Written by Amanda Huculak, Project Manager with CES
I just recently returned from a FAM Trip to Eastern India to learn more about the local tourism industry and get a feel for what the destination has to offer. FAM Trips or “familiarization” tours are experiences designed for Travel Agents and Tour Operators to have an opportunity to experience a variety of tour products, accommodations and to have a chance to personally meet with the owners and staff at each place they visit. It is also a great opportunity for local tourism businesses to showcase their products in order to attract new business on the international scale.
The event I attended was called Destination East and the program included a 2 day Symposium in Kolkata where we had one-on-one meetings between ‘Buyers’ and ‘Sellers’ and presentations on what Eastern India has to offer as a region. After the Symposium, the international delegates split into smaller groups to experience tourism products offered throughout the region. This included visiting a variety of accommodations, participating in tour activities, and having a chance to meet the owners and local operators at networking dinners and receptions.
As a Tour Operator/Agent you learn so much about the region and are able to sell the experiences better to your clients since you have personally been there and experienced it yourself.
As an individual business, these opportunities create great exposure and are essential for growing your business and creating more awareness for your tourism products and services.
Where to start?
- Contact your regional Destination Marketing Organization to find out if they are planning any FAM Tours.
- Offer individual FAM Tours to Travel Agents and International Tour Operators that you already have established relationships with.
- Contact funders to find out if they offer incentive programs and support for FAM Tours.
- Work with your community, local businesses, and regional DMO’s to find out if you can work together to create a regional FAM Tour or Symposium to bring more international awareness.
If you are interested in learning more about FAM Tours and their benefits to you, contact CES for a free consultation at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 1-877-444-5550.