23,047 industry professionals from 79 regions of Russia visited the show – this is a 9% increase of B2B only visitors than compared to 2016.
These visitors included tour operators, travel agents and other professionals involved in the travel industry, such as airlines, transport companies, hotels and IT companies.
Turkey returns to MITT this year as the largest national group. Turkish tourism sector leaders expect over 5 million Russians to visit Turkey this year now that the sanctions have been lifted.
Other key destinations participating at MITT include Greece, Spain, Italy, Bulgaria and Thailand. New destinations for the Russian market represented at MITT 2017 included Burundi, Venezuela and Andhra Pradesh. Romania and Albania have returned to exhibit after a year’s absence.
The Partner Country of MITT 2017 was Spain. Luis Boves Martín, Moscow Office Director, Turespaña, said: “According to Spanish statistics, 1,007,709 Russians came to Spain in 2016, a growth of 2.2%. MITT is like a thermometer of the market, and this year the feeling among the tour operators and visitors is positive. They have told me they expect increases of 15 to 20% compared to last year. We are optimistic about the market – we have 20% more reservations at this point in 2017 compared to the same time last year.”
Maria Badakh, International Sales Director, ITE Group, said: “Many of our exhibitors witnessed a healthy growth from the Russian market in the past year, some even achieving double digit increases. Overall the industry has picked up and everyone welcomed the change in the show`s format into a pure B2B event.”
Ms. Badakh continues: “Turkey returning to Russia as a major destination for Russian tourists will naturally affect the performance of other destinations, but with a stronger rouble and higher oil prices there will definitely be more Russians travelling abroad this year.”
MITT 2017 also featured a VIP reception and networking event for ministers of tourism, ambassadors, local and international media representatives and Russian tour operators based in Moscow, followed by a presentation on the trends of the Russian outbound travel market by market research firm Ipsos Comcon. The presentation revealed that total spend by Russians holidaying abroad rose by 40% over 2016.
MITT will return from 13 to 15 March 2018 at Expocentre in Moscow.