WTM, Travel Blog Camp, Blog Redesign and Car Hire in the USA

Hi All,

 

Hope this week has been good for you.

 

We have hit the business end of 2009, which means traveling a lot, talking a lot and thinking a lot!

 

This week I’ve been at World Travel Market, attended the second Travel Blog Camp, signed off the blog redesign and look proudly at our new start up.

 

World Travel Market (WTM)

 

Ever year for the past ten years I’ve attended the WTM and without fail I’ve come away re-charged and inspired….apart from this one.

The usual transport issues are still there but I’m use to that now. It was more the lack of companies in my niche that actually promote themselves at this event. Obviously this year has been very difficult financially for all travel companies however the WTM has slowly become an event where the return on investment (ROI) has decreased especially in car rental.

When I first attended, the event was held at Earls Court and if you weren’t represented you weren’t a company worth dealing with. Slowly all the major brokers have stopped exhibiting and only the major car hire suppliers like Alamo, Budget and Dollar remain.

The problem for me is that we meet up with the suppliers regularly anyway, so at WTM it’s merely to say hi.

Obviously this ”rant” is merely from my perspective and for hoteliers it seems a much bigger affair, perhaps I should get in to hotels? rentabed.co.uk anyone? ;-)

 

Travel Blog Camp

 

Just when I was losing all heart, me and Karl Hendrie (head honcho now at www.bargainvillas.co.uk) attended the second ever TBCamp, hosted by Tnooz’s Kevin May and organised by travel-rants Darren Cronian.

The TBCamp is an informal get together of travel industry members including bloggers and journalists to discuss travel blogging and social media.

The event enlisted some great speakers ranging from lastminute.com who described their blog strategy, to a very passionate travel agent, Murray Harrold depicting how agents can use social media to make money.

Twitter was the buzz word this year and represented a large portion of chat, I was surprised google wave wasn’t mentioned much, perhaps it’s a little early, I’m sure next year it will be mentioned.

I came away from the TBCamp with the same sort of buzz the WTM use to give me. I have some idea’s for new sites, how to develop this site and a confirmation that my time on twitter is not a waste but perhaps brand building.

A big thank you to Darren who is slowly making TBCamp a must.

 

 

Blog Redesign

 

Big thank you to Frank Williams, who has re-designed this blog. I hope you’ll agree it’s a big improvement.

Are there further improvements that could be made?

 

Car Hire USA

 

Last week I mentioned the start up, www.rentacars.co.uk the car hire opinion and review site. I’m very pleased to say that the site now has more than 13000 reviews, making it easily the largest of its kind.

I’m very much looking forward to seeing how James begins to create brand awareness, and how it will evolve.

 

That’s it for this week.

 

Regards,

 

Gavin,

U.S. Rent A Car.co.uk


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