Maldives Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators (MATATO) has announced plans to host destination stands for Maldives at two major travel trade fairs in Asia.
In a statement, MATATO said destination stands would be hosted at Vietnam International Travel Mart (VITM), which is scheduled to take place in Hanoi from March 27-30, and at Worldmaster International Travel Mart (WITM) Philippines, which is set to take place in Manila and Cebu from April 1-3.
This is the second consecutive year that MATATO is hosting a destination stand for Maldives at VITM, which is considered the leading travel and trade event in Vietnam. In 2017, six Maldivian companies exhibited at VITM along with MATATO.
More than 10,000 people are expected to visit the fourth edition of VITM this year, whilst over 500 exhibitors from 25 countries are set to participate in this event.
Vietnam is in the midst of a consumer boom thanks to the quick rise of its middle class. In a country of 95 million people, middle class will make a third of the population by 2020. This will represent some 33 million people from a current 16 million. GDP per capita is likely to rise to over USD 3,000 compared to USD 1,800 at present.
This economic book has had an effect on tourism, with a sharp rise recorded in outbound travel from Vietnam. A new report from consulting firm Euromonitor points to the fact that outbound tourism from Vietnam has been growing over the past few years at an annual rate of 10 to 15 per cent. From 4.2 million overseas trips in 2012, Vietnam’s total outbound reached 7.5 million departures in 2018.
Meanwhile, the seventh edition of WITM Philippines is expected to witness the participation of over 400 exhibitors. This exclusive B2B event targets hoteliers, tour operators and travel agents, and is designed to showcase competitive buyers keen to promote inbound and outbound travel services, discover travel innovations, and extend partnerships with the best travel industry experts in the world.
Filipinos made 5.1 million trips out of their home country, to at least 42 destinations last year. These departures are leisure in nature, and the figure will obviously be bigger if departures for working purposes were considered.
In addition to these two exhibitions, MATATO will also be taking Part in Riyadh Travel Fair 2019, the leading travel event in Saudi Arabia. The fair is scheduled to take place from March 28-30.