VILLA VACATIONS. West Indies Management Co. (WIMCO) arranges for vacation rentals of villas, apartments and farmhouses at some of the world's most exclusive destinations. Its "Country Chapters" book lists country properties available for rent in the United Kingdom and Ireland and apartments in London and Bath. Its "Vendome Guides" (the South of France, Virgin Islands, Barbados, St. Martin, St. Barthelemy) list rental properties in each of those locations. The books have photos and detailed descriptions. The "Country Chapters" book sells for $5 plus shipping and handling. The "Vendome Guides" sell for $11 each, plus shipping and handling. The company will send you a free price list and information for rental villas in England/Scotland/Ireland; the south of France; Anguilla/-Nevis; Cayman Islands; Mustique; Barbados; Virgin Islands; St. Martin and St. Barthelemy. If you travel with a lot of people, renting an apartment or a small cottage can be cost-effective. To request the free price list or to order the books, call 1-800-932-3222. WIMCO is in Newport, R.I.

- RV PARK DIRECTORY. The Best Holiday Trav-L-Park Directory is a 16-page booklet that lists and describes 66 highly rated RV parks and campgrounds in North America. To be listed in the directory, the parks must have high ratings in three nationally published camping guides. The directory lists a local phone number for each park as well as a toll-free number through which you can make reservations at Best Holiday Parks, which, we assume are listed in the directory. Call 800-323-8899.- GALENA, ILL., WEB SITE. The Galena/Jo Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau has a new Internet address: (www.galena.org). Or, to receive a printed visitors guide, call toll-free 888-2-FIND-YOU.

- ON-TIME AIRLINE PERFORMANCE. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation's recently released calculations, US Airways had the best on-time performance of major U.S. airlines, followed by TWA, American, Northwest, Southwest, American, America West, Continental, Delta and United. The percentage of on-time arrivals for US Airways (formerly US Air) was 86.8. For United, it was 72.7. Delta came in at 76.9. The fine print: a flight is considered to be on time if it arrives within 15 minutes of schedule.

- MORE ROOMS AT LAS VEGAS INNS. According to the Las Vegas News Bureau, room occupancy rates fell during the third quarter of last year in spite of an increase in the number of visitors for the same period. The prior year, occupancy rates for the same period were 91.6 percent. In 1997, they were 87.7 percent. Right now, the city has more than 104,000 hotel rooms. It expects to have 120,000 by the turn of the century. The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority is stepping up advertising campaigns to help bridge the gap between the number of visitors and the number of hotel rooms.

- EUROPEAN HOTEL DISCOUNTS on the spur of the moment. More than 250 Comfort, Quality and Clarion brand hotels across Europe are offering 40 percent off regular rates with the Last Minute Europe Program. You must make advance reservations a maximum of seven days in advance by calling Comfort (800-228-5151), Quality (800-228-5151) and Clarion (800-CLARION). Examples: The Clarion St. James et Albany is the former home of the Marquis de Lafayette. It is opposite the Tuileries Gardens and close to the Louvre and Musee d'Orsay. The Quality Inn Traiano in Rome is within walking distance of the Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, Piazza Venezia and Vai Veneto.

- DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT THEM. The Society of American Travel Writers interviewed 10 professional travel writers to find out what they never leave home without.

- Good walking shoes

- A photocopy of the opening page of your passport, carried separately from your passport

- Plastic Zip-lock bags

- Immodium

- Photocopies of prescriptions for medications and eyeglasses you can't do without

- A Swiss Army knife

- Spare camera batteries

- Your address book

- Photocopies of your credit cards

- SPEED LANGUAGE COURSE. TravelTalk is an audio and phrase-book and two-way dictionary series that has more than 300 essential words and phrases you'll need at foreign travel destinations. Currently, it is available for French, German, Italian and Spanish (both European and Latin American versions). The price is $14.95. The project is a collaboration between Lonely Planet and Penton Overseas Inc. For information, call 800-748-5804.

- KOREAN PHOTO COMPETITION. The Korea National Tourism Organization (KNTO) is sponsoring a tourism photo contest. Entry is free and open to Koreans and foreigners. You may submit up to 30 photos. They can cover a whole range of tourism-related subjects taken during your stay in Korea. Each entry must be an original color slide and should be accompanied by a color print measuring 5x7 inches. You should provide your name, title (Mr., Ms., Dr., etc.), address, telephone number and nationality. Each entry must be labeled separately, giving the photo's title and the name of the place where it was taken. All winning slides will become the exclusive property of KNTO. Entries must have been recently taken and not previously entered in a similar contest. Entries must be submitted by May 5, 1998, to Korea National Tourism Organization, Attn.: Photo Contest, 3435 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1110, Los Angeles, CA 90010. A total of 90 prizes will be awarded, including a grand prize of $3,300. Winners will receive notices by mail in early June. For information, call the KNTO at 800-868-7567.