Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show via @TravelLatte.net

Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show

They say you should go someplace new every year. We say there is one place you should return to every year: you should go to a travel show!

Right up front, we’ll tell you that we are fans of the Travel & Adventure Show, and have been attending their shows for several years now. Since the TravelLatte World HQ is in beautiful North Texas, we make a weekend out of the Dallas show every year. It’s like a pilgrimage to commune with fellow travelers, industry experts, and travel celebrities.

We will also tell you we were a little concerned heading into this year’s show. For one thing, the venue moved from the colossal Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center (roughly the size of Rhode Island – #slightexaggeration) to Dallas Market Hall. What you might call a “more intimate” space, although still large. (It is Texas, after all.) Given the current geo-political climate, we worried that tourism may be facing harder times, and that the Travel & Adventure Show might be forced to downsize.

Turns out, our fears were (mostly) unfounded. While the fate of travel in this decade is still uncertain, you wouldn’t think there’s a problem judging from the turnout. Yes, the venue changed, because the Convention Center is in very high demand. (Fan Expo Dallas was happening the same weekend. Talk about tough competition!) But there were plenty of big name exhibitors and presenters, and crowds streaming in from open to close. For now, at least, the Travel & Adventure Show is in no danger of downsizing.

Can’t make it to Dallas? No worries! This is a travel show, after all, so it’s only appropriate that it travels around the country. See below for the recently released 2018 dates.

So, we hear you asking…

Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show via @TravelLatte.net

What is the Travel & Adventure Show?

That might seem obvious but, the first time we went, it was more than we expected. It is so much more than people selling travel. The main section features booths filled by destinations, travel companies, and vendors. There are several stages for presentations and entertainment throughout the day, and a few hands-on activities you can try.

Pro Tip: Look for the Travel & Adventure Show booth, where you can enter to win prizes and get a photo souvenir!

Let’s break these down so you’ll know what to expect when you go.

Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show via @TravelLatte.net

Destinations

The Travel & Adventure Show is a trade show for travel, with row after row of people telling you about their destination. No pressure to buy anything, and no shame for gathering up brochures from everyplace under the sun. You will find lots of smiling faces and good information from genuinely enthusiastic people. The Tahiti booth is filled with people from Tahiti. The gal from the Georgetown Railroad actually runs the train. You will come away from each booth you visit with much more than a brochure.

Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show via @TravelLatte.net

Celebrity Speakers

For many attendees, these are the big draws. Keynote speakers in the Travel Theater have included travel celebrities like Rick Steves, Samantha Brown, Andrew McCarthy, and Jack Maxwell. We’ve heard from travel authors Pauline Frommer and Patricia Schultz, and authorities like Peter Greenberg and Johnny Jet. Most of them are very willing to Meet & Greet afterwards, giving you a chance to chat and get an autograph.

Seminars & Workshops

Beyond the big names, local professionals, well known travel bloggers, and destination experts address a wide range of topics at the Destination Theater and the Savvy Traveler Theater. How-To seminars cover everything from packing for a cruise, to seeing all three U.S. Virgin Islands in one vacation. (If that’s not a value, we’re not sure what is!)

Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show via @TravelLatte.net

Entertainment & Hands-On Activities

One of the best features of any trip is the local culture. The Global Beats Stage features a variety of music and dance performances from around the world. On the Taste of Travel Stage, you can connect with destinations in one of the most powerful ways: your sense of taste. You’ll learn about, and how to make, dishes from around the world. Best of all, samples are often included!

Travel memories are often made by trying new activities, and you’ll have a chance to do that, too. We’ve climbed rock walls and flew down ziplines. There have been camel rides, scuba pools, Segway courses, and more fun suitable for the entire family.

Shopping

This is a trade show, after all. There are travel suppliers and tour companies on hand, often with specials good only during the show. You’ll also find vendors with travel related items like AAACK! Packs, STUFFA travel clothing, and a host of others.

One note for the organizers: Several booths seem very out of place. (Home improvement people, we’re looking at you.) No offense but, with limited real estate in the show, we would appreciate more travel, less not-travel. I mean, we’re not shopping for a staycation.

Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show via @TravelLatte.net

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Where is the Travel & Adventure Show?

