Editor’s Note

SPRING 2017 | VOL. 42 NO. 1

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Coming to The International Travel Goods Show year after year is like returning to the same favorite destination – it’s the same locale, but it’s a different place. There’s comfort in revisiting familiar landmarks, but discovering new attractions and seeing how some places have changed are what build excitement. That mix of new and familiar is what makes every trip to London an adventure. And it’s why I love coming back to The Show.

The Show might have the same core group of big exhibitors every year, but they’re in a state of constant reinvention. Their lines are different. In some cases their business models have shifted. And each year new companies make their industry debuts, and we get to witness the rollout of new items and product segments (smart luggage, anyone?).

This year’s calendar shift to April – and the chance to move from two cramped convention center halls to owning all four halls in the Las Vegas Convention Center’s north wing – will result in a bigger, better, and more inclusive event for the industry. The center hall space would have sold out last summer, limiting us to about 180 exhibits. Compared with last year’s 300+ booths, this would have locked out a huge population of exhibitors by keeping them off the map, and deprived the industry of the diversity of brands and products that give retailers and consumers real choices.

The Show is all about being on the industry map. If you are exhibiting, if you are attending, you are truly on the map. By being at The Show, you’re part of the industry network; you’re supporting all of us while reaping the benefit of industry connection, and for this you have my personal thanks.

Being at The Show makes a statement. It says you are all in, and committed to the industry. In the past week I’ve heard two very different points of view from TGA members – one is having its hands-down best year ever, the other is having a very tough time. But both of them are exhibiting at The Show because they understand the value of being present. They know what it means to be there, and what it says if they fail to show at the world’s biggest gathering of travel goods professionals. To succeed, you have to stand up and be counted. You have to be on the map.

Think of this issue as your preview map to the world’s largest travel goods showcase. You’ll find teaser stories about debuting items and brand new exhibiting companies, and I urge you to use this issue the way you use a map when visiting a new city – study it beforehand, and earmark appealing attractions you don’t want to miss. Discovery is one of travel’s greatest joys. And one of the biggest appeals to being at The Show.

Please enjoy this issue. And enjoy The International Travel Goods Show. I know I will.