Travel’s A-list chalked in for ITB

Travel’s A-list chalked in for ITB

Next week’s ITB is set to herald a sense of renewed confidence in the travel and tourism industry as the world recovers from the downturn.

This year’s exhibition includes 200 top speakers, including oceanographer Fabien Cousteau, who will be debating the future of travel at the ITB Berlin Convention from 10-12 March.

The list of speakers and participants from practical fields, science and politics, reads like a Who’s Who of the travel industry.

A touch of glamour will come courtesy of a number of royal celebrities including His Royal Highness, the Hon. Chief Mukuni of Zambia. At the Africa Forum, at a discussion round with the Hon. Najib Mohamed Balala, Minister of Tourism of the Republic of Kenya, the king will be discussing how important tourism is among the measures for combating poverty, as well as the role of development aid.

At the ITB CSR Day the world famous oceanographer and environmental activist Fabien Cousteau will be raising some fundamental issues. In the second keynote speech he will be examining whether ocean protection and tourism are friends or foes.

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Along with other participants from the travel industry, Dr. Volker Böttcher, CEO, TUI Deutschland GmbH, will examine the topic of customer experiences as regards sales, and whether CSR is simply a fake concept. Along with other panel discussion members, Pier Luigi Foschi, Chairman & CEO, Costa Crociere S.p.A., will be answering questions from the audience at a session debating whether the expanding cruise market has a negative effect on the environment.

Leading figures will also be attending the ITB Aviation Day. Dr. Temel Kotil, CEO, Turkish Airlines will hold a keynote speech opening this headline event of the world’s aviation industry.

Prof. Dr. Claudia Kemfert, Head of the Energy, Transport and Environment Department at the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), will open the ITB Global Future Summit at the ITB Future Day. Along with other experts she will be discussing the main trends as regards demographics, climate change, natural resources, technology and consumer behaviour.

Finally, the search engine giant Google will be represented at the Global Future Summit with Patrick Schönemann, Geo Sales Manager DACH & Nordics, Google Enterprise, as well as at the [email protected] Berlin Technology Convention with Javier González-Soria. The paper due to be held by the CEO of Google Travel Spain, entitled “What’s New With Google”, promises fascinating insights and a look ahead regarding the latest developments of the enterprise heading the World Wide Web.

Pocket-sized ITB Berlin

With seemingly the entire travel industry gathered in one place, even the savviest of visitor can become disorientated here at ITB Berlin. But thoughtful organisers have once again provided the helpful ITB Mobile Guide, letting visitors navigate their way easily around the Berlin Exhibition Grounds.

Provided by GIATA & TOURIAS Mobile, there is also information on the ITB Berlin Convention programmes, as well as a list of events, press conferences, presentations, receptions, and a function for looking up exhibitors. After the fair closes the ITB Mobile Guide provides users with information on the quickest way to the city centre and tips on Berlin nightlife; including information on restaurants, bars and tourist attractions.

Tourias Mobile managing director, Christoph Schotter, explained: “Applications are now a big trend in the tourism industry as well. They offer destinations, tour operators and hotels altogether new opportunities for marketing and winning customers.”

Designed for mobiles and smartphones, the clever pocket-sized trade fair companion can be easily downloaded at www.itb-berlin.de/mobil. Users downloading direct from a mobile can head to www.itb-berlin.mobi, while Bluetooth users should head for the TOURIAS Mobile Stand in Hall 7.1c/Stand 129.

ITB Berlin 2010 will take place from Wednesday 10 to Sunday 14 March. Full details of the programme can be found at www.itb-convention.com/program.