A total of 107 countries and almost 7,000 companies are represented this year at the 42nd edition of the International Tourism Fair (Fitur) of Madrid, with the Dominican Republic as a partner.
Fitur, one of the main tourism fairs in the world, which was presented this Tuesday in the Spanish capital, will begin on the 19th and will remain open until the 23rd.
In the midst of a wave of coronavirus in Spain, the fair is committed to the online and face-to-face celebration, and aims to send the message that tourism must regain its leadership.
Of the 107 countries that attend Fitur, 70 attend with official representation, and the rest are represented by companies or as tourist destinations.
Dominican Republic, in record number of tourists
The Minister of Tourism of the Dominican Republic, David Collado, present at the presentation of the Fair, highlighted that the country’s president, Luis Abinader, will attend this edition of Fitur, in which the country tries to show the world that its model it is a sign that safe tourism is possible. “We have played responsible recovery,” he said.
The fourth quarter of last year had the best tourist influx figures in its history, Collado said.
For the Dominican Republic, tourism represents 15% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which generates 899,000 direct and indirect jobs. 60% of the hotel rooms (about 70,000) are of Spanish capital.
Recover the leadership of tourism
With a total of 600 exhibitors, Fitur aims to generate confidence in the market, encourage the travel sector and highlight the importance of business tourism, according to the organizers of the show.
In addition, with the objective that the tourism sector must regain its leadership as a lever for development and live safely with the new situation derived from the COVID-19 pandemic.
This year’s participation figures stand out, standing at levels very close to those prior to the pandemic, since eight pavilions will be occupied (last year there were only three), with a net exhibition area of 56,700 square meters and with representation of all Spanish regions.
As usual, the first three days will be attended only by professionals, while the weekend will be extended to the general public.
At the presentation of the Fair – the only one in the world that has not stopped being held in any year due to the pandemic – the president of the Ifema executive committee, José Vicente de los Mozos, highlighted his organization, which shows that “it is possible to keep alive the economic activity without affecting security ”.
Attendees at Fitur, both professionals and the general public, must present either the COVID certificate, in the case of those from the European Union, or the Spain Travel Health QR code, which allows entry into Spain from non-EU countries, or a negative test (OCR or antigens) done in the previous 24 hours. It will be mandatory to wear a FPP2 mask.
Some 60,000 professionals are expected
With 600 exhibitors and 6,933 companies, the fair aims to generate confidence in the market, encourage the travel sector and highlight the importance of business tourism, the organizers of the show report.
The organization highlighted that the participation figures are at levels “very close” to the appointments prior to the pandemic, since eight pavilions will be occupied (last year there were only three) with a net exhibition area of 56,700 square meters.
Of the 107 countries, between destinations and companies, that come to Fitur, 70 attend with official representation. In 2020, just before the pandemic was declared, there were 165 countries.
Ifema foresees that around 60,000 professionals and 30,000 public people will visit the venue next week, well above 2021, but below 2020.
Face-to-face participation is completed with a digital platform, Fitur LIVEConect, which is operational from December 20 to February 4.
The novelty of the fair will be Fitur Cruises, which will present its offer to the public, so diminished by the pandemic.
At the same time, the Helixa platform will also be activated for the first time, a technological-artistic installation that will allow visitors to create in real time their avatar, a personalized digital twin with which they will be able to interact on digital platforms and in the metaverse.
As in previous editions, Fiturtechy will be a space for the dissemination of knowledge and innovation, with four forums on business, destinations, sustainability and future trends.
Fitur Know How & Export, organized by Segittur with the collaboration of ICEX; Mice (business tourism); Screen (to show the connection of tourism and cinema), LGBT +; Talent; Woman, Lingua and TRavel Technology are the other forums that will take place during this fair.
On the margins of the fair, the XI Exceltur Tourism Leadership Forum and the XXIV edition of CIMET will be held, which will bring together the main Ibero-American tourism ministers and entrepreneurs.
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