Four Certificate Programs and Robust Education Announced for Travel Industry Exchange

NEW YORK (September 16, 2016) ─ Questex Travel Group today announced a robust roster of panel discussions and educational seminars for its second annual Travel Industry Exchange event, which will take place December 13-15, 2016 at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront in San Diego, California.

The event, emphasizing on travel specialization, will offer over 50 sessions focused on revenue-generating niche segments, including certification programs in cruise, romance, luxury, and family travel, as well as concentrated programs in social media & branding, and millennial travel.

“Travel Industry Exchange will bring together the industry’s most knowledgeable and experienced executives in specialization,” said John McMahon, Questex Travel Group executive vice president. “Parlaying on the enormous success of our inaugural event in 2015, we have raised the bar even higher going into this year and expect travel professionals to come away with the tools they need to become even more valuable to their clientele, who are growing at a tremendous pace especially within the burgeoning millennial market, and are seeking more than just a ‘one size fits all vacation.’ This is an opportunity agents cannot pass up.”

To offer attendees dynamic educational content on topics relevant to their business development, Questex has partnered with leading industry associations. Key educational tracks and sessions will include:

  • Cruise Travel Specialist Certification, in partnership with Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA):
    • Selling Up: Beyond the Cruise and the Hotel to Next-Level Planning
    • Full Steam Ahead: The Future of Cruising Including Itineraries and New Ships
    • The Wonderful World of Ship Inspections — Everything You Need to Know About Ship Inspections
    • The Next Frontier in Cruising: Alaska, the Pacific, and the Northwest
    • River Cruising: How to Successfully Introduce and Sell More to Your Cruise Clientele
    • Why Planes, Trains, and Automobiles Can Make or Break a Great Cruise Experience
    • Turn Their Heads — Grow Your Business Through 1st Time Cruisers
    • Attracting the Right Clientele to the Right Cruise for Millennials and Generations Beyond


  • Romance Travel Specialist Certification, in partnership with the Destination Wedding & Honeymoon Specialists Association (DWHSA) and sponsored by the Nevada Division of Tourism:
    • Love at First Site: Romance and Destination Wedding Travel 101: Getting Started
    • Best Practices: How To Fast-Track Your Romance Travel Business Growth
    • Strange Love: Why “Something New” Beats Out “Something Borrowed” in Today’s Destination Weddings Market
    • The Building Blocks of Profitable Partnerships: Better Working Processes for Vendor Relationships and Success
    • The Bridal Show Buy-In: Getting Your Investments to Pay Off
    • She (or He) Said “Yes”: Prospecting and Closing For Business Success in the Destination Wedding Market
    • Practice What You Preach: Selling Luxury Weddings with Panache
  • Luxury Travel Specialist Certification, in partnership with Luxury Travel Advisor:
    • The New Luxury Group Business: Celebrations, Reunions, and “Oh, Look, I’m Turning 30”
    • Managing Your Mindset: Am I Worthy of Selling Luxury?
    • What’s NEXT in Luxury: Extreme Destinations, Getting to Know the Wildest and Hottest Trends in 2017 & Beyond
    • Expanding Your Luxury Business: Should You Go It Alone or Take a Partner?
    • Selling Up: Beyond the Cruise and the Hotel to Next-Level Planning
    • Establishing YOUR Luxury Brand
    • The Luxury Niche Overview
    • Practice What You Preach: Selling Luxury Weddings with Panache
  • Family Travel Specialist Certification, in partnership with the Family Travel Association:
    • Lions and Tigers and Bears! Oh My! Redefining the Family Vacation
    • Finding the Elusive “Fun” Family Vacation: How To Make Family-Friendly Appeal to All Ages
    • Multigenerational Travel: What’s Driving the Fastest Growing Segment in Travel
    • Building Your Family Travel Business and Becoming A Specialist
    • Challenging Assumptions: Family Travelers Don’t Always Favor All-Inclusives
    • Hot Destinations for Families and Why “Tour” Is Not a Four-Letter Word!
    • The Great Outdoors is Great Once More
  • Millennial Travel Track, sponsored by Apple Vacations:
    • Going Alone or Going Along: Is It Time to Assert Your Independence?
    • Celebration Travel Continues to Rise to the Occasion
    • How Thinking Small Can Lead to Bigger Earnings: Know Thy Niche
    • Attracting the Right Clientele to the Right Cruise for Millennials and Generations Beyond
  • Social Media & Branding Track:
    • Your Social Media Presence in Practice: Real Life Scenarios and Examples of DOs & DON’Ts in Social Media
    • Who Says Business and Emotion Don’t Mix? The Dos & Don’ts of Emotional Branding
    • Stop Wasting Time on Social Media: Start Creating LEADS and BUISNESS with Efficient Processes in Social Media
    • Social Media Tactics Which Are Currently Effective in the Consumer Travel Market
    • How Customized Tours Can Build Your Brand and Guide You to More Sales
    • Selling Yourself and Fine-Tuning Your Sales Techniques Critical to Success as an Agent

The full schedule can be viewed at


Travel Industry Exchange Now Open for Registration with Special Early Bird Pricing

Early bird discount offers savings of over 45% for travel professionals.

