IGLTA eNewsletter
Mar. 11, 2015

IGLTA welcomes new board members in April
This year's board appointment process is complete and the new IGLTA board of directors will take over following the 7 April board meeting at our Annual Global Convention in Los Angeles. The 2015-2016 board of directors are: Marta Dalla Chiesa, Brazil Ecojourneys; Tanya Churchmuch, MuchPR; Jody Cole, Wild Rainbow African Safaris; Norma Dean, Delta Air Lines; Richard Gray, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau; Rika Jean-Francois, ITB Berlin; Tom Jenkins, European Tour Operators Association; Juan Julia, Axel hotels; Michael McDowell, Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board; Dan Melesurgo, American Society of Association Executives; Andy Mosetti, NEXTSKY travel agency; Jon Munoz, Hilton Worldwide; Ed Salvato, ManAboutWorld; Chris Stanley, Silversea Cruises; and John Tanzella, IGLTA President/CEO (ex officio).More

Register now before convention rates increase!
Our 32nd Annual Global Convention in Los Angeles is shaping up to be our most dynamic yet. Register now before fees increase on 17 March. You don't want to miss out on our appointment-driven buyer/supplier marketplace (the appointment system is now live), top-notch networking opportunities including the gala opening night at the Getty Museum and the IGLTA Foundation fund-raising event at the Montage Beverly Hills; a Consumer Trade Show in West Hollywood Park; a Media Trade Show with global outlets; the Women in Business mixer; and educational sessions from the Williams Institute, the U.S. Department of State, and industry leaders touching on everything from social media and marketing to transgender travel and reaching millennials. Day passes are also available for the Thursday and Friday sessions. igltaconvention.org/register-todayMore

ITB wrap up
Now in its sixth year, the Gay & Lesbian Travel Pavilion at ITB Berlin grew to more than 450 square meters and welcomed 21 exhibitors, including IGLTA members and partners from four continents. "We had 12 square meters and two countertops at my first ITB in the IGLTA stand in 2010," says IGLTA Vice President Clark Massad. "The exponential growth of the LGBT travel pavilion at ITB in just six years is a testament to the global impact and importance of this sector." Educational sessions included the Gay & Lesbian Tourism Panel, featuring an introductory presentation from Matt Skallerud of Pink Banana Media and a panel composed of IGLTA members from the U.S., Japan and Europe. IGLTA members were treated to many networking opportunities throughout the week, including a Gay & Lesbian Media Networking Brunch organized by ITB and sponsored by the Athens CVB; the TomOnTour Gay ITB Party sponsored by Visit Florida; and the Chic Champagne & Canapés lunchtime mixer hosted by IGLTA Platinum Partner Chic Outlet Shopping®. The week finished off with the annual IGLTA/Axel Hotel ITB Party sponsored by Tourism Toronto and Tourism Ontario at Hamburger Mary's in the Axel Hotel Berlin and included a raffle that raised $500 for the IGLTA Foundation. Prizes included a trip for two to Toronto and Ontario courtesy of Tourism Toronto and Tourism Ontario and a trip for two to Barcelona courtesy of Axel Hotels, Delta Air Lines, Chic Outlet Shopping® and Barcelona Tourism.More

Slovenian lawmakers approve same-sex marriage, adoption bill
Washington Blade
Lawmakers in Slovenia approved a bill that would extend marriage and adoption rights to same-sex couples in the Central European country. The measure passed in the Slovenian Parliament by a 51-28 vote margin. The Associated Press reported that thousands of people protested against the bill before the vote. More

Prague a top destination for LGBT tourists
Prague Post
Prague is among the favorite tourist destinations of LGBT travelers because it is one of the world's most open cities with a number of facilities friendly to gays and lesbians, Pavel Sýkora, from a Czech firm that offers an LGBT Internet guide at a Berlin trade fair, has told the Czech News Agency. Sýkora represents the 2009 Network company at the ITB tourism trade fair in Berlin which has a special section focused on LGBT clients. More

Yes Equality campaign launched in Dublin
Pink News
A pro-equal marriage has been officially launched in the Republic of Ireland — just over two months before the country's referendum. The Yes Equality campaign, a collaborative campaign being led by several gay rights groups in Ireland, was officially launched recently. The campaign aims to get people to register to vote so that they can support equal marriage in the upcoming referendum on May 22.More

7 arrested in latest Egyptian raid on charges of homosexuality
Egyptian police arrested seven people for "debauchery," the charge routinely used against men accused of homosexuality, according to a report in the Egyptian tabloid Al-Youm el-Saba. The paper identified the seven as "transsexuals," but details of the account could not be verified. This is the first highly publicized arrest of allegedly gay or trans people since the January acquittal of 26 men arrested in a raid on a working-class bathhouse that was featured in a television broadcast purporting to tell "the whole story of the dens for spreading AIDS in Egypt."More

Amid brazen, deadly attacks, gay Syrians tell of fear of ISIS persecution
VideoBriefThe photographs released by ISIS in its stronghold of Raqqa are dated March 2015. The first ones show a large crowd, mostly men, but also among them a handful of women and children, all looking up. Three men on top of a building, faces covered in black balaclavas, stand on either side of their victim, while a fourth seems to be taking a photo or video.More

Russia is trying to force its homophobia on the rest of world at the United Nations
LGBT activists have another Russian problem to worry about. Foreign Policy is reporting that in a move consistent with a 2013 law criminalizing "gay propaganda," the Russian government has formally demanded that U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reverse a 2014 administrative order granting marital benefits to gay and lesbian employees of the United Nations.More

Instagram launches clickable ad carousels perfect for travel marketing
Instagram's advertising product has received a significant upgrade that will appeal to travel marketers of all kinds: It's called Carousel Ads, and is similar to the recently introduced Snapchat product Sequenced Stories which allows brands to tell multi-image stories. Rather than one image sitting in the standard Instagram scroll, small buttons will appear below ads with multiple images. More