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Celebrations all round at day 2 of WTM Africa 2015

Celebrations all round at day 2 of WTM Africa 2015 ( Day two of Africa’s largest inbound and outbound b2b show has yet again been a huge success, proving that Africa is a trendy and emerging market in terms of both travel and tourism sectors of the industry. The WTM® Africa floor was buzzing from the time the doors opened until the final meetings and networking sessions ended at 18:00.

Adding to the success of business done on the second day, was the engaging content that came out of the exciting events programme. Key issues and trends within the industry were presented and discussed via interactive networking sessions and panel discussions such as the Responsible Tourism Speed Networking Session, the ASATA Western Cape Chapter Meeting and Young Professional in Travel Networking Session, Rhino Art’s presentation highlighting the rhino crisis and Wendy van der Byl’s presentation on the SADC Univisa between Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Angola.

Also included in the day’s line-up was Keith Jenkins, CEO of iambassador’s and Velvet Escape, panel discussion on best practice from both blogger and industry perspective. “I came to WTM® Africa first and foremost to discuss the relationship between blogging and industry in terms of best practice, with a keen focus on professionalism within the blogging industry. I also wanted to assist in educating the industry on the value bloggers provide tourism on an international platform. WTM® Africa was very well received with a huge interest in Social Media in terms of destination marketing,” comments Jenkins.

According to journalist, Sharon Gilbert-Rivert, who attended WTM® Africa 2015 says, “This show is an absolute must for discerning tourism businesses looking to connect with equally discerning members of the travel media. This is where the real business of tourism takes place.

At the forefront of responsible and sustainable tourism in South Africa and Africa is Hotel Verde. The Hotel is extremely happy with the success they have found at the showcase since it began yesterday. “We came with large expectations for this year's WTM® Africa which have been more than exceeded. The quality of the hosted buyers and buyers’ club have proved to be extremely impressive, providing us with a lot of potential business. There has been so much interest in what we do and in sustainability and responsible tourism in general which is wonderful to see.”

Some exhibitors have already seen the value in exhibiting at WTM® Africa and look forward to returning in 2016. Miriam Seriani, the Reservations Manager at BlueBay Beach Resort, Zanzibar says, “I’ve enjoyed it a lot. I already have three confirmed bookings and one large group booking of 50. We will definitely be coming back next year as it has been such a big success!”

Lesotho’s Tourism has found the show to be extremely successful for the destination thus far. “The World Travel Market is the premier exhibition for destinations on the continent. As the only African destination to boast the highest abseil in the world and the only premium skiing resort in Africa, we are proud to offer our unique experience to tourism professionals across the African continent. For those wanting to offer their clients the ultimate experience Lesotho presents a compelling value proposition.”

A big highlight for WTM® Africa was the African Responsible Tourism Awards. The heroes of responsible tourism in Africa were honored at the inaugural African Responsible Tourism Awards Ceremony, sponsored by Wesgro, at WTM® Africa. The winners for 2015 are:

• Best for poverty reduction – Grootbos Private Nature Reserve&Transfontier Parks Destinations
• Best for Resource Management – Chobe Game Lodge
• Best for beach tourism – Chumbe Island Coral Park
• Best destination for responsible tourism – Gansbaai Tourism
• Best for engaging people&culture – Coffee Beans Routes
• Best for wildlife conservation – Marine Dynamics
• Best blog for responsible tourism – The Good Holiday

Congratulations must also be given to all the WTM® Africa 2015 exhibitor stand award winners – The City of Cape Town, Wakanow, Namibia Tourism Board, Green Pop and Incredible India.

Tomorrow, guests and visitors can look forward to a jam-packed day filled with interesting such as WTM® Africa’s renowned Speed Networking Session, The Code’s discussion on whereby leading tourism industry stakeholders officially signal their support for the protection of children from the worst exploitation. Also included in tomorrow’s line-up is how resource efficiency cuts costs and improves the bottom line as well as a presentation by SATSA CEO David Frost on how to leverage the direct buying power more effectively with trade.

Catering for both inbound and outbound markets, WTM Africa, which ends on Friday, April 17, is open to all those involved in the travel industry to attend at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.

If you haven’t had a chance to visit the show yet, April 17 is the last day you can. To find out more about WTM Africa, click here:

MEDIA CONTACTS: Lloyd Orr Communications, Tel: +27 11 702 9601, Shelley Martin, ; Chantal Nieuwenhuizen,

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