ITB Asia News 2020 - Day 1

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#03 70% OF



IN 2021











for Southeast Asia,

Switzerland Tourism



Richard Barnes


ITB Asia News

ITB Community – innovating in uncharted waters

As uncertainty continues to be a

bugbear in these strange times,

creative ideas that bring people

together in an effective and efficient

manner are all the more important.

To this end, the creation by Messe Berlin

(Singapore) of the “ITB Community in

Asia” has been very timely. With it, ITB

Asia’s organisers made the bold decision

to ensure that the annual show could still

go on, providing meaningful conversations

that have always been associated with the

physical events, while fully leveraging the

benefits of a digital platform.

ITB Community offers a comprehensive

user experience, virtual events (including

the current ITB Asia Virtual) with business

networking opportunities, and knowledge

exchange with expansive interactive content

for community members to leverage on.

Being the unique platform of its kind for the

travel trade industry in Asia, ITB Community

also has a year-long engagement programme

for all travel and tourism stakeholders, free of

charge for its inception year.

The Community leverages ITB Asia’s global

database of travel suppliers and buyers to

virtually continue their conversations and

to contribute best practices and content for

the travel trade to navigate the recovery of


As the leading travel and trade show in Asia,

ITB Asia thus remains committed to building

a stronger community to support recovery

and restore confidence in travel


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Huidi Wu

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Cover: © Switzerland Tourism

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by Katrina



ITB Asia: more than ever,

a “not to be missed” event

As ITB Asia gets under way today, it

has to be said that the level of thought

leadership is such that, despite being

“virtual”, it is definitely a “not to be

missed” event.

Today, we kick-off at 9:30am with an exceptional

keynote from Hermione Joye, Sector Lead, Travel

and Vertical Search APAC, Google, on the “State

of Travel in APAC: Identifying Trends to Prepare

for the Road Ahead”. Paired with insightful data

and analysis, Google’s sharing in this session will

highlight emerging trends that travel companies

should consider to navigate the road ahead.

The other remarkable keynote this morning – at

9:45am, comes from Angel Llull Mancas, Vice

President & Managing Director, Asia Pacific,, who talks about “Innovating in a

pandemic”. This session highlights how we can

stay agile and continue to leverage the power

Katrina Leung

Managing Director

of Messe Berlin (Singapore),

the organiser of ITB Asia

of innovation in order to respond to the new

realities and customer behaviours that have

emerged during this pandemic.

Today sees a whole swathe of C-Suite talks

– far too many to mention briefly, but can be

found in the programme guide in the following

pages. Some of the names worth mentioning

include Claudio Bellinzona, Co-Founder &

COO, Musement, Allen Law, CEO, Park Hotel

Group, Amir Amidi, Managing Partner, Travel &

Hospitality, Plug and Play Tech Centre, Gloria

Slethaug, CEO, Connexus Travel, Jane Warren,

Managing Director, Reed & Mackay Travel

Singapore, Bruce Poon Tip, CEO, G Adventures,

Alessandro Dassi, Managing Director, Overseas

Expansion, Fosun Tourism Group, CEO, Thomas

Cook China… just to mention a few. It just gets

better as there's a lot more to come in the next

few days!







An overwhelming majority of US and Canadian

travellers (99%) are eager to travel again, with 70%

stating that they plan to take a holiday in 2021,

according to a Travel Leaders Group survey of nearly

3,000 frequent travellers.

The survey was conducted in

September in conjunction with

the World Travel & Tourism

Council. Results indicate that

45% of respondents have

already made plans or are

starting to make finite plans

for their next holiday, while

54% say they are dreaming of

when they can travel again.

“These are really strong

numbers. The fact that 99% of

travellers surveyed said they

are planning a trip or looking

forward to the time they can

travel again indicates that as

concerns about COVID-19 are

addressed, leisure travellers

will lead the recovery,” said

John Lovell, President of Travel

Leaders Group.

In the survey, 23% of

respondents said they plan to

travel by the end of 2020, 70%

said they will travel in 2021

with just 18% saying they will

resume traveling in 2022.

© 1999 - Calistemon

“Consumer uncertainty

about the risk of exposure

or concerns about being

quarantined is a core problem,”

said Gloria Guevara, WTTC

President & CEO. “With rapid

testing to replace quarantine

requirements, enhanced

contact tracing and industrywide

standards by sector that

can be clearly communicated

to the public, we can help

alleviate many of those


The willingness of Americans

to travel can be seen in the

slow, but steady, increase in

the Transportation Security

Administration’s (TSA) daily

screening numbers, which fell

below 90,000 a day in April

and are now approaching 1

million a day at peak periods.

In 2019, TSA daily traveler

counts averaged between 2.3

and 2.7 million passengers a


Buddhist monk playing checkers with an American

tourist - Zhongdian (now Shangri-La) Yunnan, China

Sentosa, Singapore’s

holiday island, launches

new experiences and


Attracting some 19 million Singaporeans and tourists

annually, Sentosa continues to go from strength to strength

as the region’s most dynamic tourism hub.

