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College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management

  • A dark, stormy beach scene.

Crisis Concierge

Crisis Concierge is a formalized program for providing continuous support to visitors if a significant negative incident happens at a destination. A support system for the visitors is fundamental because if something happens to a tourist while on vacation, it can influence the likelihood of revisiting the destination and the possibility of negative word of mouth. Moreover, incident management is the responsibility of the destination managers.

The Program

This program is offered ONLY at the University of South Carolina with its unique approach to blending current research with insights from industry leaders who have planned and implemented crisis management for both tourism destinations and businesses.

The SmartState Tourism Crisis Concierge training program consists of four two-hour seminar courses.

  • Session 1: Phases of the Crisis Concierge program – Caring About and Taking Care
  • Session 2: Phases of the Crisis Concierge program – Caregiving and Care Receiving
  • Session 3: Element of Care
  • Session 4: Best Practices – Developing strategies for DMOs and Training the Staff
  • A construction worker stands in front of a demolished building.
  • A construction worker stands in front of a demolished building.


  • Mitigate crisis impact on visitors
  • Increase the likelihood of revisiting
  • Increase the likelihood of positive destination word of mouth
  • Develop strategies to manage incidents
  • Provide staff training

Materials to be Provided by SmartState

  • PowerPoint presentations in English and Spanish
  • Pre-workshop reading materials in English
  • Workbook for completion (provided during the workshop)
  • Digital materials for three courses

Recommended Materials

We recommend the following materials are available to make the workshop successful:

  • Computer and projectors
  • Tables and chairs
  • A whiteboard
  • Five flip charts, markers, and paper
  • Wireless microphone
  • Video camera

Contact Us

Lori Pennington-Gray headshot

Lori Pennington-Gray, Ph.D.

Director and Endowed Chair
SmartState Tourism Center
College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management
University of South Carolina

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.