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2024 ITB BERLIN NEWS - DAY 2 Edition

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<strong>DAY</strong><br />

2<br />

WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong><br />

6 MARCH<br />

<strong>2024</strong><br />

HALL 9<br />

STAND 113<br />

HALL 21<br />

STAND 214<br />

HALL 4.2<br />

STANDS 200,<br />

202 & 205<br />

HALL 3.2<br />

STAND 101<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>2024</strong><br />

TOURISM'S TECH<br />

TRANSFORMATION<br />

ADVANCING TOGETHER TOWARDS<br />

THE FUTURE<br />

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW<br />

UNLOCKING<br />

LUXURY:<br />

TRENDS IN<br />

THE WORLD<br />

OF HIGH-END<br />

TRAVEL<br />

#21<br />

EXCLUSIVE<br />

INTERVIEW<br />

GLENN FOGEL<br />

CEO & President,<br />

Booking Holdings<br />

REGION: ASIA<br />

MALAYSIA<br />

UNVEILS A<br />

WORLD OF<br />

UNIQUE ECO-<br />

CULTURAL<br />

ADVENTURES<br />

#20<br />

#23 #39


I <strong>NEWS</strong> I<br />

Morning Briefing<br />

By Deborah Rothe, Director <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin<br />

Embracing the future<br />

of innovation and technology<br />

Good morning, and welcome to Day 2 of <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin<br />

<strong>2024</strong>! As your show director, it's my pleasure to<br />

guide you through another exciting day filled<br />

with opportunities, insights, and unforgettable<br />

experiences in the world of travel and tourism.<br />

Yesterday marked the grand opening of <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin,<br />

officially inaugurated by the Governing Mayor of<br />

Berlin. This set a celebratory tone for what was an<br />

amazing first day, filled with vibrant discussions,<br />

networking, and the exploration of global travel<br />

trends. The <strong>ITB</strong> Convention kicked off with a series<br />

of insightful talks, panels, and presentations,<br />

captivating attendees with the latest in travel<br />

innovations, sustainability practices, and market<br />

strategies from leaders across the industry.<br />

Today, we turn our attention to the heart of the<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Convention, with an agenda packed with<br />

discussions around the latest advancements<br />

in travel technology and digital innovation. Our<br />

sessions are designed to offer insights into how<br />

these technologies are transforming the travel<br />

and tourism landscape, improving customer<br />

experiences, and driving business growth. You<br />

can expect to hear from industry experts on topics<br />

ranging from artificial intelligence in travel planning<br />

to the future of digital payments and security.<br />

You'll find today’s must-attend sessions and main<br />

highlights on page 9.<br />

Beyond the convention, <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin's exhibition floors<br />

are bustling with activity. With over 5,500 exhibitors<br />

from around the globe, today presents a perfect<br />

opportunity to explore, connect, and discover<br />

new trends, destinations, and services. Whether<br />

you’re looking to strengthen existing business<br />

relationships or forge new ones, the diversity and<br />

vibrancy of our exhibitors are bound to inspire you.<br />

There truly is something for everyone!<br />

I encourage all attendees to take full advantage of<br />

the networking opportunities available, immerse<br />

yourselves in the vast array of cultures represented,<br />

and explore the innovative products and services<br />

that are shaping the future of travel. Remember,<br />

every stand and session is a doorway to new<br />

possibilities and insights.<br />

Thank you for being a part of <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

Together, let's continue to learn, connect, and<br />

contribute to the ever-evolving landscape of<br />

global travel. Here’s to another day of inspiration,<br />

discovery, and progress. Enjoy your journey<br />

through <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin!<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News is a CLEVERDIS Publication<br />

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is purely indicative in order to illustrate subjects contained therein. No guarantee can be given<br />

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<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 7


I <strong>NEWS</strong> I<br />

WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 MARCH <strong>2024</strong>:<br />

TO<strong>DAY</strong>’S HIGHLIGHTS<br />

On this second day of <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin, which conferences, events and talks<br />

should be at the top of your list? Here's our selection of some of the mustattend<br />

highlights.<br />

BUSINESS TRAVEL TRACK<br />

10:35 - 11:00<br />

Hall 3.1 / Green Stage<br />

BEYOND REBOUND: CHARTING THE NEXT<br />

COURSE FOR GLOBAL BUSINESS TRAVEL<br />

Discover the future of business travel with insights<br />

into emerging trends, strategies for growth, and how<br />

to navigate the post-rebound landscape.<br />

MARKETING & DISTRIBUTION TRACK<br />

11:10 - 11:25<br />

Hall 7.1a / Orange Stage<br />

OPENING KEYNOTE & <strong>ITB</strong> C-LEVEL<br />

INTERVIEW BY BOOKING.COM<br />

Uncover the latest trends, strategies, and insights<br />

from the forefront of travel marketing. Get inspired!<br />

eTRAVEL TRACK - TTA TRACK<br />

12:30 - 13:15<br />

Hall 6.1 / eTravel Stage<br />

THE OUTLOOK FOR EXPERIENCES: KEY<br />

TRENDS IN TOURS, ACTIVITIES<br />

& ATTRACTIONS<br />

Join the conversation at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin with this eyeopening<br />

conference and learn about evolving<br />

market trends and how they're reshaping the travel<br />

experience sector.<br />

MARKETING & DISTRIBUTION TRACK<br />

14:45 - 15:15<br />

Hall 7.1a / Orange Stage<br />

MEETING THE NEEDS OF<br />

THE PARADOXICAL CONSUMER<br />

This session will explore today's contradictory<br />

customer expectations and give you tips for<br />

navigating the complexities of modern travel<br />

consumers' behaviour.<br />

YOUTH, ADVENTURE, OUTDOOR TRACK<br />

14:50 - 15:40<br />

Hall 3.1 / Green Stage<br />

BOOSTING THE GROWTH OF CYCLING<br />

TOURISM WITH DATA, QUALITY AND<br />

DIGITAL TOOLS<br />

Gear up for an exciting ride into the future of cycling<br />

tourism at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin. Discover how leveraging data,<br />

enhancing quality, and utilising digital tools can<br />

significantly propel the sector forward.<br />

DESTINATION TRACK<br />

15:00 - 16:00<br />

Hall 7.1b / Blue Stage<br />

NO RISK, NO TROUBLE - LESSONS LEARNT<br />

ON RESILIENCE AND CRISIS-PROOFING<br />

EUROPEAN DESTINATIONS<br />

Experts share invaluable insights on protecting<br />

European travel destinations from unforeseen crises.<br />

Learn from past challenges to build a more stable,<br />

sustainable future for tourism.<br />

15:00<br />

Hall 8.2<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> BLOGGER BASE<br />

This afternoon, an exclusive get together will take<br />

place in the Blogger Base in cooperation with Oman.<br />

Bloggers will have the opportunity to experience<br />

Omani hospitality over traditional coffee and dates,<br />

learn about the Sultanate in a presentation, win<br />

exciting prizes in a raffle and network with Omani<br />

partners.<br />

eTRAVEL TRACK - AI TRACK<br />

16:45 - 17:15<br />

Hall 6.1 / eTravel Stage<br />

THE AI ADVANTAGE – ENHANCING<br />

PRODUCTIVITY AND DECISIONS WITH<br />

SMART PROMPTS<br />

Discover how artificial intelligence can revolutionise<br />

your approach to productivity and decision-making in<br />

the travel industry.<br />

DESTINATION TRACK<br />

16:00 - 17:00<br />

Hall 7.1b / Blue Stage<br />

INVESTMENT IN AFRICA BENEFITS<br />

TOURISM DEVELOPMENT: HOW CAN<br />

AFRICA SUSTAINABLY GROW?<br />

Dive into the vibrant possibilities of tourism in Africa,<br />

exploring how sustainable growth can be achieved<br />

through smart investment.<br />

18:00 - 19:00<br />

Hall 6.1 / eTravel Stage<br />

AWARD CEREMONY OF THE TO DO AWARD<br />

AND TO DO AWARD HUMAN RIGHTS IN<br />

TOURISM <strong>2024</strong><br />

Since 1995, the Institute for Tourism and Development<br />

has been awarding the international ‘TO DO Award’<br />

to initiatives that contribute to sustainable and<br />

socially responsible tourism. Since 2017, the 'TO<br />

DO Award Human Rights in Tourism' has also been<br />

presented annually. The awards ceremony will<br />

be moderated by Katharina Stechl (Roundtable<br />

Human Rights in Tourism) and Claudia Mitteneder<br />

(Studienkreis für Tourismus und Entwicklung).<br />

© Messe Berlin GmbH<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 9


I <strong>NEWS</strong> I<br />

Photos: © Messe Berlin GmbH<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong> opens with a spectacular<br />

