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In reply to: Ooops on Wednesday 14/12/05 10:46am

Hi Ooops,


WEB has pulled back to the 50% Fib retracement and formed a double bottom, todays move gives confirmation of the double bottom, but would need to close above 37.5c,.....a return to trend?



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In reply to: BSA on Wednesday 14/12/05 08:54am

This ones behaving very well BSA,

As you said 50% then off she go's!!!

Cheers Pete.


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In reply to: Ooops on Friday 16/12/05 11:40am

Ooops, only to fall below again. All the fundimentals are there although has not performed. Dec figures must be due shortly?


JGK http://www.sharescene.com/html/emoticons/sad.gif

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Like getting an accountant to do your tax, worth every cent so is a Travel Agent.....


Here it is :


What's better? Travel agents or the Web

Same three trips booked online and with two agencies

Experts charge fee but their advice is worth the price

Nov. 14, 2005. 07:39 AM




It's one of the biggest riddles in travel today: Is it better to book online or through an agent? The answer is simple: It depends.


We wanted to determine if those Internet deals are really deals, and also find out what we really get for those travel agency service fees.

As an experiment, earlier this year, we chose three trips for our panel of three to book. We also picked our panel: Susan Dedembilis of Carlson Wagonlit Travel; Bonny Boettger of B. Vevi Travel; and a relative novice when it comes to Internet travel ÃÆâ€â„¢ÃƒÆ’ƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¢ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚¬ÃƒÆ’…¡Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚ me.


The three trips were:

ï‚· Paris for a week, with a side trip to Versailles.

ï‚· New York for a four-day long weekend with a Broadway show.

ï‚· Vancouver for a week with a car and a round of golf at Whistler, and a weekend in Winnipeg on the way back.


THE ROOKIE: We begin with the novice because we don't want him picking up any tricks of the trade from the agents.

Now, every office has that annoying Internet junkie, the kind of person who finds U2 floor seats at face value on eBay and never shuts up about it. That person is so not me.


Let me first explain my Internet limits: I know there are chat rooms but I wouldn't know where to find them. I have purchased maybe $200 worth of products on the Web. And I booked a last-minute holiday in England by email two years ago because it was Wednesday and we needed a place to stay that Saturday.


I have never booked on the Internet because I was always afraid of missing out on the deals or the one flight connection that makes all the difference. Who would ever think of flying Luftansa through Frankfurt to Nice, France? But agents have access to all flights on one screen.

To book the Paris trip, I first went to Expedia.ca, which was an eye-opener, to say the least.



After wading through an extraordinary array of flight and hotel packages that were very reasonable ÃÆâ€â„¢ÃƒÆ’ƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¢ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚¬ÃƒÆ’…¡Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚ one as low as $1,064 ÃÆâ€â„¢ÃƒÆ’ƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¢ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚¬ÃƒÆ’…¡Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚ my heart sank when I realized the cheapest hotels were up to 10 kilometres from downtown. The other shocker was that the Northwest Airlines flight would take 12 hours to get from Toronto to Paris because of a U.S. stopover. That was about five hours longer than Air France, Air Canada or Air Transat.


Eventually, I chose Air France and a hotel from Destina.ca but I already knew that taking a half-hour train ride from Paris is the best way to visit Versailles so I didn't bother with a tour.


Expedia really came through for New York. I found a United flight down, Delta back and three nights at the Pennsylvania Hotel for $789. That turned out to be the best bargain on the Internet for me.


For the Toronto-Vancouver-Winnipeg-Toronto leg, I went straight to the WestJet site for a $695 fare. Then I found a Ramada Inn for $102 a night. There was a Days Inn for $75 but I wasn't sure how safe the area was. I booked a car through Alamo for $240 for the week but I gave up on booking a Whistler round of golf because the website was so frustrating.


In fact, that is the worst part of booking on the Internet: the full range of sites ÃÆâ€â„¢ÃƒÆ’ƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¢ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚¬ÃƒÆ’…¡Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚ from downright annoying (why can't Air Canada remember flight dates when you try to change something ÃÆâ€â„¢ÃƒÆ’ƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¢ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚¬ÃƒÆ’…¡Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚ WestJet and Air France do) to highly efficient (Expedia is a joy).


