The future of tourist attractions is revealed in Virtual ATM 2021

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The future of tourist attractions is revealed in Virtual ATM 2021
Source: Reed Exhibitions
Tue May 25, 2021

During the virtual event of the 28th Arabian Travel Market, Arival Co-Founder and CEO Douglas Quinby shared an exclusive Arival research conducted with 1500


At a value of $ 254 billion in 2019, the travel and tourism travel, activities and attractions segment is not just the third largest of travel; that's why people travel in the first place. During the virtual element of the 28th Arabian Travel Market (ATM), Arival Co-Founder and CEO Douglas Quinby shared exclusive Arival research conducted with 1,500 respondents on the prospects of tours, activities, attractions and the key trends shaping the sector. post-COVID-19 pandemic revival.

According to the research, although the gross global bookings in tours, activities and attractions in 2020 were reduced by 80%, which is not a surprise, the impact of the recession was uneven with mixed experiences in all regions and variations of a market to another.

Arival's research identified that almost all operators (99%) implemented health and safety measures and that in a sector that previously lagged 10-15 years behind the travel and tourism industry in digitization, has There has been a rapid adoption of technologies for online reservations. Virtual tours were also a popular way for platforms to try to stay connected with their customers and generate some revenue. However, only 16% of operators tried to launch virtually, with mixed results. The research also found that as travel resumes, self-guided tours and experiences will become a viable alternative to large group experiences.

Addressing delegates online during Virtual ATM 2021, Quinby said: “This travel industry will make a comeback, as will the rest of the travel and tourism industry. However, even though the impact of the recession has been uneven for the sector, so will the recovery. What we hope to see is that the recovery is hyperlocal and very destination and segment specific. "

Meanwhile, Emaar Entertainment CEO Zeina Dagher, who is responsible for strategy for some of Dubai's top attractions, including the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, KidZania and Burj Khalifa, shared how the attractions have adapted to the crisis. and where they are developed, distributed and the guest experience is headed in 2021 and beyond.

“2020 has been a year of unexpected and unknown changes. However, as an organization, we have come out strong and prepared for 2021 and beyond, ”said Dagher. “The speed with which we came together as a team to address the crisis was critical to our recovery. We have had to completely change the way we work in terms of marketing, operations and pricing to deliver much more value from our attractions and also to ensure the health and safety of our guests. Our diversity is now our strength, and our focus is more on our domestic tourism market and UAE residents. "

Elsewhere on the 2021 Virtual ATM agenda, hoteliers from ACCOR, Mantis Collection, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and Red Carnation Hotels gathered at the ATM Hotel Industry Summit to explain how they have adapted to the super-acceleration of global wellness and wellness movements. sustainability. , evolving its hotels and services to respond to the overwhelming demand from travelers for health and wellness solutions and sustainable practices that support the environment and local communities.

This was followed by two main independent interviews with airline leaders, which focused on seizing new opportunities and moving forward despite the devastating effects of the pandemic. In the first interview, Air Arabia Group CEO Adel Ali spoke about how he is managing the crisis without losing sight of opportunities. Meanwhile, the second interview featured flydubai CEO Ghaith Al Ghaith, where he shared how he envisions the development and evolution of flydubai in the coming years and explored the likely growth of the network, product developments and the ever-growing partnership. deep and evolving with Emirates.

Other sessions include information and tools for safe recovery from COVID-19, how the lack of international travel has affected the regional F&B scene, the growing importance of responsible hospitality, and the technology that will drive a more sustainable future for travel.

"Sustainability in travel and tourism has been a major focus in ATM over the years, but now, more than ever, concerns about the travel industry's impact on the environment are becoming one. of the industry's defining issues for future generations, "said Danielle. Curtis, ME Exhibition Director, Arabian Travel Market. "This session highlights how technology and sustainability will converge to ensure a vibrant and responsible future for travel."

For those who were unable to attend the in-person event that took place last week at the Dubai World Trade Center, ATM 2021 Virtual continues on Wednesday, May 26, providing the opportunity to view the recorded sessions of the in-person event, as well as participate in a variety of webinars. , live conference sessions, panel discussions, quick networking events, destination briefings, as well as making new connections in one-on-one meetings.

The third day of Virtual ATM, on Wednesday, May 26, will include sessions such as cultural tourism for growth and responsible technology for travel and tourism, as well as the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) conference that will take place from 2:00 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. pm GST, with the theme Ready.Safe.Travel.

The Middle East Tourism Investment Summit organized by ITIC in association with Arabian Travel Market 2021 will also take place virtually on May 27.

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