Claude Blanc, WTM Portfolio Director, Reed Travel Exhibitions, said: “The success of both ATM and ILTM Arabia has provided us with the platform to not only introduce two new events for 2019 – but to create a travel week which encompasses the Middle East’s inbound and outbound markets for general leisure tourism and luxury travel as well as introducing an exclusive consumer event and providing a dedicated networking forum for the region’s top airline specialists, aviation authorities, tourism boards, airports and tour operators.”
According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the direct contribution of travel and tourism to the UAE’s economy is predicted to rise 4.1 percent per annum to AED 108.4bn by 2028.
“Building on these figures, we are confident Arabian Travel Week will be a key driver attracting top international destinations to the attention of the Middle East’s travel trade and consumers and equally, marketing the Middle East to strategic overseas tour operators and travel professionals,” Blanc said
Now in its 26th year, ATM 2019 will welcome over 2,500 exhibiting companies and an expected 40,000 industry professionals, with over 150 countries represented, 65 national pavilions, and more than 100 new exhibitors set to make their ATM debut.
Identifying the top tourism trends showing the greatest growth potential is one of the most valuable insights Arabian Travel Market has to offer, and this year’s event will be no different as it adopts cutting-edge technology and innovation as its official show theme.
Running throughout the event, professionals from across the industry spectrum will discuss the ongoing unprecedented digital disruption, and the emergence of innovative technologies that will fundamentally alter the way in which the hospitality industry operates in the region.
Also new to ATM 2019 will be the Arabia China Tourism Forum which will take place on the Global Stage on Sunday 28th April. With China set to account for a quarter of international tourism by 2030, an expert panel will discuss how destinations around the world can capitalise on this growth. The forum will also include a 30-minute networking session with over 80 Chinese buyers.
Blanc said: “This year’s event is set to showcase the largest ever exhibition from Asia in the history of ATM, with the continent witnessing an 8% YoY increase in total show area and Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Sri Lanka being the largest exhibiting countries.
“The last 12 months have brought unprecedented developments in growing source markets such as China – and the region is poised for further great developments throughout 2019 and beyond.”
As well as the ultra-innovative Travel Tech Show at ATM, other calendar favourites returning for ATM 2019 include the Best Stand Awards, the Travel Agents’ Academy and the Digital Influencers and Buyers’ Speed Networking Events which will feature 20 Chinese buyers for the first time.
Issam Kazim, CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DCTCM), said: “Our presence at Arabian Travel Market forms a core part of our efforts to raise awareness of Dubai as a diverse travel destination to global audiences, and we are pleased to extend our support once again to the 26th edition of this influential event. We remain focused on strengthening collaborations with our network of industry partners, in turn underlining the enormous diversity that the emirate offers global travellers. Keeping in mind this year’s theme of innovation and technology, Dubai as a destination has already embraced a ‘digital, mobile and social first’ agenda that places future readiness at its core while promoting the adoption of disruptive technology. As a global hub of innovation, we will continue to support public-private sector partnerships to evolve our product offering and the way we engage with today’s digitally-savvy consumers. Keeping ahead of the global competition, we are anchored by an unwavering vision of establishing Dubai as the number one most-visited and innovative city in the world.”
Thierry Antinori, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, Emirates Airline, commented: “Cutting-edge technology and innovation, ATM’s theme for 2019, are redefining how customers experience travel across every touchpoint in their journey. As an airline, we are working hard to deliver a more seamless and connected end-to-end experience for our customers, from the time they book to the moment they board our aircraft. This is being propelled by new data capabilities, using technologies like biometrics, personalisation tools, as well as a host of other innovations that will help create bespoke experiences for our passengers, and ultimately help them fly better.”
Chris Newman, Chief Operating Officer, Emaar Hospitality Group, added: “As the Official Hotel partner of ATM, we look forward to welcoming the world to Dubai for this global event. ATM 2019 is underlining the strides Dubai has made in innovating the hospitality landscape through smart transformation and creativity. Further in our role as the Official Hospitality & Hotel Partner of Expo 2020 Dubai, we will highlight the strengths of the city’s hospitality sector to support the Dubai Tourism Strategy 2025. We will showcase our roster of hotels in Dubai and international markets including our upcoming hotel openings.”
Anwar A.Z. Abu Monassar, Destination Director – Strategy & Operation, The Vision, added: “We are approaching a very important target – 2020. This represents two decades’ effort in promoting the destination and it will be in conjunction with Expo2020, a milestone for the entire region. Arabian Travel Market 2019 will gather regional and international professionals and The Vision Destination Management is proud to be once again the official partner in welcoming the industry. We are experiencing a dynamic environment in terms of trends and expectations and our boutique-concept style is thrilled to be an active part of this process.”