The Arabian Travel Market arranged the first digital ATM advisory board meeting

Published on : Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Recently, the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) had arranged the first digital ATM advisory board meeting, with the major blow of the pandemic on tourism and hospitality sector being the main issue of the discussion.


The board will constantly guide on industry themes, challenges, growth opportunities and future strategies in the Middle East travel and tourism, nevertheless, this be placed against a backdrop of COVID-19 in the present scenario and how the industry can get accustomed to the “new norm.”


To quote Danielle Curtis, exhibition director ME, ATM, “The advisory board is a cross section of industry leaders who provide an insight based on firsthand experience of the trends impacting the tourism industry. Their knowledge ensures ATM continues to act as a voice for the industry by providing support and direction during these difficult times.”


“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the travel and tourism industry, like many others, to a halt, with very little indication of when the recovery will begin. It is therefore imperative we continue to listen and understand where we are as an industry, what the future could potentially look like and what we can do to work together to aid the recovery when it comes. ATM continues to play a crucial role in supporting the industry to achieve this.”


The meeting mainly talked about the impact of COVID-19 on international trade show arena while discussing on the main business learnings during the pandemic and the possible changes to the industry. Also, it provided a deeper insight into the “new normal” for the tourism sector, and the move towards dealing with new steps in regards to social distancing, reliance on domestic tourism and the impact of airline restrictions.


In the meeting, three phases of recovery were identified. Phase one will primarily aim on domestic travel and local market, the second phase will be regional travel, and to end with the international market when borders of the respective countries open again.


Also, it was agreed that for those who want to travel, social distancing, health, hygiene, and safety will be prioritized over offerings. To that effect, hotels will be subject to out and out sanitization and the execution of complete social distancing in restaurants and at all public facilities.


It is being considered that customers will demand additional information on the way hotels or restaurants support and re-train staffs, among others, the way tables are serviced or the implementation of new housekeeping procedures. A complete overhaul of the entire marketing effort along with product development and service offerings to change in the coming days that would give confidence to the consumer.


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