FAQs

There's a CVS just under a mile away from the convention center at 12 J Broad Street Southwest, Atlanta, GA 30303.

Check out the Luckie Marietta District – it's pedestrian-friendly with lots of food options! If you need even more choices, check out the CNN Food Court and the Peachtree Center Food Court. Downtown Atlanta is also home to many fine dining options, so take a night to explore and enjoy!

On average, the weather in Atlanta is cool but comfortable during January. The average high is 53 and the average low is 33 degrees Fahrenheit. That's about 12 degrees and 1 degree if you're a Celsius buff!

Again, we recommend MARTA! There's a MARTA station at the airport and there are stations near the Imaging USA host hotels and the Georgia World Congress Center. Taking a cab from the airport to your hotel will probably cost you about $30. You can also rent a car, but we don't recommend it because parking costs will add up fast and MARTA is a great alternative.

Parking at the Georgia World Congress Center is $10/day with no in and out privileges. There is also parking at the Imaging USA host hotels. We recommend NOT renting a car because parking fees can really add up – instead use MARTA, Atlanta's public transport system! You can easily get from the Imaging USA host hotels to a MARTA station to the Georgia World Congress Center.

The Georgia World Congress Center has set aside several hundred parking spaces in the Red Deck for Imaging USA and they need to be pre-purchased in order to secure a spot. Visit https://gwcc.clickandpark.com/ and Imaging USA can be located in the system. The code to enter for the discount ($10 per day plus tax/fee) is IMAG.

Red Deck parking is the closest, attached to the venue with an inclement weather bridge into the GWCC. Red Deck has offerings for single days (no overnight), is underground and securely monitored at all times. There are several lots throughout downtown Atlanta a short distance from the hotel and Convention Center.  Wherever you park, make sure to note the overnight policies in the deck.

Map of the area and directions to the Red Deck

Atlanta is a vibrant city with Southern charm and world-class attractions – it's home to Centennial Olympic Park, the World of Coca-Cola, the College Football Hall of Fame, the world's second-largest aquarium and so much more! You can also just take a walk around and explore fine dining options and shopping. We bet you'll find something great to do!

The Georgia World Congress Center agrees to use good faith efforts to assure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and its regulations and guidelines. For special requests, call PPA's Events Department at 800-786-6277.

The FedEx Office® Print & Ship Center in the Georgia World Congress Center offers you virtually everything you need to meet your convention exhibiting needs — from packing and shipping to signage, copying, and last-minute office supplies.

http://www.fedex.com/us/office/Hotels-Conventions/georgia-world-congress-center.html

For emergencies, please call 911 to receive urgent care.

The closest hospital is Grady Hospital, located at 80 Jesse Hill Jr Drive SE Atlanta, GA 30303. Always call 911 if you face an emergency.

The Georgia World Congress Center has manual push wheelchairs available for use by attendees while in the building. A credit card is required for a deposit; however, there is no rental charge for use of the wheelchair. Wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis and can be found at the Information Desks in Buildings B and C.

Scootaround is the preferred provider of accessible services at the Georgia World Congress Center (GWCC). Their broad range of services includes scooter and wheelchair rentals, oxygen and shuttle services for major events held at the GWCC. Equipment is available for daily or weekly rental. If you would like more information on how Scootaround can help you with accessible needs and ADA compliance, please contact the Scootaround Corporate Services Department at (888) 441-7575.

There is a $25 administration fee for cancellations received by Dec. 5, 2018; no refunds after Dec.5, 2018 and $35 service fee for returned checks.

