The first day of WTM Latin America highlights the impact of the metaverse and the launch of the Manifesto for Diversity & Inclusion in Tourism

The first day of WTM Latin America highlights the impact of the metaverse and the launch of the Manifesto for Diversity & Inclusion in Tourism

The schedule also explored the synergy between sustainability and luxury and highlighted the good practices of the industry’s major players.

Diversity & Inclusion, Responsible Tourism and Technology. The three cornerstones that guided the conference schedule at WTM Latin America gained dedicated theatres, with intense movement on this the first day of the event. Market professionals, guest experts and executives from other industries went up on to the theme-based stages to highlight global trends, share solutions and cause those present to stop and reflect.

One of the day’s highlights was the launch of the Manifesto for Diversity and Inclusion, a document drafted by personalities from different sectors of the tourism industry that brings together six commitments aimed at inclusive initiatives and more tolerant actions (read below). “We don’t want to distinguish between people”, stated Mariana Aldrigui, a professor and researcher linked to the University of São Paulo and a member of WTM’s Diversity Committee.

At the presentation of the Manifesto, the scholar stressed that good ideas can and should be replicated in the group, which will remain open to suggestions. WTM Latin America’s director Simon Mayle, defended the human and intercultural aspect of tourism and, consequently, the inclusion of everybody. “The role of the Manifesto is to provoke positive changes”, the director concluded.

Game changer

The Responsible Tourism theatre hosted splendid debates that revealed the synergy of its attributes with the luxury segment, in addition to sharing good practices in managing sustainability at accommodation facilities and ESG (Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance) tips for small and medium-sized businesses. Business.

Simone Scorsato, president of the Brazilian Luxury Travel Association, put high-end tourism into context, listed the actions led by BLTA on the socio-environmental front and brought in two associates to highlight the initiatives proposed in the conference “Sustainability: New indispensable item in Luxury Tourism”. The executive argued that it is necessary to include responsible initiatives in the core business and stressed that the pandemic made us appreciate simplicity and consolidated the relationship between sustainability and authenticity.

Silmara Ambrósio, from Rancho do Peixe (Preá/ in the State of Ceará), recalled that sustainability is a commitment to the environment, since the attraction of a new flow transforms the community. The trade-offs go beyond construction with minimal impact, a preference for natural materials and local labour. The venture created its own recycling centre and made the verb “to go native” become natural, which reinforces social commitment. “It’s the people who make the difference in places”, says Silmara.

Daniel Martins, from Unique Garden, states that the enterprise’s stance is to regard sustainability as a cause rather than a legal obligation. There are many actions and they include monitoring energy and fuel consumption, as well as constructing two sewage treatment plants in the complex that is located in Mairiporã (in the State of Sao Paulo). In addition to treating waste in a proper way, the hotel also generates income opportunities for local cooperatives with recyclables. Another front is an area for the conservation of wild animals.

Two of the 14 finalists of the second edition of the Responsible Tourism Award presented themselves and proved that there is indeed room for affirmative action. In addition to creating Afrotourism itineraries – a growing trend in Brazil and worldwide – Diaspora Black registers hosts for accommodation and experiences and conducts training courses on the subject. The Legal Co2 Tourism – Climate Guardians initiative, on the other hand, aims to mitigate carbon emissions by means of tourist activity in Itacaré (in the State of Bahia), in addition to offering support for organic certification and raising awareness among local people in order so that they act as guardians of natural assets. The winners will be announced tomorrow at 6:00 pm.

Antonietta Varlese (Accor Hotels), Jason Ward (Azul Linhas Aéreas) and Pedro Telles (Movida) headed up the debate on best practices in ESG. Moderated by Gustavo Syllos, the presentation stressed initiatives by companies and simple ideas that can be replicated by small and medium-sized businesses – such as hiring a consulting firm to outline viable strategies and actions, as well as the use of benchmarks. The three executives reinforced that it is essential for all departments to be involved and recalled the importance of creating indicators and measuring the results of all actions.

Destinations and technology

Chile’s training course, which is open exclusively to those taking part in the “Agent on the Road” program, emphasized the South American country’s tourism offerings. The representative Sandra Veloso, highlighted the offers in connection with snow sports, including snowkite, as well as the natural attractions and cultural offerings, on top of reinforcing that there is a lot more to Chile than just Santiago.

In the ​​Travel Tech area, Jeanine Pires dealt with the opportunities for selling trips that come out of social media. The executive announced that very shortly a B2B platform would be launched with associates along with a proposal for commissioning, 24-hour humane service, with ready-to-use templates for partners. “Obviously, social media will increase visibility and as long as you produce good content, you can reach a lot more people,” she adds.

Caroline Dalmolin covered the impacts of the metaverse, a set of virtual spaces that allow interaction with people who are not close to you. For example, having a work meeting in augmented reality and getting to know Greece from the comfort of your sofa at home is something that is very quickly becoming a reality. “Obviously, nothing can replace the real thing, the physical experience, like smelling the sea’s fragrance, for example. But this new feature will open up new possibilities in terms of experiences”, points out Meta’s executive.

According to her, Brazil is the second largest country in terms of social media consumption, which could spur technology to expand more and more. “I strongly believe in a technologically evolved future. For example, in my opinion cell phones will not be necessary and other forms of communication will be created using new tools”, she concluded.

Commitments of WTM’s Manifesto for Diversity and Inclusion: 

1 – The industry depends on peace and tolerance among peoples and should be a model in terms of adopting diversity policies. We are a real portrait of a diverse world.

2- Our aim is to be inclusive and welcoming to people. Everybody, without any distinction.

3 – We work towards increasing the participation of companies committed to social and environmental responsibility actions.

4- We will expand recognition, appreciation and dissemination actions of initiatives that are successful and inspiring for tourism.

5 – By means of studies, we will map inequality and the barriers to access to jobs and opportunities in the sector, sharing information that can help us arrive at better indicators.

6 – Prejudice is incompatible with tourism. No matter where.

About World Travel Market

The World Travel Market (WTM) portfolio comprises the main travel events, online portals and virtual platforms of four continents, and generates more than US$ 7.5 billion in business for the industry.

About WTM Latin America

WTM Latin America takes place annually in São Paulo and attracts around 19,000 tourism professionals during the three-day event. The fair offers qualified content, as well as networking and business opportunities. In its ninth edition – the first fully virtual event was held in 2021 – WTM Latin America has continued to focus on effective business generation and has reached the mark of 4,200 meetings held between buyers, travel agents and exhibitors.

For further information – WTM Latin America

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Marcia Leite (11) 9-4334 3017

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WTM Latin America is the three day must-attend business-to-business (B2B) event which brings the world to Latin America and promotes Latin America to the world.

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