Brand USA, the destination marketing organisation for the United States, is pleased to announce confirmation of a 2015 Megafam in partnership with American Airlines and British Airways. The announcement was made at Brand USA 2014 Megafam Finale in Austin, Texas.
The event was attended by 100 agents from the UK and Ireland who had qualified and won a place on the second annual Megafam which ran from 15 – 22 May. The participating agents embarked on seven simultaneous itineraries that took them to 21 states before meeting together in Austin, where each group presented highlights of their Megafam experiences in order to educate other agents and empower them to sell the variety of destinations to travellers.
“Hosting the Megafam and working with a large number of states and locations to create inspiring itineraries generates great value for our participating buyer and supplier stakeholders,” said Christopher Thompson, Brand USA President & CEO. “The event itself is growing and we are grateful to our partners, American Airlines and British Airways, for their continued support. We look forward to working in partnership with the airlines and our destination partners to create next year’s fam trip which will engage another host of agent ambassadors for the USA.”
The participating agents booked over 12,000 flights to and within the USA, up from last year’s 5,500 flights and significantly increasing the number of international tourists planning holidays to the United States. To qualify, agents were also required to complete two specialist modules on the Brand USA agent training site, www.USADiscoveryProgram.co.uk. The site allows agents to become Specialists on the USA, as well as to share insights with their peers on the Knowledge Forum and to be the first to hear about other competitions and familiarisation tours.
Craig Dewey, Managing Director EMEA Sales for American Airlines, says: “Working with Brand USA in the UK has been a successful partnership from the beginning and we are pleased to commit to a 2015 Megafam. It is our combined goal to increase UK tourism to all parts of the United States and with over 6,500 domestic flights per day we offer an extensive choice to passengers. The Megafam helps agents sell these destinations.”
Chris Rankin, British Airways, Head of Consumer Sales UK&I, commented: “We are very proud to be one of the founding partners of Brand USA and glad that the 2014 Megafam was such a success. Combined with the positive feedback and booking activity from agents this year, it was an easy decision to commit to 2015.
“The USA is an incredibly important market for us and there is no better way to drive genuine enthusiasm for this vast country, and all it has to offer our customers, than this fantastic fam programme.”
Details of how agents can qualify to win a place on the 2015 Megafam will be released at the end of the year; as will the new itinerary options and dates.