During the 2023 edition of FITUR, tourism companies and professionals presented their objectives and carried out business operations and contacts to promote their destinations. We chatted with Verónica Kunze, Chilean Undersecretary of Tourism, who told us how they experienced the event and the vision they have for this new year.
How was your experience and what do you expect for the future?
It was wonderful. There are a lot of people and entrepreneurs generally have a good evaluation. Everyone is anxious to travel, to also visit new destinations and it is good to see each other again in person at this great fair.
You set up a great stand, do you want to tell me who is with you?
We have a mix between tour operator products and experiences where we combine so that there can be work both for those who are interested in a specific accommodation product or some particular destinations, but also tour operators who can show the work we are doing in some destinations both in the north and the south of the country and that they are closely related. The call we made was to work around sustainability, especially now that we have won the best green destination in the world for this combination of products and experiences.
Chile has a great challenge this year, tell us a little. We are starting the season, how is the planning, what is the outlook for you?
On the one hand, for everything that has to do with generating a tourism strategy for the country, we are preparing the National Tourism Strategy decentralized in the regions and with the regions. The relevant actors, both public and private, are going to develop it during this year. We are updating our international marketing plan which will also be ready in a couple of months. All this will allow us to have a road map to guide us towards where we want to work for the coming years in our country. In terms of recovery,
Going back to Europe, what are the strategic markets for you today beyond Spain?
In addition to Spain, which is indeed perhaps the main market, closely followed by Germany, France and England, these are the four European markets. In a year without a pandemic, we received a little more than 500,000 tourists from Europe and, therefore, for us here the work we are doing to recover connectivity in our country is very important, talking with airlines so that some can return. that others increase frequency or that new destinations are generated to, effectively, attract that European market that can only be reached by plane.
Touching on the subject of MICE, that Chile has been a leader in this segment, what is your vision for this season?
Before starting FITUR, we were at the CINET meeting of Ibero-America where we showed the work we are doing, especially with our ambassador program, which is attracting congresses and incentive programs to our country. Show us a video that generated and caused a spectacular sensation, so everyone told us "now I do want to go to Chile, I'm going to take my Congress to Chile." So, we are betting heavily on that and in 2022 we already had some incentive companies that came to our country and we want to continue promoting that this year 2023.
How many events did you do in 2022 and how many could arrive this year?
In terms of congresses and incentives, in 2022 we had between five and ten events, some private and some closer to Peru, Bolivia, etc. This year we hope there will be more than ten, around 15, excellent.
What would be the message for the community of tourism professionals this year in Chile?
Chile is wonderful, where the impossible is possible. We have a sustainable developed tourism, we are working hard with the communities and adventure tourism and our experiences are unique.