BANGKOK, Thailand – Pre-event registration begins as delegates arrive at IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific 2012. From today till October 4, the registration desk at Bangkok Convention Centre at CentralWorld will receive some 2,579 delegates comprised of exhibitors, buyers, corporate travel managers, conference delegates, media, VIPs and trade visitors from 57 countries across the globe.

The pre-business days provide delegates with numerous education opportunities, starting with Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) newly-revamped Fundamentals of Business Travel Management[TM] (FBTM) – Associate Level Course. Previously known as the Corporate Travel Expert (CTE) Designation course, the FBTM course will be facilitated by Mr. Dean Fowles, Principal, Travel & Expenses Management, Global Sourcing Services at Rio Tinto, Singapore, and Mr. Hank Roeder, CTE, Vice President, Chapter Relations, GBTA. The course has been revised to a day-long format, yet another change from its earlier 1.5 days duration.

Course content, which has been specially tailored to corporate travel professionals in the Asia-Pacific region, has attracted participation from 14 corporate travel managers from companies such as AAPC Thailand, Amadeus, American Express, BCD Travel APAC, Caterpillar Thailand, Escapades, HPN Global, Huawei Technologies India, Merck, Michelin Siam, MINDEF, Ministry of Defense Singapore, Mplus Consults, Sanofi-Aventis, and ST Electronics.

GBTA, a long time IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific partner, has big plans for the course in Asia-Pacific. Mr. Welf Ebeling, Regional Director of GBTA Asia, said, “The Associate level course has been very well received this year. We want to bring the manager level course to Asia as well. This is an intensive 6-day course suited for experienced corporate travel professionals. Our Leader level course is still held only in America for now.” Speaking about the Associate level course at the event today he said, “This course is meant for all those who are new in the corporate travel industry, as well as for administrative staff, executive secretaries, human resource personnel, etc. who take care of travel booking and related roles in their organizations. It has a global outlook, but from the Asia-Pacific needs point of view.

Participant, Ms. Worawalant Wongsuwannasarn, Procurement Manager at Sanofi-Aventis, Thailand said: “Our company has a lot of growth strategies in the pipeline, but we want to understand how they fit in from a global standpoint. We look forward to hearing from other participants and benchmarking our strategies against theirs.”

The venue also plays host to the Association Competency Course For Professional Association Executives. Organized by the Australasian Society of Association Executives (AuSAE) and the Canadian Society of Association Executives (CSAE), this 1.5 days course returns to the double-bill event for the fourth consecutive year.

Twenty-one association executives from leading companies such as AMTT, Creative Destination Management (CDM), India-Thai Chamber of Commerce, Malaysian-Thai Chamber of Commerce, Montien Hotel Pattaya, NCC Management & Development, Queen Sirikit National Convention Center, SACEOS, Siam University, Thai Exhibition Association, Thailand Incentive and Convention Association, Tourism Council of Thailand, Plaza Athenee: A Royal Meridien Hotel Bangkok, and Thailand Management Association have signed up for the course.

Veteran course facilitator, Mr. Simon Pryor, FSAE, FAIM, Immediate Past President of AuSAE said: “We are very pleased with the turnout this year. It’s a large and diverse group, a really great mix of people and organizations. Thailand is a dynamic market with associations looking to establish international links. Well-trained staff with the ability to work in teams is absolutely key in this industry, and this course provides the best training.”

The course is co-facilitated by Mr. Dave Cybak, Executive Vice President of CSAE Canada. This is the first time Mr. Cybak will be conducting the course at IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific. He said, “I am pleased and heartened to see Asia-Pacific’s interest in the course. I would love to see people in the association world understand the need for standardized processes before spending time and money reinventing the wheel; this course provides the necessary tools for them to understand the business processes. The size of the class today is perfect for discussion and exchange of ideas.”

The networking highlights of the day include the Friendly Golf Game at new venue, Suwan Golf and Country Club. The day-long game and gathering is a popular networking event and a great way to relax before the start of the business days.

International buyers, corporate travel managers, and media delegates had a chance to catch up with peers, while re-acquainting themselves with host city, Bangkok, at the pre-show city tours. Organized by the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) and Thailand Incentive and Convention Association (TICA), the 4 tours gave delegates the opportunity to experience Thai culture through the various itineraries. From a cruise down the Chao Phraya and Thonburi canals to the quaint China town, from visits to traditional artist communities to Thai cooking classes, these experiential tours are a wonderful way for delegates to immerse themselves into the culture of Thailand.