Louisiana  Pick Your Passion! Travel Pulse Office of Tourism Update
March 2, 2015
Only in Louisiana GRAMMY® brunch

Delegates representing Louisiana food, music and tourism recently traveled to Los Angeles for the GRAMMYS® to present the annual Only in Louisiana tourism promotion event. It marked the ninth year LOT has taken Louisiana sounds and tastes to Los Angeles to support local artists nominated for American music's highest honor while marketing the state to Los Angeles-based entertainment and travel media. Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne co-hosted the event with chef John Besh while attendees this year included blues artist Buddy Guy, R&B artist Ledisi and Cajun artists Bonsoir Catin, the Magnolia Sisters, Jo-El Sonnier and Joel Savoy.

Chef John Besh, Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne, chef Brian Landry and assistant secretary Kyle Edmiston
Chef John Besh, Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne, chef Brian Landry and assistant secretary Kyle Edmiston

Travel South USA Domestic Showcase   Travel South USA Domestic Showcase registration continues
The 33rd Annual Travel South USA Domestic Showcase will take place March 22 - 25 in Shreveport. Top-producing tour operators and U.S. receptive buyers will be available to meet one-on-one with suppliers and experience the authenticity of Louisiana firsthand. On March 23, Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne will provide a keynote address at the Louisiana Opening Breakfast. There will be three full days of scheduled appointments as well as multiple networking opportunities. LOT is looking to be well represented in all areas of the state at this year's show. We are encouraging DMOs, attractions, hotels and restaurants to attend Travel South and take advantage of this opportunity to showcase their organizations.

State of the American Traveller   Understanding The State of the American Traveler webinar
The State of the American Traveler is a leading industry research report that monitors the travel intentions, behavior and media use of U.S. leisure travelers. Join Southeast Tourism Society, Miles and research company Destination Analysts as they reveal highlights of the January 2015 report. The free webinar is scheduled for 1 p.m. on March 5.

Forbes Travel Guide Awards   Forbes Travel Guide Star Awards includes many New Orleans sites
Forbes Travel Guide recently announced its 57th list of 2015 Forbes Travel Guide Star Award Winners worldwide, and New Orleans has several hotels, restaurants and spas among those recognized.

Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Hotels

Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Hotels Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Restaurants Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Spas

Copa Airlines   New Orleans gets direct flights to Panama City, Panama
Copa Airlines of Panama will be launching service to the Central American country's capital city from Louis Armstrong International Airport this summer. Officials said Copa will have flights from New Orleans to Panama City four times a week beginning in late June. From Panama, there will be connections to more than 55 destinations in Central and South America.

Lake Charles Events App   Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana CVB launches events app
The Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana CVB recently unveiled a smartphone app that lists area events, making it easy for visitors and residents to stay informed about what's going on in the community. The Lake Charles events app offers a feed from the events section of visitlakecharles.org, offering quick access to information with a click of the app icon. App users are also able to browse blog posts and submit events.

ABA Top 100   ABA's Top 100 nominations now being accepted
Nominate the best events for group travel for ABA's prestigious 2016 Top 100 Events in North America list. ABA motorcoach and tour operator members select winners from hundreds of group travel-friendly festivals and events throughout the U.S. and Canada. The Top 100 list garners media attention from national media outlets, and honorees are also featured in 10,000 copies of ABA's official magazine that is distributed to its members and travelers worldwide.

USTA Travel Talks   U.S. Travel Association introduces Travel Talks campaign
U.S. Travel recently unveiled a new name and look for its Travel Blitz grassroots campaign-Travel Talks. The vision is for Travel Talks to become the mainstay brand for grassroots events, which will better resonate with elected officials and their staff. Visit the Power of Travel Coalition website to learn how you can get involved.

Mobile Friendly Google Label   Google creates mobile-friendly label for sites
With 2 billion smartphone or tablet users expected to engage in some form of mobile commerce transactions by 2017, brands can't afford to not be mobile. So why are consumers shopping on the go still being directed to sites with tiny text, excessive scrolling or those requiring Flash? Google has decided websites need to meet the growing consumer demand for mobile performance and is rolling out a new "mobile friendly" label for smartphone search results.

The importance of being mobile   Mobile storytelling's importance rises for hotels
Mobile sites now command a presence all their own. Mobile device technology has exploded just within the past few years, making it easier for people to browse on the go. In 2014, the number of searches for hotels on smartphones rose 68 percent and shot up 180 percent for tablet searches.

Upcoming Meetings & Events   Upcoming meetings & events

If you have comments or suggestions for future issues of Louisiana Travel Pulse, contact Jay Tusa at jtusa@crt.la.gov or 225.342.8142.

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