ceremony hosted by Oman<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin's opening ceremony,<br />

organised by this year's Official<br />

Host Country Oman, kicked off<br />

the event on Monday, 4 March.<br />

The ceremony featured inaugural<br />

remarks from prominent political and<br />

tourism industry figures, including<br />

Dieter Janecek, the German federal<br />

government's Coordinator for<br />

Maritime Economy and Tourism, Julia<br />

Simpson, President & CEO of the<br />

World Travel and Tourism Council<br />

(WTTC), and Zurab Pololikashvili,<br />

Secretary General of the World<br />

Tourism Organization (newly branded<br />

UN Tourism), who praised the powers<br />

of travel and saluted <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin's<br />

success across its almost 60 years of<br />

history.<br />

architectural wonders, Omani singers<br />

and folk groups accompanied<br />

by the Royal Oman Symphony<br />

Orchestra performed traditional<br />

Omani melodies as well as works<br />

from around the world.<br />

In his official presentation, the<br />

Minister of Heritage and Tourism, H.E.<br />

Salim bin Mohammed Al Mahrouqi,<br />

cited diversity and authenticity as<br />

two of Oman's principal assets, but<br />

also underlined the importance of<br />

the Sultunate's efforts to reinforce its<br />

tourism ecosystem while remaining<br />

mindful of sustainability. After the<br />

ceremony, guests were treated to<br />

a gala reception featuring culinary<br />

specialities from Oman.<br />

The Governing Mayor of Berlin,<br />

Kai Wegner, as <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin tradition<br />

dictates, opened the event on the<br />

following day, beginning his inaugural<br />

tour on the Oman stand<br />

Beyond the official speeches, the<br />

inaugural event also celebrated the<br />

rich culture and heritage of Oman.<br />

Against a backdrop of spectacular<br />

immersive visuals showcasing the<br />

Sultanate's natural beauty and<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 11


ADVERTORIAL<br />

I <strong>NEWS</strong> I<br />

Attracting travellers who “prioritise<br />

convenience”<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News caught up with Boon Sian Chai, Managing Director & VP<br />

of International Markets at Trip.com Group to explore the needs of today's<br />

travellers and the personalised solutions the company is offering to address<br />

them<br />

The travel landscape<br />

is rapidly evolving,<br />

posing fresh challenges<br />

for brands looking<br />

to captivate modern<br />

travellers with limited<br />

attention spans<br />

and a plethora of<br />

choices. Amidst this<br />

shifting terrain, Trip.<br />

com Group is pioneering<br />

innovative solutions to<br />

meet the dynamic needs<br />

of travel consumers.<br />

How would you characterise<br />

today's travel consumers?<br />

Today's travel consumers seek<br />

personalisation, simplicity, and<br />

authenticity. They are inundated<br />

with choices, possess short<br />

attention spans, and prioritise<br />

convenience.<br />

Trip.com Group addresses these<br />

preferences with innovative<br />

solutions like TripGenie, an AIpowered<br />

travel assistant integrated<br />

into the Trip.com app. TripGenie<br />

swiftly generates personalised<br />

itineraries, recommendations,<br />

city maps and even booking links<br />

in under a minute, streamlining<br />

the planning process and saving<br />

valuable time for users.<br />

TripGenie has seen doubled order<br />

conversion rates and higher user<br />

retention rates, proving its ability<br />

to capture ever-shortened attention<br />

spans through an engaging and<br />

interactive interface, paving a<br />

reimagined way of travel booking<br />

and planning.<br />

You mentioned the growing<br />

consumer preference for<br />

personalisation. How has Trip.<br />

com Group adapted its offerings<br />

to meet this need, especially in the<br />

hotel sector?<br />

Boon Sian Chai: Trip.com Group<br />

has evolved into an integrated travel<br />

hub, offering curated content and<br />

personalised experiences alongside<br />

bookings.<br />

Recognising the discerning nature<br />

of hotel guests, Trip.com's "Hotel<br />

Rooms Plus X" offers bundled hotel<br />

stays with tailored experiences,<br />

ranging from spa treatments to<br />

tours, amongst other activities,<br />

enhancing the overall guest<br />

experience and fostering brand<br />

loyalty.<br />

It becomes more than just a stay<br />

– it’s a full-fledged experience.<br />

This is a value-add for guests<br />

as it complements their specific<br />

preferences, rather than taking a<br />

one-size-fits-all approach.<br />

AI is an indisputable game changer<br />

in many industries. How has AI<br />

reshaped the travel process?<br />

AI’s impact is evident across the<br />

entire travel journey, from seeking<br />

inspiration to streamlining trip<br />

planning, all the way to customer<br />

service.<br />

Trip.com Group's AI-curated lists,<br />

such as Trip.Best and Trip.Trends,<br />

AI’S IMPACT IS<br />

EVIDENT ACROSS THE<br />

ENTIRE TRAVEL<br />

JOURNEY, FROM<br />

SEEKING INSPIRATION<br />

TO STREAMLINING TRIP<br />

PLANNING, ALL THE<br />

WAY TO CUSTOMER<br />

SERVICE.<br />

leverage algorithms to analyse vast<br />

amounts of data and offer highly<br />

personalised travel suggestions.<br />

Travellers can now easily discover<br />

activities, accommodations, and<br />

attractions that align with their<br />

unique interests.<br />

Additionally, our AI-driven customer<br />

service solutions such as chatbots<br />

and virtual assistants enhance<br />

support for travellers, ensuring<br />

efficient assistance throughout their<br />

journey<br />

Hall 9 / Stand 108<br />

KEEPING<br />

UP WITH<br />

INDUSTRY<br />

TRENDS<br />

As the travel industry continues to<br />

evolve, Boon Sian Chai underlined<br />

the importance of keeping pace with<br />

emerging trends. "By staying abreast<br />

of these trends and proactively<br />

adapting strategies to align with<br />

consumer preferences, industry<br />

stakeholders can position themselves<br />

for success in an increasingly<br />

dynamic marketplace."<br />

Live streaming is one such trend,<br />

emerging as "a powerful tool for<br />

engaging travellers," said Mr Chai.<br />

Trip.com Group has harnessed the<br />

power of live streaming with its "LIVE<br />

for Trip" campaign, which is able to<br />

showcase destinations in real time<br />

and offer exclusive travel deals,<br />

fostering engagement and driving<br />

bookings.<br />

User-generated content (UGC) is<br />

another major trend and an important<br />

influence on travel decisions,<br />

according to Mr Chai. Travellers<br />

rely on peer recommendations and<br />

authentic experiences shared on<br />

community platforms like Trip.com's<br />

Trip Moments.<br />

For the Managing Director & VP<br />

of International Markets at Trip.<br />

com Group, sustainability is also a<br />

significant trend in the travel industry<br />

that is set to have an increasing<br />

impact, "prompting operators to<br />

adopt eco-friendly practices and<br />

offer sustainable travel options"<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 13


I <strong>NEWS</strong> I<br />

ADVERTORIAL<br />

“Remarkable diversity packed<br />

within a small territory”<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News spoke with Albania's Minister of Tourism and<br />

