200+ Mind-Blowing PowerPoint Night Ideas (Templates Included)

Zhun Yee Chew

Zhun Yee Chew

200+ Mind-Blowing PowerPoint Night Ideas (Templates Included)

Have you ever imagined that the presentation program known as PowerPoint, typically associated with school, teaching, and work presentations, could become a favorite social gathering tool for millennials and Gen Z? PowerPoint night ideas have taken TikTok’s “For You” page by storm, with someone ingeniously reimagining PowerPoint as a fresh and innovative way to bring people together.

In this article, we’ve meticulously curated an extensive collection of over 200 power-packed PowerPoint night ideas (including some inspired by TikTok ) that are certain to inject boundless amusement and fun into your gatherings. Whether you’re hanging out with friends, spending time with family, bonding with colleagues, connecting with classmates, or even making new acquaintances, these ideas will add a spark to your get-togethers. Plus, we’re offering free downloadable PowerPoint night templates to help you get started.

Get ready to jump aboard this trend and experience this new way of bonding with your loved ones, friends and colleagues! We have something for everyone!

What is A PowerPoint Night?

A PowerPoint night is a social event or gathering where friends, family members or colleagues come together to collaboratively create and share PowerPoint presentations on a range of topics in a lively and entertaining fashion. Unlike the formal presentations you might prepare for a class, PowerPoint night themes tend to be less academic and factual, focusing instead on personal narratives, opinions, cherished memories, and shared experiences among friends, family, and loved ones. With the primary goal of fostering stronger connections and fostering interactions filled with laughter, the themes of these presentations are inherently more light-hearted and joyful.

Without further ado, let us dive straight into the PowerPoint night ideas. Find what you need depending on who you are with – friends, families, siblings, other half, colleagues, classmates, or new acquaintances .

PowerPoint Night Ideas that Guarantee Endless Fun!

Powerpoint night ideas for friends.

Friends PowerPoint night ideas

  • Never Have I Ever: Share amusing and surprising “never have I ever” stories.
  • Nostalgia Collection: Gather old photos and go through them together.
  • Personal Favorites Showcase: Each friend highlights beloved books, movies, music, etc.
  • Passion Unveil: Each friend to share their hobbies and interests (pro tip: choose the ones that your friends don’t already know).
  • Would You Rather: Engage in imaginative “Would You Rather” scenarios.
  • Bucket List: Set the bucket list goals you want to achieve together with your friends.
  • Friendship origin: Describe your first meeting and initial impressions.
  • Google Search Guesses: Guess recent Google searches of your friends.
  • Unbelievable Stories: Share unbelievable personal stories you have encountered.
  • Best & Worst Dates: Discuss your best and worst date experiences.
  • Reality Show Fits: Match your friends with reality shows.
  • Song Descriptions: Describe each friend using a song and reason.
  • Dream Trip Spots: Suggest future travel destinations for your friends group.
  • Nostalgic TV Picks: Share your favorite shows from childhood.
  • Job Confession: Discuss the highs and lows of each of your previous jobs.
  • Best Year & Why: Reflect on your best year of life.
  • Middle School Cringe: Reveal cringy middle school photos.
  • Celebrity Lookalikes: Compare each friend to a celebrity.
  • Fashion Fails Awards: Decide on the ugliest outfit awards.
  • $10 Million House: Describe your dream mansion with a budget.
  • Superhero Alter Egos: Cast each friend as a superhero.
  • Insta Pic Ratings: Rate each other’s Instagram photos.
  • Caption Critiques: Review and rate Instagram captions.
  • Dream Emojis: Invent emojis you wish existed for fun.
  • Fictional Podcasts: Describe imaginary podcasts for each friend.
  • Comfort Movie Picks: Reveal top comfort movies you love.
  • Best Hookup Stories: Recount top memorable hookups.
  • Top Dislikes: List your five least favorite things.
  • Change My Mind: Challenge your friends to change your mind on your dislikes.
  • Animal Antics: Show funny animal videos you love.
  • Movie Remake Rants: Discuss the worst movie remakes.
  • My Personal Evolution: Journey to becoming your current self.
  • Social Media Blunders: Laugh at your most embarrassing social media moments.
  • Hogwarts Sorting: Sort friends into Hogwarts houses and reasons.
  • Amazon Review Laughs: Share the most hilarious Amazon product reviews.
  • Friendship Scandals: Playfully speculate on scandalous stories if friends were famous.
  • Astrological Compatibility: Examine astrological birth chart matches (or mismatches).
  • Niche Future Predictions: Predict friends’ futures in quirky and unique ways.
  • Future Kid Names: Guess what names friends would pick for their future kids.
  • Friend Starter Packs: Create humorous starter packs for each friend.
  • Regrettable Moments: Reveal things you regret and wish you hadn’t done.
  • Personal Aesthetic: Showcase your aesthetic using three photos.
  • Friend Name Alterations: Suggest new names for your friends based on their personalities.
  • Toxic Trait Revelations: Playfully disclose each friend’s most toxic trait.
  • Phone Notes Expose: Share amusing notes from your phone.
  • Red Flag Crushes: Recall previous crushes and their red flags.
  • Having Kids: Discuss your opinions about having kids and have friends weigh in.
  • Job Swaps Daydreams: Share what you’d rather be doing than your current job.
  • Favorite Memories: Each friend recounts a cherished memory.
  • Spirit Animal Choices: Describe the chosen spirit animal for each friend.
  • Friends as Kardashians: Imagine your friends as the Kardashians.
  • TikTok Insights: Share things you learned from TikTok.
  • High School Musical Friends: Casting your friends as high school musical characters.
  • TV Show Fits: Match your friends to TV shows you think they would thrive on.

PowerPoint Night Ideas For Families

Families PowerPoint night ideas

  • Tech Blunders: Share funny tech blunders in the family.
  • Family History: Uncover family heritage, roots, and stories.
  • Culinary Heritage: Share family recipes and cooking customs.
  • Family Milestones: Commemorate family members’ achievements and significant moments.
  • Talent Show: Share individual talents and abilities (pro tip: share hidden talents your family members don’t already know about you).
  • Dream Family Destinations: Share desired travel spots for family vacations.
  • Top Family Film Picks: Present favorite movies for cozy movie nights.
  • Awkward Family Captures: Laugh at cringeworthy and funny family photos.
  • Cherished Family Customs: Discuss special traditions and rituals.
  • Epic Family Fails: Share hilarious and memorable mishaps that brought your family closer.
  • Parenting Bloopers: Celebrate funny and endearing moments from your parents’ adventures.
  • Silly Family Superlatives: Present light-hearted awards like “Best Morning Bedhead” or “Snack Master.”
  • Kitchen Catastrophes: Share amusing cooking disasters in the family.
  • Pet Antics: Document your family furry friends’ mischievous moments and quirky behaviors.
  • Bedtime Chronicles: Share amusing bedtime stories and night routines that make you all laugh.
  • Gardening Goofs: Share gardening mishaps in the family.
  • Family ‘Survivor’ Moments: Discuss the funniest survival strategies each family member has.
  • Family Impersonations: Each family member imitates another’s quirks or catchphrases for laughs.
  • Parenting 101: Each family member offers humorous “parenting advice” based on their experiences.
  • Family Doppelgängers: Compare family members to famous celebrities or fictional characters.
  • Tech Time Travel: Share screenshots of your family’s early social media posts and online interactions.

PowerPoint Night Ideas For Siblings

Siblings PowerPoint night ideas

  • Pre-College Insights: Share things you wish you knew before attending college.
  • Ex Analysis: Dissect past relationships of each sibling for fun.
  • Childhood Chronicles: Share funny, embarrassing, or memorable stories from your childhood.
  • Siblings’ Bucket List: Share bucket list goals you want to achieve together as siblings.
  • Sibling Show and Tell: Each sibling presents an item that holds special meaning.
  • Sibling Showdowns: Relive playful sibling rivalries and competitions from childhood.
  • Siblings vs. Technology: Share tech-related mishaps and funny text conversations.
  • Siblings in Sync: Compile synchronized dance routines or synchronized silly faces.
  • Sibling Slang: Share inside jokes, phrases, and slang unique to your sibling dynamic.
  • Pet Peeves: Discuss quirky habits and behaviors that annoy each other.
  • Siblings’ Secret Talents: Reveal surprising talents or skills that your siblings possess.
  • Sibling Photo Recreations: Recreate old photos with a hilarious modern twist.
  • Siblings’ Prank Wars: Present the most epic pranks you’ve played on each other.
  • Sibling Impersonations: Take turns imitating each other’s mannerisms and quirks.
  • Siblings’ Guilty Pleasures: Share guilty pleasures and quirky interests you secretly enjoy.
  • Sibling Comedy Roast: Playfully roast each other with good-natured humor and jokes.
  • Siblings Through the Ages: Present a timeline of your evolving sibling relationship with photos.
  • Siblings’ Room Tour: Give a tour of your siblings’ childhood bedrooms, highlighting their quirks and treasures.

PowerPoint Night Ideas For Couples

Couples PowerPoint night ideas

  • Love Language Exploration: Delve into understanding and satisfying each other’s love languages.
  • Love Story Timeline: Chronicle your relationship journey through anecdotes and photos.
  • Fantasy Getaway: Design a presentation detailing your dream vacation as a couple.
  • Bucket List: Showcase shared ambitions and experiences on your bucket list.
  • Creative Date Night Ideas: Compile a list of date night ideas.
  • Adventurous Date Night Ideas: Propose exhilarating and daring date night escapades.
  • Future Visions: Reveal individual and collective aspirations for your journey ahead together.
  • Love Letters Memory Trail: Go through the love letters you have exchanged in the past.
  • Fantasy Escapades: Present an imaginative shared fantasy or dream adventure.
  • The Art of Flirting: Share playful techniques to keep your connection lively.
  • Intimate Poetry Sharing: Exchange heartfelt and passionate poetry compositions.
  • Inner Desires Revealed: Share your innermost fantasies.
  • Life’s Profound Insights: Share acquired wisdom and life lessons with each other.
  • Would You Rather (Couple Edition): Play a light-hearted “Would You Rather” game tailored for couples.
  • Boredom Buster Ideas: A list of fun activities when you run out of date ideas.
  • Dream Wedding Destinations: Explore fantasy wedding locations and venues.
  • Instagram Recreation Fun: Couples recreate friends’ Instagram photos for laughs.
  • Met Gala Outfit Dreams: Share creative ideas for Met Gala attire.
  • First Night Scenarios: Re-imagining scenarios for the first night spent together.
  • Ex Comparisons: Playful discussion of past relationships.
  • Shared Interests Exploration: Discover common hobbies and passions.
  • Celebrity Power Couples: Discuss and rank top celebrity relationships.
  • Aging Transformation Revelations: Predict and share how you’ll look in old age.
  • Cooking Together Adventures: Ideas for shared cooking experiences and meals.
  • Couples’ Game Night Picks: Recommend the best games for entertaining nights.
  • Ideal Relationship Presents: Brainstorm perfect gifts for partners.
  • Guess My Likes and Dislikes: Let your partner guess the things you like and dislike most. (Pro tip: surprise each other with your favorite likes to show appreciation.)
  • Admitted Annoying Habits: Confess and discuss personal bad habits.

PowerPoint Night Ideas For Colleagues

Colleagues PowerPoint night ideas

  • Workplace Superlatives: Give out awards for “Best Desk Decor,” “Snack Guru,” and more.
  • Workplace Humor: Create a humorous presentation about office life and inside jokes.
  • Work-Life Balance: Discuss strategies for maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
  • Colleague Cocktails: Match coworkers to cocktail personalities and explain why.
  • Dream Escapes: Share preferred activities over current work tasks.
  • Office Character Match: Compare colleagues to “The Office” TV show characters.
  • Job Highs and Lows: Share best and worst aspects of your jobs.
  • Insta Pic Ratings (office edition): Rate coworkers’ Instagram photos with humor.
  • Caption Critiques (office edition): Evaluate colleagues’ Instagram captions in a friendly manner.
  • Bold Unpopular Views: Share personal opinions that go against the norm.
  • Diary Delves: Reveal intriguing and amusing diary entries.
  • Lottery Dreams Unveiled: Present extravagant plans if you won the lottery.
  • Initial Impressions: Discuss first impressions of your colleagues and how they evolved.
  • Office Fashion Faux Pas: Share and laugh at hilarious outfit choices and fashion mishaps.
  • Email Etiquette Funnies: Present amusing email chains and memorable communication blunders.
  • Cubicle Cribs: Show off creative desk setups and personalized workspaces.
  • Desk Drawer Revelations: Share surprising and unusual items found in colleagues’ desk drawers.
  • Conference Call Chronicles: Relive funny moments from virtual meetings and video calls.
  • Workplace Pet Peeves: Discuss quirky habits and behaviors that amuse or annoy.
  • Office Meme Masterpieces: Create and showcase memes inspired by office life.
  • Office Confessions: Reveal humorous secrets, confessions, and funny anecdotes about the workplace.
  • Colleague Catchphrases: Highlight phrases and sayings that have become synonymous with your team.
  • Impersonation Challenge: Take turns imitating colleagues’ voices, habits, or signature moves.
  • Hilarious Meeting Re-enactments: Act out funny scenarios from past meetings.
  • Office Déjà Vu: Highlight situations that always seem to happen in the office.
  • Mugshot Gallery: Present colleagues’ favorite mugs and the stories behind them.
  • “If Colleagues Were Characters”: Match colleagues to fictional characters that best represent them.
  • Office Screensavers: Share humorous or creative screensavers from colleagues’ computers.
  • Job Title Makeovers: Playfully redefine job titles to capture the essence of each role.
  • Alternate Universe Careers: Describe what alternative careers each colleague might pursue in a parallel universe.

PowerPoint Night Ideas For Classmates

Classmates PowerPoint night ideas

  • Future Forecast: Forecast friends’ aspirations and future paths.
  • Passion Projects: Share your personal interests, hobbies, and passion-driven projects.
  • Hidden Talents: Share your lesser-known talents and exceptional abilities.
  • Emoji Wishlist: Suggest emojis you wish to see in updates.
  • Snacks on the Go: Interpret road trip snack choices as personality traits of your classmates.
  • Yearbook Image Ratings: Evaluate and rate yearbook photographs and have a good laugh together.
  • Personal Hue Spectrum: Share color palettes that reflect each person’s personalities.
  • Youthful Lessons: Explore crucial lessons learned during our younger years.
  • Life Hacks: Share useful hacks for school challenges.
  • Classroom Confessions: Share humorous and memorable confessions from your time in class.
  • If Classmates Were Animals: Match each classmate to an animal based on their personality.
  • Classmates’ Superlatives: Give out playful awards for “Class Clown,” “Tech Guru,” and more.
  • Classroom Quirks Showcase: Highlight quirky habits and behaviors that define your classmates.
  • Classmates’ Nicknames: Share the creative nicknames classmates have given each other.
  • Classroom Antics Timeline: Create a timeline of funny and unexpected classroom moments.
  • Inspirational Figures: Introduce individuals who serve as your sources of inspiration.
  • Future Plans: Reveal post-graduation objectives, wanderlust, and individual dreams.
  • Study Session Mishaps: Share and relive funny and chaotic moments from study sessions.
  • Study Strategies: Provide strategies for successful learning and time utilization.
  • Classmates’ Role Reversal: Imagine each classmate in a different role or profession.
  • Classmate Epic Fails: Share hilarious stories of classmate mishaps and blunders.
  • Classmate Time Travel: Imagine each classmate in a different era of history.
  • Classmate News Flash: Create satirical news headlines featuring your classmates.
  • Classmate Trivia Challenge: Create trivia questions based on quirky classmate facts.

PowerPoint Night Ideas For New Friends

Friends PowerPoint night ideas

  • New Friend Fun Facts: Present unique and surprising facts of yourself to each other.
  • Two Truths and a Lie: Create slides with two true statements and one false statement about yourself. Your new friend guesses which is the lie.
  • First impression: Share your first impressions about each new friend in a friendly manner.
  • Fantasy Friend Day: Imagine your dream day together, from activities to destinations.
  • Friendship Compatibility Test: Design a humorous compatibility quiz to determine how well you match.
  • New Friend Travel Plans: Imagine and present your dream travel itinerary together.
  • Personal Timeline: Create a visual timeline of your life, including significant events, milestones, and hobbies.
  • Favorite Things Presentation: Compile images and descriptions of your favorite books, movies, foods, places, hobbies etc.
  • Guess My Passion: Present photos and clues about a particular hobby or interest, and your new friend guesses what it is.
  • My Name in…: Explore the history and meaning of your name in different languages and cultures.
  • Personality Collage: Create a collage of images, symbols, and quotes that reflect your personality and values.
  • My Best Day Ever: Design a presentation detailing your ideal day, from morning to night.
  • Cultural Exchange: Present aspects of your culture, traditions, or customs that you’d like to share.
  • Alternate Reality Self: Imagine an alternate version of yourself with different interests and experiences.
  • In a Parallel Universe: Discuss how your life might differ if you made one pivotal decision differently.
  • My Superhero Alter Ego: Describe the traits and powers your superhero self would possess.
  • If I Could Time Travel: Explain which historical era you’d visit and what you’d do there.
  • If I Could Swap Lives: Discuss whose life you’d want to experience for a day and why.
  • Emoji Biography: Craft a biography using emojis to depict important milestones and experiences.
  • Word Cloud of Traits: Generate a word cloud highlighting personality traits that describe you.
  • Guilty Pleasures: Reveal guilty pleasures you enjoy, whether it’s movies, music, or quirky habits.
  • Fantasy Adventure Partner: Describe the fantastical adventures you’d embark on with your new friend.
  • Book or Movie Character: Explain which fictional character you feel most connected to and why.
  • My Personal Mantra: Share a phrase or quote that inspires and motivates you.
  • If I Were a Food: Describe the type of food you’d be based on your personality.
  • Mars Spirit Animals: Choose a unique planet and assign hilarious “spirit animals” for each other.
  • Fantasy BFF Swap: Present the perks and challenges of swapping best friends for a day with your new friend.

