WestJet

Supplier-Planner Flight to Take Off for Canadian PCMA Conference

Buckle up for a bright idea that mixes education, networking, and free travel

Jennifer Spear, president and chief strategist of Clean Slate Strategies, is used to sharing her 30,000-foot view of the business landscape to help organizations solve problems and plan strategically. But she’s never actually done it while at 30,000 feet.

That will change on November 17, when Spear acts as the “plane-ary” speaker for a special WestJet flight from Toronto to Victoria, British Columbia, for the 2018 Canadian Innovation Conference. The “V.I.Plane” will offer approximately 114 free seats to convention and event  planners headed to the sixth annual conference. The other 20 seats on the Boeing 737 will go to the flight's sponsors, which currently include Tourism Saskatoon (Saskatchewan), WestJet, Business Events Victoria, Freeman AV Canada, Destination St. John’s (Newfoundland and Labrador), Tourism London (Ontario), pc/nametag, and Ignite magazine.

In addition to hearing the keynote address, planners will have a chance to network and take in a two-minute presentation from each supplier. “We wanted to create a dynamic shared experience that both planners and partners would never forget,” said Candace Schierling, director of national sales at Tourism Saskatoon. “In an industry that thrives on building strong relationships, experiencing this with clients and colleagues is something we are really looking forward to.” Planners will also give their travel budgets a break with the free flight, and WestJet is providing discount codes for the return flight.

Educational and networking group transportation does have some precedent, though not in the air. Via Rail partnered with Travel Alberta in 2014 to take planners from Toronto and Ottawa to the Canadian Innovation Conference in Montréal. Also in 2014, executives from Sensov Event Marketing and JPdL International designed a Montréal-to-Boston bus trip where travelers earned four CEU credits on their way back and forth to the Professional Convention Management Association’s Convening Leaders conference.

For more information on getting a seat on the WestJet flight to Victoria, contact ProPlan Conferences & Events. For more on the Canadian Innovation Conference, organized by PCMA Canada East Chapter in partnership with the PCMA Canada West Chapter, visit its website.

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