IPW Frequently Asked Questions, for Destination DC Members

Many of the below questions were asked during the member overview webinars; listen on the Member Extranet.


What is IPW? Who produces it?

U.S. Travel Association’s IPW is the travel industry’s premier international marketplace and the largest industry creator of travel to the U.S. Created in 1969, IPW has been held annually in 23 major U.S. cities. Washington, DC will host IPW for the first time in 2017.

When is IPW?

June 3-7, 2017

Who attends?

Washington, DC will welcome guests from 75 countries who will have 105,000 intensive pre-scheduled 20-minute business appointments in three days. Delegates include:

  • 1,500 international buyers (tour operators, travel agents, wholesalers, retailers)
  • 4,500 suppliers (hotels, attractions, transportation providers, destination marketing organizations, etc.)
  • 500 international and domestic media representatives

Do delegates travel with or need interpreters?

No. Because the delegates work to bring visitors to the USA, they generally speak English very well.

Why is IPW important?

IPW is not a typical trade show. Buyers and sellers conduct business and book travel that would otherwise result from an exhaustive number of around-the-world trips. The result is more than $4.7 billion in future travel to the U.S.

Within three years, the expected ROI to Washington, DC is

  • 1 million additional new international visitors
  • $1.7 billion additional spending
  • $84 million in local taxes
  • 5,300 jobs directly supported

Where is IPW held?

The main conference, produced by the U.S. Travel Association, will be held in the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, June 5-7, 2017. Affiliated events will be held across the city.

How does Destination DC communicate with attendees and promote activities?

Visit washington.org/IPW2017.  The primary audience for this site is IPW delegates, they are referred both by DDC and the U.S. Travel Association.

Will Destination DC be producing any special publications for IPW?

Destination DC will not be producing any special stand-alone publications for IPW.

The Official Spring/Summer Visitors Guide will be distributed at IPW, at host hotels and in the airports. Listings and ad sales for the guide closed December 5, 2016; the guide will be in-market in March. Members can update their website listings at any time through the member extranet.


How are the hotels chosen?

U.S. Travel Association has contracted with 13 official DC host hotels, expecting 3,580 on peak.

This convention is expected to draw more attendees than any prior IPW. It is possible additional hotels and rooms will be added after the hotel block opens registration opens to all delegates in December, 2016. 


What events will Destination DC produce?

As host city, Destination DC is responsible for hosting the official IPW events. IPW delegates and Destination DC sponsors will be invited to attend. For most events, individual tickets will not be available.

  • Opening
    • Sunday, June 4, 2017
    • National Mall and Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
    • Guests: All delegates, sponsors
  • Closing
    • Wednesday, June 7, 2017
    • Nationals Stadium
    • Guests: All delegates, sponsors
  • Client event
    • Saturday June 3, 2017
    • Guests: Buyers, media, sponsors
    • Individual tickets, $TBD (DC, VA and MD partners only)
  • Press brunch
    • Sunday June 4, 2017
    • Newseum
    • Guests:  Media, sponsors
  • MICE brunch
    • Sunday June 4, 2017
    • Guests: MICE delegates, sponsors
  • LGBTQ event
    • Monday, June 5, 2017
    • Guests: buyers, media and sponsors
    • Individual tickets, $TBD

How will DDC secure vendors and venues for the events it produces?

RFPs will be or have been issued through the Member Extranet and members invited to respond. 

Are other parties and events expected in DC?

Other destinations and corporate brands may also host events in Washington, DC to entertain IPW clients. The Destination DC team is available to assist those businesses and has communicated with all 2016 IPW attendees about our services to help secure venues and services.

For more information, the Destination DC lead is Monique Russell, Convention Services Manager.


How do delegates get around the city?

There will be shuttle buses from IAD and DC to the official host hotels and from the host hotels to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center and official IPW events.

Two transportation providers have been selected to provide this transportation via an RPF issued in 2015 to qualified Destination DC members.

Of course, because DC is such a walkable city with public transit, we expect delegates will walk and take metro to many events. International attendees, in particular, are accustomed to walking around cities. Metro will not be running extended service hours for IPW.

