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Niagara Falls USA selected to host IITA summit in 2026


Mon, Jan 8th 2024 04:45 pm

The International Inbound Travel Association board of directors selected Niagara Falls USA to host its 2026 summit (Feb. 8-11). Niagara Falls USA was one of six destinations bidding on the summit.

Destination Niagara USA, the official destination marketing organization representing Niagara County and Niagara Falls, is an active member of IITA and submitted the winning bid in collaboration with the Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino. Bids are evaluated based on a number of variables, including level of city/state support, destination location and appeal, meeting space and hotel rates.

The IITA summit brings hundreds of travel organizations together to do business and put together USA itineraries and travel services for international travelers visiting the U.S. from around the world.

“We are thrilled to bring our group to Niagara Falls in 2026 for our members – the leading U.S. inbound tour operators – to experience the area from the majesty of the falls to the area’s rich history and heritage,” said Lisa Simon, CEO/executive director, IITA. “Add in the myriad outdoor adventure options, Niagara Falls USA is a major attraction for international visitors, and these travel producers will get to experience it first-hand.”

Destination Niagara USA stated, “While international visitation to the USA continues to recover from the pandemic, historically it has generated more than $235 billion in travel exports from nearly 80 million visitors. International inbound travel is crucial for the U.S. economy, and a sizable portion of that economic impact is a direct result of inbound tour operators selling U.S. travel products and services to a vast network of international tour operators and other travel producers.”

President and CEO John Percy said, “The international inbound markets are essential to the growth of the Niagara Falls USA visitor economy, and hosting the IITA summit in 2026 gives us the dual benefit of showcasing the destination and having the unique opportunity to highlight the natural beauty of the winter season here as well.”

In addition to its annual summit, IITA delivers education and training designed to help the industry grow international travel. As part of hosting the summit, Destination Niagara USA will bring IITA’s Inbound Insider Steps to Success travel trade training program to the area prior to the summit in 2026 to help prepare the local travel suppliers for working with international markets.

“Our friends at Destination Niagara USA have demonstrated their commitment to rebuilding international visitation and will have the advantage of preparedness as a result of the training,” Simon said. “Then, they’ll bring it full circle by bringing the international inbound travel producers to experience the destination firsthand.”

For more information on the International Inbound Travel Association, membership, new programs or services, visit www.inboundtravel.org or email [email protected].

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