International travel blogger conference brings thousands to Hunt - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

International travel blogger conference brings thousands to Huntsville

Huntsville was host for a TBEX travel blogger conference. (Source: WAFF) Huntsville was host for a TBEX travel blogger conference. (Source: WAFF)

This spring, Huntsville won the TBEX North America conference, the world’s largest gathering of photographers, writers and travel bloggers from all over the country and the world.

Needless to say, if you head out to dinner or for a walk downtown this weekend, there’s a good chance you’ll find some out-of-towners. One of them is Jiri Buzar.

“I came to Huntsville for TBEX for a travel blogger conference, representing my country,” Buzar said.

Buzar is from Czech Republic.

“We're basically here to showcase my destination Czech Republic, connect with travel bloggers to get them excited about central Europe and to establish a working relationship with them,” he said.

Countless bloggers approached Buzar's booth throughout the conference’s first day. They wanted to know more about things to do in his country and central Europe in general.

TBEX conferences provide work sessions for bloggers to improve their craft. They also give bloggers and travel professionals the opportunity to network with sponsors and tourism groups like Buzar's.

"We try to approach a place through media, social media. Bloggers are influencers, are the right channels for us. We either approach them or they approach us," he said.

This was Buzar's first time visiting, and he says north Alabama is the perfect location for the conference.

"I'm always so curious about new places, so when I learned it's in Alabama, I said, ‘Yay that's great.’ I’ve strolled the downtown area, really nice. Great food, nice people, I love it."

The main event is at the Von Braun Center, but these writers and bloggers are spending afternoons and evenings experiencing everything north Alabama has to offer. They've toured the Marshall Space Flight Center, the U.S. Space And Rocket Center, the Huntsville Museum of Art, Campus No. 805 and the Twickenham district. Many plan to travel to north Alabama attractions outside of Huntsville, as well.

According to the Huntsville-Madison Convention and Visitors Bureau, the TBEX community reaches more than 300 million people globally, meaning this conference will help Huntsville become a destination for vacationers and not just business travelers.

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