Expedia is serving as the official travel sponsor of The Passport Party Project, a philanthropic initiative started by award-winning travel blogger and entrepreneur Tracey Friley, founder of OneBrownGirl.com and OBG Adventure Camps.  The Passport Party Project hosts parties for ten girls each throughout the United States, giving teen girls, aged 11-15, the tools to obtain their first passports. The goal is to inspire these girls to use their passports to ultimately take their first-ever trip abroad.

As official travel sponsor, Expedia will host a contest for Passport Party participants after 100 girls have received their first passport. Six contest winners will earn a free trip to an international destination, accompanied by a parent or a legal guardian and Friley, where they will earn their first passport stamp.

“International travel is a formative experience, especially for young adults. Experiencing life beyond our local boundaries is the ideal way to gain perspective not only on other cultures, but on our own as well,” said Joe Megibow, vice president and general manager, Expedia.com. “We are inspired by the passion of Tracey Friley and the challenge that the Passport Party Project has undertaken.  Helping young women obtain their passports literally opens up a world of opportunity to them, many of whom may not have had the means or knowledge to consider traveling abroad.”

“For these girls, passports aren’t a priority in their households. Travel is likely a luxury and not a lifestyle. Having a passport has the potential to change how a young girl views herself and her place in the world,” said Tracey Friley. “It’s as much about the possibilities as it is about hopping a plane. I’m honored to be a part of a global awareness initiative that has the potential to create explorers, and ecstatic that Expedia shares my view.”

Expedia was first introduced to Tracey Friley and the Passport Party Project at the 2011 Travel Blog Exchange conference (TBEX) in Vancouver, a conference started and run by travel blogger Kim Mance. Expedia was energized by the mission set forth by Tracey and moved to begin working together for the Passport Party Project.

“We hold an open forum at TBEX between travel bloggers and companies to exchange partnership ideas with hope for an outcome just like this,” said Kim Mance. “We’re thrilled Expedia was not only savvy enough to listen to what bloggers like Tracey Friley are doing, but act on it. Their support of this fantastic project shows a company with real heart, and I’m thrilled to follow along to see the good it spreads.”

In 2012, Expedia and the Passport Party Project will host parties in the following cities:

  • Austin, TX – March 2012
  • Miami, FL – April 2012
  • Denver, CO – June 2012
  • New York, NY – August 2012
  • Chicago, IL  – September 2012
  • Washington, DC – October 2012

In the first quarter of 2013, Passport Parties will take place in:

  • Atlanta, GA – February 2013
  • San Diego, CA – March 2013
  • San Francisco Bay Area, CA – March 2013

For more information about Expedia’s sponsorship of the Passport Party Project please visit the Expedia media room or www.passportpartyproject.org. Follow along on Twitter @Expedia or @OneBrownGirl, #PassportPartyProject.

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