Join travel leaders from around the globe to discuss the new strategies, perspectives and disruptive technologies that are shaping the future of the travel industry.
Pre-Conference  |  Wednesday, October 18th
4:00 - 7:00 p.m.
5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Welcome Reception

Arrive on Wednesday, October 18, to kick off TravelConnect with our opening reception. Enjoy refreshments, hors d'oeuvres and networking with colleagues.

Day One  |  Thursday, October 19th
7:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
7:30 - 8:30 a.m.
8:30 - 8:40 a.m.

Lauri Reishus, ARC's executive vice president and chief operating officer, welcomes attendees to TravelConnect 2017 in Washington, D.C.

Lauri Reishus, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, ARC

8:40 - 9:40 a.m.
Innovating Your Organization's Future

As the travel industry redefines its distribution models and methods, only organizations able to rethink the challenges that face consumers and develop groundbreaking, consumer-centric strategies will be able to transform from status-quo market contenders into forward-thinking global icons. In this thought-provoking session, George Blankenship will provide attendees the tools they need to remove barriers to innovation, deliver outstanding customer experiences and create a culture of service excellence to transform the future of their organizations. With more than 30 years of proven experience and prescient insight, Blankenship is widely recognized as the architect of Apple's brand-building retail strategy and Tesla's redefinition of the car-buying experience—both of which upended the distribution landscape in their markets. By the end of this invigorating session, attendees will have fresh, fascinating ideas and innovative tools for rethinking their company's role in an increasingly complex and competitive environment.

Keynote Speaker:
George Blankenship, Former Executive at Tesla Motors, Apple Computer and GAP Inc.

9:40 - 10:20 a.m.
General Session
Reframing Distribution

ARC's president and chief executive officer, Mike Premo, delivers insights on the current state of distribution and shares how agencies, airlines and technology providers can thrive in this changing landscape.

Mike Premo, President and Chief Executive Officer, ARC

10:20 - 10:45 a.m.
10:45 - 11:45 a.m.
General Session
Adapting to an Evolving Distribution Landscape: Insights from Global Travel Experts

2017 is a time for change in the airline distribution landscape. As airlines look to attract new customers and provide their loyal fliers with enhanced experiences, the industry will need to adapt and adjust to shifting distribution strategies, market forces, technology and opportunities. This session will help attendees discover the future of airline distribution with detailed insights from leading airlines and technology providers. With a can't-miss panel moderated by the airline industry's leading analyst, Holly Hegeman, this hour will prove to be one of the most valuable at TravelConnect 2017.

Holly Hegeman, Founder and Publisher, PlaneBusiness Banter

Jim Davidson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Farelogix, Inc.
Amos Khim, Managing Director, Sales Strategy, Analytics and Programs, United Airlines
Andrew Watterson, Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer, Southwest Airlines
Paul Butcher, Director of Technology, Air Strategy, Expedia, Inc.

11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.
11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.
Learning Café

The Learning Café provides the opportunity to meet one-on-one with ARC's product managers and select industry providers in an intimate setting. Here, you'll learn about the latest product innovations, services and programs while partaking in demonstrations to discover new ways to enhance your business.

12:45 - 1:25 p.m.
General Session
The War for Talent

Acquiring and developing the right talent is critical to a company's success—but over the next few years, the competition for that talent is expected to grow even more fierce. With a substantial portion of the U.S. workforce approaching retirement age, as well as increasing rates of turnover in many industries, businesses must be flexible and forward-thinking in order to ensure sustainability.

In this dynamic panel discussion, leaders in talent management will share how smart companies develop a diverse, capable and thriving workforce, and how businesses of all sizes can foster leadership for the future.

Eric Barger, Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, ARC
Ann Reiling, Managing Partner, Human Resources, Lucas Group
David Ascione, Senior Director, Human Resources, McCormick & Company
Alexis Dowell, Relationship Director, CEB, now Gartner
Mike Koffler, Relationship Manager, LinkedIn

1:25 - 2:00 p.m.
Anything Goes
Fresh Perspectives on Air Travel

Holly Hegeman, founder and publisher of PlaneBusiness Banter, will return to the stage for an "anything goes" one-on-one interview with the newest member of the previously "boys only" airline global sales club, Ms. Alison Taylor. Taylor, senior vice president of global sales and distribution for American Airlines, brings a different approach to the position, having most recently served as senior vice president of global sales for Starwood. Alison and Holly will discuss changes she is bringing to the structure of the sales team at American, how the airline is putting an emphasis on customer-tailored distribution, and how the sales staff at American is changing the way they do business with customers. With these two, the interview will truly be "anything goes" — questions from the audience will be highly encouraged!

Holly Hegeman, Founder and Publisher, PlaneBusiness Banter
Alison Taylor, Senior Vice President, Global Sales and Distribution, American Airlines

2:00 - 2:15 p.m.
2:15 - 3:00 p.m.
General Session
The New Travel Agency: Fresh Approaches to Business Models and Growing Markets

For more than 50 years, the travel agency channel has been a vibrant market for airlines to reach their customers and for travelers to discover the world. In today's ever-changing environment, however, it's essential for airlines and agencies alike to investigate new ways to operate and engage with travelers. This session will provide an in-depth look at four travel agencies with alternative business models. Attendees will walk away with a new outlook on how travel agencies can operate and how they can better work with their current customers and discover new ones.

Jay Boehmer, Editor-in-Chief, The Beat

Krista Pappas, Vice President, Lola Travel
Dakota Smith, Head of Growth, Hopper
Jason Wynn, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Travel, Upside Travel

3:00 - 3:45 p.m.
General Session
Economic Impacts on Travel

Sarah Quinlan, Senior Vice President of  Market Insights for Mastercard, presents a bird's-eye view of the U.S. economy and its effects on the travel industry.

Keynote Speaker:
Sarah Quinlan, Senior Vice President of Market Insights, MasterCard

3:45 - 4:00 p.m.
ARC Awards
4:00 - 6:00 p.m.
Learning Café Networking Reception

Enjoy drinks and networking with colleagues in the Learning Café. Enjoy a variety of product demos at your leisure, and learn more about how to leverage data to advance your business.

7:00 - 10:00 p.m.
TravelConnect Party

Join us for a festive celebration with hors d'oeuvres, drinks and music at the fourth annual TravelConnect party.

Day Two  |  Friday, October 20th
7:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
7:30 - 8:30 a.m.
8:30 - 9:00 a.m.
General Session
Debit Memo Progress

Get up to speed on the latest news from ARC's Debit Memo Working Group, which works to unify the travel industry by simplifying processes and creating new solutions.

Shelly Younger, Manager, Settlement Services, ARC

9:00 - 9:30 a.m.
General Session
Building the Future of Settlement

Launched this year, ARC's Settlement Council works together to envision new solutions for the future of settlement. This session shares developments from the council's most recent meetings.

Lucianne Leighton, Managing Director, Business Process Management & Settlement Services, ARC

9:30 - 9:45 a.m.
9:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Breakout Sessions
Airline and Agency Town Halls

ARC's Town Halls give attendees a chance to directly interact with airline and travel agency colleagues, as well as ARC, on the key issues that impact your business. While ARC executives will share timely updates on the organization's most important activities, the majority of these sessions will be focused on better understanding how to best support you and your business.

12:00 - 12:30 p.m.
Closing Remarks

Join Us at TravelConnect

Event Details