The ambitious target is part of Saudi’s Vision 2030, a blueprint for the socio-economic future of Saudi Arabia, designed to diversify the country’s economy and create a thriving tourism industry.
The high-profile partnership with WTM London will ensure Saudi is positioned as a key global player and leading tourist destination in the international marketplace.
Fahd Hamidaddin, CEO of the Saudi Tourism Authority (STA), said:
“With our biggest delegation of partners, projects, and destination representatives to date, our presence at this year’s WTM London is significant in positioning Saudi as one of the world’s newest leisure destinations to major international industry players. Saudi’s tourism offering is unique, diverse and undiscovered and we look forward to welcoming WTM London visitors with the hospitality for which we are known.”
“We are committed to further establishing the Saudi brand, expanding our international presence and building relationships with trusted partners who will be critical in helping us drive conversion in our key source markets.”
The Saudi delegation at WTM London will promote and drive awareness about the destination’s rich culture, heritage, and adventure tourism opportunities. At the pavilion, WTM London guests and visitors will have the opportunity to explore Saudi’s destination offering, on an interactive journey through desert landscapes and green valleys, ancient archaeological sites and the wonders of the Red Sea.
Saudi first opened its doors and hearts to international leisure tourists in September 2019 with the launch of the country’s e-visa service.
Following border closures in early 2020, STA launched its first-ever domestic tourism campaign which saw millions of residents and citizens travel to far-flung corners of the country – many used to travel abroad for vacations, were exploring their own country for the first time.
In May 2021, WTM’s sister brand Arabian Travel Market welcomed its largest-ever Saudi delegation, with 24 public and private partners and a number of significant international partnership announcements.
And by August 2021, Saudi re-opened its borders and started welcoming back tourists, 18 months after tourism was suspended due to the pandemic.
Saudia, the national carrier for Saudi Arabia, operates direct flights from Heathrow to Jeddah and Riyadh. British Airways also operates direct flights from Heathrow to Riyadh.
WTM London’s Senior Director, Simon Press, said: “WTM London is delighted to welcome Saudi Arabia as its Premier Partner for 2021. Being WTM London’s Premier Partner gives Saudi an unparalleled opportunity to promote its tourism products among key trade buyers and media from across the globe.
“With such ambitious targets and investments worth billions, it’s clear that Saudi Arabia is striving to be a key player in the international tourism market in a very short time, so its status as Premier Partner can help accelerate its rapid progress.
“As the world opens up again after the pandemic, holidaymakers will be eager for new and exciting destinations and Saudi Arabia is in the perfect position at WTM London to capitalise on the eagerness of operators and the trade to offer innovative new products as we head into 2022.”
About Saudi Tourism Authority
Saudi Tourism Authority (STA), launched in June 2020, markets Saudi Arabia’s tourism destinations worldwide and develops the Kingdom’s offering through programs, packages and business support. Its mandate includes developing the country’s unique assets and destinations, hosting and participating in industry events, and promoting Saudi Arabia’s tourism brand locally and overseas.
WTM London, the leading global event for the travel industry, is the must-attend three-day exhibition for the worldwide travel and tourism industry. Around 50,000 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international media visit ExCeL London every November, generating over £3.71 billion in travel industry contracts. In 2020, WTM Virtual facilitated 20,000+ meetings and held 42 live content sessions over the 3-days show. Next live event: Monday 1 to 3 November 2021 at ExCel London
Next WTM Virtual: Monday 8 to 9 November 2021 – Virtual
Travel Forward London is the leading travel technology event, co-located with WTM London. Travel Forward is renowned for showcasing the next-generation technologies for the travel, tourism and hospitality industry. Over 19,000 travel officials and 150+ innovative solution providers attend for 3 days of cutting-edge insights, open debate and unrivalled networking opportunities. The combination of a 2-day conference, interactive exhibition and start-up showcase makes Travel Forward truly unique.
Next live event: Monday 1 November to Wednesday 3 November 2021 at ExCel London
Next Travel Forward Virtual: Monday 8 November to Tuesday 9 November 2021 – Virtual
London Travel Week, brought to you by WTM London, is the one-stop-shop for event hosts and visitors to be able to shape the next 12 months of travel together. The festival of events supports the global travel and tourism industry through capturing invaluable news and enhancing industry connections.
Next event: Friday 29 October – Friday 5 November 2021
WTM & TF Virtual, is the WTM Portfolio virtual platform, created to offer global delegates the chance to arrange one-to-one virtual meetings, to do business, attend conference sessions and roundtables, take part in speed networking and more. WTM Virtual embrace the global leading travel shows in one platform.
WTM Latin America takes place annually in São Paulo and attracts around 19,000 tourism professionals during a three-day event. The show offers qualified content, as well as networking and business opportunities. In its ninth edition – the first 100% virtual – WTM Latin America followed its focus on effective business generation and reached the milestone of 4,200 meetings held between buyers, travel agents and exhibitors.
Next event: Tuesday 5 to Thursday 7 April 2022 – Expo Center Norte, SP, Brazil
WTM Africa launched in 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. More than 6,000 travel industry professionals attend Africa’s leading inbound and outbound travel and tourism market. WTM Africa delivers a proven mix of hosted buyers, media, pre-scheduled appointments, on-site networking, evening functions and invited travel trade visitors.
Next event: Monday 11 to Wednesday 13 April 2022 – Cape Town International Convention Centre, Cape Town http://africa.wtm.com/
Arabian Travel Market (ATM), now on its 29th year, is the leading, international travel and tourism event in the Middle East for inbound and outbound tourism professionals. ATM 2021 showcased over 1,300 exhibiting companies from 62 countries across nine halls at Dubai World Trade Centre, with visitors from more than 140 countries over the four days. Arabian Travel Market is part of Arabian Travel Week. #IdeasArriveHere
Next in-person event: Sunday 8 to Wednesday 11 May 2022, Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai https://www.wtm.com/atm/en-gb.html
Arabian Travel Week is a festival of events taking place within and alongside Arabian Travel Market 2022. Providing a renewed focus for the Middle East’s travel and tourism sector, it includes ATM Virtual, ILTM Arabia, Arival Dubai, Influencers’ events and activations, as well as Travel Forward. It also features the ATM Buyer Forums, ATM Speed Networking Events as well as a series of country summits.
WTM Global Hub, is the new WTM Portfolio online portal created to connect and support travel industry professionals around the world. The resource hub offers the latest guidance and knowledge to help exhibitors, buyers and others in the travel industry face the challenges of the global coronavirus pandemic. WTM Portfolio is tapping into its global network of experts to create content for the hub. https://hub.wtm.com/
About RX (Reed Exhibitions)
RX is in the business of building businesses for individuals, communities and organisations. We elevate the power of face to face events by combining data and digital products to help customers learn about markets, source products and complete transactions at over 400 events in 22 countries across 43 industry sectors. RX is passionate about making a positive impact on society and is fully committed to creating an inclusive work environment for all our people. RX is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. www.rxglobal.com
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