08 MAY 2019:The International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association’s (IGLTA) Global Convention takes place this week in Toronto, and will welcome international delegates from across the world. This is the world’s premier educational and networking event for LGBTQ tourism professionals. The 35th edition of the conference will connect gay, lesbian and gay friendly travel and tourism suppliers and buyers through its hosted buyer and scheduled appointment programme, numerous educational workshops and networking receptions.

The Economics of Tourism - May 8

Prior to the official start of the convention, the Canadian Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (CGLCC) is dedicating a Thought Leadership Series session specifically to tourism, to take an in-depth look at the influence that the sector truly has on the Canadian economy. Tourism has a significant impact in Canada, generating $90 billion in economic activity and 1.7 million related jobs.

Speakers include: Charlotte Bell, President & CEO TIAC, Ken Chan, Assistant Deputy Minister, Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, and Andrew Weir, Executive Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer Tourism Toronto. Moderated by, Frederic Dimanche, Director, Ted Rogers School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Ryerson University.

STORYS Building, 11 Duncan Street, Toronto 4pm to 6pm.

Following the panel discussion, there will be a networking reception with delegates from the IGLTA convention and travel media influencers from 6pm to 8pm, presented in partnership with Pink Banana Media. Tickets: www.eventbrite.ca/e/cglcc-thought-leadership-series-the-economics-of-tourism-tickets-44413415722

Voyage Gala – May 10

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be given a Pinnacle Award for his work to make Canada a more accepting place for LGBTQ individuals. In the past year Trudeau has issued a public apology to those LGBTQ individuals who were unfairly criminalized in the past, and he was also the first Prime Minister to march in a Pride parade.

Dean Nelson, CEO of Whistler Pride & Ski Festival, and Pride House Founder, will receive the Pioneer Award. Nelson created Pride House as a pavilion to celebrate diversity in sport and raise awareness of homophobia within sports at the Vancouver/Whistler 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Modeled after a traditional Olympic hospitality house, Pride House has continued forward, providing a safe space welcoming LGBTQ athletes, fans, and their allies during large-scale international sporting events.

Trudeau and Nelson will be presented with the award, along with all other recipients at the IGLTA Voyage Gala fundraiser happening May 10th at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel (100 Front St W). The event features a silent auction with fantastic travel packages, cocktails, a networking dinner, along with the Awards presentations. Tickets www.iglta.org/convention/rsvp/voyage

2018 Convention Highlights

At this year’s convention, there will be multiple unique destinations featured to showcase what makes them distinctive in the LGBTQ travel industry, along with several panels and presentations.

Global Perspectives: Sustainability in Tourism
Moderator: Randy Durband, CEO, Global Sustainable Tourism Council

LGBTQ Tourism Trends for 2018 and Beyond

Moderator: Daniela Wagner, Director of International Partnerships, Connecting Travel & Director of EMEA, Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)

LGBTQ Tourism Research Review, Best Practices and Case Studies
Thomas Roth, President, Community Marketing & Insights
David Paisley, Senior Research Director, Community Marketing & Insights

The Intersection of Human Rights and Tourism
Moderator: Fabrice Houdart, UN Human Rights Officer

Panel Includes:
-Helen Kennedy, Executive Director, Egale, Canada Human Rights Trust
-Kevin Dallas, CEO, Bermuda Tourism Authority
-Sean Howell, Co-Founder/President, Hornet

Global Trends in Sustainable Tourism
Moderator: Randy Durband, CEO, Global Sustainable Tourism Council

Panel Includes:
-Rika Jean-Francois, CSR Commissioner, ITB
-Trudi Pearce, Partner, Brighter Group and Founder, Responsible Tourism Consulting

LGBTQ Tourism Trends for 2018 and Beyond
Moderator: Daniela Wagner, Jacobs Media Group UK, European Director for PATA

Panel Includes:
-Albert Herrera, SVP of Global Product Partnerships, Virtuoso
-Maria Cuba, Diversity & Inclusion Programme Manager, Airbnb Experiences
-Juliano Ferrari, Senior Designer & Leader of LGBTQ+ Marketing, TGK Travel
-Zack Medow, Data Specialist, RIWI Corp.

Making Travel More Accessible: Addressing Stigma Within Our Community
Drew Cumpson - Owner, H&D Consulting

Understanding LGBTQ Travel in Europe
Peter Jordan- Founder, Gen C Traveller
Helen Kennedy, Executive Director, Egale, Canada Human Rights Trust

Lessons Learned Three Years Post Marriage Equality in the US
Bernadette Smith - CEO, 14 Stories and The Gay Wedding Institute

Educational Breakout Sessions:

How to Market to LGBTQ Travelers
Auston Matta - Manager, Consumer Marketing, IGLTA

LGBTQ Tourism Research Review, Best Practices and Case Studies
Thomas Roth, President, Community Marketing & Insights
David Paisley, Senior Research Director, Community Marketing & Insights

Entrepreneurs Round Table
Moderator: Robert Sharp, Owner and Co-founder, Out Adventures

Today's Corporate Reputation And Responsibility Imperative
Dawn K. Christensen, Executive Director of National Diversity Relations, MGM Resorts International
Fletcher Whitwell, Senior Vice President, Media & Publishing and Managing Director, R&R Partners

Insider Tips to Selling Canada
Moderator: Laurence Bernstein, Executive Director, Travel Gay Canada

-Angela Moore, Regional Director, Public Relations Canada’s Western Mountain Region, Fairmont Hotels and Resorts
-Darrell Schuurman, MBA Co-Founder & CEO, Canadian Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce
-Stephanie LeClair - Content Creators and Amazing Race Canada Season 4 Winners
-Kristin McKenzie - Content Creators and Amazing Race Canada Season 4 Winners

Selling Mainstream Travel to LGBTQ Travelers
Moderator: Billy Kolber, ManAboutWorld

-Michelle Palma, Vice President of Field Sales, Uniworld
-Benjamin Cruz, Speaker for the 34th Guam Legislature, Chairman of the Legislative Committee on Appropriations and Adjudication, and a Retired Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Guam
-Ernesto Luna, Director General, Haven Resorts


LGBTQ Destination Marketing - Tips & Techniques for 2018
-Matt Skallerud, President, Pink Banana Media

10 Steps to Building a Data-Driven Content Marketing Strategy
-Meg Cale, LGBT Travel Advocate and Community Educator

Tickets and Information

It’s still not too late to register to attend the IGLTA Global Convention – May 9 to 12

Register Here - www.iglta.org/convention/register

What’s Next?

The International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association will hold their next Global Convention in New York City, April 25 to 27, 2019, and recently announced that Milan was chosen as the host city for 2020. This will be a first for Italy, the 10th country to host the event, and will mark the event’s return to Europe for the first time since 2014. The IGLTA’s board of directors selects each year’s host city through an extensive bidding process that considers the association’s diverse membership as well as the destination’s support for LGBTQ tourism and its desire to grow that presence.

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