Opening Press Conference launches ITB as a new umbrella brand
ITB Berlin opens its gates this year with show organisers, Messe Berlin, announcing a reorientation on a global scale
From 7 to 11 March 2018, the World’s Leading Travel Trade Show will again be the industry’s meeting place and must-see event, devoting itself to innovative and forwardlooking trends in the travel industry, politics and business.
At the opening press event, Dr Christian Göke, CEO of Messe Berlin announced that in the future, ITB will present itself as an “international umbrella brand” and focus not only on promoting the annual event in Berlin. This reorientation on a global scale means a concentration of three formats, the trade shows in Germany (ITB Berlin), Singapore (ITB Asia) and China (ITB China), under one label. At the 52nd edition of ITB Berlin, around 10,000 tourism companies from 186 countries and regions will be represented on an area covering 160,000 square metres at the Messe Berlin fairgrounds. Over 80 percent of the exhibitors are from abroad. Once again, the organisers expect more than 100,000 international trade visitors seeking prosperous business opportunities as well as many thousand members of the public on the weekend, who will be able to find inspiration for their next trip.
“In 2018, ITB Berlin remains strongly in touch with the industry’s trends. We provide a forum for pressing issues such as overtourism, revolutionary forms of travel and digitalisation as well as topical themes such as luxury travel, technology and sustainability. ITB Berlin has firmly established itself as an international brand and above all stands for acquiring industry contacts from around the world and industry knowledge that is firsthand. It is the logical consequence of positioning ourselves as the leading market force and opinionformer of the global travel industry”, said Dr Göke.
PARTNER REGION UNDER THE SPOTLIGHT
Manuela Schwesig, Minister Pres ident of Mecklenburg- Vorpommern told the conference she was proud her region was partner this year. The Minister- President says she is convinced that ITB Berlin is indeed the perfect place to show to the world the diversity of her region. “We want to stress that our Land stands for nature, culture but above all for peace of mind and relaxation.” Dr Michael Frenzel, President of the Federal Association of the German Tourism Industry (BTW), was on hand at the opening press event to talk up growth in both the German and global travel business. “Over the past year, our industry has achieved good results,” he said. “There has been a tourism boom and people remain keen to travel.”
ITB BERLIN HAS FIRMLY ESTABLISHED ITSELF AS AN INTERNATIONAL BRAND AND ABOVE ALL STANDS FOR ACQUIRING INDUSTRY CONTACTS FROM AROUND THE WORLD AND INDUSTRY KNOWLEDGE THAT IS FIRST-HAND
Noting an “impressive” 7% increase in the number or tourists making cross-border journeys worldwide in 2017 (90 million more than 2016), Frenzel described corresponding strong uptake in the German travel business.
German citizens travelled 11 million more days last year, while destination Germany recorded 460 million overnight stays, with visits from abroad rising 4%. It was the eighth consecutive year of growth. Frenzel reiterated the importance of the German travel industry for “providing a link with our culture” and promoting “international understanding.” He went on: “Our activities are based on ‘transcending borders’ in both a figurative and literal sense.”
The president of the German Travel Association (DRV), Norbert Fiebig, also had good news for the ITB Berlin faithful, noting that German citizens spent €91bn on travel in 2017 – of this, €65m were spent ahead on bookings made in Germany, a record increase of over 8%.
“What is most satisfying for us German travel industry representatives is that package tours or combined trips organised by operators accounted for half of the amount spent,” Fiebig noted.
Norbert Fiebig – President, DRV
Manuela Schwesig – Minister President, Mecklenburg- Vorpommern,
Dr Michael Frenzel – President, BTW,
Dr Christian Göke – CEO Messe Berlin
Dr Martin Buck – Vice-President of Competence Centre Travel and Logistics, Messe Berlin