BBTF: Blurs boundaries, expands trade

The fourth annual Bali and Beyond Travel Fair (BBTF) recently hosted 174 sellers from Indonesia, including tour operators, hotel chains and resorts as well as provincial tourism offices, representing the country’s tourism and hospitality industry along with 264 buyers from 54 other countries.

Bali and Beyond Travel Fair (BBTF) was founded in 2014 with the vision of creating Indonesia’s very own international travel fair. Unlike other countries, Indonesia has over 17,000 islands; vast cultural heritage, including customs, traditions, art and culinary; and an unmatched natural beauty. Promoting such a vast destination across the world is quite challenging, hence, the Bali and Beyond Travel Fair was launched, with the sole purpose of inviting buyers from all over the world to experience the country first-hand and see the potential of each destination so that they will know how to explain it later on to their customers. BBTF has become the only forum that brings potential buyers from around the globe – with special interest in Indonesia – to meet the travel agencies, tourism offices, tour operators, hotels, resorts and all the tourism industry from Indonesia in a B2B setting, to talk about potential mutual business collaboration with each other.

Ketut Ardana, Chairman, BBTF, explained, “The fourth BBTF this year was an overall success. We included several additional programmes to the main programmes, aimed to attract our media participants and to give our sellers the opportunity to present their products and services to the attending media. The Ministry of Tourism showcased the new 10 potential destinations beyond Bali and we got good feedback on that as buyers have now started looking at more destinations to visit. If this goes well, Bali will surely be the tourist hub for Indonesia – before visitors venture out further to other destinations.”

This year, BBTF also hosted several pre-event tour programmes with the support of Ministry of Tourism, another step to realising their goal and let the buyers experience the destinations themselves. This was helpful for them to find out whether the destination is ready for international market so that they could bring it back to the Ministry for review and development. As a buyer from the Middle East region, Gessy Gitapuri, Chief Executive, MichiDe International, shared that BBTF is an amazing platform for quality sellers and buyers to do real business together. “This is where the rhythm is intense yet effective, providing day-packed appointments to each participant with meticulous planning A to Z. The entertainment locations are hand-picked, providing world-class service, cuisine and sceneries from the magical island of the gods, Bali. It is definitely a pleasure and an honour for MichiDe International–Luxury Expert from Dubai to join forces with BBTF!” she said.

The Middle East market is already an important market for Indonesia, however, they hope to increase the number of visitors by creating more destinations that are potential for ME market to consider. MICE is an option for them to focus more on for ME market as it covers a healthy spread of business across the board. They still need to deeply research the trends and interests within the ME market further to make sure that they are able to provide the right products and services. John Hardy Bali Workshop Experience and Boutique as a luxury shopping destination is a special feature which would attract the ME travellers. It is an experience where customers are invited to see how their artisans create each piece of jewellery entirely by hand using traditional techniques unique to Bali. The workshop in Bali is an expression of the John Hardy values of upholding artisan communities and environmental sustainability, as well as the rich heritage of Bali which continues to inspire the brand. Polly Purser, Director of Heritage, Hospitality and Public Affairs–John Hardy shared that they support the BBTF in preserving and celebrating what is authentic to Bali and Indonesia. “We support BBTF to develop luxury tourism in Bali and Indonesia which highlights sustainability and cultural preservation. ME travel trade can send guests/travellers to John Hardy workshop and showroom. At the John Hardy Workshop and Boutique in Bali, guests can join them for one-of-a-kind experience where they will discover the heritage and evolution of John Hardy brand, learn more about sustainable architecture and environmental sustainability initiatives,” Purser said.

Indonesia Tourism has grown significantly over the past years, which also supports the growth of hospitality industry in the country. Biznet Hospitality is a service that offers integrated solution of Biznet Dedicated Internet and Biznet Cable TV services for hotels, dormitories, service apartments and hospitals. Biznet Dedicated Line service offers premium Internet access service that can be distributed via wired or wireless solutions throughout customers’ property. Speed options are customisable that can be easily installed an upgraded without disrupting business daily operations. Adi Kusma, President Director, Biznet, shared, “Internet has become a necessity for almost everyone, including those who are on holiday but still need to be connected with their loved ones. We are hoping that Biznet Hospitality service can support the growth of tourism industry in Indonesia by providing hotels and resorts with super-fast Internet connection with high-quality cable TV, which will certainly provide better entertainment and experience for guests and customers.”

Bali has a lot to offer, from shopping destinations to private luxury getaways in various locations around the island, hillside, mountain top to beachfront luxury. Business owners in the tourism industry understands the need of the (ME) market. Gusti Ngurah Swijana, Resort Manager, Wapa di Ume Resort and Spa, explains their strategy to obtain more clientele from the ME region, “This is our second year at BBTF. We are focusing in exposing our brand to the market, upselling our current property in Ubud and presenting our new property in Sidemen (Karangasem). Wapa di Ume Resort and Spa is 4-star hotel. Middle East market is very important to us as those clients are looking for luxury relaxing escapes. They are willing to spend more time in the resort and in resort dining. We are expanding the market to ME by joining the trade show and do more intensive marketing with more exposure.”

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