The 500-hectare resort island of

Sentosa is home to more than

30 themed attractions, some 120

food & beverage outlets, golden

sandy beaches, 17 hotels with

more than 4,000 rooms, two

premier 18-hole golf courses, a

deep-water yachting marina, lush

greenery and more.

As part of the SingapoRediscovers

campaign, a range of new

and attractively priced leisure

packages and experiences have

been rolled out to encourage the

local residents to visit Sentosa.

From Singapoliday staycation

packages to daycation deals

for those who just wants take a

breather and escape to the island

for a day, these new offerings

feature itineraries themed around

Island Life, Heritage Discovery,

Wellness Escape, and Nature


For example, one of the Island Life

staycation packages includes a

HydroDash, Singapore’s very first floating aqua park

unique tea tailoring experience

and a private three-hour yacht trip

to the Southern Islands, among

other experiences. For visitors

looking for a treat, Wellness

Escape packages offers bundles

such as 90min massage at So

SPA by Sofitel and a 4-course

set meal at Quentin’s Bar and

restaurant. Sentosa is also inviting

visitors to indulge in a celebration

on the island, offering romantic

Sunset and City light packages

which includes attractions such

as the Singapore Cable Car and

The Royal Albatross.

These new and refreshing

offerings are part of Sentosa and

its Island Partners continuous

efforts to entice and grow the

domestic market segment

Read more




Programme updated as of 15 October 2020

Live Conferences


9:30 AM - 9:45 AM - KEYNOTE

The State of Travel in APAC: Identifying Trends to

Prepare for the Road Ahead

Hermione Joye, Sector Lead, Travel and Vertical

Search APAC, Google

9:45 AM - 10:00 AM - KEYNOTE

Innovating in a Pandemic

Angel Llull Mancas, Vice President & Managing

Director, Asia Pacific,

10:00 AM - 10:15 AM

MICE Insights: Building a Resilient Post-COVID-19

MICE Industry

Dr Edward Koh, Executive Director, Conventions,

Meetings & Incentive Travel, Singapore Tourism Board


10:15 AM - 10:30 AM

C-Suite Talk: What Tours & Activities Companies

Can Do to Prepare for Re-opening and Recovery

Claudio Bellinzona, Co-Founder & COO, Musement

10:30 AM - 10:45 AM

C-Suite Talk: Navigating the Crisis and Beyond:

Rebound, Recession & Reimagination

Allen Law, CEO, Park Hotel Group

10:45 AM - 11:00 AM

C-Suite Talk: Investing Through Chaos:

Opportunities for Travel Tech Startups

Amir Amidi, Managing Partner, Travel & Hospitality,

Plug and Play Tech Center

11:00 AM - 11:15 AM

MICE Insights: “Brains for Gains” – The Purpose

of Meetings Before, During and After the


Mathias Posch, President, International Conference

Services, Immediate Past President, IAPCO -

International Association of Professional Congress


11:15 AM - 11:30 AM

MICE Insights: Understanding Your Virtual

Attendees – The Antidote to Virtual Fatigue

Kaori Pereyra-Lago, Regional Head, Asia Pacific,

Global Business Development & Strategy, American

Express Meetings & Events

11:30 AM - 11:45 AM

C-Suite Talk: Digitalization of Tourism: COVID and


Vivek Neb, Managing Director, Grail Insights;

Margie Whitehouse, CMO, Saudi Tourism Authority

11:45 AM - 12:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: Navigating Asia’s Challenging

Business Travel Market

Gloria Slethaug, CEO, Connexus Travel; Jane

Warren, Managing Director, Reed & Mackay Travel


12:00 PM - 12:15 PM

MICE Insights: Customer Journey – The New


Natalie Simmons, Global General Manager,


12:15 PM - 12:30 PM

A Global Perspective for Travel & Tourism


Maribel Rodriguez, Senior Vice President,

Membership & Commercial, World Travel & Tourism

Council (WTTC)

12:30 PM - 12:45 PM

MICE Insights: Hybrid Meetings – Inspiring Both

Virtual and In-Person Audiences to Sign Up

Jan Tonkin, Founder & Managing Director, The

Conference Company; Stephen Noble, Manager

Asia-Pacific, The Conference Company

12:45 PM - 1:00 PM

MICE Insights: After Lockdown – Meetings &

Events Post-Crisis

Jessie States, Director, MPI Academy

1:00 PM - 1:15 PM

MICE Insights: The Who, What and How of

Bouncing Back for MICE Venues in a Post-COVID


Enid Low, Chief Strategy Officer, AsiaWorld-Expo

1:15 PM - 1:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: The New Prospects for Corporate Travel

Tobias Ragge, CEO, HRS Group

1:30 PM - 1:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: How to Survive the (Hospitality)

Zombie Apocalypse

Brett Henry, President Director, MG Group;

Dan Lynn, Co-Founder, ZUZU Hospitality;

Vikram Malhi, Co-Founder, ZUZU Hospitality

1:45 PM - 2:00 PM

Destination Marketing: How to Attract Southeast

Asia’s Muslim Travelers Post COVID-19

Nina Kubik-Cheng, Vice President, Asia Pacific;

Wego Brent Anderson, Regional General Manager,

South-South East Asia, Tourism Australia; Hannah

Pearson, Founder; Pear Anderson Faried

Ismunandar, Co-founder

2:00 PM - 2:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: Thriving in the Changing Times

