Africa Travel Week brings three main events to Cape Town

(eTN) - Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE) has announced the dates for a three-pronged approach in holding three key promotional events at the same time and at the same venue.

Africa Travel Week brings three main events to Cape Town

(eTN) – Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE) has announced the dates for a three-pronged approach in holding three key promotional events at the same time and at the same venue. The “Africa Travel Week” will be staged in Cape Town from April 28 to May 3, 2014 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre. The three main events merged into one week of promotional activity for travel to Africa will be WTM Africa, IBTM Africa, and ILTM Africa, showcasing inbound and outbound travel, general leisure, luxury travel, business travel, and the MICE sector.

Reed is aiming to create a unified platform to promote Africa, which will make the Cape Town event THE place to be next year for all and sundry dealing with African tourism and travel.

Richard Mortimore, the Managing Director of Reed Travel Exhibition, was quoted in a media release saying: “Reed has been exploring opportunities in Africa for some time, and the success of our first launch event, ILTM Africa, has given us the platform to now introduce two more of our global industry brands to create ‘Africa Travel Week’ and make it the leading global event for the continent’s travel industry.

‘Because of the sheer size of the continent and diversity of its travel offering, all three brands will help bring the world to Africa and promote Africa to the world’s leading source markets. RTE is committed to the African continent and its future as a global player in the leisure, business, and luxury tourism sectors.”

WTM Africa, taking place between May 2-3, is expected to attract exhibitors from all categories of the leisure travel industry within sub-Sahara Africa as well as North African destinations, aligning itself with other RTE sister events like WTM, WTM Latin America, Arabian Travel Market, and International French Travel Market – Top Resa.

IBTM Africa, taking place April 28-30, will be a table-top summit located in the West Ballroom, adjacent to the exhibition hall in the CTICC. It will target the inbound and outbound meetings, events, incentives, and business travel sectors of sub-Sahara Africa, with suppliers from the MICE sector including hotels, venues, convention bureaus, DMCs, technology providers, and suppliers of services. IBTM will reflect the brand values of its sister events CIBTM (China), EIBTM (Europe), GIBTM (Middle East), AIME (Australia), AIBTM (US), and IBTM India.

ILTM Africa, also taking place from April 2-30 will be the second edition of this event, having staged the successful inaugural exhibition earlier this year. A table-top summit located in the East Ballroom of CTICC will, in line with its successful launch, target Africa’s inbound luxury travel market. ILTM Africa is part of a global portfolio of luxury travel events that include ILTM (Cannes), ILTM Americas, ILTM Asia, ILTM Japan, and ILTM Spa.

Both ILTM Africa and IBTM Africa will operate with a pre-qualified Hosted Buyer program and a pre-scheduled appointment system. WTM Africa will combine a Hosted Buyer and appointment system with a trade visitor program.

Africa Travel Week will be supported by the Thebe Exhibitions Group, based out of Johannesburg. “We will be working with Thebe as our local management services contractor to provide logistics, operations, and local sales and marketing services,” commented RTE’s Richard Mortimore.

Meanwhile, Arthur Gillis, the CEO of the Protea Hospitality Group, the largest hotel group on the African continent with some 130 hotels in 10 countries, commented on the upcoming events, saying: “Africa Travel Week is the sort of event that exposes the best of the continent to a global audience that covers the entire travel spectrum from leisure to luxury, business to conferencing. Cape Town, arguably one of the most beautiful cities in the world, will be the perfect backdrop to a travel showcase of this magnitude. The Protea Hospitality Group firmly supports collaborative efforts of this nature in which tourism players work together for the greater good of growing travel and investment in Africa by creating infrastructure and permanent jobs in a market sector that I believe will continue to show steady growth in the long term.”

With the UNWTO General Meeting coming to Africa in August this year, hosted jointly by the cities of Livingstone in Zambia and Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe, there is an obvious trend visible now to focus on Africa to a much greater extent than in the past and finally make use of the continent’s many unique attractions and first-class meeting facilities, hotels, resorts, and safari lodges which have sprung up over the past decades. These developments in Africa took place almost unnoticed by the global travel market, which last year saw in excess of 1 billion people take to the road, rail, rivers, oceans, and skies and yet bringing only a paltry small percentage of those travelers to Africa as a whole. Time for more focus on Africa and RTE obviously has captured that mood at the right time and in right measure.

Author: editor