International experts in Jordan to develop e-business for tourism


AMMAN – To help prepare Jordan’s tourism sector to do business online and tap into the multi-billion-dollar global online tourism market, an e-business conference took place today, organized by the USAID/Jordan Tourism Development Project II in coordination with the Ministry of Tourism & Antiquities (MoTA). The conference hosted international and local tourism e-business experts to share their knowledge and experience with Jordan’s tourism sector. Also during the event, a new online payment solutions, PAYNET, was launched by STS and Visa Jordan. Under an initiative led by the USAID tourism project, PAYNET has been customized for Jordan’s tourism sector and is now ready to be used at preferential rates to facilitate fast and easy online bookings from anywhere in the world.

“This conference gives Jordan’s tourism sector the opportunity to learn from some of the best e-business and online marketing experts on how to effectively present and sell their tourism products and services online,” said HE Mrs. Suzanne Afanah, Minister of Tourism and Antiquities.

“In today’s digital age, ‘online’ is the place to be. That is where potential visitors are spending their time – reading, researching, preparing and booking their holidays – and if Jordan’s tourism sector does not have a strong online presence it will miss out on having access to billions of dollars of global travel business,” explained Ibrahim Osta, USAID/Jordan Tourism Development Project II Chief of Party.

Expert international speakers from Expedia, South Africa Tourism, Mobiguides, Clicks2Customers, Nightsbridge, E-Tourism Frontiers, and, as well as local speakers from Microsoft, STS, and SADDA shared their knowledge and experiences about attracting customers to book and pay for tourism services online. Participants were introduced to the latest e-business solutions available in the market and learned how to convert users into customers.

During the conference, the USAID/Jordan Tourism Development Project II released a “how to” guide to digital, social media marketing, and e-business for the tourism sector. This provides a comprehensive reference for those working in Jordan’s tourism industry on how to create and maintain a strong presence online in order to reach the huge and growing market of international travelers who book their travel online.

Global online travel bookings are growing at a rate of about 35 percent each year, and the e-business conference will help shift Jordan’s tourism business online to take advantage of this rapidly increasing trend.

This follows on from a conference held in July to introduce Jordan’s tourism sector to digital and social media marketing, and will help participants convert online business into actual sales. Participants included hotels, tour operators, car rental companies, handicraft retailers, guides, and others.

The event was supported by the Jordan Tourism Board (JTB), Jordan Hotel Association (JHA), and Jordan Inbound Tour Operators Association (JITOA).