Alfan Hendro, CEO, Accommodation & Eats,


2:15 PM - 2:30 PM

New Ways of Generating Business for Tours and


Pete Saxby, Associate Director, Asia Pacific, Bókun, a

Tripadvisor company

2:30 PM - 2:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: Beyond Recovery: Rethinking Our

Travel Industry’s Immune System

Nicholas Lim, Managing Director, The Travel

Corporation, Asia

2:45 PM - 3:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: What Do Today’s Corporate

Travelers Want and How Companies Can Adapt

Joanne Sully, Vice President & Regional General

Manager, Asia Pacific, AMEX GBT; Daniel Carceles,

Vice President & Head of Service Delivery, Asia

Pacific, AMEX GBT

3:00 PM - 3:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: Beyond COVID-19 – Tourism


Poh Chi Chuan, Acting CTO, Singapore Tourism

Board (STB)

3:15 PM - 3:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: How Tours & Activities Will Evolve

Bruce Poon Tip, CEO, G Adventures Kris Martinez,

Mayor, G Adventures

3:30 PM - 3:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: Build Back Better for Animals

Helen Usher, Co-Founder & Director, ANIMONDIAL

3:45 PM - 4:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: A Customer-led Recovery: How

to Stay Close to the Customer and Continue to

Innovate During the Pandemic

Adam Schwab, Co-Founder & CEO, Luxury Escapes

John O'Shea, Senior Research Analyst, Ord Minnett


4:00 PM - 4:15 PM

The Marketing Gurus: Reactivating Your

Marketing Channels After COVID-19

Alexander Steenbakkers-Noffke, Managing Director,


4:15 PM - 4:30 PM

MICE: Where Else but Korea!

Jonathan Lee, Junior MICE Manager, Korea Tourism

Organization Singapore Office

4:30 PM - 4:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: A Golden Age for Direct Bookings?

Daniel Mourad, General Manager, APAC, Triptease

5:00 PM - 5:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: How to Win Back the Chinese

Traveller in the Post-pandemic Era

Alessandro Dassi, Managing Director, Overseas

Expansion, Fosun Tourism Group, CEO, Thomas Cook;

China Chen Bo, Assistant President, Fosun Tourism


5:15 PM - 5:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: Planning for the Recovery

Adam Sacks, President, Tourism Economics

5:30 PM - 5:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Future of Travel Post-COVID19

Anita Mendiratta, Special Advisor to Secretary

General, The UN World Tourism Organization


5:45 PM - 6:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Great Reset for Corporate Travel

David Hughes, Managing Director, Asia Pacific,

UNIGLOBE Travel International


10:00 AM - 10:10 AM

Keynote: Travelling in the New Normal

Axel Hefer, Managing Director & CEO, trivago

10:10 AM - 10:30 AM

Keynote: Leadership in Times of Crisis

Deep Kalra, Founder & Group Executive Chairman,

MakeMyTrip; Philip C. Wolf, Founder, PhoCusWright,

Mentor & Serial Board Director

10:30 AM - 10:45 AM

Keynote: The Experience Starts Online: Attracting

Travelers With Memorable and Easy to Book Tours

and Activities

Ben Drew, President, Viator; Kristin Dorsett, VP of

Supply, Viator; Shiyi Tay, Manager, Business Planning,

Tour East Group

10:45 AM - 11:00 AM

C-Suite Talk: The Tour Operator of the Future

James Thornton, CEO, Intrepid Travel

11:00 AM - 11:15 AM

C-Suite Talk: Care and Prepare: Your Guide to Recommencing


Brett Thomson, General Manager, Corporate Travel,

TAG; Tony Loughran, CEO, Zero Risk International



Watch all keynotes, live and on-demand sessions and replays @

11:15 AM - 11:30 AM

Rethink and Reshape: Pivoting to Domestic


Chuan Sheng (C.S.) Soong, VP, Corporate

Development, Klook

11:30 AM - 11:45 AM

Getting Creative: Bringing Back Group Bookings

Edward Wright, Regional Vice President, South East

Asia, Hospitality, Amadeus

11:45 AM - 12:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: “I Want It – and I Want It Now!”: How

Can Smart Offline Data and AI-Empower Omni-

Channel Strategy?

Miron Mironiuk, Founder & CEO, Cosmose

12:00 PM - 12:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Future of Business-to-Business


Kurt Knackstedt, CEO, Troovo

12:15 PM - 12:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: The New Normal of Incentive Travel


SD Nandakumar, President & Country Head, B2B &

Foreign Exchange, SOTC Travel

12:30 PM - 12:45 PM

The Secret Sauce for Winning ‘The New Guest’

Kamesh Shukla, Executive Vice President - Asia

Pacific, Middle East & Africa, RateGain

12:45 PM - 1:00 PM

Safety First: A Guide to Destination Marketing as

Travel Recovers

Sarah Mathews, Group Head of Destination

Marketing APAC, Tripadvisor

1:15 PM - 1:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: How Virtual Reality is Changing the

Way We Experience Travel

Laura Olin, COO & Partner, ZOAN

1:30 PM - 1:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: How to Prepare Your Travel

