Speaker Stages

America’s Favorite Travel Shows Have America’s Most Comprehensive Education Content That You Can’t Find Anywhere Else..

You’ll be Inspired to take your dream vacation and learn how to be your own travel expert on your next vacation from top celebrity travel personalities and leading local experts at dozens of travel workshops on 4 theaters located on the show floor.

4 Theaters and Over 30+ Sessions

Travel Theater: Hear from the top travel celebrity personalities such as Samantha Brown, Rick Steves, and Peter Greenberg  as they inspire you to take your dream vacation.

Destination Theater: From where to go and when to go, to what to do and how to get there, destination experts will give you the in depth information you need to travel like a local.

Savvy Traveler Theater: Showcasing travel tips, tricks and actionable advice, you’ll learn how to travel like an pro straight from the experts. Topics include packing tips, technology skills, travel safety methods, budget travel hacks, etc.

Taste of Travel Theater: Get a taste of cultures from around the world as chefs prepare their local cuisines right in front of you. Like what you smell? Most cooking demonstrations end with a sampling right at your seat! Click Here to view to the Taste of Travel schedule.

Speakers and schedule are subject to change without prior notice, please check back often for updates.

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10:15 am – 10:45 am
Destination Theater

Discovering Uncharted Waters

Brittany Riley, Director of Marketing, Dream Yacht Charter

Explore the affordable luxury of an all-inclusive by the cabin or private yacht charter.

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

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10:15 am – 11:00 am
Savvy Traveler Theater

The Freedom of Independent Vacations

Judy Koziel, Business Development Manager, Pleasant Holidays

Independent Travel affords you the flexibility to do it your way.  Visit our destinations at your own pace, exploring what interests you. See Hawaii, Tahiti, Europe, USA, Central America, Caribbean and Mexico.

Peter Greenberg Travel Celebrity - Travel Shows

10:45 am – 11:45 am
Travel Theater

Travel in A Time of Disruption

Peter Greenberg, Emmy Award-Winning Investigative Reporter and Producer and CBS News Travel Editor

How and where to travel in a year of global uncertainty, instability, economic upheaval – and great opportunity. The ultimate road warriors guide to when, where and how to go just about anywhere.

Autograph Signing Immediately Following

11:00 am – 11:30 am
Destination Theater

Celebrity’s Galapagos, A Once-In-A-Lifetime Experience

Susana Romero, Sr. Manager, Celebrity Xpedition Galapagos

Join Celebrity Cruises for an exclusive and unique seminar entitled, “Celebrity’s Galapagos, A Once-In-A-Lifetime Experience.”  We invite you to enrich your knowledge of one of the most amazing destinations on Earth.  As Celebrity’s own “Galapagos Expert”, Susana Romero will be leading you on an incredible journey where you will learn about the Galapagos Islands and Celebrity’s all-inclusive, environmentally conscious vacation packages.  There is no place quite like the Galapagos Islands and we hope to share the experience with you!

Angel Castellanos Celebrity Travel Expert - Travel Shows

11:15 am – 12 Noon
Savvy Traveler Theater

Travel Smart & Pack Right

Angel Castellanos, Travel Ambassador, AngelsTravelLounge.com

Angel Castellanos, The Travel Ambassador, delivers his popular and acclaimed “Travel Smart” seminar drawing from his experience and frequent travels. This informative presentation prepares travelers for each step of the journey (including packing!). Angel will give his favorite travel tips on packing smart, safety & security, traveling with technology and much more! No matter your level of experience, you are bound to come away with practical travel tips to help you travel smarter. Join us for this insightful and dynamic presentation. Travel smart, well and often! www.AngelsTravelLounge.com

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

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11:45 am – 12:15 pm
Destination Theater

AmaWaterways Leading the Way in River Cruising

Diane Horan, CTC, Manager, National Accounts and Business Development, AmaWaterways

Discover why AmaWaterways was ranked by Berlitz Guide Books as the Number 1 River Cruise company in the world out of all 310 river cruise ships ranked! AmaWaterways has come to be known not only for their high quality of service and accommodations but also for its expertly crafted itineraries and inclusions. Please join us to learn more about the huge variety of complimentary excursions, award-winning dining, complimentary fine wines, spacious Twin balcony staterooms, biking and hiking excursions, wine cruises and more that are all available on an AmaWaterways river cruise!

