The 247 newcomers hail from all four corners of the globe and represent every travel sector, including airlines, tourist boards, luxury resorts and technology specialists. They range from large corporations to small-business entrepreneurs who have spotted a gap in the market for a new product.
Together they will contribute to some of the 1.1 million on-stand meetings that are expected to lead to more than £2.5 billion worth of deals being agreed during the four days of the show, at ExCeL, from November 2-5.
Flag-carriers such as Avianca and Kuwait Airways and high-profile tourist boards from as far afield as Orlando, Tokyo, the Caribbean and Scotland are among the newcomers. All nine WTM regions will host new exhibitors, with North America welcoming one of the world’s most recognized carriers – United Airlines – and the official tourism association for the most visited destination in the US – Visit Orlando.
The Caribbean region welcomes four new exhibitors: the hugely influential Caribbean Hotel&Tourism Association; hotel group Palace Resorts; inter-island carrier Trans Caribbean Air and the Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board.
Latin America has six new exhibitors, including Colombia’s flag-carrier Avianca and Brazil’s Caiman Ecoturismo, while Asia has wooed eight new exhibitors, including representation firm Khiri Travel; the Tokyo Convention&Visitors Bureau and a new tour company Pegu Travels, which offers experiences in Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, fast becoming a popular tourist destination.
Two well-known UK tour operators – Premier Holidays and Cosmos Holidays – are among 39 new exhibitors in the Europe area. Others include Ticket Bureau; Ibiza’s tourism promotion agency and Liberation Route Europe, an international remembrance trail that connects important milestones from the Second World War.
The UK and Ireland zone has 12 fresh faces including VisitScotland, which is taking its own stand for the first time; Norfolk Broads boating holiday firm Herbert Woods; B2B accommodation specialist Vanilla Tours; and group travel organizer The Group Company.
India, sponsor for the WTM Buyers’ Club, and Africa have attracted 12 new exhibitors each, including Hotel Pushkar Palace in Rajasthan and the tourism department of the state of Telangana in India, plus Morocco’s tourist board and the West Midland Safari Park, representing Ongava Game Reserve in Namibia, in the Africa region.
Middle East has 10, including major players such as Kuwait Airways; the tourism office of the Kingdom of Bahrain; and Dubai Parks&Resorts – which will open three theme parks and a waterpark in 2016, including Legoland Dubai.
The Global Village section will have 24 new exhibitors this year, including accommodation specialists such as Getabed, and TUI’s Destination Services – Hotelbeds Group; Fox Rent A Car Reservation System and several hotel companies, such as NH Hotel Group and Hard Rock International.
Other events within WTM London 2015 also welcome new exhibitors: The Travel Tech Show at WTM London has 40, while A Taste of ILTM at WTM London has 19 new exhibitors. New technology brands range from large, well-established suppliers of travel technology such as Atcore to start-ups such as software technology development company Celigra.
Among many well-known upmarket names that will take part in the luxury show this year are Small Luxury Hotels of the World; Culloden Estate & Spa; Beverly Hills Conference&Visitors Bureau; Fairmont Hotels&Resorts Kenya; and South Africa’s Sun International, which has five-star hotels, casinos and resorts in its portfolio.
One newcomer, an upmarket transfer company called REAL, which launched earlier this year, has chosen WTM London 2015 to launch to the trade. Director Jon Ghaemian said: “We are hugely excited to be attending WTM. This is the first major travel related event we will be attending since launching earlier this year. We have already contacted a number of WTM attendees and arranged meetings and we are looking forward to finding ways that we can jointly maximize any opportunities.”
WTM London, Senior Exhibition Director, Simon Press said: “The fact that WTM London has signed up almost 250 new exhibitors shows how immensely important the global travel trade sees this event.
“The variety of new exhibitors is impressive, with small, entrepreneurial start-ups to tourist boards to well-established global operators and everything in between. With many opportunities to network and conference sessions that cover the whole spectrum of the industry, there is no better place to do business than WTM London.”