Funny PowerPoint Night Ideas

Funny PowerPoint night ideas

  • Driver Ratings: Rate each friend’s driving skills with anecdotes.
  • First Horror Movie Victim: Predict who’d go first in a horror film.
  • Jail Time Predictions: Guess how each friend would end up in jail.
  • Body Swap Adventures: Describe what you’d do in your friend’s body.
  • Crying Locations Ratings: Rate places where you’ve cried before.
  • Kidnapper’s Change of Heart: Explain why a kidnapper would return your friends.
  • Bank Heist Roles: Assign roles for each friend in a hypothetical bank heist.
  • Santa’s Existence: Proof that Santa does exist.
  • Cartoon Villains: Match your friends with cartoon villains.
  • Hunger Games Survival: Estimate the survival time and downfall of each friend in Hunger Games.
  • Problematic Scale: Playfully rate how problematic each friend is.
  • Gender Swap: Imagine how friends would be as the opposite gender.
  • Conspiracy Theorist Tales: Invent conspiracy theories about each friend.
  • Comical Anecdotes: Exchange funny and cringe-worthy tales.
  • Hilarious Memes: Share recent funny memes you’ve encountered.
  • Funeral Planning: Plan a light-hearted and unique funeral for yourself.
  • DIY Disasters: Show before-and-after photos of DIY projects that didn’t quite go as planned.
  • Text Comedy Revealed: Share amusing text message exchanges.
  • Extreme Makeover: Present outrageous and funny makeovers you’d give to each other.
  • My Secret Lair or Hideout: Share the most absurd and extravagant places you’d hide out in as a secret agent.
  • Hair Horror: Share the worst hairstyles throughout history.
  • Career Misinterpretations: Explain what you think each friend does for work.
  • Yearbook Ratings: Rate yearbook photos with humor.
  • Pick-Up Line Extravaganza: Share both terrible and hilarious pick-up lines.
  • Weird Global Foods: Share unusual foods from around the world.
  • Fashion Fails: Showcase fashion faux pas and “Worst Outfit” moments.

10 Tips for An Unforgettable PowerPoint Night

Now that you have an exciting array of PowerPoint night ideas in your arsenal, let us make sure you combine them with the following tips to ensure your PowerPoint night is an unforgettable and enjoyable experience for everyone involved.

1.     Select Diverse Topics : Pick a mix of fun, informative, and personal subjects to appeal to everyone’s interests.

2.     Interactive Elements : Infuse interactive elements in your PowerPoint presentations like quizzes, polls, or challenges to actively engage the audience and spark conversations.

Read this Expert Guide to  Interactive PowerPoint  for more expert tips, tutorials and free templates for interactive PowerPoint presentations, with a free 60+ pages playbook for download.

3.     Add a Personal Flair : Encourage sharing personal stories, anecdotes, or cherished memories to forge deeper connections among participants.

4.     Timekeeping : Use a timer to help keep everything on track and ensure seamless transitions between presentations.

5.     Variety of Formats : Be flexible and embrace diverse presentation styles—blend informative pieces with humor, storytelling, or even interactive games to keep things fresh.

6.     Clear and Concise Content : Keep your slides straightforward and succinct. Use bullet points, short sentences, and key phrases to convey your message with precision.

7.     Visual Appeal : Infuse your slides with fun and engaging images, graphics, and icons to elevate the visual appeal.

8.     Minimal Text : Cut down on excessive text and use only essential keywords and phrases to complement your spoken presentation. (Remember, this is not a lecture or class presentation!)

9.     Engaging Fonts : Opt for easy-to-read fonts that are pleasing to the eye. Stick to a maximum of two font styles for a polished and unified appearance.

10.  Audience-Focused : Tailor your content to your audience’s interests and questions. Address their needs to keep them fully engaged and invested.

In a fast-paced digital world quick with fleeting connections, PowerPoint nights stand as investments that hold a value beyond mere currency. These gatherings are more than just presentations; they are windows into the soul of friendships, families, and colleagues. So, whether you’re bonding with loved ones, rekindling old friendships, or strengthening workplace camaraderie, remember that a PowerPoint night isn’t just about the slides—it’s about the stories, the connections, and the joy that unfolds with each click. So, we hope you make good use of the ideas above to create an epic PowerPoint night, because you are not just creating presentations, but moments that will be cherished for a lifetime.

For alternative social gathering ideas, check out our 350+ funny trivia questions bank . And for more PowerPoint game ideas, check out our PowerPoint Jeopardy template and PowerPoint Trivia template !

About Zhun Yee Chew

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FAQs About Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates

What exactly are travel & tourism presentation templates.

Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates are pre-designed layouts and patterns for presentations that are related to travel and tourism. These templates are commonly used by travel agencies, tourism departments, hotels, and airlines presentations to provide a professional and eye-catching appearance. They are equipped with travel-related graphics, designed themes, font styles, and placeholders for travel or tourism related content.

They can be found in different formats like for PowerPoint, Keynote, or Google Slides. Some templates even come with detailed reports, graphs, charts, and more making it easier to present any travel data clearly and concisely.

Why should I use a Travel & Tourism Presentation Template?

Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates not only save time and effort but also provide a professional, cohesive look to your presentation. They are pre-designed, so you don't need to worry about choosing colors, font styles, or creating impactful graphics—they are already created for you.

By using these templates, you can easily present your content in a visually appealing way that connects with the audience. The travel-related themes enhance the audience's experience and make your content easier to understand. They also come with customizable elements which let you tailor the presentation to suit your particular needs.

Where can I find Travel & Tourism Presentation templates?

Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates can be found on a variety of online platforms. Websites dedicated to presentation templates, such as SlideModel, PowerPointTemplates, Canva, and TemplateMonster often have a whole category dedicated to travel and tourism templates. They usually come in different formats like PPT, PPTX, KEY for compatibility with various presentation software.

In addition, several software like Microsoft PowerPoint, Google Slides, and Apple's Keynote provide inbuilt templates that you can use, modify, and customize according to your requirements.

Are these Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates easy to use?

Yes, Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates are typically designed to be user-friendly. Most templates are easy to edit and require no advanced technical knowledge. Elements such as text, images, charts, and colors can typically be edited with just a few clicks. In many templates, it's as simple as dragging and dropping your content into the placeholders.

Templates often come with instructions or guidelines to help users navigate, and if you run into any major issues, the site or platform where you downloaded the template from often has a customer service team or community forum that can help.

Can I customize the Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates according to my need?

Yes, the majority of Travel & Tourism Presentation Templates are designed to be customizable. They often come with a variety of slide layouts, color schemes, fonts, and graphics that can be easily modified. Some of them even allow you to add in multimedia elements, like videos or audio clips.

Even though these templates have a pre-set design, you can usually change individual elements to fit your specific needs. This flexibility allows you to maintain a professional design while still ensuring your presentation aligns with your brand’s look and feel or the specific theme of your presentation.

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Proper Conference Room Setup Makes Presenting Much Easier

The downside is true as well. Improper conference room setup can actually make you more nervous and make delivering the presentation more difficult.

This post has two parts. Part one is about The Different Conference Room Styles . In that section, I’ll give you different conference room setup options with pros and cons of each. Then, in Part Two, I’ll give you the Best Practices for How to Set Up a Conference Room and how to set up a meeting room. These best practices will help you avoid some of the big mistakes that presenters make when they set up the tables, chairs, and audiovisual for meetings.

Part One: The Pros and Cons of Different Conference Room Styles.

The Pros and Cons of Different Conference Room Styles

For instance, when I teach a leadership development class, I sometimes change the room set up at each break. This is helpful, because the purpose of the class is to increase the :comfort zone” of the participants. So, changing the way the chairs are set up or the way the tables are set up makes the participants have to move to a new seat each time.

When I teach the group how to remember names, a u-shaped room is ideal. That way, each person is able to view every other participant in the room. (They aren’t looking at the back of anybody’s head.)

However, when I cover a module on presentation skills, a chevron style classroom setup is better. This style allows the presenter to be the center of attention. It also lets every person in the audience have a great view of both the speaker and the speaker’s visual aids.

Then, in the same class on the afternoon of the first day, we cover meeting skills. In that session, I push two classroom tables together to make bigger meeting tables. And I put six to eight chairs around each table. This allows each table to operate as a separate group.

However, unless you are covering multiple topics in the same presentation, you shouldn’t need to do this, by the way. For example, when I teach a regular two-day public speaking class , I keep the same chevron-style class setting throughout the entire class.

The point is to alter the conference room set up to fit the needs of the audience. And when the needs change, alter the conference room set up as well.

List of Different Conference Room Styles:

  • Theater/Auditorium

Boardroom Style: All the Participants Gather Around a Single Long and Skinny Boardroom Table.

Boardroom Style-All the Participants Gather Around a Single Boardroom Table

One major advantage of the boardroom style is that almost every building has some type of conference room. Another is that the table is already set up in the room. Finally, this style is ideal if you want the participants to communicate with each other (from a seated position.) Everyone in the room can see each other face-to-face.

The major disadvantage, though is that the audio and visual components are often built into the room. So you lose a lot of flexibility with this room style. Also, when people design boardrooms, they often make the screen or display the center of attention. As a result, the presenter will often have to deliver the presentation from either side of the screen.

The other major disadvantage of this style is that if you have more than 12 people, the style doesn’t work very well. The room is too crowded and people have a hard time moving around to go to the restroom or get a coffee refill.

Still though, for a small group, a boardroom is often the best option.

U-Shaped Style: Tables Are Set in a Square Shape with One End Opened for the Presenter.

U-Shaped Conference Setup Style

This room setup is also very easy. All you need is a minimum of three tables to set it up. The major advantage of the U-Shaped style is that the entire group can still see everyone in the room face-to-face. So, this setup is ideal for team meeting where you want the audience to communicate with each other and share ideas.

Just like with the boardroom style, though, the major disadvantage is the group size. As the group gets larger, you lose the major advantages. So, if you have 14 or 16 people, you get the same advantages of the boardroom even though the group is a little larger. However, at 18, 20, or 22 people, you begin to lose this advantage. It will be difficult and impractical to get all 22 people to participate in a discussion.

So, since you lose this value, as the group gets bigger, you may want to switch to a classroom setup.

Just as an FYI, there is an alternative style called the “open square” style. It is the same as U-Shaped, but the open end is closed off. Between you and I, I have never really found any value in this style. You lose a lot of the advantages of the U-Shaped style without adding ANY advantages.

Theater Style or Auditorium Style: Chairs Set Side-by-Side as in a Movie Theater.

Theater Style or Auditorium Style Room Setup

The major advantage of the theater style is that you can comfortable seat a large number of people. The entire room will be able see and hear the main speaker (or speakers.) So, if you are organizing an annual meeting for hundreds (or thousands) of people, you might use this style for an opening introduction. Or, if you invite a keynote speaker or comedian to speak, this room style works well.

However, this style has a huge disadvantage. The audience has no place to write or take notes. So, if your audience has handouts or printed content, avoid this conference room style. (Use the classroom style instead.) The other major disadvantage of this room setup is that it will be very difficult to get the audience to interact each other or the speaker. So when organizing a big meeting, this conference style doesn’t have as many uses as other styles.

Classroom Style: A Series of Six foot by One Foot Tables Set Up in Rows.

Classroom Style Room Setup

The advantages are that you can comfortably fit more people using this style and everyone in the room can see the presenter. Also, every audience member has his or her own space. And no one has to sit with their back to the stage. Another huge advantage is that the speaker has more control and authority in the room. It is easier to get and keep the attention of the audience.

The only real disadvantage to this style is that you’ll have difficulty getting groups to interact in teams. If you want to create small groups to discuss items from the meeting, you may need to get a row to turn around. When you do this, you’d need to leave the stage to give instructions.

Still though, this is the conference room style that I use most often when I set up meeting rooms.

Banquet Style: Six to Ten People Gather Around Big Round Tables.

Banquet Style is a Hybrid Between Classroom and Boardroom

Each audience member styles gets adequate space. They also get to see the people at their table face-to-face as with the boardroom style. So, this conference room style is kind of a hybrid between classroom style and boardroom style.

A major disadvantage, though, is that this style takes up a lot of space. So, it is more expensive if you are renting space from a hotel or convention center. The other major disadvantage is that some people at the table with have limited view of the stage. They often have to turn their chairs when speakers are talking. So, they lose the advantage of having the personal space.

Still, though, this style has works well if you want a big group of people to interact with each other. It allows you to have tables discuss items with each other and brainstorm solutions to challenges.

Part Two: Best Practices for Proper Conference Room Set Up for Presentations (How to Set Up a Meeting Room.)

Setting Up the Room Wrong Can Make You a More Boring Speaker!

For instance, if you cram 20 people into a boardroom, they will be uncomfortable. You may be presenting well, but the facial expressions from the audience may be less-than-cordial. If multiple people in the room are giving you negative facial expressions, you might begin to feel a little more self-conscious.

Basically, the way you set up the conference room can either make presenting easier or make it harder. Improper room setup can cause challenges that you just don’t want or need when you present.

Below are some of my favorite ways to set up a conference room for a presentation. These are the “best practices” that I have discovered over 20 years of presenting.

1) Present from the Short-Side of the Conference Room.

Present from the Short-Side of the Conference Room

In the podcast that I did about eye-contact, I gave an example of how this can cause challenges. The analogy that I used there was to think about sitting in a movie theater with only three rows of seats. If you happen to be on either end, your view isn’t great. If you are the speaker, it is even worse. It is difficult for you to keep eye contact with the people on either side of the room.

To fix this, just present from the “short” side of the room. If you are presenting in a rectangular room, you will have two short walls and two long walls. Present from the short wall that is farthest away from the main door to the room.

By the way, a good A/V person can make presenting on the long-side of the room better. They will often set up big screens on both sides of the stage. This allows the audience to be closer to the speaker and still see the visual aids. Still though, this is just fixing a symptom caused by another problem.

2) Make Yourself the Center of Attention, Not the Visual Aid.

Make Yourself the Center of Attention Not the Visual Aid

When presenters violate this room setup tip, it can cause some major problems with delivery. For instance, the speaker will often move to the side of the room and look at the visual aid screen as he or she speaks. Obviously, the audience will look at the screen as well. Now that the visual aid is the center of attention, the speaker will often move behind the audience to continue to speak. Instead of being an interesting dialogue between the speaker and the audience, the presentation will become a monologue.

This room setup for a presentation can lead to the click… talk… click… talk method of delivery. (This is really boring.) So, move your screen to the side.

3) Get Rid of the Lectern.

Get Rid of the Lectern

If you feel like you need to have notes to deliver your presentation, make sure to read How to Memorize Your Speech . This post gives a number of tips that will allow you to deliver your entire presentation without notes.

Just so you know, standing behind a lectern is a technique that presenters sometimes use to feel more comfortable. In reality, though, it often makes people more nervous. Any time we feel threatened, we want to put something between us and the potential threat. In martial arts, students are taught to put their hands (fists) between themselves and the threat. For presenters, we put a lectern between us and the threat. A good example of how the demeanor of a presentation changes with a lectern is political debates. Candidates who feel like they have an advantage connecting with voters on a personal level always favor “town hall” style debates. (Just as an FYI, audiences do too.)

4) Place Whiteboard or Flipchart to the Proper Side When You Set Up Your Room for a Presentation.

Place Whiteboard or Flipchart to the Proper Side When You Set Up Your Room

If I forget and place the board on the wrong side of the room, I will have to cross in front of the board and stand on the opposite side to write. I makes for an awkward transition in the speech.

Also, since I’m left-handed, I pay attention to moving the whiteboard for each presenter. Just before I introduce the next speaker, I will move the stand over for a right-handed person. Obviously, if you are the meeting leader and every speaker is right-handed, this is much easier. But you’ll be surprised at how many speakers are left-handed. So, pay attention.

5) Chevron Style Room Set Up Is My Favorite Conference Room Setup Style.

Chevron Style Room Set Up Is My Favorite Conference Room Setup Style

Basically, you set up your room classroom style. This is rows of six-foot tables straight across. However, put an isle in the middle of the room that is maybe six-foot or so wide. Then, move the edge of the table that is on the isle back about three feet, so that the tables now angle toward the front-center of the room. Instead of the rows being straight across, now, they will be slightly “V” shaped.

When you set up your room for a presentation this way, you are creating a stage to present from. Basically, you can now walk into your isle to be closer to the audience. However, when you do, the folks on the front row don’t have to crank their necks to follow you. They will be looking directly at you.

Best Practices for Room Set Up for a Presentation in a Boardroom

If you are presenting in a boardroom, many of the tips still work. You still want to present from the short-side of the room. If the room has a dropdown screen that is in the center of the room or on the long-side of the room, you can always just project onto a whiteboard. (I do this a lot when I use boardrooms.) It allows me to be able to write on my slides as well, so it is really helpful.

