Riyadh Travel Fair (RTF) 2018, Saudi Arabia’s leading travel industry showcase, concluded its tenth edition at the Al Faisaliah Hotel, Riyadh held from April 10-13, 2018. Bander’ Al Gryni, General Manager, ASAS Exhibitions, shares highlights of the event with TravTalk.
Q) Could you share a brief about this year’s RTF?
Having received over 30,000 visitors this year, RTF continues to be Saudi Arabia’s largest domestic and outbound tourism promotion event. The four-day event focused on business networking opportunities, seminar sessions, discussions and recognition of the industry’s achievements.
Q) Was this year’s event any different?
The 2018 edition has been the largest on record with an increase in both the number of exhibitors and visitor arrivals. More than 270 exhibitors were present representing more than 50 countries. Over 50 national and regional pavilions had a prominent presence with the show floor space also increased by 10 per cent compared to the 2017 event.
Q) What was the theme of the event?
The theme for this year was ‘Innovation’. Last year, RTF featured 270 exhibitors with visitor attendance at 27,329. That was an increase of 30 per cent compared to the 2016 edition. This year continued our year-onyear growth as exhibitors hit over 270 and visitor numbers increased to over 30,000.
Q) What were the new features this year?
For the first time this year, RTF 2018 hosted Scandinavian tourism boards such as Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland as well as Greece, among others. Tanzania and Spain debuted at RTF 2018, joining other European and African tourism boards including Czech Republic, Poland, Bosnia, Greece, Turkey, South Africa, Egypt and Tunisia. While Asian markets appeared to increase its presence in this years show floor, North and South East Asia featured prominently during RTF 2018 too with the participation of Japan, Korea, The Philippines, Indonesia and Singapore.
Q) How would RTF contribute towards Saudi’s 2030 vision?
We fully support all travel and tourism industry players here in KSA to strengthen their inbound tourism products whist empowering them by providing insights and platform to exchange business with other nations that could potentially lead to a progressive business development.