CAPE TOWN, South Africa – Day two of Africa’s leading B2B travel and tourism trade event has exceeded the expectations of the visitors and exhibitors yet again and industry leaders are hailing this years’ show as a huge success already. Last night, WTM Africa celebrated the successful opening at the spectacular Grand Café and Beach Club, exhibitors, media and visitors from around the globe enjoyed a fun evening of networking at one of Cape Town’s iconic venues.
A return WTM Africa exhibitor, the award winning, 5 star AM Lodge’s Shaun Boyd hopes to “find new clients during this year’s show as well as build upon existing relationships. If you want new business, WTM Africa is the way to do it.”
The continent is establishing itself as a trending and emerging market in both the inbound and outbound travel and tourism sectors of the industry and the 3rd edition of WTM® Africa is proving it’s worth as the must-attend event, in Africa, where real business gets done. The WTM® Africa exhibition floor has been buzzing over the last two days from the time the doors opened until the final meetings and networking sessions drew to a close.
Sarah Farrell, standing on the Hotel Verde floor, said “we exhibit here, because this is where professionals in the tourism industry gather. It is a place to meet good people, do good business, and a perfect platform to showcase our product.”
In the event programme today, travel professionals were treated, to insights on the 5 key trends for destinations in 2016 by Keith Jenkins, the Responsible Tourism theme continued in the form of a business seminar spearheaded by Professor Harold Goodwin and the business of travel blogging was thrashed out in the conference theatre by some lively panellists amongst many other topics.
During our events programme today, renowned blogger Vaughan and Lauren McShane, writers of The Travel Manuel spoke to visitors on the topic of ‘the business of travel blogging: from branding to building traffic and partnerships’. Visitors of the seminar dubbed the pair ‘techno ninjas’.
A significant highlight for WTM® Africa was the auspicious African Responsible Tourism Awards closed day 2 of WTM Africa 2016. The heroes of responsible tourism in Africa were honoured at the inaugural African Responsible Tourism Awards Ceremony, sponsored by Wesgro, at WTM® Africa.
Congratulations to the following winners:
• Shark Spotters and Nkwichi Lodge: Beach Tourism Award
• Bushman Kloof Wilderness Reserve: Contribution to Cultural Heritage Conservation Award
• Spier: Accommodation for Responsible Employment Award
• ATKV Goudini Spa and Flamingo Tours: Operator for People with Disabilities Award
• !Xaus Lodge: Poverty Reduction Award
• Great Plains Conservation: Responsible Tourism Marketing Campaign Award
• National Department of Tourism, South Africa: Public Sector Policy/Support Award
• Mara Naboisho Conservancy: Wildlife Conservation Award
• Ol Pejeta Conservancy: Wildlife Conservation Award
• Marine Dynamics: People’s Choice in Responsible Tourism Award
• Mara Naboisho Conservancy: 2016 Overall Winners
Tomorrow, marks the final day of WTM® Africa 2016 but the day’s events are showing no signs of slowing down with seminars on experiential travel; how to cope with the new visa regulations in South Africa; and other stimulating topics filled with information not to be missed. A full-on line up that will keep everyone busy right to the end.
Tomorrow, as part of Africa Travel Week, ibtm Africa will kick off with registration at 08h00. The one-day conference will provide African exhibitors in this niche field to meet face to face with selected senior international buyers, network with like-minded business people and harness the many opportunities that exist on the continent for MICE.
There is still one more day of WTM Africa left and if you have not yet been able to get down to the CTICC you -are not too late, there is a jam-packed final day in store.
eTN is a media partner for WTM.