I recently had the opportunity to check out the Travel and Adventure Show and I have to admit it was better than I expected. Although, if pressed about it, I couldn’t really say what is was that I did expect. Maybe I just didn’t expect it to be such big production.
The convention center was filled with airline, cruise ship, vacation and tourism vendors of every variety and they were all at the ready to book the trip of your dreams. Vacation and travel brands like Celebrity Cruises, Rhodes Scholar, and Amtrak held drawings for free trips and more. I’m not proud of it, but I happily stood in line to eagerly offer up my personal information for the slightest chance of winning anything from trips to Italy to luggage tags.
The Travel Channel sponsored hour long presentations by travel notables like Rick Steves, Samantha Brown, and Patricia Schultz. On the Culinary Stage there were chefs serving up globally inspired cooking demonstrations, there were cultural performances in music and dance on the Global Beats Stage, and hands-on activities like scuba diving and a mechanical bull ride. I will say, it was a bit of a shock to walk in from the Chicago blizzard outside to be met with a giant indoor pool filled with divers in scuba gear.
Although, I wasn’t in a financial position to book a trip on the spot (thanks to being a full-time college student again), I was glad that I attended the Travel and Adventure Show. It was kind of nice to be surrounded by a room full of people who get just as excited about travel as I do. It was also nice to be reminded of some of dream destinations that I had kind of forgotten about.
I’m not much on skintight wet suits, but if I attend the show again, I might even consider trying out the scuba dive. Maybe.