ITB Asia, the leading travel trade show for the Asian market, opened its doors today at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.
There has been a significant interest in the MICE and Corporate travel products, with over 85 per cent of attending buyers leveraging on the business matching platform to source for new destinations and travel products, and gain new industry knowledge.
“As we are witnessing a rise in travel demand amongst Asian buyers, we are constantly working with our exhibitors and partners to create new frontiers and provide the best business platforms for them to connect with the key decision makers in the MICE, Corporate and Leisure travel industry. To ensure high quality of buyers at our show, more than 60 per cent of our confirmed buyers are recommended through our exhibitors and partners. We have secured over 15,000 matched appointments and we anticipate more during the event,” said Katrina Leung, Executive Director of Messe Berlin (Singapore), the organiser of ITB Asia.
ITB Asia is now in its ninth year and this edition is the biggest with strong contributions from Indonesia, Finland and Japan who have increased their exhibition space by more than 60 per cent. The biggest exhibitor is the Ministry of Tourism of The Republic of Indonesia with a record breaking booth space of 400sqm – the largest booth country representative in the history of ITB Asia in Singapore. It also welcomes newcomers including Panama and Taiwan.
The three-day event also kicked off successfully with Google and Booking.com sharing about the impact of digital disruption and trends driving customer experience in travel in their opening keynote address.
In addition, the event opened with a stimulating panel discussion by some of ITB Asia’s new partners such as CrescentRating and International SOS, who provided insights to the key corporate and consumer trends that are impacting the travel industry in Asia Pacific and how businesses can effectively engage with the different generation of travellers given the ever-changing travel landscape today.
Key highlights of this year’s show:
- For the first time ever, the keynote sessions will stretch across all three days
- This year, ITB Asia holds the most comprehensive conference line-up with over 5,440 conference minutes. This is 730 more minutes as compared to 2015.
- ITB Asia will be holding its inaugural MICE Day on 20 October 2016. The sessions held on the second day of the exhibition will cover a full spectrum of key issues faced by the MICE sector today.
- New partnerships with prominent industry heavyweights such as the Society for Incentive Travel Excellence (SITE), Singapore Association of Convention and Exhibition Organisers and Suppliers (SACEOS) sealed, as well as a renewed agreement with the Incentive Conference & Event Society Asia Pacific (ICESAP).
- There is an increase in show presence from airlines with The Singapore Airlines being the official airline, along with other players such as Finnair, Air Berlin, Qatar Airways etc.
Some of the key conference speakers for this year also include:
o Greg Schulze, Senior Vice President, Commercial Strategy and Services, Expedia Group
o Andrew Hughes, Vice President Sales, Marketing & Sourcing APMEA, GTA
o Jenny Wu, Chief Strategy Officer, Ctrip.com International
For more information on ITB Asia 2016, visit www.itb-asia.com.