As one of Signify’s core sectors is travel, a visit to this year’s World Travel Market exhibition at the Excel was essential for us. Not only did the show provide an inspiring trip around the world experience for our team of avid travel enthusiasts through its awe inspiring stands, but as marketeers at heart the WTM provided us with first hand insight into global travel marketing. From what the current state of play is to the upcoming travel trends for 2023 and beyond.
WTM invites exhibitors from all over the world for 3 days of intriguing industry networking at the Excel in London. The stands include everything from interactive experiences that immerse you into an environment from halfway across the globe to friendly tour promoters, hotels and local experts providing invaluable insight into their areas of expertise.
The focus for our team was to learn, network and absorb as much as we could while we wandered from Italy to Croatia, over to Florida, Egypt, Cuba, Vietnam and just about everywhere else in between!
The abundance of information to take on board was immense. If you missed the show, then we fully recommend putting the date in your diary for next year. But never fear – here are 3 key things we learnt from our visit to WTM 2022…
It’s all about sustainability
This almost goes without saying and couldn’t be more front of mind for the organisers, exhibitors and the visitors themselves. With a number of talks on sustainable travel and business, there were also key elements of the show that focused on this core theme.
The Sustainability Hub just a hop and a skip from the vast Columbia stand provided a place for visitors to relax and learn about sustainable travel. Alongside this many exhibitors adopted the sustainable theme as a core part of their overall messaging. In terms of the marketing world, sustainability continues to grow as a key player in the narrative moving forward.
The people are the real draw
Yes, the stands were incredible and around every corner there were audible ‘wow’s from our team as we explored the floor. But what really stood out to us was the people on the stands and their expansive knowledge. WTM truly is a chance to meet travel marketing experts from all around the world and whether you are speaking to a tour operator from Thailand or the global head of marketing from a world leading airline, the value of personal stories and insight is second to none.
Our team spent time talking with a whole host of exhibitors who shared their first-hand knowledge and insight into what customers and clients are looking for from their travel experiences.
Travel is well and truly back
Speaking with many people from the show, the overwhelming message was the feeling of elation around the fact that the travel community is back and the excitement that they have for the opportunities ahead.
Many people spoke of the time during covid as an era of review and assessment for their businesses, which means that over the coming years we are set to see many new ways of thinking, technologies and new experiences emerging from the travel market. Alongside this, the sense of community was clear – a genuine feeling of collaboration, not competition.
So how can we sum up this year’s team trip to WTM? Interesting, inspiring, delicious food, incredibly welcoming people and a captivating show overall! If you are interested in hearing more about what we learnt, get in touch with our team and we would love to chat to you about our thoughts for the next year of travel marketing trends and what to expect from this resilient and growing sector.