Arabian Travel Market (ATM) has officially announced the launch of ATM Virtual, a three-day event that will take place from June 1 to 3, 2020. The event, which underscores ATM’s commitment to delivering positive business and networking opportunities to the region’s vast travel and tourism community, will focus on emerging trends, opportunities and the challenges, which are directly impacting the tourism industry amid the COVID-19 global health pandemic.
Danielle Curtis, Exhibition Director ME, Arabian Travel Market said, “Our debut virtual event provides us with the opportunity to work closely with the ATM community and ensure we can support the travel and tourism industry is rebounding as quickly and efficiently as possible. We will address the impact the global health pandemic has had on the travel and tourism industry and discuss a road map to recovery, identifying the trends shaping the future of the industry and the ‘new normal’ that lies ahead.”
ATM Virtual, which will take place over three days, will feature comprehensive webinars, live conference sessions, roundtables, speed networking events, one-to-one meetings, as well as facilitating new connections and offering a wide range of online business opportunities. With up to four live high-level sessions each day, industry experts will address a range of topics including tourism strategies for the future, the hotel landscape in a post-COVID-19 world, and the resilience of the travel industry, as well as exploring emerging travel technology and sustainability trends, amongst other key topics.
Sessions on the first day of the virtual event include, amongst others, Communicating and Building Confidence Now and The Hotel landscape in a post-COVID-19 world.
Day two will include the Virtual ATM China Forum and Networking sessions as well as Bouncing Back: Tourism Strategies for the Future, and Catapulting Resilience Through Technology and Analytics. On day three, the event will conclude with the International Travel Investment Conference.
The packed agenda will also feature interviews with high-calibre aviation keynote speakers providing a detailed update on the aviation industry. It will also feature a session run by Arrival, focused on the rise of online travel agencies (OTAs), the re-opening of operations, and what this means for the tour and attraction operators across the Middle East.
One-to-one pre-scheduled 30-minute meetings between editors, exhibitors, and buyers will also take place, while live video sessions will include Q&As and polls which will be run alongside the presentations to enable audience interaction. A series of independently moderated, pre-recorded on-demand roundtables have been designed to discuss emerging hot topics such as domestic travel, luxury travel trends, corporate travel, and tourism recovery plans. Also, key travel editors and leading travel and tourism experts will be writing blogs on topical subjects spanning not just regional but international industry verticals.
While a host of hour-long speed networking sessions, between key buyers and exhibitors, will culminate in over 1,400 5-minute meetings that can then be extended into more in-depth meetings where a business need is identified. “For exhibitors from this region, the dedicated networking event will also have one Middle East-focused session per day, as well as sessions for buyers, focused on purchasing European and Asian products, plus a session specifically targeting Chinese buyers,” added Curtis. In addition to ATM Virtual, the WTM Portfolio has launched a new online portal, the WTM Global Hub, which went live on 23 April 2020.
The portal, which was set up to connect and support travel industry professionals around the world, will offer the latest news and advisory to help exhibitors, buyers and others in the travel industry face up to the challenges of the global coronavirus pandemic. The platform, which will provide content in English, Arabic, Spanish and Portuguese, will provide a wide range of webinars, podcasts, videos, news and blogs from key industry figures, providing travel professionals with a wealth of information, advice, and support to cope with the current crisis and plan for the future.