Who Are We?
The U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council (USCHT) is an exciting and innovative initiative designed to drive cultural and heritage tourism to and within the USA by developing “dynamic” cultural and heritage tour packages that offer unique and innovative cultural and heritage experiences to visitors.
Why Was the U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council Formed?
The U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council is a direct outcome of the U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism Summit held October 6-8, 2005 in Washington, DC in partnership with the U.S. Department of Commerce, The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, Partners in Tourism and American Express. The Summit was developed and produced by Shop America Alliance.
The Summit was successful in bringing together over 400 delegates and distinguished leaders in cultural and heritage tourism from all 50 U.S. States, the District of Columbia and U.S. Virgin Islands. This event served to catalyze enhanced interest in U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism, one of our nation’s most valuable assets. It also resulted in the realization that the U.S. did not have a national organization promoting and marketing cultural and heritage tourism both nationally and internationally. Hence, the USCHT was formed to provide that platform.
What Do We Do?
The primary purpose of the USCHT is to package, market and sell U.S. Cultural and Heritage Tourism Experiences on behalf of its partners, the leading U.S. tourism destinations, attractions and travel partners.
The Council is dedicated to marketing U.S. cultural and heritage tourism destinations to and within the USA.
The Cultural Traveler Tours Packages Feature Museums, Gardens, Aquariums, Historic Homes, Epicurean Experiences, Art Galleries, Performing Arts Venues, Shopping, Dining.... and more! Visit TheCulturalTraveler.comto learnabout our current packages.
How Do We Do It?
- PARTNER with leading U.S. Tourism Destinations, Cultural and Heritage Attractions and Travel Partners
- PROMOTE Cultural & Heritage Tourism both nationally and internationally
- PACKAGE Cultural & Heritage Tours to generate visits, exposure and revenue
- POSITION U.S. Culture & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council as a leader in the tourism industry.
How We Further Support the Marketing of U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism
- Host a transactional website, TheCulturalTraveler.com, to market and sell our partners’ cultural and heritage packages and other initiatives
- Co-Publish The Cultural Traveler, an annual guide showcasing US culture and heritage travel experiences. The guide is distributed to all IPW delegates and at other travel trade and media events, at America’s Byways Visitor Centers, Select Registry B&B’s and Inns and via AAA. It is also available on line at TheCulturalTraveler.com and ShopAmericaTours.com.
- Co-Present the annual ONE Travel Conference with Shop America Alliance to bring together thought leaders in the shopping, dining and cultural tourism industry to exchange ideas and nurture partnerships
- Co-Produced the book, Marketing Cultural & Heritage Tourism, authored by the co-founder of USCHT, Rosemary McCormick, to inform and educate on how to market cultural heritage tourism
- Publish The Cultural Traveler E-News to provide a forum to update all interested in cultural and heritage tourism about cultural and heritage trends and activities.
- Commission Market Research to provide current and insightful data on the cultural and heritage visitor and how best to market to them
- Offer seminars and webinars on the marketing of cultural and heritage to visitors
- Represent the cultural and heritage tourism segment on national tourism boards. Sheila Armstrong, Co-founder and Executive President, has served on the Brand USA Marketing Committee and the Board of Directors of the U.S. Travel Association. She has just completed her term on the Secretary of Commerce’s Travel and Tourism Advisory Board. Rosemary McCormick, Co-founder and President of Shop America Alliance, has served on the Destination & Foundation Board of Directors. She has just completed her six year tenure on the US Travel Association Board of Directors and Executive Committee and Members Connect Committee
- Represent our partners as travel trade shows and media events including the annual IPW (International Pow Wow) Travel Trade Show and Media Day.
10 Top Benefits of Partnering with the USCHT Marketing Council
We help our partners develop effective cultural and heritage tourism packages. We negotiate rates and contracts, write sales copy, edit photographs and design the packages for the websites and marketing collateral
2. Online Marketing Services
Our partners’ packages are showcased and sold on the web at TheCulturalTraveler.com, ShopAmericaTours.com, other major online tour operators’ sites such as Travelocity, Expedia and Mark Travel plus our partner’s sites.
