Volume 14, Issue 11 | November 2019
The TIAK Talk is published monthly for members of the Travel Industry Association of Kansas.
By Stacy Barnes

As we near the end of the year and holiday season, it’s easy to reflect on all of the things for which I'm thankful. In my professional life, I am most thankful for an amazing network of people that are friends, colleagues, and Kansans that care deeply about this state. I've made many of these relationships through TIAK, and I am so glad to know so many people passionate about tourism in our great state. Thanks to all of you for the work you do carrying out the message of the awesomeness of Kansas - from our larger cities and well-known landmarks to our more unknown, off-the-beaten path and quirky attractions. I know that when questions or challenges arise, I have you as my network. We are all part of this great Kansas Tourism team and for that I am thankful.

"Even in the trials of life, if we have eyes to see, we can find good things everywhere we look." Johanna Gaines
Registration Open for 2020 Destination Statehouse

Join your fellow destination marketing organizations to bring a cumulative message to the Capitol City on February 5. Travel professionals must strive for positive and cooperative relationships with local and state elected officials to advance and promote the tourism industry in Kansas. Register now!

As Topeka hotels fill quickly during the legislative session, members are encouraged to make their hotel reservations soon. Call the Cyrus Hotel directly at (266) 266-3500 and mention the TIAK Legislative Reception room block. You can also book your room online here . Please note that you must manipulate the check in/check out dates.
2020 Legislative Survey Results

We asked, you answered. You gave us your top tourism and general business issues and important comments regarding the impact of the travel ban on your community or organization. Thank you to all of the members that participated in the 2020 Legislative Survey. We had a 13% return rate and received quality feedback that will help the TIAK board of directors shape the association’s legislative agenda for next year. Read the full survey results.
Cost Share Road Projects Selected

Gov. Laura Kelly and Transportation Secretary Julie Lorenz announced on November 5 the 22 projects selected across the state as part of the Kansas Department of Transportation’s new Cost Share Program. These projects total nearly $74 million in state, local, federal and private investment in transportation improvements statewide. Read more.
Barnes, Fern Appointed to State Tourism Council

Congratulations to Suzan Barnes and Kevin Fern for being appointed by Governor Kelly to the Council on Travel and Tourism. The council is working actively on advising the development of new tourist attractions in Kansas and on the expansion of existing tourist attractions.

Barnes, Cottonwood Falls, is the owner of the Grand Central Hotel and a representative for the Travel Industry Association of Kansas. Fern, Shawnee, is the Executive Director of Visit Shawnee.
TIAK President Interviewed in Greensburg Story

Jim McLean, senior correspondent for Kansas News Service, traveled to Greensburg to see how the community has rebuilt after a massive tornado nearly leveled the town back in 2007. It’s a great, quick interview with several of Greensburg’s city leaders, including our very own TIAK president, Stacy Barnes. Listen here.
November Lodging Report

TIAK has signed an agreement with Smith Travel Research (STR) to provide members with the monthly statewide STR report on hotel occupancy. Several TIAK members receive their local community information. We hope that this agreement will increase the information gathered, hotel participants, and improve the data included. Click here for monthly and year-to-date comparisons provided directly by STR.

Kansas had 64% property participation and 77% hotel room participation in November.
State Tourism Website Traffic Analysis, Q3 2019

TwoSix Digital published on November 6 their third quarterly state tourism website traffic analysis for the 50 official state tourism offices. The analysis was to benchmark and rank traffic to each tourism organization’s website. The analysis graded each state by total traffic, average monthly visits, the share of mobile vs. desktop and engagement factors like pages per visit, average visit duration and bounce rate. Read more.
Are you REAL ID ready?

Starting next October 1, all Americans will need a REAL ID to pass airport security to board a flight in the United States. A REAL ID, generally marked with a star in the upper righthand corner, is different than a traditional driver’s license and can be obtained at your state’s DMV. If you do not have a REAL ID, there are other forms of identification accepted, such as a U.S. passport or passport card, enhanced driver’s license or U.S. military ID.

The U.S. Travel Association has developed a toolkit for communities to use in helping get their travelers ready for the change. Included are resources for social media, email marketing, radio advertising and much more. Read more.
National Plan for Vacation Day

Did you know that more than half of American workers (55%) failed to use all their time off last year? That’s a stockpile of 768 million unused vacation days just in 2018, of which 236 million were forfeited completely.

National Plan for Vacation Day will take place on January 28, 2020 as a day to encourage Americans to plan their vacation days for the rest of the year at the start of the year. To help employees get their vacation days on the calendar, U.S. Travel Association has created a Vacation Planning Tool that you can distribute in your communities. Read more.
The state of the economy is mixed. While the record-long expansion has continued, the pace of economic growth has slowed. On a positive note, the labor market has remained strong, consumer confidence is elevated, wage growth has remained solid and consumer spending has continued to grow. On the other hand, business investment has stalled and exports have declined. As a result, the manufacturing sector, which is most exposed to the current weakness, is suffering. Meanwhile, the rest of the economy has continued to grow. The consensus outlook is that the expansion will continue but decelerate in the near term. Read more.
Business Travel Bootcamp

The Wichita Airport Authority is hosting a Business Travel Bootcamp conference on January 30, 2020 for anyone from seasoned travel managers to administrative assistants tasked with booking travel. The all-day event will feature experts on how to book and travel more efficiently. Get updates from airline representatives and learn about the industry's challenges and Wichita's strategies to improve air service. The deadline to register is January 14. Read more.
Job Opportunity

The Kansas I-70 Association is looking for an Association Coordinator to attract and encourage travelers to visit more communities and their attractions along I-70 in Kansas. This is a part-time contract position with no benefits. Read more.

Governor’s Council on Tourism
December 6 Topeka

TIAK Board Meeting
December 12, Topeka

TIAK Destination Statehouse
February 5, Topeka

U.S. Travel Association Destination Capitol Hill
April 1-2, Washington D.C.

Kansas Tourism Conference
October 19-21, 2020 in Liberal
October 18-20, 2021 in Wichita

2020 TIAK Executive Committee Meetings
January 9, Junction City
March 12, by phone
June 10, Olathe
July 9, by phone
September 10, by phone
November 12, Cottonwood Falls Retreat

2020 TIAK Board Meetings
February 6, Topeka
April 9, Salina
June 11, Olathe
August 13, by email
October 19, Liberal
December 10, Abilene


December 5

December 12

December 19