Travel agents Denise and Paul Hangsleben of Travel Your Way network with Cookie Monster, Elmo and Grover at Sandals Royal Caribbean, Sandals Cay. // © 2010 Denise Hangsleben
The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) spent four consecutive weekends in late September and early October hosting 2,000 travel agents as part of its “Wish You Were Here” education series. Dubbed the agent fly-in, and nicknamed “the largest fam ever” by some officials, the mega-fam came on the heels of a series of local market events held by the JTB during mid-July and August.
Commencing on Sept. 10 and continuing through the first weekend in October, the fam event saw nearly 500 agents in Jamaica each week from around the U.S. and Canada. Agents were flown in every Friday afternoon, segmented into groups of 50 and housed at properties throughout Montego Bay. Although each group largely followed individual programs — welcome dinners were sponsored by each group’s host hotel, for example — the entire group came together to network with Jamaica’s industry partners at a private event held at Sandals Royal Caribbean, Sandals Cay. After two full days of site inspections and education opportunities, agents returned home on Monday.