Australia’s largest travel event to promote Australian holiday experiences to the international travel trade has wrapped-up in Sydney.
During the week-long 2011 Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE), 1,700 delegates representing 600 tourism businesses from across the country have met with 700 delegates from 40 countries in around 100,000 business meetings.
Held at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre (SCEC) from April 2-8, ATE is Tourism Australia’s premier business-to-business event, providing a forum for Australian tourism businesses to showcase their products, meet overseas contacts and negotiate business deals with the travel trade who sell Australian holidays overseas.
Tourism Australia Managing Director Andrew McEvoy said the business secured during ATE this year would help to consolidate Australia’s future as a tourism destination.
“There has been a real buzz amongst delegates attending ATE this week and a real confidence about selling Australia internationally as a holiday destination,” McEvoy said.
“The relationships developed and the deals that are done at ATE, between Australian tourism products and the travel trade who sell Australian holidays overseas, are the building blocks for creating long term tourism growth.
“Short term, ATE11 has injected around $10m in to the local economy this week, with 13,000 visitors nights spent in Sydney,” McEvoy said.
Tourism NSW Executive Director and General Manager, Lyndel Gray said this year’s event, co-hosted by Tourism NSW and Tourism Australia and one of the biggest ever, was an enormous success with a record numbers of buyers and sellers attending ATE.
“Our sellers from around NSW have been reporting almost full appointment schedules with the international buyers attending ATE, which is an excellent result,” Gray said.
“Now these products and destinations have the opportunity to create future business through the relationships they’ve formed at ATE.
“Tourism NSW’s role is to facilitate business opportunities for the NSW tourism industry and having a fabulous environment to showcase their product and do business in has proved really important.
“For the first time this year we have gone with a uniform look and the feedback we’ve had from our operators has been amazing, they really love the new look and feel and say it makes it easier for people to identify NSW destinations and products.
“ATE has been really successful for our NSW tourism operators and we’re really excited about hosting this fabulous event again in 2013,” Gray said.
McEvoy said this year’s ATE also provided a platform for key initiatives including the launch of the new National Tourism Accreditation Framework, by the Minister for Tourism, the Hon Martin Ferguson AM MP, emphasizing the industry-wide need to drive improvement in the quality of Australia’s tourism product.
“Another successful outcome of this year’s ATE has been the embedding of the 2020 Tourism Industry Potential, the industry’s long-term vision of doubling overnight expenditure by 2020,” McEvoy said.
“Throughout the event we have been engaging with the industry to work with us to generate $140 billion in overnight expenditure by 2020.
“We have been looking at the specific regions and markets where these numbers are going to come from. It’s been great getting feedback from the operators as they start to engage with how this vision might affect their own business.”
ATE is divided into two modules allowing exhibitors to target the markets most appropriate for their tourism product. The Eastern module targets buyers from Japan, Asia and the Gulf Countries while the Western module targets buyers from UK, Europe, the Americas, Africa, New Zealand and the South Pacific. International buyers attend the module according to where their company is based and Australian exhibitors can apply to attend one or both modules.