2019 Year End Holiday Message

2019 Year End Holiday Message

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Before everyone takes time off to be with family and friends (and maybe take a vacation too?), I wanted to take a few minutes to wish all of our members a very Happy Holiday season, while also looking back on a momentous 2019, and casting a glimpse into 2020.

It really has been an incredible year, starting with our most powerful presence ever at the NY Times Travel Show last January. Not only did we sponsor the Family Travel Pavilion and two panel discussions, we also hosted members at our trade show booth during the consumer days, affording them the opportunity to meet prospects and network with industry colleagues.

Aaron Schlein kept up the momentum with Family Travel Radio, which gives members more exposure with consumers. He has produced 75 episodes and the program has earned a 5-star rating on iTunes.

We also launched our Social Media Takeovers this year, giving FTA members a chance to promote themselves to our more than 3,000 followers on Instagram and Facebook. Some of your posts have been the most popular this year, helping us grow our following by more than 16%. Thank you.

For our Travel Advisors, we launched a resource center that includes our first three guides to FTA member suppliers, enabling advisors to achieve better selling skills for Ocean Cruise Lines and Tour Operators. And the Dude Ranch guide has an accompanying sales tips video.

Our 2019 Summit in the Black Hills of South Dakota was epic. We heard from inspiring speakers, enhanced our skills through great workshops and began formulating ways that we can collaborate more effectively to enable families to travel more, and build our mutual businesses.

Finally, we announced and launched the process for moving the Family Travel Association to a non-profit structure in 2020, so that we can harness expanded resources and accelerate our mission. Since the announcement in October, several committees have been meeting to work through the complexities of this process and we will provide a report on their progress in January.

An exciting year ahead

We’re working hard to make 2020 even better for our members. Once again, we will be a New York Times Travel Show sponsor, and hope to see you there as we open the #TakeFamilyTime advocacy campaign to the traveling public.

To expand opportunities for you to network and build your business, the FTA has also partnered with the Adventure & Travel Show in 2020, and we look forward to you joining us at as many shows as you can.

A lot of you have been asking, and yes, we are finalizing plans for the 2020 Summit. We recently completed site visits and are examining proposals from several properties, and hope to have some news to announce early next year.

So thanks again for an amazing year and the lives we’ve changed through the power of travel. The warmest of wishes to you, your family and expanding circle of travel industry friends during the coming weeks of holiday celebrations. And a very prosperous and fulfilling New Year to all.

 

Rainer Jenss

FTA Founder and President

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