A 10 percent increase in buyer delegates and one of the hottest destination cities in America translated into a resounding success for the 20th-anniversary edition of the Select Traveler Conference in Nashville, Tennessee, February 8-10. More than 450 delegates arrived in Music City to enjoy superb entertainment, productive business sessions and three days of networking.
“Our rebranding of the Select Traveler Conference to include banks, chambers and alumni travel programs is creating a dynamic new marketplace for upscale groups,” said conference CEO Joe Cappuzzello. “As a result, our buyer attendance increased by 10 percent, and 40 percent of all our delegates this year were first-time attendees. The business activity at this conference was invigorating for everyone involved.”
Buyer and seller delegates from 40 states and five countries attended the event, and three marketplace sessions yielded more than 7,000 six-minute business appointments in Nashville.
“I wouldn’t miss this conference,” said longtime attendee Julie Hardy with Hardy Flying Reindeer Ranch in Rantoul, Illinois. “With a lot of shows, I begin to feel like I’m seeing the same people year after year. Not with Select Traveler. I met a lot of new buyers this year, just as I always do. The banks have been great for me for years, and I think the chamber groups will begin coming as well once they get to know us.”
“I noticed the energy from the start at the opening breakout sessions,” said conference partner Mac Lacy, who publishes Select Traveler magazine. “We had planned for a more diverse group of buyers, and we were able to offer alumni planners and chamber planners their own room this year. We had more than 30 buyers in that room and another 125 or so in the bankers’ breakout. They all met for nearly two hours, and the information exchange was instantaneous and broad based.”
“Nashville was such a great city to hold the conference in,” said Cappuzzello. “Butch Spyridon, Laurel Bennett, Victoria Grider and Amy Spear with the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation all did a great job for us from start to finish. Our delegates definitely made the most of that nightlife scene over on Broadway.”
After the conference concluded, more than 55 delegates participated in four different sightseeing tours featuring Nashville, Rutherford and Wilson counties, Tennessee’s Upper Cumberland region, and Memphis and Tupelo’s Music Heritage Tour.
For more information on the Select Traveler Conference go to selecttravelerconf.com