With over 600 exhibitors from 55 countries & regions and nearly 60% of its 45 official pavilions came from countries outside Asia, last year, ITE & ITE MICE attracted over 10000 trade visitors in its two trade days. Among them, respectively around 22% and 15% were from mainland China and abroad, and the rest from Hong Kong. Around 55% of the trade visitors were travel agents or operators, while corporate buyers and visitors accounted for 17.5%.
The Travel Expo in Hong Kong thus excels itself by being a truly international trade fair covering the Asian market as a whole, unlike others which often focus only on the market where they are being held. This will be most convenient and cost effective, particularly to those sellers and buyers who can not afford the time and can attend only a few travel trade fairs in Asia.
The next ITE will be held from June 14 to 17 while ITE MICE from June 14 to 16, 2007 at halls 1A, B, C and halls 2A & B at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre, which is located in the city centre. The first two days are for trade only while the remaining days open to public.
The strong supports by the travel industry, the long history of ITE and that it is being held in the strategically located city of Hong Kong contribute to its relative success.
Among ITE & ITE MICE’s supporters are China National Tourism Administration (CNTA), Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB), Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong (TIC) and Macau Government Tourist Office (MGTO), with Cathay Pacific Airways and DragonAir as Official Airlines and sponsor the hosted buyer program. Several outbound associations in Asia help either by promoting ITE & ITE MICE or organizing buyer delegations. The last ITE & ITE MICE were officiated by the Chairman of CNTA and the Economic Secretary of Hong Kong, and attended by several tourism ministers from Europe and Asia.
In its twenty-first edition this year, the annual ITE is among the earliest of its kind in Asia and started way back in the Eighties when traveling has still not been popularized. ITE has always included business and MICE travels but to attract more corporate visitors, these parts are now being organized as a separate but concurrent trade fair named ITE MICE since last year. This unique combination of leisure and business / MICE travels proves to be popular as they can not be clearly separated.
Hong Kong is widely known as a modern international city where English is also an official language. However, few aware that it is among the world’s top 15 source outbound market despite its relatively small population of 7 million. In fact, including trips to abroad and overnight trips to mainland China and Macau, the number of such trips made last year by Hong Kong residents totaled around 30 million. If day trips to neighboring cities are also being included, the total will have exceeded 70 million. Hong Kong’s GDP per capita last year stood at US$27100, and ranks among the highest in Asia.
Public visitors of ITE & ITE MICE can also be of interest too as from survey at the expo, over 60% of them traveling in FIT and 21% went to destinations outside Asia in their last leisure trips. The survey also found that respectively 58% and 36% have made two or more overnight leisure and business trips in the past 12 months.
The organizer, TKS, expects to attract more new official pavilions from Americas, Middle East and Eastern Europe while some past exhibitors will increases scale of their participation as well. Thus, ITE & ITE MICE this year will be bigger and have more to offer.
Besides official pavilions, exhibitors of the expos include also hotels and resorts, theme parks and other attractions, travel agents, tour operators, trade media, airlines, cruise, spa and hot springs, transportation, and convention centers and other MICE facilities etc. There will also be practical trade seminars, press conferences, business matching, and social functions for networking. The organizer also provides assistance to organize presentations in the expos and in publicity such as free distribution of press releases etc..