European tourism association backs Paris


ETOA – the European tourism association – continues to back Paris. It is convening the second Hotel Committee in Paris on September 29, and is bringing incoming tour operators to a B2B workshop in the city on October 4. This support for the French capital will continue through its main annual workshop on November 4. The following night the association’s gala dinner at the London Hilton on Park Lane has a London-Paris theme, sponsored by Eurostar, featuring showcase performances from the Moulin Rouge and a West End show.

This week’s Hotel Committee, hosted by Jean Claude Balanos, Accor’s Vice President Leisure Sales at the French chain’s new headquarters, will bring together directors from important accommodation providers and tour operators. Topics to be discussed include the impact of security matters on Paris and the rest of Europe along with the mitigating measures which can be consolidated by the travel trade, the impact of city accommodation taxes, the sharing economy, health and safety, as well as particular issues affecting Paris.

In attendance at the committee on the hotel side will be representatives from Accor, Carlson Rezidor, Grandes Etapes Francais, Hans Brinker, Les Hotels de Paris, Louvre Hotels and Millennium Hotels & Resorts. Among the tour operators present will be JAC, JTB, G2, Cox & Kings and Abbey. Chaired by ETOA, the Paris Region Tourist Board will also be contributing.

Following this week’s action on operational and practical matters, on 4th October 30 international tour operator buyers from the ETOA network will be heading to Paris to meet with 50 Ile-de-France tourism suppliers at Paris, the jointly-run B2B workshop realised by ETOA and Visit Paris Region. In its fourth year, this edition is the biggest yet and will support the continued growth and product development of Paris and its region.

Jean Claude Balanos, Accor’s Vice President Leisure Sales said: “We are very happy to host the board meeting of ETOA in Paris in our new HQ in order to show how Paris is welcoming Europe and to have the opportunity to exchange on important topics for the industry.”

Visit Paris Region’s Managing Director Francois Navarro said: “2016 has been one of the most difficult years the Paris has seen. However, tourism professionals have acted quickly to ensure that our visitors continue to receive the very best welcome and the very best offer. The strong partnership between the Paris Region Tourist Board and ETOA continues to allow us to bring together all European operators, which is a truly great thing.”

ETOA CEO Tom Jenkins said: “Paris has not had the easiest of years. When Paris suffers, so does the rest of Europe. It remains the most important single city in Europe for the long-haul visitors who are brought to Europe by our members. This is not just because it is a uniquely desirable as a destination, but because it is the crucial component in multi-city itineraries. For nearly all of ETOA’s members who sell Europe as a destination the most important combination is Paris and London. So it is entirely fitting that this will feature at our annual dinner”