ATF hosting process slammed as top longhaul buyers miss out

THE QUESTION of who should be hosted at ATF has arisen as some of the biggest European producers to ASEAN were rejected as hosted buyers, shocking these big-timers and creating a debate on how TRAVEX should strike a balance between old and new buyers going forward.

Of the more than 400 buyers at TRAVEX, which kicks off today, about 300 are hosted, but major travel groups such as Germany’s Meier’s Weltreisen, Thomas Cook UK and The Mark Travel Corporation US did not make the cut for the first time in years. Trade buyers have to pay their own airfares and are accommodated free only on a first-come-first-served basis.

Deputy director of the Cambodia Ministry of Tourism’s marketing and promotion department, Lor Thoura, who oversees the hosted buyer selection, said: “We had 1,000 people registering as buyers, but our main target for the show is Asia-Pacific buyers and we have limits on the number of buyers we host for each country and region.

“We select who to host on a first-come-first-served basis and once we get enough, we don’t accept any more. Some big operators from Europe may not be hosted if they register later than others.”

– Full story in TTG Asia, January 28

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