04 Sep 2020

USA: IAAPA Expo 2020 Cancelled – IAAPA to Offer Virtual Education Conference as Alternative

A decision that the professionals of the international leisure and attractions industry have been waiting for: Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions cancels IAAPA Expo 2020 in Orlando, which was originally planned to take place from 17-20 Nov. However, in order to provide a platform for important education offerings that would otherwise have been part of the trade show’s framework program, IAAPA will organize a virtual education conference from 16-18 Nov, including online seminars and keynote speeches.

Less than three months before the start of IAAPA’s main trade show event, exhibitors and visitors who travel to Orlando every year from all over the world to participate in the show and network with industry peers, now finally have planning security regarding the shipment of goods, flight and hotel room bookings. A few weeks ago, European industry associations and leading American manufacturers had already expressed their displeasure about the long delayed cancellation of the trade fair by demanding a decision in a letter to those responsible (cf. EAP News of 10 Aug 2020). Since the pandemic situation has become increasingly critical again in recent weeks and it is not possible to make a reliable forecast for the coming months with regard to freedom of travel, quarantine requirements and the availability of medical care, the cancellation of the IAAPA main trade fair is a logical and correct step.

“IAAPA Expo serves as the global marketplace for the attractions industry. We recognize this year there are many challenges facing our members from around the world. Together with input from members, exhibitors, the IAAPA Board of Directors and our team, we have decided to cancel this year’s Expo due to the ongoing impacts of Covid-19. The continuing barriers to international and domestic travel coupled with the evolving guidance on mass gatherings, and members’ need to focus on their businesses helped lead to this decision,” comments Hal McEvoy, IAAPA President and CEO. He adds, “[…] We also appreciate the patience, support and commitment from our dedicated IAAPA Expo exhibitors. The IAAPA team has already pivoted to address finding new ways industry manufacturers and suppliers can connect with their customers to promote their products, discover new trends, and make plans for the future.”

The next IAAPA Expos are already scheduled to take place next year: The IAAPA Expo Asia is set to be held from 7-10 June in Macao, China; the dates for the IAAPA Expo Europe in Barcelona, Spain are 28-30 September and the IAAPA Expo is scheduled for 16-19 November 2021 in Orlando, USA. (eap)