Record number of participants are expected at ITB with 10,856 exhibiting companies from 183 countries.
ITB Berlin continues to grow - India, Arab states, South America have larger display areas.
There is now a new “ITB Supply” and “Immovest,” while the ITB Convention Market Trends & Innovations includes Hospitality Day and [email protected] for first time.
The ITB Berlin (8 to 12 March 2006) is taking place for the 40th time on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds.
Productive business, friendly contacts and innovative ideas have been a tradition at this event on the Exhibition Grounds since 1966.
In recent years the ITB Berlin has evolved from simply renting out display space and has now become a modern competence centre for the travel industry.
It provides an accurate reflection of the industry and gives a fresh impetus to the international travel trade.
At no other event can exhibitors and visitors representing every link in the value-added chain be found in such numbers, ranging from service providers to tour operators and carriers, and over 180 countries.
Dr. Christian Göke, COO of Messe Berlin: “In recent weeks the signs of an economic recovery have become more evident and the mood among consumers continues to improve. This gives a boost to the ITB Berlin 2006 and will no doubt be reflected by positive commercial results.”
Each year the ITB Berlin brings worldwide supply and demand together with great success. “Various studies have also forecast a positive impact on tourism in Germany as a result of the FIFA World Cup 2006?, one of the greatest sporting events taking place in Europe this year. Tour operators have prepared some attractive offers for this period to give an additional lift to business this summer.”
Record number of exhibitors and increased display areas
The ITB Berlin continues to expand in 2006: 10,856 exhibitors (firms, enterprises and institutions) from some 180 countries and territories will be presenting their latest tourism products on an overall display area of 150,000 square metres.
Following the growth of the last few years this represents a further increase of 4.3 per cent (2005: 10,409 exhibiting companies).
The entire Messe Berlin exhibition site is occupied, forcing more exhibitors to increase the height of their displays, and there has been a 25 per cent increase in the number of two-storey stands at the ITB Berlin 2006.
Among the countries requiring more space this year is India, which is occupying an entire hall (5.2) for the first time, covering an area of 2,000 square metres.
The Arab states are also using 35 per cent more display space, while the increase in the case of South America is around 40 per cent. The Czech Republic and TUI are also exhibiting on larger stands.
New countries and new display sections
The ITB Berlin 2006 welcomes new countries and exhibitors too. Timor Leste, formerly known as East Timor, and Afghanistan will be meeting the industry for the first time at the world’s leading travel trade fair (Hall 26, Stand 127).
Following a long absence Macedonia (Hall 2.1, Stand 108) and North Korea (one of the exhibitors on the PATA stand Hall 26, Stand 103) have returned as exhibitors.
The Caribbean has always been strongly represented, and this year Cancun (Stand 210) and Riveira Maya (Stand 211) will also be exhibiting in Hall 3.1.
Making their first appearance in the new ITB Supply section are the holiday and hotel project Blue City from Oman (Hall 22, Stand 109), the German vacation cruise company Vivamare Urlaubsreisen (Hall 14.1, Stand 107), the Spanish television station Canal Andaluc’a Turismo (Hall 1.2, Stand 102), the Royal Bank of Scotland, RBS (RD Europe) GmbH (Hall 7.1b, Stand 1) and the German manufacturers of windows and solar installations Schüco International KG (Halle 7.1c, Stand 101).
This fair is constantly adapting to reflect current trends and innovations and is again introducing a number of new sections this year. ITB Supply (Hall 7.1.c) features the service sector at the ITB Berlin with a wide spectrum of suppliers.
Opportunities are now available on the Exhibition Grounds for discussions with the representatives of interior furnishers, designers, the manufacturers of technical installations, appliances and equipment, as well as the suppliers of foodstuffs and service providers from areas such as sales promotion, advertising, financing and market research.
There has been a very good response to the wellness sector, which is strongly represented with all kinds of products from spa textiles to cosmetics for hotels. A separate Wellness hall has been set up this year complete with a stage, various presentations and an accompanying Experts’ Forum in Hall 16.
Immovest (Hall 15.2) is a special trade fair for holiday properties and second homes which makes use of the synergies derived from the many different activities at the ITB Berlin.
It is intended for exhibitors engaged in the development, management and financing of projects, architecture and consulting, as well as those involved in selling and managing real estate. The accompanying convention (on 9 and 10 March in the ICC Berlin) deals with trends and developments in a number of countries from Germany to Dubai, Turkey, Spain, France and Croatia.
Expansion of the ITB Convention Market Trends & Innovations
The ITB Convention Market Trends & Innovations, the world’s largest specialist convention for the travel industry, continues to expand.
This year the five-day programme includes 180 speakers and 60 separate events.
The convention provides some valuable ideas for decision-makers in the industry.
The list of speakers reads like a who’s who of the tourism industry and includes Michael Frenzel, Sir Rocco Forte and Stelios Haji-Ioannou, the founder of easyjet.
The ITB Hospitality Day is being staged for the first time. This one-day event provides a forum for the hotel industry, which is regularly represented by all the leading groups each year at the ITB Berlin, and it is an ideal place for exchanging view and information about the latest trends.
Among the events taking place again this year are the ITB Aviation Day and ITB Marketing and Sales Day.
For its entire duration the fair will feature destinations such as this year’s partner country, Greece, the well-established forums on Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America, regions currently experiencing a boom in business such as India and Russia, and new trends, for example “Destination Shopping” and “Space Tourism”.
The travel technology sector is now known as [email protected] and is being presented in a completely new way in partnership with a well-known consultancy from the USA, PhoCusWright Inc.
