Climate change, inclusive tourism, and artificial intelligence: main topics at FITUR 2024

From January 24th to 28th , was held the international tourism fair FITUR, in Madrid Spain. In its 44th edition, a total of 9,000 companies, 152 countries, and 806 exhibitors attended this international event to share knowledge and experiences, create business opportunities and discover new destinations .

Climate change, inclusive tourism, and artificial intelligence: main topics at FITUR 2024

FITUR stands out as the global epicentre of tourism markets, offering a comprehensive platform for brand promotion, the launch of new products, the exploration of the latest trends and the creation of strategic alliances in the sector.

SIPPO collaborated closely with ProColombia and Acotur during FITUR 2024, focusing on effective participation in the fair, to encourage the increase of European tourism to Colombia, and supporting efforts to position Colombia as a sustainable tourist destination worldwide.

The Swiss Import Promotion Program (SIPPO) accompanied ProColombia and Acotur (Colombian Association of Responsible Tourism) in strengthening capacities and identifying needs in terms of training to enhance tourism exports from Colombia, “the country of beauty” towards European markets.

On January 11th, SIPPO held a preparation workshop with ProColombia and more than 35 businessmen, to strengthen Colombian companies that participate in this great fair, in methodologies and tips to establish business contacts, close agreements, promote their tourism products and stay up to date on sustainable tourism trends in Europe.

Among the contents addressed in the workshop were: Main tourism trends in Europe and how to respond to them from the presence of the Colombia destination at FITUR 2024; How to use market intelligence in the design of sustainable and competitive products for the international market; Preparation of presence at the fair and promotional materials; Definition of the USP (Unique Selling Proposal); identification of buyers and sellers at the fair; among others.

At the opening ceremony of the Colombian stand at FITUR 2024, the president of ProColombia highlighted that 42 Colombian tour operators and 32 artisanal tourist routes participated in this great fair with the suport of Artesanías de Colombia.

At this international fair, relevant topics such as climate change, inclusive tourism, sector governance and the use of artificial intelligence and new technologies were addressed.

FITUR Results 

Imagen resultados FITUR EN

The fair was enriched by its wide range of conferences, presentations and workshops on topics of common interest, aimed at trends in the tourism industry that have highlighted the importance of the dynamism of the sector through the use of new technologies, consolidation of public-private alliances, fostering circular economy, etc.

Among the topics addressed throughout the event, SIPPO highlights 7 main ones that are of great importance for the sector:

Imágen temas relevantes FITUR EN
  • Artificial intelligence (AI) is coming to play a leading role in the tourism sector. AI will help filter and model micro-personalization in the information offered to tourists, depending on their particular interests.
  • Current websites are going to tend to disappear, since they are often configured as simple catalogs, and the market is now requiring hyper-personalization of content.
  • The virtual assistants that are beginning used, serve to collect much more information from the client, and thus redefine personalized content strategies. It is increasingly important to know the specific interests of the tourist, which allows generating an emotional connection and subsequently triggering the customer's purchase decision.
  • Sustainability in products and destinations is no longer enough. Tourism is being considered as a sector that can regenerate destinations, redistribute tourist flows and revive that tourist offer that is being relegated by the great tourist attractions.
  • Tourism as a great linker of different industries has a very great potential to promote and strengthen a circular economy. In this sense, aspects such as: consolidating public-private alliances, having detailed environmental and social planning, considering small milestones that allow the benefits to be seen, there must be a specific area in charge of these issues, thinking about the circular economy must in a positive language rather than imposed.
  • The UNWTO together with the IDB, launched an observatory of Tourism Law for Latin America and the Caribbean, in order to know the tourism rules and regulations in each of the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, to be able to face challenges such as those that have brought platforms such as Uber or Airbnb to the industry, or regulatory challenges on circularity and neutral carbon issues, or hotel classification that in practice is no longer done by official entities, but rather by platforms such as Trip Advisor or
  • Within the framework of the fair, in association with the UNWTO, launched online courses on sustainability for accommodations.

According to the Ministry of Commerce and ProColombia, these were the preliminary results of FITUR 2024:

  • More than 40 Colombian businessmen held 874 meetings with companies from 36 countries, including England, the United States, Thailand, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, France, among others.
  • Preliminary business expectations worth more than US$30 million were achieved.
  • Colombia took the title of best Inclusive International Destination in the first edition of the FITUR4all awards.
  • Activations were carried out in the Madrid Metro (Colombia station) and in Plaza Callao, under the narrative “Colombia the country of Beauty”, which reached both Madrid residents and tourists of other nationalities who visit the city.

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