No! It has been brought to our attention that there are multiple third parties claiming to represent Imaging USA offering Exhibitors/Attendees "assistance" with hotel bookings. These third parties are aggressively cold-calling and spamming companies whose names appear on ImagingUSA.org. Please be aware, these third parties are NOT IN ANY WAY AFFILIATED with Imaging USA. Please book your hotel through the links/phone number on the Imaging USA Hotels page. PPA is working through the proper channels to put an end to the poaching and apologizes for their deceptive behavior. Here are some of the scams we've heard about that you should be aware of:

  • No one will contact you directly to book your hotel room or offer you a "special discounted conference rate" or “can save you $30.00 off your room rate".
  • If you receive a phone call from someone wanting to speak to the "tradeshow coordinator or the person who is handling Imaging USA that your company is attending in January", it is a scam and they are not affiliated with Imaging USA.
  • If someone emails you claiming to be from Imaging USA's Exhibitor Department, and the email is not from a PPA address, do not share any information with them. The company is not affiliated with Imaging USA.

Imaging USA 2020 will be in Nashville, TN, January 19-21, 2020! More details will be announced later.

Professional Photographers of America (PPA) is the guiding force behind Imaging USA. More photographers get into the industry every day, but few know how to run profitable businesses and many don't know where to turn for support. That's why PPA started its first convention in 1880 (that’s right, more than 130 years ago!), and that's why we continue to host Imaging USA every year.

Created and led by professional photographers, PPA is the largest photography non-profit in the world and assists 28,500 photographers through protection, education and resources for their continued success. To see how photographers can Be More, visit ppa.com.

Imaging USA is a sun up to sun down (and then some) kind of affair. Your best bet is to turn your out of office reply on to manage clients' expectations and return messages when you have a moment.

Join the conversation on social media! We're on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and we'll be sharing photos, tips and giveaways as we get closer to the event! It's also a great way to interact with the speakers or connect with fellow attendees! (Oh, and use #ImagingUSA with your posts. You didn't forget already, did you?)

Those little # things are "hashtags" in social media speak. It makes it easier to search your tweets, Facebook posts and Instagram photos. The official hashtag for the conference is #ImagingUSA. Use it to get on the TweetWall or possibly retweeted by @ImagingUSA.

For sessions and the Expo, bring your conference badge, business cards, note taking materials (laptop, tablet or pen and paper), reusable water bottle and personal items like cell phone and wallet. We encourage you to bring your camera.

Note taking is heavily encouraged; you'll need a place to put all of the inspirational things you come across whether it's a notebook, a tablet or a laptop! The classrooms are set up with rows of chairs, but no tables, so tablets, smartphones, or good old pen and paper might work easier than a full blown laptop. The Imaging USA app will also allow you for some great note taking options. Plus, you'll also get an Imaging USA notebook at the registration area perfect for taking notes.

If you've lost or found something, swing by the Special Handling kiosk in the Registration area in Building A, Level 3.

Sunday, January 20: 1-3pm
Monday, January 21: 1-3pm
Tuesday, January 22: 1-3pm

See the schedule page or mobile app for up-to-date room locations.

Yes, complimentary WIFI will be available throughout the duration of the show at the Georgia World Congress Center.

Of course you can! Anyone in an orange button-up shirt (well, those affiliated with PPA anyway) can answer just about any question you have for us. If they don't know the answer, they know who will and will happily point you in the right direction.

Three big reasons!

1. Keep your registration fees low!
By staying at the official Imaging USA host hotels, you're helping to keep registration fees down! The hotel provides complimentary meeting rooms for Imaging USA if, and only if, we meet the required minimum guest rooms in our hotel contract. Otherwise, Imaging USA must pay for meeting rooms as well as for each room we fall below the minimum—and registration fees will go up! So stay with us and save!

2. Networking opportunities!
By staying at the host hotels, you're at the epicenter for everything Imaging USA. Social and networking opportunities abound, and you don't even have to go anywhere to find them. They're all right here!

3. Save on transportation!
If you're not staying at the host hotels, chances are good you'll have to spend some money on a taxi or parking to come over for some of the events. Why incur extra expense? Stay here and be at the center of it all.

Staying at one of the official Imaging USA host hotels is the best and easiest way to get the most out of your time at the convention. We encourage you to continue to reserve a room and stay at one of the contracted Imaging USA hotels.

Imaging USA 2019 will take place at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, 285 Andrew Young International Blvd NW, GA 30313. Pre-convention classes will be held January 17-19, 2019.