Environment, Mirela Kumbaro, to discuss the country's ambitions<br />

as an up-and-coming destination<br />

Albania is a small but mighty destination with a diverse<br />

tourism offering that brought about its stellar performance<br />

of 10.1 million foreign visitors in 2023. As the government<br />

pursues its efforts to stimulate the sector and prioritise<br />

sustainable development, <strong>2024</strong> is already off to a positive<br />

start.<br />

Albania is an up-and-coming<br />

destination. How do you explain its<br />

growing appeal? What are the main<br />

components of its attractiveness?<br />

Albania is renowned for its<br />

breathtaking beaches, yet its<br />

hinterland and northern Alpine<br />

region hold vast potential for<br />

ecotourism. The true strength of<br />

our offering lies in the remarkable<br />

diversity packed within a small<br />

territory. Within our villages, tourists<br />

encounter rich pastoral traditions<br />

and heartfelt hospitality, while just<br />

a stone's throw from the beaches,<br />

they discover UNESCO-protected<br />

world heritage cities like Berat and<br />

Gjirokastra, along with awe-inspiring<br />

natural landscapes.<br />

How was 2023 for Albania's<br />

tourism industry? What are your<br />

expectations for <strong>2024</strong>?<br />

In 2023, Albania had its most<br />

successful year in terms of tourism,<br />

with 10.1 million foreign visitors<br />

arriving from all six continents.<br />

Our top incoming markets include<br />

neighbouring Balkan countries and<br />

Italy, with Italian tourists increasing<br />

by 56% and becoming the secondlargest<br />

group of visitors to Albania.<br />

Additionally, a significant rise was<br />

observed in tourist arrivals from<br />

Spain, Germany, the Netherlands,<br />

and Britain. Albania also welcomed<br />

over 12,000 tourists from China and<br />

over 10,000 tourists from India during<br />

the year, highlighting the country's<br />

burgeoning potential in the Asian<br />

market. Also, in 2023, UN Tourism<br />

ranked Albania first in Europe and<br />

third globally for the recovery of<br />

international tourist flows. This<br />

year, January has already marked a<br />

promising start with a 30% increase<br />

in visitors compared to last year.<br />

IN 2023, UN<br />

TOURISM RANKED<br />

ALBANIA FIRST IN<br />

EUROPE AND THIRD<br />

GLOBALLY FOR THE<br />

RECOVERY OF<br />

INTERNATIONAL<br />

TOURIST FLOWS.<br />

How are you marketing Albania as<br />

a tourism destination and what is<br />

your strategy for the coming years?<br />

Albania has an immense tourism<br />

potential year-round, and our aim<br />

is to showcase this rich offering to<br />

the public. We're thrilled to introduce<br />

our new slogan, "Albania All Senses,"<br />

which encapsulates the diversity of<br />

14 <strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> news.itb.com


I <strong>NEWS</strong> I<br />

Vjosa National Park<br />

Berat City<br />

Dhermi Beach<br />

experiences our country offers.<br />

We are crafting the new tourism<br />

strategy for <strong>2024</strong>-2030 with<br />

the goal of elevating Albania<br />

to the status of an elite tourist<br />

destination.<br />

How is the offer matching<br />

demand in terms of<br />

accommodation and air<br />

connections? Are there any<br />

specific programmes from<br />

the government to encourage<br />

investments in these areas?<br />

The Albanian government<br />

has implemented a liberal<br />

framework aimed at fostering<br />

a conducive investment<br />

environment for foreign<br />

investors and special legislation<br />

targeting strategic investments.<br />

In line with this strategy, Albania<br />

is offering regulatory incentives,<br />

including income tax and<br />

infrastructure tax exemption.<br />

As a result, renowned<br />

hospitality brands like Marriott<br />

International, Radisson, Hilton,<br />

and Hyatt, Melia Hotels<br />

International, Maritim, and the<br />

InterContinental Hotels Group<br />

are now present in Albania.<br />

This dynamic growth<br />

in the hospitality sector<br />

is underpinned by the<br />

government's strategic<br />

framework. Infrastructure<br />

investments have been<br />

strategically directed to bolster<br />

the tourism industry, enhancing<br />

connectivity between tourist<br />

destinations and the capital,<br />

Tirana. While Tirana's airport<br />

reached a record of over 7<br />

million passengers in 2023, our<br />

second airport in Kukes began<br />

operating, and construction is<br />

underway for Vlora in the south.<br />

A fourth airport is also planned<br />

in Gjirokastër, promising<br />

expedited access to the<br />

renowned beaches, Saranda<br />

and Ksamil.<br />

What steps are being taken,<br />

to foster and implement<br />

a sustainable tourism<br />

strategy? Could you share<br />

some examples?<br />

Operating under the same<br />

ministry, tourism and<br />

environmental management<br />

are integrated, fostering<br />

comprehensive policy<br />

making that balances both<br />

perspectives. Albania has<br />

expanded its network of<br />

protected areas, recognising<br />

them as natural treasures<br />

and opportunities for<br />

environmentally conscious<br />

tourism. A "par excellence"<br />

example is the Vjosa River,<br />

which is protected as a National<br />

Park. Currently, natural tourism<br />

is flourishing in Albania, with<br />

4.6 million visitors exploring<br />

protected areas, Natural Parks,<br />

or National Parks in 2023, as<br />

well as cultural tourism with<br />

over 1 million visitors exploring<br />

archaeological and cultural<br />

sites. Culinary tourism is also<br />

emerging as a highlight<br />

A FULL AGENDA<br />

OF EVENTS<br />

Hall 1.1 / Stand 214a<br />

Albania is not only showcasing its tourism offering at<br />

its spacious booth where some 26 tour operators are<br />

on hand for B2B meetings, the country is also hosting a<br />

full programme of events.<br />

Today's events on Albania's stand:<br />

11:00<br />

Let’s talk about: Welcome with hand on heart, a full<br />

presentation from Mayors of seven Albanian touristic<br />

destinations.<br />

12:00<br />

Albania Official Host Country <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin 2025:<br />

Signing ceremony with the participation of Minister<br />

of Tourism and Environment of Albania, Ms. Mirela<br />

Kumbaro and <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin CEO Ms. Deborah Rothe.<br />

13:30<br />

Networking Event and Happy Hour: OriginAL – A<br />

drink menu inspired by our culinary traditions.<br />

14:00<br />

Albanian destinations: Touristic Gjirokastra.<br />

15:00<br />

Albanian destinations: Touristic Saranda.<br />

16:00<br />

Albanian destinations: Touristic Përmet and Tepelena.<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 15


I <strong>NEWS</strong> I<br />

Oman Airports: More direct flights to key<br />

markets and emerging destinations<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin news spoke with Oman Airports CEO, Sheikh<br />

Aimen, about strategies for the future and the role of the<br />

airports in the Sultanate's overall tourism strategy.<br />

How was the year 2023 for Muscat<br />

International Airport? What are your<br />

expectations in <strong>2024</strong>?<br />

2023 was a year of recovery and<br />

growth for Muscat airport. We<br />

witnessed an increase in passenger<br />

traffic, reaching pre-pandemic levels,<br />

thanks to our strategic initiatives and<br />

the global resurgence in travel. Total<br />

passengers at Muscat reached 12.6<br />

million, up 46.7% with international<br />

passengers totalling 11.5 million.<br />

For <strong>2024</strong>, we are optimistic about<br />

continuing this upward trajectory.<br />

Do you expect any new destinations<br />

or new airlines in <strong>2024</strong>?<br />

We are in discussions with several<br />

airlines to introduce new destinations<br />

and welcome additional carriers.<br />

While specific details are still being<br />

finalised, our goal is to include more<br />

direct flights to key markets and<br />

emerging destinations.<br />

Are you planning new services<br />

in <strong>2024</strong> or beyond at your main<br />

airports?<br />

We plan to introduce a range of<br />

new services and developments to<br />

enhance the passenger experience<br />

and operational efficiency. These<br />

include technological advancements<br />

for smoother, faster check-in and<br />

security processes.<br />

Why is <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin so strategic for<br />

Oman Airports?<br />

Our primary goal at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin is not<br />

only to underscore the important<br />

Turkish Airlines: Excellence<br />

and innovation on display at<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong><br />

