Can ITB Berlin 2002 Maintain Its Leading Status?

The International Tourism Exchange ITB Berlin 2002, taking place on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds and in the ICC Berlin from 16 to 20 March, continues to fulfil a vital role in stimulating the international tourism industry.

The travel and tourism world trade fair will provide a clear indication of the future direction to be taken by the travel trade worldwide. Experts predict that the ITB 2002 will help to revitalise the summer season and assist with plans for successful business in 2003. Once again the ITB Berlin will demonstrate the effectiveness of its recipe for success at this event, which is the ideal means of bringing together supply and demand from around the world.

The ITB Berlin
is a market leader and one of the major fairs staged by Messe Berlin. Applications by companies and organisations wishing to exhibit at the ITB 2002 have remained at a constant level. Over 9,000 exhibitors from 180 countries and territo-ries will be presenting their tourism attractions and services on an overall display area measuring 150,000 square metres. Messe Berlin is again expecting some 50,000 trade visitors to attend.

The International Tourism Exchange ITB Berlin 2002 continues to offer its trade visitors a target-oriented forum where the latest market developments can be debated. It also focuses on various market segments within the international tourism industry.

Almost all of Germany`s airports are represented in the segment devoted to “Airlines/Airports”. Many of the airlines that had their own stands at the ITB 2001 have returned to the ITB 2002, but as contributors to their countries` national stands.


Following the events of 11 September the organisers of “Cruises” saw a decline in bookings. This has also had an impact on the number of participants in this segment. A total of 13 companies from Germany, Greece, Italy, Austria and Russia have registered to attend at the ITB 2002. There will be other exhibitors from the USA, and the companies M.S.C. Kreuzfahrt

and Seetours

are staging their own presentations along with numerous co-exhibitors.

The Cultural Tourism hall is again under the patronage of the Minister of State for Cultural and Media Affairs, Prof. Dr. JuIian Nida-Rumelin. The European Cultural Tourism Prize is being awarded here for the first time.

A regular feature of the range of information and services available at the travel and tourism world`s fair, the ITB Tourism Studies Centre will be celebrating its 10th anniversary at the ITB 2002. A total of 48 universities, vocational schools, technical colleges and private institutions from 9 countries will provide a representative cross-section of training and advanced training opportunities on a national and an international scale of unrivalled depth and scope. It includes the specialist congress “Progress in Tourism Research”, which has met with such a good response in the past that it is being held for the third time in 2002. Distinguished tourism researchers and practitioners will be discussing current issues of interest to the tourism industry.

The IST- Institute for the Study of Sport, Leisure and Tourism, Dusseldorf, will be staging an employment exchange for the first time on its own stand at the Tourism Studies Centre.

In recent years the ITB Travel Technology segment has proved indispensable as a source of information for trade visitors with an eye on the future. In the business-to-consumer sector exhibitors will include the representatives of commercial television for the first time, whose activities include “Travel Sales Programmes”. The Deutsche Telekom travel portal will also be introduced for the first time.

The various aspects of tourism involving travel for young people will be dealt with in the segment “ITB Young Travel 2002 led by an international association, the FIYTO (Federation of International Youth Travel Organisations

) and by RUF. The “ITB Young Travel Centre” for children and young people has been expanded to include young adults, in response to increasing demand and the changing require-ments of young travellers.

The “Sustainable Travel Exchange - Travel with sense” will contribute significantly to a greater awareness of environmentally and socially compatible tourism attractions among those in the tourism industry itself, among the travelling public, and in the public at large. This year it will feature 20 exhibitors, who will be presenting practical examples of environmentally and socially compatible tourism in a European and an international context.

This fair has a record of supporting environmentally and socially compatible tourism that goes back many years and has been featuring exhibitors in this field since 1983.

Exhibitors at the ITB Berlin use this fair as an opportunity to conduct face-to-face dis-cussions with the experts, and as a means of establishing whether their offers and services are commercially acceptable. This is also an opportunity to talk with interna-tional partners about collaboration, prices, terms and planning. More than ever the international tourism industry values the high volume of business and the many con-tacts that take place at the ITB Berlin.

All these facts indicate the context in which the International Tourism Exchange ITB Berlin should be viewed. This Berlin trade fair reflects activities in a truly worldwide industry, and its value as travel and tourism`s world fair is undiminished.
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