Find out more about the AWTE

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Everyone in the industry has heard the Association of Women Travel Executives’ annual Christmas lunch is a must-attend event, but there’s much more to the AWTE than that.

It’s hard to imagine now, but the AWTE started out as The Women’s Travel Club in 1954, at a time when founder Joan Richardson, a travel manager, was unable to join a sector-specific club because only men were allowed.

Today, as well as being a great networking association with likeminded individuals, it offers mentoring and development services to women in the industry and organises a variety of different events.

AWTE Projects and Partnerships Director Lisa Henning, whose day job is Managing Director of Inspire Group, explains more…​

How’s it changed over the years?

The association has grown significantly since it was formed and continues to gather momentum.

It also continues to evolve around the needs of its membership and external factors.  Currently we are offering an events programme which is stronger and more diverse than ever before.

Networking with purpose and value has never been more relevant after the last two years of the pandemic and the impact that it’s had on the way we work and the way that we are now moving forward.

This year we are focussed on sharing ways to improve overall mental health, covering sessions on stress, how to build confidence and so on which is also reflected with our support in 2022 for Papyrus, a charity that supports the prevention of suicide in the young.

Are men allowed in?

Men who are committed to supporting and developing opportunities for equality, creating more seats at the table and encouraging businesses within the industry to progress women’s careers is crucial and will always be welcomed as members of AWTE.

The AWTE board

Why should I join?

AWTE offers any individuals in the industry the opportunity to grow and develop in their careers. Our events programme for 2022 will feature development sessions on ‘How to raise your personal brand’, develop confidence, public speaking and presenting, along with weekends away with AWTE, wild water swimming.

AWTE ‘audiences with’ feature an external guest speaker, such as Lisa Talbot, a personal stylist who can support us in dressing for success and staying authentic to your profile and brand, to sessions on wellbeing and menopause.  Joining AWTE is an incredible way of sharing experiences, making new connections, and gaining confidence.

Tell us about some key speakers you have had at the events

One of the motivational speakers for me personally was Kate Halpin. Kate is a senior Metropolitan Police Officer and held the role of Detective Chief Superintendent.  She was recognised in the 2020 honours with the Queen’s Police Medal. From her humble beginnings, she has achieved so much in her career with the Met and her story will stay with me, and be a source of inspiration, forever.

Tell us about AWTE partner opportunities

We welcome partners from all aspects of business and enterprise.  Our industry is alive with talented people, those who have a wealth of experience and are able to share this with our members and be able to offer skills such as mentoring are welcome.

What makes the AWTE Christmas Lunch December’s hottest ticket in town? 

We love that the AWTE Christmas lunch has taken its legendary status and rightly so.

It’s usually the first festive event in the travel industry calendar and our partners, colleagues and friends enjoy connecting, celebrating and reflecting on the last 12 months achievements, not to mention the entertainment, which has been quite something over recent years!

It never disappoints and continues to set the tone for the forthcoming year. 

Find out more here.

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