How Big A Bash?

High rollers will celebrate the millennium in style, but others are planning to party at home

Two years ago, the travel industry was about to cash in on a once-in-a-lifetime--make that once-in-a-millennium--event. The most hyped party in world history was fast approaching, and well-heeled globe-trotters were starting to look for special kicks with their New Year's 2000 champagne. As long as computer bugs didn't spoil the picnic, tour operators were bound to make a bundle.

But a funny thing happened: while affluent travelers are plunking down large sums for lavish trips to faraway places, ordinary consumers have begun to balk. The millennium may not be such a travel gold mine after all.

This is not to say...

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