The biggest suggestion I can make about presenting in a boardroom is to stand up when you speak. If everyone is seated in the boardroom (including you) when you start your presentation, just stand up to call attention to your visual aid. (Then don’t ever sit back down.)

Never, ever, ever sit on one side of a boardroom table and use visual aids on the opposite side of the table. This is the HUGE mistake that amateur presenters make that will cause your presentation to be so boring, you will put your audience to sleep. Avoid it at all costs. Stand up and use your visual aid to add to your verbal presentation — not replace it.

by Doug Staneart | Podcasts , presentation skills

View More Posts By Category: Free Public Speaking Tips | leadership tips | Online Courses | Past Fearless Presentations ® Classes | Podcasts | presentation skills | Uncategorized

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226 Best Tour-Themed Templates for PowerPoint & Google Slides

With over 6 million presentation templates available for you to choose from, crystalgraphics is the award-winning provider of the world’s largest collection of templates for powerpoint and google slides. so, take your time and look around. you’ll like what you see whether you want 1 great template or an ongoing subscription, we've got affordable purchasing options and 24/7 download access to fit your needs. thanks to our unbeatable combination of quality, selection and unique customization options, crystalgraphics is the company you can count on for your presentation enhancement needs. just ask any of our thousands of satisfied customers from virtually every leading company around the world. they love our products. we think you will, too" id="category_description">crystalgraphics creates templates designed to make even average presentations look incredible. below you’ll see thumbnail sized previews of the title slides of a few of our 226 best tour templates for powerpoint and google slides. the text you’ll see in in those slides is just example text. the tour-related image or video you’ll see in the background of each title slide is designed to help you set the stage for your tour-related topics and it is included with that template. in addition to the title slides, each of our templates comes with 17 additional slide layouts that you can use to create an unlimited number of presentation slides with your own added text and images. and every template is available in both widescreen and standard formats. with over 6 million presentation templates available for you to choose from, crystalgraphics is the award-winning provider of the world’s largest collection of templates for powerpoint and google slides. so, take your time and look around. you’ll like what you see whether you want 1 great template or an ongoing subscription, we've got affordable purchasing options and 24/7 download access to fit your needs. thanks to our unbeatable combination of quality, selection and unique customization options, crystalgraphics is the company you can count on for your presentation enhancement needs. just ask any of our thousands of satisfied customers from virtually every leading company around the world. they love our products. we think you will, too.

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How to Optimize Room Setup for Training and Presentations

If your audience seating arrangement and overall room setup isn’t aligned with the design of your session, you are starting from a position of weakness.

In this article, we describe the core principles that factor into your room setup choices. We then offer an in-depth view of several popular options, and point out the advantages and disadvantages of each. Finally, we end with tips you can use to optimize the room for your audience and set yourself up for success.

Core Principles for Choosing a Seating Setup

Before we dig into the many seating styles available, let’s first review the high-level audience-centric principles which will guide your choices.

  • Comfort  — Are audience members able to participate fully while facing forward? Or do they need to constantly twist around? Is there enough room for them to get to their seat easily? Will they be bumping into one another constantly? If they are comfortable, they can focus on listening to you.
  • Sight lines — Can audience members see the presenter? The slides? Each other? Clear sight lines allow your audience to absorb the visual component of your message, whether it be slides, body language, or anything else.
  • Utility  — Is a surface provided for using a laptop, taking notes, practice exercises, eating, or drinking? You want your audience members to be active learners, so give them space to do it.
  • Proximity  — Are audience members relatively close to the screen, the presenter, and each other? Or is it sparse seating? Too far apart drains energy from the room, but too close can be uncomfortable.
  • Compatibility — Is the layout of the room and the seating arrangement optimal for the style of presentation/training being offered? Does it support slide content? Large-group discussions? Small-group exercises?

These five principles will be our focus as we tour many popular seating styles available for your room.

Theater Style Seating Setup

Theater style seating is a series of chairs arranged in parallel rows, all facing forward to the front of the room. No tables are provided. Most large lecture theaters and movie theaters are arranged this way.

  • Allows high-density seating; that is, for a given room size, theater style seating maximizes the potential audience size.
  • Because audience members are close to each other and the speaker, this arrangement tends to maximize the energy in the room.

Disadvantages

  • No surface on which to place laptops, writing pads, food, or any other items.
  • Poor sight lines for people sitting near the front corners and, in very large rooms, people sitting toward the back and along the sides.
  • Angle of seats may require some audience members to “twist” their body to face the speaker or screen.
  • May be cumbersome to get to seats, depending on locations of walking aisles.
  • Less overall comfort (i.e. hot, stuffy) due to high density.
  • Audience members have essentially zero eye contact with each other, making discussions inconvenient and unlikely.

Best for…

  • Presentations for large audiences where the information flow is one-way (from speaker to audience) and there is no requirement for taking notes or using laptops.

Classroom Style Seating Setup

Classroom style seating is a series of tables (or desks) and chairs arranged in parallel rows, all facing toward the front of the room.

  • Tables (or desks) provide space for laptops, note-taking, and food.
  • Highest density of any seating arrangement involving tables or desks.
  • Poor sight lines for people sitting near the front corners.
  • Angle of seats and tables requires some audience members to twist their body to face the speaker or screen.
  • Training sessions where most audience members are taking notes or using laptops, and where most of the information flows from the speaker to the audience.

Boardroom Style Seating Setup

Boardroom style seating is a single large table (or several smaller tables butting up against one another) surrounded by chairs on both sides. The most common shape is rectangular (as shown in the diagram), but variations include both circular or square tables.

  • Lots of eye contact between audience members promotes discussion.
  • Tables allow for laptops, note-taking, and food.
  • Terrible sight lines to view slides for many audience members, particularly those at the “far end”.
  • Even worse sight lines from audience members to see the presenter, who must either stand to the side (not good) or sit (worse).
  • Multi-tasking (e.g. using a laptop while viewing slides or the presenter) requires lots of body twisting.
  • Depending on length (and shape) of table(s), audience members at the extreme ends can feel isolated. Tables which are circular or square can mitigate this.
  • Small groups focused on discussion and making decisions where there’s no primary presenter and little reliance on slides.

U-Shaped Style Seating Setup

U-shaped style seating is a series of tables forming three sides of a square or rectangle, with seating arranged around the outside. In this arrangement, all seats face the middle of the “U” shape.

  • Clear sight lines (both audience-to-presenter and audience-to-audience) fosters large group discussions.
  • Presenter can walk into open space within the “U”; this creates a unique dynamic because they are “immersed” within the audience.
  • Tends to lead to very low density seating, and thus requires a larger room for the same size audience.
  • Audience members at the “bottom” of the “U” are seated a large distance from screen, leading to several bad results: [a] readability of slides or flip charts is reduced, [b] participants are more easily distracted, and [c] participants are more likely to lose focus.
  • Audience members in the “corners” can feel relatively isolated.
  • Training sessions which are designed to emphasize large group interactions, with less emphasis on slide content.

Banquet Style Seating Setup

Banquet style seating is when a number of tables are scattered throughout the room, with seating arranged entirely around each table. Tables are often circular, but can be other shapes as well.

  • Tables create focal points which promote small-group discussions.
  • Small group settings create feelings of inclusiveness, and counteract the isolated feeling or anonymity that individual participants may feel within a large group.
  • Many people are naturally facing away from screen, and must turn away from table to see slides or presenter.
  • Tables can promote side chatter among groups unrelated to event goals.
  • Table space can be limited, depending how many people are seated at each table. (i.e. there is less individual space compared to classroom, boardroom, or U-shaped style seating)
  • Moving to/from seats can be cumbersome, depending on overall room size and walking aisles.
  • Training sessions which are designed to emphasize small-group exercises, with less emphasis on slide content.

Cabaret Style Seating Setup

Cabaret style seating is when a number of tables are scattered throughout the room, with seating arranged only partly around each table. This avoids anyone sitting with their back to the front of the room where the speaker or screen are located.

  • Most people are facing screen and presenter with limited twisting.
  • Lower density compared with Banquet style seating. More tables and a larger room are required for the same number of people.
  • Training sessions which are designed to emphasize a balance between small-group exercises and slide content.

Chevron Style Seating Setup

Chevron style seating (or V-shaped seating) is when tables are arranged in a series of angular patterns relative to one another, with seating on one side so that every chair is oriented optimally to face the screen or speaker. In narrow rooms, tables might be arranged in true “V”-shapes (as shown in the diagram); in wider rooms, tables might be arranged with a central “wing” connecting the two ends of the “V”, like this: \_/ .

  • Everyone faces the screen and presenter, so nobody has to twist their chair. Note-taking or using a laptop is thus comfortable for everyone.
  • Many audience members are now able to make full or partial eye contact with each other, promoting group discussion.
  • Relatively high density (similar to Classroom seating).
  • Individual tables support small-group exercises.
  • While some large group discussion is supported, it isn’t ideal because some people are still looking at the backs of other people’s heads.
  • Training sessions which are designed to emphasize slide content, but also want to incorporate some small-group exercises and some large-group discussion.

What is the Best Seating Arrangement?

It depends! There’s no single seating arrangement that works best for all speakers and all settings. I have had productive sessions (both as the speaker and as an audience member) in all of the above arrangements, and I’ve also been in many rooms which were not set up properly to support the goals of the session.

A trainer who trained me several times usually adopts U-shaped style seating, because her courses rely heavily on large-group discussion, and she feels very comfortable sitting in the middle of the “U”.

On the other hand, I generally prefer chevron style seating for the courses that I teach, because I feel it offers the best blend of comfort and flexibility to support the slide content, large-group discussions, and small-group exercises which I design into my courses.

Tips for Optimizing the Room for Your Audience

Regardless of the seating arrangement that you choose for your event, be thoughtful and action-oriented when it comes to setting up your room for success. Every style above can be modified and enhanced to further support your goals.

  • Be proactive. Plan for success. The overall success of the presentation or training session reflects on you. Ask questions about what is possible. Think about the seating arrangement that will best support your format, and make it happen.
  • Show up early and roll up your sleeves. If the room isn’t set up as you requested (and if the furniture isn’t all bolted to the floor), then go ahead and move it. Several times, I’ve asked for chevron-style seating with tables, and discovered that the tables were stacked at the back of the room. Moving them was a small effort to invest in the success of the training session.
  • Pull the seats forward. When your audience is unnecessarily far away from you, it’s harder for them to hear you, harder for them to read your slides, and harder for you to connect with them. I have routinely moved all of the seats forward to improve this situation.
  • Eliminate unnecessary seats. Suppose you know that your audience is going to be 30 people, but the room is set up with 6 rows of 10 chairs each (=60 seats total). Most people tend to choose a seat toward the back. The result is that most of your audience will sit in the back half of the room. This reduces the overall energy in the group, and makes it harder for them to hear you and see you (and your slides). You have several options: [a] push the chairs/tables all the way back so they aren’t an option, [b] tip the chairs on the back rows forward to indicate they are blocked, or [c] “tape” them off.
  • Identify and solve sight line problems. Check the seats in the corners to make sure that someone sitting there can see [a] the screen, [b] you (even as you move around) and [c] any other equipment you’ll be using (e.g. flip charts, white boards, etc.). I recently delivered a training session in a long, narrow room which could only be set up in Boardroom style. The consequence was that most participants would not be able to see both the screen and the flip chart if I left them side by side. So, I decided to pull the flip chart to a central location when I needed it, and then push it away again to support focusing on slides.
  • Plan your movement with room constraints in mind. Remember that your body will block sight lines too. Map out where you can stand to avoid blocking your audience’s view of the screen, whiteboard, or flip chart.
  • Design your slides with room constraints in mind. If you know that the room will be set up in such a way that everyone past the front row can’t see the bottom 10% of your slides (which is the case in many rooms), then don’t place any useful information there.

Which seating arrangements do you prefer?

As a speaker or trainer, which seating style helps you achieve your goals?

As an audience member, which seating style is most conducive to your goals?

Have you ever been in a room which was set up in a way that contradicted the goals of the session?

Please share your thoughts in the comments.

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Yes – just yes! It always amazes me how many presenters just accept the room as it is when they walk in.

I’ve been known to turn the entire room around to get what I wanted. (Mind you, my team weren’t all that impressed by how hard they had to work 😉 )

Thanks, Simon. Good to hear that others are being proactive with the room setup too.

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How to Write a Tour Guide Script that Wows Guests

By Breanna Lawlor

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tour guide script with couple on vacation

What do charisma, charm and storytelling skills have to do with being a good tour guide? As it turns out — a lot.

As you figure what to include and how to write a tour guide script, know that you are pivotal to the guest experience.

Picture this: a traveler arrives at a destination full of curiosity and excitement, excited to immerse themselves in a new culture. And while tour guests might be ready to explore, they don’t know where to start and are leaning on you to show them the way.

With activities, sights and scenery to explore, there’s so much to discover. Plus, it’s exciting to be in a brand new place for the first time — an experience, made better with a tour guide.

What is a tour guide script?

Before your tour begins, you’ll want to share a little preamble with travelers. Creating a tour guide commentary gives guests a sense of what to expect from a tour. In this case, you might start with:

  • Introducing who you are
  • Confirming the tour type and where you’ll be heading
  • Noting washroom locations
  • Mentioning the number of stops along the route

An intro will give guests an idea of when to pay attention. Varying your pace and taking a pause can make your guest’s ears perk up. And, the best part? They aren’t expecting you to be speaking constantly.

In fact, guests may even appreciate a bit of silence so they’re able to process their own thoughts while on tour.

Tour guide script opening remarks 

Start with something funny that acts as an icebreaker. Your witty banter could relate to the area, the weather or how this happens to be your first time leading this tour (and where you silently plead with them to go easy on you).

Cue the awkward chuckles and mild concern, after which you showcase your enthusiasm and competence. From here your goal should be to figure out how you can immerse your guest in the story.

In your tour guide safety script, this is one of the first segments where guests’ eyes will glaze over. Don’t let this happen! Make safety entertaining with some witty banter and overly exuberant demonstrations or stories of what happens when guests fail to pay attention.

You’re likely to have a range of personality types amongst your tour guests. So, aim to get everyone on the same page with some humour.

tour guide storytelling script

How to provide tour commentary (step-by-step) 

Any tour should start with opening remarks about what guests can look forward to. Earn guest’s attention by structuring your tour commentary in a way that puts their interests first.

Keen to deliver a captivating tour? Start by following these guidelines:

1. Address important topics

Guests want to head into a tour feeling confident that a guide will deliver a memorable experience. With your approach, aim to be both informative and engaging with your guests from the get-go.

2. Bookend points of interest

Lead with the most commonly asked questions and topics that are featured in your tour listing. Consider mentioning whether food will be available and where guests can find washroom locations along the tour route.

You’ll also want to address anything that isn’t concrete, like whether they’ll have time to explore and photograph a famous landmark. Just like with GPS in your car, it’s much easier to know where to turn if you know the route plan.  

3. Address any questions 

After your pre-amble confirms the tour type, make space to connect conversationally with your guests. You can ask guests where they are from, the reason for this vacation and try to find out what people are most looking forward to seeing.

Ask if anyone has questions about the tour, another tour booking or a pickup at a specific time. And while it may not impact your tour, guests like to be considered.

As a bonus, this minimizes potential disruptions halfway and provides good tour commentary. In addition, if there happens to be transportation for the bulk of the group, ensure you instill the importance of time management. 

4. Showcase your enthusiasm

Charm and inspire guests before the tour kicks off, with your excitement for what’s to come. And while this may not be your first time providing this tour, trust that they will feed off your energy and excitement.

Picture yourself taking a moment to take in sweeping views or savour a tasty treat while on a food tour. These moments of acknowledgement let your guests know that they can carve out a few moments too.

5. Leave guests feeling inspired

You may already be a charismatic tour guide. Perhaps you’re delighting travelers with your wild and wondrous stories. But there’s always room for adding in a bit of variety into your daily routine and a fresh perspective for how you deliver guided tours. When guests wrap up a tour, your goal is for them to feel like they learned a little and had a lot of fun.

tour guide commentary

 10 characteristics guests want in a tour guide

We’re all human and appreciate when people treat us with kindness and respect. So, when it comes to tactics for tour guide commentary, here are a handful of traits that guests look for in a tour guide:

1. A sense of humour

To deliver a compelling story, you may also have to be a funny tour guide . Sometimes, the world can throw curveballs and we all appreciate a reason to laugh.

You may find that funny, light-hearted stories will jive with almost any crowd. Keen to inject some humour into your script? Just ensure it’s relevant to your audience and relatable. 

Remember to keep your audience in mind. Humour works best when it’s done sparingly. Jokes used for millennial backpackers might not work on retired cruise ship passengers.

2. Kindness

Pave the way for connecting with your guests by being kind enough to initiate conversation and listen to what they have to share.

Some travelers appreciate being asked what they’re hoping to get out of their experience and how far they’ve traveled to join in on your tour. Looking after small details and paying attention is a thoughtful trait that guests appreciate.

3. A guide who’s good with kids 

Little ones have feelings and thoughts during their travels. After all, the whole world is new for them.

While it can be challenging to structure a tour for all ages, if you aim to be inclusive, you’re destined to win minds and hearts. Look into opportunities to highlight kid-specific topics and vantage points. Aim to schedule some pit stops along the route to keep everyone comfortable and happy.

