VisitBritain kicks off travel trade event
Bangkok, May 14, 2013
VisitBritain, the national tourism agency, responsible for marketing Britain worldwide, kicked off its flagship international travel trade event, Destination Britain 2013, in Bangkok today (May 14).
Celebrating its 10th year, the tourism gathering opened with a record 35 per cent of new suppliers, showcasing their strongest UK travel and tourism offerings.
The event offers British tourism businesses a crucial route to market and a unique opportunity to further boost the 4.2 million visits and record GBP5.3 billion ($8.1 billion) spent in Britain by visitors from the APMEA (Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Asia) region.
APMEA is a key region for Britain in terms of value, accounting for 28 per cent of total tourism spend, an amount that has grown considerably over the last few years (35 per cent growth since 2008).
Destination Britain APMEA is VisitBritain’s largest overseas trade event, with over 200 companies and travel industry specialists attending over three days. This year is set to break attendance records, with 60 UK companies comprising attractions, hotels, tour operators, regional, and national tourist boards and transport providers taking part, a statement said.
In the 2012 Olympic year, Britain welcomed 31 million visitors from across the world, spending GBP18.6 billion. VisitBritain has recently outlined a growth strategy that aims to boost inbound tourism to 40 million visits and GBP31.5 billion in spend by 2020 (3 per cent year-on-year growth).
A key component of the 2020 growth strategy involves plans to expand the GCC region. These markets are becoming increasingly important, accounting for £1.2b spend in 2012, representing 22 per cent of the APMEA total.
The organisation will now increase its reach across Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Jeddah, Kuwait City and Qatar. This larger network along with partner activity will enable VisitBritain to engage with high spending Arab families and the increasingly important youth market.
To support their efforts, and after successful partnerships with British Airways across the world, VisitBritain and Emirates airline have agreed a GBP2 million, two-year partnership to promote Britain overseas. The deal will include a combination of marketing in kind and cash payments. Emirates cover a vast network of routes and destinations across South East Asia, Australia, India and the GCC.
Keith Beecham, VisitBritain’s overseas director said: “Destination Britain is another example of how we continue to work with the APMEA trade, helping ensure Britain is front of mind when it comes to destination choice. It also allows us to promote our great British product across a wide network of countries and enables us to provide a route to export growth for UK businesses at a key time for the economy.
“This is one of our most sought after events, with operators recognising the great potential of APMEA and the opportunity it brings to increase the millions of visitors arriving from the region every year. Along with increased trade engagement and a new partnership with Emirates, this year will witness the continuation of our GREAT Britain marketing campaign, inspiring more travel from an increasingly popular and high spending region.” – TradeArabia News Service