Upbeat mood around CTC pavilion at huge German B2B trade show reflects promising high Canada travel intentions for 2011.
The biggest shows pack the biggest punches, and ITB Berlin 2011 in Berlin this month was no exception. This mega B2B and consumer travel tradeshow pulls in exhibitors and visitors from around the world, and a strong Canada pavilion led by the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) was part of this huge pulling power. In all, 10,000-plus exhibitors from 180-plus countries combine for this travel giant.
Forty-five Canadian exhibitors joined forces to represent all of Canada’s vast geography. The pavilion had reps from large companies and destinations as well as small- and medium-size tourism businesses. They had plenty of people to meet at ITB: more than 180,000 people poured through the doors March 9-13, including tour operators, airline and hotel reps.
One of the hot tickets was entry to CTC’s event at the Embassy of Canada on March 10. Up to 300 guests (including travel agents, tour operators and media peeps) enjoyed some relaxed networking while being entertained by walking acts representing the provinces and territories (eg, a cowboy for Alberta, a juggler for Quebec…). CTC President and CEO Michele McKenzie also gave an update on CTC’s work and new structure.
CTC’s leading partners at ITB 2011 were Air Canada, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts (Western Canada), Delta Hotels, Tourism British Columbia, Travel Alberta, Tourism Yukon, Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership, Tourisme Québec, Northwest Territories Tourism, Atlantic Canada Tourism Partnership and Travel Manitoba.
“The Canada travel market outlook for Germany is looking pretty healthy, with a robust economy and strong consumer confidence,” says Anthony Rippingale, CTC general manager, Sales & Marketing, Core Markets. “We’re looking to build on the 7% growth seen in 2010 and ITB is an excellent way for us to put the word out and show off the magnificent trips people can make in our country.”
Small bit of back-slapping: CTC’s work in Germany gained further recognition this past February. Our team was acclaimed as one of the best 10 national tourism offices in 2010 by Touristik PR, the leading German tourism media handbook. Canada was the only long-distance destination to break into the top 10.