First Free Story (1 of 3)

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Ireland will try to convince everyone it is the next tech hub, American Airlines unveils its travel and AAdvantage APIs for the first time, and Airbnb execs will be out in full force singing the praises of the sharing economy at SXSW this year.

In part one of Skift’s guide, we outline the events taking place on Friday and Saturday that touch on some aspect of the travel and tourism industry whether it be panels with leaders from today’s most popular travel startups, design sessions, book readings, or meet ups for finding fellow travel geeks.

Check back this weekend which events to check out Sunday through Tuesday. If you’re hosting or attending an event that we missed, let us know in the comments and we’ll add it!

Sessions on Friday:

3:30 pm: WeHostels co-founder Diego Saez-Gil will share experiences and best practices on building successful global teams across borders and particularly in South America at Building Successful Teams in Latin America. [Austin Convention Center, Room 5ABC]

3:30pm: Survival Strategies for Brands in China looks at how  brands can prepare to succeed on a global stage, especially in China. [Austin Convention Center, Room 6AB]

5pm: Vimeo Presents: Moving Images to Melt Your Mind and Expand Your Heart This is sure to include some pretty incredible travel images. [Vimeo Theater]

7pm: The “Before I Die” Board is where participants can write down their wishes and share it with the world. There’s bound to be travel inspiration shared here. [JW Marriott Construction Site]

Sessions on Saturday

All Day: Airbnb Director of Product Joe Zadeh, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, and Hotel Tonight CEO Sam Shank will speak at The Lean Startup at SXSW. [Hilton Austin Downtown, Salon ABC]

9:30am: IrelandatSXSW does destination promotion at SXSW in a smart way. The session will demo the technologies of Ireland’s top interactive companies and promote Ireland as the next tech hub. Ireland will host a party at 5 pm at Kung Fu Saloon. [Hilton Austin Downtown, Salon D]

10am: AT&T and American Airlines are co-hosting a travel/location hackathon where developers will build new travel-related mobile apps with previously unreleased APIs including AT&T hybrid-location information services (beta) and American Airlines travel and AAdvantage APIs. Teams with the best apps will win cash and other prizes. Sign up here. [Hilton Austin Downtown, Room 408]

12:30pm: Taboo Travel hosted by BBC Travel Editor Allison Busacca shares how digital and social media have dramatically unearthed places that travelers aren’t supposed to know about and how to get there. [Hyatt Regency Austin, Hill Country ABCD]

12:30pm:  Airbnb co-founder Nate Blecharczyk, Etsy Communications Director Juliet Gorman, RelayRides founder Shelby Clark discuss the values and economics of the new sharing economy at David over Goliath: Power of the Sharing Economy. [Hilton Austin Downtown @ Salon JK]

3:30pm: Pop (Up) Culture explores the growing trend in urban centers that allows retailers (and in our case hoteliers) to sell products and experiences from street corners. [Four Seasons, San Jacinto Ballroom]

3:30pm: The conversation at  Event Success Through New Tools & Technologies explores best practices, case studies and new tools for succeeding with live events. [Sheraton Austin, Capital View South]

5pm: Hacking cities for a better, sustainable tomorrow discusses an emerging wave of place-based, localized apps that aim to create smarter, more sustainable cities. [Austin Convention Center, Room 9ABC]


Friday @ 3:30pm: Travel Bloggers Meet Up hosted by the co-founder of Tourism Currents, Sheila Scarborough. [Empire]

Saturday @ 11am: Hacking Transportation Meet Up hosted by Scoot Networks, Zimride, Getaround, Shareable Magazine, and Open Plans. [Driskill Hotel]

Saturday @ 5pm: Happy Hour at the Hackers Hotel for startups, entrepreneurs, VCs, journalists, and bloggers hosted by WeHostels.


Saturday @ 11am: Touba chronicles the Grand Magaal pilgrimage of 1 million Sufi Muslims to the holy city of Touba, Senegal. [Stateside Theater]

Book Readings:

Saturday @ 1:30pm: This Book is About Travel, Andrew Hyde will talk about the past two years he’s traveled to 15 countries with 15 items in his backpack. He’ll also touch on self publishing, his passion for community, writing, travel and startups. [Austin Convention Center @ Ballroom G]

Tags: sxsw
Photo Credit: Geeks unite at SXSW and experience music, film, and tech events no matter which sector drive them down to Austin, Texas. Kris Krug / Flickr