Africa Travel Week 2014: The world came, saw and did tourism business
It was a year in the planning but by the time the inaugural Africa Travel Week closed, Africa had experienced its first all-encompassing week of travel industry events.
It was a year in the planning but by the time the inaugural Africa Travel Week closed, Africa had experienced its first all-encompassing week of travel industry events. The international buying community alongside those from the region came to see what it was all about, to do business and to put the spotlight on Africa. Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE) in partnership with ReedThebe launched the first ever travel industry expo that brought 3 global brands together on one continent.
ILTM Africa, IBTM Africa and WTM Africa created the impact that the organizers had planned from the start. Focused on the luxury travel industry, the b2b MICE sector and the leisure side of tourism, each event comprised one-to-one pre-scheduled business appointments, pre-qualified international hosted buyers who had proven business to deliver (many who had not visited Africa before), plus travel industry professionals from across Africa who qualified as trade visitors and decided their own business agenda. It was all put together with a mix of education and knowledge sessions, keynote conferences and a variety of networking and parties that showed Cape Town to the world.
“Support and testimonials of the business our stakeholders achieved have been overwhelming. The team is now well underway with planning Africa Travel Week 2015, which will of course take place once again at the CTICC. We are engaging with exhibitors who have requested more space, and others who want a presence at more than one show plus several who want to be at all three. The synergy between the 3 events will give the African and sub-Sahara Africa travel industry an even bigger stage for 2015” Said Craig Moyes, Portfolio Director, Africa Travel Week.
“We have been asked to look at new initiatives to support the events, to invite all those who attend to be at the next Forum and to cross over opportunities for networking between shows as the week progresses. We are taking it all in and will be announcing how 2015 will look over the coming months. But we believe we have achieved what we set out to do when we first announced our plans last June, that we would deliver a leading global event for Africa’s travel industry and our stakeholders have told us that we did”.
The statistics (still to be independently audited) spoke for themselves. ILTM Africa hosted buyers from 31 countries. IBTM Africa had 17 nationalities represented and WTM welcomed buyers from 47 countries. The organizers invested money in the buyer program that was well spent for some 700 international buyers to be in Cape Town to attend the week’s events.
Conferences, seminars, workshops and keynote speakers were all part of the experience and more than 10,000 known meetings took place.