The schedule for 2018 is already out! You can catch the Travel & Adventure show in one of these cities:

  • San Diego: January 13-14 at the San Diego Convention Center
  • Washington, DC: January 20-21 at the Washington Convention Center
  • Chicago: February 10-11 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont
  • San Francisco: February 17-18 at the Santa Clara Convention Center
  • Los Angeles: February 24-25 at the Los Angeles Convention Center
  • Philadelphia: March 10-11 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center
  • Dallas: March 17-18 at Dallas Market Hall
  • Denver: March 24-25 at the Colorado Convention Center

See our experience at the 2013 Travel & Adventure Show where we met actor and Lowell Thomas award-winning travel writer Andrew McCarthy!

Why Should I Go Every Year?

You’ve seen one Travel & Adventure Show and you’ve seen them all, right?

Granted, a lot of the show is the same from year to year. The format doesn’t change much. Many of the same vendors come back every year. Even some of the speakers and presenters are repeat performers. (Personally, we’re okay with seeing Rick Steves or Samantha Brown on repeat. Heck, we do it on our DVR!)

Every year, though, we see and learn something new. We learn about new places, even though some of them have had a booth at the show for years. We meet new people, and learn about new deals and offers. New this year, for example, was Holo Holo, a charter company that sails to Hawaii’s Forbidden Island and the Napali Coast. Also new was our plan to visit Ireland. Having a chance to talk with Rick Steves’ staff about travel plans was a gold mine, even if they wouldn’t reveal when he’s secretly taking one of his Ireland tours. (So much for having clout!)

Our advice stands: If you go one place every year, make it a travel show. It’s a sure bet that you’ll find someplace new to go every year.

Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show via @TravelLatte.net

A meeting of travel hearts and minds: Rob & Rick at the 2016 Travel & Adventure Show.

Disclaimer: Thank you to the Travel & Adventure Show for providing complimentary Press Passes to this year’s event. All opinions expressed are solely our own.

The Weekly Postcard

TravelLatte is proud and pleased to have joined forces with the amazing bloggers in The Weekly Postcard! Over the years, we have enjoyed reading posts from this group, and now we can call them co-hosts. We’re excited, and hope you share our enthusiasm! Please do check out the other host bloggers, and all of the great travel blogs who link up every week. We know you’ll enjoy them as much as we do!

TravelLatte


42 comments on “Your Next Destination is at the Travel & Adventure Show

  1. I really, really wanted to go the the Dallas show this year, especially to see Rick Steves, but the timing didn’t work out for me. I think I would enjoy the Taste of Travel and any travel related gadgets the best. Thanks for the tip about Holo Holo. We’re in the midst of planning a Kuai vacation, and a visit to a Hawaiian Forbidden Island sounds very tempting.

    • Hi Michelle – The last time we were in Hawaii, nobody was running tours to the Forbidden Island (from Maui, at least), so we’re excited about that! I think we’re going to hook up with them for a couple of sails, actually. See, there’s the beauty of travel shows, right there! 🙂 Sorry the timing didn’t work out, but there’s always next year!

  2. I wish I had read this a few weeks ago! I was wondering if the show was worth it to attend and they were just in LA! Next time I’ll have to check it out! Thanks for joining Fly Away Friday, hope to see you again this weekend! xo

    • Hi Kana – We really enjoy the shows, and definitely encourage you to catch it next year. We haven’t been to one in LA…that would be fun! Who knows? Maybe we’ll spot you there! 🙂

  3. We went to the show in London at the beginning of February! I think yours may have been better though we did enjoy picking up lots of leaflets and maps of places we hope to visit! #feetdotravel

    • Hi Tracy – Which travel show did you go to in London? We’ve heard that the Destinations Show is a good one, and hope to catch it one year. We pick up fewer leaflets each year, but find ourselves spending more time talking with people about their destinations. Great way to discover some of the locals’ favorite spots and tips. Thanks for reading!

  4. I love trade shows, so one solely related to travel would be awesome. I may have to just plan a trip so I can catch it this year!

    • Hi Baguios! You should go! It’s way more fun than most of your typical trade shows. And sometimes you can score a good deal or find cool new travel toys. Since next year’s schedule is out already, we can start planning! Thanks for your comment, guys.

  5. The Travel and Adventure Show looks like a lot of fun and a great way to learn about some new places and hear from some industry greats. I’ve yet to go to a travel expo like this so it would be cool to go one day. #TheWeeklyPostcard

    • What??? David, it’s hard to believe an intrepid traveler such as yourself has managed not to attend a travel show! If you’re in the states next year, maybe you can change that at one of the Travel & Adventure Shows. We’ll look for you there! 😉

  6. Looks like a great show, so big!! (only in America!) We went to Destinations, our first travel show this year in the UK, it was so inspiring and weirdly very exciting, like being a kid or something … must be wanderlust!