Programme for Post COVID

Ken Kuguru, Managing Director, APAC, Egencia

1:45 PM - 2:00 PM

Global Flight Search Trends and Key Traveller


Paul Whiteway, Senior Director APAC, Skyscanner

2:00 PM - 2:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Traveler’s New Purchasing

Behaviours We Need to Know

Marco Corradino, CEO,; Alessandra

Di Lorenzo, CEO of Forward,

2:15 PM - 2:30 PM

Is It ‘Sayonara’ to Online Booking in Corporate


Carl Jones, Vice President, Head of Travel, Asia

Pacific & Greater China, SAP Concur

2:30 PM - 2:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Rise of the Phoenix: How Online

Experiences Shape the Future of Travel

Matthijs Keij, CEO, Withlocals

2:45 PM - 3:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: COVID-19 as a Fast Track to Fully

Digital Travel Distribution

Oliver Dlouhy, Co-Founder & CEO,

3:00 PM - 3:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: Doing Things Differently – The

Changing Ways People Discover, Book and

Experience Restaurants During a Pandemic

Yuki Imai, Chief Supply Officer, Quandoo; Ayran

Myhill, Director of Business Development, Quandoo

3:15 PM - 3:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Future of Travel Technology

Amit Madhan, President & Group Head - Technology

& eBusiness, Thomas Cook India

3:30 PM - 3:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: Our Industry Would Be a Better

Place if…

David Gunnarsson, CEO, Dohop

3:45 PM - 4:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: In Search of Customer Loyalty Post

COVID-19: A New Ecosystem and How to Make It


Spencer Lee, CEO, BIGLIFE

4:00 PM - 4:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: Leveraging an Intelligent Back Office

in Turbulent Times

Mike Tansey, Managing Director - Growth Markets

Travel Leader, Accenture; Sean Carpenter, Client

Account Lead (Middle East and Africa), Accenture;

Kevin Tanzola, VP, Finance Operations, Middle East

Africa, Marriott International

4:15 PM - 4:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: Restoring Confidence in Air Travel

After the COVID-19 Shutdown

Alexandre de Juniac, Director General & CEO,

International Air Transport Association (IATA)


10:00 AM - 10:15 AM

China’s Session: How to Revive Homestays After the


Jennifer Li, EVP & Chief Business Officer, Tujia

10:15 AM - 10:30 AM

China’s Session: Welcoming Tourists Back in China

and What the World Can Learn From the China’s


Jackey Yu, Associate Partner, McKinsey & Company

10:30 AM - 10:45 AM

5 Steps to Building a Post-pandemic Responsible

Travel Program and Why You Should Care

Elis Kodra, Director, CWT Solutions Group Asia Pacific

10:45 AM - 11:00 AM

C-Suite Talk: From Physical to Virtual Tours, Pre to

Post Trips: How Every Concept of Experiences Will


Wataru Futagi, President & CEO, VELTRA

11:15 AM - 11:30 AM

C-Suite Talk: How to Sell Travel Experiences Online

Chitra Gurnani, Co-Founder & CEO, Thrillophilia

11:30 AM - 11:45 AM

C-Suite Talk: Optimizing Your Platform for the Post-

COVID-19 Era

Chen Ming-ming, Founder & CEO, KKDay;

Agnes Chiao, SEA Marketing Director, KKDay

11:45 AM - 12:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: Food & Beverage Tourism in a Post

COVID-19 World

4:30 PM - 4:45 PM

MICE Insights: How to Build a Thriving Online

Community in 4 Achievable Steps

Nisha Sharma Mullatti, Global Account Director &

Head, Global Growth & Client Solutions, MCI Group

4:45 PM - 5:00 PM

MICE Insights: The COVID-induced

Metamorphosis of MICE Travel

Amanda Kotze-Nhlapo, Chief Convention Bureau

Officer, South African Tourism; Mayank Nagpal, Head

of Africa & Director, Travel & Tourism, Grail Insights

5:00 PM - 5:15 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Future of Booking, Distribution

& Metasearch With SuperApps

Kei Shibata, Co-Founder & CEO, LINE TRAVEL jp &

Trip101; Timothy Hughes, Vice President, Corporate

Development, Agoda

5:15 PM - 5:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: Helping Travelers Fight Jet Lag With

Rocket Science, and Strengthen Their Immune

Function in the Process

Mickey Beyer-Clausen, Co-Founder & CEO,

Timeshifter® - The Jet Lag App®

5:30 PM - 5:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: Opportunity Through Crisis: Deeper

Connections With Your Customers

Andy Owen Jones, Co-Founder & CEO, bd4travel

5:45 PM - 6:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: Travel Manager 4.0: A New Role in

the New World

Mayank Kukreja, Co-Founder & CEO, ITILITE

Erik Wolf, Founder & Executive Director, World Food

Travel Association (WFTA)

12:00 PM - 12:15 PM

Tours & Activities: Preparing for Recovery

Kasia Jawien, Director, Account Management, Activities,

Expedia Group

12:15 PM - 12:30 PM

Three Steps to Make Business Travel Sustainable

Teresa Matheson, Senior Director, Accounts

Management, Egencia

12:30 PM - 12:45 PM

C-Suite Talk: The Changing Consumer’s Appetite for


Joost Timmer, Managing Director, iVenture Card


12:45 PM - 1:00 PM

C-Suite Talk: In a VR-driven World, What Does It

Mean to Have an Event?