All-Delegate Sightseeing Tours & Press Tours

How will Destination DC help the delegates see the city?

All-Delegate Sightseeing Tours – All IPW delegates have the opportunity sign up for free sightseeing tours. These will be open to buyers and media in late January, and to the rest of the IPW delegates in early February.

Press Tours – Only registered IPW media can sign up for the Press Tours taking place on Sunday, June 4.

Destination DC members were contacted to participate in October 2016. The tours will showcase different neighborhoods, activities and attractions regularly available in across Washington, DC.

For more information about sightseeing tours, please contact Lindsay Hill, Tourism Sales Manager. For press tours, contact Vanessa Casas, International Media Relations Manager.


A lot of journalists attend IPW, right?

Over 500 international and domestic journalists are expected. U.S. Travel Association requires them to file two stories about the U.S. to attend. While coverage is not guaranteed, many stories about Washington, DC are expected and the DDC team is engaging media in several ways.

There will be a press brunch on Sunday, June 4, followed by tours around the city. In addition, Destination DC will host the journalists-only press room in the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. These activities are not open to the public. Destination DC members can join the press brunch by becoming IPW Partners.

How can Destination DC members reach all the journalists who will be here?

DDC will pitch story angles and offer itinerary suggestions throughout IPW. Members should be aware that hosting requests might be spontaneous, and members open to hosting will have the opportunity to earn their position in a major international article or even a stand-alone feature.

Members should:

  1. Appoint an IPW contact who is ready to field questions from DDC and media for the duration of IPW when journalists are expected, from Friday, June 2 – Wednesday, June 7.
  2. Put together suggested tours and experiences that can be shared with inquisitive journalists upon request.
  3. Share this information with Vanessa Casas, International Media Relations Manager.

Are there other ways for my business to engage the delegates?

VIP Show Your Badge! Destination DC members are familiar with the Show Your Badge program, where convention delegates receive special offers from Destination DC members.

For the duration of IPW, plus pre- and post-stays, Destination DC members are encouraged to create special Show Your Badge offers for IPW delegates. Many businesses will offer free experiences for buyers and media and a steep discount for other delegates.

These special offers will be promoted by Destination DC to the delegates at the Washington DC Host City booth in the convention center, online and in our communication to delegates.

Destination DC members will receive more information about VIP Show Your Badge in the months prior to IPW.


How can I join the Washington DC booth at IPW?

Destination DC and our Capital Region USA (CRUSA) partners will host a booth at IPW. Up to 20 Destination DC members can join as partners in the booth; the fee is $4,200 and includes one representative from the partner company.

Booth partners join Destination DC’s appointments with tour and travel operators and benefit from Destination DC’s reputation and experience with these clients.

For more information, contact Letizia Sirtori, Associate Director, Tourism.


How can my business sponsor IPW?

Strong investment from Washington, DC’s business community is essential to IPW’s success. As a partner, your brand will be positioned in front of key decision makers in the global travel industry. Of equal importance is the high-profile opportunity to invest in Washington, DC’s future, aligning your company with the unique assets of our city and the associated economic growth and job creation in the travel, tourism and hospitality sectors.

IPW partners will also have unique access to events with buyers, media and influencers.

Contact Claire Carlin, VP Partnerships & Alliances to learn more.


Can our staff members volunteer to support IPW? What will they do?

Over 800 volunteers are needed to help us roll out Washington DC’s red carpet to welcome these special guests to our city. Volunteers will greet attendees at the airports, convention center, hotels and official IPW events. Learn more.

For more information

Booth – Letizia Sirtori – Associate Director, Tourism

Member inquiries – Ahmed Ibrahim – Membership Sales Manager

Sightseeing tours – Lindsay Hill – Tourism Sales Manager

Press – Vanessa Casas – International Media Relations Manager

Partnership & Sponsorship – Claire Carlin – VP, Partnerships & Alliances

Volunteering – Volunteers@destinationdc.com

Overall – Monique Russell, Convention Services Manager

Overall – Theresa Belpulsi – VP, Tourism & Visitor Services