Family Travel Association Newsletter

FTA Launches into Summer with Agents, Summits and More in Its Sights

Week of June 26, 2017

This is the newsletter of the Family Travel Association, a 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.

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Family Travel Association News

FTA Opens New Membership Category - Travel Agents

Now just three years since we opened our doors, we are offering a new membership category for travel agents, an outgrowth of last month’s meeting with some of the industry’s leading family travel agents at Averill's Flathead Lake Lodge in Montana.

Stand tuned for more information from us, previews of which can be found here:
* Family Travel Association to Offer Membership to Travel Agents (Travel Weekly)
* Family Travel Group Welcomes Travel Agent Members (Associations Now)

The FTA Taps Top Family Travel Agents for Industry Intel

What’s Next for the FTA Summit?

FTA’s team is hard at work laying out all aspects of the upcoming FTA Summit, as well as taking registrations from key media, agents, operators, destinations and more.

Stay tuned for forthcoming updates and information about the event:
* An initial list of keynote speakers and breakout presenters
* A preliminary list of registered delegates (travel agents, family travel media, etc.)
* Details about the post-Summit FAM tour itinerary for Florida’s Space Coast

The 2017 FTA Summit is Oct. 23-27, out of Port Canaveral, Florida, on the Royal Caribbean Majesty of the Seas. Highlights will include:
* A diverse array of media, agents, operators, destinations and industry experts with whom to connect - 200 in total
* Specific media networking opportunities
* Presentations from industry ‘heavy hitters’
* And we just might manage to have some fun along the way with networking dinners and lunches, events in Nassau, and a stop on the island of CocoCay.

2016 FTA Summit video

Check out the video above that conveys the energy and excitement of delegates from last year’s Summit!

To register today and learn more, CLICK HERE.

The FTA Was Active at IPW!

The FTA’s Rainer Jenss and Chez Chesak had hundreds of meetings with tourism boards, tour operators, foreign buyers, media and other family-focused industry players at U.S. Travel’s IPW trade show in early June.

“IPW is a fantastic place to connect with real influencers in the travel space, be those influencers with current FTA members like Visit Florida or Visit Anchorage or with other travel entities considering joining the FTA,” said Rainer Jenss. “The combination of US destinations and visiting foreign media and buyers is powerful stuff - and great for business all around.”

Rainer Jenss and Chez Chesak with colleagues at Visit California at IPW 2017
According to U.S. Travel, more than 1,000 U.S. travel organizations from every region of the USA (representing all industry categories), and more than 1,300 international and domestic buyers from more than 70 countries conduct business negotiations that result in the generation of more than $4.7 billion in future travel to the U.S.A.

Special thanks to American Recreation Coalition / National Park Hospitality Association / National Parks Promotion Council for their partnership and allowing the FTA access to IPW.

Family Travel by Bicycle

In the most recent edition of our consumer-facing newsletter, we looked at Family Travel by Bicycle. With testimonials, tips and suggestions from nearly a dozen travel experts, it answers some important thoughts about whether and how a family cycling vacation is a good fit.

Family Travel by Bicycle

Family Travel Spotlight During the Sustainable Travel Summit

FTA Editorial Director Ethan Gelber, his wife and two young sons share in this video about their travel experiences, including their current adventure traveling the world for a year. Learn how to plan a vacation for the whole family, make the most out of a trip for children, combat boredom in airports and train stations and more.
Making Family Travel Sustainable

Bermuda Beckons to Families, Sailors and Perhaps Even Summits

Along with his daughter Lillian, the FTA Executive Director, Chez Chesak, recently attended a FAM tour and site inspection of Bermuda that showcased the island’s extensive family-friendly side, with many activities centered on the America’s Cup and the island’s hope of establishing itself as a sort of neutral location for future races. The FAM was supported by the Bermuda Tourism Authority and the Fairmont Southampton, both of which have jointly expressed interest in someday holding the FTA Summit at their location. 
Making Family Travel Sustainable

FTA Is Social - Share with Us

We’re busy on social media sharing about family travel. Join the conversation on Facebook (/familytravelassociation) and Twitter (@FamilyTravAssoc) and be sure to use the #familytravel hashtag!

Family Travel Association Membership

The Family Travel Association membership base continues to expand, drawing in new associations, media outlets, destinations, tour operators, corporate entities, cruise lines, lodgings and travel specialists.

Who Are Our Newest Members?

