Volume 15, Issue 3 | March 2020
TIAK Talk is published monthly for members of the Travel Industry Association of Kansas.
By Kelly Peetoom

Hello Kansas Travel Partners. Wow, what a time to be alive and in the travel and tourism business. This will be an experience that we not only share with each other but also with our children and grandchildren for years to come.

In this month’s newsletter, I want to offer just a few suggestions and words of advice.

First, in regard to COVID-19, be informed. Reach out to your partners and be the travel expert for your elected officials. Here are some websites I have been using for accurate data:  www.str.com , www.ustravel.org , and www.travelks.com

The second suggestion deals with crisis leadership. Be clear and concise when communicating. Be adaptable. Things will change quickly, so be present for your staff. Some topics will be emotional, so choose a positive outlook and create a path of success together.

The next few weeks and months will be challenging, but we will see this through together. Please be safe.
Kansas Tourism & Hospitality COVID 19 update
Sponsored by Kansas Tourism Division and TIAK
Please join us  Wednesday, April 1 at 1:30 PM  for a virtual meeting for Kansas Tourism and Hospitality Industry members to hear from industry leaders on relevant COVID 19 related issues.
Speakers will be KDWPT Secretary Brad Loveless, Director of Tourism Bridgette Jobe, and a representative from U.S. Travel.
Questions should be submitted in advance to  office@tiak.org .
Max 250 participants. **Please note that the meeting will be recorded and made available at  www.tiak.org  to anyone that can't participate live.
Zoom meeting log-in information:
Topic: Kansas Tourism & Hospitality Industry COVID 19 update
Time: Apr 1, 2020 01:30 PM Central Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/399687402
Meeting ID: 399 687 402

For the latest travel and tourism news on COVID 19, be sure and sign-up for the Kansas Travel Talk newsletter provided by the Kansas Tourism Office. If you are not receiving the newsletter and believe you should be, please contact the KDWPT. You can also stay informed by following KDWPT and TIAK on Facebook.

U.S. Travel CARES Act Webinar & Resources

If you plan on zooming with us tomorrow, it is highly recommended that you review the below resources made available by U.S. Travel. They hosted a webinar yesterday that will provide useful background for our meeting.

View the full slide deck  outlining CARES Act provisions and eligibility.
View an FAQ  that answers many questions from the webinar.
For the full recording with slides and audio, click below.
CARES Act Relief Resources

The CARES Act, the largest economic relief package in our nation’s history, was signed into law on March 27 and includes major provisions that the U.S. Travel Association fought for to deliver economic support to travel businesses, travel workers and their families. Here are the different parts of the CARES Act and what it might mean for your travel business:

Click here   to learn more and find lenders available by state and region from the Small Business Administration.
Shared Work Program

The Kansas Department of Labor's Employment Security (Unemployment Insurance) Shared Work Program is designed to help both employers and employees. It is an alternative for employers faced with a reduction in workforce and allows an employer to divide the available work or hours of work among a specified group of affected employees in lieu of a layoff.

Shared Work allows the employees to receive a portion of their unemployment insurance benefits while working reduced hour. It is not available for seasonal layoffs. To learn more about the application process, click here .
REAL ID Deadline Extension

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced last week a one-year REAL ID enforcement delay to October 1, 2021, but the U.S. Travel Association cautioned that a longer extension may be necessary to ensure that implementation won’t further disrupt the already devastated American travel economy.

In a March 26  letter  to Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf, U.S. Travel cited  polling data  showing that the U.S. had not made significant strides toward REAL ID compliance even before the coronavirus crisis. A new analysis compiled by U.S. Travel and Longwoods International, a market research consultancy, shows that if REAL ID were implemented today, an estimated 67,400 travelers would be turned away at airport security checkpoints on the first day, and more than 471,800 within the first week.

The latest compliance figures have not substantially changed from data U.S. Travel  released in September . The finding comes despite good steps by Department of Homeland Security to create  greater flexibility  in the REAL ID application process, and broad efforts among America’s travel industry to boost awareness among the traveling public.
Tourism Cares Project

Several members have expressed an interest in benefitting the host community of the TIAK Annual Tourism Conference each year. For 2020, the Liberal CVB has chosen the Liberal Area Rape Crisis and Domestic Violence Services (LARC DVS) as the recipient of this new Tourism Cares Project.

LARC DVS serves Grant, Haskell, Morton, Seward, Stanton, and Stevens counties with offices in Liberal, Elkhart, Hugoton, Satanta, and Ulysses. They currently employ 11 advocates, an intake specialist, and an executive director. All services are provided free and confidential to anyone in need. In 2019, they provided services to 544 unduplicated individuals (with 431 of those being new individuals) and sheltered 48.

Donated items are either used by those in the shelter or provided to clients as they begin new lives. If you would like to participate in this giving opportunity, below is a list of requested items:

  • Towels: bath, hand & washcloth
  • Bed Sheets, blankets & comforters, pillows: Twin & Full
  • Personal toiletries: Shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, soap, disposal razors, deodorant, tampons & pads, toothpaste & toothbrushes
  • Household: Laundry soap, fabric softener, bleach, household cleaner, toilet bowl cleaner, antibacterial wipes, hand sanitizer, paper towels, toilet tissue, glass cleaner, etc.
  • Food Items: all non-perishable

Please bring your donations to the annual conference for LARC DVS to collect. To learn more about the organization, visit larcdvs.com .
February Lodging Report

TIAK has an agreement with Smith Travel Research (STR) to provide members with the monthly statewide STR report on hotel occupancy. Several TIAK members also receive their local community reports. Click here for monthly and year-to-date comparisons provided directly by STR.

Kansas had 64% property participation and 76% hotel room participation in February.
COVID 19 Weekly Data Report
U.S. Travel Association, March 26, 2020

Through the first three weeks of March, travel spending in the U.S. is falling at an accelerating pace. National weekly travel spending dropped to just $7.7 billion the week ending on Saturday, March 21st. This is down from $19.8 billion during the first week of March.

The week ending March 21st suffered a $14 billion loss in travel spending. Compared to the previous year, this is a 65% drop, nearly double the previous week’s year-over-year decline (-33%).

Cumulative travel spending losses through March 21st, total $22.9 billion for the month. The losses have been growing dramatically each week. In the week ending March 21st, travel spending registered $14 billion below the same week a year ago, approximately double the loss of a week earlier. Learn more .
Job Opening

Humanities Kansas is seeking applications for new board members. TIAK has been contacted by past Dodge City CVB Director and past TIAK president, Jan Stevens, who currently serves on the Humanities Board of Directors. She would like to see the connection of the two boards continue into the future. The communications of the works of both these important organizations in Kansas is crucial.

If you are interested in serving on Humanities Board, please contact Jan Stevens at  jastevens@cox.net  or call 620-338-0610. More information can be found on the humanities website at humanitieskansas.org .
Welcome New Member
Medicine Lodge Indian Peace Treaty Association

TIAK Board Meetings
April 9, by email
June 11, Olathe
August 13, by email
October 19, Liberal
December 10, Abilene

TIAK Executive Committee Meetings
June 10, Olathe
July 9, by phone
September 10, by phone
November 12, Cottonwood Falls Retreat

Kansas Tourism Conference
October 19-21, 2020 in Liberal
October 18-20, 2021 in Wichita

Coupon code: TravelKS

April 2

April 9

April 16

April 23