From increased visitor numbers, to more media and even greater attendance by trade specialists, World Travel Market Africa 2017 closed with praise from both local and international travel professionals.
Exhibitors queuing to meet with buyers at one of the highly sought-after speed networking sessions that grew from 110 to 165 tables this year.
“While we are still awaiting the audited figures for WTM Africa 2017, we can report that we have recorded a total increase in travel professionals of 17%,” says Chardonnay Marchesi, General Manager of Africa Travel Week, which incorporates WTM Africa.
Marchesi furthered that increases across the board indicate that WTM Africa is fast becoming one of the most popular B2B platforms for travel professionals on the African continent. “Media attendance increased by an incredible 17% in 2017, while the number of travel professionals in attendance increased too. The number of registered travel agents also grew, increasing by 9%.”
In 2017, 21 different African countries were represented across the exhibition, while the total number of countries represented grew to 38, a total increase of 5,2%.
WTM Africa 2017 opened with over 8,900 self-scheduled and pre-scheduled appointments on record between buyers and exhibitors, and 140 first-time Hosted Buyers from key and emerging source markets. For the first time, hosted buyers from Zambia, Ethiopia and Namibia were also present.
Positive feedback from buyers and exhibitors alike has started to trickle in, while social media indicated a massive interest in WTM Africa 2017, with over 7,000 mentions of the hashtag (#WTMA17) alone.
Highlights of WTM Africa 2017 include the large-scale exhibition with over 650 exhibitors, exciting speakers and panel discussions, and the announcement that from 2018, the Sports & Events Tourism Exchange will be incorporated into Africa Travel Week.
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