Family Travel Association Newsletter

Just a Few Days Until the Inaugural Family Travel Association Summit

Week of September 21, 2015

This is the newsletter of the Family Travel Association, a new coalition of leading family travel experts, media and companies coming together to create an industry voice that will transform the way families travel — charting a path for future generations of travelers.


Family Travel Association News

Family Travel Association Summit Is Ready to Commence on Sunday

Family Travel Association Summit
With all of its speakers in place (see a selection below) and sold-out attendance, the first Family Travel Association Summit is primed and ready for September 27-30 at the Mountain Sky Guest Ranch in Emigrant, Montana. As the first event of its kind, the FTA Summit brings together family travel experts, industry leaders, FTA members and the media for inspiring presentations, enlightening research, interactive panels and a diverse array of networking opportunities.
Toby O'Rourke

A complete list of events, attendees and presenters is available at on the Family Travel Association website. New to that list of presenters is Toby O'Rourke, SVP Marketing of Kampgrounds of America (KOA), who will be discussing how technology is impacting how families travel.

The Summit's goal is to advance our understanding of the important issues surrounding family travel through the input of a distinguished group of speakers.

U.S. Family Travel Survey Report to Be Released at FTA Summit

Family travel is one of the fastest-growing segments of the tourism industry, accounting for over one-third of all leisure trips. A new study by us and the NYU School of Professional Studies (NYUSPS) Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism examines this sector and provides insight into how U.S. families make travel decisions, as well as the considerations they take into account when doing so. The results, which focused on the influence of demographic (income, age, number of children) and psychographic factors (attitudes toward travel and life) will be released next week at the FTA Summit.
"We were very excited to work with the Family Travel Association on this study. This is an under-researched area in the tourism field, and we hope that the study will help the travel industry to provide better products and services for families in the future. Many of our students were involved in this invaluable research project."
– Dr. Lynn Minnaert, Academic Co-chair and Clinical Assistant Professor, NYUSPS Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism.
FTA Spotlight: Re/Defining Family Travel

Complete Set of 12 FTA Spotlight Topics

Three months ago, we launched the FTA Spotlight: Re/Defining Family Travel, a 15-month editorial initiative to develop a rounded understanding of the challenges we all face today with family travel and the efforts we can make as an industry to move forward with it. The first stage of the initiative – a 12-week process of spotlighting 12 core family travel topics to the public – is now complete, with a full set of 12 introductory essay open for public discussion.

The full set of 12 essays is:

FTA Spotlight Topic 12: The Future of Family Travel

Family/multigenerational travel is growing. A lot. But according to our new family travel survey, psychographics, not demographics, may be real factor in determining if and how much it will continue to grow. That's why it may be the time to double down on family travel. People need a lot of assistance and reassurance finding travel options that satisfy their desires, offer value for money and keep their families safe.

Read the full essay here and please share your thoughts.

FTA Spotlight: The Future of Family Travel

Rainer Jenss Takes the Mic on Rudy Maxa’s World Radio Program

How Multigenerational Travel Helps Families Connect
On September 12, Rainer Jenss sat down with Rudy Maxa (skip ahead to 24:36) on his Rudy Maxa's World Radio Program, America's #1 travel radio show, which has a weekly audience reach of approximately 1.4 million upscale leisure and business travelers via 250+ commercial radio stations. Rudy Maxa will be attending the FTA Summit.

Family Travel Association Member News

Bound Round Launches New Capabilities with New Website

Bound Round, the world’s only travel app created by kids and for kids, today launched user generated capability and a sleek new-look website. Tweens can now share their opinions and experiences, photos, reviews, ratings and stories about any destination around the world. As per one of our recent FTA Spotlight essays (, children have gone from the back seat to the front seat in holiday planning, with technology and social connectedness playing a key part.

Bound Round
"Being connected is an inherent need for kids and tweens, They know no different. It was a logical next step for us to enable them to have their voices heard and share their opinions with their peers. It adds another layer of detail and validity to the content Bound Round provides travelling families."
– Janeece Keller, Founder & CEO, Bound Round

Albany County CVB Reaches Families With Engaging Videos

The Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau has produced a number of videos that share information on what there is to do in Albany. Their two most recent videos – Family Fun in New York’s Capital and Haunted History and Attractions in Albany, New York – worked in conjunction with other messages throughout their social media channels and newsletters to engage the ever-growing family travel market.

