on February 19.