Prominent exhibitors and industry professionals from more than 150 countries, who attended this yearâ€™s 25th edition of the largest travel and tourism exhibition in the Middle East, have described the event as a huge success.
Over 2,500 exhibitors and 40,000 industry professionals graced the exhibition, which took place at the Dubai World Trade Centre from April 22 to 26, with the theme: â€˜Responsible Tourism and Sustainabilityâ€™.
One of those who attended the exhibition, the deputy ruler of Dubai, His Highness Shelkh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum, noted that this yearâ€™s event was remarkable going by the number of attendees and professionals.
Maktoum who inaugurated this yearâ€™s Arabian Travel Market (ATM) conference which also marked the 25 year anniversary of the existence of the exhibition, also lauded the organisers, saying it would help improve the economy of the United Arab Emirate.
In his remark, Maktoum said: This yearâ€™s event is a lot different because of the number of the exhibitors present from all over the world,â€ adding that no doubt, the event would help boost the economy of Dubai and launder the countryâ€™s tourism image among the comity of nations.
Director of Shammal Communication, Nathalie Visele, on behalf of the organisers of the event, noted that â€œATM is the leading international travel and tourism event in the Middle east, for inbound and out-bound tourism professionals.â€
Visele, who stated that the previous year recorded a deal worth $25 billion, added that this year would be far better than the previous years because of the great response from professional and exhibitors from over the world.
According to the General Manager of Visa Middle East and North Africa (MENA), Marcello Baricordi, â€œItâ€™s vital for the travel industry to understand how travelers gather information and make decisions. The increasing use of online tools and this platform is to connect with customers at every step of their journey. Also, study has shown that digital payment is relevant, because travelers want a reliable, secure and convenient experience without the worry of carrying cash about.â€
Speaking further, Marcello said Visa cashless solution offers travelers the freedom of acceptance at more than 46 million merchant bank locations worldwide.
He added that the peace of mind using Visa as it is being protected by Visa global, secure network, as well as back by multiple layers as security with benefit of competitive exchange rate when they pay in local currency.
On his part, Emirates Divisional Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations Centre, Sheikh Majid Al Mualla, who spoke to THISDAY, stated that Emirate has over the years promoted tourism business between Nigeria and Dubai, making the airline the most friendly and suitable for travelers with the quality of service being rendered daily on board as well as the good relationship enjoyed with the Nigeria Government.
He further stated that they were at this yearâ€™s ATM to show case it new first Business Class 777 with great features meant for other routes like Geneva and Brussel and other countries.