ATM 2020: a narrative of resilience
Twenty-seven years on from its launch, Arabian Travel Market (ATM) continues to be the focal point for the Middle East’s resilient and ever-changing travel and tourism landscape. Every year placing a focus on emerging trends, opportunities and the challenges which are directly impacting the industry.
And, in light of the global health crisis related to Covid-19 coronavirus, ATM this year will focus on the impact felt by the travel industry in recent months, as well as providing a platform to discuss the resilience of our industry and the importance of continuity as we work together to direct and support one another in the recovery phase which lies ahead.
We are fully aware of the important role that ATM plays for industry professionals across the Middle East region and beyond, and we are continuing to listen to our stakeholders and supporting associations, as well as taking advice from public health authorities, as we work towards ATM 2020.
Our decision to postpone will also enable us, with the help of our partners and of course our participants, to organise and deliver an event, which will provide a road map to recovery for the travel and tourism industry, throughout the region and beyond.
Our industry is built on personal relationships, after all we serve people, that’s our business, ‘Events for Tourism Growth’ will therefore remain our spotlight theme for 2020. Events which embrace one-on-one meetings and networking will be integral to our recovery and they will be featured across the various show verticals and planned activities
Arabian Travel Week will also return to the agenda, running alongside ATM 2020, the week-long festival of events will include ILTM Arabia, Travel Forward, a new travel tech and hospitality innovation event; as well as new in-destination conference Arival Dubai @ ATM and a series of buyer forums for key source markets India, Saudi Arabia and Russia and ATM Speed Networking Events.
Taking Travel Tech to a new level at ATM this year, Travel Forward will feature a cutting-edge conference agenda as well as showcasing the very latest innovations from some of the brightest minds in the travel and tourism industry. Enabling delegates to test new technologies and applications that could help boost efficiency during the industry’s recovery phase and beyond, the event will also feature a ‘StartUp Competition’.
Meanwhile, with countries across the MENA region predicted to see an increase in domestic tourism and staycations, Arival Dubai @ ATM will provide a platform for vendors, agents and operators of tours, activities and attractions to explore the next generation of emerging in-destination trends and innovations set to positively impact the industry over the next 12 months.
New to our agenda this year will be the ATM Influencers Day, in association with ITP. exhibitors will have the opportunity to meet 50 key regional and international travel bloggers. Other popular features which will return to the show repertoire will be the ATM Hotel Industry Summit, Digital Influencers Speed Networking, the Halal Tourism Showcase, the Best Stand Awards and the Travel Agents Academy.
It is only through international cooperation that Covid-19 will be contained, managed and ultimately suppressed. The world will overcome this crisis, indeed the travel and hotel sectors will be some of the first beneficiaries, when the global economy returns to a ‘new’ normal. And it is precisely the role of ATM to prepare the industry to take full advantage of those opportunities, when they arrive.
* The writer is exhibition director ME, Arabian Travel Market