Daniel Wishnia, Chief Digital Transformation Officer,

Aroundtown SA, Co-Founder, Vivent

1:00 PM - 1:15 PM

MICE Insights: 3 Things I’ve Learned From Running

a Virtual Event and What It Means to Plan for a

Hybrid Show

Iain Bitran, Executive Director, ISPIM - The International

Society for Professional Innovation Management

1:15 PM - 1:30 PM

C-Suite Talk: New Booking Strategies for Recovery

Chris Atkin, CEO, Rezdy

*all live sessions will run in Singapore time (UTC/ GMT+8)



October 21 - October 26




More details, click here


Unlocking Possibilities with CVBs

Lesley Williams, Managing Director, BestCities Global Alliance

Jessica Chang, Director North Asia, Melbourne Convention Bureau


Christopher Zhang, Managing Director, PTC Express Travel


Philippine MICE: Innovations and Best Practices

Jing Lagandaon, Chairman, PACEOS – Philippine Association of

Convention / Exhibition Organizers and Suppliers, COO, Global-Link

MP Events International Inc.

Agnes Pacis, VP, PACEOS, VP and General Manager, SMX Convention


Maria Anthonette C. Velasco-Allones, COO, Tourism Promotions



Talk 1: The Future of MICE in India

S. Balasubramanian, President, IEIA – Indian Exhibition Industry



Talk 2: Post-COVID-19 Tourism & MICE Industry


Kimarli Fernando, Chairman, Sri Lanka Convention Bureau (SLCB)

Dr. Susie Perera De Silva, Deputy Director General – Public Health

Services, Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka

Dileep Mudadeniya, CEO, Cinnamon Life, Vice President, John Keels

Group (moderator)


The Outlook of MICE Travel in China’s Market

Kris Van Goethem, Managing Director, MICE, Leisure & Sport,

Thomas Cook China

Olivia Chen, CMO, Thomas Cook China


Talk 1: Melbourne’s Innovation and Pursuit of

Connection: Differentiation on the Road to

Recovery and Growth

Julia Swanson, CEO, Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB)

Peter King, CEO, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre



Talk 2: The Future of Business Events: Recovery,

Resilience, and Innovation

Anna Hayward, Head of Auckland Convention Bureau, Auckland

Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED)

Barbara Maple, President, Barbara Maple & Associates, Chair,

Auckland International Business Events Advisory Group (Moderator)

Steve Armitage, General Manager – Destination, Auckland Tourism,

Events and Economic Development (ATEED)

Lisa Gardiner, Global Manager Business Events, Tourism New



Talk 1: What’s Next in the Constantly Changing

Business Events Industry

Matthias Schultze, Managing Director, German Convention Bureau



Talk 2: Regional Diversity as a Key to the Global

Competitiveness of the Destination in Post

Pandemic Era

Alexey Kalachev, CEO, Russian Convention Bureau (RCB)

Alexander Porodnov, CEO, ANO “Investment Promotion Agency of

the Sverdlovsk Region”

Pavel Mayorov, CEO, Krasnodar Region Development Corporation



The Future of Incentive Travel in Africa: The

Barriers & Opportunities

Tes Proos, President, SITE Africa

Corné Koch, Head, Cape Town & Western Cape Convention Bureau

Frank Murangwa, Director of Destination Marketing, Rwanda

Convention Bureau

Jillian Blackbeard, CEO, The Victoria Falls Regional Association


More details, click here


Talk 1: The Road Ahead in the New Normal &

Emerging Travel Trends

Daniel D’souza, President & Country Head, Leisure, SOTC Travel


Talk 2: Destination Storytelling in India

Vijay Prabhat Kamalakara, Founder & CEO, Storytrails


Talk 1: The Outlook for Tours & Activities in

China’s Market

Brian Bergey, CEO & Co-Founder, Lost Plate Food Tours


Talk 2: Pre- and Post-COVID-19 Comparison of the

South Korean Travel Industry

Donggun Lee, Founder & CEO, MyRealTrip

NaeYoung (Sophia) Kwon, Business Development Lead –

Experiences, MyRealTrip

Baromi Kim, Business Development Lead – Key Accounts,



Talk 3: Trends in Japan: Before COVID and After


Takahiro Noguchi, CEO, Beauty of Japan


Talk 1: The Pivot to Virtual and the Transformation

of Tours & Activities

Stephen Oddo, CEO & Co-Founder, Walks


Talk 2: Making Decisions During a Pandemic

Simone Gozzi, CEO & Co-Founder, City Wonders


More details, click here

The Marketing Gurus:

The New Normal in Destination Marketing: Insight

and Case Studies from the Front

Anna Au-Yeung, Global Head of Destination Marketing, Travelport

Sean Keliiholokai, Vice President Business Development, West

Hollywood Travel + Tourism Board

Tolene van der Merwe, Director – UK & Ireland, Malta Tourism




The Marketing Gurus:

Destination Marketing Strategy Checklist:

How Data Plays a Critical Role in Today Travel


Rochelle Chhaya, COO, OMD APAC

Maunik Thacker, Senior Vice President – Marketing, Marina Bay


The Marketing Gurus:

WeChat Marketing: A Complete Guide for

Overseas Travel Brands

Jiang Ting, Founder, Bridge86 & WeChat4Travel

The Marketing Gurus:

Marketing to Gen Z: What’s Next in Youth Travel?

