The 11th edition of IMEX America
held in Las Vegas recently saw an overall participation of 12,000 attendees, of
whom over 4,000 were buyers and 2,500 were suppliers representing 150
countries. Between the easing of travel restrictions and 40% of returning
exhibitors taking more booth space, this year’s version was 45% larger than
last year’s. And, IMEX Chairman Ray Bloom was very proud of the fact
that “hundreds of students, our future leaders, have been here learning
and experiencing the industry first hand and in full color.”
Each year, ConventionPlanit.com
proudly hosts buyers at IMEX. This year we were fortunate to include
a number of student interns from the University of Las Vegas at
our ConventionPlanit.com stand. As future meeting and event planners, the
experience provided ULV students with an overview of the marketplace and
current meeting planning priorities.
traditional excitement, business and sheer energy that are hallmarks of IMEX
were combined with a program attuned to addressing today’s
realities. Along with the themes of sustainability, diversity and
service levels, those of wellbeing and mental health were factored in as
important considerations. Demonstrating these topics were several of the
innovative engagement strategies positioned throughout the exhibit hall.
sponsor brought in trained dogs for attendees to pet and scratch for stress
relief between educational sessions and show-booth interactions. Taiwan
used an inflatable room complete with a faux campfire and a video
screen providing over stimulated planners with a cozy presentation space.
And CoralTree Hospitality won friends and influenced buyers
with a foot massaging station complete with your choice of an essential oil to
take away for an aromatherapy jolt to be applied when energy was bound to flag!
America offers an incomparable opportunity to make connections in the meetings,
events and incentive industry. Mark your calendar and see you next year for
IMEX America #12 – to be held October 16-19, 2023 at the Mandalay Bay
Along with the myriad of challenges today’s meeting participants
must overcome in deciding whether or not to attend an event, air travel (and
its repercussions) presents one of the more formidable issues to consider.
TSA screened 8.76 million air travelers over Labor Day
weekend beating out 2019’s pre-pandemic number by 2%!
Whereby statistics like this were normally used to describe a
holiday weekend, an ordinary mid-week, off peak time to fly now has passengers
experiencing a significantly increased number of fellow flyers. Along with this
higher traffic volume comes more delays and/or outright cancellations. Historically,
deciphering obscure rules as described in the Contract of Carriage relating to
restitution due passengers has been the norm when an airline failed to provide
the service paid for through no action or fault of the consumer.
However, help is on the way! In late August, the
Transportation Department introduced an Airline Customer Service
Dashboard which allows passengers to see what each carrier is
committed to doing for them in cases of “controllable” (meaning their fault)
cancellations or significant delays.
Re-accommodation can range from handing out food vouchers in
case of long delays, providing a hotel in case of an overnight cancellation/delay
to rebooking you on the same airline at no additional cost, or even on a competitor’s
flight. However, not all airlines will offer the same levels of
re-accommodation with the ultra-low-cost carriers less amenable to some of the
above mentioned entitlements.
Now passengers can consult this simple dashboard rather than
trying to read through the excruciatingly small print of the aforementioned Contract
of Carriage on an individual airline’s website to find out what they are
entitled to – or not. What the Transportation Department is saying now is that
more focus in dealing with the aftermath of delays and cancellations is long
overdue and they are laying down the law.
Hopefully this will help to eliminate the attendee’s
question of “should I or should I not rely on an airline to get me to my
meeting, event or convention on time and unstressed?”