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Q&A: ASTA Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2023

Finalists will pitch in Puerto Rico
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We interview Megan Wester, Senior Director of Marketing at the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA), about their annual Entrepreneur of the Year Award, presented at ASTA's Global Convention in Puerto Rico in May.

The Award provides a great platform for entrepreneurs to be recognized in front of hundreds of travel professionals and suppliers in attendance at ASTA's Global Convention. This is a fantastic opportunity for the winner to make connections and build new relationships that will help support their continued success.

πŸ‘‰ Apply online at astaglobalconvention.org/EntrepreneurAward.cfm before March 20, 2023.


What is the ASTA Entrepreneur of the Year Award?

This annual award, sponsored by the Dan and Gloria Bohan Foundation, celebrates the entrepreneurial spirit in the travel and hospitality industry by honoring innovators who are leading the way, whether it is creating a new product, introducing a new service or technology, or simply innovating in a completely original way that enhances our industry. These innovators can be individual business owners or part of a larger organization where they were instrumental in leading an entrepreneurial initiative.

What are the eligibility criteria for the 2023 Award?

If your entrepreneurial innovation or product benefits the travel industry in any way, we encourage you to apply. This includes travel advisors, agency managers and owners, travel suppliers, frontline hospitality workers, technology start-ups, and anyone in the travel and hospitality industry. We welcome submissions from anywhere in the world, because travel is a global experience.

Who won last year's Award and how did they impact the travel industry?

Last year’s winner, Debby Corwin, is a travel advisor who developed the TA Toolkit (tatoolkit.com), an online service which helps advisors more easily match clients with resorts that match their preferences and budgets. Entrepreneur of the Year award winners over the years have included professionals from across the industry.

How does the judging process work and what are the key criteria?

All submissions will be reviewed by a committee of seasoned travel professionals selected by ASTA and the Dan and Gloria Bohan Foundation. Submissions are evaluated on the basis of eight primary criteria:

1. Continuity
2. Evolution
3. Experiential Travel
4. Proven Impact
5. Curation
6. Marketing
7. Growth
8. Technology

Among these are how wide-reaching the product or service is, its demonstrated impact for travelers or professionals within the travel industry, and the innovation’s growth potential.

πŸ‘‰ Criteria details are provided at astaglobalconvention.org/EntrepreneurAward.cfm

What advice would you give to aspiring travel industry entrepreneurs?

The sky is the limit! The travel industry is constantly evolving, including new market segments emerging and changes in consumer travel expectations and demands. The only way to meet those needs is through innovation and folks tapping into their entrepreneurial spirit to create something new that hasn’t existed before.

Where do the three finalists compete for the award?

This year’s ASTA Global Convention will be held May 2-4 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The convention will include a variety of education sessions to help build your business, as well as keynote presentations, networking opportunities and sightseeing adventures around the island. Learn more at www.astaglobalconvention.org

How do you apply for the award?

πŸ‘‰ Apply online at astaglobalconvention.org/EntrepreneurAward.cfm before March 20, 2023.

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