Some offer generic support across industries and others are industry specific – either founded and funded by businesses that operate within a specific industry or founded with the intention of furthering a particular profession and the interests of those engaged in it. The intention is always to add value for their members and to improve the professional standing of that industry for customers.

Membership fees do apply to belong to any association but there are a number of benefits for businesses and, particularly in the visitor economy sector where connections and relationships are a critical part of a business success, the return on investment often far outweighs the cost.

benefits include:

Networking Opportunities

By this we don’t mean ‘selling’, but rather benefitting from the ability to connect with potential contacts and partners with whom you can collaborate, share ideas and explore business opportunities.

Training & Development

Keeping abreast of the latest trends, technologies and experiences is essential in the visitor economy sector, as is understanding best practice around leadership skills, resilience, and productivity. Associations will often run regular events, seminars and workshops for their members, bringing in highly respected trainers and speakers. In addition, they will often provide helpful resources and research, sharing useful information that affects the industry.

Increased Reputation

We’ve all heard the saying that we tend to buy and do business with those we know, like and trust and this is never more true than for the visitor economy sector which is all about people. Whichever field you are in, the chances are your reputation will be influenced and enhanced by the organisations you are members of; the awards you win (often developed by these associations) and the people you know.

Having influence to make a difference

By belonging to an industry specific organisation, you have the opportunity to make changes and lobby for changes that will be beneficial for your industry. If there are factors that you believe to be detrimental to the industry you operate within, joining an active and progressive organisation will enable you to have a say and help to lead the change.

Knowledge

Generally speaking, by being part of an industry association you are kept abreast of any newcomers to the industry (competitors as well as products and services); any service issues being commonly experienced; and new contracts coming up for renewal. This helps you stay ahead of the game.

Below, we’ve listed a number of professional bodies and associations (both general and industry specific) that you may find beneficial for your business. Please note however that this is not an exhaustive list and is not intended to suggest any approval of the bodies listed. If you belong to, or know of an industry association not listed here please contact us and we’ll be pleased to add them in.

Confused about which association might be the best fit for you? Then we recommend you speak with some of their existing members and ask how they are benefitting from being a member; whether they feel they are receiving value for their membership fees.

The Main tourist bodies

Business Tourism / Events Associations

Association of British Professional Conference Organisers (ABPCO)

British Visits and Events Partnership (BVEP)

Association for Events Management Education (AEME)

Business Travel Association (BTA)

Event Supplier and Services Association (ESSA)

Association of Event Organisers (AEO)

Association of Event Venues (AEV)

Events Industry Forum (EIF)

Event Marketing Association (EMA)

Event and Visual Communication Association (EVCOM)

Hotel Booking Agents Association (HBAA)

International Association of Speaker Bureaus (IASB)

International Congress & Convention Association (ICCA)

Meetings Industry Association (MIA)

National Outdoor Events Association (NOEA)

Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA)

Production Services Association (PSA)

PLASA Event Technology and Service Association

Hospitality Associations

Hospitality Professionals Association

Institute of Hospitality

Hospitality Guild

Food & Drink Federation (FDF)

National Take Away Association (NTWA)

National Restaurant Association

The Sustainable Restaurant Association (The SRA)

The Alliance of Independent Restaurants (A.I.R)

British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA)

Federation of Licensed Victuallers Association (FLVA)

The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII)

The Independent Family Brewers of Britain (IFBB)

The Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA)

The Professional Association of Self Caterers UK (PASC)

The Nationwide Caterers Association (NCASS)

The Bed & Breakfast Association (BBA)

The Short Term Accommodation Association (STAA)

Holiday Home Association (HHA)

Attractions & Entertainments

British Amusement Catering Trades Association (BACTA)

Swimming Pool & Allied Trades Association (SPATA)

The Association of Independent Museums (AiM)

The Museums Association (MA)

Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (ALVA)

British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions (BALPPA)

The Heritage Railway Association (HRA)

British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA)

National Farm Attractions Network (NFAN)

The Global Association for The Attractions Industry (IAAPA)

Caravan & Camping

British Holiday & Home Parks Association

The British Holiday & Home Parks Association

National Caravan Council (NCC)

The Night time Economy

The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA)

UK Theatre Association

Association of British Theatre Technicians (ABTT)

General Business and Professional Associations - Local

National Federation for Small Businesses

for Lincolnshire Branch contact:-

Katrina.Pierce@fsb.org.uk

Lincolnshire Chamber of Commerce

Skegness Chamber of Commerce

Lincoln Business Improvement Group (BIG)

Visit Lincs Coast

Team Lincolnshire

General Business and Professional Associations - National

Chartered Management Institute

Chartered Institute for Professional Development

Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply

Chartered Institute of Management Accountants