4. Open-mindedness

Have you ever heard of the golden rule? It may seem silly, but by treating others how you would like to be treated, you help set the tone for how people in your group will interact.

Plus, when you get to know people personally, this helps to heighten their experience. After all, when guests book a tour they hope to be treated well. Help guests feel more comfortable and consider what different travelers might find interesting while on tour.

5. Informative storyteller

If you’ve been living in a region for some time, you probably have a wealth of knowledge to share. Guests expect that you’ll be well-informed and willing to share your local knowledge. Let’s say you’re looking at creative ways for how to train a tour guide , it’s key to bring your local knowledge and storytelling chops to the table.

6. Organized and punctual  

Starting a tour on time is essential for every guest who made a point to be punctual and ready for things to start. Sure, mishaps happen and people find themselves in the wrong location. But as a general rule, you want to reward the guests who are prepared, by starting your tours on time.

Try sticking to time limits set for exploring an area and visiting different points of interest. In addition, guests hoping to make the most out of their trip will appreciate a tour that starts and ends right on time.

When guests book a tour, they put their faith in you to be direct and honest. Deliver on the promise and try to keep things on track with what your tour is supposed to include. Sometimes, it’s possible to get your facts wrong or not know the answer.

Ask if your guests have read up on the area and whether they have the answer. It’s not a bad idea to have a few key facts in your back pocket, so you do have the answers most of the time.

8. Adaptability

As a tour guide, you’ll potentially come across bad weather, detours or chaos from last minutechanges. Being adaptable is all a part of the role. This is where stories can keep your guests entertained if things go array.

The role of a tour guide is not without its challenges. You may have guests joining a tour with no minimal idea of what to expect, only having booked your tour because it was suggested to them. Keep things light and aim to be helpful for all travelers. This is where your uncanny ability to shift multiple hats is what makes you so good at your job.

9. Respectful

Sometimes, leading a tour may test your patience. You’ll find that respect can go pretty far, even if you don’t speak the same language. You may have to contend with late guests, irritated travelers and a wide array of personalities, but it doesn’t mean you can’t deliver an amazing tour for all.

Tour guests may not know or understand all of the expected cultural norms. Your role is to give travelers the benefit of the doubt, instead providing them with the opportunity to learn something new. And always keep your cool and remain respectful with tour guests.

10. Personality

Guests book tours with guides for a curated, hands-on and personalized experience. So, if they choose to book a tour with you, aim to dazzle them with your wealth of knowledge and personality.

Scan any negative online review and you’ll note descriptions like “cold, indifferent, boring or selfish” amongst the bad reviews. If travelers were looking for a generic experience, they could base a tour off a blog or seek out something on an audio walking tour. Make sure your personal touch is present throughout the tour.

Two travelers listening to a tour guide tell a story as they walk a city street.

Become a confident public speaker

If you find yourself getting nervous about speaking in front of a group of people, you’re not alone. We all worry about fumbling words or forgetting the material, but you know what’s awesome? Most people won’t know you’ve made a mistake unless you broadcast your error.

That’s part of the beauty in guiding. You can ad-lib, mix up the order and renege on your original script to make it perfect for your current tour group. Imagine guests reading reviews and coming to expect what you’re going to say next; now why would they bother booking a predictable tour?

Helpful things tips for your tour guide script:

  • Focus on your guests : While it may be you doing the talking, your guests will be giving a lot of feedback with non-verbal cues. Aim to say just enough to keep them engaged and then move on.
  • Forget the rules : focusing on them will only distract you. Make eye contact. Be animated with hands. Get to the point. Speak slowly. These will come naturally when you are more comfortable with public speaking. Take your time and enjoy th company of your guests.
  • Invest in the story : Before the tour, pay close attention to your thoughts. Does the word can’t make a frequent appearance? If yes, it is time to change up your inner monologue. To be a better storyteller, you have to tell yourself you can . It seems like a cheesy exercise, but self-confidence makes a world of a difference.
  • Create a set list : Have a few topics you know you’ll want to touch on throughout the tour to help remind you of your tour guide script.
  • Take notes : You will get better with practice, but only if you learn from each attempt. Observe the audience’s reactions and write them down afterwards (not during — that would be strange). Next time, change your story up and repeat. Keep doing this until you know what details to emphasize more and what parts to leave out.

Use your tour guide script to be storyteller

As a tour guide you’re able to inform and entertain at the same time. Delivering facts while on tour doesn’t have to be a lecture. You can create a tour guide script that’s conversational and invites your guests into the experience.

Telling stories is a common way we communicate with each other. Over coffee with a friend, stories of weekend adventures are shared. At family dinners, your father brings up stories of your childhood. Even with the cashier, you may tell the story of why you forgot your reusable bags again.

You may find that you’re a natural when it comes to telling stories, and part of the reason could be that we’re hardwired to listen to them. Your past experiences, and the resulting stories, can contribute to the qualities of a good tour guide , helping you to create an incredible connection with your guests.

Whenever we listen to someone sharing a story, a large portion of our brain gets to work. Storytelling can engage three regions of the cortex : the motor, sensory and frontal. So why is storytelling important for tour guides? Want to figure out how to use storytelling to your advantage ?

In storytelling, try embracing the moment and not taking yourself too seriously. So throw a little of yourself in the content — even if the story isn’t about you. The narrator is part of the story as much as the characters are.

tour guide script and storytelling

How to make good commentary in tour guiding

There are two types of stories to tell on tour:.

  • Fun, wacky or exciting stories about a place. Told at the location of the site — either before or after listing relevant facts
  • And personal stories. Best reserved for the in-transit, awkward moments of silence

For any location, there’s bound to be a large selection of stories to use on tour. But how do you choose the right ones?

It is best to base your selection around topics you care about — whether this happens to be architecture, food or history. Because when you are passionate about a topic, you will be more enthusiastic in your storytelling. And if you are excited to tell it, your listeners will be excited to hear it.

For your story collection, make a list of your own experiences. Some might be funny — even if they weren’t at the time. And some might be shocking — like you still can’t believe it happened to you. Out of all your stories, make sure they are appropriate and relate to the tour in some way.

Closing tour guide script

While you’re wrapping up the tour, you’ll want to close the experience for your guests.

Mention how you value guest feedback a few times throughout the tour. As an example of what to include in your tour commentary, make a point to share a point of interest that guests might not be able to find on their own.

Your closing tour guide commentary is also a great time to suggest other places travelers should consider, including restaurant recommendations and other tourist favourites.

And instead of telling guests that they should leave a 5-star review, which can seem disingenuous, encourage your visitors to highlight what makes this particular experience worth booking with an online review.

Male traveler reading map with a camera around the neck at Buckingham Palace

So, how can you become a better storyteller then?

Let’s go over important elements in crafting your story:

1. Hero/Protagonist

A story needs a character for the audience to cheer for. One they can relate to. Or one they will remember.

2. Objective

To create suspense, the main character needs a goal. The audience will listen in anticipation to find out whether the character succeeds.

3. Clear Incident

An obstacle must get in the character’s way. This makes it all the more interesting. Can they overcome it?

4. Harness emotion

You want the audience to feel what your characters are feeling. Empathy helps to connect the audience with your characters.

5. Add twists and turns

Unpredictable stories make the best ones. To keep the audience on their toes, throw unexpected twists and turns into the mix.

6. End with a punchline

Every story has a resolution, where typically the hero saves the day. No matter what type of story you share, aim to wrap up in a cheerful way — ending with a joke.

On your next tour, give storytelling a try. You might be surprised by your natural storytelling abilities and have a lot of fun while you’re at it.

Final thoughts 

Right from the beginning, invite guests into the storytelling experience of your tour.

You don’t have to be the only one telling stories. Open up the floor and ask the audience questions. One story has a way of breathing other stories into life.

By giving your audience time to share, you might quickly come up with another. Also, the tour will have a more conversational tone, making everyone, including yourself, more relaxed. As a result, they’ll be more inclined to enjoy the tour and provide you with good, honest feedback.

Are you looking to hire a tour guide with these storytelling skills?

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how to lay out the room for your presentation

Lockdown won’t last forever. I’ve written elsewhere about how to make better online presentations, so here I thought I’d change it up a bit and talk about in-the-room presentations for when we can be with our audiences again!

room tour presentation

Sometimes there just nothing you can do – I get that – but far more often than you might think there’s a chance to change the way your room works (or doesn’t work!) to help you make better presentations.

Presentation in a luxury venue

I’m not talking her about the cool theatre-like spaces that you see people posting pictures of. “Look at me, I’m presenting in a cool space!”

Why not? Firstly ‘cos you usually can’t do much about the layout of those rooms and secondly because that’s just not the day-to-day reality of most presenters. Let’s face it, most presentations are in meeting rooms and board rooms.

The simple truth is that most of us, most of the time are going to be presenting in rooms or venues more like the ones below – either a boardroom or a projector on a table… or both!

room tour presentation

Presenting with boardroom layouts

presentation in a boardroom

Boardroom presentation setups are a particular bane of my life. It’s almost impossible to have the same relationship with people at the far end of the table as you have withe people at ‘your’ end. As a consequence you end up working too hard with some of your audience and not hard enough with others. Not even professional presenters can make that work without some extra magic.

Pro tip: use a remote control so that you can move around the room and make a point of presenting from the side of the table rather than being stuck at one end. That way you can work more easily with different people and you’re not too far from anyone. What’s more, it gives you the advantage of distancing you from your slides and puts you in something called ‘second position’ to your audience. This breaks any subconscious association they have between you and the content of the slides. This generally makes the slides’ content feel more objective. The presenter’s personality is less physically obvious. While we’re at it, think about trying to find a place around the table that allows you to most directly interact with the decision-makers in your audience, not the most engaged people. (You might be interested in this way of targeting who you make your presentations to .)

Presenting with ad hoc set ups

Presentation venue

The balancing act of projectors on the table! Ah, the joys!

I mean, who wouldn’t want to fuss of having to put index cards under the projector to make it point high enough, spend time focusing the thing and then have to have one extra thing to concentrate on – namely staying out of the beam of your own projector so you don’t put a shadow on the screen.

Ah yes – the joys of presenting in a temporary room set-up!

Pro tip – to help with keeping out of your own shadow, when you’re setting up, get there in plenty of time and find the limits of the projector’s cone… then mark it on the floor with some coloured tape. It’s generally a good idea to take the tape up before you make your presentation (but if you can leave it down, why not!) but even just a few minutes rehearsal with it in the corner of your eye will get you more used to where you can stand without looking stupid.

And of course it goes without saying that you should get there in pleeeeeenty of time before your audience so that you can mess about with getting the projector sorted out before the audience arrives. People make a link between the quality of your content with other things, such as how well you use the tech – so make your presentation-tech-check something done in private!

room tour presentation

Presenting in training rooms

Presentation room with cool screen

Arguably the most annoying room layout is the one that’s a modified training room. The screen here is beautiful, big, bright and powerful… but what about the poor people who are supposed to sit with their back to it?!

Pretty clearly, no one can be sat there… but the simple and obvious solution of just not putting an audience there barely tackles the problem!

Pro tip – if people can’t sit at some of desks and chairs, consider veeeeeeeeery hard how you can simply remove them. In rooms like this the chairs and so on are often collapsable. Not only does taking the unusable tables make the whole presentation look slicker, it has the another advantage – you as the presenter now can easy easily get into the centre of the horseshoe, so you can control better how close you are to your audience.

Here’s how I prepared a training room for a recent presentation

Here’s a quick shot of a training room I was using for my presentation recently. There are a few things I changed before the audience came in.

A typical room for presenting in view 1

  • I’d already moved the flip chart before I took the picture, so that it wasn’t right next to the screen. That means I could stand between the two and also that when my audience looked at one, they were less distracted by the other.
  • I closed the blinds on the windows just enough to stop it distracting (and annoying!) lines and shadows on the walls and flipchart
  • I removed the phone from the front desk!
  • I checked out (in terms of carpet tiles!) where I could stand so that everyone in the room could see the screen without me in front of it (the next photo shows the rest of the room)
  • I moved the tables so that they weren’t aligned directly behind each other to obscure views (but left them in groups like that as my presentation was going to include a lot of group work)

A typical room for presenting - view 2

  • A quick check of my slides from the back of the room made sure that everything was visible (one slide got slightly edited) and that my remote control had sufficient range to work from anywhere in the room and I didn’t have to present from my laptop
  • Had a cup of tea. Okay, so that’s not strictly part of sorting out the layout of the room but it’s an important part of my preparation ritual and a good measure of when you should have got there. If you don’t have time to have a cup of tea you didn’t get to the venue early enough!
  • Played “spot the squeaky floorboard”. Call me cynical but I’ve never met a stage of any size or shape where there wasn’t a spot that squeaked. (Usually it’s the bit you want to stand on most during your presentation.) Find it, note where it is, avoid it.
  • Checked the sigh-lines for outside of the room. Knowing where the audience can see as they look at you and your slides etc is one thing, but knowing what they could be distracted by outside the room is another. On this occasion the glass panel in the door, for example, simply showed a corridor that was rarely walked down so I decided not to do anything about it.

So what do you do to sort out your presentation room layout?

Seriously – everyone’s ideas are different!

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ReleuctantStoryTeller

Are your presentations "okay on the day" but don't have an impact ? Adding stories to your presentations will make the biggest difference, helping you really engage with your audience. But not sure how to get started?

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Timeshare Presentations: How to Get Cheap & Free Vacations

If you’re planning to visit some of the world’s most popular destinations, you can run into some hurdles if award availability is scarce and cash prices are high.

Sure, points can help offset the cost, but that means it will cost you a lot of points. What if I told you there’s a way to save those points and snag an awesome deal on your accommodation?

Well, there is – welcome to the world of timeshare presentation packages.  

What Is a Timeshare?

In a nutshell, a timeshare is a shared ownership program in which you may use a vacation property for a set time period every year.

Timeshare properties can range from resorts to condominiums to campsites. They can be a good option for travellers who have a favourite destination they like to vacation at every year.

With timeshares, these travellers will  have familiar accommodations to return to each time without the hassle of having to manage a fully-owned property while they are away. 

Most of the big hotel brands that we’re familiar with have their own affiliated timeshare division. A few well-known examples include the Marriott Vacation Club, Hilton Grand Vacations, Holiday Inn Vacation Club, Hyatt Residence Club, and even Disney has their own Disney Vacation Club.

Generally speaking, there are two types of timeshares: those that are points-based and those that give you deeded weeks.

  • In a points-based program, you have a certain number of points each year that can be redeemed against nights at your timeshare.
  • In a deeded-week program, every year, you have a “week” of the year that you can use your timeshare.

You do not necessarily need to stick with your timeshare property either. Usually, there is a system or program for owners to swap their property for another destination or property for any given year, building some flexibility into the program.

Despite the perks of timeshares, many people choose not invest in one, as they can be a money drain if you don’t make good use of them.

There are annual maintenance fees for the upkeep of the property that have to be paid, the process of swapping properties can be quite complicated, and it can be a pain to get rid of them or resell them as they don’t hold much value in the reseller’s market.  

What Is a Timeshare Presentation?

Whether you feel like timeshares may be a good fit for your travel patterns or not, you should consider attending a timeshare preview presentation.

The timeshare market is a competitive one, and most timeshare vacation clubs will offer some form of incentive for an opportunity to introduce you to their program in the hopes of enticing you to purchase one. 

What is offered as part of the package varies by the club and even the property, and it can be anywhere from tickets to a theme park or a show, to accommodations at one of their properties for several days at a huge discount, plus maybe even some bonus points for their respective hotel award programs.

If it’s the accommodation you’re after, keep in mind that usually the package will cover a “standard” room; however, there is a possibility for upgrading, as we’ll discuss later.

What’s the Catch with Timeshare Presentations? 

To take advantage of these fantastic offers, you (and your spouse, if you’re married) need to attend a 1.5- to two-hour sales pitch about the timeshare program while you’re vacationing on your timeshare package.

During that time, they’ll introduce you to their program, how easy it is to use the timeshare, the flexibility it provides, the years of enjoyment you will get out of it, and even give you a tour of a potential timeshare unit. 

Easy enough, right? Most of the time, yes.

Some sales representatives can be pushy and will pull out all the stops to get you to sign on, because that’s how they earn their commission. You may feel pressured to buy, and they may spend a lot of time negotiating a better offer for you.

Most sales reps, however, are quite reasonable. If you’ve put in your time and made it clear you’re not ready to buy, they’ll send you along your merry way. And if you do happen to cave under the pressure and buy the timeshare, it’s not the end of the world (more on this later).

During the pandemic, some timeshares like the Marriott Vacation Club opted to do virtual sales presentations, and in lieu of a vacation deal, you’d earn Bonvoy points instead.

There have been recent offers of up to 20,000–25,000 Bonvoy points; however, you have to be a US resident to take advantage. For the in-person presentation packages, there are no US residency requirements. 

How to Book a Timeshare Presentation

Now that you might be considering taking advantage of a timeshare presentation, let’s go over how you find these offers and sign up for them.

The easiest way is through each respective club’s website. Usually, there is a phone number or online form to complete for additional information. 

Hyatt even allows you to book the package online if you reside in the USA.

Once you purchase the package, there is quite a bit of flexibility when it comes to booking. Although the terms specifically say that the timeshare has to be booked within 12 months of purchase, it is not uncommon for them to extend this deadline. I have done this on a couple of occasions myself, even prior to the pandemic.

