What happens when 1,000+ Asia Pacific travel industry delegates from more than 60 countries gather in one place for three days? Aside from talking, promoting and, of course, booking trips, it’s literally a plethora of tourism. Day in day out the whole event at this Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Travel Mart 2016 only envisioned more people to travel, explore and experience the destinations.
Jakarta is chosen to be this year’s host after Bangalore’s turn last year. Each year, delegates representing tourism organisations, tour operators and travel media gather to support PATA’s responsible tourism development mission. Unlike other travel exhibitions, this event changes host every year, showcasing destinations across Asia Pacific and the cultural diversity, and bringing almost everyone together in the region’s tourism industry in the same time.
Founded in 1951, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is a not-for profit association that is internationally acclaimed for acting as a catalyst for the responsible development of travel and tourism to, from and within the Asia Pacific region. The Association provides aligned advocacy, insightful research and innovative events to its member organisations, comprising 95 government, state and city tourism bodies, 29 international airlines, airports and cruise lines, 63 educational institutions, and hundreds of travel industry companies in Asia Pacific and beyond.
The Ministry of Tourism Indonesia took the opportunity as this year’s host rather well by introducing Kapal Phinisi, an iconic ship made by the Bugis and Molucca tribes in Eastern Indonesia. The ship would sail very far to trade natural produces back in the days, which showcases Indonesian skill of ship-making. The ship is now more widely used as means of tourism, with onboard guided trips to, say, Raja Ampat, Indonesia’s crown-jewel of diving destinations. It’s no secret that most travellers know Bali or Lombok, so the Ministry promoted rising destinations such as Komodo Island, Toraja, North Sumatra and also the capital, Jakarta.
PATA also does annual award ceremony to recognise the industry’s most successful campaigns. This year, Tourism Authority of Thailand received Grand and Gold prizes for their integrated travel marketing push. The “One and Only” campaign, which invited travellers to discover Thainess and share their experiences, won the Grand Awards under the Heritage and Culture category while the Thailand from the Air book received the Gold Awards under the Travel Journalism – Travel Guide Book category. We featured Pattaya, Hua Hin and also what’s good to eat at the bustling Bangkok, so it is needless to say, Thainess is discovered easily through this campaign and the convenient access from and to other Asia Pacific countries.