I cannot say enough GREAT things about this seminar – which I have absolutely no affiliation with other than being a very happy attendee. This will be my 5th year in attending and each year I come away with more confidence to broaden what I do. The seminar was begun by Rick Ingersol of Frugal Travel Guy and taken over by Howie Rappaport. If you have a chance, go on over to Howie’s blog.
First of all, this seminar is, in my opinion, very, very affordable. The entire weekend of seminars beginning Friday late afternoon to late afternoon on Sunday and including your lunch on both Saturday and Sunday is $105.00. The event is at the Elk Grove Holiday Inn, a short shuttle stop from O’Hare Airport. If at all possible, try to stay at the host hotel but if not, book a room at one of the overflow hotels where shuttles will run you back and forth to the event. If you are in an overflow hotel, keep checking back at the host hotel because there are ALWAYS last minute cancellations, even the day the seminar begins. I would go to the host hotel first and see if there were any openings before checking into the host hotel.
Most times there are two concurrent seminar topics running in adjacent rooms. Tough decision which to choice or better yet bring a friend, spouse or find a friend and offer to share notes.. Bring a sweater too – some rooms are very cold, others just right or hot. You just never know.
Bring your laptop (I do), a notebook for jotting down information, your iPhone to take pictures of the screens to help you remember. The main thing that you should bring with you is a willingness to meet people, include others in your conversations, share and to ask questions. So much of what I have learned has been in the lobby between classes, or over a beer in the connected restaurant or over a meal with a newfound friend.
You may ask why am I attending for a 5th time. Well, as most of you know, I am a YOUNG senior and although I have plenty of free time (ahh, retirement is grand) I do sometimes take a little longer to “get it”. My first time attending I felt overwhelmed and that everyone was speaking a language that I didn’t get and I felt too embarrassed to ask any questions. I hid out in my room some of the time though I did have a great excuse of my broken foot in a cast and needed to elevate it. The second time I had taken a couple of trips, knew the words but still a little unsure of the strategies. I spoke more, sat with strangers and involved myself in the conversations. I knew what to expect the second time and even spent an extra night (Sunday) so I wouldn’t miss Sunday afternoon and wasn’t as rushed. The third time was really the charm for me. I met a great group from Boston and a really nice woman from Texas. She and I have stayed in contact passing on deals to each other. We joined a large group for dinner and had so much fun. Last year, I felt like one of the more veteran attendees and it was answering questions from newbies, encouraged those who stayed outside of circles to join us.
No matter what your level or expertise in this hobby is, I know that you will take home a new trick as well as new friend.
Here is the link to the registration form Please consider attending, you will not regret it, I promise