ON EXHIBIT: It’s all new at WTM 2012

There will be a lot of new faces when the 2012 World Travel Market gets underway in London (Nov. 5 to Nov. 8, 2012) next week. WTM officials report that the show, now in its 33rd year of operation, will welcome 157 new exhibitors. The list of new exhibitors includes tourist boards, technology companies, hotel chains, attractions and tour operators who will all be hosting their own stands for the first time at the show’s ExCeL – London venue. Europe leads the way in new exhibitors with a massive 41 exhibitors making their debut as Main Stand Holders. They include tourism boards and offices from as far apart as San Marino, Lille and Belarus as well as the Economic Development Ministry of the Republic of Komi in North Western Russia. Hoteliers taking their first exhibition stands include Palladium Hotel Group of Spain, and Germany?s Steigenberger Hotels. Technology and Online Travel has the second highest number of new exhibitors, with 36 technology companies taking their own stands. The continued growth in the technology section reflects the burgeoning importance of hi-tech and web developments in travel. Companies making their debuts come from a wide range of disciplines, and include well-known names such as online travel agency Travel Republic and e-learning specialist Online Travel Training. Software firms are represented by the likes of Hotelogix and Intuitive, while the rise of social media and mobile is reflected in the appearance of specialists such as Revinate and Voiamo Group. Other suppliers to the sector exhibiting for the first time include payment firm Worldpay and technology services company Wizie. The Global Village region will see 18 exhibitors from all parts of the industry appearing for the first time, representing the unrivalled diversity of suppliers at World Travel Market. They include the K+K boutique hotels chain, wholesaler Adonis, Autorent Car Rental and Chic Outlet Shopping in Europe. Meanwhile, Asia offers a total of 13 first-time exhibitors at this year’s World Travel Market, which demonstrates the growth in China’s travel industry — such as China Southern Airlines — and the emergence of newer destinations such as Vietnam, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, represented by the likes of Victoria Vietnam Group, Saigontourist, Uzbektourism and the Kyrgyz Association of Tour Operators. India has its own dedicated stand-alone region at WTM 2012, with 12 new exhibitors including; Brys Hotels, Inbound Tour Operator Council (ITOC) – West Bengal, hotel company ITC Limited and Odisha Tourism. The UK also has 12 exhibitors to make their first appearance, hoping to capitalize on an unprecedented year for the country after the Diamond Jubilee and Olympics. New exhibitors include household names such as English Heritage and the National Trust, plus London attractions such as The View From the Shard and Ripley?s Believe It Or Not. A further ten new exhibitors will attend the show in the Africa region highlighting the continued development of African tourism, especially as the continent emerges from last year’s Arab Spring. Those making their debuts include the Libyan Export Promotion Center and Airkenya Express. The Americas and Caribbean will welcome eight new exhibitors to the event including Cuba Direct, Cuba Select Travel, Harlequin Hotels and Resorts, the Falkland Islands Tourist Board and Discover Ecuador. The Middle East welcomes seven new main stand holders including the Iraqi Tourism Board and Marta Consulting.

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