New structure to accommodate extended business sessions, as largest travel event in Middle East announces 2011 dates
Arabian Travel Market, the leading travel exhibition in the Middle East, has unveiled a new format to its four-day event, by introducing an additional day of business, while still maintaining a dedicated session for consumers.
The 2011 show which takes place at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre will open a day earlier running from Monday to Thursday (May 2-5), with new opening times creating an extra day of business on Thursday followed by a dedicated consumer session later the same day between 3pm and 9pm.
“We have decided to change the format of the show after a survey revealed that the majority of participants wanted more time to explore business opportunities, while also retaining a consumer element. The new format accommodates that request,” said Mark Walsh, Group Exhibition Director, Reed Travel Exhibitions.
“Although business will always be the key driver of the event consumers still provide valuable end-user feedback and key insight for industry professionals,” added Walsh.
Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai and approaching its eighteenth year, the show has grown to become the largest showcase of its kind in the region and one of the biggest in the world. This year 2,236 exhibitors covering over 20,000 square metres, attracted more than 22,000 visitors.
“This is a logical move for Arabian Travel Market as the Middle East region is one of the fastest growing inbound and outbound markets in the world,” said Saleh Mohammed Al Geziry, Director, Overseas Promotions and Inward Mission.
“Dubai will continue to provide a platform to support key industry events like Arabian Travel Market, which help to shape the future of the region’s tourism landscape, not only in terms of infrastructure, but also in terms of social, environmental and cultural development, ” added Al Geziry.
According to the World Travel Organisation (WTO), the travel industry has witnessed seven consecutive months of growth to the end of April this year. Indeed the number of international tourist arrivals worldwide from January to April 2010 grew to over 258 million, which is a 7% year-on-year increase and during the same period the International Air Transport Association (IATA) reported a 6% growth in air transport.
The WTO’s 2020 tourism vision forecasts that the Middle East region which currently receives 36 million visitors, will attract 69 million tourists by 2020, an average growth rate of 6.7%.
As such, the GCC region and in particular Dubai, has continued to invest heavily in tourism infrastructure. According to Dubai-based research company, Proleads, there are currently over 470 active hotel projects (those not completed, on-hold or cancelled) in the GCC countries, 258 of which are in the UAE. In fact $1.7 billion will be spent on hospitality projects throughout the Gulf this year.
“Through strategic investment, Dubai’s tourism industry has grown exponentially over the past decade and will continue to be a key economic driver in the future,” said Al Geziry.
For more information on Arabian Travel Market 2011, please log on to www.arabiantravelmarket.com
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