Over the past three years, Skift has become the most trusted source for travel intelligence in the world. We break major stories, cover the trends, and give you analysis around all aspects of marketing, strategy and tech changes happening in the sector.
With the new weekly Skift Podcast we wanted to create a space where we could take a step back. This is a venue where we sit down with creatives, executives, and entrepreneurs from across the industry to discuss their insights and perspectives on the how and why of travelers’ habits, industry patterns, and the seismic changes happening to each. Our topics will be diverse, ranging from the continued appeal of iconic tourist destinations to food as a big driver of tourism, from offbeat art tours to the death of traditional travel PR.
The Skift Podcast is underwritten by the FutureCities initiative from MasterCard. Find out more at futurecities.skift.com.
In the inaugural episode, “The Appeal of Mass Tourism in the Age of Authentic Travel” we discuss why tourist epicenters such as Times Square in New York, Las Ramblas in Barcelona, or Trafalgar Square in London continue to draw such big crowds of tourists in an age where everyone supposedly wants deeper and more authentic travel experiences. Our guests Fred Dixon, the CEO of New York’s tourism marketing organization NYC & Company and Pegi Vail, an anthropologist at New York University and filmmaker, discuss the topic with the host of the show and Skift reporter Samantha Shankman and Skift CEO Rafat Ali.
Our conversation starts by looking at how Times Square has become embedded in tourists’ minds and how local culture is starting to weave its way through giant billboards. We discuss the impact that a “selfie” culture has on tourism and what drives our need to self promote. We then end with a broader look at the role of public spaces within cities, the museum-ization of experiences, and how places like Times Square create a shared imaginary for the future.