Questex Travel Group today announced early bird pricing of $75 for travel professionals who register by August 31 for its Travel Industry Exchange event, which will take place December 13-15 in San Diego, California at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront are set to increase on September 1, 2016.

Travel15_LogoStkd-CS5 (2)The event will emphasize niche travel and specialization and feature one-to-one appointments, networking events, and educational programs designed to help travel professionals and global suppliers build on their specializations and grow their businesses.

Travel Industry Exchange will offer over 50 sessions focused on specific revenue-generating niche segments including certification programs in luxury, cruise, romance, and family travel as well as concentrated programs in brand building, social media, destinations, and millennial travel.

The event is being organized by the Questex Travel Group, publishers of Travel Agent and Luxury Travel Advisor magazines, which has pioneered the specialization concept into the mainstream travel industry.

“Specialization is a major business driver,” said John McMahon, Questex Travel Group executive vice president. “As more consumers look to travel professionals for expert advice, we see untapped potential in specialty markets, with the millennial generation leading the pack.”

The early bird savings will be applied during the registration process. One-day, exhibit-floor, and upgraded packages are also available. For more information or to register, travel professionals may visit

The second edition of Travel Industry Exchange will bring travel professionals and lifestyle specialists together with international suppliers, including destinations, hoteliers, cruise lines, tour operators, transportation providers, technology companies, spas, and resorts. The even will include one-to-one meetings, comprehensive education including agent specialty training, and networking events and receptions.


In Pursuit of Passion: A Love Story in Learning to Sell Travel

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Passion is what moves people to greatness. The building of Rome, the crafting of a fine wine, the solo trip made across the globe—all these things accomplished by people who are passionate about what they do.

Translating into every part of life, the need for passion is especially true for today’s travel agent. In a world filled with distraction, consumers are inundated with endless options from what to eat for dinner to how to plan the trip of their wildest imaginings.

Most of today’s travelers crave an authentic travel experience; the beaten path and the cliché will no longer do—and with this in mind it is time to start thinking outside of the box when it comes to serving your clients and growing your market.

But how do you start?

The path begins with identifying the destinations and types of travel that excite you—that you love and that you’re passionate about— and exploring and researching everything there is to know in order to sell to your clients.

This process once meant hours of endless web searches, but with Travel Agent University, you have the premier e-learning tool that will help you assess, prioritize, and take action to close more business, prospect new markets, and upsell your clients by growing your knowledge of destinations and travel suppliers. The fact is, when agents specialize in a product or destination, they sell more of it and at higher yields!

Loaded with resources, such as supplier training courses, webinars, itineraries, and other resources that you can share with your clients, here is how TAU can work for you and put more money in your pocket.

→ Seal The Deal: Closing Existing Business

Continuing your education with TAU will help you close more business. Completing supplier courses will keep you in the know about special promotions and extra perks that will get your clients to sign on the dotted line.

→ A Whole New World: Prospecting New Markets

The variety of product training courses is the way to explore and prospect new markets and discover new passions. 97% of TAU graduates thought they had a better understanding of a supplier’s unique selling points after completing courses on TAU. Becoming a specialist gives you the confidence to sell new clients the trips and adventures that they want, now that you are armed with the knowledge to  give them the best travel experience they’ve ever had.

→ The Sky’s The Limit: Upselling Your Clients

TAU will increase your commissions by helping you upsell your clients. Each supplier course offers you valuable insider tips on how to upsell your clients with cabin upgrades, tour add-ons, and suite promotions. Providing these “nice-to-haves” and “extras” to your clients will grow your commissions and ensure that they come back to you for their next trip.

TAU is critical to propelling your business forward— nearly 40% of TAU graduates book $1million+ in annual sales by continuing their education and building their supplier knowledge. By learning more about the destinations you love and discovering new ones, you can serve your existing clients and close more business, grow and prospect new markets, upsell your clients, and grow your commissions by following your passion.

New Travel Agents: How to Start Your Education

By Ruthanne Terrero
Travel Agent magazine
April 7, 2016

It’s said that having too many choices often results in an angst that you’ve picked the wrong thing. It’s easy to analyze options to pieces only to agonize when you’ve made your selection. This must be an issue for newbie travel agents, who have the entire world in front of them to learn about. Where do you begin?

Consider the following assessment strategy.

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VP/Editorial Director, Ruthanne Terrero

You’re in business, so you need to earn a viable income. I suggest going for the low-hanging fruit, the travel offerings that will provide an immediate return. Take supplier and destination courses that give you the 101 on how to sell to more than just one type of client, that verse you in the art of upselling and give you specific instructions on how to close the deal.