Ralph Velasco Travel Show Speaker

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12:15 pm – 1:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

A Guide to Better Travel Photography

Ralph Velasco, Travel Photography Instructor, Author and International Guide, CEO, PhotoEnrichment Adventures

Travel photography instructor, author and international guide Ralph Velasco has organized and led more than 60 cultural tours, with a focus on photography, around the world. In this presentation he discusses the importance of working from a Shot List in order to create a varied set of images from any destination, one that tells the complete story of the place. He’ll define exactly what a shot list is and explain how to effectively develop and use one in order to bring back a more interesting and well-rounded set of photos from your travels.

Ralph will also reveal his Number One Photo Tip that is guaranteed to take your photography to another level, whatever type of camera you use, or your experience. To visually demonstrate these simple-to-understand and easy-to-implement tips and concepts, he’ll be using images from his recent trips to India, Romania, Vietnam, Lapland, Iceland, Spain, Tuscany, the Adriatic, the Baltics, Morocco, Cuba, Mexico’s Copper Canyon, Cambodia, and more.

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
Travel Theater

How to Travel Like A Movie Star (Without Movie Star Money)

Johnny Jet, Editor-In-Chief, JohnnyJet.com

For many people, travel can be arduous, tiring and uncomfortable. Long lines, departure delays, lost luggage – all of this adds up to frustration for many travelers. But it doesn’t have to be this way! Join seasoned traveler Johnny Jet to learn the tricks of the trade and simple steps you can take to make your travels smoother to make you feel like a VIP.

Autograph Signing Immediately Following

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

12:30 pm – 1:00 pm
Destination Theater

On Stage Alaska

Mary O’Neil, Tour Director for Holland America in Alaska and Canada’s Yukon Territory

On Stage Alaska is a fun, informative live presentation hosted by an Alaska expert, Mary O’Neil. Mary will discuss myths about visiting Alaska as well as useful planning advice and exclusive travel benefits.

Arizona - Travel and Tourist Expo

1:15 pm – 1:45 pm
Destination Theater

Walking in Paradise: The Joy of Arizona Hiking

Roger Naylor, Travel Writer

When it comes to hiking possibilities, no state can match Arizona for sheer staggering diversity. Arizona is the only state where you can hike into the one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. And not far from the Grand Canyon you can hike amid alpine tundra, climbing to the summit of Humphreys Peak at 12,633 feet. In fact, Arizona has 26 peaks that are over 10,000 feet.

Arizona is the only state where you can hike in the Sonoran Desert. We step outside and walk among cactus as tall as five-story buildings. We can also explore the world’s largest contiguous ponderosa pine forest. There are over 300 miles of hiking trails weaving among the red rocks of Sedona alone. Then you add the Petrified Forest, the Painted Desert, the Superstition Mountains, Chiricahua National Monument, Organ Pipe National Monument, Lake Powell, Lake Mead, the White Mountains, the Mogollon Rim, Monument Valley, 30 state parks and so many more.

When we go outside to play in Arizona, we’re in the big leagues.

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

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1:15 pm – 2:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

Unique Experiences, Carefree Travel – The Best Way to Vacation

Liesa Bissett, Product Development Director, Trafalgar Travel

Trafalgar Travel has been creating richer experiences and effortless worldwide travel for 70 years.  With more than 230 guided vacations to worldwide destinations, we continue to offer new ways to travel every year.  We were the first to create Insider Experiences; enabling our guests to appreciate their destination through genuine local experiences, such as dining with locals in their homes. And we continue to evolve guided travel in new directions.  Travel is our passion.

2:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Destination Theater

Hiking and Biking Down Under

Sunnie Rossi, President, Aussie Experts (affiliated with Travel 100 group)
Karen Stotz, Tourism Australia and Tourism Tasmania
Hadyn Fitzpatrick, Premium Trade Manager, Tourism New Zealand

Samantha Brown Celebrity Travel Speaker

2:15 pm – 3:15 pm
Travel Theater

Travel Smart: Lessons Learned from A Life Lived on the Road

Samantha Brown, Travel Channel Host

Autograph Signing Immediately Following

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

2:15 pm – 3:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

Sustainable Tourism with Contiki – How the Younger Generation Travels

Céline Cousteau, Founder and Executive Director of CauseCentric Productions, Contiki

Céline Cousteau will discuss the importance of sustainable travel and tourism projects with Contiki. In addition, she will discuss the current projects Contiki is currently doing to make a positive impact on the tourism industry.

2:45 pm – 3:15 pm
Destination Theater

The Northwest Passage — A Changing Frontier

Matthew James Swan, Expedition Leader, Adventure Canada

To travel the legendary Northwest Passage is to join the ranks of history’s great explorers, to see our world through new eyes. Today, the allure of this mythic destination is greater than ever; large cruise ships have begun to explore its wilderness, and unprecedented archaeological discoveries have driven interest to a fever pitch. But what are the ramifications of this Arctic Fever? Join Adventure Canada Expedition Leader Matthew James Swan for a discussion on the future of polar tourism—its effects on the pristine environment, the sensitive local wildlife, and the regional culture. Learn what steps operators can take to approach this destination sustainably, and how Adventure Canada’s unique approach to expedition travel has established industry-leading best practices for unparalleled passenger experiences in the Far North.

3:15 pm – 4:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

99 Ways to Cut Your Travel Costs – Without Skimping

Russell Hannon, Ultra-Economical Travel Expert

Known for wowing TV and radio audiences with untold budget travel tips, Ultra-Economical Travel Expert Russell Hannon from breakthetravelbarrier.com offers 99 ways to quickly and easily find the best and least expensive travel options for you. No matter what your travel type is, or where you want to go, you will leave with dozens of practical tips and tricks you can put to work right away to save money on your next great escape.

Pauline Frommer Celebrity Travel Expert

3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
Travel Theater

See More, Spend Less: How to Travel in 2017

Pauline Frommer, Editorial Director of the Frommer Guides and Publisher of Frommers.com

Get more out of your vacation, whether you’re a luxury lover or a backpacker. Pauline Frommer offers straight-shooting tips and tricks for getting the best deals on airfares, accommodations, cruises and attractions. She’ll count down the hottest destinations of the year, alongside those that give the best value for the dollar, and discuss the new trends that will be shaping the way you travel. 

Autograph Signing Immediately Following

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3:30 pm – 4:15 pm
Destination Theater

Cruises – One Size Does Not Fit All!

Mauricio Ponce, Manager of Strategic Partnerships, Cruise Planners

Join Cruise Planners’ panel to hear from the industry’s most recognized cruise brands and learn which one is the ideal option for your next vacation. From sailing the seven seas, to exploring European cities via river to enjoying a once-in-a-lifetime exotic cruise, there are so many options and your full-service advisor is your key for selecting the right fit.

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

4:15 pm – 5:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

Come Seek the Royal Caribbean

Katy Cannizzaro, Strategic Account Manager, Royal Caribbean

Join Katy Cannizzaro for an informational presentation on why Royal Caribbean International is the number one choice for all vacationers.  Our newest ship Harmony of the Seas will capture your heart and get you excited about your next cruise experience.  Whether your idea of a perfect vacation is relaxing by the pool or one adventure after another – Royal Caribbean is the perfect vacation choice.

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4:30 pm – 5:00 pm
Destination Theater

Myths and Misconceptions of Traveling to Africa for a Wildlife Safari

Gerry van der Walt, Co-Founder, Wild Eye

Africa is without a doubt one of the world’s most diverse wildlife and nature destinations but there are still many myths and misconceptions around traveling to this beautiful continent. Is it safe to go on safari? Can you drink the water and eat the food? What about accommodation? Do animals really walk around in the streets and do they attack?

Errors and generalizations around African travel are rife, and perpetuated both by the media and by popular culture.   With so many fallacies about African travel, it’s often hard to get a true and honest insight about a safari to a place that is as complex as it is beautiful.

In this presentation, Gerry van der Walt will share his African safari experiences from a guide and lodge manager point of view and take you on a visual journey from the moment you arrive in Africa for your safari until you then top the lodge all in order to give you a better understanding of what you can expect when you finally go on that African trip that will change the way you see the world!

