Buckle Up, Cowboy! How to Prepare for Your HITEC Journey to the Lonestar State

Written by: Jennifer Jones

Howdy y’all! We are a week away from the biggest hospitality technology show in the world…HITEC! After taking 18 months off from its traditional face-to-face structure, the event returns live and in-person to Dallas, Texas where many in the industry will be jet-setting for their first time since the pandemic forced a lockdown in March 2020. With that said, I thought I would provide a little insight as to how travel has been changed over the last year and what to expect at HITEC so you can be fully prepared, pack appropriately and enjoy your time at the conference.

Make sure to pack your boots and cowboy hat but most importantly, don’t forget that Wednesday, September 29 is the day to show off your HFTP and HITEC branded apparel and gear! Snap photos of you and your colleagues and hashtag all pictures with the #hftp and #HITEC hashtags to participate on social media.

Please remember, although the Texas governor has lifted the mask mandate and increased the capacity of all businesses and facilities in the state to 100 percent, be aware that all attendees and HFTP staff will be required to wear masks. So pack some festive face coverings and perhaps color coordinate! It also appears that some exhibitor hospitality receptions are requesting a digital copy of your COVID-19 vaccination card or proof of a negative test for entrance so make sure to snap a picture of it before you leave home. Other parties are requiring a temperature scan prior to entering. Pack your patience as I am sure this may promote some delays getting in.

To help assist in navigating the HITEC schedule, directory of vendors and guidelines about the conference please download the HFTP Events App sponsored by IRECKONU. Once you’ve downloaded the app from your respective store, make sure to go into your chosen event, or both, and download the guides. This will give you up-to-date information and any schedule changes for both HITEC and the HFTP Annual Convention.

Finally, I encourage everyone to make sure not to miss the opening keynote speaker on Monday, September 27. Known as “Equalman”, Erik Qualman is the number-one digital leadership speaker and will definitely spice things up to discuss exactly how you can harness the power of digital transformation. He’s the second most likable author in the world behind J.K. Rowling and author of witty, inspiring books such as “Socialnomics”, “What Happens in Vegas Stays on YouTube” and “The Focus Project.” He’s a Forbes 50 Top Influencer and has spoken at engagements for top-name organizations such as the FBI, Disney, Chase and Hyatt. Just recently in 2021, Qualman became the first male speaker to address the audience at the Indy Women in Tech Conference. We are really fortunate to have HFTP and HITEC bring the talents of such a renowned keynote speaker to our conference. I can’t think of a better way to welcome back our industry and kick things off at our annual event. See you all there!

Jennifer Jones is president of J2 Hospitality Solutions and an official event guest blogger for HITEC Dallas 2021, taking place in-person September 27-30 at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, Texas USA. Continue checking HFTP Connect for more of Jennifer’s experiences at HITEC this year.

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