Lotus Travel:
Uniting Families and Connecting Cultures
In This Issue
Upcoming Events
Linh's Article
Chinese New Year
Homeland Heritage Tours
Louie's Shopping Tips
Updated Visa Pricing
Map and Brochure Requests
Apply for a Grant!

Packages of Hope, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that provides hope to children living in orphanages around the world. Our small but dedicated group of volunteers help  provide needed supplies, such as clothes, incubators, medical care, bedding, school supplies, playgrounds and toys to children living in orphanages in China.

We're currently assisting the following orphanages: Behai, Bengbu, Changchun, ChangDe, Jinzhou, Lanzhou, Hannah's Hope, QianJiang, ShenYang, Siping, Suzhou, Xian'an, Xinjiang, Yujiang, and Yanbian. We are able to assist orphanages based on availability of volunteers in the region, cooperation with orphanage staff and financial support. If you have a specific orphanage you'd like to assist, please send us and email and we'll do our best to help.

We're currently raising funds for a new indoor play and therapy equipment for the Jinzhou Social Welfare Institute, foster care for the children at ChangDe Social Welfare Institute, Libraries of Hope for orphanages throughout China and funding for our medical program. There are several ways you can help support our work in China:

  • Do your online shopping through our Amazon.com and iGive.com links available on our website
  • Help with contacts within China
  • Help connect us with businesses in China who are able to donate needed supplies
  • Help with business connections to help with shipping and printing services
  • Coordinate a fundraiser within your company or organization
  • Make a cash donation or donate a needed item listed on our website
If you make a cash donation of $30 to Packages of Hope through our website or by check and mark "Friend of Lotus,"we'll send you a beautiful 2008 Packages of Hope Calendar as a thank you gift for your contribution.

"Love Without Boundaries is a worldwide group of volunteers who have realized that people with a pure love for helping children can truly make a difference. We all donate our time and resources in an attempt to brighten the lives of orphaned children in China. Give the "gift of a family" this holiday season by sponsoring a child into foster care.  We have so many beautiful children in need of sponsors, and we have seen firsthand the miraculous transformations that occur when a child is given their own mama and baba to love them.   Visit the sponsorship page. We also have many critical children in need of surgery this holiday season.   No amount is ever too small as every dollar brings a child closer to healing.  Visit the medical page. For both programs, sponsors will receive photos and updates on their child regularly."


--Amy Eldridge, Love Without Boundaries

Upcoming Events 
Come and visit one of our Lotus Travel representatives as we will be holding a vendor booth at the following events:
February 9th--Visit Iris Culp at FCC-Austin's Chinese New Year Celebration.
February 10th--Theresa Hundley, Linh Nguyen, Marie Gonda and Sandee McAlpine will be in attendance supporting FCC-Oregon; FCC-Seattle; FCC-Chicago and FCC-Cincinnati respectively.
February 17th--Marie Gonda will also visit FCC-Columbus and show her support!
Although we will not be in attendance, you can find further information regarding Lotus Travel from our supportive FCC groups:
February 6th--FCC-FL
February 8th--FCC-VA
February 9th--FCC-MD; FCC-NC
February 10th--FCC-CT/RI; FCC-VA(Hampton Road); FCC-PA

We highly recommend families to purchase the Travel Plus Plan through the Travelex Insurance Company once your travel arrangements are secured.  These days, travel insurance is much more than just protecting your savings against travel complications; it goes further to protect your family and travel companions against travel delays, identity theft, medical emergencies and even unfortunate terrorist events.  Please take a moment to consider purchasing from a dependable insurance company that will guarantee you a safe and worry free trip of a lifetime. 


Starting Today, February 4, 2008, Lotus Travel's new insurance policy requires that ALL CLIENTS present proof of their travel insurance coverage or a signed waiver releasing interest in any coverage 21 days prior to travel or date of final payment.   Please contact us via email at [email protected]or by phone at 1-866-524-0089 if you have any questions in regards to our new addition.


Welcome to our second issue of Lotus' bi-monthly newsletter!We are very thankful for your support and value your ideas and questions. Please continue to send us your thoughts as we make our newsletter the piece of information adoptive families read for informative articles, exciting travel tips and interesting facts.
Linh's Introductory Article: "What If"

LinhLinh Nguyen, our administrative assistant here at Lotus Travel, expresses her personal story of coming to America at the young age of 4 while fleeing from the oppressive Vietnamese government in 1989.

To view Linh's moving article click here to visit our Lotus Connections part of our website!
Celebrating the Lunar New Year!

Celebrating the New Year across Asia, not only includes fireworks, traditional dragon and lion parades and a week-long holiday-it also includes particular traditions, superstitions, celebrations and cuisine.

Click here to read further about how China and Vietnam welcome the prosperous New Year!
Homeland Heritage Tours:  

Lotus Travel has over 12 years of experience and knowledge when it comes to planning a trip of a lifetime for you and your family.  Our experience is essential in preparing tours specialized for your adoptive child when visiting their birth country.  Our professional staff understands that birth country visits can not be a "one size fits all" package and realizes that these tours can be customizable to fit the needs of the family.  This gives families the opportunity to choose from many different options when planning a visit to China.  You will have the option of traveling with other groups, independently or privately. 