Once you book your package, you can still change the dates, although some programs will charge a change fee. During the pandemic, there was even more leniency (I rescheduled a Marriott preview package no less than four times), although this may tighten up a bit as travel opens up.

Unfortunately, once you purchase a preview package, they are generally considered non-refundable. There have been scattered reports of people receiving refunds if they no longer fulfill the eligibility for the package, but as always, your mileage may vary and this should not be the expectation.

My Experiences with Hilton Grand Vacations

Hilton Grand Vacations (HGV) has over 50 properties spread across the United States. Their properties differ from the regular Hilton-branded hotels in that they generally offer accommodations with more space, larger and a greater number of bedrooms, and ensuite kitchen and laundry amenities.

Note that not all HGV properties are bookable through timeshare presentations, and some properties are only made available at certain times. 

Thus far, I’ve done a couple of packages with Hilton Grand Vacations in Orlando , and another in Honolulu . Here’s a recap of my experiences so far with HGV. 

Parc Soleil by Hilton Grand Vacations

View on the Hilton Grand Vacations website.

2017 Package Deal: Three nights / four days for US$199 and a US$200 “Stay a Night On Us” rebate voucher; upgraded to a two-bedroom suite for an additional US$50

A few years back, I had to call Hilton reservations to change an existing hotel booking I had. At the end of the call, they thanked me for being a loyal Hilton Honors member and asked if I would be interested in hearing about a “great offer” they currently had. I accepted, and so began my journey down the rabbit hole of timeshare packages. 

I was forwarded to another agent, who offered me the above timeshare package. I was considering a trip to Disney for my son’s fifth birthday anyway, and this would definitely help bring down the trip’s cost, so I bought the package.

When we decided on our dates, I called back, and they confirmed availability and booked our accommodation and the timeshare presentation to be done during our stay – and that was it! 

At the time of booking, my youngest was only a few months old and wasn’t the greatest sleeper, and so extra space to accommodate her sleeping situation was desirable. When I inquired whether our one-bedroom suite could be upgraded to a two-bedroom suite, the agent advised that we could do that for an additional US$50, which seemed more than reasonable to me, bringing our grand total to US$249 plus tax. 

We stayed at the HGV Parc Soleil, which is a 15-minute drive into Disney. Other than being a bit further out from Disney, it was a fantastic accommodation option for families.

It had two beautiful outdoor pools, one that was zero-entry with a water slide and another for adults only. They had a kids activity centre and some organized activities throughout the day. There was also a basketball court, tennis court, and outdoor playground for the kids.

The suite itself was spacious, modern and clean with a full kitchen and an in-suite washer and dryer. There was also a paid shuttle service ($10 round trip per person) to the surrounding amusement parks, but times were rather limited. 

We attended the timeshare presentation on the second day. It was located at the Parc Soleil, which made it convenient.

At check-in, they ask for your ID and credit card, then invite you to enjoy snacks and non-alcoholic drinks while you wait for your sales representative. You can also drop off your kids at a small, supervised children’s room (with toys, colouring, and a TV) while you attend the presentation. 

Since it was our first timeshare presentation experience, we did not know what to expect. We were also genuinely interested in learning more about timeshares, which didn’t work in our favour.

They started off with some general questions about our travel habits and destinations we wanted to visit, and then went onto discuss how HGV could make it all happen at a fraction of the cost. 

Once the sales representative realized we actually had some interest, he turned the pressure on. He would show us how he had booked various destinations at fantastic rates and began negotiating on the amount of initial investment required to purchase, while offering additional Hilton Honors points to sweeten the deal.

Each time we declined, he would go back to his manager and come back with a better deal.

This went on for a bit until he finally came back with what seemed to be a decent offer at the time, and we actually signed the papers and walked out with a timeshare after the two and half hours.

The agent offered to refund our US$199 package cost, probably as a kind gesture given that we had just bought a timeshare with him, and then sent us to the front desk to obtain our US$200 “Stay a Night On Us” rebate voucher.

Suffice to say, purchasing a time share was not our initial game plan. Luckily for us, there is a cooling-off period built into the contracts, whereby you have 10 days to rescind a timeshare purchase agreement.

With some time and space to actually think about our impulsive decision, we decided it really wasn’t for us and the next day, we rescinded.

The staff were very kind about it and it was an easy enough process, but lesson learned: do not show any interest in a timeshare if you are in it only for the cheap accommodations.

Hilton Grand Vacations at Tuscany Village

2019 Package Deal: Four nights / five days in a one bedroom suite for US$299, refunded after presentation, one $200 “Stay A Night On Us” rebate voucher OR 10,000 Hilton Honors points

A year later, my husband had a conference in Chicago at the Hilton. HGV had set up a booth in the lobby, where they offered everyone 1,000 Hilton Honors points just for listening to what they had to offer.

Jon took them up on the offer, and this time he was offered packages to either New York City, Las Vegas, Myrtle Beach, or Orlando. They were two- to four-night packages ranging from US$199 to US$399.

Now, you might be wondering: how often you can purchase a timeshare presentation package? As per HGV’s terms, as long as you have not attended another presentation in the last 12 months, you are eligible to purchase another. 

We were just over a year since our first package, so we bought another, back to Orlando. This time around, the offer was four nights for US$299 plus tax, so we were a little hesitant as our previous offer was better.

The sales agent, sensing the hesitancy, sweetened the package by offering either a US$200 “Stay a Night On Us” rebate voucher or 10,000 Hilton Honors points, and to refund the US$299 after the presentation. That sealed the deal for us. 

This time, we chose to stay at the Tuscany Village, located about 15 minutes from Disney once again. The décor was a bit more dated, but it still had an outdoor playground and a few pools that would satisfy most young kids.

There were also complimentary DVD rentals and a children’s activity centre, albeit a bit smaller than the one at Parc Soleil.

I enjoyed the fact that it was right beside the Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets, which meant some retail therapy for me between theme park days. They also had a paid shuttle going to the amusement parks, but once again, the times were limited. 

Our presentation was back at the Parc Soleil. This time, my husband and I had a different game plan: we would tell them that we weren’t ready to buy a timeshare and to let them know early on.

This was working well for us initially, and at the one-hour mark the agent was pretty much finishing up. As we were just about to leave, he advised us that his manager had one last offer for us, which got us our third package… 

The Grand Islander by Hilton Grand Vacations

The manager came out and offered us a trial membership to the HGV program. Now this was different.

There was no set destination for the package; instead, for $1,599 (USD), we would be given enough points to redeem for seven nights in up to a two-bedroom suite at any of the HGV properties in North America, including Hawaii.

We did the math and worked out that it would be less than $230 (USD) a night. If it were any other destination, we would have left it. After looking at the current rates for Hawaii for a Hilton property in Honolulu for March Break, we came to see that it was a great deal.

Keep in mind that these are rates for two adults and two children. If you have more than four in your family, like myself, either you’re paying more, or you’ll find that most hotels won’t even be able to accommodate. The fact that we could book a two-bedroom suite was a big selling point for us.

HGV has quite a few properties in Hawaii, with the Grand Islander by HGV being one of the newer ones. We booked at the Grand Islander for four nights in Honolulu over March Break . 

That leaves us with three nights remaining, which we could have used to extend reservation to seven nights… 

…or book three nights at their New York property, West 57th Street by Hilton Club at the south end of Central Park, another otherwise pricey accommodation option. 

Either way, you can see that our $230 (USD) per night beats the above rates by a long shot. 

An Even Better Offer…

Sticking with Hawaii as our theme destination, HGV currently has an offer on their website for five nights in Honolulu or Waikoloa for $799 (USD) in a standard room, which brings the nightly rate to $160 (USD) – an incredible deal for a night in Hawaii.

Granted, it’s for a standard room, but I’m pretty sure you can request an upgrade offer to a bigger suite at a decent cost when you call in. 

My Experience with Marriott Vacation Club

We originally purchased our Marriott Vacation Club Preview Package back in 2019. This package offered a five nights at Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club for $799 (USD).

After numerous delays and postponements due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we finally enjoyed our stay in March 2022 . 

We rescheduled our timeshare presentation after our arrival, and there were no issues with moving it to a different day. When it came time for the actual presentation, it took place in a cubicle in their outdoor Sales Centre.

We wound up going over the 90-minute allotment, and spent closer to two hours there. I was genuinely interested in the program, so it was more my fault than theirs.

Marriott Vacation Club uses a points-based system. Our sales agent offered us the base-level 1,500 points at $15.84 (USD) per point, totalling $23,760 (USD).

As a signup bonus, they were willing to throw in another 3,000 points for the first year.

To put things into perspective, a one-bedroom villa in Maui at peak season could cost up to 4,500 points per week.

We didn’t show much interest in this, and they tried to sweeten the deal with some more offers, but we kindly declined. As we had an exit interview, another sales agent came in to offer us yet another timeshare presentation package.

The first offer, which was good for the next two years, was five nights at the same property for $1,295 (USD). We weren’t sure when we would be back to Maui again, so, again, we declined.  

They approached us with one last offer: $995 (USD) for four nights at any of their North American properties, including another property in Hawaii for a $300 (USD) add-on fee.

Our family wanted to visit Kauai in the near future, and after a quick check for a four-night stay in the winter revealed prices at around $2,600 (USD) for four nights, we accepted this last offer.

It goes to show that sticking around for more offers can result in some pretty great rates!

If you’re not familiar with timeshare presentation packages, now’s the time to take a look at them as a means to very cheap accommodations in many popular vacation spots.

Timeshare presentations are a great option in areas where points redemptions are either not worth it (e.g., Orlando, where hotels are generally quite cheap to begin with), or in places where redemptions are difficult to make (e.g., Hawaii where the cost of redemptions are high).

It does require a small time commitment and perhaps a bit of finesse in talking down a sales representative, but in my mind, the savings are definitely worth it. And better yet, they can be easily “churned”, too. 😉

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30 Comments

Amy, please clarify — you said “no” to buying the timeshare BUT they offered you another timeshare presentation elsewhere?

room tour presentation

That’s correct!

Thanks for the great information!! Do any of them ask for income verification?

No, they didn’t.

Thank you VERY much, not even the fancier ones like Wyndham or Marriott presentations?

As a previous owner of timeshares and an attendee at multiple presentations I’ll add some comments which may be helpful: -if you buy, it is difficult to recover your purchase price because of the heavy marketing costs built into the price -I have sold my timeshares and currently have some fractional ownership properties to which I have title, which may not be subject to the same haircut on sale -my trading options (including my Hyatt property) are through Interval International which has a network of thousands of properties around the world -Resorts Condominiums International is another trading network, so you are not stuck with a specific hotel program -if you go to a place like Puerto Vallarta or Cabo San Lucas, you are swarmed at the airport, sometimes car rental places or Walmart, by sellers of these packages -I have a friend who used to fill her PV trips with different presentations, and she was often able to negotiate improved perks for the presentations themselves; she did this for a fair number of years, without buying, before they caught on to her -If you decide to buy, wait, wait, wait; I’ve seen people buy in the initial large presentation with cheers and champagne, only to see deals offered that were a fraction of the cost in later iterations -often you have to see multiple people before you escape, the deals keep getting better, but the original 90 minutes is substantially exceeded -the last one I went to took about 4 hours and I finally walked away abandoning my promised perks

Thanks for the article Amy. I was attempting to book an Orlando offer in my Hilton App yesterday but they only permit USA addresses. When I went to the International website the offers weren’t as good. Do you know of a way to get the same offers advertised on the App?

I’m not sure but you can try calling in and requesting.

Amy, do they ask to see both adult’s ID or license? We are common law marriage different last names. Can we just show 1 ID card?

When you sign up for the package they will usually ask if you are married, etc. If so, they will ask for your partners name. It doesn’t matter if the last names are different. At Hilton, they checked both ID’s but Marriott only checked my husbands (not sure if that was intentional though).

Hi Amy, thanks for the article (and love the family-geared content!). When I click through the link for the current HGV Hawaii offer and put in my zip code, I get a message basically telling me this offer is not available to me. Any idea why?

Hmm that’s interesting. I’m not entirely sure why. Perhaps certain states have different offers/restrictions.

My family has an Embarc timeshare bought maybe 20 years ago… from our experience… currently there is not enough money and points in the world to suffer the presentation. Long story but about 8 years ago, had to lawyer up to deal with them.

I have reached on Marriott Vacation Club for further information and was told there is no timeshare deal for canadian résidents at the moment but if I visit à proporty I can ask over there… not really convenient

Hi Amy, great article and tips! Just a question: is there a limitation on the number of times you can book (the rules seem to say once per year but is this per individual or per family (so a family of 2 adults could do this twice per year))? Thank you!

Hi Amy, Thank you for the great information. You mentioned you were given a trial membership of HGV. Is the $1599 USD a yearly fee? Are there any other fees associated with owning HGV timeshare? Do you plan on continuing with the HGV membership or will you likely cancel. Thanks!

It was $1599 one time fee for 7 nights. Once you use up the 7 nights, the trial is done.

I have used this strategy successfully. As a family of four, we will only stay in a one bedroom or two bedroom if it’s for any stretch of time. Having a kitchen to cook your own meals is a cost savings and easier than having to coordinate eating out all the time. In November 2019 we stayed in a one-bedroom at Maui Ocean Club Napili for only 450,000 bonvoy points. My wife and I attended a 1.5 hour timeshare presentation and received 40,000 bonvoy. The retail value of the room was $7,500 USD. Unfortunately, any type of room at Maui Ocean Club is very difficult to book on points.

I will likely have to cancel due to Australia’s continued strict lockdown, but I booked two 2 bedroom suites at the Surfers Paradise Marriot Vacation Club this December for seven days and 292,000 points each (total 584,000 points). The retail value was 14,500 Australian Dollars. You have to really hunt but can find some gems occasionally.

Thanks for the info Amy! Is there a website for all the Hilton offers available? I was able to find Orlando/Las Vegas by searching on their site, but could only find the Hawaii deal by using the link in your article. And similarly for Marriott, do they have a webpage that describes their offers? I was recently invited by a Marriott CSR to call a 1-800 number to get a similar deal, but would much rather check it out first on a website rather than have it described over the phone by a salesperson.

Unfortunately there’s no central page where all the offers are located for HGV. If you click on the various destinations they have you may see a banner at the top with an offer for whichever destination you selected. If you can’t find a particular destination offer, best to call or email them. Same applies for Marriott.

While staying at an Hilton in Washington DC 3 years ago, we were offred a timeshare presentation and visit for 10k HHONORS points. I said I wasn’t interested unless it was for 30k points which they agreed. The visit went smoothly and interesting, when we sat down to discussed the prices at one point I said it wouldn’t work out since I’m earning lots of miles and points from business travels. And that was it a total of 90 minutes of our time.

Hi Amy, how can you book the Grand Islanders by HGV in Maui? It is opening in September but I cannot find it is available to book yet. I’m looking 5 day accommodation in Maui next year. I really hope we can have the Honolulu’s deal in Maui.

I apologize, we have Grand Islander booked for Honolulu and Marriott booked for Maui. You are correct, the new HGV property opening in Maui is not bookable yet.

Hi Amy, how can you access the HGV in Honolulu? I entered my information and the site says I’m not eligible for the Hawaii deal and instead directed me to Orlando and Las Vegas only.

I would try calling in and requesting. Sometimes they do have eligibility restrictions based on where you’re located or your income. Actually, for my current one with Marriott in Maui, i had to go through a couple of agents before they gave me the offer I was looking for.

Hi Amy – Great article and timely as we’re looking to book a family trip to Hawaii this coming year. What offer did you end up getting for the Marriott presentation?

Hey Mark! $799 usd for 5 nights 🙂

Which property? Offers for me were between $799 and $999 for 5 nights depending on which island.

It’s at Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club 🙂

Nice score! Thanks

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How to Do a Presentation for The Travel Industry

Written By: The Planet D

Digital Nomads

Updated On: April 27, 2023

Keith Jenkins of Velvet Escape is a respected speaker and presenter in the travel world sharing his knowledge of business and the tourism industry with everyone from travel bloggers to PR professionals and tourism boards.

We are thrilled to have him share his advice on how to prepare and present a presentation in your area of expertise. So take it away Keith!

Table of Contents

How to Do a Travel Presentation

If someone had told me years ago that I would one day be speaking at conferences, I would have laughed it off with a “Yeah, right!”.

Oh, wait a minute, someone did tell me a few years ago that I should look into public speaking – the argument was that my ‘investment banker to blogger entrepreneur’ background would be an inspiring story to tell.

That suggestion was met with a pursed-lipped “Hmmmm” and a shake of my head.

Prepare for Professional Speaking Engagements

The thing that held me back was that I’ve never felt comfortable standing in front of a crowd.

I have plenty of experience chairing a meeting or presenting a product to a client but standing in front of a hundred people (or more) and talking was a daunting idea.

As time passed and my blog grew, it gradually dawned on me that the experiences I’d gained from creating the Velvet Escape brand, building the blog and marketing it via social media would be useful to others.

Moreover, I realised that speaking in public is a great way to market my brand and reach out to a new audience.

It’s something I had to do if I wanted to take my brand further.

Start Doing Small Presentations

I decided to test the waters by organising blogging seminars in Amsterdam and it was quite a revelation to discover that I quite enjoy speaking in public.

At my first seminar, I used little cards which contained my notes.

