In the course of making 78 travel shows for public television—from Shanghai to Paris to Rajasthan—Maxa has accumulated a wide range of travel knowledge and stories.
He’s written for magazines ranging from National Geographic Traveler (for whom he is an award-wining contributing editor) to Forbes. A former Washington Post investigative reporter and columnist whose reporting has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, Maxa brings a professional journalist’s eye to the world of airlines, hotels, and destinations.
Maxa’s topics for speaking engagements are tailored to the interests of his audience. For travel industry clients, he will work with meeting planners to bring his experience and sense of humor to a professional audience. For general audiences, his personal and anecdotal speeches are popular.
“Ever been trapped at a party by a travel snob? You know them. They talk on and on about sunsets viewed from sailboats off the coast of Turkey or confide the location of their favorite restaurant in Shanghai. Unasked. I call that ‘place dropping,’ and it’s annoying. It’s the new equivalent to being invited over by the neighbors to see their family vacation slides.” --“Life,” by Rudy Maxa, Forbes
Other than gas prices, few things change as fast as the travel industry. Security rules for airline passengers are modified with little notice. Trends in hotels swing from bathrooms filled with amenities to boutique hotels where the entire front desk staff is outfitted in black t-shirts. Cruise lines and rental car companies are constantly changing the way they do business.
Maxa keeps up with the changes in the travel industry and looks ahead a few years to explain what’s coming over the horizon. And he does it with wit.
“There are umpteen ways to earn miles these days that don’t involve getting anywhere near an airplane . . . [Remember] the Citibank ads for its American Airlines credit card that asked, ‘Was he really sorry? Or was it the miles?’ They’re becoming a way of saying ‘I’m sorry’ or ‘Notice me.’ Why not offer someone 75,000 miles to settle a fender bender without involving the police or alerting the insurance company? Your lover walks into a restaurant and discovers you’re on a date with someone else? I’d say 100,000 miles would be an appropriate offer.’ --“Postmodern Money,” by Rudy Maxa, Forbes
Travel is an endlessly fascinating subject. Most everyone either just returned from a trip, is about to leave on a trip, or is dreaming about someday taking a trip. Maxa also argues that you can travel in your mind. Or in your own hometown. He makes travel to far-away destinations seem more possible for a general audience. And for a travel industry audience, he explains what travelers like and what they hate.
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