We track results of our partners’ packages and provide quarterly sales reports
4. Travel Trade Exposure
We provide representation and marketing of our partners’ packages at major travel trade shows and sales missions in the USA, UK, Germany, China, Brazil, Canada and Mexico
5. Public Relations
We promote our partners’ packages to domestic and international travel trade media.
6. Information and Ideas
The Cultural Traveler E-Newspromotes packages and provides news and views on USCHT developments.
7. Networking and Professional Development
Partners in USCHT are invited to attend the annual meeting at the ONE Travel Conference
8. Tourism Education
We provide training and development for USCHT partners.
9. Dedicated Professional Staff
USCHT’s President, Sheila Armstrong, works directly with USCHT partners. The USCHT affiliation with Shop America Alliance and Shop America Tours provides marketing assistance and a support network.
10. Affiliation with Industry Leaders
Partners include the leading U.S. Tourism Destinations, Attractions and Travel Partners dedicated to marketing U.S. Cultural and Heritage Tourism. Sheila Armstrong has served on U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke’s Travel and Tourism Advisory Board and the U.S. Travel Association Board of Directors. Rosemary McCormick has served on the U.S. Travel Association Board, the Executive Committee and the Members Connect Committee. She also served on the Destination & Foundation Board of Directors. Armstrong and McCormick also serve on the Board of Women in Travel and Tourism International.
WHAT IS UNIQUE ABOUT THE CULTURAL TRAVELER TOUR PACKAGES?
The Cultural Traveler Tour Packages are a fun, new way to “catch some culture”!
- Offering the best cultural experiences combined with VIP, insider opportunities, special savings and the convenience of flexibility
- Enriching a vacation getaway, to see family and friends or a business trip
- Inviting visitors to experience America’s Culture, History, Gardens, Arts, Shopping and Dining in a unique and entertaining way.
- Going beyond the usual package tours to feature “And More” experiences!
- Focusing on the WOW! Factor—tell a story, are memorable, add value and enrich the visitor’s experience.
Why Is US Cultural & Heritage Tourism Important?
- Cultural & Heritage Tourism is the largest growing segment of the Tourism Market (Ref. TIA and U.S. Department of Commerce/OTTI)
- Culture & Heritage is the #3 top tourism activity in the USA (Shopping and Dining are #1 & #2 Ref. U.S. Department of Commerce/OTTI Studies)
- Cultural & Heritage Tourism is a $192.3+ billion industry (Ref. The Cultural Traveler Market Research Study)
- Cultural & Heritage Tourists spend more and stay longer at their Destinations (Ref. The Cultural Traveler Market Research Study)
- Arts and Culture Economic Growth has increased 24% in last 5 years—now a $162.2 Billion Economic Activity (Ref. Americans for the Arts)
Who are the Most Productive Cultural Travelers in generate ROI?
(Ref. The Cultural Traveler Market Research)
- Baby Boomer/Seniors
- College Degree/Professional
- Annual HH Income of $75,000 or More
- Stays Longer & Spends More
- Looking for Unique Travel Experiences
- WantingValue-- Both in Time AND Dollars
- Spend $3,000+ on 4.2 Trips Per Year
- Force Behind Multi-Generational Travel
- Get Information From the Web (as well as word of mouth)
- Part of 80%+ of Americans Who Book Their Travel On-Line
How is the USCHT Structured and Who Are Our Partners?
The USCHT is an LLC that develops and markets cultural and heritage tour package for our partners. Our partners are cultural and heritage organizations and destinations engaged in cultural and heritage travel marketing. USCHT works in affiliation with Shop America Alliance which serves as the facilitator and program manager of these packages, bringing their expertise as a leading tour operator with years of experience in developing and marketing more than 200 diverse package tours.
How Do You Become a Partner?
To join the U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council, Contact:
Sheila Armstrong, President
U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council
2 Tomotley Court
Hilton Head Island, SC 29928
U.S. Cultural & Heritage Tourism Marketing Council
Co-Founder and President
Co-Founder and Development Director
President of Shop America Alliance