Turkish Airlines will launch its newest route to Melbourne,<br />

Australia, starting with three weekly frequencies from 15<br />

March, <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

role of Oman Airports in facilitating<br />

global access to our Sultanate but<br />

also to complement and highlight<br />

the concerted efforts of the Ministry<br />

of Heritage and Tourism, alongside all<br />

stakeholders, in promoting Oman. <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin serves as a strategic platform<br />

to present a united front, showcasing<br />

After many months of negotiations<br />

with the Australian Ministry of<br />

Transport, Turkish Airlines has been<br />

granted up to 35 flights per week<br />

with the possibility to immediately<br />

provide 21 frequencies to Brisbane,<br />

Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.<br />

On 15 March <strong>2024</strong> Turkish Airlines is<br />

launching three weekly frequencies to<br />

Melbourne, Australia's second largest<br />

metropolis. Melbourne is the carrier's<br />

346th destination in a network of 130<br />

countries. With its flights relayed via<br />

Singapore, the carrier is the only one<br />

from Europe to land in the capital<br />

of the State of Victoria. By flying<br />

thousands of passengers on the<br />

İstanbul-Melbourne route annually,<br />

the airline will contribute to trade and<br />

tourism volumes of both countries.<br />

The new route to Australia is also an<br />

opportunity for Turkish Airlines to<br />

introduce its hallmark "Turkish Airlines<br />

the comprehensive advancements<br />

and investments made across<br />

the board. We ensure that every<br />

traveller's journey through our airports<br />

is seamlessly integrated with the<br />

Sultanate's broader tourism narrative<br />

Hall 2.2 / Stand 201<br />

Red" colour. The Turkish Airlines<br />

Red has officially been launched<br />

in partnership with Pantone Color<br />

Institute, the global colour authority.<br />

Speaking on its collaboration with<br />

Pantone, Turkish Airlines SVP,<br />

Communications Rafet Fatih Özgür<br />

stated: "Our collaboration with<br />

Pantone Color Institute to create<br />

‘Turkish Airlines Red’ marks a<br />

significant milestone in our brand's<br />

evolution. This distinct colour<br />

highlights our visual identity and<br />

celebrates our expanding global<br />

footprint with the addition of Australia<br />

to our route network. It is a testament<br />

to our ongoing commitment to<br />

excellence and innovation in<br />

connecting the world"<br />

Hall 3.2 / Stand 101<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 17


I EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW I<br />

JORDAN<br />

TOURISM HAS<br />

ALWAYS SHOWN<br />

RESILIENCE IN<br />

TIMES OF<br />

TURMOIL IN THE<br />

REGION. AND WE<br />

ALWAYS EMERGE<br />

STRONGER<br />

AFTERWARDS.<br />

Makram<br />

Al-Queisi<br />

Jordan's Minister of<br />

Tourism and Antiquities<br />

18 <strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> news.itb.com


I EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW<br />

I<br />

“We take pride in offering visitors the chance to<br />

engage deeply with our local communities”<br />

Makram Al-Queisi, Jordan's Minister of Tourism and Antiquities, spoke to<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News about what makes Jordan tourism different from other<br />

destinations<br />

Makram Al-Queisi outlined Jordan's efforts to become<br />

a year-round destination and to encourage travellers<br />

to interact with local communities for authentic<br />

experiences.<br />

How does it feel to be back at <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin this year? Why is this such<br />

an important event for Jordan ?<br />

We view <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin as one of the<br />

most important international travel<br />

trade shows in the world and a<br />

must-attend event. <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin serves<br />

as a perfect platform for us and the<br />

global travel tourism industry to<br />

convene, showcase our products<br />

and services, establish business<br />

contracts and new partnerships<br />

and discuss developments and<br />

trends within the sector.<br />

Jordan is a tourism pillar in the travel<br />

industry. We can proudly say that we<br />

have achieved a new anchor year in<br />

2023, in both the number of tourists<br />

and revenue generated. According<br />

to UN Tourism, we became the<br />

ninth fastest country in the world for<br />

the recovery of tourist numbers.<br />

What is your strategy towards the<br />

European market?<br />

First, we are participating in trade<br />

fairs in Europe to enhance visibility<br />

and create brand awareness. We<br />

are also currently focusing on<br />

B2B business, complemented by<br />

travel and trade training courses<br />

and informational trips for the<br />

media. Attending <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong> is<br />

critical for ensuring Jordan remains<br />

highly visible and a top choice for<br />

consumers.<br />

We have 100,000 archaeological<br />

sites mapped in Jordan, out of<br />

which 15,000 belong to our national<br />

registry. This turns Jordan into<br />

an open museum, shaping its<br />

uniqueness. There is only one site<br />

acknowledged by the Vatican to<br />

be the authentic site where Jesus<br />

Christ was baptised, and this is in<br />

Jordan. There is also only one Petra,<br />

the magical seventh wonder of the<br />

world; there is only one Dead Sea, a<br />

natural spa with 6-8% more oxygen<br />

than anywhere else in the world and<br />

waters 10 times more saline than<br />

the ocean.<br />

Jordan's Mansaf dish and<br />

traditional dance, As-Samer, have<br />

been recognised by UNESCO<br />

Intangible Cultural Heritage.<br />

Why is it important for Jordan to<br />

promote them?<br />

We take pride in offering visitors the<br />

chance to engage deeply with our<br />

local communities and traditions.<br />

Parts of cultural heritage such as<br />

Mansaf and As-Samer provide a<br />

window into our rich traditions. As<br />

such, Mansaf is not only a dish, it<br />

is a celebration of generosity, of<br />

cultural heritage, or national unity.<br />

Engaging visitors' senses and<br />

emotions are reflected in our brand<br />

"Kingdom of Time," a place where<br />

the past and the present converge.<br />

The warmth, hospitality, and<br />

welcoming nature of the Jordanian<br />

people are key elements to Jordan's<br />

uniqueness.<br />

Jordan has a dedicated adventure<br />

tourism booth at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin this<br />

year. Why is it important for Jordan<br />

to prioritise this sector?<br />

Although cultural tourism is<br />

considered our bread and butter<br />

with regard to the number of<br />

tourists who visit the Kingdom<br />

each year, we have diversified<br />

our tourism offering over the past<br />

seven years. The new trend is that<br />

people are seeking to maximise the<br />

number of experiences they engage<br />

in when visiting a destination.<br />

We consequently target specific<br />

niche products, such as adventure<br />

tourism, medical/wellness tourism,<br />

MICE tourism, faith tourism and<br />

educational tourism. We believe that<br />

Jordan has a wealth of experiences<br />

in adventure tourism - from hiking<br />

to more hardcore activities such as<br />

climbing. Our dedicated booth for<br />

adventure tourism at <strong>ITB</strong> is perfect<br />

for professionals to interact with<br />

local adventure tourism providers.<br />

How is Jordan working to<br />

encourage year-round tourism?<br />

Few people actually realise this,<br />

but Jordan is really a classic yearround<br />

destination. In February, you<br />

can already swim in the Red Sea<br />

in Aqaba, in midsummer the north<br />

of the country has a Mediterranean<br />

climate and you can also enjoy<br />

wellness at the Dead Sea all year<br />

round. Low-Cost Carriers (LCCs) in<br />

Jordan have significantly bolstered<br />

the country's image as an attractive<br />

year-round travel destination.<br />

How is Jordan including local<br />

communities in its overall tourism<br />

strategy?<br />

Engaging local communities and<br />

enhancing local experiences are<br />

pivotal to our strategy, sitting at<br />

the heart of our marketing efforts<br />

and ongoing development plans for<br />

<strong>2024</strong>. We are currently assessing<br />

the potential of over 850 local<br />

community experiences, aiming to<br />

integrate them into existing tourism<br />

itineraries<br />

AQABA SELECTED<br />

AS A GLOBAL<br />

TOP SIX GREEN<br />

DESTINATION<br />

Aqaba, Jordan's only coastal city, is<br />

in competition with global tourism<br />

destinations for the top sustainability<br />

standards according to the Green<br />

Destinations Organization. Jordan’s<br />

Red Sea destination was selected<br />

as one of the Top 100 global green<br />

destinations by applying 15 criteria of<br />

the sustainable destination standard. It<br />

then submitted a good practice success<br />

story about the Aqaba Bird Observatory<br />

in cooperation with the Royal Society<br />

for the Conservation of Nature. The<br />

initiative showcases an environmentrelated<br />

tourism product offering a rich<br />

biodiversity while implementing the<br />

reuse of water, in a country that is facing<br />

scarce water resources.<br />

This good practice story qualified<br />

Aqaba to be selected amongst the<br />

top six global tourist destinations that<br />

meet sustainable tourism standards in<br />

the Environment and Climate category.<br />

Today, an international jury at <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin composed of sustainable tourism<br />

