Friday, April 22, 2016

WTM Latin America: Top Trends to Watch

The fourth edition of WTM Latin America in Sao Paulo concluded last month. The largest travel trade fair in Brazil brought more than 5,900 unique travel trade visitors and over 1,000 buyers from around the world under one roof.  The event is a platform for the world to visit Latin America – the success of which can be gauged with the fact that business deals worth US$363 million were transacted across the three event days.
 
Julian Lindt at WTM Brazil
Like previous year, I was there to meet clients and prospects and interact with peers in the industry. Given Brazil will be hosting the Summer Olympics in Rio this year, we witnessed an increased number of hoteliers at the show looking for solutions and opportunities on how they could maximise from the upcoming events.

Julian Lindt and Alex Moura with a partner at WTM Brazil
According to Brazil's state-owned tourism agency - Embratur, an estimated 380,000 international tourists are expected to visit the country during the Olympic Games. Brazil welcomed over one million foreign visitors during the FIFA World Cup in 2014 and from then has continued to see an increased number of travellers visiting the country.
With such high demand, hoteliers see the growth prospects in the region and many hotel brands have started new projects to cater to these visitors.  The total number of hotels and condo hotels in Brazil in 2015 was pegged at 10,050 and total available rooms at 500,212. Hotels are looking to increase the room supply before the Summer Olympics to ensure they meet the demand effectively.
With more than two million people visiting the country every year and over one million expected to travel, hoteliers need a strong online distribution strategy to reach out to the global travellers for maximising revenues.
Julian Lindt is the Latam & Caribe Sales Director at eRevMax. He can be reached at julianl@erevmax.com
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