I held these in my hands as I spoke but I threw them out before the second seminar – they were too distracting and made me feel uneasy.

I figured I didn’t need the cards anyway because I knew the subject matter inside-out.

First Lesson – Know the Story

This was my first lesson: you know the story, tell it naturally. Discard anything that prevents you from telling the story in a natural manner.

So, I stood in front of the room and simply talked, using only my slides on the wall as a guide.

The seminars were an excellent way to learn about my own speaking capabilities and test various techniques.

Since then, I’ve spoken at seminars and conferences such as Travel Bloggers Unite, GoMedia Canada and most recently, at the World Travel Market in London.

Showcase Your Expertise

Public speaking is an excellent way to showcase your expertise and generate exposure for your blog outside your usual circles.

It’s also an opportunity to create an alternative source of income. There are many subjects that travel bloggers can speak about and there are various types of audiences that can be targeted.

Experienced travel bloggers can target other bloggers and talk about blogging techniques, writing, photography, social media or SEO.

If you have an inspiring story to tell, with thought-provoking anecdotes, you could approach schools or companies looking for motivational speakers.

For those who are thinking of speaking in public for the first time, I‘ve listed below some tips based on my own experience.

Tips to Prepare for your Presentation

One thing that always helps me is not to treat the presentation as a ‘presentation’ but merely as a ‘story-telling’ session – you’re there to tell a story you know very well.

Putting myself in this frame of mind relaxes me and gives me an extra confidence boost – this is a mental technique I used very often at interviews during my banking days.

Preparation

  • Choose a topic you’re perfectly comfortable with and which reflects your expertise
  • I still use Powerpoint for my slides but there are other, more sophisticated programs in which to create a presentation
  • Keep the text on your slides concise
  • Use images that are relevant
  • ‘Rehearse’ the story in your mind as you create the slides. Make notes.
  • Dress appropriately – you are representing your brand!
  • Decide beforehand if you want to hold on to your notes. Some speakers feel more comfortable holding something in their hand, be it their notes, the microphone or a cup of tea (the last has the added advantage of being warm, i.e. relaxing, and it helps to create a casual atmosphere). Most importantly, do what makes you feel comfortable
  • Choose a good spot to stand where you’re in full view of your audience. It’s advisable to move around but don’t overdo it – it may make your audience dizzy!
  • Look out for friendly faces in different sections of the audience. Spread your attention evenly across the room by moving your gaze from one friendly face to another
  • Effective body language is paramount to the success of your presentation. Stand tall, move confidently and look your audience straight in the eye. Remember, you’re the expert! Keep your hand gestures to a minimum – use your hands sparingly to drive home a point. Don’t forget to smile!
  • Speak up but vary the tone of your voice to avoid monotony. As with hand gestures, use a different tone to drive home a point
  • As you speak, make occasional references to your slides on the wall
  • Interact with your audience by soliciting a response through a joke (if this works, great. If it doesn’t, you’ll be the only one laughing so be careful with jokes), a reference to someone in the audience or by asking a question.

After your presentation, try to get some feedback from the audience about the subject matter and how they think the presentation went.

Ask if they have any take-aways from the presentation.

Use this feedback to improve your presentation and the style in which it’s delivered.

Happy speaking! 

  • Get Paid to Travel the World – The Ultimate How To Guide
  • How to Start a Travel Blog in 11 Easy Steps
  • How to Make Money Blogging

Keith Jenkins is available to speak at conferences or conduct seminars on utilising social media for branding, networking and marketing purposes; travel blogging (branding, monetising, working with travel bloggers); his experiences in promoting destinations via social media and blogging. Speaking engagements in 2011 include: Blue Badges tour guides, London, Travel Bloggers Unite, Manchester, Social Media, Girona, Travel Bloggers Unite, Innsbruck, Go Media Canada, Edmonton , World Travel Market, London

Follow Keith on Twitter and Facebook 

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9 thoughts on “How to Do a Presentation for The Travel Industry”

Thanks for these tips Keith. I’m doing my first talk on travel blogging in Zanzibar in two weeks so will definitely be using your tips to help me 🙂

GrrrlTraveler, you can see Keith in action (holding on to his teacup for dear life!) here.

It’s the first in a set of 7 parts of Keith’s talk in Manchester last spring. (There also is a set of him & Janice Waugh talking at Innsbruck on that channel)

That video clip raises two other important tips for public speaking.

1) Just as he gets going, Keith checks to see who he’s talking to. In this case he asks the audience to stick up their hand if they have a blog. It’s a really useful thing to do so that you know how, and at what level to pitch your talk. The audience in front of you may not be the one you were expecting.

2) What Keith failed to do – and I’ve been noticing this a lot recently, particularly in many of the high-powered presentations at Le Web earlier this month – is vocalise the response ‘for the camera’. Whether the talk is being officially filmed or not, these days there is *always* somebody in the audience with a video camera and unless they quickly turn around to film the audience, the viewers of that video will never know how many hands went up.

Apart from the first occasion (when you can gauge the answer to “how many people know who I am?” from the laugh!) this guy, Gary Vanyerchuk, throws out loads of questions to his audience and always says what the response was.

Thanks Alastair, that’s a great point to make about repeating it for the camera. Public Speaking is definitely something that takes work and practice. We learned a lot from IOETI and will be working more at engaging with the audience and having them join the conversation more. Thanks for sharing the links. It’s a great way to learn from others.

you guys are all awesome! Keith, even though I haven’t seen / heard you at a conference, I just know you are skilled and professional!

Nice post! I like that this is a very unique topic. I’ve had to do large presentations in front of an audience before, but I’ve never really taken on the travel blogging perspective! Some nice ideas here.

Heard you speak at WTM Keith and you have definitely followed all your own advice! Look forward to hearing more from you as we can all learn a LOT from you and your brand. Cheers Cole

What an awesome guide!

I also have found that I quite enjoy public speaking…when it’s something I’m passionate about and know inside-out! More speaking is on my goal list for 2012 – these tips will help. Thanks!

Keith is certainly knowledeable in anything about blogging and promotion. He puts his money where his mouth is. He’s also quite a nice guy and generous with advice to anyone who asks. We can only wish him all the success.

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When Is a Timeshare Presentation Offer a Good Deal?

Carissa Rawson

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money .

Would you sit through a two-hour timeshare sales presentation to get three nights at a hotel in Orlando, plus 15,000 Hilton Honors points — all for $199? How about for dinner or a spa voucher at a Marriott hotel in Dubai? Would three nights in Tahoe plus 10,000 IHG points for $249 be worth enduring a long sales pitch?

Companies dangle generous perks to try to sell you a timeshare, with offers ranging from free parking to free hotel nights to deeply discounted hotel stays — provided you sit through a timeshare sales presentation of 90 minutes or more.

Here’s what you need to know if you’re considering a timeshare sales presentation offer.

How timeshares work

What is a timeshare.

A timeshare is a fractional ownership of a vacation property or vacation property lease — usually at a popular travel destination or resort. It’s a lifetime commitment, although it’s possible to resell it. You’re basically investing in the opportunity to spend a week or more at select properties every year.

Many hotel chains have timeshares, including Hilton , Marriott and IHG .

The question "Is a timeshare a good deal?" is different from the question "Is this timeshare presentation offer a good deal?" Timeshares are often pitched as ways to save money on future vacations. Depending on your travel habits, it’s possible the timeshare pros and cons could tilt in your favor. But in most cases, collecting points and miles redeemable for travel is a better way to save.

But even if you know the timeshare route isn’t for you, that doesn’t necessarily mean you should skip out on the timeshare presentation offer. The perks could be well worth your time.

» Learn more: Are timeshares worth it? Possibly, if you buy smart

Timeshare presentation offers

A timeshare presentation offer is any benefit or discount — like free or reduced hotel stays, bonus points or free spa treatments — that you can receive by agreeing to sit through a timeshare sales presentation. These offers can include things like free parking at a resort where you’re staying, free hotel nights or deeply discounted hotel stays and resort experiences.

To determine whether it’s worth sitting through a presentation, consider the value of the perk being offered. In the case of free parking, you would probably be better off spending $50 to self-park and skip the sales pitch.

Can attending timeshare presentations offer a good deal?

Even still, there are times when sitting through a timeshare presentation can be worth your while. You can find good timeshare deals on offers for discounted stays, free nights and more online — or get offers through phone calls or targeted emails. In some cases, you might decide the savings are worth it.

Tip: Watch out for blackout dates, hidden charges and more

Depending on the hotel chain, your offer could be subject to blackout dates, high-season charges and package expiration dates. Read the terms and conditions carefully.

» Learn more: Find the best hotel credit card for you

Worthwhile timeshare offers, by chain

Here are a few offers from major hotel chains that, depending on how you feel about sitting through a sales pitch, might be worth grabbing.

Hilton has a timeshare presentation offer that gets you a three-night stay in Orlando or Las Vegas, plus 15,000 Hilton points for $199. That’s a pretty decent deal considering that rooms normally cost $175 to $500 per night.

This offer is good at several hotels, including the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista — an official Walt Disney World hotel. This means it gives its guests additional benefits, such as extra magic hours and access to FastPass. (Note that both services are currently on hold).

Other Hilton offers include a five-night stay at a resort in Hawaii for $649 plus taxes. The online offer includes 15,000 points. But a recent phone call to Hilton proved that sales representatives have some leeway to negotiate, in this case switching the offer to 5,000 Hilton points and a $200 Hilton gift certificate.

There are two different Hilton packages available for Hawaii — you can pick either Honolulu or the Big Island. Considering room rates here often hover around $500 per night, you can save a bundle by sitting through a timeshare presentation. For example, five nights in September 2021 at the Ocean Tower at the Hilton Waikoloa Village cost about $1,891.

That’s a big discount, not counting that $200 gift certificate and the value of those points, at a sprawling oceanfront resort featuring a saltwater lagoon.

Marriott Vacation Club has a number of specials for travelers willing to attend a timeshare presentation. In Dubai, for example, you can score two free nights at a number of hotels throughout the Middle East.

marriott timeshare deals

You can also participate in timeshare presentation in exchange for a dinner or spa voucher at select Marriott hotels in Dubai.

IHG’s vacation club is extending offers for properties in Gatlinburg, Tennessee; New Orleans; Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; and Lake Tahoe, Nevada; among others.

At the Lake Tahoe resort, you can pay $249 plus tax and get three nights in a one-bedroom villa at the Holiday Inn Club Vacations: Tahoe Ridge Resort, as well as 10,000 IHG points .

Considering three nights at that resort can cost upward of $1,000, the timeshare presentation offer may be well worth it.

Some IHG hotels cost as little as 8,000 points per night, which means you can turn those 10,000 points into another free night.

Who qualifies for timeshare presentation offers?

Not everyone will qualify for these offers. Requirements vary by chain, so check the details of your offer before committing to one of these packages.

In the case of Hilton, you must not have attended a timeshare presentation within the past year at the property where you’ll be staying or within the last six months at any other properties. You’ll also need to meet certain other criteria, though they don’t publish details about what these are.

For Marriott’s Vacation Club offer in Dubai, you must be a married couple 30 to 65 years old with a joint income of over $130,000 who has traveled to Europe at least once in the past three years.

IHG’s Holiday Inn Club, meanwhile, requires that you be older than 25 with a minimum income of $50,000.

If you’re tempted by a timeshare presentation offer

Are all timeshare presentation offers a good deal? No, especially if you’re staying somewhere cheap or they’re just handing out free parking. But if you do some research, you can score serious discounts in truly exciting locations.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2024 , including those best for:

Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

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Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

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1%-5% Earn 5% cash back on purchases in your top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent, 1% cash back thereafter. Also, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

$200 Earn $200 cash back after you spend $1,500 on purchases in the first 6 months of account opening. This bonus offer will be fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou® Points, which can be redeemed for $200 cash back.

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2% Earn unlimited 2% cash rewards on purchases

$200 Earn a $200 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in purchases in the first 3 months.

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Credit Card

1x-3x Earn unlimited 3X points on restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services and phone plans. Plus earn 1X points on other purchases.

20,000 Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $200 cash redemption value.

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I normally use credit card points to book hotel nights — but when I was offered a free stay for listening to a timeshare pitch, I couldn't refuse

Our experts answer readers' credit card questions and write unbiased product reviews ( here's how we assess credit cards ). In some cases, we receive a commission from our partners ; however, our opinions are our own. Terms apply to offers listed on this page.

A few years back I fell into earning credit card rewards , and have been hooked ever since. I love being able to strategically open and use credit cards to earn points for flights, hotels, and car rentals.

We started by opening several Chase cards , like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, to rack up points within the Ultimate Rewards program and then moved to others afterward. Since then, our family has earned a week-long hotel stay on the Big Island, and flown to places such as Washington, DC, Salt Lake City, and Fort Lauderdale with points .

Read more: I haven't paid for a hotel room in 10 years — here's how I stay for free

We've also used points to rent cars in some of those locations. Needless to say, pursuing credit card rewards has really paid off for our family. But credit card rewards points aren't the only way to travel for free. 

A free hotel stay without using credit card rewards

Chase Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Earn 5x points on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Earn 3x points on dining, including eligible delivery services, takeout, and dining out. Earn 3x points on select streaming services. Earn 3x points on online grocery purchases (excluding Target, Walmart, and wholesale clubs). Earn 2x points on other travel. Earn 1x point per dollar on everything else.

21.49% - 28.49% Variable

Earn 60,000 bonus points

Good to Excellent

  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. High intro bonus offer starts you off with lots of points
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If you're new to travel rewards credit cards or just don't want to pay hundreds in annual fees, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is a smart choice. It earns bonus points on a wide variety of travel and dining purchases and offers strong travel and purchase coverage, including primary car rental insurance.

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining, and 2x on all other travel purchases, and $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
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  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024.
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Earlier this year I had to change a hotel stay for a conference I was attending in Austin for work. I called the Hilton hotel I was staying at and was transferred to its customer service line. The representative was able to add an extra night for me at the group rate I originally booked at, so I was thrilled.

He then asked if I wanted to hold on after our call to chat with someone about some deal. Honestly, I can't remember exactly the terminology he used, but I was excited about adding an extra night to my stay at the discounted rate so I agreed. 

Read more: The best Hilton credit cards

After our call finished I was transferred to a Hilton Grand Vacations representative. I wasn't super familiar with the brand but was willing to hear him out. He walked me through a few different promotions they were offering, including staying in Orlando, Chicago, or Las Vegas.

I was able to get the details for each of the trips, including how much it would cost us out of pocket. I'm typically not one to turn down a good deal on flights or hotels, and love the excuse deals give us to travel! 

From our conversation, I discovered that we could stay for three nights at a Hilton Grand Vacations property in Orlando, Chicago, or Las Vegas for around $200 total. Being hotel rooms typically cost around that much per night, I knew this was a deal I wanted to consider, whether for a family vacation or a trip for just my husband and me.

The representative explained which types of rooms were included in the deal for each city (such as a studio room versus a standard room) and where extra fees applied (it would cost an extra $100 if we checked in on a Friday or Saturday). He also stated that we would get $199 back after our stay, making the hotel stay essentially free. 

So what was the catch to this deal? Drumroll, please ...

We had to sit through a two-hour timeshare presentation. 

A free stay for two hours of our time

I know very little about timeshares. No one in my family or husband's family has owned one (or not that I know of!) and I don't hear a lot of chat about them within our circles of friends. What I do know is that you pay a fee upfront to be a part-owner in a property, where you can then stay for an allotted amount of time (usually one week a year). You can typically rotate properties around the US or the world.

While this may sound like a dream to some people, there are plenty of cons. This type of ownership can be expensive, have hidden fees, and be hard to get rid of if you no longer want it. 

Read more: I haven't stayed in a hotel in over a year — here's how I'm using all the credit card points and free night certificates I've saved up

So while we love to travel, I know for a fact we won't be purchasing a timeshare. Although I didn't outright say this to the representative, I did express my concerns and he addressed them. His advice? Set a timer for two hours when the presentation starts and walk out when it goes off if it isn't over. 

Of course, I had to accept the deal over the phone (but could decide on the location afterward) or it would no longer be available. These types of decisions I normally involve my husband in, but he was working. While contemplating if this was a legit deal I remembered that my in-laws sat through a timeshare presentation on our family vacation to Hawaii in 2020.

I figured since they had done it before it was a valid opportunity (the deal, not purchasing a timeshare!) and that my husband would be excited about a free hotel stay. After paying, I received an email and text message confirmation. Later on, another representative called me to discuss which hotel options were available at the locations I was considering. 

Read more: 5 real-life trips taken by credit card reward travel experts to inspire your vacation planning — especially if you have lots of points and miles to burn

Although I'm not very great at saying no to people, including solicitors that come to our door, my husband is. When I told him about the deal he was a little surprised but mentioned he had sat through a few presentations when he was younger while vacationing with his parents.

After discussing it we decided to use this as an excuse to take a vacation without our kids, called the representative helping us, and booked the three nights for Vegas. We were given the choice between a few Hilton Grand Vacations properties and booked the one with the highest ratings and best location.

A quick Google search showed me that the cost for the nights we booked is between $284 and $334 a night! There will be a resort fee to pay (around $25 per night) but that's still worth it being the rest of the hotel stay will be paid for. 

