South Asia’s leading travel and tourism show – SATTE 2015 – witnessed an exciting participation at Delhi’s Pragati Maidan from the best of national and international travel brands.
National participants included Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat and Goa. Besides, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha were other state players who experienced a good enough response. There was an array ofinternational destinations which included Israel, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia, The Maldives, Japan, Korea, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, Maldives and The Venetian Macao amongst others.
SATTE 2015 looked quite pepped up with an increasing number of participation this year from Philippines, Central Asia and Bihar Tourism for the first time, further to the usual domestic players such as Rajasthan Tourism. Chhattisgarh Tourism was another vital yet offbeat entry which is slowly making its way towards becoming a popular tourist destination for inbound tourism.
Joji George, MD, UBM India, in an official statement said: “The huge surge amongst the industry players for SATTE 2015 is the result of new government’s renewed thrust on tourism as one of the significant industries to contribute towards employment and revenue generation. The Ministry of Tourism has already initiated a series of marketing initiatives to make India as a must-see tourism destination. SATTE expects to welcome a record number of buyers for its 22nd edition. After being bracketed as a vital sector by the new government in this year’s Union budget, the Indian tourism industry is looking forward to a positive year, giving the industry more than enough reason to be at SATTE 2015.”
Joji is indeed true. His sentiments are echoed well by the participating exhibitors. A travel agency from Bhutan told this blogger: “We are quite upbeat about SATTE and the response has been fairly good. This will definitely help us promote Bhutan as a tourism destination in the years to come.”
Pallavi Mehra, Associate Commercial Director, UBM, the company managing and hosting SATTE 2015 while speaking exclusively to this blogger, said: “There are more than 650 exhibitors participating in SATTE 2015 at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi. At least 26 state tourism departments and 35 international destinations took part.”
“People are tired of the usual Rajasthan and Agra tourist circuits. They are looking for something different, unusual and offbeat,” said an exhibitor from a state tourism department.
However, a travel agent shares a different experience. The travel and tour agency from Himachal Pradesh, who didn’t exhibit this time at SATTE said: “We have chosen not to participate this time, since there are a few back to back travel events in February. We are participating in TTF, Mumbai and TTF Delhi.”
Interestingly, SATTE 2014 gathered 10,000 business meeting request between buyers and sellers. It also witnessed 11,529 travel and tourism trade professionals, including pre-registered and hosted Indian and international buyers and business visitors. On being asked about the response in SATTE 2015, Pallavi said: “There has been an increasing interest and the participation and response has been more than 40 percent compared to last year,” while adding: “Bihar Tourism participated for the first time and I have heard their department’s secretary saying that ‘SATTE was an eye opener for them’. They surely want to participate again next year and are quite impressed by the response they witnessed this year.”
SATTE was also promoting itself on the digital and social media harnessing the immense power of digital media and engaging with the larger and wider audience. On twitter, SATTE was actively conversing with the online audience from its official handle@satte_india and using the hashtag #SATTE2015 to communicate and engage with the public.
Says Pallavi: “SATTE is the best travel event in India that the travel and tourism industry is witnessing.”
What next from SATTE Delhi? “We are taking the event to Mumbai and opening up for the western region. The Mumbai edition of SATTE is on 18-19 August, 2015. Mumbai is very crucial from the tourism perspective. The western region contributes to at least 60 percent of outbound tourism and the timing of the Mumbai edition is kept keeping in mind the tourism’s seasonality. We are expecting more than 100 exhibitors in Mumbai,” Pallavi signs-off.