experts is due to select and reveal the<br />

final three award winners.<br />

At the same time, there is a vote to<br />

win the People’s Choice Award as the<br />

public’s best and favorite success story.<br />

Jordan hopes that the Aqaba Bird<br />

Observatory was able to attract many<br />

votes from a broad audience<br />

GREEN<br />

DESTINATIONS TOP<br />

100 STORY AWARDS<br />

Wednesday<br />

6 March<br />

from 6:00 p.m.<br />

Hall 7.1<br />

Blue Stage<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 19


I EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW I<br />

Unlocking luxury: Trends in the world<br />

of high-end travel<br />

Caroline Bremner, Senior Head of Travel Research at<br />

Euromonitor, spoke to <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News about the major<br />

trends in luxury travel ahead of her conference at the show<br />

tomorrow.<br />

At your conference tomorrow you'll<br />

be addressing how luxury travel<br />

is leading transformation in the<br />

tourism sector. Could you share<br />

some insights on the key factors<br />

driving this shift towards luxury<br />

travel?<br />

The luxury travel sector is more<br />

immune to the global macroeconomic<br />

headwinds created by the cost-ofliving<br />

crisis. Luxury Seekers have<br />

the means to spend despite higher<br />

prices for air travel and lodging,<br />

driving the global travel recovery<br />

where luxury hotels have already<br />

returned to their peak levels. Affluent<br />

consumers prioritise travel and see it<br />

is an important part of their lifestyle,<br />

sharing unique experiences with loved<br />

ones.<br />

With luxury travellers willing to<br />

pay more for sustainable features,<br />

how should brands approach this<br />

opportunity to balance luxury and<br />

sustainability?<br />

All travel is a privilege, and luxury<br />

travel comes with even greater<br />

responsibility due to its higher<br />

carbon footprint. Luxury brands<br />

should therefore adopt sustainability<br />

practices whole-heartedly, by<br />

declaring a climate emergency and<br />

working with accreditation partners.<br />

Luxury consumers are more<br />

attracted to purpose-driven brands<br />

that prioritise people and planet as<br />

well as profit. Sustainable features<br />

should also be central to the traveller<br />

experience, weaving in local to ensure<br />

a truly authentic immersion in a place<br />

and its culture.<br />

Helping their customers make<br />

the right choice requires a holistic<br />

approach to sustainability, from backend<br />

operations, mitigating negative<br />

environmental impacts and adopting<br />

strong social criteria to boost diversity,<br />

inclusion, and equality<br />

LUXURY TRAVEL TAKES<br />

THE LEAD – DRIVING<br />

TRANSFORMATION<br />

FROM A POSITION OF<br />

STRENGTH<br />

Thursday 7 March<br />

10:30a.m. - 11:30a.m.<br />

Hall 7.1b<br />

Blue Stage<br />

Scan the QR code<br />

to read the full<br />

article<br />

20 <strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> news.itb.com


I EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW<br />

I<br />

“Technology is now<br />

central to travel<br />

research, planning,<br />

booking and in-trip<br />

experiences”<br />

Following his conference at yesterday's <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin Convention, <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News spoke<br />

with Booking Holdings' CEO and President,<br />

Glenn Fogel, in an exclusive interview about<br />

the direction the tourism industry is taking<br />

Technology has become an essential component of travel<br />

planning, with Artificial Intelligence (AI) taking on an<br />

increasingly important role. But as the CEO of Booking<br />

Holdings points out, it is not a new technology for the<br />

travel industry, or for the online travel giant.<br />

In your view, what are the most<br />

significant trends shaping the<br />

future of the travel industry right<br />

now?<br />

Travellers will continue to grow in<br />

their expectations of what platforms,<br />

like ours, can deliver and we’re<br />

ready to meet that demand, from<br />

travel planning with generative AI<br />

chatbots to being able to book and<br />

manage all components of their trip<br />

in one place. Ultimately, the reality<br />

that technology is now central to<br />

travel research, planning, booking<br />

and in-trip experiences is the single<br />

most important thing the industry<br />

must take on in stride. And we look<br />

forward to making sure we are able<br />

to use our technology skills to make<br />

things better for both our travellers<br />

and partners.<br />

What role is AI playing in the travel<br />

industry today and how will this<br />

change in the near future?<br />

Artificial intelligence is not new<br />

to the travel industry and it won’t<br />

be going anywhere anytime soon.<br />

Today, on our platforms for example,<br />

it informs personalising interactions<br />

and recommendations, conducts<br />

machine translations in 46 languages<br />

and dialects, analyses the content of<br />

pictures provided by customers and<br />

partners, detects when a booking<br />

may have used a stolen credit card,<br />

and more. In the near future, the<br />

industry will see rapid enhancements<br />

in its long-standing uses of AI,<br />

including algorithms guiding access<br />

to great deals and personalised<br />

recommendations on platforms,<br />

and we will continue to deepen our<br />

understanding of how customers<br />

want to harness generative AI in their<br />

travel experiences.<br />

How is Booking Holdings<br />

harnessing these technologies as<br />

part of your overall strategy?<br />

We have always known AI technology<br />

will play a central role. Although we’ve<br />

been using various forms of AI and<br />

machine learning for over a decade,<br />

generative AI is now accelerating<br />

efforts to improve and better connect<br />

the end-to-end trip experience for<br />

travellers and deliver more value to<br />

our partners. Given it is still early<br />

days, there’s no one “right” interface<br />

at this moment in time, which is why<br />

different brands within our company<br />

are taking different approaches to<br />

integrating generative AI into their<br />

products and services. We’re seeing<br />

encouraging signs, for example,<br />

lower customer service contact rates,<br />

and we see that Booking.com’s AI Trip<br />

Planner is getting better at answering<br />

customers’ inquiries.<br />

What are some of the main<br />

challenges the travel industry must<br />

overcome?<br />

The interconnectedness of travel is<br />

both an opportunity and a challenge.<br />

Technology is accelerating access to<br />

information and it's important that<br />

everyone in the travel ecosystem<br />

is moving forward, together. This is<br />

particularly critical with respect to<br />

technology because if one area of the<br />

industry lags behind, it could inhibit<br />

progress across the entire customer<br />

travel journey<br />

MEETING<br />

AS AN<br />

INDUSTRY<br />

For Glenn Fogel, "travel is an<br />

enduring force for good in the world,<br />

breaking down barriers, bringing<br />

communities together" and <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin not only celebrates that fact,<br />

but helps to ensure it stays that way.<br />

Mr Fogel underlined how important<br />

it is for the industry to come together<br />

"to promote the exchange of ideas,<br />

examine challenges, and drive<br />

collective success for everyone in<br />

the travel ecosystem," especially in<br />

the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.<br />

"As the industry has now hit its<br />

stride once again, we must applaud<br />

travel’s resilience and maintain open<br />

dialogue in order to continue to<br />

grow and evolve for the better," he<br />

concluded<br />

Hall 9 / Stands 101a, 101b<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 21