EXPERT NO. 1: With the online element completed, our next stop was the Carlson Wagonlit office at Yonge and Summerhill, where Susan Dedembilis was set for the challenge.


It took only minutes to find the cheapest fare to Paris on Air Transat ($811, all prices include extras) but we opted for Air France ($1,073) because it's one of our favourite airlines.


The hotel was even easier. Dedembilis, who has been an agent for 15 years, recommended a nice little hotel near the Opera for 90 Euros a night (about $125 Canadian) but swore us to secrecy. "It's central and very reasonable," she said. "I found it through word of mouth. It doesn't even have a website."


As for Versailles, there were several tours available, from $56 for four hours, to a $137 for a full day that included lunch and a carriage ride.

For New York, the cheapest fare was $324 on CanJet. But it doesn't fly Saturdays so we opted for Air Canada's $359. It was $30 cheaper if you fly to Newark but then you had to get to New York. She pointed out that some hotels have shuttle buses.



Beaming with delight, Dedembilis began her search for a couple of favourite bargain hotels but the spell was quickly broken. "Something's happening that weekend," she said. Later we learned that a travel industry convention had driven hotel prices to the high end of the scale. So, the "$150 a night" Pennsylvania (about $180 in our dollars) became $240 (Canadian).

We opted for the Holiday Inn at $260 a night, a special Carlson rate.

Tickets to A Streetcar Named Desire with Natasha Richardson were $160 (Canadian) each.


For Vancouver, Air Canada had the better price at $690 but it flies in the evening, so we went for WestJet's morning flights at $695.

"I always counsel my clients to maximize their time," Dedembilis said. "Arrive early, leave late."


The hotel was the Holiday Inn Centre ("good location," she said) for $119 a night, a Carlson rate. A couple of other hotels were cheaper but in an area where they might be filming the gritty TV drama Da Vinci's Inquest.

Dedembilis warned us off renting the car for a week.


"If you're only going up to Whistler to golf, then rent one for a day," she said. "Parking's a nightmare in Vancouver. It's $20 a day at most hotels."


She also suggested we book the golf when we get there. Otherwise, she said, she would contact MyWhistler.com and they would check tee times and book the round.


So, the service charges for booking these trips through Carlson Wagonlit would be: Paris $60; New York $60; and Vancouver $40.


EXPERT NO. 2: The next stop was Bonny Boettger's country home in north Stouffville, where she runs her travel business.


We started with Paris: Air France for $1,052, the 2 1/2-star Hotel Cronstadt at $834 for the week, and the side trip to Versailles ÃÆâ€â„¢ÃƒÆ’ƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¢ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â€š¬Ã…¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚¬ÃƒÆ’…¡Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬ÃƒÆ’¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã‚¡ÃƒÆ’‚¬Ãƒâہ¡ÃƒÆ’‚ she looked up the tours but suggested we just buy a train ticket.


For New York, we chose a $331.87 Continental flight to Newark.

"People talk about the $40 it costs to transfer from Newark to their hotel in New York but it's $30 from LaGuardia."


The hotel was the Pennsylvania for $590 and the Streetcar show tickets were $202.


The service fees were: Paris $35 to $45; New York $35; and Vancouver $60. "I don't have the overhead of running a big office," she explains, "so I don't have to charge as much."



THE VERDICT: So, what is the answer to that question at the top of the story? Well, that still depends.


In financial terms, the travel agents did well enough that the money they saved me would have covered their service fees. But it was in the advice department that they shone. Why would you want a car in Vancouver? Why not take the train to Versailles? There's something happening in New York that weekend.


Overall, I find the scale tipped in favour of the travel agents. As Dedembilis likes to say: "Who do you call if you make a mistake when booking on the Internet? Having an agent take the rap for you is a good thing."

Personally, I have always found travel agents are worth the expense, like having an accountant do your taxes. This is their business and they're just better at it than me.


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In reply to: dfonze on Monday 16/01/06 07:01am

My father would agree, but not me. I am 33 yrs and everyone I know older and younger has the confidence in the NET and confidence in their abilities to use the internet for banking, share market trading and even booking flights and holidays. Times are a changing and I use WEBJET as do the people I know. I believe in the product and that is why I invest.


Defonze, dont you use WEBJET?


JGK http://www.sharescene.com/html/emoticons/tongue.gif

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