IITA Insights Newsletter - March 1, 2017
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Last month, at the IITA Summit, I introduced an advocacy program that we have begun, to work toward becoming a conduit  between the National Park Service and our members. As many of the major National Parks face overcrowding issues they have been tasked with developing their own protocol for resoloving the problem. The IITA wants to take an active lead in being a part of these discussions as it is our business - both suppliers and ITO that are directly impacted. Donald Leadbetter, NPS Tourism Program Manager out of the DC office, talked more about this issue at the general session and was thrilled to see IITA taking a stand to help coordinate efforts. 

Last week, I was in Reno, NV attending the Go West Summit where we took this program one step further with a roundtable discussion. Participants included: James Scoon,Wyoming Office of Tourism; Quintin Blair,Blair Hotels of Wyoming; Lance Syrett, BW Ruby’s Inn and other Bryce Park entrance properties; Donald Leadbetter, NPS, and myself representing IITA and inbound tour operators.  What we found out was that this is one of the “hottest issues” in the American West. Several parks have already begun to have local meetings— we need to be a part of the conversation. The decisions that are made will have a direct impact on park visitation from our international guests! Much angst is coming from properties and communities near the parks that feel like they are being left out of important decisions being made by the NPS. Arches Park superintendent has already announced that they are exploring moving to a full reservation system for daily entrances starting in 2018! Many other parks are  looking to limit visitation in one form or another.

IITA is working on the forefront of this “wave” to keep our members informed and work with key partners like the NPS and Brand USA on ways to promote off-season visitation and lesser known parks.  We must also get behind the NPS to help facilitate an infrastructure budget that will help the parks be equipped to meet the needs of visitors making their experience a positive one! IITA will be meeting again with the National Park Service in Washington, D.C. during Destination Capitol Hill. Expect more information moving forward as this subject continues to become an even bigger issue over the next few months! If you would like to become directly involved with IITA's efforts please email or me. 

-Gary Schluter, Chairman
 Rocky Mountain Holiday Tours

March 8 - 12
ITB Berlin
More Information

March 23 - 24
Tourism Cares for Oakland
More Information

March 28-29
Destination Capitol Hill
More Information

April 19
Secure Tourism Summit
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May 11 - 12
Tourism Cares for Detroit
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June 3-7
IPW 2017
More Information
See highlight videos and photos from the 2017 IITA Summit on our website!
2018 IITA Summit
February 4-7, 2018
2019 IITA Summit
February 3-6, 2019
How real is the "Trump Slump"?

Today the White House announced a delay in the much anticipated immigration Executive Order that would impose a new travel ban, which would replace the original Executive Order that was ruled to be unconstitutional by the Ninth Circuit US Court of Appeals.  That could be good news as members of the US travel industry attend ITB next week in Berlin to promote the US to the German market. Yet still it is unclear as to what impact the administration’s action has had on inbound travel.

Click here to read more. 
From the Inside with Jordi Zarroca

Jordi Zarroca has been serving as Chief Executive Officer of Cosmopolitan Incentives since September 2010. Cosmopolitan Incentives is a boutique Destination Management Company, that provides their clients with a creative and innovative take on the planning and execution of Incentive Programs, Corporate Meetings, Product Launches, Multilingual Tours, Pre/Post Convention Programs, Gala Events, Team-Building Activities, Themed Events, and VIP Services for Corporate/Leisure Travelers in New York and around the US. Each member of the Cosmopolitan Incentives team, including Jordi, are highly qualified, multilingual experts with years of hands-on experience. Prior to joining Cosmopolitan Incentives Jordi worked in several other positions within the travel and tourism industry. 
What is the MICE market?

MICE stands for meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions.

A lot of tour operators focus on leisure visitors, but corporations are looking for assistance in providing the best travel experiences for their clients and for sales staff as incentives.

Cosmopolitan Incentives started in 2010 and specializes in that kind of programming for clients and travel agents in markets of Mexico, South America and Spain. We work with meetings, medical conventions and incentive travel for the incoming market.
Why should it be important to inbound tour operators?

Click here to learn more.
ITB Berlin

Please look for IITA leadership at ITB. In addition to valued Board Members, IITA Executive Director, Lisa Simon, will be making rounds at the event.

"ITB is a wonderful opportunity to get in front of key partners, decision makers and industry leaders to share IITA's work in advocacy, especially concerning the travel restrictions," shares Simon. "I also hope to gain greater knowledge of outside perspective to help IITA strenghten our position on the issue."

ITB will take place next week, March 8-12, at Messe Berlin.
Destination Capitol Hill: March 28-29, 2017

IITA is proud to support Destination Capitol Hill (DCH), the U.S. Travel industry's premier legislative fly-in.
DCH brings travel leaders from across the country to Washington, D.C. to educate policymakers about the power of travel. The program combines a legislative day on Capitol Hill with advocacy training, guest speakers and peer-to-peer networking. DCH provides delegates with an opportunity to learn about upcoming legislation that impacts travel, network with peers and meet with members of Congress to stress the importance of travel as an economic driver.

All IITA members are encouraged to participate in Destination Capitol Hill. Please click here to learn more.