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Many of the changes you’ll see at Travel Exchange ’19 are a direct result of buyer feedback, including reducing the burden of appointments. (Hey, we don’t call it appointment-free Tuesday for nothing).

Best Pitch will be a succession of elevator speeches about international destinations—country by country. And Sales Missions will feature groups of DMOs from different states and provinces giving you the big picture, itinerary-wise. You won’t want to miss these new sessions.

The more operators that sellers see at these Tuesday sessions, the happier they’ll be to give up a day of appointments. To be rebate-eligible, you’ll need to attend two out of three sessions: Sales Mission I, Sales Mission II, and/or Best Pitch. Rebate aside, though, you’ll get great ideas and info during these talks.

How will you know where to go? Let’s work together. When the appointment system opens this fall, you’ll be able to prioritize the state or provincial Sales Missions you want to attend. The earlier you request your appointments, the better chance you’ll have of getting the Sales Mission you want. However, we need to make sure that every mission has a good number of buyers, so we’ll assign some buyers to missions they didn’t request.

Please don’t skip out on your assigned mission. For starters, you’ll miss out on some great information—a new program, maybe. But also, DMOs with only a few operators attending their presentation will be understandably mad. They have bosses back home they need to report to, and those bosses will ask about the number of buyers they met with. If sellers aren’t happy with no-appointment Tuesday, they’ll want to go back to one-on-one appointments.

The Best Pitch session is simpler: For each country that’s represented by a DMO (or a receptive operator), you’ll get concise information about packaging that country, a quick Q&A, and a name and face for future questions. This will move fast: You’ll get a new country every five minutes.

I’m counting on you to give these sessions a chance. They are designed for you—both by NTA and by the DMOs who’ll provide you with information. I can’t wait to hear your feedback before, during, and after the show. My door is always open.

—Dawn Pettus, CTP, Director of Events

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