of the oldest and most successful travel trade shows and exhibitions in
Asia, the PATA Travel Mart faced some heavy criticism when the show
closed in April 2002. The quality of buyers was down, exhibitor
confidence was down, in fact overall support for the 2003 show was
said it was the fact that the exhibition, which traditionally rotated
from country to country, was now based in Singapore for 10 straight
years, others that the timing of the show was wrong, and there were
those that said a combination of both factors were an influence.
the reason, the 2003 PATA Travel Mart was perhaps one of, if not the,
most important marts in the shows history. PATA had to prove that the
mart could attract quality buyers, the right number, and right quality
of exhibitors, and deliver good value for money for everyone attending.
after the end of the 2002 PATA Travel Mart, PATA announced that the next
exhibition would be in October 2003, a radical change from previous
years when the show was normally held in April. This gave PATA a much
needed year and a half to create a winning formula and rally support.
PATA also announced that it would be managing the mart by itself, after
Reed managed the event for five years from 1998 to 2002.
were being made fast and furious, with perhaps the most welcome
announcement of all being that the mart would once again start rotating,
with the 2004 mart being held in Bangkok, and on from there.
was indeed welcome news. Rotating the PATA Travel Mart enables buyers,
sellers and media to experience new destinations first hand, to meet
local smaller sellers and buyers that would perhaps not travel to
overseas events and injects a certain amount of fun into the whole
should not interpret this as Singapore failing as a destination. Far
from it, Singapore is possibly one of the most well organised and
enjoyable countries in the world to hold an exhibition or mart, and each
year it came out trumps, never failing to impress on all fronts.
a travel mart aimed primarily at the leisure travel trade, movement can
only be a good thing, it allows those in the industry to see and
experience different destinations on an annual basis, ensuring we are
all kept in touch with the latest developments of each country.
how was the PATA Travel Mart 2003 - did PATA manage to revitalise the
show, build confidence in its future? There is one simple answer to this
question and that is, yes, they surpassed it.
the 2003 PATA Travel Mart was not the busiest travel mart you will
attend, but that did not matter as the quality of buyers attending the
show was simply excellent.
2003 PATA Travel Mart attracted some 190 buyers, 213 exhibitors and 92
media from all over the world. For this show though,
numbers mean nothing, and quality means everything. If an exhibition or
mart can attract such quality buyers, then it is sure to succeed, as
that is what the exhibitors or sellers are looking for, someone they can
do some serious business with.
all however was positive, PATA needs to do some work with its partners,
mainly the airlines who offered special rates but were unwilling to
change itineraries or upgrade even though some buyers offered cash to do
so. With such quality buyers it must be understood that business class
or even first in some cases is generally a way of life, and being forced
by the airline into economy is a not a wise business decision.
however are small matters that we are sure PATA will work out. It has
already proved that it has overcome much greater problems and has been
able to revitalise one of Asia's oldest and much needed travel
exhibitions, and next years mart held in Bangkok is expected to be even
note we have a full list of all the other major Travel
Trade Shows and Events from all over the world with dates and other
reviews and information.