If you ever needed evidence that everything is bigger, brighter and bolder in Las Vegas – you need look no further than IMEX America. With a record 13,000 participants this year, including 6,000 attendees, IMEX America is a travel trade show on steroids. Rubbing shoulders with this seething mass of travel aficionados in October, was Stage and Screen’s Director of Account Management, Wonitta Atkins who attended as a hosted buyer.
In town looking for opportunities and inspiration, Wonitta plunged headfirst into the travel show with representatives from over 3,200 destinations, venues and suppliers from some 150 countries. Not surprisingly, she didn’t get to see them all! Wonitta honed in on accommodation suppliers that share a synergy with the needs of Stage and Screen customers and explored products specifically tailored to entertainment industry travellers.
“For Stage and Screen the event is an exciting opportunity to connect with new and existing suppliers, to explore individual, group and VIP travel options and to have a fresh look at what’s in the market and what’s coming in the near future,” said Wonitta. “Because the needs of our travellers are constantly changing, we are also constantly reviewing product globally.”
For instance, more clients are travelling to Europe via the Middle East with great airfares on offer, so Stage and Screen are looking to make new connections with hotels in the region offering attractive stopovers.
During the action-packed trip Wonitta clocked up ten appointments a day for three days, with productive one-on-one meetings with suppliers offering something unique from an entertainment industry point of view. “There’s no substitute for meeting face-to-face with representatives of properties from around the world to both build and develop these personal relationships. This process assists our clients through negotiation of rates and leveraging our partnerships to provide exceptional service and product offering,” said Wonitta. “Plus it’s also easier to call in a favour for a client when we need to – when the supplier knows you.”
Along with building multi-level relationships with suppliers across Stage and Screen, attending these events ensures we have the right mix of accommodation product to meet all client needs – from the intimate and boutique hotel to large properties with facilities to cater for large sporting or entertainment groups.