The 2019 New York Times Travel Show: A Review


Let’s discover some of the top travel trends of 2019 as I echo the personal insights I gained from the seminars and the travel booths from my third time visit to the New York Times Travel Show (Jan25th-Jan27th 2019).

From general travel aficionados who loves to travel to travel bloggers and journalists who document travel to travel gurus who share their knowledge to travel traders who love to invite you to their place to travel performances and food from around the world , it’s simply mind boggling to even imagine how the magnum opus of the world can be had in a hall in a short span of 3 days once a year. It’s one of its kind of celebration of “All things travel”. No wonder it attracts visitors from far and wide.


It also opens new ways to see the world and we learn plenty.. It makes us more well versed in travel and keep us more updated than we might have been. If earlier I sipped wine occasionally, today I know we can write with wine thanks to age old tradition of writing with wine in Georgia. Georgia is known for centuries old calligraphy and I loved how mesmerizing my name looked when I wined it down on paper.

If earlier I used to just eat a candy bar as a sweet delight, today I know age-old art of traditional Japanese candy crafting called Amezaiku as demonstrated by Master Kimura Takeo, the world’s first female Amezaiku artist.

 If earlier, I had relied on mainstream brands for my Travel wear, today I know of Bluffworks an innovative travel clothing brand that also designs Travel Ready Blazers.

If earlier I used Priceline for car rentals, today we know of Autoslash thanks to seminar by Major Developments in Travel with Pauline Frommer. If earlier I had admired the variety of food New York has, today I know of their Buckwheat honey! If earlier I had dined and wined in Israel, today I know how to prepare their food thanks to numerous food seminars at the taste of the world section.

Incredible India was the sponsor for the show. The ribbon cutting inaugural speech was done by Incredible India. Being an Indian myself, it makes me very proud.

Their performance on the Asian Stage was applaudable. Watch my interview with the dance crew performing on Indian Bollywood and snippet from their performance:

And that is just a fraction of what I am talking about. The scope of intensity of our learning is enormous here and with it being so affordable, there is no reason we should miss it. Every time I go there, I feel there are so many experiences I have had but so many I missed. And I go next year, and next and next, each time happy to have something different than the last year.

So, here are 25 facts that we learnt at the show:

  1. “India is the birthplace of wellness and confluence of cultures and heritage cities. Wellness travel is projected to be 900 billion. You also find wellness modalities and treatment and detox cleanse and Ayurvedic treatment everywhere,” says Rona Berg from Organic Spa Media.

  2. “India has always been welcoming to me with open arms. I always start with a physical map. On the map, I look at where the important things are. And I try to find myself or location base myself within walking distance from what I want to see and also within walking distance of local shops and bazaar. India is one of the easiest places to be a traveler because you can push through the level of checking just the bucket list very easily to break through that and get to the point of meeting people in India and traveling with them, “says Daisann McLann, former travel columnist at National Geographic Traveler. She continues," There are enormous tier 2 cities that I would recommend including Bhubaneswar. Bhubaneshwar has amazing temples well worth knowing and indigenous cultures. Kolkata is another amazing city for history. "

  3. “What 9/11 did to the USA, the 26/11 did to India, so there is whole lot of security in India making it safe in the luxury hotels,” says Karambir Kang from the Taj Hotel.

  4. “Research where you are going. For example, check issues with water, mosquitoes, diseases, safety etc.). The app Geosure provides such information,” says Rhonda Sloan from AIG Travel.

  5. “If you are fat, and are wanting to go for adventure sports, call the provider beforehand to make sure that the harness and equipment for your size are available”, says Annette, a travel blogger at “From Annette With Love”.

  6. “Research the airport you are flying into. Share your Uber status with your friends and family in a new place. Turn off locations while checking in on Facebook,” says Tracey Breeden from Uber. 

  7. "Take copies of your important document either store it in laptop or have hard copies," says Rhonda Sloan from AIG Travel .

  8. “You can do short-term work when you travel with Workaway, WWOOF, VaughanSystems,” quoted Pauline Frommer from Frommer's 

  9. "Some of the digital nomad careers are Jobbatical, Remotey, Jobspresso, Remoteok," says Pauline Frommer. 

  10. “Some of the travel destinations this year could be Olympic National Park (95% of it has no roads), a road trip down Estrada Nacional 2 Portugal, Matera Italy, Singapore, New York state etc,” says Pauline Frommer.

  11. "These are some of the replacement places of popular sites which are getting overpopulated due to huge inflow of tourists. One of which is Iceland. Last year, Iceland had more Americans than their locals,"  says Pauline Frommer.

  12. "River Cruises are huge this year," says Pauline Frommer. 

  13. “Between YouTube and Podcast, I would probably go YouTube. No much is really doing much on podcasting right now in terms of advertising. YouTube does not have that problem. In YouTube, you can see the number of users and subscribers. Most of the travel videos are simple top 10 types so you can simply create in front on green screen unless you find sponsors. Video podcast are good space on YouTube,” says Gary Arndt from Everything Everywhere and Dan Callahan from travAlliancemedia.