We even invited some of our friends, and now there is a group of eight of us going. While the deal had me a little skeptical, I have no doubt that we will make it through the timeshare presentation unscathed, and have a fantastic warm-weather getaway with our friends.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews, or recommendations expressed in this article are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Read our editorial standards .

Please note: While the offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication, they're subject to change at any time and may have changed, or may no longer be available.

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12 Tips for Successful Travel Agency Presentations

The following guest column is the latest in a series by the founder of Talking Travel . Even travel sellers who feel at ease when talking to clients one-to-one can tense up when their agency needs to address a group of clients or prepare presentations on destinations, tours, cruises or other products.    Here are 12 quick tips for organizing group presentations for current and future clients. 1. Have a purpose or goal and stick to it. For every presentation you do, you should have a specific defined purpose and then a singular focus on achieving this goal. If we use the example of a presentation on a trip to Japan, everything you do, from the second the client arrives to the next day’s follow-up, has to relate to booking travel to Japan. 2. Research the audience. You want to have the right people at the presentation, so you must be crystal clear about the agenda. You also must search your database to identify clients who have expressed an interest in the featured destination, traveled to similar destinations or expressed interest in a new and exciting alternative. (This is where niche market notations in the client file pays dividends. Someone interested in culinary travel may be interested in a shopping-and-cooking experience, or learning about a tea ceremony or having a behind-the-scenes visit to a famous restaurant.) 3. Entice them to attend. The invitation to attend should impart a feeling of exclusivity and specialness that makes the client feel important. This strategy also tends to lower no-show and regrets rate. 4. Create the ambience. Agencies that emote travel by crafting an atmosphere of far-away places, excitement, exploration, relaxation, getting away from it all and more tend to be most successful. They do this with displays of posters, statues, masks, costumes and other decorations. This helps to create a three-way relationship between the client, the destination and the agency. 5. Get attendees involved and invested. Audience interaction will make a presentation more meaningful. The challenge is to encourage participation without alienating the introverts in the room. To get them involved and invested, consider a simple get-to-know-you questionnaire or ask people to list all the countries they’ve visited. Hand out a blank map at the beginning of the presentation and ask each person to add in certain locations. Or ask simple questions, such as: name three foods you would eat in Japan. At the end of the presentation, you can have a drawing for a prize. 6. Watch your watch. Choose a time that is comfortable for your clients to attend, whether this is in the afternoon or evening. Strictly adhere to a set time to start and end the presentation. Time parameters help you to plan, while at the same time, showing the audience that you respect their time. 7. Remove any barriers to attendance. Address issues of accessibility so that clients of all physical abilities are able to attend.  Likewise, arrange for easy parking – free if possible – to create a more welcoming atmosphere. 8. Involve all the senses. Just think how you react when you walk by a bakery and are tempted by the smell of fresh cookies and cakes! This is the same atmosphere that successful presentations achieve. In travel you can play to all the senses by: •    serving refreshments and snacks when the clients arrive •    providing a taste of the destination during or after the presentation (indigenous food and drink) •    playing music from the destination •    allowing the audience to touch and smell the destination by passing around souvenirs or artifacts, perhaps even sand or exotic fruit. •    featuring quality in-focus maps, photos and videos. 9. Ensure the speaker conveys positivity and energy. Nothing kills a presentation like a poorly prepared speaker. Longevity or position in a company is no guarantee that the speaker will excite the audience through positive intonation and body language. Interview the speaker beforehand. Ensure that s/he knows the audience and knows the information. Avoid speakers who only know a packaged presentation and refuse to divert from it — or those who tend to deliver a commercial ad for their product without addressing the topic of the presentation. 10. Create excitement. Contests, giveaways, discounts, early booking incentives, etc., add excitement to a presentation. It may be a bottle of champagne in the client’s suite or it may be something more immediate, such as a gift card. This is where you involve partners such as a tour wholesaler, bookstore, luggage shop, ethnic restaurant etc.  It’s one of those cross-marketing win-win-win opportunities. 11. Take the next step. Too many presentations end with the host bidding the clients a safe drive home, rather than creating next steps in the sales/booking procedure. You can keep the momentum going in a number of ways. Hand out personalized booking forms for a credit card deposit. Distribute a list of niche market activities or tour options. Indicate that you will personally call attendees in the next day or so to chat about their upcoming trip.  Provide brochures to remind clients about the advantages, features and benefits of destination. And remember to provide your own contact information and a reminder about the experience and expertise you bring to the travel satisfaction equation. 12. Make follow-up a priority. Just as you said you would, contact all attendees (or the group leader) to gauge their feelings and ensure that all their questions and concerns are addressed as well as to provide guidance on how to proceed with the booking.   Of course, this is not the end of relationship-building with the client. Even if they don’t travel to a featured destination, the skill with which the presentation was conducted will impress on the client the need (yes –the need!) to keep the name of your agency front and center. The presentation investment you make will come back to reward you. Travel educator Steve Gillick delivers sales, marketing and destination training to travel professionals via his consultancy Talking Travel . He served as president and COO of the Canadian Institute of Travel Counsellors from 2001 to 2012. Contact Steve at [email protected] .

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A message from our CEO

The next chapter of our Gemini era

Feb 08, 2024

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For years, we’ve been investing deeply in AI as the single best way to improve Search and all of our products. We’re excited by the progress, for example with our Search Generative Experience, or SGE, which you can try in Search Labs . AI is also now central to two businesses that have grown rapidly in recent years: our Cloud and Workspace services and our popular subscription service Google One, which is just about to cross 100 million subscribers.

A new state of the art

In December, we took a significant step on our journey to make AI more helpful for everyone with the start of the Gemini era , setting a new state of the art across a wide range of text, image, audio, and video benchmarks. However, Gemini is evolving to be more than just the models. It supports an entire ecosystem — from the products that billions of people use every day, to the APIs and platforms helping developers and businesses innovate.

The largest model Ultra 1.0 is the first to outperform human experts on MMLU (massive multitask language understanding), which uses a combination of 57 subjects — including math, physics, history, law, medicine and ethics — to test knowledge and problem-solving abilities.

Today we’re taking our next step and bringing Ultra to our products and the world.

Introducing Gemini Advanced

Bard has been the best way for people to directly experience our most capable models. To reflect the advanced tech at its core, Bard will now simply be called Gemini. It’s available in 40 languages on the web, and is coming to a new Gemini app on Android and on the Google app on iOS .

The version with Ultra will be called Gemini Advanced , a new experience far more capable at reasoning, following instructions, coding, and creative collaboration. For example, it can be a personal tutor, tailored to your learning style. Or it can be a creative partner, helping you plan a content strategy or build a business plan. You can read more in this post .

You can start using Gemini Advanced by subscribing to the new Google One AI Premium plan , which offers the best of Google’s AI features in a single place. This premium plan builds off the popular Google One service offering expanded storage and exclusive product features.

Video explaining  two new experiences — Gemini Advanced and a mobile app — to help you easily collaborate with the best of Google AI.

Bringing Gemini’s capabilities to more products

Gemini models are also coming to products that people and businesses use every day, including Workspace and Google Cloud:

  • Workspace : Already, more than 1 million people are using features like Help me write to enhance their productivity and creativity through Duet AI. Duet AI will become Gemini for Workspace, and soon consumers with the Google One AI Premium plan can use Gemini in Gmail, Docs, Sheets, Slides and Meet.
  • Google Cloud: For Cloud customers, Duet AI will also become Gemini in the coming weeks. Gemini will help companies boost productivity, developers code faster, and organizations to protect themselves from cyber attacks, along with countless other benefits.

More to come

Developers have been fundamental to every major technology shift and will play an equally important role in the Gemini ecosystem. Hundreds of thousands of developers and businesses have already been building with Gemini models. While today is about Gemini Advanced and its new capabilities, next week we'll share more details on what's coming for developers and Cloud customers.

These latest updates reflect how we’re approaching innovation boldly, and advancing and deploying this technology responsibly. And we’re already well underway training the next iteration of our Gemini models — so stay tuned for more!

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The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington, DC 20500

Remarks by Vice President Harris During the “Fight for Reproductive Freedoms” Tour | Savannah,   GA

Savannah Civic Center Savannah, Georgia

1:26 P.M. EST THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Good afternoon, Savannah.  Good afternoon.  Oh, it is good to be back in Georgia.  Thank you all. Let — can we please give it up for President McDonald and all of your work — (applause) — and your leadership.  Truly.  And I want to thank you for all of your courage and your tireless work.

Mr. Mayor, where are you?  He was — there is — there is our mayor.  He — he greeted me on the tarmac when I landed on Air Force Two.  (Applause.)  He has been such a friend to our administration and a great national leader.  And, Mayor, I want to thank you for your powerful leadership of this great city.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  Thank you. And I know they’re working hard in Washington, but I want to recognize Senator Raphael Warnock — (applause) — and Senator Jon Ossoff.  (Applause.)  They’re in D.C. today for votes, but I will say, Georgia, you have two extraordinary senators.  (Applause.)  And they are always fighting on behalf of the people of this state. And to all of the leaders who are here — and there are so many — I want to thank all of you for the work that you do to — to uphold one of our nation’s highest and most important ideals.  And that is the ideal of freedom.  Freedom. Freedom is fundamental to the promise of America — to the promise of America.  Freedom of speech.  Freedom of worship.  Freedom of assembly.  The freedom to vote.  In America, freedom is not to be given.  It is not to be bestowed.  It is ours by right.  (Applause.)  By right.   And that includes the freedom to make decisions about one’s own body and not have the government — (applause) — telling people what to do.  Fifty-one years ago, in the case of Roe vs. Wade, the United States Supreme Court recognized the fundamental constitutional right to reproductive freedom.  And for nearly half a century, Americans relied on the freedoms protected by Roe.  However, 19 months ago, the highest court in our land — the court of Thurgood and RBG — (applause) — right? — took a constitutional right that had been recognized from the people of America, from the women of America.  And now, we must speak of Roe in the past tense. AUDIENCE:  Booo — THE VICE PRESIDENT:  In states across our nation, extremists have proposed and passed laws that criminalize doctors and punish women.  Laws that threaten doctors and nurses with prison time, including right here in Georgia, even for life — in some states, prison for life — simply for providing healthcare.  Laws that in some states make no exception even for rape and incest.  AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Now, I know it’s a difficult conversation to have, but we need to face reality.  Right?

As many of us know, and many of you may know —

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  (Inaudible.)

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  — I started —

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Shame on you!  You’re committing genocide!  You’re committing genocide!  (Inaudible.)

AUDIENCE:  Kamala!  Kamala!  Kamala!

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  It’s okay.

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you all.  Thank you.  Thank you all.

And we know, in a healthy democracy, we value the freedom of all people to be heard.  And — but right now, we are talking about a different issue, and that is the issue of what has happened to the women and people of America as a result of the Dobbs decision.  (Applause.) So, as I was saying, no exception even for rape or incest.  And we must have difficult conversations about what that means.    As many of you know, I started my career as a prosecutor specializing in crimes of violence against women and children.  (Applause.)  But what many of you may not know is why.  So, when I was in high school, one of my best friends, I learned, was being molested by her stepfather.  And when I learned, I said to her, “You got to — you got to come and stay with us.”  And I called my mother, and my mother said, “Of course she has to come and stay with us.”  And she did.  So, the idea that someone who survives a crime of violence, a violation to their body, would then be told they don’t have the authority to decide what happens to their body next, that’s immoral.   And let us all agree: One does not have to abandon their faith or deeply held beliefs to agree the government should not be telling her what to do with her body.  (Applause.)   If she chooses, she will consult with her pastor, her priest, her rabbi, her imam.  But it should not be the government telling her what to do.  (Applause.) So, this is, in fact, a healthcare crisis.  And in that way, there is nothing about this moment that is hypothetical. Today, in America, more than one in three women of reproductive age live in a state with an abortion ban — one in three women of reproductive age live in a state with an abortion ban, including more than 2 and a half million right here in the state of Georgia. And let us understand what that really means.  Let us understand the horrific reality that women face every single day since the Roe decision was overturned. Folks, I have met women who have had miscarriages in toilets because they were refused care.  I met a woman who went to an emergency room during a miscarriage and was turned away repeatedly because the doctors there were afraid they might be put in jail for helping her.  And it was only at the point that she developed sepsis that she received care. Think about this fact: Of the number of women — and this is — this is difficult to talk about, guys.  I know that.  But this is the reality of what’s happening in our country. 

Of the number of women who became pregnant because of rape since this case came down, it is estimated that tens of thousands are in a state with a complete abortion ban.  Now, think about what that means.  In Georgia, women face a six-week abortion ban — before many women even know they are pregnant.  Which, by the way, tells us these lawmakers e- — either they don’t know how a woman’s body works or they just don’t care.  (Applause.)  And in Georgia, because of the way the law is written, no exception for rape or incest unless they file a police report to get permission — to get permission for an abortion after six weeks.  Permission. So, as a former prosecutor, again, we got to break this down.  Okay?  Here’s what we’re talking about: So, this means she needs to walk into a police department, be questioned by a police officer.  If she lives in a small town, it might be somebody she knows.  And she will be required — after what she’s been through — required to recount the crime even if she don’t want to talk about it.  She will be required to report on someone even though the consequences of that may expose her to more harm, simply because she wants to exercise her right to make a decision about what happens to her body next.  Think about what this means.  And for many of these women, all of this means that, in order to access the care they need, they have to leave Georgia — they have to leave their home; they have to leave their family or friends who might be with them through this moment to give them comfort and care — to travel to a state that protects reproductive freedom.  And understand, there’s only one state in the South without an abortion ban: the state of Virginia.  In the entire South, one — a six-hour drive from here in Savannah. Now, the majority of women, we also know, who have abortions are mothers.  So, again, let’s break down what this means.  For her to travel to receive care, well, God help her if she does not have paid leave or affordable childcare.  (Applause.)  God help her if she does not have the savings necessary to buy a plane, train, or a bus ticket to get where she can receive the care she wants and needs or to book a hotel room.  And, by the way, while these extremists behind these laws say they are motivated by the health and well-being of women and children — (laughter) — while they say that, they have been silent on the crisis of maternal mortality.  (Applause.)  Silent. Georgia has one of the highest rates of maternal mortality in our nation.  Black women are three to four times more likely to die in connection with childbirth than other women.  And the top ten states with the highest rates of maternal mortality all have abortion bans.  The hypocrisy abounds.  So, Georgia, there is profound harm happening in our country because of the state of the law.  The reality in real time across our country is that for every story we hear, there are so many we don’t.  Today, an untold number of women are silently suffering — women who are being judged, who are being made to feel as though they did something wrong, that they should be embarrassed, made to feel alone.  And I say, I do believe that, as a nation, that is not what we stand for.  I do believe that. So, I say to these women: We see you, we see your incredible strength, and we are here with you. And in this healthcare crisis, please do understand who is to blame.  The former President, Donald Trump — (applause) — hand-picked three members of the United States Supreme Court justice because he intended for them to overturn Roe.  He intended for them to take your freedoms.  And it’s a decision he brags about. He said, “Well, for years” — and I’m going to quote — “they were trying to get rid of Roe v. Wade — trying to have it terminated.”  And then — but he said — I quote — “I did it,” he said.  “And I’m proud to have done it,” he said.  He is proud.  Proud that women across our nation are suffering?  Proud that women have been robbed of a fundamental freedom?  Proud that doctors could be thrown in prison — in some cases, for life — for caring for patients?  That young women today have fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers?  How dare he.  (Applause.)  How dare he. Understand, the former President is the architect of this healthcare crisis.  And the extremists are not done.  In the United States Congress, extremists tried to pass a national abortion ban to outlaw abortion in every single state.  But what they need to know is that if Congress passes a national abortion ban, President Joe Biden will veto it.  (Applause.)   Because here’s the deal about all of us: We trust women.  We trust women.  We trust women to make decisions about their own body.  We trust women to know what is in their own best interest. 

And, folks, women trust all of us to fight for their rights — (applause) — and to protect their most fundamental freedoms.  And it is going to take all of us.  And it is going to take all of us.  AUDIENCE MEMBER:  We ready! THE VICE PRESIDENT:  And we’re ready.  AUDIENCE MEMBER:  That’s right!  (Inaudible.)

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  (Laughs.)

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Four more years!

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Four more years! THE VICE PRESIDENT:  I see that.  (Laughs.) AUDIENCE:  Four more years!  Four more years!  Four more years! THE VICE PRESIDENT:  So, on that point — so, on that point, Joe Biden and I are fighting in court to protect women’s access to medication and emergency care.  We are strengthening patient privacy protections so that medical records stay between a woman and her doctor.  And we are protecting the right of women to travel for abortion care.  And fighting for access to free contraception.  (Applause.)  Yes. And the bottom line is: To truly protect reproductive freedoms, we must restore the protections of Roe.  What the United States Supreme Court took away, Congress can put back in place.  But we must have a majority in the United States Congress who simply agree that the government should not be making those personal decisions for people.  (Applause.)  And when Congress passes a law that puts back in the protections of Roe, Joe Biden will sign it.  (Applause.)   So, again, I say, it’s going to take all of us to get there — everybody here.  And the momentum is on our side.  We are winning.  Since Roe was overturned, every time reproductive freedom has been on the ballot, the people of America have voted for freedom.  From Kansas to California to Kentucky, in Michigan and Montana and Vermont and Ohio — (applause) — the American people have voted for freedom.  And not by a little but by overwhelming majorities.  Proving, also, by the way — and I say that to whichever political pundits might be behind those cameras — (laughter) — proving, also, that it is not a partisan issue.  Tens of millions of Americans, in red states and blue, marched to the polls in defense of fundamental freedoms.  And so, with that, I say, the voice of the people has been heard, and it will be heard. And then I say — and ask, in conclusion: Georgia, are you ready to make your voices heard?  (Applause.) 