Yes! Children 16 and under are allowed free admission to the Imaging Expo trade show ONLY. Just check in with the Registration Staff and they will add a free Expo Pass for your child.

Coat Check will be located on level 3 (past Registration)

  • Saturday, January 19, 2019: 8am-6:30pm
  • Sunday, January 20, 2019: 7am-8:30pm
  • Monday, January 21, 2019: 7am-8:30pm
  • Tuesday, January 22, 2019: 7am-6:30pm

The Expo is located at the Georgia World Congress Center in Building A.

The Expo is open daily:

Sunday, January 20, 11:30am - 5pm
Monday, January 21, 10:30am - 5pm
Tuesday, January 22, 10:30am - 3:30pm

There will be more for you to choose from, but these won't be added until the day prior to the conference.! There will be physical copies of the list at Registration and, once more, you'll be kept in the loop if you follow us on Facebook or Twitter @ImagingUSA: there we'll get you the up-to-the-minute scoop!

Print for Success Theater Schedule

Stop by the PRINT for Success Theater and join a comprehensive sales session, get information about how to price and market printed products to your clients, and show them the value of printed photography. The sessions will be held in 30-minute intervals Sunday – Tuesday during Expo hours.

Complete schedule coming this summer.

Merit Cafe Schedule

The Merit Café provides the opportunity to learn from International Photographic Competition jurors about how to improve your photos for the competition and offers a first look at the new IPC rules that are in effect for the 2019 competition. Merit Café sessions are held from Sunday to Tuesday during expo hours.

Complete schedule coming this summer.

Oh yes! There will be tradeshow freebies and specials from many of vendors and exhibitors, but that's up for each exhibitor to decide. We will find out about the deals at the same time you do, but we'll make sure to broadcast to the masses when we find out through the app's notifications and through social media. That's one more reason to download the app and follow us online @ImagingUSA!

Yes! Children 16 and under are allowed free admission to the Imaging Expo trade show ONLY. Just check in with the Registration Staff and they will add a free Expo Pass for your child.

(All times are subject to changes)

Attendee Registration will be open

Thursday, Jan. 17: 8am–6pm
Friday, Jan. 18: 8am–6pm
Saturday, Jan 20: 7am–7pm
Monday, Jan. 21: 7am–7pm
Tuesday, Jan. 22: 7am–4pm

Exhibitor Registration will be open

Friday, Jan. 18: 8am–6pm
Saturday, Jan. 19: 8am–7pm
Sunday, Jan. 20: 7am–7pm
Monday, Jan. 21: 7am–7pm
Tuesday, Jan. 22: 7am–4pm

All registration will be located at the Georgia World Congress Center in Building A on Level 3. There will be signage, you won't miss it!

An All-Access Pass gives you just that—All Access! You can attend all of the classes, visit the Expo at your leisure and attend any of the awesome after-parties.

There are hundreds of exhibitors to visit and explore, and we don't want you to miss a thing. An Expo Only Pass gives you access to the tradeshow/Expo portion of the convention as well as to the International Photographic Competition Exhibit area for all three days. Feel free to come back and make the rounds. This is like the Mall of America for photographers, so one day won't be enough to scout all the stands. Please note that it does not include entry into the parties, nor classes. Feel free to upgrade to an All-Access pass onsite, at Registration, or by phone by calling PPA's customer service at 800-786-6277.

There are two types of badges given to exhibitors:

Exhibitor All-Access Badge: This gets you just about anywhere. You'll be allowed all of the privileges of an All-Access Pass (parties, classes, etc.) as well as on the Expo floor before the official opening hours to set up and to tear down your booth.

Exhibitor Only Badge: This gets the badge holder access to the Expo floor before official show hours, as well as during set up/break down to get ready for your 10,000+ visitors. Please note that it does not include entry into the parties, nor classes. Feel free to upgrade to a full-access pass onsite at Registration or through the official Imaging USA primary point of contact at your company.

Hold on tight to your badge. You'll need it to access the classes, expo, party and more. If you lose your badge, there is a reprint fee of $25 for the first badge reprint and $50 for each additional reprint. Stop by the main registration area for assistance.