Reene Ho-Phang, Founder & Managing Director, BrandStory Asia

The Marketing Gurus:

How to Create the Right Stories at the Right Time

to Reach Out to an Audience Dreaming of Travel

Nicola Eliot, Vice President, BBC StoryWorks APAC, BBC Global News

Anne Banas, Editor, BBC Travel, BBC Global News

The Marketing Gurus:

Rebounds and Revenge Travel

Martin Stoll, CEO, Sparkloft Media

The Marketing Gurus:

The New Storytelling Strategies for Destinations

in The Changing Social Media Landscape

Jonathan Sloan, EVP, Europe and Middle East Strategy, MMGY Global

Victoria Sanders, Director Travel, News UK

Nick Evans, Social and Digital Director, MMGY Hills Balfour

The Marketing Gurus:

Influencer Marketing and Social Media

Management for the Travel Industry

Kelly Beckwith, Co-Founder & Director, The Asia Collective

The Marketing Gurus:

Crisis Communications: Marketing a Destination

Amidst COVID-19

Elan Shou, APAC CEO, Ruder Finn Asia

The Marketing Gurus: Reimagining the Tours &

Activities Value Chain

Matthew Barker, Founder and CEO, Horizon Guides

The Marketing Gurus:

Reimagining Destinations for the Post-COVID


Jake Haupert, Co-Founder & Chairman of Board, Transformational

Travel Council

Brian T. Mullis, Board Member, Transformational Travel Council

Joe Pine, Co-Founder, Strategic Horizons LLP, Strategic Thought

Leader, Stone Mantel, Lecturer (Part-time), Columbia University

School of Professional Studies

Anna Pollock, Founder, Conscious.Travel



More details, click here

Can Hotels Save the Planet? Rethinking Hotel

Designs With Mother Nature in Mind

Clint Nagata, Founder & Creative Partner, BLINK Design Group

Guy Heywood, COO, Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas

Allen Kerton, Design Principal & Partner, Coopers Hill

The Key to Recovery is Guest Satisfaction – Learn

How to Turn Detractors into Promoters

Benjamin Jost, Co-Founder & CEO, TrustYou

Steffen Wenz, CTO, TrustYou

How Revenue Management Has Evolved and

Where It is Today

Omkar Sen, Chief Revenue Officer, ZEN Rooms

Trends Hoteliers Need to Consider

Maria Taylor, Head of Hospitality, Asia Pacific, Amadeus

The Travel Journey – Past, Present and Future

Patrick Andres, Regional Vice President, Oracle Hospitality

The Future of Short-Term Vacation Rentals

Quirin Schwaighofer, Co-CEO & Co-Founder, MadeComfy

Moving Forward in the Midst of Crisis

Fenady Uriarte, Business Development Manager, South East Asia, STR

Leverage Big Data and Analytics to Predict Future

Market Demand

Amit Peshawaria, Head, Asia Pacific & Oceania, OTA Insight

Adapting for the Future of Hospitality

Rajeev Menon, President, Asia Pacific (Excluding Greater China),

Marriott International


More details, click here

Conference Partner’s Session:

What’s Next for Cruise?

Jiali Wong, Regional Manager, Asia, Cruise Lines International

Association (CLIA)

Conference Partner’s Session:

What Does It Mean to “Build Back Better”?

Introducing the Future of Tourism Coalition

Natasha Martin, Founder, Good Tourism (moderator)

Jeremy Sampson, CEO, The Travel Foundation

Jens Thraenhart, CEO, Mekong Tourism

Albert Salman, President, Green Destination

Conference Partner’s Session:

ASEAN Travel Readiness

Fazal Bahardeen, Founder & CEO, CrescentRating, CEO, HalalTrip

Raudha Zaini, Strategic Partnerships & Projects Lead, HalalTrip

Barkathunnisha Abu Bakar, Founder, Elevated Consultancy &

Training, Director, World Women Tourism, Associate, Murdoch

University (Singapore)

Nagesh Jaladi, Head of Retail and Commerce, Asia Pacific,








Ivan Breiter

Director for Southeast Asia,

Switzerland Tourism


promotes bleisure

at ITB Asia Virtual

Exclusive interview: Ivan Breiter, Director for

Southeast Asia, Switzerland Tourism

While many countries have been “spinning their wheels” during the COVID-19

crisis, Switzerland has been very active in finding ways to keep the travel trade in

business. We asked Ivan Breiter, Director for Southeast Asia, Switzerland Tourism

to tell us more.

In Switzerland, a number of proposals

have been developed to incentivise

Swiss residents to holiday in their own

country. The centrepiece of the support

plan was to give every Swiss resident

a 200-franc voucher to be spent in the

Swiss tourism or hospitality industries.