Do we trust women?  (Applause.) 

Do we believe in reproductive freedom?  (Applause.) 

Do we believe in the promise of America?  (Applause.) 

And are we ready to fight for it?  (Applause.) And when we fight, we win!  God bless you.  God bless America.  Thank you, all.  (Applause.)                         END            1:44 P.M. EST

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Exclusively on PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+: WM Phoenix Open, Every Shot Live at No. 16 “Coliseum” Hole

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  • Coverage of one of the TOUR’s most unique events begins tomorrow at 9:15 a.m. ET
  • Marquee and Featured Groups include world No. 1 Scheffler going for three-peat, other top 10 players: Clark, Homa, Fitzpatrick, Harman, along with Spieth, Thomas, Fowler, more
  • Subscribe to ESPN+ on the ESPN App, ESPN.com and connected TV devices

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PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+ will present live, exclusive four-feed coverage of the  WM Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale in Arizona, one of the most energetic and entertaining events on the TOUR schedule.

  • Main Feed coverage begins on ESPN+ at 9:15 a.m. ET , and continues through the final round on Sunday, February 11.
  • Marquee and Featured Groups include two-time defending WM Phoenix Open champion and world No. 1 Scottie Scheffler ; No. 6 Wyndham Clark , last week’s winner of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am; and other top 10 players including Max Homa (No. 8), Matt Fitzpatrick (No. 9) and Brian Harman (No. 10), along with fan favorites Jordan Spieth , Justin Thomas , Rickie Fowler and more.
  • Throughout all four days of the tournament, PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+ will present every shot played on TPC Scottsdale’s par-3 16th . Dubbed the “Coliseum” with grandstands from tee to green , it is one of the loudest, fan-friendly holes on the TOUR.
  • In addition to the iconic 16th, the Featured Holes feed will showcase the drivable par-4 17th and par-3 Nos. 4 and 12 .
  • The field at the WM Phoenix Open this week includes 20 of the top 30 players in the world , 13 major winners, and four FedExCup champions.
  • ESPN+ Bonus Coverage of other top groups will begin when the initial Marquee Group and Featured Groups complete their rounds.

Thursday, February 8 Main Feed | 9:15 a.m. ET Featured Holes | 9:45 a.m. ET

Marquee Group | 9:45 a.m. ET

  • Max Homa – No. 8 world ranking, six-time TOUR winner
  • Jordan Spieth – No. 16 world ranking, three-time major champion, 13-time PGA TOUR winner, 2015 FedExCup Champion
  • Brian Harman – No. 10 world ranking, 2023 Open Championship winner, three-time TOUR winner

Featured Groups | 10 a.m. ET

  • Rickie Fowler – Six-time TOUR winner, 2019 WM Phoenix Open winner, 2010 PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year
  • Tom Kim – No. 17 world ranking, three-time TOUR winner
  • Grayson Murray – Two-time TOUR winner
  • Shane Lowry – 2019 Open Championship winner, two-time TOUR winner, five DP World Tour victories
  • Matt Fitzpatrick – No. 9 world ranking, 2022 U.S. Open champion, two-time TOUR winner, nine wins on DP World Tour
  • Sungjae Im – Two-time TOUR winner, 2019 PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year

ESPN+ Bonus Coverage, once the morning groups finish:

  • Scottie Scheffler – Two-time defending WM Phoenix Open winner, No. 1 world ranking, 2023 THE PLAYERS winner, 2022 Masters champion, six-time TOUR winner
  • Hideki Matsuyama – Back-to-back WM Phoenix Open winner (2017, 2016), 2021 Masters champion, eight-time TOUR champion
  • Wyndham Clark – No. 6 world ranking, won last week’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, 2023 U.S. Open champion, three-time TOUR winner
  • Justin Thomas – No. 19 world ranking, two-time PGA Champion (2022, 2017), 15-time TOUR winner, 2017 FedExCup Champion, 2017 PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year
  • Adam Scott – 14-time TOUR winner, 2013 Masters champion
  • Cameron Young – 2022 PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year
  • Si Woo Kim – Four-time TOUR winner
  • Sam Burns – No. 20 world ranking, five-time TOUR winner
  • J.T. Poston  – Two-time TOUR winner

At 4 p.m. ET, coverage will transition to two Featured Group feeds and two Featured Hole streams.

  • Featured Group – Justin Thomas, Adam Scott, Cameron Young
  • Featured Group – Scottie Scheffler, Hideki Matsuyama, Wyndham Clark
  • Featured Hole – No. 16 | Par 3
  • Featured Hole – No. 17 | Par 4

Friday, February 9 Main Feed | 9:15 a.m. ET Featured Holes | 9:45 a.m. ET

  • Scottie Scheffler, Hideki Matsuyama, Wyndham Clark
  • Justin Thomas, Adam Scott, Cameron Young
  • Si Woo Kim, Sam Burns, J.T. Poston
  • Max Homa, Jordan Spieth, Brian Harman
  • Rickie Fowler, Tom Kim, Grayson Murray
  • Shane Lowry, Matt Fitzpatrick, Sungjae Im
  • Featured Group – Rickie Fowler, Tom Kim, Grayson Murray
  • Featured Group – Max Homa, Jordan Spieth, Brian Harman

WM Phoenix Open | Exclusively on PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+

PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+ will follow a similar schedule Saturday and Sunday when pairings are announced.

The four feeds available on PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+ include:

  • Main Feed – The primary tournament coverage stream, showcasing the best action from across the course, with two dedicated booth announcers, a dedicated walking announcer and coverage drawn from all cameras at the event.
  • Marquee Group – Every shot from each player in the group, with two booth announcers and one walking announcer calling the action.
  • Featured Holes – Exclusive coverage of key par 3 holes and the course’s iconic, signature holes.
  • Featured Groups – Traditional PGA TOUR LIVE coverage following two concurrent featured groups, with two booth announcers and one walking announcer.

PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+ In this third year of PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+, fans will again have access to more than 4,300 live and exclusive hours covering 35 tournaments in 2024, including all eight of the TOUR’s Signature Events and at least 28 tournaments with four full days of coverage with four simultaneous live feeds each day. PGA TOUR LIVE on ESPN+ is part of the PGA TOUR’s nine-year domestic media rights portfolio announced in March 2020 .

All ESPN+ subscribers have access to PGA TOUR LIVE, at no additional cost, in addition to more than 32,000 other live sporting events, acclaimed studio programs, original series and documentaries, as well as the complete library of ESPN 30 for 30 films and more than 1,500 exclusive written articles on ESPN.com.

About PGA TOUR By showcasing golf’s greatest players, the PGA TOUR engages, inspires and positively impacts our fans, partners and communities worldwide.

The PGA TOUR, headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, co-sanctions tournaments on the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions, Korn Ferry Tour, PGA TOUR Americas and administers PGA TOUR Q-School presented by Korn Ferry and PGA TOUR University. TOUR members represent the world’s best players, hailing from 28 countries and territories. Showcasing the biggest moments in the sport with history and legacy on the line, the PGA TOUR has long-term domestic distribution partnerships for broadcast coverage on CBS, NBC and Golf Channel and video streaming service on ESPN+. Internationally, PGA TOUR coverage is available across 200+ countries and territories in 28 languages via 44 broadcast and digital partners. Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations to maximize charitable giving, and to date, tournaments across all Tours have generated more than $3.93 billion.

Fans can follow the PGA TOUR on the new PGA TOUR app and PGATOUR.COM, and on social media channels, including  Facebook , Instagram (in  Spanish , Korean and Japanese ), LinkedIn , TikTok , X (in English and Spanish ), WhatsApp (in English and Spanish ),  WeChat ,  Weibo ,  Toutiao ,  Douyin and  LINE .

About ESPN+ ESPN+ is the No. 1 sports streaming platform, serving fans in the U.S. with exclusive access to more than 32,000 live sports events each year, an unmatched library of on-demand replays and acclaimed original content, and premium written articles by the top reporters and analysts from ESPN.com. Fans sign up to ESPN+ for just $10.99 a month (or $109.99 per year) at ESPN.com, ESPNplus.com or in the ESPN App on mobile and connected devices. For more visit the ESPN+ Press Kit .

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Shane Lowry, Sahith Theegala shine through weather-delayed first round of WM Phoenix Open

Daily Wrap Up

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SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Sahith Theegala spent time with his parents in the players’ dining room and grabbed a bite to eat during what ended up being a long weather delay.

With no room to sit in the clubhouse at TPC Scottsdale, Theegala went out to his car to get warm, listen to music and play chess on his phone.

The break did nothing to slow him down.

Theegala returned to birdie his first hole following the delay, shooting a 6-under 65 to take the early lead in the unfinished first round of the WM Phoenix Open on Thursday.

“The weather was, it was not good, (but) those last four holes felt great, so I think there might be some good scores (Friday) with the wave that just teed off,” Theegala said. “It’s going to be cold, but hopefully no rain and wind. We’ll see. I played great and that’s all I can do, really.”

Five days after weather shortened the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am to 54 holes, storms followed the PGA TOUR to the desert.

A chilly morning gave way to wind and heavy rain that left pools of water on the greens at TPC Scottsdale. The Stadium Course was deemed unplayable around noon, leading to a delay of three-and-a-half hours.

About half the field was able to finish following the delay, leaving the rest to return Friday morning to resume their first rounds.

Theegala returned to sink an 8-foot birdie putt on the par-4 sixth hole and closed with two pars. His closest pursuer was Andrew Novak, who was 5-under through nine holes.

Sahith Theegala chips in from 80 feet at WM Phoenix Open

S.H. Kim eagled the par-5 13th and got to 6-under with consecutive birdies starting on No. 5, but closed with two bogeys to shoot 67, matching Shane Lowry. Jordan Spieth shot 68.

Two-time defending champion Scottie Scheffler was 1-over through six holes in his bid to become the first PGA TOUR player to win the same tournament three straight times since Steve Stricker at the John Deere Classic from 2009-11.

“I was surprised at how many fans were out here when it was raining sideways and blowing 20, and freezing,” Theegala said.

Theegala broke through with his first PGA TOUR win last fall at the Fortinet Championship, earning a spot in The Sentry to open the 2024 season. The former Pepperdine star finished second in Maui, a shot behind Chris Kirk, and tied for 20th at Pebble Beach last week.

Theegala, who tied for third at the 2022 WM Phoenix Open, kicked off this year’s tournament with three birdies in his opening nine after starting on No. 10. He chipped in on the par-4 second to start a run of three straight birdies before a bogey on No. 5 dropped him to 5 under.

Then the rain and wind hit.

Six groups managed to finish before the weather rolled in, leaving a majority of the field biding their time in the clubhouse — and their cars.

“It got really bad towards the end, it was quite tough,” said Lowry, who also spent time in his car with a couple of friends. “We came back out, the wind was not blowing as strong, but the ball was going nowhere, and it was cold and kind of tough.”

Shane Lowry drains a 37-foot birdie putt at WM Phoenix Open

Thousands of fans remained at the stadium's 16th hole and let out a roar when the horn sounded to resume play.

Theegala took advantage of a booming drive for his birdie on No. 6 and Kim bogeyed the par-4 eighth after pulling his second shot left of the green. Kim then three-putted from 31 feet for bogey on No. 9.

Novak sank a 28-foot eagle putt on No. 4 and had three straight birdies before the round was called because of darkness.

“I’m going to try and stay off my phone tomorrow,” Theegala said. “I know it’s going to be a while until I tee off, but hopefully I tee off tomorrow.”

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How to Introduce a Room to Your Guest (SOP)

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Generally it is the duty of a bell person or bellaman or bellhop or hotel porter  to carry luggage, escort guest to the room and then introduce the guest with the amenities and services of the hotel and the room. Being a hotelier it is his duty to provide all necessary information to the guest to make him feel comfortable and relaxed. Here are some step by step procedures you should follow.

How to Introduce a Room  or Show room Facilities to Guest

Training Video:

Click her to watch our Training Video on this topic from YouTube:   How to Introduce a Guest Room and Show Room Facilities to a Guest in a Hotel

1. Always be careful about the safety and security. So, while escorting point out on fire emergency exit and fire extinguisher on the floor.

2. Before entering room you should let your guest know how to use room key card to open the door. From your guest part, this may be his very first arrival in any hotel, so he or she may not know how to use room key card. So better ask him or her first and if he agrees then show the way by this way:

“So, Mr. Robin, Should I show you how to use your room key card”

If he says yes then guide him this way:

“First please insert your key card from the bottom to upwards and continue until you see the green light on. Green light means it is ok. So, now proceed to the room as the door is open now”

3. After his entrance to the room open the window and switch on the lights and give him or her some time to settle down little bit.

4. Then politely seek his permission to make him familiarize with the facilities of the room. You can say “Sir/Madam can I take some time to introduce features of this room”.

5. If your guest agrees then give him information on following facilities:

  • Air Condition/Heater Controls
  • Bathroom with feature of rainforest shower head
  • BOSE radio wave CD player
  • Broadband Data Port for high speed Internet access
  • Butler Service Brochure with Guest Preference Slip
  • Coffee/tea making facility
  • DND/Makeup room light switch
  • Personal Bar
  • Safe Deposit & Lobby Safe location
  • Telephone and Butler Service Button
  • Television and Remote Control Location

6. You can instruct your guest in this way:

  • Your in room safety box is located here. It functions with 4-digit password, self-programmed, very convenient to use. May I show you how to use it?
  • This is a Make-up Room & Do Not Disturb lights switch. Please do not switch on both lights at the same time because it will only show Do Not Disturb light from outside.
  • This is Air-con Control Panel. You may adjust your room temperature with the switch here. Is your room temperature comfortable to you now?
  • Your TV Remote Control is located here. We have 25 channels for your selection.
  • This is your Personal Bar and Butlers will replenish drinks here every day.
  • Here are coffee and tea making facilities.
  • One of the most useful features is our broadband data port, which provides you with complimentary high-speed Internet access.
  • Here is your BOSE radio wave CD player. You may enjoy CD & radio music any time.
  • Here is your Bathroom, which has both bathtub and shower stall, which features with rainforest showerhead.

7. You should give your business card or tell him the way to contact you if needed.

8. Wish your guest to have a pleasant stay upon leaving the room.

9. If guest wish not to have room introduction at the moment, only point out In Room Safe’s location & Butler Service Button before executing himself.

10. For return or regular guest, just highlight any new services and facilities if any.

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Job of a Doorman or Porter in Hotel

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Thanks for this. Its very wonderful tips for me as a student who studied in hospitality school

Well done.. its really helpful for me as i am working as a Guest Relation Executive in a 5 star property at Alleppey, Kerala Which is a famous tourist destination in Kerala.. its very helpful for all the hotelier’s especially for front office staffs.

Thanks for your words

I’m Very Impressed, thank you for your wonderful tips!!

You are welcome

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hello Tanji,I have transferred to HSKP dept, so I will care more about products of HSKP dept

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since my first job experience as a butler, i need more information about the standart operating procedure for the profesional butler. I was looking for an updated news and information belongs to profesional butler. Thank You.

keep In Touch and Invite your friends to join my network.

I am so impressed with the tutorials, its very handy and helpful for hoteliers. Where has this site been all these months when i have looking for it. It’s just the hotelliers’ site. Thanks

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very intersting

Just one word: Perfect!

Thanks Mr. bafurno

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WMUR News 9 - NH News, Weather

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Postal workers voice concerns over proposal to shift some mail processing to boston.

Larger room needed to allow hundreds of people into presentation on plan

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room tour presentation

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So many people wanted to weigh in Thursday about potential changes to a U.S. Postal Service facility in Manchester that the meeting had to move to a bigger room.

Postal workers are concerned that shifting some mail processing operations from Manchester to Boston could affect jobs and employees' commutes.

The plan would change the facility on Goffs Falls Road from a processing and distribution center to a local processing center and would move some operations to Boston.

The original room wasn't big enough to handle the crowd of hundreds who wanted to hear about the proposal, so after some discussion, the meeting was moved to a larger auditorium to accommodate the overflow.

The USPS said the changes wouldn't result in the facility's closure, but it would move some mail processing operations from Manchester to Boston.

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"A significant percentage of the mail collected locally will travel across the wider United States Postal Service transportation and processing network over significant distances to reach their final destination in a more efficient manner," Christine Brink, senior director of processing operations at USPS, said.

Employees questioned the logistics.

"When you mail a letter from Bow, New Hampshire, to Concord, New Hampshire, and your plan means that it will be transported to Boston to be sorted so that it can be transported back to Concord, that's insane," one woman said.

Union president Dana Coletti said the plan would eliminate equipment at the Manchester facility.

"I represent 200 employees," he said. "So, if you're eliminating 70% of the equipment, you have to wonder who's going to be impacted."

During the presentation, the USPS said 11 employees would be affected, but it didn't have somebody available to answer questions.

"It's hard to believe, and they don't have any specific numbers," Coletti said. "So, what they are telling us is one thing. I'd like to see the data that supports that, but they failed to provide that in this meeting."

The public has 15 days to submit written feedback to the USPS before any decisions are made.

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