Tourism professionals from 39 countries will arrive in Bogota on Thursday for the 2013 Colombia Travel Mart to promote their country’s tourism opportunities and also learn about Colombia’s exciting tourism options.
The Travel Mart is part of the larger Vitrina Touristica ANATO 2013 – an international tourism conference being held in Bogota from February 27 to March 1.
The two-day Colombia Travel Mart organized by Colombia’s ministry of commerce, industry and tourism in conjunction with Proexport Colombia, will attempt to promote Colombia as a tourism destination.
Organizers say that 223 Colombian tourism professionals will be on hand February 28 and March 1 to pitch tourism and convention packages to foreign companies interested in promoting Colombia as a tourist destination in their home country.
Colombian tourism professionals have scoured the country to determine which of the many exciting destinations they want to highlight in their two-day, giant sales pitch. They took into account categories like gastronomy, convention tourism, culture, sun and beaches, nature, golf and luxury.
“Unique first hand experiences are one of the best ways to persuade wholesalers to sell in their countries tour packages that our [tourism professionals] offer. The 200 [Colombian] wholesalers who take these familiarization trips will tour the country, fall in love with each of the regions and then have all the arguments for making [their pitches] at the business conference,” said Maria Claudia Lacouture, President of Proexport.
The number of countries coming to Colombia for the Travel Mart increased by 30 percent from last year, according to Proexport, and some newcomers include China, Poland, Switzerland, Surinam and Holland. The Travel Mart has been taking place in Colombia for seven years.
In respect to the Vitrina Touristica ANATO conference as a whole, Melissa Rangel Nunez, coordinator of communications for ANATO told Colombia Reports that the western department of Huila will be a highlight in 2013. “The department of Huila will release its crafts, dishes, national parks and ecotourism. It will be a tourism showcase filled with memorable good times and surprises,” said the coordinator. She also said that the United States will be showcasing their own travel packages to foreign tourism wholesalers which will include a trip to a Broadway show in New York, New York.
The event is open to the public this year on the conference’s final day, March 1, with an entrance fee of around $5.50.
ANATO Website (Asociacion Colombiana de Agencias de Viajes v Turismo)
Proexport Colombia Website (Proexport)
Press Release from Proexport
Interview with Melissa Rangel Nunez, coordinator of communications for ANATO