- The large influx of professionals was the common denominator of these verticals of tourism, in which a variety of proposals, a growing interest in their presentations as well as the high quality of the participants stood out, according to its organisers
FITUR KNOW-HOW AND EXPORT
Nuria Muñoz, Communication and Media Manager at SEGITTUR, has highlighted the results of the 6th Edition of FITUR Know-How & Export as very satisfactory, both for the organizers as well as the 40 companies and six start-ups who participated. “The number of professionals has been very high. However, the participating companies have highlighted the level of activity, with numerous meetings which they have had over the three days”.
In addition, the whole of space at Fitur Know-How & Export has been awarded with one of the best company stand awards by FITUR due to the combination of proposals contained in this space. The area of virtual reality was one of the points that sparked greater interest, since it allowed to focus on eleven experiences that revealed the potential of virtual reality for tourism (visiting Malaga, completing the Way of Saint James, getting to know, discovering the Arctic Circle in Norway, visiting the Roman amphitheatre in Cartagena, the Pulpi Geode, Archena Baths or Don Quixote’s fight with the windmills, as well as flying over New York to get a bird’s eye view).
SEGITTURLab, the ideas laboratory, held six practical workshops in which professionals and entrepreneurs had the opportunity to find an answer to the challenges faced by digital tourism, with sessions from blockchain, virtual reality, gamification, visual thinking or chatbot. More than 240 people have visited all of them.
On the other hand, it is worth highlighting the interest in the conference programme with more than 14 presentations and 60 speakers, experts in various topics related to digital transformation, as well as support for the internationalization of the tourism industry which was supported by the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank. Finally, we should highlight the celebration of the 5th Edition of the contest for tourism applications, which received about 80 applications, 40 national and 34 international.
Álvaro Carrillo de Albornoz, Managing Director of ITH, stressed the participation of more than 100 very high level speakers in FiturtechY 2018, in 4 parallel forums (tech&future, tech&business, tech&destination and tech&sustainability), attracting more than 20,000 professionals, seeking to anticipate the demands of the market and plan their investments based on the knowledge offered in this area of technology and innovation. In addition, he explained “that the Hotel of the future has shown how, thanks to technology and artificial intelligence, we can customize the customer experience more and better.” This success, according to the Managing Director of ITH, “just consolidates the positive evolution of a forum that after twelve years of history is the meeting point for the most innovative professionals in the tourism sector in the framework of the International Tourism Trade Fair”.
Fernando Ruiz, sales manager of Fitur Shopping, highlighted that there has been a 10% increase in the number of attendees to the conference programme in relation to that of 2017. In addition, he explained in the first presentation, “Turismo de compras en destinos: marcas globales vs. diseño local” (Shopping destinations in tourism: global brands vs. local design), this area was highlighted as an opportunity to increase the average expenditure of tourists regardless of the destination. In the second presentation, “Turismo de compras en comercios singulares de Madrid” (Shopping tourism in unique shops of Madrid), shopping tourism was defended as a way to strengthen and maintain commerce in Madrid when faced with online sales and offshoring, since tourists are looking for the direct experience of the destination. And in the last presentation; “Turismo de compras y digitalización” (Shopping tourism and digitalization), this appears as an additional product in terms of digitalization, that is to say, influenced by the present trends of augmented reality, geolocalisation, artificial intelligence or big data.
The different FITUR B2B events have already cemented themselves as one of the main networking tools where business opportunities are multiplying. Proof of this is the total of 6,800 planned appointments in its last edition, with the idea of maximizing the effectiveness and optimizing the time during the Trade Fair.
The valuation of FITUR has been very positive in relation to the results of the eighth edition of Workshop Fitur-Hosted Buyers; with around 130 buyers invited – representatives with decision making positions from agencies and international tour operators, coming from 37 countries and rigorously selected by the IFEMA delegations abroad, commission companies in India, China and Russia and by the exhibitors themselves.
On the other hand, the ninth Tourism Investment and Business Forum for Africa- INVESTOUR– has been a success, reuniting 20 international investors with holders of 46 African projects in the following countries: Algeria, Cameroun, Comoros, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of Guinea, Kenya, Mali, Morocco, Namibia, Niger, Rwanda, Sudan, Somalia and Zambia. The objective of this B2B is the promotion of concrete initiatives that contribute to the sustainable development of the tourism sector in Africa.
Regarding this, being aware of the potential that sectorisation poses, we should emphasize the good results of the specific fourth workshop of Fitur Health, with business encounters between the exhibitors of this area and buyers coming from the main countries in this specific field, who represent medical prescribers, national health organisations, medical facilitators, specialized travel agencies and insurers.
Spain Live Music highlighted the importance of FITUR to connect, through Fitur Festivals, the organizers of events with auxiliary companies in the sector, mass media and international tour operators.
“We think that, after the first year of Fitur Festivals, the objectives that we thought were possible to achieve have been satisfactory, both in relation to public knowledge, discussion forum and networking”, as the people in charge of Spain Live Music stated.
FITUR GAY (LGBT)
Juan Pedro Tudela, co-founder of Diversity Consulting, emphasized the growth of FITUR GAY (LGBT) both in exhibitors and brands represented, as well as the incorporation of ASTURIAS, EL CORTE INGLES and COSTA RICA.
“We have had more than 80 speakers talking about diverse subjects related to LGBT tourism and businesses, among them; Mayors, Tourism Managing Directors, Counsellors, Company Directors, Ministers, People in charge of Convention Centres, Associations, etc… We calculate that more than 60,000 people may have visited FITUR GAY every day, if we base this information on the magazines handed out by a famous company”, emphasized Juan Pedro Tudela.