Our round-up of some of the noteworthy conference events at WTM London this year.
Responsible Tourism – How Much Progress Have We Made?
The BBC’s Tanya Beckett hosts a panel of female leaders to consider how much progress has been made towards achieving sustainability in the travel sector. Has the emergence of women leaders in travel and tourism companies made a difference to responsible tourism? Wednesday 11.15-12.00, Europe Inspiration Zone – EU8
The Best Use of Social Media 2018
Join us for the Awfully Entertaining Social Media (Awesomes) of 2018. In 2015, it was Iceland with its brilliant Ask Gudmundur campaign, while in 2016 it was Visit Finland and its Polar Night Magic campaign. In 2017 it was the Faroe Islands’ Translate Project. Will the accolade head to the North Atlantic again in 2018? Wednesday 15.40-16.30, WTM Global Stage – AS1350
Travel Advice Essentials From ABTA and the FCO
This aim of this session is to explore FCO travel advice and raise awareness of the different elements within its country advice. As well as the importance of informing customers about advice before and after they make bookings, this will examine what to consider if the advice changes for customers who have booked and for those already at the resort.
You will also get an insight into ABTA’s role in working with the FCO. Wednesday 10.30-11.30, UKI & International Inspiration Zone – TA190
PR Campaigns With Impact – Lessons From Leading Marketeers
Chaired by Frank Marr, this panel will discuss how travel PRs and marketers can learn from other sectors, new tactics and how to create impactful campaigns. The panel includes Conrad Bird, GREAT Britain Campaign director behind one of the UK’s biggest and most effective global marketing campaigns of all time. Wednesday 12.45-13.45, UKI & International Inspiration Zone – TA190
Food Tourism & ABTA’s Make Holidays Greener
The volume of food and beverage-packaging waste that is created by consumers, including travellers, is shocking and surprising. ABTA has put together one of the world’s best programmes to help drive awareness of the issue and help improve the situation. In this TV talkshow-style interview, World Food Travel Association’s executive director, Erik Wolf, will interview ABTA’s senior destinations & sustainability manager, Clare Jenkinson, about ABTA’s programme. Wednesday 14.00-14.30, UKI & International Inspiration Zone – TA190
Destination Challenge 2018 – Pitches
WTM London and the Digital Tourism Think Tank (DTTT) are working with I Amsterdam and Paris Tourism to bring the brightest minds of industry visionaries together to help solve one of the biggest issues in tourism. The question at hand: how can we overcome the challenge of overcrowding in tourism hotspots and spread the value of tourism wider? Wednesday 15.00-16.30, Europe Inspiration Zone – EU80
USA and the LGBT Tourism Market: Where Next?
Using the latest USA LGBT2030 research data – an expanded presentation of the latest LGBT2030 data from Out Now – this results-focused event shines a light on individual traveller feedback as well as big-picture data to let you know what’s happening in this market. Wednesday 12.30-13.30, Americas Inspiration Zone, LA360
With the growth in experiential tourism, there is a growing awareness of the scale of the contribution which well-managed tourism can make to local economic development. This event, moderated by WTM’s responsible tourism advisor, Harold Goodwin, looks at the increasing understanding of indigenous tourism. Wednesday 15.05-15.50, Americas Inspiration Zone, LA360
World Responsible Tourism Day Opening: Hear from South Africa’s Minister of Tourism
The post-apartheid democratic government adopted responsible tourism, understanding that the industry could create employment and offer development opportunities in rural and urban areas. Derek Hanekon, South Africa’s minister of tourism, will reflect on the country’s initiatives and why this approach matters. Wednesday 11.00-11.15, Europe Inspiration Zone – EU80
Jordan: a World Leader in Gastrodiplomacy
Jordan has a culture of using food as a tool to foster understanding – evidenced in the use of the phrase karam, which translates as generosity, or that ‘the guest is king’. The result is that visitors leave Jordan with the impression of a respectful, hospitable and peace-loving country. This session will show how to leverage an area’s food and drink offering as gastrodiplomacy. Wednesday 15.30-16.00, Middle East & Africa Inspiration Zone – AF190
An Exclusive Preview of Expo 2020, Featuring the UK Pavilion
With just two years to go before its opening, Expo 2020 will preview why it will be a must-visit event. In addition, for the first time, Laura Faulkner OBE will describe to the travel trade the incredible design and detailing of the UK Pavilion. Wednesday 10.30-11.00, Middle East & Africa Inspiration Zone – AF190
Leveraging Destination Brands to Attract Higher Value Travel Customers
This session will explore the business case for strong destination brands, how tour operators can align their product and experience offerings, plus methods for measuring impact. The session will involve a facilitated discussion with marketing strategists from select DMOs with audience participation. Wednesday 10.30-11.15, Asia Inspiration Zone – AS1070
The Wellness and Wellbeing Hour – Asia
Global Wellness Tourism Economy 2018 study authors Ophelia Yeung and Katherine Johnston will examine the detailed data and unique trends driving Asia’s record growth in this vital wellness sector. It will be followed by discussions on global wellness travel trends, crystal sound healing experience and meditation. Wednesday 14.30-15.30, Asia Inspiration Zone – AS1070