    • Hi Garth! We very much feel like the proverbial Kids in a Candy Store at a travel show! There is so much world to learn about, and hopefully see one day. We get excited just thinking about it! You mentioned Destinations was fun. Hoping to experience it ourselves one day! Thanks for your comments.

  7. I absolutely love travel shows and go to 4-5 a year (we are lucky we have a few in London) – always such a great way to connect with companies, meet other travellers, listen to some great talks and, of course, get inspired! This looked like an awesome show!

  8. How fun! I definitely will be looking at attending the Travel Adventure Show. Seems like a great place to meet fellow travelers, travel companies and experts. I so want to meet Rick Steves. How beneficial and will have to put this on my must things to do if not this year hopefully next year. Thanks for this great information and sharing! 🙂

  9. Oh my gosh, you met Rick Steves! That’s awesome. As I’ve mentioned before, I grew up watching his travel show (which inspired my sense of wanderlust) and think it’s cool he still attends travel shows. 🙂 Anyway, the Travel & Adventure Show sounds fun to attend! I’ve been to expos before in the writing world but never for travel. Maybe that’ll have to change next year! Thanks for sharing the 2018 dates and tips with us.

    • Hi Anna – you do need to change that next year! Besides meeting the travel celebs, they share their expertise both on stage and in “Meet & Greet” sessions. It was awesome having a chance to chat with Rick Steves and Samantha Brown. Two of our favorites, and great inspirations. Thanks for your comment!

    • Lolo, that is surprising! I don’t know how you’ve managed to miss them, but maybe you can catch one coming up? Do they have them in Germany? Well, we promise to keep going and sharing at least until you get to one, and probably long after. 🙂

  10. I’ve never been to a travel show! You’ve convinced me it would be a fantastic thing to do. I’d have to leave my wallet at home or I’d come back bankrupt! #weeklypostcard

  11. Goodness me, if you didn’t have a case of serious wanderlust before attending this event, you certainly would after! This would be a dream for me (and I could spend hours and hours here), I would also be out of pocket as I’m sure I would be signing up for somewhere immediately! Thanks for bringing this to my attention, I didn’t know it existed before now 🙂 #feetdotravel

    • Oh, Angie, we are on the same wave. We DO spend hours and hours there! The one in Dallas would have you spending every penny – it’s always chock full of destinations in SE Asia. But then, maybe you’re ready for some US travels now? Either way, I feel like we’re going to be in trouble with Sy for opening this door for you. 😉 Thanks for reading – stay well!

    • Hi guys – we are keen to attend some shows in other countries. It would be interesting to see what destinations are there and how they’re marketed. And to see what kind of local deals we might find!! As always, thanks for reading.

  12. I have been to the Travel & Adventure show for the past 10 years (even before they changed the name, the Adventure part was added latter, remember that?). I agree that it is good to visit every year. Like you mentioned, there are several differences, plus, you get to participate on a lot of raffles and contest (hey, you never know). This year in Los Angeles was different from the Dallas case. The show takes place in Long Beach but this year they changed it to Los Angeles (next to the Staples Center). The location is much bigger but I think we prefer the smaller venue. #TheWeeklyPostcard

    • 10 years?!? Wow! We did notice they changed location in LA too, but I didn’t realize it was someplace bigger. That’s a good sign! We completely forgot to mention the prizes!! Lots of vendors have prizes to give away, plus there are show door prizes. We have yet to win, but we keep trying! Thanks for your comments, Ruth!

    • Hi Jill – Meeting THE Rick Steves was definitely a treat! Super nice guy with so much know how! Certainly a highlight of that show, but we always come back with lots of ideas and plans. 🙂

  13. Great post. I attended the show when it was in DC last year, but unfortunately I missed it this year. I agree the presenters are great. Looks like you had a great time!

    • Hi Albert, thanks for your comment. We narrowly missed the DC show last year. We like catching it in different cities because you get different regional focuses. The surrounding states are usually well represented, so getting away from your home region really broadens horizons. We hope you get to catch it next year!

    • Hi Amanda – You got that right! A kid in a candy store is exactly how we feel at these shows. And they make a great road trip! We have an extra tip if you decide to do that: Plan to attend the show on the second day because sometimes there are great “end of show” deals to be had. Travel and deals? Who doesn’t like that? Thanks for visiting!

    • Us too! Glad you mentioned meeting fellow travelers – something we didn’t talk about. We had some great conversations with people attending the show. They are a wealth of ideas and information, too! Thanks for stopping by – next year, we’ll have to plan a visit!

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