TIA NZ Chief Martin Snedden

New Zealand’s tourism industry chief Martin Snedden is encouraging industry players to ‘think different’ and come up with new ways to grow the visitor economy and address long-standing challenges.

Snedden made the comments in the lead-up to the Tourism Industry Association (TIA) 2012 Summit, taking place in Wellington on Tuesday 2 October 2012.

Organised by TIA and supported by Westpac, the one-day event for leaders of New Zealand’s NZD$23 billion tourism industry will be firmly focused on the future.

“There’s an old saying: ‘if you keep doing the same old things the same old way, why should you expect anything other than the same old results?’ This also applies to tourism,” Snedden says.

“Our industry is changing quickly and the changes are permanent. We need to move past the mind-blocks that are holding us back and find ways to drive the industry to greater growth.”

The TIA says a strong line-up of speakers will challenge and provoke attendees.

From Australia, Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF) Chief Executive John Lee will share his views on how Australia’s industry leaders are facing up to the future.

The high profile head of cruise ship operator Carnival Australia, Anne Sherry, will explain why the tourism industry has no choice but to embrace the opportunities offered by the cruise sector.

A series of break-out sessions throughout the day will draw on the expertise of both tourism and non-tourism participants to debate challenging issues facing the industry, including:
-Domestic tourism – why are we ignoring our biggest customer?;
-The environment or the economy?;
-Taxing visitors to fund tourism;
-Digital and social media – from awareness to conversion;
-Lobbying, an underrated art; and
-Changing markets + changing cultures = changing thinking.

“If our individual businesses are to survive and prosper, we must be more forward thinking and work together much better to ensure we make the best use of resources,” Snedden says.

“The 2012 TIA Summit will be a watershed opportunity to create a brighter future for our industry and grow its contribution to New Zealand’s economy.”

For more details on the 2012 TIA Summit or to register, go to www.tianz.org.nz/main/2012-tia-summit

James Wilkinson

Editor-In-Chief, Hotel Management

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