Many of us are influenced to travel by friends and relatives we know in a destination. Yet most destinations don’t engage residents despite their role in shaping tourism. Residents attract people, but also give advice on what to do, influencing the experiences and stories shared through word-of-mouth. Residents also become tourists themselves when they host, showing off their communities, and trying out new experiences for the first time. This presentation will argue that there are missed opportunities, and offer ideas for destinations to engage residents as tourism ambassadors.