Family Fun in New York’s Capital video

LEGOLAND California Joins the Southern California CityPASS Program

The addition of LEGOLAND® California Resort to the Southern California CityPASS® admission card makes everything even more awesome when it comes to saving money on entry to the Golden State’s most family-friendly theme parks. Each Southern California CityPASS card saves travelers at least $120 off admission to California’s top theme parks, including a Disneyland Resort 3-Day Park Hopper ticket; one-day admission to SeaWorld® San Diego; and one-day admission to the newly added LEGOLAND California Resort. The Southern California CityPASS admission card is valid for 14 consecutive days, beginning with the first day of use. Tour operators and travel agents should contact a Disney sales representative.

Southern California CityPASS

Trekaroo Tips About Traveling with Special-Needs Children

According to The Center For Disease Control and Autism Speaks, an overwhelming 1 out of 68 children in the U.S. has been diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum Scale and close to 14% of all American children have some sort of special need that impairs development. This family learned that even with a child with special needs, your life shouldn’t stop. Getting out of the house and experiencing the world leads to stronger family connections and may even open other people’s eyes to the love and joy that a child with special needs brings to a family.

Colleen Kelly Begins Work on Third Season

Family Travel with Colleen Kelly
"Family Travel with Colleen Kelly," a National Public Television series, has started production on its third season, which is scheduled to air in spring 2016. For the first time, the show will explore RV camping. Season Two episodes continue to air throughout the U.S. on public television and on Create® TV, which airs lifestyle-oriented shows.

Atlantis, Paradise Island Begins Long-Term Plan to Enhance the Property and Guest Accommodations

Atlantis, Paradise Island, the iconic resort and family vacation mecca in the Bahamas, has announced four renovation projects in a comprehensive two-year plan to refresh the property's culinary, guest room and singular casino experiences. Renovations include: a new look and concept for the Royal Towers, the heart of the resort, including its buffet and center-of-activity lounge, Plato's.

Atlantis, Paradis Island

Fishing Families Will Make the Most of Hawks Cay Resort's Saltwater Experience

The hosts of the popular Saltwater Experience TV show will return to Hawks Cay Resort, Villas and Marina for the third annual Saltwater Experience Weekend (October 9-11). Anglers of all ages can learn about the latest gear, equipment and techniques from the experts that have fished the waters of the Florida Keys for years. Parents and kids can attend classroom seminars complemented by outdoor, hands-on workshops on topics such as fly-casting, cast-netting and engine maintenance, just to name a few.

Family Travel Industry News

Study: Parents Need Vacations, and So Do Their Kids

Children were the basis of a study released Tuesday, called "The Work Martyr's Children: How Kids Are Harmed by America’s Lost Week," in conjunction with Project: Time Off’s Upside of Downtime Forum in New York City. According to Travel Weekly, the study found that six of seven children observed their parents' work stress at home. It also found that 75% of children said their parents do not disconnect from work at home, and 59% are upset with their parents’ lack of presence. (Project: Time Off is a U.S. Travel Association initiative aimed at researching the benefits taking time off can have for both employers and employees.)

Project: Time Off

Tourism Cares Announces the First Study of the Philanthropic Habits of American Travelers

America has always been considered one of the most generous nations, but now there’s even more evidence in a new study called “Good Travels: The Philanthropic Profile of the American Traveler,” released this week by Tourism Cares.

Interestingly, Families with children who travel give more of their volunteer time (73%) and in-kind services (82%) than any others. In fact, they give and volunteer more than the average person surveyed. Additionally, they are passing these values along to their children: 49% of travelers plan to increase their children’s engagement in giving activities and 47% intend to increase discussions about community needs with them, thus passing on the torch to future generations.

10 Questions to Ask Yourself After Your Family Travels This Summer

With summer vacations behind us and a long year of school ahead, now is the time to reflect on your family’s summer travels, and see if you are traveling in a meaningful way. Here are 10 questions to ask and discuss.

Travel Is the Best Education: Start Teaching Your Kids Today

As you get back into school routines and slip back into your everyday grind, think about how you're going to give your kids the world. Summer might be coming to a close, but family travel goes way beyond going on vacation. Traveling, in fact, is the best kind of education there is. Here are some meaningful thoughts about why.

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