I REGION I ASIA I<br />

Asia's strong presence at <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin <strong>2024</strong> a sign of tourism<br />

recovery<br />

Asia tourism is gathering<br />

momentum<br />

Asia tourism recovery was behind the<br />

rest of the world in 2023 due to the<br />

late reopening of countries. However,<br />

Asia tourism is now gathering<br />

momentum and should experience a<br />

very promising <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

According to UN Tourism, Asia and<br />

the Pacific reached 65% of prepandemic<br />

levels last year. However,<br />

233.4 million<br />

international tourists to Asia/<br />

Oceania<br />

performance among sub-regions<br />

was mixed: South Asia outperformed<br />

other Asian sub-regions by reaching<br />

87% of pre-pandemic levels, followed<br />

by Southeast Asia at 70% of 2019<br />

figures and North-East Asia at<br />

55%. Oceania tourism reached 74%<br />

of 2019 figures, due to the strong<br />

performance of Fiji, New Caledonia<br />

and Samoa<br />

41.8% Southeast<br />

Asia accounted for 41.8% of<br />

tourism to Asia in 2023<br />

With UN Tourism predicting the<br />

unleashing of remaining pentup<br />

demand with increased air<br />

connectivity, Asian markets and<br />

destinations are expected to reach<br />

a full recovery by the end of <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

The strong presence of Asia Pacific<br />

countries and regions at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin<br />

<strong>2024</strong> underlines this uptrend.<br />

Hall 5.2a is fully booked this year, with<br />

New Zealand and Australia's stands<br />

significantly larger than in 2023.<br />

The reopened Hall 10.2 welcomes<br />

Central Asian destinations such as<br />

Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan,<br />

Tajikistan and Azerbaijan.<br />

In the Asia Hall (Hall 26), for the first<br />

time since the pandemic, China has<br />

its own stand and numerous new coexhibitors<br />

such as Chengdu. Trade<br />

visitors can also meet with Mongolia,<br />

Malaysia, Laos, Korea, Japan,<br />

Cambodia, Indonesia, Hong Kong,<br />

Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand and many<br />

other countries<br />

Halls 5.2 / 10.2 / 26a & 26b<br />

22 <strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> news.itb.com


I REGION I ASIA I<br />

Malaysia unveils a world of unique ecocultural<br />

adventures at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong><br />

Tourism Malaysia is introducing an array of distinctive<br />

travel packages at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin this year, spotlighting<br />

the nation's vast and varied niche tourism offers.<br />

This comes on the heels of an impressive year<br />

in 2023, with the nation greeting upwards of 20.1<br />

million visitors, marking a significant revival in its<br />

tourism industry.<br />

The latest figures on tourist<br />

arrivals highlight a substantial<br />

recovery, particularly from<br />

German-speaking regions,<br />

showcasing growing interest in<br />

Malaysia's unique experiences.<br />

2023 numbers showed that<br />

125,987 Germans visited Malaysia,<br />

followed by 22,312 travellers from<br />

Switzerland and 10,842 from<br />

Austria. These numbers indicate<br />

a recovery rate of approximately<br />

90% for the German-speaking<br />

market compared to the same<br />

period in 2019.<br />

Malaysia stands out as<br />

one of the 17 megadiverse<br />

countries globally, thanks to<br />

its abundant flora and fauna. It<br />

has become a premier choice<br />

for eco-tourism enthusiasts,<br />

given its rich biodiversity and<br />

natural attractions. Particularly<br />

characteristic of the jungle area<br />

are the proboscis monkeys and<br />

the rafflesia, the largest species<br />

of flower in the world. On the<br />

Malaysian peninsula travellers<br />

can explore the Taman Negara<br />

National Park, a rainforest around<br />

130 million years old and home<br />

to one of the most complex<br />

ecosystems on the planet.<br />

Through its participation in <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin <strong>2024</strong>, Malaysia affirms<br />

its commitment to enriching its<br />

tourism landscape, promising<br />

visitors from around the globe<br />

a range of unique and diverse<br />

experiences<br />

MALAYSIA<br />

LAUNCHES<br />

FOUR NEW<br />

NICHE TOURISM<br />

PACKAGES AT <strong>ITB</strong><br />

<strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>2024</strong><br />

Tourism Malaysia is launching<br />

four new niche tourism packages<br />

at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong> in an effort<br />

to diversify its tourism offerings<br />

in the sectors of geotourism,<br />

ecotourism, archaeotourism and<br />

community tourism as well as<br />

diving.<br />

Pulau Pinang & Kedah<br />

Archaeotourism & Geotourism<br />

Packages: These packages offer<br />

trips to UNESCO World Heritage<br />

sites and in-depth exploration<br />

of the regions’ archaeological<br />

history.<br />

Perlis Ecotourism Packages:<br />

These packages present Perlis as<br />

a destination ripe for ecotourism,<br />

with activities such as cave<br />

explorations, kayaking, and<br />

stargazing on offer.<br />

Sarawak Delta Geopark<br />

& Gawai Packages: These<br />

packages illustrate Malaysia’s<br />

commitment to ecotourism and<br />

the preservation of its natural<br />

landscapes.<br />

Dive into the Unimaginable<br />

Packages: These packages<br />

highlight Malaysia as a top-<br />

Perlis fisherman<br />

Sarawak Bako Nationalpark<br />

tier destination for underwater<br />

exploration, with its untouched<br />

marine ecosystems offering<br />

unmatched experiences for<br />

divers of every skill level<br />

Hall 26a / Stand 117<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 23


I REGION I ASIA I<br />

The Philippines' Bohol Island<br />

in the spotlight at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong><br />

The Philippines is promoting its new tagline "Love the<br />

Philippines" at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin this year as well as the island of<br />

Bohol, the country's first UNESCO Geopark.<br />

The Philippines experienced a strong<br />

year in tourism in 2023 as the country<br />

welcomed 5.45 million foreign<br />

visitors. The country has set its sights<br />

on 7.7 million international visitors this<br />

year.<br />

The Philippines is exhibiting with a<br />

total of 31 tourism partners this year -<br />

one of its biggest delegations ever, led<br />

by Tourism Minister Maria Esperanza<br />

Cristina Frasco. Co-exhibitors include<br />

agencies from all parts of the country,<br />

hotels and resorts of all categories<br />

as well as state institutions. They are<br />

presenting the diversity of nature,<br />

culture and adventures that the<br />

Philippines is offering to travellers,<br />

with several cultural performances<br />

for visitors throughout the show.<br />

The island of Bohol is in the spotlight<br />

on the Philippines' stand, home<br />

to the unique Chocolate Hills, the<br />

cute tarsier macis, beautiful sandy<br />

beaches and diving area. Bohol is the<br />

country's first UNESCO Geopark, and<br />

the geological identity of the island<br />

was formed over the course of 150<br />

million years, with traces of its past<br />

to be found in the limestone with its<br />

karst structures and a 6,000-year old<br />

reef; a true paradise for snorkellers<br />

and divers.<br />

Tourism is becoming more and more<br />

important as an economic sector<br />

for the island, with a clear focus on<br />

sustainable tourism, in which the<br />

preservation of natural resources and<br />

the needs of the local population take<br />

central stage<br />

Hall 26 / Stands 124-125-126<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 25


I REGION I ASIA I<br />

“<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin is a must for Thailand's<br />

tourism sector”<br />

At <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin, Thapanee Khiatphaibool, Governor of the<br />

Tourism Authority of Thailand, wants to capitalise on<br />

European markets to promote the concept of a "meaningful<br />

holiday experience".<br />

How was the year 2023 for Thailand?<br />

With 28 million foreign visitors in 2023,<br />

Thailand's tourism recovery was in line<br />

with our forecasts. We now expect<br />

that Thailand will welcome over 35<br />

million foreign travellers this year.<br />

How did European tourism perform<br />

last year and what are your<br />

predictions in <strong>2024</strong>?<br />

Europe generated 5.9 million travellers<br />

to Thailand in 2023 and we are now<br />

aiming to receive between 7.5 and<br />

8 million Europeans in <strong>2024</strong>. As a<br />

mature market, Europeans are keener<br />

to explore secondary destinations or<br />

experience a truly sustainable holiday<br />

experience. We are now looking at<br />

convincing the Thai government to<br />

extend the validity of the free visa<br />

on arrival from 30 to 90 days as this<br />

would lift revenues from long-haul<br />

markets.<br />

What strong points set Thailand<br />

apart as a destination?<br />

I believe our strong identity but also<br />

our diversity, our culture, our food<br />

and the way we care for others make<br />

a difference. Last but not least, our<br />

sense of tolerance and freedom is also<br />

a major asset for all foreign travellers<br />

to our country.<br />

How important is <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong> for<br />

you?<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong> is special for us.<br />

