More than 200 overseas travel buyers will be flying into the UK to attend VisitBritain’s British Travel Trade Fair - with potentially huge benefits to the British economy. Many of them will also take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy the unique appeals of different areas of Britain on dedicated ‘familiarisation’ visits.
The annual BTTF, staged by World Travel Market organisers Reed Travel Exhibitions, takes place at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham on March 1st and 2nd.
Now celebrating its 21st anniversary, BTTF is the UK’s premier business-to-business travel and tourism exhibition, focussed exclusively on domestic and inbound travel.
VisitBritain chief executive Tom Wright commented: “The continuing appeal of the UK as one of the world’s leading destinations is underlined by the interest being shown in BTTF by these all-important overseas travel buyers.
“It is particularly pleasing to note the enthusiasm being shown in developing markets, where VisitBritain has been breaking new ground in recent years.”
VisitBritain will be hosting 215 international buyers at the show, a more than 50% increase on 2005 with more than a quarter of them from the Asia-Pacific region. Of those, 28 are flying in from Hong Kong and China, which is widely recognised as a market with huge tourism potential for the UK.
“We are also very pleased with the attendance from North America, with 25 delegates making the transatlantic trip,” says Wright. “It is no secret that there has been a downturn in the market, especially from the US, in recent years. This renewed interest in tourism to Britain is very encouraging.
“The UK currently earns around £13 billion a year from incoming tourism, and BTTF is playing a vital role in increasing those earnings, with real benefits to the country’s national, regional and local economies.”
Some 400 exhibitors are expected to take part in BTTF, showcasing their products and services to an anticipated 2,500 visitors.