Published on : Tuesday, June 1, 2021
The Hybrid PATA Adventure Travel Conference and Mart 2021 was launched on Wednesday, May 26, 2021 through both on-ground, in Clark, Philippines, and online formats. The two-day niche event attracted 582 delegates from 53 destinations in attendance including international delegates comprising 56% of the total. With both travel mart and conference elements, the B2B trade mart welcomed 67 seller organisations from 13 destinations and 65 buyer organisations from 28 source markets.
The event, which was organised by the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) in partnership with Platinum Sponsor, the Philippine Department of Tourism, brought together international experts at the forefront of the adventure travel industry to explore the nuances, trends and dynamics of one of the fastest-growing tourism sectors.
Over the two days, delegates heard from a diverse line-up of speakers under the theme ‘Re-Generation for the Adventure Industry’. The innovators and pioneers, who are shaping the emerging landscape of the adventure travel industry, examined various topics that covered ‘The Re-Generation Opportunity”, “Delivering what the next generation of adventure travellers want”, “Recalibrating Tourism’s Standards”, “Can local cuisine drive travel recovery?”, “Ensuring a more equal recovery”, “The future of online experiences”, “Putting our communities first”, and “Resiliency is the new sustainability”.
The conference was opened by Soon Hwa Wong, Chair of PATA, and Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat of the Philippines Department of Tourism.
“In a span of a few months, the pandemic radically transformed the operating landscape of the global MICE industry. Despite the challenges, we are thankful for the opportunity to partner with PATA in organizing this travel mart and conference in a hybrid format as we continue to pursue a safe reopening of the Philippines’ tourism destinations. We acknowledge the commitment and continual support of PATA for the industry’s fast and effective recovery through the various technical assistance, information sharing and capacity development activities they have rolled out,” commented the Minister.
Other confirmed speakers for the event included Benito C. Bengzon, Jr., Undersecretary, Philippine Department of Tourism; Carmen Roberts, The Travel Show Presenter, BBC World News; Natasha Martin, Adventure Tourism Expert; Dan Sandoval, Co-Founder, Perspective China; Deeya Bajaj, Director of Operations and Business Development, Snow Leopard Adventures; Jessica Yew, Co-founder & Director, Sticky Rice Travel; Bob Zozobrado, Chairman, PATA Philippines Chapter; Erik Wolf, Founder & Executive Director, The World Food Travel Association; Leila Calnan, Sustainable Tourism Expert, Chemonics International; Sarah Mathews, Group Head of Destination Marketing APAC, Tripadvisor; Jeremy Sampson, CEO, The Travel Foundation; Graham Harper, Special Advisor for Sustainability & Social Responsibility, PATA; Ann Dumaliang, Managing Trustee, Masungi Georeserve Foundation; Andreas Hofmann, Project Manager, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ); Dr. Trevor Girard, Director of Standards & Accreditation, Hotel Resilient; Jessie F. McComb, Tourism Specialist, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Dr. Mario Hardy, former CEO, PATA and Liz Ortiguera, CEO, PATA.
“I would like to sincerely thank all our delegates and speakers for joining us to discuss, analyse and share their various ideas in planning, building and promoting a responsible travel and tourism industry, particularly as we look toward the restart of travel post COVID-19,” said Dr. Hardy. “As the last official PATA event for me as the CEO, I would also like to thank the Philippines Department or Tourism for the valuable support not only for this event but during my entire time in office. I would also like to thank our various sponsors, partners, PATA members and staff who all worked hard to organise this highly successful event. It has truly been an honour to be able to work with you all.”