The vouchers can be used in hotels or

with tour operators, while the money

can also go towards restaurants and

leisure facilities. The total cost of the

voucher scheme is around 1.7bn Swiss


Meanwhile, in a bid to kick-start

the city’s tourism industry, Geneva

Tourism has invested significantly into

“Geneva Boxes” giving visitors exciting

city experiences and hotel packages

with up to a 65% saving, up until 31

December 2020.

The Geneva Boxes are divided into

four main themes: the terroir, the art of

living (culture, gastronomy and nature),

international/scientific Geneva and

fine watchmaking.

All boxes include accommodation,

public transport and an activity.

With the restrictive cross border policies, leisure

travel from Asia has been very limited. Our

main focus has therefore been on attracting the

domestic and neighbouring source markets.

The domestic market is the backbone of

the Swiss tourism industry, generating in an

average year almost half of all overnights in

Switzerland. The record growth in the domestic

travel and the ability to secure 70-90% of

customers from Germany, the Benelux and

France during the Summer months, through

intensive campaigning, helped the tourism

industry in the Alpine Region of our country.

The cities on the other side, with the lack of

business, MICE traffic and Asian guests were

hit the hardest.

How have your initiatives been working during

this time?

Initiatives like “Bed and Bureau”, that hops

on the trend of Bleisure travel, having calm

working time in a business hotel and enjoying

some days in a less known city attracted

new segments. Our congress destinations

have shown that it is possible to conduct

physical meetings with efficient safety and

distancing measures in place. Nevertheless,

those initiatives couldn’t compensate for the

significant impact of COVID-19 on our tourism


What kinds of tourism are you promoting at

ITB Asia Virtual?

Switzerland has always been the place for

high quality tourism and is considered the

eponym of a clean and safe country, with many

attractions that cater to the well-travelled and

sophisticated globetrotter. Itineraries allowing

to discover the beauty of Switzerland, its hidden

treasures, the different seasons, its gastronomy

and its traditions will be the ones that we will

highlight at ITB Asia 2020 Virtual. We are

looking very much forward to welcoming our

dear guests from Asia in Switzerland again


Dragon Ride cable car from

Pilatus Kulm to Fraekmuentegg



(exclusive collection):

• 1 double room in a 5-star hotel for 1

night for 2 people with breakfast

• Making your own watch with a

master watchmaker – activity for 2

people, making 1 watch, lunch with

the watchmaker included

• Free public transport

(Geneva Transport Card)

• Price for 2 people (approximate):

€894 instead of €2,540 (65% saving)

© Switzerland Scenery



Indonesia’s Ambassador to

Spain, Bapak Hermono at

signature ceremony,

UNWTO headquarters,


Innovation central

to Penang’s


Penang waterfront - Chew Jetty

Indonesia takes

leading role in

tourism ethics

Indonesia stands out this year at ITB Asia as being the

first signatory of the UNWTO’s Framework Convention on

Tourism Ethics. The convention was launched as a landmark

instrument to ensure global tourism is fair, inclusive, more

transparent, and works for everyone.

The ceremony, hosted on 2

October by the UNWTO in Madrid,

was a significant step towards

the ratification of the Convention,

which was first adopted during

the 23 rd meeting of the UNWTO

General Assembly in September

2019. In a special ceremony

attended by Indonesia’s

Ambassador to Spain, Bapak

Hermono and hosted at the

UNWTO headquarters, Indonesia

became the first country to sign,

signalling its strong commitment

to uphold the highest ethical

principles as it expands its tourism

sector. Indonesia also played

an important role in the original

drafting of the Convention.



Indonesia continues to work on

the promotion of lesser-known

destinations in the archipelago.

How about Prambanan, the “most

beautiful and graceful Hindu temple

in Indonesia”? Located not far from

the Buddhist Borobudur temple,

the proximity of the two temples

tells us that on Java, Buddhism

and Hinduism lived peacefully next

to one another. Prambanan is a

magnificent spectacle and an icon

of Indonesia’s cultural heritage. The

temples at Prambanan were built in

the 9 th century

At the destination's virtual

ITB Asia booth, visitors can

experience Indonesia through

three main zones:

1. The Main Room, bringing

new travel offers, policy

updates and exclusive

video content

2. The Product Showcase

where visitors can find

stories about some top


3. The Experiential Zone

with games and interactive


Penang is participating in ITB Asia this year

demonstrating the Malaysian state's ongoing dynamic

development in line with its recently launched “Penang

2030 Vision”.

To this end, the Penang State

Government this summer

launched the “Penang Bay

International Ideas Competition”.

Open to local and global

innovators and thinkers, the

competition seeks to generate

inspiring ideas and concepts for

Penang's waterfront assets in

order to drive prosperity.

The Penang Bay concept

aims to bring life back into

Penang's historical and natural

water-based assets. As part

of Penang's recovery strategy,

innovation will be at the heart

of reshaping the future, by

transforming the waterfronts of

the island and mainland in a way

that builds social, economic and

environmental resilience.

Meanwhile, eco-responsibility

took a major step forward

last month, as the Penang

Hill Corporation successfully

submitted an application to be

listed as a UNESCO Biosphere

Reserve under the Man and the

Biosphere (MAB) Programme.

