Posted by Jemima Herman, Worldwide Partner Conference lead for the Microsoft U.S. Partner Team.

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With WPC 2012 just a few weeks away, we’re in the final stages of planning this year’s experience. Last week, my worldwide counterparts released details about the Value Keynotes, the Session Catalog is published (and includes the U.S. Sub sessions), the WPC Connect tool will be available soon, and you already know that our guest speaker is Deepak Chopra and that Grammy-winning band, Train, will be rocking the Partner Celebration on Thursday night.

Now, it’s time for you to finalize your plans for getting to Toronto, so you can soak up all the WPC goodness!

clip_image002Before I go into the different ways to get to the host city, there is one important thing to cover. All U.S. citizens are required to present a valid passport when entering or re-entering the United States. There may still be time to apply for a new passport or renew your existing passport if necessary. On the WPC website’s Getting There page, you’ll find information and helpful links to resources like the U.S. Department of State.

airplanes,biplanes,childhood,households,leisure,playthings,recreation,toy airplanes,toysTo get to Toronto and the Conference as quickly as possible, air travel is the way to go. If you have not already booked your flight, both Delta Airlines and WestJet are offering discounts to WPC attendees. Take advantage of their discounts and you may have a little extra money to spend while in Toronto! The Getting There page includes details about these discounts and how to get them.

MP900398805[1]If you prefer a more leisurely trip, consider taking the train. I once took a 36-hour train ride to Canada and found it to be heavenly. It’s definitely a more stress-free way to travel—just put up your feet and relax. Plus, there’s no baggage claim to worry about, you get free Wi-Fi during the trip, and you’ll be dropped off right at the Convention Centre. Amtrak offers a number of different routes between Toronto and New York City, Detroit, Minneapolis, Boston, Washington, D.C., and Chicago. Check out the Train Travel Information at the bottom of the Getting There page for details.

Travel Tip: Regardless of how you plan to get to Toronto, use your travel time to start networking! With so many people heading to the Conference from across the U.S., it’s possible that the person sitting next to you on your journey is either a Microsoft partner or a Microsoft employee who is also on his or her way to WPC. What a great opportunity to kick-start your networking efforts and make the most of your attendance.

I look forward to seeing you in July—maybe you’ll have a great story to share with me about your journey!

Not yet registered for WPC 2012? Register today to secure your spot, and stay informed about U.S. activities at http://aka.ms/usatwpc.