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FAM Trips

FAM is short for familiarization. A FAM trip is designed by a sponsor to provide experiences for the participants. If the participants are bloggers and media, they will write or broadcast about these experiences. Since 2008 we have attended both group and individual FAM trips designed for bloggers and media. It is interesting to note that not all sponsoring agencies like group FAM trips.

Our first FAM trip was with a group of writers, one was a magazine editor that  had issues with all the wines we tasted and winemakers we met. The other media representatives on the trip felt sorry for us because we were in the same van as this individual who had nothing good to say about our online publication. On the other hand, we have been with group FAM trips where the group gelled together and worked well together. The reason sited by sponsoring agencies against hosting a group FAM trip is the occasional participant that causes a sour note for all the other writers. It was probably good for us to experience this, however we have also experienced group trips that were very positive.

So we are keenly interested in experiencing the FAM trip to Italy with 20 other bloggers and media. Fortunately we already know four of the twenty and look forward to meeting the others. We met Paul & Merrill Bonarrigo at their Messina Hof Winery on our first visit to Texas in 2009. The following year we met Tom Plant while attending winery media events in Temecula, California. Later in 2010 we went on a wine tour with Tom and wrote about his tour company WINEormous. Although we were both at the 2011 Wine Bloggers Conference in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2011, we didn’t meet Marcy Gordon until November at the Wine Tourism Conference in Napa. We have been emailing Marcy since the November conference.

The Italy FAM trip is sponsored by Wine Pleasures. It will include visits to wine related sites in Umbria and Campania. We are looking forward to meeting other writers that have a passion for wine. Over the next several weeks, we’ll write blog entries about them and their publications. In addition to visiting wineries, the group will also attend the International Wine Tourism Conference in Perugia, Italy.


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