With the introduction of the lounge in Hall 8.1 the Business Travel sector has much more to offer this year now that the ITB Business Travel Days have been extended to cover all five days of the fair.
This section has now acquired a far more international dimension and all its events will be in German and English, with simultaneous interpreting being provided.
The ITB Berlin 2006 is collaborating with VDR-Akademie to present a broadly based programme to provide access to increased knowledge on the subject of business travel. Details of the entire convention programme can be found on the internet at www.itb-kongress.com.
Information and entertainment for the general public
The ITB Berlin not only offers unique opportunities for trade visitors to make contacts, conduct business and obtain information, it is also an opportunity for the general public to learn about the latest travel trends and obtain guidance in the increasingly diversified world of travel.
The ITB Berlin 2006 has undergone major re-organisation and from the Wednesday to the Friday it will now be open exclusively until 1 p.m. to trade visitors.
After this time the general public will be admitted to obtain ideas for their next holiday.
Another new feature this year is intended to appeal to the palate, with something for everyone: sushi, Bavarian cooking, Thai food, Indonesian specialities, a Vienna coffee house, exotic fruit cocktails and Czech beer.
On the Canary Islands stand (Hall 1.2/205) there will be demonstrations of the art of cigar rolling. Greece is the partner country at the ITB Berlin 2006 and with its Greek Kafenion (Hall 1.2/2.2) it will also be bringing some of the southern lifestyle to the fair.
To mark the 40th anniversary of the ITB a prize draw will be taking place in Hall 4.1. Everyone with an admission ticket is automatically entered.
There are a thousand travel-related prizes to be won from city breaks to cruises. And a really special prize: astronaut training in Cologne, and a visit to a Mission Control Centre, either at Nordwijk in the Netherlands or in Oberpfaffenhofen in Germany.
The top prize is a FIAT Panda Racing sponsored by the Italian National Tourist Office (ENIT) in Germany.
For the first time the ITB Book World is being merged with the Cultural Tourism section (Hall 4.2) to present an even wider range of attractions, and as a new feature books will be sold here too.
This year more than 20 cultural destinations from around the world will be featured, including cities, arts festivals, and museums such as the Museum Folkwang in Essen, the Kunsthaus Zürich, the Breslau Opera, the Dubrovnik Festival, the cities of Vilnius, Basel and Malaga, Santiago de Compostela and the Spanish world cities of culture. The accompanying programme on the stage, entitled “Showtime for Culture” will include Dervish dancers from Istanbul, soloists from the Dresden Staatsoperette and the Breslau Opera, and videos showing the latest production by the Cirque du Soleil.
By rail, 1st Class, to Berlin and back for 69 euros
As the official partner of the ITB Berlin 2006, Germany’s national rail company, Deutsche Bahn, is offering all visitors 1st class return travel between any DB station in the country and Berlin from 7 to 13 March 2006 for just 69 euros.
Tickets can be booked, quoting the reference “ITB 2006”, via the hotline 01805 - 31 11 53 (12 ct/min. on Deutsche Telekom landlines).
Open days for the public, prices, information
The fair will be open to the public on Friday, 10 March 2006, from 1 to 6 p.m., and on Saturday, 11 March 2006 and Sunday, 12 March 2006, between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.
The cost of a day ticket is 13 euros, and they are also available online for just 11 euros. The Happy Friday ticket costs 6.50 euros. All the details about the ITB Berlin can be found at www.itb-berlin.com.
An overview of the various sections of the tourism market
The International Tourism Exchange ITB Berlin 2006 provides its trade visitors with a forum that meets the needs of specific target groups, for discussions about current market developments, with an emphasis is on the main sectors of the international tourism market:
1. Cultural Tourism (Hall 4.2)
For increasing numbers of people the choice of holiday is determined by the cultural attractions of a particular destination, and culture forms the main focus of attention among the holiday attractions and short breaks offered in Hall 4.2.
2. Forum Wellness (Hall 16)
The global trend for wellbeing and health continues unabated. The Forum Wellness has been explaining some of the complex issues associated with “wellness” since 2004.
3. Training and Employment in Tourism (Hall 5.1)
The ITB Employment Exchange, in collaboration with IST-Studieninstitut GmbH, provides exhibitors and jobseekers with ideal facilities to help them find employment in the tourism industry. German and foreign universities, technical colleges and vocational schools, research institutes and other service providers are presenting details about the opportunities for study and educational advancement in tourism.
4. Cruises (Hall 14.1)
Ocean and river cruises form an expanding sector with increasing sales that is being presented in a compact form at the ITB Berlin 2006.
5. Travel Technology (Hall 6.1)
This international meeting place for the industry presents global distribution systems, tour operator databases, reservation systems, technological solutions, ticket consolidators and calculation programs.
6. Book World (Hall 4.2)
The leading platform for travel guides and maps for anyone planning business travel, city breaks, beach holidays, individual or adventure travel, or preparing a route.
7. Trends & Events (Hall 4.1)
This innovative communication platform brings together sections such as the Youth Travel Centre, Experience Adventure, ECOTourism and Travel for the Disabled.
8. ITB Supply (Hall 7.1c)
The platform for businesses engaged in supplying the tourism industry is being introduced for the first time at the ITB Berlin 2006 with a wide spectrum of exhibitors.
Immovest (Hall 15.2)
The Trade Fair for Holiday Property and Second Homes forms part of the ITB Berlin 2006 and has its own accompanying convention in Halls 4/5 at the ICC Berlin.