This is not only my first visit as the<br />

Governor of TAT but it is also a first<br />

for our Minister of Tourism and our<br />

Prime Minister, who will be present on<br />

Thapanee<br />

Khiatphaibool<br />

Governor of the Tourism<br />

Authority of Thailand<br />

7 March. <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin is really a must for<br />

Thailand's tourism sector!<br />

Hall 26 / Stand 217<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin “an important<br />

opportunity” for Indonesia<br />

Sandiaga Uno<br />

Minister of Tourism, Indonesia<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News spoke with Indonesia's Minister<br />

of Tourism Sandiaga Uno who is confident that the<br />

destination's tourism figures will be back to 2019<br />

levels this year.<br />

Are you satisfied with the<br />

evolution of tourism to<br />

Indonesia in 2023?<br />

We were very grateful to have to<br />

upgrade our projections twice in<br />

2023 from an initial forecast of<br />

7.4 million international visitors<br />

to a final figure of 11.5 million<br />

international tourists. We could<br />

do even more if we improve<br />

flight connectivity, because<br />

many destinations are ready to<br />

welcome travellers. In <strong>2024</strong>, the<br />

government set a target of 14.3<br />

million international visitors. But<br />

I am confident we could reach<br />

16.7 million foreign travellers, like<br />

in 2019. I believe Australia, India<br />

and China together will help in<br />

delivering those figures.<br />

How is the European market<br />

performing?<br />

The European market is growing<br />

according to our projections with<br />

close to 2 million travellers last<br />

year, only 5% below 2019. Europe<br />

is our fifth largest inbound<br />

market, after ASEAN countries,<br />

Australia, India and China.<br />

France, Germany and the UK are<br />

the top markets. We aim to see<br />

Europe represent 20% to 25% of<br />

all international arrivals again.<br />

You launched 5 priority<br />

destinations dubbed as "New<br />

Bali". Are you satisfied with the<br />

results?<br />

I think out of the five, I feel<br />

particularly happy with the<br />

results for Borobudur, Labuan<br />

Bajo and Mandalika. Lake Toba<br />

needs more flights and more<br />

accommodation. In Likupang, in<br />

North Sulawesi, we are going to<br />

shift to regenerative tourism by<br />

focusing on marine life and the<br />

preservation of the environment.<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin is an opportunity to<br />

present all of them<br />

Hall 26 / Stand 113<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 27


I SPECIAL FEATURE I NATURE TOURISM I<br />

© Zanzibar Commission for Tourism<br />

© Zanzibar Commission for Tourism<br />

Chile at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong>: “nature,<br />

rich culture and commitment to<br />

sustainability”<br />

Chile has a strong presence at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin this year<br />

with a total of 24 partners including 5 accommodation<br />

providers, 16 inbound agencies, 2 cruise operators and<br />

1 car rental company.<br />

“Greener Zanzibar”: authenticity<br />

and environmental responsibility<br />

at <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong><br />

At this year's <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin, Zanzibar is focusing on preserving<br />

its natural and cultural heritage to provide tourists with a<br />

diverse array of attractions.<br />

Zanzibar is an archipelago with two<br />

main islands, Unguja and Pemba, each<br />

boasting their own unique character.<br />

Unguja, home to Stone Town and<br />

the larger of the two islands, with its<br />

ancient buildings and its bustling local<br />

markets, is the cultural and economic<br />

heart of Zanzibar.<br />

Pemba, on the other hand, offers<br />

visitors a sanctuary of natural beauty<br />

and tranquillity with its lush greenery,<br />

pristine beaches, and thriving marine<br />

life. A haven for nature enthusiasts and<br />

adventure seekers alike, Pemba offers<br />

everything from coral reefs teeming<br />

with life to verdant forests full of rare<br />

flora and fauna.<br />

a commitment to sustainability. The<br />

Zanzibar Commission for Tourism's<br />

"Greener Zanzibar" campaign,<br />

launched in 2023, reflects this<br />

dedication. Through initiatives such<br />

as effective waste management,<br />

sustainable food sourcing, and<br />

ecosystem restoration, Zanzibar is<br />

fully embracing responsible tourism<br />

practices. Zanzibar stands as an<br />

example of how a commitment to<br />

sustainability can enhance the visitor<br />

experience, preserve natural and<br />

cultural heritage, and drive economic<br />

growth<br />

Hall 21 / Stand 107<br />

For the Chilean Secretary of State<br />

for Tourism, Verónica Pardo, "Chile<br />

takes part in <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong><br />

to continue positioning itself to<br />

international markets, especially to<br />

the German travel trade.<br />

Chile's popularity is reflected in<br />

recent international awards: We<br />

were recognised as the best green<br />

destination by the WTA (World<br />

Travel Awards) and named among<br />

the best destinations for <strong>2024</strong> by<br />

international media such as National<br />

Geographic, New York Times and<br />

Lonely Planet. Chile particularly<br />

impresses with the beauty of its<br />

nature, rich culture and commitment<br />

to sustainability."<br />

The European market is a priority<br />

in Chile promotion as a tourist<br />

destination, specifically Spain,<br />

Germany, France and the UK,<br />

making participation in international<br />

travel fairs an important strategy.<br />

Last year, Chile welcomed 396,012<br />

visitors from Europe, 60,052 of them<br />

from Germany.<br />

Chile is once again highlighting<br />

its spectacular natural landscapes<br />

perfect for adventure travellers, as<br />

well as its skies, some of the clearest<br />

in the southern hemisphere, which<br />

foster astrotourism<br />

Hall 23 / Stand 201<br />

To preserve all of this rich natural and<br />

cultural heritage, Zanzibar has made<br />

Cristobal Benitez, Head of Tourism Board, Chile and<br />

Zurab Pololikashvili, UN Tourism Secretary-General<br />

28 <strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> news.itb.com


ADVERTORIAL<br />

I SPECIAL FEATURE I NATURE TOURISM I<br />

Italy showcases enhanced<br />

nature tourism offer at <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin <strong>2024</strong><br />

As ENIT CEO Ivana Jelinic highlighted<br />

in her exclusive interview with <strong>ITB</strong><br />

Berlin News yesterday, nature is playing<br />

an increasingly important role in Italy's<br />

tourism offering, as more visitors opt for<br />

slow tourism activities and sustainable<br />

experiences. Climate change and new<br />

travel patterns following COVID have<br />

FRIULI VENEZIA GIULIA: AN AUTHENTIC<br />

HIDDEN GEM IN NORTHEAST ITALY<br />

Stretching between the Alps and the Dolomites<br />

in the north and the gold sandy beaches on the<br />

Adriatic in the south, Friuli Venezia Giulia attracts<br />

translated into more interest in activities<br />

linked to nature. At the Italian stand at<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> Berlin <strong>2024</strong>, many regions including<br />

