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The Groups Today Blog includes unique personal perspectives on a multitude of topics relevant to group travel industry leaders, business owners and planners.

"Wouldn't this look better as a lake?"

I was staring out into Yosemite Valley. Half Dome and El Capitan loomed in the distance—two natural landmarks accomplishing what I thought impossible: Make the giant sequoias gathered below look small.

"What?" I turned to the man standing next to me.

"A joke," he said. "Someone once thought this valley would make a great lake."

Route 66 sure gets a lot of hype, but have you sent groups along U.S. Route 50 lately? Probably not. In July 1986, Life magazine dubbed the Nevada portion, "The Loneliest Road in America." And yet, from rural mountain ranges to desolate deserts and miles upon miles of rich farmland, Route 50 stretches across 3,073 miles from Ocean City, Maryland to Sacramento, California. It spans 12 states and links four state capitals—offering the most complete cross-sectional journey along the United States midriff.

Millennials are one of the largest generations in history (larger, even, than the baby boomers)—and they're entering their prime spending years. Born between 1982 and 1999, millennials were raised on the Internet, fostering a global awareness and an inherent interest in travel. But what are these young travelers looking for? The Millennial Traveler Report conducted by Expedia and Future Foundation discovered a few key generational characteristics.

I may be a mid-20s milliennial, but I think I jumped on the emoji bandwagon a little later than most humans my age. I'm a writer, so my gut feelings toward anything destroying the written word aren't exactly warm and fuzzy. The Oxford English Dictionary named "emoji" 2015's word of the year, and that wasn't cool.

I am an extrovert. I like meeting new people and often make a point to do so while traveling, while out to dinner or even in the elevator. Meeting and talking with new people is, honestly, a favorite thing of mine. So gearing up for my first formal networking event, I put on my new black pumps and suit dress, made up my hair and makeup, and felt ready.

Recent Blogs

13 Things That Can Go Wrong on Group Tours

Anything that can go wrong on a group tour hopefully won't, but probably will ... at least once during your career.

Wine Tasting Code Words

My wife is one of the most polite people you could ever meet. Whether this is due to her upbringing, an aspect of her demeanor, or just her go-to behavior, she is polite to a fault. This materializes itself in often unexpected places: She lets the neighborhood kids have first go at the biggest, ripest blackberries that grow on our fence; she feels compelled to listen to the full pitch when eating the food samples at our local price club; she turns shades of blush if anyone in our party offers criticism of a winery's offerings in front of the person pouring. After all, if you don't have something nice to say ...

Generation X: Travel Trends

Once upon a time, Generation X was considered a cohort of apathetic, grungy loners blasting angry music, Today, they're working professionals and mature adults raising families. Sandwiched between the baby boomers and millennials, Gen X is sometimes considered the "Lost Generation," but they're about 68 million strong and account for 25 percent of the population—and 31 percent of total income, according to OpenForum. Gen X is at a point where they have money to spend on travel. Here are a few trends shaping their plans.