The 2013 Travel Goods Show at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center last week was full of exhibitors — some 260 of them, up 30% over last year’s show. The significance of the increase? A Travel Good Association spokesman says very definitely, the travel industry has come back from the recession and the industry is once again looking toward a positive future.
The Travel Goods Show, the world’s largest show of its kind, features products for all kinds of travel — be it traveling on a bicycle to a local health club, attending a business meeting or embarking on a five-week international vacation. As shown in the accompanying video, for the urban professional carrying a suit in a backpack, that can be done smoothly…with a roll-type bag first popularized in Australia. Need to keep makeup cool in the hot Arizona sun? That, too, is available in the smallest of packable purses. Wonder where your lost luggage is hiding? The wonders of technology will locate the luggage wherever it is in the world..and a service is available to help have the luggage returned. If safety of your credit cards, travel documents and money is your concern, then products to meet those needs are also available….even in underwear with enough pockets to hold a phone, a passport, money, lip gloss and maps!
Of course, portable electronics mean that every carry-all contains spots for phones and tablets. Classic colors and leather goods are still available, but no one should ever again have trouble identifying their luggage on an airport turntable. Much of the luggage at the show, hoping to attract retail buyers, came in bold colors, with distinctive artwork. Luggage tags, too, come BiG and in neon colors. Wheels are advertised as going in all directions.
And gone are the days when Mom and Dad packed two big suitcases, one for them and one for all the kids. In this “one suitcase per person” era of airline travel, each child has his or her own very distinctive and fun suitcase…with, perhaps, a matching backpack.
The Travel Goods Show is produced by the 75-year-old Travel Goods Association. Though final attendance figures won’t be available for several weeks, a pre-show estimate of attendance, posted on the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority calendar, was 3500. Next year, because of scheduling problems in Las Vegas, the Travel Goods Show will be held in Phoenix, AZ, but will be returning to Las Vegas in 2015.