We have many different tours where you can choose from and all of them can be customizable to meet the preferences of each family or travel group.  With this in mind, please visit our website athttp://www.lotustours.net/heritage/china/index.shtmlfor further information on the tour packages we offer.  


Our Budget China Homeland Heritage tour provides you with a smaller budget, but a great tour.  This tour is designed by our founder and tour expert Louie Yi for families with limited budgets, but desperately want to gain a deeper appreciation of their children's cultural heritages. Your children will be able to explore with you the Great Wall in Beijing, the breathtaking Terracotta Warriors in Xian, reunite with orphanage directors and hug adorable baby pandas in Chengdu, plus many more meaningful activities and places to travel around.  Two percent of the standard tour cost will also be donated to Lotus Travel's Orphans Improvement Program to develop a better quality of life for orphans in China.  By joining our China Homeland Heritage Tours, you are not only going on a trip of a lifetime to explore your adoptive children's homeland, but you are also helping to improve the lives of orphans in China! Interested families may freely contact our Tour Expert and President Louie Yi at [email protected]or by phone at 1-800-956-8873.

Louie's Shopping Tips

As the President of Lotus Travel and with his experience in the travel industry for over 20 years, Louie Yi presents his tips and words of wisdom to families seeking planning and in-country travel advice.

Click here to read Louie's article in our Lotus Connections part of our website!
NEW! Visa Processing Prices

Lotus Travel welcomes visa applications from all 50 states.  Since our courier has over 10 years of experience, they have been very reliable and efficient in handling all visa applications.  Our service is based on a personal approach so our visa expert will assist you on all aspects of getting your visa on time.  An important note from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China, all Chinese consulates in the U.S. has raised their China visa processing fees which began on January 21, 2008.  Please visit our website at www.lotustours.net/promo/visas/china.shtmlfor detailed information as well as the new fees. 


Chinese New Years is on February 7, 2008, therefore the Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in Los Angeles will be closed on February 6th, 7th, and 8th.  For questions in relation to visa processing, courier services and required documents, please contact our visa specialist, Linh, at 1-866-524-0089 or via email at [email protected].


Childvision is a 501(c)(3) created to serve and assist older children in orphanages around the world who are not adopted to prepare them for life when because of age they are forced to leave the orphanage.  Most, if not all these children, are not prepared for life after leaving the orphanage - while living in the orphanage they receive little education and typically no life skills to prepare them to be on their own.


Childvision is building a dormitory at the Kids First Rehabilitation Village in Quang Tri province in Vietnam so that we can bring children from orphanages around Vietnam to the village. While at the village they will receive education, job training and life skills training.  When it is time to leave the village, we will assist with job placement and follow-up social services to help with their transition.  Childvision is also preparing to establish a school in Ethiopia with the same mission.


Contributions can be made on line through the Childvision website www.childvision.org . Childvision has available on its website greeting cards for purchase.  Childvision will hold its annual Gala including a live and silent auction in Indianapolis on Saturday, October 18th.  Online registration for the Gala will be available on www.childvision.org/GALA late summer.

Map and Brochure Requests 

Lotus Travel greatly extends map requests for interested families.  We have received some new maps, but due to the high volume requests, these maps will be first come first serve. The maps we have to offer include the following: ZheJiang, GuangZhou, China, Xi'An, Anhui, Jiangsu, Sichuan, Hubei, ShenZhen, Yunnan, Guilin, Shanghai, Korea.  Please include your name, mailing address, and the interested city of province available and we will send it to you at Lotus Travel's expense.  We will also include a copy of our exciting and colorful brochure in the package to those who wish to receive one.  This brochure provides you with details on our tours we provide as well as the pricing.  All requests must be made via email at [email protected]. Request your map and brochure today as the offer is valid while supplies last.  Be the first one to pick up a map for your adoptive child or family to look through!

Apply for a Grant! 
 The goal of Lotus Travel's homeland heritage tour program is to provide an authentic and inspiring look into the wonderful world of Chinese culture. To support this goal, Lotus Travel has developed a grant program to support organizations that educate adoptive families about the rich and beautiful Chinese culture. Families with Children from China, adoption agencies, and similar organizations that are committed to this same goal are encouraged to submit a grant application. Please note that grant applications must be submitted at least 30 days in advance for consideration. Please refer to our website at http://www.lotustours.net/heritage/grant.shtml for more information.
We hope that you enjoyed this special Lunar New Year issue of our  bi-monthly newsletter. Feel free to email your thoughts, comments, questions, concerns, or topics for future issues. Lotus Travel feels privileged to provide our input in coordination with your reflections and ideas. Cheers to a prosperous New Year for our past, present and future Lotus Travelers!

Theresa Hundley
Regional Office Manager
Lotus Travel: Uniting Families and Connecting Cultures
Save $50 Save $50 off your upcoming Homeland Heritage Tour if you refer a friend to sign up for our bi-monthly newsletter. Please have your friend, who is not already enrolled in our newsletter email list, contact Theresa by email at: [email protected] in order to sign up for this valid coupon for you. One coupon valid per travel group. If your case is already established, you are not eligible for this offer. Rules and restrictions apply, please contact Theresa for more information.
Offer Expires: February 29th, 2008