Next step: Cultivating a new business isn’t all about the now. You need to nurture new markets by learning about products and places that speak to emerging trends. Read up on where new hotels are being developed in international markets; the larger lodging companies often have an eye on those places that have the potential for new tourists. Which new ports are the cruise lines visiting? Assemble as much information as possible on where to go next so you’ve got much to offer that new sophisticated client who comes your way.  Read more

Travel Agent University Partners with Equator Learning Offering Travel Suppliers Unparalleled International Reach

Questex Travel Group announced today that its iconic Travel Agent University brand has partnered with the Online Travel Academy powered by Equator Learning, a UK-based travel industry e-learning platform to offer participating suppliers an international audience of professional sellers of travel.

taublueTravel Agent University (TAU), with 46,000 plus certified members, is the industry’s largest online travel agent community and education site and has graduated more specialists than any other industry education program, awarding over 50,000 diplomas annually. The recent launch of the totally revamped platform, which features responsive design, intuitive navigation, seamless rewards, both B2B and B2C resources for agents, and even editing capabilities for course hosts, has received rave reviews from member users.

equator_cropEquator Learning, a UK-based company, designs, manages and markets unique, multilingual and interactive online training portals for the travel industry. Through their global media partnerships, Equator training courses such as NYC, California, and Sandals are offered to over 125,000 travel agents worldwide including Europe, Asia, Brazil, India, China, Australia, and the Middle East.

John McMahon, Questex Travel Group executive vice president, said the partnership is a key strategic move for the TAU brand because it will enable suppliers to leverage best-in-class e-learning technology to a global marketplace. It will give clients the opportunity to streamline their education courses via one partner, and simply translate for each individual audience, rather than have to work with multiple vendors around the world.

“We are delighted to collaborate on this advantageous endeavor with Equator Learning, one of the leading global e-learning distributors,” said McMahon. “Questex is invested in travel agent education and committed to delivering an invaluable opportunity for our suppliers to expand their reach to agents eager to learn throughout the world.”

“We are proud to partner with Questex, North America’s preeminent publisher of travel agent content, editorial, and education,” said Chris May, managing director, Equator Learning. “Our two unique brands combined will offer suppliers the elite in travel agent training opportunities, with a global reach that will be unprecedented. We are looking forward to a mutually successful relationship.”

Serving the travel community since 2005, Equator Learning creates innovative and engaging online travel and leisure training solutions that offer an affordable and efficient solution for clients and a fun learning tool for the end user.

Launched in 1993, Travel Agent University is accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Along with the best-in-class Travel Agent University courses offered on this proprietary platform, Questex continues to offer fully customized, white label e-learning and loyalty solutions. For more information, visit


Top 10 Reasons to Exhibit at Travel Industry Exchange

Travel Industry Exchange is the #1 event for top10imageBarspecialization.
But why should you participate?

  1. It will be hosted in beautiful San Diego, California — in December!
  1. Options to suit your budget — full booth or table top.
  1. Focused, uninterrupted meetings — no conflicting conference sessions while trade show floor is open.
  1. Schedule your own appointments with travel agents YOU CHOOSE to meet with.
  1. Educated agents will attend for specialization training in your products.
  1. Conference passes included in your package at no additional charge.
  1. Participation will help optimize your database with pre-qualified travel agent leads.
  1. Helps eliminate sales call road shows with eight hours of one-to-one meetings.
  1. Exposure to 100,000 travel agents via the Travel Agent and Luxury Travel Advisor media portfolio.

And the #1 reason to exhibit at Travel Industry Exchange

It’s the only event focused on specialization, the next wave of growth for agents, and a direct link to more business for you!

Travel Industry Exchange 2016 Is A Year Away!


As we wrap up 2015, we look toward 2016 with excitement as Travel Industry Exchange heads to the lovely Hilton San Diego Bayfront in sunny San Diego, California.

With over 500+ pre-qualified agents in attendance and 366 global suppliers, Travel Industry Exchange 2015 was a tremendous success and we look forward to an off the charts event in 2016.

So mark your calendars and be sure to join us in San Diego next December!

Select an option below to add Travel Industry Exchange 2016 to your Outlook, iCalendar or Google Calendar now.

Outlook | iCalendar | Google Calendar

Questex Unveils Revamped Travel Agent University E- Learning Site

Travel Agent University

The new home page at Travel Agent University

Questex Travel Group today announced the launch of a totally revamped Travel Agent University e-learning platform, featuring responsive design to work on any desktop or mobile device, intuitive navigation, sales-focused resources for agents, editing capabilities for course hosts and seamless rewards redemption for users.

Travel Agent University, with 38,500 certified members, is the industry’s largest online travel agent community and education site and has graduated more specialists than any other industry education program, awarding over 60,000 diplomas annually. Travel professionals can choose their specialty, complete courses and earn rewards and exclusive deals while earning accreditation.

Read more