Milford, CT, March 27, 2007 – With tremendous pre-show “fanfare”, the Adventures in Travel Expo (ATE) took New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles (as part of the LA Times Travel & Adventure Show) and Washington, DC by storm, as more than 60,000 people poured into convention centers to get a taste of the hottest active and adventure vacation options found anywhere on the globe.
Featuring over 1400 exhibits, the events showcased thousands of destinations, from every continent on earth. Attendees found, high-energy, interactive exhibits representing everything from far flung destinations like Mongolia and Thailand, to Caribbean gems like Curacao and Anguilla or domestic getaways such as dude ranches in Montana and American Indian retreats in Wyoming; each brimming with enthusiastic travelers looking for exciting and memorable vacations.
Initial attendee surveys have shown that over 73% of attendees found a travel provider with whom they will book a trip. Additionally attendees were delighted with the breadth of travel offerings and equally impressed with the content provided by the on-floor seminars highlighting family travel, women-only travel, volunteer travel, and sustainable travel, to name just a few.
“The response to the ATE shows this year clearly validates that active and adventure travel or ‘experiential travel’ is a powerful segment of travel and tourism that is here to stay,” said John Golicz, CEO of Unicomm, producers of the Adventures in Travel Expos and Los Angeles Times Travel and Adventure Show. “We continue our mission to grow the next generation of active and adventure travelers, and will be expanding our offerings in 2007 and beyond”.
Sponsors included tourism agencies of Greece, India, Puerto Rico, Guam, Turkey, Ireland, Malaysia as well as Disney Vacation Club, FLO-USA and I-to-I Meaningful Travel.
The events also included an impressive list of supporting partners including Africa Travel Association (ATA), Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), Association for the Promotion of Tourism to Africa (APTA) , Pacific Asia Tourism Association (PATA), Travel Industry Association of America (TIA), American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), Rainforest Alliance and dozens more. Several organizations co-located their events with the ATE events, and joined forces in reaching out to over 2,800 local travel trade and meeting professionals attending the events, plus local media.
"The shows have grown tremendously since last year and are becoming the events destinations and hotels don't want to miss. We were very pleased with the type of attendees who came to the events - they were of high quality, were very knowledgeable about the region and we had steady traffic throughout all shows. Our presence at the events did allot for building awareness of the Caribbean." Fernando Abreu, Marketing Director, Caribbean Tourism Organization.
National Magazine Sponsor National Geographic ADVENTURE magazine hosted an “Adventure Theatre” in each event, featuring top speakers from the world of active and adventure travel – including their “2006 Adventurers of the Year” Julie Wafaei and Colin Angus who “wowed” attendees by recounting their 26,000-mile odyssey of circumnavigating the planet using only human power. Keynote speakers included travel legends Rick Steves, Arthur Frommer, Pauline Frommer, Huell Howser and Robert Young Pelton.
New York City far surpassed last year’s success and featured a new location at the “UnConvention Center,” Pier 94 on the west side of Manhattan. Exhibitors and attendees alike gave “two thumbs up” to the new venue that was an ideal fit for the active and affluent travelers attending the show. “We’ve done a lot of shows in New York. This is the best one…and the target market has been excellent,” stated Reinaldo Arana, representative of the Puerto Rico Tourism Company.
In Long Beach, the Los Angeles Times Travel & Adventure Show (which includes ATE) posted impressive attendance gains – and became the nation’s largest travel show for consumers and travel trade, featuring an expansive show floor.
ATE’s Chicago and Washington DC events both enjoyed tremendous attendance. “The entire experience in Washington, D.C. was wonderful. We were extremely impressed with the show and received many quality leads and have already been bombarded with emails from potential clients”, said Bonnie McErlane of Abercrombie & Kent, Inc.
The increased attendance was the result of ATE’s aggressive marketing program which included tens of millions of media impressions and dozens of live television, cable and radio feeds from the shows. Coverage included Associated Press, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC Networks. All events featured show-floor bookings stations managed by Liberty Travel and Adventure Engine, show-only discount packages and strong cultural performances on the Global Beats Stage.
“Adventures in Travel Expo is not just a show – it’s a community,” says John Golicz, Unicomm’s CEO and the show’s organizer. “We are advancing adventure travel by bringing together every facet of this industry under one huge umbrella and then rolling out a professional marketplace from one key market to the next. The strength of these events are the unique high demographic attendees that demand exciting out of the ordinary travel experiences. No other show brings these seasoned, very active travelers to travel providers.”
The Adventures in Travel Expo was backed by media powerhouses such as Los Angeles Times, New York Daily News and Chicago Tribune who did much to promote the show, along with other key sponsors such as National Geographic ADVENTURE, whose compelling line-up of seminars and “Wild Angle Photo Contest” brought consumers out in force.
For more information about the Adventures in Travel Expo or Los Angeles Times Travel & Adventure Show, visit the web site at www.adventureexpo.com.
About Unicomm, LLC
Unicomm, LLC is an independent business-to-business communications company specializing in originating and managing world-class trade shows and conferences in underserved and nascent markets. Located in Milford, Connecticut, Unicomm is led by a seasoned management team possessing more than 50 years of events industry experience and an impressive track record of dozens of successful show launches and hundreds of event productions. Each year Unicomm holds varied events attracting tens of thousands of people in key markets including Human Resources, Engineering, Defense, Travel and others.