  14. “We are introducing California as a road trip republic.  What’s embedded in the DNA of California is the sense of freedom and discovery, it is a perfect destination for road trips and its foundational for millennials for capturing Instagrammable moments. GPS has seen 79% of increase in international traveler’s road trips. California is the only state where you can ski in the morning and surf in the afternoon. Glamping is big in California. Media loves to show California burnt to the ground with the recent fires, it’s those 40% of wild wilderness where exactly how the forests are grown, and we had less that 1% of the land touched by wildfires impacted by it.  We developed WestCoastTravelFacts in collaboration with Washington state to keep everybody updated on the travel resources,” says Caroline Beteta From Visit California.

  15. “Tourism is our third largest industry in New York since 2011, and the economic impact is huge here. New York isn’t just New York city.  Also, there is Adirondacks, Finger Lakes, Niagara Falls etc. There is nowhere in the world where you would be dipping your toes in the Atlantic Ocean and the next day watching a Broadway show and the next day you would be on the longest highest zipline in America in the Catskills, the next day visiting an island castle in the 1000 islands, the next day visiting the only national center of comedy in Jamestown – you walk in and there are kiosks to find out what’s your favorite type of comedy etc. Truly a state of diversity,” says Ross D. Levi from IloveNY

  16. “Over the statue of Liberty there is going to be a brand-new state of the art museum coming up which would be a great addition to what truly is a national treasure. In Buffalo, on the Canal site, which is part of the Erie Canal that has concerts all year along, they are opening a Children’s museum. We are just a year away from opening of the first LEGOLAND theme park in the north east in New York state. In the Lake George area, we are going to have a new theme park. Six Flags are adding some new roller coaster and the tallest ride in New York state. A new way to explore the outdoors in New York would be by Empire State Trail by 2020, the longest multi-used trail in the united states, 750 miles, you would really be able to bike or walk from New York City to Canada,” says Ross D. Levi from IloveNY.

  17. “We are the most visited state in the South, if you don’t consider Florida in the south. We are really known about Natural Scenic Beauty of 543 miles from mountains to coast. We have one of the famous roads in the country, the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina. We are the state of firsts. We invited visitors to our state and made them repel down a waterfall or drink moonshine. You can see the original Wright Brothers Flyer and the Glider out there. We have Dirty Dancing festival every year. There is something that we call Project 543. Com that is 543 things that you can only do in North Carolina – we have 1 thing for every mile,” says Wit Tuttell from Visit North Carolina

  18. “Guides for full day trip are not that expensive when you compare the number of hours, they put in. In some countries they have tour managers or driver guides – one-person driver guide combined. You’d have to pay for one person that,” says Shivani Vora from New York Times travel and Matthew Upchurch from Virtuoso.

  19. “When going on cruises, check for shore excursions & travel agents that can get you access to things that possibly you couldn’t have had had you done it on your own. Look for country specific itinerates. Do research about the port before you get there and make educated decisions on what you want to do including looking at access to transportations. Most of the people assume that as they get to the port, they will get a taxi. They might not have done the research and they could be stuck at the pier. Cuba started from nowhere and now it’s a mature market for cruising,” says  panelists from How to Cruise Like a Traveler, Not a Tourist.

  20. “The Caribbean is hot this year! Grenada, also known as the spice of the Caribbean is having their pure Grenada Dive Fest from Sept 29th-Oct 4th. View the quirky dimension of the first unique Underwater Sculpture Park. Grenada is also big in Chocolates – they have their own Chocolate fest and Chocolate bath and their local drink is Chocolate tea,” says Francine Stewart, from Grenada Tourism Authority

  21. “Jaguar viewing tours are conducted in Guyana. Kite Flying, Rum tasting and Cricket is big in Guyana,” says Jane Behrend from Guyana Tourism Authority.

  22. “Antigua and Barbuda have 365 wonderful beaches. It’s a romantic place and has one of the largest sailing regattas,” says Dean Fenton from Antigua and Barbuda Tourism.

  23. “A popular island St. Lucia, honeymooner’s favorite, and a UNESCO world heritage site is a country where visitors go where locals are. They also have their weekly fish fries and jazz!” says Richard Moss from St. Lucia.

  24. “There are some of the places near New York such as Dutch Spring in Pennsylvania, great for diving. PADI has a great resource from where you can access our Scuba guides,” says Jennifer from PADI. Watch my interview with Jennifer below:

  25. “Google and Pinterest are two of the highly used search engines,” says says Gary Arndt from Everything Everywhere and Dan Callahan from travAlliancemedia.
I am amazed at how much I know now. Thanks to all these wonderful people for the insights and Thanks to New York Times Travel Show for having a spectacular show. Some more stills from the events are here:

Plus, you get to meet your favorite bloggers:

With Travel Blogger Shabrina of SlowTravelStory
and Travel Host Jeannette Ceja of Jet Set with Jeannette

                            With Travel Blogger April Hope of Love Lust or Bust

See you again next year!

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