The tickets are $60 per party for the Opening or Closing Party. But they're free if you have an all-access pass!

The tickets may be purchased in advance at the Registration area or before each party at check in.

The GIAs are the Grand Imaging Awards. The best of the best from 2018 will be honored at the event. They take place on Monday late afternoon and highlight the merits and achievements of your peers, including the winner of the International Photographic Competition. The 2018 Medalists, Diamond Photographers of the Year, and all the elite Loan Collection artists will be honored and new winners will be revealed in each of the competition's image categories.

The Award & Degree Ceremony takes place Monday afternoon and is like a fun graduation for all of your fellow photographers earning awards and degrees from 2018. This is a free event to the public, so attendees can bring guests to enjoy the celebration! The attire is formal; we're talking your fanciest pants.

The Welcome & Closing Parties have food, drinks and entertainment! Dance the night away with your fellow photogs–but don't forget your camera.

No! It has been brought to our attention that there are multiple third parties claiming to represent Imaging USA offering Exhibitors/Attendees "assistance" with hotel bookings. These third parties are aggressively cold-calling and spamming companies whose names appear on ImagingUSA.org. Please be aware, these third parties are NOT IN ANY WAY AFFILIATED with Imaging USA. Please book your hotel through the links/phone number on the Imaging USA Hotels page. PPA is working through the proper channels to put an end to the poaching and apologizes for their deceptive behavior. Here are some of the scams we've heard about that you should be aware of:

  • No one will contact you directly to book your hotel room or offer you a "special discounted conference rate" or “can save you $30.00 off your room rate".
  • If you receive a phone call from someone wanting to speak to the "tradeshow coordinator or the person who is handling Imaging USA that your company is attending in January", it is a scam and they are not affiliated with Imaging USA.
  • If someone emails you claiming to be from Imaging USA's Exhibitor Department, and the email is not from a PPA address, do not share any information with them. The company is not affiliated with Imaging USA.

Three big reasons!

1. Keep your registration fees low!
By staying at the official Imaging USA host hotels, you're helping to keep registration fees down! The hotel provides complimentary meeting rooms for Imaging USA if, and only if, we meet the required minimum guest rooms in our hotel contract. Otherwise, Imaging USA must pay for meeting rooms as well as for each room we fall below the minimum—and registration fees will go up! So stay with us and save!

2. Networking opportunities!
By staying at the host hotels, you're at the epicenter for everything Imaging USA. Social and networking opportunities abound, and you don't even have to go anywhere to find them. They're all right here!

3. Save on transportation!
If you're not staying at the host hotels, chances are good you'll have to spend some money on a taxi or parking to come over for some of the events. Why incur extra expense? Stay here and be at the center of it all.

Staying at one of the official Imaging USA host hotels is the best and easiest way to get the most out of your time at the convention. We encourage you to continue to reserve a room and stay at one of the contracted Imaging USA hotels.

Well… duh! Heck, we encourage you to. Not only can you get hands-on learning, but snap some photos of the conference and share on our social media sites! Just use @ImagingUSA on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Flying solo for Imaging USA but looking to share the cost of a room? If you're a PPA Member, head over to theLoop's Imaging USA community. Not a member? Check out the PPA forum for Imaging USA. There are always plenty of people looking to find roommates and save money!

Dress code for the classes & exhibits is just plain comfortable. Maybe not your pajamas, but no need to get all fancy for us. The main thing is to wear the most comfortable shoes you own. There is so much space to cover that you'll need to be kind to your feet to survive all three days. Oh, and you'll need your badge to get in every day so don’t forget it!

As for the Welcome Party, people usually wear what they wore during the sessions and Expo. The only real place where you'll want to wear your fancy pants is at the Award & Degree Ceremony and Grand Imaging Awards. Since the closing party happens after the Grand Imaging Awards, many people attend it in their dressed up attire.