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

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11:15 am – 12 Noon
Savvy Traveler Theater

What Differentiates Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection from Other River Cruise Options in the Marketplace.

Anne Mickey, Business Development Manager at Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection

Awarded “World Best River Cruise” Travel n Leisure 2016. Come and learn about how we differ from the others. All-inclusive, luxurious yet casual, “farm to table” cuisine, fine wine and spirts and exceptional service render us one of the best values in the marketplace for the discerning cruiser.

Rick Steves Celebrity Travel Speaker

Rick Steves Travel Expert - Travel Expos

11:15 am – 12:30 pm
Travel Theater

Europe Through the Back Door with Rick Steves

Rick Steves, Travel Writer, Host of Rick Steves Europe and Travel with Rick Steves, Europe Through the Back Door

Join travel expert Rick Steves – acclaimed for his bestselling guidebooks and public television series – as he shares the latest in smart European travel. In this entertaining, information-packed slideshow lecture, Rick will explain how to travel smoothly and affordably by stretching your travel dollar, eating and sleeping well, avoiding crowds, and packing smartly. Freshly back from lots of travels, Rick will share exactly how you can enjoy maximum travel thrills for every mile, minute, and euro on your next European adventure.

Autograph Signing Immediately Following

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11:30 am – 12 Noon
Destination Theater

African Safari Travel – When, Where and How

Gerry van der Walt, Co-Founder, Wild Eye

Africa is without a doubt one of the best wildlife and nature travel destinations in the world and the diversity of ecosystems continues to attract photographers and nature enthusiasts from around the world.

This diversity of destinations and wildlife subjects can make it quite challenging to plan a safari unless you know when and where to visit.

Where is the best place to see and photograph Africa’s famous Big 5 – Lion, Leopard, Elephant, Rhino and Buffalo?
What time of year can you see and photograph the Great Wildebeest Migration?
What lenses and cameras will I need when traveling to Africa to see wildlife?
What kind of images and experiences can I expect to get on safari?
Will you always be on a game drive vehicles or will you go on foot with wildlife as well?

These are a few of the questions Gerry will be answering during this presentation while at the same time showing some of his wildlife images from various African countries and wildlife reserves to not only show you where and when to get the experiences you’ve always dreamed of but also to showcase the incredible raw beauty that is Africa.

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12:15 pm – 12:45 pm
Destination Theater

See More of Alaska: The Inside Scoop on Alaska Adventures

Ashley Heimbigner, AWE Tourism Sales Manager, Visit Anchorage

Learn about the hidden gems and can’t-miss experiences from Southcentral Alaska destination expert and lifelong Alaskan, Ashley Heimbigner. With more moose, more glaciers, more national parks, more daylight and more coastline than any other state, Alaska has it all. Start with Anchorage, an urban oasis in untamed wilderness nestled between Cook Inlet and the Chugach Mountains with 60 glaciers within 50 miles of the city. Maximize your land or cruise experience with adventures that take you from city to summit, from sparkling waters to snow-capped peaks and beyond.

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

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12:15 pm – 1:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

Magic Isn’t Imaginary – It’s Just Well Planned:  Premium Escorted Journeys with Insight Vacations

Richard Sims, Director of National Accounts, Insight Vacations

Insight is ‘in a class of its own’, providing premium, award-winning escorted journeys that embody ‘The Art of Touring in Style’.  They’ll introduce you to Europe, the Eastern Mediterranean and North America, with destinations expertly brought to life by our renowned Tour Directors. Now is your time to take pleasure in authentic Signature Experiences, exciting regional cuisine and excellent hotels always hand-picked for their great locations in the heart of the action. Enjoy a variety of smaller-group touring styles guaranteed to suit your preferences and fulfil your travel dreams.

