Arabian Travel Week, an umbrella brand comprising four co-located shows including the 2019 edition of Arabian Travel Market (ATM) will launch on Saturday. Arabian Travel Week comprises ATM 2019 and ILTM Arabia as well as Connect Middle East, India and Africa 2019 and new consumer-led event ATM Holiday Shopper which kicks the week off.
Claude Blanc, WTM Portfolio Director, Reed Travel Exhibitions, the organisers, 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.”
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 AED108.4 billion 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,” said Blanc.
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 debut.
Running throughout the event which starts on Sunday, 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. 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.
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 percent annual 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.”
Other Global Stage highlights will include sessions on the future of selling travel, Saudi Arabia’s tourism potential, the Global Halal Tourism Summit and the debut ATM Hotel Industry Summit.
Taking place on April 30 and May 1, Connect Middle East, India and Africa will bring together airports, airlines and aviation suppliers in a format that offers formal one-to-one pre-arranged meetings, seminars as well as social opportunities.
In its third year, the ILTM is an exclusive event for those looking to attract HNW travellers from the Middle East to their destination. Returning on the first two days of the ATM, ILTM will allow international luxury suppliers and key luxury buyers to connect via one-to-one pre-scheduled appointments and networking opportunities.