Maldives exhibits at top Italian and African fairs

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The Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation participated in top tourism fairs in Italy and Africa to promote the Maldives destination brand.

The MMPRC was joined by nine co-exhibitors from the tourism industry at the BIT Milan from 10 to 12 April. Organised by Fiera Milano since 1980, the event brings together potential investors as well as tour operators and travel agents with VIP clients from the leisure travel Industry.

“Participation in this event is aligned with our marketing strategies for the Italian market which focuses on promoting the natural geography of the scattered Maldivian islands which offer the ultimate safety and privacy for tourists,” according to the MMPRC. “It also aims to market our products including resorts, hotels, guesthouses and liveaboards and the unique experiences available in the Maldives for tourists. Such events also provide MMPRC the opportunity to relay the latest travel guidelines, safety measures in place at our facilities to the travel trade and travelers interested in choosing Maldives as a preferred destination for their business and leisure travels.”

The Maldives welcomed 27,309 tourists from Italy last year, a 41.5% decrease as Italian borders remained closed and travel corridors were only established in late September 2021. But as of 6 April, 31,898 holidaymakers have arrived from Italy, representing a share of 6.9% as the fifth-largest market.

The MMPRC is also promoting the Maldives at the World Travel Market (WTM) Africa 2022. The leading global tourism event in the African continent, WTM is hosted at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) in South Africa’s capital from 11 to 13 April. More than 6,000 travel industry professionals are expected to participate in the WTM flagship event, which offers a platform for investors, sellers, and media representatives to connect, network, and hold pre-scheduled meetings. One of six shows in the WTM portfolio, WTM Africa was launched in 2014 under the Africa Travel Week umbrella.

Together with the MMPRC, the Maldives is represented by 11 co-exhibitors: W Maldives (Sheraton Maldives Full Moon), Robinson Club Maldives, Villa Hotels & Resorts, Capital Travels & Tours, Cocoon Maldives, Travel Escape Maldives, Sun Siyam Resorts, Soneva, Resort Life Travel, Brennia Maldives and Let’s Go Maldives. 

“Through this event, MMPRC targets to increase penetration for various tourism products, including luxury resorts, hotels, guesthouses and liveaboards from the African market,” the tourism promotion company explained. “We also aim to market the luxury experiences available in the destination, promote the unique scattered geography of our islands which provides natural social distancing for visitors, making it one of the safest destinations to vacation. Participation in this event is aligned with MMPRC’s marketing strategy for the African market. This strategy is based on maintaining destination momentum and increasing bookings and arrivals from this market while providing the latest information of the destination and guidelines for the travel trade and potential travelers.”

Tourist arrivals from Africa grew 70% between 2019 and 2021 with South Africa ranked the 17th top market last year. The MMPRC also participated in WTM Africa Virtual 2021 and organized two media familiarisation trips for African journalists last year. A marketing campaign is presently ongoing in collaboration with Air Seychelles whilst upcoming activities for the African market includes roadshows in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban, two media familiarisation trips, and online training for travel agents as well as campaigns with tour operators and joint promotion with top airlines.