Basilicata, Campania, Friuli Venezia<br />

Giulia and Molise are promoting outdoor<br />

activities and nature-linked tourism<br />

Hall 1.2 / Stands 107 – 107 A – 107 B – 107 C<br />

cultural and knowledge-seeking visitors with<br />

its variety of UNESCO heritage sites, historical<br />

villages and art cities such as Trieste, Udine,<br />

Pordenone and Gorizia. The latter, with its<br />

Austro-Hungarian flair on the border of<br />

Slovenia, will be 2025 European Capital<br />

of Culture together with Nova Gorica.<br />

Outdoor lovers will find in the Dolomites<br />

and in the Carnic and Julian Alps trekking<br />

paths crossing breathtaking landscapes<br />

such as the emerald Tagliamento river,<br />

flower-covered prairies or karst rocks<br />

overlooking Trieste. They all form a<br />

unique territory to discover<br />

© Luigi Vitale<br />

BASILICATA STATE OF<br />

MIND: TOURISM FOR<br />

WELL-BEING<br />

Basilicata is the ideal destination to regenerate body<br />

and mind. The region is a fitting choice for those<br />

in search of unique and unusual places, far from<br />

mass tourism and attentive to uncovering authentic<br />

natural beauty, culture and tradition.<br />

Basilicata proposes itineraries between nature and<br />

culture. Fairytale atmospheres, the scent of the<br />

countryside leading to the sea, rhythmic music,<br />

adrenaline-filled experiences in the open air, hiking,<br />

cycling and genuine, gastronomic products all<br />

provide invigorating experiences. According to the<br />

region, these experiences can not only encourage<br />

the well-being of visitors' bodies but even reach the<br />

well-being of their souls. To be discovered<br />

© Domenico Acerenza<br />

© Alex Mennella<br />

MOLISE'S<br />

LANDSCAPES:<br />

A TALE OF NATURE,<br />

TRADITION AND<br />

TRANQUILITY<br />

Molise is an authentic place hidden where the<br />

mountains meet the see within just 90 km.<br />

Between both are rolling hills and historic<br />

arches, revealing the historic and natural<br />

beauty of the land which is both ancient<br />

and fragile. Time moves more slowly here,<br />

and visitors can explore its biodiversity and<br />

gastronomy, both intimately connected to its<br />

untouched nature. Local gastronomy includes<br />

fresh milk and handmade cheese, truffles and<br />

of course Tintilla wine to warm every table.<br />

Locals follow old traditions made up of deer,<br />

devils, saints and bright mysteries. Molise<br />

is for those who prefer the slowness of a<br />

contemporary fairy tale to the bustle of<br />

modern life<br />

© Fonte Civico 32<br />

© Fonte Civico 32<br />

CAMPANIA: 1000 YEARS<br />

OF MEDITERRANEAN<br />

CULTURE<br />

In Campania, visitors can plunge into a great mosaic<br />

of nature. From the Phlegraean volcanoes to the<br />

Vesuvius and the Gulf of the Mermaids, they can<br />

enjoy thousands of years of Mediterranean culture<br />

along the paths of adventure and hospitality.<br />

Thanks to its mild Mediterranean weather, it<br />

is possible for visitors to partake in a number of<br />

activities throughout most of the year, from sailing<br />

in the Gulf of Naples and hiking the Vesuvius to<br />

horse riding on Ischia Island, hiking along the<br />

Amalfi Coast, rafting in the National Park of Cilento,<br />

or just strolling in Naples, Herculaneum and<br />

Pompeii. Homeland of pizza, mozzarella, espresso<br />

coffee, wines and Limoncello, Campania is an<br />

ideal destination for slow food lovers. Campania is<br />

promoting a new, sustainable and more harmonic<br />

vision of travelling while respecting nature<br />

Hall 1.2 / Stands 107 – 107 A – 107 B – 107 C<br />

<strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> 29


I SPECIAL FEATURE I LUXURY & HOSPITALITY I<br />

ADVERTORIAL<br />

South Africa:<br />

Starry nights<br />

in star-rated hotels<br />

At <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin this year, South Africa is<br />

highlighting affordable luxury thanks to<br />

the excellent value for the price of its<br />

accommodation offers. Three new luxury<br />

accommodation options are now offering<br />

stunning views of South Africa's starry skies.<br />

Sky Camp in the Aristea Private Nature<br />

Reserve in the Cape Floral Kingdom<br />

World Heritage Site is home to South<br />

Africa's first mirrored glass cabin. There<br />

are no other habitations or light influences<br />

nearby, meaning that visitors can enjoy<br />

undisturbed views of the starry night - from<br />

their bedroom or the private whirlpool.<br />

In the Samara Karoo Reserve, guests of<br />

Karoo Lodge or The Manor can book a freestanding<br />

bed under the stars from October<br />

to May. A unique opportunity to combine<br />

the Milk River with the Milky Way above!<br />

The Bubble Valley in Mpumalanga is home<br />

to Africa's first Bubble Tent Suite: a luxurious<br />

suite in a transparent bubble that promises<br />

a glamping holiday under South African<br />

skies<br />

Hall 20 / Stand 201<br />

ADVERTORIAL<br />

Healing hospitality:<br />

Ensana's integrated health<br />

spa experience<br />

Ensana, one of Europe's leading health spa hotel<br />

brands with a collection of 28 hotels, has developed<br />

a unique integrated health concept that combines<br />

natural healing resources with current medical<br />

expertise and modern diagnostic methods.<br />

As custodian of some of Europe’s<br />

most powerful and historic<br />

natural resources, Ensana is<br />

harnessing them in new ways to<br />

enhance the health of its guests.<br />

The hotel brand is utilising the<br />

therapeutic properties of thermal<br />

and mineral waters, mud and<br />

salt, to treat a range of health<br />

conditions aff ecting the muscles,<br />

bones, organs, metabolism and<br />

skin, as well as enhancing wellbeing.<br />

Ensana's commitment to<br />

health and wellness goes beyond<br />

ordinary hospitality.<br />

With decades of expertise and<br />

properties that span the historic<br />

allure of Hungary and Romania<br />

to the natural healing sanctuaries<br />

nestled in the Czech Republic,<br />

Slovakia, Bulgaria, and the UK,<br />

Ensana has established itself as a<br />

brand visitors can trust with their<br />

most precious commodity – their<br />

health.<br />

Ensana is continually seeking<br />

to expand and find new<br />

opportunities as an operator in<br />

Europe and the Middle East. The<br />

brand's development pipeline<br />

is currently focused on unique<br />

locations in Greece, Italy, Austria,<br />

Germany, Switzerland, and in the<br />

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.<br />

The firm's expansion strategy<br />

includes new spa hotels as well<br />

as existing properties which can<br />

benefit from its expertise and the<br />

implementation of Ensana’s health<br />

spa programmes. “We believe<br />

that everybody has a right to good<br />

health, and it’s our long-term goal<br />

to provide that opportunity," says<br />

Frank Halmos, CEO of Ensana<br />

Hall 9 / Stand 113<br />

Frank Halmos<br />

CEO, Ensana<br />

Would you like to strengthen your brand's<br />

presence at the show?<br />

Book your advertising or advertorial space<br />

in <strong>ITB</strong> Berlin News.<br />

Need to advertise<br />

during the show?<br />

You still can!<br />

We'd be happy to discuss opportunities<br />

with you.<br />

Give us a call at +33 6 98 40 29 27.<br />

We'll help you increase your brand<br />

awareness in the tourism industry!<br />

30 <strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> news.itb.com


32 <strong>ITB</strong> <strong>BERLIN</strong> <strong>NEWS</strong> • WEDNES<strong>DAY</strong> 6 TH MARCH <strong>2024</strong> news.itb.com


<strong>2024</strong><br />

HALL<br />

PLAN<br />

Hall 4.2 / Stand 100<br />

Hall 4.1 / Stand 222<br />

Hall 1.1 / Stand 214a<br />

Hall 20 / Stand 306


Hall 5.2 / Stand 114<br />

Hall 2.2 / Stands 201/205<br />

Hall 2.2 / Stands 200 & 200a<br />

Hall 26 / Stand 122<br />

Hall 9 / Stand 123<br />

Hall 5.1 / Stand 136<br />

Hall 9 / Stand 219 Hall 25 / Stand 215 Hall 8.1 / Stand 109<br />

Hall 4.1 / Stand 122<br />

Hall 3.2 / Stands 100 & 101<br />

Hall 1.2 / Stands 107, 107a, 107b, 107c<br />

Hall 25 / Stand 119 Hall 25 / Stand 118<br />

Hall 8.1 / Stand 111 Hall 7.1c / Stand 117 Hall 5.1 / Stand142<br />

Hall 5.1 / Stand 135<br />

Hall 18 / Stand 400c<br />

Hall 1.1 / Stand 122

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