After four years of meticulous

research work and tedious

submission processes, the

nomination dossier was

submitted by the Ministry of

Energy and Natural Resources

on 29 th September 2020

Penang prides itself in its nature:

recently completed “Langur Way”

canopy walk at the Habitat, Penang

after it was approved by the

Cabinet. The assessment of the

application at UNESCO is then

estimated to take around one


The proposed UNESCO

Biosphere Reserve will

encompass 20% of Penang

Island, covering Penang Hill as

a central park, Teluk Bahang

National Park and Marine Park,

Penang Botanic Gardens, 6

permanent forest reserves

which are Bukit Kerajaan Forest

Reserve, Teluk Bahang Forest

Reserve, Laksamana Forest

Reserve, Penara Bukit Forest

Reserve, Highlands Forest

Reserve, and Pantai Acheh

Forest Reserve including 2

dams; Teluk Bahang Dam and

Ayer Hitam Dam. It is equivalent

to 12,481 ha of land



Korea's Gyeonggi

region stronger than

ever for MICE

Gyeonggi is increasingly "the" MICE destination

for successful business and genuine experiences

in Korea.

Seoul’s Destination Marketing

extends to Virtual World

Seoul Convention Bureau (SCB) is launching a highly innovative

method of MICE Destination Marketing in response to the new era

the industry is facing.

Rather than holding back its marketing

activities, SCB has decided to take a

major step forward, creating the "Virtual

Seoul Platform" as an essential source

to be used towards holding more MICE

events in the digital world.

This is, according to the organisation,

the first case in the world in which a

destination marketing organisation is

presenting a virtual platform up-front in

promoting the city as a striking MICE


The Virtual Seoul Platform is designed

to accommodate various types of MICE

events. It portrays the actual Seoul in

simple, realistic 3D graphics outlining

venues and nature. The web-based

format allows high accessibility without

downloading and installing a program,

also working on mobile devices with

recent internet web browsers, such has

Chrome, Edge and Safari.

The attractiveness of Seoul's MICE

offering is also displayed in highly

realistic VR videos. There are 360˚ VR

videos on Seoul’s landmarks, unique

venues, and team-building at the VR

theatre. They are filmed in the firstperson

point of view to present them

as if one is taking a virtual tour: riding

a rickshaw to Hanok village, taking a

glimpse of a temple stay program and

taking a site inspection of a cruise venue

are some of the programs on the list.

The tour is extended to Seoul’s partner

cities, Gangwon and Gwangju, as well

as an array of special tour videos with

Honorary Seoul Tourism Ambassador,

Eunwoo Cha.

The well-known Korean band and

Seoul Tourism Ambassadors BTS, also

welcomes attendees with an official

promotional video on a billboard in the


Gyeonggi Province has diverse tourist attractions and MICE

venues optimised for meetings, successfully catering to largescale

international events.

The world’s only Demilitarised Zone, or DMZ, is a fascinating

ecological destination for visitors of all kinds. Meanwhile,

Everland, Herb Island, and the west coast, ranking among the

world’s top five wetlands, are exceptional venues in the province.

Bleisure tourism is increasingly popular, as visitors are able to

check out the latest local fashion trends while shopping, or even

visit locations featured in Korea's popular Hallyu dramas.

Gyeonggi Province, where tradition and modern times meet, is

thus a MICE destination full of charm and wonder.



Another reason for Gyeonggi Province being an optimal MICE

destination is thanks to its proximity to Gimpo and Incheon

international airports, easy access to Seoul, and advanced

transportation infrastructure.

KINTEX, the largest congress and exhibition venue in Korea,

is just 20 minutes from Gimpo Airport and 40 minutes from

Incheon International Airport. In addition, Seoul and most of the

major cities in Gyeonggi are located within an hour’s drive.

Five venues are present on the platform,

representing different charms of Seoul:

a beautiful traditional palace, a modern

cultural complex, the all-time favourite

classic landmark tower, artificial islands,

and a green space in the city. They each

can be developed into a conference

hall, workshop rooms, a promotional

booth, a VR theatre or a lounge area.

A wide range of possibilities means

the venue can be customised to serve

different functions according to the

specific needs of an event.

UIA Associations Round Table Asia-

Pacific 2020 hosted its first virtual

roundtable at virtual Seoul from

September 17 to 18.

Jihyun Kim, a director at SCB, mentioned

that the Virtual Seoul Platform is

versatile, with endless possibilities

and rooms - to be built upon in the

coming years by adding more venues

or programs, becoming a universal

source for organising and hosting any

MICE event

All in all, Gyeonggi is a transportation hub blessed with a

wonderful natural environment, meeting the strictest of business

needs, especially when travel time management is important. A

variety of culture and tour programmes are also available to add

to the enjoyment.


Gyeonggi-do has long served as a key role in the development of

Korea through its strategic location and vibrant economy. Home

to world-leading enterprises such as Samsung, LG, Hyundai, and

Kia, the province accounts for one-fifth of the nation's exports and

GDP. Furthermore, as the fastest growing regional economy in

Korea, Gyeonggi-do is one of the most sought-after destinations

for foreign investment


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