ABTA's Adventure Travel Conference

Fresh back from my adventure in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, I have had time to reflect on my epic experience ahead of the ABTA Adventure Travel Conference taking place later this month. The trip marked another chapter in the ‘G Trek for Good’ series, an initiative G Adventures have run over the past three years (pandemic aside). While previous treks have taken us to the summits of Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Toubkal, this year we challenged ourselves to trek through the Colombian jungle in search of the Lost City.

The aim of G Trek for Good is to unite individuals from the travel industry who are able to raise significant funds and who like to challenge themselves beyond their comfort zone, both mentally and physically. The charities we support are Planeterra and ABTA LifeLine – two causes that mean a lot to me personally.

Planeterra is G Adventures’ non-profit partner. They build community tourism projects worldwide that are crucial for empowering vulnerable children, women and Indigenous communities and preserving our planet. These projects give me real purpose for the work I do at G Adventures and are something I am very passionate about.

Additionally, we extend our support to ABTA LifeLine. I have been in the travel industry my whole career, starting as a 19-year-old holiday rep in Mallorca for Club 1830, then back in the UK with Cosmos after which I started a number of travel companies before landing at G Adventures. I can honestly say travel has given me everything. I love this industry but I am one of the lucky ones. Not everyone is so fortunate. ABTA LifeLine is there to help in such hard times, and I feel it incumbent on myself and others to do our bit to support our colleagues, given that we have grown up in it.

When done right, adventure travel can be life-changing for everyone involved. A force for good. It offers a new perspective on a place, people, culture, cuisine and the planet. It brings people together like no other kind of holiday. Just ask the 20 brave folk who joined me in Colombia last month. They will all say that the trip changed them in some way but through their collective efforts, raising over £30,000, they also positively impacted many other lives along the way.

I’m thrilled that the sector is propelling into the mainstream, where the unconventional has become the new standard and the extraordinary has become the expected. Today, more than ever, travellers seek responsible and meaningful travel experiences. So I can't help but feel excited about the valuable discussions and connections that will take place at the upcoming Adventure Travel Conference and as moderator, I look forward to facilitating a day that will help shape the future of adventure travel.

I hope to see you there.

Brian Young, Managing Director, G Adventures

ABTA’s new conference will take place on 18 April at the Brewery, London. Through case studies and conference sessions get the latest updates on the trends and challenges in the sector. Hear from G Adventures, UN World Travel Organisation, Macs Adventure, Exodus Adventure Travels, Peregrine Risk Management, Intrepid Travel, The Long Run, The Adventure People, Voyage Jules Verne, Pura Aventura and Expedition Cruise Network. 

View the agenda and register here

ABTA is pleased to share there are 10 hosted agent places available for this event. Please contact events@abta.co.uk to apply for a place.