Farewell to Fort Lauderdale

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

The Moodie Blog is in Fort Lauderdale for the annual Duty Free Show of the Americas – the last one, as it transpires, to be held here.

Next year the show returns to its long-time home, Orlando – a wholly pragmatic move by organisers, the International Association of Airport Duty Free Stores (IAADFS).

One of the big problems the IAADFS faces with this venue is its proximity to Miami, which happens to be the regional base for a number of the big beauty houses. Several of those houses, though not exhibiting in Fort Lauderdale, are calling meetings at their Miami offices with visitors to the show.

That has a doubly negative impact on the exhibition – because the beauty houses aren’t here, some retailers choose not to visit. And those that do visit spend increasing amounts of time away from the trademarket floor and in Miami instead.

It’s hardly a new problem or one unique to the IAADFS – the same issue has been an irritant to TFWA in Singapore for years – but it’s one that if left alone could have seriously compromised the future of this event. Moving it to Orlando may not be the perfect solution either – some buyers will still fly in via Miami International Airport and may be dragged away – but the considerable distance between the two locations will engender a greater allure to exhibit.

The IAADFS plans to underline that allure via a combination of booths and suites – though, crucially, the latter will be on the trademarket floor and not in hotel rooms. The other big attraction about Orlando is that the show will integrate everything – from accomodation to social events to the exhibition itself – under one roof. It is patently the right move by the IAADFS.

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