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

1:00 pm – 1:30 pm
Destination Theater

Discover Your Africa

Sherwin Banda, President, African Travel

Listen and learn all about visiting Africa and experiencing the amazing culture and wildlife. Get an unparalled perspective on what to consider before embarking your first Safari or being called to return to magnificent Africa

Peter Greenberg Travel Celebrity - Travel Shows

1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Travel Theater

Travel in A Time of Disruption

Peter Greenberg, Emmy Award-Winning Investigative Reporter and Producer and CBS News Travel Editor

How and where to travel in a year of global uncertainty, instability, economic upheaval – and great opportunity. The ultimate road warriors guide to when, where and how to go just about anywhere.

Autograph Signing Immediately Following

Angel Castellanos Celebrity Travel Expert - Travel Shows

1:15 pm – 2:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

Travel Smarter & Better with Technology

Angel Castellanos, Travel Ambassador, AngelsTravelLounge.com

Do you want to use your iPhone or other gadgets abroad without going broke? What are the best apps for travel? Angel Castellanos, The Travel Ambassador, delivers his acclaimed “Travel Smart with Technology” seminar. This informative and popular presentation prepares travelers (step-by-step) so they can confidently use their mobile devices while traveling. By attending this talk, you will be able to communicate effectively while on the road just like a temporary local and without breaking the bank. Angel will also cover the best travel apps to enhance your travels! No matter your level of experience, you are bound to come away with great advice and helpful apps to help you travel smarter with your technology. Join us for this insightful and dynamic presentation. Travel often and well! www.AngelsTravelLounge.com

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

1:45 pm – 2:15 pm
Destination Theater

AAA Member Choice Vacations Gives You More Ways to Discover North America & Beyond

Kevin Carter, Director of Strategic Partnerships, AAA Members Choice Vacations

Join us and discover how AAA Member Choice Vacations® gives you more for your next guided adventure. From private sedan service, to culturally immersive experiences, the must-see’s, and strategically located hotels; AAA MCV handles all the details for you, so all you have to do is sit back and enjoy the ride. Discover the best of North America, from the National Parks of America to our Spotlight on New York City, and even the Canadian Rockies – AAA MCV brings you to all the must-see destinations in North America

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2:15 pm – 3:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

Cruises – One Size Does Not Fit All!

Mauricio Ponce, Manager of Strategic Partnerships, Cruise Planners

Join Cruise Planners’ panel to hear from the industry’s most recognized cruise brands and learn which one is the ideal option for your next vacation. From sailing the seven seas, to exploring European cities via river to enjoying a once-in-a-lifetime exotic cruise, there are so many options and your full-service advisor is your key for selecting the right fit.

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

2:30 pm – 3:00 pm
Destination Theater

Taking You Personally –  Ireland & Scotland

Brian Moore, Ireland & Scotland Expert, Brendan Vacations

Our name comes from St. Brendan, patron saint of navigation, as we share his great passion for exploration and travel that has fueled the authentic vacation experiences we’ve created for travelers like you over the past 46 years.  Experience authentic Ireland & Scotland, crafted by locals – your story awaits.

Samantha Brown Celebrity Travel Speaker

2:30 pm – 3:30 pm
Travel Theater

Travel Smart: Lessons Learned from A Life Lived on the Road

Samantha Brown, Travel Channel Host

Autograph Signing Immediately Following

3:15 pm – 3:45 pm
Destination Theater

Explore the best of the Islands of The Bahamas: Book unique experiences for every lifestyle.

Edward Archer, General Manager, Business Development / USA Sales & Marketing, The Bahamas Tourist Office, Atlanta

With more than 700 islands and cays, sapphire blue skies, turquoise water and white and pink sand beaches, The Bahamas is a multi-island destination, providing unique experiences suited for every lifestyle. In this presentation, representatives from the Bahamas Tourist Office will share the latest promotions and unique itineraries as well as highlight the versatility of adventures, activities, and properties throughout the Islands of The Bahamas that make us an ideal destination for all types of travelers. For travel professionals, we will also share how to give you the edge to increase your bookings to The Islands of The Bahamas.

Travel AAA - Travel Shows

3:15 pm – 4:00 pm
Savvy Traveler Theater

How to Save the Most on Your Travel

Vicky Evans, Director, Travel Agency Market Development

AAA Travel shares insider knowledge on how to get the best price on your vacation while working with top industry experts. Learn about travel tips, tools, and apps to help you plan the best vacation.