Pride Month: How the travel industry is embracing the LGBTQ comm - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Pride Month: How the travel industry is embracing the LGBTQ community

Posted: Updated: Jun 13, 2018 1:11 PM
Employees from The Alexander, a Dolce Hotel, marched in the  Indianapolis Pride Festival June 8 alongside the “Alexander-mobile” and team puppy, Calvin, offering giveaways and beads to the guests. Employees from The Alexander, a Dolce Hotel, marched in the Indianapolis Pride Festival June 8 alongside the “Alexander-mobile” and team puppy, Calvin, offering giveaways and beads to the guests.

The travel industry has increasingly been courting LGBTQ customers with programming and packages.

Their efforts have picked up during Pride month, but hotels and destinations have been pursuing the community for a while now.

W Hotels, part of Marriott International, will debut a series of LGBTQ destination guides in places such as Mexico City, Istanbul, Atlanta, and Brisbane in Australia.

The hotel chain, always known for being progressive, is also holding a "QUEER ME OUT' speaker series at six destinations worldwide this year. These are panel discussions about issues important to the community.

In 2014, Marriott launched its #LoveTravels campaign, an effort to make every traveler feel comfortable regardless of sexual orientation, with images featuring celebrities such as Jason Collins, the NBA's first openly gay player. Marriott also has a travel website dedicated to the community: Marriott.com/gaytravel.

Since 2012, Hilton Hotels and Resorts has been running a "Stay Hilton.Go Out' campaign and website to punctuate its efforts to be inclusive.

For those traveling for Pride celebrations throughout the country, the company is offering a special "Long Weekend Package' letting Hilton Honors member who stay three nights or more at one of its hotels get 50 percent off room rates on Sunday. Hilton has also designed a Pride-themed logo of its name to celebrate the month.

Hyatt Regency New Orleans has gender neutral restrooms. It also sponsors the gala dinner for the Human Rights Campaign, an advocacy group for the LGBTQ community. Last month, the property hosted the PRIDE PROM designed for LGBTQ teenagers.

The Alexander, a Dolce Hotel, part of Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, is the headquarters hotel each November for the LGBTQ+ Film Festival in Indianapolis. It is also the host hotel for the TGIF Classic, an international LGBTQ bowling tournament which takes place over the July 4th week.

The Sofitel Philadelphia, part of AccorHotels, has a partnership with The Attic Youth Center, which provides mental health and other supportive services to LGBTQ youth. A portion of the hotel's proceeds from the banquet menu will go to the program.

But of course, the industry does double its efforts during Pride month.

Hyatt properties are running a "My Pride' promotion. World of Hyatt loyalty program members who book a stay between June 1 and Sept. 19 can use the "EQUAL' promotion to get up to 15 percent off their stay.

Transgender celebrity Laverne Cox has teamed up with Airbnb to host a "Social Impact Experience' that will raise awareness about the needs of transgender and non-binary communities.

The experience will go live for booking on June 12 and is open to four guests for $250. All the proceeds will go directly to the newly opened 3,000-square-foot Trans Wellness Center in Los Angeles. The experience will include a meditation session with Cox and a trip to her favorite thrift store to pick out outfits that align with their gender identity.

Uber has launched Rainbow Routes. While on Uber trips around the world, riders will see rainbow colored Uber routes from pick up to drop off.

Uber found that globally, there is between a 20 to 40 percent increase in trips to popular Pride destinations around the country on Pride weekend. For instance, there Castro Camera in San Francisco sees a 72.8 percent increase in drop-offs.

The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco will have a special Pride Afternoon Tea on June 16 with rainbow-colored pastries. The hotel will donate 50 percent of all proceeds from the tea to the Human Rights Campaign.

Hotel Indigo, part of InterContinental Hotels Group, has partnered with online publisher Daily Beast to create local Pride Guides for 15 of its key properties in the USA.

Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants, also part of IHG, is partnering with Absolut Vodka to offer signature Pride cocktails on-property. A portion of the sales will be donated to The Trevor Project, a national 24-hour, toll-free confidential suicide hotline for LGBTQ youth. Guests who make a reservation though Ihg.com/kimptonhotels/content/us/en/stay/special-offers/trevor-offer#property-list will get 15 percent off the Best Flexible Rate. The hotel company will donate $10 per night to the Trevor Project.

Known for providing guests free wine for an hour each night, Kimpton properties will have Bodegas Callia as their "Wines that Care' partner in June. In honor of Pride, Bodegas Callia will make a donation to The Trevor Project based on how much wine Kimpton pours throughout the month.

Additionally, Kimpton's music director Lauren Bucherie has created a Kimpton Pride Playlist on Spotify.

Take a look at the most popular LGBTQ-friendly U.S. destinations, according to Travelzoo, in the photo gallery above.

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