Costa Rica Green Adventures
Costa Rica Green Adventures
"As parents of three kids, Gaby and I founded Costa Rica Green Adventures to focus on eco adventures that explore Costa Rica through tours designed with kids in mind. Costa Rica is one of the best family vacations countries and our goal is to maximize fun and learning. We are pleased to be part of the FTA and hope to appeal to families and companies that enjoy a bit of nature and culture."
– Erick Gomez, General Manager
Elevate Destinations
Elevate Destinations
"Elevate Destinations is excited to join the FTA community and share best practices and innovation in family travel, especially when it comes to community and conservation engagement for families, opportunities to give back and to pay it forward!"
– Dominique Callimanopulos, Founder and President
Family Travel Boutique
Family Travel Boutique
"As a mom of two boys and the owner of Family Travel Boutique, I hold family travel as a true passion. It is my goal to help families get out and experience the world. The FTA is doing that and more. It is helping families see the true gift that travel is for their families and I wanted to be a part of that mission."
– Kimberly Milnes, Owner and Chief Memory Officer
McCabe World Travel
McCabe World Travel
"We are proud to be a member of the FTA as we have parallel goals to promote and encourage families to get out there and experience the world on any level from camping trips to exotic safaris. We hope to learn from fellow FTA members and share our best practices. Our goal for families is to embrace time together and experience new adventures that will only increase their family bond. Having the FTA as a partner will only enhance and support our goals."
– Jessica Griscavage, Director of Marketing
Out & About with Kids
Out & About with Kids
"As Australia’s premier family travel magazine, we absolutely had to join the FTA and engage in their network of family-friendly companies and destinations. We look forward to connecting with other FTA members, sharing information, and generally doing what we can to further the family travel industry, and help inspire families to further travels."
– Elisa Elwin, Owner/Publisher
The Explorer's Passage
The Explorer's Passage
"Our mission is to show people history's greatest stories through travel. As a member of the FTA, this allows us to connect with families who can share in the incredible experiences with each other. Our hope is that families come back from our adventures more connected to the world, history and each other."
– Jeff Bonaldi, Founder & President
Wallace Pierson Travel
Wallace Pierson Travel
"Travel brings with it experiential learning that applies to and reinforces all other forms of learning. Travel is higher education about ourselves as well as the world we encounter. We are excited to join forces with some of the industries leaders in family travel through the FTA! The industry has been missing a large voice in this extremely important travel sector. We really love the unique opportunity FTA has to get the travelers involved in the collaboration!"
– Angela Pierson, Co-owner

Family Travel Association Member News

Trending Now: Families Seeking a Digital Detox Vacation

The Importance of a Family-Wide Digital Detox
For many families distracted by devices, the solution is an increasingly popular digital detox vacation, during which screens are not allowed and there’s no Wi-Fi access or cellular service, says Paige Conner Totaro of Unquote Travel in our latest TravelAge West column.
Read more about this and some of the options:
* Take the #100HoursUnplugged challenge from OARS
* See Intrepid Travel’s new digital detox trip for families
* UnCruise Adventures trips are purposefully internet-free
* Western River Expeditions promises families will unplug and reconnect with nature

Digital Family Travel Mags Worth Noting

Family travel magazine covers
There’s no shortage of inspiring editorial about family travel. Three excellent recently published digital resources worth noting are:
* Family Traveller
* Twist Travel Magazine
* Out & About with Kids

Kids Tell All in Family Travel Marketing Videos

Why kids love Sandos Caracol so much
Why wonder what kids think when you can just ask them... and use their answers in family travel marketing? Two fine new examples come from Sandos Caracol, who recorded "Why kids love Sandos Caracol so much" and Scott Dunn, who shared what teens really think about traveling!

47 of the Best Family Travel Blogs

47 of the Best Family Travel Blogs
For anyone looking for practical, insightful tips from family-focused travel blogs, this post lists 47 of what it believes are the best family travel blogs online that will give you the tools and inspiration you need in 2017 to travel with your family. We’re there and so are a whole bunch of our Media Center members.

Diving Back into Life (with Family)

Diving Back into Life (with Family)
Paul Zanelli is a husband, a father… and now an amputee after crushing his right foot during a home project and spending 33 days confined to a hospital bed. But missing part of a limb hasn’t made him less of a husband, a father… or a traveler. And he is diving back into life with the help of Kids Sea Camp.

Seas for Autism — A Cruise Ship Tour Program with Royal Caribbean

Seas for Autism
For families that have children with special needs, Seas for Autism is a free cruise ship tour program designed to provide an actual cruise ship boarding experience (while it is docked). It is a two- to three-hour orientation tour conducted by Royal Caribbean International and Autism on the Seas staff.

What Kids Really Want From a Family Vacation

Kids' Vacation Wish List
School’s almost out for summer! And that means family vacation. Let this be the summer to sit back and have the kids decide where the next family trip should be. FamilyFun says parents may be pleasantly surprised!

The Best Family Holidays to Book in 2017

The Best Family Holidays to Book in 2017
Traveling with children might not sound like it’d let you get your fill of both adventure and relaxation, but Intrepid believes it can. This is why their family trips feature a mix of activities for all ages and kid-friendly hotels. Here are some of their favorite family vacation destinations for 2017.