Pre-Convention registration is at the Georgia World Congress Center, Building A, Level 3

Thursday: 8am – 6pm
Friday: 8am – 6pm
Saturday: 8am – 6pm

Pre-Convention classes happen before Imaging USA officially starts. For an additional fee, you can attend smaller, specialty classes on a wide range of topics, meaning you'll really get to dig into these topics.

Pre-Con classes start Thursday, January 17 and go through Saturday, January 19. On Thursday you have options for a single day of learning or you can begin one of the 2 or 3-day classes being offered. Friday has new 1-day options and is also a continuation of the multi-day classes. Saturday you have your choice of full-day classes, half-day classes and hands-on classes (where you are encouraged to bring your camera as these are all about photography technique.)  

This year we've timed it so you can take more classes on Saturday. You can fill your day with up to 3 – hands-on classes or add more class time with 2 half-day classes and 1 hands-on!

Space for Pre-Convention classes is limited, so register today! For the most up-to-date list of Pre-Convention classes, go to the programs page and select the Pre-Convention option.

The price of Pre-Convention Classes varies depending on the length and format of the session.

You can attend up to 3 Hands-On classes; each class is offered 3 times on Saturday, so pick your 3 favorites for a full day of learning. Mix and match: you can take two half-day classes and still have time to add one hands-on class.

Class Times:

  • Full-day classes are 9am – 5pm.
  • The Saturday Hands-on session times are 9-11am, 1-3pm and 4-6pm.
  • Saturday Half-day classes are 9am – 12pm and 1 – 4pm.  

The Cost:              

  • 1-Day Pre-Conference Class = $179
  • 2-Day Pre-Conference Class = $299
  • 3-Day Certification Prep Class = $299
  • Half-day Pre-Conference Class = $89  
  • Choose 1 Hands-on Course = $99.00
  • Choose 2 Hands-on Courses = $159.00
  • Choose 3 Hands-on Courses = $199.00

Your call here! You surely can, but we actually would strongly encourage you to take at least a class or two (or three!) outside of your specialty. You'll be truly amazed at what you can learn and be inspired by!

None of the classes are recorded. Copyright protection is a big issue for photographers and instructors alike. Additionally, providing streaming or recording service would shoot your registration fee through the roof. So until the technology allows us better levels of protection at a very affordable cost (PPA is a nonprofit!), we're holding off on that option.

We will be accepting speaker applications for Imaging USA 2020 in Nashville beginning September 1, 2018. Visit ImagingUSA.org/Speaker-Application

Download, complete and submit the Volunteer Application form found on the Imaging USA website (go to tab: About: Volunteer)

Aside from having the opportunity to see some of the finest photography speakers in the world in action and building friendships with other photographers, you will receive:

  • All Access Complimentary Convention Registration ($323 value)
  • Merits

Pre-Convention Volunteer (Thursday-Saturday):  maximum of (2) Service Merits per convention
Imaging USA Convention Volunteer: (Sunday-Tuesday):  maximum of (2) Service Merits per convention

Note: Maximum of five Annual Conference Merits per person, per year

  • Continental breakfast and  lunch provided during Imaging USA (Sunday-Tuesday)
  • Access to the volunteer’s lounge
  • Imaging USA shirt
  • Support Imaging USA Convention Committee and event staff.
  • Support Imaging USA speakers with program set-up, etc.
  • Check badges of attendees at classroom doors.
  • Assist with speakers' props and/or their print displays.
  • Hand out any material as requested by the speaker(s).
  • Serve as Airport Greeters on Saturday and Sunday
  • Serve as lobby hotel greeters on Saturday and Sunday

As a Convention Committee Volunteer Worker, you would be asked to:

  • Attend the Mandatory Orientation Session, which will be held on Saturday, January 19, 2019 at 5 p.m. Dinner will be served.
  • Assist with two Convention Programs each day-Sunday, Monday and Tuesday (and/or pre-convention programsThursday, Friday, and Saturday)
  • Attend the Daily Briefing each day to stay up to date on any changes in programming, etc. - held on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday at 12:15 PM and includes a luncheon each day.