Following the recent United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA) annual Conference & Marketplace, Terry Dale, President & CEO of USTOA, said, “Malta is a rising star! Over the past four years, USTOA tour operator members, along with the press, have widely recognized that this is definitely a country to be seen and heard from. Malta’s proactive presence in the US market is making a huge difference in the minds of tour operators as well as consumers and that’s great economic news for Malta.”
The 2017 USTOA Conference & Marketplace took place at the Diplomat Resort & Spa, November 27 to December 1 in Hollywood, Florida.
Michelle Buttigieg, Malta Tourism Authority Representative North America, said at the successful conclusion of the 2017 USTOA Annual Conference & Marketplace, that “since MTA rejoined USTOA four years ago, Malta has continued to increase the number of tour operators who are requesting to add Malta to their itineraries and those who are expanding their Malta tour product, has grown to about 30 in 2017.” She added that “in fact tourism from North America itself has grown steadily from year to year and the most recent figure indicates it is has increased 35% over the same period last year.”
This year at USTOA, MTA was a sponsor of the World Bazaar, accompanied by a delegation of four Maltese DMCs and hoteliers. The delegation included Jason Allan, Exclusively Malta, Alexandra Bajada, Corinthia Palace Hotel, Ian and Francesca Tonna from United Travel and Chiara Hensel Ellul from Le Meridian Hotel. Donating Maltese products for the Malta table at the World Bazaar were fashion designers Charles & Ron and Mdina Glass.
Ms. Buttigieg noted that Malta’s growing popularity in the US, creating consumer interest in the destination, is also a result of the continued coverage in major travel consumer media. Once again, Malta has been named to the Places to go lists, which for 2018 include such prominent titles as Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, Lonely Planet, Architectural Digest, Frommer’s and Fodor’s.