Lindblad Expeditions—National Geographic Launches New Family Program to Inspire the Next Generation of Explorers

National Geographic Global Explorers
National Geographic Global Explorers is an exploration-based family program of unforgettable “smart fun” experiences. Designed to inspire the next generation of explorers, kids and teens join in activities adapted to their age for maximum enjoyment and engagement.

Top 10 Tips for Traveling with Teenagers

Top 10 Tips for Traveling with Teenagers
Keeping everyone happy on a family holiday is tricky enough, let alone when children turn into temperamental teens. In this blog, luxury private journeys operator Scott Dunn lays out top tips on where to take them and how to make the holiday one to remember.

Martinhal Chiado Family Suites Makes Discovering Lisbon as a Family Easy

Martinhal Chiado Family Suites Makes Discovering Lisbon as a Family Easy
Lisbon is a perfect base for a family getaway and a child’s first introduction to Europe’s rich history and culture. There’s no better place from which to take it all in than a home-away-from-home for families seeking the privacy and comfort of a luxury apartment with the convenience of a hotel.

SeaWorld Orlando Unleashes First-of-Its-Kind VR Roller Coaster

SeaWorld Orlando Unleashes First-of-Its-Kind VR Roller Coaster
One of the fiercest underwater legends has come to life in an entirely new way. Kraken Unleashed, SeaWorld Orlando’s first-of-its-kind virtual reality roller coaster in the United States, with fully integrated headsets, offers an adventure for thrill-seeking guests unlike any other.

Summertime in the Mountains (of Utah) for Families

Summer Time in the Mountains (of Utah) for Kids
This summer, the mountains of Utah best known for their top-quality winter sports, are open for endless summer fun for families of any age. Park City Mountain, Snowbasin Resort, Nordic Valley, Brian Head Resort and Snowbird all promise great activities and outdoor events.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Remain Official NYC Family Ambassadors

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Remain Official NYC Family Ambassadors
NYC & Co has retained Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as Official NYC Family Ambassadors for a second year. A new campaign welcomes family travelers to explore the five boroughs and it includes family-friendly itineraries catered to each of the four turtle personalities.
FTA Media Center

Family Travel Thoughts from the FTA Media Center

Read some of the latest writing from the experienced and knowledgeable voices in our Media Center.

Zika, One Year Later by Megan Padilla in Travel Weekly

Summer Vacation, Minus the Traffic: 5 Alternatives to Popular Trips by Amy Tara Koch in The New York Times

Top 8 Tiny Stays for Families by Shellie Bailey-Shah in KidTripster

Pandora: Mythical World of Na’vi Comes to Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom by Priya Vin in Outside Suburbia

Family Travel Industry News

Your Ultimate How-To Summer Vacation Guide

Your Ultimate How-To Summer Vacation Guide
Whether one is hitting the road, hiking, camping, or just diving into a lake, pool, or the ocean, Budget Travel checked in with the experts  who know how to get the most out of every kind of summer vacation experience.

Busted! Seven Lame Excuses for Not Traveling with Your Kids 

Busted! Seven Lame Excuses for Not Traveling with Your Kids
Yes, young kids are slaves to their routines and vacations can be tricky, but with a little bit of creativity, flexibility and planning, travel with kids can be a rewarding adventure for the whole family. This article in Reader’s Digest offers seven reasons why NOT to postpone family travel.

Single Parents Pay More for Family Holidays

Single Parents Pay More for Family Holidays
Single-parent families could be paying significantly more per person to go on holiday than a two adult family. Research carried out for Sky News has shown that a parent with one child could pay up to 28% more for the same holiday as two adults with one child. This comes as no surprise to us.

10 of the World's Best Messy Adventures for Kids

10 of the World's Best Messy Adventures for Kids
Some of your favorite travel memories from childhood probably involved being buried in sand up to your nose, splashing through mud or literally mucking about. After all, where’s the joy in good, clean fun without getting absolutely filthy? Here are a few great messy adventures from Lonely Planet.

2017 Road Trip Survey: How Families Travel

2017 Road Trip Survey: How Families Travel
A 2017 road trip survey has uncovered that nearly 75% of Americans plan to take a road trip this year. The survey also notes trends on how much road trippers will spend, what they eat and where they travel while on the road. For more about family travel and road tripping, read our in-depth article.
Family Getaways

Other Industry Stories Through TravelAge West

As part of a collaboration with TravelAge West, we are sharing selected items of interest from their family travel news desk.

Top Family Vacation Tips From Family Getaways' #TWChats
Travel agents, suppliers and more tweet their advice for upcoming family trips.

SeaWorld Ends Theatrical Orca Show, Adds Attractions
Reimagined performances, ride upgrades and more are set to launch in all three parks this summer.

Here's How Royal Caribbean Is Shuffling Its Deployment
The cruise line has announced a return to the Gulf Coast and the Panama Canal, along with a full year of Cuba sailings.
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